August 29, 2002
Uniting the World -- Against the USThe mad foreign policy of the Bush administration is succeeding in turning practically the entire world against the lone superpower. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan issued a call to the US to resist its obsession to attack Iraq "joining calls from leaders in Germany, China, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain on Wednesday for restraint in considering military action to topple Saddam Hussein", according to an Associated Press report. All in one day.
Bush is a pitbull on the pantleg on this issue, and as practically the entire world domestically and internationally lines up against him and he continues to push it, it appears more and more like some sick Oedipal obsession, some private issue with his father playing itself out on the world stage.
[Never misunderestimate him though, dense as he may seem. What this administration needs now is a good provocation, something dramatic, on the order of another World Trade Center attack that Bush can blame on Saddam Hussein. Something that will make it seem suddenly as if he had been right all along. People will be more attentive this time, perhaps, to the lapses that could allow such an event to occur. But don't put it past the Bush cartel. Don't put anything past them. They are full of surprises and never cease to amaze with the degree to which they will go to accomplish their objectives. Beware.]
Bush's Oedipal Obsession with Iraq The more I think about it, the more I see Bush's obsession with Iraq in Freudian Oedipal terms. Yes, Bush wants to "finish the job" that his father took so much flack for not finishing when Iraq was in retreat a decade ago. He wants to complete his father's legacy. He wants to redeem his father.
But under the surface, here is the boy who followed his namesake through every step in his career, to the prep school at Andover, to Yale, to a military stint, an oil business career and finally politics. And in each of these theaters of activity he was strikingly less successful than his illustrious father. Even as he struts and stretches to appear as tall as possible, he knows he will never measure up to his towering father. It's a foregone conclusion that few have ever questioned. And yet somewhere inside there remains a vestige of the sullen young man who drunkenly challenged his father to "go mano a mano" back in Houston after Junior had crashed the car into some garbage cans after a night out drinking.
Somewhere down under the surface George still harbors that hope that he can just once in his life outshine his father. Deposing Saddam Hussein and winning a second term is the plan on which that possibility rests, and in Junior's simple mind, it will be nearly impossible to dislodge, as we are seeing. He will go up against the whole world on this issue, because remember, it is a world he barely knows exists.
Now, like Oedipus, Bush the Younger -- without even knowing it -- endeavors to kill his father and marry his mother, to bring down the icon that has dominated his life since he learned his own name, and to seize the prize that eluded even that Great Warrior. And we, the rest of the world, are merely the backdrop of this drama.
-- By David Cogswell