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Since our attack on Iraq in December of 1998, there was a continuous series of air battles and skirmishes between the USA and Iraq. The best analysis of events takes into consideration the USA's global political-economic aims and those of its junior partner, the UK. The reason the Bush administration did not with Iraq is that . George Bush the First said that the Persian Gulf War demonstrated that, "What we say, goes." If one possesses the superior means of violence, there is no need to negotiate. Negotiation is even avoided, because the very nature of negotiation means giving up something. If one has the monopoly on violent means, the ultimatum is delivered: do it our way, or we destroy you.
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"It would be some time before I fully realised that the United States sees little need for diplomacy. Power is enough. Only the weak rely on diplomacy... The Roman Empire had no need for diplomacy. Nor does the United States. Diplomacy is perceived by an imperial power as a waste of time and prestige and a sign of weakness. '' - United Nations Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali
in Anatolia, Balkans, or Caucasus.
Colombia's government resembles a democracy about as much as Hitler's Germany did. The government may gird itself with the trappings of democracy, but the trappings are about all it can lay claim to. The official political landscape of Colombia is divided into two spheres. The first is a state bureaucracy that is as corrupt as they come. The other is the military that keeps the populace in line. Kangaroo court is a salient feature of state justice against its opponents, with secret judges, secret witnesses, and secret evidence, paid witnesses, and arbitrary arrest and imprisonment, among other practices that make the notion of "democracy" ludicrous on its face. The loser in such a system is the vast majority of the populace. In the standard Latin American model, a plutocratic elite at the top largely does the USA's bidding. A vanishingly small middle class largely performs a service function to the elite, and the other 80% or 90% of the population does all the work and suffers greatly, although American consumers receive cheap coffee, bananas, cocaine, etc., and the elite, both American and Latin American, rake it in.