Democrats & Liberals Archives

Another wasted opportunity

According to published reports (link), in 2005, the CIA knew of a planned high-level meeting with senior members of al Qaeda, in a known region of Pakistan. The Bush administration’s response was not to go after those responsible for the 911 attacks, again…

Rumsfeld decided that the raid against senior al Qaeda members, including Ayman al-Zawahri, Bin Laden’s Chief Terrorist Officer, was too risky and would jeopardize relations with Pakistan. According to the report, the operation would require several hundred forces to paratroop into remote areas of Pakistan and attack the meeting in stealth. Rumsfeld nixed the idea as he felt that we shouldn’t go into Pakistan to get al Qaeda because Pakistan relations would be damaged.

So much for that ‘We make no distinction between those who commit acts of terror and those who support and harbor terrorists.” (link) dogma. That was soooo 2001.

With news reports (link)this week of al Qeada’s continuing strength, some suggesting that the terrorist organization’s strength is back to pre-911 levels, one could wonder what a successful raid in 2005 might have done to prevent the continued growth of this terrorist organization. Why would the Bush administration put the needs of a reluctant ally (Pakistan) over the goals of the US and its coalition forces throughout the world? Doesn’t the global struggle against terrorism include Pakistan?

But the message from the Bush administration is to repeat, repeat and repeat again that ‘We must bring the fight to them, before they bring it to us.’ Bush, himself repeated this claim again this week: (link) “We need to chase them down and bring them to justice before they come home to hurt us again.” Of course, Mr. Bush was speaking about Iraq and not Pakistan. As Mr. Bush seems to have forgotten who was actually responsible for the attacks on 911. Or maybe not (link)

It appears that, to the Bush administration, success in this global fight against terrorism is measured not by hunting down and catching those responsible for the 911 attacks. No, the success seems to be measured by how you control the spin or message of the global fight against terrorism. Unless I missed the footnote on the ‘bring the fight to them’ mantra, not going after those responsible for 911 while saying your are, could be construed as inconsistent.

Or maybe just deceitful.

You decide.

Posted by john trevisani at July 13, 2007 9:48 AM
Comments
Comment #226175

John,

One small point, you suggest that Al Qaeda is at pre-9/11 strength, but I don’t think that is what the report says. If I read the details right it is saying that Al Qaeda is at the highest level of strength SINCE 9/11. That doesn’t necessarily mean that level is up to or even close to what it was on 9/10. I know some news outlets have misread that to mean the that they are now AT pre-9/11 strength but I don’t think that holds water.

It’s still a damning report, but I think that unecessarily overstating the situation may cause those who really need to be convinced to dismiss the information all together.

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 13, 2007 10:34 AM
Comment #226177

This administration likes to pick and choose it’s evildoers. What proportion of the 9/11 terrorists were Saudi? Like so much of this society, the Bushies prefer the appearance of action over action itself. Good press is so much better than actually doing things, donchaknow?

L

Posted by: leatherankh at July 13, 2007 10:50 AM
Comment #226181

Rhinehold:
What i wrote was:

With news reports (link)this week of al Qeada’s continuing strength, some suggesting that the terrorist organization’s strength is back to pre-911 levels

i wasn’t overstating anything. In fact, i was reporting what others were reporting and left my opinion out.

But you’re right; the report (on the report) is damning. At 9/10 levels or at 9/12 levels (which would be 9/10 levels minus 19 hijackers) seems irrelevant. The point is that with all the loud blather coming from the White House about their Bush-doctrine of Pre-emptive war, it hasn’t had any effect on the ‘war on terror’. Meaning; their strategy isn’t working.

Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 11:26 AM
Comment #226184

strange, 911 was the last attack on this country’s homeland. Hmmm. Something is working. But i suppose to give our security forces some credit would be uncomfortable for you.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 11:36 AM
Comment #226186

John in Texas:

strange, 911 was the last attack on this country’s homeland.

i think you forgot about that whole ‘Anthrax’ thing.

That’s okay; you’re in good company. Bush etc… have forgotten about it too. Why? Because it’s easier to keep repeating the same thing over and over again. Forget about the facts, keep repeating.. “no attack since 911…” “Iraq is part of the overall strategy in the war on terror” “We’re making good progress..” “Hecka a job, Brownie.”

Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 11:57 AM
Comment #226187

Rhinehold… I like the way you think. That is an important distinction and is much more than just semantics. While john t’s main point is quite valid, overstating important points only hurts our argument.

John t… interesting and well written. You are correct in that the administration says and does things to make us feel safe as opposed to going after those that would actually threaten our safety. It’s quite amazing to me how all of our attention is in Iraq when the real fight needs to be in Afghanistan/Pakistan.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at July 13, 2007 12:18 PM
Comment #226189

John in TX… I don’t think anyone here is saying that the security forces themselves are doing a poor job… you are correct, we haven’t been hit with any major attacks since the big one… the forces themselves are doing great… The critique here is of the leaders at the top in charge of the policy from which these forces are led… heck… if anything, I think John was praising our forces, implying that if the baboon in charge at the time (Rummy) actually let them do their job they would have done it well and A-Q would not be as strong as they are today.

Critisizing Rumsfeld and Bush is not the same as critisizing the forces in their charge.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at July 13, 2007 12:23 PM
Comment #226190

The proof is in the pudding. And that bothers you some, i can tell.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 12:35 PM
Comment #226191

John,

Good points about the character (actually, lack thereof) of Bush and his administration. To comment further on the rogue, dishonest, evil, corrupt nature of this administration is sooooo 2000-2007.

Anyway, I do find it interesting that you state that Pakistan in an “ally” albeit reluctant. Many of our Muslim “allies” permit our military to fight “terror” (and kill Saddam Hussein) on their turf. Pakistan, however, is different. We have a different policy for them—hmmm, wonder why? (I don’t really wonder—I’m quite sure the “N” word has something to do with it). As you pointed out, they feign support for the war on terror while on the other hand allowing Al Qaeda heads to operate with impunity within their country. Pakistan also supported their training camps (remember, the Kashmir dispute still is not settled). It is hard for me to consider Pakistan an ally. Unlike our Arab “allies,” Musharaf must be somewhat confident in his military’s ability to keep him alive so he can keep our military prowess at arms length as he has done.

Regarding Al Qaeda and its perceived increase or decrease in strength, this issue and the way it is even discussed is sooooo pre-9/11. The way this issue has been handled suggests to me that certainly our politicians (and likely the general public as well) has learned exceedingly little in the wake of 9/11 and the Iraq War.

As far as I am concerned, all of these terms we use are equivalent, particularly since the invasion of Iraq—Al Qaeda, “Al Qaeda in Iraq” (this one is also major Bush propaganda), insurgents, Al Qaeda post-9/11.

What has increased is the jihadist movement throughout the Muslim world. It is this ideology and all its derivations that represent the global threat—Al Qaeda (pre or post 9-11) is only a part. I concede that Al Qaeda (a la Bin Landen and Al Zawahiri) is an important part (the spoke of the jihadist wheel). Our strategy in dealing with global “terrorism” in general—but I really mean the jihadist movement—needs to broaden. “Getting” Bin Laden and Al Zawahiri is unlikely to reap the benefits that Bush et al would like the American public to believe. Bin Laden himself, has many many children some of which are adult sons. I am quite confident that even with his death; his money will continue to support the mission of his network and like minded factions throughout the Muslim world. His “martyrdom” will be the “new” spoke supporting the jihadist wheel. Our policy on “global terrorism” needs to evolve.

The actions (I was going to type policies—but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it) of the Bush administration in the Muslim world has created disasters and instability that a genuine leader of our executive branch will have to being to address and attempt to fix. 2008 seems sooooo far away. In the interim, I can only continue to pray that loss of American lives at home and abroad, military and civilian are kept to a minimum in as we await the end of this long “national nightmare.”

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 13, 2007 12:45 PM
Comment #226192

Doug.
I have said that i dont approve of the handling of the war in Iraq. But I do agfee we need to be there. Like it or not Al Queada is there now. Like it or not Al queada has chosen you as an enemy. Like it or not OBL hass declared Iraq the center of the war against the west. Like it or not we HAVE NOT forgotten Afganistan and Pakistan (thats just a big propaganda lie) like it or not , leaving now would be handing over the country to a much worse situation than we can even imagine.
Nobody on the left wants to answer the question of what happens in Iraq if we leave. What happens there? What happens to our borders here? Questions that have to be answered BEFORE we leave. Harry reid just got all pissed when asked this question. Pelosi just babbles on about any subject she can think of when asked “What happens if we leave”?
Regardless of how we got there, those are real people with hopes and dreams just like you. they deserve an answer too.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 12:46 PM
Comment #226196

John in TX… agreed with everything you just said. Like or not, wer ARE there now and we certainly cannot just leave. Thankfully Rumsfeld is finally gone, albeit FAR too late.

BTW… I live in Nevada (Reid’s home state), so I get more than my fair share of news about him… more than one man should have to bear! The guy just needs to go…

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at July 13, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #226199

Doug,
With the luxury of hindsight, i might choose to have never gone to Iraq. But that would be unrealistic. 80 percent of the country was behind Bush, there was the a decent coalition (on paper) and therewas foriegn intelligence to back the US intelligence.
The reason i post is because i want to burn down the facade that democrats didnt have anything to do with it. They knew full well what the first vote meant. They voted to stay 2 more times when they had a majority. They continue to fund the war. Democrats knew of the 26 UN violations and the prevention of inspections, yet they try to paint this as an exclusively WMD instigated war.
Until the democrats face up to thier own culpability i can never , ever vote for a single one of them. They have to ditch Reid and Pelosi and tear down the facade of innocense they have built before I can even consider voting democrat again. Yes, i used to be one. But the party today has a lust for power and a need for revenge so strong that they cannot begin to understand the damage they are doing to the system. Or their lack of success as a congress.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 1:34 PM
Comment #226204
But the party today has a lust for power and a need for revenge so strong that they cannot begin to understand the damage they are doing to the system. Or their lack of success as a congress.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 01:34 PM


John in Texas, glad to see you’re understanding how we feel about the R’s ! Damage being the key word and most encompassing. Our children will be old and gray before we’ve recovered and repaired the sentiment the rest of the world has for us. And what is most reprehensible is that Bush did it without a scratch to himself, but has decimated thousands of families and turned what was once a proud and strong military into a weakened and shattered force(with still a great pride). Bless all those who continue while knowing they’re in a NO WIN situation!!
As far as any credit where due for no recent attacks,…. I’d say it was more just luck. Our borders are sieves for anyone wanting to walk, crawl, or swim across either of them….our ports still remain a key area for anything or anyone to come right in. And all this because our idiot leader has a one-track mind and is answering a call from a “higer power”. Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 13, 2007 2:12 PM
Comment #226205

Sandra:

Are you refering to the same Bush that ordered the National guard to the US/Mexico Border? Or even the one that supports the border wall?

Seems to me you are willfully misinformed or just trying to misinform others.
Here is a link for you:

http://cbs2.com/national/topstories_story_134191405.html

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 2:23 PM
Comment #226206

Kim-Sue:

Many of our Muslim “allies” permit our military to fight “terror” (and kill Saddam Hussein) on their turf. Pakistan, however, is different. We have a different policy for them—hmmm, wonder why?

Exactly! There must be some ‘special’ reason for Pakistan’s ‘special’ treatment. i mean, Rummy doesn’t make foreign policy, so ‘his’ decision NOT to go in, wasn’t really his. Someone intervened and they had a special reason.

What has increased is the jihadist movement throughout the Muslim world. It is this ideology and all its derivations that represent the global threat—Al Qaeda (pre or post 9-11) is only a part.
Again correct! After 911 we had the collateral to make real progress with many nations throughout the world; including many unfriendly nations. But for some unknown reason, the Bush administration squandered this collateral and misdirected the attention toward Iraq (WHICH HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH 911). The invasion of Iraq put gasoline on that jihadist movement; it didn’t help.


Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 2:26 PM
Comment #226208

john trevisani,

When I first read about this a few days ago I couldn’t help but remember Trent Lott’s “Wag the Dog” moment in ‘98 following Operation Infinite Reach and the criticism about violating Pakistani air space.

Of course several years later the GOP spun it the other way: the Clinton administration blew it by notifying Pakistan moments before our missiles entered their air space to avoid a possible international crisis. Or so went ABC’s spin a’ la The Path to 9/11.

In fact, the 9/11 commission report states (page 117), “Since the missiles headed for Afghanistan had had to cross Pakistan, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs was sent to meet with Pakistan’s army chief of staff to assure him the missiles were not coming from India. Officials in Washington speculated that one or another Pakistani official might have sent a warning to the Taliban or Bin Ladin.”

Of course remaining true to form the GOP never lets facts interfere with their spin on history.

I have a sneaking suspicion that Chertoff’s “gut feeling” is backed up by FACTS that would embarrass W & crew!

Posted by: KansasDem at July 13, 2007 2:30 PM
Comment #226211

As if you would have supported a military action in Pakistan in the first place…

If Bush had invaded, the Blue Side would have been up in arms and you know it. It’s so fun to watch people “tweak” their own attitudes and opinions just so they can be on the opposite side of whatever Bush does.

Posted by: TheTraveler at July 13, 2007 2:40 PM
Comment #226212

John in Texas,

How many miles of our borders has Bush secured in the last 5 1/2 years since 9/11? (Five of those years with nearly unfettered opposition)

How many miles of fence have been built? (how many on the right side of the border?)

One last thing, is a year 6 months long where you live? You keep stating as fact that we Dems have had control for a year, January being the 1st month and July being the 7th leaves me with the equation: 7-1=6 Where I live six months is half a year. Never mind the fact that we have a majority of ONE in the Senate.

It’s always interesting to have a look inside the minds of the 30 per centers.

Posted by: KansasDem at July 13, 2007 2:46 PM
Comment #226213

John in Texas….
“Seems to me you are willfully misinformed or just trying to misinform others.”
I don’t consider myself to be either one, certainly not based on the link you provided with a more than year old article. You seem to avoid the part about Bush being too closely connected to the corporate structures who benefit from the open borders to seriously consider stopping the traffic.
Kansas Dem….do you really believe that “W” and crew are embarassable??? That is a state they seem to have become quite comfortable in. Media has already shown that released reports and Chertoff’s gut work on the same time frame… ;)

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 13, 2007 2:57 PM
Comment #226215

TheTraveler:
Question my sincerity? Good one. I liken that to questioning my patriotism when i happen to dissent from the powers that be.

Let’s turn it around, shall we? What was the real reason for not going after al-Zawahri?

Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 3:06 PM
Comment #226216

“do you really believe that “W” and crew are embarassable???”

Sandra,

You really got me on that one. The obvious answer is NO!

Hell, I would have resigned out of guilt and embarrassment after it was exposed that I ignored the “OBL Determined to Attack in US” memo.

Posted by: KansasDem at July 13, 2007 3:15 PM
Comment #226219

Sandra,
So now you imply that Bush and “crew” are somehow profiting from what you refer to as an “open border”?

1. show me who and how. I’m real interested in how Bush is profiting. Show me. Show us all.
2. Show me the “open border” (take your passport, it’s required now). I live in a border state, i travel a lot. You dont know what you are talking about. There are no “open borders” in this country. Anywhere.
3. The article’s age simply points to how long you have had the misinformation. It is genuine.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 3:37 PM
Comment #226220

John,

Question my sincerity?

Yes. I honestly don’t believe you would have supported a military invasion of Pakistan. Not if Bush was President.

I liken that to questioning my patriotism when i happen to dissent from the powers that be.

Nonsense. Literally nonsense.

Let’s turn it around, shall we? What was the real reason for not going after al-Zawahri?

How am I supposed to know? I didn’t know about this until I read your article (which I don’t necessarily disagree with). I just don’t think you would have supported Bush if he had invaded Pakistan. The Blue Side would be filled with more calls for impeachment than there are now!

Posted by: TheTraveler at July 13, 2007 3:42 PM
Comment #226221

Kim-Sue rocks. OBL/UBL is a former CIA resource, right? They should know how to go after his money, but we never go after the money. If you have money, we like you, come to America, invest in the USA, and buy some port authorities.

Posted by: ohrealy at July 13, 2007 4:10 PM
Comment #226223

First of all John in Texas, you need to spend time more carefully reading what has been written. My referral to “crew” was directed to another poster on a different subject. That shows me that you cherry pick words and statements to address. That explains a lot……
Second, it’s funny how most of us would consider California a border state and living in it for 40+ years has shown me a thing or two about border crossing and how easy it is when the damned border is OPEN!!!
I didn’t question the genuiness of the article, only the age of it and the moot subject matter.
Bush’s reluctance to secure the borders clearly benefits the big (as well as small) businesses who stroke dubyas’ pockets on a regular basis. Just as prolonging the Iraq debacle is making a lot wealthy, (does the name Haliburton mean anything to you???) so does the nonending flow of illegals.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 13, 2007 4:14 PM
Comment #226224

TheTraveler:

I didn’t know about this until I read your article (which I don’t necessarily disagree with). I just don’t think you would have supported Bush if he had invaded Pakistan. The Blue Side would be filled with more calls for impeachment than there are now!

Well, not so fast; someone is playing on that ‘jump to conclusions’ mat. i think it’s quite a stretch to say that were ‘invading Pakistan though.

Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 4:22 PM
Comment #226227

John,

Perhaps “invasion” is a strong word for such a mission. Of course, people persist in saying we’re “occupying” Iraq when we’re really doing no such thing.
I like the Office Space reference, btw.

So, it’s 2005. One day we wake up to the news that Bush has ordered troops into (or perhaps ordered the bombing of) this location in a country that was not (overtly) hostile to the United States. Would you, personally, have supported that action? I guarantee there are many here on Watchblog who wouldn’t have.

Posted by: TheTraveler at July 13, 2007 4:39 PM
Comment #226228

Sandra:

Wheres the beef? You make accusation, i ask for specifics. You provide more accusations.

You describe open borders and i tell you there are none. Let me see you try to come across the border without documents. Tape it, i want to see. And more importantly i want you to see how rediculous the assertion is. Do we have border problems? Yes we do. Do we have open borders? NO we dont.
Sorry, but you have really convinced me of nothng. I am always open to genuine discussion. But i tire quickly when confronted with unsubstantiated, unsupported rants.

Lastly, the California border problem would not be as rampant as it is if California would quit providing sanctuary and encouragement to illegals. You provide them documentation, drivers license, sanctuary, legal representation, schooling, offer free medical, provide them jobs and then complain about the border. And you probably dont even see the contradiction.

Posted by: John in Texas at July 13, 2007 4:50 PM
Comment #226230
Show me the “open border” (take your passport, it’s required now). I live in a border state, i travel a lot.

I live in San Diego, there is no requirement such as this that is being enforced at the moment. Enforcement of this has been delayed for at least another year.


So, it’s 2005. One day we wake up to the news that Bush has ordered troops into (or perhaps ordered the bombing of) this location in a country that was not (overtly) hostile to the United States.


WASHINGTON (CNN) — Saying there will be no sanctuary for terrorists, President Clinton on Thursday said the U.S. strikes against terrorist bases in Afghanistan and a facility in Sudan are part of “a long, ongoing struggle between freedom and fanaticism. Aug, 20 1998

I remember many on the right accusing President Clinton of wagging the dog.

Posted by: Cube at July 13, 2007 5:01 PM
Comment #226231

Cube,

Something was wagging the dog, but it was on the other side…

Posted by: willie at July 13, 2007 5:22 PM
Comment #226232

Pakistan has nukes, so of course they get “special treatment” from ALL administrations.
Bush is not the first one to promise to “get those who are responsible” and failed either.
As with most things the left complains about, this is not something that just started under Bush.

John in Tx
Negative opinions and presumptions about Bush are considered facts here.

Posted by: kctim at July 13, 2007 5:24 PM
Comment #226233

John, good article. I posted a link about this in Jack’s ‘It’s not us; it’s them’ thread in the rose colored column, and not a single person chose to made a comment about it.
Maybe that’s because we all realize that there isn’t a single excuse that can be made for our leaders not to go after any member of Al Qaeda, let alone a meeting of senior high level-leaders, anywhere in the world.

Traveler:
“So, it’s 2005. One day we wake up to the news that Bush has ordered troops into (or perhaps ordered the bombing of) this location in a country that was not (overtly) hostile to the United States. Would you, personally, have supported that action?”

YES. Completely. And I’m an anti-Iraq War Liberal.

“I guarantee there are many here on Watchblog who wouldn’t have.”

You’re wrong. Our citizens were in almost total agreement with going after those who attacked us on 9/11. That’s why so many of us are furious that Bushco took the focus off of Bin Laden, Al Qaeda, Afghanistan, or anywhere where in the world where they’ve been harbored and protected, such as Pakistan, and instead took us to Iraq on a pack of lies.

Posted by: Adrienne at July 13, 2007 5:34 PM
Comment #226234

“YES. Completely”

Why Adrienne? The intel confirming the need to do so would be coming from, and acted upon, by the same groups supplying and acting on intel concerning Iraq.

Posted by: kctim at July 13, 2007 5:48 PM
Comment #226235

kctim and john……by all means, then try out the red column….you’ll no doubt find more what you’re looking for there.
You need to apply for a job with INS, then go drop leaflets all along the border and remind those climbing, swimming, jumping and crawling from Mexico into the U.S. not to bother any more, because we have closed it to them.
I don’t know, or care, where in Texas you live, but it must be someplace where there is no news coverage. What do you think is any different there than in California, or Arizona…or Kansas, Oklahoma or almost anywhere these days???? And thanks for saving me the trouble of answering any more outrageous questions with your last paragraph. And by the way, you haven’t even seen “rant” yet!
As far as further response and “feeding”….you’ll find no more from me. I learned long ago that a dead horse goes no further than where it dropped.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 13, 2007 5:48 PM
Comment #226236

Traveler:
i support going after those responsible for the 911 attacks. If that means going to into Pakistan, then so be it.

That’s where Bush and i differ, i guess.

Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 5:52 PM
Comment #226237

JIT,

“Do we have open borders? NO we dont.”

The problem isn’t just in California. No state is even enforcing the laws passed in the 80’s, not one.
Frankly, I don’t see a random INS sweep as a deterrent to anyone.

There is 1700 miles of virtually unguarded border between California and the Gulf.
Anyone (including those that would do us harm), that wanted to could walk across that border anytime they wanted to and nobody would be the wiser.

Posted by: Rocky at July 13, 2007 5:55 PM
Comment #226238

kctim:
“Why Adrienne? The intel confirming the need to do so would be coming from, and acted upon, by the same groups supplying and acting on intel concerning Iraq.”

Because I don’t think the CIA would have been that ready to go on operation requiring several hundred forces to paratroop into remote areas of Pakistan for no damn reason at all.
Sounds like it must have been some very good intell they had. Unlike the bogus crap on Iraq, where they had to “fix the facts around the intelligence” and then needed to have it widely disseminated by loyal Bushies using bombastic terms like “mushroom clouds” to scare the public into fearful compliance and willingness.

Posted by: Adrienne at July 13, 2007 6:00 PM
Comment #226240

i support going after those responsible for the 911 attacks. If that means going to into Pakistan, then so be it.
That’s where Bush and i differ, i guess.
Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 05:52 PM

My, my, how the libs have changed their tunes.

They’ve gone from:
1.) Bush moved too fast into Iraq, (although he was made to wait four months by the Democrats while he and Colin Powell were forced to appease the U.N). What we needed was diplomacy, diplomacy, and more diplomacy!!

to:

2.) Bush is not moving fast enough into Pakistan to attack al Qaida there. Why are those low-down dirty terrorists getting a pass in Pakistan? Let’s blow it to smithereens!!

Somehow, it just doesn’t make any difference what Bush does. He’ll always get criticized by the left. What’s next, left-wingers? You gonna support an all out attack on Iran?

JD

Posted by: JD at July 13, 2007 7:16 PM
Comment #226242

“2.) Bush is not moving fast enough into Pakistan to attack al Qaida there. Why are those low-down dirty terrorists getting a pass in Pakistan? Let’s blow it to smithereens!!”

Gee JD, prior to our invasion of Iraq, you could probably count al Qaeda members actually in Iraq on two hands.
Prior to our invasion of Iraq, could you say the same about Pakistan?


Posted by: Rocky at July 13, 2007 7:37 PM
Comment #226243

JD:
Save your rebuke for someone who cares.

The only bouncing ball on tune-changing is coming from this administration. The dissenting majority has stayed fairly consistent: we should never have gone to Iraq and go after Bin Laden. As much as you want to fantasize, no on has said that someone shouldn’t be held accountable for 911.

Why is it that all support for Bush and company is completely blind and void of anything resembling a valid argument?

How else can you support any argument that it’s OKAY to allow al qaeda to continue to flourish and grow while you attack someone that had nothing to do with 911?


Posted by: john trevisani at July 13, 2007 7:37 PM
Comment #226246

After reading the NYT story, which is all I know about this, I have to say whether or not to proceed with the mission was a coin toss. There are plenty of reasons to criticize the Bush administration, but I don’t think this is one of them.

Posted by: Gerrold at July 13, 2007 8:11 PM
Comment #226258

kctim wrote:

“Bush is not the first one to promise to “get those who are responsible” and failed either.
As with most things the left complains about, this is not something that just started under Bush.”

Those that came before and “failed” as you say did NOT initiate wars that completely undermind and abolish US diplomatic influence on the international stage. They did NOT cause the escalation of the jihadist movement within the Muslim world.

To be perfectly honest I don’t even know why I continue to respond to this utter foolishness, reflex I guess. So never mind….18 months and counting.

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 13, 2007 10:05 PM
Comment #226260

I’ve just watched one of the best hours of television I’ve seen in a long time. It was Bill Moyer’s Journal. Moyers led a discussion with conservative Constitutional scholar Bruce Fein and Nation magazine correspondent John Nichols on the need to impeach Bush and Cheney.

This isn’t just about getting the two out of office for violating the law, it’s about curbing the power grab by the executive branch before another president takes the reins. We must get beyond games of political gotcha and insist Congress curb the efforts to place the presidency above the law. It doesn’t matter how wins the 2008 election, Democrat or Republican — whoever wins will not hand back the power this presidency has grabbed.

The transcript and video should be available soon; I encourage everyone to go the Bill Moyer’s Journal site to read or view this discussion.

Posted by: Gerrold at July 13, 2007 10:07 PM
Comment #226266

KansasDem,

Interesting perspective on Chertoff’s “gut feeling.” I thought the timing of his “guts” was just so convenient for Bush to continue to shoot off his “let’s give victory a chance” gun he has aimed at the American military.

I am so distrustful of anyone in the Bush administration, it is almost instinctive to assume that none of them have any integrity at all. But your point about Chertoff is to be considered as well. Thanks.

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 13, 2007 10:18 PM
Comment #226267

Another plausable reason for so few attacks on the US is that AlQeada was never that great a threat to begin with. A threat yes.They got lucky on 9/11. Lucky enough to have a criminally incompetent administration in charge of security.This conflict should have ended in 2002-3 in Afganistan and the border areas of Pakistan. Instead this same administration diverted our military and intelligence resources to invade and occupy Iraq,a country with no ties to AlQueada.AlQueada gets lucky again plus they have the Bush administration helping to recruit thousands of new followers for them by confirming Bin Ladens claim the America is a predatory nation bent on capturing Muslum lands. And back home we get to spend trillions on useless defense spending with major programs to rebuild the entire nuclear arsenal,to deploy a destabilizing useless anti- missile system in Europe almost garunteed to start an arms race with Russia.All this because we are at war with an enemy more likely to sneak a bomb in in a canoe than anICBM.Narry a whimper from congress.After all.we are at war so oviously we have to spend $4000 to buy flack jackets for police dogs in Beullton.
The MIC is fully in charge and the last thing they want is this phony war to end. Their incompetant stooge in the Whitehouse is not just stupid or laughable.He is dangerious to the nation. It is time to bring impeachment front and center.If the Dem leadership is worried about a political backlash they are mistaken. The opposite is true. Impeachment would gain support.

Posted by: BillS at July 13, 2007 10:28 PM
Comment #226287

BillS:

Another plausible reason for so few attacks on the US is that AlQeada was never that great a threat to begin with. A threat yes.They got lucky on 9/11.

You’re probably right. To continue along those lines, this administration now chooses to take seriously memos entitled “Bin Laden determined to strike in the US” as opposed to before 911, when they ignored it.

This whole ‘mantra’ of we haven’t had a single attack in the US since 911 is so irrelevant. The Bush administration throws out blanket statements like that, their loyal base laps it up and regurgitates it as fact and the rest of the US is too busy paying fuel costs to realize that it’s factually incorrect. (i’m sure the families of those who died during the Anthrax attack think there was a terrorist attack within the US following 911.)

Prior to 911, how many attacks did we have? A few actually. Mainly from homegrown terrorist organizations and a bombing of the WTC in 1993; which, if memory serves me correctly, the people were captured, tried and convicted of the bombing. Oh i realize that the Bush supporters are going to chime in on this one. But really, if Clinton wanted to say in 2001 as he left the White House: ‘Since 1993, there hasn’t been an attack on US soil by international terrorists”; he’d be just as correct as the Bush administration.

Posted by: john trevisani at July 14, 2007 6:55 AM
Comment #226295

Al Gore is so correct in naming lack of reason as a hallmark of the current administration…unfortunately, the far majority of the US populace also lacks any use of reason and just laps up whatever is said by the administration without examining it for truth or even possibility…this administration is one long false advertising campaign…

Posted by: Rachel at July 14, 2007 9:15 AM
Comment #226299

Few remember that the 1993 attack on the WTC came only a month after Papa Bush left office…if the 2001 attack that came in the 8th month of Bush son’s presidency and that was “Clinton’s fault”, how much more the 1993 attack was Bush daddy’s “fault”…and, yes, those who perpetrated the 1993 attack were tried & convicted…those who masterminded the 2001 attack are still out there & are not being persued…hmmmmmmmmm…..however, the US has created a base for al Qaeda in Iraq where none was before…this administration does everything it is able to keep creating terrorists and people who hate the US…why? because then this administration can keep grabbing executive power and squeeze the populace dry of $$$ and liberty…what a cruel joke Bush and his cronies are…

Wake up America!!

Posted by: Rachel at July 14, 2007 10:12 AM
Comment #226317

Rachel
Do not underestimate Americans. That is the the mistake of the Bush administration. There are a great many that want this president impeached and even more that know there is something seriously and dangeriously wrong. The later include many Republicans. It is our task to bring impeachment to the front and then to remind the majority of Americans that they are not helpless to remove this scourge and danger.

Posted by: BillS at July 14, 2007 1:28 PM
Comment #226324

Bills

I think you are correct Bill. I hear the word impeachment spoken more and more often as these pompous bastards continue with a blind eye to the desires of the american people. Not to mention their obvious efforts to reshape the laws to place them above the it. I think that unfortunately it is the support of that small percentage of gullible steadfast Bushies that are creating just enough buffer to keep those nervous republicans who are in doubt from a massive revolt.

Posted by: ILdem at July 14, 2007 2:22 PM
Comment #226330

BillS and ILdem…if you’ve noticed, a new poll out today on Congressional approval is in the toilet!! We know this will bring out that percentage of Bushies still hanging on by their nails, but there are also some die-hard, blue-dog Dems that aren’t willing to suck it up and do what the country is hollering for. Quit crying that there probably isn’t enough time to get an impeachment going and completed before the term ends. I also feel that if they were to seriously start the mechanics of an impeachment procedure, those waffling with their support would fall into line and get behind it. I also agree, At the VERY LEAST, we need to show this administration that there isn’t anything right about so many of the things they have done, and that we are sick of their blatant disregard for laws and THE CONSTITUTION!!!

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 14, 2007 2:49 PM
Comment #226334

I also watched the Bill Moyers program on PBS last night. They were arguing that Nixon should have continued to be prosecuted after he resigned. The perception back then was that Nixon was the problem, and his resignation solved most of it. TPTB did not want to reduce the power of the presidency into insignificance.
After Nixon, we had two good presidents, before the Reagans came along.

The most interesting thing about the Moyers program was that the military tribunals are actually giving people shorter sentences than civilian courts, and the idea that Bush just likes breaking the law, and getting away with it.

GWBush is our president today because we have an electoral college, and the big square states have more votes than their percentage of the population.

Posted by: ohrealy at July 14, 2007 3:46 PM
Comment #226336

There is not much time left of the Bush presidency but there is plenty of time for him to get us into a war with Iran and to rekindle the cold war with Russia. There are indications he is heading in both directions. Ohrealy brings up a good point. Along with Bush we need to purge all the militarist from the halls of power.This was the great failure after Vietnam.As it is Bushco is just too dangerious to leave in power and most Americans know that.

Posted by: BillS at July 14, 2007 4:37 PM
Comment #226352

BillS,

Bush rekindle the cold war you say? That is not necessary. Bush has created a new red hot war and obliterated US international diplomacy and influence. No one gives a damn what the US position is on many global matters.

Two things I don’t see being mentioned here just yet: 1) Iran has agreed to allow in UN inspectors for their nuclear program in a (get this) DIPLOMATIC agreement with the UN. To my knowlege, it is not contingent upon lifting sanctions that are in place right now.

2) No one, unless I have missed it, has made any comparison to the USSR “invasion” of Afghanistan and the US “invasion” of Iraq. I have read the WWII comparisons, Vietnam comparisons, Bay of Pigs comparison, etc. Yet, the only other recent conflict between the “superpower west” and the “muslim world” has received such scant attention.

It think it is because the obvious similarities will hit entirely too close to home, especially when one considers that the USSR invasion of Afghanistan was closed and on the books a whole 13 YEARS!!! before Bush decided to repeat the scenario. What’s that saying about those ignorant of history? Perhaps I should give “president” Bush as pass because he, himself, is just plain ignorant (among other things).

Also, the point made about Bush being too dangerous to be office is quite valid but the part about most Americans knowing it—that’s not true—He legitimately won the popular vote in 2004 (or at least was legitimately conceded the popular vote by Kerry). Unless you are making a distinction between all American citizens and the voting electorate, most people failed to realize that other than his age and nationality, Bush has no valuable traits that qualify him to be chief executive of a Dog Kennel let alone a nation. So, here we are waiting for the Constitution, in one form or another, to send his sorry ass back to Texas.

Can anyone think of another time in American history when there was such emnity for a President (rightly or wrongly) that it didn’t result in at least an assassination attempt? Could it be that if precedence was followed, it would mean for the US “out of purgatory and straight into the fiery pits of hell.”

Is the FBI going to come for me?

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 14, 2007 7:33 PM
Comment #226355

Probably not Kin-Sue, but you might want to be careful on your phone….. ;)

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 14, 2007 8:38 PM
Comment #226364

KIm-Sue
On re-kindling the cold war. Our Defense Dept. Has instituted a program to replace our entire nuclear arsenal with new and improved designs. The number of warheads needed for deterance during the cold war was enormous as part of the MAD policy.It could make some sense to upgrade SOME warheads but not thousands.Russia as the other real nuclear power cannot allow this unmatched.Placing anti-missile systems in Europe also gives Russia no choice. Its true that the anti-missile system could never be particularly effective in preventing a Russian first strike. The numbers would overcome any possible system. What Russia is so frightened by is that an anti-missile system can,in theory , be effective in destroying the few missiles Russia would have left after a US first strike . An anti-missile system is part of the infrastructure needed for a first strike to be viable and so are the warhead upgrades. Russia must respond. Because they do not have the economic resources available they might well take more risk. Why are we doing this? Because the MIC is calling the shots. How they missed the cold war.

Posted by: BillS at July 14, 2007 9:32 PM
Comment #226369

John Trevisani-I have a belief about the Borders
an the reason President Bush wants them.
NAFTA an GATT Treaty calls for all borders to
to open. Since each State must vote for this an
by a margin of 3/4 of all votes must be in the Yes
box. I am sure most Americans would not vote for we
Americans to become an UN-Sovereign Nation and would not want open borders. I also believe the President
with all his secrecy’s is more than likely implementing other Objectionable Rules we would not approve of. This is just food for thought.

Posted by: -DAVID- at July 14, 2007 10:56 PM
Comment #226371

—My corrections got lost in transit[sorry]—
President Bush wants open borders-
would not want closed borders-
_______________________________________________

Posted by: -DAVID- at July 14, 2007 11:03 PM
Comment #226389

BillS,

You raise some interesting points regarding the cold war and the cold war “revisited.” I have not done much (ok, none) research regarding missle defense or “star wars” or anything of that nature. I never did agree with Ronald Reagan that the USSR was the “evil empire” so I was never concerned about nuclear holacosts and such. These jihadists scare me though with respect to obtaining nuclear weaponery.

So you don’t think it is worth the expense to keep our military and security up to date from a technological standpoint. Never mind for the moment about what Russia may fear, I always felt that a nation should make it’s military a priority in terms of up-grading when necessary and making the best use of technology to ensure its safety. I don’t mind my tax dollars going for purposeful maintanence of our defense. What I do mind, is Dumbsfeld giving millions of DOD dollars to support former Iraqi exhiles—corrupt ones no less.

Political aside (yeah right, I know), what is your standpoint on the level of Defense spending and military readiness? In your response, please assume that GWB hasn’t permenantly turned the US into the World’s International Dart Board.

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 15, 2007 2:52 AM
Comment #226459

On CBS this morning they were saying it would take 2 years to get completely out of Iraq, so the next president will be dealing with this situation after Bush leaves, besides whatever other messes Bush gets us into before his long awaited permanent vacation.

Sens. Lugar and Warner are looking at some kind of deal to bring Bush to terms with reality. Warner is probably retiring, and 20 Rpblcn senators will be up for reelection in 2008.

Posted by: ohrealy at July 15, 2007 5:03 PM
Comment #226470

KimSue
We have a nuclear arsenal capable of destroying all life on earth something like 100 times over. This is a legacy of the cold war. A sad legacy indeed. The amount of money spent on war during that period could have propeled mankind into space,eliminated deases,provided a rich sustainable life for everyone on the planet. You might want to read what Eisenhower had to say about military spending. The vast number of warheads was deemed necessary to thwart a Soviet first strike and makes perverse sense in light of the MAD concept.At this point in time there is no Soviet Union and there is not much of a chance of an overwheleming first strike from anyone.This is not to say there is no danger of a nuclear assault from terrorist or a rogue state somewhere but even if the damage is great retaliation would not require anywhere near our full arsenal, that is if we can even find a target.The upgradeing of a small portion of the arsenal makes sense in a way,but upgrading it all is a tremendous waste of resorces. A better option is limited upgrades and dismantleing of the surplus along with a thanksgiving prayer that we never had to use them.
We should also address military procurment. As it is contractors make more mony by increasing their expenses. This is backwards from how markets are supposed to work. Another thing they do is “politically engineer” programs. The B1 is a case in point.Componants are made in every state of the union. It is generally more efficient for manufacture to have more central campuses.Shipping cost,security,supply coordination etc. It is spread out for the purpose of provideing a constituency in every state. The cost to us?2.2 billion dollars a plane!They are a real cool plane,granted,but are they worth a thousand new high schools each?The military has an estimated fifty different types of aircrat,each with their own program. Could they maybe get by with say,30 different types. While we are spending so much on these high tech,high cost programs our troops sometimes lack low tech stuff like body armor.

Posted by: BillS at July 15, 2007 6:40 PM
Comment #226680

Adrienne
Not sure I would agree about going to war with a country with a nuke based on that, but thank you for giving me your input.

Kim-Sue
“Those that came before and “failed” as you say did NOT initiate wars that completely undermind and abolish US diplomatic influence on the international stage. They did NOT cause the escalation of the jihadist movement within the Muslim world”

They still failed to get those responsible Kim-Sue.
It doesnt matter if you fail to get them and they bring down two towers and kill 3,000 some Americans or if you fail to get them and “initiate” a war: You still failed to get those responsible like you promised.

And as far as why you keep responding? Your version of things are based on opinions and assumptions, not facts. So you feel the need to state your opinions enough so that some will eventually accept your opinions as facts.

Posted by: kctim at July 17, 2007 3:08 PM
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