Kuwait: the Siren of the Gulf

A post here last week pontificated, rather adroitly, that Allawi could only be described as a dictator - not a president. It appears that the folks at Newsweek are belatedly awakening to the reality of the situation. Were the stakes not so high, it would be humorous to witness the gears slowly turning in their tiny, tiny heads.

Not to belittle such an august journal of weekly happenings and happenstances, but their analysis is still tepid at best and does not follow the path to the logical conclusions:

  • Iraq is in a state of disorder.
  • A dictator - searching to establish order - must act ever more ruthlessly.
  • Once having shredded every fiber of decency to obtain order, dictators look back with pride and rarely choose to step away from positions of power and subject themselves to the rule of the people they have just subjugated.
  • Having consolidated his dictatorial power at home, dictators routinely look for new challenges to undertake.

That is right, set your clocks folks because it is about to get interesting. Two possible outcomes are vying to become the future of Iraq even as these words are writ, either:

  • Allawi will fail in his efforts to consolidate control over "a country the size of Texas" or
  • Allawi will succeed in his efforts and seek to expand his authority over his neighbors. The prize will most likely be the weakest one: Kuwait.

Never trust any predictions of the future that even hint of real specificity, but I would venture were Allawi to implement his will over the people of Iraq, he will invade Kuwait within two years of having done so.

Wars lead to debt and debt is a harsh master. Debt always has demands and those demands must be fed. Unfortunately, the only way to feed them is through acquisitions by hook or by crook. Having newly become the sole remaining neighborhood power broker, Allawi's US-supplied army will turn its gaze upon a barely more than helpless Kuwait and feel compelled to invade as surely as they did for Hussein.

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And the wheel goes 'round

It has become fashionable of late - post the surprise, early hand-over of power - to claim that this new CIA-sponsored leader is a president and not a dictator. I know that it has been a score of years since my last civics class, but I seem to recall a simple rule of thumb for determining the title of the head of state that went something like this:

- Kings and Queens, appointed by God (so they like to tell us);
- Dictators, appointed by themselves or the powerful;
- Presidents, elected by the people.

Assuming agreement with the above taxonomy, to which of the above groups does ______ Allawi belong?

A - King Allawi?
B - Dictator Allawi?
C - President Allawi?

Others may tell you there is no wrong answer to the questions they pose; sadly, I am not one of those people and this is not one of those questions. Unless a Libyan employee of the United Nations - who was invited to Iraq by the occupying military forces of the United States - can make some claim to being a representative of the voice of the Iraqi people, then there can be no other correct answer than B - Dictator Allawi.

At this point in our lesson for today, extra-credit students will be asking themselves how Saddam Hussein came to power and seeking to find out if there were any anonymous - or at least, soft spoken - power brokers behind his rapid rise. I will give aid to your search by providing three letters: CIA. Those extra-credit students should focus on the parallels between early CIA backing of a Saddam Hussein and early CIA backing of Iyad Allawi. Then, the entire class should ask themselves if we should be glad that Allawi seeks to implement martial law?

Again, this question has only one right answer and that is no. The usurping of the human rights of the Iraqi population once again - this time under the new US-imposed dictator (Allawi) instead of under the previous US-imposed dictator (Hussein) - demonstrates the appalling lack of commitment to the values our US President professes to hold dear.

Where, in all of the praise of the love of "order", are the self-evident truths upon which we created this republic we call the United States of America?

Finally, where is the simple historical understanding that when Hussein came to power, all of the same nice things that are being said about Allawi were said about him: he is bringing order to the nation of Iraq; he is preventing the country from falling under the sway of an even greater evil (then communism, today - who knows - terrorism, Islamism, Baathism?).

Readers of All Panthers Are Black are expected to learn the lessons of the past and not to repeat the failures. After all, how many times will you fall (allow yourself to be led) down the same rabbit (spider?) hole and expect to end up in a different place?

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