O.k. I may well be somewhat off topic, but theres a couple (maybe more) points I feel like making.
There's a UNHCR report that's been sent to a shedload of governments containing estimates of the number of civillian deaths and injuries, dispalced persons etc, that are likely in the event of a U.S. led invasion of Iraq. It was sent, reputedly, as a begging letter to get the recipient governments to cough up some cash. The point is they estimate that there will be in the region of 500,000 civilian casualties and millions of refugess, that figure does not assume that U.S./U.K./whoever else joins in, soldiers are, to a man, barbarian savages but does take into account the appalingly low standard of health "enjoyed" by the vast bulk of the Iraqi populace as a result of Saddams response to a decade of sanctions.
Given that the average Iraqi doesn't have accses to anything even remotly aproximating to unbiased news, and that therefore there's a high probability that their judgemantal baseline inclines them to, at least tacitly, endose whatever Mr Hussein is telling them, are we not about to become the most effective recruting tool that Bin Laden, or for that matter any other nutcase who want's to start a Jihad, has ever had?
I guess my point, in short, Is how are the actions currently being proposed by the U.S. addministration going to make the world a safer place. Because I'm damned If I can see how that will happen and I have a horrible feeling that this "war" on terror is going to be just like the war on drugs; i.e. spend lots of money, make lots of speaches, achive bu***r all (this is a family website isnt it?).
Now that I come to think about it, another thing that bugs me is that I just don't buy the reasons that are being given for war. No I'm not saying that Saddam is in any way anything other than an abominable discrace to his people, his country and his species, but if that by itself were sufficent reason for intervension, what about Mugabe (currently starving to death anyone who didn't vote for him) or Surhato ((I just know I spelt that name wrong) twenty years of genocide in East Timor). Or that he's either got or is developing weapons of mass destruction, well no stinker sherlock, but if wer'e going to get all hot and bothered about the non-proliferation treaty or the various international agrrements concerning chemical and biological weapons, shouldn't we first off be saying some very uncomplimentary things to Israel and futhermore how is it that the most likely source of the anthrax used in the U.S. just recently was, um, U.S. defence research facilitys.
Incidenly I don't feel the French need to take that much stick from a bunch of latecomers :wink:
O.K. I've donned my asbestos suit, flame away.