Monday, February 10, 2003

"The US Is a Danger to World Peace"-True, But Is That a Bug or a Feature?-Part II-Here's yet another keeper from the over at USS Clueless
Britons see U.S. as Biggest Threat to Peace - Poll The majority of Britons do not regard Iraq as the biggest threat to world peace and one in three people say the United States is more dangerous, a poll published on Tuesday showed. However, a majority of Britons would back military action against Iraq -- even without a specific mandate from the United Nations -- and seven out of 10 people believe Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has a dangerous arsenal of weapons.
Now what, exactly, is a "threat to peace"? Seems to me what it means is "the nation most likely to go to war in the immediate future." The largest number of Brits think it's the United States. I sure as hell hope so! But of course, the phrase "threat to peace" is deliberately loaded, since of course no one can possible really, be in favor of threatening peace, can they? So obviously what this means is that the British people now oppose the US, don't they? Evidently not, given that they also found that the majority of Brits favor military action against Iraq. So what in hell was the point of asking them who "threatened peace"?
Time ran a similar poll of their international readers about a month ago and I had this comment at the time
The Conservative Journal (stop it with all these good new blogs, stop it, you're swamping my bookmarks!) goes off on some Time-bashing for a reader poll which concluded that the US poses the biggest danger to world peace. The liberal denizens of Time are correct. For my readers who think I've had a neoliberal relapse, let's rephrase the question. If you ask the question "Who's most likely to initiate military action in the next year" Uncle Sam wins the prize. I don't think Saddam will go on an offensive in the next year; the US is more likely to invade Iraq for non-compliance than the North Koreans are to send their tanks to pick up some take-out kimchi from Seoul. However, world peace isn't necessarily a good thing if it means that the bad guys get to abuse their people and build up a big WMD arsenal for even bigger future wars. What the US is after isn't peace but something more like shalom. I recall that the word has a law-and-order, everything-in-its-place ring to it in Hebrew; heads may have to be cracked open before we get the world where things are in their place. Diplomats will often see conflict as a failure when warfare is needed, while other, more realistic, folks might understand that "aggressive negotiations" are sometimes called for.
Yes, we threaten the peace, but the bad guys like the status quo.

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