Sunday, 30 March 2003

Thank you, President Bush

Leading Brazilian novelist Paulo Coelho gives praise to President Bush for the wisdom of his leadership which has united the world in opposition.

Thank you, great leader George W. Bush.

Thank you for showing everyone what a danger Saddam Hussein represents. Many of us might otherwise have forgotten that he had used chemical weapons against his own people, against the Kurds and against the Iranians. Hussein is a bloodthirsty dictator and one of the clearest expressions of evil in today's world.

But this is not my only reason for thanking you. During the first months of 2003, you have shown the world a great many other important things and, therefore, deserve my gratitude.

So, remembering a poem I learned as a child, I want to say thank you.

Thank you for showing everyone that the Turkish people and their Parliament are not for sale, not even for 26 billion dollars.

Thank you for revealing to the world the gulf that exists between the decisions made by those in power and the wishes of the people. Thank you for making it clear that neither Jos¿ Mar¿a Aznar nor Tony Blair give the slightest weight to or show the slightest respect for the votes they received. Aznar is perfectly capable of ignoring the fact that 90% of Spaniards are against the war, and Blair is unmoved by the largest public demonstration to take place in England in the last thirty years.

Thank you for making it necessary for Tony Blair to go to the British Parliament with a fabricated dossier written by a student ten years ago, and present this as 'damning evidence collected by the British Secret Service'.

Thank you for allowing Colin Powell to make a complete fool of himself by showing the UN Security Council photos which, one week later, were publicly challenged by Hans Blix, the Inspector responsible for disarming Iraq.

Thank you for adopting your current position and thus ensuring that, at the plenary session, the French Foreign Minister, Dominique de Villepin's anti-war speech was greeted with applause - something, as far as I know, that has only happened once before in the history of the UN, following a speech by Nelson Mandela.

Thank you too, because, after all your efforts to promote war, the normally divided Arab nations, at their meeting in Cairo during the last week in February, were, for the first time, unanimous in their condemnation of any invasion.

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