What It Was Like to Oppose Iraq War in 2013

By John Judis, The New Republic - March 18, 2013

In the six months before the American invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the six weeks after the invasion (culminating in George W. Bush's "Mission Accomplished"� speech), I often compared my situation in Washington to that of Jeannette Rankin, the Montana congresswoman and pacifist who voted against entry into both World War I and II.  Not that I would have voted against declaring war in 1941; the comparison was to her isolation, not with her isolationism.

There were, of course, people who opposed invading Iraq"”Illinois State Senator Barack Obama among them"”but within political Washington, it was difficult to find like-minded foes. When The New Republic's editor-in-chief and editor proclaimed the need for a "muscular"� foreign policy, I was usually the only vocal dissenter, and the only people who agreed with me were the women on staff: Michelle Cottle, Laura Obolensky and Sarah Wildman. Both of the major national dailies"”The Washington Post and The New York Times (featuring Judith Miller's reporting)"”were beating the drums for war. Except for Jessica Mathews at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington's thinktank honchos were also lined up behind the war.

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