Wednesday 12 February 2003

Why the Warhorses Stomp & Snort

by Richard Neville

Hey ho, the “Old Europeans” unstrap their rusty sabres & lurch towards peace. Hands soaked with the blood of Chechen children, Vladimir Putin declares an Iraqi war “not inevitable”, so ending his likelihood of future romps in a Texas ranch. The world jokes that the latest US dossier against Iraq is not worth the paper it’s stolen from. Smouldering from the wings, his great Arabian arms bazaar now under threat, the man who sold a nuclear power plant to North Korea while sitting on the board of the global tech group, ABB, Donald Rumsfeld, is spitting chips. Is this a major setback to the US plan of 21st Century domination?

McDonald’s arches are sagging, Mecca Cola is gushing and peace marches are breaking out all over. It is a moment of promise and peril. The ones who come between the hawks and their prey take heed. Media warhorses are stomping and snorting. “Bigger and bolder assertions of American power” are sought in the Sydney Morning Herald by strategic analyst Hugh White, who believes Australia has “much to gain” by bombing Baghdad. White yearns for a tautological world in which “American values . . . are even more strongly valued . . . than they are today”, even at the price of innocent lives.

Well, there are many American values I too fully embrace, such as transparency, truth telling, and a free press, which are now more honoured in their breach than observance. Other values, such as arms dealing, overthrowing populist governments, slaughtering civilians, Government lying, ecological abuse, etc, are worth exposing and opposing, a task undertaken with relish by millions of American citizens.

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