Stuck in the past
[Re: As Obama says all options are open in Iraq, is Western intervention now necessary? Friday]
Britain seems reluctant to advocate intervention because of its recent history. But it’s potentially dangerous to see this current crisis through the lens of the 2003 war. Many are using outdated reference points. For example, it is irrelevant that Tikrit – one of the fallen towns – “is the birth place of Saddam Hussein”. Nick Clegg was drawn on the legality of the 2003 invasion – that is irrelevant. This is a new situation. There were no links to Al Qaeda affiliates in 2003, but there are now. Syria was not in a state of civil war in 2003, it is now. The media and political elite should not judge the question of intervention based on what happened in 2003. Leave the final judgement on that to the Chilcot inquiry. Lessons should be drawn from the past of course, but we should insist that decisions on the here and now be based on evidence not hunches.
Jason Ralph, professor of international relations, University of Leeds
[Re: Bubble trouble: We’re sacrificing financial stability for a growth illusion, Friday]
Asset price bubbles are even more likely with cash from China flowing in as it relaxes capital controls.
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