The idea that toppling state sponsors of terrorism, as defined by the U.S. State Department, also topple the violence they inspire was laid to rest with Saddam Hussein's execution tonight. President Bush responded to the execution with an ambiguous nod to the War on Terror:
Saddam Hussein’s execution comes at the end of a difficult year for the Iraqi people and for our troops. Bringing Saddam Hussein to justice will not end the violence in Iraq, but it is an important milestone on Iraq’s course to becoming a democracy that can govern, sustain, and defend itself, and be an ally in the War on Terror.
While President Bush essentially acknowledges that events in Iraq and the "War on Terror" have little if any relation, by his remark that violence will continue, his statement also opens the door to a new justification for American fighting in Iraq: to bring forth democracy and create a new ally in the War on Terror. And, perhaps most important than any words the President utters, current Pentagon budgets passing through Congress lump together funding for the Iraq War and the War on Terror, indicating that – bottom line – the U.S. government includes Iraq as a front in the war on terror.
News and Insight on Hussein's Execution:
- Saddam Hussein Reported Hanged (U.S. Gov Info)
- Speedy Justice: Saddam Executed (Conservative Politics)
- The Riddle of Saddam Hussein (Civil Liberties)