Friday, October 04, 2002

An interview with a German Human Rights Activist about the situation in Iraq and the very troubling trend emerging in Germany. A journalist, human rights activist and intellectual, Thomas von der Osten-Sacken is considered one of Germany's leading authorities on human rights in Iraq.
This is a very troublesome article which illustrates why relations between the US and Germany are deteriorating so quickly and why Germany is being praised by all the fascist regimes on Iraq, Syria, etc... as an ally of the Pan-Arabic cause.
Very scary indeed.
Canadian Customs detains pro-Israel papers destined for the Ayn Rand Institute.
You know, I am so glad that these proud civil servants are defending us against the infusion of material which states things like "We hold that the state of Israel has a moral right to exist and defend itself against attack -- and that the United States should unequivocally support Israel" or even this kind of inflammatory language: "those attacking Israel are "terrorist organizations, theocracies, dictatorships and would-be dictators".
Such statements clearly fall under the definition set out in our proud criminal code: "Goods that constitute hate propaganda under the Criminal Code are those which advocate or promote genocide or promote hatred against an identifiable group distinguished by colour, race, religion or ethnic origin.".
So how low will our morally bankrupt Canadian Government go in its waffling or even undercover support for terrorists and megalomaniacs such as Saddam? Very low I guess. They confiscate material which clearly support Israel's right to exist but refuse to categorize Hamas or Hizbollah as terrorist organizations while these organizations state in their own charters that their goal is the destruction of Israel.
No double standard there, no siree!
By the way, the minister in charge of Canada Customs is Elinor Caplan (a self-hating Jew if I ever met one) and she can be e-mailed at caplan.e@parl.gc.ca
I would say that a small barrage of e-mails to her is warranted.
By the way, here is the link to this highly offensive material.

Thursday, October 03, 2002

A very powerful piece about how inertia towards the first signs of antisemitism eventually leads to the death of many.
Read it please, it is a great motivator. If it is too long, here is the conclusion, it says it all:

In Germany, they first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Catholic. Then they came for me -- and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

A. M. Rosenthal comes out of retirement....

A.M. Rosenthal was the managing editor of the NY Times for many years. He now writes occasionally for the Op-Ed page and the Sunday magazine section of the Times.

ROSENTHAL CALL TO ACTION

Daily News (New York)

HEADLINE: IGNORE HATE TODAY, DIE TOMORROW
BY A.M. ROSENTHAL

Jews, listen and you will hear the sound of breaking glass. Even if you squeeze your hands over your ears, you will still hear it. Breaking glass, burning synagogues and diplomats making filthy anti-Semitic remarks mean that a sickening number of people around the world, many in high office, would have no great objections if the concentration camps arrived again, and would even take pleasure in speeding their coming.
Jews and Christians have been deceiving themselves that the most violent and virulent anti-Semitism campaign since Hitler has involved only Muslim states. That languor of eye, ear and brain could become our eternal sleep. The noise and stench of hatred are soiling us again, now not just from Muslim countries but from lands we consider our friends.
The American press is generally doing a miserable job of reporting this outbreak. But when the information does trickle in, we sit around saying, "Well, what can we do about it?"
German Jews asked themselves the same question while the Nazis were slithering to power. Then they couldn't even ask the question, because they were being strangled.
When it was all over -- or supposed to be -- those still alive said, "Never again." It meant never again would anti-Jewish hate be allowed to become slaughter. But it was supposed to mean something else, too.
Never again would those whose fate was to be hung by the neck pretend that they did not see the nooses. And yet, here we are. Staring at the gallows.
This year, a French ambassador to England described Israel as feces. A Saudi newspaper -- controlled, of course, by the government -- wrote that Jews make holiday pastry with human blood. It is the old blood libel, and if you don't know what that means, be ashamed of yourself. It means the blueprints for the new camps are probably already drawn.
But what can we do? We hear that whine again and again -- sometimes from ourselves. We can use our political, ethical and financial resources against the Jew-haters now crawling out from the moldings of fancy English homes and Belgian and French political offices. We can look them squarely in the eye.
Most important, we can turn to our own leaders of government, industry and commerce. Americans cannot rely only upon foreigners to fight anti-Jewishness abroad.
The first thing we can do is decide to do something. President Bush has so far shown the bravest and clearest mind among the world's "leaders." He does not try to define the killers by nationality or religion but by their belief that the only important weapon of their warfare is terrorist murder.
Dissemination of Jew-hate is a prelude to suicide terror just as certainly as making the bomb is the prelude to exploding it. In Israel today, America tomorrow.
Bush can speak that truth and make sure his administration does the same. His administration should make it clear to the murderers that they will be judged in Washington by their incitement to murder, before the new bombs of the suicide killers go off in American cities. Americans and their government should boycott any country or international organization that allows any official to tolerate the growing international anti-Jew movement. Yes, movement. These are not isolated incidents -- not when the same hatred is being thrown around by propagandists in Paris as well as Baghdad.
We have already been told that boycotts for the benefit of humanity and survival have no great impact. Tell that to the former apartheid leaders in South Africa now scrounging for jobs. We have been told we have a lot of money tied up in foreign trade in countries that permit or encourage anti-Jewish campaigns. If some American entrepreneurs insist on bolstering the Jew-hating countries with American money and trade, the rest of us must turn our assets and banks against them and remove any respect and social acceptance. These Americans will become our opponents -- people we fight, not woo. Most important, our souls will be made stronger and cleaner if we show ourselves and the world that we indeed mean it when we say "never again."

ADDENDUM:
In Germany, they first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Catholic. Then they came for me -- and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

-Martin Niemoller
It is a slow news day so we interrupt our regular scheduled blog to bring you the latest recipient of the Darwin award.
A man in a southern state (I think its was Alabama but I am not sure) wrapped his hair in an alcohol-soaked towel to kill the lice in his hair. Then he lit a cigarette. He is in intensive care with third-degree burns to 2/3 of his body.
We now return to our regular scheduled blog.
Sorry floks, I just could not resist.
Harvard University President Speaks Out!

I speak with you today not as President of the University but as a concerned member of our community about something that I never thought I would become seriously worried about -- the issue of anti-Semitism. I am Jewish, identified but hardly devout. In my lifetime, anti-Semitism has been remote from my experience. My family all left Europe at the beginning of the 20th century. The Holocaust is for me a matter of history, not personal memory. To be sure, there were country clubs where I grew up that had few if any Jewish members, but not ones that included people I knew. My experience in college and graduate school, as a faculty member, as a government official -- all involved little notice of my religion.

Indeed, I was struck during my years in the Clinton administration that the existence of an economic leadership team with people like Robert Rubin, Alan Greenspan, Charlene Barshefsky and many others that was very heavily Jewish passed without comment or notice -- it was something that would have been inconceivable a generation or two ago, as indeed it would have been inconceivable a generation or two ago that Harvard could have a Jewish President. Without thinking about it much, I attributed all of this to progress -- to an ascendancy of enlightenment and tolerance. A view that prejudice is increasingly put aside. A view that while the politics of the Middle East was enormously complex, and contentious, the question of the right of a Jewish state to exist had been settled in the affirmative by the world community.

But today, I am less complacent. Less complacent and comfortable because there is disturbing evidence of an upturn in anti-Semitism globally, and also because of some
developments closer to home. Consider some of the global events of the last year:

* There have been synagogue burnings, physical assaults on Jews, or the painting of swastikas on Jewish memorials in every country in Europe. Observers in many countries have pointed to the worst outbreak of attacks against the Jews since the Second World War.

* Candidates who denied the significance of the Holocaust reached the runoff stage of elections for the nation's highest office in France and Denmark. State-sponsored
television stations in many nations of the world spew anti-Zionist propaganda.

* The United Nations-sponsored World Conference on Racism -- while failing to mention human rights abuses in China, Rwanda, or anyplace in the Arab world -- spoke of Israel's policies prior to recent struggles under the Barak government as constituting ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. The NGO declaration at the same
conference was even more virulent.

I could go on. But I want to bring this closer to home. Of course academic communities should be and always will be places that allow any viewpoint to be expressed. And
certainly there is much to be debated about the Middle East and much in Israel's foreign and defense policy that can be and should be vigorously challenged.

But where anti-Semitism and views that are profoundly anti-Israeli have traditionally been the primary preserve of poorly educated right-wing populists, profoundly anti-Israel
views are increasingly finding support in progressive intellectual communities. Serious and thoughtful people are advocating and taking actions that are anti-Semitic in their
effect if not their intent.

For example:

* Hundreds of European academics have called for an end to support for Israeli researchers, though not for an end to support for researchers from any other nation.

* Israeli scholars this past spring were forced off the board of an international literature journal.

* At the same rallies where protesters, many of them university students, condemn the IMF and global capitalism and raise questions about globalization, it is becoming
increasingly common to also lash out at Israel. Indeed, at the anti-IMF rallies last spring, chants were heard equating Hitler and Sharon.

* Events to raise funds for organizations of questionable political provenance that in some cases were later found to support terrorism have been held by student
organizations on this and other campuses with at least modest success and very little criticism.

* And some here at Harvard and some at universities across the country have called for the University to single out Israel among all nations as the lone country where it is
inappropriate for any part of the university's endowment to be invested. I hasten to say the University has categorically rejected this suggestion.

We should always respect the academic freedom of everyone to take any position. We should also recall that academic freedom does not include freedom from criticism. The only antidote to dangerous ideas is strong alternatives vigorously advocated.

I have always throughout my life been put off by those who heard the sound of breaking glass, in every insult or slight, and conjured up images of Hitler's Kristallnacht at
any disagreement with Israel. Such views have always seemed to me alarmist if not slightly hysterical. But I have to say that while they still seem to me unwarranted, they seem rather less alarmist in the world of today than they did a year ago.

I would like nothing more than to be wrong. It is my greatest hope and prayer that the idea of a rise of anti-Semitism proves to be a self-denying prophecy -- a prediction that carries the seeds of its own falsification. But this depends on all of us.

Your duty as a blog reader....
Guys, I received an e-mail this morning about a petition that is getting signed with regards to the disaster that is Concordia University. More signatures are needed to make a real impact. It only takes a minute to sign the petition, so please let your voice be heard (if you agree with the petition) and sign the petition.

We all know the issues! Violent protesters rioted against the speaking engagement of former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The censorship perpetrated by the Arab students and their supporters is contrary to both the respectful exchange of competing viewpoints that is the essence of intellectual discourse, and to the basic principles of freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful assembly that are the cornerstones of democratic society.

Mr. Netanyahu had the right to speak and people had the right to listen to him without intimidation or fear. Those rights were compromised.

The University administration has promised that:
"These are shameful incidents that have no place at an institution of higher learning. Concordia will not tolerate this kind of violent behavior in the name of legitimate protest and will act to prevent any reoccurrence in the future."
(Dennis Murphy, Executive Director, University Communications)

And yet within a week of the violent demonstration, a Jewish student was attacked within the school by an Arab Extremist!

Hoping to prevent future violence is not enough.
The participants in the melee should be found, charged and tried.

It's the Canadian thing to do.
It's the democratic thing to do.
It's the right thing to do.

If you have not yet done so, please sign the petition below about this violence. More names are needed if we are to make an impression! As well, please pass on to friends!

Click here to go to petition:

Read the petition about violence at Concordia University and if you agree, sign the petition.

Wednesday, October 02, 2002

Guess what! I went to Israel today!
Actually, I didn't really go there, but I was on Israeli soil when I attended a meeting at Montreal's Israeli consulate. When I arrived, I was informed that consulates are considered part of the respective country, and any crimes committed within the confines of the consulate would be tried in Israel and under Israeli law. Cool eh? Anyway, the purpose of the meeting was to meet with three Israeli students who were part of a group travelling around North America to talk about Israel. You know the beauty of it? They don't represent any organization or government. They spoke about their experiences as young Israelis in the army, they spoke about the constant fear they experience while back home, and they spoke about their political views. As you'd expect, three Israelis had seven opinions about Israel, and they were all totally different. The meeting lasted hours, and continued at my friend Joel's house afterwards where I spoke with the Israelis for another several hours. How incredible it was to be able to speak with people who were really touched by the crisis. Their ideas and thoughts were different than anything I had heard before....and I just got back from Israel!
One of the most shocking things for me to learn, were the roles and ranks held by these young students. The first girl Natalie, a gorgeous and eloquent 23-year old, stood up and said "Hello, I'm Natalie and I'm an Air Force officer. I instruct pilots". All I could do was sit there and think to myself "Wow...what the heck have I done lately?" The other two students also held impressive ranks within the IDF and were equally eloquent and impressive.

Throughout the evening we spoke, argued, debated, agreed, disagreed, became angry, became sad, and became friends. These students opened my eyes to a wealth of ideas and opinions that I had never even considered....especially left leaning ones. For instance, when I gave my heroic little rant about how Israel had to be tough and strong and fight tooth and nail until the bloody end, Natalie asked me "Do you know what that means? Do you know what "being tough" means? It means that all my brothers and sisters and friends and their parents too, are going to have to go back to the army. It means that on weekends, we won't be together anymore. It means that we have to put off our jobs and our social lives. It means that I have to fly a plane and drop bombs. It means that my little brother has to drive a tank. It means that my father and my uncle have to go into the Arab cities and walk in the line of fire. It means that I have to start worrying about bombs and mortars and nukes." On and on she went. What could I say? Finally, she ended by saying "I'm not one of those Israelis who gets mad at Jews in the Diaspora. I don't believe that every Jew has to be in Israel, but you must consider things from our perspective. When you sit here with your newspaper and analyze the conflict and tell me to be tough, it doesn't mean that the IDF is going to start a new and impressive mission. It means that MY family and MY friends have to do what you're telling us....to go to war".

One of the other students the, an admitted left-winger (which I now understand has VERY different implications in Israel than being a leftists in North America), said "We're all very optimistic and idealistic about the situation and the future. I know that North Americans get angry at us for being so naive, but what you don't understand is that when you say the word "peace" Israelis melt. We melt. Our hearts jump and our eyes well up with tears. We're willing to believe ANYTHING for peace. We want it so badly. We're willing to make concessions that Americans just can't understand. Why? Because we're famished for peace. We want it so badly that we can almost taste it".

My second question was equally as stupid as my first, but the answer was just as thought provoking as the first one. When I asked "Don't you feel a need to win? Don't you understand that the victors are the ones who get to write the textbooks? Doesn't that inspire you to give it all you've got to win this thing?" Natalie answered me "Elana, if I woke you up tomorrow morning and told you "Israel has won this war", what would that mean? What is there to win here? What does "winning" mean?"
I had no idea what to say. I thought long and hard and still haven't been able to come up with an answer. Israelis aren't fighting for extra land, they're not fighting to get rid of the Palestinians, they're not fighting a conventional army that can surrender and concede defeat. So, what then, does winning actually mean?

What would it mean if Israelis "won" this war?
I leave the question with you, the readers. Please make good use of the comments section. I want to compare and contrast our ideas about the ultimate goal of Israelis.
I guess even National Geographic has its dose of idiotarians. Meet Andrew Cockburn who writes about the water situation in a Palestinian village.
Why the National Geographic would even allow such dishonest propaganda is beyond my comprehension. They should probably go back to taking nice pictures. Obviously, writing and forgetting the context is severely harming their credibility. Following are a few select passages out of Mr. Cockburn's diatribe:
In consequence, each of the 13 tankers serving the town can make only one delivery a day, as opposed to the four or five daily deliveries that they usually made before the present disturbances, known as the Al Aqsa intifada, began in September 2000.
Disturbance? 650 Israelis massacred, 2000 injured, many for life, a destroyed Israeli economy...and this is just a disturbance? Buddy, this is a WAR, not a disturbance.
The latest news from the West Bank, occupied by Israel since June 1967...just one more reason why some 70 percent of the inhabitants of the occupied territories are living on $2 a day or less.
Occupied since June 1967, occupied territories? According to what legal framework? The Palestinians never owned this territory, never had sovereignty over this territory. This territory was seized by Arab countries in 1948 and liberated by the Israelis in 1967. And why is he automatically subscribing to the flawed notion that Israel is the only country in the world which does not have the right of conquest?
As the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz noted on September 4, Palestinians are “walking by foot on dirt paths, riding donkeys or tractors (the modern alternative to the camel) in order to fulfill basic needs like water, a few vegetables, medicines and studies.”
And other Arabs in all their failed cleptocracies are riding in luxury cars maybe? Except for a rare elite (the corrupted supporters of the regimes), the entire Arab population in the Middle East is living below the poverty level thanks to the failed regimes that only left-wing idiotarians support.
So Andrew Cockburn, whoever you are, stop showing your biases, get your facts straight or even better, don't write about things that you do not understand. As a journalist, someone should have taught you that images without a context are deceiving. And you have been deceived so easily that you have shamed the journal you write for.
Vote!Vote!Vote!
The Independant Florida Alligator is conducting a poll on behalf of the University of Florida, asking people whether or not the school should sponsor study-abroad programs in Israel. Many Jews attend the University and look forward to the possibility of spending a year in Israel. Please go to the site and VOTE NOW!

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

Guess what? The PA officially admits it has the men and weapons to control Hamas but does not intend to do so.
I wonder if Mr. Saeb Erakat, Arafat's official liar spokesperson, who continuously has affirmed that the Israelis have destroyed the PA's ability to combat terrorism, and who also has always maintained that the PA is doing everything in its power to control terrorism, actually believes his litany of lies.
Now some other PA flunkie is saying exactly the opposite:
"We have enough men and arms, but not political horizon and no incentive, to enter into bloody conflict with other Palestinians,"
He also claims that the much touted announcement of a crackdown on Hamas by the PA will likely never happen. So, all the Peace Now idiots and idiotarians alike are going to have to find another chorus. The one they were using about the PA being a partner for peace, giving peace a chance, etc...has just evaporated (duh...what a surprise!). Now they might have to admit that the PA is not only irrelevant but actually a partner in crime according to any descent criminal code: if you have the knowledge of a crime about to happen, if you have the means to stop it and you do nothing to stop it yourself of to warn potential victims about it, I think this is called concealing and abetting. Effectively, the PA has now become an official criminal accomplice of Hamas.
Does anyone think that the PA is finally going to make the list of terrorist organizations? Me neither!
(Thanks Damian Penny for pointing this article out).
US recognizes Jerusalem as Israel's capital. When Joe Clark, the former Canadian Prime Minister, tried this stunt 22 years ago, he was turfed from office! Kids, DO NOT try this at home.
Amazing that it has taken so long, isn't it? But it is still incredible and Israelis (and Jews) around the world should be grateful to Bush for finally taking a firm stand on Jerusalem.
Of course, Saeb Erakat said "Bush's signing of the bill undermines all efforts being exerted to revive the peace process and put it back on track." Interesting that more suicide bombers, Arafat giving refuge to 50 terrorists in his compound, Hamas' calls for more Jewish blood, provocation by Hezbollah in Northern Israel, constant incitement by Muslim racists clerics for the annihilation of Israel and the massacre of Jews, etc...none of which undermine Palestinian efforts for peace. But this? The recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital? Now this is the final blow to the Palestinians' ever so sincere and genuine interest in peace. Yeah...Saeb, you are an imbecile.
You are all familiar with the Republic of Birobidzhan, of course. No?...Let me refresh your memory...It is a Jewish autonomous region setup by the Soviets in the 1920's. Putin corrected Sharon during a visit by the Israeli Prime Minister and insisted that Birobidzhan is the other Jewish homeland. Nice try Vladimir!
In the meantime, Sharon, who was impressed by Putin's genuine interest in the situation of Jews around the world, was invited to visit Birobidzhan and was treated to a fully Kosher lunch. Looks like Putin may turn out to be the first non-anti-semite Russian leader in about 3 or 4 generations.

Sunday, September 29, 2002

I think Saddam's clock is about to run out...thank God! Jeff Jacoby presents a pretty compelling list of clues showing that the opposition to a war on Iraq is crumbling...actually, even better, the support for the war is starting to solidify.
Note to Jean Cretin...you are on the wrong side of this fight. Note to the 100 Canadian intellectuals who petitioned against the war on Iraq...you are out of touch with reality, most people who lived under tyranny at some point know that tyrants need to be destroyed, not appeased. You will, once again, be shown to have been wrong, pretty much like every cause you support.

THE WORLD WILL FOLLOW US TO WAR
By Jeff Jacoby - The Boston Globe

September 29, 2002
Less than two minutes into his speech at San Francisco's Commonwealth Club last week, Al Gore said he was "deeply concerned" that the Bush administration's policy toward Iraq will "weaken our ability to lead the world."
It was a point he kept repeating. America's ability to secure "broad and continuous international cooperation" in the war against terrorism, he said, would be "severely damaged by unilateral action against Iraq." Unlike during the Gulf War, "many of our allies in Europe and Asia are thus far opposed to what President Bush is doing." Bush has "squandered" the "sympathy, goodwill, and solidarity that followed the attacks of Sept. 11th and converted it [sic] into anger and apprehension." He has conducted foreign policy "at the expense of solidarity . . . between America and her allies."
This is hardly a new argument (though it is new for the former vice president, who as recently as February was calling for a "final reckoning" with Saddam's regime, which he labeled "a virulent threat in a class by itself"). Is there any Bush critic who *hasn't* claimed that the administration's determination to oust Saddam was costing us the support of the rest of the world?
Here, for instance, is an August editorial in The New York Times, which has been beating the no-war drum for months: "Rarely in preparing for war has America seemed so isolated from potential military partners and allies as it does today."
And here is Democratic partisan James Carville, railing on CNN the other night: "Let me tell you something. The Koreans hate us. Now the Germans. . . . You know what? If we had a foreign policy that tried to get people to like us, as opposed to irritating everybody in the damn world, it would be a lot better thing. . . . Our foreign policy makes it where people don't like us."
And Senator John Kerry, scolding the president in a recent op-ed column: "The administration's hasty war talk makes it much more difficult to manage our relations with other Arab governments, let alone the Arab street. . . . The administration seems to have elevated Saddam Hussein in the eyes of his neighbors to a level he would never have achieved on his own."
There is just one problem with this argument. It isn't true.

To be sure, not every country favors a US war on Iraq. The French are against it, in keeping with their old habit of accommodating dictators instead of fighting them. More surprisingly, the Germans are against it too. In his re-election campaign, Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder repeatedly denounced Bush's war plans, and was backed up by other members of his Social Democratic Party. Justice Minister Herta Daeubler-Gmelin reportedly likened Bush's rhetoric to Adolf Hitler's; Ludwig Stiegler, the SDP leader in the German parliament, said Bush was "acting as if he's Caesar Augustus."
But no sooner was Schroeder returned to office than he forced Daeubler-Gmelin to resign and stripped Stiegler of his party post. Why? If the prospect of a US war against Saddam is truly "irritating everybody in the damn world," the victorious Schroeder would hardly feel the need to take such drastic steps to appease Washington. It is precisely because the world is lining up behind Bush, not against him, that Schroeder is so keen to mend fences.
Consider some recent developments:
At a summit meeting in Copenhagen, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi staunchly backs the US call for regime change in Baghdad. At the United Nations, the Portuguese foreign minister says the option of war with Iraq "must be open," and that it is a great mistake for any nation to blame the United States for preparing to fight. On Sept. 12, Spanish Prime Minister José Maria Aznar declares, "If I have to choose between the camp of freedom and the camp of tyranny or . . . between President Bush or Saddam Hussein, I have no doubt which is my place or what Spain's place should be."
East of Elbe, meanwhile, support for Bush is even stronger. For good reason: East Europeans have vivid, recent memories of what it means to live under a dictatorship -- and what it means like to be liberated.
Thus Czech President Vaclav Havel warns that Saddam must be defeated, recalling that "if the world had resisted Hitler sooner . . . World War II might not have happened." Bulgaria, which currently holds the rotating presidency of the UN Security Council, pronounces the US case against Saddam "quite convincing." Romania offers the use of its airspace in any action against Iraq. Count on it: When the American war to topple Saddam begins, most of Europe will follow.
And what of the Arab world?

Well, Qatar has indicated it would welcome a request from the United States to use its Al Udeid Air Base to launch an attack on Baghdad. Jordan has reportedly agreed to let US forces target Iraqi missile batteries from positions in the eastern Jordanian desert. Egypt, Kuwait, and Turkey likewise have reportedly consented to provide logistical assistance to a US-led campaign against Saddam. Even Saudi Arabia, reversing its earlier stance, now says it will permit its bases to be used against Iraq.
All that talk of how the "Arab street" will explode if America marches on Baghdad and how Bush, as Kerry put it, "has elevated Saddam in the eyes of his neighbors"? Forget it. "Over the past few weeks," reports the Iranian-born journalist Amir Taheri, "Arab opposition to military action against Saddam Hussein has crumbled. . . . In visits from one end of the Arab world to another, one finds little evidence of any grassroots support for Saddam."
It is easy and tempting to grouse about the United States. But when the superpower goes to war, no one wants to be on the losing side. The war to liberate Iraq will be no exception.