UN to Bush: Drop Dead

Save your breath, George; we're all alone


"War precipitates clarity as well as confusion, and the war against Iraq already has clarified this: The United Nations is not a good idea badly implemented, it is a bad idea," wrote conservative columnist George Will just as the war was beginning.

So why are conservative would-be empire builders not making the principled case that if it was right for the US to go to war without the UN's blessing, then it is our duty to shoulder the postwar burdens alone? Because the $87 billion price tag for rebuilding Iraq and mounting American casualties have pushed President Bush's poll numbers way down from their post September 11 peak. It turns out that empire costs way too much.

So, President George Bush is going back tomorrow to the organization he dissed six months ago to ask for its help in pacifying and rebuilding Iraq. In his September 8 address to the nation, President Bush declared, "I recognize that not all of our friends agreed with our decision to enforce the Security Council resolutions and remove Saddam Hussein from power. Yet, we cannot let past differences interfere with present duties."

However Bush may hope, French president Jacques Chirac, German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, and Russian president Vladimir Putin have shown no sign that they think it is their duty to help America in postwar Iraq. Bush may as well save his breath tomorrow; the United States and Britain are stuck fixing Iraq by themselves.