||Holiday weekends always screw up deadlines; I found out today that my next piece Tuesday is due Thursday noon. I had expected to write that column about the responses to the Thursday column, but it hasnt come out yet. I could take a vacation day, but of all the weeks I feel less entitled to a vacation, this is the one. Its been gorgeous every day. Gnats at day camp. Every morning has been bliss, frankly: I miss her, yes, but to just sit at the kitchen table with the breeze blowing in the window, working with ease and calm, bereft of interruption well, its been heaven. So I have to write a column tonight instead of a Bleat, and I apologize for the lack of the usual cheery drivel. See you tomorrow.
Still here? Well, there was something in the news that intrigued me, only for its utter ordinariness. Another day, another Arab tyrant handed over to civilian authorities to answer for his crimes.
You know, it happens so often were just blasé about nowadays, eh? I mean, tell me something new.
What matters most now is adopting the correct cynical pose about this. You have your choices:
A) Its a show trial, indistinguishable from the trials in Saddams regime. Granted, he didnt have trials; he just had people spirited off to dank blood-soaked rooms to have their hands sawed off, but in spirit its more of the same.
B) Oh fine great that Saddam is gone, I never supported him, but what about Saudi Arabia? Shouldnt we invade them? Not that we should, because that would totally be about oil.
C) While of course you cant discount the impact of having a regional tyrant put in the dock to account for his crimes, we have to consider that the means by which this was accomplished American intervention, for reasons that now appear suspect at worst and dubious at best, if not vice versa. This fatally taints the momentousness of the event. Is it good that Saddam answers for his misrule? Of course. Would it have been better if the Iraqis themselves achieved this without outside help? Of course, yes. But well never know if they could have, because this administration jumped the gun and rushed to war after only 12 years of cease-fire violations. I say, didnt we order the calamari? Its been ten minutes.
D) Did we find Osama yet? Oh right I forgot, Mission Accomplished. D00d, where's my WMDs?
E) If early reports are true, and Saddam may face the death penalty, then we have simply exchanged one abomination for the other. He should be sentenced to a term of life in prison. Iraqis need to know that the sort of vengeance personified by Saddam has come to an end in their land, and the only way their hearts and minds can rest easy is to know that Saddam remains alive, well fed, rested, observant, and waiting for an opportune moment to reenter politics, a changed and chastened man.
F) Who frickin cares, I hate Bush. Kerry sux too
G) Let this stand for all ages as a sign of American perfidy: this regime shoots at our planes, violates its treaty obligations, diverts humanitarian aid, corrupts the international organization set up to bring relief, attempts to kill our ex-president, harbors terrorists, models its society after Stalinist models, and after ten years of this shite, in a we destroy the regime and turns its godfather over to his countrymen for trial. Thats just the sort of evil in which we specialize.
Take your choice. Wallow, if you will, in this day of shame. Saddam is going to stand trial and Bush isnt. Truly a world turned upside down.