The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

Bush Jumps From One Unfinished Conflict to Another

Recently, I have found it near impossible to turn on the TV without being confronted with colorful images of President Bush fighting for our freedom.

Strong, fierce and inflexible he declares that a war with Iraq is in our nation’s best interests. His frequent pauses and vacant expressions are so moving that sometimes I find myself inclined to agree. But after my morning cup of coffee I tend to respond much more to logic than to impulse.

I tuned in to CNN one morning to see our Commander in Chief proudly announcing that we are entering a phase in the war on terrorism that the Bush administration deems as “the next step.”

At that moment I was so incredibly proud to be an American. To think, we are progressing. We are moving on to the next step. Suddenly, the avid CNN watcher in me was taken aback. I realized that I must have missed an entire first step.

Was it destroying the al Qaeda infrastructure in Afghanistan, or did they catch Osama bin Laden?

Dismissing both of theses possibilities, I soon realized that the truth is that none of the original initiatives have been fulfilled. Still I’m searching for the answer to my question, what was that first step?

The bottom line is that we have unfinished business in Afghanistan. We have barely even begun to eliminate the al Qaeda infrastructure that exists in the country, Bin Laden is still at large and we are gunning to jump into yet another military situation. What guarantee does the administration give that they won’t leave it half finished?

It is clear that the United Nations to date is not standing behind the administration’s proposal for an out and out offensive maneuver. When the previous Bush administration attempted this venture ten years ago, the nation’s status was exactly opposite of what it is now. Domestic support for the war was incredibly low, while international support was strong.

Not only did we have international backing, we also had international money helping us to fight the war. With the Dow taking almost daily dives, I am sure that I am not the only one wondering where the monetary support is going to come from.

More war is the last thing that this nation needs. While there is no denying that Saddam Hussein is a threat, several world leaders, Jacques Chirac of France for one, believe that tensions could be soothed by the simple readmission of United Nations weapons inspectors into Iraq. Once again, the logical part of me is inclined to agree.

If we know that Iraq is violating several agreements, what do we have to lose? The answer is nothing. By waiting for the UN’s approval we not only gain international backing, but monetary support as well, perhaps while we’re waiting we could even finish what we’ve started elsewhere.

Unfortunately for us, the golden rule in politics will always be that if it looks good and sounds good it must be good. We have market this concept to the extent that Mattel is gradually reintroducing a military Barbie.

Hopefully this time the U.S. will get things right and take care of its problems for good.

If not, when the same situation rears its ugly head ten years from now, who is going to pick up the pieces? Barbara? Jenna? Something tells me there has to be another solution to the problem.

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