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Archive for March, 2003

anti-war March #31

The end of my anti-war March.

We may not know the real reason for the war for decades. It will become obscured in the fog of history. But I assume that the US will achieve its primary aim and fend off the euro, ensure a stable source of oil for itself, help to support Israel by providing a new and friendly neighbour, give US economy a shot in the arm with the contracts for rebuilding Iraq, and no doubt many other reasons that haven’t occurred to me.

I think that the ‘formal’ fighting (as it has been called) will be over within a couple of weeks, but the US will maintain a presence in the country for decades. And hopefully the situation won’t get any worse.

Maida Vale, London, Monday, March 31st, 2003

anti-war March, #29

Pre-emptive News – the news reporting technique that has been used by several newspapers in reporting the war. Take the following stories:

  • Two British soldiers being executed by Saddam’s forces
  • The reports of a civilian uprising in Basra
  • The discovery of a huge chemical weapons plant
  • The biggest tank battle since the second world war involving 130 Iraqi tanks

All these stories were reported in newspapers. All turned out to be untrue. Is this a form of propaganda? Or are the press desperate to print the best headlines to increase sales? And more disturbingly, why are newspapers failing to verify their sources?

The Ministry of Defence confirmed that the armoured column of 130 tanks was in fact only 3; Tony Blair had to apologise to the family of the serviceman he claimed had been executed by the Iraqis as they had in fact been killed in action, the weapons plant has yet to be verified, and it is unlikely that it can be verified as it does not exist, and the Basra uprising never happened.

Interesting to note the guilty newspapers are my old friends The Daily Telegraph, The Evening Standard and its sister the Daily Mail (which I in an earlier blog I mistakenly called the Daily Express).

I can only hope that the papers using pre-emptive reporting techniques learn a lesson and return to more traditional forms of journalism.

Maida Vale, London, Saturday, March 29th, 2003

anti-war March, #28

In saturdays mornings Guardian ‘Weekend’ magazine :

“Spectre orange – Nearly 30 years after the Vietnam war, a chemical weapon used by US troops is still exacting a hideous toll on each new generation.” It is accompanied by some awful pictures of horrifically deformed children. The photos are not on the web site. Bush and Blair would have me believe the war is about stopping monsters using chemical weapons. We have short memories.

Maida Vale, London, Friday, March 28th, 2003

anti-war March, #26

A knower of truth does what is called for,

then stops

He uses his strength but does not force things

fully choose to do what you must do

….this is to live without forcing

to overcome without conquering.

–Lao Tzu

I checked my site messages yesterday and Ben Poole had left a particularly nice one. All I can say is “Ben – you’re great!”.

Maida Vale, London, Wednesday, March 26th, 2003

anti war March #er um…

How do I miss such obvious double standards? The Guardian today points out that the US have scant regard for international law and yet when captured US servicemen are shown on TV they start quoting the Geneva Convention? Hmmm. Why am I surprised?

I think I’ve recovered from the weekends party – I’m still trying to remember what the fuck was happening for half the night.

Maida Vale, London, Tuesday, March 25th, 2003

anti war March #24

The other day I said that the war was about securing oil for future generations. That was before I found a rather interesting line of reasoning that argues that the motives are more about an economic conflict between the US and Europe. It’s a long article. So, in a nutshell, it is related to a potential economic shift of power away from the US to the EU. Interestingly, a few years ago Iraq began trading oil in Euro’s, which due to the exchange rate, resulted in an unexpected economic windfall. As other oil producing nations (including Iran and Venezuela) began to consider the shift to the Euro, the US had to act. Could this be the reason for the peace policy adopted so staunchly by France and Germany?

I believe that there are a number of reasons for this war. While getting rid of an aggressive and powerful dictator may be considered a good reason for a war, I know that it is not the real reason for the war.

The reasons for the war include the above EU/US conflict; securing a stable and long term source of oil; allowing for the domestic economic benefits of US private sector investment in rebuilding a shattered Iraq; and arms contracts (how much is that worth?). All of this has got to be good for the US economy.

I’m beginning to remember some of what happened on the weekend. I haven’t had such a long memory blank from partying for ages. I was trying to remember bright lights or little grey fella’s that might have been the cause for the ‘missing time’. Maybe I need to check for evidence of an implant/anal probe?

Maida Vale, London, Monday, March 24th, 2003

anti-war March, #23

oh jeez, I dunno – ‘make tea, nor war’….

Where the hell did last night go? We had a wee gathering here. I remember chatting to some friends at about 9pm. Next time I looked at my watch it was 5:30am. Now I can remember only sporadic episodes of my dignified, witty and charming repartee.

MongoLand, somewhere in London, Sunday, March 23rd, 2003

anti-war March, #18

48 hours to war? If the war goes ahead, perhaps for the first time more people in the west will realise that so much of our wealth comes at the price of others suffering. This war is about a reliable source of oil for the next few generations, not about a despot in Baghdad. The powers that be have no qualms about thousands of deaths to ensure this supply of oil. The Iraqi people will benefit from the oil riches, there’s no doubt about that. But it comes at a high cost to them. And is destruction and death a fair price for a stronger economy? Wouldn’t they like to have the choice?

All that and to top it all, my fly has been down all morning.

near the Tower of London, Tuesday, March 18th, 2003

anti-war March, #17

The puppet in this imaginative protest in Wellington NZ is none other than the Australian Prime Minister, John Howard. He is seen by his detractors to be kissing President Bush’s arse.

Maida Vale, London, Monday, March 17th, 2003

anti-war March, #16

Mahatma Gandhi said: “The science of war leads one to dictatorship pure and simple. The science of nonviolence can alone lead one to pure democracy”. I’ve been thinking about what our democracy really means in the light of so many democratic processes being ignored because they are inconvenient to the means of our political leaders. It seems to me that Bush and the Republicans are as much of a dictator as Saddam – they want their way and are determined to have it, in spite of the number of people, governments, and even the UN, telling him otherwise. Is our democracy just a front for a dictatroship?

Friday night: The guys at work have a DJ night every month or so. When I say a DJ night, I don’t exactly mean Fat Boy Slim. No disrespect to the technical ability of the DJ’s they get in, but it’s the music that they have to play. You know, West-Life, Celine Dion dance remixes, The Eagles, and the like. The dude dj-ing on Friday night liked dub. And in the middle of some top forty hits abomination he would lay in heaps of reverb. Beautiful. And the look on the faces of some of the punters! I think that they thought the guy was having ‘technical issues’….. After that we went to a bar which I managed to get myself thrown out of. Bastards.

Maida Vale, London, Sunday, March 16th, 2003


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