(originally published the 23th March 2003)
I think this war is essentially against European interests.
Iraq is selling oil for Euro, and as long as it would have not switched back to USD, the veto of the France over any possible change of governament in Bagdad it is fully understandable. The United Kingdom is not in the Euro, the pound has been pretty weak lately, so it is not convenient for the British government to join the Euro and Mr.Blair has to be fully awared of that, so also its position is pretty understandable. The position of Mr. Aznar and Mr. Berlusconi is instead pretty weak (their countries's interest would have to be the end of embargo on Iraq, saving the status quo), I think both of them have not the right perception of what is happening. From its standpoint instead Mr. Bush's gamble (also if I am not sure he was the one who ideated that) is much more clever, especially if the invasion and the lecture of the Iraq will stop Libia and especially Iran wishes to switch to Euro, and it will get a jackpot if this war will reach its ultimate target, to break Opec. The doctrine of Enduring Freedom is instead pretty trivial, it is the faithful copy of the doctrine of the Defensive Imperialism tought and taught in uncountable books during the XIX century and at the beginning of the XX century from generations of historians to explain the Roman expansionism; the fact someone could sell that doctrine in the XXI to the people of US show carefully what is the average level of humanistic knowledges of that people. This is a war against Euro, to save the US economy and continue to permit to the US financial institutions to print banknotes to pay foreign debts, to permit their national accounting system not to certificate its expenses and to the average US citizen to live following Chicago school's paradoxal economical doctrines, applied "so" successfully (Argentina and Turkey, i.e.) from IMF all around the world in countries without oil-dollar connections. Obviously as long as continental Europeans would have not clear they could pay their retirement plans printing notes if the oil transactions would be switched to Euro, it will be not a war against Europeans, but it still remains against European interests. The problem is the only politic leader who probably understood that is Mr. Chirac.
My 2 realpolitik eurocents