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02/18/2003 Archived Entry: "We are all French now."

On the Political Front:

The weekend's antiwar rallies may not prevent the invasion of Iraq -- I do not believe tbat is possible -- but they may have caused delay. "American officials had hoped to see a British resolution at least implicitly authorizing the use of force in Iraq submitted to the Council by early this week. But over the weekend US officials said that while some draft wording was being considered, no final resolution yet exists."

The British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw conceded that "the enormity of the anti-war protests at the weekend made it 'very difficult to launch an invasion of Iraq." (Hit "printable version" at bottom of page if article does not display.) Straw is more muted than P.M. Blair who claimed that the 1.5 million + protestors in England would have blood on their hands if they stopped the invasion: the blood of Saddam's persecuted victims. I guess Blair expects us to forget that he was instrumental in arming Saddam back in the buddy-buddy days. Or maybe his knickers are in a twist because of plans announced by the anti-war coalition leaders. If Blair goes to war without a UN resolution, the peaceniks plan to close the government down. "We want to completely close down Whitehall and prevent the Ministry of Defence going to work," said Lindsay German of the Stop the War Coalition. "At 6pm on the first evening after the bombing starts, there will be demonstrations and vigils all over the country, to be followed by another march with CND on the first weekend after war starts."

Meanwhile, bitter conflict over Iraq is causing schisms in the EU which -- some commentators say -- could threaten its ultimate unity.

Domestically, the economy is still gasping. Gas prices broke through $2 a gallon, which was as much a psychological barrier as an economic one. Drought conditions in the Pacific Northwest threaten to cause price hikes and rolling blackouts in California similar to those experienced two years ago during the state's power crisis. A bright spot was the rally of major interantional stock exchanges, apparently in belief that war was not quite so imminent. The NY exchange was closed for President's Day so it should feel the effect, if any, today.

On the Personal/Movement Front:

The newsfeeds are up-and-running on the front page of ifeminists.com and the editorials for this week will be posted later today. I am generally steering the site clear of the upcoming war/terrorism in the belief that feminism is a separate area but I did accept Nicki Fellenzer's article on Homeland Security. It is difficult *not* to address in some manner the most important issue by far on the political horizon.

The Independent Institute maintains a useful and updated page of links re: the War on Terrorism, with Robert Higg's articles particularly and personally recommended.

A cute cartoon of Lew Rockwell even tho' it is presented in the context of Rockwell bashing. Its message about his politics is absolutely inaccurate, BTW.

It is starting to warm up a bit and I can be less zealous about keeping the homefires constantly burning...literally. The dogs want out for longer and longer periods but I am still keeping them basically confined, letting them out one at a time. Otherwise, they tend to wander. Ordinarily, I welcome their adventures in our woods out back because it runs off their energy but a group of farmers has been staking out the area in order to kill "wolves" -- by which they mean wild dogs. Each winter, the farmers have to hunt down such dogs in order to prevent them from killing newborn lambs and other livestock. I particularly worry about Sam, our black German Shepherd, galloping around and being mistaken for a "wolf."

Best to all,

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