ANYONE got a spare flak jacket? Those of us who were against the US and Britain attacking Iraq are now under fiercer fire than experienced by most of the American stormtroopers. Some juicy examples can be found on the Evening Press website's Iraq discussion board.

"Just wondering what the anti-war idiots are thinking now, seeing those scenes of jubilation in Bagdhad & Basra, Iraqis welcoming coalition troops... Perhaps now you will shut up, and admit that you were wrong, and go back to selling Socialist Worker magazine outside Woollies - good riddance to you all" - Jimbo, York.

"I for one would like to see these people ridiculed for getting it so wrong from the minute go" - Chris, Piccadilly, York.

"If I see anyone with a 'Not in my name' banner I will be sure to vomit" - Tony, York.

Thanks guys. And I respect your viewpoint too. This sort of argument is the equivalent of the football terrace chant: "You're not singing anymore!" In the weeks before war, few people were prepared to speak in favour of military action, while a million marched against. Now we can't shut the hawks up.Perhaps we should let the events speak for themselves. The war has proved our point: that it was totally unnecessary.

Britain and the US invaded Iraq because, we were told, Saddam Hussein's regime threatened the West. Yet his mighty military machine crumbled like an Oxo cube at the first sign of the coalition. It fired no nukes or chemical weapons, and posed us no danger.

That does not mean I begrudge the people of Iraq their freedom. Their joy was fantastic to witness (although this is tempered by the suffering of the war's many innocent victims).

But we did not roll our tanks into Baghdad and Basra on a mercy mission; we did it to protect our own interests. The lack of Iraqi firepower suggests our own interests were never in jeopardy. As we predicted, this was just Uncle Sam flexing his muscles.

No one would be happier than me if a multinational security force could liberate all the oppressed people of the world. It would be fantastic to see families in Somalia, Indonesia, Zimbabwe and so many other countries freed from tyranny and fear. Unhappily, that will never happen. America does not go to war on selfless, humanitarian grounds. It is far more hard-headed.

No, the US has already decided upon its next political target: Syria. A testosterone-fuelled Washington is itching for another fight even before clearing up the last one. And now we know they can march into another's backyard without even asking.

Missed the war? Don't worry. There'll be another along in a minute.

And our website boys can't wait. "I believe that the US and UK troops should attack Syria next," writes John Howe of York. Stirring stuff.

EASTER is upon us. For Christians it is a time of spirituality and comforting rituals. The rest of us can enjoy time with family, friends and the other motorists in the traffic jam. I am certainly not going to heed all the posters in York shop windows and start lavishing "Easter gifts" on all and sundry. This is not Christmas Lite.

What non-churchgoers should do with this holiday has long been a conundrum. Trawling through the archives, I came across this from the Evening Press at Easter 20 years ago. "The tourist season got off to a good start in York.However, trippers were disappointed to find the Minster inaccessible for much of the day because of services."

Updated: 08:39 Wednesday, April 16, 2003