Bush Digs In on Preventive War

President Bush on Thursday declared anew a US right to attack foes pre-emptively to ward off grave threats before they have fully materialized. He first enunciated this doctrine in 2002, not long after the Sept. 11 attacks. Many said the Iraq War showed the flaws of this stance, but Bush, in his 48-page 2006 National Security Strategy of the United States of America, didn’t back up an inch. Here is the money quote: “We do not rule out the use of force before attacks occur…. When the consequences of an attack with WMD are potentially so devastating, we cannot afford to stand idly by as grave dangers materialize. This is the principle and logic of preemption. The place of preemption in our national security strategy remains the same.”