Tuesday, December 03, 2002

"So now you care? I don't know whether I am angry, sad or scared. You had the reports all the time and you knew. What makes today different than a year ago?"

— Salam Pax, responding from Baghdad to the British government's newly released dossier on human rights abuses in Iraq.

It is rather appalling that Blair, Straw et al should manifest this concern about Saddam Hussein's atrocities (which human rights organisations have been reporting for decades) only now that it's geopolitically convenient. But the atrocities themselves are infinitely more appalling, & the fact that similar dossiers on North Korea, Syria, China etc. have not been released is not a morally convincing argument against action to remove Hussein.

No one with any sense or compassion can honestly believe he should be allowed to continue his depradations unchecked. What is still uncertain is the best means of removing or neutralising his menace. I am not sure an all-out war is the best solution — not when the consequential fate of ordinary, guiltless Iraqis & the future of their nation (in anarchy or under occupation) remain areas of unaddressed doubt.

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