The island bit over the weekend was a revealing farce. The three wannabe liberators, determined to export popular rule to Iraq, had to flee the protests of their own peoples to an inaccessible retreat in the Azores. How fitting to choose an island chain originally settled by a Portuguese Crusader whose goal was to encircle the Muslim world with Christian armies.
Unlike the other leaders of his tiny "coalition of the willing," George W. Bush can at least claim a slim majority at home in support of his war after selling frightened Americans the big lie that Iraq is connected to 9/11. But how do British and Spanish leaders claim to be acting in the spirit of democracy when almost no one in their countries supports going to war without the backing of the United Nations, which has now been gutted? Instead of a U.N. vote and a final report from the chief weapons inspectors, Bush jettisons democracy with a 48-hour ultimatum.
How dare Bush and company champion freedom and the rule of law after running roughshod over the U.N. Security Council following their failed attempt to intimidate or bribe a majority of members into compliance? Clearly, the independence demonstrated by the council among countries large and small was one of the U.N.'s finest moments.
Instead, that independence has been termed treachery by Bush, who singled out the French for his opprobrium. Like some barroom hustler, the president of the United States snarled that the French "showed their cards" and he dismissed their compromise offer of another 30 days for inspections. His fear must be that the inspectors were doing their work all too well and that with even a little more time they would have completely robbed him of his excuse for war.
It is incredible that Bush and Blair show such contempt for France, a democratic ally that has, according to U.S. intelligence sources, played a key role in the war on Al Qaeda. Rather than simply acknowledge that France and most of the world sincerely disagree with us on this one, Bush and other hawks have attempted to bludgeon with chauvinism those nations that have not fallen in line.
And not only are we ignoring world opinion, we have stained our national reputation by throwing around lies. The United States lied to the world when Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said he had "bulletproof evidence" that Iraq was behind the Sept. 11 attacks and then failed to produce a shred of credible evidence. Bush repeatedly has made a lie of omission by telling us Saddam Hussein "gassed his own people" but neglecting to mention that in the immediate aftermath of that attack 15 years ago, his father gave Hussein's government $1.2 billion in financial credits.
And Bush lied to the world by telling us Iraq posed an imminent nuclear threat. U.N. inspectors instead have pointed out that they have found no evidence of a nuclear weapons program and that some of the documents they were fed from Western intelligence agencies had been faked.
In the end, it is despicable how the White House has denigrated and short-circuited the clearly effective work of U.N. inspectors because they failed to manufacture evidence supporting Bush's rationale for preemptive war.
The Azores gang apparently realizes that if it doesn't start dropping bombs now, a peaceful solution to the crisis might actually be found. In this coming war, Hussein, as loathsome as he is, is not the aggressor -- we are.
This is a truly frightening moment in history. Acting as if divinely inspired, Washington is now setting out to violently remake the maps and lives of the people of the world. This is an idea that old colonial powers England and Spain should have long ago discarded, after learning the hard way that people need to make their own histories. Whether this war is short or long, extremely bloody or just bloody, the stark fact is that a barely elected president has made the United States the first colonizer of the 21st century, openly declaring that he plans to reorder the politics, economy and culture of the Muslim world.
The world's current unprecedented hostility toward the United States, only a year and a half after we enjoyed its deepest sympathy on Sept. 11, is not a statement of naivete regarding the obvious evil of Hussein but rather a profound alarm over the imperial endpoint of Bush's design for the world.
Robert Scheer is a columnist for The Los Angeles Times.
Americans....Go America Go..but never forget all things will come to an end and GOD WILL JUDGE!!!!
another conflict that the international community failed to step up to was in rwanda.
false, if it were truly sanctions that hurt the people of iraq, then why would saddam spend so much money on building mosques and palaces and other things that glorify him?
he has spent millions upon millions of dollars for himself while denying food and medicine to the people, which he keeps stored away to give people the opinion that it is sanctions and in an effort to control the people of iraq by controlling the food supply in a negative manner.
international opinion did not want to get iraq out of kuwait, international opinion did not want to stop hitler.
international opinion did not want former president clinton to bomb iraq, but he did anyway, was this a flagrant violation of international law and policy? was it undermining the un then? What is the difference between the democratic president and the republican one?
they said and have nearly done the same things on the same arguments.
whereas clinton accomplished nothing by bombing iraq, bush is taking the issue seriously and is willing to make sure saddam is disarmed.
as to war for oil argument:
the oil is for the iraqi people and only for the iraqi people.
little known that the last us official to talk to saddam directly during the invasion of kuwait, but that saddam was wanting to give american oil if they would turn their head towards the invasion.
also, it would do better economically to lift sanctions and allow saddam to put out as much oil into the market as he wanted. it would reduce prices world-wide.
even through the un sanctioned oil-for-food program, the benefits economically are far greater.
Concerning Israel's defiance of resolutions:
if a look at the resolutions is taken and the history behind the events is taken into consideration, it is easily seen that the resolutions only berate israel while saying nothing about the others in conflict. Also, the usa has not always voted against resolutions concerning israel, otherwise they would not exist as the usa has a veto. it has abstained, it has rejected, and has supported various resolutions.
Concerning America in Iraq:
The cease-fire agreement from 1991 states several things Saddam must do or face removal from Iraq by force. It was a cease-fire, an absence of hostility to reach a specific goal in the interests of both parties. Saddam has had 12 years to meet those demands (by the United Nations) and has refused to obey by them. It is by UN authority that the usa has the authority to do as it is doing now.
Since 1991, two other resolutions have been given that also give the explicit and implicit use of force.
It is not by terrorist affiliation (although it does exist) nor by an imminent danger that the usa has the legal authority to take action, but by the resolutions set forth by the international community.
the other permanent member nations, minus the UK, have never had the intention of truly disarming iraq, but wish only to benefit economically from a tyrannical regime.
Allah is Khalid !!! owned the whole universe , he is absolute authority , choose the faithful & obidient over the arrogrant & kufr , let us ammended our strong ties with Allah , Allah is great protector & refuge for the weak ,...Mighty Allah ruled the universe and under his command , let us be steadfast , not deterred , pray & steadfast way to victory...
For free oil, you kill thousands of Aphgan people and you killed thousands of Iraqi people in 1991, and you want to continue eradicating them now, are you human beings???????
I know that many of the Americans refuse this unfair war, if I did not see the demonestrations, I would say that all of you hate the humanity but the demonestrations indicated that there are still many good people in America.
No one can stop this crazy cowboy, whatever he does, He will fail as his dady did before.
Stop this unfair war, remove this spoiled boy from the white house, and next time, take care of choosing your president.
Why you kill the Iraqi people, you killed 100,000 Iraqi solidier were withdrawing without from Kewit, why you kill surrender people, you are just like Dracula, never fed with blood.
Allah knows best. Salam wa Allah Hafiz.
(Jazak Allahu Khair.)
The U.S. is hated, our people are hated, and we will do whatever is necessary to secure our safety. Bottom line! When it comes down to it no body else is going to do it, so we have to.
And let us not get started with Israel's defiance of UN resolutions and Geneva Convention laws. But for the US to do anything about that would be like them sending armies into New York.
The entire world complains about US foreign policy. Would it not make more sense (and cost less) to review that than to flex muscle or even throw a punch when a country doesn't submit to US will? Instead, the US chooses to wage war. But for every one 'extremist' the US kills we have just planted the seeds for 5 more. This can only last for so long. The Romans, Ottoman Turks, Mongols, and British all had empires that came and went. Did they see it coming? Yes, no, maybe. But it does appear America is next in line.
try these links if you aren't afraid of the truth, by the way what ever happened to two sides to every story?
Few of you know that it has not been 12 years as you keep spouting. Inspections stopped at the US request in 91 because of distrust on both sides the US said Saddam was blocking inspections and Saddam said the US was using the inspections to spy on his country. Both claims later proved to be true. And if you read either of the above articles espically the one from the Mirror you will see more that for some reason the American press did not want you to know. Just like the fact that Bush's pastor and a collition of religous leaders paid for some anti-war ads and none of the television networks would sell them air time, but they sold the army,navy and airforce all they wanted. I am not saying Saddam is not a tyrant but 180 countries voted Bush the most dangerous man on the planet for a good reason. All I am saying is stop the lies. If you want to invade and kill Iraqis go ahead and do it just stop telling me lies for why. Just tell me the truth "We got more guns and money and no one will try to stop us so we will and while we'er at it we will steal some oil too."
Just a coment on some of the comments. What right did Saddam have for invading Kuwait? None. So what right does Bush have to invade Iraq? None. Saddam used gas on the Iranians, True but who supplied him with it and then oppossed the UN when they branded him a War Criminal and then gave him one of the largest Ag Grants ever at the time? The US. Who did the US choose to get even with Iran for dumping the Shah? Iraq. When did the US declare Saddam a criminal? When he attacked Kuwait without first being attacked and without US approval. None of the 9/11 bombers were from Iraq, Saudi and Pakistan so why not invade Saudi? That regime is just as corrupt. There have been numerous attempts by the Iragi public to overthrow Saddam and each time the promised support of the US including Bush Sr.'s never showed up I am sure that some of you attend salat with refugees from attempted overthrows. 3000 bombs in two days is not liberation it is murder. If it is ok for the US to invade Iraq because of a perceived threat then it is ok for China to invade Japan or Russia to invade Egypt or for any country to invade any other for that matter if the threat is "perceived". Color it anyway you want it is still wrong no matter who does it and the world should stand up to stop it but as long as there is a profit to be made from blood. Iraq is not the first and wont be the last.
Finally N.Korea not only has the bomb but the means to deliever it any where in the world and they are not threathened why? They have an army one million men strong and four million more on reserve. Bush and the war mongers are for all there talk bullies and cowards and since Vietnam only attack the weak and crippled that is why Iraq and not N.Korea and that is why the rest of the world is arming even as we speak, you see bullies have no real friends only people that fear them.
In view of that it might be reasonable to conclude that it may not be possible to end their threat through inspections alone. But Mr Scheer (and the French & Russians, who both negotiated lucrative contracts with Iraq in the last few months) cannot tell us how much time and how many inspectors are needed if 12 years of patience are as insufficient as they have proven to be. Their blindness to this fatal flaw in their program is contemptable; at least as contemptable as the dictator they support.
And it is a reminder of how many people will not believe anything bad about this regime's intentions and capabilities. At least not until *after* the tens of thousands have died of anthrax or radiation poisoning.
Of course then they can carp about how the administration failed to protect these innocent victims.
They awfully sound very alike.
We have to suppose that Bush Snr. thought that Saddam was going to be a reasonable man. It is ridiculous to suggest that because the US gave him money 15 years ago, that Saddam can behave as murderously as he wishes now. Nor did Bush Jr. mention "an imminent nuclear threat", he mentioned a threat from weapons of mass destruction that include chemical, biological and nuclear. If there is a despicable character in this play, it is Robert Scheer who seems perfectly willing to see tens of thousands of his fellow-Americans incinerated and who thinks that corrupt Middle Eastern regimes are morally superior to his own country. It would be agood idea if he has his citizenship revoked.
I know you didn't say he's not a columnist, but you said "But in checking with the LA Times I find he is not listed as an employee so his credentials are suspect. Maybe he's a wannabe employee." I'm not going to comment on what you wrote though, because I believe it's your opinion and you're entitled to it and I respect it even though I disagree with it.
Are you so naive, what ever be the authors background dont you accept the open facts. Its well documented that its the US who suports Saddam when he was at his peak of crimes. US has the blood of Iraqi people in its hands.
You are a living dead
One thing about Turkey. If the Turks assist the U.S., they will do it for just one reason: To protect themselves from American threat that will come from the south as well as through American embargos and boycotts against Turkey! Turks do not fear saddam at all. They fear America, which is a very close ally of theirs.
Do you see the point? Even a very close ally of the U.S. like Turkey is afraid of America! This is not a good thing, this is the beginning of a disater. Even their closest allies will hate Americans and Israelis.
Very sad for America, very sad for the whole humanity.
Or is it that the UN should only pass US approved resolutions (ie the UN becoming a body to legitimize US actions only)? This is getting even clearer as President Bush has declared he doesn't need UN approval to launch the war. Why was he then seeking that approval a week ago? It is clear the US does not care about world opinion if it cannot harness it to its own strategic purposes (ex. the wave of sympathy in the aftermath of Sep.11).
The day the US invades Iraq, the UN will have lost its credibility and its status as mediator of nations. Apparently a superpower like the US does not heed any another nation and gives itself the right to do anything it finds suitable for its own interests (or Israel's). If Iraq had the weapons of mass destruction as the US claims, the US wouldn't dare invade it, just like it didn't dare confront Korea with the recent nuclear issue, or China with the spy plane issue.
History will always repeat itself, nations get powerful, they rise, their ego sky-rockets, they nurture emperialistic thoughts and actions, then their own ego and their belittling of other powers brings their demise. Assyrians, Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Ottomans, British, French and other empires are all history's witnesses.
A day will come when rising nations like Korea or China will stand up to the US and the US will openly have to settle with whatever these nations propose. (Why China would want some day a share in the Iraqi oil as well!!!)
You said: >>
You forgot the 2nd resolution was to take place ONLY AND ONLY IF IRAQ WAS NOT IN COMPLIANCE WITH DISARMAMENT. As far the whole world was concerned Iraq was in compliance and disarming. But that was a nightmare scenerio for Bush and Blair, because they had a different agenda. They knew that the longer they waited the more the world will realized that Saddam never was a threat to anyone and that would ruin their plan which was conceived many many years ago to control the Mid East and protect Israel which was created by the British and now is being protected and nortured by U.S.
(I BELIEVE THAT IF ONE PERSON HAS MORE POWER THAN OTHER, HE OR SHE IS GOING TO USE IT... IN A GOOD OR EVIL WAY. WORLD IS WATCHING... PEOPLE MAYBE POOR, WEAK BUT THEY ARE NOT STUPID.)