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Letters to the Editor 2/11

Iraqi war priority is economy, not weapons

In the limelight of Iraq, many citizens and media outlets have brought the issue of war to the debate table with a sense of compassionate animosity, if there is such a thing. However, a great deal of history seems to be forgotten as to why this is happening now and not later. In retrospect, after the “first” Gulf War, the U.N. Security Council imposed economic sanctions on Iraq.

Under U.N. resolutions, the sanctions imposed to punish Iraq for invading Kuwait in 1990 cannot be lifted until the inspectors certify that Iraq has surrendered all its weapons of mass destruction. After a number of years of bickering between Iraq and the United Nations, Iraq accepted an oil for food program in 1997 that is still in effect today.

Now with déjà vu back on the United Nation’s menu, the United States is very nervous about Iraq having no weapons of mass destruction. Yes, I said “no” weapons of mass destruction. Why? Imagine Iraq having economic sanctions lifted while sitting on the world’s second largest oil field. This would create a lot of power for a very dangerous man in a very unstable Middle East.

In return, the Bush administration’s move on the political chess board has put Saddam Hussein in check by convincing the world that he has deadly weapons. That’s easy. For one he’s evil, and second, he’s had them before. So, the world, and especially the United States, is easily sold on the notion of war producing the greatest check-mate with a bang.

Unfortunately, Bush and his regime have stalemated the situation with desperate measures to insult our intelligence, saying that Iraq poses a threat to the United States and that Saddam and al-Qaida have a connection.

These accusations drift from the point and only add to the question of whether to use force to take out Hussein. The main priority in all this mess is economics, not weapons of mass destruction. Of course, selling that to the American people, and to the world, would have been seen as greedy and arrogant. However, Bush has started something much bigger, and that is a possible war. He must find out how to finish what he has started without instability. War will be a sad finish to something that could have ended with a better move. But like all games, especially chess, in order to win, you must look at the “entire” board.

Matthew Cooke is a junior majoring in marketing.