Mar 17th, 2003, 12:04 AM
Endgame for Diplomacy
So the United States, with Britain and Spain, have issued a Monday ultimatum for the UN to support the war. While not inconceivable, I doubt the canvassing for votes will succeed, and France does not seem to be bluffing. The bombs will follow.
Domestically, support for the war is strong, and the opposition isn't strong enough to challenge. Media acquiescence and even open support has obscured this impending war's obvious moral illegitimacy. Most likely the war will be done with in a blink of an eye, not long enough for opposition to grow and make a difference.
On Iraq: For awhile I supported the war, but joined the opposition when I realized that the justness, or the moral case depends on not only on Saddam Hussein but on what happens afterwards. The United States, however, does not have the heart for reconstruction and democracy building. Others may cite Japan, but that was during a different time and different circumstances entirely. Less anachronistic cases of Panama, Yugoslavia, and Afghanistan aren't nearly as cheerful. If Iraq becomes a shining beacon of democracy, then I will happily admit to have been proven wrong, but history gives me no confidence that this will occur.
France/Germany and Britain/Spain/others: Interesting times for the future of Europe, and especially the European Union. NATO is dead, and Europe may one day create an EU army. Though the European leaders are divided, European people are very much in agreement. The EU will ascend.
United Nations: The battle for its relevance has been overdramatized, as it's been pretty irrelevant for all of its history.
The Middle East: Allies and enemies come and go, but as far as American foriegn policy goes, little has fundamentally changed since after 9-11. It's as colonialistic and hegemonistic as always. A remarkable opportunity in Iran for democratic revolution risks being squandered, partly because of American myopia.