Monday, March 24, 2003

I'm trying not to be a warblogger, really, but like a lot of folks, I guess I'm just a bit preoccupied at the moment. So, here are a few war-related items which are worthwhile, but a perhaps bit off the beaten path:
  • The Daily Kos, posting before the war, about our supply line problem, and some hair-raising technical discussion of the same attributed to an anonymous American tank officer.

  • The ugly reaction on the "Arab Street" to even the current antiseptic campaign, which would surely get worse in an atmosphere of sustained streetfights, or even the health emergency that's coming if the citizens of Basra don't get their water back. (It's been cut off for nearly three days now, though the Red Cross has jury-rigged a system that's providing limited water to some of the residents).

    Already the American embassy in Pakistan has had to close up, though it's reopening Tuesday.

  • North Korea cancelling talks with the South, explicitly citing the Iraq crisis as part of the reason. And you thought Dubya wasn't trying to do anything at all to change that ugly situation.

  • And lastly, after all those overheated diatribes about the use that Saddam Hussein's forces might make of weapons of mass destruction, the Pentagon is now complaining bitterly about the use of white flags as ruses in combat -- calling it "among the most serious violations of the laws of war". Legalities aside, I don't think that's going to go down too well between interviews with wounded civilians on al-Jazeera.

One more thing -- a few days ago, some overrated warblogger described an Iraqi kid eating a chocolate bar as "the 'peace' movement's worst nightmare". Well, speaking as an anti-war blogger, my worst nightmare right now runs toward a humanitarian crisis in the South, followed by a "humanitarian" intervention by the Iranians, who have already got armed proxies in country in the north of Iraq, and who may already be taking potshots at coalition forces that stray too close to their border.

Not that I think that that's likely -- the most likely outcome is a nasty set of streetfights, probably dragging on for weeks, and gradually transitioning into a hell of a pacification job (so long, that is, as the American forces manage to keep their supply lines in order). Which would be plenty bad enough.

That's war, the war party says now. But as Mahabarbara reminds us (no permalinks or I'd link to her piece), some of them were saying before the war that it would be a cakewalk.


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