RETROSPECTIVE: IRAN v. IRAQ September 22, 2005Posted by wmmbb in Category to be ascribed.
The BBC has a retrospective of the eight year long Iraq-Iran war that nobody was making any attempt to stop. The principals who would invade and occupy Iraq 23 years later with the high moral purpose of deposing Saddam Hussein supported him against Iran, despite the fact, well known to them that he was the initial aggressor.
We are given to believe that diplomacy is an area of politics where national interest is pre-eminent and ethics and morality are mostly, if not always, irrelevant. In these matters, the national interest is never defined, and often thought be coincident with powerful players with the domestic polity.
In this context, an over-rated dramatist might be quoted. Shakespeare observed in Troilus and Cressida, through the character of
Strength should be the lord of imbecility . . .
Force should be right; or rather right and wrong -
Between whose endless jar, justice resides -
Should lose their names, and so should justice too.
Then everything includes itself in power,
Power into will, will into appetite;
And appetite, a universal wolf,
So doubly seconded with will and power,
Must make perforce a universal prey1,
And last eat up himself . . .
So much then, Great Agamemnon, for unilateralism, and anything other than a planetary rule of law, with some thought about a transition to a non-carbon economy to cope with humanities survival and both the recognition and consideration of the fact, as it seems, however unpleasant, of global warming. Now, as you might observe, Great Agamemnon, the hirelings then seem to think they can act with impunity as well – and that was Saddam’s mistake.
Footnote 1 The text has this phase as “an universal wolf”, or “an universal prey”, which may be strictly correct.