Anti-War Protests Signal
Communications Disconnect on Iraqi Threat
11th, good and reliable communications between leaders and their
people have been vital to the health, security and survival of
a nation’s people. With U.S. troops placed around the world and
their loving families and friends anxious to see them all return
home safely, caring communications are needed from their fellow
Americans as well as our leaders.
analysts were concerned about the changes ahead when White House
advisor Karen Hughes left a few months ago. At least one news
analyst wondered if internal conflict played a role and if her
absence would bring the rise in power of a cold calculating, ambitious
advisor. Many had grown comfortable with Ms. Hughes and saw her
as an advisor that was strong, smart, loyal, and–most importantly–had
a warm heart that showed through in her communications.
contributed greatly to the feelings of trust and confidence in
the White House; feelings that had developed among those
who voted for the President, (a man with the disposition of a
friendly Texas cowboy committed to God) and grew among Americans
especially after the 9-11 terror attacks.
was noticeably different in December 2002, when it seemed a blizzard
hit the closest advisors to the White House. Friendly, rarely
seen without a smile, U.S. Senator Trent Lott, a loyal George
Bush supporter (most notable pre and post elections of 2000),
suddenly appeared to have lost his friendship with the White House.
As the rebuke increased, more people were left confused.
that Lott’s well intentioned birthday tribute was politically
reworked by political enemies (as political opposites commonly
do). At first folks didn’t believe the bad wrap on Lott and carried
on with their holiday activities. But, little by little holiday
cheer was darkened by unusual news reports of the defriending
of Lott, and as the heat intensified, the situation became very
dark, very fast.
Soon it looked
as though everyone in the Administration would come out against
the suddenly friendless Trent Lott. The couple of Senators that
came out and defended Lott appeared afraid of some sort of retaliation
for doing so.
isolation by the White House increased, holiday cheer was squeezed
out of the air. Both Democrats and Republicans alike were amazed
by the attacks and cold shoulder shown toward Lott. Soon Lott
could do nothing right–he was like a man pushed off the ship,
left to tread water in hopes of eventual safe harbor.
from Mississippi, vocally protested on Lott’s behalf and offered
accounts of the good he had done over the years for ‘all’ the
people of the State. Alan Colmes, a liberal democrat with FoxNews
said he was puzzled by the Bush White House’s severity against
Lott and found it inexplicable that an apology, especially from
a friend, was not acceptable. Colmes wondered what type of precedent
was being set as the country is still healing from the 9-11 terror
attacks and we all watched as a good Senator received the worst
rebuke in known American history, and all apparently due to a
scintilla of political incorrectness. Being humans, how would
it be possible to never make an error and to live in fear of such
trial, verdict, and sentencing of Lott, the singing Senator, was
over in a few short days before the Christmas holiday. However,
many were left with an odd sense of uneasiness about what had
happened. If advisor Karen Hughes was still in the picture, would
pictures of the fun loving White House dogs been in our minds,
instead of the sad news images of Lott fending off hate mail at
across the nation last weekend were by most accounts successful
in numbers of people. But, they were not without violence: there
was a huge American flag set on fire in San Francisco and New
York Police horses were poked in the ribs by demonstrators sign’s.
A NYPD horse named Boots was punched in the face and pulled to
political analysts believe that at least half the protestors would
have not been involved in the march if they understood the reasons
the White House is aggressively sending our troops to Iraq to
disarm Saddam Hussein.
gets it", in the words of one commentator. ABC’s Barbara
Walters questioned if President Bush was in pursuit of Saddam
for his father: Bush I.
Michael Savage noted this week the disconnect in communications
between the Administration and the nation; saying people obviously
don’t understand the reason ‘Iraq is a threat.’ The case hasn’t
been made for military action in Iraq. Savage speculated that
the Administration’s close friends and advisors may be ‘elitists’,
which would account for the deepening divide between the people
and the White House.
is the prevailing attitude than most anything could be considered
offensive, even questions.
in the air over the economy, lack of jobs, and terror, would the
return of advisor Karen Huge’s foster better communications to
American families on the Administration’s urgency to attack Iraq?
on the urgency to disarm Iraq, the anti-war protestors may grow
in numbers and families of U.S. troops will feel increased anxiety
over their future. Historically, when people sense a deep disconnect
with their leadership, they seek a new leader or ideology.
A major U.S.
ally in disarming Iraq is Britain, where over last weekend several
hundred thousand protestors demonstrated against war in Iraq.
British Prime Minister Tony Blair has a large, vocal and powerful
Islamic population in his country, and since Blair has committed
to disarming Iraq, his high approval rating has dropped.
in an effort to help the masses understand the terror threat of
Iraq that has been discovered since September 11th, Tony Blair
gave a one hour press conference. He said it was his responsibility
to be accountable and to help those who are "firmly against"
military action in Iraq to understand (without asking them to
change their position) the other side of the Iraq issue. Blair
told of hundreds of letters that he had received from Iraqi exiles
who had been tortured by Saddam or had family members or friends
that were tortured and murdered. One letter released reads in
part "Today, in the face of so much opposition, we look to
you [PM Blair] to remain steadfast for all that is decent and
honourable, as you already have done.
anti-war coalition ignores the terror we have lived under for
so long, offers no alternative to our nightmare, can only be construed
as supporting Saddam Hussein and helping to maintain his regime
issue with a journalist from a certain newspaper that had been
presenting an unrealistic view of the U.S. to its readers. Blair
made it plain that he didn’t like the fact that "America"
appeared in reports that likened it to "savages" and
Saddam was shown in a more favorable light.
responded to a range of questions from reporters including: the
truth of Iraq’s threat to world, Iraq’s terrorist connections,
and Blair’s relationship with other leaders. The Prime Minister
even gave comment to a journalist who suggested that Blair’s popularity
had dropped due to his support of Bush, to which Blair reminded
the press that the US is an ally–not an alien nation working
against the UK.
in the coalition to disarm Iraq is Australia, which has recently
launched a centralized phone system, whereby by its citizens can
report suspected terrorist activities. The system had difficulties
in the beginning and had taken more calls than they expected,
so Prime Minister Howard held a conference to give additional
information about the new system. Reportedly, the anti-war protestors
in Australia last weekend were not as numerous as those in the
US and Briton. Some speculate that a crack down on illegal immigration
could account for smaller groups of protestors. Australia has
literally let boat loads of people fend for themselves off the
country’s coast, rather than take in immigrants that had not taken
the proper and legal steps to enter the country.
Prime Minister Howard visited the US, and joined Defense Secretary
Rumsfeld in speaking to the press about Iraq.
relationship between Australia and the United States has many
facets. One of those has been our constant cooperation in military
conflicts over the years. We value very much that association.
Australians, particularly the older generation, remember the vital
help rendered to us during World War II by the United States.
And together we have fought on many battlefields and done many
things in pursuit of the values that we share.
face as close friends the threat around the world of weapons of
mass destruction in the hands of rogue states and the frightening
possibility that those same weapons could fall into the hands
of international terrorists. That is a new dimension of instability,
replacing some of the older threats. And that’s the motivation
for what Australia has been doing, in partnership with the United
States, concerning Iraq.
hope that military conflict can be avoided. It can only be avoided
— if there’s a faint hope of it being avoided — that can only
happen if you get the entire world, through the United Nations,
saying the one thing to Iraq: The game is up. You must disarm."
the BBC posted some of the remarks that people gave on British
Prime Minister Tony Blair’s efforts to communicate with those
in his nation that are troubled over a possible war with Iraq:
is fortunate to have Tony Blair as their leader. Would anyone
honestly prefer any of the other party leaders at this crucial
point in time? As an American, I am grateful for his support and
the ability to communicate facts in a clear and concise manner,"
wrote Patti, England.
Middlesbrough, England wrote: "Iraq comes down to a basic
question, do we want to put our trust in Europe or the US. USA
don’t need us but they want us, Europe don’t want us but they
need us. This is a crunch time; I believe that in the long run
the UK’s best interest lies in supporting the USA, and so does