I hate to return to this tiresome subject of war, but the emailers are forcing me to do just that. A great number of them insist on calling me a warmonger.

This is evidently because I've made the case that doing something about Saddam Hussein seems to be a requirement of our times, and war seems to be the only surefire way to go about it.

He is, after all, one of those guys who does not respond to nice little requests like, "Please leave office and go to Switzerland, where you get chummy with all the money you've embezzled from your starving people."

No, he's determined to stay.

Remember after the Gulf War when the smarties around D.C. were giving him a week... tops... and now a dozen or so years later, we're still trying to figure out what to do with this thorn in our side?

Anyway, a large number of viewers rose in righteous indignation, including a surprising number of people either formerly or currently in the military. This is surprising not because military people know best the horrors of war, and therefore are often the least inclined to unleash the dogs of war... but because military people are often most attuned to the notion of being under attack. It wasn't baseball players who popularized the warning call, "Incoming!"

Then there were the traditional kumbaya peaceniks. I know these people because I was a college kid too, once upon a time of war. I learned firsthand what these people sound like, and think like, so I recognize the familiar cadences of their outrage over yet another call to war.

But let me repeat slowly so everyone can hear it clearly, and compute the meaning efficiently... we are under attack. They have killed a few thousand of us already. Nearly 2,000 of the dead were so obliterated that virtually nothing of them was even found in the rubble.

So let's have a show of hands. How many of us think that one attack on Sept. 11 was it? How many think it was just a one-time terror attack, and that now that they've made their point, it's over?

Come on... think. Think.

When you look over the landscape of bad guys... Usama bin Laden, Sheik Omar... where does Saddam fit in? Come on... somebody make the argument he's a benign little dictator who isn't out to hurt anybody? Please make that stupid little argument so I can pound it flat.

Oh, never mind. I'm not a warmonger. I'm a realist and it has been forced upon me. Really.

That's My Word.

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