Generals gathered in their masses,
Just like witches at Black Masses,
Evil minds that plot destruction,
Sorcerers of death's construction...
Dubya has shown himself to be hellbent on invading Iraq, regardless of what happens in the world around him. No matter what the inspectors report, no matter what the UN Security Council resolves, no matter what millions of protesters around the world say, he wants war. I find that sad for him, and dangerous for the rest of us.
I didn't take part in the demonstration in New York on February 15th, as I already had other plans during the day. But we did drive past thousands of them on the streets, and I flashed a peace sign at several. Later that night, as I waited on line to get into the Sleater-Kinney concert at the Roseland Ballroom, some people were handing out free buttons commemorating the protest, and I gladly accepted one and wore it. I've also written an anti-war poem for the National Day of Poetry Against the War on February 12th, and there's an International Day of Poetry Against the War scheduled for March 5th.
So, yes, like many other Americans and many other people all over the globe, I am, for the moment at least, opposed to U.S. forces invading Iraq. That doesn't mean that I don't think there should be a war no matter what; I am a pacifist by nature, but I recognize that there are some situations, with some who will not listen to reason, which can only be resolved by force. I can't imagine the world stopping Hitler any way but through war, for example. But I don't see that we've got that kind of situation here. Yes, Saddam Hussein is an exquisite and a dangerous asshole. The same could be said of the leaders of many other nations, and of past American presidents. Without proof of the Iraqis' intent and ability to attack another country, overtly or otherwise, there is no justification for attacking them. It's an ugly situation, but if we want to live by the rule of law, then the law applies to us as well. If Hussein openly defies the sensible demands of the UN Security Council, then by all means let the UN resolve to strip him of his weaponry, and back that up with action. So far, though, he seems to be slowly bending under pressure, as the ongoing destruction of the al-Samoud 2 missiles demonstrates. As far as 'regime change' goes, it's not our business. If the Iraqi people want to continue to put up with him, that's their problem. No nation invaded American territory to 'liberate' the Native Americans or the black slaves here during the 18th or 19th centuries, despite the crimes against humanity perpetrated against them. The problems were eventually dealt with internally. If there had been an intervention, Americans and their leaders would have been furious. The United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Kuwait are to be commended for urging Hussein to step down in order to avert war, but I don't think anyone believes that he'll do so, and I'm not even convinced that that would stop the war machine.
It's frustrating, too, that Dubya and his camp are trying to paint anyone who's not with them as 'the old Europe' or confused or blatantly hurting America. I'm still an American, and I seek a solution that's fair to America and to the world. That's the only way to prevent such ugly situations from arising again. And while France and Germany are indebted to the United States for helping them become what they are today, that does not mean that they're obligated to follow an American president into whatever foolhardy venture in which he decides to partake. Dubya's behavior will only serve to alienate the Europeans, whose money he will need if an invasion and subsequent rebuilding does take place. I don't know about you, but I'm loathe to have my tax dollars go towards first destroying and then reconstructing Baghdad. If we're going to engage in that kind of rebuilding, let's try Los Angeles instead. Even Turkey has decided to obey the will of its people against the lure of American dollars, making an invasion that much more difficult.
OK, I'm going to try to stay off that topic for a while. Dubya's made it very clear that he doesn't care what anyone, outside or inside the U.S., thinks of his plans, so all I can do is hope that he digs a grave for his political career. If he fails to get the world community behind him, yet he invades Iraq anyway, it's going to cost Americans a lot, and not just in money. Eventually, others will realize this...
Someone stole an original Dalí sketch from the prison at Riker's Island. Go figure.
So, I've been on a concert-going kick lately. Since September, I've seen Les Paul, Aimee Mann (twice), Tori Amos, the Martin Rivas Three (two or three times, I forget), and Sleater-Kinney, and over the next few weeks I'm going to see They Might Be Giants, the Martin Rivas Three again (at CBGB this time!), and Def Leppard, again. Live music is a real kick, when done right. Heh-heh...
I'm also gearing up to get back into my own music. I have to finish this album of mine this year; I've procrastinated on it, but the fact is, if I were to die tomorrow, my only regret would be not getting the recording done. So I intend to get it done, starting with finishing up "Swingin' in the Park (After Dark)" this month. Jon and I haven't worked on any Not An Exit stuff in quite a while, either, though it'll be much easier once we've found an apartment. Anyone know of anything in north Jersey?
I've added another computer to the collection, a Silicon Graphics Indy; I think I'm going to call her Mindy. ;) At the moment, though, she's not in use, because of incompatible video ports. Got to order an adapter and do some tinkering...
Goddamn, I am sick of snow. Maybe Jon and I should move to a tropical island... Well, no, if I were going to move to a tropical island, I'd much rather do it with a woman. No offense, Jon... But, really, we've had a lot more snow and much colder weather this winter than in the six that preceded it.
Lastly, I know I haven't updated the gift shop since first
setting it up. I'm going to, though frankly I'm not in a rush. It's not like
you people have ordered anything yet anyway. Maybe once the Andersen Silva
lunchbox hits the Web...