Bush is unpopular

Bush is very unpopular, it seems… with those who wouldn’t mind seeing America defeated. Jimmy Carter is in Nevada reportedly, "embarrassed by American Government," and calling Bush an, "international disgrace".

Strangely enough Al Qaeda’s Veep, Zawahiri, is saying almost the exact same thing.

RENO, Nev. Former President Carter is urging northern Nevadans to elect his son, Jack, to the Senate to help combat a Bush administration he says has brought "international disgrace" to the country.

The former president told a crowd of about 300 on the campus of the University of Nevada, Reno today that the nation is more sharply divided that it has ever been as a result of Bush's policies.

The winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, he says he's deeply embarrassed that the American government now stands convicted around the world as one of the greatest abusers of civil rights. He continued the theme in a dinner speech to 700 at a Democratic fundraiser tonight, saying every past president has been a supporter of human rights, until this one. KESQ News Channel 3
I love how he throws in the nonsensical, if not hypocritical, assertion that if the nation is divided it must be Bush's fault.

Or the bald face lie that Bush doesn't support human rights.

First of all, we are divided. But is there anything that Bush could possibly do to avert division with the kind of foaming at the mouth liberalism that Carter supports?

The ironic thing about this, coming on the heels of the Chavez-Ahmedinejad-UN-tag-team-hate-fest, is that it is hard to distinguish the propaganda of the enemy from the propaganda of the left. In fact, it is virtually identical.

Carter says that Bush is a torturer and doesn't support human rights. Chavez says Bush is bent on world domination and torture and doesn't support human rights. Coincidentally, that's what Al Qaeda says too.
DUBAI (Reuters) - Al Qaeda's second-in-command Ayman al-Zawahri called President Bush a lying failure for talking of progress in the war on terrorism, according to a video posted on the Internet on Friday.

..."Bush, you are a lying failure and a charlatan. It has been three and-a-half years (since the arrests)...What happened to us? We have gained more strength and we are more insistent on martyrdom," he declared.

"Bush, O failure and liar, why don't you be courageous for once and confront your people and tell them the truth about your losses in Iraq and Afghanistan?" said Zawahri, wearing a black turban and sitting in front of a banner with Islam's statement of faith: "There is no god but Allah, Mohammad is his prophet."

A U.S. intelligence official in Washington dismissed the video as a "typical al Qaeda propaganda stream" but said analysts were scrutinising its contents for clues that might aid U.S. efforts to track down the militant leader. ~yahoonews
Yup. "Typical Al Qaeda propaganda stream". But it's as if the same writers are working on the Democrat's campaign speeches as well.

And who is to blame for the division between all the newly recruited terrorists and America? According to Democrats it is Bush. Invading Iraq has created more terrorists and failed to stop Al Qaeda's extreme hatred. But we could just as easily blame the Pope as well.
In a second portion of the tape, apparently shot at a different location, Zawahri labeled Pope Benedict a "charlatan" because of his remarks on Islam.

"This charlatan accused Islam of being incompatible with rationality while forgetting that his own Christianity is unacceptable to a  sensible mind," Zawahri said, this time wearing a white turban.

He also compared the Pope to the 11th century Pope Urban II who backed the first crusade.

In a speech to a university in his native Germany on September 12, Pope Benedict quoted criticism of Islam and the Prophet Mohammad by 14th century Byzantine Emperor Manuel II Palaeologus, who wrote that Mohammad commanded that Islam be spread by the sword.

HOLY WAR IN DARFUR

Zawahri urged Muslims to launch a holy war against proposed U.N. peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur region.

"O Muslim nation, come to defend your lands from crusaders masked as United Nations (troops). Nothing will protect you except popular jihad (holy war)," Zawahri said on the video, that showed the date of the Muslim lunar month that ended about a week ago.  ~yahoonews
Damn. It turns out being in Darfur creates more terrorists too. If we want to avoid angering Muslim fanatics then we obviously need to get out of everywhere. A total pullout from the entire world. Once we have all of our troops and citizens within the borders of the United States, we can start mixing the cool-aid for the 'final solution'. The solution that will make them happy rather than angry at us. No more Bush. No more America. No more angry muslims.



Posted by Eric Simonson at September 29, 2006 11:56 PM
Comments
Comment #185261
But is there anything that Bush could possibly do to avert division with the kind of foaming at the mouth liberalism that Carter supports?

Talk about irony. So you’re saying Carter is wrong to blame Bush for the polarity and then imply it’s because of “foaming at the mouth liberalism.” That’s one very stupid counter-argument, Eric.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 12:41 AM
Comment #185262

Just because both have the same message does not mean that they have the same agenda. Besides, the message is truthful no matter who says it. Since imprisonment is the opposite of liberty, and Bush wants to dole out indefinite imprisonment without any legal impediment, then one can conclude that Bush does not in fact respect inalienable human rights. Habeas Corpus is not to protect the guilty, it’s to protect the innocent. If you don’t think the War on Terror sweeps up innocents then you aren’t paying attention.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 12:51 AM
Comment #185263

Jimmy Carter has never really forgiven America for not sharing his own very high opinion of… Jimmy Carter.

Now he wants us to pay.

Posted by: Neo-Con Pilsner at September 30, 2006 12:53 AM
Comment #185265
Bush is very unpopular, it seems… with those who wouldn’t mind seeing America defeated.

Don’t you ever get tired of being so disingenuous? Or is your worldview so simpleminded that you can’t imagine that there might be more than one way to address global terrorism? That those opposed to the Bush agenda oppose it simply to “defeat America” and not because they feel there are better approaches to the problem? It’s hard to believe that you spend so much time seeking out support for your “arguments” and posture as if you’re erudite, yet you still paint with only two colors.

[…] voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.
— Hermann Goering Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 1:09 AM
Comment #185269
Bush wants to dole out indefinite imprisonment without any legal impediment

And of course, there’s more to it than this. The Bush team’s advocacy of torture is rather blatant disrespect for human rights. That whole “what is an ‘outrage against human dignity’?” schtick was hilarious. Bush is either really stupid or being insidiously obtuse. I’m sure if he were tied down and used as a toilet for a week, he might finally understand what that phrase means. And how torture doesn’t necessarily have to involve serious injury and/or organ failure.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 1:45 AM
Comment #185274

Lets see, Bush prays - he’s a religious zealot.
Bush attacks Iraq - wrong war, wrong time, for oil.
Bush says stay the course in Iraq and defeat the terrorists where they live instead of here - he’s lost touch with reality.
Huh, hmmm?
So Bush is more revolting to Lib/Dems because of these attributes, and others - but they embrace and long for Clinton, a man who sexually abused a 21 yr old intern in the Whitehouse, (yeah, I know, consensual-right!)cheated on his wife, lied about it to the American people and failed to do anything about UBL for 8 years, and just recently derided the Bush administration for not doing anything during their 8 months leading up to 9/11. Huh?

Yeah, I guess the old saying is really true, the definition of liberalism is standing on your head and yelling to the whole world that the world is the one who is upside down.

Bottom line - Bush stands for what he believes in, makes no decisions based on newly ginned up poll data and won’t make policy based on situational morality.

Libs don’t leave their home in the morning without sticking a finger in the political wind to see what their stance or “operational truth” should be on the issue of the day. Pathetic.

Posted by: JR at September 30, 2006 2:51 AM
Comment #185275

Joseph

By all means, lets not “torture them”. We all know that a dog collar around ones neck is just as bad as being beheaded while you are still alive. After all they just want to strap a bomb to their chest and detonate it in a crowd of innocent women and children, or fly a plane into an office building, maybe use nerve gas in a subway or dirty nuke a city, their behavior is much more humane than say a slap to the chest - cold air - loud rock music - water running over their head - sleep depravation - I mean, heck they get their 70 virgins and we get another 3,000 dead, maybe more. And you have the gall to call the President “obtuse”? You do realize that they are not taking notes and writing your name down on a list of “people who defended our rights-no blowing these up”. Your weakness in the face of this attack on western civilization is what they count on to defeat and destroy us. Wake up! One last question, is it worse to degrade and “torture” these murderous thugs or to have been the people trapped in and above the fires in the Twin Towers on 9/11? Think about it.

Posted by: JR at September 30, 2006 3:10 AM
Comment #185276

Hey, get off the peaNUT farmers case.
This great man brought us Habitat For Humanity
and NightLine. Hey. Maybe he can help us with
those whacky Iranians again. Then again. No.

Maybe he can start an old style barber shop
quartet with Hugo Chavez, Kim Jung Il and his
old pal from Iran. They all seem to be singing
the same sour tune.

Posted by: Dale G. at September 30, 2006 3:34 AM
Comment #185281

JR,

I was a Clinton supporter. Having said that you’ve probably already stopped reading and made a judgement about me, it’s the close-minded conservative way you think.

Clinton embarrassed me. I was ashamed of him. I thought the republicans had created gossip about him to destroy his credibilty. Then I found out it was true, and that he lied.

What Bush has done is far, far worse, and he is unable to say “I was wrong” or its time to change strategy on Iraq. Even when his own advisors tell him the bad news, he continues on. It’s the close-minded conservative way he thinks.

Bush has done far more to shame this country. Bush is much more of an embarrasment! Bush is morally corrupt, and the loss of our country’s integrity has been the outcome. Because of this administration, we are becoming the same type of evil that we sought to destroy.

“when we allow someone to be tortured by our agents, it is not only the victim and the perpetrator who are corrupted, not only the “intelligence” that is contaminated, but also everyone who looked away and said they did not know, everyone who consented tacitly to that outrage so they could sleep a little safer at night, all the citizens who did not march in the streets by the millions to demand the resignation of whoever suggested, even whispered, that torture is inevitable in our day and age, that we must embrace its darkness?” - Ariel Dorfman

BTW, I’m a conservative libertarian. Conservatives used to stand for personal responsibility, fiscal responsibilty, and integrity. But they have turned into vengeance seeking capitalists who know they’ll be able to become richer as long as they can keep the American public in fear of the next terrorist attack.

Bush unpoplar? I wonder why?

Posted by: mem beth at September 30, 2006 7:43 AM
Comment #185282

Seems 1/3 of Republicans want to see America defeated, then by your logic, Eric. Polls show Bush is not handling the Iraq situation well according 30% of Republicans.

You really shouldn’t trash your own party’s constituents like that. Or, maybe you should, come to think of it.

See, folks, Eric has mastered the Republican spin machine which has a rule. The rule is to frame the issue in such a way as you either agree with Karl Rove or your are despicable as an American in some way, either unpatriotic, stupid, or hate America, or hate our troops.

But, the fact is, an intelligent, patriotic American who loves both their country and the troops can also hold the opinion that Bush’s invasion of Iraq was a mistake, and his handling of the Iraq war was less than should be expected of our President at war.

The same person can also reason that since there is no end in sight for the Civil War in Iraq which was allowed to ensue, our troops will be safer if withdrawn from the Civil War, but remain either just outside Iraq or, within safer launching areas in Iraq, on standby, to prevent an overthrow of the Iraqi government and to halt migration of al-Queda and other hostiles into Iraq’s borders with any force or armament.

This action would better safeguard our troops, concede that the Civil War in Iraq is a reality we can’t fix and allow it to proceed without our troops in the middle of it dying for no good purpose, and prevent Iraq’s government from falling to others who would not keep democracy alive.

This is a strategy which Eric and the President want to call “Cut and Run”, but the fact is, it is not cut and run, it is facing reality and safeguarding our soldiers. Eric and the President fear that anything less than total victory regardless of the cost to our soldiers means political defeat here at home. So, for hopeful political gain, Eric and our President are willing to spend our soldiers lives needlessly to try to defend their reelectability here at home.

I applaud and find much in common with the 30% of Republicans who have lost confidence in Bush’s handling of Iraq, and recognize there are other options which involve pulling our troops back while maintaining their ability to jump back in the instant a threat is mounted against the Iraqi government itself.

That is not cut and run, that is smart. Eric and Bush don’t like the plan because a military Democrat proposed it first. Which is more important? Saving face, or, saving our soldiers from needless maiming and death?

Posted by: David R. Remer at September 30, 2006 7:44 AM
Comment #185283

JR,

By all means, lets not “torture them”. We all know that a dog collar around ones neck is just as bad as being beheaded while you are still alive.

What then of cases such as Maher Arar, an innocent Canadian citizen “extraordinarily rendered” to Syria by the United States government, where he was forced to live in a 6’x3’ cell for over a year and to endure torturous, inhumane treatment?

If cannot establish guilt or innocence on our own soil before sending someone off to be tortured, how then do you trust us to do so in more precarious situations? As Joseph Briggs said earlier in this thread: “Habeas Corpus is not to protect the guilty, it’s to protect the innocent”.

And what of all those who have been released-without charge-from Guantanamo and the Iraqi prisons? Were they all guilty and we just let them out anyway? Or did we confine (and possibly abuse) innocent people for years before actually taking the time to discern their legal status? Either answer shows a serious lack competence, foresight and respect for justice.

Torture degrades both the practitioner and the recipient; no one considered our troops in the pictures released from Abu Graib to be heroes. I would rather not see them demeaned, dishonored and mentally scarred in such a fashion; torture serves no purposes other than vengeance and sadism. Those who are most likely to succumb are those who have not been trained to withstand such practices: the innocent, who then confess to whatever they think their torturer wants them to. If you consider false information more desirable than reliable intelligence, then torture is certainly the way to go to achieve that end.

Your weakness in the face of this attack on western civilization is what they count on to defeat and destroy us.

How again are small bands of people from what we would consider impoverished nations going to “defeat and destroy” us, the most powerful nation on the planet?

Oh, that’s right, by using terrorism to elicit social and/or political change within our own country through the incitement of fear.

They wish for the world to view us as they view us; they count on an aggressive and militaristic overreaction in order to paint us in reality as the evil tyrannical imperialists they see inside their own heads. To divide us from our allies by getting us to abandon our values and to drain our resources into the sinkhole of the middle-eastern deserts like so many countries that succumbed to such hubris and foolishness in the past. All this, in an attempt to justify their own aggression and hatred and to gain more followers in their cause.

Like any other small and wily predator, they wish to frighten our horses off the moral high ground and lead us into the wilderness.

Weakness is running into battle without first learning of the enemy you intend to face. Weakness is relying on brute strength when self-control, acumen and finesse would have been more prudent. Any practitioner of martial arts will tell you that even the largest oppenent can be brought down if one knows how to use his own strength against him.

Wake up!

Yes, and remember what we should be fighting for: our ideals, our liberties and morals; everything which separates us from our enemies and everything those honorable men who came before were willing to die for so that we could one day know such freedoms. Abandoning what such brave men paid for in blood and sacrifice out of fear for one’s own hide is the true definition of cowardice.

Posted by: Liberal Demon at September 30, 2006 7:58 AM
Comment #185284

“The former president told a crowd of about 300 on the campus of the University of Nevada, Reno”

300? 300?

Sure shows his drawing power, doesn’t it?

Stick to Habitat Jimmy.

Posted by: The Chief at September 30, 2006 8:21 AM
Comment #185285
We all know that a dog collar around ones neck is just as bad as being beheaded while you are still alive.

If I hear this “But they behead people…” argument again I’m going to scream. You don’t set your own moral standards by what the worst people do. If we all thought that way, life would be a nightmare of rape, murder, and theft. Fortunately, most of us realize that you are actually supposed to greatly exceed the moral standards of evil people, not barely edge them out.

The dog collar is of course a red herring. If that’s the worst thing that ever happened to someone in US custody then we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

Posted by: Woody Mena at September 30, 2006 8:22 AM
Comment #185287

Jeffery Domar! The new American standard!

Posted by: tony at September 30, 2006 8:27 AM
Comment #185289

Liberal demon,
Rarely have I heard it expressed so clearly. That to relinquish dearly held principles which have always worked to insure freedom, out of fear for one’s own hide (or even worse, one’s POLITICAL hide) is the act of a coward.

Eric, Are you not in fact ashamed that our great country is the laughingstock of most of the world? Many of the countries laughing at our folly are themselves free countries. They understand that our huge misguided safari in Iraq validated and emboldened the terrorists. Some in this country seem to be taking a long time to catch on to this fact.

I live in a tiny, very wealthy town. We have visitors from all over the world. Many young people from europe and elsewhere come here to work on their summer break from college. Their INVARIABLE response to any query about their opinion on Iraq is to smile and avert their eyes. I think they have an objectivity that some here may lack.

I personally am ripshit that my country is a laughingstock in the world because our “leader” does not have the ability to admit his “course” is not working. I HATE the fact that we are in the middle of someone else’s civil war, and that our young people are dying by the thousands in an unjust, unprovoked war.

You accuse those of us who are vey strong patriots of not being patriotic by speaking out against what we feel is wrong. You do so at the peril of our country. America has always stood for liberty. American courts have always been the last refuge of the sick,the weak, the outcast. I don’t support ANY terrorist,EVER. But I support their having basic human rights in our legal system. If tried and convicted, I volunteer my expert shooting services (thanks, Uncle Sam!) to put a round through the head of the terrorist in question. I’m not, however, going to sit back and watch the constitution take one throught the head so some would-be oppressors can maintain their grip on my country.

Get it into your brain that we say bush is a misguided loser because it is TRUE.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 8:37 AM
Comment #185290

To compare us to the terrorists is absurd. They have no respect for any rules or any sense of humanity. Because we are not muslim, they look at us as less than a person. That is why they dont mind beheading us.
There are several interrogation tactics that are used to get reliable information. You take this intel and corroborate it with other intel and make decisions on proper responses.
Liberals want us to change our values, but libs should adopt american values.

Posted by: JoeRWC at September 30, 2006 8:44 AM
Comment #185291

Steve-
What do terrorists have to do with our constitution?

Posted by: JoeRWC at September 30, 2006 8:48 AM
Comment #185292

Eric

Bush is very unpopular, it seems… with those who wouldn’t mind seeing America defeated

This is the kind of talk that polarizes our country. If you do not agree with Bush and the neo-con way of fighting terror, then you hate america and against america.

There are many Americans, myself included that are tired of being labled this way. It designed to squash dissent and it is undemocratic.

Many of us see the war on terror different than you and do not agree with the way Bush is fighting it. Maybe we are wrong, maybe not. But it dosen’t mean we want to see us lose the war.

You would think of all the revelations that have come out in the past 5 years, there would be some intellectual growth by conservative pro-Iraq war thinkers. But instead, you dig in your heals, reject reality and look to justify your initial decision to support the war.

Posted by: Stefano at September 30, 2006 8:49 AM
Comment #185293

A prisoner of war is a man who tries to kill you and fails, and then asks you not to kill him.
Winston Churchill

Posted by: Jeff S at September 30, 2006 8:49 AM
Comment #185294


Ummm…

An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Winston Churchill

Posted by: Jeff S at September 30, 2006 8:52 AM
Comment #185297

Eric

So when GWB stands in front of the cameras and calls everyone who disagrees with “cut and runners” he is not being divisive? When he ridicules Democrats who don’t support the decisions he has made regarding Iraq he is being the Uniter, not the Divider? It’s no wonder Republicans such as you also love to ridicule and divide, to bend the truth into outright lies to serve your agenda. You have quite the example to follow.

Posted by: mark at September 30, 2006 9:06 AM
Comment #185298
Bush is very unpopular, it seems… with those who wouldn’t mind seeing America defeated. Jimmy Carter is in Nevada reportedly, “embarrassed by American Government,” and calling Bush an, “international disgrace”.

Strangely enough Al Qaeda’s Veep, Zawahiri, is saying almost the exact same thing.

And, in other news, Osama Bin Laden claims that the sky is blue and the earth is round. And, strangely enough, Bush agrees with him. Would that make Bush an America-hating terrorist-lover, too?

Posted by: Rob Cottrell at September 30, 2006 9:06 AM
Comment #185299

If the neo-libs dont want us to lose the war, they should come up with solutions to help us win. Hating Bush does not help. Most of the Democratic Party supports the war, anyway. The most votes they ever cast against the war is 13. If the Dems come into power, they will continue with the same policies and then take ownership and credit. Neo-libs, the Dems are not on your side. They just need your vote this November.

Posted by: JoeRWC at September 30, 2006 9:06 AM
Comment #185300

JoeRWC,
“What do terrorists have to do with the constitution?”

They should have nothing to do with the constitution. Neo cons want us to change our values, but they should adopt American values. If we change or ignore the constitution out of fear of the terrorists, then that is what they have to do with the constitution.

I would hate to appease those who want to restrict rights, spy on folks with no warrant, and jail folks with no habeus corpus. The crocodile thus created could feed well on even those who created it.

Great quote about the prisoner of war being the man who tried to kill you, fails, and then asks you not to kill him. It sounds ironic, even a little stupid at first. But it really says a lot about how civilized people have principles that they abide by. Calling one evil worse than another, by justifying torture on the grounds that “we don’t cut heads off”, we lower ourselves from the standards we have held for hundreds of years. Standards, values which have worked great and elevated us in the eyes of the world to the best. Standards and values we must not abandon out of fear. Or much worse, political gain.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 9:12 AM
Comment #185303

JoeRWC

I thought we won the war when GWB declared “mission accomplished”, it’s the occupation of Iraq that is so difficult. I believe it is time to end the occupation and let Iraq decide for itself what type of government they want to have. It’s not about winning or losing, you can’t “win” an occupation, and what is going on over there right now is not doing anyone any good. The majority of American(U.S.) want out and it’s time our government listened.

Posted by: mark at September 30, 2006 9:45 AM
Comment #185305

Ilove how he throws in the nonsensical, if not hypocritical, assertion that if the nation is divided it must be Bush’s fault.

Or the bald face lie that Bush doesn’t support human rights.


Our nation wasn’t divided after 9/11. If we are divided now, it’s on his watch. How is Carter being hypocritical here? Have you read anything GW has been saying lately about Democrats? Even if he were right, those comments are extremely divisive. Do you actually believe GW and co. are incapable of playing nasty politics? Is that why you say that the statement is nonsensical?

Bush doesn’t support human rights, unless they are for his base. If any of the rest of us get rights, well, I guess that’s just gravy for his mandate.


First of all, we are divided. But is there anything that Bush could possibly do to avert division with the kind of foaming at the mouth liberalism that Carter supports?

Yes, he could stop alienating moderate Americans, especially moderate Democratic Americans. Foaming at the mouth? It would take hundreds of years for most people to do as much good for this world as Jimmy Carter has done. So you don’t like Carter? Your comment about him is so overreactive as to be down-right delusional.

Posted by: Loren at September 30, 2006 10:08 AM
Comment #185306
Ilove how he throws in the nonsensical, if not hypocritical, assertion that if the nation is divided it must be Bush’s fault.

Or the bald face lie that Bush doesn’t support human rights.


Our nation wasn’t divided after 9/11. If we are divided now, it’s on his watch. How is Carter being hypocritical here? Have you read anything GW has been saying lately about Democrats? Even if he were right, those comments are extremely divisive. Do you actually believe GW and co. are incapable of playing nasty politics? Is that why you say that the statement is nonsensical?

Bush doesn’t support human rights, unless they are for his base. If any of the rest of us get rights, well, I guess that’s just gravy for his mandate.


First of all, we are divided. But is there anything that Bush could possibly do to avert division with the kind of foaming at the mouth liberalism that Carter supports?

Yes, he could stop alienating moderate Americans, especially moderate Democratic Americans. Foaming at the mouth? It would take hundreds of years for most people to do as much good for this world as Jimmy Carter has done. So you don’t like Carter? Your comment about him is so overreactive as to be down-right delusional.

Posted by: Loren at September 30, 2006 10:09 AM
Comment #185307

“Popularity” has nothing to do with it…policies that violate the Constitution and grab executive power do…along with a useless war that’s helping recruit even more terrorists and killing & maiming our children.

Posted by: Lynne at September 30, 2006 10:19 AM
Comment #185308

Steve,

You say,But it really says a lot about how civilized people have principles that they abide by. Calling one evil worse than another, by justifying torture on the grounds that “we don’t cut heads off”, we lower ourselves from the standards we have held for hundreds of years. Standards, values which have worked great and elevated us in the eyes of the world to the best.

We didn’t have the embedded TV crews in WW2 like we have had since Vietnam. I wonder how many crimes were committed by american soldiers against german and japanese POW’s that didn’t get investigated because the media was part of the propoganda machine of FDR. If you really think we have been this high and mighty deliverer of purity and moral ethics for hundreds of years, I have some swampland I would like to sale you. We are losing this war politically. If there is a better way to fight terrorism I would love to hear it. The muslim world has had us in their sights since the mid seventies. Make no mistake, we are going to lose this war. Because most americans don’t think Islam is a threat. I am aethiest, so I am not preaching from a christian perspective. I have much more fear of Islam than I do of christianity. This war is between the judeo-christian values of the west and the islamic fascism of the middle east. Europe is very afraid of irritating muslims for fear of attacks. Sounds like 1936 all over again. How long will France hold out this time before they surrender?

Posted by: Ed at September 30, 2006 10:26 AM
Comment #185309

JR,

We all know that a dog collar around ones neck is just as bad as being beheaded while you are still alive. After all they just want to strap a bomb to their chest and detonate it in a crowd of innocent women and children, or fly a plane into an office building, maybe use nerve gas in a subway or dirty nuke a city, their behavior is much more humane than say a slap to the chest - cold air - loud rock music - water running over their head - sleep depravation - I mean, heck they get their 70 virgins and we get another 3,000 dead, maybe more.

You are using an argument of equivalence or lack thereof, i.e. since shitting on someone’s face isn’t as bad as beheading or suicide bombing, then it’s okay. This is a fallacy. By this measure we could sodomize suspected terrorists and it would be okay.

And you have the gall to call the President “obtuse”?

Gall? If you think it impudent to question the motives of the president then fine. I, on the other hand, feel it absolutely necessary to always question a government who insists on killing innocents and torturing suspects on my behalf. I’m audacious like that.

You do realize that they are not taking notes and writing your name down on a list of “people who defended our rights-no blowing these up”.

So? I’m not afraid of terrorists. I’m not afraid of dying in a terrorist attack. Come what may, I’d rather have my liberty and honor.

Your weakness in the face of this attack on western civilization is what they count on to defeat and destroy us. Wake up!

That’s funny since I think all this hand waving and bullshit policy from the right is cowardly. I would rather die than sacrifice my morals and the idealism of what is America and you call me weak. While you would rather sacrifice our morals in the face of your fear in order to attain a false sense of security and you call that strength. I think such a position is obviously confused and upside down. I think your position undermines America and will defeat us with more certainty than any terrorist attack.

One last question, is it worse to degrade and “torture” these murderous thugs or to have been the people trapped in and above the fires in the Twin Towers on 9/11? Think about it.

False dilemma. They’re both bad. There is no justification for torture ever. Torture is advocated by the weak and insecure.

You also seem to forget how many people we’ve released without charge.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 10:31 AM
Comment #185313

Where does it say that an enemy cannot hold the truth against us? It doesn’t make al-Qaeda, the murderer of innocents the good guys. Even the Devil can quote scripture to his purposes, the saying goes. The truth can be a weapon in the hands of evil men, when good men fail to live up to their principles. We can hollow ourselves out going into denial, until we don’t even know the truth ourselves, or we can confront the truth, clean up our act and begin focusing on making America and the West preferable to Bin Laden and his arrogant ambitions of religious zealotry.

If we stop caring whether we kill innocent men, women, and children, who does that benefit? If we stop caring about the inhumanity and ineffectiveness of torture in getting to the truth, who does that benefit? If we are seen as invaders who don’t even have the decency to set up law and order in their wake, who does that benefit?

To balk at the truth now because it comes from the lips of our enemies is to give them the advantage. If we cannot openly discuss it, if ours is to become a nation of dirty little secrets, then guess what? We are vulnerable to every villain who knows the truth. Of all the enemies to make, the truth is the one enemy we cannot defeat.

There’s one good solution to the matter of Bin Laden and al-Zawahiri taunting us: Get them. The same NIE that tells us that winning Iraq will denigrate the prestige of the jihadists tells us that the rapid capture or killing of those two bastards will serve to splinter the groups If we want to make them eat their words, we have to get our hands on them first.

Five years has passed, and still this president hasn’t caught them. He and his people didn’t want the fun to end with al-Qaeda, so they decided to attach the war on terror to their broader rogue nation campaign. As a result, the mission creep has spread our forces thin and blurred the focus of our ambition to put an end to those who attacked us.

This should be a wake up call, just like that other item that’s shown up on the Red Column. We are giving these guys advantages to hold over us that they don’t deserve. We’ve engaged in a counterproductive policy that aids the enemy.

There’s that old joke where a guy goes to the doctor and says “It hurts when I do this.” The punchline? The doctor says “Then don’t do that.”

If it hurts us to engage in poorly planned pre-emptive warfare, then lets not do that. If it hurts us to hear them taunting us about them being free and us being fools, lets do something about that. Any person with the least bit of logic gifted to them knows that the purpose of our enemies aping our own complaints towards our leader is to deeping our division by taunting us about the truth.

The most elegant way to deal with this, is to stop bickering, assess things objectively, and then make it our goal to turn the truth against our enemies, both in action, and in terms of their reputation.

Let’s stop handing advantages to the enemy by embracing filthy, immoral methods, and lets start making ourselves among the heroes in the Muslim world’s story. Only when they prefer taking our side to al-Qaeda’s will we truly have won this war. We have the advantage of not being an amoral terrorist organization. I suggest we start acting like the civilized country we are, and leaving the dirty tricks to the shadows.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 30, 2006 10:47 AM
Comment #185314

Eric, let’ resume your post:

Carter hate Bush.
Terrorists hate Bush.
Carter is a terrorist.

Now join the nearest sophism club ASAP.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at September 30, 2006 10:49 AM
Comment #185318

“Popularity” is for people like cheerleaders, not people in major leadership positions…oh, yeah, Bush IS a cheerleader…

Posted by: Lynne at September 30, 2006 10:57 AM
Comment #185320

There is NO torture. It is not “being justified” by anybody. It is banned.

The term is merely being thrown around by those types of narcissists who think it feels good to be “against torture” even if there is no torture taking place. Are you against burning witches too?

Why don’t you whip yourself into a frenzy of moral posturing and letters to your congressmane about all the witches that Bush is burning? I have no doubt you’ll feel good about yourselves in your noble outrage.

The question is whether there should be any form of coercive interrogation or attempt to break down a terrorist suspect’s psycholigical resistance.

Without coercive interrogation, we will never or almost never get any information from hardened terrorists, and if our soldiers know that interrogation has become pointless, they’ll stop taking so many prisoners.

Taking prisoners is difficult and risky. Much easier to just send them straight to the virgins.

Now, if you actually cared about sparing lives and being merciful instead of stroking your own egos and raving about Bush, you’d have a little more common sense about this issue.

Posted by: Neo-Con Pilsner at September 30, 2006 11:01 AM
Comment #185321

Liberal Demon

From the report of the Commission of Inquiry into the Arar affair.


The Commissioner also found that both before and after Mr. Arar’s detention in the U.S. the
RCMP provided American authorities with information about Mr. Arar which was inaccurate,
portrayed him in an unfair fashion and overstated his importance to the investigation. Some of
this inaccurate information had the potential to create serious consequences for Mr. Arar in light
of American attitudes and practices at the time.

I just wanted to show you taht things like this do not happen in a vacuum. What happened to him may have been a mistake, however it’s not as simple as saying “ya know like this Canadian guyt was traveling home and when he stopped in NY they just sent him to Syria.”

Posted by: Keith at September 30, 2006 11:05 AM
Comment #185323

Philippe

He is not a terrorist. He is a wak minded former President who is still trying to be relevant.

Posted by: Keith at September 30, 2006 11:07 AM
Comment #185325

Stephen Daugherty,
You are the MAN. I can usually tell by the first paragraph or so of your posts that it is you writing them. An amazing clarity of thought and logic. Wow.

Ed,
It sounds like you really would love to find a solution to the mess we are in. As stephen suggests above, killing the assholes who taunt us and would kill us and our children would be a nice start.

Do you really think we are hearing about all the abuse that is happening as we “fight for freedom”? Was it right that we abused enemy prisoners in WW2? Do you want your country, the greatest country the world has ever known, to stand for barbarian principles, for secrecy, for erosion of liberties?

Have we always followed ALL of our principles and laws in every instance, for hundreds of years? NO, probably not. But are not these the same laws and principles which set us apart from terrorists, from totalitarians?

Remember, Ed, the same laws and principles that demand we treat prisoners (even asshole terrorists) humanely also say that we can kill them, if we can find them. I think we can all get behind that.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 11:10 AM
Comment #185326
[…] So Bush is more revolting to Lib/Dems because of these attributes, and others - but they embrace and long for Clinton, a man who sexually abused a 21 yr old intern in the Whitehouse

It’s funny how you think a sexual peccadillo is in any way nearly as bad, or worse even, than killing tens of thousands of Iraqis under false pretenses. Funny as in batshitinsane, not ha ha funny.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 11:16 AM
Comment #185330

Yeah, the division in America is ALL Bush’s fault…because the media’s constant reporting of the negative news, and the “opposition party“‘s parroting of the EXACT same opinions as our avowed enemies (you know, those folks who want to either blow you to smithereens or force you at gunpoint or knifepoint to their calm, religion of peace??!) has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with public opinion…..

During previous periods when America was under attack, the opposition party KNEW they were at war with people who wanted to KILL THEM, and put their country’s interests above their own and those of politics. But the left in this country today is so blinded by their personal animosity and hatred of President Bush that they will do, say and embrace ANYTHING to unseat him, including letting this newest variety of fascism gain ground and power. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!! The only way we can make these fanatics happy is to renounce the freedoms and liberties this great nation was founded upon, most especially the freedom to choose our own religion and the freedom to speak our own minds, and embrace their backwards, accept-no-opposition and make-women-slaves way of life. The failure of so many to grasp the realities of what we face today is truly frightening and disheartening. These people hated us and wanted to destroy us LONG BEFORE 9/11 and BEFORE we invaded Iraq (which was under a maniacal dictator who killed thousands of his citizens for “fun”). Quit being blinded by your partisan hatred of the president and FACE REALITY - there will be no safety or freedom anywhere in the world until the terrorists and the forces of Islamofacism are DESTROYED.

Posted by: James at September 30, 2006 11:35 AM
Comment #185331

Joseph Briggs

Besides the whole lying under oath thing, it was more about attitude than anything else. It was about where and when his little peccadillo took place. The fact that he did this in the Oval office when he was supposedly doing the people’s business showed his total disregard for the people. It was and still is all about Bill.

Posted by: Keith at September 30, 2006 11:37 AM
Comment #185332

Pilsner,
You think that staying awake for a week, sexual humiliation, loud music in your ears for the entire time, a little “waterboarding” to top it off, wouldn’t be tortuous?

Are you so certain of that that you would be willing to try it, and then report back to the rest of us? I don’t want ANYTHING to do with that kind of thing myself, on EITHER side.

For the hundreth time, maintaining the moral high ground doesn’t mean we don’t get to give some death back to the terrorists. It just means we can do so AND still call ourselves the greatest nation on the planet. As soon as we condone torture, pre-emptive warfare, warrantless wiretapping, habeus corpus-less imprisonment, and the like, we’ve lost that right.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 11:37 AM
Comment #185341
Besides the whole lying under oath thing, it was more about attitude than anything else.

Ohhhh, so it’s where sexual peccadillo occured and the lying under oath and his defiant attitude that is equal to or worse than killing tens of thousands of Iraqis under false pretenses. That clears things up nicely.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 12:04 PM
Comment #185348
There is NO torture. It is not “being justified” by anybody. It is banned.

Bush, like anyone who has to defend such a weak position, is trying to reduce the argument down to semantics. “What is torture?” This bullshit plays well with twelve year olds but educated adults can see it for what it is. Like I’ve alluded to, I can think of dozens of ways to torture someone without ever causing serious injury and/or organ failure. All of them would qualify as outrages against human dignity.

The question is whether there should be any form of coercive interrogation or attempt to break down a terrorist suspect’s psycholigical resistance.

Without coercive interrogation, we will never or almost never get any information from hardened terrorists

Tough. Living by the rule of law is hard work.

The term is merely being thrown around by those types of narcissists who think it feels good to be “against torture” even if there is no torture taking place. Are you against burning witches too?

Why don’t you whip yourself into a frenzy of moral posturing and letters to your congressmane about all the witches that Bush is burning? I have no doubt you’ll feel good about yourselves in your noble outrage.

[…] Now, if you actually cared about sparing lives and being merciful instead of stroking your own egos and raving about Bush, you’d have a little more common sense about this issue.

These are just indirect insults attacking crude strawmen. Why don’t you stick to addressing the issues rather than deride some imaginary opponent? Those who have no substance to their argument resort to ridicule.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 12:20 PM
Comment #185349

Eric,

Do you even try to make sense? If you wish to start, learn to avoid basic fallacies.

Posted by: Trent at September 30, 2006 12:20 PM
Comment #185351

“Bush stands for what he belives in” yes he does and if you disagree with him no matter what, you are unamerican or at least that is what he is telling everyone. So lets take a trip back in history to when the colonies wanted to break away. They talked bad about the King so they were wrong, well then maybe we should become part of England again. If everyone believes that the president is the know-all to end-all then isn’t that called a dictatorship.

How long are we going to have to hear stay the course before he throws the country off the cliff?

Posted by: KT at September 30, 2006 12:28 PM
Comment #185356

The right wing thinks that waterboarding and other torture should be allowed because our cause is noble and just.

The extreme fringes of the Islamic fundamentalist movement think that attacks on civilians and beheadings should be allowed because THEIR cause is noble and just.

Both sides think that the end justifies the means.

I believe that the end DOESN’T justify the means. I believe that right is right, and wrong is wrong. I believe that doing the wrong thing is WRONG, regardless of why you do it. As my parents taught me, two wrongs don’t make a right.

I believe that in order to be thought of as a good guy, you actually have to SHOW that you’re a good guy through your behavior - you can’t just claim to be one but behave badly. And behaving like a good guy means following the rules we all learned as kids.

* Play by the rules.
* Don’t lie.
* Don’t cheat.
* Don’t steal.
* Don’t make excuses.
* Live up to your word.

There are more rules, but I think you get the idea. The rules we learned as kids also apply to us as a nation. If we don’t do ALL those things as a nation that we learned as kids, then we can’t claim to be the good guys for one simple reason - we aren’t behaving like the good guys.

This is a great country. I just want us to continue to be the good guys by doing the right thing.

But the RIGHT wing wants to do the WRONG thing, and they accuse anyone who objects to that of being un-American. When did doing the right thing become un-American?

Posted by: ElliottBay at September 30, 2006 12:40 PM
Comment #185381

It was 1952 when then President Eisenhower (with the assistance of the CIA) to reinstall the (late) Shah of Iran to the throne. The Shah was basically our ONLY middle eastern ally when the dreaded 1972-1973 oil embargo was started with the newly formed OPEC nations. (How soon we forget.)

Today, we are now enjoying the fruits of the Carter Administrations (lack of) labor in NOT supporting the Shah of Iran when it was or should have been in our best interests to do so.

As I said, we are now paying a very heavy price for Carter’s lack of fighting Islamic facism when it first raised it’s ugly head.


Posted by: Frank B at September 30, 2006 3:07 PM
Comment #185384

For the sake of clarification: do those objecting to what they call torture believe that it would be acceptable to question terror suspects using ANY methods which differ from how an American citizen accused of a crime would be questioned in routine law enforcement in this country?

If not, say so. If so, then WHAT extra methods would be okay to use?

If you believe that there should never be any difference between the interrogation methods used on a terrorist picked up on the battlefield and an American citizen arrested for, say, dealing drugs, then you are asking for something quite, something that goes far beyond the Geneva Conventions and beyond what any nation has ever done in the history of warfare or the history of the world.

It’s not a matter of America “living up” so any values—it’s the invention of entirely new values at precisely the time when we are facing an enemy more dangerous and more lawless than we have ever faced before.

I completely oppose any kinds of treatment which cause injury or could conceivably cause death. But I don’t object to scaring accused terrorists into talking and wearing down their resistance by subjecting them to physical DISCOMFORT which stops short of torture.

This is a standard which is extremely merciful not only to the hundreds and thousands of innocent people whose lives can be saved, but it is actually extremeley merciful to the terrorists themselves.

For if they CANNOT be questioned using any coercive techniques whatsoever, there is no reason for our soldiers to run the risks involved in bothering to capture them alive.

Our soldiers frequently enter buildings instead of just bombing them flat, which they’d be entirely within their rights under the laws of military engagment to do. They do this in order to take prisoners. Further, our troops have been maimed and killed on many occasions while attempting to disarm and restrain enemy combatants (who often booby-trap themselves and their surroundings and who often conceal weapons).

Instead of just slaughtering the enemy, our troops try to take prisoners—not for any military reason, but for their intelligence value.

Anybody who thinks that jihadists are going to give up their secrets if you just say “please” and “thank you” is kidding themselves. Far better to just waterboard them for 30 seconds, hear what they have to say, and then send them back to their cells where they can get on with reading their American taxpayer supplied Korans and eat their three American taxpayer supplied religously correct meals a day.

Posted by: Neo-Con Pilsner at September 30, 2006 3:26 PM
Comment #185387

On the contrary, Mr. Briggs. Eric’s argument is precisely to the point. The division in America is due to the consistent refusal of the Left to oppose the Bush administration with rational arguments, and its persistent and consistent reliance on slander, character assassination, and personal attacks.

The “more than one way to address global terrorism” as an excuse for caving in to it is lame enough that it needs no refutation. If you’re against Bush’s policies because you think they’re wrong, Joe, how about finding some rational arguments against them, instead of quite so much disinginuity?

And Elliott, it’s not a matter of accusing people who disagree with us of being un-American. It’s a matter of accusing people who are un-American with being un-American.

Trent, if you want to accuse others of “basic fallacies,” try citing them, eh? Or have baseless attacks become so much of a habit over the pass six years that you don’t even bother to try to provide a rational for them?

“Moderate Democrats” is a virtual oxymoron. Ask Joe Lieberman about “moderate Democrats.” I don’t see that anyone sufficiently extreme to identify the opponents of this President with moderation is terribly well qualified to use that word in any case.

As to the former Clinton supporter who is a “conservative” libertarian and now opposes Bush, here we simply have further evidence that a libertarian is pretty much nothing more or less than a low-budget liberal who extends the normal liberal penchant for moral nihilism a bit futrher in any case.

Hey

Posted by: Bob Waters at September 30, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #185389

“Islamic facism”

I can’t beleive people are still clinging to this pathetic right-wing talking point.

There is no facism within the Islamic jihad. If you doubt me, use a dictionary.

Bob -

The most un-American action I’ve seen in the past six years has been the fear-driven fire sale of our American freedoms by those who preach the loudest that our American soldiers should be dying to protect those very freedoms. I can not help those who shake so violently in their shoes from their overwhelming fear of the terrorists - and their pathetic trade of freedoms for a facade of safety… but I do think they should be labeled as cowards and traitors.

Posted by: tony at September 30, 2006 3:53 PM
Comment #185391

At the risk of sounding like Sicilian Eagle: there have been some excellent posts here on this thread, and some damn good writing and reasoning.

I think you know who you are.

Keep it coming—the lurkers are transfixed.

Posted by: Tim Crow at September 30, 2006 3:56 PM
Comment #185393

Thank you, Tim. I do my best.

Posted by: Neo-Con Pilsner at September 30, 2006 3:58 PM
Comment #185395

Joseph Briggs,

Talk about irony. So you’re saying Carter is wrong to blame Bush forthe polarity and then imply it’s because of “foaming at the mouthliberalism.” That’s one very stupid counter-argument, Eric.

Ah, sweet irony. Almost as good as delicious irony. But not quite.

The reality is that the left and the Democratic party in particular has made it a talking point to say that Bush has divided America. The question is, are Democrats dumb or are they dishonest?

The argument has absolutely no merit whatsoever. I can just as easily say that it is Democrats who have divided America.

Does Bush divide America? Then how? By being partisan? By making decisions based on what he believes? By disagreeing with the left? But then the reverse is also true. When the left disagrees with the duly elected representative of the people are they not the ones who are creating division?

If Bush wins two presidential elections on the strength of the issues he puts forth, is it not fair to say that the country has chosen Bush’s policies? And that it is Democrats who are “DISSENTING” and thereby creating division.

The evidence is overwhelming that it is the left which is dividing the country through their own perverted version of patriotism, which is “DISSENT”.

How many times have we been told that the left and democrats have a right to dissent?

Dissent: defined as “a state of disagreement and disharmony”.

So how is it that one can be in dissent and also blame others for dividing the country?

Posted by: esimonson at September 30, 2006 4:14 PM
Comment #185403

David,

Seems 1/3 of Republicans want to see America defeated, then by your logic, Eric. Polls show Bush is not handling the Iraq situation well according 30% of Republicans.

You really shouldn’t trash your own party’s constituents like that. Or, maybe you should, come to think of it.


I am not speaking of polls, David. I am speaking of the leftist meme which sees America as an enemy to be defeated. The left has a clear history of viewing America precisely as Bin Laden and Zawahiri state it.

See, folks, Eric has mastered the Republican spin machine which has a rule. The rule is to frame the issue in such a way as you either agree with Karl Rove or your are despicable as an American in some way, either unpatriotic, stupid, or hate America, or hate our troops.

Actually, no. One can disagree without being unfaithful to America- or Karl Rove. I’m merely highlighting the puzzling animosity toward America that is the core philosophy of the left.

But, the fact is, an intelligent, patriotic American who loves both their country and the troops can also hold the opinion that Bush’s invasion of Iraq was a mistake, and his handling of the Iraq war was less than should be expected of our President at war.

This is part of the problem. Democrats voted for this war. Once we are there it is not wisdom to say that we should have never been there. Had Clinton or Gore done the same thing I would not declare that we need to give up and just leave.

Once you are pregnant, it does no good to argue that one should have used birth control. What democrats and the left want is nothing less than surrender.

Posted by: esimonson at September 30, 2006 4:38 PM
Comment #185406

Bob Waters,

You have now been elevated to glorious inclusion in my hegemonic blogroll!

Be joyful.

Posted by: esimonson at September 30, 2006 4:47 PM
Comment #185416

“Once we are there is is not wisdom (sic)to say that we should have never been there”
Sometimes ideas that didn’t seem to bad in concept turn out to suck in practice. This is a textbook example of how to think yourself into the shit. I mean, how could someone as smart and infallible as our “great leader” do something that was wrong or unjustified. Well, I guess he never could, could he?

Fools and bumblers since time immemorial have followed that path, and they all got their just reward. Certain failure and ridicule. I guess bush is getting his share of both right now.


“the leftist meme (!) which sees America as an enemy to be defeated” If you actually believe this Eric, you should go get some psychiatric help. I’m serious- no insult intended. It’s just as Karl Rove would have you do. Try to tear down the other side- retain control at any cost.

I am as left wing as they come. Love blacks, gays, support a woman’s right to choose abortion, the whole magilla. But the idea that I, or anyone like me wants America to lose, wants the terrorists to win, well, I’ve gotta hand it to ya pal- that’s some sick shit!!! I’m problably not telling you anything you don’t already know. And if that’s so, well then, that is among the most corrupt messages I have ever heard.

It also pretty much mimics the tone of your masters. People that think like that are insufferable, borderline personalities. People that come out and SAY something like that? Well, you get the picture. Way to go Eric, pit American against American!!

Talk about divisive! If someone were to tell me I wanted america to lose to my face, there would be a fight. Sheesh!!

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 5:19 PM
Comment #185418

Frank B,

It was 1952 when then President Eisenhower (with the assistance of the CIA) to reinstall the (late) Shah of Iran to the throne.

[…] Today, we are now enjoying the fruits of the Carter Administrations (lack of) labor in NOT supporting the Shah of Iran when it was or should have been in our best interests to do so.

That’s funny. We arrange a coup in Iran (which was a British plan that they couldn’t implement because they had been expelled) and you don’t see anything wrong with that. How that might’ve contributed to the rise of Iranian fanatical hatred of America. And then you go on to blame Carter for inadequately dealing with Eisenhower’s mess. You do realize that the original phrase was “Death to Britan,” right? And that Iran saw support from America as a means to shed the unwanted influences of England and Russia? Yet we didn’t do anything due to the irrational fear of the spread of communism. But it was our lack of support for Iranian nationalization that eventually lead Mosaddeq’s push toward power grabs and association with the Tudeh Party, i.e. a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The beginnings of Islamic fanaticism in Iran began with the assassination of PM Razmara in 1951, which was seen as a triumph against British imperialism. The fact that America did not correctly deduce that the trend in Iran was moving assuredly toward nationalization (which should’ve been obvious) and that any interference in this movement would breed deep hatred toward us is a failure of leadership and diplomacy that Eisenhower bears the brunt of, but Truman as well since he had more time to act on it (sound familiar?). Carter simply inherited this unfortunate legacy.

Our best interests in dealing with Iran arose long before the second and successful coup in 1953. And the coup only fed the fanatical hatred of America.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 5:23 PM
Comment #185424

“… puzzling animosity toward America that is the core philosophy of the left.”

I thought you all felt it was all because we loved the terrorists. (I’ve heard that one quite a lot… ) Think about it - you simply infer that we hate America because we are opposed to Bush. WTF? Can you please explain this?

My daughters sometimes feel that we hate them because we are critical of them from time to time… or we feel they have been bad. Is it something like that?

Posted by: tony at September 30, 2006 5:34 PM
Comment #185426

Bob,

On the contrary, Mr. Briggs. Eric’s argument is precisely to the point. The division in America is due to the consistent refusal of the Left to oppose the Bush administration with rational arguments, and its persistent and consistent reliance on slander, character assassination, and personal attacks.

What is irrational about saying the problem of global terrorism should be addressed as a law enforcement problem and not a military one? Where is the slander and character assassination in that?

The “more than one way to address global terrorism” as an excuse for caving in to it is lame enough that it needs no refutation.

Why don’t you drop the lame excuse to avoid countering the argument and just counter the argument? Do you really think those who oppose Bush’s methods want to see America defeated? What really reeks of character assassination is saying that those who don’t agree with the Bush doctrine are un-American, seek to give comfort and support to the terrorists, and wouldn’t mind seeing America defeated.

If you’re against Bush’s policies because you think they’re wrong, Joe, how about finding some rational arguments against them, instead of quite so much disinginuity?

Please point out where you think I’ve been disingenuous or irrational. You might also want to find all the comments I’ve made in the past.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 5:44 PM
Comment #185429
The reality is that the left and the Democratic party in particular has made it a talking point to say that Bush has divided America. The question is, are Democrats dumb or are they dishonest?

Probably both. I did not say Bush has, in fact, divided America. I place that solely on the shoulders of Newt Gingrich. It would be more honest to say Bush has not made any effort to unite America. My comment regarding this was simply to point out that you refute one unfounded accusation with your own. It’s just a dumb tactic.

If Bush wins two presidential elections on the strength of the issues he puts forth, is it not fair to say that the country has chosen Bush’s policies? And that it is Democrats who are “DISSENTING” and thereby creating division.

No. The country as very much split. There was no mandate. This would encourage any reasonable politician to move toward the center and seek out compromise. Bush, on the other hand, moved further to the right (in his foreign policy) and dismissed opposing views.

Dissent: defined as “a state of disagreement and disharmony”.

So how is it that one can be in dissent and also blame others for dividing the country?

Do you notice that “division” is not in your definition?

Dissent is what makes this country strong. Dissent demonstrates the strength and stability of our system of government. Arguing that dissent must be quelled and that we should trust one branch of our government to “do the right thing” is diametrically opposed to the foundations of our country. Our founders knew that men are corruptible and that trust cannot be inherent to the system. In every congressional session, there will always be dissent. When the SCOTUS strikes down executive action as unconstitutional, that is dissent. Dissent does not equal division. It should be pretty obvious that both the left and the right want to address the problem of global terrorism and that dissent only applies to our methods.

And the fact that the people can rise up and dissent against any administration’s policies is the double-edged sword of free speech. Face it: a free society is hard to manage but this is no reason to abandon our principles and decry those who enjoy the benefits of free speech through dissent. It would be easier if we lived under a dictatorship, just like Bush said, but I’ll never capitulate to that.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at September 30, 2006 6:08 PM
Comment #185430

Bob Waters

Elliott, it’s not a matter of accusing people who disagree with us of being un-American. It’s a matter of accusing people who are un-American with being un-American.
Who appointed you the sole arbiter of what makes someone an American?

Posted by: ElliottBay at September 30, 2006 6:18 PM
Comment #185435

James-
The Nazis were a real party, with members, an organization, a set of stated goals, etc. So, too, the communists. The Baathists are a real party, as are the Taliban.

But the Islamofascists? They are a figment of the right’s imagination. There is no such party, no such organization, no common stated goals. No nothing that would indicate a truly common political and religious agenda.

It’s a vague syndrome of extremism proposed as a defeatable enemy, so much the better to rally the party faithful to support a faltering war on terrorism, and a misguided invasion in Iraq. In all actuality, a number of parties, religious movements, and other factions exist, in various differen forms of government, from old-fashioned monarchies, to parliamentary systems, to theocracies to military governments.

It makes absolutely no sense to blur the distinctions here. It is our necessity to know our enemies, to know each for what they are, not for what kind of cooked up syndrome they might all be a symptom of. Our job is not to fix the Middle East. That’s the native’s job, and only they, in the end can acheive it.

They don’t care about our freedoms. They care about our influence and power in the region. They want it for themselves. They covet the power we have, envy our ability to so easily lead folks astray from what they believe is the right and true path.

The truth is, we can’t destroy this extremism. Our enemies have to do it themselves. Defeats in battle might aid this by making the cause seem futile, wasteful, but those are not the only means. We ought to expose the bloodthirstiness of our enemy, the innocent toll both here and there that they work.

That can only work, though, if the criticisms are difficult to turn around, if we are not merely the big bully country trying to deny our enemies the right to the atrocities we perform.

The reality to face is that we will be judged in comparison to our enemies by people who have much more in common with them than with us. We must become a force to be admired in the world. We can’t be admired while men in rainslicker stand on boxes in our prisons waiting to be electrocuted if they step off.

The benefits of these aggressive interrogation methods are questionable. Memory itself is reconstructive. Your brain stitches together different details into a pattern that can be recalled later. Torture disrupts the pattern. The suspect becomes “encouraged” to remember things as the torturer wants them to. Perhaps that means giving up actual details.

Problem is, we don’t know what they know (would we be asking questions otherwise?) so we don’t know when we’ve stopped getting fact and when we’re simply getting fed a story by someone who wishes to avoid our displeasure at contradiction and such.

People die for intelligence failures, so it is no casual matter to use such unreliable means to gather intelligence. Every dollar that we spend to counter a fictional threat is one that cannot go to confront a real one.

CIA and FBI agents from across the board have spoken out: creative interrogation, interrogation that manipulates by pride, shame, ambition, vice, and other means, rather than trying to force information out, often works best. It’s not perfect, but neither is torture, and it lacks the nasty side effects of using such means.

As for any definition of torture, I’d say the best test for what’s torture and what’s not would depend on one question: what would you call it (indeed, what would be your reaction to it) if it was done to our troops? This is not an unimportant measure, because other governments might get the idea that because we define torture a certain way, they are free to engage in reciprocal practices.

I want your honest response: if somebody waterboarded one of our soldiers, what would you call it? If somebody deprived one of our soldiers of sleep for days on end, what would you call it? Never mind whether the evil enemies we fight cut off heads or screw their own sisters, what is right or wrong for us? It is the most subtle and insidious form of relativism to peg the depths we are willing to go to that of our enemy.

Sometimes, we don’t have a choice but to be ruthless. Most of the time, though, we have the choices to make. Whether we make them appropriately makes the difference as to how we compare to our enemies. Let it not be said, when it comes to our behavior, that between our adversaries and ourselves little real distinction can be made.

We are our own best advertisement for the good of Democracy and humane codes of conduct. When we stop being that great example, our ability to persuade others to follow in our footsteps is hindered.

I think you should stop and consider why the enemy chooses to use the words of the dissenters to needle those of the majority party in America. Could it be that they want you to cripple America by taking out more of your rage against your fellow Americans instead of them?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 30, 2006 6:44 PM
Comment #185449

I think Jimmy Carter needs to retire back on the peanut farm . His failure as a president shouldnt be masked by blaming George Bush for all that is wrong in the world. If Jimmy were running against President Bush he would’t stand a chance. Jimmy Carter like most liberals have lost touch with reality and would rather lay down and HOPE the terrorist would just stop their evil little ways. But I am sorry to say isalmic Fundimentalist will only grow more bold in their terrorist thinking. Therefore I think we should only support politicians that have a set and are not afraid to stand up for America! It is unfortunate that we have come to this state in America today. But any politician that is worried about the rights of terrorist at Guantonamo Bay should be voted out immediately because they are obviously on the wrong side and their interest in America is NOT the constitution or the American way but the way of the United Nations. Which is a whole subject with in itself.

Posted by: Casey at September 30, 2006 7:16 PM
Comment #185457

Henry C,
Keep writing my friend. You’ll do more to help us liberals than to hurt us with that kind of rant.

I only have one slight issue with your rant. Your misunderstanding of courage. Courage is not an absence of fear. Any animal, human or other, that does not have this God-given emotion will soon be dead. Courage is when you feel fear, but do the right thing anyhow.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 7:52 PM
Comment #185462

If you read the following I guess we should have impeached President Lincoln.

Merryman, ex parte, case decided in 1861 by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney sitting as a federal circuit judge in Baltimore, Md. John Merryman, a citizen of Maryland, was imprisoned by the U.S. army on suspicion of favoring the Confederacy. He obtained a writ of habeas corpus habeas corpus (hā`bēəs kôr`pəs) [Lat.,=you should have the body], writ directed by a judge to some person who is detaining another, commanding him to bring the body of the person in his custody at a specified time to a specified place for a specified purpose. The commanding general refused to respect this action, alleging that President Lincoln had authorized him to suspend the writ. Taney held that Article 1, Section 9, of the U.S. Constitution gave to Congress alone the power to suspend the writ in case of rebellion or invasion and that consequently the President’s action had been without warrant and represented a threat to the liberties of all Americans. Lincoln, however, continued to adhere to the same practice throughout the Civil War. Congress ratified the suspension in 1863.
Please pray tell what we should do different in this war.

Posted by: Jeff S at September 30, 2006 8:25 PM
Comment #185463

Casey said: “But any politician that is worried about the rights of terrorist at Guantonamo Bay should be voted out immediately because they are obviously on the wrong side and their interest in America is NOT the constitution or the American way but the way of the United Nations.”

What a perversion of what opponents to torture are arguing. They are not arguing that convicted terrorists don’t deserve whatever happens to them. They are arguing that Americans are of a higher moral and ethical character than to brutalize innocents it captures in along with the real terrorists, as our enemies the terrorists do. We are better than they AS LONG AS WE ACT BETTER THAN THEY!

The instant we adopt their tactics and dehumanizing manner of warfare, is the instant we cease to be better than they are. Are you better than they are, Casey? I am sure you want to think you are. But, that means you must think and act better than they are. Saying you are better without acting and thinking better, does not make a person better. It just makes them hypocritical at best.

The issue is not about treating them right. It is about our acting right! We didn’t have to become cannibals or torturers of women and children to defeat the Japanese in WWII. Nor do we have to become subhuman in our pursuit of terrorists in order to defeat them. In fact, the more respect and honor we earn from the people of the world from out actions, the more certain will be the terrorist organizations defeat - for the army against them will grow faster than they can grow their ranks.

Posted by: David R. Remer at September 30, 2006 8:32 PM
Comment #185464

One of the reasons Bush is unpopular is because he invaded a fourth-rate country like Iraq (diverting his attention from the hunt for al’Queada and Ben Laden in Afghanistan) and is getting his ass kicked. If the world’s only super-power can’t defeat Iraq, then something is wrong. Could it be that the Bush administration is incompetent and doesn’t know how to fight a war. It has consistently ignored the advice of its generals and done it its way. So who is to blame but Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the rest of that gang.

Bush and Company wanted a war on the cheap, and they didn’t want to pay for it because they didn’t want to alienate big business. They didn’t wan’t to draft, because that would lose them popularity, so they sent too few men in without even essentials like body armor or armor for the humvees, with no planning for the long term, and apparently with no understanding of the region or its peoples and have pretty well botched everything.

Posted by: kiamichi at September 30, 2006 8:35 PM
Comment #185467

Steve Miller,

Thanks for the kind words.

Keith,

Yes, I realize that it was not entirely the fault of the United States, however, and if I’m not mistaken, we were the ones who made the ultimate decision to send him to Syria. In my opinion, this is a direct violation of the spirit of the Geneva Conventions, which states that no prisoner of war can be extradited to a country where they may be tortured. This guy wasn’t even a prisoner of war, so I admit that perhaps the Geneva Conventions do not technically apply, but shouldn’t potential innocents be protected to a greater degree than POW’s?

This case illustrates why we must uphold the rule of law and give due process. Our justice system was created for a reason, because absolute certainty of guilt is not in any way easy to ascertain even under the best of circumstances. Labeling someone guilty in order to assuage one’s own conscience and allow indefinite detention and harsh treatment is worlds away from truly establishing guilt in a manner befitting civilized society.

In the end, the assumption of guilt rather than innocence only creates guilt, on the part of those administering this perverted form of justice.

All the arguments of what is considered appropriate treatment of terrorists fall by the wayside if we do not even take the time to discern who is a terrorist and who is not.

Posted by: Liberal Demon at September 30, 2006 9:01 PM
Comment #185478

I remain genuinely baffled as to how somebody could read the above posts by Liberal Demon and David Remer and still fail to see beyond the fear that causes some to want to react EXTREMELY on the terrorism issue.

“Stupid is as stupid does” said Forrest Gump. You can talk freedom and justice, liberty for all, human rights, yatta yatta, ad infinitum, but if you aint living it, you fulla crap. We don’t have to fight terror on a lowest common denominator basis.

Posted by: Steve Miller at September 30, 2006 10:06 PM
Comment #185479

JR youre great. I almost copy and pasted what you said and made it my own.

The sheer ignorance in saying Bush does not believe in human rights would be hilarious if it wasn’t so unbelievably depressing. We have soldiers in foreign countries defending people who can’t defend themselves. The whole reason we are there is because of human rights! 1) I have a right to go into a building and not get hit by a plane. 2)Kurds have a right to be in their homes without being gassed. 3) Telling a terroist you voted for Kerry might make him smile. He might even thank you. Then he will cut off you’re American head. (BTW PLEASE take off that bumper sticker!!!)

Do you really think there’s so few terrorists out there we can give each a trial after a week? Believe me, I wish we could.

Its America, I would die to defend your opinion, but please, think. And do one better. Care.

Posted by: CommonSense at September 30, 2006 10:12 PM
Comment #185483

CommonSense,

Do you really think there’s so few terrorists out there we can give each a trial after a week?

Our justice system as it currently stands handles millions of cases every single year throughout the country; there are far more murderers and other types of criminals processed through our courts monthly than there are suspected terrorists in detention around the world. This is not a problem of numbers or an overload on the system.

There is a major difference between “A trial after a week” and no trial after years of confinement and degrading treatment.

If you truly wish we could try them fairly, then I don’t understand your argument against doing so, given that it has no basis in reality.

Posted by: Liberal Demon at September 30, 2006 10:26 PM
Comment #185522

CommonSense-
You’re playing semantics. You could say that he believes in human rights, but still, things like Abu Ghraib happen, and we’re essentially arguing about laws legalizing things that we would likely call torture if they were inflicted on our soldiers.

Most of our soldiers are doing a good job, and are showing an unbelieveable level of restraint in the face of an intense guerilla campaign. It’s a measure of our culture’s respect for human rights that more incidents like Haditha haven’t occurred.

As for the so-called rights you speak of?

1)I certainly would prefer that nothing happens to you like that, but no right, written or unwritten, could stop a terrorist from doing that. What could do that is good information and good practices in security. Unfortunately, this administration has been short on both, especially because of its infatuation with “aggressive” interrogation practices.

Memory is reconstructive, and often the current state you’re in does much to determine what you remember, and more importantly, how you remember. The phenomenon of bias in memory is well known; folks will often remember events in a way that is flattering to them, or dependent on their perspective. Even under normal circumstances, people can become confused about the actual nature of events.

Under torture, one’s memory tends to get better for what the torturer wants to hear. You will say things out of fear that denial will simply bring more pain. John McCain, I believe, during his interrogation by the North Vietnamese, was asked for the name of his fellow squad members. He gave them the line up for the Green Bay Packers, or some other football team. The torture stopped. I don’t know whether his captors knew he was lying, but the point is, torture merely yields information that satisfies the interrogators. If the interrogators show satisfaction in a lie, a confabulation, or a misrepresentation of the facts, then that is what the subject of the torture will yield them. The prejudices and biases of those asking the questions will function to limit the usable information. Overall, such a policy is more than just an embarrassment to a country supposedly above such things; it is an intelligence failure waiting to happen.

Scratch that. That has already happened, again and again. One suspect had us chasing around shopping malls and crap like that on the basis of his intelligence. Only when they got somebody down who knew the Quran, and who knew how to appeal to his particular psychological weakness did we actually get good intelligence. The beauty of such an approach is that it’s open ended. You will be creating less interference to them telling you the things perhaps that a torture victim would be too intimidated and beat up to tell you, things that don’t confirm your biases. Since a person who reveals stuff under traditional interrogation is doing it of their free will, they will often volunteer details and names you didn’t know you needed to know, information that torture might overright, inhibit, or make uncertain with confabulation.

It also lets you separated the guilty from the innocent much easier. Under Torture, you could probably make any man you picked up off the street confess to being Bin Laden’s right hand man. The key reason not not torture is so that you can have greater faith in what they tell you, and a more reliable set of methods for determining when they’re lying.

2)In case you didn’t know, America stood by and let things like Halabja happened. It’s nice for men like Rumsfeld and Bush to condemn it now, but their forebears in this government, and many of their own made deals with and support Saddam. Saddam, without his weapons and with a no-fly zone in place over Kurdish lands, was in no position to gas anybody. In light of not finding WMDs, I think we can make the common sense inference that the Kurds were in no danger of chemical attack when we invaded.

3)On the subject of who the terrorists wanted elected, the general consensus was they wanted Bush. The CIA, looking at the evidence, concluded that Bin Laden’s October Surprise was intended to throw the election to Bush. Why Bush? Because Bush is stubborn, inflexible, and predictable. He has also been extraordinarily ineffective at plugging up the security holes that al-Qaeda exploited. He got D’s and F’s from the 9/11 commission for his follow up.

The Bush administration is the triumph of arrogance and complacency over humility and vigilance. He is perpetually trying to make his efforts seem more successful than they are. Such practices inevitably lend help to the enemy. After all, what problem is harder to solve, than the one you don’t know you have?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2006 8:55 AM
Comment #185556

First WE just approved another 70 billion dollars for the war effort, I understand that this vote shows “support” for the troops. Where are all the good Democrats who oppose this war? Why didn’t ANY stand up and vote no?

I really don’t think anyone here wants to cause or allow any anymore American deaths. That being said, I agree that our country is divided and I think we should just split it up. I will live with the republicans on the west coast and we will fight this war, you can all die on the east coast as you stand around and point fingers at each other.

Posted by: JayTea at October 1, 2006 1:31 PM
Comment #185602

I can’t believe all the crap that I am reading. Your very attitudes are what is going to defeat our great nation. You want to talk about our constitution? Our constitution was never meant to be chiseled in stone. It was never meant to be a stagnant pool. The framers of the constituiton wanted this important document to be an ever flowing dynamic stream capable of changing with time and conditions. Even though I hold our constitution above all and will defend it to the death, I don’t believe that we as a nation should be so rigid in our protection of our constitutional freedoms as to allow the document itself to be the very impliment that causes our destruction. We have seen the heyday of our country, and if we as a nation do not stop our bickering and wake up to the fact that this is a new world necessitating new ideas and strategies for our very survival, we may be faced with the destruction of the very things we want to preserve. We may all go down because we are so inflexable at a time when we need to be the most flexable. Can you not see that our greatest enemies are using our constitution to defeat us? They just sit back and laugh at how gullable we are as a nation. I guess my main point is that our constitution was meant to guarantee our liberties and not to be the cause of our destruction because we were to pigheaded to change with time.

Posted by: DrKing at October 1, 2006 8:01 PM
Comment #185607

dr king;

which parts are you willing to give up?

Posted by: califrep at October 1, 2006 8:37 PM
Comment #185615

Califrep I don’t see anything in dr kings post about giving up parts of the Constitution. We must remember that document was made by men who believed in honor. We are fighting people who look at American babies as targets (not that liberals care about babies either…)They could never imagine the vast scale this conflict is on. And Liberal Demon, you just said our court system handles millions of cases a year.

I can’t believe you don’t think theres a problem with numbers. Let me help you… a million is a lot. Millions is plural, well call that “many a lot” so you understand. Now, how many terrorists do you think there are? Some estimates say as many as 50% of the worlds Muslim population support extremists. Now, its time for you to do some research. Go find out how many Muslims there are in the world (I’m a big supported or class involvement). Divide by 2 (remember, dont multiply, but if you do multiply by .5). Its a slightly larger number than we can give trials to. Got it?

Posted by: CommonSense at October 1, 2006 9:35 PM
Comment #185631

Dr. King-
I’m not sure of your position, but here goes: power granted without oversight is inflexible by nature. It’s difficult to get people to give it back. It’s more flexible to protect constitutional guarantees for the most part, then if an emergency necessitates it, we can afford to be somewhat flexible. I don’t think in the wake of 9/11, we were that concerned about our government dotting i’s and crossing t’s, and legitimately so. But now, without the crisis, and with the problem of how we live with this threat long term, most people are unwilling to compromise that far. When Americans die overseas for our freedoms, they’re not dying for abstract luxuries.

They’re dying for freedoms that must be enforced by vigilance, even at the risk of our lives. The Founding Fathers made the constitution flexible not so it could be subverted by those with little imagination for policy, but so Americans wouldn’t see their liberty ground under the wheels of an arbitrary government.

What I hear talking with the torture debate is fear, pure and simple, and folks are letting it ride them relentlessly.

It wasn’t our restraint that caused 9/11, it was our ignorance, and our inability to get the systems working towards a concerted goal.

How worthy are we of our liberties when we drop them at the sight of an attack of our country without a second thought. If we can be scared to such extremes so easily, then we have lost to the terrorists, and deserve to lose to them.

Commonsense-
Honor? They might have believed in it, but they didn’t rely on it as a means of government

As for the size of the conflict? Good heavens, man, We can imagine the scope of World War II, why can’t we imagine the scope of this? Your sense of proportion leaves something wanting.

As for support of extremists, your definition is too vague. What degrees, what kinds, how local, how global. It’s fearmongering paranoia, and we can’t persuade people to support cooperation when our head folks are acting like the average Arab is out to get them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 2, 2006 12:09 AM
Comment #185659

Commonsense,

There are slightly over 1 Billion Muslims worldwide. We do not have half that number in custody, nor will we ever because you obviously pulled that percentage right out of thin air; nice non-sequitur though. Even the most fear-laden individuals on this site only put the percentage at 1-2% of the Muslim population, which is still rather silly; 19 hijackers fly planes into buildings, so we then assume that tens of millions of people are out to get us (and have the wherewithal to do so). By the way, the Boogeyman is real and he’s hiding under your bed, better abandon some of your freedoms so that the government can come in a have a look.

Even if your percentage were true, we are currently holding approximately 14,000 suspected terrorists in custody around the world. Again, less than what our justice system currently handles in an average month. Why again are they being held for years without ever being charged? Why have so many of them been released eventually, again without charge? Either they were innocent and we detained (and possibly abused) them for years, or they were guilty and we let them go free anyway. Your choice, but neither option is an example of justice, competence or foresight.

Oh well, I simply thought you were being sincere when you said “Believe me, I wish we could,” in regards to giving trials to the suspected extremists we currently have in custody. Changing the debate to a fictional number of total terrorists and using that number to justify indefinite detention and abuse of a much smaller group belies your statement and is really quite beyond my (or anyone’s, for that matter) abilities to counter sufficiently, as debates regarding confabulations contained solely within your mind are not what I come here for.

By the way, telling someone that they need to do some research, when you obviously have no idea what you’re talking about, is really quite preposterous. Perhaps coming here to learn and discuss, rather than condescend and regurgitate, would serve you (and maybe even our country) better in the long run. Just a thought.

Posted by: Liberal Demon at October 2, 2006 7:02 AM
Comment #185668

Keith,

He is not a terrorist. He is a wak minded former President who is still trying to be relevant.

If he’s not anymore revelant, wak minded or not, why Eric do care about what Carter say about Bush?

Guess for Eric (and someones here) what Carter could say still catch some attention, right?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 2, 2006 8:50 AM
Comment #185669

James,

there will be no safety or freedom anywhere in the world until the terrorists and the forces of Islamofacism are DESTROYED.

My opinion here is:
- there will be no ever total safety anywhere in the world.
- there will be always freedom somewhere in the world.
- there will be always a poster trying to turn capslock into a stronger point.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 2, 2006 8:54 AM
Comment #185675

Joseph Briggs

You speak as though these detainees were US citizens, rather than members of violent foreign movements intent on the destruction of our culture and country. Come on! Give us a solution rather than the same old leftist rhetoric.

Posted by: Jack McG at October 2, 2006 9:19 AM
Comment #185677

kiamichi,

Where do you get your information?? Do you really believe what you stated? The US Armed Forces is hardly getting the crap kicked out of it. Sadly, the Iraq situation is becoming another policing operation run by politics rather than our generals. If the US military was actually unleashed in Iraq, there would be little left of the “insurgency”. That kind of might also destroys many good people and institutions, as well. So, as a good nation and good people, we hold back to do little harm. What’s your game plan, Ace???

Posted by: Jack McG at October 2, 2006 9:30 AM
Comment #185697

Jack McG-
Unleashed to do what? Unleashed from what? The simple fact is, our soldiers are capable, and actually much more on the ball regarding the needs of the situation. It’s Bush and Rumsfeld’s leadership that’s lacking.

The French tried the approach you describe with insurgents. Guess what? They lost Algeria and Vietnam. Attrition doesn’t defeat guerilla soldiers. They draw on the population, using your ruthlessness as a means to draw support and gain recruits. They provoke the ruthlessness, harrass you until you can’t think straight, and then exploit your mistakes and your atrocities.

Simply being stubborn and more aggressive will not necessarily work. In fact, it might even play into their hands, reinforcing approaches that are destructive to the success of the mission. If you’re wrong in a war, no amount of insistence otherwise on your part will make you right.

This isn’t about holding back. Naturally any approach we take should be taken with overwhelming force. But for that to mean something, for it to accomplish something, there’s got to be a goal.

The game plan should be a graduated withdrawal, with the mission in each case being reductions in forces conditional on the acheivement of stability and self-sufficiency. The difference here, the crucial distinction between this plan and Bush’s, is that we’re not going to wait forever for it, and we’re not going to simply wait for it to happen. We’re going to make it happen.

We must make the following clear:
We are going. If things do not shape up after a long enough time, we will simply leave. If our concentrated effort can’t win the situation, years of protracted passivity won’t do the trick. We are, however, going to be leaving quicker if we get their cooperation. In return, we will spare no expense to get things done.

Ultimately, we only win if we give them more cause to take our side and make our priorities their own. We aren’t fighting the Iraqis. We’re fighting what they’re fight: Lawlessness, sectarian violence, terrorism from outside. They oppose us mainly because they see us as the source of their problems. Getting out of control will not make our success more likely. Becoming part of their solution to their problems rather than the problem itself is our best bet.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 2, 2006 11:14 AM
Comment #185710

Jack McG,

You speak as though these detainees were US citizens, rather than members of violent foreign movements intent on the destruction of our culture and country.

I don’t care that they aren’t US citizens. They should be afforded basic human rights because it’s the right thing to do.

They aren’t all terrorists. If you remember, after the Abu Ghraib the US released hundreds of detainees. And we’ve been releasing magnitudes more detainees than we’ve prosecuted. Like I said earlier, if you don’t think innocents get swept up in this conflict then you aren’t paying attention.

Abiding by Common Article 3 and affording detainees the rights of Habeas Corpus is to ensure that we do no excessive harm to those innocents. While at the same time, the same treatment toward what actual terrorists we do have in custody will allow us to maintain our moral high ground and add legitimacy to our struggle.

Oh, and characterizing the terrorist’s impetus as “the destruction of our culture and country” is hyperbole not suited to reasoned debate. We’re in a conflict against humans, not cartoon caricatures.

Come on! Give us a solution rather than the same old leftist rhetoric.

I’ve said it before: terrorism must be dealt with as a law enforcement problem because that’s what it is. These are individuals, regardless of state sponsorship, who perpetrate crimes. Using military forces to deal with terrorism is like using a nuke to rid a house of termites.

If you need evidence that a law enforcement approach works simply look at every foiled terrorist plot. If you need evidence that the military approach is the wrong approach simply look at Iraq and Lebanon.

As far as detainment goes, simply follow the laws already established and give detainees the right to challenge their detainment. Without the opportunity to challenge, suspected terrorist detainment could be indefinite, which is abhorrent.

Regardless, I suspect your demand for a solution is disingenuous and used as a rhetorical device to imply that I haven’t thought these issues through and am simply parroting the party line. Since the sum of my comments on WB clearly show that I am not a Dem ditto bot, I must conclude that your attempts at debate are merely ignorant and lazy.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at October 2, 2006 12:32 PM
Comment #185711
If you remember, after the Abu Ghraib the US released hundreds of detainees.

This should actually be: If you remember, after the Abu Ghraib scandal the US released hundreds of detainees.

Posted by: Joseph Briggs at October 2, 2006 12:33 PM
Comment #185721

They always say that there are only two things you can count on, death and taxes. Well I’m adding a third, partisan hatred bred by the media and ignorance. I love when I hear viewpoints formed after watching our lovely news channels that broadcast only the left side of the current events. But speak to soldiers that are in the military, speak to officers, speak to those that are over there in Iraq and then develop your opinion of the war. The libs want to constantly debate about Bush and his competency, however all they ever say is that they are anti-Bush. I can break it down to common lib speak “Bush bad” no matter what. Get over it! Unity during war means standing together united against a greater enemy. ARe we really so concerned about whether Bush did this or said that? Let’s deal with the situation at hand. Formulate an educated plan on what direction to move and if that happened the dems might even get my vote in the upcoming election. Otherwise all I hear is hatred and dissention which I am not interested in. And no I am not just a person who believes “what they want me to”. I gather info from both sides and make an informed decision on where I stand. I only wish that many other voters did the same. Parties are all well and good, but you can’t always be black and white. I feel that our country is so caught up in “I’m a Democrat” or “I’m a Republican” that we fail to examine all of the issues as thouroughly as we should. SOmeimes looking at the world through someone elses eyes brings about a new perspective.

Posted by: well...... at October 2, 2006 1:35 PM
Comment #185746

Sometimes I’m just speechless,

Some of the things that people say. First of all, I support Bush for taking an offensive on the war on terror(some of you don’t even believe there is a war). We just couldn’t keep sending a missile or two to a training camp upon being attacked and hoping the problem would go away.
To the people saying Iraq is unwinnable, quit listening to the media crap, forget politics for one minute and look at the numbers. The numbers of Iraqi civilians signing up for service, as volunteers by the way, wanting to fight for a say so in the freedom of their country. While the media does nothing but blast our President(stepping over the line many times) and seeing our military entries dwindle. People say there is no Americans against America, how can you say some of the things you say and not be against America. Oh and the person who said we should withdraw our troops in Iraq to a safe place and just come in for “overthrow” conditions, watch the reports, these are what the insurgents are trying to do everyday. I proudly served our military for eight years and you make me sick to my stomach sometimes. I don’t believe Bush is perfect, no one is, but listen to the troops returning. I remember seeing one soldiers reaction to a question by a tv journalist upon returning home… I can’t believe you people(the media), we are doing so many things right over there and feel we’ve made huge progress only to come home and hear you people say we’re losing and want us to pull out.
Some of you people on this blog are probably some of the same people protesting soldiers funerals here at home because they’re gay…, I’m not gay, don’t really believe that homosexuality is right, but these people believe in this country enough to protect the same people that hold signs at their funerals, praising God for their deaths! If you don’t believe that in unAmerican, let me catch you doing it.
Dems want to pull out of Iraq now and say they support our troops, how? Support our troops by supporting our country. This can be done without liking Bush. Thats why we have elections, one is coming up, so go vote, that’s why our country is great. But we have high ranking democrats saying to people oversees that America is a laughing stock. That is unAmerican. We have Senators saying on TV that our soldiers are raping and killing innocent civilians while saying nothing about our soldiers captured and beheaded. This country is great, while not perfect, we find instances of criminal behavior in our citizens as well as our military and take judicial actions against that instance.
If you say you’re American and support our troops, then speak out agains people who speak out against our country. Praise our soldiers who are doing their jobs while we cant even decide to regulate our borders(another topic,another time) wish them well to do their job, leave Iraq a secure place, home to millions of newly freed people and hope for a safe return. Find elected officials you can belive in that support that as well as tell the world America is great. If they’re not doing that, why would you want them to represent you and this nation? But understand you can not reason with terrorist, they believe and are committed to destroying this country, as well as other freedom loving countries and will die to do so. Don’t say ridiculous things that support them, they don’t really like you anyway and will kill you and your family to prove it.
Harsh, I know, but true.
We as Americans are in a time of trial right now but we have been here before. During WW2, America came together to support what they truly saw as evil, where they would to the point ration meat off their tables to support the war, how many of us now would do such a thing. We overcame then and we will overcome this with the understanding we are a free democracy and the greatest nation on this planet.
Thanks for your time…

Posted by: hoyte at October 2, 2006 5:40 PM
Comment #185749

well…..-
Blame the media. It’s easier than admitting you have a reality problem rather than just an image problem. Blame people for being ignorant. It’s better than either admitting you have nothing real to tell them, or admitting that you’ve failed to persuasively connect to people.

Blame bias. It’s better than admitting your rivals might have it right.

We on the left have heard from plenty of people from over there. Many on the right just don’t seem to be listening at all. When the author of the hagiographic Bush at War and the apologetic Plan of Attack comes out with a book entitled State of Denial, you know your leadership has gotten cut off from reality.

Unity during war is typically the default. Most Americans started this war supporting it, because of the perceived threat. Americans will unite to confront threats time and time again.

It is the experience of Iraq, and the manner in which the war has been handled by the administration that’s soured people on it. People don’t remain unified forever unless something external reinforces it.

One part of that would be the success of the military effort. The other part would be the continued existence of the threat. Unfortunately, the unifying threat never existed. That fact, in and of itself has generated much opposition to the war. And the war effort? No. It’s been mismanaged from the start by self-important politicians who measure everything about this war in terms of their personal virtues. They’ve run the war and the intelligence efforts with slipshod egotism, and the rest of us are paying the price.

Stop blaming the media, stop blaming the critics, start blaming those who made the decisions and keep on making them, regardless of what anybody else in this country wants.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 2, 2006 6:04 PM
Comment #185755

Hey guys:
Rather than arguing (to no avail) people who support the torture and the latest “detainee act” — I say
Let’s go along!!
Then, when we replace this embarresment of a President WE can start labelling all the right-wing hate-mongers as “enemy of the state combatents” and send them off to Syria to enjoy their “benign interrogation techniques”
After all, they are saying it is no big deal, I am looking forward to allowing them the opportunity to test them for themselves!!
Just then, as they are sitting in their cells, listening to the screams of their fellow inmates, going “but, but , but I’m supposed to be one of the good guys”!!
THEN, MAYBE the light will come on that these protections are NOT for TERRORISTS, but for the ACCUSED — and especially for the ACCUSED that are INNOCENT.
But then again, I wouldn’t bet on the light coming on — after all it has been extinquished for quite some time!

Posted by: Russ at October 2, 2006 7:07 PM
Comment #185769

Liberal Demon reading your posts is a complete waste of time. Instead of attacking me, and accusing me of making up numbers, DO research. It will open your eyes and one day you’ll see the world isn’t flat.

Stephen:
I respect you and I think you have many good points. But to say a unifying threat never existed seems strange coming from you. And I agree the Right blames the media far too much, but it is a fact most people in the media identify themselves as liberals. And generalizing the Iraqi people opposing us is very unfair. Tell that to the children my cousin plays soccer with in Baghdad.

Posted by: CommonSense at October 2, 2006 8:17 PM
Comment #186148

CommonSense-
It seemed to exist, all right. But actually existing is a different ball of wax altogther. Were the threat real, then the facts would have converged around that.

There have been actual surveys on the attitudes of the Iraqis that indicate that they want us out within the year. That doesn’t necessarily mean all would be glad to see us go, or that we couldn’t come back on better terms. It simply means they want the war over and their country back.

When I took courses in screenwriting I was introduced to the concept of the Square of oppositions. You had Positive (in agreement), Contrary(disagreeing on a crucial poing) Contradictory (just flat opposite in point of view), and The Negation of the Negation(or the sneaky bastard who acts like he’s your friend and like he agrees with you so he can stab you in the back)

Point is, there are any number of degrees of opposition. I don’t think that the Iraqis as one consider us evil. I don’t think, though, we’ll gain much harmony with them with an indefinite stay.

The threat from al-Qaeda still exists. People could be rallied around confronting him and opposing him.

As for Liberal identification, that’s different from the kind of advocacy we see on FOXNews. We all have our biases, and inevitably we show them. The only good solution is not to set up news organizations with an explicit and active bias to balance it, but rather to work by the same rules of journalism and just do news work organically. The solution to unconscious blindspots in others is not deliberately worn blinders on oneself.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 4, 2006 11:35 AM
Comment #187034

I vote based on a party not a person. I vote for the person that seems to stand more for what I am about rather than what some union or anyother idiot tells me to vote for. I voted for Carter (in 6th grade mock government elections)As an adult I voted for Clinton and both Bush’s. I always check out people I vote for before I vote for them. And then I vote on the lesser of two evils

I find it rather amusing how republicans and democrats accuse and call eachother names and make allegations of nonsense. Take for instance this Foley thing. I strongly believe members of both parties new. What they knew and when are yet to be seen. I know just from working in an office most people know everything that is going on down the hall. Nobody on the Hill is innocent. They all have done something that would make us angry. Neither party is perfect and neither have had perfect histories. Besides that who cares what they did in the past. I care about tomorrow. I care about my children. I care about the future of this country. This is a wonderful country we live in and it is worth fighting for. Stop listening to what the idiots in your party tell you and take the time to check people out. Some of the people in both parties are nasty to others and it doesn’t get printed for whatever reason.

I don’t like all this anti-American jibber jabber especially from people who want to defeat us and make us wear those scarves so only our eyes show. And for a former President to go around repeating the same thing is disrespectful to me, you and all the soldiers who have given their lives to fight for our country. Years ago people who talked like that about our country were considered traitors.

I teach my children it’s not nice to call names and say awful things about people, and the other day my son asked why it is acceptable for the former Presidents to do it. I said it’s not.

Why are the former Presidents allowed to do this? No other former Presidents have done it before have they? How sad is that? Former Presidents are not even a good example of class for our children. Shame on them.

Posted by: Independent Voter at October 8, 2006 7:41 PM
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