High stakes poker
Published: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 14, 2003 at 10:35 p.m.
Having a penchant for the card game called poker, I have been fascinated for some time how the crisis in Iraq has taken on many of the overtones of that venerable game.
President Bush started his term with three aces in his hand by the fact that Saddam Hussein was already in violation of the Gulf War peace accords when he kicked out the U.N. weapon inspectors in 1998.
Cursorily, the president did not start playing his strong hand until the summer before the 2002 midterm elections. At that time, the president raised the stakes and the rhetoric by demanding complete Iraqi compliance or risk the raft of war.
Hussein then called the president's bet by letting U.N. weapons inspectors back into Iraq and raised the bet by submitting a very lengthy document on Iraqi weapons programs of mass destruction.
The president sensed weakness in Hussein's cards and the document he submitted.
The willy old president tugged down on his presidential baseball cap, to shade the light of reason, and ups the bet by calling up the reserves and moving thousands of regular military personnel to the gulf region.
It's now up to Saddam Hussein to call the president's bet or drop and get out of the country. For the sake of innocent thousands, I hope and pray Hussein folds and leaves the game.
But at the same time I hope and pray President Bush did not forget to sit with his back to the wall. There is some Korean card player who is a bit wild and is looking for a game with old George.
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