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Editor's Message

We’ve only Just Begun…

I would say that I’m ready to lay down my sword and shield, except that I own neither. I also could serve up a cliché about pens and swords, but it seems totally irrelevant. There has been plenty of dissent in the press and elsewhere regarding the pending war in Iraq, but in the end it doesn’t matter. The president is ready to take on Saddam, Congress is quite willing to back him up, and the only real question is whether General Tommy Franks will be an able occupation ruler of Iraq.

And so, reluctantly, I must refrain from saying that “I ain’t gonna study war no more.” That’s because we are being given very little choice other than to do so. Last fall, Donald Rumsfeld promised a forty-year war on terrorism, and by my count, that means we’ve got 39 more years to go. That the richest, most powerful nation in human history can devise no better means for ruling the world other than through military aggression seems rather primitive. But perhaps I’m the one who’s being naïve.

The good news is that very few pages in this issue actually pertain to Iraq. In fact, this issue is dedicated to the proposition that there is more to life than war. Peace.


Theodore Hamm


The Brooklyn Rail


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