mathNEWS Issue 90.5: Friday, November 15, 2002

MathSoc Vows To Proceed Unilaterally With Assault On Iraq

REUTERS — In a speech today, President Stebila re-iterated — and strengthened — MathSoc's position on Iraq. Stebila assured students that they will continue to work through the Feds Council, but that if a reasonable scenario has not evolved by early December he warned reporters to be ready for a unilateral invasion on Iraq.

The MathSoc position on Iraq has hardened in recent months, with the Hawks clutching victory in the mid-term elections with Yolanda Dorrington and Craig D'Amelio both being elected to the Orientation Directorships. The election of Louis Mastorakos though, was seen by some as evidence of voters' reluctance towards a campaign and a personal victory for Colin Davidson, the Chief of Education and the loudest opponent of the war within the president's close circle.

In a recent press conference, Davidson had noted "I respect [Chief of Finance Kevin] Wong's noble intentions towards the removal of Saddam Hussien, but re-enforcing cross-campus reproach will hurt us economically." Davidson pointed out that 85% of Math students take courses from other faculties. There has been strong disapproval from Engineering in particular.

"Engineering has always been a bunch of whiners," noted veteran correspondent Aaron Klotz. "Frankly, if you complain about everything, people just can't take you seriously." He did express reservations though, especially that Iraq's army, devastated by Desert Storm I, would still present a formidable opponent for the Math Faculty.

If Stebila does intend to attack, Engineering holds a key veto on Feds council and their support will be crucial to Feds authorization of the campaign. Many observers have dismissed the recent language as another ploy by Stebila to distract students from the fact that he squeaked into office with a mere 573 vote lead. Other MathSoc watchers assume this is largely a smokescreen, and the invasion will proceed in mid-December, in the depth of Final Exams when students are less likely to notice. Some members of the ruling body feel that even this route is misguided.

"We're a student society. Iraq is a sovereign state, and that can't been taken lightly." Representative Paul Ulrich (D-CS) elucidated, "Also, we don't have any weapons or anything; maybe we should focus on math-related stuff." Ulrich went on to promote his domestic agenda, including co-op reform and a Women in Math in Miniskirts committee.

David Hayes

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