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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Wednesday, March 05, 2003


Dean Defense Forces: Dean lied about "unilateral"

posted by Aziz P. at Wednesday, March 05, 2003 permalink View blog reactions

Andrew Sullivan is the latest to try and portray Dean as deliberately lying about the war on Iraq:

I'll never be able to loathe Howard Dean. For what he did in supporting civil unions in Vermont, any gay person would have to thank him for political sense and courage. But that's all the more reason for calling him on a simple, obvious and brazen fib.

According to the New York Times, Dean made the following remarks to the winter meeting of the Democratic National Committee: 'What I want to know is why in the world the Democratic Party leadership is supporting the president's unilateral attack on Iraq? . .

Huh? . . . Whatever else this war is, it's not unilateral. A clear majority of European nations – eighteen at the last count – support the war. From Australia to Poland, we have dozens of allies, large and small. Britain, one of the few remaining non-American military powers, is contributing most of its armed forces. We may not have unanimous global support for an attack but to describe the coming war as 'unilateral' is simply false.

There is no such fib - the definition of unilateral is not "no one agrees with us". It means, in this context, "acting without formal approval of the UN". No one denies that the US can invade Iraq (ie, is capable of), nor that the US does have supporters. But tomorrow if Iraq signed up N. Korea and Iran for its plan to reinvade Kuwait, that would not make it a multilateral act.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.