In the first of the presidential debates on American TV, George Bush claimed the world is a better place now that Saddam is gone. Julie illustrated her anger at this beautifully but posting a picture of a man with a (dead?) child in his arms after another bomb explosion in Iraq.
The world COULD have been better off without Saddam Hussein than it is now. The world would have been better off if they had approached it slightly differently. Now it is a mess. The worls is a more dangerous place, terrorism is worse than before.
Apparently, the Americans do not get half of the bad press about Iraq that Europeans get (don't know about Australians). That is why a lot of people in the US still believe things are going well in in Iraq and that Bush did a good job.
No matter how much I hate Bush, I think Kerry is betting on the wrong horse by making the elections all about Iraq. His point should be that Bush has ignored EVERYTHING else since he went to Iraq. Economy, healthcare.... education....... Kerry won't win on Iraq alone. Especially since his own war-past is not something most Republicans like.
At one point in the 'debate' Kerry said: "Just because YOU (Bush red.) believe in what you are doing and because YOU are prepared to fight for it all the way, that does not mean you are actually RIGHT." Go Kerry.
By the way, the debates are hardly debates. The audience is carefully selected; nobody with extreme views on either side gets in; audience is not allowed to speak or ask questions and the weirdest of all is that the television networks are not allowed to make cut-away shots. (Cut away shots are short shots of the audience, the person who is not speaking etc to give cameramen the opportunity to change their position whilst their shot is not on-air). Neither of the cadidates wanted the networks to use cut away shots because it would show the responses of the person who was listening or they might get caught in a moment of unattentiveness and that would make them look bad.
Fox decided to use cut away shots after all. Good. Nobody should dictate what the networks can broadcast or not. it is fascinating how people see the same debate completely differently. For CNN, a Democrat and a Republican blogged live during the debate. They had a completely different view.