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Excellent Memorial Day editorial

Military Memorial Day Iraq Bush

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#1 Call Me Robin

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 12:42 PM

Quote

In exchange for our uniformed young people's willingness to offer the gift of their lives, civilian Americans owe them something important: It is our duty to ensure that they never are called to make that sacrifice unless it is truly necessary for the security of the country. In the case of Iraq, the American public has failed them; we did not prevent the Bush administration from spending their blood in an unnecessary war based on contrived concerns about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.

More here.
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#2 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 01:13 PM

"In the case of Iraq, the American public has failed them; we did not prevent the Bush administration from spending their blood in an unnecessary war based on contrived concerns about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. "

This is the "excellent Memorial Day editorial"? What's excellent about hate? All this editorial bespeaks is the hate of that newspaper's editorial staff for Bush. Nothing new there, hate is all Bush's critics in the news media have offered.

I am currently reading a history on the World War II battle of Tarawa. (Hint: For you younger people, that was something before Bill Clinton.)

The errors made by the people in charge before our Marines hit the Tarawa beach were horrendous. Thousands of Marines lost their lives because of inadequate flamethrowers, few working tanks, and a landing plan devised back at Pearl Harbor that chose the worst possible tide for the landing craft.

Yet we didn't Court Martial the generals, we didn't Impeach FDR and hang his Secretary of War. The hysteria we see directed at Bush is simply ridiculous, there's no historical basis for it. Saddam Hussein needed to be removed from power, period.

And for those without knowledge of what Bill Clinton signed into law, regime change in Iraq has been the Official United States policy since 1998. Again, check your history, you'll be better informed.

Quote

The Iraq Liberation Act
October 31, 1998
STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 31, 1998
STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

Today I am signing into law H.R. 4655, the "Iraq Liberation Act of 1998." This Act makes clear that it is the sense of the Congress that the United States should support those elements of the Iraqi opposition that advocate a very different future for Iraq than the bitter reality of internal repression and external aggression that the current regime in Baghdad now offers.

Let me be clear on what the U.S. objectives are: The United States wants Iraq to rejoin the family of nations as a freedom-loving and law-abiding member. This is in our interest and that of our allies within the region.

The United States favors an Iraq that offers its people freedom at home. I categorically reject arguments that this is unattainable due to Iraq's history or its ethnic or sectarian make-up. Iraqis deserve and desire freedom like everyone else. The United States looks forward to a democratically supported regime that would permit us to enter into a dialogue leading to the reintegration of Iraq into normal international life.

My Administration has pursued, and will continue to pursue, these objectives through active application of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions. The evidence is overwhelming that such changes will not happen under the current Iraq leadership.

In the meantime, while the United States continues to look to the Security Council's efforts to keep the current regime's behavior in check, we look forward to new leadership in Iraq that has the support of the Iraqi people. The United States is providing support to opposition groups from all sectors of the Iraqi community that could lead to a popularly supported government.

On October 21, 1998, I signed into law the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, which made $8 million available for assistance to the Iraqi democratic opposition. This assistance is intended to help the democratic opposition unify, work together more effectively, and articulate the aspirations of the Iraqi people for a pluralistic, participa--tory political system that will include all of Iraq's diverse ethnic and religious groups. As required by the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for FY 1998 (Public Law 105-174), the Department of State submitted a report to the Congress on plans to establish a program to support the democratic opposition. My Administration, as required by that statute, has also begun to implement a program to compile information regarding allegations of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes by Iraq's current leaders as a step towards bringing to justice those directly responsible for such acts.

The Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 provides additional, discretionary authorities under which my Administration can act to further the objectives I outlined above. There are, of course, other important elements of U.S. policy. These include the maintenance of U.N. Security Council support efforts to eliminate Iraq's weapons and missile programs and economic sanctions that continue to deny the regime the means to reconstitute those threats to international peace and security. United States support for the Iraqi opposition will be carried out consistent with those policy objectives as well. Similarly, U.S. support must be attuned to what the opposition can effectively make use of as it develops over time. With those observations, I sign H.R. 4655 into law.

WILLIAM J. CLINTON
THE WHITE HOUSE,
October 31, 1998.
http://www.library.c...east/libera.htm

Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 (PL 105-338)
http://www.fcnl.org/..._liberation.htm
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#3 Call Me Robin

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 01:22 PM

Ogami, on May 30 2005, 06:13 PM, said:

"In the case of Iraq, the American public has failed them; we did not prevent the Bush administration from spending their blood in an unnecessary war based on contrived concerns about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. "

This is the "excellent Memorial Day editorial"? What's excellent about hate? All this editorial bespeaks is the hate of that newspaper's editorial staff for Bush. Nothing new there, hate is all Bush's critics in the news media have offered.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



An editorial saying the Iraq war is a mistake.  Oooooooooo-kay.
:blink:

But if you think that's hateful, wait until you read this piece by USA Today founder Al Neuharth.

Reading the editorial, one can see that it faults the government and the American people for going into a misguided war.  But if you think it's hateful to fault the government for a tragic error, go right ahead.

I think it's best, however, to remember the words of Mark Twain: "Loyalty to the country always; loyalty to the government when it deserves it."
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#4 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 01:26 PM

Robin wrote:

Reading the editorial, one can see that it faults the government and the American people for going into a misguided war. But if you think it's hateful to fault the government for a tragic error, go right ahead.

So Robin, that means you do not dispute that Iraq Regime change has been the OFFICIAL United States policy since 1998? Bush did nothing but what his responsibilities as President called on him to do. And Bill Clinton certainly believed Saddam had WMD, as he himself said above.

And Robin, how many drops of Iraq oil have we stolen? Zip! I'll take Bush's intelligence predictions over those of his critics any day.

-Ogam

#5 Call Me Robin

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 01:47 PM

Ogami, on May 30 2005, 06:26 PM, said:

Robin wrote:

Reading the editorial, one can see that it faults the government and the American people for going into a misguided war. But if you think it's hateful to fault the government for a tragic error, go right ahead.

So Robin, that means you do not dispute that Iraq Regime change has been the OFFICIAL United States policy since 1998? Bush did nothing but what his responsibilities as President called on him to do. And Bill Clinton certainly believed Saddam had WMD, as he himself said above.

And Robin, how many drops of Iraq oil have we stolen? Zip! I'll take Bush's intelligence predictions over those of his critics any day.

-Ogam

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Clinton never declared pre-emptive war against Iraq.  Neither did the Republicans in Congress--they were too busy chasing him down for his peccadilloes.  

You missed one part of Clinton's statement:

Quote

My Administration has pursued, and will continue to pursue, these objectives through active application of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions. The evidence is overwhelming that such changes will not happen under the current Iraq leadership.

In other words, Clinton did not go in with guns a-blazing.  He was willing to work through and with the UN.  No unilateral action.  No pre-emptive war.  His statements and actions are not comparable to Bush's.

The Iraq war is not comparable with WWII.  FDR was responding to a real, worldwide threat.  Saddam Hussein, as we now know, was not a threat.  He had no weapons of mass destruction.  He had no ties to al-Qaeda (the 9/11 commission said as much).  

Even Colin Powell--before he even left Capitol Hill--said it was unlikely that WMDs would ever be found anywhere in Iraq.

Finally, here's a passage in the editoral that should raise some eyebrows:

Quote

Walter Pincus, writing in the Washington Post on May 22, provides further evidence that the administration did, indeed, fix the intelligence on Iraq to fit a policy it had already embraced: invasion and regime change. Just four days before Bush's State of the Union address in January 2003, Pincus writes, the National Security Council staff "put out a call for new intelligence to bolster claims" about Saddam Hussein's WMD programs. The call went out because the NSC staff believed the case was weak. Moreover, Pincus says, "as the war approached, many U.S. intelligence analysts were internally questioning almost every major piece of prewar intelligence about Hussein's alleged weapons programs." But no one at high ranks in the administration would listen to them.

On the day before Bush's speech, the CIA's Berlin station chief warned that the source for some of what Bush would say was untrustworthy. Bush said it anyway. He based part of his most important annual speech to the American people on a single, dubious, unnamed source. The source was later found to have fabricated his information.

In other words, Bush and co. already had every intention of invading and occupying Iraq, despite the fact that their case for war was based on dubious evidence and false claims.  They had no exit strategy and no idea what they were doing.  

Their judgment and actions dishonor our troops.
Of all the varieties of virtues, liberalism is the most beloved.
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The fanatic is not really a stickler to principle. He embraces a cause not primarily because of its justness or holiness but because of his desperate need for something to hold onto.
--Eric Hoffer

#6 G1223

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 02:01 PM

You mean the UN that after suckling off the Scam for Oil program. Decided that getting free money under the table was OK.

Sorry we had the UN mandate. Saddam was required to not interfer with inspections. But time and again he did exactly that. The UN Ceasefire with North Korea allows us to start shooting when attacked. Or if North Korea attacks the south . We do not need to walk back to the UN and ask permission.

We could and should have held the Gulf War Ceasefire document up and waved under the noses of those who would do anything but the media would not have listened or would have spun it to meet their ends. This is another reason that the media is losing influnce. Because they are being seen as having a agenda.
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#7 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 02:38 PM

Robin wrote:

Clinton never declared pre-emptive war against Iraq. Neither did the Republicans in Congress--they were too busy chasing him down for his peccadilloes.

And Clinton's Regime Change of Iraq, which he signed into law, would be achieved by what, the tooth fairy? Ah, the tooth fairy waves her wand with a star on top, and little wafts of pixie dust fall through the air, and Saddam Hussein magically disappears.

It takes boots on the ground, air support, logistics, and a desire to see the job done. Not letting him linger for years and laugh at our efforts. Saddam Hussein scoffed at Colin Powell's UN maneuverings in 2003, he thought it was just going to be another empty "Iraq Liberation Act" and he'd still be in power. Wrong. Dead wrong, for Saddam and his cronies. Clinton talked the talk, Bush walks the walk.

In other words, Clinton did not go in with guns a-blazing. He was willing to work through and with the UN. No unilateral action. No pre-emptive war. His statements and actions are not comparable to Bush's.


I printed the entire press statement, and linked the entire Resolution, for a deliberate reason, Robin. It was so someone couldn't facetiously take a single sentence out of the whole thing and say "See! Clinton didn't mean to do regime change!". It's all there, you cannot edit it down to one sentence, Robin. Nice try.

Clinton authorized funding opposition groups with the eventual goal of overthrowing Saddam Hussein, which went beyond what the UN was already doing. Clinton signed Regime Change into law as official U.S. policy in 1998, and he was still going to enforce existing UN sanctions.

The Iraq war is not comparable with WWII. FDR was responding to a real, worldwide threat. Saddam Hussein, as we now know, was not a threat. He had no weapons of mass destruction. He had no ties to al-Qaeda (the 9/11 commission said as much).

Saddam Hussein was a real, worldwide threat, he was a proven (and proud) financial sponsor of a multitude of Islamic terror groups. Saddam Hussein had no WMD once our troops took the country, Saddam Hussein has been proven to create, stockpile, and USE WMD on many occasions! To your final sentence, you cannot support that statement because the 9/11 Commission never said any such thing. Instead, the 9/11 Commission said they found no evidence that Saddam Hussein planned or knew of the 9/11 attacks by Al Queda. That is not the same as what you say here, Saddam Hussein did know and have contacts with Al Queda. Which was the 9/11 Commission finding.

Even Colin Powell--before he even left Capitol Hill--said it was unlikely that WMDs would ever be found anywhere in Iraq.

Yes, because Bush never made the imbecilic claim that his critics made, that there would be giant WMD stockpiles lined up and carefully labeled for our invading troops to inspect and examine. Bush never made that idiotic claim, yet is the claim of his critics to this day. Robin, why would Saddam Hussein leave anything for us to find?

Make no mistake, the mistake in the Iraq invasion was Saddam Hussein's, not Bush's. Saddam Hussein wanted to bluff, to posture, to delay inspectors. His bluff was called, and he is sitting in his underwear in our custody. Where he belongs, by the way, the attitude of Saddam's excusers notwithstanding. He does belong right where he is.

In other words, Bush and co. already had every intention of invading and occupying Iraq, despite the fact that their case for war was based on dubious evidence and false claims. They had no exit strategy and no idea what they were doing.

We invaded Iraq because:

1) Saddam Hussein refused to permit full access for our inspectors, as was signed by his generals in the 1991 Cease Fire and specified in UN resolutions.

2) Saddam Hussein sought, created, stockpiled, and used Weapons of Mass Destruction repeatedly against Kurds and Iranians.

3) Saddam Hussein was a bad bad bad bad bad bad bad man.

It did not matter if not one single remaining (or functioning) WMD was found after Saddam had from Fall 2002 to Winter 2003 to dispose of them, hide them, ship them to Syria. He was our problem from Gulf War I, and he needed to be removed. He was. Too bad for "victim" Saddam and his supporters.

-Ogami

#8 Spectacles

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 04:32 PM

That is a great editorial, Robin. It's good to see a mainstream newspaper like the Minneapolis Star Tribune call it like it is--and make reference to the Downing Street Memo, which is being largely ignored by the liberal, out-to-get-Bush press for some peculiar reason:

Quote

The "smoking gun," as some call it, surfaced on May 1 in the London Times. It is a highly classified document containing the minutes of a July 23, 2002, meeting at 10 Downing Street in which Sir Richard Dearlove, head of Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, reported to Prime Minister Tony Blair on talks he'd just held in Washington. His mission was to determine the Bush administration's intentions toward Iraq.

At a time when the White House was saying it had "no plans" for an invasion, the British document says Dearlove reported that there had been "a perceptible shift in attitude" in Washington. "Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The (National Security Council) had no patience with the U.N. route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."


While I agree with Ogami that Saddam was a bad bad bad bad man, I think it's incorrect to say that "Saddam Hussein refused to permit full access for our inspectors." Inspectors were in Iraq from November 2002 until the Bush Administration told them to get out because we were coming in:

http://www.un.org/De...asdelivered.htm
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#9 Call Me Robin

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 05:56 PM

Ogami, on May 30 2005, 07:38 PM, said:

Robin wrote:

Clinton never declared pre-emptive war against Iraq. Neither did the Republicans in Congress--they were too busy chasing him down for his peccadilloes.

And Clinton's Regime Change of Iraq, which he signed into law, would be achieved by what, the tooth fairy? Ah, the tooth fairy waves her wand with a star on top, and little wafts of pixie dust fall through the air, and Saddam Hussein magically disappears.

It takes boots on the ground, air support, logistics, and a desire to see the job done.

Oh, duh.  But everyone knows that you have to a. present a valid case for war and b. have a good plan.  

Which Bush never had.

Quote

Clinton talked the talk, Bush walks the walk.

Maybe because Clinton (and Congress) had an impeachment to deal with, which took his attention away from Iraq.  Y'think?

And whose idea was it to sink all that money into impeaching him for the flimsiest of reasons?

Quote

In other words, Clinton did not go in with guns a-blazing. He was willing to work through and with the UN. No unilateral action. No pre-emptive war. His statements and actions are not comparable to Bush's.


I printed the entire press statement, and linked the entire Resolution, for a deliberate reason, Robin. It was so someone couldn't facetiously take a single sentence out of the whole thing and say "See! Clinton didn't mean to do regime change!". It's all there, you cannot edit it down to one sentence, Robin. Nice try.

Don't accuse me of being dishonest.  Particularly since you conveniently overlook one fact: Clinton did not explicitly endorse pre-emptive war.  He authorized funding opposition groups.  

There is a difference between funding opposition groups within Iraq dedicated to change from within and pre-emptive war from without.  You conveniently ignore this when you re-print the press release.  Nice try, Ogami.

Perhaps Clinton was smart enough to realize that he would not have a good case for pre-emptive war.  Perhaps he was also smart enough to realize that the right wing would accuse him of "wagging the dog," as they did re Kosovo.

Bush would've been better off following Clinton's lead and helping to fund opposition groups instead of pushing a pre-emptive war based on lies and false information.

Quote

Saddam Hussein was a real, worldwide threat, he was a proven (and proud) financial sponsor of a multitude of Islamic terror groups.

Saddam had no WMDs in Iraq.  Why?  Because the sanctions against Iraq worked!  Zack has said that by the time we invaded, Iraq was little more than a fourth-rate dictatorship, and I'm inclined to agree.  

Quote

Instead, the 9/11 Commission said they found no evidence that Saddam Hussein planned or knew of the 9/11 attacks by Al Queda. That is not the same as what you say here, Saddam Hussein did know and have contacts with Al Queda. Which was the 9/11 Commission finding.

The reason Bush claimed we were invading Iraq was because supposedly Saddam a. had WMDs and b. was linked to al Qaeda.  

Last year, reports concluded, once and for all, that there were no WMDs.

And the al Qaeda link?  That doesn't look too promising, either.

Here's the main quote:

Quote

The Sept. 11 commission reported yesterday that it has found no "collaborative relationship" between Iraq and al Qaeda, challenging one of the Bush administration's main justifications for the war in Iraq.

The article also states that there had been "contacts" between Saddam and al Qaeda, "but no collaboration."  

But wait, there's more...

Quote

The staff report said that bin Laden "explored possible cooperation with Iraq" while in Sudan through 1996, but that "Iraq apparently never responded" to a bin Laden request for help in 1994. The commission cited reports of contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda after bin Laden went to Afghanistan in 1996, adding, "but they do not appear to have resulted in a collaborative relationship. Two senior bin Laden associates have adamantly denied that any ties existed between al Qaeda and Iraq. We have no credible evidence that Iraq and al Qaeda cooperated on attacks against the United States."

The finding challenges a belief held by large numbers of Americans about al Qaeda's ties to Hussein. According to a Harris poll in late April, a plurality of Americans, 49 percent to 36 percent, believe "clear evidence that Iraq was supporting al Qaeda has been found."

These are the findings of the 9/11 commission.  The same one that George Bush was so antsy about.

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Robin, why would Saddam Hussein leave anything for us to find?

You can't leave something to find if it just isn't there.

Quote

We invaded Iraq because:

1) Saddam Hussein refused to permit full access for our inspectors, as was signed by his generals in the 1991 Cease Fire and specified in UN resolutions.

As Spectacles points out, this is simply not true.

Quote

2) Saddam Hussein sought, created, stockpiled, and used Weapons of Mass Destruction repeatedly against Kurds and Iranians.

First of all, this happened during the 1980s and early 1990s.  During this time, Saddam Hussein was receiving support from the United States.  The US government under Reagan had no problem with this; Iran was our enemy at the time.   We didn't have a problem with his WMDs then.  

AND, for what it's worth, Gulf War I was necessary.  We didn't have a choice.

By 2004, Saddam did not have WMDs.  The sanctions worked.

Quote

3) Saddam Hussein was a bad bad bad bad bad bad bad man.

We all know that.  What would you call our so-called "allies" in Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, and Pakistan?  Benevolent dictators?  Yet we don't invade and occupy those nations.  Saudi Arabia, in particular, has a horrible human rights record and is known for financing schools that push their extremist teachings.  Yet Bush is friends with the Saudi royal family.

The invasion had nothing to do with freeing the Iraqi people.  If it were, we would not be occupying the country.  We would probably be doing what Clinton wanted: supporting opposition groups in Iraq.  

Quote

It did not matter if not one single remaining (or functioning) WMD was found after Saddam had from Fall 2002 to Winter 2003 to dispose of them, hide them, ship them to Syria. He was our problem from Gulf War I, and he needed to be removed. He was. Too bad for "victim" Saddam and his supporters.
-Ogami

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Another straw man: the supposed Saddam sympathizer or appeaser.  I know of nobody who called Saddam a victim or who was pro-Saddam.  

And if Saddam has these WMDs in Syria, why haven't we put pressure on Syria to hand them over?  Surely, Bush would be interested in a look-see, hmmmmm?
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The fanatic is not really a stickler to principle. He embraces a cause not primarily because of its justness or holiness but because of his desperate need for something to hold onto.
--Eric Hoffer

#10 waterpanther

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 06:16 PM

The most cogent question about the mythical WMD's is why Saddam didn't use them if he had them.  He was otherwise outweaponed and outfought: a few hundred rounds of mustard or nerve agent would have gone a long, long way toward evening the playing field, from his point of view.  He had nothing to lose by using them, and much to gain.
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#11 Elara

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 06:28 PM

Ogami, on May 30 2005, 01:13 PM, said:

Yet we didn't Court Martial the generals, we didn't Impeach FDR and hang his Secretary of War. The hysteria we see directed at Bush is simply ridiculous, there's no historical basis for it. Saddam Hussein needed to be removed from power, period.
-Ogami

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


~.~ I don't think anyone disagrees that Saddam needed to be ousted. I think it's the way it was done, the lies that were told and what was ...not... done.

Ogami, on May 30 2005, 02:38 PM, said:

It takes boots on the ground, air support, logistics, and a desire to see the job done. Not letting him linger for years and laugh at our efforts.

~.~ Yet the one that killed all those people on 9/11 is still having a laugh, free as a bird.

Quote

Clinton talked the talk, Bush walks the walk.

~.~ Sounds so strong, until you realize that he did not do what he said he was going to do. Get those that attacked us on 9/11.

Quote

We invaded Iraq because:

1) Saddam Hussein refused to permit full access for our inspectors, as was signed by his generals in the 1991 Cease Fire and specified in UN resolutions.

2) Saddam Hussein sought, created, stockpiled, and used Weapons of Mass Destruction repeatedly against Kurds and Iranians.

3) Saddam Hussein was a bad bad bad bad bad bad bad man.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


~.~ I must be confused. I thought the reason we went into Iraq was because we were after bin laden. I would swear I recall some talk of going there to find and get bin laden for the deaths on 9/11. Was 9/11 and bin laden's part a figment of my imagination?
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#12 tennyson

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 06:31 PM

Actually, at the time the US did put through a formal censure of Iraq through the UN because of its use of chemical weapons during the mid-1980s. Thier may also have been something about thier use of laser target designators as blinding weapons as well but my recall is fuzzy and I'll have to look in my files.
Actually, Saudi Arabia is a monarchy, not a dictorship. It's a subtle difference and in some cases amounts to the same thing but it is thier official system of government. They have a king that supposedly wields real power. As it is right now attacking Saudi Arabia would be a horrific blunder even if the US hadn't become involved in Iraq. Here the US would be attacking its third closest Middle East ally(after Isreal and Kuwait) that also has the most sacred sites in all Islam on it, whose prescence in Saudi Arabia was one of the primary points in Bin Laden's Fatwa against the West. This would be completely fuffilling the claims of Bin Laden's antiWestern proganda, deposing a friendly government that could be worked with to reform as well as deal with the Al-Queda in its midst and give virtually every radical Islamist on the planet a reason to stream into Saudi Arabia to free its holy soil from the infidel. Working with Saudia Arabia is the better option.
The same applies with Pakistan, without Musharef the Islamists have enough support to take power, gain control of the countries nuclear weapons and delivery systems and attack either India or American forces in the region. By working with them our vital interests are maintained and we can apply soft power from the inside to achive reform and try to deal with the radical Isamists in country.
As for Uzbekistan, the US should cut him loose(and the momentary support has already stopped) and institute the plan I've presented before in other threads of a multinational stabilization force designed to stabilize the country while setting p an international econmic development fund that could also start the reform process.
"Only an idiot would fight a war on two fronts. Only the heir to the throne of the Kingdom of Idiots would fight a war on twelve fronts."

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#13 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:10 PM

Spectacles wrote:

While I agree with Ogami that Saddam was a bad bad bad bad man, I think it's incorrect to say that "Saddam Hussein refused to permit full access for our inspectors." Inspectors were in Iraq from November 2002 until the Bush Administration told them to get out because we were coming in

You watched CNN same as I did during early 2003. Every day that Colin Powell would go before the UN and state that Iraq was putting on a dog-and-pony show for the Inspectors, Tariq Aziz would shake his head and say "No no no, we are fully cooperating with inspectors."

I happen to believe Tariq Aziz was a liar, Spectacles. Why should we believe Tariq Azis over Colin Powell? Your side posted every week about how he's the most honorable man in the Administration, was Colin Powell lying about inspection access so that Bush would cook him a hot dog at the ranch?

There's nothing vague here, Spectacles. One of the men was lying. You just stated you choose to believe what Saddam Hussein's best friend said about the access of the inspectors. Why?

-Ogami

#14 waterpanther

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:14 PM

But the choice is not between believing Tariq Aziz--known to lie--and Colin Powell--also, alas, now known to lie.

According to the inspectors on the ground, who included neither of these men, they had full and free access to the sites they needed to visit.  So far none of these inspectors has been shown to be a liar.
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#15 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:42 PM

Robin wrote:

Oh, duh. But everyone knows that you have to a. present a valid case for war and b. have a good plan.  Which Bush never had.

John Kerry campaigned on the premise that he had a "Secret Plan" for Iraq, a plan that would do a much better job than Bush's plan. Yet after the election, Kerry decided to keep it to himself, so I guess we'll never know.

It is because the Democratic party saw Iraq as a means of political maneuvering that they are completely out of power.

Maybe because Clinton (and Congress) had an impeachment to deal with, which took his attention away from Iraq. Y'think?

No, that's insane. A President who could be so distracted would be incompetent to begin with and should have been impeached for that reason. Bush has had five years of steady charges against him, everything the Democrats could think up and throw at him. Yet he just smiles and brushes it off. And now you expect me to care about what Bill Clinton was actually found guilty of? Bush, on the other hand, hasn't been charged with anything. (Like Tom Delay, I think we see a pattern.)

And whose idea was it to sink all that money into impeaching him for the flimsiest of reasons?

That would be Clinton lying before a Federal Judge, lying before a Grand Jury, lying before the country (as his administration team went to work smearing Monica), and thereby losing his license to practice Law in the State of Arkansas? The Arkansas Bar association disbarred Bill Clinton for a reason. Nothing flimsy about it.

Don't accuse me of being dishonest. Particularly since you conveniently overlook one fact: Clinton did not explicitly endorse pre-emptive war. He authorized funding opposition groups.

Robin, I can't force you to go and read the actual Bill that Clinton signed into law. Here's the very first sentence for you from the Bill itself, from the above Cornell University link:

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To establish a program to support a transition to democracy in Iraq.
Not clear enough for you? Here's another one, also from the front page:

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Since March 1996, Iraq has systematically sought to deny weapons inspectors from the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq (UNSCOM) access to key facilities and documents, has on several occasions endangered the safe operation of UNSCOM helicopters transporting UNSCOM personnel in Iraq, and has persisted in a pattern of deception and concealment regarding the history of its weapons of mass destruction programs.

This was the precise reason Bush went before Congress and the UN, secured their permission to deliver "serious consequences" to Saddam Hussein should he not comply. Clinton acknowledged the abuse of weapons inspectors (Hello, Spectacles!), but did very little about it. Finally:

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SEC. 3. SENSE OF THE CONGRESS REGARDING UNITED STATES POLICY TOWARD IRAQ.

It should be the policy of the United States to support efforts to remove the regime headed by Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq and to promote the emergence of a democratic government to replace that regime.

Robin, if you still cannot understand what that means, and why it is called the "Iraq Liberation Act" and not "Iraq let's hope Sanctions Work Act", I can't help you further. There's nothing plainer than the above Article 3 on what Clinton wanted to happen.

Saddam had no WMDs in Iraq. Why? Because the sanctions against Iraq worked! Zack has said that by the time we invaded, Iraq was little more than a fourth-rate dictatorship, and I'm inclined to agree.

And if Saddam Hussein had not stonewalled our inspectors to show this, he'd still be in power! You do understand that, don't you? Bush called Saddam's bluff. Bush never said "We're only invading Iraq because I guarantee neatly labeled stockpiles of WMD". That claim lies only in the fertile imagination of his critics.

Bush would've been better off following Clinton's lead and helping to fund opposition groups instead of pushing a pre-emptive war based on lies and false information.

So Iraqi intelligence contacts spruced up their reports, so what? The left accuses Bush of lying and fabricating intelligence. If he did that, why is he still president? He did not.

The reason Bush claimed we were invading Iraq was because supposedly Saddam a. had WMDs

Bush didn't have to claim Saddam Hussein had WMD, the whole world saw him use them! Why are you so determined to protest the innocence of Saddam Hussein? He had WMD, used them, and showed all signs of wanting to acquire more. So he didn't acquire more, that's good. That doesn't mean we should have left him in power.

and b. was linked to al Qaeda.

That was the determination of the 9/11 Commission, Saddam Hussein was indisputably linked to Al Queda. Did Saddam plan or know of the 9/11 attacks? No evidence. Did Saddam support and pay for Islamic terrorist organizations as a whole? Absolutely. Bush never lied.

As Spectacles points out, this is simply not true.

When Spectacles takes the position of Tariq Aziz, Iraq's representative in the UN up to early 2003, that does not prove anything besides a willingness to believe a dictator. Was Tariq Azis telling the truth, that they were fully cooperating with inspectors? Colin Powell reported that Aziz was lying, and I am inclined to believe a decorated Army General over a blood-soaked dictator. Make your choice.

First of all, this happened during the 1980s and early 1990s. During this time, Saddam Hussein was receiving support from the United States. The US government under Reagan had no problem with this; Iran was our enemy at the time. We didn't have a problem with his WMDs then.

Yes, I remember the left doing everything in their power to lie and claim that America gave Saddam Hussein his WMD. It never happened. But that just showed the depths that Bush's critics were willing to go in order to protest Saddam's forcible removal.

By 2004, Saddam did not have WMDs. The sanctions worked.

And again, Saddam Hussein chose to bluff that he had something to hide, he gave our inspectors the runaround. Bush called Saddam's bluff, Saddam is out of power, and a major financial sponsor of Islamic terrorism is gone. Why is this a problem, again?

We all know that. What would you call our so-called "allies" in Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, and Pakistan? Benevolent dictators?

Yes, I've seen this argument before. Why invade Iraq when there are equally bad dictators around the world? Because with Iraq and Afghanistan as examples, the world's dictators do not need to receive actual invasion. Sometimes, just by letting them see what happens to their brother dictators is good enough. And I can tell you that the world's blood-soaked dictators agree with every bit of anti-war criticism that Bush has received. Think very carefully about what that means, and why they support the side of Bush's critics. The dictators know Bush is effective, even if Bush's critics argue otherwise until they're hoarse.

The invasion had nothing to do with freeing the Iraqi people. If it were, we would not be occupying the country. We would probably be doing what Clinton wanted: supporting opposition groups in Iraq.

This will come as a great surprise to the people of Japan and Germany, who were told we had to occupy them to bring them democracy and freedom. I don't dispute the fervency of your feelings, but I happen to look at history more than feelings. History completely repudiates your above statement.

Another straw man: the supposed Saddam sympathizer or appeaser. I know of nobody who called Saddam a victim or who was pro-Saddam.

You yourself just stated it was the wrong thing to do to forcibly remove Saddam Hussein from power. Did I misunderstand your very precise and very clear statement?

Sure, we could have let Saddam rule another 20 years, let scams like Oil for Food support and protect the dictator through black market channels. But Bush recognized that only the people of Iraq were suffering from sanctions, Saddam Hussein and his bunch were fat, rich, and happy. Bush removed those scum from power, and now the Iraqi people have food, medicine, education, and all the basics that we in our democracies consider necessities.

Funny how the crowd who argues "We should have given sanctions a longer chance!" is the same exact crowd who was saying "End Iraq sanctions now!" before Bush made his Axis of Evil speech. You may choose not to remember the position of Bush's critics, but I do.

And if Saddam has these WMDs in Syria, why haven't we put pressure on Syria to hand them over? Surely, Bush would be interested in a look-see, hmmmmm?

Let me go over the concept of time, and I hope I do not sound anywhere near as condescending as Algore did in his televised debates with Bush. After Bush's 2002 "Axis of Evil" State of the Union speech, things didn't start moving into high gear until Summer 2002. With me so far? From the Summer of 2002, to March 2003, Saddam Hussein had warning that Bush was looking for his WMD. That means that if Saddam Hussein still had any secret functioning stockpiles, we gave him NINE MONTHS to get rid of it.

Bush gave Saddam Hussein nine months, Robin. 9 months to hide, destroy, ship out, do whatever with his WMD. There was no rush to war, we gave Saddam Hussein plenty of time to get rid of the labs, the scientists, the paperwork, the experimental evidence, purchasing contracts, all of it. He had 9 months to get rid of every scrap of evidence. And that's not hard in a police state.

Again, you have to have a concept of time in order to think about that. I make a point of it because I wonder if Bush's critics have the slightest grasp of what an absolute dictator can do, if the world's democracies give him 9 months (not counting the years from 1991 to 2002) to cover up. Is it really that hard to think through?

Edited by Ogami, 30 May 2005 - 09:57 PM.


#16 waterpanther

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:46 PM

Me, I think we should bomb London.  After all, the Brits burned Washington.
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#17 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:46 PM

Elara wrote:

I don't think anyone disagrees that Saddam needed to be ousted. I think it's the way it was done, the lies that were told and what was ...not... done.

Elara, here's CNN.com:
http://www.cnn.com

Here's all of Bush's speeches and radio addresses made while president:
http://www.whitehous...3/20050329.html

Find me one quote of Bush on Iraq or Afghanistan that is a demonstrable lie. You can't do it because he never did lie.

I must be confused. I thought the reason we went into Iraq was because we were after bin laden.

Again, find for me ONE QUOTE where Bush, or Rumsfeld, or Cheney, or Powell, or Rice said, "Saddam Hussein knew of and planned the 9/11 attacks with Bin Laden and his Al-Qaeda network."

You can't do it because he never said it. Just because every Democrat politician in Washington says it to get out the vote doesn't mean it happened. (You'll have to do like Spectacles and point to a poll that Bush didn't write, but go ahead and look.)

-Ogami

Edited by Ogami, 30 May 2005 - 09:48 PM.


#18 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 09:51 PM

Waterpanther wrote:

But the choice is not between believing Tariq Aziz--known to lie--and Colin Powell--also, alas, now known to lie.

When was that proven? The left has cut down an entire forest writing columns and editorials on how Colin Powell was the only honest man in the Bush Administration (and by clear insinuation, that they wanted him to quit before the first term was up). Now you're telling me they were just praising Powell in order to create a wedge between him and the rest of the Administration? That Bush's critics were just thinking of politics?

I make the claim, and have it confirmed the same hour. Opposition to Iraq never went beyond politics, and includes every bit of praise that Colin Powell has received from Bush's critics.

According to the inspectors on the ground, who included neither of these men, they had full and free access to the sites they needed to visit. So far none of these inspectors has been shown to be a liar.

from the Associated Press, February 15, 2003:

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The world should not be taken in by "tricks that are being played on us" by Saddam Hussein, Secretary of State Colin Powell said Friday, pressing reluctant U.S. allies to threaten force if Iraq does not disarm.

"The threat of force must remain," Powell said after chief U.N. inspectors Hans Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei delivered their report to the Security Council. The presentation indicated that Iraq had complied with the probe to some degree, but had not provided a complete account of their weapons programs.

So, they cooperated to some degree, but had notr provided a complete account.

Waterpanther, were you thinking of Clinton's inspectors that got thrown out?

-Ogami

Edited by Ogami, 30 May 2005 - 10:02 PM.


#19 waterpanther

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 10:03 PM

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So, they cooperated to some degree, but had notr provided a complete account

Of course they didn't.  They couldn't because the inspections themselves were not complete.  Bush pulled the inspectors out before they were finished; if they had completed their mission without finding the WMD, Bush would have lost his predicate for war.  

And yes, much of the material Colin Powell presented to the U. N. was false, including assertions about the nature of Iraqi installations and the currency of their weapons stocks.  Which is sad, because I had a great deal of admiration for the man.
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#20 Ogami

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Posted 30 May 2005 - 10:06 PM

Waterpanther wrote:

Of course they didn't. They couldn't because the inspections themselves were not complete. Bush pulled the inspectors out before they were finished; if they had completed their mission without finding the WMD, Bush would have lost his predicate for war.

The Bush administration made their stance on inspections known well before March 2003, Waterpanther. They gave Saddam chance after chance, and by the above final inspection reports, he chose to not be forthcoming. Do you remember all the press conferences that Saddam set up with his WMD scientists, with their families securely under Iraqi guard?

Saddam Hussein made a choice for war, not Bush. Saddam chose to bluff that he had something to hide, and we were going to take him out because of that bluff. Whether we found anything afterwards was (and is) irrelevant. What is relevant is that Saddam Hussein is gone.

-Ogami



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