so's your old man!

I don't know why I bother. No one cares, and there's nothing anyone can do about it, but I still want to point out that the "diplomacy" of the White House has come to this: Bush has given Iraq an ultimatim, saying, "Saddam Hussein and his sons [and his sons?] must leave Iraq within 48 hours. Their refusal to do so will result in military conflict, commenced at a time of our choosing"

Two pages later, in the same NYTimes edition which prints the text of Bush's rambling mess of last night there is the following report:

Allies Will Move In, Even if Saddam Hussein Moves Out

CAMP DOHA, Tuesday, March 18 — Even if Saddam Hussein leaves Iraq within 48 hours, as President Bush demanded, allied forces plan to move north into Iraqi territory, American officials said today.

Leave or we'll blow your country to pieces, but don't leave and we'll blow your country to pieces. Sounds logical to me, and it certainly should attract overwhelming support all around the world. It will definitely attract the interest of war crime tribunals in the future.

Now about the sons of Hussein. Up to now I don't remember anyone making visiting upon the sons the sins of the father a part of the argument for immediately destroying Iraq, as Bush now does.

None of this is important, as I said at the beginning, but am I the only one who notices that in last night's statement we heard the ruling scion of one dynasty demanding that the scions of another ruler give up political power? It may take one to know one, but, historically, dynastic tyrants usually don't risk whatever legitimacy they may claim by wiping out the legitimacy of another country's own dynasty. But that was a rule observed at a time when it was still possible to talk about the balance of power in the world, rather than today, when we must talk about the power of the unbalanced.

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Published on March 18, 2003 3:40 PM.

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