OPINION

Seeking closure?

“It’s time to bring this to a close,» according to Mr Donald Rumsfeld, Ms Condoleeza Rice, even Mr George W. Bush himself. To bring what to a close, exactly? The reign of Saddam Hussein, ostensibly Osama Bin Laden’s comrade-in-arms? But not even the secret services of Britain, which support war in Iraq, maintain that there is a link between the fiercely fundamentalist Al Qaeda and Iraq’s ruling Baath Party. The USA wants to eradicate the danger it says it faces. But what possible danger can be posed by a country like Iraq – under strict surveillance for the past 12 years, partitioned, its people poor and sick? Does the USA really feel threatened by Iraq’s Al-Samud missiles because their range violates UN resolutions by 30 kilometers? The Bush administration also says it wants to crack down on countries that harbor nuclear weapons. Well, that’s very admirable. But to avoid being partisan, if we are attempting to convince Iraq to disarm, we should also ask our allies Israel and Pakistan to destroy the nuclear warheads which they are known to possess. America also wants to topple tyrants. That is also admirable, but tyrants are deposed by their own people, not by overlords who replace them with new subordinate leaders. But if pro-war leaders such as Bush, Silvio Berlusconi and Tony Blair are so concerned about democracy, why don’t they pay attention to the intense anti-war sentiment being expressed democratically in their own countries, if not in their own governments?