Since the pevious threads had become so entangled and intertwined, I figured it was time to try to refocus. Today I ran across a blogger I hadn't known before, Arthur Silber. I urge anyone with a desire to firther their knowledge of current events to read him. A Quote: The general terms in which the numerous and profound intelligence failures preceding the Iraq invasion are now being discussed create a very great danger. Without realizing they're doing so, even many strong critics of the Bush administration's foreign policy are making a preemptive attack on Iran more likely rather than less, perhaps an attack that utilizes even tactical nuclear weapons. I'm not speaking here of the "misuse" of intelligence by Bush and others, although it is beyond dispute that they misrepresented, distorted and even lied about many aspects of Iraq's purported WMD (and probably most or even all of them) and that they heard what they wanted to hear, even from sources no one else believed. The Bush administration led an extensive propaganda campaign designed to make the American public believe that Iraq constituted a very serious danger that could no longer be countenanced and that, in the wake of 9/11, action had to be taken now, not at some later date. To their shame, much of the national press went along with this campaign and only rarely challenged it. Our media are now repeating this same pattern with regard to Iran, and with Syria as well. But I'm not talking about the many misuses of intelligence: I'm talking about the crucial emphasis placed on intelligence in the first place. Let me be very clear: accurate intelligence is vital to our nation's defense. We need to know about gathering threats, if a threat must be addressed and, if it must, how and when to best do so. But here I'm talking about a different aspect of the problem, one which ought to be considered separately, but usually isn't: the extent and manner in which intelligence, accurate or not, influences major policy decisions. Silber lays out a powerful argument for non-intervention, and backs it with historical fact. One of his points is that there is no way we will ever achieve our stated goals in Iraq, instead of spreading democracy, we are creating enemies we never had before. I agree with him 100%.