Democrats & Liberals Archives

Foreign Policy: Republican vs. Democratic Approaches

Republicans like to say that they have a foreign policy that keeps us safe, whereas Democrats don’t care about security and they do not know how to keep America safe from terrorists. This is just plain wrong. What we can say is that the foreign policy approaches of Republicans and Democrats are different. Suppose I show the differences in a few examples. You can judge for yourself which is better for the U.S. in the long run.

Iraq War

Most of us agree that the Iraq War was a mistake. In a recent poll, 72% of the troops in Iraq said that we should end it in 2006. You know how the Republicans started it. They paid no attention to the inspectors, completely disregarded what our democratic allies said and went full speed ahead. Bush's speech to the UN was disdainful: He said either you go along with us or you're wrong. Powell's speech was worse: a pack of lies.

No need to dwell on it, but the worldwide results are horrible: Iraq is on the verge of civil war, our allies are upset with us and we have created a bunch of new terrorists. All because Bush and his Republican cronies must have their own way.

Democrats were in favor of giving the inspectors a chance. They were in favor of discussions with allies and others. They were in favor of treating all nations at the UN with respect. They wanted every country to become involved in the black tragedy of terrorism. Democrats favored talk, talk, talk.

I don't know how things would be different today if we had followed the Democratic approach. But I'm sure of one thing: the hostility against America around the world would not be as great as it is today.

Iran

Bullying Bush announced that Iran was part of the "axis of evil." Iran looked at what happened to the other members of the "axis of evil." North Korea had nuclear weapons and was not attacked by U.S., whereas Iraq did not have any nuclear weapons and was attacked. Gotta have the weapons.

The European Union tried to negotiate with Iran. But the U.S. stayed on the sidelines. They said they were with the European Union, but this is not so. U.S. should have contributed a couple of carrots, not constantly brandish a big stick. But Republicans have an aversion towards carrots. Who's afraid of a carrot?

The Democrats believe in carrots. Why could not the Republicans offer a big business deal with Iran? If it were not accepted, why could they not offer a big business deal with China - to woo it away from Iran? This and other forms of diplomacy would have been actively pursued if Democrats were in power.

Democrats would have demonstrated that they are friends of Iranians and not merely enemies of Iranian clerics, as the Republicans demonstrated.

UN

How Republicans feel about the UN is demonstrated by how they forced John Bolton into the job of UN ambassador. They agreed that Bolton is no diplomat. But they insisted that tough-guy Bolton is what the UN needed in order to reform it. Bully Bolton, the "bull in a China shop." All the other ambassadors are unhappy with him. And he managed to accomplish nothing. Worse, his obstinacy brought about a very weak Human Affairs Council. It seems as though he is single-handedly destroying the UN.

Democrats were very unhappy with the appointment of Bolton. Democrats prefer a diplomat, a smooth diplomat, for a post at the UN. Democrats believe in diplomacy. Democrats believe in honest discussions in order to achieve consensus. Democrats would rather talk than kill.

Contrast

The huge contrast between the foreign policy approaches of Republicans and Democrats may be summarized as follows:

REPUBLICANS: NATIONAL STRENGTH THROUGH SELF-RELIANCE - Rely primarily on superior military. No need for treaties and agreements. Work only with those nations that follow our leadership to transform dictatorships into democracies

DEMOCRATS: NATIONAL STRENGTH THROUGH COOPERATION - Rely primarily on superior diplomacy. Encourage discussions, treaties and agreements. Cooperate primarily with democracies to make the world more peaceful and more democratic.

Posted by Paul Siegel at February 28, 2006 6:39 PM
Comments
Comment #130351

Then Paul woke up from his sweet slumber returning to the real world.

Posted by: Nunya at February 28, 2006 7:19 PM
Comment #130355

So Paul, you basically are citing the hawk vs. dove….honey vs. vinegar…grammar vs. guns. I happen to believe all of that and also that killing is an option of absolute last resort or in the case of self protection. Whether a person leans to the left or to the right, peaceful negotiations beat bloodshed….anyone’s blood.
Maybe now, just maybe…Americans are willing to see that nothing is working right now, so trying something different can’t possibly be worse.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at February 28, 2006 7:30 PM
Comment #130362

I am grateful that you are mistaken about Democrat’s foreign policy. If that were true, we would be in serious trouble.

Most prominent Democrats did not favor talk, talk, talk. I would quote them, as we have done so many times before, but you know about them I know you will say they were fooled by the much more intelligent Karl Rove, or that is what you believe. But your statement is empirically wrong.

In Iran, the President is working multilaterally. What are Democrats saying?

From NYT January 19 - In a speech at Princeton University, Mrs. Clinton, a New York Democrat, joined the Bush administration’s call for sanctions against Iran, and also said that the threat of military action against nuclear sites should not be ruled out.

But she was critical of the administration for letting European nations take the lead in negotiations over the last several years.(BTW - you might call this cooperation with allies)

Re UN
Did the UN system fall apart because of Bolton. You may recall the Holbrook (no mister nice guy) and Albright (no big intellect) were also UN Ambassadors.

Could you give more examples of your idea of the contrast? I don’t mean people saying that it is so. Did Kosovo have an UN mandate? Chasing Somalia warlords a good idea? Remember our Haiti invasion? We had the alliance of some Caribbean mini states. They contributed all together a single company - 266 soldiers. In Rwanda we didn’t act at all. Maybe a unilateral approach would have done better. Then we had the Sudan bombing. Not to mention the 1998 attack on Iraq. Of course, Clinton did give a really good speech on Iraq. Sort of sounds like Bush, don’t you think.


Posted by: Jack at February 28, 2006 7:45 PM
Comment #130366

Paul,

Okay, I’ll judge for myself. Here I go:

“Most of us agree that the Iraq War was a mistake. In a recent poll, 72% of the troops in Iraq said that we should end it in 2006.”

Answer: 2 sentences which have absolutely nothing to with each other. Oh, and a link: http://media1.streamtoyou.com/rnc/111505.wmv
What poll by the way? When did they ask the troops … in their last month of deployment?? You dems and your almighty, infallible polls . . you probably wonder why we even have a gov’t and don’t just make all decisions via some polling website. And, you can’t even explain why that would be a bad idea!


“They paid no attention to the inspectors.”

Oh! I’m sorry we didn’t put every ounce of possible weight in telegraphed, pre-scheduled, incomplete inspections limited by Saddam himself. What were we thinking??!!


“… either you go along with us or you’re wrong.”

Kinda like that 14th UN Resolution to Saddam, huhn Paul?


“Iraq is on the verge of civil war.”

I know, I know. Libs are very very upset that this latest uprising obviously instigated by Zarqawi (he declared his civil war tactic himself for god’s sake) didn’t erupt the whole country into civil war. There’s nothing the libs would like more to add to their bleak ammo depot more than Iraq erupting into civil war.

“They were in favor of treating all nations at the UN with respect.”

All nations … really? You’re going to stand by that Paul? How about all those nations feeding off of “Oil For Food”? Hell, how about the UAE for that matter?


“the hostility against America around the world would not be as great as it is today.”

More trumped up liberal lies. How many times has your neighborhood been attacked? And are you saying that radical Muslims just started hating us in FEB 2001? Really?


“Bullying Bush announced that Iran was part of the axis of evil. Iran looked at what happened to the other members of the axis of evil.”

Yes, you’re right Paul. If it wasn’t for Bush using those 3 words Iran wouldn’t cut off people’s hands for holding a Christian bible. They wouldn’t be calling for the destruction of Israel and they certainly wouldn’t be seeking nuclear weapons. I mean, why seek nuclear weapons if Bush doesn’t use those 3 words? Because their screwed-up-ed-ness is all because Bush used those 3 words. They were so much nicer when Carter was in office, weren’t they?!!!!


“The European Union tried to negotiate with Iran. But the US stayed on the sidelines.”

This is part of the liberal “I voted for it right after I voted against it” tactic. Slam Bush for not involving countries … Bush always has to have it his way … Bush doesn’t care, he’ll just go it alone. Then comes Iran and now we hear: What is Bush doing? Why are other countries doing the talking? Why doesn’t he lead???!!! (flippity flop!)


“Why could not the Republicans offer a big business deal with Iran?”

Answer: Because we our infidels. Oh, and this might shock you … so are you. You’re just considered a weak, obsequious infidel. But your head still needs to come off. (They’ll just laugh more when they decapitate you.)


“How Republicans feel about the UN is demonstrated by how … “

Let me finish that one for you. “… by how they made billions off of a program designed to help the people of Iraq during sanctions aimed mostly at Saddam, by how they demonize the US only because they can’t get a reaction out of other more lawless governments, and by how they pass 14 unambiguous resolutions and then piss all over the nation which actually enforced them.”


“Encourage discussions, treaties and agreements. Cooperate primarily with democracies to make the world more peaceful and more democratic.”

There you go again … thinking all other nations, leaders, and peoples actually want to be a part of a reasoned, free society. Let me help you out here: Many Muslims are only allowed to read one book. And if we cooperate primarily with democracies, what good is that? What are we going to do? … make current democracies, um, democracies?

This sufficiently thrashes your entire article and it’s also a warning. Not that you offered many detailed solutions in your article, but what general alternative paths you did offer were naive and part of the BAFSLA (Blame America First Self Loathing American) mentality. Scary to say the least!

Posted by: Ken Cooper at February 28, 2006 7:54 PM
Comment #130370

It’s all great that we can say what we are for or against, but the trouble we have nowadays is the inability to let go of that and evolve our points of view to deal with the facts as they change and become better known to us.

I wish more people left and right (especially right, since they have control, especially left because they’re my people) would take a moment to step back from the habitual statements of political positions, from their accusations and counter accusations, and remember our purposes here. I didn’t start writing here about the Iraq war so Democrats could win in ‘04 or ‘06, or because of some hatred towards Bush, I did so because I wanted to see our efforts in Iraq changed for the better, and I just didn’t trust Bush to do so properly. Now, I have no choice but to trust him, so therefore I’m pushing on these issues harder than before.

We should want what’s best for the country, not merely where we want it to head, but also in what we do right this minute.

We can’t afford in this day and age to be right only in our own heads. We must tie our understanding of things back to the real world as best as we can. The alternatives are the deadly twin illusions of paranoia and complacency, both bad estimations of our situation.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 28, 2006 8:04 PM
Comment #130374

Ken-
If you think those resolutions were all unambiguous, I invite you to read them. As for blame America first, I think you misinterpret our position. America must be the first country to admit mistakes when America is wrong. Maybe you’re convinced that we can perpetually disclaim all things that besmirch our image, yet freely commit the very atrocities we condemn in other countries, but I find I have little stomach for that kind of hypocrisy. America should act in vein of what it stands for. The alternative is not to stand for freedom, human rights, and the American way any longer.

We must make our stand against the terrorists armored against their insinuations and lies by the truth of our actions. That also works to solve your problems with the media. Without a chronic insurgency, it becomes rather more difficult to report on one. As I insisted with Paul Siegel, I insist with you: We cannot afford to be only right within our own heads. We must be right in the real world, even if if that means being somewhat vulnerable to the atrocities of our enemies. They can kill us, but only we can kill our Democracy, and abdicate our moral authority as the beacon of freedom and righteousness.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 28, 2006 8:16 PM
Comment #130376

Stephen D.,

Excellent post, I mean that sincerely. I think the problem is such as when we see articles like above, full of emotion and very little to no fact. My centrist side starts to dissipate.

I usually vote Republican. But I also believe in an adult woman’s right to choose, affirmative action, and strong environmental policies (although I believe about 1/2 of the global warming activists hype the situation to false levels). I had to teach my very liberal neighbor how to obtain recycling bins and what days to put it out for pick-up.

But I’m a “Bushy”, to use a liberal term, when it comes to post 9/11 foreign policy. And re-hashing Abu Ghraib every other day, equating Gitmo to Gulags (hi Sen. Durbin!), calling the House of Reps a Plantation, senators backing Bush on the threat of Saddam in 2002 and then saying he lied in 2003, 2004, and 2005 … all of those types of outrageous rhetoric send me hurdling to the Right at Mach 3.

I don’t mind the dissent. But when people get on this “America is the worst country in the world” kick in a way to damn Bush … it just sends me sailing right.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at February 28, 2006 8:24 PM
Comment #130379

Paul:

There is a common thread in your thoughts on cooperation which is noble if nieve. The fault line you are discribing here is not one that I think exists. What I think exists is a difference in values.

L:berals (in general) ARE soft on defense.

Conservatives (in general) are soft of civil rights.

If you were to poll consevatives verses liberals on the following question, I think the differences would be astounding.

“Would you be willing to surrender your civil rights in order to protect your country?”

My answer on this would be sure, if that is what it takes, of course. On national defense issues, do you think I’m a liberal, moderate or conservative?

I think we are different because we have different fundamental values. Questions about the NSA are puzzling to me. I assumed all that wiretapping was going on already!! Why the shock? We are at war after all.

Conservatives and liberals both “bend the rules” when politics enters their sacred cow. There is no right to abortion in the constitution right? What there was in 1973 was a majority of members of the supreme court who believed in the civil rights of pregnant mothers over the fetus!! So they imposed (being unelected) law on the country. That is what liberals would do.

On the other hand, conservatives are no better. Now that conservatives are in charge, and we are at war, conservatives say wiretaps without warrants are ok. We will just rewrite that 1978 law written when liberals were in power. We will stretch the constitution our way for a while until the tide shifts back your way. Thirty years from now, you can rewrite it again!!

Values are important. We all think our values are the important ones, and the opponants are straight from hell. They shift from time to time as well. At one time Democrats were the party of slavery, and tax and spend. Now you are the party of civil rights and fiscal responsibility!!

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at February 28, 2006 8:49 PM
Comment #130380

“all of those types of outrageous rhetoric send me hurdling to the Right at Mach 3.”

I’m guessing you’re going to run out of room quick.

I really have a hard time responding to your posts because you simply assume the worse - take each argument ot the extreme and don’t seem to attempt to grasp what is posted.

example: “I don’t mind the dissent. But when people get on this “America is the worst country in the world” kick in a way to damn Bush … it just sends me sailing right.”

Please, show me anyone other than yourself posting this message.

Posted by: tony at February 28, 2006 8:50 PM
Comment #130384

>> You dems and your almighty, infallible polls

you reps are all for polls when they work in your favor A Beautiful Friendship Flowers. Come on, you can’t have it both ways.

>> I know, I know. Libs are very very upset that this latest uprising obviously instigated by Zarqawi (he declared his civil war tactic himself for god’s sake) didn’t erupt the whole country into civil war. There’s nothing the libs would like more to add to their bleak ammo depot more than Iraq erupting into civil war.

vitriolic comments aside, nothing you’ve said here contradicts the fact that Iraq is on the verge of a civil war that is a direct result of the administrations screwups over there.

>> All nations … really? You’re going to stand by that Paul? How about all those nations feeding off of “Oil For Food”? Hell, how about the UAE for that matter?

Treating all nations with respect does not equal sacrificing national security or ignoring violations of the law. We can treat the UAE with respect but still refuse to allow them to control our ports.

>> More trumped up liberal lies. How many times has your neighborhood been attacked? And are you saying that radical Muslims just started hating us in FEB 2001? Really?

Make up your mind. You say on the one hand that the negative world view of america is trumped up liberal lies, then imply that there is a negative view of america when you state that radical muslims have hated america since before feb 2001. Which is it? The fact is, save for India, the general view of america has been declining since 2000, World Opinion Grows More Negative After Bush Re-Election, to include our allies in the war in Iraq, and aside from resorting to the “liberal liar, liberal liar, liberal pants on fire” argument, you didn’t provide any evidence to the contrary.

>> Yes, you’re right Paul. If it wasn’t for Bush using those 3 words Iran wouldn’t cut off people’s hands for holding a Christian bible. They wouldn’t be calling for the destruction of Israel and they certainly wouldn’t be seeking nuclear weapons. I mean, why seek nuclear weapons if Bush doesn’t use those 3 words? Because their screwed-up-ed-ness is all because Bush used those 3 words. They were so much nicer when Carter was in office, weren’t they?!!!!

The perfect example here is China. You know, china isn’t exactly the pearl of the orient. human rights are in the toilet. anyone remember the tiananmen massacre? selling sensitive military technology. what do we do? we open trade, most favored nation status as i recall. we throw them a carrot under the belief that working with them will help lead them to a better future.

>> This is part of the liberal “I voted for it right after I voted against it” tactic. Slam Bush for not involving countries … Bush always has to have it his way … Bush doesn’t care, he’ll just go it alone. Then comes Iran and now we hear: What is Bush doing? Why are other countries doing the talking? Why doesn’t he lead???!!! (flippity flop!)

Who’s talking about Bush taking the lead? That would be a huge mistake. We’ve already seen what happens when he takes the lead in … well anything. The question is about participating “with” other countries, not charging in and taking over. That’s the way it is with reps, isn’t it. Black and white. america either runs something or we stay out of it. there’s no cooperation, no partnerships. partnership to reps means everyone does what we want.

>> Because we our infidels. Oh, and this might shock you … so are you. You’re just considered a weak, obsequious infidel

so what, are you prejudice against the entire country of Iran? Just a question. Seriously. Because I don’t remember your other posts. Are you one of those that were saying the dems were prejudice against the UAE when we were talking about protecting national security? And perhaps a business deal isn’t the best carrot to throw, but there is something we could work with them on that would strengthen our relationship.

>> Let me finish that one for you. “… by how they made billions off of a program designed to help the people of Iraq during sanctions aimed mostly at Saddam

So should we judge the entire republican party by the actions of abramoff, duke cunningham, tom delay, etc., etc., etc.,?

>> There you go again … thinking all other nations, leaders, and peoples actually want to be a part of a reasoned, free society. Let me help you out here: Many Muslims are only allowed to read one book.

And yet it’s amazing how chummy we are with saudi, UAE, etc., etc., etc.,

>> And if we cooperate primarily with democracies, what good is that? What are we going to do? … make current democracies, um, democracies?

No, we encourage other nations to move towards democracy so that they can join the fun.

Well, this sufficiently thrashes your entire rebuttal to the original article. Not that you offered many detailed solutions in your rebuttal , but what more could one expect.

Posted by: Grant at February 28, 2006 9:07 PM
Comment #130385

Sorry, forgot to mark that last post for Ken, in case there was any confusion.

Posted by: Grant at February 28, 2006 9:10 PM
Comment #130395

” ‘Would you be willing to surrender your civil rights in order to protect your country?’

My answer on this would be sure, if that is what it takes, of course.”

i would sacrifice my rights and my life to protect my country, and those whom i love. however, this isn’t the question that is currently before us.
i think the more pertinent question given our situation is…

“Would you be willing to surrender the civil rights of others in order to protect your country?”

…and my answer would be the only one possible
- neither i, nor anyone else, has the right to make that decision for others. inalienable.

Posted by: diogenes at February 28, 2006 9:48 PM
Comment #130402

I’m looking for a little light generated by all this heat, but there isn’t even a faint glow. Rather than reading a thread of mutual recriminations, I would like to see some discussion of Paul Siegel’s final point, which was:

The huge contrast between the foreign policy approaches of Republicans and Democrats may be summarized as follows:

REPUBLICANS: NATIONAL STRENGTH THROUGH SELF-RELIANCE - Rely primarily on superior military. No need for treaties and agreements. Work only with those nations that follow our leadership to transform dictatorships into democracies

DEMOCRATS: NATIONAL STRENGTH THROUGH COOPERATION - Rely primarily on superior diplomacy. Encourage discussions, treaties and agreements. Cooperate primarily with democracies to make the world more peaceful and more democratic.

Let me start. First, I think that Paul’s analysis is too simplistic in describing BOTH parties. The Republican Congressional leadership and its core supporters in each house DO have this worldview, but you would probably not find those sentiments to run deep in the minds of the Main Street Partnership. John McCain, Chuck Hagel, Christopher Shays, Susan Collins, Chris Smith, and others have a more internationalist, rational view of foreign policy .

Most Congressional Democrats DO want more reliance on diplomacy and cooperation with other countries than the Republican leadership. Like moderate Republicans, we also support a military that has the resources to do its job. We also want to see veterans and their families get more than the thanks of a grateful nation when they come home.

THIS Democrat doesn’t have as much faith in a diplomacy-only approach to conflict as Paul seems to think we have. I think that most Democrats want the US to be able to defend its interests as reality requires, and that sometimes means with military action. We differ with the Republicans in seeing the need for a strategy based on always having the right tools and methods for the job.

We also believe, passionately, that securing the homeland is a much more realistic defense policy than trying to export democracy to cultures that are allergic to it. Again, unlike the Republican leadership and their supporters, we don’t believe that securing the homeland requires sacrificing the First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth Amendments, but DOES mean putting the resources required for security ahead of tax breaks for the highest income Americans.

Democrats seem much more in synch with what experienced combat commanders are thinking, and with what they will need to do their jobs. What REALLY pisses us off about the Republican leadership’s approach is that it is based on midwestern xenophobia, religious obsession, ideological delusion, and plain old paranoia. Plus, its unbelievable incompetence.

Posted by: Robert Benjamin at February 28, 2006 10:24 PM
Comment #130403

Nice post Robert B….thanks for presenting a bit different angle to clarify and substantiate where, I believe, we’re all coming from. At least us blue people out here…..Sorry, guess I should just speak for myself…again ..good post.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at February 28, 2006 10:35 PM
Comment #130404

This following news item would show that Bush still doesn’t have a grip on reality…….

Back to Story - Help
Bush denies Iraq heading toward civil war By Matt Spetalnick
Tue Feb 28, 7:26 PM ET


President George W. Bush, hit by polls showing America’s support for the Iraq war at an all-time low, denied on Tuesday Iraq was sliding into civil war, despite the worst sectarian strife since a U.S. invasion.

The decline in Bush’s public approval ratings came as he told Iraqis they faced a choice between “chaos or unity” amid violence that has dented U.S. hopes for the stability needed to pave the way for a U.S. troop withdrawal.

At least 60 people were killed in Baghdad on Tuesday in the latest in a series of deadly attacks following the bombing of a major Shi’ite mosque last week.

Asked what Washington would do if civil war broke out in Iraq, Bush told ABC News: “I don’t buy your premise that there’s going to be a civil war.”

He said he had spoken to leaders of all Iraqi sects and “I heard loud and clear that they understand that they’re going to choose unification, and we’re going to help them do so.”

Despite that, sectarian bloodshed has complicated efforts to forge a new unity government.

At home, pessimism over Iraq, and Bush’s support — despite bipartisan objections — for letting a state-owned Arab company take over operations at six U.S. ports, appeared to be major factors driving his job performance rating down to 34 percent.

They were the lowest CBS News poll numbers of his presidency, creating a grim picture in a midterm election year.

Bush brushed aside the findings, saying ups and downs in the polls were not worth worrying about.

“I’ve got ample capital and I’m using it to spread freedom and to protect the American people,” he told ABC before leaving on an trip to South Asia that offered a breather from problems and miscues that have recently plagued him in his second term.

U.S. TROOPS WANT OUT

The same CBS poll showed public approval for Bush’s handling of the situation in Iraq, once among his strongest suits, falling to 30 percent from 37 percent in January.

Sixty-two percent of Americans said they thought U.S. efforts to bring order to Iraq were going badly, up from 54 percent in January, compared with 36 percent who said things were going well, a drop from 45 percent.

Raising questions about Bush’s vow to keep troops in Iraq as long as they are needed, a Le Moyne College/Zogby poll showed 72 percent of U.S troops serving there think the United States should exit within the next year. Nearly one in four said the troops should leave immediately.

A strategy often used by the Bush administration against opponents of the war in Iraq has been to accuse them of being unfair to troops who want to stay until they get the job done.

But Americans’ opposition to the war has grown as U.S. casualties have mounted and violence has persisted despite a costly program to train Iraqi police and soldiers. There have been 2,295 U.S. military deaths in Iraq since the start of the war in March 2003.

Before leaving for India and Pakistan, Bush skirted a reporter’s question of whether the latest Iraqi violence would affect prospects for beginning a drawdown of the 136,000 U.S. troops now in Iraq.

“The people of Iraq and their leaders must make a choice,” Bush said after a White House meeting with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. “The choice is a free society, or a society dictated … by evil people who will kill innocents.”

Administration officials have accused Sunni-led insurgents, including al Qaeda operatives, of trying to foment civil war in Iraq. In Washington, a U.S. military intelligence chief called the situation “very tenuous” but not yet civil war.

Seated with Bush, Berlusconi stood by his plan to withdraw all of Italy’s 3,000 troops from Iraq by the end of the year.

“This plan has been agreed upon also together with our allies, and with the Iraqi government,” Berlusconi, one of Bush’s staunchest allies on Iraq, told reporters.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at February 28, 2006 10:41 PM
Comment #130405

“What poll by the way? When did they ask the troops … in their last month of deployment?? You dems and your almighty, infallible polls . .”

Ken,

I posted this same link earler on another thread:
U.S. Troops in Iraq: 72% Say End War in 2006
http://www.zogby.com/news/ReadNews.dbm?ID=1075

FYI a little Q & A on Zogby:
Q: I’ve heard so many conflicting stories - is Zogby International a Republican pollster, a Democratic pollster or an Independent pollster?

A: “We are independent and nonpartisan. I am personally a Democrat, but the firm does a lot of work for media (like Reuters America, New York Post, St. Louis Post Dispatch, etc.) and we work for both parties.”

*****

Paul,

Isn’t it nice to “feel the love”. You need only wait for the response from the right to prove your point.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at February 28, 2006 10:43 PM
Comment #130412

Sandra,
You beat me to the punch!!!!

I don’t know how long the site will be up, however since you posted the article, I’ll post the link.

Posted by: Linda H. at February 28, 2006 11:46 PM
Comment #130413

Oh, I almost forgot! Don’t forget the polls showing that most of the Iraqis don’t even want us there. Or wanted us there after once Saddam was gone.

Posted by: Linda H. at February 28, 2006 11:55 PM
Comment #130414

Trying to post the link once more…

http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=578&u=/nm/20060301/ts_nm/iraq_usa_bush_dc_3

Posted by: Linda H. at February 28, 2006 11:56 PM
Comment #130416

The Zogby polling data have usually been as reliable as any.

CBS NEWS unfortunately is usually crap. It has already been diminished because they used a flawed sampling. (More democrats and independents than the population at large). Plus it is a straw poll, instead of likely voters.

CBS polling is just about the same as if it were published by moveon.org. Walter where are you??

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at March 1, 2006 12:00 AM
Comment #130417

Grant

You are showing something you may not have intended. My post that you mention about India (a beautiful friendship) includes a statistic saying that 71% of Indians have a favorable view of America (not Bush) This should be good news to any AMERICAN. Yet you evidently see this good new as working in OUR favor and you don’t include yourself.

It does work in OUR favor if WE are Americans. Do not let Bush hatred overcome America love.

Posted by: Jack at March 1, 2006 12:12 AM
Comment #130420

Jack,

>> You are showing something you may not have intended

My only intention was to point out the hypocricy demonstrated by the right, not to say anything positive or negative about the India poll. Any poll that demonstrates the growing dislike for bush or this administration by the american people is discredited in one way or another, as Ken did for polling in general through his snide remark “You dems and your almighty, infallible polls”, but when a poll supports what you’re doing it’s embraced as being the true will of the people. I didn’t see any of you who relish downplaying the value of polling data attack or question the India poll with the same ferver that you do polls that go against your position.

Posted by: Grant at March 1, 2006 12:34 AM
Comment #130421

We cannot leave Iraq. Al Queda will win if we abandon the mission. We must stay.

Posted by: Aldous at March 1, 2006 12:38 AM
Comment #130423

Linda:


Oh, I almost forgot! Don’t forget the polls showing that most of the Iraqis don’t even want us there. Or wanted us there after once Saddam was gone.

I don’t think that is needed. That is expected. Who would “want” foreign troops on your soil? Iraqi’s are however very optimistic about their future. Very optimistic, and very glad Sadaam is gone.

It is not an argument against the war to say iraqi’s doing want us there. Their pragmatic people know we need to be there for the time being.

Also, everyone wants this to end. I am a war supporter. I want our troops home this year as well!! I fear that it wasn’t just Sadaam who was oppressing the masses. I think we are learning it was the Sunni’s. I am afraid the Shite majority after winning at the ballot box, may have to win in the battlefield as well. Independence from oppression is a very difficult thing.

Bush is wrong in that this isn’t heading for civil war. It is even broader than that. It could spill over to the entire muslim world. It could get pretty ugly over there for a while.

Craig

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at March 1, 2006 12:42 AM
Comment #130424

Grant

That is because I thought the poll was valid AND I would not suspect that a poll that made my country look good was necessarily partisan.

I still think it interesting that you think a poll that shows the U.S. in a good light would support a Republican position and evidently not yours.

Question, if something is good for both Bush and the U.S. is it a good thing according to you?

Posted by: Jack at March 1, 2006 12:44 AM
Comment #130425

Jack,

I don’t want to rehash the entire discussion from the other thread and my comments were not directed towards whether this poll was good or bad for america. Again, my only point was that the right has a double standard in regards to their view and use of polls. “Any” poll that goes against the administration must be wrong while any poll that supports the administration must be right. The India poll was simply an example of a positive poll and hence was beyond repute.

Posted by: Grant at March 1, 2006 12:58 AM
Comment #130431

Craig,

Various sites track polls. For example, this one shows CBS is consistently on the low side for Bush approval ratings. You can glean useful information from this- generally speaking, I think it’s fair to say the CBS poll runs a couple percentage points below the average of all the polls. If it’s true in this case, Bush is probably somewhere around 37& in approval ratings- still a dismal number.

“I fear that it wasn’t just Sadaam who was oppressing the masses. I think we are learning it was the Sunni’s.”

Absolutely. Agreed. Iraq was originally three backwater provinces in the Ottoman Empire: Basra, Bagdhad, and Mosul. When Britain and France divided up the Middle East, they drew borders based upon their spheres of interest, especially their interest in oil. Iraq was the result of Winston Churchill’s colonial dreams, and NOT the aspirations of anyone actually from the region.

The Brits found it difficult to control Iraq, but eventually hit upon an effective solution. The Brits co-opted the Sunnis. In exchange for giving the Sunnis in political power and control of the military, the Sunnis cooperated with the British.

Eventually, Saddam Hussein and the Baathists took control of Iraq. They were Arab nationalists and secularists, with no use for either the Kurds or the Shias. The feeling was always mutual.

At the end of the First Gulf War, Bush #41 left Saddam in power. The proximate cause was the agreement the US made with the Coalition limiting the objective to the liberation of Kuwait (itself a fictional creation of colonialism- but never mind). The ultimate cause, however, was realpolitik; the realization by Bush #41 that Iraq was ungovernable, at least not without someone like Saddam Hussein in charge. The alternative was letting the Kurds establish an independent state, an idea which was anathema to the Turks and others; and letting the Shias establish a fundamentalist Shia state in the south, one closely allied with Iran.

And now, here we are, face to face with a civil war, one which could easily spread to engulf Shias and Sunnis in a regional war. Partition of Iraq will be the solution. It’s just a matter of time. It ‘s the only realistic solution which doesn’t involve mass slaughter. It should have been the solution over a year ago. Instead, the Bush administration initiated a disastrous policy of conducting democratic elections for Iraq as a whole, because mediocrities like Condi Rice couldn’t summon the courage to advocate partition.

The question that needed to be voted upon was this: do you want to be a part of a united Iraqi nation, or split it into three independent countries?

But here we are. It’s easy to see where we need to be, but unfortunately, we’re stuck with an arrogant & inept administration. It’s been a strategic blunder of colossal proportions, and there’s every chance of its growing even worse.

Maybe Cheney will resign ‘for health reasons.’ It would be the best thing to happen to this country.

Posted by: phx8 at March 1, 2006 1:22 AM
Comment #130437

phx8,

You know, I’ve wondered for awhile now why no one’s talked about just splitting up Iraq into three states. I never really researched it, but it seemed like a logical solutions. The three factions don’t want anything to do with each other. In America, the north and the south had differences of opinions, but we also had a lot in common. I’ve never seen much in common between these three groups.

Posted by: Grant at March 1, 2006 1:37 AM
Comment #130438

I’ve always said polls make good fodder for magazines and newspapers but they day we start adjusting policies based on any polling besides election day will be a sad day indeed. If any politician does this, it’s wrong in my view. And in my view the dems are more reactionary to the weekly polls … a huge fault in my opinion. The way you ask the question can get 2 different answers:

Sergeant, would you prefer that the war end this year and you not have to come back? 72% say “YES”!

Sergeant, are we wasting our time here and thus need to get out of Iraq no later than the end of this year?

I guarantee you that you would not get 72%!

Do you prefer beer or wine? 72% say “wine”! (Undisclosed: Poll taken in Napa Valley.)

Do you prefer beer or wine? 72% say “beer”! (Undisclosed: Poll taken in Milwaukee)

Now do you get my point about polls? How you ask, who you ask, when you ask, where you ask … every poll question, to include ones that lean to my viewpoints have had major faults in them when auditing the polling. They’re just worthless in my mind to back up a point.

If you want to back up your viewpoint with more than your personal experiences … use universally accepted fact, use unchallenged history, use obtainable document data, use direct quotes from universally accepted experts … but if you throw polls around you might as well quote your crazy cousin living in a van down by the river while you’re at it.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 2:03 AM
Comment #130439

Grant,
There are several reasons to oppose splitting Iraq.

First, splitting Iraq could encourage the minorities of other countries to agitate for partition as well. US policy usually advocates the sanctity of international borders. Invasions are forbidden for good reason. Rebellions are discouraged. Yet partition eventually worked for Yugoslavia, and perhaps it would be a better solution for others as well.

Second, splitting Iraq could be threatening for neighboring countries. The Kurds have proven themselves good friends to the US, and have enjoyed de facto independence since the First Gulf War. But they are not exactly angelic. Go back far enough, and you’ll find the Kurds played an important role in the Armenian genocide of the early 1900’s. In addition, they fought against the Turks to establish a Kurdish homeland in southeastern Turkey. Over 30,000 died over the years. Neither the Turks nor the Iranians nor the Syrians want to face a resurgent Kurdish nationalism.

Third, an independent state in southern Iraq would almost certainly be close to Iran, and a fundamentalist Shia regime. In addition, a Shia state in the south would threaten Kuwait. A substantial amount of the world’s oil reserves could fall under to the Shias. Of course, keeping Iraq united under Shia rule would be even worse, so this is a risk that seems worth taking.

Fourth, an independent state in central Iraq would be predominantly Sunni, and would lack the oil wealth available to the Kurds & Shias. This problem could be addressed by providing massive subsidies. We’re already bleeding in Iraq at the rate of over $1 billion per week. Why not cut to the chase, funnel the money through our fine friends in Saudi Arabia, and rebuild & subsidize an independent Iraqi state centered around Bagdhad?

Fifth, separate states would not be guaranteed to cease warring against one another. However, it seems partition could breath new life into the region. The US could front the UN as a genuine peacekeeping force, rather than as a narrowly disguised occupying colonial force.

The upshot of partition would be a win for US interests with the Kurds, a neutral outcome with many unknowns for the Sunnis in the central region, and a loss for US interests in the south.

An overall advantage would result for US interests through partition because small states have fewer means to resist US hegemony than large states. For example, compare the USSR with the numerous independent nations after the break=up. If the trend of other nations splitting into smaller ones follows, it’s to the advantage of the US; many smaller states are less powerful and easier to dominate than larger, unified nations.

Posted by: phx8 at March 1, 2006 2:07 AM
Comment #130440

Ken,

By and large I agree with your assessment regarding the flaws in polling, and I certainly don’t think polls should be used in regards to policy, but I don’t think they are completely invalid either.

That being said, I respect your views regarding polls so long as those views are consistant across the board. My issue is that republicans, and to be fair democrats probably do it to, flip-flop on their attitudes about polls. If the polls support them than the polls are good, otherwise they are distortions or flawed.

Posted by: Grant at March 1, 2006 2:11 AM
Comment #130447

Grant,

You took some time to rebut my rebuttal so I’ll address at least you.

My viewpoint on polls is above. Dems unquestionably fall prey to polling more than democrats. It’s why most dems voted against Gulf War I (No Blood For Oil!) but then most voted for the Iraq War so they didn’t get left behind the victory like last time. Then the Iraq War made itself known not to be a 3 week wonder like Gulf I and Afghanistan . . and Dean made some polling headway with “Bush Lied! Bush Lied!” and that led to the necessity of “I voted for it right after I voted against it”.

Regarding the Civil War in Iraq: Even the NY Times acknowledges, that while strife still continues, the major Shia V. Sunni Civil War lasted all of a day. All leaders of note from both sides are calling for calm.

How are we treating the UAE with respect, and pray tell, what laws have they violated? The Brits went through the same congressionally approved vetting process that the UAE went through up until a few days ago … what we’re doing now is completely different simply because that country is Arab. Is that equal respect? I’m not saying it’s wrong, just saying it’s not equal. We DON’T want to treat all nations equally!

Regarding the greater hostility towards America, I don’t consider Western Europe, Latin America, and Islamic States expressing a dislike of our chosen President as “hostile”. I consider violence or nationally endorsed threats of violents as “hostile”. Radical Muslims have been attacking us since the 80’s and picked it up to it’s most feverish pitch in the 90’s. To pin radical muslim hostility on Bush is absurd to the Nth degree.

China worked with us because they believed in a strong economy. And Chinese think of themselves as Chinese. Iranians don’t think of themselves as Iranians, they think of themselves as Muslims. They have little to no pride in a national economy. And, while China has made economic gains, their civil rights are no better since Tianamen Square … the carrot helped Wal Mart, but it didn’t help individual civil rights.

I’m glad we didn’t talk to Iran. I mean, do you argue with 13 year olds? The answer to that question is why I’m glad Bush stayed away from Iran. The issue of Nukes in Iran was unequivocal . . it would be like your 13 year old child getting caught with crack cocaine and me telling you “Hey, you really should sit down and hash this out with him … work on a compromise.”

I don’t know if I’m prejudiced, but I’m definitely weary of the entire country of Iran. I realize the Shah was no cupcake but the leaders they allow to stay in power there … the “goals” they have for the world … If they sent a million people over to the US and killed 10,000 of us I’m quite sure they’d call that a victory and probably install a national holiday to memorialize the “martyrs”.

Duke Cunningham and Delay are involved in trials. I haven’t seen or heard of an external investigation worthy enough to make that happen with UN folks. And the money we’re talking about with Duke and Delay is 1/10th of a small peanut compared to the money involved in the Oil For Food scandal. The UN is barely eeking out just token measures to deal with the billions of dollars lost. Until they do, that scandal does indeed taint the entire organization, especially to include its leader.

Yes, we are chummy with Saudi, UAE, etc. but it’s only because of oil and current mid-east strategy. To not have trade with at least some of the oil rich nations would be economically irresponsible. (And yes, I know that’s Bush’s fault … if he only could’ve avoided inventing that reciprocating engine!) Even as “progressive” as Saudi, Jordan, and the UAE are … they’re still a lot of homegrown terrorists there. The day we can seriously cut back on oil needs is the day we can say good bye to the Mid-East. Good riddance! I’m tired of them hating to death their #1 customer for one of their only serious trade products.

And finally, I’m still not getting how we promote new democracies if we only cooperate primarily with current democracies. You failed to explain that.

Thank you, I’ll just take that epee . . ugh . . right there and be on my way.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 3:06 AM
Comment #130453

PHX8,

I rarely agree with you but I thought your post on partitioning Iraq, pros and cons, was excellent. And no, I haven’t been drinking.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 3:14 AM
Comment #130455

Ken,
Thanks! As you probably already know, like you, I served in the military. Although I served as a B-52 bombardier, I’m just this side of a pacifist; but when people like me go to war, it’s for keeps, and if it comes to war, people like me win. Nothing less will do. I do not take violence for granted. Violence is an absolute last resort, and something to be avoided to the greatest extent possible. That includes an extraordinary effort to avoid it. For practical purposes, it’s fair to characterize me as a Democrat and very,very liberal, further to the left than most posters on Watchblog. But I do try to think issues through for myself, and appreciate your willingness to do the same.

Posted by: phx8 at March 1, 2006 3:43 AM
Comment #130460

Ahh, the mighty Stratofortress … that’s an airplane. I once saw it at an airshow, it lost an engine, and came in for the dreaded 7 engine approach. Now that’s reliability!!

If you ever did a Hornet’s Nest over Beaufort, SC … you probably saw my right wing ass flailing around trying to shoot you down. (That’s a “simulated” shoot down for you folks not aware of military war gaming.)

I’m glad you’re on the Left. We need more military vets on that side.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 4:34 AM
Comment #130476

No need to elaborate after Ken Cooper was dead on correct.

The only thing I can add is that, sometimes, I wish could go to back to that kindergarden state-of-mind of Paul Siegel. But I grew up and now see that the world can never be the way Paul wants it because there is evil in the world (btw not President Bush) that we must deal with.

We need to treat all Nations with respect and love and try to live peacefully with them; however, we must always be prepared to overcome the evil that exists.

Posted by: mac6115cd at March 1, 2006 7:53 AM
Comment #130478

phx8,

Thanks for your service. The B-52 is one of my favorite planes. One of my goals in life is to take a flight in one.

Ken,

Good posts. Keep up the good work.

Posted by: TheTraveler at March 1, 2006 8:07 AM
Comment #130483

It’s all OK…
Paul believes in carrots.

Posted by: Cliff at March 1, 2006 8:45 AM
Comment #130490

Ken,
“You dems and your almighty, infallible polls . . you probably wonder why we even have a gov’t and don’t just make all decisions via some polling website. And, you can’t even explain why that would be a bad idea!

Polls are only “bad” polls if they disagree with a person’s beliefs… otherwise you can bet that they are cited! Come on, please. Both parties and member of both sides cite them if they agree with what they believe.

As to why? Geee, Civics 101 huh? If we need to discuss the very basics then it will take forever to get to the “meat” of the issues.

Since ancient Greece and the birth of Democracy it was understood by some that basing a society strictly on the basis of majority rule would lead to chaos and the rights of the minority being abused. Do we also need to get into why a representative form of government was selected and why voting restrictions were used?

Ross Perot was an idiot because of his “electronic town hall” idea. Who really wants the policy of this nation to be based on the emotions of people at a particular moment? Want a really close example of this junk in action? Look to Californina with the Propositions and you will see the stupidity of the people acting on emotions and limited information.


“They paid no attention to the inspectors.”

That is true. Your miinimizing the importance of the inspections does not make their accuracy any less accurate. What was the hurry to get into this war?

Neo-con think tanks, based on their desire to “right” the “wrongs” of the first Gulf war. They had tons of justifications of WHY it should be done… they were just clueless as to HOW it should be done.

And, yes sir… I will be happy to discuss the role of civilian oversight (as outlined by our Constitution) and how they are supposed to be doing the strategic planning on winning the war and it is up to the military to do the tactical thinking on how to win the battles and achieve the strategic goals of the government.

Oooops! The civilians (President Bush, Vice-President Cheney, Sec. of Def. Rumsfeld, Asst. Sec. of Defence Wolfowitz and others had absolutely no clue about this! The believed that going in an defeating the enemy on the battle field would win the war. How stupid is that?

Yes, I will be happy to debate and discuss how a government should have been bright enough and intellectual enough to have done it properly.


“There’s nothing the libs would like more to add to their bleak ammo depot more than Iraq erupting into civil war.”

Exactly when will it be considered a “Civil War”? I believe that it is pretty darn close or even past time to call it that. Does that make a really big difference? Does calling it a Civil War trip a trigger in the Conservative play book?

We are appeasers? Don’t have the guts to do what is neceassary, yet we are supposed to be cynical enough to want a bloody civil war to prove that we are right and you all are wrong? Hmmmmmmm.

Actually, I am a liberal but I believe that we are now morally responsible for the carnage we have caused. See, to me, that is what morality is about… not whether or not you can call yourself a moral party.

“More trumped up liberal lies. How many times has your neighborhood been attacked? And are you saying that radical Muslims just started hating us in FEB 2001? Really?”

I am not sure about the neighborhood bit. Are you citing the neighborhood on Manhattan Island? Was your neighborhood attacked? Does this have anything to do with the price of tea in China?

You don’t mention why the Muslims might hate us. Would you care to elaborate on that? Or, are you just going to give us the old, we are infidels and we are “supposed” to be killed?

They hated us for many years. Why? Geee, let’s think… Do you also want to get into the past 100 years or so of Western influence and policy concerning the middle-east? We in the west like to pretend that we are complete victims and that the anger and resentment in the middle-east came from out of the blue. Completely irrationale and unjustified. Is it? Could it be attitudes like wanting a war with Iraq and then finding an exucse to justify it that are part of the problem?


“Yes, you’re right Paul. If it wasn’t for Bush using those 3 words Iran wouldn’t cut off people’s hands for holding a Christian bible.”

Please give me an example? I would love to have one because it has been my arguement that we need to kick the right-wing Christian conservatives in the teeth. They spout all this garbage about this being a “Christian” nation so they need to have the Government sponor their beliefs by placing mangers on city squares and the 10 Commandements in court rooms in Alabama.

I want to show them that we need to take a secular government very seriously because we want the Christians in these Muslim countries to have just as much freedom as the minorities have in our country. We can only do that by completely separating Church and State.

Otherwise… they can say, like the Chistians here, that it is a Muslim country and they have the right to do what they want within their borders.


“Why doesn’t he lead???!!! (flippity flop!)”

I love this one too. Okay, a person changes their belief based upon new evidence you present them. Are they now “flippity flop” and to be despised because they changed their mind?

If a person refuses to change their mind based upon the new evidence you presented do you belive that they are steadfast, decisive and a leader?

This one really has me pondering. Please elaborate.

“You’re just considered a weak, obsequious infidel. But your head still needs to come off. (They’ll just laugh more when they decapitate you.)”

Sigh… another bit of wisdom concerning Islam based upon… what? All people in Iran want to cut off our heads? Amazing. We can’t even get a consensus on which cola tastes better!

Check out the tenets of Islam and particulary the part about the “people of the book” and the history of Christians and Jews under the rule of Islam. Then compare that to the treatment of Jews in the old Germanic states, the First Crusade and the Inquisition of Spain.

“and by how they pass 14 unambiguous resolutions and then piss all over the nation which actually enforced them.”

Is this another, “If you ain’t for us your against us” arguement? The UN is only worthy of they agree with what you believe? It is like treaties… we sign them and once they become inconvenient we feel we can disregard them… in the interst of sovereignty… the intersting thing thoughs, is that if you sign a treaty, such as the Geneva Convention then you are basically agreeing to foresake some part of your sovereignty on the basis of the treaty… Duh… that is kind of the purpose behind a treaty… to bind countries to an agreement, regardless of how convenient it is.

“Many Muslims are only allowed to read one book.”

Again, can you cite a source for this? Which countries? What penalty? Is it an ancient law that you are referencing or a recent one that is enforced? You know, there were many people persecuted by the Church for printing the Bible… especially in the vernacular.

“This sufficiently thrashes your entire article and it’s also a warning.”

I am sorry, I missed the warning. Could you elaborate on it a bit. What I read from you illustrates perfectly the point that Paul was making… but you were so busy trying to call everything a lie that you missed it. Isn’t that ironic?

What I have seen from conservatives on this site is the complete inability to deal with the facts presented. Instead they classify everything the other says as “lies” and a belief that they are the only ones that really understand what is going on… Based on what has happened, what is happening now and what might happen in the future they steadfastly remain loyal to bad decisions.

This relates to my point made above. I guess that this makes them decisive and non-filppity-floppy.

What great smear artist came up with that anyhow? Rove? It locked the Republican and the President into a policy of never admitting they were wrong or of having the MORAL integreity to admit that they were wrong. Brilliant! But, I think that the American people are catching on… check the polls.

Any polls… doesn’t matter!

Posted by: Darren7160 at March 1, 2006 9:38 AM
Comment #130491

Phx8-

Just to give some support to your CBS poll comments, here is an article on National Review reminding conservatives that at the most the CBS poll is 3 points understated. It’s a good read.

Ken, were you a Shamrock? Was that you making all that noise while I was shrimping???? If you’ve been gone for more than 5-10 years you would not recognize Beaufort.

Posted by: George in SC at March 1, 2006 9:44 AM
Comment #130493

Wow. So much banter and finger-pointing.

Paul, I appreciate your original post, though I don’t necessarily agree with your conclusions. Instead, I think that the difference between this White House and a proposed Democratic one boils down to what Bush told Elizabeth Vargas last night – that he hopes that his presidency, in retrospect, will be viewed as an “agent for peace.”

In other words, Bush’s presidency is based on wishful thinking and outright delusion.

A Democratic president, IMHO, would at least make an attempt to live in the real world.

Posted by: 0% APR at March 1, 2006 10:03 AM
Comment #130513

While the Dems were talking Saddam killed 2 million people in Iraq and helped kill 3 thousand in America,and planned to kill more and sooner or later he wiil pay for it because of Bush and the American Military and our Allies.Talking did not work for 30 years!Bush did what the U.N. should have done,but,they were too busy taking money from Saddam!

Posted by: RDAVIDC at March 1, 2006 12:02 PM
Comment #130522

Paul good article.

When are people going to wake up and smell the coffie.
The Shoot first and never look
at facts history of the Republican
party has made so many ill.
I tend to feel the divide in our
nation has a more sinister source.
Many have posted concerns about what
side of the fence this or that media
sorce have allegiances with. The fact
that the media fails to report facts.
But insist on forceing this agenda or
that agenda in to there programing is
a crime. News is no longer news it has
become Propaganda. Leaveing many Americans
with the view that none can be trusted.
NO media or media person should be allowed
to outright state that one political party
is better than any other. Americans should
have enough commen sense to see who is
reporting and who is delivering a party
speech. However sadly people can not tell
the differance. If a report does not alline
with your partys interest it is immediately
wrong. Does not mean the report is wrong.
However when a reporter preaches concepts
that are one party based. Going so far as
creating terminology that paints the opposing
party as weak , evil jokes. You can rest assured
it is not fact. People must acknowledge they are expossing
themselves to nothing less than brainwashing. I have said it
before and will continue to say. That if you
can tell who a person votes for they are not reporting
they are a political propaganda tool.
This type of media has devided our nation. A
person can not make a factual decision if
they have no where to turn for real unbiased
facts. Sadly some media does go as far as out
right lies.

Posted by: Honey P at March 1, 2006 12:13 PM
Comment #130546

Paul, interesting topic. I agree with your post, even though I realize that you are speaking very generally.

phx8, great post on the partitioning of Iraq. In your follow-up post to Ken Cooper you wrote:

“Although I served as a B-52 bombardier, I’m just this side of a pacifist; but when people like me go to war, it’s for keeps, and if it comes to war, people like me win. Nothing less will do.”

I admire this kind of spirit, and I share it. I just wish it was the mindset shared by more of America.
Speaking of going in for keeps, that is what we should have done in Afghanistan. Gone in massively. Rounded up Bin Laden and all those other Al Qaeda bastards and totally kicked the Taliban’s butt. If we had done all that, by now we’d be well into the process of completely rebuilding their infrastructure and assisting the Afghani people with economic development. Instead, Bush took our eyes off that goal by taking us needlessly and senselessly into Iraq. And now look at where we are.
The stupidity of it all is just mind-boggling and unbelievable.

“I do not take violence for granted. Violence is an absolute last resort, and something to be avoided to the greatest extent possible. That includes an extraordinary effort to avoid it.”

Yes. But don’t you think most intelligent, sane and logical people share this view — Democrat, Independent and Republican?
Of course, the Neocon Republican’s obviously don’t share that view. They love war, and view it as the best choice, even when it’s obvious that they don’t know the first damn thing about waging it — which is the reason I believe these people are actually quite insane, and extraordinarily dangerous to America.

“For practical purposes, it’s fair to characterize me as a Democrat and very,very liberal, further to the left than most posters on Watchblog.”

:^)

Posted by: Adrienne at March 1, 2006 1:21 PM
Comment #130565

Wow! What a rush to attack me. I merely stated the differences, as I see them, between current Republicans and Democrats.

No one criticized me on what I actually said, except Democrats. Robert Benjamin said:

“THIS Democrat doesn’t have as much faith in a diplomacy-only approach to conflict as Paul seems to think we have.”

I did not say “diplomacy-only.” I am in favor of diplomacy primarily. In other words talk and talk and talk and leave armed confrontation as truly a last resort.

Posted by: Paul Siegel at March 1, 2006 2:17 PM
Comment #130566

“Let him who desires peace prepare for war”
Flavius Vegetius Renatus (~375 AD),

“There is a homely old adage which runs: “Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.” If the American nation will speak softly, and yet build and keep at a pitch of the highest training a thoroughly efficient navy, the Monroe Doctrine will go far.
Theodore Roosevelt (1858 - 1919),

This is another “lefty” that believes in NOT going to war, but being prepared for one.
It is amazing how cooperative people can be when you hold out your hand, and they are aware of the big stick you are hiding behind your back.

Posted by: Russ at March 1, 2006 2:17 PM
Comment #130578

Darren,

I appreciate your long response, unfortunately I must be brief or my wife will shoot me … which might please way too many people.

Anyway, in short order and only addressing a couple of your rebuttals (please see my other posts on issues where I don’t respond directly),

My issue against polls is more personal than right wing party line, although I explained why I think Dems fall more victim to “poll quoting”. If nothing else, it strikes me odd that everyone’s on the dems’ side but yet they control no part of the legislative or executive.

On Iraq, we did take care of the problem (Saddam, his sons, and scouring the country in short order.) The fact that we had to go into Iraq to verify WMD or lack thereof … that was not Bush’s fault. Saddam had nearly 10 years to allow for unfettered, limitless inspections. And remember, we’re not rebuilding their nation and government for them because we have to, we’re doing it because it’s the right thing to do. So, if you want to get upset that the right thing to do is taking longer than forecasted, that’s fine … just realize it’s better than swooping in there, capturing Saddam and killing his rape room sons, free searching for WMD, and just going home.

And you’re being silly to assume all aspects of Iraq should’ve been forecastable. War is nothing of the same. We (both parties of Congress) destroyed our Human Intel capabilities in the ‘70’s. We were forced to rely on satellite photos, the occasional radio/cell phone intercept, and 2nd hand information from the late ‘70’s on. To expect a “know-it-all” approach to this war is blindly moronic. You plan for what you can but if we waited for a perfect plan every time we went to war, our country would be divided in 2, we would’ve never helped Western Europe in WWII, and all of Korea would be Communist and starving to death, literally. We tried to do the perfect planning in Vietnam and it took us 10 times longer than it should have and still ended up giving us our first loss in a war. Once ample time transpires, the worst decision is no decision.

As far as the carnage we’ve caused … what about Saddam staying in power? Besides the carnage he would’ve levied in his own country, Saddam’s arsenal was very much in question: http://media1.streamtoyou.com/rnc/111505.wmv
And I’ve yet to find anyone who will take a stance that Saddam had sworn off dealing with anyone (terrorists) desiring to hurt the US and its citizens. After 9/11 “Death To America” wasn’t cute anymore!

And my flippity flop had nothing to do with your “new evidence” but rather what dems expect him to do on the world scene. If he’s involved in world affairs they hate it, if he’s not involved (Iran), they hate it. “Damned if you do and damned if you don’t” is a weak complaint strategy.

Shoot, wife yelling louder and louder … only one more point. Are you about to tell me that Muslims hate us because they’re poor? Maybe if the Saudi Arabian madras’s let them read more than the Koran and didn’t blame the USA for all their ills, they would have a better ability to produce for their country. But in any case, if economic depravity is your theory, you need to see a very recent MSNBC documentary on foreign insurgents into Iraq. (MSNBC, not exactly a conservative mouthpiece.) The show elaborates on how sons of mostly WEALTHY families are seeking out a suicide/homicide missions in Iraq. If they’re poor they want to kill us, if they’re rich they want to kill us. Look at Osama, he’s got a couple of coins in the bank … word is Zarqawi could afford a house on Malibu Beach as well … money has little to do with it.

Gotta run, thanks for the exchange.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 2:53 PM
Comment #130582

Russ
Exactly, nothing like an aircraft carrier loitering offshore to make a cooperative government where once there was none.

Posted by: richard at March 1, 2006 3:15 PM
Comment #130586
While the Dems were talking Saddam killed 2 million people in Iraq and helped kill 3 thousand in America,and planned to kill more and sooner or later he wiil pay for it because of Bush and the American Military and our Allies.Talking did not work for 30 years!Bush did what the U.N. should have done,but,they were too busy taking money from Saddam!

It boggles my mind that someone still believes this!

Posted by: womanmarine at March 1, 2006 3:25 PM
Comment #130590

As a democrat this might seem heretical but what we need, to be able to deal with these mounting problems, is a third party that can move more centrist without interuption from left or right special interests and even corporate/investor interests mitigatively.

Over the last few years I have been in disagreement with democrats on their populistic “hype” and being too loose in their policy decisions with more californianized-styled yippie community effortism like all politics is just localized/domestic (not everything around the world works like a Marin county seat) which amounts to a short-sightedness when dealing with things overseas. All the while at greater odds with the republicans on their lack of any semblance of ramificationary forethought (obviously not their strongsuit)and the fake political answers with no accountability-taken for their partisan-drunk actions in any venue.

These two groups PANDER to the lowest common denominator—to appease whom?—a constituency on the looser fringes that is not the collective majority of either party. We need a third party that can shut-up the outer-fringe squeeky-wheel patrisan dogma that seems to rule.

This era of mishap is really the historical legacy of the Babyboomers who are NO strangers to extremism in the least from the 60’s onward. I think we need both the left and right mindsets to tackle these problems not a divided field in a war of words and partisan actions born solely of hate for the opposition and “defensiveness of idiocy” (such as the average Watchblog post sheds light on). I now find myself more of a John Bircher than most republicans these days—where do the centrists go?

If we are the majority, we have no party because the g-damn wingnuts don’t have the smarts to get off the field. The right side panders to the rich laissez fairists (who don’t mind undermining our nation’s economy to make a buck) by means of the hicks. While the left panders to the rich L.L. Beaners by way of the youth vote (who can be more socialist than we need) and the gay/lesbian vote that brought in the Gingrich house take-over in 1994. Not to mention the left’s auto-pilot mentality when we need them to be more responsive and less ‘redtape’ as it were.

QUESTION: Where is a sane third platform party? Or are we as screwed as we look?

Here’s my plan: We stop the rediculous tip-toeing around Islam and placatively rearranging ourselves around Ramadan and other such sacrimonious nonsense. Islam is the problem of the Islamic world let’s give it no more credence than such idiocy deserves. It’s not a peaceful religion and never was, nor did it EVER have an era of enlightenment or even peace as the PC crowd/police assumes via western hype. It’s always been a vat of a-holes. To see a religion as insane IS NOT RACISM—Islam is not a race it is a totalitarian religion as was Catholicism—circa; medeival times through the early nineteenth century.

They are using Islam to impose things on us or they get mad and burn, bomb and dismember all if they can’t sway us over with their phony-ass religion. Let’s stop the PC and get down to business and get that region situated. How many more centuries is it going to take?—Islam needs to go so give it not one iota of credit on it’s supposed dominionary right.

If religion is the opium of the masses Islam is the Crystal Meth.

Posted by: Translator at March 1, 2006 3:32 PM
Comment #130596

A quick review of the posted article indicates that Mr. Seigel just fell off the carrot wagon. I will say that the UN is probably open to carrots, um… appeasement, oh what the the hell bribes from the US since they take them from everyone else. Also, North Korea has a tremendous appetite for carrots and has dined on carrot salad the whole time that they were lying about building their nuclear weapons program. What carrots do you suggest for Iran? Perhaps Israel’s head on a plate surrounded by carrots.

It is good that Mr. Seigel doesn’t want to compete through force since any administration which followed these guidelines would be easy pickings in a military conflict. Mr. Seigel, like the bunny, displays the attitude of prey.

Posted by: goodkingned at March 1, 2006 3:51 PM
Comment #130600

Somewhere I got the idea that the US owes past and present UN fees\dues. Financial support that is high enough to actually keep the UN stable. If this is true, then why do we keep wishing the UN would intervene, in either Iraq or Iran?

Can someone clarify this for me?

Posted by: Linda H. at March 1, 2006 4:20 PM
Comment #130601

KEN COOPER,

“(MSNBC not exactly a conservative mouthpiece)”

Hmm okay that’s why on punditry, defending the left’s positions, we get Ron Reagan’s broadway dancer son? The truth is MSNBC doesn’t have a clue what the left is about—they think we are all gay-rights, unintellectual, vitriolic hippie non-hawks who could form a drum circle on a moments notice. With no more sophistication than an issue of “George” magazine (not sure whether that stupid thing is still around).

BUT I’m sure republicans are pleased by Condi Rice on the exercize bike though—if that were my party I’d be pissed to have a secretary of state doing that type of useless dull-witted fluff—but watch how fast you defend her on her inanity.
I’ll time it.

Oh wait let me throw some fuel on it “What a dumb-ass! Another of George Bush’s great cabinet picks I presume.” There go!

Or wait even better fuel “A true symbol of the Bush administration, a bike that you PEDDLE that goes NOWHERE.” Now go!

Posted by: Translator at March 1, 2006 4:21 PM
Comment #130603

Translator

If religion is the opium of the masses Islam is the Crystal Meth.”

Best comment of the thread.Bravo.

I haven’t posted for a couple of days as I wanted to see how the civil war thing was playing out,but as I said last week,I do not think that partition,if it comes to that,is such a bad thing.

That means that we won the war but came to a draw with the peace.

I say we won the war as in militarily…after all in what 6 weeks Baghdad was occupied,so score one point for the home team there.

Now if a partition was to occur,we end up with somewhat friendly Kurds in the north,although politicially it will be interesting to see how Turkey and Syria react to that,but pretty much I put a check in the plus column there.

We lose one with the south,however.At first I didn’t think that Iran would have as much juice there as it did.I thought that Iraq nationialism would rule..that is Iraqi Arabism versus Persian,but I was wrong…American Pundit called it correctly here…they are firmly in the hands of the religious Shia nutcakes.

So far,one win,one draw.It comes down to the Sunnis there.We still have a chance of turning the Sunnis if partition were to occur by letting the big Sunni countries…Egypt and Saudia Arabia and the money boys from Kuawait…Sunnis all…act as a buffer.

Hey,we could have done a lot worse…Saddam is in jail and seeds have at least been planted that contain some portent of democratic ideals there….

Either way,it’s not as bad as the far left paints nor is it as good as the far right says either.

Somewhere in the middle,I decided is the truth.


Posted by: sicilianeagle at March 1, 2006 4:35 PM
Comment #130605

I dont think youre entirely right, look at what clinton did while in office. While he did attempt at some points to sway people using diplomacy, he never met a cruise missle he didnt like. The differences in foreign policy opinions between democrats and republicans, in my opinion, tend to differ more within the parties than between. obviously our approach in Iraq has been a mistake, but most democrats agreed that getting saddam out of power was a good thing. Certainly invading ourselves and making it a United States occupation, then paying for all of it ourselves, and contracting out the labor to companies that barely qualified to do the jobs they are doing (and maintaining military responses to social problems, better mitigated by police operations) was a bad idea, but that doesnt mean there was a real difference between clinton and bush’s actuall approach to Iraq.
Iran is another matter, but one where i see even less difference between republicans and democrats, neither want Iran to get nuclear weapons, and neither want to invade the country, while both would like to see a democracy there. there are certain detalied differences in opinin of execution of the spread of democracy, but as i said before, there is more variance within the parties than between them, making this an insignificant difference.
Essentially, both parties are foreign policy liberals with a semi-realist view of the world (two opposing and contradictory philosophies of foreign policy), and while individual presidents may be more or less capable diplomats, both parties advocate a similar ideological bent and occupy a similar space in the political realm.

Posted by: iandanger at March 1, 2006 4:49 PM
Comment #130624

Paul:

Wow! What a rush to attack me. I merely stated the differences, as I see them, between current Republicans and Democrats.

Just scanned this thread, but your comment above serves to show a real disconnect. You may have tried to merely state the differences, but I’d hope you can see that you stated the differences AS YOU SEE THEM, which is not necessarily as they are. I hope that you aren’t blind to the fact that you have inherent biases in your thinking, as we all do.

From the opposite perspective, I read your words and saw many fallacies in them, but I recognize that IFF I saw things from your viewpoint, I’d be pissed too. Your post served to help me understand the viewpoint from which you, and perhaps others who agree with you, see things. That alone is helpful, though I’d hope you can see other viewpoints with the same clarity.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at March 1, 2006 6:11 PM
Comment #130628

Translator
A third party would be great, but few people are financially in a position to enter politics let alone do so outside the main stream. I sure would love it, especially if it were a viable option. The two we have now are virtually indistinguishable with regards to their pandering to the people who foot the bills for their campaigns. The sad thing is that it seems the people footing the largest part of the bill are doing so for both parties.
I expect the only way the people are ever going to be relevant in this government will have to involve campaign financing reforms and strict term limits. Maybe even an initiative process could help. It is only reasonable to expect that by the time Rep. Nosepicker has been around for a third term they owe so much to so few that as a representative of the people they are worthless.

Posted by: richard at March 1, 2006 6:22 PM
Comment #130635

Translator,

Wow, nice rant. Unfortunately I didn’t say they championed the left, but Ron Reagan JR. hardly leans right and the same can be said of MSNBC’s most popular host, Chris Matthews. He’s no far left liberal but he certainly isn’t right … he came from a democratic congressmen’s office after all. So, I stand by my statement, MSNBC is no mouthpiece for conservatism.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 6:50 PM
Comment #130636

>>I say we won the war as in militarily…after all in what 6 weeks Baghdad was occupied,so score one point for the home team there.

se,

It’d have been almost impossible for the U.S. military to LOSE the Iraq (so-called) war. That’s nothing to brag about, so score none for the invaders. I suppose if you relate to the David/Goliath legend we COULD have stumbled, but that would still have been just a little set-back. Getting to Baghdad was a cake walk. I wish Cheney/Bush would quit calling this farce ‘war’…but, that would lose him political capital.

The greatest military in history…the mightiest armada on the face of the earth…more nukes than all the other nations combined, and the greatest war general (GWB) who ever lived. How come it took us six weeks?

And, now that we’ve impressed the world with our omnipotence, what’s next?

Posted by: Marysdude at March 1, 2006 6:50 PM
Comment #130638

I forgot to add:

I’ll take Condi Rice over Madeline Albright 100 times to one. I’d be weary about calling someone “stupid” who has more of an education than Dean or Kennedy or Reid or Pelosi … you leave the “stupid” namecalling door as wide open as the Grand Canyon.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 6:54 PM
Comment #130639

Marysdude,

Answer: Collateral damage concerns. Otherwise it would’ve been 2 weeks.

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 1, 2006 7:00 PM
Comment #130645

Ken Cooper……all that education to become Dubya’s “Brown Sugar”.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 1, 2006 7:38 PM
Comment #130648

My, my my Sandra!

What a hue and cry would arise if that cheap little shot were fired by someone who didn’t vote for the loser in the last presidential election. Perhaps black people aren’t appropriate in highly visible political positions? Or is it the fact that she’s a woman that you object to? Perhaps you would be more comfortable if they would confine their activities to more appropriate endeavors, like sports or entertainment.

Posted by: goodkingned at March 1, 2006 7:57 PM
Comment #130650

Ease back there good…..he has referred to that publicly…….a number of times, though I must admit, someone must have wised him up, which is why he changed the familiarity to call her “Condy”….

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 1, 2006 8:04 PM
Comment #130652

good….
nice to see you so willing to show your backside while jumping to her defense.
She is, in fact, quite credentialed….but the cutesy little name aparantly came from back in time.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 1, 2006 8:11 PM
Comment #130655

To the best of my knowledge the nickname “Brownsugar” was first applied to Condi not by Bush but in this Doonesbury cartoon:

http://pekingduck.org/archives/brown_sugar_condi.gif

Not one of Garry Trudeau’s finest moments IMO.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at March 1, 2006 8:45 PM
Comment #130656

Trudeau took it from an aired clip…..and ran with it…back either just before or after her appointment. I am quite sure that it will never see the light of day again. I know that I saw it and will stand by that even though it probably can not be proven.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 1, 2006 8:53 PM
Comment #130661

Sandra,

I’m not doubting you or arguing with you, that’s why I said “to the best of my knowledge”.

I know I saw and read clips about Bush using the term “crusade” more than once describing the war on terror but I’ll be damned if I can find one archived now.

I was just making a statement, not criticizing your posts.

I hope a lot of people “archive” these newly released videotapes of GW’s pre-Katrina correspondence.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at March 1, 2006 9:31 PM
Comment #130665

chris matthews was tip o neils aid and staffer for 15 years. remember ole tip the dem speaker of the house for many years, i liked him and matthews.ole tip could not touch reagan the original teflon president.

Posted by: rodney brown at March 1, 2006 10:00 PM
Comment #130684

Sandra;
RE: Your dismissal of Condi Rice as ‘Brown Sugar’ and my notation of the racist and sexist implications of your attitude; I don’t understand the following statement from you.

*good….
nice to see you so willing to show your backside while jumping to her defense.*

Those sort of references wouldn’t be tolerated from Republicans or conservatives in general. Derogatory racial stereotypes are SOP in the progressive camp when it makes a good soundbyte. I guess it’s an end justifying the means sort of thing, but it looks very intolerant and ignorant.

If you characterize someone who publically objects to racial or gender stereotyping as ‘showing their backside’, maybe people around you are turning away from you because of your attitudes.


Posted by: goodkingned at March 1, 2006 10:53 PM
Comment #130715

Interesting article, Paul. I see you already got dinged on the accuracy of your view of Democratic foreign policy. :)

Foreign policy was bi-partisan for a long time until the wackos took control of the Republican Party. Then, all of a sudden, they embarked on a wacky ideological crusade. And yes, President Bush did use the word “crusade”.

But after Bush’s Middle East debacle, it looks like foreign policy is trending bi-partisan again — except for the occasional irrational anti-UN rhetoric.

That’s why you don’t hear Democrats screaming and yelling about foreign policy anymore. Bush finally flip-flopped and started bi-lateral talks with North Korea that broke the stalemate, just like Kerry and Hagle suggested. Bush started working with the EU and Russia and China on Iran, just like Sen. Clinton and Lugar wanted. And he didn’t go charging into Darfur with US troops, just like President Clinton didn’t drag us into Rwanda.

So after the Iraq disaster — other than wacky opinions about the UN (which conservatives will get over eventually) — I think both sides are pretty much back on the same page with respect to foreign policy.

That’s not to say we don’t need to jettison Bush. Other than Dr. Rice, he’s surrounded by a bunch of foreign policy nut cases who could reassert themselves at any moment.

Posted by: American Pundit at March 2, 2006 4:37 AM
Comment #130778

goodking….if you’d bother to read in entirity what was written, you would have seen that the comment I made was a “quote”….that came from the lips of none other than Dubya.
I don’t care for her personally, I have no respect for her because of her relationship to G.W.
The fact that a woman holds that post is to be lauded…..her color is totally irrelevant.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 2, 2006 10:16 AM
Comment #130786

The current administration is chock-full of neocons who were instrumental parts of the authoring of the mission statement of the Project for the New American Century. Though I doubt you’re unfamiliar , this is a VERY hawkish group dedicated to an American stranglehold on the rest of the world, especially the Mideast, through military and economic intervention and what I’ll nicely call persuasion. The goal is retaining single superpower status and the means is control of global oil supplies - and this is no surprise of course, knowing the ties of Bushco’s leading figures to big oil, big money, and the pursuit of more and more of it.

As far as this thread is concerned, I agree that its premise, while noble, is somewhat naively presented. I also agree that foreign policy is a very difficult shell game that even the best fail at, oftentimes disastrously. What is different about the neocon agenda is that while foreign policy options and strategy used to be relatively unaffected by party affiliation, now the stakes are higher - and the tragedy of 9/11 is being blatantly used as justification for every last detail on the neocon wish list - since global domination is the ultimate prize.

THIS is the main difference between the current party approaches. Yes, the RNC has effectively (and sometimes deservingly) labeled the Dems as weak on defense. However, the Reps are being overrun by a wild-eyed bunch of heavies who are used to throwing their weight around and ALWAYS play hardball. This is why more than one article I’ve read recently (in nonpartisan publications, BTW) suggest that the fracture of the GOP may be soon in the making.

Posted by: macsonix at March 2, 2006 11:17 AM
Comment #130808

The following, while by no means out and out proving my point, doubtless clarifies the priorities of the administration and its New American slant. After all, there’s no need to yield to intelligence reports when you know your mission is to control the oil in the region and that you’re not going anywhere until that is a reality:

_________ ____________ __________

No one could have predicted it

When terrorists hijacked airplanes and crashed airplanes into buildings, Condoleezza Rice said that no one could have predicted it. When levees broke and floodwaters poured into New Orleans, George W. Bush said no one could have anticipated it.

The Bush administration was wrong both times, of course. Long before 9/11, the Federal Aviation Administration was warning that terrorists might try to hijack planes and crash them into buildings. And long before Hurricane Katrina, Louisiana officials were warning that New Orleans wouldn’t stand a chance if a massive hurricane ever hit.

The

who knew?
defense seems to be a favorite of this White House. So while we’re not so big on preemptive strikes, maybe it makes sense to make one here. Before conditions get any worse in Iraq — at least 30 more people were killed in sectarian fighting today — let’s get one thing straight: Someone could have predicted this, and somebody did.

As former senior intelligence officials tell Knight Ridder, U.S. intelligence agencies

repeatedly warned the White House beginning more than two years ago that the insurgency in Iraq had deep local roots, was likely to worsen and could lead to civil war.
What became of those warnings? Nothing, apparently. Robert Hutchings, who chaired the National Intelligence Council from 2003 to 2005, says that Bush and his top aides ignored a
steady stream
of warnings about civil war in Iraq.
Frankly, senior officials simply weren’t ready to pay attention to analysis that didn’t conform to their own optimistic scenarios,
Hutchings says.

Hutchings isn’t the only critical voice in the Knight Ridder report, and Knight Ridder isn’t the only one unearthing damaging new revelations on the path to what may yet turn out to be all-out civil war. Earlier this week, the Associated Press brought news of a report from the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction — a report that blames the lack of progress in Iraq on a lack of prewar planning in the Washington.

Pre-war reconstruction planning assumed that Iraq’s bureaucracy would go back to work when the fighting stopped,
the report says. When that didn’t happen — when Iraqis didn’t get right back to work after all those greeted as liberators parades — the Coalition Provisional Authority didn’t have the manpower on hand to do what needed to be done. As the Washington Times puts it, whatever plans the Bush administration had simply
crumbled
when coalition forces encountered an unexpected
foreign and domestic insurgency that looted the country, sabotaged electric and water service, and killed hundreds of Americans and Iraqis.

Only the insurgency wasn’t exactly

unexpected,
either, at least not to anyone who was paying attention. As former CIA official Paul Pillar said last month, the
judgment of the intelligence community
before the war began was that there wouldn’t be an insurgency, but only if the United States succeeded in quickly
restoring and establishing
safety, security and a growing economy for the Iraqi people.
Of course,
Pillar said,
we did not succeed in doing that.

All of which takes us back to the doorstep of civil war and the predicament the United States finds itself in now. Although the president said Wednesday that he expects Iraqis, not U.S. troops, to take the lead role in stopping sectarian violence, Reuters says Pentagon planners — and you can insert the inevitable

oxymoron
joke here — are now scrambling to reconsider the notion of a troop drawdown this spring. Meanwhile, there’s the separate but related issue of the insurgency. It doesn’t seem to be in its
last throes,
as Dick Cheney famously claimed nine months ago; the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency told Congress this week that the insurgency in Iraq
remains strong and resilient,
and that
localized
tension between homegrown insurgents and foreign fighters hasn’t disrupted its
overall strength.

Who would have predicted it?

— Tim Grieve

Sorry ‘bout the block quotes, but I just can’t seem to get good old quotation marks to show up here.

Posted by: macsonix at March 2, 2006 2:07 PM
Comment #130813

Darren,

“My issue against polls is more personal than right wing party line…”

Apathy. Nothing more or less. Some wish to participate, some wish to complain. Also, with the deviciveness of the campaign and its misguided focus on “morality” there were many that might have voted for the President because of a single issue… they do not necessairly agree with him on many other issues. So, if the people, as related in the polls, are not dancing with joy over the President, then maybe they possibly aren’t happy with his performance? Not liking the results of the polls does not make them any less interesting and informative if a skepical and analytical approach is taken in evaluating them. Unlike diehard Dem’s and Rep’s… people do change their opinions of a President’s based on his performance. Regardless of polls… it is a VERY significant drop. Way too much to argue that there isn’t anything there.

Oh wait… I forgot. The Republican party knows everything about what the people want! They don’t need to listen to what people are thinking… Rove doesn’t look at polls to set up his agendas… This also explains all the sweetheart deals done behind close doors… ‘cause the Republican party knows everything about what the people want.

“On Iraq, we did take care of the problem (Saddam, his sons, and scouring the country in short order.)”

No one said that Saddam and his sons and the Baath party weren’t bad. We all knew that. The quoted 2 million killed… does that include the Iranians in their 10 year war (which we supported)?

“The fact that we had to go into Iraq to verify WMD or lack thereof … that was not Bush’s fault. Saddam had nearly 10 years to allow for unfettered, limitless inspections.”

And yet… with those 10 years, Saddam did not use his supposed ability against us… I hear now people saying that he moved them to Syria… are we now going to play “Wack The Mole” and chase around the middle-east for these WMDs?

There was no other way than a trillion dollar war? Maybe patience really is a virtue. Cheaper at least.

“And remember, we’re not rebuilding their nation and government for them because we have to, we’re doing it because it’s the right thing to do.”

By God yes we are doing it because we have to!!!! You were wondering where the hatred and dispising of America comes from? It is the high-handed attitude like… “Yes, we destroyed your complete infrastructure, disbanded your miliary and police and now we are good enough to help clean up the mess… be grateful!”

We are obligated to rebuilding their country!!!!!! That is morality. In action…. not whether someone had oral sex in the oval office or did or did not inhale. Nuts and bolts, brass tacks morality! Sir, we are not doing anything that is not morally obligated by us to do. To pretend otherwise is wrong.

Supposedly our problem was with Saddam, not the “peace loving people” of Iraq. Therefore, anything that we break in our effort to remove him we are obligated to fix. Aren’t these people victims of Saddam? Aren’t they the poor souls we fought to liberate? Powell said that before the war started… but this party and administration trashed that man’s integrity to the bone because he knew what he was talking about.

I am beginning to understand the Republican-Conservative despising of Colin Powell. Read his Powell Doctrine concerning war and America’s use of force.

Sir, you don’t have to be a know-it-all or use 20-20 hindsight. Possibly listening with an open mind to people that disagree might bring in something that isn’t known or appreciated. Instead… Bush and Party knew all the answers.

“And you’re being silly to assume all aspects of Iraq should’ve been forecastable. War is nothing of the same.”

Nice try. I don’t believe I said all. Words such as “all”, “always” and “never” can be used to disparage a person’s comments. There should have been more foresight than what we had. Beating the foce in the field, flying onto a carrier and annoucing that it is accomplished? That clearly illustrated a lack of understanding.

Read Churchill sometime. Read about the difference between tactical and strategic planning. WWII was not about a single battle… and the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall plan were not done by tactical, small minded people.

It was all there for anyone to see if they had thought about their assumptions going in… but they knew it all!

These people leading us are supposed to be the best and the brightest that the Republican party has.

No one thought to tell the President that the word “Crusade” has special signigicance? It was worth much more as propoganda than any speech Murtha made.

“To expect a “know-it-all” approach to this war is blindly moronic.”

Common sense, anticipating that the assumptions might be wrong, studying military and political history… synthasizing these is moronic? That is like denigrating the “Intellectual Elites” as being too smart and then claming to be the education President…. what part of the educational benefits that higher learning provides should be discarded? I can understand a “gentleman’s D” student not appreciating the knowledge people strive for.

Along with the above statement concerning the Powell Doctrine, it doesn’t take a whole lot of brain power to figure out some of the following things:
1) You have to do more than defeat the enemy on the battlefield. This requires a bit of strategic thinking that should be part and parcel of taking us into war. As I have mentioned many times… they knew why they wanted to go to war, they didn’t know how.
2) Determining force strength based on the battlefield and to support political agendas of where the military should go in the future (Sec. of Defense Rumsfeld) is moronic. We bypassed pockets of resistance and caches of arms because of lack of troops to secure these.
a) I understand a mobile war. These areas are supposed to be taken care of by the following up troops… but we didn’t have any!
b) Rusfeld had an agenda to do this with as few troops as possible.
c) The loss of entry into Iraq through the Turkey border was a blunder… planning this without the prior approval. Those troops should have immediately been transferred to Iraq… not their heavy equipment, but them and their guns. The could have been used for policing the cities and the borders where all the insergents are comming from.
d) But, there wasn’t supposed to be an insurgency! They were supposed to welcome us as liberators. Stop for a moment… what curcimstances would you EVER welcome an invading army into America?
3) Once in Baghdad we should have immediately disarmed any person with a gun, rifle, RPG or a sling-shot! This is where the large number of troops were needed! To provide security and protection to the troops and to the Iraqi people that we “liberated.”
a) Immediately clamping down, curfews and house-to-house checks should have been done. Not standing by while looting was being done. These should have remained in effect until order was restored, passions calmed a bit and people could see that they were secure. Instead, it became a free-for-all and just like inner-city gangs, you goes with the ones that gives yah protection.
4) Rebuilding should have been apportioned out to the Iraqi people as much as possible… Ownership, livihood, working towards a solution and making their country livable again. Instead, it all went to the fat cats of the Republican party in “No-bid” contracts with American workers behind barbed-wire.

Sir, none of these things are “moronic”. What is moronic is to believe that we would be seen as liberators and welcomed with open arms. Not going in with overwhelming (Again, the Powell Doctrine) force set us up.

It just takes common sense, a bit of understanding and an idea that we are not always right and always have the answers. But, that doesn’t seem possible.

“As far as the carnage we’ve caused … what about Saddam staying in power? Besides the carnage he would’ve levied in his own country, Saddam’s arsenal was very much in question:”

There is a concept called intent. Motive too. Means fits in there. They were all open to question. However, the President and his people were not interested in exploring these questions. That is a fact and it is continually being denied.

Why am I so adamant about all of this? I did not believe that justification or the above mentioned intent, motive and means as present by the President were sufficient to justify this war. I have been waiting for years now to hear all the pundits and “think tanks” admit they were wrong. What do they do? Shrug and talk about “hind-sight” , “maybes”, “coulda beens”, or go all over the map and try to justify what was done. Even to the point of showing concern for the carnage that Saddam might have done to his people in the future!

Isn’t it a bit ironic that the Republicans are justifying almost a $trillion dollars to “help” Iraq yet still begrudge Headstart for America’s children? I am so glad to see that your concern about Saddam’s carnage on Iraq is so heartfelt and justifies our actions.

“And my flippity flop had nothing to do with your “new evidence” but rather what dems expect him to do on the world scene.”

I am not presenting evidence in which will change your mind… I am talking about the President’s inability to admit he is wrong. Nice try though. Even when he is supposed to be admitting a mistake he is constitutionally incapable of doing it… he has to point his finger at the Democrats that supported him based on the information HE presented them!

I am talking about the mind set of the Republican party to associated a person changing their mind based upon new information. If Kerry voted for something and then he voted against it… it wasn’t done in a vacuum… something caused the change. Making that a moral issue was incredibly stupid and reward people, like the President, to stay with bad decisions so he will look moral.

Hey, I didn’t make the pigheaded denial of new evidence a morality issue, the Republicans did. When I teach I will grade the students on their ability to remain unchanged based upon the education and new material I give them.

“Are you about to tell me that Muslims hate us because they’re poor? Maybe if the Saudi Arabian madras’s let them read more than the Koran and didn’t blame the USA for all their ills, they would have a better ability to produce for their country.”

Boy Ken, you either missed my point or are trying to deflect it. I have stated before that American’s believing that the Iraqi people will welcome democracy and captialism is a downfall of the contempt for “multiculturalism” that the Republicans have.

They believe that everyone is motivated by the same things they are. Give them a democracy and let them have the chance to choose between the two major colas and everything will be fine.

What I was talking about was the high-handed mistreatment of the peoples of the middle-east by the people and governments of the west. Portioning out countries, borders, oil and power based upon the needs of the west.

Lawerance of Arabia is much more than a war flick. It is a fairly accurate portrayal of the west’s duplicity in the middle-east.

For this kind of rage, it isn’t the Muslims sitting in a vacuum getting pissed at America and the west for no reason. This viewpoint completely disregards our part of the problem. It just makes these people that woke up one day with a raging desire to strap bombs on their bodies because they had nothing better to read that the Koran. BTW, I would really love a source about the Koran being the only book allowed to be read somewhere. Are we maybe talking the Taliban in Afganistan?

If so, remember this, the Democrats had to problem with the enemy identification… if it was the Taliban we supported that… so please don’t make it an all Republican thing.

Posted by: Darren7160 at March 2, 2006 2:15 PM
Comment #130814

Macsonix,

Someone let you out of your Madras class and onto a computer I see.

“this is a VERY hawkish group dedicated to an American stranglehold on the rest of the world”

It would take pages to describe how many ways that statement is wrong. We went into Afghanistan which everyone (even Gore!) agrees with. So that’s mox nix. We went into Iraq which was only unpopular until it became difficult. If you’ll please note, the vote to authorize action in Iraq received many many more democratic votes than Gulf War I. We’re now in the process of establishing a democracy there while trying to provide for security against former Baathists and foreign insurgents trying to muck up the process. I’ll look forward to your historical analysis of other more generous nations than our own defeating a country in battle and then setting that same defeated country up with their own democracy only for us to wave goodbye and say “good luck”.


“The goal is retaining single superpower status”

Darn it! You’re right! It’s so much more harmful now. You know, knowing some radical Muslim might sneak in a WMD and blow us up. I much preferred the 2 SuperPower set-up where we were only fretting about 500 to 1000 nukes reigning down on us.


“knowing the ties of Bushco’s leading figures to big oil, big money, and the pursuit of more and more of it”

Yeah, funny thing though. We have many more fold of hybrid cars under Bush than any other president … something helped out in part by a nice, Bush approved federal tax cut for owning a hybrid car WHICH OH BY THE WAY, BURNS LESS GAS! Or are you now going to tell me about Halliburton … which owns Brown and Root … which was all over Mogadishu during Clinton’s term … and also set up tent and tin cities in places like Aviano, Italy and other outposts during our efforts in Bosnia-Herzegovinia.


“and the tragedy of 9/11 is being blatantly used … “

Yes, you’re right again! We should either forget about 9/11 entirely or, at the very least, only think about it inconspicuously. Nice thinkin’!


“since global domination is the ultimate prize”

Yes, we’ve taken over so many countries while Bush has been in office. Whoops, wait a minute. Karzai is elected in Afghanistan and Iraq has had 3 major elections with more of a percentage turnout than in most USA elections. And the other countries we’re “dominating” … yes, let’s see … I’m thinkin … still thinkin … hold on! … nope … still thinkin … .


“However, the Reps are being overrun by a wild-eyed bunch of heavies who are used to throwing their weight around and ALWAYS play hardball.”

Yes, I was just reading about the Tomahawk strikes on the Tehran nuclear facilities … fascinating stuff!! Oh, and working a deal with Libya’s Khadaffi . . ha! I’m sure it’s just to lull him to sleep … I bet you the missiles are in the air as we speak!


“that the fracture of the GOP may be soon in the making.”

Yes, that may occur as soon as the dems and wild-eyed far left liberals like yourself come up with better solutions to important problems. Since that hasn’t happened yet, I’ll go ahead and keep the GOP glue way back in my sock drawer.

“Ring Ring!!” Madras recess has ended … time to talk about more USA domination of the world!!

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 2, 2006 2:15 PM
Comment #130822

rdavidc, saddams trial was on c span last night. now he is bitching about his living conditions! the fact is he is 25 lbs heavier! and his blood pressure is under control. were did he get the idea of using living conditions for a excuse?

Posted by: rodney brown at March 2, 2006 2:29 PM
Comment #130833

Darren,

Clinton had approval ratings in the 30’s at some points … so what. Polls and their weekly take of attitudes hold little weight for me personally. You make my point about the crazies out there wanting to use weekly polls for more than article fodder. Most people thought the UAE port deal was either selling the entire port or the entire security responsibility to the UAE. And you want to put great weight in weekly polls? The rest of your diatribe isn’t worth responding to.

No, the 2 million does not include the Iranian War.

And if Syria does have the WMD … do you declare that as a non-issue?

FDR did most things right but a lot of things wrong during WWII and his administration … it doesn’t mean he needed to come out every week at conflagrate himself about his mistakes.

Defending “I voted for it right after I voted against it”???? Even most dems cringe when that’s brought up. Analyzing facts and changing tactics is one thing, but completely reversing a strategic decision for political purposes is why Kerry got rightfully slammed for that comment.

Apparently there was no other way than an expensive war, maybe these prominent dems may convince you: http://media1.streamtoyou.com/rnc/111505.wmv

“They believe that everyone is motivated by the same things they are. Give them a democracy and let them have the chance to choose between the two major colas and everything will be fine.” I CAN’T THINK OF A FINER LIBERAL DEFINITION OF DEMOCRACY!! I’ll definitely add that to my list of liberal quotes.


“What I was talking about was the high-handed mistreatment of the peoples of the middle-east by the people and governments of the west. Portioning out countries, borders, oil and power based upon the needs of the west.”

What??? We now portion out oil and power in the mid-east?? Wow!! You learn something new every day! I much of the mid-east’s oil do we let them have anyway? Fascinating!!!


“BTW, I would really love a source about the Koran being the only book allowed to be read somewhere.”

3 words: SAUDI ARABIAN MADRAS’S. STUDY THEM!!! THEY ARE PROUD OF THE FACT THAT THEY ONLY READ THE KORAN. Do yourself and your country a favor by becoming familiar with them. Off the top comments like “We must be doing something to really upset them” are ridiculous. We are doing something to really upset them, WE’RE NOT MUSLIM!!! There are some moderate Muslims, but mainstream to extremists Muslims think you should die a horrible death for not praying to the prophet Muhammad 63 times a day. Learn, read, a recent MSNBC expose on foreign insurgents into Iraq is excellent … stop being part of the BLAME AMERICA FIRST SELF-LOATHING AMERICAN crowd!!!


Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 2, 2006 2:57 PM
Comment #130835

Grant,

So let me get this straight… working with China to strengthen our relationship with them is bad, but not working with Iran to strengthen our relationship with them is also bad. You accuse the conservatives of not making up THEIR minds? wow… pot, meet kettle…

And just for the record, there is one very significant difference between working with China and not working with Iran. Iran hates the Unites States with an unmatched fervor that has existed since long before Bush, since long before Carter, since, oh, since Iran was formed in it’s current existence as Iran. While China isn’t exactly the angel of world ideology, at least they aren’t sponsoring and promoting world terrorism, and they are attempting to adapt and cooperate with the world in which they live. They don’t hate the United States with a blind, unreasoning fervor. We cooperate with China because they cooperate with the U.N., and with the United States, at least, to some degree. We cooperate with China because they don’t scare the unholy bejeezus out of the rest of the world, as Iran does.

Oh, and for the record… I AM prejudiced against Iran. I think I have a reason to be. Not against Islam, or Muslims in general, but against Iran. Hell yes, I am. And if your unreasoning liberalism wasn’t blinding you to reality, you’d be scared and just a little prejudiced, too.

Posted by: Lee at March 2, 2006 3:08 PM
Comment #130837

And for all the dems/libs complaining about not enough troops to do the job … Clinton deleted 40% of our Army divisions among many other military cuts. Please seek party leadership regarding questions concerning a vastly reduced military.

“You can burn down a house in a hour … it takes a tad longer to rebuild it.”

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 2, 2006 3:14 PM
Comment #130846

Ken,
If Clinton deleted 40% and that was a bad thing, then what about the reduction in force that Rumsfeld wants to do? A good thing?

Nice job completely ignoring Powell and his “moronic” ability to explain what should have been done before it was done. Don’t like the facts, say that they a “diatribe”. That is a neato word… kinda like “whinning” which you poor little Republicans have been doing an awful lot of.

It irks some to no end to see that the rest of America is seeing their President for what he really is… and minimize it any way that they can. The polls are consistent and showing a definite decline. Call it temporary… say that ONLY dems use polls. Go ahead if it makes you feel better.

If I am not mistaken… a Madra would be a school? Claiming that the people of a country cannot read anything but the Koran based on the Madra is a bit manipulative and simplictic. Isn’t it?

Again… do you understand the difference betwen Shiites, Sunnis and Wahabi sects? I don’t believe so. You say that I need to study Saudi Arabia… I have. Aren’t they the buddies of the Bush family… from waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back?

Your disregard for history is either intentional to deflect my point or you really don’t know. That, though, is not my problem… the facts are, the west has dominated the middle-east. Why is it necessary for a republican ALWAYS to deny everything? It can really cause a lack of credibility…

WWI and the Ottoman’s siding with the Germans lead to their final downfall. They were already fairly weak but it was the final blow. Britian, France divided the region up as spoils and “strategic spheres of influence.”

Iraq was created by the British by declaration. Not based upon the differences of the 3 major groups, but by what was convenient for them.

Nice try at deflecting any notion that these people might be justified in the least with their anger and then manipulated by people that want to misuse religion to achieve their aims…. Kinda like the Christians have done…

Deny American oil companies and the support of the American government in protecting their “right” to exploit the oil of another nation.

Want something to read? Read about our support of the Shah of Iran. Read about our support of the Baath party.

I know… like I said… these people, I am talking average, non-terrorists, have a bit to be pissed about.

My point? Things are not black and white. Any “Intellectual Elite” liberal could have figured this out in a cup or two of mocha between classes.

Buy hey… no one is going to try to stop this president and his cronies into reshaping the world in their image.

That sir, is not America bashing.. that is Republican bashing. It is shaded and nuanced so probably cannot be understood by Republicans.

Hehehehe. There is a difference. Democrats do not believe that republicans are the only Americans. Sorry.

Posted by: Darren7160 at March 2, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #130858

Ken

Your condescension, while alarmingly infantile, is also par for the course when it comes to the tendency of hypocritical boobs who wanna play war skirting true debate in favor of sophomoric taunting. FYI, I’m a goddamn US Army Infantry veteran with a firsthand knowledge of war zones and what happens in them. So keep your trite accusations and mockery to yourself and the few friends you may have who appreciate such things.

Generally, your grasp of my arguments is so fleeting that very little of your rebuttal actually applied to the issues at hand - although I do appreciate your quoting my previous post, thereby highlighting the irrelevance of yours.

Specifically, the point that Dems voted to invade Iraq three years ago is as old and worn-out as a ‘71 Gremlin, especially considering the revelations of cherry-picked and ignored intelligence since then.

The comment about a few extra dollars of tax breaks to purchase a hybrid proves nothing other than the fact that even a cronyistic theocracy has to throw a bone to its detractors once in awhile.

BTW, global domination is NOT synonymous with imperialism. Nor is control of mideast oil with bombing of Iran or Libya.

Since you seem to be so fond of academic metaphor, why don’t you read up on the Project for a New American Century and let us know what your dreck and drivel has to do with it, because it seems pretty obvious you have no idea what the well-documented goals and activities of your beloved leaders actually are.

Posted by: macsonix at March 2, 2006 5:14 PM
Comment #130890

Ron -
Bush said he had as many boots on the ground as was needed.

So what’s your beef?

Are you now suggesting that it’s Clinton’s fault that the Iraq invasion has gone so bad? Really? I mean, the guys has really REALLY let this country go to hell since he left office. STRING HIM UP!

Posted by: tony at March 2, 2006 8:21 PM
Comment #130927

We have troops serving their FOURTH tour of duty in Iraq and Afganistan. Why?(Wait, the answer’s coming)

I have a question: how many of you remember that some of our military leaders on the ground in Iraq asked for more ground troops in the beginning? Why didn’t the administration listen? (Read on the answer’s coming)

Despite the BS, ie: Cheney’s last throes crap, etc., has anyone truly thought the insurgency would just die out? I hate comparisons to Vietnam because few even begin to fit, but one that does is the “hit-n-run” stategy. We go and wipe out the insurgents in one area (village), then we leave and in time the insurgents reinfiltrate, then we go back and do it all over again. Each time there is more collateral damage and each time more and more of the innocents begin to wonder which enemy is worse. More and more find themselves either being used as pawns or choose to fight whomever they see as the worst aggressor. The lines become blurred during war. So, what would it have taken to secure each area after we’d defeated the insurgents? (Hold on the answer is coming)

It seems that more and more areas in Afghanistan are slipping back out of our control. Why? Need for more American troops maybe? Why aren’t they there? (Be patient, I’m almost there)

Enlistment is down across the board, where are we going to get new troops? Rummy say’s we’re just getting battle hardened, has anyone heard of the thousand yard stare? Wouldn’t it be good to have our green troops trained in the feild by guy’s that don’t have it yet?

So, what’s the answer? It’s spelled D-R-A-F-T and the only damn reason Bush & Co. won’t go there is it also spells “POLITICAL SUICIDE”!

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at March 2, 2006 10:03 PM
Comment #130934

Macsonix,

Thank you for your US Army wisdom. I only spent 14 years active duty in the Marine Corps so I know absolutely nothing about battlefields myself … you pompous idiot.

You call me “infantile” and assert “facts” after you stand there with your disgraced army uniform and say the “USA is trying to put a stranglehold on the world.” Really??!!! You’re going to stand by that unpatriotic nonsense but try to get away with it by saying “Uhh, it’s only republicans.” How many nations in the history of the world, oh wise Army vet, have ever invaded a country only to give it back to them in the form of a democracy? You can rightfully argue the merits of why and how but to say that means we’re trying to “put a stranglehold” on the world is idiotic. Which Michael Moore or Cindy Sheehan rally did you get that from?

Or are you complaining about Afghanistan? Or maybe you’re complaining about Bosnia. Hmmm, that must be a stumper for ya! “Dems putting a stranglehold on the world!!” How in the Hell do you sleep at night with that on your chest?!

For that matter, attacking Germany in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam … all under democratic Presidents and all without us being attacked directly. My God man! You must be ready to slit your throat!

Or are you STILL gong to try to tell me (and I know I’m WAAAYYY off point by quoting ALWAYS play hard ball!” Yes, I always get off point by quoting people directly … I hate it when I do that!

Ah yes, you still want to stick by the fact that we’re controlling mid-east oil. Really? Well I’ll be! I’ll bet, just for a moment, that the many OPEC nations might have just a word or two about that. Buying something and controlling it (since we seem to be into definitions today) are 2 different things.

And I’m so sorry that the Dems voting to go to war 3 years ago is “worn out” in your mind, but here’s a nice little factual tidbit for ya, THAT’S WHEN WE WENT TO WAR, 3 YEARS AGO!

Is this the new liberal mantra:

“Oh, that vote! That little ole thing! Now you didn’t think we were serious now, did ya? Why that’s just because hardly any of us voted for Gulf War I, and, well, that turned out to be such a success and mostly accepted war … you know, that “No Blood For Oil” thing didn’t stick as well as we’d hoped … so we couldn’t be left behind the 2nd time around! But! Damn it! This war has some legs. This war is hard! We never signed up for ‘hard’!! So, that vote waaayyyy back when in the 1971 Gremlin era . . oh, I mean 2002 (sorry ‘bout that) can’t mean all that much to ya anymore … does it now?”

You deserve the condescension sir!

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 2, 2006 10:43 PM
Comment #130949

Jarhead:

1. WWII, Korea, and Vietnam were finished long before the group I’m talking about got together.

2. A plan to control something in the future and controlling it presently are also two different things.

3. Lies, when told often and convincingly, can certainly make reasonable people believe in and vote for any number of unnecessary actions, wars, deployments, snafus, bunglings, missteps, quagmires or missions accomplished.

4. Take a gander at your chain of command here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century

5. Thanks for your service. Semper Fi.

Posted by: macsonix at March 2, 2006 11:15 PM
Comment #131017

the democrates are the greater evil!!
to Paul Siegel is a part of it.

Posted by: Jason Morris at March 3, 2006 7:15 AM
Comment #131018

>>You deserve the condescension sir!


Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 2, 2006 10:43 PM

ken,

No one who presents an argument deserves condescension. The first Gulf War was because Saddam invaded another country, and that was a threat to our oil and middle east stability.

This other mess was fabricated by Cheney/Bush for reasons we may NEVER know, but it was NOT because Saddam posed a threat to anyone.

I served two and a half tours in Nam, but they were spread from ‘62 to ‘71, and I volunteered for two of them. That does not compare to three or four manditory tours in Iraq within the short time we’ve been there. Troops are not just dying in combat, they are being wasted psychologically as well.

Posted by: Marysdude at March 3, 2006 7:16 AM
Comment #131022

Jason Morris said “the democrates are the greater evil!! to Paul Siegel is a part of it.”

Wooow you really showed him didn’t you? How about giving reasons, instead of just stating pointless and thoughtless statements… humm?

I can’t stand it when people bash something with out a reason. That and name calling. Calling someone and idiot does not open up the floor for them to see your point of view, it just shuts you out, making you seem ignorant. I’m asking in the nicest way possible, please stop the name calling, it’s absurd. Please grow up.

-Einghf

Posted by: Einghf at March 3, 2006 7:51 AM
Comment #131028

but then you would actually have to have something relevant to say in order to participate.

Posted by: macsonix at March 3, 2006 9:00 AM
Comment #131099

Marysdude,

Presenting an argument and extremist “They’re putting a stranglehold on the rest of the world!” nonsense are 2 different things. With all of the garbage and insanity going on in the world … the same insanity which started well before GWB took office and climaxed only 8 months after he was in office … an American rightly demands folks like you and Macsonix stop with this “Blame America First / Self-Loathing American” crap.

And you’re gonna stand by this comment???:

“This other mess was fabricated by Cheney/Bush for reasons we may NEVER know, but it was NOT because Saddam posed a threat to anyone.”

Really? You’re really that ignorant of history??!! Because the following video, if you’re not afraid to have your far left views crushed beyond repair is telling (it’s all dems speaking by the way):

http://media1.streamtoyou.com/rnc/111505.wmv

Since you’re probably too scared to watch it, let me tell you about it.

It has quotes from people like Albright in 1998 talking about how Saddam is a danger to the people of Ohio. It also has Clinton talking to the JCS and discussing a fear that the US take some “ambiguous 3rd route with Saddam” … perhaps he meant accepting telegraphed, pre-scheduled, incomplete inspections. 1998 is important because GWB was Gov of Texas and if you think he had some command of the CIA you are in a la la land of epic proportions.

But the quotes continue well past 2000 up through 2002 with folks like Reid and Pelosi and HRC all talking VERY VERY tough about Iraq. Actually, if you go back to 2002, there were very few people more hawkish about Iraq than Hillary. And good on her for that anyway! She was well aware that limited inspections are no inspections at all.

So watch this video if you’re not afraid … and if you come back to me with:

Well, Saddam was a threat in 1998 but something magical happened between Clinton leaving office and Bush taking office and he was (to quote you directly) “not a threat to anyone”.

You know what that is?! That’s more “La La Land”. If you were in the military did you accept it when some Private said “Sir, you can inspect my room, but you can only look in 3 areas, and those 3 areas cannot include my locker, my sock drawer, or my rifle. And the 3 areas you are going to inspect … I need those areas in writing at least 3 hours before the inspection.”

And you would consider that an acceptable inspection? Really?

Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 3, 2006 12:38 PM
Comment #131106

Macsonix,

“A plan to control something in the future and controlling it presently are also two different things”

So are you suggesting that the independent governments we are setting up in Afghanistan or Iraq are some ruse? … that at some undeclared moment we’re coming into their various government offices with stormtroopers yelling “Ha Ha!!! We were just kidding, we’re taking over again!” How is what we are doing in Iraq or Afghanistan more a of “stranglehold” than Germany or Japan of last century?

“Lies, when told often and convincingly, can certainly make reasonable people believe in and vote for any number of unnecessary actions, wars, deployments, snafus, bunglings, missteps, quagmires or missions accomplished”

If you’re referencing Iraq again, we hashed the “Bush Lied” thing out pretty clearly in the 2004 campaign and then again late last year. How many more times does the “Bush Lied!! Bush Lied!!” inanity need to go on because, well, it seems to me that if he did lie about it we’d be hearing a lot more about it in mainstream media and not just from far left extremists. I just don’t think anyone of our various major news outlets would let it go if it had ANY truth whatsoever … but yet they ALL let it go.

Solid proof Bush lied or ordered the fabrication of intelligence data would indeed be new news … but yet all the NY Times can find to re-hash are old Abu Ghraib stories. Don’t you think they would forego the outdated Abu Ghraib for something new and juicy like fresh evidence that Bush Lied? I think that premise is unquestionable, but yet there’s no story … only far lefties huddling together:

“Whadda we do now?” Anyone have any ideas to solve any major problems?”

… grumbling . . guffaw … shakes of the head

“Okay, okay, let’s go with Old Faithful …ready?” “Yeah! We’re ready!!!”

“All together now!!!”

“BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED!BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED!BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED!BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED!BUSH LIED! BUSH LIED!”

“Woohoo, excellent!! Okay, while we were yelling, did anyone come up with some solid solutions?”

… grumbling . . guffaw … shakes of the head


Posted by: Ken Cooper at March 3, 2006 1:06 PM
Comment #131121

Marysdude,

If you TRULY believe that Saddam was not a threat to anyone, then your knowledge level just doesn’t qualify to be involved in an intellectual debate on this particular subject. You don’t have to invade another country to pose a real threat to the nations of the free world.

I, for one, am getting tired of the same old denigrations of Bush for going into Iraq on the basis that the madman had WMD. It was bad intel. Saddam did not have functional WMD. Yup. I agree, and so does everyone on that point. Does that mean that the decision to oust him was a bad one? Nope, not necessarily. Was Saddam cooperating with all those precious 14 UN resolutions regarding WMD? Nope. He wasn’t. Was anyone showing any real signs of doing anything about that? Nope. Not really. Was he supporting terrorism? Yep. Would he have used WMD given the opportunity? Yep, because he already had. Was the decision to remove him a good one, even though the mouthpiece definition for going over there turned out to be incorrect? YES!

Talk, talk, talk, I think I’ve heard that mentioned in this discussion a few times. When is enough talk enough?

I truly wish to see the end of the conflict over there, but I am not and never was deluded enough to believe that this was going to be just a little quickie was like 1991. And I certainly don’t want to see Saddam replaced by someone even worse, a la the current nutball who’s running Iran.

There was pretty broad support for ousting Saddam at the time we went in there, at least here in the states (and I really could care less what the media tells us about how nobody else in the world likes us, because most of it is highly exaggerated, and those who truly don’t like us, aren’t going to like us no matter what we do), but as is always the case, a number of Americans and their short attentions spans and demands for immediate satisfaction can’t tolerate a long-term commitment like this one, especially when things get difficult. It’s easier to pull out than finish the job and finish it right.

Posted by: Lee at March 3, 2006 1:38 PM
Comment #131127

finish the job and finish it right

what does that mean, exactly? Tell me when we’re there, okay? I thought watching some bozo walk around in a flight suit, with his thumb in the air, on a very large sea vessel, talking about accomplishments meant it was finished. Guess I was wrong.

Posted by: macsonix at March 3, 2006 2:08 PM
Comment #131131

Ken, you are so damn good at being so badly uninformed. Also very good at keeping your mind made up no matter what evidence you’re presented with to the contrary. I commend you on your uh, resolve.

Oh, and you’re also as dramatic as a transvestite in South Beach. What imagination! What intrigue! This is better than that Queer Eye show.

Posted by: macsonix at March 3, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #131137

Bush lied because he knew prior to the invasion that there were no WMD, and invaded anyway.

His lies carried the day with his own crowd and Democarts as well.

Saddam was no direct threat to the United States, and any indirect threat could have been handled by other methods.

Bush lied us into a Bush League war and made us the BAD GUYS in this fiasco.

Posted by: Marysdude at March 3, 2006 2:34 PM
Comment #131150

Marysdude,

Show me some definitive proof that Bush knew that Saddam did not have WMD prior to invading. SHOW ME SOME PROOF! Stop barking about “Bush lied! Bush Lied!” if you don’t have anything to back it up. It’s a tired old well to keep going into. Nobody, not even the most extreme left-wing media outlet, has been able to show anything other than that Bush was very poorly misinformed about what Saddam had or did not have. He did not lie. Now, Clinton lied. About lots of stuff. And he did it right to face of the American people on national television. But that didn’t seem to bother you liberals all that much at the time.

“He was no direct threat to the United States…” — That’s true if you mean that we in the U.S. didn’t have to worry about him invading our shores. But he was a threat to our security in that he sponsored internation terrorism, hid terrorists inside his own borders, and he certainly was a direct threat to the few allies we do have in the Middle East. I believe you made previous mention of him invading someone (Kuwait) that forced us to intervene once before to protect our interests over there. And by the way, protecting our access to oil isn’t any better or worse of a reason to invade Iraq than the belief that he had access to horrid Weapons of Mass Destruction.

Oh, and masconix, by finishing the job right, I meant making sure that the will of the people in their recent elections is enforced and allowed to take hold and prosper. By finishing the job right, I meant not leaving until the citizens of Iraq have a government in place that will be capable of looking after them and defending them and protecting their rights, in a similar fashion to the one we have that protects your right to speak out against the current leader of our great country, misguided thought your views might be. By finishing the job right, I was not referring to some sailor on a ship with his thumb in the air. That seems to be the point at which you democrats/liberals always think the job is done. And the work isn’t done yet, which is why we have not left yet.

Posted by: Lee at March 3, 2006 3:52 PM
Comment #131158

Lee - well, the sailor to which I was referring was actually “the current leader of our great country”, proclaiming in his infinite wisdom, “mission accomplished.” Face it, Bush thought it was going to be a cakewalk. In spite of evidence and intelligence to the contrary. Just like the invasion itself - In spite of mountains of evidence to the contrary, the limited evidence of questionable veracity was not only used but supported, flaunted, and propped up as gospel to convince you, me, and everybody who’d listen that Saddam was inches away from blowing us up. Remember the “mushroom cloud” remarks of Rummy appearing on all the major Sunday AM news shows? Here, take a look at this
http://www.harpers.org/TheCaseForImpeachment.html#2-note

and refresh your memory about the minimal evidence that was used (and turned out to be wrong) instead of the preponderance of evidence that was ignored (and turned out to be correct). The invasion was a foregone conclusion, and these guys were licking their chops over Iraq and its oil within hours after the first airliner hit the WTC.

Now, does suggesting that is the case, because it damn sure looks like it there, Inspector Clousseau, therefore make me an American traitor? Self-loathing? Soft on defense issues? In need of refresher civics courses? A little bit country and a little bit rock ‘n roll?

No. It makes me a patrioit. A concerned citizen. An uninhibited, unintimidated, involved American.

Posted by: macsonix at March 3, 2006 4:48 PM
Comment #131170

When and where did Bush ever claim that going into Iraq would be a cakewalk? And where is this preponderance of evidence that existed, pre-invasion, that was ignored?

And why do you libs always resort to name-calling in your arguments? It really weakens your credibility. I offered you no personal insult in dissenting against your opinions. Why do you fall to “Inspector Clousseau” comments? Is your confidence in your beliefs so weak that you must attack me on a personal level to make yourself feel more confident of that which you claim to belive in?

And if the invasion of Iraq was a foregone conclusion based on our greedy, lip-smacking desire for oil, post-911, why then did we go into Pakistan first to eliminate the Taliban? Why didn’t we go for Iraq first? Oh wait… I bet you tell me we were just trying to make it all look legitimate… us conservatives are so sneaky like that. And by the way, I’m a moderate and a registered Libertarian… not a conservative Republican.

Posted by: Lee at March 3, 2006 5:56 PM
Comment #131177

I wasn’t using the clousseau thing AT you. OR CALLING you clousseau. Just goofing around a bit in an obviously misguided attempt to lighten the moment a touch. If you can’t tell, there are enough white knuckles around here lately.

Oh and BTW, we went into Afghanistan, not Pakistan. And it’s most likely because there was no way to pin this on anyone other than Bin Laden. ‘Course once it got too difficult to find him, on to Saddam who was the real target in the first place. Seems criminal to me to liberate Iraqis when OBL’s at large. Anybody wanna debate that one?

Oh, and the reason I put the damn links in the posts is so they can be READ. Not ignored followed by yet another insistence that I have no documentation to support my assertions. Do your homework. Can I PROVE Bush lied? NO. Can anyone with a reasonably functioning brain tell that he was hell-bent on going into Iraq no matter what the intelligence said? OF COURSE. Ah, let me count the justifications:

1. WMD
2. TIES to Al-Quaeda
3. Liberate the Iraq people
4. Eliminate the insurgency
5. ?

Posted by: macsonix at March 3, 2006 6:22 PM
Comment #131292

hmmmm…I DID try to read your link with “proof,” but it didn’t seem to take me anywhere. I got a blank screen with “URL doesn’t exist.” Sorry.

And yes, you’re right. It was Afghanistan, not Pakistan. Sorry about the slip-up. However, we went into Afghanistan to oust the Taliban, who were sheltering bin Laden. They were also a ridiculously cruel and vicious, Dark Age-style despotic regime that cut off the fingers of women who were brazen enough to wear fingernail polish…among other nasty methods of exerting terror and control. You want to debate whether eliminating them was a good thing for the people of Afghanistan?

I like to think that I have a reasonably-functioning brain, and so do most of the people who post on here. And I don’t see that Bush was “hell-bent” on going into Iraq, no matter what anyone said. And thanks for listing 4 justifications why we went there and why we’re still there! You just made my job easy. I certainly appreciate that. But how does it help your argument?

“seems criminal to liberate Iraqis while OBL is still at large…” Do you have something against the Iraqi people, that they don’t deserve the same freedoms and rights that you and I enjoy? And do you have any ideas about how we can find bin Laden? Or is it just easier to scream that Bush isn’t doing his job because he personally hasn’t gone into the desert and found that damn pedophile, drug-dealing SOB terrorist?

And since you admit that you can’t PROVE that Bush lied about anything, can’t you please stop barking about it? I believe the foundation of our criminal justice system is PROOF. Innocent until proven guilty and all that…

Posted by: Lee at March 4, 2006 11:23 AM
Comment #131387

Well, unless you actually are a judge and this blogspot is an honored court in the criminal justice system, then I don’t feel the need to PROVE anything to you, Lee. There are going to be plenty of investigations if the Dems win back both houses, believe me. Then you’ll have all the proof you can stomach. Please dismount the high horse and realize that we are all just presenting opinions here, including you. That’s why it’s a blog. That’s why standards of proof beyond a reasonable doubt DON’T apply.

Do I have something against the Iraqi people? NO, of course not. Oh, and we did NOT “eliminate” the taliban. We toppled their gov’t, installed another under the pretenses of free elections, then moved on to the more resource wealthy nation. But do I think it’s wise to go great guns into Iraq when OBL is still running around making videos? HELL NO. BTW, can you PROVE that we did all we could to find Bin Laden before we decided to spend the next three years plus what, a couple hundred billion on this “liberation”??? And yes, if I were president, I would have personally gone looking around for him myself before I committed so many troops and so many American tax dollars on this travesty. Of course, I’m one of those crackpot liberals who think our elected officials are supposed to answer to WE THE PEOPLE. One of those crazed weirdoes whose idea of representative government includes a strong sense of accountability.

Oh, and the best idea I personally have to find OBL is if you were going to spend a couple hundred billion, get over 2,000 Americans KIA’ed, and lose countless more to devastating, life-altering injuries, at least it would have been to get Osama’s head, not for some ridiculous scheme like Iraq.

FYI the justifications listed are, in order, excuses. First it was the WMD. Don’t like that? Oh, yeah - it’s untrue. Um, okay - how about because Al Queada and Saddam are best buds? Oh, alright - you got me, that’s a lie, too. Hmmm…I got it! We are going to be greeted as liberators! Yeah, that’s the ticket! Now what do you think? Don’t believe me now, either? Come on, you’d love it if some foreigners with guns drove a tank up onto your yard. Oh, well - you can see that now that we’re here, we’d better clean up the mess we made and get this insurgency under control.

Ad nauseum. You’re welcome for “making your job easier.” I guess your job is to point out how transparently hollow the administration’s policies are. BTW, you know something? While I may not be able to PROVE what I think about Bush (which of course is all the Bush apologists need to scurry to his defense, harping about presumptions of innocence and patriotism and such), there’s a funny reaction whenever I witness him on TV, speaking…especially when he’s delivering a speech and very strongly during his responses to certain questioning. I DON’T BELIEVE HIM. I just don’t think he’s telling the truth. I get the gut feeling that he’s at best hiding something, and at worst telling me a boldfaced lie.

Now on the other hand, you know who I do believe when I see him on TV, talking about his plans and his beliefs and his ideas? BIN LADEN. Nope, if you ask me, that guy’s not lying. Not about his methods, his strategy, his reasons. He’s not thinking one thing and telling you another. He is giving it to you straight.

Here’s the link.

http://www.harpers.org/TheCaseForImpeachment.html

Posted by: macsonix at March 5, 2006 9:46 AM
Comment #131389

okay, this method isn’t working for posting a link to this magazine. Copy the text into your browser’s address field and have at it.

Posted by: macsonix at March 5, 2006 9:50 AM
Comment #131686

Masconix,

If you’re serious about going looking for bin Laden personally, run for president. I’ll vote for you. That’s the type of accountability I respect. I don’t care if a person is a liberal or a conservative as long as I believe what they’re saying and I believe that THEY believe in what they’re doing.

As for investigations if the Dems win back some seats in Congress, well, I’m sure that will happen. Libs just love to revise history, investigate things and seek out the “facts” that prove their own point of view. I feel quite certain that Bush will be burned in effigy should Billary Clinton or some other flaming left-wing nut case win the White House in ‘08. Whether or not Bush actually DID anything illegal or unethical will be irrelevant. Proving things isn’t the liberal strong suit, after all. You said so yourself.

Seems the main difference between us is that I believe Bush, and that I require proof of his misdeeds before I convict him. Not circumstantial stuff, but honest proof that he’s lied, or knowingly led us into Iraq with the sole purpose of acquiring oil or power or whatever it is you hate him so much for. But you’re right… screw proof. We shouldn’t have to actually MAKE our case for anything around here, especially since it’s a JUST a blog for opinions. And screaming about our opinions being the ONLY right opinions is what you libs are best at anyway. Screw proving anything. Let’s just hang Bush because you don’t like him. Can I hang all the idiot liberal politicians and media talking heads that provide you your misinformation, too?

Posted by: Lee at March 6, 2006 5:24 PM
Comment #131723

well just hang on a minute…

I never said that proving things isn’t a liberal strong suit…I’m simply saying that presumptions of innocence and burdens of proof and such are all (hopefully) characteristics of any legal proceeding. Since this blog is nothing if not a far cry from anything resembling a legal proceeding, then those precepts are a bit stiff to really apply in theory or matter in practice here in a forum where opinions are flying all over the place and NONE of us is expected to back up what we say with ironclad, irrefutable proof that would hold up in a court of law.

I guess the idea is to make your argument and hopefully if asked, be able to cite examples or perhaps published evidence to support your assertions, but by and large, if we all had to make sure everything we said on this blog was proven beyond a shadow of a doubt, then this whole thing would be kaput before it even got started.

As far as this thread and the current state of foreign affairs are concerned, there are those of us who smell a rat. And there are those who don’t. Then there are those who may suspect foul play but really don’t care so much as their favored party line is held. And finally I guess you’d have to include those who believe everything their favorite politicians say. Everyone’s welcome but don’t expect to be handed a fig leaf and a champagne glass every time you say something others disagree with.

But I don’t think anyone expects to be held to the same standards of proof that apply in a courtroom either. Hell, pay me three hundred an hour and I’ll find all the proof you want!

Posted by: macsonix at March 6, 2006 8:14 PM
Comment #131927

Masconix,

You’re right… we’re not in any courtroom or law. But we are in a courtroom of public opinion, and I would like to see something MORE than opinion being thrown around when we’re talking about trashing a man’s integrity and ethics and everything else good and decent about him for all of posterity.

There is a tremendous amount of Bush-bashing that goes on these days, and it’s got the full backing of the mainstream media, and frequently, even THEY don’t have any more proof than rumor and an intense dislike of our current president. It’s THAT that I rail against, not the fact that not everyone sees eye-to-eye with his policies. Freedom of the press was insituted to protect freedom of ideas and the right to speak out; it wasn’t intended to encourage the distortion of fact. At least, I’d like to think that it wasn’t. To listen to most of the Bush-bashing, if we shaved his head, there would be a 666 stamped on the back of it, and I just don’t see that. Just because I don’t agree with him on one subject or another, I’m not going to burn him at the stake. For the most part, I DO think he’s done an admirable job, considering the opposition he has faced from all the fronts he has faced it from. I don’t think there’s been a more tumultuous period for the nation since Vietnam, and I don’t believe that Bush has been the sole source of the tumult.

And just to throw a final comment into this thread, here’s some info, a large amount of info, actually, about Iraq and Saddam and the reasons for going there. This is what the gov’t investigations determined about WMD and Saddam, etc.

http://www.cia.gov/cia/reports/iraq_wmd_2004/chap1.html

Read, and determine for yourself how to interpret it.

Posted by: Lee at March 7, 2006 2:52 PM
Comment #131944

I will look over this link when I’ve more time to digest it tonight. In the meantime I’d like to simply point out that Bush, Cheney, Rummy and the rest of ‘em have done quite a fine job on their own trashing integrity and ethics.

Seriously - if there were no examples of questionable honesty (“we do not torture” or “these wiretaps require a court order”), if there were no recordings of questionable thought (“last throes”), if there were no public pronouncements of questionable sincerity (“you go to war with the army you have”),

then there would be no question.

Posted by: macsonix at March 7, 2006 4:41 PM
Comment #132142

Masconix —

Question granted, but when was the last time we had a president whose ethics and integrity were completely above reproach?

Posted by: Lee at March 8, 2006 1:02 PM
Comment #132208

It’s been a turtle’s age, to be sure. However, I and a whole bunch of other folks feel like our current administration’s behaviour is simply beyond the pale.

Posted by: macsonix at March 8, 2006 4:31 PM
Comment #142047

I’m looking for some good information for my essay, but this is a severely biast article.

Posted by: Phu at April 20, 2006 11:19 PM
Comment #157998

As per your: Most of us agree that the Iraq War was a mistake. In a recent poll, 72% of the troops in Iraq said that we should end it in 2006. You know how the Republicans started it. They paid no attention to the inspectors, completely disregarded what our democratic allies said and went full speed ahead. Bush’s speech to the UN was disdainful: He said either you go along with us or you’re wrong. Powell’s speech was worse: a pack of lies.

No need to dwell on it, but the worldwide results are horrible: Iraq is on the verge of civil war, our allies are upset with us and we have created a bunch of new terrorists. All because Bush and his Republican cronies must have their own way.

We shouldn’t give a crap what other countries (allies or enemies) think about us. Especially when we did what they couldn’t do. So, are you saying you agree with the terrorists? Are you an American? We did not run planes into their buildings. We didn’t threaten anyone with building and dropping nukes on them or taking nearby oil countries. Sometimes, someone has to step up the plate and be a man and take on the bully. In history, When we are all dead and buried, President Bush will go down as a hero. What happened will make a BIG difference for the GOOD of the world… not merely the US.

Posted by: LYNN GHANDI at June 15, 2006 8:28 AM
Comment #232909

First of all
The reason that we attacked Iran was because they were linked with the attackers of sept 11,2001, whereas North Korea has never attacked us (if u dont count their numerous threats). North Korea may have nukes and threaten us, but they have never hurt us. The day that they do they will be in a world of pain ——-1-10 nukes v.s. 1300-1500——
!Not good odds! LOL

Posted by: Far right at September 15, 2007 2:07 AM
Comment #232911

First of all:
the reason that we attacked iran was because we thought that iran was associated with 9-11. we were wrong. Also, North Korea = nukes etc. A world of pain? Will there be a habitable world left after we’ve blown it all up with our 13,000+ nukes?

what’s the point of fighting if in the long run, we all die?

To respond to an unwritten comment, if we do get into a nuke fight, what would we get if we win? If we lose? Nukes are not a way of war, they are merely used as a threat. After hirojima, all the world knows not to use nukes. In the long run, all that matters is the ability to seem like we will use them, not to actually use them.

Posted by: steventrouble at September 15, 2007 2:13 AM
Comment #232913

oh, and by the way, I know where you live, #232912

Posted by: steventrouble at September 15, 2007 2:16 AM
Comment #232914

it is so funny how many people explain occurances by linking them to Pres Bush LOL

All u F$#@ democrats need to learn that w/ Hillary in office, we will then be screwed LOL

IF u think that Bush aint doin his job u should see what kind of *jobs hillary is gunnu do.

First, they blame bush for 9/11, the fall of a US bridge, reason that most countries hate us, which I remind u is BS. LOL when will them Far Left chumps get a gd dm ??clue??

Posted by: Far right at September 15, 2007 2:19 AM
Comment #232915

haha, you’re right it is funny, seeing as Bush is merely a puppet on strings for Cheney(sp?) and co. If I may refer to a video released in the 1980’s, Cheney and co. were the first to plan an attack on iraq. They litterally stated that they were going to ‘help’ Afganistan first and gain approval of the nation, the claim that Iraq has Weapons of Mass Destruction. They made plans to invade iraq and take control of their oil resources and become rich.

Yah, lolz.

Posted by: steventrouble at September 15, 2007 2:24 AM
Comment #232916

O, and btw, what kind of job would hillary do?

can’t get much worse than Bush. haha!

response:
“that’s what they say about every president”…

despite the amazing accuracy of this statement, it is always the smart people who say this, and they are always right in one way or another.

FDR, god among presidents, was criticized for being too “in the favor of the people” and being too much of a manipulative diplomat. True though this may be, I think you forgot to mention that he basically saved this country from the great depression.

Damn, I’ve contradicted myself. You may say that, because of my statement, that Bush has some good qualities too. Well, just tell me what they are and I’ll prove you wrong =D

Posted by: steventrouble at September 15, 2007 2:29 AM
Comment #232917

Now just amagine another Clinton in office……………..

There wasnt must trust when “Clinton I” was in office….. Clintons cant keep trust within their own family, how du u expect to trust another one. how du any of u tweaked no brainers not get that?????????

Posted by: Far right at September 15, 2007 2:33 AM
Comment #232920

OH MY GOD!!! ANOTHER CLINTON IN OFFICE! Because anyone with the same last name as someone else who was a bad president, etc. is a HORRIBLE person. DAMN THEM FOR HAVING THE SAME LAST NAME! DAMN THEM ALL!

Sarcasm is one of the five wonders of the world, case you’re interested.

Oh, and that was sarcasm


What the hell do family matters have to do with presidency? And I’m tweaked? I don’t go insulting democrats on a democratic blog. Baka.

Posted by: steventrouble at September 15, 2007 2:45 AM
Comment #238388

I would have to agree that the last thing we need is a woman in the President’s seat. I have nothing against women, but for God’s sake, if you think we have problems with the war(s) now, just imagine when she is in office. We would have a war every 28 days…

Also, i believe Paul said something about not fighting back and ‘shedding blood’ unless we are attacked? As far as i remembered, we were attacked, and i also believe we laid on our vengeance pretty thick, but now there are so many wars and conflicts that i have nothing else to believe that the world is certainly coming to an end…

Posted by: Johnny Smith at November 14, 2007 8:48 PM
Comment #240224

how do you feel about the war in Iraq and why did you think that the war want to “end the war”?
I want to know how much should we continue supporting foreign policy. Please send me back so I want to know what they about the question.

Thank you for your time
Alba

Posted by: Alba Lavrenz at December 7, 2007 1:54 PM
Comment #242835

you are all full of shit rep and dem im only 14 and iknow that.im doing a research paper and looking for a source for my paper on this subject. but im woundering what hell are you losers doing typing this crap on the internet holy shit all of you need to get women or at least a playboy oh my God

Posted by: jon doe at January 11, 2008 9:40 PM
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