I don’t usually get political on these pages, and I’m not about to make a habit of it, but this whole Bush v Saddam thing is starting to get on my nerves. Now, of course I realize that Saddam Hussein can quite reasonably be described as a dangerous evil dictator who has already invaded two of his neighbouring countries, but what would bombing Iraq really achieve? Well you wouldn’t kill Saddam for a start – I think you can rest assured he’ll be long gone, viewing events from afar.
More importantly for the American people, what about reprisals? Invading Iraq will certainly get the hackles up of any anti-American group or country. Despite the talk in today’s papers of Iraq’s supposed nuclear capabilities, I don’t see that as a real threat, especially if NATO’s all-for-one and one-for-all stance stays intact.
The real threat has to come from terrorist activities, and they don’t have to be on scale of 9/11. Just look at the way a small, well organised outfit; you may have heard of them; have terrorised Northern Ireland and England for the past 30 years. It wasn’t that long ago the IRA destroyed the centre of Manchester. The IRA chose to give a warning and no-one was killed; had no warning been given, the death toll would have been huge. Let us not forget the bombing of the Grand Hotel in Brighton which killed five people and very nearly killed Thatcher. And in previous, sickening campaigns the IRA were happily blowing up pubs full of people in Guildford & Birmingham.
All this was exacted by a group whose members value their own lives (if no-one else’s) upon a nation schooled in anti-terror vigilance. An unprepared America would be a sitting duck for this kind of sustained offensive.