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Nepal Media

The United States of America has won a predictable victory in Iraq. But the cost of victory is much more challenging, uncertain and perhaps different from any war in the past... Rehabilitation of the war victims, reconstruction and pattern of future administration, besides the fate of sovereign Iraq, are the issues which not only concern the Iraqis, but the world in general.

The war… raised other more fundamental issues as well. The strike began before the UN Inspectors' team came to the conclusion that Iraq was in possession of chemical and other weapons of mass destruction…

But the post-war Iraq and the world are faced with the onerous task of not only rebuilding ravaged Iraq, but also to repair a badly mauled world order. The UN's role as the only world body representing collective hope for co-existence has to be re-established, and the best guarantee for that is for the US to accept the UN's lead in determining Iraq's future.

Defiance or undermining of the UN by the US at the time of beginning the war was something that even the US security and economic allies detested…countries like France, Germany and other members of the NATO and the European Union did not support the US…. While they refused to be party to the destruction, they are willing to play a role in the reconstruction of Iraq under aegis of the United Nations…

The immediate issue and need of Iraq is proper rehabilitation of the war victims and pave the way for the hand-over of Iraq to the Iraqis under an interim arrangement to be followed by democratic elections. Any act that would substantiate the fear that the US is out to control the oil resources of Iraq through a puppet regime would be another brazen defiance of the prevailing world order. With the role of tanks and guns over, the US needs to promote a more construction and peace-oriented approach, of course, ensuring much larger role for the UN.

-- Editorial, Kathmandu Post, April 11, 2003

The war clouds are clearly hovering over the Iraqi sky as President Bush has given up diplomacy and ignored world opinion…

… President Bush clearly favoured the war and… was eager to have it endorsed by the world community, including the United Nations… The support that the U S commanded about 13 years ago … has remarkably dwindled... The protest demonstrations worldwide, including in America, turned to be of no consequence to President Bush. At the moment only three other governments—Britain and Spain included—are joining the U S war... But there are clear signs of dissent even in the United Kingdom...

Yes, certainly the Saddam Hussein regime has a legitimate role to ensure that its oil resources should be protected even during war. Even the striking forces have equal obligation that the precious natural resources are not harmed.

… [The] anti-Iraq campaign is largely aimed at seizing control over its vast oil resources... The questions of human rights and democracy are undoubtedly a serious concern of the entire world, but the question of letting Saddam Hussein to continue or not continue in the post should be left primarily to the people of Iraq. In fact, the one-sided war would go against the spirit in which the world supported the US in the post 9/11 terrorist attack. The war on Iraq would dilute that support to the US... But the world community and especially the UN has a much bigger role to play to stop the war, or minimise the damage even after it has actually begun. War can never be a substitute for diplomacy.

- Editorial, Kathmandu Post, March 19, 2003.






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