...of not saying anything about what I do from day to day, I spent some time today reviewing grant applications for the Serbia & Montenegro Ministry of Science. Most of today i spent feeling neuron-deprived and weary, much like Dave, probably pre-flu. All of Androo's concerns about the US not having a plan are very valid, and I guess it is a judgment call as to whether the best response is to try and help them come up with a plan or just to wait and hope they will go away. Actually, both modes of action seem naively optimistic in my current mood. I guess I would be much less likely to support the current US administration if everyone hadn't been abusing them from before they took over. They are not that different from the last lot, unfortunately. They do not have any agenda that any real religious radical or republican imperialist would consider remotely satsifactory. They are time-serving, venial, rotten politicians, all in all, just like their counterparts here on both so-called 'sides' of politics.
In 1998 Clinton bombed Iraq in a pretty serious way, killing a lot of civilians. This really pissed me off at the time and made me briefly consider renouncing my US citizenship. It didn't seem to be achieving anything or to be a well-thought out course of action at all. We now know that it pretty much destroyed Saddam's weapons program, so it was probably justified. But I can't remember anyone protesting agaisnt it- certainly not anything like 2003. I can't help wondering if all those people would have protested in 2003 if the US president, putting forward exactly the same policy, was someone from their 'side' of politics.
In 1999 the US intervened again, putting together a coalition of the willing to bomb a country that had pretty much given away violent meddling in the affairs of its neighbours, that wasn't in breach of anywhere near as many UN resolutions as Iraq was, and that really wasn't all that oppressive and genocidal compared to places like, say, Iraq. I remember there were protests in Sydney, but it seemed from the media reports that just about everyone at them was from Serbia & Montenegro... I don't know if Bush would have gotten off so easily.
Perhaps the exception is Afghanistan: that was the current administration. Afghanistan wasn't in breach of any UN resolutions, it wasn't any threat to its neighbours, it may have offended Western sensibilities but it wasn't genocidal, and the atrocities the Northern Alliance inflicted on captured prisoners make Abu Ghraib look like a CWA picnic. Bush got away with that, so what pressed buttons with Iraq? It couldn't be that the US was run by someone on the so-called 'right' and Iraq was run by someone on the so-called 'left'? I dunno.