Sunday, May 11, 2003

Real Concerns

Hmm, the news in the US is starting to get a clue that, gosh, maybe the Gummint was lying about the reasons to attack Iraq. Whoda thunk it?

The Washington Post has presented several articles on the non-existence of WMDs in Iraq, and how the Pentagon is pulling the WMD units out of the country. Well, if that is true, what does it mean?

It means that the UN inspections were working and kept Hussein from developing them to the point where he could use them in war.

Isn't that what they were supposed to do? Doesn't this show that the world (acting in concert) can engage in effective, non-combative policing of dangerous states?

No, the UN is far from perfect. But, as Winston Churchill famously said of democracy, it is the worst thing except for all of the alternatives.

There is such a thing as a just war. The US invasion of Iraq was not one of them.

There was another article discussing the helplessness of US troops in Iraq to do what they want to do - get the country back on its feet, get people's lives restord to normal, make things work on the average, everyday level, like water, power, and the city buses. The average American soldier is home-town kind of person. They know how to fight, but they're happier building something. Give an American a hammer and some plywood, and they'll start putting things back together. US soldiers are beginning to resent the position they've been left in. There are (maybe) 150,000 soldiers who are supposed to maintain peace and order, and restore normal everyday operations, to a country the size and population of California.

This would be hysterically funny if it did not mean that my countrymen and women have been put into a condition of danger as an under-powered occupying force in a hostile country. If it did not mean that ordinary Iraqi civilians are being forced to live in atrocious conditions because no one was thinking about basic services. If it did not mean that the adminsitration is more concerned about conducting a religious war with the Shi'ite majority of Iraq than with unearthing the wrongs of the previous regime and building representative local institutions.

Iraq is better off without Hussein - there can be NO argument on that point. None. Iraq is also better off without the fumbling attempts of the Bush administration to monopolize the oil production and the airfields while imposing a kinder, gentler authoritarian regime. It should be reasonably clear to any moderately intelligent person that this war was done to threaten "lesser" nations into (outward) compliance with US wishes, to secure oil, and to provide photo-ops for the Chimp-in-Chief. As long as Halliburton controls the oil and the Pentagon controls the airfields, the rest of the country can go hang. The Administration is already whining and pouting and wanting the UN and the EU to come in and do the hard work of rebuilding the nation (with the US controlling lucrative construction contracts, n'est ce pas) and provide all that icky, mushy humanitarian shit like caring for children maimed by cluster bombs.

My nation is being used for the personal gain of a small sliver of men at the very top of the socio-corporate heirarchy, and they are doing so with utter disregard for the dignity and welfare of Americans and of the other human beings who inhabit the world. They attack those who disagree with them hysterically, demanding that everyone agree to their vision of the world and how things should be, denying the validity of contrary opinions, using threats and force when desired to impose their will.

Rather like the regime they just defeated.


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