Several months ago, I argued the president would surrender precious moral authority if the United States waged war without firm evidence that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction (search). Well, the war is over and coalition forces still haven't found a single biological, chemical or nuclear device or production site.
A handful of Democrats say that failure may constitute evidence of impeachable misconduct, but that's a moronic argument. Virtually every congressional Democrat declared that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction and a fair number in 1998 urged Bill Clinton to wage war on Saddam. If the president was lying, so were they.
Besides, it is indisputable that Saddam turned his land, rich in treasures and history, into a charnel house. He drained the lands on which Marsh Arabs had lived for thousands of years, reducing the wetland to a wasteland. He slaughtered foes and perceived foes by the thousands. Just four days before Baghdad fell, three busloads of Shi'a Muslims showed up at an isolated spot outside Baghdad. Saddam's squads massacred all aboard, and then tossed the bodies in the freshly gouged earth.
We did in fact disable a devastating weapon of mass destruction: Saddam Hussein.
Yet even though the war was just, there's a problem: Americans endorsed the war on the basis of blind faith, and we're still waiting for evidence.
It seems pretty obvious the government doesn't know where Saddam hid his weapons, or even if he had them at the end. So we get increasingly half-hearted promises about finds to come.
Why not admit it: Uncle Sam doesn't know.
A president revered for his moral clarity surely ought to understand that a straight answer is better than an evasive one: Did we or did we not have the goods before the war began? And if we had the goods, why not show at least some of the proof?