Meanwhile, the US government has announced how it will bring about "democracy" in Iraq -- US military rule. It is expected that an occupation of Iraq will require up to 75,000 troops to be garrisonned in Iraq, leaving serious doubts as to whether US soldiers and reservists will return to the US anytime soon. US military control of Iraq is expected to last a minimum of two years, and may last for well over five years, based on previous examples in Japan and Germany.
Some critics argue that the reason why Afghanistan's reconstruction is being ignored by the government, while Iraq's seems to be scripted out, is because administration officials have been planning an invasion of Iraq prior to President Bush taking office -- unlike a possible invasion of Iraq, the invasion of Afghanistan was unplanned, and an offshoot of the war on terrorism.
Today, Hans Blix dismissed much of Colin Powell's evidence regarding Iraq's possession of weapons of mass destruction, and denied any evidence of Iraqi interference with the inspections process. In a rare display of sentiment, Blix was applauded by UN members when he called for inspections to continue. Meanwhile, well over 150,000 people protested the war in Melbourne, making it easily the largest peace rally in Melbourne's history. Millions more are expected to protest war tomorrow across the world.
Locally, there will be a protest march in San Jose from Rosevelt Park to Cesar Chavez on Saturday beginning at 11 am, and a huge protest in San Francisco on Sunday that may draw in excess of a quarter million people. Locations for other protests worldwide are available at http://pax.protest.net .