Bombing of Iraq - US and Britain had choices

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 24 December, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 24 December, 1998, 12:00am

In a world of such diversity and understanding it is difficult to believe that the self-claimed leaders of the world felt they had only one option when it came to Iraq. The word 'option' itself implies choices, and the two choices we have seen were diplomacy or attack.

The US and Britain could have chosen to blow Saddam Hussein and much of Iraq off the face of the earth.

They could have chosen to fire only 10 missiles at strategic sites instead of 200 missiles. Or they could have chosen to bring the attack to a UN vote. This last possibility is the most disturbing. No member of the UN should be allowed to wield power in such a way. The role of the UN is not only to keep rogue nations under watch, but also to make sure that powerful nations do not abuse their power.

The frustration felt by the US and Britain is understandable, but this did not give them the right to initiate attacks.

The Iraqis must have been equally frustrated. They see a UN which allows the US and other powerful nations to dictate the agenda. The media, which are part of the US propaganda machine, edit the voice of the Iraqi people to promote this agenda.

If you don't believe this to be true, ask yourself what you have learned about the past uses of chemical weapons, the clear and present danger of chemical weapons in places other than Iraq, or about any of the chemical weapons treaties and their particulars.

For nearly eight years we have watched this geo-political battle and learned only what the powerful wanted us to learn. For this, we have only ourselves to blame.

This is not completely true; we can also blame the UN for capitulating to the agenda of the US. And here is another option - invest in alternative energy research so that we will not continue to be dependent on the oil supplies of the Middle East, thus taking away the ace in Saddam's hand.

ANDREA C. POZZONI, New Territories