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Friday, March 07, 2003
Luminary views

Here is part of a letter from Richard (The Selfish Gene) Dawkins, published in The Guardian on Thursday, 6th March (fuller details here):
The distorting mirror of Munich and appeasement is held up with irritating regularity...Turn it round. Who is the petulant bully, the "bloodthirsty guttersnipe" today? On February 16, the Observer reported that the Pentagon had been ordered by Donald Rumsfeld to impose sanctions to punish Germany for leading international opposition to a war against Iraq. "We are doing this for one reason only: to harm the German economy." Yesterday you quoted Colin Powell as warning that time is running out: "Either the international community's will has meaning or does not have meaning." One might have hoped that the will of the international community would mean whatever emerges from the deliberations of the UN. Apparently it means the unilateral will of the current US government. Most chilling of all, you report that Bush himself has warned Chirac "he will neither forgive nor forget if France continues to oppose the resolution".

Where should we look for our Chamberlain? Jack Straw warns that Washington would abandon the UN and Nato if Europe refuses to fall into line: "What I say to France and Germany and all my other EU colleagues is take care, because just as America helps to define and influence our politics, so what we do in Europe helps to define and influence American politics ... And we will reap a whirlwind if we push the Americans into a unilateralist position in which they are the centre of this unipolar world." If that is not appeasement, I'd like to know what you call it.
Don'tcha just want to slap him? [Straw or Dawkins? - Ed.] Here's another prescient letter from Caryl Churchill (check here):
So Jack Straw's latest justification for the war is that we must all do what America says because otherwise, in future, we'll all have to do what America says.
That's the gist of what our illustrious Foreign Secretary said. Was it "mis-speaking" or were we really meant to understand that meaning?

MoveOn's petition site is just below (under Fence sitting). The warmongers have won the argument but against the war. Please get signing.

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