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November 24, 2003

So much the worse for international law 

This news is five days old, but I'm seeing it now for the first time (via Tolle, Blogge, which I almost never read because I keep forgetting it's in English.)

International lawyers and anti-war campaigners reacted with astonishment yesterday after the influential Pentagon hawk Richard Perle conceded that the invasion of Iraq had been illegal.

In a startling break with the official White House and Downing Street lines, Mr Perle told an audience in London: "I think in this case international law stood in the way of doing the right thing."


French intransigence, he added, meant there had been "no practical mechanism consistent with the rules of the UN for dealing with Saddam Hussein".

I agree with Michael Dorf:

"I think Perle's statement has the virtue of honesty," said Michael Dorf, a law professor at Columbia University who opposed the war, arguing that it was illegal.

"And, interestingly, I suspect a majority of the American public would have supported the invasion almost exactly to the same degree that they in fact did, had the administration said that all along."

I also notice that, like me, he opposed the war, which is not to say that we oppose it now. No one should hope to see Saddam Hussein back in power, or Iraq falling into civil war.


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