View from the Loft 

war and peace, politics, books, rants, the passing parade ...


Thursday, October 10, 2002

I've been lax in these last few, crucial days. Partly it's a product of exhaustion with the entire issue of Iraq, and partly it's the knowledge that despite building opposition to the war, Congress is going to give Bush his resolution. Some members of congress have even acknowledged that their constituents are overwhelmingly opposed, yet say they will still vote for the resolution. Thus, even though we've been heard, our voices will be ignored. At this point, I feel resigned, I have to admit. And yet ... and yet, I will send those last e-mails and make those last calls. Why? Because I feel morally compelled to do so.

The House is expected to give overwhelming support to the resolution.

While the Senate is moving more slowly, it, too, is expected to side with Bush. But you can send 50 e-mails with a single click to those senators not completely gone over to the dark side.

One senator who's had the courage to stand up and tell it like it is (as we used to say back in the day) is Robert Byrd. Why, he asks, is Congress so willing to abdicate its responsibility in the matter of war-making? Why is it not looking at the Constitutional issues at stake? Read John Nichols' column about Byrd's remarkable actions.

As expected, Bush is ignoring and squelching those who say he has exaggerated evidence of a threat from Saddam Hussein. Knight-Ridder reports that "Analysts at the working level in the intelligence community are feeling very strong pressure from the Pentagon to cook the intelligence books." Anybody surprised?

Similarly, The Guardian says, after talking with CIA, FBI, and energy department officials, that "President Bush's case against Saddam Hussein, outlined in a televised address to the nation on Monday night, relied on a slanted and sometimes entirely false reading of the available US intelligence."

Meanwhile, Iraq is preparing for street fighting, with 2 million members of "Saddam's militia" ready to take up arms against U.S. forces. Hey, whatever happened to the "rejoicing in the streets" the Bushies tell us will break out when our forces begin to lay waste to the land?

Monday, October 07, 2002

Somehow, we peaceniks have managed to make a difference. Sunday's CBS-New York Times poll finds that a majority of Americans want Bush to wait until weapons inspectors have had time to do their work. 70% of respondents want Bush to get Congressional approval before going to war, and 51% think Congress is not asking enough questions. All righty then! This is more like it. I don't know if that will actually stop the war, but at least people are beginning to wake up.

Keep calling your elected officials, e-mailing, writing letters ... It's only because people began to besiege their senators and representatives that we're seeing such a change.

Thinking of going to D.C. for the anti-war march? Here's the contact information.
contact phone: 313-831-0750
contact email: detroit@internationalanswer.org
transportation: Buses are $60 round trip, leaving from Detroit and Ann Arbor. For tickets call 13-831-0750. Buses will be leaving from Detroit and Ann Arbor (possibly more locations) on Friday, Oct. 25 at 10 PM. Ticket checks can be made to "IAC-Oct. 26" and sent to ANSWER, 5920 Second Ave., Detroit, MI 48202.

Martin Woollacott of The Guardian argues that "no one and nothing will stop this drift toward war" and that "international diplomacy now is less about preventing war than about preventing an open break between America and Europe and Russia."

Meanwhile, news leaked out of Washington's "intention to use UN weapons inspections as a possible first step towards a military occupation of Iraq by sending in troops, sealing off 'exclusion zones' and creating secure corridors throughout the country." According to The Guardian, "The resolution would place a full-scale invasion of Iraq on a hair trigger, authorising UN member states 'to use all necessary means to restore international peace and security' if Iraq does so much as make an omission in the weapons inventories it presents to the security council."

An exciting new website featuring reports from within Iraq has made its debut. IraqJournal.org is "breaking ranks with the war chorus," saying that "the words 'we' and 'us' and 'our forces' are used so frequently by major corporate media personalities that it has become difficult to figure out if it is the Bush Administration or Rupert Murdoch and FOX that are gearing up to bomb Iraq."

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