Actually, there's good reason for the irony you saw in your conversation with
your student. I can't read his/her mind, but I would think Japan has more to lose
if the ME supply of oil is disrupted, but only in the short term. As it presently
stands, Iraq's sales of oil are strictly limited due to UN-imposed sanctions. An
attack on Iraq would almost surely send the price of oil sky high -- if for no
other reason than ME oil would be able to get through the Gulf. The US is
relatively safe as it has made great steps at securing its oil supply from ME
events (as per previous posts of mine on the topic), but Europe and Japan are
right to be antsy. But the Japanese could be willing to take a wager on  having
someone else remove Saddam Hussein, and thus lift the sanctions through US
influence at the UN (part of the US's UN Security Council strategy, I'm
guessing); while short term prices would zoom, medium-term and long-term prices
would stabilize. Just a thought.

Cousin Bill wrote:

> At some point in the past, Marc wrote:
>
> Incidentally, while I'm against any war of aggression like the one
> contemplated
> by the US (as I see it), but I'd like to ask US constitutional experts
> (amateur
> or not, I mean those interested in constitutional affairs), if they feel
> that the
> legislation now up before the Senate would amount to a "declaration of war"
> under the US Constitution. It appears to give the president a kind of blank
> cheque to use violence if he sees fit. Is that the same as a declaration of
> war, or is the difference just nit-picking?
> --------------------------
> Due to time constraints and other factors, I have been (mainly) silent on
> these threads, but Marc asks a fairly specific question that I would like to
> answer.  I don't know why I want to answer.  (Probably at least partly
> because I need a break from translating really boring documents.)
>
> I am only answering as an amateur.  And I am also answering without the
> benefit of actually hearing the President's speech or reading the actual
> resolution passed / being debated.  That being said, I do *not* believe this
> is a declaration of war.  And I do not believe America should be in this
> type of engagement with Iraq at this time.  As JWR has pointed out many
> times, and as I agree with him on this point, I don't think Saddam is a
> threat to the US.  If that is the problem we're looking into, I think a much
> better case could be made for making war with China.  (I am not saying we
> should go to war with China, but the arguments I hear for a war with Iraq
> would be much better used to excuse a war with China.)
>
> Regardless, though I think the US, the world, and especially the people of
> Iraq would be much better off without Hussein, I don't think that it is the
> place of the US to take him out, unless their is compelling evidence that
> shows a direct threat to the US.
>
> Interestingly, one of my students says he was convinced by the President's
> speech that a war with Iraq to get rid of Hussein was a good idea.  I found
> it odd that I, who six months ago would have been the biggest "hawk" in
> Japan, was now arguing against US foreign policy to a Japanese citizen, most
> of whom are head-in-the-sand "doves."  Still, it hurt when I went to another
> place of work and found a flier on my desk that called for opposition to the
> US call for war with Iraq.  I guess it's just one of those things, I don't
> mind Americans debate, but not from foreigners, who just "don't get it."
> (Wasn't that a phrase used on one of these threads?)
>
> Not that I'm not still a hawk.  I believe that the US should vigorously be
> trying to find and bring to justice Osama bin Laden and/or others who are
> responsible for 9/11 and other terrorist incidents.  While I was in America
> last month, Grampa Bill gave me an idea of what he would do in case of
> another terrorist attack.  But it was so good, I'll let him tell it.
>
> Bill Lewis AKA
> Cousin Bill
> [EMAIL PROTECTED]
>
> Guess what!  I'm published!  Check out this link:
> http://www.writers-and-publishers.com/ebooks
>
> /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
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>

--
Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

"The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and
falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark."
--Michelangelo Buonarroti

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the authorís employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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