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Thursday, February 06, 2003
Sadam and Al Qaeda
I watched Colin Powell's statement and I am not persuaded.
In previous blogs, I have pointed out that proven misleading statements (or 'lies' as we pedants sometimes call them) undermine the rest of the message. Jack Straw has frequently lied that the UNSCOM inspectors were thrown out of Iraq when they were, in fact, withdrawn.
In the same way, just one example of Powell's evidence - the provision of facilities for Al Qaeda - is debatable, if not downright untrue. The 'facilities' are, apparently, in a part of Iraq under Kurdish, not Iraqi, control. Tony Blair and Jack Straw have indicated that they are not persuaded by the link argument.
It is always worrying when intelligence is this piss-poor. Remember the Sudanese 'chemical weapons factory'?
What further concerns me is that the World community in general and the US in particular has taken its eyes off the main 'problem': Al Qaeda. By trying to associate this shadowy organisation with Sadam Hussein, those advocating war are implicitly confessing not to know how to deal with the threat of Al Qaeda terrorism. And what is certain is that if war comes to Iraq, many more Muslims will see Al Qaeda as the only possible counterbalance to US bullying. Thus, the military option against the supposed Al Qaeda-Baghdad axis will be self-fulfilling. Al Qaeda will pull off some stunt and claim it as a reaction against US imperialism in general and the West's contempt for the Iraqi people in particular.
Further, if the US Hebrew Gog (anag: George W. Bush) is really concerned that Iraqi oil should be 'left in trust for the Iraqi people', he could pass laws so that it would become illegal for US companies or subsidiaries to have any part in the development of Iraq's oil resources. Fat chance, though.
The West could do such a lot to alleviate criticism of bias in the Middle East. For example, it could get tough with Israel. You know, that's the expansionist State, created in someone else's country: Palestine, using terrorism. Now, they're annexing even more territory...
Of course, it's a matter of perception, so try looking at it in different ways.
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