Scott Galindez: Kerry Can Win the Allies Bush Lost
Kerry Can Win the Allies Bush Lost
By Scott Galindez
Tuesday 05 October 2004
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
From day one in office, the Bush Administration has alienated many allies. Not ratifying the Kyoto treaty, walking away from the ABM Treaty, and not joining the International Criminal Court are just a few examples.
To get support from Congress for the Iraq war resolution, the Administration promised to go to the UN and seek a diplomatic solution. The problem is they never took the process seriously - instead choosing to go through the motions without respecting the process, or the opinions of most of the Security Council.
Iraq was given 30 days to report to the Security Council, disclosing their WMD programs. They turned over thousands of documents and declared that they had no WMD. The Bush Administration immediately declared that Iraq was lying and in violation of UN Resolutions. They now admit that Iraq probably didn't have any WMD, so Iraq probably was in compliance.
UN weapons inspectors requested more time, and many countries on the council agreed that another resolution and more time was warranted. Instead, the U.S. and Great Britain decided to ignore their traditional allies and launch an illegal war on Iraq.
The biggest mistake was yet to come. After Saddam fell, it was announced that the spoils of the war would go to those countries who had participated in the war. France, Germany, Russia and others need not apply for reconstruction contracts. Then, as the situation worsened, the Administration went begging for help from NATO and other allies that they had ignored a few months earlier.
It is no surprise that these countries are not assisting in Iraq. Why should they assist an Administration that showed no respect for them? John Kerry can go to the UN and NATO with a clean slate and win the support that George Bush has lost.
After 9/11 the World was united behind the "War on Terror." The Bush Administration's rush to war in Iraq squandered that unity. Only a fresh start with a new President can improve our relations with world community.
John Kerry's campaign is sending signals to the diplomatic community that he is prepared to unite the world again, and not choose to divide countries into divisive coalitions like Bush's "coalition of the willing." If Kerry makes the following gestures, he can win more support in Iraq from countries Bush has alienated:
Ratify the Kyoto Protocol Join the International Criminal Court Honor the ABM Treaty Honor the Geneva Convention Open up a fair bidding process for reconstruction contracts to all countries Allow the United Nations to manage the reconstruction.
The above gestures, coupled with an International Conference, can provide the framework for a solution to the mess that George Bush has created but cannot clean up. George Bush cannot get our troops out of Iraq. John Kerry can.