There was George Bush himself, on Thursday…at the dedication of the Presidential library whose archives will hold evidence of the disaster of his war. It is important to…wonder which Iraqi ghost we are confronting. We have heard about false intelligence before, and, rightly, want to know why it’s different this time. But there is also the question of how to deal with chemical weapons if you do know that they’re there. If, in the first few days in Iraq, we had secured a cache of sarin, would we now be content with the images from Fallujah, with the bungling of the occupation, with the terrible human price that ordinary Iraqis paid? The falsity of the opening adds a sordid layer to it all—but war, even scrubbed of lies, isn’t pretty. Of course, unlike in Iraq, Syria is already engaged in an increasingly unhinged civil war, and, in a basic, human, way, we are…keen to do something. But what?
art: A Free Syrian Army fighter practiced using a Dragunov semiautomatic sniper rifle during training exercises in the countryside outside of Homs in June 2012