PERSPECTIVEnFurther Reflections on ViolencenSaddam Hussein’s little expedition into Kuwait has begunnto take on the colors of a counter-crusade againstnEuropean and American influence in the Middle East. As Inwrite, in the second week of August, it is too early to predictnthe outcome of any of President Bush’s diplomatic andnmilitary initiatives. In general, he deserves praise for thencaution with which he has acted but blame for the vehementnrhetoric in which he and other American politicians havenbeen indulging. Saddam is not Hitier, and Iraq is a nationnthat, for all its “million-man army,” could not even conquernthe priest-ridden shambles of what had been Iran.nOf course, our own affirmative action army may prove tonbe no match for Iraq’s well-equipped mob of Arabs. And, asnBill Hawkins points out elsewhere in this issue, America isnwoefully underprepared to shoulder the burdens of empire.nWe are back to the policies of the 1930’s when FDR wasncutting the military budget and goading the Japanese intonwar. But George Bush has no Douglas MacArthur tonrebuke him.nThe idea of shedding a single drop of American blood tonrestore the emir of Kuwait (or lower oil prices for bankersnand lawyers commuting to work) is worse than preposterous.nEven Saudi Arabia is important to us only as a strategic allynto which we have made commitments. On its own meritsnthe regime of the Saudi “royal” family is not worth a singlenbullet, much less a single life. But if our aim was to aid thenSaudis, our efforts to drag them into the conflict may havensealed their fate, since we have given Saddam Hussein allnthe evidence he needs to portray himself as an Arabn12/CHRONICLESnby Thomas Flemingnnnnationalist fighting against American carpetbaggers andnSaudi scalawags.nIt is now a week later as I write, and some of my worstnfears have materialized. Egypt and Turkey have maintainednfaith with the United States, but President Mubarak has putnhimself in an unenviable position. Since Egypt receives overn$2 billion a year in aid from the United States, the Iraqis cannsay with some justification that Mubarak is only “annobedient imperialist agent,” as he was called in al-Thawra,nHussein’s party organ. The Iranians, at this point, still claimnto be holding tough, despite Saddam Hussein’s generousnconcession of one thousand square miles of territory. But nonone in the Arab worid has ever believed anything thenIranians say. They are a people for whom “the truth” meansnonly a lie sold to the highest bidder.nMeanwhile, the other Hussein has also refused to allownhis country, Jordan, to be offered as a sacrifice on the altar ofnworld peace. The king, while promising to honor thenembargo, managed to qualify his promise by referring to thenU.N. charter, which guarantees relief to nonbelligerentnnations suffering from the effects of an embargo. Even if thenking of Jordan wanted to join the American offensive, it isnnot clear that his people would let him: the pro-Iraqndemonstrations on the streets of Aman look like the realnthing, a rising tide of anti-Western, specifically anti-Americannsentiment. Even George Ball conceded that “Arabsnprivately have a considerable admiration for Saddam Hussein.”nIt will be America’s worst nightmare, if our vigorousndefense of “Abdul Abulbul Emir” results in a pan-Arabn