Man Without Qualities

Sunday, March 02, 2003

Music From A Farther Back Room

Despite apparent international setbacks, the Financial Times reports:

The Bush administration is increasingly confident it can secure a second victory for US diplomacy at the United Nations Security Council as it exerts pressure on Russia and China to vote in favour of a resolution authorising war in Iraq. Even as Russia on Friday said it would be willing to use its veto to block the resolution, White House officials privately signalled gradual progress with Moscow. US officials say the discussions are precarious, with the majority of the 15-nation Security Council against them in public. However, after private conversations with foreign ministers and heads of state, US officials say they can see seven or eight countries in support of a second resolution.

And despite the Turks saying there are no plans for another Parliament vote, it seems to me that, since the difference is made by 19 abstentions, something can probably be done. Indeed, a second United Nations Security Council resolution authorising war in Iraq would itself likely break the Turkish impass.

Of course, if the United Nations and Turkey won't do the right thing, the United States, Australia and Britain will move anyway - and the door will open for a new United Nations, a new EU, a new NATO, a new Kurdish state, an isolated and unsuccessful France, a new French (and European) awareness that no policy of spinning obstructionist treaties around the United Staes will work, possibly a new opening for American relations with Greece and, of course, a new Iraq and a new day for Israel.

That's quite a set of silver linings.

Matt Drudge is reporting: Senior Turkish official indicates his government would ask Parliament a second time to allow U.S. troops to use the country as a base against Iraq... Developing Hard...

If they vote again with five of the abstainers agreeing to stay home, that should do it for Turkey.

FURTHER UPDATE: Now the New York Times is reporting the same development: another likely Turkish Parliament vote.

FURTHER UPDATE: The Sun is also suggesting that the Security Council will vote the US way: The countdown to war became unstoppable when America spotted the first signs of support from Russia and China — both permanent members of the UN Security Council. Despite publicly warning against war, they are keen not to risk a valuable relationship with the US.

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