The press conference: Bush on…

The press conference: Bush on valium

Bush held a rare press conference yesterday. His demeanor was strange, a flat emotionless monotone, like he was sedated, answering every question virtually the same, often with identical words – if you could even call them answers. 

Several of us listened while stuffing envelopes in the L.A. ANSWER office. I must confess our comments could be construed as being rude. “Answer the damn question, George!”. “If you believe in peace, why are you going to war?”. “Oh well he’s right about Iraq threat, why just this afternoon I was assaulted by six Iraqis right here in L.A., they must have swum here.”

I’ll paraphrase how Dubya (non) answered questions. “It’s been 12 long years and Saddam hasn’t disarmed, and I want peace, but Resolution 1441 says he must disarm, and he hasn’t so we will invade to make the world safe for freedom and because it’s been 12 long years since Saddam…”

Right… Resolution 1441 says Saddam must disarm. It does not say what should happen if he doesn’t. King George the Mad added the part about the unprovoked invasion by the U.S.

The questions from the press had real bite. Will you invade if the U.N. does not support you? Will an invasion cause increased terrorism here? How many innocents will die? Why is world opinion clearly against you? How do you know you will win? Will this be another Vietnam. Why are many saying the U.S., not Iraq, is the biggest threat to world peace?

For the first time since I can’t remember, the press was bold, confrontative, and demanding answers. Two months ago they were tossing him powder puff questions while ignoring antiwar dissent. Now they are asking sharp questions and the antiwar movement is front page news.

What accounts for this change? The millions and millions of people who have been demonstrating worldwide, that’s what. And, miracle of miracles, some members of Congress appear to being finding their spine too.

On the international front, China, Russia France, and Germany stand opposed to an Iraq war resolution in the U.N., with Russia now stating flatly they will veto it.

Major dissent at home. A emboldened media. Previously unimaginable opposition from the world at large. The Bushies are in serious trouble.

A sane President would find a way to quietly back down, and the rest of the planet would then breathe a sigh of relief.

That’s what a sane President would do. But Bush will have his war.

And then there will be a firestorm of protest unlike any ever witnessed. Governments will fall, certainly Tony Blair is a goner. Here too, one hopes for immediate regime change. Hey, stranger things have happened.