Friday, October 01, 2004


Patrick Seale

After listening to some of the debates last night and then having a pretty good discussion about Iraq and the "war on terrorism" with my housemate last night, it is abundantly clear that we are going to be screwed for a while. The situation in Iraq just seems unfixable at the moment. Bush obviously has no concept of what is going on in the world. We went into Iraq when it seemed painfully clear that Saddam Hussein posed no serious threat. I mean come on, the guy was a SNL joke. A fucking joke! So now, several years later, here we are and things have deteriorated. Where are we going to go from here? I don't know, but I feel like we declared a war and we got it. Somewhere along the lines, somebody's foot slipped off the brakes and now we are headed for disaster. Which leads me to the Patrick Seale article on Agence Global. Seale concludes the following:
The battle over the coming months between the United States and Israel on one side and a world-wide Islamic and nationalist insurgency on the other is likely to be exceedingly hot.
Find out what leads Seale to conclude this, and ask yourself whether this is really what we wanted. Did we really want a war with "militant Islam" or whatever they're calling it these days? Did we really want to say "You're either with us or you're against us"? I just think that put us on the wrong end of a lot of angry motherfuckers, and we're making more of them angrier and angrier by the day. Well, have a good weekend everybody!

Off topic, I thought Kerry did much better than I thought he would in the debate, pretty much kicking W's teeth in. But as my housemate declared in retrospect, "C'mon, you're not going to get it any easier than this."

Deepak is oh so right re the debate. But I wonder just what the goal can be vis-a-vis the War on Terra. Yes, I prefer Kerry and will vote for him without compunction but perhaps with some regret. Because I don't hear anything about the middle east and nationalism vs. ethnicism coming out of his mouth. I don't suppose he can afford to say it. But do he and Edwards have to say anything pro-Israeli, really? No, they do not.

I just spent a lot of time reading Roman history -- it was really fun. But what was clear from the distance of thousands of years was that the Romans just did not have a clue about the peoples and territories they "conquered". They did know about power and politics and what it took to maintain prominence *in Rome* but it soon just did not matter if you were the boss of Rome. It didn't require a big "War on Roma" to bring about the slow subsidence of Roman dominance. And the sad thing, to me, is that this "War on Terror" is going to end the dominance of the ideal of American democracy. Sure, we can keep on bombing the crap out of places like Fallujah and Samarra and Tora Bora and hey, why stop there! we can bomb Brazil and Cuba if we feel like it, too. But what is the point of such "supremacy" other than to prove that we don't really care about the deaths of "collateral" humans as we seek pre-eminence?

But the thing I find so baffling is this idea that Islam is our enemy. As though Christianity is democracy's friend. That is really truly funny.

All that talk about hard work during the debate made me think about the things I've done in my life that were much harder work than I ever thought they would be -- raising kids, teaching LD kids, keeping faith with a humane outlook on life, trying to make my garden grow. But what Bush thinks is hard work is almost totally negative stuff; killing bad guys and staying the course even when the course starts getting a bit well weird and bloody and hugging widows and all.

He's a very pathetic little man. But that's no excuse for the Supreme Court's behavior in 2000, is it. Except that we now have a Supreme Court in which the majority of judges have chips on their shoulders.

It's a really strange country nowadays.
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