A reader writes:

As soon as I heard that the US was withdrawing from Saudi Arabia, I immediately wrote a friend to say that this was the real reason for the war.

(Osama bin Laden bombed us because there were US troops in Saudi Arabia. Not wanting another attack, the White House wanted to get our troops out of there. But the Saudi rulers wanted our protection, because they feared an Iraqi invasion. So the prerequisite to removing our troops was to neutralize the threat of an Iraqi invasion of Arabia. Thus the Iraqi war really _was_ necessary to prevent more al-Qaeda attacks, but indirectly.)

And now it appears that this might be correct:

|| According to the next issue of Vanity Fair magazine….

|| [Paul Wolfowitz] said a “huge” reason for the war was to enable

|| Washington to withdraw its troops from Saudi Arabia.


|| “For bureaucratic reasons we settled on one issue, weapons of mass

|| destruction, because it was the one reason everyone could agree

|| on,” Wolfowitz was quoted as saying.

Okay. But I’m always rather skeptical of anything emerging from pen of Helen Thomas. We’ll see.