My friend Jim recently made the suggestion that my recent attempts at creating fiction might be akin to "pulling a W."
For those that aren't familliar with that banter, it is a mocking reference to how Emperor W. made war on Iraq much as his father did. That is the intended meaning anyway.
The truth, unfortunately, is that a neo-conservative by any other name would smell just as bad.
Once again, its all about oil.
Even before Saddam, the only significant military powers in the Persian Gulf were Iraq and Iran (and it is significant that they are themselves oil producers). The Nixon doctrine called for backing "freindly" powers in the region with funding and hardware in order to protect the interests of the United States (Saudi oil). After the revolution in Iran, no friendly military powers remained in the region. Fast forward to the first Bush administration and Saddam's invasion of Kuwait.
The U.S. could not care less about Kuwait. The concept behind Operations Desert Sheild and Desert Storm was to protect (sheild) the Saudi Kingdom from possible conquest by Hussein. [The Saudi peoples are sufficiently disaffected with the Saudi Royal family that Hussein could easily have pulled off a coup similar to Hitler's annexation the Sudatenland]
Let me be absolutely clear here. You've seen on this blog how I've characterized the U.S.-Saudi relationship. The character of this relationship is very important. It is significant because every other country with a significant Islamic population is sympatico to the plight of the Palestinians and generally hate (for lack of a stronger word) the United States for supporting Isreal. The only thing that is preventing a 1970's style petroleum embargo against the United States is our cozy relationship with ths Saudis. There are other oil-producing nations, but the Saudis have so much more that they will still have untapped reserves when every other country has been pumped dry.
So, in a way, George Herbert Walker Bush was forced to go to war as a natural extension of the Nixon doctrine. There simply were no third-party options available, only direct U.S. military intervention. Under the guise of a multi-national force, of course.
Fast forward to September 11.
The assault on Afghanistan was necessary and sufficient; the country had become a safe haven for terrorists. For the neo-conservatives that came to power on Emperor W.'s coat-tails, however, this was precisely the scenario they wanted. We already had forces in the region for "legitimate" purposes; lets take out Saddam too while we're at it! [Rumsfeld was quoted as saying as much on September 12, 2001] "Neutralizing" Iraq by invasion would accomplish several things that Cheney and his pals wanted. Primarily, Saddam Hussein and his ambitions would become a non-entities in the Persian Gulf. Secondly, but more important (if also more short-sighted) for the long run, it provided a chance to "stabilize" the region with a democratic government that would (naturally) be freindly to the United States. Just in case anyone forgot, Iraq has oil too, thats another significant reason.
So, did W. "pull a W."?
My answer is no. George H. W. Bush was forced into Desert Storm as a natural result of the doctrines of preceding administrations. Emperor W always could have chosen not to make war on Iraq, but I seriously doubt that it was the W itself that made those decisions.
I know its too late to make a long story short. Why did Jim think that "Pulling a W" might apply to me? Well, I have a father too.
Should my prose be well-received, I'll accept that as a good thing.
W or no W.