Other options to war are always preferable. War is preferable only when there are no other options left to exercise.
But what does that mean? What constitutes no other options? Is war only justified when you've been invaded (thus the U.S. would not have been justified entering WWII prior to the Pearl Harbor attack)? Just glibly saying other options to war are always preferable is meaningless.
The evidence you give for why war was a good choice is really a moot cause. This was not a war where the evidence to go to war tilted the scales so heavily that we had no choice. Rather, the decision to go to war was decided far before we began making a case for it. Instead of basing the decision on strong evidence, we tried to conform weak evidence in a manner that somehow supported this predetermined decision.
Your argument really doesn't say anything. You say the evidence presented is irrelevant because the decision to go to war had already been made. That's like saying Pearl Harbor as a reason for entering WWII was irrelevant because it is clear from history that FDR had always intended to enter the war on the side of the allies. Even if the war was preordained that doesn't change the factual basis for or against war.
In this case, we knew Iraq was not a threat to us. We knew Iraq was not a threat to it's neighboring countries.
Not a threat to us in what sense? In the sense that Iraq couldn't conquer the United States? Sure. In the sense that it was not a threat to our interests? False. We knew Iraq was not a threat to its neighboring countries contingent upon our continued presence both in Saudia Arabia and Kuwait to maintain regional security. That is quite different than saying we knew Iraq was not a threat to its neighboring countries.
And we knew Iraq possessed no WMD.
And we also know
1) That the various reports indicating there is no WMD also indicate that Saddam intended to develop a WMD capability once oversight was removed.
2) That on-going inspections had proven to be almost impossible to maintain over any significant period of time.
3) Historically based on our experience after the First Gulf War, Iraqi WMD capability had far exceeded our previous estimates based on international inspections from the past.
4) Once Iraq had WMD capability it would've been too late. A country in possession of WMD creates a deterrent making future intervention virtually impossible (see N. Korea).
Just to note the claim wasn't that Iraq had WMD. If you recall the arguments in Congress at the time and the statements at the time the argument revolved around stopping Iraq from obtaining WMD. Thus the argument that it was a preventative war rather than a pre-emptive war.
Over 100,000 innocent women and children killed by coalition forces, thousands of US soldiers dead, a continuing growing number of insurgents that now outnumber US forces, a still deteriorating US image around the world, Bin Laden still roaming free, Iran and North Korea more dangerous than Iraq ever was, and a country still out of control with no real end in sight.
Contrast that with
A) If we believe various reports about the sanctions over the period sanctions were in place (specifically the 1991-1998 period) there were 100,000-227,000 deaths for children under 5. I assume some level of mortality assigned to sanctions for those above age 5 though probable concentrated on the opposite end of the age spectrum.
B) I think the Iraqi election was a good thing don't you? Especially since off-hand I can't recall a remotely moderate election in Iraq for at least a hundreds of years.
C) We did get rid of a dictator who's brutality was remarkable even compared to the various horrors that have been inflicted on populations from Stalin to Pol Pot.
D) Bin Laden roaming free is an issue? Will terrorism go away if we get rid of Bin Laden? It'd be nice to get him but remember that it would be more of a PR victory than a substantive victory.
E) The further impact it has had on the Middle East generally (i.e. progress in Lebanon, allowing us to remove troops from Saudi Arabia, etc.).
Alright I really need to work on school.