February 5, 2003
History Through the Looking GlassIn Madeleine Bunting's writing in the UK Guardian we can see a British view of the Blair-Bush drama and it brings strange and sad ironies to mind. (See "Beginning of the End: The US is Ignoring an Important Lesson from History - That an Empire Cannot Survive on Brute Force Alone" posted at Commondreams.org)
From the sound of things, Blair is saying he's ready to "risk all" for Bush and the oil companies. It seems that among the debris George W. Bush will leave in his wake will be Tony Blair. This whole mad escapade may just be the end of Blair's political career, and who at this point can care very much?
The Bushoids have pushed the notion of "appeasement" with Saddam Hussein to evoke the appeasement of Hitler at the summit in Munich when the European nations agreed to "give" Hitler Czechoslovakia in exchange for his assurances that he had no more territorial ambitions.
No politician wants to be compared with Chamberlain, the prime minister who promised "Peace in Our Time" and ignored the Nazi threat so long the British only escaped Nazi domination by the skin of their teeth.
The Munich analogy is used to further the Bush war agenda, comparing Saddam Hussein to Hitler and saying we'd better not appease him. But historically Saddam has very little in common with Hitler and George W. Bush has a great deal in common with him. Hitler was the head of a mighty military-industrial machine that was centralized under an oligarchy with Hitler as its frontman and was pushing for world domination through whatever means were necessary.
Saddam has virtually no military or economic power. He is not being aggressive with his meighbors. He is not attacking anyone, not trying to expand his territory. But George Bush and the oligarchy that pulls his strings from behind the shadowy curtain is doing all that.
This time it is Iraq's oil that the European powers will parcel up. And it will be a share in the booty that the Bush regime will use to bring France and Germany on board. With France and Germany standing against Bush's plan to take over Iraq, Blair could have thrown his weight to their side and it might have made the difference between driving into a new world war or not. But instead he sided with the war mongers. He blew his chance to make a difference. He came down on the side of the fascists, of the colonialists, the aggressors.
Appeasement and carving up of sacrificial countries is being prepared in the service of George Bush, and Blair will -- ironically -- go down in history as the Chamberlain who gave into a tyrant and thus helped him in his drive for power and world domination.