WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Starting in the summer of 2002, our "allies" -- the French, Germans and most of "Old Europe" -- used every forum they could find to stay "the rush to war" in Iraq. Encouraged by massive anti-American protests on the streets of European capitals, President Jacques Chirac and Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder repeatedly urged the United States and Great Britain to delay plans for military action against Saddam Hussein until the United Nations's super-sleuth, Hans Blix, had "completed" his search for Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) in Iraq.
U.S. frustration with the snail's pace at which Blix was pursuing his mission was dismissed as "saber rattling" in Paris, Berlin, Brussels and the U.N. cocktail party circuit. Now, those same voices that preached patience before going to arms are unwilling to wait for a full and careful search for Saddam's WMD stockpiles.
If we are to believe Blix, Sen. Robert Byrd, most of the Democrat candidates for president and The New York Times, significant stockpiles of nerve agents, bio-toxins and nuclear weapons must be found in the next few days, or it's curtains for American credibility.
As might be expected, the amiable, bumbling and soon-to-be-retired Swedish diplomat has become the hero of the moment for the "Blame America First" crowd. As he prepares to vacate his posh digs overlooking the East River, Blix has been conducting a series of exit interviews and soirees in Manhattan.
He's found sympathetic audiences at The New York Times and the Council on Foreign Relations, and is now threatening to publish his memoirs. And he's using the occasions to take a few parting shots at the "bastards" in the Bush administration.
"I have my detractors in Washington," Hans huffed, while courageously claiming indifference. He then whined that "the (Bush) administration leaned on us," told "a lot of fairytales" that were "totally unfair" and accused the administration of believing that the U.N. Security Council is "a hopeless institution." Well, at least he got that part right.
Blix may indeed have his detractors in Washington, but his animosity for the administration is matched in fever and pitch by Democrats searching for the president's Achilles' heel. The cheerleader in charge is West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd, who claims that the president is "intent on revising history" and suggests the administration "bent, stretched or massaged" intelligence reports "to make Iraq look like an imminent threat to the United States."
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.