TEXAS POKER: Is what Bob Novak terms the current standoff. While I find Novak quite annoying in his television persona, his column is usually quite thoughtful. Not so much this one, in which he argues rather incoherently that this war is about reviving the domestic economy and some larger scheme to bolster Israel. The economy claim begins from a sound premise, that until the war is over, the economy will remain stagnant. But this stagnation would be ended much more efficiently by forgoing war than by prosecuting it. And, yes, “the US will be sitting on a new major oil supply” once we topple Saddam. But does Novak think we’ll seize it for ourselves? If not, I’m not sure how it’ll help, other than by the lifting of the decade-long economic sanctions and allowing the Iraqi supply back into the market. But, of course, we could also accomplish that without war. And, if anyone can decipher his argument on Israel, let me know. (via RCP)

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.