"In the early 80's, Israel discovered that Iraq was developing nuclear weapons. Instead of postponing conflict with Iraq to a time when Saddam Hussein could attack Israel with atomic bombs, the Israelis struck first, and destroyed the Iraqi nuclear reactor at Osiris. Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 was inspired by the same Machiavellian logic. Knowing they would have to fight America sooner or later, the Japanese chose to attack when they were strong, and we were weak."
"Machiavelli had abundant firsthand evidence from his childhood in Florence to support his conviction that good leaders must always be ready for the next attack."
- Machiavelli on Modern Leadership, by Michael Ledeen
In the sense that Bush chose to attack Iraq before they could attack another, he seems to follow Machiavelli's philosophy. Machiavelli believed that war is inevitable and it is best to fight wars under conditions that are favorable to you. It is also better to strike before you are struck. The Israeli example in the above quote resembles the US and Iraq last year...except with one major difference - no weapons (yet)!