‘Business as usual’

‘Business as usual’ by Tariq Ali for The Guardian, May 24, 2003

The UN has capitulated. Now let the north’s plunder of the south begin again

Unsurprisingly, the UN security council has capitulated completely, recognised the occupation of Iraq and approved its re-colonisation by the US and its bloodshot British adjutant. The timing of the mea culpa by the “international community” was perfect. Yesterday, senior executives from more than 1,000 companies gathered in London to bask in the sunshine of the re-established consensus under the giant umbrella of Bechtel, the American empire’s most favoured construction company. A tiny proportion of the loot will be shared.

So what happened to the overheated rhetoric of Europe v America? Berlusconi in Italy and Aznar in Spain—the two most rightwing governments in Europe—were fitting partners for Blair while the eastern European states, giving a new meaning to the term “satellite” which they had previously so long enjoyed, fell as one into line behind Bush. read more