Whose war is it anyway?


                                                        - Viswam Sundar


A couple of days back, on his daily program, the Factor, Bill O’Reilly interviewed a senior Canadian journalist, perhaps the Editor of the Globe and Mail. O’Reilly asked the journalist something like “What business of Canada’s is it that America has gone to war against Iraq?” Of course, it was not just a single question nor was it so short - with O’Reilly (and Sean Hannity) it seldom is - but that was the gist of it.


I can understand the pressure of having to have a ready answer to every question, but one would still think that a journalist of that stature would come to an international television show well-prepared, and too to Bill O’Reilly’s show, and that too when his country’s media has purportedly been the USA! I’m sure he would hove come up with a thesis given the time, but when you are ready to voice your criticism in the media, then you should be ready to voice your reasons there too. The war is more than eighteen months old now. You’ve had enough time to think!


Anyway, the journalist could not say a word, believe me, not a single word. It was almost as if he was dumbstruck, as though this was the first time the question had ever occurred to him. O’Reilly rubbed it in as only he can, but the journalist just sat there, with not even a sound emerging from his throat. Believe me, it was pathetic.


But, to be honest, I found myself at a loss too, thrown by the sudden question. (But then, I’m neither so knowledgeable, nor am I experienced at being interviewedl). What if I was asked about my own and my country’s objection to the war? What business of mine, or India’s, is it that America has invaded Iraq or any other country, for that matter?


Of course, there ore double standards here. What business was it of America’s that India went nuclear in 1998? Or that Pakistan did? Why did it find it necessary to impose sanctions on us, when it was, and still is, sitting on the world’s largest collection of nuclear arms?


But the question remains. What business is it of any country what another country does with any other country?


In what way have India or I been affected by the Iraq war? I continue to do fairly well in my job, I haven’t suffered any financial losses, my health has not been affected. India has been doing well too by all accounts, its citizens are becoming more prosperous, its stock market is booming and has reached its all-time high, its politicians ore as corrupt as ever and even poverty is taking a beating.


Yeah, sure, if we had sent our troops to Iraq, we would have had a tough time reining in the terrorists at home. But we haven’t. Saddam and his sans were terrible human beings, if at all they could be called that, and they’re gone. None of the bombs are falling on any of us. So, what’s the deal? Why can’t we just close our eyes, bury our heads in the sand or whatever and let it all hang out? Why ore we all getting so worked about the Iraq war? Don’t we have enough problems of our own? After all, our #1 seer has been arrested, for murder, no less. Isn’t that enough to keep us all sufficiently worried for the next few months? Why then are we wasting our time becoming all frothy at the mouth when we talk of the Iraq war?


                                                                                                To be continued…..