Progress is being made on a daily basis in Iraq, as Baghdad continues to get safer and the bad guys continue to get killed.

Don’t tell that to the Democrats, though, why screw up a perfectly good election season?

Listening to Obama, Hillary, John Edwards, not to mention Harry Reid and THAT crew, you would think that the American Forces have suffered complete annihilation in Iraq, and a Bataan-like scenario is unfolding.

A catastrophe there is just what the doctor ordered, they think. If Iraq is lost, then Bush's policy is finally dead, and they can coattail an election win on the outcome.

Obama and Hillary, or Hillary (with Bill, of course) and Obama will save the day.

Ya, right.

Truth is, that mid-level officer corps that the Iraqi Security forces so desperately need is taking shape.

On a daily basis, Iraqi forces are taking over, and their blood on the pavement is stark evidence of that statement.

Meanwhile, American diplomats are twisting arms to get the important oil-revenue issue squared away, and within weeks, that issue will be put to bed.

In Afghanistan, over 2,000 Taliban lay rotting in their graves, their so-called spring offensive dying a miserable death.

Trouble is, we have lost the war, according to the Democrats. Trouble is, we can't beat these guys. Trouble is we hate Bush, they say.


The real trouble is American politics. It serves the opposition well if things go bad, and that is what has happened in this case.

Maybe the civil war will drag on there...maybe partition is inevitable. It took years for a fledgling America to go from a revolutionary government to a democracy 231 years ago....I assume that if we have to wait another 5 years there that is out of the question, I guess.

Nope, what we wanted all along was an instant war...a Microwave War....done in 30 seconds.

Instead, the forces of Doom what to strangle that nascent seed that has sprouted over there. Hatred of the president...absolute hatred of the the motivating factor....and to hell with what's really happening there.

Guess they don't see the threat against our way of life....that these folks won't stop until your momma, sister and wife wear a burka and you pray five times a day. Dump your Gillette stock I say, as razors will be thing of the past if either Hillary or Obama are elected.

Well, The Eagle has returned full of solid intel that is of a positive nature. US Forces are kicking butt, and bad guys are getting killed off everywhere.

Trouble is, we won't hear that story.

Except right here.

Posted by Sicilian Eagle at July 5, 2007 7:37 AM
Comment #224852

Yeah, things are going great. Keep repeating it and it’ll come true…

I keep trying to figure out:

1. How long does the war have to last before everything is perfect. (HINT: forever seems like a promising answer…

2. How many of our guys dead = “good” vs. great.

Keep your head in the sand and repeat - “the surge is working” “the surge is working”…

Posted by: Jeff Seltzer at July 5, 2007 8:00 AM
Comment #224855


1. A long time, I think. Five years plus a permanent force, I think we want that gicen Iraq’s strategic location..especially the proximity to Iran

2. Even 1 dead is too many, I think. However, their sacrifice will prove beneficiial down the road. Trouble is, do we have the national will to wage the tough fight? Honestly, thanks to you guys on the other side, the answer appears to be “No”

Are yopu and your collegues over there prepared for the consequenses?

Posted by: sicilian eagle at July 5, 2007 8:40 AM
Comment #224857

Look, this war should have been over four years ago. In fact, that’s what Bush planned. He thought we’d start withdrawing in August of ‘03. He though Chalabi would make a great leader. He thought he wouldn’t have to reconstruct Iraq, that he wouldn’t have to govern it at all. We were just unprepared under Bush and Rumsfeld’s plan. That’s why we’re still fighting.

Bush let this get out of control. The fact that there civil conflict in the streets, that the bloody violence continues isn’t some mere inconvenience, it’s a strategic problem.

What makes it worse is that you’re still thinking in these 2003 terms. you haven’t let the slide into vicious sectarian violence discourage you from keeping this war going. Meanwhile, your people haven’t even thought of how to keep soldiers in Iraq at these levels past next April.

You got that? With the current troop levels we have, even with our national guard and reserve committed, even with our lax recruiting standards, even with all the tour extensions, and repetitions, and the rest periods cut short, you don’t have the soldiers to carry out this plan. Bush has had four years to increase our forces to make this work, and he hasn’t lifted a finger.

The Republicans are ones to talk about the Democrats being prepared for the consequences, given the fact that in this war, they’ve never been prepared for much of anything at all. We’re seeing these people we’re training shooting back at us, showing up among the enemy dead.

You have this very oversimplified notion of what defeat is. It’s not being run off the battlefield by force of arms. It’s being kept from achieving the aims necessary to the mission. We’ve not kept the peace in Iraq. We’ve not made it a shining democratic beacon. It’s a failed state in the middle of a civil war, and only the Sudan is in worse shape.

These people are at each other’s throats, and at ours, and that certainly is not victory, or anything close to it. Iraq is a ruined country, and unfortunately, our botched warplan has contributed to that. This should have been done four years ago. Stop kidding yourselves. You had your chance to win. Everybody wanted you to win. Your party burned people out on those promises, and now the vast majority of American simply want to go.

You had your chance to win. Now spare us the rest of the defeat your side inflicted on us by it’s mismanagement.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 5, 2007 9:33 AM
Comment #224861

pssst…this war has nothing to do with terrorism….it’s all about control of oil and the malleable propaganda-prone minds needed to do bidding for the masters.

Posted by: muirgeo at July 5, 2007 10:07 AM
Comment #224863

If everything will be “Perfect” (are you saying God will be taking residence in Iraq, as only God is perfect??) in 5 years, why then would there need to be a “permanent force” stationed in this “Paradise”??

Posted by: Russ at July 5, 2007 10:14 AM
Comment #224865


Om most points, you are correct…the war was mismanaged ab initio…no disagreement here.

However, the bottom line is that Saddam is gone and a power vaccum exists…something that, if exploited [pproperly, will benefut us for decades.

If we disapear “over the horizon” and Iraq decend into an Iranian -influenced state, what good will that do?

At this point, we have to play out the hand…with the cards that we have…

As far as the sectarian slide goes….it’s a power struggle (Read that: oil-revenue struggle)…and nothing more. These fanatics are no holier than other fanatics…they want their piece of the action, tyhat’s all, to fund their agenda.

We have to prevent that.

Tell me Steve: exactly what is your plan going forward? Does YOUR party have one?

Posted by: sicilianeagle at July 5, 2007 10:34 AM
Comment #224867


Now, where oh where are we going to find the troops to maintain our current troop levels?

Anyone feel a draft? Or should we just make deployments indefinite? Too few are sacrificing too much. It’s time for ALL American’s to take a bite of Bush’s yummy $%*# sandwich!

Posted by: KansasDem at July 5, 2007 10:39 AM
Comment #224871

The ‘surge’ is such a strange concept. We return troop levels to what they were a few years ago and suddenly its a bold new strategy?

First the surge is working, then Iraq is bloodier than ever and now its working again? I hesitate to use the expression but this surge truly is a game of whack-a-mole that we cant win. Any short term successes ignore the underlying problems. Escalated troop levels is like trying to stop the inner city drug game with more police or administering medicine to patients which treat the symptoms instead of the root causes… hopeless

Posted by: Paul at July 5, 2007 11:04 AM
Comment #224872


Good to have you back! What would this blog be without someone to stir up righteous indignation around here? It’s ALWAYS entertaining to see someone blathering and drooling at the mouth with their panties all bunched in a wad. Keep up the good work!

As for the “Surge”…I’m still in the “wait and see” mode. When the number of Americans killed reaches zero, then I’ll be a dyed in the wool believer. Until then, it’s wait and see. I’ll at least be open minded enough to give it a chance and won’t proclaim that…”It’s a FAILURE!!!” until it has had its chance to succeed.

Posted by: Jim T at July 5, 2007 11:08 AM
Comment #224875

Jim T
Eagles don’t wear panties…manly eagle boxers is what we wear…. :)

Honestly, the number will never drop tp zero…and that’s the rub.

This is urban warfare at its worst..treachery at it worst…friends today…enemies tomorrow….the arabs do business this way, switching sides on a whim.

However, wack a moles are not infinate in number. Sooner or later, once the first teamers are all killed off, the replacements basicially suck.

Are the insurgents getting better at it? Yes. But so are we. This war is now a sophisticated war…and technologies are being used today that weren’t around 4 years ago.

While I grieve every day for every single GI lost, to me they had a purpose..and retreating isn’t that purpose.

As long as these eagle feathures cvan type the written word, I will continue to (now) go across the grain of opinion, and (I guess) be the lonely voice in the wilderness

We are fighting am enemy that understands only the boot..reasoning doesn’t work.

Either that, or as I said above, sell your razor and grow a beard. This is a war of survival.

Posted by: sicilian eagle at July 5, 2007 11:21 AM
Comment #224876

Why do you think the surge is workinig?

Here is an article from the WAPO, dated 7/5:

The article states something we all know:
“Calculating the numbers of people who die in Iraq is notoriously difficult because there is no transparent or reliable system for tracking and distributing official estimates. Various ministries keep different statistics on fatalities, and Iraqi government officials planned to meet this week to discuss how to collect and distribute a single set of numbers.”

There are no estimates provided by neutral sources; we only have the information provided by the Ministry of Health, which is controlled by Shias participating in the government, and by the US military. Some numbers show signs of improvement, such as the decline in car bombings. Others appear to be about the same. Numbers relating to violent crime are non-existent. Statistics relating to attacks on infrastructure are also nearly non-existent. The situation remains too dangerous for anyone to provide useful, reliable information.

Will the violence eventually burn itself out? I have always thought that is a possibility, but who knows? No one can say if or when that point will be reached. It could be a month, a year, a decade, maybe never. No one knows.

The government remains gridlocked on the oil legislation. The Sadrist block and a large Sunni block refuse to participate. So many other parliamenarians are outside the country that a legislative quorem cannot even be achieved.

If the oil legislation is somehow pushed through despite Sunni objections, it will be just one more causus belli. Exxon, Chevron, BP, and Royal Dutch/Shell may love the ridiculously favorable terms, but no one else will.

So once again, I ask the question:

Why do you think the surge is working?

Posted by: phx8 at July 5, 2007 11:52 AM
Comment #224880


Do you want the surge to work? Are you one of those people that see the jar half empty?

I see the following: Tribal leaders turning againt insurgents on a daily basis. I see Anabar province coming into play. I see car bombing way down in Iraq. I see more security forces getting more experience every day. I see Shia militia getting muzzled, I guess I see what you refuse to see…progress.

If the surge wasn’t working, I’d see none of the above.

By the way, within 3 weeks there will be a deal on oil. Whether or not big oil is involved…and it has to by the way…the Iraquis lack (like Iran) refining capability) is immaterial.

Yes, I see progress…the Dems don’t, that’s all.

Posted by: sicilianeagle at July 5, 2007 12:20 PM
Comment #224881

Thanks for such a great laugh, Eagle. I haven’t laughed so hard since .. well, since you told us all that Bush’s “dead cat bounce” in the polls was in fact the beginning of an upturn.

Posted by: ElliottBay at July 5, 2007 12:35 PM
Comment #224884

“reasoning doesn’t work.” THANK YOU! I have been telling people on this blog many times that you cannot reason with someone who is unreasonable, and the arab mind defines unreasonable.

I think that the reason that this does not sink into the mind of our lefty friends is because they too are unreasonable on this question. Their desire to see America (read that as George Bush) fail is very strong because once that failure is acknowledged, then it all falls on the head of GWB and they can dance with glee on the grave of his foreign policy. They WANT us to fail in Iraq. Their whole political capital is tied up in our loss, it is the only way they can win politicaly. They are so vested in our failure that anything resembling a victory would spell resounding defeat for them. If we win in Iraq, they loose. It is that simple.

Hence, they look at anything bad as proof of our failure and pronounce it as such in the hopes of a self fulfilling prophecy.

Oh, and by the way Stephen, this war WAS over 4 years ago. The military did what its job was and what it was trained to do, attack until the enemy surrenders. We did that, and they did. Now what you see is an occupation, and not even a protracted one at that. Germany, Japan and South Korea come to mind when recalling protracted occupations. We are still even in the Balkans 12 years after Clinton said we would be gone. It is not what the military is trained for and made even more difficult considering the unreasonable mindset (see comment above) we are forced to confront. Yes we did not nor could not have predicted the difficulty in this. So before you comment on how we should not have done this or that, l want you to answer the Sicilian Eagles question, “What is your plan for going forward? Does your party even have one?” Other than turn tail feathers and run (pun intended), I think not.

Posted by: Beirut Vet at July 5, 2007 1:11 PM
Comment #224891

Beirut Vet

Glad to see that the Mighty Eagle has an ally. Lately, other than Jack, Eric, and a couple of my favorite posters, it has been a case of shoveling…against the tide.

We gotta speak up,…and often…I think….

Posted by: sicilian eagle at July 5, 2007 1:52 PM
Comment #224896

Hey SE:

You haven’t addressed the questions posted about where the troops are going to come from?

And this “microwave” war was Bush and Rummy IIRC.

Hell, Bush Sr. knew what the outcome would be, as did any number of folks. It was predicted and ignored.

Posted by: womanmarine at July 5, 2007 2:13 PM
Comment #224898

Bieruit Vet

”..the arab mind defines unreasonable”
So your suggestion is that we should just kill all the Arabs and take OUR oil from them? I guess if they were reasonable they would just give it to us.

Posted by: BillS at July 5, 2007 2:18 PM
Comment #224900

Is this article some kind of joke? Here it is, what some of you have requested. No “overblown” rhetoric from me—no matter how fact ladden it is.

The facts and other statements in this article are slighlty skewed.

Posted by: Kim-Sue at July 5, 2007 2:22 PM
Comment #224901

Bierut Vet

Lets see,how long did it take to get out of Bierut once Reagan realized it was a loser? Two days was it?

Posted by: BillS at July 5, 2007 2:25 PM
Comment #224906

Would I like the surge to work? Sure. I would also like to see world peace as of tomorrow, and humanity joing hands to sing a rousing chorus of “Good Morning Starshine.” But wishing will not make it so. Furthermore, acting on wishes as if they were realistic is not necessarily a good idea. Staying in Iraq costs billions per week, not to mention lives. The opportunity cost is very real.

“I see the following: Tribal leaders turning againt insurgents on a daily basis.”

Tribal leaders are turning against the Al Qaida in Iraq suicide bombers & the foreign jihadists. That is a good thing. Those are the most unpopular groups in Iraq, and Iraqis are nearly unanimous in their opposition to them. The next most unpopular group is the US. Turning against the terrorist groups does not mean the insurgents are with us. Those are two completely different groups.

” I see Shia militia getting muzzled…”
I do not see that, not at all. Read the WAPO article linked earlier.

Beirut Vet,
The war did not end after the US invasion. That was only the first phase. We now face a classic example of Fourth Generation Warfare, with multiple factions participating, something like 30 different factions fighting on along eight different fault lines; the US is only one of these factions. That is why the Powell Doctrine was developed in the first place- to prevent being caught in this type of warfare, where the US technological advantage is severely diminished.

US troops are neither trained nor structured for this type of warfare, mainly because it is not profitable for the US military/industrial complex. This is a complicated topic. If you find this kind of thing interesting, check out a book by Thomas P.M. Barnett…

Posted by: phx8 at July 5, 2007 2:51 PM
Comment #224908


Your penchant for mentally bifurcating rational thought is only out-performed by your ability to get it ALL wrong.

Where in my comments do I suggest killing all arabs? Being you are the one who brought it up it must be on your mind. Perhaps as your answer to S.E.’s question “what is your plan?”

Where in my comments do I suggest taking their oil? As soon as you have at least a basic understanding of the free market, get back to me.

Yes, we left Beirut, and what did that get us? I will save you the mental gymnastics that this may cause for you and give you the answer. It got us much more of the same. Say this with me, WTC1, Mogadishu, Kobar towers, 2 African embassies, USS Cole, WTC2,,,,,,,,Get the picture? Probably not, but thanks for playing anyway.


I do not know to which you are reffering, is it the Washington Post article from phyx8?

Posted by: Beirut Vet at July 5, 2007 2:58 PM
Comment #224910

“Germany, Japan and South Korea come to mind when recalling protracted occupations. We are still even in the Balkans 12 years after Clinton said we would be gone.”

Yeah…is 62 years, 62 years and 54 years (respectively) unreasonable? Why don’t I hear people here screaming for us to get out of South Korea? Don’t you think 54 years of guarding a line on a map long ENOUGH? As far as the Balkans, they’ve been fighting there since 1389. That’s over 600 years. Will we be there trying to guard a line on a map 600 years from now? Is THAT reasonable?


“dead cat bounce”? Is that sort of like the “dead cat SPLAT” in the approval numbers of Congress? Last time I checked, their approval numbers were in the TEENS. They only way those numbers could get lower is to deport all the dope smokers and brain damaged glue huffers who think that a phone call from a pollster is actually someone trying to sell them a new type of bong.

Of course, that wouldn’t work. The moment they were deported, they’d be considered illegal aliens in some other country and then be deported back here. Some countries actually DO have strict immigration laws, ya know.

Posted by: Jim T at July 5, 2007 3:02 PM
Comment #224914

The basic fallacy behind support for the Iraq War is that Bush Supporters back it for purely domestic reasons. The fact is, the vast majority of Iraqis do not want us in their country. It is that simple.

Posted by: phx8 at July 5, 2007 3:29 PM
Comment #224916
Well, The Eagle has returned full of solid intel that is of a positive nature.

Is this solid intel as good as your predictions for the last elections? Or is it just as good as your intel that you supposedly had about the innocence of the U.S. soldiers charged with murder in Iraq?

If it is then:

Trouble is we hate Bush, they say he is Nuts.

Is the best part of your post.

Posted by: Cube at July 5, 2007 3:40 PM
Comment #224928

Don’t forget to knock your ruby slippers together when you say the surge works.

It is not working. Our troops are still getting killed, and the civilians are still being beheaded. Reminds me of Nam and Saigon, it was supposely secure until the TET offense.

Maybe the saying is the Surge is not working, the Surge is not working, even the Republicans are now saying to get out of Iraq, problem is bush isn’t listening to anyone except the person who he see’s in the mirror and that one is lying.

Posted by: KT at July 5, 2007 5:05 PM
Comment #224935

Jim T,

If I remember correctly, about a year ago Eagle predicted that Bush’s popularity would rise dramatically and the Republicans would retain control of both Houses of Congress in the last election.

Eagle was laughably wrong about that just as he & the right wing been wrong about almost everything else. In fact, the “right” wing has been so consistently wrong about almost everything that you folks should really be called the WRONG wing.

Posted by: ElliottBay at July 5, 2007 5:46 PM
Comment #224939

No facts, no proof, no backup information - how Republican!

Posted by: Max at July 5, 2007 6:26 PM
Comment #224943


Yep, we’re WRONG to want a strong national defense.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want strong enforcement of our laws.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want ALL Americans to take advantage of the American Dream.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to keep more of our paychecks and keep taxes low.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to be energy independant.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to keep government out of our everyday lives.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want the freedom to determine for OURSELVES our individual futures…and the SAME for EVERY person on this planet.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want every child in this country to realize their FULL potential by having access to the finest education possible.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that individual people can do more for other people than an officious, bureaucratic, faceless entity.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that Socialism can only create, foster and reward mediocrity…taking away the will to do better and excell.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that voters should have some sort of identification to prove that they are voting legally.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to have English as the official language of the United States, saving us BILLIONS of dollar each and every year.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want people who can work to do so, and stop suckling off the public teat.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want corporations to be financially strong so as to ADD jobs instead of having massive layoffs.

I could go on and on…but it’s OBVIOUS who belongs to the “right” political philosophy and who, indeed, is “LEFT” out.

Posted by: Jim T at July 5, 2007 6:40 PM
Comment #224949
Yep, we’re WRONG to want a strong national defense.

…. by attacking uninvolved sovereign nations, and losing our focus on groups and individuals who have actually attacked us.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want strong enforcement of our laws.

Unless the crime is committed by a republican to protect the Bush administration.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want ALL Americans to take advantage of the American Dream.

Unless they’re on welfare or need some other kind of social support network. Or are gay and want to get married.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to keep more of our paychecks and keep taxes low.

Unless you actually aren’t in the top tax brackets.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to be energy independant.

Unless, you know, it involves giving up oil.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to keep government out of our everyday lives.

Unless they say they’re looking for terrorists, then they can tap anyone without warrants or oversights, after all why would you have anything to hide if you’re not guilty?

Yep, we’re WRONG to want the freedom to determine for OURSELVES our individual futures…and the SAME for EVERY person on this planet.

Unless they’re gay and want to get married.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want every child in this country to realize their FULL potential by having access to the finest education possible.

Unless, you know, that involves supporting public schools and not trying to divert their funding to private schools through vouchers and school choice programs.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that individual people can do more for other people than an officious, bureaucratic, faceless entity.

Unless that entity is faith-based or private-sector, in which case we should outsource the job to them.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that Socialism can only create, foster and reward mediocrity…taking away the will to do better and excell.

Unless of course you look at the actual definitions of socialism vs communism and see socialist programs the world over working very nicely. England, for instance, and even Canada. Or our very interstate highway system.

Yep, we’re WRONG to think that voters should have some sort of identification to prove that they are voting legally.

Unless of course you actually look to constitutional law and precident and see that is considered a type of poll tax since the acceptable form of id would cost voters money to accquire.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want to have English as the official language of the United States, saving us BILLIONS of dollar each and every year.

And instantly alienating those who speak other languages, which make up significant minorities across the US.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want people who can work to do so, and stop suckling off the public teat.

Unless of course they’re corporations, in which case we can’t throw enough money at them quickly enough in the form of subsidies.

Yep, we’re WRONG to want corporations to be financially strong so as to ADD jobs instead of having massive layoffs.

Unless, of course, all the money caused by that strength gets funneled to the top and the employees and infrastructure never see a dime of it.

I could go on and on…but it’s OBVIOUS who belongs to the “right” political philosophy and who, indeed, is “LEFT” out.

Seems like you did go on and on. And yeah, the results are obvious.

Posted by: Jarandhel at July 5, 2007 8:01 PM
Comment #224955


Thanks again for brightening up my evening. I always enjoy your satire (it is, isn’t it?) and the comments that follow. Just curious, though; Do you consider yourself an extremist and do you pick your friends based on party affiliation?

Posted by: Tim in NY at July 5, 2007 9:18 PM
Comment #224962

If the Arabs are so unreasonable why don’t we just let them all have their sunni vs. shia war and let them kill most of themselves off? We might want to wait until republicans finally get around to giving us energy independence…shouldn’t be too long since they’ve been working on it for about 12 years now. But maybe they were just too busy giving subsidies to oil companies or bashing gays. And hey since we’ve been selling all kinds of military technology to Saudi Arabia for years they should win a war…and Iran has little refining capacity…it imports half its gasoline. If arabs are so unreasonable why not just let them kill themselves off? Seems better to just let them shoot at each other than have them shoot each other anyway at have our troops caught in the crossfire.

Posted by: Silima at July 5, 2007 10:16 PM
Comment #224963


Welcome back.

I hope you are right about the surge. I am hearing some better news from friends in Iraq. There still is a long way to go, however.

I do not think we can ever come to an agreement with some of our leftist colleagues. They have defined victory as near zero deaths and happy cooperation among various ethnic groups.

I am satisfied with a reasonably democratic and stable Iraq that is not a threat to its neighbors or us. That would be a big step ahead for that region. Many reasonably stable countries have lived with deadly insurgencies for many years. If we demand zero deaths from terrorists, UK, Spain, France and even the U.S. would not qualify.

It is looking more likely that we can achieve those reasonable results, but much less likely Dems will find that acceptable.

Posted by: Jack at July 5, 2007 10:27 PM
Comment #224966

Jim T

Nope. Actually, I am pretty moderate on all issues…I am backing Guilianni, I decided.

As far as picking friends based on party affiliations…I was just at Logan Airport tonight picking up a friend. While waiting in the restaurant next to the security check-in in Terminal E, I went to the restaurant there to grab a bite to eat. Sitting on the table was a bottle of Heinz catchup. Yep…I squaked to the manager about that one. Seriously. I don’t watch anything with Whoopi, Hanoi Jane,Mike Moore,Harry Belefonte, Robert Redford either.

Thinking about the line-up of Peloisi, Reed, Murtha…just sickens me. Thankfully their popularity…in 7 short months…is below that of the president…and it took Bush 6 years to get that low…still…he’s ahead of that crew.

Who’s better on the left? Edwards and his $1200 haircut? Hillary (jeez..didn’t Bill pardon over 90 right before he left office? Obama? Sorry…I just don’t see it.

I like the Mitt man…he’d be a good president…and even McCain wouldn’t be so bad…neither would Condi for heaven’s sake.

As for the election…let’s remind everone….Iraq didn’t cost the Repubs Congress…corruption did…the war was a distant second in every exit poll…a convienient thing that’s forgotten.

Anyway: all you Bush bashers out there….please tell me: exactly what is the plan that your party has? Exactly.

Posted by: sicilianeagle at July 5, 2007 10:34 PM
Comment #224971

The dem party doesn’t have A plan. It is more individualistic than the rep party. It apparently does not demand that all its members kneel before “the plan” as you suggest. You assume that a party will have one single plan which its leaders will bludgeon the underlings into. Just look at how all former rep moderates (McCain, Romney, Guiliani) have moved steadily to the right. A key dem strategy in the midterms was to recruit moderates that could steal rep seats. They’re more open the the republicans. Your mere assumption of a single party plan points this out.

Posted by: Silima at July 5, 2007 10:47 PM
Comment #224978

I was taken aback by your statement characterizing an entire race as having minds that “define unreasonableness’. That is an outrageous statement.

As to pulling out of Bierut causeing all the attacks you listed including WTC2. I find that interesting and quite unusual to hear someone on the right blame Reagan for the attacks. Please explain.

Posted by: BillS at July 5, 2007 11:32 PM
Comment #224979

“They WANT us to fail in Iraq. Their whole political capital is tied up in our loss, it is the only way they can win politicaly. They are so vested in our failure that anything resembling a victory would spell resounding defeat for them. If we win in Iraq, they loose. It is that simple.”
Posted by Beirut Vet


I was skimming, reading very fast, and thought you were talking about the terrorists. Didn’t realize you were talking about the Democrats. But, you bring up a good point also towards Iraqis.
Who’s defeat is their victory vested in? If there is not any assurance of a Republican President being victorious in 2008, and they feel that the Democrats will turn on them, as you have said and most Democrats have also promised their constituencies they will do, what is their motive to join forces with the Americans? This lack of committment on the part of half of America may be killing our soldiers in Iraq in greater numbers, and maybe not.
If you were an Iraqi and half of your “coalition’s power base” was as you have said, vested in your nation’s defeat, what assurances of an Iraqi future would you have? I think that G.W. Bush is using Democratic hatred toward him and threats of withdrawal of troops to spur more success in Iraq.
The only real upside to the Democratic barrage of the President is that perhaps the Iraqis will understand that their American protectors may very well be gone if the Democrats continue with their slight momentum, and get their way. Democratic hatred, and defection in regard to this War and George W. Bush may very well be spurring the success and cooperation of the Iraqis, and ultimately undermining Democratic hopes of seeing this thing fail. Perhaps it is a great Bush strategy to keep reminding the Iraqis that his term expires in only a year and a half, then “he” can no longer promise or commit to anything.


Posted by: JD at July 5, 2007 11:44 PM
Comment #224980

First: What troops? Your intentions require something in the way of troops to continue this war. The troop increases necessary to do this kind of thing have not been even suggested by this administration. They just continue to play tricks with recruiting, with the refreshing and reinforcing of the troops, playing Enron Accounting games with our numbers there, rather than put out the call or call up a draft.

I have no interest, nor any fear that my country is going to get taken over by the people over in Iraq. We are a nation of 300 million people, with tons of soldiers and armed civilians. When we describe these countries we’re fighting in, we describe them in terms of mere states of our union. We have an economic base that was deadly in World War Two, and positively lethal in this day and age. If I grow a beard, it’s only because I’m too lazy to shave. I’m not scared of these people, not like that.

They couldn’t win a war of attrition against us, not in our own backyard. We can’t do it in their backyards either. Besides, the war isn’t being lost because of the numbers we face. It’s being lost because we never filled the power vacuum you referred to. Not all military objectives have to do with destroying armies. Like Clausewitz says, War is the continuation of policy by other means, and our policy was to create a Democratic, stable Iraq. What have we been doing all that time, if Bush has been on the right track? What have you been doing? This president only decided to do a surge after the 2006 elections made the status quo untenable. Yet despite the supposed commitment that this surge represents to Iraq, we are in position right now where we will be forced to start bringing back a brigade a month worth of troops, due to the logistic knot this President’s tied the army into. What kind of idiot arranges things like that, if victory is his goal?

You know what our plan has been. Gradual Withdrawal. The reason Congressional numbers are in the tank is because they didn’t follow the plan, didn’t stick to their guns. Yet even then, the numbers show they want Democrats in office more than Republicans.

I don’t know. You guys say you want to win a war. Fine. So do I. I hate this country losing. But winning a war isn’t a choice like that. It’s a choice you have to back up with good policy and good material support. The Right only seems to give lip support, while soldier’s equipment and vehicles breakdown, and while the system designed to keep fresh, trained, well-equipped troops in the war breaks down as well. The hypocrisy sickens me, and its what makes me so critical of this president’s policy.

Or put another way, this is the criticism from a hawk who thinks that the president is all talk on this war, and no action, who thinks that all the partisan rhetoric about “doves” and “peaceniks” is just warmed over cold war B.S. that doesn’t properly characterize my objections at all.

If we lose this war, it won’t be for the want of power. It won’t be for want of a population of draftable or recruitable soldiers. It won’t be for the want of technology or anything else. And it won’t be be for the want of positive media coverage. Embedded reporters were a brilliant move in that regard. It will be for the want of leadership and plans, of wisdom and intelligence concerning the plan’s formulation. It’ll be because they tried to reinvent the wheel, and wouldn’t admit they were wrong when the damn thing didn’t roll right.

It’ll be because they didn’t know their enemy well enough, because they were too busy intentionally mission creeping everything todeal with the realities on the ground.

Joke about Edward’s hair. Ignore Mitt’s utter hypocrisy on Pardons and Commutations.

Conveniently forget that the past shapes the future, and that for the first four years of this war, Bush shaped a failure. If you think keeping this war going indefinitely is a wise idea, consider what Sun Tzu said about the matter: Nobody has ever brilliantly protracted a war.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 5, 2007 11:48 PM
Comment #224982

My nephew is in Iraq right now. He’s already seen 3 guys in his unit die. The last one was particularly fun and yummy. Seems the newest trick in the book is to leave the carcass of some sizable animal in the middle of the road with a live elecrical cable buried inside it. Part of the job of our vaunted American military is to keep the roads clear, so when my nephew’s comrade-in-arms went to move it… well, he was dead before he hit the ground and there was almost as much ash as body left over afterwards. My sister asked when he thought he could come home on leave, and he said he wasn’t going to anytime soon because he didn’t think he could deal with having to leave here and go back to Iraq again. It would just be easier if he just stayed. He also said that while he loved getting mail and e-mails, that he didn’t want anyone to send pictures. He doesn’t want to see what he’s missing.

So ya wanna tell me again that the war is going well?


Posted by: leatherankh at July 5, 2007 11:54 PM
Comment #224983

Didnt W just veto the plan put forth by the Dems in the house and senate? Why then would you keep saying there is no plan there is no plan?

Posted by: j2t2 at July 5, 2007 11:58 PM
Comment #224984

Beirut Vet-
Except there was no surrender. One of the problems of a decapitation strategy.

Failure has never been all that attractive an option to me. As I’ve said, I spent the first few years imploring Bush to change his strategy so we could win. Many Democrats did just the same I did. It was more important to me that this country win than Bush lose.

Saddam’s fall was over four years ago. It should have immediately been followed by martial law and strict control on our parts. Only problem is, we went in with a light, mobile invasion force, which at best was able to encircle the main cities and move on to Baghdad. Saddam never surrendered, never delivered power into our hands on a formal basis. Iraq has gotten to the point, where the NIE tells us that the nation in is in a position worse than civil war.

The estimates I’ve heard for getting this place under control are over five hundred thousand. We can’t even keep up our commitments as it is.

You compare Germany, Japan, and Korea to this. Well, we had lengthy occupations, but mostly peaceful ones, rather than ongoing mayhem. As for the Balkans, tell me what our numbers the are, and how many soldiers have died there. The death toll does not compare.

We have a plan, like I’ve said: Withdrawal. That just gets conveniently ignored, so the right can pretend that they alone are vigilant on this matter.

The sad thing is that the Right indulges fantasies of being the Gung-ho macho men, when they give political excuses for the long years where they failed to sufficiently confront the problem

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 6, 2007 12:06 AM
Comment #224995

SE,,,,this article would show that your belief isn’t truly a popular position on either side of the aisle. Try again…….your support is fading fast.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 6, 2007 1:47 AM
Comment #224998

Welcome back Sicilian Eagle.

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at July 6, 2007 3:09 AM
Comment #225000

I am an MI captain on my way to Iraq and I would like to know by what standards you are saying the surge is working. All we are doing is gaining temporary support from tribal leaders by arming them. Violence has not decreased. Attacks have not decreased.
Maybe the insurgents are in their last throes still?

Posted by: yossarian at July 6, 2007 3:21 AM
Comment #225001
Some folks inherit star spangled eyes, Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord, And when you ask them, “How much should we give?” Ooh, they only answer More! more! more!

Remember that old song? This article reminds me of it. Too young to have heard it? Or you don’t really remember how the whole thing goes? You can listen to it here.

Posted by: Adrienne at July 6, 2007 3:29 AM
Comment #225002
In Afghanistan…

Hold yer horses, SE. Don’t try to conflate those two wars. Afghanistan is the good fight and we’re making steady progress there.

Iraq is a diversion from the war on terror and the surge is not working. Are the militias disbanding? No. Is the Iraqi government coming together and making the progress necessary to end their civil war? No. Quite the opposite.

Sen. Domenici just joined the growing list of Republican legislators admitting the obvious. You’re going to look pretty foolish when even Bush finally admits the surge is not working.

Oh, and welcome back!

Posted by: American Pundit at July 6, 2007 3:35 AM
Comment #225006

AP and Richadrd Rhodes

Thank you. It’s fun to get skewered by some really neat people who I respect, even if they are wrong. :)

Senator Domenice and the other Repubs are probably doing a wise thing. First, some of them are feathering their beds for election time….prudent, I think… but also when a Repub bolts the path, it snends a powerful message to the Iraqi government…who better get their shit together…and fast.


Again, your reasoning is sound…always is. However, withdrawal I just can’t swallow as a solution. The president has failed miserably on many things here, unfortunately, mostly with piss poor public relations…virtually non-existenent except for “Mission Accomplished” gaffs. However, the guy has been a rock against terrorism world-wide. Why, he is hated more by them than even….the Dems! Now that says a lot!

Plus, zero is still the number. Zero attacks here since 9/11. That, in and of itself, is an accomplishment.

This guy has had a major natural disaster screw-up on his watch, a vp who shot someone in the face,a vice-presidential assistant convicted of perjury…..and his numbers are still ahead of Reed’s and Pelosi’s!

Hundred’s of thousands of jobs have been created, the ecomony (for 5 years now) is humming…with no end in site, and even when he embraces “liberal” positions (read: immigration reform) he still gets blasted.

I still like the guy. He’s a tough bastard (who still had a higher GPA that John Kerry at Yale by the way), and you guys continue to throw up as candidates unispired insiders who speak out of both sides of their mouths (read: Hillary and Bill)

I will keep you in my prayers. Thank you for serving the nation.


Is that you? Wow…this post is turning into a regular beach party!

Posted by: sicilianeagle at July 6, 2007 6:24 AM
Comment #225013


“I still like the guy. He’s a tough bastard (who still had a higher GPA that John Kerry at Yale by the way), and you guys continue to throw up as candidates unispired insiders who speak out of both sides of their mouths (read: Hillary and Bill)”

Amen! I feel the same way our President. Though, you are (definitely) “shoveling against the tide” with some of these bloggers. The surge only (truly) officially started (full battalions) a few weeks ago and it’s only going to get better. Sucks for Democrats and the few Repubs that jumped ship; however, the Dems positioned themselves as “what’s good for America is bad for them and what’s bad for America is good for them”. It’s a disgusting way to position oneself; however, it was their choice!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 6, 2007 10:19 AM
Comment #225023

> Plus, zero is still the number.
> Zero attacks here since 9/11.
> That, in and of itself, is an accomplishment.

Same here in France since the AirFrance plane hijacked in 1994 by islamist terrorists that were aiming to crash it on Eiffel Tower.

Same accomplishment. Except that France is not at war alone since 5 years anywhere.

If war was the final solution to terrorism, considering how many wars are currently happening on this little planet, terrorism will be over since long. Quite the contrary, alas.
Maybe war and terrorism are related in a different way. What about the former spawning the later?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 6, 2007 12:11 PM
Comment #225031
also when a Repub bolts the path, it snends a powerful message to the Iraqi government…who better get their shit together…and fast.

SE, I thought you were arguing that the Iraqis had their shit together, but it was a secret:


Is it so secret that you forgot?

However, withdrawal I just can’t swallow as a solution.

That depends on what you mean by withdrawal. For the last couple years, the Democrat’s withdrawal plan redeploys the bulk of our combat troops ASAP but keeps a significant number of troops in country to train the Iraqis, hunt down al-Qaeda cells and protect US interests.

I’m starting to hear some Republicans talk that way now as well.

Posted by: American Pundit at July 6, 2007 12:51 PM
Comment #225036


Is that you?”

Uh huh. Welcome back Sic Eagle. I see it’s still all beak and claws with you.

“Wow…this post is turning into a regular beach party!”

No, more like a Bloody Quagmire in the desert, wouldn’t you say?

Posted by: Adrienne at July 6, 2007 1:02 PM
Comment #225039

Before I made the claim about Pelosi’s and Reid’s approval numbers, I would look into what their individual numbers are, in their district and nationally. It’s Congress as a whole which has the job approval problem. Additionally, the Job approval numbers are not the only ones out there. Other numbers indicate that people are glad we’re in power, and not your party, and that they would prefer to elect a generic Democrat come November 2008, rather than a generic Republican.

It’s no coincidence that the public disapproval rose when they capitulated on putting withdrawal into the supplemental bill. That was poorly mishandled. If, however, Democrats manage to get more on track on getting this war over with, we’ll probably see the popularity of this Congress rise.

My complaints about the narrow mindedness of the right concerning war apply here, too. The most important weapons we have in this war is the disapproval of the average, moderate Muslim and Arab of the terrorists, and the inhibition of violence by moderating forces.

Attempting to kill all the terrorists is a fools errand. We’ve taken up the Israeli attitude towards terrorists, which is not only inappropriate for a nation of our size and relative security, but which also replicates the mistakes that have helped make violence endemic int that part of the world for the last four decades.

Which is not to say that the Palestinians or others aren’t responsible for their share of the problem there; that’s not even the point. The point is that in our fight to reduce terrorism to a minor nuisance, we should not undervalue the importance of our ability to positively influence and build relationships with those these people draw their recruits from.

Too many right-wingers think of that as appeasement, but that’s hardly what the plan is. The plan is to outcompete those who support terrorism, to add those people as allies to our cause, rather than as allies to theirs. Wouldn’t hurt to get some to renounce terrorism if they supported it before, either.

Iraq has gotten in the way of that. It’s been a disaster for America’s image in that part of the world, and the terrorists have increased their ranks worldwide on its account. The only appeasement we are doing right now is sacrificing our troops for the sake of a war that is just feeding al-Qaeda and Hardline Iran’s agenda.

I fully expect to see more terrorist attacks after we leave. Not because we were successfully destroying the threat before, but rather because they were happy to have us bring the Americans to the Middle East to kill, rather than have to slog through all the obstacles that coming after us in our country presents. That this will be the cause, rather than a failure to employ the flypaper strategy, can be indicated in the successful terrorist attacks in Madrid, London, and Indonesia. If our efforts really were bogging them down, they wouldn’t be capable of these other attacks.

Additionally, let me comment on the time during which we weren’t attacked: It took eight years for them to attack us again on our own soil after 9/11. By your logic, Clinton did a fine job of keeping us safe. No foreign terrorist attacks for the rest of his term in this country.

The War in Iraq has only defered the problem, with interest.

The worst part is, this never had to be this way. We could have left Iraq alone until we had a legitimate reason to attack, or we could have anticipated the security challenges, rather than walking right into them unprepared. This is a setback against Islamic extremism. Far from doing this because I wish to appease or surrender to these people, I want to end the war in Iraq so we’re not continuing to do them an ongoing favor.

That’s doubletalk. The surge isn’t the maximum rise in troops, it’s the entire rise. The surge started some time in February, and is only now ending its increase. Now, it’s going to begin to wind down, because what Bush hasn’t told you is that these levels of troops are unsustainable given his current policies.

It’s always in the future for you folks. It’s easy to say we’re winning this war when your criteria for saying so are results that haven’t come yet.

Only problem is, people only buy the deferred results arguments when those results actually come to pass. When they don’t come to pass on a regular basis, folks begin to assume that you will fall short when you make such promises, or claim such results will come.

We have no interest as a country in wasting lives, dollars, and prestige pursuing a war where we only find good results amidst the broken promises.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 6, 2007 1:17 PM
Comment #225042

Not so fast Phillipe:

Your head in the sand attitude toward terrorism is so indicative of your inability to grasp the obvious. YOU ARE AT WAR, and have been for years. How many cars were torched on the streets of Paris last year? How many are torched every day since then? These are just as much acts of terrorism as a plane flying into your famous radio antenna.

That slug you call an ex-president, Chirac, was instrumental in harboring Saddam and making this whole mess necessary by thwarting anything meaning full in the form of action against Iraq (along with Russia and Germany). And all because your country and president had a financial stake in Iraq remaining under Saddam (oil for food scandal).

You do not realize it but you are neck deep in it. Wake up before the daily calls for prayers covers your head.

Posted by: Beirut Vet at July 6, 2007 1:21 PM
Comment #225048
Chirac, was instrumental in harboring Saddam and making this whole mess necessary

Actually, up until it became clear that Iraq had no WMD or terrorist ties, Chirac was working with the Pentagon to integrate an armored division, carrier group and several hundred warplanes into the invasion plan.

BTW, your argument is kind of funny: Chirac opposed the invasion, thereby forcing us to invade! The bastard. :)

Posted by: American Pundit at July 6, 2007 1:46 PM
Comment #225064

I cant help but wonder what the left would have to say today if we were involved in a WWII scenario with respect to casualties. We lost 6000 on D Day alone. Another 6000 during the invasion of Holland. There were some 20 million plus altogether killed in this awful war against global domination. Because we failed to recognize the signs and act sooner.
I thank GOD everyday that George W Bush was elected President because he has the vision to see the threat in it’s infancy. If you doubt the goal of Islamist is to dominate the world, you are a fool. Better to take care of this than to leave it for our children to deal with at a WWII cost.

Posted by: john in Texas at July 6, 2007 3:13 PM
Comment #225069


France never offered ANY support for this invasion before or after no WMD, which did not become apparent until AFTER the invasion. So how could they dtermine this before invading and withdraw this alledged support? They never had any intention of doing anything with Iraq except profit from it. Your revisionism is showing.

Had they not stalled and blocked all efforts at sanctions and inspections made it necessary, not their opposition to invasion. Pay attention or go back to sleep.

Posted by: beirut Vet at July 6, 2007 3:37 PM
Comment #225083


“I cant help but wonder what the left would have to say today if we were involved in a WWII scenario with respect to casualties. We lost 6000 on D Day alone. Another 6000 during the invasion of Holland. There were some 20 million plus altogether killed in this awful war against global domination. Because we failed to recognize the signs and act sooner.”

That is an excellent point; we lost 1500 troops in a training accident (alone) during the invasion of Normandy. I referred (many times) to the WWII scenario. FDR would’ve been impeached with this media and today’s anti-war nuts, that is for sure. There are too many bloggers out there that do not want to hear that though; they will do everything in their power to keep reciting the liberal talking points about the blunders, the deaths, and (of course) the “quagmire” mantras all they can to convince (themselves) that it is not worth it. Yet, it is worth it and we will win. This military is an all volunteer military and they know (exactly) what their mission is and they will accomplish it. As I have said before, “figure out what (and whos) side you are on and get on it”; b/c the conservatives and the military definitely know what side we are on, that is for sure!!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 6, 2007 5:08 PM
Comment #225084

Beirut Vet-
Just how many cars are torched in Paris streets everyday? That would be interesting to know. What I find rather hard to believe is that flying a plane into a world-famous cultural landmark qualifies as no more a terrorist act than the burning of a car during a riot. You’d probably rip somebody up one side and down the other if they made such a comparison between a Car-BQ and the destruction of the Washington Monument.

Such a lack of perspective is one of the reasons I don’t put much stock in your dire warnings. The whole thing about Americans being on the verge of being taken over by the Muslims of the Middle East is another.

Before you accuse me of being too relaxed about this, Consider the following: we are a nation of 300 million people, separated from them by an ocean. We have a number of carrier fleets that could come to their country’s aid in the space of a few days. We have the world’s most advanced tank, and could devastate any battalion landed on our shores, if they ever got there. Yeah, there is the small matter of the Submarine fleet we have, and which they don’t. Just how they get their heavy equipment across, I don’t know. Anybody who succeeds in gaining a foothold not only has to contend with the military, but also a highly populous, highly sophisticated nation with legalized gun ownership. Not the best recipe for occupation.

Oh, and yes, there is the matter of the Nuclear arms that we have in no short supply.

Our interests are more likely to be threatened by the fact that Bush is running our Army into the ground than they are by any Middle Eastern power.

Of course, then there’s the standard Republican dark fantasy of a nation of Liberal collaborators, who just throw the doors open and convert all at once to Islam. That’s the premise of Orson Scott Card’s Empire, and it stands out as one of the more far-fetched in a career full of Science Fiction and Fantasy stories. Truth of the matter is, I think you’re barking up the wrong tree if that’s what you think.

Tolerance and agreement are two different things. Just because the Muslims allowed Orthodox Christians and Sephardic Jews to remain among them for centuries, doesn’t mean they were lining up to convert to their religion.

Chirac and others weren’t exactly clean on Iraq, but that doesn’t mean it was still a good idea to invade. Did you know that at the time of the invasion, we didn’t have one confirmed WMD site in the whole country? The very thing we were counting on to lend crediblity and legitimacy to our war, and we didn’t even know if he had one WMD, much less the thousands alleged.

It’s like the lawyers say: you don’t ask a question unless you already know what the answer is. Only in military terms, it’s you don’t give reasons for going to war unless you can show people proof that supports them. Kennedy could have Adlai Stevenson tell the Russian Ambassador that he would wait for his answer until hell froze over, because he had them cold on the missiles, and could show the world the rockets parked on Cuban soil.

Strategically, when you’re trying to fight an enemy, it’s better to turn those closest too them against them, than to turn them against you. Would I be off the mark if I said it was better for your enemy to have fewer allies than more? The evidence (or more importantly, its lack) clearly indicates that this was not a necessary war. We’re fighting to resolve a mistake, to deal with a failure. At this point, Iraq is beyond our ability to repair it, and we’re breaking other relationships around it in order to salvage it. What other defeats must we suffer, just trying to win in Iraq?

John in Texas-
This isn’t a WWII situation in terms of casualties. Even when there were big mistakes (Omaha Beach features some collossal blunders, as did Market Garden) we still made forward progress. Our share was roughly 400,000 dead. But those lives furthered the aims of our war, which were the defeat of the Axis powers.

Most Muslims could care less about dominating the world. They want jobs, they want food, they want companionship, they want to keep on breathing as long as possible. The Islamists are one group among them, and the terrorists one group among them. Unfortunately, our policy is playing into their hands, helping to legitimize Anti-Americanism.

As for seeing the threat in its infancy? This threat has been cooking for much longer than Bush has even been alive, much less President. He’s managed to make it worse, not better, failing to get the folks really responsible for hitting us, while going on a wild goose-chase that has served as free propaganda grist for our real enemies.

Besides, the Republicans did not “see this threat in its infancy” They sold arms to terrorists, for crying out loud. They criticized Clinton every time he retaliated against Bin Laden, and not for going after him too softly. Only when the Republicans were caught off guard with the rest of us did they even somewhat awake to the threat. And know they’re daydreaming away in a daze about this perceived threat of World Domination, while the real threats fester, no less nonlethal for the more modest plans involved.

The Republicans are still fighting Vietnam, still fighting the cold war, still prioritizing it’s policy according to the needs of an age when Rogue States seemed the biggest threat. If anybody needs to wake up to the here and the now, it’s the Republicans.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 6, 2007 5:14 PM
Comment #225091

I find it odd that only Woman Marine and Stephen Daugherty have in any way addressed my concerns about the sustainability of our current troop levels. How many times can we deploy the same brave, selfless guys and gals? Why are we sending people back into harm’s way even though they’re suffering from PTSD and in many cases physical injuries that have not healed?

Do any of you feel guilty when you pull up to the gas pump or drive out of the dealership in a new SUV? Only about 1% of Americans are either serving or have a family member serving in a war zone!

One f@*%^&g percent! Whose taxes have gone up? Oh, I almost forgot we only need to spend more to support the troops! How much of a GD joke is that??????????????? Just buy more imported products to support our troops!

I agree that a rapid and total withdrawal from Iraq would cause total chaos and create a new center of operations for Islamic extremists. BUT we need a much larger force in Iraq to truly contain that threat. A true occupation force, possibly as many as one million American troops for several years!

It also means once again disarming all Iraqis and starting all over again. It means reinstating the draft in the USA. BTW, only Chris Dodd has the balls to call for uniform service by all Americans which would undoubtedly improve our public sense of responsibility.

I hardly have all the answers but I know it’s wrong to be increasing the duration and repetition of deployments! Supporting the war in Iraq and supporting the troops are two different things!

Posted by: KansasDem at July 6, 2007 6:33 PM
Comment #225092


I never said that planes attacks and car bombings were the same. I merely stated that they are both acts of terrorism just on different scales. Do not try to make your argument by dissembling what I said.

I also never said that we are going to be taken over by muslims, that once again is not what I said or think. I do not know who Orson Scott Card is and am not familiar with his work. If you are trying to say I think liberals are trying to throw the door open and have a mass conversion, I think it is you who are delusional, not me. I do beleive however that liberals are “leaving the front door open ” by not taking the threat of Islamism seriously. Oh and yes we have nuclear weapons, but if you think we will ever use them then you are truly delusional.

“Chirac and others were not exactly clean on Iraq”. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? They were so dirty you could smell them on this side of the Atlantic. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? Oh yes, thats right, “hate Bush” means we conveniently forget all of that.

Yes, going into Iraq at the time was the correct thing to do, just because there have been no WMD found does not mean they were not and still are there. Every intelligence agency on the face of this planet knew he had them and stated so. He gave every indication that he was hiding something whenever inspectors were around. He put so many restrictions on their movement that the Key Stone Cops, oops, I mean the U.N. weapons inspectors were never going to find them.

Saying he never had them is intellectual dishonesty on a very large scale. He used them against Iran in their war with them, then he used them against his own people for trying to kill him. But oh, I forgot, you think he never had them. Bill Clinton himself stated that he had them and said “make no mistake about this, he will use them, mark my words.” May I remind you that the official policy of the U.S. was regime change for Iraq and that this policy was instituted by Clinton. Bill just didn’t have the balls or the political and security reasons to do something about it. GW had all 3, thank God.

He had them alright, and you know how I know this? BECAUSE WE WERE THE ONES WHO GAVE IT TO HIM!!!!! How can you honestly sit there and say he did not have them when the evidence is right there that he used them? How can he use something he does not have?

“most muslims could care less about dominating the world”. I don’t care about most muslims, only the ones who want to dominate the world. They are the ones that need to be dealt with, and you do not do this by turning their allies against them. That is all well and good in your classroom but it will not win you a war. Yes it will help but it is not enough.

“they criticized Clinton evrytime he retaliated against OBL and not for going after him too softly.” BULL____! First of all, he only went after him once and that coincidentily was the same day as Monica Lewinski’s grand jury testimony. Can you say “wag this dog”? And if he was so interested in him, why did he not take him when he was handed to him on a silver platter by Sudan? Answer, he was not really all that interested.

“Republicans are still fighting Vietnam”. It is the Democrats who are still fighting that war. They never miss an opportunity to go back to their perceived glory days and try to say this looks so much like Vietnam. It is you who are always making that comparison.

No my friend, it is you who needs to wake up, and please do it for all of us.

Posted by: Beirut Vet at July 6, 2007 7:01 PM
Comment #225101


I’m glad the terror threat has a name!

Posted by: KansasDem at July 6, 2007 7:54 PM
Comment #225102

Kansas Dem…’re absolutely right about sustaining the level of troops….bouncing these deployments back and forth multiple times….ignoring the idea of a draft. I’ve actually mentioned it a number of times over the last few months, along with the idea that this also is leaving us strung out here with sparse means to assist in any kind of state-wide or national aid.
There are some things which just get ignored more than others.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 6, 2007 8:01 PM
Comment #225103

Wesley Clark is on MSNBC right now saying that it is time to bring the troops home!! He is vehement about this administration not supporting the troops in Iraq, and being there only for his (Bush’s) own political means.
I still believe that this Libby stuff was launched with a timing to circumvent something else going on, and it would most likely be Iraq. Paranoia???……no, just SOSDD !!

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 6, 2007 8:11 PM
Comment #225106


Excellent post, very well stated! The answer to your very first question is……… EVERYONE PLEASE PAY ATTENTION TO THE ANSWER……is that we can deploy the same selfless brave boys and gals until there are none left that believe in the meaning of the Constitution and principles that our country was founded on. Very few have ever joined because of just “Duty, Honor and Country”, but even fewer have joined not knowing what may be required of them. We all have hoped and prayed that we were not needed for war, but these few had no illusions. Just so you know, party politics did not sway these brave souls.GOD BLESS THEM ALL!

KD, this is in by no means a slight to you, I have never read a more heartfelt and nonpartisan writing. Hopefully this is a moment that the vocal on all sides will say, “DAMN!”, lay party politics aside and start thinking about what is best for the country, especially our servicemen/women, not just in the short term, but for 50 years down the road. 1% folks, just 1%. War is always full of political inroads; full for advantages for the politicans, but for that 1% POLITICS SHOULD BE DAMNED. Staying in Iraq has both advantages and disavantages. So does a withdrawing. We must make honest accessments of both actions and anything in between. If we cannot do that without placing blame or using the “Republican/Democrat” terms, then we are doing a great disservice to not only the servicemen/women of today, but of all that have served this Great Land.

Posted by: submariner at July 6, 2007 8:46 PM
Comment #225109


I should have said that others have previously expressed my concerns over the welfare of our troops. To be honest even Sicilian Eagle has done so, certainly Jack has done so, OTOH only a few of us go as far as saying that we MUST reinstate the draft IF we continue down the current path.

To me it’s a top priority! It’s numero uno on my list right now. My pet peeves about a Dominionist Theocracy and the threat of genocide against Hispanics are still in my car. They’re just sitting side by side in the backseat waiting their turn.

Unless we get on the right course concerning our military forces nothing else will matter. We’ll all be hoping that global warming kills us before the Jihadists can cut our heads off. We’ve already seen that these violent extremists are not just waiting to invade once we leave Iraq.

They’re everywhere. It is a law enforcement problem! The second most fatal attack on American soil was perpetrated by white conservative extremists! One of the perps (Terry Nichols) lived less than 30 miles away!

And yet everyone was surprised when they found explosives buried under his previous home in Herington, Kansas:

“The six weeks the Oklahoma City bombing conspirator spent in the town was a fading memory — until one day last month. Memories resurfaced when FBI agents found explosive materials buried in a crawl space under the home where Nichols lived at the time of the bombing.”

“On the eve of the tenth anniversary of the bombing that killed 168 people, Herington real estate agent Georgia Rucker remembers when she sold the house to Nichols. She says Nichols was “out in left field and a little bizarre.””

(first try at this new url format)

I personally never thought he was “left field”. His brother married my second wife and they all seemed very, very “right field”! Jesus loving, gay hating, self righteous, bible thumpers! I just can’t get “left field” out of that.

Maybe a little moderation with the Bible teaching? Whether it’s the Bible most of us are acquainted with or the Qur’an or any other supposed religious text. Maybe we’ve had enough holy wars, and just maybe anyone that wages war in the name of any “god” is a criminal!

I seriously doubt that DC could have been successful thwarting another OKC bombing by declaring war on all red-necks! Just consider that the justification for the OKC bombing was the Waco incident! NOT hard to do as it gets thrown up by the far right and the Libertarians every time one of us praises Clinton.

Too long winded, too tired, later!

Posted by: KansasDem at July 6, 2007 9:25 PM
Comment #225110

Beirut Vet

my brother in law lost two of his fellow marines in the 83 bombing. they were shipped to beirut as discipline for something they did that they didn’t deserve to be disciplined for, but thats a long story. hope you made it back unscathed.

Posted by: dbs at July 6, 2007 10:01 PM
Comment #225112


Thanks. I know we disagree on many issues, but this one should rise above all political differences. Our troops are being overused and abused! It’s time to share the cost, both physically and financially.

Too few are sacrificing too much. It also pisses me off when I hear about most of these “atrocities” committed by our troops. I’ll grant you that some are truly WRONG, but most are a result of “war mentality” which is no more accurate than a “smart bomb”.

Bombs are not the only cause of collateral damage. A person can be a “bomb”! Wow, do you suppose that’s what the suicide bombers are thinking?

Killing is ugly and it gets really hard to draw lines between right and wrong. Or them and us.

The war on drugs has been an utter failure. This war on terror will be also. The waging of a war must have a definition of victory. Crap, we’ve even borrowed one of the most egregious terms possible to execute these “wars”: CZAR!

But, no matter what else we do we must support and respect those on the front lines. Including our border agents! And recognize that front line troops are just as capable of “collateral damage” as any damn bomb!

I’ll grant you that Abu Ghraib was uncalled for but I still believe it was sanctioned from higher up. That rape and murder incident was apparently a truly criminal incident. But MOST bad incidents happen the same way a cluster bomb hits everyone in the area without discrimination.

Only it’s very seldom that the person who ordered the deployment or the dropping of the bomb is held responsible. The turd always rolls downhill.

Posted by: KansasDem at July 6, 2007 10:18 PM
Comment #225113

KD…I can’t begin to say just how sick our use and abuse of our military makes me. Bush and most (since there has been some defections) of the administration have demonstrated time and agin that they have little or no concern beyond the selfish drive and self-promotion.
We absolutely need to reinstate the draft…it would certainly balance out the feeding pools, and would quite possibly change a lot of opinions of our need to stay there and continue the destruction of our armies.
Of course, don’t you think that the reinstatement would be tantamount to political suicide???? I’d actually be pretty surprised to find one of “us” that would go along with it. What think ye?

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at July 6, 2007 10:21 PM
Comment #225118

Beirut Vet-
By your logic, we could call the Rodney King or Watts Riots an act of terrorism. European countries imported these people from the Middle East years ago, to fill in for their gutted workforces.

They kept them around as second class citizens. In fact, the first time I heard about guest workers was when my brother told me about them in Europe; the word gastarbeiter is almost a direct translation. The consequences of that work policy are part of what supported and still support acts of terrorism here and in Europe. It’s not for nothing that the folks who pulled off 9/11 were known at the Hamburg Cell.

I take the threat of terrorism very seriously. What I know though is that Islamism and terrorism are not necessarily the same thing, any more than Eric Rudolph’s murderous behavior represents the true ideals of religious conservatives who populate many parts of the US. To be an Islamist is to believe that Islam is the key to good government and justice in society. That can be anything from Industrial strength Taliban style government to much tamer attitudes that merely ask that Islam be a basis for law that is similar to what many religious conservatives in this country believe. It’s important to make the distinction, because obviously the industrial strength Islamists don’t like us much; that isn’t necessarily the case with the more moderate folks there.

In terms of Chirac, I wasn’t disagreeing that they were dirty. I was merely pointing out that even a broken clock can be right, twice a day.

As for the UN inspectors, they were right, and we were wrong. Results matter more than political opinions motivated by the wish to go to war. They got Saddam’s weapons early on. I not trying to tell you he never had them, just that he didn’t.

Clinton took Saddam seriously as a threat. Given what we found out, it’s logical to conclude that he did all we really should have done: he helped take Saddam’s weapons away from him and keep them from him. As it turns out, the Neocon’s push for war was misguided, especially with the counterterrorism justification tacked on. Unfortunately we’re stuck in the war that mistake lead to, and Bush had the balls to commit and keep on committing that error. If you’re going to talk to me about intellectual dishonesty, then please tell me if I’m wrong when I say we didn’t find anything. Because if we didn’t, you have to explain where the threat was that required us to pre-emptively take him out. Often times folks say the WMDs were moved, but where to, and why hasn’t Bush gone after those people, especially given what’s at stake?

As for Clinton’s pursuit of al-Qaeda? Well, we are talking about the administration that was able to put away the first WTC bombers. The Sudam strike was problematic, and was likely a mistake, but it demonstrates Clinton’s determination to prevent Bin Laden from getting WMDs. He also launched a strike on Bin Laden’s camp, and set up a massive counterterrorism effort at the millenium which netted bad guys intent on attacking celebrators in Jordan and bombing LAX. When he was asked what was the primary foreign policy issue that Bush should be concerned with, he said terrorism.

As for still fighting Vietnam?

If you understood the role that the Democrats had in starting the Vietnam war, you would know it was more complex than the formulation of Republicans = Hawks/Democrats = Doves. That, in fact is part of what brought on the resurgency of the Republican party. Vietnam wasn’t our glory days, it was the point when our Best and our Brightest failed us.

Iraq is where the Republicans repeated the mistake of Kennedy and Johnson. They took a hostile, politicized position with the press, and claimed that anti-war elements were simply trying to be subversive. They extended the Vietnam War for years on end, and blamed the failure on those who lost faith in the war. Never mind that people lost faith in the war because they were promised results they never saw. Never mind that protracted wars rarely end well.

Wake up? When are you folks going to quit looking to the future to justify a war that’s not working in the here and now?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 6, 2007 10:55 PM
Comment #225145


I believe Chris Dodd has basically done just that. The majority of Americans would scream like hell at reinstatement of the draft., but if we’re going to continue with an occupation of Iraq it’s needed. In fact we should increase the number of boots on the ground in Iraq………….a lot!

Otherwise we’re fooling ourselves. It might be worth watching what Biden has to say next week if it’s true that the Pentagon is holding up the production of thousands of MRAPS to replace the Hummers. That’s been one of his pet projects since January.

Posted by: KansasDem at July 7, 2007 2:37 AM
Comment #225158

Excellent posts from all….and thank you for the warm welcome back.

For the next three weeks, I have decided to post only on the Iraq war…except, of course, if Bill were to stray and get ahold of one of those female campaign volunteers…. which he will…..

Posted by: sicilian eagle at July 7, 2007 6:47 AM
Comment #225203


I believe, from your *post* that you have finally lost your freakin’ mind!

There is nothing about this surge that is doing anything but EARNING us more casualties and a much larger pool of potentially dangerous enemies.

The best way to REALLY LOSE in Iraq…


Posted by: RGF at July 7, 2007 4:13 PM
Comment #225248

This just in from the BBC: A deadly truck bombing in a busy market in northern Iraq has killed 105 people and injured 240, police say: Saturday, 7 July 2007, 15:03 GMT 16:03 UK - Guess what. Wake up! Now! Stop being a fool. We are all growing weary of willful ignorance.

Posted by: Scott at July 7, 2007 9:50 PM
Comment #225273

Stephen Daugherty,

What is wrong with calling a riot an act of terrorism? I certainly don’t distinguish any difference in the two.
Anytime people take it upon themselves to terrorize and destroy the lives and property of innocent individuals for the purpose of manipulating Government policy or political action, that is terrorism!
The reason why revolution is not terrorism is that revolution is carried out upon the Government entity against whom the revolutionaries are revolting. Revolutionary acts are never directed at innocent people on the streets, in their marketplaces, homes, or businesses.


Posted by: JD at July 8, 2007 1:04 AM
Comment #225286

As it is, too many valid distinctions are not made. If you approach the unrest in France as if it were the result of al-Qaeda activity, or something else, you would miss the entirely secular causes of the problem there, which was their importation of large Muslim, Arab, and North African populations, which they have since subjected to grinding poverty, social isolation, racial and cultural discrimination. The cause of the riots, allegedly, are the deaths of two young men who were chased by police into an electrical substation. Their electrocution sparked the violence, not some call to arms by Bin Laden.

Not that the terrorists haven’t or wouldn’t exploit the social unrest. However, if you dealt with the real reasons for the riots, rather than trying to get tough on this population to guard the European’s interests (the motivation for much of the policies that have gotten them in this problem), then you might take away part of their support. That would be a victory for our side.

Disciplined use of language and arguments keeps us from getting caught up in bad arguments, entrapped by bad thinking. It allows us to shape our thinking to suit the situation, rather than try to make the world, with all the mysteries and complexities we don’t understand about it, fit our thinking.

Undisciplined argument, conflation of unrelated situations, is why we’re in Iraq with no end in sight. Both the War on Terrorism, and efforts to redeem Iraq’s political character might have been better waged without the confusion that their false linkage created.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 8, 2007 9:05 AM
Comment #225295

Toll in Iraq bombings could surpass 150

I wonder if repeating, “…it’s working, it’s working…” would convince these people. Until the very end people made excuses for what Hitler was doing….I’m sick with disgust at the lack of responsibility of some people. SE you are a wholly owned subsidiary of the Bush propaganda machine.

Posted by: muirgeo at July 8, 2007 10:45 AM
Comment #225314


While you wait for Bill to make a pass at a female campaign worker, we’ll keep an eye on Newt and Rudy. They’re the pros at cheating on their wives and pointing a finger elsewhere.

Posted by: Tim in NY at July 8, 2007 2:22 PM
Comment #225317

Stephen Daugherty,

So, what is your excuse for 9/11?

Riotous destruction of the property and lives of innocent people to manipulate Government action is terrorism, regardless of the excuses one wishes to make for the rioters. What part of that don’t you understand?


Posted by: JD at July 8, 2007 2:40 PM
Comment #225319

What right does a group of people have to burn the homes, cars, and personal property of hundreds of innocent people, because they thought the actions of a few cops was inappropriate? Are you actually excusing that behavior? Does the conservative right also get to use your excuse to target doctors who practice abortion because the government condones it? Do they get to burn down shops that sell pornography because they disagree with the government condoning its sale? Where are your excuses for those actions which the left so vehemently criticizes on the right, when they occur in far lesser numbers than those abuses toward violence, property destruction, and even terror induced murder perpetrated even by some on the left in this country as in the riots which have occured here. I’m not talking about Europe. This is exactly why persons of integrity, like Martin Luther King, Jr. and others vowed peaceful protest. They would never have condoned the personal property destruction, murder, and physical threat to win the hearts of the masses. But, today, even the Democratic Party, as well as many in the Islamic world condone this type of action, and seek, like yourself, to make excuses for it!!


Posted by: JD at July 8, 2007 2:55 PM
Comment #225349

Don’t play word games with me. All that tortured semantics has gotten the right-wing is an unwinnable war. They were so busy redefining what victory was every other second, that they failed to nail down what they needed to do to get the Iraqis on our side, and all together in working, tolerant democracy.

The only purpose this bullshit mixing of meanings serves is political. Ironically enough, it’s the kind of thing that the Right-Wingers tried to do in France, alleging foreign involvement, when most people rioting were citizens.

Now, note something else: nowhere did I say that rioting is an acceptable behavior. I’m not like Donald Rumsfeld, who when confronted with building-stripping grade looting in Iraq, simply passed it off as people stretching the legs of their freedom. I think of riots as ugly things, as very dangerous lapses in civil order.

I’m not supporting what these people did. I think they put back the cause of their people, and are the likely reason that Sarkozy (correct my spelling if I got that wrong) won the election in France. The same goes for the leaders and the participants of the Second Intifada and Ariel Sharon. I believe that regardless of their frustrations, they would have been better off finding some peaceful way of letting off their steam, making their message heard.

All that said, the door swings both ways. Sharon and his successor, with their hardline, have created foreign policy debacles for Israel. Right Wingers like Sarkozy are the same people who created the policies and practices that have lead to these unassimilated pockets of second class citizens. The cure is not only worse than the disease, it’s part of what’s causing it.

The attempts to conflate terrorism with these riots misses that. The fear of losing jobs to these people, the fear of these people’s customs, and the fear of the dilution of their societies is leading these people to create the conditions that their real enemies take advantage of, and which drive these populations to become more hostile to the majorities in their country.

You have to make peace to get peace. We will have an easier time weeding the gardens of Europe and the Middle East, if we’re not spreading the seeds of discontent while we try to tear up the unwanted and undesireable.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 8, 2007 9:29 PM
Comment #225411
Don’t play word games with me. All that tortured semantics has gotten the right-wing is an unwinnable war.

Ha! Most of the “semantics” have been made(predominantly) by the lefties, not the righties. This blog alone, on many occasions, has been filled with semantics (“What does winning truly mean?”, “you can’t say Islamofascists”, blah, blah, blah); so, don’t even try to shun the responsibility (of words and actions) on this one. Own up to it!

You have to make peace to get peace. We will have an easier time weeding the gardens of Europe and the Middle East, if we’re not spreading the seeds of discontent while we try to tear up the unwanted and undesireable.

So, we have to appease the terrorists?! Haven’t heard that one before.** By the way, try to make the “unwanted” & “undesirable” make peace first, instead of people, capable of peace, making peace. The ones that are intolerant and unpeaceful are the ones to worry about. But some of you don’t want to hear that…

Posted by: rahdigly at July 9, 2007 1:32 PM
Comment #225441
The reason why revolution is not terrorism is that revolution is carried out upon the Government entity against whom the revolutionaries are revolting. Revolutionary acts are never directed at innocent people on the streets, in their marketplaces, homes, or businesses.

One of the acts that helped spark the American revolution was a riotous act of vandalism against a private business, not against a government entity. It was called the “Boston Tea Party”. Terrorism or patriotism? You decide.

Posted by: Jarandhel at July 9, 2007 3:03 PM
Comment #225481

On winning the war, I sought to define victory and the means to gain it by substantive means, not by word games.

My objections to the term Islamofascism are similarly founded. The term is often used to Portray folks like Bin Laden and the late Saddam Hussein as if they were part of the same movement, to group distinct ethnic and language groups together, to ignore the sectarian divides that run through the region so that everybody grouped together can be treated as one enemy to be engaged on multiple fronts.

The word itself is little more than a semantic grab-bag. Secular governments are tossed in with religious, nationalists and socialists with monarchies and theocracies. Persian and Pashto speakers are tossed in with Arabs, Shia Muslims indiscriminately brought together with Sunni. Not all of these people or governments are hostile to each other, but you got some folks tossed in there that just hate each other’s guts.

The term is a semantic joke in my eyes. It’s worse than useless as a means to understand the region and its problems.

As for “appeasing the terrorists”? Look at what I actually wrote. I compared tackling the problem of getting at the terrorists to that of weeding a garden. When you weed a garden, you pull up and get rid of the undesirable element where you can.

That, though, is much easier when their own people don’t want them around either, when they themselves reject them of their own free will.

It’s a strategic question, especially if you think about the asymmetric nature of the tactics the other side uses. These people need collaborators. They need people willing to fund their endeavors. They need folks who feel inhibited about selling them out or speaking out against them for fear of seeming to be supporters of a nation or a culture that most people in the society see as hostile to them.

To put it simply, we want the average Muslim or Arab to join us and help us, rather than join and help our enemies. What I’m talking about isn’t appeasement of an enemy. As a matter of fact, I think it’s idiocy to try and get the radicals and Jihadists, the people who have built their lives around hating and fighting against us and moderation in their society, to lay off first. It’s backwards. It’s a waste of time. Try the reasonable people first, then let them persuade the less reasonable.

If we make peace with the reasonable folks in the Middle East, the breach of that peace by al-Qaeda and its ilk become offensive to them, too. That, Rahdigly, is not a bad thing. We want these people slamming the brakes on the radicals, not hitting the accelerator.

If you want to have to fight and kill more people to attain less effective security, be my guests. I want to do this the smart way, not the hard way, the right way, not in some muddled attempt at macho wish fulfillment.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 9, 2007 6:04 PM
Comment #225528
To put it simply, we want the average Muslim or Arab to join us and help us, rather than join and help our enemies. What I’m talking about isn’t appeasement of an enemy. As a matter of fact, I think it’s idiocy to try and get the radicals and Jihadists, the people who have built their lives around hating and fighting against us and moderation in their society, to lay off first. It’s backwards. It’s a waste of time. Try the reasonable people first, then let them persuade the less reasonable.

Ok, one, that is not possible and (definitely) not going to happen! The “moderate” muslims are not going to “sell out” their own “people”. That would be equivalent to asking the Italian people to “rat out” their fellow paisans (mafia) during the height of the mafia, in this country, during the 1940’s and 50’s. It is just not going to happen; that is, if those non-mafia Italians wanted to live. Same with today’s “moderate” muslims, they are not going to deal with the radical Islamists b/c they (Islamofascists) will kill them just as fast as they would the Jews, the West, and the rest of the “infidels”. And, two, why isn’t it in your vernacular to take out the enemy?! Why do you want to “talk” to people that can’t help us?! Why do you have to target the decent people, rather than go after and KILL the enemy?!! Targeting the enemy and not worrying about what people thought or “how we were viewed in the world” is (exactly) what they did in WWII.

Posted by: rahdigly at July 9, 2007 9:32 PM
Comment #225532

“On Thursday, December 16, 1773, the evening before the tea was due to be landed, the Sons of Liberty thinly disguised as Mohawk Indians, left the massive protest meeting and headed toward Griffin’s Wharf, where lay Dartmouth and the newly arrived Beaver and Eleanour. Swiftly and efficiently, casks of tea were brought up from the hold to the deck, reasonable proof that some of the “Indians” were, in fact, longshoremen.”

(Perhaps, the precursor to the longshoremen’s union?)

“The casks were opened and the tea dumped overboard; the work, lasting well into the night, was quick, thorough, and efficient. By dawn, 90,000 lbs (45 tons) of tea worth an estimated £10,000 had been consigned to waters of Boston harbor.[1] “Nothing else had been damaged or stolen, except a single padlock accidentally broken and anonymously replaced not long thereafter.” Tea washed up on the shores around Boston for weeks.

The British Company bringing tea to the colonies was practicing a monopoly, with the help of Britain, against those colonists trying to sell tea in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. The quote above describes the care and dignity with which the colonists reacted. Some from the individual companies that were getting special favors did suffer threat and violence, however, the colonists did not participate in mindless, rampant property destruction for blocks and blocks throughout the city, murdering anyone disagreeing with or opposing them, etc.! How you can justify the L.A. riots, the riots in Europe, and elsewhere with your depiction of the Boston Tea Party, is quite a stretch. But, typical of the left wing excuse makers! Because the U.S. and Britain has always been the reason for “terrorist protest”, right? In fact, now, they invented it!


Posted by: JD at July 9, 2007 9:52 PM
Comment #225658


You’re real quick to point out how little damage was done in the Boston Tea Party itself. What about the act which followed, the burning of the Peggy Stewart? It’s mentioned in the wikipedia article as one of the acts inspired by the Boston Tea Party, in the reactions section. You also ignore the build-up to the tea party: “Samuel Adams, and others of like mind, called for agents and consignees of the East India Company tea to abandon their positions; consignees who hesitated were terrorized through attacks on their warehouses and even their homes.” But you claim that Revolutionary acts are always against Government entities and never directed at innocent people on the streets, in their marketplaces, homes, or businesses. So were these acts, by our Revolutionaries, merely terrorism in your eyes?

Posted by: Jarandhel at July 10, 2007 1:58 PM
Comment #225709

I want to castrate al-Qaeda, take out not only it’s current existence, but its future offspring and heirs. All this war has managed to do is swell their ranks. If that’s what you call defeat for them, I’m sorry.

Killing terrorists is worthless when successors who are just as vicious pop up to take their place. It’s the movement we should target. We should do our best to sway the Middle East towards the side of moderation. If al-Qaeda starts killing people for that, it will only make them more unpopular, as killing your own fellow Muslims is a serious offense.

It’ll take guts to walk away from the Iraq war, but that’s what’s going to have to be done, to take the focus off of our aggression, and put it on al-Qaeda. We’ve become the goto bad guys for the radicals of the Middle East, their excuse, their punching bag on these matters.

Getting the support back of the countries of the Middle East, renormalizing our relationships there, can be the first step to breaking al-Qaeda’s legs, blindings its eyes, deafening its ears, and even worse, emptying its wallet.

The victory against al-Qaeda must be political, because it is at heart a politically oriented group. We can better fight on the political angle from the background, through diplomacy and tacit cooperation, and later as things cool down, more open friendship.

We have an advantage over these people: we ultimately would like to leave them alone. al-Qaeda wants to create an intrusive, backwards, puritanical system. We? We want to do business. We have a lot less to ask of the average Arab than Bin Laden does, That can work to our advantage, as long as they’re not seeing their fellow Arabs on the screen everyday, dead at American’s hands.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 10, 2007 7:31 PM
Comment #225740

The individuals you speak of were agents of the East India Company which was an agent of the British Government; being used by the British Government to completely devastate the livelihood of the colonists. The “company” was allowed to pay no taxes whatsoever under British law, while the colonists got taxed up the wahzoo on any tea they attempted to sell!!! They viewed this single company as an agent of the Crown. The colonists went after those that were directly interfering with their livelihood, by means of tyrannical, and unjust laws imposed upon them by the King.
They did not target innocent people on the streets, in the marketplaces, etc., as I correctly stated. They gave the agents of the crown the opportunity to quit swindling them. If they refused, they were forced out. They did not run throught the streets attempting to murder people in cold blood who had nothing whatsoever to do with their grievance.
Such murderous action and completely unconnected, malicious, riotous, and uncontrolled vandalism, like that which occured in L.A. and the cities of Europe, is terrorism, make no mistake about it.


Posted by: JD at July 10, 2007 11:44 PM
Comment #225790

History is not kind to those who make broad generalizations. The commentary is about what you’d expect from the freepers, but when it comes down to it, civil discord, whether it’s revolution, rioting, civil war or terrorism, is rarely pretty.

A riot, though, can be defined away from the other forms of civil discord in that it’s often spontaneous. Terrorist acts are often fairly planned out. Even a suicide car bomber might have a list of targets to go after. There’s an organized political purpose. A riot can be started over some pretty stupid crap, but once it gets going, it feeds on the hatred, anger, and discontent. As often as not, the violence falls back on their own areas, harms their own people. What defines a riot is lawlessness.

Calling it an act of terrorism gives it too much credit for forethought. It also neglects an important strategic aspect of the situation: any action taken against participants is bound to make things worse. Take down some terrorists, and you’ll likely be taking down malcontents, already somewhat isolated. Take down rioters, and you just killed civilians that others are going to make a cause out of. The aim of dealing with terrorists is to intercept them before they carry out their plans. Therefor, deadly force is often warranted. With a riot, deadly force can enrage a population. That’s why methods in riot control differ. Tear gas, rubber bullets, and riot gear are meant to enable the police force in question to back down the mobs.

Definitions matter. Terrorists are best met with apprehension and lethal force. Rioters are best met with non-lethal force meant to blunt their rage and return order to the situation in their dispersal. Treat one like the other and you have a fiasco on your hands.

Treating civil war combatants as terrorist can have a similar effect. Terrorists cannot be offered any quarter. They must be hunted down and stopped. Folks in a civil war? They can be calmed, brought to discord. If we are as relentless with them as we are with the terrorists, we end up making it very difficult for folks to look at us as friends rather than a mutually hated third party. We ought to have secured Iraq early on, so that we could preserve our reputation as an honest broker. Now? We’re too involved, and because of Bush’s policy, not able to make enough of a difference to take back control of the situation.

The time to have taken down the terrorists in Iraq was 2004. Unfortunately, Bush was too busy getting re-elected to allow the the number of bodybags to come home that would be required to bring Iraq back under control. Bush lacked the political will to do that. Oh, but he talked real pretty about it, and that’s why people bought what he said.

Definitions matter. Somebody thought up the flypaper strategy, defining the fight in Iraq as a terrorist magnet, rather than admit that was really going on was a failure of security. Result? We spent long months killing terrorists and insurgents while security continued to decline.

Definitions matter. They are what we define our actions by. If we treat rioters like terrorists, we will pay for it in further chaos.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 11, 2007 9:16 AM
Comment #225800


Even assuming everything else you said is correct, EVERYONE living in those homes would not have been agents of the company, they would have been wives and children of agents of the company. If the homes were targeted, innocents were targeted too, QED.

Posted by: Jarandhel at July 11, 2007 11:24 AM
Comment #225811


“As for “appeasing the terrorists”? Look at what I actually wrote. I compared tackling the problem of getting at the terrorists to that of weeding a garden. When you weed a garden, you pull up and get rid of the undesirable element where you can.” July 9, 2007 06:04 PM

“The victory against al-Qaeda must be political, because it is at heart a politically oriented group. We can better fight on the political angle from the background, through diplomacy and tacit cooperation, and later as things cool down, more open friendship.” July 10, 2007 07:31 PM

So you do want to “appease the terrorists”!! Politics is not the answer, killing them and defeating them financially and on the battlefield (Afghansitan/Iraq) is what will (ultimately) “wipe” Al Qaeda out. It sounds as if you are talking out of both sides of your mouth with this issue. If you (truly) want to “castrate al-Qaeda, take out not only it’s current existence, but its future offspring and heirs”…”, then you have to fight them, not try to do business with them or their “moderate” people.

Posted by: rahdigly at July 11, 2007 12:14 PM
Comment #225823

I have no problem fighting al-Qaeda. Your scope of that fight, though, is too limited and strategically hamstrung for my tastes. Only Arab rejection of radical groups like al-Qaeda constitutes true victory. You naively assume that people just have to understand what we’re doing in our fight. No, they don’t. They don’t have to understand when they see their own country or the country next door bombed. They don’t have understand when our war kills their family and friends. They don’t have to understand when we make hypocrites of ourselves to the world, and then criticize their people for acting barbarically.

The fight against the terrorists must not be imagined as a strictly military engagement. If we can get folks over there in the region to adopt policies and attitudes that undercut al-Qaeda, why pass up the opportunity? Why force ourselves to fight al-Qaeda from its position of strength? Cripple them, for heaven’s sake!

We will never kill every terrorist. We can, though, make it more difficult to sympathize with al-Qaeda, to take their world view. We can get governments, generally not many who like al-Qaeda, to aid us in their home territories, where these people work and plan.

It’s foolish to deny all other options than brute force, especially when the help we can get from these people can raise the effectiveness of it.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 11, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #225838


You don’t seem to get that America cannot go this alone. There is no conceivable way that we can fight terrorism without the aid of the Middle Eastern countries that are the breeding ground al Qaeda, Hezbollah, and the like.

Without diplomacy, America will continue to spin it’s wheels fighting terrorism.

Appeasement, give me a freaking break.

You guys out there on the fringes seem to believe that anything short of turning the Middle East into a glowing sheet of glass, is appeasement.

Without the carrot, the stick is meaningless, and no amount of mindless hyperbole is going to change that.

Posted by: Rocky at July 11, 2007 1:54 PM
Comment #226042

Stephen, you are talking around the subject and (sometimes) out of both sides of your mouth. The last message I posted, I pasted two statements (by you) that were completely on opposite ends of the spectrum. One, you said that that you want to “weed the garden” against terrorists, then, you say you want it to be done “politically”; through “diplomacy” and when “things cool down”, we can communicate through “open friendship”. Ok, what?!!!

You also (conveniently) did not respond to my comment of the “moderate” muslims turning on thier own with that of the American-Italians turning on the Mafia. What is up with that?!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 12, 2007 12:58 PM
Comment #226585


Using your logic of counting the family members’ losses of those who were targeted because of their affiliations with the Crown in the Revolutionary War, we can then estimate that well over 20,000 lives were devastated by the 9/11 attack upon America including friends and family members of the 3,000 plus that were killed.
We can easily estimate that well over two million lives of innocent friends and family have been affected by those terrorists who are targeting civilians in Iraq, if we are to accept the death toll figures of 650,000 that Democrats repeat over and over again.
We can easily estimate the family and friends affected by the deaths of 3,500 American soldiers to be at least in the tens of thousands. That doesn’t even include the wounded.
Using your logic, in excess of two million “innocent civilian” family members have been targeted by terrorist extremists in the towns and marketplaces of Iraq. Well into the tens of thousands, probably in excess of fifty thousand United States citizen family members of “innocent 9/11 victims” and soldiers have been targeted by Islamic extremists; and the Democratic answer is, so what! We need to stay out of it! It’s not our problem! They don’t really hate us, it is simply Bush’s War for Oil! It’s not even a problem at all that we can’t solve with Democratic diplomacy.
Talk about being out of touch!!!!


Posted by: JD at July 16, 2007 7:20 PM
Comment #226586

Stephen Daugherty,

Riots in America today are rarely spontaneous anymore. They are nearly always instigated and incited by race-baiters calling themselves civil rights activists. For their efforts, these persons are often given praise and recognition by the Democratic Party!


Posted by: JD at July 16, 2007 7:26 PM
Comment #226874


That post is the most preposterous thng I have seen in a long time. Absolutely a foolish and rediculous point of view in that post.

Such a post comes from a sheltered and shallow point of view that fails to recognize realities when confronted with them directly.

To the extent to which you believe it -
To the extent to which others adhere to it -
That is a post that is self-destructively foolish.

Complete failure of empathy.

Posted by: RGF at July 19, 2007 12:55 PM
Comment #226878

AS to Comment #224948

What the F?????

You don’t list a single issue or idea that hasn’t been significantly undermined by the republicans. In fact, every point you make is directly contradicted by THEIR ACTIONS!

And yet your *post* appears to be borne of the same shallow thinking label-junkie alegiance typical of modern republicans! It is the *post* of a point a view that continues to buy into all the GOP hype and lies and follows every distraction issue they throw out there, like immigration, with no recognition that there is no consistency or logical progression of any kind.


Posted by: RGF at July 19, 2007 1:08 PM
Comment #226915

Complete failure of empathy.
Posted by: RGF at July 19, 2007 12:55 PM


Sorry, I just can’t find it within myself to have empathy for those who deliberately target innocent men, women, and children for murder, beating, torture, property destruction, etc. when these innocent people have absolutely nothing to do with their political grievance.
Certain groups beholden to the Democratic Party or deemed so-called minorities by the politically correct establishment can go on deadly rampages for days and even weeks at a time while liberals use every worn out excuse for them in the book. Where are liberals out there saying we need to make it harder for their leaders to stir up this hate-mongering, and the inciting of violence amongst their people.
But, let conservatives block one bill like the immigration bill from being rammed through Congress, and libs are out there talking about the need to squelch free speech among the leaders of the conservative movement in talk radio who “alledgedly incite hate”. I think its time that liberals had a bit of a come-uppance and a reality check!
In the meantime, let one group of people or even an individual with Republican Party affiliations or even any semblance of conservative ties go on some crazy rampage and all of a sudden every Republican is a deemed a killer by the Mainstream Press. I think the perfect example is Bill Clinton blaming Rush Limbaugh, talk radio, and conservative militias for the Timothy McVeigh rampage, even though they knew the connections were small to none whatsoever. But the Mainstream media stories of how the conservative Republicans on radio and complaining in Congress about Clinton and Reno’s handling of Waco should be blamed for Oklahoma City went on for weeks.
Where’s the balance RGF? The media is quick to demonize Republican groups that take legal political actions to block unwanted legislation or solve social problems, but groups on the liberal side who practice violence toward innocent people are never criticized. Instead, the answer is excuse after excuse after excuse. I for one am tired of it!! Where is the condemnation of their liberal leaders inciting real, “not imagined”, hatred and violence evidenced by the deaths and torturous beatings of the innocent for entire city blocks?


Posted by: JD at July 19, 2007 11:13 PM
Comment #226950


With only the slightest of twists, you could sound just like a member of Hamas, Al Qeada or any other such organisation.

You see, we are engaged in the same kind of horrifying conduct. We cannot win on any kind of moral grounds as a result of that fact.

Empathy for the mutuality of the situation is the ONLY way to achieve any kind of significant and lasting peace. Otherwise, we are just as evil as any other terrorist organization.

That simple fact is the reason the terorist threat is GROWING as a result of the conflict i Iraq. We are playing right into the propaganda with which the worst terrorist organizations recruit new members for attacks against us and our allies.

We are MAKING it WORSE, not better.

Mostly, the empathy I am asking you to achieve, is enough empathy to realize the effects of what WE are doing.

Posted by: RGF at July 20, 2007 1:58 PM
Comment #226951


AS for the domestic civil rights issue, I believe you ar out of touch. You are automatically calling civil rights activists “race-baiters” with no effort on your part to evaluate the truth of your assertions or theirs. That is irresponsible, JD, and immoral.

More importantly, you are simply wrong.
Perhaps you have heard the recent happenings in Louisiana? A group of balck students forced to attend a mostly white school were repeatedly attacked and threatened. They were subjected to nooses hung prominantly on a tree where they used to sit in the shade. A confrontation occured which looks like it will result in a group of these black students spending most of the rest of their lives in jail, and yet nothing at all is being done in response to the life-threats and beatings and hate crimes they have been subjected to.

A similar thing is happening in Lewistown, Maine. Various Somalians who are obtaining lawful resident status based on asylum due to conditions which our own State Department has recognized, are being subjected to violence and threats and when they respond out of fear for their lives, they are denied the legal right to defend themselves! Keep in mind, these people are coming here from a war zone where a genocide is still being carried on against them and their families. Self-defense is a defense afforded us all if we are attacked or threatened and believe our lives are in danger or we are in danger of severe bodily harm…
Apparently, this affirmative defense is not available to those of color in this country.

And yet you offer the post you offered above.

I can only imagine that you are somewhat sheltered and unaware of these kinds of realities. Perhaps, you are from some pristine suburb somewhere and have never seen or felt any of these things. Perhaps, it is merely a failure of empathy on your part and when you hear or see these things happening, you automatically assume they are bogus! Your heart only seems to go out to the perpetrators.

Posted by: RGF at July 20, 2007 2:14 PM
Comment #226959


Neither can I just let that Tim McVeigh thing go.
Uttering encouraging words to one in the process of, or about to commit a crime is called being an accessory to the crime and is just as culpable as the criminal act itself!

In the case with Tim McVeigh, he haed been listening to Limbaugh et al and hearing the tripe about the government being the enemy for years. He heard the BS about republicans blaming Waco on Janet Reno (an apparent effort to impugn responsibility on Clinton either directly or indirectly for appointing Reno). The only missing element was that these spewers of republican bile didn’t actually know McVeigh was out there. They did, however, know of the existence of the growing anti-government militia groups such as McVeigh was affiliated with - they said as much. So, we cannot hold Limbaugh et al responsible for the crime as accessories, but the link is nonetheless plainly there.

Perhaps, there should be some sort of liability for lying and misrepresenting the truth to the public. It is after all, the method employed by Goering in Germany during WWII: Keep telling the same lies over and over until enough people start believing them!

Posted by: RGF at July 20, 2007 4:25 PM
Comment #226995

“With only the slightest of twists, you could sound just like a member of Hamas, Al Qeada or any other such organisation.
You see, we are engaged in the same kind of horrifying conduct. We cannot win on any kind of moral grounds as a result of that fact.”
Posted by: RGF at July 20, 2007 01:58 PM

Oh, that’s a good one RGF! Now I am only a twist away from being a terrorist myself for simply pointing out the deplorably excused conduct of those on the left; conduct that no civil human being should condone and support. Yet, Democrats seem to support it and excuse it outright.
All I read from your posts is how it is all our fault. We are the bad guys. Never mind that it is they who attack innocent men, women, and children. What we need to do is simply have a big pity party for them, right?
The Islamic terrorists attacking the innocent men, women, and children of the World Trade Center was terrorism of the worst kind. It was cowardly and pathetic. Just like the attacks upon the civilian people of Iraq that are being perpetrated by al Qaida today. And just like masses of armed looters and rioters trying to get everything they want from those in their own neighborhoods by sensless violence and fear. Sometimes even simply terrorizing neighborhoods for days just for their sheer pleasure of proving that they can do it without anyone, other than the National Guard being called out, as able to stop them. It is not some sense of wanting compassion, or empathy which drives these people. It is the lust, greed, and hatred of their own hearts that drive them to kill and beat innocent people with whom they have no grievance!


Posted by: JD at July 20, 2007 10:22 PM
Comment #227029


You cannot name one Democrat or liberal who suports torture. What a silly thing to say!

I cannot name a republican either, but actions speak louder than words. Even if I were to buy the argument that Bush cannot be held directly laible for Abu-Graib and GTO, I still see him continually trying to get exceptions made allowing our troops to torture! That impugns responisbility in my mind!

You just are NOT getting it. WE ALREADY are engaged in torture and the killing of innocent Iraqi civilians. Even if these occurences with the civilians are isolated events that are the result of tragic accidents, such events feed right into the hands of those recuiting new terrorists. It is true that a certain amount of these atrocities being carried out by our own are the inevitable result of war - any war. War is dirty and is not something that be conducted in a sterile and pristine environment. But - that doesn’t matter! Neither can any of these incidents be shrugged off. Each time there is an innocent civilian casualty; each time there is another incident of torture or news of the innocence of another prisoner held at Guantanamo for years, we give our enemies the tools they need to grow stronger and hurt us more.

I don’t want you to think it is about demonizing the right. It is about trying to educate the right (they desparately need it). We are all in this together and Bush led us into a trap. Iraq is a lose-lose. The longer we stay, the more we play into the hands of Al-Qeada and others.

Bush led us into a trap.
HE lied to Conress, lied to the UN and comitted treason to do it.

Now, America is demonstrating that Monica Lewinski is more of a threat.

The incompetence of the man you voted for put hundreds of metric tons (previously under UN control) of HMX and RDX high explosive in the hands of insurgents who are killing Americans with it right now. The same high-explsove may have been responsible for the deaths in Madrid, Spain from that bombing.

How can you deny some responsibility for having voted for him…especially if you did so in ‘04!

I’m not accusing you of terrorism. I’m only accusing you of not paying attention.

Posted by: RGF at July 21, 2007 1:53 PM
Comment #227091


It is sheltered thinking to imagine that those in the middle east have no grievence against us.

They see our actions and in-actions in their world on a regular basis. They see us backing the middle east fat-cats like the Suadi family. They see the support we give to Isreal as well as the actions Isreal has taken against the Palerstinians - like, bulldozing homes, using the peace to build Isreali housing in disputed areas during peace time only to achieve better negotiating position during conflict, sowing the seeds of dispute between factions so as to strengthen themselves, requiring the Palestinians to not allow their refugees who left in past conflict to return while simultaneously and continuously subsidizing the Immigration of Jews from all over the world (particularly, Russia) to move to Isreal.

All of these things, rightly or wrongly, are grievences. These are not even necessarily the biggest of their issues. They see us back some regimes and not back others with the result of human rights abuses and horrors for muslims all over the middle-east. Let us not forget, we once backed Sadaam. We also once backed Osama bin Laden. We backed the Shah of Iran, as well. They have seen torture and death squads backed by American interests for generations. Long before our actual troops were caught doing it more directly. How can you say they have no grievences?


But, unless we own up to its causes and accept the responsibility for our actions both direct and indirect, we will never solve the problem.

We simply cannot go around the world like some 14 year old play-ground bully with a 14 year old’s perceptioin of what it is to take responsibility for our actions. If that sounds like I am blaming my country, so be it. What I am trying to point out is that we need to conduct our world-business with an enlightened Adult’s sense of responsibility and moral conduct.
If all you see is the blame, then take another mental step, JD, and let’s take responsibility and do the right thing.
It is bound to have some rather surprising and beneficial effects for peace in the world as well as for our country’s health, wealth and well-being!

Posted by: RGF at July 22, 2007 1:45 PM
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