Wednesday, March 19, 2008

2003 + 2001

Two news items caught my eye...well, I guess my ear, since I was listening to the radio...on the way into work this morning. One relates to the year 2003, one to 2001.

First the 2003 marks the 5th anniversary of the start of the war in Iraq. I was going to say 'the war with Iraq', but that's not really accurate. We're not fighting the country itself, but against an ideology. So how do you know when you've won?

Last year on this date, when I wrote this post, I had a strong feeling we'd still be stuck in this quagmire a year later. The facts and figures I quoted in that post are relevant but now out-of-date...but the bottom line is we're still pouring too much time, money, and too many precious lives of our young men and women into a mess we created, a battle we shouldn't be fighting, and an ideological war we'll never win. How long will we be there? Who knows...maybe our next President will find a way out of this mess. It's clear the current President won't.

Onto our next story...writer Arthur C. Clarke died March 18th at the age of 90 ( obituary is here). Clarke's most famous work was 1968's 2001: A Space Odyssey, but he had many other significant contributions. He was also an early proponent of telecommunications satellites, served as chairman of the British Interplanetary Society, and was a prolific fiction- and non-fiction writer. Last night I heard an excerpt from one of his speeches, and he talked about how when he wrote 2001 he had no idea how many of the concepts in it would end up becoming reality. What an interesting man...we've lost a great visionary and thinker.

That's all for now, folks...more later...


snowelf said...

I know I don't feel like the war is ever going to "end". And I'll be supportive and grateful to the soilders forever and a day, but I'm sad that they have to be over there in the first place.


Sue said...

Today's technology makes it harder to win something like this because people can know in an instant where we are.

That said, I know next to nothing about what we're actually doing over there. But from an outsider's point of view, I don't think the leaders of our military do either. I support the troops, always, but not the 'war', which seems to have grown into an occupation. Sigh.

Anonymous said...

Don't shoot me for getting political (heh!) but from a British point of view - we're only in Iraq because our esteemed ex-leader was so far up Bush's arse that he couldn't see daylight! I agree that I sincerely hope your next President gets us ALL out of this mess. ;o)

jtj3 said...

Snow I'm like you...I don't see it "ending" per se, just dragging on. And on. And on...

Sue, I think you're sort of right about technology...although to me it comes back to the fact that we're fighting against an ideology, not a nation. If we declared war on the nation, it would have pretty much been over once Saddam Hussain stepped down from power. I echo your comments (and Snow's) that I completely support the troops, just not the mission or the Commander in Chief.

Penelope, you'll get no argument here! And heck, even if we believed differently, 's' can still be wrong (which, by definition, disagreeing with me would make you wrong!!!), and we can still be pals...chums...mates...whatever the hell you guys call your friends over there.