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Message to anti-war protesters

One of the news headlines today was about the discovery of mass grave in Mahawil area in Iraq. So far remains of more than 3,000 people have been found but Iraqis fear up to 15,000 people reported missing in the area may have been buried there during Saddam’s government crackdown on Shi’ites when they launched an uprising in 1991. Reuters reports:

Many families stood silently behind a ring of barbed wire coils separating them from the excavation in an attempt to preserve the site but others walked through the piles.

As an earthmover scraped heaps of rich brown earth from the site, bones protruded from the dirt. Once extricated, skulls and what look like the bones from the rest of the bodies were heaped into crumbled piles or stuffed into plastic bags. Clothing hung from the bones. Some skulls were cracked.

Since Saddam’s fall in the U.S.-led war on Iraq, mass graves have been unearthed in Najaf, Basra, Babylon and other areas and are still being found as Iraqis feel free to recount tales of arrests, torture and killings once too risky to tell.

To all those protesters whose righteous hatred for the United States and Britain was declared out of self-proclaimed desire for peace. Is this the kind of ‘peace’ you wanted to preserve when you cried “not in my name”?

Araya Hussein carried the remains of her husband in a bag away from the site weeping.

He went missing in 1991 when we had 10 children. I thought he was a prisoner and would one day come home. I never imagined I would be carrying his bones home.

Explain to this woman why your righteous wrath was directed at Bush and Blair but not at Saddam. Explain how according to your warped view of the world Saddam has ‘the right’ to rule Iraq and kill thousands without any fear of retribution. Explain how you can end up supporting an evil and oppressive regime and distance yourself from the long awaited liberation.

Damn you and your coddled, self-centered and twisted minds. You have caused enough misery and suffering by your irrational and irresponsible opposition to anything that might bring freedom to those parts of the world where free expression is an unknown concept. Perhaps you should change your slogans and cry for ‘peace of mind’, your minds that is, in the face of the gruesome truth emerging from Iraq.

The mass murders in Iraq have been stopped… but not in your name

276 comments to Message to anti-war protesters

  • damaged justice

    You ruin your argument when you conflate being anti-war (anti-American Empire?) with being pro-Saddam (or pro-bin Laden, as they were saying a year ago). “Meet the new boss; same as the old boss.” How many eggs have been broken to make this distasteful omelette, and how many more will follow?

    I think the worst argument I’ve seen on Samizdata in favor of war has been, “I can’t stop the State from stealing my money, so I should at least get something GOOD out of it.” Reminds me of PJ O’Rourke’s, “*This* is the way to waste government money,” after he’d just watched a videotape of a missile being launched — “hell’s own hard-on,” as he put it. Some crimes are just more exciting than others — until the gun of the State is pointed at *you*. Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines. And if you wouldn’t steal from me to send your kid to school, what the hell makes it moral to steal from me to kill people?

  • Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines

    Oh the Chickenhawk argument. It has such a nice fascist ring to it, a la ‘Startship Troopers’.

    And note how “liberation” is in scare quotes. Sure, I suppose the current state of the Iraqi people is just as bad as under Ba’athism… is that the point you are making or do you just like the look of quotation marks?

    The fact is people opposed the liberation of Iraq for many reasons, some of which were entirely rational, such as that it would lead to all sorts of nasty things back home (meaning the US or UK) such as PATRIOT act and the like, a concern I also share…

    …but many opposed it for quite different reasons. What Gabriel wrote is entirely correct about the people who opposed the liberation on the grounds of either ‘it is a soverign state’ (so frigging what?) or ‘what about the poor Iraqi people?’ (yet these same 700,000 people did not feel the need to march though London protesting the 300,000 people that Iraqi groups claimed were slaughtered in the aftermath of the 1991 uprising in Iraq).

    If those last two were not the reason for your position, I would suggest Gabriel was really not talking to you, but if you dislike the fact some of the shit being thrown by him is landing rather too close to you, well, it is hardly Gabriel’s problem if you insist on standing next to such people. Consider yourself intellectual collateral damage in an entirely ‘Just War’ of words.

  • Calvin

    Mass graves from 1991 do not mean unquestioned authority to unilaterally invade in 2003, it means Bush the father failed in 1991.

    Bush and Cheney and etc. before the war said the risks to the US of inaction are greater than the risks of invasion. Does anybody still believe that after no WMD’s of any sort are found and after we learn that known, but unprotected, nuclear facilities were looted and sacked, and also that Al Qaeda is alive and apparently as lethal as ever?

  • mike

    Hello; I’m still waiting for people to protest a suiside bombing by carrying a placard that says, “Not in my name.” (I’m especially waiting for some muslims to do this.)

  • “Does anybody still believe that?”

    You betcha. But that’s because the battle for Iraq was part of the progress of winning the war. It was an essential step, and without victory in Iraq there was only a poor chance of winning the war. Now the chance of winning the war is excellent.

  • Dan Tracy

    Too many of the anti-war types are too absorbed with their anti-Bush agenda. Letters to the editor here locally reflect that as you read these “peace activists” wail about the looting of Iraqi museums or the bombed out infrastructure in Iraq.

    These same individuals, however, remain silent about the mass graves, the freed prisoners (including children), etc. One has to wonder about their true sense of compassion and morality.

    Nobel Peace Prize receipent, Elie Wiesel was quoted last month as stating:

    “”If some European countries put as much pressure on Saddam Hussein as on (US President George W.) Bush, there would have been no war,” he told a press conference in Montreal. ”

    The same holds true for too many in the peace movement.

    Dan Tracy

  • Peter Ingemi

    It is very simple.

    Those who opposed the war decided that in their non-judgemental world that the slaughter of Iraqi’s by their own leadership is a “cultural” issue and none of our business.

    Now if this had been a country administrated by a western power (read the US or England) and these things were going on their cries would be loud.

    A similar arguement is going on about the sanctions. Now that the war is won the groups that clammored for the end of sanctions are saying otherwise and France and Russia have changed their tune.

    Apparently its ok for all those iraqi children “killed” by sanctions to die now because the US can be directly blamed instead of US sanctions.

    You know it would be much easier to say. “Yes I was wrong about the war, if I truly knew or believed that this slaughter was going on I would have supported the war, but not the people running it.”

    However that isn’t possible because in then end like the great congressman from the west coast who visited Iraq before the war, the people opposed will take any dictator’s word over George Bush’s.

    It’s a form of psycosis

  • Lazarus Long

    Yes Calvin, I believe it. Especially when I see Syria folding and N. Korea despearatly trying to make a deal and the Paks cracking down. Iraq wasn’t a decisive battle in this War, but I have yet to see any solutions to the War on Terror from the anti-war side (and denying that such a War is occuring is not a solution).

    But don’t think I am naive, the war wasn’t fought for human rights or because WMDs. It was fought to send a message that we replace regimes that support terror or own WMDs, to give us leverage over the Saudis with the oil and to give us a base of operations (a beach head) in the area. Perhaps you can critique the generalship of this operation, but you are fool if you don’t provide us an alternative or a traitor if you support doing nothing until an a-bomb hits London or Seattle.

  • Neil Eden

    How much of your vitriolic hatred is directed at George Bush Sr. for promising the revolting Shi’ites support and never delivering it?

    Some of those protesters you level so much contempt towards could have opposed the war because they feel that government can’t deliver on their promises to “bring freedom to those parts of the world ” any better than they can deliver on all the promises they make on the home front. Our governments have gotten rid of one unstable dictator, but they certainly haven’t established much stability to replace him. Baghdad is still without power, still without law and order, and the people there are still without any concept of who is in charge. The US government is failing Iraqis now just as much as they did in ’91.

    Why do you pro-war libertarians, who are rightly distrustful of government when when it comes to domestic projects, become the same kind of glaze-eyed government worshippers that socialists are when it come to international adventuring and dragon slaying?

  • Scare-quotes: good. “E” in American Empire: better. Changing the subject to avoid thinking to hard about people massacred in your name: priceless.

    Orwell described opponents of the war on Hitlerism as objectively pro-Nazi. It is entirely correct to describe their contemporary equivalents in the same terms.

  • Scare-quotes: good. “E” in American Empire: better. Changing the subject to avoid thinking too hard about people massacred in your name: priceless.

    Orwell described opponents of the war on Hitlerism as objectively pro-Nazi. It is entirely correct to describe their contemporary equivalents in the same terms.

  • Andy Freeman

    > You ruin your argument when you conflate being anti-war (anti-American Empire?) with being pro-Saddam

    Actually, he’s quite accurate.

    Certain arguments are both anti-war and pro-Saddam. Other arguments are anti-war and Saddam-neutral. Others are anti-war and anti-Saddam. (I think that most of the “anti-war” positions are actually “anti- some fantasy of American Empire”, a fantasy that tells us more about the protestor than it reflects reality, but that’s a tangent.)

    A lot of people used arguments from the first group. If they didn’t “intend” to be pro-Saddam, they shouldn’t have been.

  • “Mass graves from 1991 do not mean unquestioned authority to unilaterally invade in 2003, it means Bush the father failed in 1991.”

    I would argue that such state mass murder would both justify intervention, and mean that Bush the father failed in 1991. One conclusion certainly does not preclude the other.

    And though many now argue that the “failure” to find WMD means the casus belli was a sham, it should be remembered that Saddam’s Iraq had been directed by the UN Security Council to prove that it had destroyed its WMD (the existence of which UN inspectors had demonstrated beyond a shadow of a doubt). Iraq did not comply, which alone was justification for presumption of continued possession. Nor is the searching over. . . .

  • Sean

    Though I disagreed with those who opposed the war because they felt it wasn’t in the best interest of the US or the war on terrorism, I could at least respect their opinion. However, I could never respect the views of one who claimed to be protesting on behalf of the Iraqi people — particularly now that the war is over, the massive civilian casualties predicted by war opponents at the war’s buildup never materialized and the brutality of Saddam’s regime has come into clear focus.

    Bottom line, the casualties inadvertantly inflicted on the Iraq people as a result of our war against Saddam Hussein cost fewer Iraqi lives than are found at EACH of the mass graves described above, and there are likely to be many more mass graves uncovered in the future. That means that, if Gulf War II never occurred, more Iraqi civilians would have died in ONE Ba’ath party crackdown. The fact that the “anti-war” crowd STILL insists that THEY are the ones on the moral high ground is as baffling as it is disgusting.

  • “Mass graves from 1991 do not mean unquestioned authority to unilaterally invade in 2003, it means Bush the father failed in 1991.”

    I would argue that such state mass murder would both justify intervention, and mean that Bush the father failed in 1991. One conclusion certainly does not preclude the other.

    And though many now argue that the “failure” to find WMD means the casus belli was a sham, it should be remembered that Saddam’s Iraq had been directed by the UN Security Council to prove that it had destroyed its WMD (the existence of which UN inspectors had demonstrated beyond a shadow of a doubt). Iraq did not comply, which alone was justification for presumption of continued possession. Nor is the searching over. . . .

  • KJ

    “it means Bush the father failed in 1991″

    Bush I stopped short of taking Saddam out in 1991 b/c he didn’t have the support of the international community. He thought he needed it. I didn’t disagree with his decision at the time. He was wrong and I was wrong. But that doesn’t mean one shouldn’t correct mistakes. We just did that. But if we fell short (not finding WMD, etc), it was b/c we delayed action and allowed the US to be influenced by the “international” outcry and desire to protect tyrants like Saddam by those whose only real interest was financial (France, Russia, UN oil for palaces program)

    KJ.

  • Fred

    Attention, sour critics of US action in Iraq,
    listen to yourselves, you have become
    nightmare scolds whose loathing of humanity is
    only outdone by your blind hatred of the US or
    do you just admit to GWB?

  • “How many eggs have been broken to make this distasteful omelette…” Well, it looks like fewer Iraqis were killed in the recent war than are reckoned to be buried in this one grave alone. “…and how many more will follow” If you add in the saving of tens of thousands of lives annually who were being killed by a combination of UN sanctions (not “US sanctions”: UN sanctions) and Saddam’s administration thereof I suppose the answer is “many fewer broken eggs than would have otherwise been the case”.

  • “Mass graves from 1991 do not mean unquestioned authority to unilaterally invade in 2003, it means Bush the father failed in 1991.”

    I would argue that such state mass murder would both justify intervention, and mean that Bush the father failed in 1991. One conclusion certainly does not preclude the other.

    And though many now argue that the “failure” to find WMD means the casus belli was a sham, it should be remembered that Saddam’s Iraq had been directed by the UN Security Council to prove that it had destroyed its WMD (the existence of which UN inspectors had demonstrated beyond a shadow of a doubt). Iraq did not comply, which alone was justification for presumption of continued possession. Nor is the searching over. . . .

  • KJ

    “it means Bush the father failed in 1991″

    Bush I stopped short of taking Saddam out in 1991 b/c he didn’t have the support of the international community. He thought he needed it. I didn’t disagree with his decision at the time. He was wrong and I was wrong. But that doesn’t mean one shouldn’t correct mistakes. We just did that. But if we fell short (not finding WMD, etc), it was b/c we delayed action and allowed the US to be influenced by the “international” outcry and desire to protect tyrants like Saddam by those whose only real interest was financial (France, Russia, UN oil for palaces program)

    KJ.

  • Redman

    You make the same mistake that is always made when arguing with liberals . . . you attempt to use logic to show the inconsistency of their viewpoints. Logic smogic. It’s just plain anti Americanism. Whatever the government (espescially one led by a republican president) wants to do, these people will oppose it until the slobber runs down their chins and drops onto their Lands End shoes.

    Thanks to cable TV, blogs, and the internet news outlets, the liberals’ choke hold on the American media has been permanently broken, and the signs of their resulting desperation are everywhere. Expect to see liberals engage in more extreme and outrageous conduct (witness the Texas House democrats fleeing acrosss the Red River into Oklahoma to shut down the Texas House) as time goes by.

    How hard would it be for the liberals to say “Thank God Saddam is gone. He was a butcherous tyrant and the world is now a better place.” But no, their hatred for all things embraced by mainstream America trumps all compassion.

  • it means Bush the father failed in 1991.

    Straw men do not stand on their own, Calvin. Bush the father did not fail; the UN failed, as they did so often where Iraq is concerned. Troops well on their way to Baghdad stopped short because the UN asked us to. . .thus the first of many times the UN would fail the people of Iraq. You choose to ignore that, don’t you?

    And yes, Al Qaeda is alive, but I wonder about their lethality.

    Oh. You mean the twenty+ who died from the attacks two days ago. If we hadn’t invaded Iraq, that wouldn’t have happened, is that what you’re saying? Calvin, Al Qaeda, Hammas, the PLO, and all of the other terrorist groups have but three goals: Eliminate Israel, destroy the United States, and convert everyone who’s left to Islam.

    What would you have us do, Calvin? Cry? Whimper? Shut the door, turn off the lights, pull up the sheets, and wish them away? If it would work, I’d do it. . .but even you know it won’t.

    Calvin, GWB learned from his fathers mistakes: Don’t trust the UN.

    He’s also learned this: People are liars, especially murderous thug dictators.

    And anyone with half of a functioning brain cell should know this: If someone says they’re going to kill you, you should take them seriously.

  • Wow, is there an echo in here, or what?

  • S. Weasel

    Hm. I thought 42 comments in the time it took to pick up a Greek salad was good going.

  • Tongue Boy

    While it certainly true that anti-war and pro-Saddam should not be conflated, it is also true that the anti-war/not-anti-Saddam crowd (well, not “crowd”, maybe “remnant” is a better word) weren’t too eager to push the anti-war/pro-Saddam/anti-American dog off the bed. And now they complain because they have fleas?

  • Ron

    It was never about the invasion of Iraq, it was never about “not in my name,” it was about promoting the hatred of the United States and the furtherence of organizations like ANSWER, the Stalinist Front organization. Most of the organizations were fronting for Marxists and they didn’t care about anything except trying to demoralize the United Statesand fill their coffers with money. The still have a plan, its the same one from long ago, they want to try it one more time, they want Stalin, Pol Pot and the others back, once wasn’t enough. Read a little history, look at who they are, read the web sites and their pamphlets and what they are saying. They are not the “useful idiots” as Lenin used to call them, that was the marchers… but behind them is the bloody organization and all it stands for, we’ve seen them before, they’ve been around since 1917.

  • Jeffersonian

    I think we got the message, Felix, though you won’t find many takers on the notion that the Iranian theocracy is notably superior to Saddam’s thug state.

    I think the anti-war libertarians’ moral message boils down to Lincoln’s quip that if one man enslaves another, no third man should object. Were there practical reasons to object? Sure, but the arguements were not frequently made and almost always enveloped by moral outrage of war itself. But can anyone seriously, soberly look at the killing fields, the torture chambers, the children’s prisons and say that removing the regime that created them all was a morally squalid act?

    As for the mass graves, I say let George Galloway climb down into them and handle the effluent of the villain that has paid him so handsomely for his slavish, craven support.

  • Jeffersonian

    I think we got the message, Felix, though you won’t find many takers on the notion that the Iranian theocracy is notably superior to Saddam’s thug state.

    I think the anti-war libertarians’ moral message boils down to Lincoln’s quip that if one man enslaves another, no third man should object. Were there practical reasons to object? Sure, but the arguements were not frequently made and almost always enveloped by moral outrage of war itself. But can anyone seriously, soberly look at the killing fields, the torture chambers, the children’s prisons and say that removing the regime that created them all was a morally squalid act?

    As for the mass graves, I say let George Galloway climb down into them and handle the effluent of the villain that has paid him so handsomely for his slavish, craven support.

  • Able

    Boy, what a busy thread.

    So, three points.

    1:: If mere brutality was a reason for mounting invasions, we’ve have re-invaded after putting Pinochet in power. We’d probably have invaded Cuba. And we’d certainly invade the US Prison system where people convicted of minor crimes get raped and infected with aids daily.

    This was never supposed to be about invading a brutal dictatorship because of their human rights record. While I laud and celebrate the idea of the US as a global human rights police man, we’re going to have our hands full if this is our criteria for war.

    2:: Show me the democracy, baby? Left to their own devices, with fair one-person, one-vote elections, and there’s every chance Iraq will be governed by an Islamic Theocracy. Don’t like it? Well, better find some plausible alternative to democracy… oh, wait…. we have one of those here, it’s called the Supreme Court.

    (remember: Gore wins a fair recount. Yes, he was also an asshole trying to manipulate the process for his own ends and therefore probably isn’t much better than Bush, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles).

    3:: If this is about “liberation” we should have some metrics for what a “liberated” people looks like, in terms of access to government, perhaps education, health care (if that’s part of the package), freedom from oppression, freedom of speech etc. Perhaps a constitution.

    Whatever metrics we find for “liberation” we should apply at home also.

  • Tongue Boy

    Is it just me or does it seem like these NIONers and Upper West Siders are parochial, narrow-minded and have an odor of European neo-colonialism about them?

    “Why, Saddam is just a product of his culture!”

    “How dare the imperialist Americans impose “democracy” on these benighted, culturally pure darkies, er, I mean souls?!”

    “The problem isn’t Saddam but the violation of Iraq’s territorial integrity by the Bush war machine.”

    “Of course, the Haliburton fascists in charge of the U.S. genocide machine would protect the Oil Ministry and not the National Museum.”

    “Wow, they found mass graves?! Okay, now what about the looted artifacts?”

    Yes, these are made-up quotes but I’d bet you a dollar to Sunday you wouldn’t have known that had I not told you. I’ve heard a lot worse from these backdoor racists.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines

    Oh the Chickenhawk argument. It has such a nice fascist ring to it, a la ‘Startship Troopers’.

    In other words, you have no actual response to it.

    The fact is people opposed the liberation of Iraq for many reasons, some of which were entirely rational, such as that it would lead to all sorts of nasty things back home (meaning the US or UK) such as PATRIOT act and the like, a concern I also share…

    … but if you dislike the fact some of the shit being thrown by him is landing rather too close to you, well, it is hardly Gabriel’s problem if you insist on standing next to such people. Consider yourself intellectual collateral damage in an entirely ‘Just War’ of words.

    Um, if we’re to be considered “standing next to such people” for opposing your war, aren’t you standing next to Ashcroft and his PATRIOT Act? If I’m responsible for left wing idiocy, you cannot claim to be innocent of that right wing idiocy.

    Perry’s War means Perry’s Patriot Act.

  • Hungry Valley

    La, la, la, they can’t hear you.

  • KJ

    Able’s points are as follows:

    1: We can’t take out every thug regime, so why Iraq?

    True, there are lots of evil leaders similar to Saddam. We cannot possibly send armies all over the world to take them out. But just b/c you can’t do “everything” doesn’t mean you can’t do anything. You choose your spots based on some mix of national interest, collateral damage, other achievable goals and the ability to define the objective and win. Somolia clearly was a bad choice. Bosnia (yes, even Clinton could make a right decision at times) and Iraq were good choices, for many reasons, though neither may end up the utopia critics will claim it has to become for the evil American president to get credit for the decision.

    2. Democracy has not surfaced.

    It is very early. A little patience today, though impossible in the day of satelite 24/7 news, is required. Japan was in worse shape than Iraq, and it took 7 years. But US help obviously worked.

    Aside: Every newspaper, even Miami and NYT, found that Bush would have won the recounts. The Supreme Court did its job — 7 justices said all chads had to be counted the same under the equal protection clause. Dems in Florida didn’t want to do that. BTW, the Constitution, fairly construed (even by justices who don’t make stuff up based on political belief), places limits on democracy.

    3. We need metrics.

    I’m sure some fair, neutral university poly sci center will come up with one, no doubt similar to the fair, unbiased and rational criteria used in the Mommy Index of countries recently published.

    I wonder though, will “oportunity” be the basis for those metrics, or will “results.”

    KJ

  • T. Hartin

    “While it certainly true that anti-war and pro-Saddam should not be conflated.”

    Not so fast. In fact, some of the anti-war types were pro-Saddam. The pro-Saddam sorts (I am thinking ANSWER) provided critical organizational support to the anti-war movement, by all accounts. In other words, many anti-war protestors were perfectly content to associate with pro-Saddam supporters in order to advance their cause, and never uttered a peep of repudiation of ANSWER and their pro-Saddam confreres. If you allied yourself with a pro-Saddam group, relied on it, and never repudiated it, then I fail to see why you should complain when you are thereafter associated with its goals.

    Further, the anti-war types never proposed a workable alternative to war. In other words, the policy they proposed would have left Saddam in power indefinitely. They might not have preferred this outcome, but it is the outcome the worked toward. If you don’t want to be tagged as pro-Saddam, you should have some realistic way of getting rid of him.

  • cydonia

    Please would the pro-war libertarians be a bit more understanding of where the anti-war libertarians are coming from?

    The history of U.S. libertarianism (and its old-right roots) is one of principled isolationism and vehement opposition to overseas entanglements and military adventurism

    Their stance has repeatedly been shown to be correct. Think of the Civil War, WW1, the cold war (and its various hot outgrowths) etc. In each case the policy of aggressive militarism, interventionism etc can now be clearly seen as mistaken and as having had disastrous consequences in terms of human lives, wasted money and the extension of domestic State power (just as the libertarians had predicted).

    Yet in each case, the motivation of those who advocated interventionism included (just as with Iraq) the goal of bringing liberty and the supposed protection of vital U.S. interests.

    In fact the similarity between some of the arguments and rhetoric of the pro-war libertarians re. Iraq and of the pro-war pro-State Conservatives at the time of WW1, the cold war etc is uncanny.

    Against that background, it is hardly surprising that anti-war libertarians express profound scepticism that things will be any different this time around.

  • Bill

    “Besides, the Iranians were ready to get of Saddam for us a few years ago but we supplied Saddam with chemical weapons to help him defend himself. ”

    Uhhh… yeah, I guess you must be French or German then. That’s the only way that “we” would make sense. In the Iraqi disclosure on their chemical weapons program, the US didn’t show up at all. Guess which countries did.

  • So far nobody seems to have noticed an important point:

    These people were apparently killed during the post-Gulf War I uprising. The discovery of their bodies now is a rather gruesome reminder to the people of Iraq: “This is what happens to people who are naive enough to trust the US government.”

  • mhw

    The psychosis of the left wing Bush haters is very deep. It must be way more difficult to quit than smoking. Only a few percentage of the left wing have gotten their sanity back even after the liberation scenes. Sad. Very Sad and Very Sick.

  • Raoul Ortega

    Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines

    Oh the Chickenhawk argument. It has such a nice fascist ring to it, a la ‘Startship Troopers’.

    In other words, you have no actual response to it.

    If you accept the Chickenhawk/Starship Troopers criteria, then those people without military experience cannot express an opinion, either for or against, military activities.

    The Chickenhawk arguement is facetious because it is a requirement imposed on only one side of the issue. It’s a typical Leftist technique– to impose requirements on one side of an issue that aren’t imposed on other sides. Funny how the extra requirements are never made on Leftists.

  • (Re: Chickenhawk argument) “In other words, you have no actual response to it”. The chickenhawk argument (no civilian is entitled to advocate the use of force) is totally fatuous, Scott. In every modern democracy I can think of the armed forces are under civilian control. The armed forces are controlled by the civilian population via the orders of the civilian government and that is an entirely Good Thing. I suspect those advocating the chickenhawk argument (“how dare he advocate force, he’s not a soldier!”) would also be quick to respond to a hawkish soldier thus: “but of course he advocates force, he’s a soldier so must want to kill people/raise the army’s profile/secure funding for his unit!”.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Damn you and your coddled, self-centered and twisted minds.

    Damn you for giving aid and comfort to every future Saddam by siding with a government that with “wartime necessities” like the Patriot Act (and future part II) and a war that will never end (at least not until all Bad Men are removed from power – which is giving the govt a blank check for future wars) is removing some of the only examples of free countries available to the oppressed of the world.

    Damn you because, thanks to you, people being oppressed by their governments (including whatever thug we install in Iraq) will never know that freedom is even a possibility.

  • Scott: In other words, you have no actual response to it.

    Actually Scott I have made my case against the feeble ‘Chickenhawk’ argument before, ad nauseam in fact, and I do not feel like going over it again considering it is one of the least compelling and trivial positions out there. There were many arguments against the armed libertarian of Iraq that were sound and deserved respect, even if not agreement, you even made a few yourself, but ‘Chickenhawk’ is not one of them. If you want to know my ‘actual response’, and that of some other people, well, look at the comments here. I feel no need to repeat my views on that over and over again.

  • Matt Edens

    >Mass graves from 1991 do not mean unquestioned >authority to unilaterally invade in 2003, it means Bush the >father failed in 1991.

    Curious. Now how exactly did he “fail”?

    Couldn’t have been by not unilaterally invading Iraq and deposing Saddam, could it?

    Interesting that you characterize that as a “failure” and yet denounce George W. Bush for correcting that “failure”.

    Not that being critical of the assorted Bushes have anything to do with this.

    -M

  • Mick_McMick

    >2:: Show me the democracy, baby? Left to their own devices, with fair one-person, one-vote elections, and there’s every chance Iraq will be governed by an Islamic Theocracy.

    That’s why it will not be a simple majority. That wouldn’t sit with the Kurds and Sunni. It will have to be representative of all the different groups. That’s why we have THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE! And speaking of which…

    >Don’t like it? Well, better find some plausible alternative to democracy… oh, wait…. we have one of those here, it’s called the Supreme Court.

    You see? You keep tipping your hand. This isn’t about “Give Peace a Chance!” It’s about “Gore 2000.”

    Spoiled trustfund crybabies and sore losers.

  • At the risk of being politically incorrect (and how ironic THAT would be in a self-avowed libertarian forum), posting pictures of the contents of mass graves dug circa 1991 and saying “the killing has been stopped” in 2003 is like the ANSWER crowd posting a picture of the smoldering ruins of the Mt. Carmel compound outside Waco TX, and asking, in 2003, “Mr. President, has the killing stopped yet”?

    In either case, there is the clear implication that the horrific killing depicted so graphically has continued on into the present day, as well as an additional implication that any recently taken actions against the alleged perpetrators were 1) justified, and 2) effective in stopping it. (In the Waco case, of course, the “recently taken action” would have been the replacement of Clinton by Bush, I suppose…)

    Thus can “true” pictures be made to lie.

    A further irony is that, if the reported date is accurate, the people in the graves are those who took Bush the Elder at his word, when he exhorted them to rise up and oppose Saddam. Surely they expected US help that never came. And almost as surely, many — perhaps thousands — of them were killed by weaponry that Saddam acquired by virtue of being one of “our guys.”

    We don’t need more evidence of how bad a guy Saddam has been throughout his career. Nobody is claiming that he is a misunderstood victim of circumstance. He’s a thug. The continuing — and for me, the insufficiently answered — question is, what justification under its own constitution and traditions does the US have for making a pre-emptive strike to remove the ruling regime in a soverign country? If it turns out that the alleged justification proves false, what will the US do to address the mistake?

    I don’t think that “Saddam is a bad guy” is sufficient reason for the Iraq war we just prosecuted. “Hitler is a bad guy” was insufficient reason for the US to get into WWII — for that, we needed the direct attack on Pearl Harbor. I also think that the US was founded on the principle that government power must be restrained, especially the ability to make war, as even wars fought for “morally just causes” have the effect of reducing both social and economic freedom at home, and enlarging the government (more or less permanently). So clearly, the people who founded the US did not want the politicians to be able to plunge us into war on flimsy, overly general, or unexamined premises. Lawyers can find loopholes — that’s what most of them do to put bread on the table (not to mention that classic collectors’ car in the garage) — and many of them have been working overtime to make a case that the Iraq war was prosecuted completely according to the letter of the Constitution. Even if they can be shown wrong eventually, the damage that the US will be able to do while the current thinking dominates will be considerable. But the spirit of the constitution is a different thing entirely. It is clear that the things the US constitution authorizes it does for the good — especially the safety — of the American people and for no other people on the earth. The only authority the US government has to operate militarily overseas is in the service of making us — the Americans — safe. “Making the world a better place,” by ridding the world of one more dictator, or by undertaking various humanitarian military missions around the world, is too vague an excuse to fall within the constitution’s focus on America and Americans. This isn’t an argument you can likely make in court, whether a court of law or a court of impeachment. It is the kind of argument that can best (perhaps only) be made in electoral court — on election day, with the jury issuing their decision as ballots in the voting booth.

    We can all rejoice that a bad guy was put down. But if we let stand that the US can go to war for false reasons, for reasons that are inconsistent with the authority vested in the government by the people via the constitution, and without sufficient congressional debate or proper congressional declaration, then we must accept that there will be plenty of wars ahead that won’t end so quickly or so happily.

    If you really want to say “not in my name,” you have a moral obligation to register to vote, to vote for people who won’t play so fast and loose with the constitution or the warmaking power, and to do your part as voter to endorse a governmental approach that will let you sleep at night. Voting may not be as fun as wilding during a peace march, or as publicly visible as a sit-in. But it is the central way our institutions provide for people to take control of their government. Up to this very day, people have fought and died for the right to vote, or been threatened and killed for attempting to exercise that right. Voting to rein in the government does NOT mean you don’t care about people in foreign lands, or that you endorse the evil perpetrated by a thug like Saddam. It does mean that you won’t give the US government the power to stick its military nose into foreign conflicts, and that you demand that other, preferrably more peaceful, probably voluntary, non-governmental approaches and means be used to promote peace and order outside the US borders. Please think about casting such a vote, the next time you have the chance.

  • Buddy

    Felix, whose love of civil debate apparently led him to try to clog up the site with his own voice, needs to look up his dates. USA helped Saddam marginally in the mid-80s. The big old cold war was still on, Iran had basically declared on us already, geopolitics were entirely different, and Saddam hadn’t yet gone berserk on the repression/genocide. He was our best bet to retain influence in that conflict, AT THAT TIME. Felix, you’ve said a hundred times here that “12 yrs ago” we were arming Saddam. 12 years ago we were FIGHTing him. His war with Iran was over 15 years ago. The two-plus years between 1988 and his Kuwait invasion were a long time, then, and those years, after we helped him against Iran, changed things. Saddam changed the dynamics of the relationship. Not GWBush. Facts matter, a little, to some folks, Felix. But you will just keep on making up things that sound cool to you, won’t you?

  • hark

    Scott is totally divorced from reality. I guess he thinks whatever ‘thug’ is installed by the US will kill hundreds of thousands like the baathists did, with CNN somehow not noticing. Perry did have a response by adding “… a la Starship Troopers”, which elegantly and, unlike your lengthy diatribes, briefly, made a powerful point about CIVILIAN control of the military.

  • Holger Uhl

    Wolf Bierman, a poet of national renown, called the German Anti-Iraq War movement “Hurra Pazifisten” and “Nationalpazifisten” or National Pacifists in recognition that many in the peace movement were less interested in “peace” and more interested in opposing western democracy as symbolized by the US. As long as the peace movement limits its opposition to policies of the United States, and fails to sufficiently condemn the acts of war of others it lacks credibility and it takes sites against democracy.

  • oops… I did not intend to delete ALL of felix’s comments, just the nine zillion repeats, which I assume was our server burping, not him spamming us. Sorry.

  • Mick_McMick

    >Their stance has repeatedly been shown to be correct. Think of the Civil War, WW1, the cold war (and its various hot outgrowths) etc. In each case the policy of aggressive militarism, interventionism etc can now be clearly seen as mistaken and as having had disastrous consequences…

    Are you saying the South will rise again? You think slavery should be reinstated? A new Kaiser should be appointed to rule Europe? The USSR should be reincorporated, and this time appeased until it encompasses the globe?

    Isolationism doesn’t work, because there will always be hungry monsters more than willing to come TO YOU, and take what you have, and stop you from running your life the way you want to live it.

    What puzzles me is that these same liberals complained bitterly about GWB’s early policy of less intervention and foreign entanglements. They foamed at the mouth about sinking the bulldinky Kyoto treaty and the World Court sovereignty giveaway. Then, after 9/11 they call for isolationism and “respect for sovereignty” of terrorist-sponsoring tyrants.

  • Scott Cattanach

    From the thread Perry pointed to:

    Here we are presented with several insights into the ‘mind’ of a man who not only seems to presume to know what passport I hold and what I may or may not have done (I have seen a real war up close and personal, I wonder if Robert McCormick has?), but also does not believe in civilian control of the military: i.e. he thinks the only people with any right to have an opinion how a volunteer military is used, is the volunteer soldiers themselves, rather than the people who pay for them. Presumably Robert McCormick feels that fireman are the only ones with the moral right to call out the fire brigade.

    This is a straw man. The “chickenhawk” argument isn’t that only the military can decide which wars to fight. It is a claim that while Perry will demand the war, consider it a crime not to fight the war, and dance in the streets after the war, Perry will clearly not personally risk so much as a hangnail for the freedom of people in Iraq. Its only when others die that this is a Good War. His own previous military service is not relevant here.

    Saddam out of power and 100 US Marines dead is a fair trade. Saddam out of power and Perry harmed is not.

    Nobody is saying that you have to have joined the military, or that you have to join now. The NeoCons are being condemmed for making an obsession out of a war only when they can do so in absolute safety. I’m not even talking about people who think it is a sad necessity to fight but won’t go, its the cheerleaders who are chickenhawks.

    And I also don’t buy the “since The State exists, they might as well fight this war” claim, since it can be used to justify anything the left or right wants. After all, since its just a given that The State will resistribute income (do you see it stopping any time soon?), they might as well distribute it the way the Socialists see fit. Since the govt will spend billions anyway, we might as well get “free” healthcare out of it.

  • Jon G.

    Maybe I missed it, but I don’t recall the Bush adminstration arguing to depose Saddam because of his treatment of the Iraqi people. The argument I heard was that Iraq presented an immediate threat to the safety of the United States.

    That argument was supported by a detailed list of chemical weapons he possessed and the belief he either had or was close to getting nuclear weapons. So far, no MWDs have been found in Iraq. Since that arguement hasn’t panned out, the justification for the war has switched from the immediate threat to the US to how we needed to free the Iraqi people.

    No doubt Saddam was a bad guy – there’s lots of bad guys in the world we’d all be better off without. Using that rational we have a long list of countries to invade, some of them our allies. But that’s not the reason the American People were given for the war. Face it, they lied.

  • Ryan

    Why is it that anti-Bushies can’t bring themselves to admit they were wrong? They should admit they were selfish, ideological, irrational, and uninformed, but I’d settle with wrong. Even if every bad intention attributed to the Bush administration is correct, and the new Iraq will be no more than a puppet regime so Bechtel and Haliburton can make a few billion and the U.S. gets access to oil reserves, isn’t it pretty clear by now that the Iraqi people are far better off? I think it’s clear by the anti-war crowd’s response to the last month that the well-being of the Iraqi people is not very important. It’s the “process”, not the results.

  • Scott Cattanach

    That argument was supported by a detailed list of chemical weapons he possessed and the belief he either had or was close to getting nuclear weapons.


    Technological illiterates and WMD

    …The FTI media failed us again in the runup to the US invasion of Iraq. In order to have had the weapons of mass destruction (WMD) claimed for Iraq, they would have had to have a GE – pre-Welch – in their country. Technology needs all the parts to work. If an essential part is missing you have to make it or buy it.

    Before we blew it to smithereens, Iraq had many areas where they had a “first-world”/state-of-the-art infrastructure. But they had bought rather than made it – which meant that they were dependent on outside suppliers for spare parts.

    As the embargo stretched out, the chance that an irreplaceable part had gone missing somewhere along the technological “food chain” became practically infinite. So even if we “knew” that they had everything to make WMD at one time, (after all, went the joke, we had the receipts) we could not know what had been lost.

    Technologically we “knew” nothing – but every missing piece of information would have been further evidence that WMD production had become impossible. So all the predictions that Iraq had the capability of making WMD in anywhere near the quantities claimed had less basis in fact than the Sunday morning football betting lines…

  • Steve White

    To Neil Eden: apparently your complaint is that, after Saddam spent 25 years wrecking Iraq, it’s taken us six weeks to get the power back on in Baghdad. Patience, grasshopper.

    To those who claim that the inability to find WMD now obviates the original reason for going to war: please recall that Saddam used chemical weapons on his on people — an incontrovertible fact. Whether or not we can find them now, Mr. Hussein had them and had demonstrated his willingness to use them in odious ways. Our inability to find them may reflect on our own limitations/competence (always possible), or Saddam’s cleverness (he was that), or Iraq’s inability to maintain these weapons sufficiently to stock them. There is clear evidence that Saddam expected his generals to use chemical WMD against us. I would suggest that the WMD argument really is moot — Saddam had them before and was willing to use them.

    To those who claimed that GHW Bush failed in 1991: please recall why. The correct answer is, he was constrained by the Arab states in the region. Please recall that Syria stated bluntly that if we moved on Baghdad, they would switch sides and fight. The Egyptians told us that they would withdraw their forces, and the Saudis told us that they would close our access to their bases. The Arab states promised GHWB that if we limited ourselves to the liberation of Kuwait, plus a good spanking of Iraqi forces, that they then would contain Saddam. They failed to do so. One could correctly question whether GHWB should have believed them, but that was the hand he was dealt.

  • Jim

    All “human shield”-types so dedicated to stopping the killing should hop on city buses in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem.

  • Daniel in Medford

    To Jon G. — Yes, the Bush administration’s rationale for attacking Iraq was that Saddam’s regime posed a threat to the United States. (Several reasons were given for this — Saddam’s support of terrorism, not limited to Al Qaeda; Saddam’s REFUSAL TO COME CLEAN about his weapons of mass destruction, in defiance of the entire UN Security Council; and so on).

    But I do not recall being told, even once, that we were attacking Iraq *solely* (or even “primarily”) because it posessed weapons of mass destruction. So I’m afraid I don’t buy your argument that we were lied to.

    As to the incalculable human benefit to the Iraqi people of ridding them of Saddam, I don’t recall it being emphasized before the war either. So what? Is it a crime to bring it up now? Personally, I see it as a “fringe benefit” of doing what the Unites States had to do for its OWN well-being — an enormous fringe benefit, to be sure, and one we can be quite proud of. But that’s not why we went to Iraq, and I’m not aware that the Bush administration is now claiming that it was.

    One more thought. France, Germany, Russia, and others made it quite clear, as recently as March, that six months of searching for weapons of mass destruction were insufficient. Why is it so terrible that it’s taking the US military a while too?

    Frankly, if no WMD were *ever* discovered in Iraq, I wouldn’t feel betrayed; I’d feel puzzled as hell. We *know* that Saddam had them; he told the UN so in 1991. We *know* that he still had them in the mid-nineties, because UN inspection teams wrote about them. We *know* that he claimed, in 2002, not to have them any more, but refused to tell us what he had done with them. Could Saddam have been so collossally stupid as to have destroyed the WMD, and refused to prove it to anyone? I can’t believe that.

    I do expect that we’ll find WMD — perhaps buried deep underground, perhaps hidden in the cellar of an elementary school, perhaps shunted across the border to Syria (or even Iran). But I’m not holding my breath waiting for them, and I don’t see why I should.

    DJS
    Medford, MA

  • Scott Cattanach

    To Neil Eden: apparently your complaint is that, after Saddam spent 25 years wrecking Iraq, it’s taken us six weeks to get the power back on in Baghdad. Patience, grasshopper.

    But, but, but the government hasn’t failed, it just hasn’t been given enough time and money. Just another year and another 50% budget increase and our social programs will work. Honest. We mean it this time.

  • Matt

    One more comment on the Florida recount…besides Bush wininng all the recounts, It will never be known who did not vote in the Panhandle due to early “projections” of the winner. It is an hour behind and a heavily military area. One can reasonably assume Bush would have widened his lead and won the election…so I hope the liberals don’t let this go…It will cost them in ’08!!!

  • Steve White

    James Merritt asks: what justification under its own constitution and traditions does the US have for making a pre-emptive strike to remove the ruling regime in a soverign country?

    The answer is straight-forward: should that country become a manifest threat to us, we are permitted to defend ourselves, and to do so pro-actively.

    Those who make Mr. Merritt’s argument generally do so in a pre-9/11 mindset: they wonder what bombers, what aircraft carriers, what tanks Saddam would have used to attack the United States. Failing to see any, they conclude that Saddam was not a direct threat to us. But 9/11 showed us that terrorism, particularly terrorism that is aided and abetted by a nation-state (e.g., the Taliban in Afghanistan), can strike at the most powerful countries.

    Saddam had numerous connections to many different terror groups — and now we’re learning that he had connections to al-Qaeda. Given Saddam’s relentless push to build portable WMD (e.g., small nuclear weapon, smallpox, etc), his willingness to use these (e.g., gas the Kurds), his desire to be the next Saladin, and these connections, how long before a never-before-announced terrorist groups has such weapons and uses them against the US?

    So for Mr. Merritt, two questions — first, if such a scenario occurred — Saddam sponsored terrorist group blew up a US city — who would you blame, and how would you respond?

    Second, why should a country that is aiding, abetting, and planning terrorist acts as a weapon against others enjoy sovereign immunity? I would appreciate a response that does not cite the Treaty of Westphalia.

  • Matt

    One more comment on the Florida recount…besides Bush wininng all the recounts, It will never be known who did not vote in the Panhandle due to early “projections” of the winner. It is an hour behind and a heavily military area. One can reasonably assume Bush would have widened his lead and won the election…so I hope the liberals don’t let this go…It will cost them in ’08!!!

  • James Stephenson

    Well I usually do not comment too much.

    But I get so tired of these people saying the Supreme Court gave the election to Bush. First and foremost, Florida Election law states, on a close machine count, Run the votes through the machine again and that vote is official. In Effect, the Florida Supreme Court was trying to change election law after the fact, nice I thought the US had went to third world status over night.

    Secondly Democrats sent lawyers to Florida with one agenda, Keep the Military absentee votes from being counted. Because they knew that military typically vote one way, Republican.

    Lastly, the Supreme Court just told Florida, you are not allowed to handcount a couple of districts, you must count all of Florida in the same manner. The Dems figured that the would not be able to catch up if all of Florida was counted, and you know what they were right. Several Major newspapers hired an accounting firm to count those votes and Bush still won Florida. If Gore would have won, it would have been a huge story, but since he did not, hardly any press.

    My god, next I will hear from some of you people is that the CIA was behind the 9/11 attacks. Paranoia will destroy ya.

    Sorry for the rant, but I get tired of hearing this election nonesense.

  • @Jon G

    National security, protection of US interests (Israel, et al), and Iraq’s possession and development of WMDs were the strategic impetus. The failure of Iraq to present evidence of their destruction was the legal justification. The oppression of the Iraqi people was used from day one (September 12, 2001, that is) for moral justification.

    The burden of proof lay with Saddam, not the US.

    You, sir, speak from your rectum.

  • James Stephenson

    Nonesense = nonsense. Not sure how I missed that, I apologize for my own shortcomings =^).

  • So Scott’s position is that because I personally did not topple Saddam Hussain, I have no right to ask the all volunteer military I helped pay for to do it. Does that mean some guy in a wheelchair who has never been in a military also has no right to express his views on the subject because he will not be at risk, just a cheerleader? So what?

    This is a non-argument and really makes no sense, so I will wait for you to come up with one that is worth while before sticking my oar back in the water.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Steve White, anyone “might” strike at us w/ box cutters and stolen airliners. You need to do better than that to justify a war, unless you want to explicitly claim we can invade anyone anytime we want to w/ nothing better than a hypothetical that could apply to anyone.

    And you haven’t proven Iraq had any better link to Al Qaeda than anyone else had, or a better link than we had to Saddam.

  • Jon G.

    Becuase if they don’t find MWDs in fairly significant quantities it means the Bush Administration lied. Maybe your comfortable with going to war based on lies. I’m not. I don’t care whether the administration is Republican or Democrat. LBJ lied about the Tonkin Gulf. George Bush lied about Iraq. The American people deserve to be told the truth and deserve the respect of the government to base their decisions on that truth.

    From George Bush’s speech giving Saddam 48 hours ‘to get outta town’.

    The danger is clear: using chemical, biological or, one day, nuclear weapons, obtained with the help of Iraq, the terrorists could fulfill their stated ambitions and kill thousands or hundreds of thousands of innocent people in our country, or any other.

    The United States and other nations did nothing to deserve or invite this threat. But we will do everything to defeat it. Instead of drifting along toward tragedy, we will set a course toward safety. Before the day of horror can come, before it is too late to act, this danger will be removed.

    The United States of America has the sovereign authority to use force in assuring its own national security. That duty falls to me, as Commander-in-Chief, by the oath I have sworn, by the oath I will keep.

    Read at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/03/20030317-7.html

    There was also Colin Powell’s speech to the UN.

    My second purpose today is to provide you with additional information, to share with you what the United States knows about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction as well as Iraq’s involvement in terrorism, which is also the subject of Resolution 1441 and other earlier resolutions.

    Saddam Hussein has never accounted for vast amounts of chemical weaponry: 550 artillery shells with mustard, 30,000 empty munitions and enough precursors to increase his stockpile to as much as 500 tons of chemical agents. If we consider just one category of missing weaponry–6,500 bombs from the Iran-Iraq war–UNMOVIC says the amount of chemical agent in them would be in the order of 1,000 tons. These quantities of chemical weapons are now unaccounted for.

    As for time to search for WMDs. That’s what Hans Blix asked for and we denied.

    Speak from my rectum eh? Nice reBUTTal.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Perry, not that you didn’t personally (and single handedly) topple Saddam, but that you risked absolutely nothing yourself. There’s a difference.

    The man in the wheelchair, a grandmother, etc have no business obsessing over a war and questioning the morality, courage, etc of those who disagree.

    Since you helped pay for the military, demand they give you the weapons you bought so you can go free the world yourself.

    Your “they’re volunteers” argument is the Star Trek Mirror Universe equivalent of your chickenhawk strawman. You basically claim that only the people at risk from fighting you war have no business voicing an opinion (“you volunteered, so shut up and obey”).

    How ’bout we split the difference and make the next Iraq war a volunteer specifically for the war only affair. If any Marine wants to stay home and defend his physical homeland, no govt can make him go overseas.

  • Hey Felix – give it a rest. Go back on your meds.

    Cydonia wrote:
    “The history of U.S. libertarianism (and its old-right roots) is one of principled isolationism and vehement opposition to overseas entanglements and military adventurism.”

    That’s certainly true. Lindbergh was even taken in by them. Fortunately, “US libertarianism” hasn’t been running things. Imagine WWI and WWII without US intervention? Imagine the National Socialst Democratic Republic of Greater Euope.

    I do have to agree that the “policy of aggressive militarism” in the Civil War was mistaken. They should never have fired on Ft Sumter.

  • Tombo

    It says much about the confusion of the anti-Bushite left that they’re reduced to advancing Kissinger-speak realpolitik arguments against the Wolfowitz-Cheney-Bush plan to liberalize the middle east.

    Comical, really, to hear left-libs decrying “chaos” in post-Saddam Baghdad and urging the need for “stability” in the middle east…

  • Scott: “you volunteered, so shut up and obey”

    Exactly. They freely contracted to fight the wars that their employer (the state) sends them to fight, so yeah, shut up and obey… you would be a funny sort of libertarian if you did not think contracts freely entered into actually matter.

  • @Jon G

    Yup, more than ever. We gave Hans Blix two more months to let Iraq show him the WMDs, not to look for them. They didn’t do it. We took care of it. We haven’t even had one month to look for them on our own, and you’re already saying it took too long. Oh, but there I go bringing logic into it again.

    The burden of proof was on Iraq, not the US

    Those numbers, btw, were provided by the UN, not the US. That they were repeated by the US is not remarkable.

  • songster

    perry, scotts response is soooooo predictable. i will e-mail it to you and i bet I am right :)

  • Scott Cattanach

    Perry “Nuremberg Defense” de Havilland writes:

    so yeah, shut up and obey…

    Its a funny sort of libertarian who is so insistent that others obey The State, contract or not.

  • A_t

    OK… let’s rewind a few years here…. I may be totally wrong, but I strongly reckon the people on the recent peace marches would’ve been far more likely to have been a) informed, and b) bothered about Saddam’s gassing of the Kurds. None of our oh-so-defenders-of-humanity governments did anything but say “ooo… aren’t you naughty” at the time.

    Now, unless politics has undergone a sea change (unlikely), or it just takes people a long time to react, I don’t think Saddam’s inhumanity towards his subjects *really* had that much to do with anything. It may help those who were in favour of the war crow at those who opposed it, and it may help provide retrospective justification, but as a motivation for the politicians? The same ones who seemed happy to deal with Saddam while he was gassing Iranians, torturing his own people etc.? I’m sorry, I don’t buy it at all.

    If the US & UK governments had consistantly presented the war as one of liberation from the start; emphasised Saddam’s inhumanity, argued that this was an intolerable situation, & perhaps said “yes, we dealt with him in the past, but now we realise this was a mistake and we’d like to see democracy spread across the globe, and particularly the middle east; it makes sense for all of our sakes”, then YES, anti-war protesters would’ve been pretty stupid, although even then, I think strong grounds for doubting the genuineness of such words from the mouths of politicians would’ve been in order.

    Under the circumstances; changing goalposts several times, & then finally producing Saddam’s human rights record (which anyone involved in amnesty international would’ve known about for years) with a flourish when people failed to be convinced by the more conventional arguments, was remarkably unconvincing to anyone with an intial anti-war bias.

    I’m not denying the end result is almost certainly better than Saddam’s rule, even with the current state of semi-anarchy, and is likely to remain so for a while… but stopping cruelty and political repression were NOT the criteria presented to the public, or the French or Russian governments, until very recently. If human rights & democracy truly were the overridingly important things they now appear to be, why did they not get more mention in the run up to the war?

  • Abraham Liebsch

    “The “chickenhawk” argument isn’t that only the military can decide which wars to fight. It is a claim that while Perry will demand the war, consider it a crime not to fight the war, and dance in the streets after the war, Perry will clearly not personally risk so much as a hangnail for the freedom of people in Iraq.”

    I want to note that this argument also applies in reverse: that is to say, those who argued and protested most vehemently against war did not themselves have any possibility of suffering the consequences of that position. Surely it must be easy to argue against deposition of a totalitarian dictatorship, when one lives under the protection of a liberal democracy. They do not go to Iraq to confront Saddam or protest him, or even to try to help in any way.

    US out of Iraq and 100,000 Iraqis dead is an acceptable trade. US out of Iraq and themselves dead is not. Chickendoves.

    The only other point was re: metrics. See http://www.freedomhouse.org/research/freeworld/2000/methodology.htm for what I think is a comprehensive and reasonably fair system of metrics.

  • Scott Cattanach

    songster, why is “unpredictable” a good thing in your book? People who oppose gun control can be predicted to say guns don’t kill, people do. We keep saying it because its true.

    Its like saying libertarians are sooooo predictable because they oppose conservative and liberal state interventions (The War excepted in some quarters).

    Consistency means some level of predictability. Sorry that bothers you.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Abraham, many of the so called chickendoves are also objecting to the War Party’s Patriot Act and the fearmongering that goes with the Act and the War. If my own safety was the most important thing on Earth, I’d be perfectly happy with the government rounding up anyone with skin darker than a paper grocery bag and locking them up forever. I’m not demanding perfect safety, the War Party is by justifying wars on hypotheticals (Saddam might get WMDs maybe years down the road and might ignore deterence and use them).

  • Scott Cattanach

    For the record, my comment above about rounding up people wasn’t a claim that anyone is a threat to me because of their skin color – I was referring to a “Japanese internment” style response to anyone who could possibly be Arab.

  • Maybe I should ask you whether you are proud of the mangled bodies in Saudi Arabia being pulled from the wreckage of yet another Al Qaeda mass murder attack?

    After all…it was your mindless support for George W. Bush’s irrelevent war in Iraq, at the expense of finishing the job of cracking down on the people who actually attacked us.

    But I have absolutely no guilt or remorse over my opposition to an Iraqi invasion. I had nothing to do with Saddam’s crimes.

    And, quite frankly, many opf those people who died…were killed long before jackasses like you suggested we should invade Iraq and take out Saddam Hussein.

    Many, it would seem, were killed back when Saddam was a bulwark against the Ayatollah and Donald Rumsfeld was shaking his hand.

    Therefore, isn’t the blood on your hands as well?

  • John Henderson

    >Those calling for the “liberation” of the
    >Iraqi people should have been the first
    >ones on the front lines.

    I don’t know about you, pal, but I *am* on the front lines. People flew jetliners full of people into buildings full of people 25 blocks from my office. And 6 blocks from my wife. Liberating (no quotes) Iraq was one battle in a war on an ideology of hatred that wants to come to _my_ city and kill _me_.

  • S. Weasel

    Not taking Saddam out in ’91 was a serious tactical error. Telling the Shi’ites we’d back them up if they revolted, then not doing it, with the consequence that many were slaughtered…that was bad. I can’t blame anyone but Saddam for the mass graves, but there’s no question we have some culpability for failing our promises.

    Of course, the only apology in any case was to go in and topple Saddam.

    I’m not bothered that our justification for war seemed a moving target (except that I’m disappointed that our PR skills weren’t sharper). In the end, I’m convinced the real reason was something we couldn’t say aloud.

    Basically, “the whole Middle East is a great savage sinkhole of political unrest. Meddling in a half-hearted way got us September 11. So, let’s go in and make clean spot and…see what happens.”

  • Scott Cattanach

    Many, it would seem, were killed back when Saddam was a bulwark against the Ayatollah and Donald Rumsfeld was shaking his hand.

    Therefore, isn’t the blood on your hands as well?

    Hesiod, war is the santification of government – its born again with its sins cleansed and forgotten. Amen.

  • Abraham Liebsch

    I never said that your safety was the ONLY thing important to you, or that you value it above all else, just as that is obviously not true of “chickenhawks” either. I was merely pointing out that like chickenhawks, chickendoves had no possibility of suffering the consequences of their positions, should they be carried out.

    “Therefore, isn’t the blood on your hands as well?”

    Perhaps. But I live in the real world, and the sad but true fact is that doing the right thing sometimes means having getting your hands dirty.

  • Scott Cattanach

    I don’t know about you, pal, but I *am* on the front lines.

    No you’re not. Would Fox News let some movie actor say in public that he’s as much a hero as any soldier who took part in the invasion because he lives in NY and therefore took the same risks they did? Would Rush?

  • Uncle_Squid

    Eh, what the heck — I’ll jump in.

    Do you really want to know the conditions that have to be met for the U.S. to declare war on another country? It’s an easy answer: the Congress has to authorize it. That’s all. Just authorization from the citizens of the U.S., through their elected leaders.

    The conditions that you have to meet in order to convince the Congress to authorize war will change according to the people in office and the circumstances of the day.

    And I find it ironic in the extreme, Jon G., when you observe that the U.S. has failed to find WMD overnight, and in the same breath tell us that we should have let Blix continue his work. How much time would you have allowed Blix & Co. to look for the alleged WMD? Don’t you think it’s only fair that you give the U.S. inspectors an equal length of time before you start complaining?

  • Scott Cattanach

    Uncle Squid, its no more ironic than Bush & Co. saying “we need more time, be patient, we can’t do this overnight” when they reject the same claim from Blix?

  • Justin Weitz

    I just returned from a trip to Poland, where I saw the Nazi death camp at Majdanek. As I walked through the gas chambers, the crematorium, past the barbed wire to the enormous mound of human ash, I thought of the criminals who perpetrate these murderous actions throughout history and, even worse, those who support them and give the evil ones aid and comfort.
    To be sure, Saddam’s massacres fall short of Majdanek. But does anyone doubt that his defenders would still support his regime if they were of equal barbarity?

  • A_t

    Steve White said: “why should a country that is aiding, abetting, and planning terrorist acts as a weapon against others enjoy sovereign immunity?”

    …because otherwise none of our countries should be considered sovereign?

    Don’t even *try* and make me believe the US, UK, French etc. governments haven’t had their dirty little hands involved in acts which would be considered terrorist by those on the receiving end at some point. And I’m not talking about war-as-equivalent-to-terrorism. I’m talking about straightforward use of violence to intimidate governments/people into certain courses of action.

  • Abraham Liebsch

    “…because otherwise none of our countries should be considered sovereign?”

    If you think the basis of our status as sovereign power comes solely or even substantially from our expectation that those claims will be respected, I’d like to direct your attention to our defense budget…

  • Don Tompkins

    Couple of points: nobody really cared what Saddam did until 9/11, then the concern was to stamp out radical groups that threatened our Western based civilization. 1) Saddam had to go- too much $ and access to Muslim wacko groups- that we created a possible wake up call for the Middle East is icing on the cake. 2) Witness the changes that are quietly, and not so quietly, taking place in that “neighborhood”certainly the sheiks who own Saudi have been put on notice that they need to act in concert or suffer the consequences from us or their own homegrown and nutured enemies. 3) The US had to do something dramatic and demonstrative of a society whose strength is beholden to the freedoms guaranteed in civilized nations- the guys who did the programming and creative hard science which allowed for sophiscated weaponery function best in an open, critical society. 4) The Middle East understands power trumps all; ask the Israelis 5) There is the possibility that we can construct some sort of democratic gov’t in Iraq- to say it isn’t possible is the worst form of racism.

    One other observation- the virulent anti-Semitism that the left displayed will not be forgotten. Irrationally blaming one specific group for what is happening is racist, something abhorent to the “old” left/liberal wing. Interesting- the left says it’s the Jews/Israelis fault, but that Middle Easterners can’t construct a democratic gov’t. Is this a pattern? I think so. Additionally, the world press has taken as big a hit as Saddam. They’re just too pompous and full of self to know it yet.

  • P.J. Huss

    TO: Perry de Havilland

    “Chickenhawk”? I agree with everything she wrote. The hell with you and your kind. I served in the first Gulf War and saw the work of Iraq. The first thing that convinced me that thoses bastards deserved no quarter was upon entering Kuwait. There were young boys with their genitals stuffed in their mouths hanging from the light posts on the main strip of Kuwait’s capitol. Women were weaping begging us for something. I didn’t understand and was getting very frustrated. Then, a younger girl told me that they had taken all the men. These guys just disappeared. None have returned.

    Thanks to your beloved UN and Bush I’s lack of balls, we didn’t finish the job and free these good people.

    Symesaid it best: “Damn you and your coddled, self-centered and twisted minds. You have caused enough misery and suffering by your irrational and irresponsible opposition to anything that might bring freedom to those parts of the world where free expression is an unknown concept. Perhaps you should change your slogans and cry for ‘peace of mind’, your minds that is, in the face of the gruesome truth emerging from Iraq.”

    In short, Perry, F U.

  • A_t

    Abraham, “If you think the basis of our status as sovereign power comes solely or even substantially from our expectation that those claims will be respected, I’d like to direct your attention to our defense budget…”

    I never suggested that; i was just responding to Steve’s earlier suggestion that Saddam’s government’s alleged involvement in terrorism made for a *moral* case to ignore sovereign immunity.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Dan, its not racist to point out that the US cannot install a warm and fuzzy democracy in an environment where nothing like it has ever existed, when it took hundreds of years to develop here in the first place. To believe otherwise it to also accept that social engineering would work.

    If keeping the Saudis in line was the issue, why not skip the middle men and just depose the current Saudi govt?

  • I wonder if I have as as big a percentile of lefties reading my blog as you guys have reading yours.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Nice subtle way of working an ad for your website into the conversation here, Mr. Briffa.

  • Scott Cattanach

    They freely contracted to fight the wars that their employer (the state) sends them to fight, so yeah, shut up and obey…

    Perry, nothing gives the US govt the legal authority to try to free the world (nor did we have an official Declaration of War, and Congress is not authorized to delegate that power). The order to fight was therefore illegal, and a contract to perform an illegal act is null and void.

  • jong

    I don’t find it ironic we haven’t found WMDs. I found it very disturbing.

    Blix’s search and ours aren’t even in the same league. The UN had a handful of inspectors in the country. We had over 100,000 troops there and access to every square inch of the country. And Baghdad fell a month ago, not yesterday. Do the man-hour computation.

    Our vaunted intelligence agencies had supposedly pinpointed the MWDs. Anyway Powell had some great pictures for the UN. If Iraq really had MWDs in the quantity Colin claimed, shouldn’t we have found at least a trace of them by now?

    Again, lies are not the basis to start a war on.

  • Don Tompkins

    Scott- The same could have been said about Japan, Germany and Italy after WW2. If you review their histories, you’ll find no track record for democratic bodies. Particularly true in Japan- a truly foreign, non white society. The point is also that we really have no choice- if the West doesn’t step in and at least try, the pattern will continue ad infinitum, resulting in continuing waves of fanatics trying to destroy a way of life that we treasure.

    The Saudis have no WMD, nor is their army much of a threat to the world. They haven’t rounded up people by thousands and shot them. They have incited terrorists to deflict their autocratic rule- after all Saudi is a family name added to Arabia. I would suggest that they have now have the picture- just as Dr. Frankenstein did in Shelley’s novel. They’ll have to change- whose side can they be on- bin Laden, who wants his line to rule under religious pretense, or the U.S.? No brainer.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Germany was a part of the West for as long as there was a West, and Japan had decades of deliberate (and ‘domestic’) westernization before the end of WWII. Both countries also had a Soviet Union to fear, and therefore good reason to voluntarily play along.

    And, 60 years later, we still have troops occupying both countries despite all that.

    “We have to try something” is how socialists justify yet another unproven experiment in government power. I won’t buy it here either.

    You never did say why we should have invaded Iraq to send a message to Saudi Arabia. If the Saudis have no army or WMDs, then it would have been a walk in the park, so that’s more reason to invade them directly instead of invading their neighbors.

  • (The other) Ron

    (I have chosen this name because another Ron posted to this thread first).

    Hayseed is up to his old tricks. He attempts to conflate our presence in Saudi (and the war against terrorism) with the attacks of 9/11 and elsewhere.

    While it is true that Al Qaeda *oficially* objected to our presence in Saudi Arabia, I seriously doubt that had we pulled out of the kingdom that the movement would have gone away. Like government programs, radical groups that have fulfilled their mandate do not disappear, they simply change their focus. Hezbollah was founded to oppose Israeli occupation of Lebanon. The Israelis are out of Lebanon, but Hezbollah has not disappeared. (Nor is Hezbollah some sort of Lebanese liberation movement, since Lebanon is currently occupied by Syria). I am firmly convinced that the only reason Iraq did as little as it did over the past 12 years is the presence of US (and US allied) troops in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Turkey, and the UAE.

    To those who make arguments of the “chickenhawk”, please STFU. I am active duty military, and would have gladly stayed in the theater during the war (I was rotated out two weeks prior to the start of the conflict). If you want to make the argument that the people fighting the war were doing it at the behest of the Bush administration, why don’t you ask us about our opinion of the whole War on Terror. Sorry to say, your point of view doesn’t fly. “Not in Our Name” is how we feel about you trying to undermine Bush and Cheney because they don’t have combat experience.

  • @Jon G

    Sigh

    Repeat: Burden of proof lay with Hussein. What is it exactly about that sentence that you don’t understand? The only reason the US has to find those weapons is to make sure they get destroyed and not handed over to al Qaeda or any other Islamist nutjobs.

  • RK Jones

    Scott,
    The main thrust of your ‘chickenhawk’ argument appears to be thus:

    The man in the wheelchair, a grandmother, etc have no business obsessing over a war and questioning the morality, courage, etc of those who disagree.

    Does this mean that it can be acceptable to support a war, even if you do not personally fight it, so long as you aren’t completely wrapped up in it? If so, then the problem with Perry is not his support, but his ‘obsession’? How far back must Perry tone his language before it would be acceptable?

    If you are saying that only those who are personally at risk from a war should advocate it, then how does this differ from the standard chickenhawk theory, which Perry and others have spent a substantial amount of time critiqueing?

    Is your prime concern here that Saddam has been removed, or that he was removed via state action? Would it have been acceptable if an all volunteer force, privately equipped had done the job? Are you criticizing on anarchist grounds, or pacifist ones?

    Also, suppose that at some future date, evidence shows Saddam’s regime was complicit in the September 11th attacks, does this whole argument go away? Would the war then be legitimized post facto? What if the Bush administration had no proof, but their suspicions were later proved correct?

    The isolationist argument makes a fair amount of sense to me. The idea that the state (in some minarchist form) shouldn’t gallivant about the world searching for dragons to slay is one I support. It is however, the argument least heard from the opponents of the war. There are in fact several logical criticisms one could make of the war. You however, have chosen to criticize the style with which Perry backs it.

  • monkeyboy

    “…Saddam’s government’s alleged involvement in terrorism made for a *moral* case to ignore sovereign immunity”

    I would like to take a moment to demand that any fireman who has ever broken a lock to rescue victims from a fire be immediately arrested for tresspassing.

  • T. Hartin

    Scott sez: “And, 60 years later, we still have troops occupying both countries despite all that.”

    Anyone who thinks our troops are “occupying” Germany and Japan needs to stop sucking down the Chomsky kool-aid.

  • T. Hartin

    “The idea that the state (in some minarchist form) shouldn’t gallivant about the world searching for dragons to slay is one I support.”

    I agree, in principle. However, the single most fundamental duty of the state is to protect me from foreign aggression. One person’s “forward defense” may be another’s gallivanting dragon.

    I happen to think that the liberation of Iraq was a legitimate exercise in forward self-defense by the US, in a way that the interventions in the Balkans and Somalia were not.

  • Scott Cattanach

    RK, you can only resign yourself to a war that others will fight and keep some credibility in my book.

    The Big Job before the War

    BreakPoint with Charles Colson
    February 21, 2003

    Praying and Fasting for Saddam

    Last week I listened to a group of Christians talking about the “American empire.” War with Iraq, they said cheerfully, will secure that empire and is part of our ordained role to secure peace in the world.

    Wait a minute—that is pure hubris, a terrible attitude.

    This fallen world is dangerous, and out of mercy, God has given legitimate governments the power of the sword to protect us. The just war doctrine, derived from Scriptures, enables us to evaluate and hold our national leaders accountable when they must use the sword.

    In my opinion, removing Saddam Hussein is necessary—peacefully, I hope, but if not, then by military means. In order to fight terrorism, we must cut off terrorists’ supplies and support. And Saddam Hussein represents both. So war against Saddam is self-defense. But Christians should never talk about war with bravado—only with reluctance, weeping, and with prayer and fasting….

    … Fasting and prayer—not peace marches and certainly not bravado—are the Christian response to this perilous hour. God in his providence may yet spare us. We must ask him. I would like nothing better than to see a wave of prayer and fasting sweep our nation….

    Colson supported the war, but was not in danger of being hurt in combat, but is not a chickenhawk because he is at the very least not doing the happy dance over it. No, you don’t have to be a Christian to avoid the chickenhawk label, this was just the best example I remembered well enough to hunt down.

    And I’m objecting on anarchist grounds, not pacifist ones. I also doubt that whoever winds up in charge in Iraq will be the warm fuzzy democrat we’re being promised, making the “liberation” claim fall flat to me.

    And later proof about 9/11 would not justify this. Bush said he had evidence when he didn’t – that’s a lie no matter what they find tomorrow. Would you retroactively prosecute Bush for a war crime if its proven Saddam had no connection to 9/11?

  • Scott Cattanach

    Germany and Japan are obviously not puppet regimes (they didn’t support the Iraq war, for one thing), but you cannot deny we still have an expensive presence there, and we aren’t universally loved by the locals for being there.

  • jong

    Saddam couldn’t prove he doesn’t have WMDs. It’s proving a negative.

    Starting a war based on lies is un-democratic, un-American and un-patriotic. You may like presidents that lie, I don’t. That goes for Clinton, LBJ, and all the others that have lied and sent soldiers to death by manipulating public opinion to support their private agenda. Bastards all.

  • Love all your new found humanitarianism on the right. Good for you to bludgeon those hapless human rights activist wimps.

    Hey? How about Ethiopia? Hmmm. How many died under Saddam’s regime? How many Ethiopians will die in the next year or so from famine?

    How many right winger war supporters will even care to find out?

    Just in case you actually do care, here’s an URL from that Liberal Biased paper you all love to hate which will give you just a bit of background so you can all trundle off on your next humanitarian mission: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/05/13/opinion/13KRIS.html

    Based on all your comments so far, I’m sure y’all will be supporting relief action immediately

  • Able

    I have to say, this is all looking a lot more republican than libertarian.

    I don’t see much that looks like a rebuttal to my earlier points, and KJ’s restatement of them missed the point rather badly.

    To clarify:

    1:: I’m not actually against the idea of the US as a global human rights policing organization. I think it’s a great idea. We could make a huge, huge difference for the better in the world.

    Seriously. Empires lay down goodness for all, more or less, and when they inevitably collapse they usually seed progress for millenia.

    I got no problem with that. I just think it might get expensive.

    2:: The problem with democracy in Iraq is that it is, in all probability, completely unworkable because of the nature of the country: illiterate, divided and priest-ridden not to mention riddled with ancient scores best settled with tanks.

    So what’s the alternative? Another US-sponsored puppet government?

    3:: Metrics for “liberated” matter.

    Nigeria, for example, has about 95% of it’s GNP from oil companies, and is a complete shithole to live in due to wealth distribution issues, and bloody awful civil society. Are they “free”? Perhaps so.

    But “liberation” doesn’t mean rule by oil company. If we’re trumpeting ourselves as Great Liberators, we better damn well define what that’s supposed to look like when all is said and done. WW2 wasn’t really over until normalized trade and government had returned to Europe and the rest of the world, and the same is true in Iraq. I’m expecting great things.

    So, anyway, back to yer regularly scheduled programming. Watch the invasion of republicans, though. They just don’t get it….

  • Black Swan

    Scott, re: “Bush rejecting claim from Blix”

    The point of the inspections was for SADDAM to prove to the inspectors that he had destroyed his previously existing WMD. He declined to prove that in the time allotted, and Bush refused to grant him more time.

    Three months (plus 12 years) is plenty of time for a cooperative government to prove disarmament, or to disarm. It is an insufficient time for detectives to locate well-hidden WMD. But that wasn’t what Blix & Co. were there for.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Swan, at this point you’re justifying a war over paperwork. I won’t kill people because their government didn’t cooperate sufficiently with the socialist world state wannabe UN. I also don’t buy that we had to enforce a UN resolution whether the UN wanted us to or not.

  • The Zymurgist

    Lively thread. Too bad everyone is just talking past each other. Got to get those talking points out there! Pretty much every angle has been covered here, so I’d just like to ask one question of those who opposed this war:

    What degree of state-sponsered terror financing is allowable before we as a nation have the legal and moral right to militarily confront it with or without international approval?

    Saddam is on record as offering $25k to the family of anyone willing to strap on a bomb and kill as many Jews as possible. This is not in dispute.

    So, for the anti-war group, $25k payments to terrorists obviously isn’t the magic number. What is? A dollar amount will suffice for an answer. I anxiously await your reply.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Zymurgist, you point out that Isreal has a justification for a war w/ Saddam (and more than enough firepower to pull it off). This is just a recycled “he’s a Bad Man” argument, without addressing the fact that the world is full of bad men, and telling which ones you’d remove and which you wouldn’t.

  • The Zymurgist

    “But, but, there are other bad people too”… this is the current trademark copout of the left’s failed position. Israel is an ally, and American citizens have been killed within her borders by these suicide attackes. Clearly, a national interest.

    Scott, it’s a simple question. Now answer it. How much?

  • Mick_McMick

    >Saddam couldn’t prove he doesn’t have WMDs. It’s proving a negative.

    No, he had to prove a positive: that he had destroyed the weapons that he had previously ADMITTED having.

    Also remember, this was all Iraq’s responsibility under the ceasefire agreement from the Gulf War, the resolutions of which he ignored for 12 long years.

    The WMD have been hidden, moved and/or destroyed in the days just before the US attack, but they were there. The evidence, if not some remaining weapon stocks, is still there, and is being uncovered.

    The fact that he had such weapons was not a lie. There certainly were some aggregious lies, but they came from Saddam, from France, from Russia, from George Galloway, and from Bush-haters like you.

  • Barry

    I blame the man responcible for this travisty. George Bush Senior. Who urged the people of Iraq to rise up against Saddam, then when these Iraqi Revolutionaries went begging at an army gate for sanctuary we took there guns and kicked them outside.
    So what happened to these poor souls? They were carted off and shot. Suprise suprise! Our actions have consiquences!

  • Jim writes:

    All “human shield”-types so dedicated to stopping the killing should hop on city buses in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem.

    No, please — the Israelis have suffered enough.

  • P.J. Huss: Either I do not understand your remarks or you did not understand mine. I was 100% in agreement with Gabriel Syme’s article, I think the ‘Chickenhawk’ argument is preposterous, I abominated Bush the First for hanging the Iraqi people out to dry after having called on them to revolt and I despise the UN with a wild passion. Do you really mean FU to me?

  • Scott Cattanach

    “But, but, there are other bad people too”… this is the current trademark copout of the left’s failed position. Israel is an ally, and American citizens have been killed within her borders by these suicide attackes. Clearly, a national interest.

    Scott, it’s a simple question. Now answer it. How much?

    Isreal is the national interest only of the Isrealis (who can take care of themselves). I won’t support a war for the Christian right’s Late Great Planet Earth/Left Behind school of Biblical interpretation, where we prop Isreal up for 50 years (no matter what their settlement policy is) and then let millions of them be killed on the last day of history to make Jesus come back whether He wants to or not.

    “There are lots of Bad Men” isn’t a copout. You haven’t answered the question about which Bad Men to remove and which ones not to, or the criteria you use to make the determination.

    The actual dollar amount Saddam promised the suicide bombers is irrelevant. If you insist on an answer then, try a billion dollars.

    I’ve now answered your question. Now answer mine above (about who to remove and why).

  • Scott Cattanach

    In all fairness Perry, that FU was probably meant for me. I’ll never forget the sacrifice you made in taking it for me. :-)

  • Barry writes:

    I blame the man responcible for this travisty. George Bush Senior. Who urged the people of Iraq to rise up against Saddam, then when these Iraqi Revolutionaries went begging at an army gate for sanctuary we took there guns and kicked them outside.

    The primary responsibility still falls on Saddam — it was he who killed those people, and we can’t just treat that as some sort of natural occurrence. Bush carries secondary responsibility, for failing to prevent the mass murder for no good reason. Our Gulf War I “allies” carry some, too, for persuading him to stop short of removing Hussein.

    So what happened to these poor souls? They were carted off and shot. Suprise suprise! Our actions have consiquences!

    In this case, it was our inaction that carried the lethal consequences. Which is one of those lessons too many fail to learn: doing nothing can cause much harm.

    One of the more shameful chapters in U.S. history, methinks — and brought on by giving too much credence to the words of our “allies.” I’m glad we’re not repeating that error.

  • Just a few words on this pathetic ‘chickenhawk’ accusation cooked up by marxoids and peddled by them and some of the Libertarian dupes.

    If you insist that military action can only be supported by current or ex-members of the military (and no-one else) then, in order to be consistent, you must also insist that pursuit of thieves, rapists and muggers can only be supported by current and ex-members of the police force (and no-one else).

  • Scott Cattanach

    David, I’ll keep that in mind if I ever make the straw man argument you assign to those who call others “chickenhawk” – I’ve defined my use of the term earlier in the thread.

  • Scott, one request:

    It’s spelled Israel.

    Thanks.

  • Mick_McMick

    >”There are lots of Bad Men” isn’t a copout. You haven’t answered the question about which Bad Men to remove and which ones not to, or the criteria you use to make the determination.

    Well, let’s see…

    How about start with the one that invades a country like, say…Kuwait, signs a ceasefire agreement that promises to destroy all his chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs, totally violates this ceasefire, gets overly cozy with terrorists who have already declared war on America, and (just the cherry on top) tortures and terrorizes the people of Iraq.

    Also remember, we didn’t “start a war” with Iraq, HE violated the ceasefire agreement of a war that HE started and lost twelve years ago.

  • Scott Cattanach

    Mick, produce the WMDs and hard evidence of links to Al Qaeda. Also admit that given these criteria, the war now has to stop w/ Iraq (no Iran, no Syria, no North Korea, no Libya).

  • Jordan

    Reader Barry said:

    I blame the man responcible for this travisty. George Bush Senior. Who urged the people of Iraq to rise up against Saddam, then when these Iraqi Revolutionaries went begging at an army gate for sanctuary we took there guns and kicked them outside.
    So what happened to these poor souls? They were carted off and shot. Suprise suprise! Our actions have consiquences!

    Interesting he blames Bush for the killing, but not those who actually did the killing. He is also under the impression that what happened is due purely to our actions, and not the actions of those who actually did the killing. Very wrong.

    This racist attitude, in which only the US is repsonsible for its actions, and others are not is despicable. Racist because he seems to expect so little out of others, and so much from Americans.

  • Eric the .5b

    So, if you say someone not serving in the military who supports a war isn’t a “chickenhawk”, Scott, who is? As best as I can tell, it’s just an emotional-based slur against those who disagree with you on the war and have the utter gall to not feel the need to apologize for that.

  • Jacob

    “….fact that the world is full of bad men”…
    Yeah… the world is full of bad men (though few as bad as Saddam) … one of them has been toppled. So is that an ocasion for sorrow and lamentation or for rejoice ?
    Can’t you leave aside for a moment all the empty sophistry ?
    A people has been liberated. They (the Iraqis) are manifestly happy and overjoyed. It has been done at a tolerable low cost. There is hope and possibility (though not certainty) for better future for Iraq and it’s neighbours.

    Those anti-war demonstrators were surely wrong as hell.

    We can expext of the anti-war libertarians, which have some plausible arguments, but are supposedly intelligent and open minded – to acknowledge at least the positive side of this war.
    Consistently and fervently denying that the liberation of Iraq is a good thing, and that removing a murderous thug isn’t a crime – is not a reasonable possition.

  • Ghaleon

    Jacob, their a lot of man as evil as Saddam, de difference is that they didn’t had the chance de rule over a state and to have their own army… That doesn’t change anything to the fact that they are as sick. Stop that stupid thing to make Saddam look as the devil, he was just a sick man, like the thousand of sick man that live in all country of the world… the difference is that in occident they end up in jail…

    Why don’t you do anything about North Korea if you really care about saving people lives? The ratio of people dying there is much MUCH higher than it was in Irak… Why don’t you just give the $$$ you waste in military to feed people who are dying from hunger, you would save with all those billion (how much Bush asked, I forgot, something like 70 billion?) easily 100x more lives, if not 1000, if not more… THAT WAR WASN’T FOR LIBERATION, IT WAS PURELY FOR STRATEGIC REASONS(not wmd).

  • Ghaleon

    Jordan, racist is just not the good race, american aren’t a race…

    Btw also, by reading the anti-European and anti-islam speech here I can say that YOU are ”racist” too.

    Oh, and by the way, maybe United State should thing about abolishing death sentence before considering they are noble enought to judge others.

    Really, I thing the lack of enthousiasm from the Iraqis is still the best prove that you’re not liberator. When the statue of Saddam fall in Bagdag the realité is that they were at max 200 person in the street, in a city of 5 000 000 persons. And it’s strange, that happened near the Palestinien Hotel, where all the journalism where, strange isn’t it? Could we speak about manipulation of the information, it’s just like the TV in Iraq now that is starting again…

  • Jacob

    “THAT WAR WASN’T FOR LIBERATION, IT WAS PURELY FOR STRATEGIC REASONS”

    Correct.
    It was for many reasons, maybe the most important beeing the strategic reason. A very good reason too. “Strategic reasons” isn’t a dirty word.

    But the liberation of Iraqi people happened and is a remarkably good thing; even those who opposed the war should not mourn over it or deny it.

  • P.J. Huss

    Perry…

    Sorry. I paged up and cut-n-pasted your name instead of the one I wanted.

  • Mick_McMick

    >Mick, produce the WMDs and hard evidence of links to Al Qaeda.

    Me, personally? Gee, I don’t know if they’ll let me walk away with it. It’s also kind of heavy.

    >Also admit that given these criteria, the war now has to stop w/ Iraq (no Iran, no Syria, no North Korea, no Libya).

    Oh, you’d love that, wouldn’t you?

    That depends on THEIR actions, not ours. They should know now that we mean business about the unacceptable practices of supporting terrorists and producing WMD. They now have ample opportunity to avoid being on the receiving end of JDAMs.

    Let’s see if they are willing to join the fallen tyrants, or if they have any serious desire to join the rational world.

    I assume you think they should stick to their guns in supporting Hezbollah and have every right as “sovereign nations” to produce nuclear weapons?

  • I guess I might as well say something substantive on this.

    First, a response to Scott Cattanach’s novel re-definition of “chickenhawk” as someone doing a “happy dance” over the fact that the U.S. went to war in Iraq: I’ve yet to see anyone, much less Mr. de Havilland, call the war an unvarnished happy good thing — you know, like a warm puppy, only with tanks and stuff. We all know and accept that war is horrific, and people die. As someone who supported the war, I am glad that it took place — not because I want war as such, but because I think the world is safer (for me and my country) with Saddam gone, and I don’t see how else he could have been removed. In other words, I think we are all better off now that the war has taken place, than we would have been if it hadn’t.

    The standard “chickenhawk” argument is, at its base, an accusation of hypocrisy — and it’s completely bogus. Mr. Cattanach changes it into a silly accusation of harboring the wrong feelings, which manages the dubious accomplishment of making it even more absurd than the original.

    Whether I (or Mssrs. Syme and de Havilland) served on the front lines, or otherwise put myself in danger, is completely irrelevant. None of us has condemned the “anti-war” camp for not serving in the war or not joining the military. We are condemning them for opposing the toppling of a murderous regime.

  • Which brings me to Hussein, and the point of Gabriel’s original accusation. The “peace brigade” is arguing against a straw man: namely, that the United States invaded Iraq specifically to rescue its population from its dictator. Obviously, this is not the case. In reality, the United States believed, with good reason, that Iraq posed a threat to the Arabian peninsula, and ultimately to our own interests, which is why the country was invaded. (You can argue with this reasoning, but you have to at least acknowledge it, and then make a convincing case for why it was fallacious — convincing enough to make people complacent about Iraqi activities, overt and covert. I haven’t seen this done.)

    So why has so much ink been spilled and so much bandwidth consumed about Saddam’s mass killings? What about those Iraqi people, anyway? Well, the simple answer is that their liberation was a positive side effect of the American removal of Hussein & Co. It wasn’t the primary goal, but it did happen, and the Iraqi people are infinitely better off in its wake. (Yes, some died; it’s unfortunate and inevitable. Their number was small enough to be a rounding error for Hussein’s record of mass murder.)

    And this is where the Left-wing opposition becomes both absurd and outrageous. Most of the “peace activists” who marched along with ANSWER and threw epithets at Bush claimed to be primarily concerned with the effect of the war on the Iraqi populace. The pro-war response to that (before the war, and after) is simple: the status-quo for Iraqis under Saddam was far worse than under American occupation. The mass graves, stories of torture, children’s prisons, etc. all demonstrate this with vivid, bloody clarity. The issue isn’t just how many people were already dead by the time the U.S. invaded, but also how many people would be killed as a result of Saddam’s continued rule of the country. No, the rescue of Iraqis from Saddam was not the sole (or the primary) purpose of the U.S. invasion. But it is beyond preposterous for anyone to piously weep over what would happen to the poor Iraqi people if the U.S. invaded, all the while brushing away what tortures faced Iraqi political prisoners even as the self-righteous ANSWER squads marched through Paris and blocked roads in San Francisco. Simply put, every extra day Saddam was in power, more innocent Iraqis died, who didn’t have to. And the “anti-war” camp demanded that this continue, at the very least preferring those deaths to a U.S. invasion, even as they claimed “solidarity” with the Iraqi people. That’s what made it so detestable. That’s what still makes it so detestable.

    Hesiod makes the following claim:

    But I have absolutely no guilt or remorse over my opposition to an Iraqi invasion. I had nothing to do with Saddam’s crimes.

    He ain’t getting off that easy. Had it been unopposed, the invasion of Iraq may have happened sooner, and dozens (hundreds? thousands?) of Iraqis wouldn’t have been beaten, tortured, raped, and murdered at the hands of the Mukhabbarat. But he and his compadres worked hard to stop the invasion of Iraq, which put an end to those horrors. Had they succeeded entirely, the torture and mass murder would still be going on. As it is, the invasion was delayed, and at least some Iraqis had to suffer the consequences. Hesiod didn’t just not help Hussein’s victims; he actively worked to make sure no one else helped them, either. He, ANSWER, Chirac, the UN all played the role of blocking a rushing ambulance. And when you do that, you can’t claim innocence just because you didn’t cause the victim’s heart attack. You chose a side and played a role, and your actions resulted in negative consequences. Quit weaseling around, and say it like it is: you find projection of American power to be more distasteful than the death and torture of thousands. Human life and human suffering mean less to you than high-minded UN proclamations and neat abstractions of international law. The prevention of literally thousands of tortures, rapes, and horrific murders was not worth rejecting the will of international opinion.

    The question isn’t whether the U.S. invaded Iraq to rescue Iraqis, and we are not obligated to explain why we’re not also invading Burma or North Korea. (We didn’t, and it wouldn’t serve our interests.) The question is why the Left-wing anti-war camp opposed the invasion, preferring to let Iraqis keep on suffering. After all, they were the ones shrieking about those very same Iraqi people, and their impending doom at the hands of U.S. aggression. It’d be nice if they’d answer it, instead of trying to change the subject.

  • Coyote

    Jong wrote

    “Starting a war based on lies is un-democratic, un-American and un-patriotic. You may like presidents that lie, I don’t. That goes for Clinton, LBJ, and all the others that have lied and sent soldiers to death by manipulating public opinion to support their private agenda. Bastards all. ”

    That last word was at least well chosen. All it is, because everyone lies. Show me a man who always tells the truth to their wife’s inquiry ‘Am I fat?” and I’ll show you a man who has been married many times (raises hand, but I finally got smart). Politicians and everyone else in front of the camera just get far more chances to be caught. It won’t matter if WMD’s are found. It won’t matter if by some freak chance a democratic system that surpasses even ours develops in Iraq. It won’t matter if Bush’s attempt at intervention in the Palestinian/Israel conflict yields a level of co-existance that hasn’t existed since the First Crusade (wonder which Bush they blame those on). Why? A joke I heard explains it better.

    President Bush invites the Pope for a yatch ride on the Potomac. When the wind blows the Pope’s hat off into the water several secret service get ready to jump in but George says I’ll get it and proceeds to walk across the water. He retrieves the hat and returns to the Pope. The next day all the Democratic news sites share the same headlines “Bush can’t swim”.

    Nothing matters more to these people than their hatred of Bush. All the soapboxing and dissent is merely an extension of this, and if their not careful it’s going to cost them in 2004 as well because they’ll be so blinded by hate they won’t be able to effectively campaign their cause.

  • George Stewart

    Great article and comments!

    E. Nough has put it so well any further comment seems superfluous. But his last few paragraphs need to be hammered home.

    There were two schools of thought re. the situation in Iraq. One school of thought “won”. It got its agenda put into action.

    What would have happened if the other school of thought had “won”?

    What would have happened, to the people of Iraq, the ostensible beneficiaries of the antiwar crowd’s agenda, if the antiwar crowd’s agenda had been implemented?

    That’s all you need to ask yourself.

    (And remember, one of the main points of the antiwar crowd’s argument was that _they_ were the ones kindly sparing a thought for the people of Iraq, whereas the prowar peoples’ agenda was venal and callous, or at least unthinking.)

    At the end of the day, this has been an absolute disaster for the Left: there seems to be nothing left of the Left but a kind of mechanical anti-Americanism.

    That is not a sufficient basis on which to form a progressive politics.

  • Ted Schuerzinger

    Ghaleon wrote:

    Why don't you do anything about North Korea if you really care about saving people lives? The ratio of people dying there is much MUCH higher than it was in Irak... Why don't you just give the $$$ you waste in military to feed people who are dying from hunger, you would save with all those billion (how much Bush asked, I forgot, something like 70 billion?) easily 100x more lives, if not 1000, if not more...

    Well, look what happened with the food aid we gave to Ethiopia in the famine of 1984/5 — the Marxist regime used it as a weapon in their civil war against the Eritreans. I don’t know that just sending massive amounts of food aid to N. Korea would solve the problem. Cruel as it may be, the least bad thing may be to let the regime implode. (No, I don’t know if Kim Jong Il would use his nukes if this happened, which is certainly an issue.)

  • Able

    E. Nough,

    the anti-Iraq war faction opposed the attack on Iraq for three reasons.

    1) Fear of how america would behave as a unilateral superpower, based on documents like Rebuilding America’s Defences by J. Bush, D. Cheney et al.

    2) Genuine, if somewhat misguided, concern for “innocents” in Iraq.

    3) A desire to avoid an increasingly polarized, militarized and unsafe world, in favor of a stable, if nasty, status quo.

    None of which is terribly irrational, frankly. Yes, a good percentage of the anti-war left should really be back home, fighting with their fathers, but so fucking what? A few assholes do not invalidate a movement.

    To that case, add:

    4) American president is now seen as a liar by most of the world, having switched his reasons for war half a dozen times, and still come up with no credible threat.

  • Hi Able,

    I understood those reasons, but I still find them unconvincing. Taking them one at a time:

    1) Fear of how america would behave as a unilateral superpower, based on documents like Rebuilding America’s Defences by J. Bush, D. Cheney et al.

    I admit not having scrutinized those documents closely, but is there anything in them that suggests that the U.S. was going to practice mass murder on the Ba’ath scale? If not, then how would leaving Hussein in power be any better? Moreover, how would it prevent any sinister behavior that The Bush Neocon Cabal planned to engage in?

    2) Genuine, if somewhat misguided, concern for “innocents” in Iraq.

    Again, why does that concern only materialize with the possibility of a U.S. invasion? What of the concern for innocents (no quotes needed) being put through the plastic shredders under Hussein? I suppose a few hard-core nuts might have believed that American occupation would be as bad or worse — but seriously? “Misguided” is an awfully nice way to phrase it.

    3) A desire to avoid an increasingly polarized, militarized and unsafe world, in favor of a stable, if nasty, status quo.

    OK, this is an understandable reason (one that I didn’t want to address in an already long post). I’m not sure it’s a good strategy, though — they’d have to first show that the supposedly non-polarized, non-militarized, and safe word we had prior to the invasion of Iraq was somehow better than what we’ve got now. That’s a tough argument to make — The world is good enough as is. (Also, it’s be an implicit concession that the Iraqi victims of Hussein aren’t worth rocking the boat. That’s an awfully callous position for people who wear their “caring” on their sleeves.)

    4) American president is now seen as a liar by most of the world, having switched his reasons for war half a dozen times, and still come up with no credible threat.

    I think the reasons have stayed constant throughout: WMD (proven in the 1980s), support for terrorism (proven by payments to Palestinian bombers, and later revelations in the wake of the war), and willingness to kill en masse (proven in Halabja and today).

    But really, whether Bush is a mean guy and a liar is not really relevant, is it? Surely no one will dispute that Iraqis were being tortured and murdered by Hussein’s regime, and that they aren’t anymore. Leaving them to their sorry fate because something seems wrong about that Bush guy doesn’t really strike me as the most noble or sensible of arguments.

    Which was my point all along: even if we accept all of these reasons, the sum of them doesn’t strike me as sufficient to demand that Iraqis continue to be killed by the thousands. They could explain indifference, cynicism, or cold hostility — but not the frenzied Herculean efforts to stop the war at any cost, innocents be damned. I can understand an isolationist conservative or libertarian making such an argument (and that’s a whole nuther discussion), but not someone claiming to be a kind-hearted left-wing liberal, concerned only with What is Right™.

    Thanks for the explanation. I’m afraid something still doesn’t wash here, though.

  • Diggs

    I am not exactly on the front line, since I am in Kuwait right now, but I still feel somewhat able to write to the above blog. Thank you, Samizdata, for helping to put into words the feelings that I have had for quite some time now. After other tours of duty in the Middle East, it became apparent to me that very few of the rich and righteous that traveled here in search of the truth ever came close to seeing what I saw on a daily basis. Extreme measures against women, against basic rights, against freedom of religion, against anything even remotely western (except cellphones, Mercedes Benz cars, Rolex watches, etc) are the norm. Lack of basic neccesities such as clean water, health care and sewage treatment is rampant among the majority of the populations here. To make matters worse, the wealth of many of the nations is being siphoned off at an alarming rate by a priveleged few. One flight into Riyadh International Airport should be enough to prove that; just as you leave the regular airport you pass by the fully guarded, completely empty (usually), duplicate airport on the other side of the hiway that is reserved for members of the Saudi Royal Family. Shortly thereafter begins the dirt-floored hovels that pockmark the city of Riyadh.
    When I saw members of my own country claiming to speak for the wretched citizens of Iraq, opposing their liberation, saying nothing should be done in their name, I wanted to ask them how, with all that they possessed, were they able to say that no Iraqis deserved a better chance at life. How could they claim that there was no legitimate need for US power? I’ve never seen a MORE legitimate need for force against a living evil; even if that means that I personally will not see my daughters first birthday (which I will miss for sure), that many more of my fellow soldiers will never see their loved ones again, that my country’s treasure will once again be spent on things that bring me no personal gain. Yes, please shout out to a million people, to generations to come, that the liberation of the Iraqi people was done in my name, Diggs Cleveland. I will be proud of that claim for the rest of my life.

  • Able

    E. Nough,

    First, go and read Rebuilding America’s Defenses. You can find it here.

    Really, it’s pretty much a necessary precondition for understanding where we are. It’s only about 80 pages, and uses phrases like “Pax Americana” pretty liberally. And it’s by our current government, more or less to a man.

    Now, here’s the situation as I see it.

    If you focus on Iraq, clearly the invasion is really a good deal: Hussein’s regime was pretty fucking awful, and by god we probably should have finished the job the first time around, rather than leaving the Marsh Arabs and the Kurds in the lurch, to be slaughtered like dogs.

    however

    If you focus on the relationships between America and the world, and the whole Sole Superpower thing, and take uncontroversial documents of intent like RAD and the other defense papers by Wolfowitz et. al. you see a very, very different picture. They’ve outlined a clear strategy: total, complete, utter military dominance, to become the only effective military force on the planet, and to reshape the world to their wills.

    I’m serious. Or rather, more worryingly, they are serious, and their own documents prove it. (for what it’s worth, there is no speculation that these documents were not authored by the current government. they are legit).

    So if you’re watching that stuff, the Iraq war looks like the first in a potentially long and bloody series of engagements resulting in more-or-less Total World Domination.

    It may sound like I’m exaggerating here. But RAD is really one of the most frightening political documents I’ve read, considering that it’s authors are now in charge of American foreign policy.

    The plan they outline is for total military domination of the globe and resulting expansion of american wealth and power.

    If you narrow focus completely to “did this war make the life of the average Iraqi better”, then yes, sure it did.

    Personally, I think that kind of narrow focus is useful only when balanced with a much wider, much longer view. If we were serious about saving lives, vaccinations against all major diseases we have vaccines for cost about $0.50 in bulk. A $100 million cruise missile vaccinates about 200 million people. Food for a day costs about $0.25, so that’s 400 million person-meals (i.e. feed 1.1 million people for a year).

    If you want capitalist aid, microcredit loans to small business people across the world usually cost about $50, have a 90%+ repayment rate, and the unmet demand for loans is estimated to require about $1.1 billion to fill. (look up Grameen bank for details).

    So, basically, as a way of saving lives or sparing human misery, $70 billion to help something like 22 million people is a pathetically inefficient use of funds.

    The average gradeschooler could have done more good than we did in Iraq given a tenth of those funds, a wal-mart catalog and a little help with shipping logistics.

    Also, American domestic policy changes cannot be ignored either. Bush’s government has done more damage to the basic political and civil rights infrastructure in American than anybody other than McCarthy within living memory. They have also sheltered the people funding and planning terrorism, the Saudis and generally offered extremely poor accountability for intelligence failures around 9/11, and the sheer lack of heads-on-poles which we have a reasonable right to expect.

    So, given that they’re sandbagging the constitution, proclaiming a desire for Global Domination ™, completely failing to actually catch Osama bin Laden and refusing to bust Saudi ass for funding 9/11 and supplying most of the manpower, it’s REALLY EASY to look at the Iraq war as a distraction, a lining of pockets, or yet another callous media circus to distract attention from the very real, and very worrying curtailment of civil liberties at home.

    For those who doubt, go and find the text of PATRIOT II, aka the DESA, which more or less smashes the bill of rights into bite-sized chunks, including the delightful capability to strip an American citizen of their citizenship without any due process, leaving them prey to the full range of detention-at-will powers currently used on the folks in Git’mo Bay.

    Patriot II text here

    Oh, yeah, and while we’re at it:

    Operation Northwoods – Joint Chiefs of Staff request permission to kill US citiziens to provoke war with Cuba in the ’60s

    And oldy but a goody: you can’t actually trust the US military any further than you can throw them. Never forget that.

    Summing up: if you ignore everything else which is going on, the War on Iraq looks like a good idea. If you watch what is going on in the rest of the Administration, then it looks like an extremely calculated step in a well publicised plan which has very little good intent in it at all. And before you tell me I’m full of it, read RAD.

    g’dnight, sleep well and all that,

    Able.

  • M. Simon

    Neil,

    I think you have given adequate proof of the necessity of Iraq 2003.

    The failure of Iraq 1991.

    You are correct about the growth of the state in War. Then I remember that the west did not start the current hostilities. They started officially on 9/11. They will continue until the fascists give up utterly and no government is tempted to support them for fear of the consequences.

    Obviously there have not been enough consequences.

    What we are seeing in action is why libertarians still believe in a state. For defence against fascist states.

  • Yeah, Able! Right on, man.

    That’s what the U.S. wants to do. Takeover the world.

    The fact that most of the non-western world (and a good chunk of the western world) has shitty, sclerotic economies, festering social strife and questionable resources is what makes it attractive to us Americans. The fact that our intervention will only make terrorist attacks on our own soil more likely for a long time makes it even more attractive. Sure, all the blood and gore dripping from our fangs might sometimes get flung up and cloud our vision, but the reason we are doing it is to hide our especially cunning, unsuspected plan.

    You see, except for a few hyper-intelligent beings like yourself, nobody could see the attraction to taking over places like Iraq. Sure, most people would see Iraq as a balkanized land, with a couple decades worth of oil, volcanic religious and social problems just below the surface, a volatile and half-educated populace, and nothing but trouble. But not you, and not 270 million Americans. Nope, we see something much better. We’ve got the elusive vision thing.

    We’re doing it to provide cover for our massive plan to enslave the oppressed peoples of the world, er, I mean the human capital of the planet, and build a giant space laser with which to wipe out the peace movement.

    Bwah ha ha ha. Bwah ha ha ha hah.

    Unless you pay us…

    one million dollars.

  • Scott Cattanach

  • T. Hartin

    >”3) A desire to avoid an increasingly polarized, militarized and unsafe world, in favor of a stable, if nasty, status quo.”

    Whatever validity this concern might have had was vaporized on 9/11 along with the WTC. Essentially, this is an argument for appeasing, not confronting, our enemies, which was the policy pursued by the Clinton administration. As was demonstrated on 9/11 (and not for the first time in history), you cannot appease fanatics, you can ony encourage them. Or kill them. Of the two, I prefer the latter.

  • Scott Cattanach

    As was demonstrated on 9/11 (and not for the first time in history), you cannot appease fanatics, you can ony encourage them. Or kill them. Of the two, I prefer the latter.

    Then we’re back to either proving Iraq was involved in 9/11, or fight a war to kill all fanatics on Earth, and that war will never end.

    Also admit that given these criteria, the war now has to stop w/ Iraq (no Iran, no Syria, no North Korea, no Libya).

    Oh, you’d love that, wouldn’t you?

    That depends on THEIR actions, not ours. They should know now that we mean business about the unacceptable practices of supporting terrorists and producing WMD. They now have ample opportunity to avoid being on the receiving end of JDAMs.

    Then we’re back to a never-ending war on all Bad Men (where you either free the entire world or you’re just as evil as Saddam). This is why the War Party never gives any specific criteria for who to overthrow and who to just live with. A criteria they give today might be brought up to argue against a war tomorrow, and we can’t be logically consistent when there’s killing to be done, now can we?

    WHERE ARE IRAQ’s WMDS?

    The unspoken part of “Saddam, prove you don’t have WMDs” is “prove to my personal satisfaction you don’t have WMDs”. Jesus Christ could walk into the office and personally tell GeeDub that Iraq has no WMDs, and the Bush administration’s response would be “you cannot expect us to take the word of some guy from Palestine”.

  • Able

    Did you even *bother* reading Rebuilding America’s Defences, Omnibus Bill?

    Get informed before you shoot your mouth off.

  • Well Scott, I rather prefer:

  • T. J. Madison

    Two things:

    1. Apparently the USG has decreed that the Iraqi civilian population must be completely disarmed:

    Ok, Perry, now the Coalition forces are trying to impose gun control on a nation overrun by looting. If you were an Iraqi business owner, what would you do?

    2. The Scott v. Perry debate basically boils down to this:

    Perry: The poor bastards in Iraq (and elsewhere)must be liberated.

    Scott: The USG is a very, very poor tool for doing this.

    It seems to me that both of these positions are nearly self-evident. It seems logical, then, that:

    Madison: We must develop tools other than the USG for liberating foreign victims of tyranny.

    What we need is some kind of private libertarian revolutionary organization that can go around the world doing good deeds, like pushing an 8.58 round through Mr. Hussein’s brain. We need to round up all the hard-core libertarians with military experience and try to assess the feasability of this sort of thing.

    Leaving the Fight Against Tyranny in the hands of the State is irresponsible. Talk is cheap: we need to actually implement an alternative.

  • Madison: We must develop tools other than the USG for liberating foreign victims of tyranny.

    Well… yeah. No argument there!

    However I have no intention of urging people to wait until that happy day comes.

  • oh… and…

    Ok, Perry, now the Coalition forces are trying to impose gun control on a nation overrun by looting. If you were an Iraqi business owner, what would you do?

    Get a Kalashnikov and a few spare mags of ammo, of course…and keep them hidden somewhere handy. The Allies have done a great job in getting rid of the Ba’athist regime but shooting the bad guys when it is clear who they are is easy… now it is time for the cockups to begin in earnest. Stash some weapons because the Yanks and Brits will not be there forever.

  • T. J. Madison

    >>However I have no intention of urging people to wait until that happy day comes.

    That happy day won’t come all by itself. The USG certainly isn’t urging others to compete with it in the liberation business. Some places the USG will likely NEVER liberate — like Tibet, Chechnya, Zimbabwe, etc. If Samizdata isn’t the place to rally “private cleanup” efforts I don’t know where is.

    >>Stash some weapons because the Yanks and Brits will not be there forever.

    Hmm. The USG is still in Germany, Japan, and SK. What government voluntarily gives up power and influence over a territory? That would cause a bureaucracy to shrink! State bureaucracies that aren’t highly resistant to accountability got weeded
    out long ago.

  • Paul Grabarz

    I opposed the war because it was a preemptive strike against a non-threatening nation who only was invaded to support Bush and Cheney’s oil concerns (Halliburton) and the 30,000 people are in the grave because George the 1st told them to rise up and then they were slaughtered and the USA WAS nowhere in sight. No wonder so many Iraqis mistrust us.

  • Concering “liberating” Iraqis to be a good thing, and so the govt is justified doing so (I use the quotation marks because we really don’t know who or what will be in charge there a decade from now):

    Giving free health care is a “good thing” (doctors who volunteer their time or people who give to medical charities are considered by most to be doing good work). Its a given that the govt will exist and be spending billions on something, and a given that the govt will be stepping outside libertarian minarchy bound in doing so. Therefore, couldn’t some socialist argue that since we’re gonna have a big govt anyway, it might as well provide free health care?

    All they have to do is ignore all past history of govt failure in that area, just like the War Party ignores govt history of failure in creating warm and fuzzy third world democracy at gunpoint (which is the main reason I keep bringing up our previous support for Saddam).

  • Johan

    Paul Grabarz, either you’re joking or you dont know a shit.

  • T. J. Madison writes:

    2. The Scott v. Perry debate basically boils down to this:

    Perry: The poor bastards in Iraq (and elsewhere)must be liberated.

    Scott: The USG is a very, very poor tool for doing this.

    …so while we are racking our brains and checking behind the toolshed, Iraqis will just have to continue being slaughtered. Congratulations: you found the perfect way to illustrate the principle of the perfect being the enemy of the good.

    It seems to me that both of these positions are nearly self-evident. It seems logical, then, that:

    Madison: We must develop tools other than the USG for liberating foreign victims of tyranny.

    Suits me. But since we don’t have them yet, does that mean we should just leave tyrannies alone?

    What we need is some kind of private libertarian revolutionary organization

    Uhh, yeah. And here I thought that the state was supposed to have the monopoly on violence. It’s hard to keep track of those principles…

    that can go around the world doing good deeds, like pushing an 8.58 round through Mr. Hussein’s brain.

    You know, I’m wondering if you were actually serious when you wrote this.

    Something to consider: killing Saddam wouldn’t destroy the Ba’ath apparatus. It would merely bring his offspring into power. Kill them, and some other dictator will be found.

    Also, do you really want a private organization running around doing this, unaccountable to anyone? What if they decide that Noam Chomsky is a threat? Or you? What you are suggesting is little more than a politically-motivated mafia.

    Thanks, but I prefer my organized violence coming from a government that I have a vote in. (Note: as opposed to that I voted for.)

    Do I want them charging in to clean up every hellhole on earth? Not for an instant. But when the need arises, do I support doing it? Definitely, especially since those who live there benefit as a side effect.

  • T. J. Madison

    >>…so while we are racking our brains and checking behind the toolshed, Iraqis will just have to continue being slaughtered. Congratulations: you found the perfect way to illustrate the principle of the perfect being the enemy of the good.< <

    In this case it doesn't matter at all. You and I are powerless to stop the US juggernaut from doing whatever it wants. The Powers That Be don't listen to us and don't give a damn what we think. Attempting to influence the State one way or the other is a hopeless task.

    However, organizing private resistance to tyranny, while an incredibly difficult and complex task, is conceivably within our capabilities.

    >>Also, do you really want a private organization running around doing this, unaccountable to anyone? What if they decide that Noam Chomsky is a threat? Or you? What you are suggesting is little more than a politically-motivated mafia.< <

    Actually, private organizations would at least be accountable to those who gave them financial support -- which is FAR better than the situation we have with the State(TM).

    Yes, private organizations could cause mayhem -- like Al Queda. But private organizations, lacking the apparatus for large scale extortion, will never be as great a threat to liberty as even a small rotten State.

    >>Something to consider: killing Saddam wouldn’t destroy the Ba’ath apparatus. It would merely bring his offspring into power. Kill them, and some other dictator will be found. < <

    It is my understanding that in recent years Mr. Hussein was scraping the bottom of the manpower pool in terms of people he could trust to help him keep a lid on things. Wasting Saddam, and maybe Qusay, would likely have created an opportunity for the Kurds and Shiites to break loose.

    >>Thanks, but I prefer my organized violence coming from a government that I have a vote in. (Note: as opposed to that I voted for.) <<

    Please remember that your vote (like mine) doesn’t have any influence at all. Democracy provides the illusion of accountability, not real accountability. Even collectively, “the people” only have leverage over the political process to the extent that they are well informed. Given the negligible power voting wields, a rational citizen will determine that doing the necessary research isn’t worth the effort. It’s called the Collective Action Problem.

    I’m sure I’m forgetting something — Perry, Scott, help me out here.

  • Able writes:

    First, go and read Rebuilding America’s Defenses.

    Done. Thanks for the links.

    The plan they outline is for total military domination of the globe and resulting expansion of american wealth and power.

    Accepting this at face value for the sake of argument, I’m still not clear on why this is a bad thing.

    But more importantly, and the Iraq controversy is just one example — how is this worse than what came before it? Why would American expansion and greater wealth be worse than Islamist control of Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia? The deaths of thousands at the hands of Hussein’s pseudo-Marxists, the lunatic society of the Taliban, the repression and terror sponsorship of Syria and Iran… — how came these things to be perceived as somehow better than rising Halliburton revenues and American naval presence in the Persian Gulf?

    If you narrow focus completely to “did this war make the life of the average Iraqi better”, then yes, sure it did.

    Personally, I think that kind of narrow focus is useful only when balanced with a much wider, much longer view.

    Fair enough — but then you have to concede that Iraqi civilians had suffered, and more would have suffered, in service to this “much longer view.” They are your collateral damage, as it were.

    If we were serious about saving lives, vaccinations against all major diseases we have vaccines for cost about $0.50 in bulk. A $100 million cruise missile vaccinates about 200 million people. Food for a day costs about $0.25, so that’s 400 million person-meals (i.e. feed 1.1 million people for a year).

    Once again, I run to point out that the primary motivator was not to rescue the Iraqis from dictatorship. It just happened to be a side benefit.

    Having said that, you paint an absurd false dilemma. In societies such as Hussein’s Iraq or Mugabe’s Zimbabwe, disease and hunger aren’t the result of shortages. Sending food and medicine is not the solution, if you keep the current governments in power. If you really want a society to be prosperous (or at least reasonably self-sufficient) and keep people from dying, you have to do a lot more than Fedex over some vaccines.

    If you want capitalist aid, microcredit loans to small business people across the world usually cost about $50, have a 90%+ repayment rate, and the unmet demand for loans is estimated to require about $1.1 billion to fill. (look up Grameen bank for details).

    Which has what to do with anything? How will vaccines or microbusiness loans help a family whose child is sitting in Hussein’s prison? How does shipping in food keep North Korea from going nuclear? I’m sure these are nice solutions — to problems that aren’t under discussion. Foreign aid and generosity are not tools against thugocracies — that is, they are not substitutes for bombs, missiles, and soldiers.

    Also, American domestic policy changes cannot be ignored either. Bush’s government has done more damage to the basic political and civil rights infrastructure in American than anybody other than McCarthy within living memory.

    That’s open to debate, actually, especially depending on which side of the political spectrum you’re on. (What about campus speech codes? Affirmative action and “set-asides”? The Great Society with its concominant exponential expansion of government? The War on Drugs, ditto? Etc.) Don’t get me wrong, I’m no fan of the Patriot II act (which, last I checked, has not yet been passed). But “damaged the infrastructure”? I think not. This the Administration reacting (in fact, overreacting) to the threat of terrorism, which has been made all too plain in the last two years. But reacting like this, and trying to do as much as possible, is their job. The rest of the government — Congress, courts, etc. — was set up to keep them in check, which is what it’ll be doing. The infrastructure is doing just fine, thank you. And once again, I simply have to ask: even granted all your assumptions, how is the picture you paint worse than the spread of Marxism, Ba’athism, or Islamism?

    So, given that they’re sandbagging the constitution, proclaiming a desire for Global Domination ™, completely failing to actually catch Osama bin Laden and refusing to bust Saudi ass for funding 9/11 and supplying most of the manpower, it’s REALLY EASY to look at the Iraq war as a distraction, a lining of pockets, or yet another callous media circus to distract attention from the very real, and very worrying curtailment of civil liberties at home.

    And thus emerges yet another theory — the “Wag the Dog” hypothesis that the war is a distraction while the Bush government sets up a tyranny at home. All with the Patriot II Act. Wow.

    Frankly, this doesn’t even address the question. If you are opposed to distracting the American public from some sinister agenda at home, then instead of protesting the war, protest the sinister agenda. It’s a bit pointless otherwise; actually, you end up participating in the distraction.

    Operation Northwoods – Joint Chiefs of Staff request permission to kill US citiziens to provoke war with Cuba in the ’60s

    Wow, an unhatched plan born of fear of a nuclear USSR, from only 40 years ago? That clearly proves something…

    And oldy but a goody: you can’t actually trust the US military any further than you can throw them. Never forget that.

    I don’t have to trust them. That’s the cool part about having a civilian C-in-C that I vote on every four years, not to mention all those Congresscritters in charge of the purse strings. Now, was there a point to this? Am I supposed to trust the Iraqi or Chinese military more? Perhaps French and Belgian UN delegations? Truly the models of integrity there…

    Summing up: if you ignore everything else which is going on, the War on Iraq looks like a good idea.

    No, not to the many “anti-war” groups out there. A huge number are opposed to the war itself. It’s those “peace brigades” that I wonder about.

    If you watch what is going on in the rest of the Administration, then it looks like an extremely calculated step in a well publicised plan which has very little good intent in it at all. And before you tell me I’m full of it, read RAD.

    I’ve read RAD, and of all the documents you cite, it bothers me the least. Actually, I rather like its intent, but even if I accept every theory you listed, I still fail to see why supposed liberals consider “American domination” more objectionable than dictators who could give a damn about anyone’s rights, and gas people by the thousands.

    If it’s about the domestic agenda, then I’d like to know why the protests were all “against war,” as opposed to “against the Patiot II act,” and why the most visible opposition seems unable to distinguish harsh criticism from censorship. (Not to mention the admiration for France, whose policies make even the most feverish Patriot-II Act nighmares look positively benign by comparison.)

  • Kirk Parker

    Scott Cattanach:

    “nor did we have an official Declaration of War”

    Are you completely without access to news media where you are? I ask because the congressional resolution authorizing military force was widely reported at the time. Interestingly, it passed by a much wider margin than did the one authorizing GWI.

  • The US Constitution does not allow enabling acts.

    Kirk, a general authorization of military force is not a Declaration of War. That general authorization is a delegation of the power to declare war from Congress to GeeDub, and the Constitution does not allow Congress to delegate that authority.

    BTW, for those of you saying that only a State has the power necessary to remove Saddam, you’re reading right out of the socialist playbook – namely you’re arguing that there are some problems only govt is big enough to handle.

    I’ve yet to see an argument for this Big Government War that cannot equally apply to Big Government in general.

  • Able

    E. Nough,

    Ok. If you don’t have any problem with the content of Rebuilding America’s Defences, I really don’t know what to say. Seriously. I, personally, am against that kind of expansion of American power without a clear mandate from the people, which is completely absent, and even with a clear mandate it might still be completely immoral.

    It’s certainly a sharp break from the principles on which this country was founded: individual freedom, self-determination etc.

  • M. Simon

    Able,

    With the world out there becoming more hostile by the day, it is incumbent on the US of A government to be able to defend itself against any hostile combination. At least until France collapses economically.

    —————————————

    Just for the sake of accuracy there are no $100 million cruise missles. About $750K per is the going price.

  • M. Simon

    Calvin on May 14, 2003 03:08 PM,

    If Bush made a mistake in ’91 what is wrong with fixing it in ’03? Don’t good people fix their mistakes?

  • M. Simon

    Neil Eden,

    In a libertarian country one of the few jobs for a national government is protecting the citizens from outside threats and declarations of war overt or covert.

    9/11 changed everything. Get over it.

  • M. Simon

    T. J. Madison,

    I suppose the US of A leaving the Philipines when asked was a fluke.

    Recently it looked for a while as if South Korea wanted the USof A gone. There was a groundswell here wanting just such a move to be made.

    If Germany and Japan seriously ask, we will be gone. We add a few air wings and a few more carrier battle groups(CBGs) and we are out of there. In fact two more CBGs are on the way.

  • Scott: you are suffering from a name-referent problem.

    A declaration of war does not need to be titled “A Declaration Of War”, the Constitution does not require any specific labeling. The enabling act *was* a declaration of war, and and specifically stated that it fufilled that function in terms of the specific contextual legisiation, the War Powers Act.

    It was a Constitutionally legal war.

  • T. J. Madison

    >>The enabling act *was* a declaration of war, and and specifically stated that it fufilled that function in terms of the specific contextual legisiation, the War Powers Act.

    So if the President had chosen not to attack Iraq in the face of this “declaration of war”, would he have been impeached?

    >>I suppose the US of A leaving the Philipines when asked was a fluke.

    Yep. No U.S. troops in the Phillipines today. Not a one.

  • Mick_McMick

    >Ok. If you don’t have any problem with the content of Rebuilding America’s Defences, I really don’t know what to say.

    Maybe that’s why you just keep repeating the same never-ending disingenuous crap.

    America must defend itself, and it’s a new world full of mass murderers with no regard for human life, including those of the mindless drones they send to blow themselves up.

    Iraq was an intolerable situation in this new world, and it could no longer be ignored.

    This nonsense that we didn’t have a declaration of war, and that we have to put our security on the backburner until some nameless bureaucracy stamps our “Form 4403 Declaration of War Application” in triplicate, is a lie. Aside from Congress giving the President their backing, this was NOT a new war.

    This was the final consequence of constant violations of the ceasefire agreement from the Gulf War in 1991. If the Nazis, after surrendering, had risen up again during the occupation, and we put them down again, would that require a new Form 4403?

    Personally, I don’t give a fart about the incessant whining of the “anti-war” crowd, especially since it was their intransigent insistence that NOTHING Saddam did would permit war that made war inevitable.

    It seems the only people who are “afraid” of the US “taking over the world” are the same people who have no problem whatsoever with radical islamists overthrowing every nation in the mideast, Africa and southeast Asia, and establishing a worldwide Taliban theocracy.

    If you truly hate fascism, you would see why not letting this happen must be a priority.

  • Mick_McMick

    >The problem with democracy in Iraq is that it is, in all probability, completely unworkable because of the nature of the country: illiterate, divided and priest-ridden not to mention riddled with ancient scores best settled with tanks.

    See, this is the EXACT line of faulty and bigoted logic that kept Saddam in power after 1991. “Oh, they can’t govern themselves! It would be chaos! Better the devil you know…”

    The Kurds have proven you wrong, and have governed themselves quite well, thank you.

    Your argument only reinforces the conclusion that you preferred Saddam, and your motive was not simply one of being “anti-war.”

    You are being pro-fascist.

  • Mark Bruder

    Ah, how bitterly ironic. Many of these dead souls in the mass graves were people who rose up against Saddam after Desert Storm, upon the urging of George H.W. Bush and on the promise that the US would be right behind them. Well, we (of course) lied and these poor men and women were slaughtered.
    However, it is good to know that the US and UK are now going after ALL tyrants. It will be wonderful to liberate the world from tyranny, ushering in a golden age of freedom for all people, from Cuba to Africa to the Middle East. I, for one, am proud to be a part of such a country. Wait… there’s no oil in Cuba or those African nations? Well then, nevermind. They can fend for themselves.

  • Magdel

    Just wanted to know that since the USA is not the liberation/freedom fighters of the world. Could they please liberate Zimbabwe, Cuba, Rwanda, North Korean, and on and on and on. Or are they just interested in certain strategic countries?

    Since when do we start wars to liberate countries and if so, the USA has a LOT of wars to fight!

  • Paul M Baggenstoss

    The whole premise of this article is wrong and misguided. There will always be people who protest against all wars, and these people also protested this war. But I, who enthusiatically supported the Afghan ear, was agianist this one. This war in Iraq was different. No one doubts that Saddam was a cruel dictator and tnhat many people suffered horribly. The problem with this war is that it was sold to Americans based on WMD which did not exist, and a 9/11 connection that was imaginary. It was done for reasons that are not noble. Yet, the noble causes are what are used as a justification. Do you honestly believe that Rumsfeld, Chenney, Bush cared about those 3000 people? They had their eyes on oil and power, my friend. So get off your high horse and stop using noble justifications for a war that had injust reasons for being waged.

  • Magdel

    Typing error correction to previous statement.

    Just wanted to know that since the USA is now the liberation/freedom fighters of the world, could they please liberate Zimbabwe, Cuba, Rwanda, North Korea, and on and on and on. Or are they just interested in certain strategic countries?

    Since when do we start wars to liberate countries and if so, the USA has a LOT of wars to fight!

  • Sean Cain

    The idea that the American and British invasion of Iraq is about liberating their people and creating democracy is nonsense. This is an occupation of their land and control over oil, period. Whoever hasn’t figured this one out clearly isn’t paying attention.

    I also find it fascinating that those who supported the war (supposedly to help the people of Iraq) were the same policy wizards who implemented the embargo over a decade ago which, according to the United Nations, has led to the deaths of over 700,000 innocent civilians. Whether we would like to believe it or not, it murdered more people than Hussein could ever dream of killing.

    If Bush’s new top priority is to come to the plight of the oppressed peoples of the Third World, when is he going to start redirecting resources and decision-making from the rich and powerful to communities in the developing world.

    That’ll be the day.

  • Mick_McMick

    Okay, it’s not in your name.

    You happy now?

  • Mick_McMick

    >the same policy wizards who implemented the embargo over a decade ago which, according to the United Nations, has led to the deaths of over 700,000 innocent civilians.

    Just more of Saddam’s official propaganda.

    Where did those lavish palaces come from while people were being deprived of basic necessities?

    And how strange that the money from the “oil for food” program found its way into corrupt “anti-war” politicians’ pockets. The same people who complained about the “suffering Iraqis,” and who didn’t give half a crap about the “suffering Iraqis.”

    Rape rooms? Children’s Prisons?!!!

    Fine, go ahead and be unmovable in your stance against war under any circumstances, but please remove any claim of humanitarian empathy as a motive for your hypocritical protests.

    The whole anti-war thing is the conglomeration of the anti-Bush crowd and the crypto-Marxist anti-America network. But you guys just can’t bring yourselves to admit it.

  • C Kay

    This is a joke. The US has done the same sort of things internationally, since, most of us have been alive. Whether it was Clinton lobbing cruise missiles into buildings or Jimmy Carter encouraging Saddam to attack Iran. Reagan invaded Grenada. Kennedy started Vietnam, and Ike got us involved in korea.

    We are a world power, that has business interests all over the world and the same people who enjoy the spoils of this empire, do not like the means in which we maintain it. You can not use 3/4 of the world’s resources and be so much richer, then most of the world without having to protect your interests. Your ally’s in this cause, the French, were just protecting their business interets, in their opposition. The french who colonized the whole world and then most flipped and became vichy, nazi sympathizers. So get off your hippy, liberal arts college banter and step into the real world.

    This is the way it is, it will continue to be this way, and folks like you will be outraged when a republican is in office and silent when a democrat does the exact same thing. Foreign policy has never been a partisan issue.

    The easiest way to flip the script, would be to end our relationship with Israel and let the arabs slaughter them (which would happen, if we didn’t give them the means to defend themselves)

    Maybe that is what you want, help the self declared enemies of the US and turn your back our friends.
    We have seen this before they are called vichy french.

  • Paradigm Shift

    Here is another idea – let those who have ears hear.

    The war in Iraq was a temper tantrum – an impotent reaction to acts of symbollic terrorism which cannot be addressed through the use of military force. Attacking Afghanistan and removing Saddam were excuses for the US to make of show of their dominance under existing world power structures. It had nothing to do with helping the Iraqi people – there are hundreds of other equally oppressive regimes (Islamic and otherwise) across the world that Bush will never even think about let alone go to war over. Bush couldnt care less about people in his own country (unless they are exceedingly rich) let alone those in the 3rd world.

    What Bush cares about, in his own brain-dead child-like way, is preserving the dominant world order – which happens to be run by multi-national corporations for the benefit of those same rich fukers that Bush’s tax policies are intended to enrich. Im not saying democrats are much better – but Bush is especially oafish in his work and makes it much more evident for all to see.

    Bush’s “war” on terrorism was a war on dissent and opposition to this world order (which is what Bin laden – in his fundamentalist way – is all about). Bush wanted to send a message to the world and drum up patriotic sentiment here at home to quell dissent. Period. Throw in some increased authority for the US government to control dissent and monitor people here at home and you have a winner – for the dominant social structure.

    This war was about nothing else. Naturally, Bush cant SAY that – the game here is about controlling minds – so he came up with justications which fit into the popular ethical framework of our society (which, by the way, also supports the same power structures Bush aims to serve). Anyone with a moderate amount of intellect and knowlegde could see (if they could free themselves from dominant ideology) that these justifications dont match the reality of what Bush did or is doing and that they are just a method for controlling people. This lack of fit between justifications and reality should be a clue that something is VERY WRONG and an invitation to examine what may really be going on.

    However, the show of force did not, and could not, address the challenge posed those on the other side of the debate – islamic fundamentalists and the anti-globilization movement generally. The past couple years have shown that you can make war on states and arrest individuals but you cannot stop ideas and revolutionary acts predicated soley on individual decisions and activity. You can kill the revolutionary, but you cant kill the revolution.

    People, at least some people, are begining to see that society is constructed to control them for the benefit or others and itself and they are resisting. Some protest, some blow up buildings, some monkey-wrench.

    Dont buy into the BS Bush, the media, the churches, and the corporations are pushing. Free you mind and you ass will surely follow.

  • You TOTALLY stole my thunder, and there’s not much else I can say to this but, thank God for folks like you for telling things as they REALLY are and standing up to the pious anti-American “peace movement.” Thank you for this piece!

  • Pete S.

    Let’s see……which guise will we pick for the justification for war today? Why don’t you just come right out and say it – the attack on Iraq had NOTHING to do with WMD, it had NOTHING to do with liberating the people, and had EVERYTHING to do with fostering the dwindling image of a dimwitted president that can’t seem to actually FINISH anything he starts; i.e. the search for bin laden, the search for Hussein, etc., etc., etc. (oh, and uh the oil too!) By the way, who wants to take bets that he won’t finish the mess he started in Iraq?? So who thinks we “liberated” the people of Afghanistan? That premise was used there as well and look how that one turned out. Wake up hawks, we’ve opened up the proverbial can of worms and given new life to the terrorist groups that we’re supposed to be so scared of. The latest happenings in the Middle East show how this administration has poked a stick in the hornet’s nest. How can we possibly be surprised? That’s right, just keep poking and you’ll soon find out that there is no “winnable” nuclear war – not even in the mighty US.
    p.s. This site is a waste of cyberspace!

  • Jon Roth

    Magdel, I think you are missing the point. The war was not about liberating a country it was and continues to be about protecting American citizens. The war was directly linked to 9/11, anyone who does not believe that is living in denial.

    The fact is that by getting rid of Hussein, Americans are now safer, I hope the war continues into any place where terrorists are supported.

  • Christopher H.

    Folks can argue about the justifiability (or lack thereof) of the war and liberation (or occupation) of Iraq ’til they are blue in the face (which seems to be what is happening here). What we in the west think about these issues is irrelevant, though, to most Muslim Arabs. If the United States government is not able, through consistent action, to convince a comfortable majority of these folks of its benevolence and good intentions, then mistrust, fear and hatred of the US will continue to grow in that part of the world.

    Islamic terrorism will never be eliminated unless the struggle for the hearts and minds of the Muslim world is won. And few hearts and minds have ever been won at gunpoint.

  • Benjamin

    it is amazing how many people are getting punished for opposing the war. Actors and singers are just a few of the people who are facing consequences because they felt the war was unjust. I read “the liberation of iraq” everywhere. WE did a great thing by liberating the iraqi people. I can agree with that. But how about the many other countries being oppressed by dictators? Dictators who kill and arrest many people just because they oppose those in power. Will Bush attack them also? Arent they a threat to their people? Not to Bush, to him some of them are allies. In a way, since Bush became president we have had a dictator because people cant speak their minds without being punished. That is the same thing dictatorship countries do except we dont kill people, we just fire them and probably if they are popular follow them around with the FBI.
    IM STILL WAITING FOR THE “WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION”. I love my country (U.S.A). I havent protested. But if I did, how would that make me unamerican?

  • Benjamin

    it is amazing how many people are getting punished for opposing the war. Actors and singers are just a few of the people who are facing consequences because they felt the war was unjust. I read “the liberation of iraq” everywhere. WE did a great thing by liberating the iraqi people. I can agree with that. But how about the many other countries being oppressed by dictators? Dictators who kill and arrest many people just because they oppose those in power. Will Bush attack them also? Arent they a threat to their people? Not to Bush, to him some of them are allies. In a way, since Bush became president we have had a dictator because people cant speak their minds without being punished. That is the same thing dictatorship countries do except we dont kill people, we just fire them and probably if they are popular follow them around with the FBI.
    IM STILL WAITING FOR THE “WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION”. I love my country (U.S.A). I havent protested. But if I did, how would that make me unamerican?

  • sebastian

    The problem with the regime-change agenda, our new crusade, is: who decides what is a good regime, and what is a bad regime? Specially when some of our friends and even us behave in the same way the supposed bad regimes do.

    And why sink so much effort and money, and energy for other people? In many cases doing so taints our relationship with the rest of the world and ourselves back home, when our own are jobless and hungry, and un-educated? If we want to be the “do-gooders” of the world, why do not we start in our community, with our enviroment, in our cities, schools, and homes?

  • Rodney

    If it was only about the oil, why didn’t the USA just annex Kuwait? We were already there. The oil fields are working perfectly and there was anyone or any country that could kick us out. It wan’t about the oil.

  • Shawn

    I completely agree with Paul (two posters up). I am actually a military officer and I opposed this war. I see dying soldiers every week for this war and when my soldiers ask me why are they here I tell them we are supporting the president of the united states against the war on terrorism and now the liberation of the Iraqi people. But when the soldiers are wearing chemical suits that adds 10 degrees of body heat to a outside temperature of 108, ask me where are the WMD I tell them we are still looking. When we are getting shot by the same people we are supposed to liberate, my soldiers ask me why are they shooting at us. I patiently explained that some people don’t want us here.
    These are the types of questions I face everyday for this war. I will give the bs answers that my leaders give me. Now don’t get me wrong when you see a bunch of Iraqi kids waving at you, you do get a tad bit mushy. But most of the time they want food, and I would get the same response driving around the homeless people in our nation’s capital passing out MREs.
    I love this country and being over here in Iraq reminds me of that, but I still wonder why am I here. If Iraq has these terrible weapons, by all means lets get rid of them. But no weapons have been found, but my folks are soldiers are still getting injured and dying.
    I am not on a pity trail, I gladly fight for my country but I don’t want to die for a reason that can’t be explained at my military funeral.
    Also, one of the reasons why I voted for Bush is because he promised that we (the military) would not be the world police keepers but that is exactly what we are doing here. I know of soldiers guarding Baghdad’s zoo. A zoo for heaven’s sake. YOUR son or daughter is being sent from their home to guard a monkey cage, how does that make you feel.
    We have a lot more countries that need liberation and that is not why I raised my right hand. I raised my hand to protect this country against all enemies foreign or domestic. No where in my swearing spill does it say liberate Iraq, Iran, or any other third world country.
    I was completely for our troops in Afghanistan. They are a foreign enemy and only with the convincing speech from our nation leaders was I even convinced that Iraq was an enemy. But every reason they gave (ie WMD & and the links to Sept 11) are not the real reasons. I just wish someone would come out and say it. So when I write a letter to some dead soldiers mother, I can tell them the truth. Because right now I only tell them a pack of lies.

  • Mike

    Bin Laden has his power because of American funds. Bush told us that we needed to rid Iraq of banned weapons, but when there are no weapons the pro-war people have no problem with it still. The media shows you statues of Saddam being torn down, as if that was the plan all along. You see your cause for being stripped from you and you grasp for something else, when is it enough?

  • Mike

    Bin Laden has his power because of American funds. Bush told us that we needed to rid Iraq of banned weapons, but when there are no weapons the pro-war people have no problem with it still. The media shows you statues of Saddam being torn down, as if that was the plan all along. You see your cause for war being stripped from you and you grasp for something else, when is it enough?

  • christopher

    It seems interesting to me that so many people do not know the truth about Iraq.
    It is simply a fact that the United States not only brought to power, but also funded and supplied Iraq with their weapons and technology. This is not new. The United States has had the same foreign policy sence the 1940’s. Instead of blindly following patriotism, why will you not truley be free and find the information yourself, while you still can!!
    In the words of the great speaker Noam Chomsky “there is one easy way to stop terrorism, stop partisipating in it”
    Until the United States stops funding and promoting dictators we will feel the pain and death of terror.

    PLEASE LOOK FOR YOURSELF, THE EVIDENCE IS THERE!!!!!!

  • Thomas Payne

    For those of you cheering the GREAT USA for fighting for Iraqi human rights I offer a list:
    Ferdinand Marcos
    Rafael Trujillo
    Sese Seko Mobutu
    Armando Pinochet
    Chun Doo-hwan
    Manuel Noriega
    The Shah of Iran
    Slobodan Milosevic
    Jonas Savibmi
    Roh Tae-woo…. (to be cont’d)
    And you wonder why they hate us.

  • Vinson

    I am 63 and was an officer during the Vietnam War. I recently found a book from the late sixties, reminding me of our hopes for the world at that time. After about 10 pages I was unable continue reading, because Iwas crying so hard about what mycountry has become..

  • edsall78

    Who are we kidding?..

    If all Iraq had were potatoes this war would have never happened.

    It’s about oil and power. Period.

    So we “freed” the Iraqi’s (Apparently, they were not worth freeing prior to September 11th), or whatever the multitude of reasons for justifying this war. None of them hold any water.

    The current question is: Was the U.S.’s response to Iraq just? What have we gained as a result of the war? Security? Wasn’t that the reason for going?

    It seems to me that the only thing the U.S. may have done is have tangentially freed Iraqi’s and in the process limited the rights of every American, lost the respect of the world community, and bred an intense hatred (and more terrorism from extremist groups).

    I lived in Europe when this war started and I have to say that it was not so much a pro-Saddam sentiment (becuase there was no doubt that what Saddam was doing was wrong) it is just a simple: Give a peaceful solution a chance. Saddam was not an imminent threat?..period So why not give any other alternative a chance.?

    And as for the Patriot Act…

    “..Those that would sacrifice their freedom for safety will find they inherit neither…”

    -Ben Franklin

    I think the U.S. is setting a dangerous precedent when it chooses to “engage” in war with those that “potentially” pose a threat to the U.S. and chooses to handle “real” threats diplomatically (Korea).

    It means that any country that ever wishes to be taken serious by the U.S. or any world power needs to get there hands on WMD.

    Nevertheless, the fault lies not on our elected officials but on a populace suffering from “historical amnesia”. This isn’t new; this same scenario can be played over, more or less, everytime the U.S. has gone to war.

  • sallysmathers

    you are an idiot. that is all.

  • Chola

    Please do not lump all anti-war protesters under some liberal banner. There were quite a few folks out there who could hardly be categorized as die-hard, Bush-hating liberals, who found this Operation Iraqui Freedom to be misguided.

    Many of us protested this venture not out of love for Saddam or hatred for Bush, but rather because we saw that arguments for intvention were poorly made and we reasoned that any attempt to overthrow Hussein would further destabilize an already unstable region. We protested the war because we had the foresight to realize that a war effort, by its very nature, tends to invite chaos and that only a unified International response can prevent chaos from escalating and metamorphsing into total anarchy. We believed a world without Saddam would most definitely be a better place, but that it should have been the International community, in conjunction with the Iraqui people themselves, who should have taken the man down. There are those of you who might throw your hands up at the International Community and consider it useless, but historically speaking, cooperative, multi-lateral intervention has been much more successful at promoting long term stability than unilateral intervention.

    If you can recall Milosevic’s current fate, you can recall that the International community CAN further the cause of democracy and justice when it is properly convinced that the means are available to do so. Hussein should be joining Milosevic behind bars. Instead we find him free to cause further mayhem and damage.

    Some of the chaos that is taking place on the streets of Baghdad now could have been averted if the United States had worked in concert with the UN. It could have also been averted had the United States taken some time to develop a game plan for post-war occupation, which it apparantly never bothered to do given the utter anarchy and disorder of present-day Iraq.

    As far as true liberation is concerned, we’ll start talking about that when Iraquis can walk down the street without fear of being mugged, killed or raped. Please do not start mumbling tired excuses about time or unstable elements. Order requires foresight and organization. This venture has been sorely lacking in both and that is plainly obvious to both Iraquis and the Americans who either supported this venture and those who did not.

  • Mick_McMick

    >It is simply a fact that the United States not only brought to power, but also funded and supplied Iraq with their weapons and technology.

    This is a lie, and telling it again and again will never make it true.

  • Wendy

    STILL THINK THE WAR IN IRAQ WAS ABOUT LIBERATION? (My comments are in parentheses.)

    From the Washington Post:

    A Halliburton Primer
    Thursday, July 11, 2002

    Following President Bush’s demand for more corporate accountability, public interest group Judicial Watch, Inc., filed suit against Vice President Cheney and the Halliburton Company, alleging accounting fraud during Cheney’s stewardship of Halliburton in the 1990s. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is also investigating Halliburton’s accounting practices.

    (NOTE: Judicial Watch is a conservative watchdog group determined to hold US corporations accountable for their business practices.)

    Following is a brief explanation of Cheney’s involvment with Halliburton and the pending lawsuit and SEC investigation.

    What is Halliburton Co.?

    The Dallas-based Halliburton Company provides products and services to the petroleum and energy industries to aid in the exploration, development and production of natural resources. Halliburton KBR, the company’s engineering and construction division, designs, builds and provides additional services for the energy industry, governments and civil infrastructure. Halliburton employs 85,000 people in over 100 countries.

    Halliburton came under fire in the early ’90s for supplying Libya and Iraq with oil drilling equipment which could be used to detonate nuclear weapons.

    (READ THAT AGAIN, PLEASE!!!)

    Halliburton came under fire in the early ’90s for supplying Libya and Iraq with oil drilling equipment which could be used to detonate nuclear weapons.

    (GOT THAT? After we already knew that Saddam Hussein gassed his own people, after we went to war against him, Halliburton, an American company later chaired by our current Vice President, SOLD HIM OIL DRILLING EQUIPMENT WHICH COULD BE USED TO DETONATE NUCLEAR WEAPONS.)

    Halliburton Logging Services, a former subsidiary, was charged with shipping six pulse neutron generators through Italy to Libya. (GOT THAT?) In 1995, the company pled guilty to criminal charges that it violated the U.S. ban on exports to Libya. (AND THAT?) Halliburton was fined $1.2 million and will pay $2.61 million in civil penalties.

    What was Vice President Cheney’s involvement with Halliburton?

    Cheney was tapped in 1995 to lead Halliburton as chairman and chief executive officer while the company was a second-tier firm within the oil and energy industries. As secretary of defense during the Persian Gulf War, Cheney made international contacts which Halliburton executives hoped would propel the company to the industry’s fore. Under his leadership, the company did expand overseas, swelling its domestic portfolio into foreign markets. Cheney also led the aggressive acquisition of competitors, an offensive strategy which occurred during a period of falling oil prices. The largest merger was with Dresser Industries for $5.4 billion in 1998 – the same month in which layoffs cut nine percent of the work force.

    During his chairmanship of Halliburton, Cheney criticized U.S. sanctions against “rogue” nations such as Iran and Libya in a 1998 speech. According to a July 26, 2000, Washington Post story, Cheney complained the sanctions “are nearly always motivated by domestic political pressure, the need for Congress to appeal to some domestic constituency.”

    (AND THAT? Cheney didn’t like the fact that he was prevented from doing business with despots, dictators, and mass murderers.)

    Cheney’s work with Halliburton yielded large financial reward. In May 2000 he sold stock holdings in the company worth $5 million. When he retired from Halliburton during the 2000 presidential campaign, Cheney was awarded a retirement package worth $20 million. (HE’S STILL COLLECTING $1 MILLION A YEAR FROM THEM.)

  • Mick_McMick

    >Some of the chaos that is taking place on the streets of Baghdad now could have been averted if the United States had worked in concert with the UN.

    What planet were you on for the past 12 years? It was the so-called “anti-war” French and other weasels that made war inevitable by taking all the teeth out of the UN’s resolutions, refusing to back them up, and in fact violating the very sanctions they wanted us to believe were an effective alternative to war.

    If the UN had shown any resolve, instead of mocking the United States for its earnest effort in coming to them, war might have been avoided.

    But even then, considering the UN’s history, even if Saddam had been disarmed, he would still be torturing and terrorizing his citizens, and we all know he would never give up clandestine weapons programs, and would never stop supporting terrorism.

    As for those who say “what about the other tyrants in the world,” I say “yeah, what about them?” If they present the same type of threat, if they support terrorist organizations or hide terrorist suspects, if they threaten to sell plutonium to terrorist groups, then yes, we will take them out as well.

    You sound like the kid who gets caught being naughty, saying “Well, the other kids do it! Why punish me?”

    You have to start somewhere, and Saddam had to go.

    The day he mocked the dead firefighters at the WTC was the day he placed that final straw on the camel’s back.

    You can defend him all you want, and talk about sovereignty until the cows come home, but this war was the right thing to do despite it all. Save your antiwar arguments for an actually unjust war.

    Don’t make antiwar a bad word just to satisfy your anti-Bush cravings.

  • Sergio Méndez

    It wasn´t the same people that supported Hussein in the past – knowing he was a brutal dictator- that now came with this war of “liberation”? Who are you trying to fool? Where in the peace movement a defense of Saddam Hussein was ever made? Of course the guy is a brutal dictator. But using that excuse to take over iraqi oil – cause this is the real and evident reason for this war- is even more evil. By the way, why the Bush administration has close friendship ties with countries with similar regimens in the region (like Uzbekistan)? Maybe cause they allowed US military presence and don´t have oil? What a pack of hypocrites are the right winger in the US..as if they even cared for the lifes of innocent iraqis or democracy….

  • Andy

    What are the protesters doing to materially help the Iraqis now that the war’s over . . . ?

  • Mariam

    Dear Shawn,
    My name is Mariam and I’m a 28 year old Iranian from Tehran. I recently
    read your posting about the Iraq war and your thoughts, and I must say
    it not only impressed me for the honesty within it , but also because I
    could sense the genuine love you have for your country and your
    people… how you’re prepared to do your all :) Your concern reflected these
    things.
    As a child,I have lived through the 8 year Iran-Iraq war, and have seen
    enough of war to hate it for a lifetime.I still have many unanswered questions. Who sold all those weapons to Saddam and Iran?and why? what make were those weapons? (surely not Iraqi and Iranian) I lost some very good friends
    to the war.Therefore, as an Iranian, it was expected of me to feel
    little sympathy for what goes on in Iraq( which had started the Iran-Iraq
    war)….yet as a human being I could not but grieve for the soldiers risking their lives and getting killed for a vague cause and also Iraqi civillians ,women and children being killed; the worst thing is that human life today is so cheap, these losses are accounted for as ‘colateral damage’. I have come to believe that politics is a fickle food on a shifting plate, and all politicians are fickle. I don’t trust any…..yet I envy the good faith you have in your president. I wish I could also support mine. But Christ said, be wary not to put your faith in men , but only in God.
    I personally believe that a war that is won by others for you is not worthwhile. The brave and mighty US military succeeded in giving a good slap to the arab ego, making them realize what they knew all along: that they were cowards. Cowards not being able to oust their tyrant. As you noted very well, the majority of Iraqis who appear to welcome you as heroes are really more interested in what you can give them now, and not grateful at all. Freedom, for a long oppressed nation can have little meaning, I dare say they do not know what to do with it. A child that doesnt know what an orange is , cannot crave for it ; and when given an orange, wouldn’t know what to do with it.
    The desire and longing for freedom is what makes democracies appear, and they always are born from within a nation, not given to them from outside. Just look back at American History, and we have a brilliant example. Surely, Iraqi schoolkids have nothing to feel patriotic about when reading in their history books about how the tyrant Saddam Hussein was ousted by the US and not by local heroes.
    I have deep hope for democracy to be born in my country. The desire is ever burning among my people. It would be a wonderful chance to have us obtain it ourselves, and have something to be proud of for generations to come. It’s a pity not to let that happen, if true freedom and democracy worldwide is what we strive for.
    God bless you, and all you good people who read this

  • C Kay

    Paradigm shift is another one of these people, who thinks the USA is a police state. Go to a police state and see the difference. As a son of a state department official. I got to live in both Cairo and Panama. Those were places, where dissent was squashed. You can say what you want in the US. It’s just if your livlihood depends on those people buying your goods, you might not want to talk bad about our troops in a time of war.

    The war on terrorism, is a war against a group who doesn’t like our power in the world. Period. there is no hidden agenda. These arabs are all tied together because they are the big losers in the 21st century. The American empire is contrary to fundamental Islam. We can not coexist. So the arabs need to clean their own messes up or we will clean them up for them. Liberals, seem to think that arabs have no control over their own circumstances. It’s called Seperation of church and state…Democracy… these people are ridiculous. Iraq was necessary because we double crossed Saddam in the mid 1980’s, he could now allign with our new enemies and he couldn’t be left standing. Much like shooting a gangster, but not killing him. He will always be there to haunt your progress.

    Many of you want WMD. take a drink out of the tigris? During the months and months of delay, he destroyed much of them, but left OJ Simpson, style, circumstancial evidence. Maybe you belive they just bury biological weapons labs for storage. I don’t know. This is an all-out war and the quicker you liberal retards figure that out. The better for your own sanity. Do you think Lieberman as VP would change the war or Kerry as president? No. Because these people do want to kill us at all cost.

    We need to stay on the offensive, with liberal fools like you, we would have never won WWII. You doubt American goodwill. Why did Stalin need to build the Berlin Wall (To keep e.germans from going to west Germany) Not the other way around.

    Why is South korea in such better shape then North Korea. How about western europe compared to eastern europe?

    Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Syria… should get ready becuase the war has just begun… much like the cold war this will take a long, long time. Yet, ask anyone who lived in the soviet Union and now lives in America… and tell me the cause wasn’t just.

    These groups are mosquitoes, not like having the USSR’s missiles pointed at us, but an annoyance that needs to be dealt with.

    If I had my way, the Palestinians would have one chance to get their own state. if they continue to bomb, then the hell with them and give Israel the green light to drive them into the sea.

    In the end, As Churchill said: The english speaking democracies of the world need to stick together and lead the world.

    Don’t hate us because we are #1.. Don’t hate the player. Hate the game.

    I think you guys are all nuts. The US is the greatest country the world has ever known, flawed, of course, but to pretend like toppling Saddam was some tragedy, what a joke.

  • Cesco

    It is truly amazing how people are so easily maipulated. Some are using the discovery of the mass graves to justify the war. I will never buy that because you have to remember what the first reason for war was :
    WMDs!!!!! That’s why Powell went to the UN and try to demonstrate Iraq had WMDs (using a report done buy a graduate student in the early 1990s)
    Saddam, say Bush, was a threat to the USA and to the world because of his WMDs and that’s why he had to be removed. The USA said that Saddam did not want to « disarm » and THAT WAS THE REASON he would face « serious consequences ».
    Let me remind you that France opposed war buy saying that more time should be given to the inspectors to find the WMDs if they exist. Till today, no WMDs have been found. France was right! The US administration made us believe that Saddam was an imminent threat. If so, where are those WMDs.

    Now, pro-wars are showing mass graves to show how a great thing that war was. What was the reason the US went to the UN again? What was all that show about? THE WMDs. Not the liberation of Iraqis.

    Please, don’t use the mass graves and other horrors today to tell us anti-war that we were wrong. Wrong about what? Is this about liberating people? Yes you are may be screaming. Then let me ask you this. Where was the USA when more than 1,000,000 were killed in Rwanda. I believe you were talking about mass graves right?
    Liberating people and bring democracy right? CRAP! What about the silent support of apartheid in South Africa several years ago?
    Today, what about Congo where more than 400,000 people were killed last year alone
    What about :
    China : it is not a democracy
    Cuba : Why not invade Columbia and « liberate columbians »
    Columbia : thousands of people are dying there. Why not invade Columbia and « liberate columbians »
    Qatar, Koweït, Oman
    North Korea

    The last time I had and argument with a pro-war, the reply was that none of the above is a direct threat to the US security. Iraq was. Well, where are the WMDs to proove that. NOWHERE!

    The liberation argument looses all credibility because in this world, there are millions who are dying by the hands of brutal dictators, hunger, sickness …etc. and this administration is doing ABSOLUTLY NOTHING TO HELP. Are Iraqis so special they needed to be liberated more than the others?
    Please, do not care about what we think, but never insult are intelligence.

  • Abhishek Tiwari

    The various comments on this site have given me a very nuanced view of the Iraq war and for that I thank you. These comments highlight the fact that no issue can be distilled down to a few simple points; that is they show the fallacy of binary oppositions that urge individuals to be solely with one point of view or its polar opposite. It is only by deliberating upon this texture, these nuances, will we, as individuals, be able to make sound decisions.

    It is this freedom to deliberate, opine, and consider ideas, some of which may scare or even offend us, that makes democracy a preferable alternative to other contemporary forms of government.

    I am grateful that the Iraqi people now have the opportunity to enjoy these freedoms. I am relieved that Saddam is gone or at least no longer in power. However, I am still not convinced of the verity of the stated intentions of our current government with respect to Iraq. I also do not like slow erosion of basic constitutional principles during the last year or so. So on what side does that leave me–I do not know (although I suspect the next few postings will pick a side for me).

    Thank you all again for your various points of view.

  • Bob

    “So far remains of more than 3,000 people have been found but Iraqis fear up to 15,000 people reported missing in the area may have been buried there during Saddam’s government crackdown on Shi’ites when they launched an uprising in 1991″

    Oh my God, what a shock! Dead revolutionaries!

    Sure, if the U.S. hadn’t encouraged the Shi to revolt, or if we would have at least offered support, not only would these people not have died, but Saddam would have been out over 10 years ago. But hey, we just figured Saddam would give them a slap on the wrist! Its not like he had squashed uprisings before! Oops, forgot the Kurds…Nevermind!

    You know, I seem to recall another uprising that occured in our country back in the 1860’s. How was this dealt with? What exactly is the difference from the frame of reference of loss of humanity if that is indeed so important to the pro-war contingent?

    Listen, I was all for the war in Afganistan. That was a no-brainer and I was behind GW all the way. But our resources (tax dollars, people!!!) could be better spent right now here at home. Not to mention the fact thousands of people died that didn’t have to die!

    There was no imminent threat in Iraq and to try to save face by running with the freedom spin just ain’t gonna happen!

  • Matt Sanders

    You’re absolutley right Vinson. It’s sad to see how deluded American’s are by their government’s justification for its foreign policy. I haven’t seen anybody mention the fact that Bush Sr. actually helped Saddam supress the Shi’ite uprising in ’91 because they jeapordized our oil interests there. Who knows how many countless people in those mass gravesites were killed by American weapons? Of course one could say that was a mistake and we should move on, but will they be saying the same thing about us invading Iraq ten years from now? We are hated by most of the free world for our greed and disregard for international law. I used to feel proud to be an American; now I miss that feeling.

  • C kay

    One last point. Many of you seem divorced from reality.

    Throughout the course of human history their have been superpowers. Many of you hate that the US leads the world and has influence over smaller nations.

    You seem to belive that if the US didn’t lead, then we would all live in a type of utopian existence.

    If the events of the 20th century unfolded differently we could be under Nazi or Soviet style societies, dominating the earth.

    THE FACT IS SOMEBODY WILL ALWAYS BE INFLUENCING THE WORLD AND LEADING IT.

    This is a fact… so it’s better to be strong and dictating things then being weak and taking events as they come. OBL is trying to resurect an islamic state over the middle east. That is his vision for world dominance. Our vision may not be perfect, but, it is better then his.

    Many bitch about our support for dictators, well, if we didn’t have our thug buddies in the middle east. The world’s economy could be held hostage right now by islamic fundamentalists. That is the sad fact of the world we live in. Does anyone doubt that without the Saudi Royal family’s repressive regime, that Saudi Arabia would be Afghanistan on steriods for Al-queda and their people.

    The Saudi royal family are gangsters and pay protection money and do all kinds of bad things, but, they are better then the alternative. Which is why we support groups like this. Liberals seem to think anybody we are allies with, we have put in power, not true, we just keep our business interests safe, which needs stability and islamic revolutions are not good for business.

    It’s the economy stupid.. that is what drives most geo-politics. We have a majority fo the world that has embraced the global economy. On the other side we have college students who were not born or slept through the cold war and these fundamentalists who hate the global economy.

    also, many people love to talk about our support for Saddam. That was so minor. But, look at it in context. In Lebanon, Hezbollah had blown up and killed 241 marines. Iran had overthrown the Shah and held Americans as hostages for over a year. In between this mess, was Saddam… who hated the sh’ites our new enemy in Iran. We started talking to him, to make sure that he wouldn’t use the situation to his advantage. We had some similar interests… one being that we didn’t want a islamic revolution in Iraq (Saddam was losing the war, until we helped him) Geo-politics, usually, it’s a choice between two wrongs. In the end, we double crossed Saddam because we were selling weapons to Iran as well… Come on, now, i know you liberals remember Iran-Contra. yet, you forget about when you claim Saddam was some ally of ours. Never the case. We had a mutual interest, he wanted to win the war and we wanted Iran to lose the war, in the end we wanted a long, costly, bloody battle. Which we got, because, we didn’t like either. Hardly, an ally.

    Finally, someone said that we set a bad precedent because now anyone should get a WMD.

    No kidding. That was always the case. These countries all knew that. Duh! All countries, long before Iraq, knew that a WMD, would put them on a different plane. We are trying to say pusuit of this, will lose you power.

    Do you think the Iraq war suddenly, gave these foreign leaders a moment of clarity “I have it .we need WMD.” This has been known since the end of WWII, when Stalin was thinking of moving into Alaska on the way to Japan, after the Nazi’s were defeated. Then the A-bomb. Stalin said ” we need to wait on ambitious foreign policy until we get a bomb.”

    Everyone knows that. Every third world leader has known that since the day Hiroshima was obliterated. Why do you think we gave Israel so many nukes.”

    Please, please, get a clue. The iraq war, was finishing a war that never ended in 1991. that was it, all this other stuff is rhetoric for the masses. We were spending a billion dollars a year to starve people for the past 12 years. i would say this strategy is an improvement.

  • Passing Thought

    I applaud George Bush for taking the thunder to Saddams ass. I applaud the reasons he stated for going to war in Iraq, because they were basically noble and well intentioned. I am not however, a fan of George Bush and I do believe that oil played a major roll in the decision to go to war.

    That being said, I want to tell you anti war protesters a couple of things. First being, if you are an American, Canadian, Western European, Australian, or a citizen of any other “first world” nation, I can safely say that 95% of you don’t have a fucking clue about what goes on it the world. If you have never been to a war zone, or seen unedited footage of bombings, executions, and firefights, you need to shut the hell up and concentrate on the decaf latte from Starbucks you had to put down in order to whine about U.S. pissing the world off. Did you put down your Starbucks to get in front of a camera when Robert Mugabe was allowing his psychopaths to overrun white owned farms and kill the farmers who weren’t fast enough clearing out. How many antiwar protesters got upset about the Ruwandan genocides or the cross border wars in Uganda, Eritrea, Congo, and Somalia? Damn few, Starbucks makes some damn good coffee. What about the FARC rebels in south america? Let’s not forget the Khmer Rouge is still running around murdering folks. Where are the protesters? I can tell you….they’re still at Starbucks because they don’t give a shit! This world can burn to a fucking cinder as long as the US doesn’t get involved. I got news for you people. We’re talking about the United State of America here. My homeland! It’s no different than any other country on the planet. It just happens to be the most powerful country on the planet and it leverages that power to serve it’s interests and the best interests of it’s citizens when it can. It’s not fair and most of the time it sucks. But the world is not a fair place. I don’t know about my fellow anti war countrymen, but I like waking up and not having don a flak vest to go shopping.

    Human Shields are without a doubt the dumbest people on the planet. If you think you can stop a war simply by mailing a letter to the pentagon letting them know you’re going to be in the path of any bombs that may be heading towards the site you’ve chosen to “defend”, I can save you the airfare and send you to a shitload of neighborhoods in the U.S. where you can defend a hard working family against, gangs, drug dealers, serial killers, child rapists, and you’d get your name in the paper once you got your head blown off!

    Be anti U.S. if you want, but don’t hide behind anti war to do it. Your making people that really hate war and work hard to get their message across, look like a bunch of Starbucks swilling, fashion statement making, prom queens out for their 15 minutes of fame.

  • AMinhas

    The mass grave does not equate with WMD. Also, there were plenty of people mass graved in Rwanda, and US failed to take any action there. Us is getting desperate– calling a little mobile trailer which god knows was used for whatever reason as potential mobile chemical lob & our main stream media telecasting it in such a verasity is the sign of country’s desperation.

  • Hmm

    Ugh. Now they’ve gone and done it. They’re actually gonna make me have to go and register to vote…
    What was that wrestler guy’s name again?

  • Ken Ortman

    Regarding isolationism one poster said:

    ” Imagine WWI and WWII without US intervention? Imagine the National Socialst Democratic Republic of Greater Euope.”

    As Winston Churchill once pointed out, if America had stayed out of WWI “peace would have been made with Germany; and there would have been no collapse in Russia leading to Communism; no breakdown of government in Italy followed by fascism; and Naziism never would have gained ascendancy in Germany” (Social Justice Magazine, July 3, 1939,p.4)

    Isn’t it a bit early to be crowing about the victory in Iraq? We haven’t even begun to see what the consequences will be (good or ill). The reason that many of us opposed the war was because we feared that the long-term effects would not be worth the short-term gains. Don’t try to tar all of the anti-war lefties with the same brush. There were as many different reasons for opposing the war as there seems to be to justify it in the minds of the right…some of them logical, some less than logical…but not ALL supported by everyone on one side or another.

    How will we react if other nations decide to follow our lead? If America can utilize pre-emptive strikes…why not India, for example?

    Most people left or right knew full well that Iraq would fall quickly. Most knew Saddam was a ‘bad guy’, and of course the Iraqi people for the most part would be glad to see him gone…but what is the price? Anyone who claims to know what will come of this yet is either a liar or a fool. Don’t pat yourselves on the back just yet. This has only just begun.

  • Paris

    I’m so sick of all the smarmy, smart-ass, baseless pro-war rhetoric. Ok, sure I’m proud to admit that I think Bush is perhaps the worst President to ever disgrace the halls of our Capital– it’s mystifying to me how the rest of my country finds so much in so little of a man. A BBC investigation (amongst others) discovered that 22, 000 black and mostly Democratic voters were somehow erroneously or quite possibly illegally excluded from the election by a private Florida co. named DBT. This same company whose objective was to screen ineligible voters (felons etc) excluded over 5,000 eligible blacks. Some voters who were wrongly disqualified had never had a legal violation of any kind (i.e.. a Baptist minister!) The company has just about admitted its compliance in the whole damn debacle that’s now become FACT, but yet…no one seems to know or care about it. So how the holy hell can anyone in all sense of fairness claim that there’s no basis for at least questioning the legitimacy of this horrible presidency? Or do you just think CNN is dogma?
    Fast forward to 911, Iraq and then think about all of the very loose connections we’ve been given for doing some very risky moves within foreign policy. How many different and ever-changing reasons were we given for this war? Hmm..1,2,3. We would probably have better luck finding the fountain of youth than a bunker of WMDs. Hell, the Bay of Pigs did more for smoking guns w/ 60’s technology than we have now– fraudulent nuke evidence? I won’t even bother to address all mis-dis-information stemming from 911. Yeh, call me paranoid but god bless me for actually having the ability to think and question the motives of this OH SO HONORABLE presidency. Hindsight’s a b__tch…and when time comes, history will judge us and our actions. When it comes, I’ll be the one with the sh_it eating grin towards a wholly duped and tragic group of so-called Americans!

  • C Kay

    Matt, if you don’t like America. you can leave. I think you will find corruption and the like in every administration.

    People keep saying that liberation is not a reason for war, simply because all people are not free. That is retarded. Then,Liberating Europe during WWII was a bad idea because France and Britain had colonies all across the globe.

    You can’t fix all the problems, so you should fix none, is that what your saying?

    Germany never attacked the USA, yet, we went to war to liberate europe. Even though, African Americans had few rights in our country. You know, what we won the war and by doing so allowed for the civil rights movement to build on these principles of WWII.

    That is what people who care about human rights across the world need to do, capitalize on this rhetoric. Of course, we didn’t fight this war to liberate Iraq. We fought it to give ourselves a foothole in the middle east. (The intelligence, alone was worth the war)

    A huge part of the war on Terror is shutting down areas, in which they gain sympathy and support. Two down. A bunch to go. I don’t know why people are shocked. Iraq, was an easy target, Iran, Syria, the Saudi’s– this is much harder nut to crack. To pretend it’s about oil, ruins your otherwise, substantial case against the war. You people want to run a half-ass Bill Clinton war on terror. I assume whoever is in the white house in 2004, will put our troops in another location.

    Get with it, this is the new cold war and covert and overt battles will be fought all over the globe. iraq was just the beginning.

    Thank god, my grandfather’s generation who won WWII and set up this society to become the richest in the history of the world. Just did their job, without a bunch of Johnny come lately’s telling them what they should have done.

    We did nothing after hezbollah killed 243 marines
    We did nothing after the Khobar towers
    We did nothing after the USS Cole
    The first WTC bombing we tried them in open court, so they could understand how our FBI operates, etc.
    We did nothing after the Iran hostage crisis
    We did nothing after Saddam tried to Kill George Bush 41
    We did nothing after the embassy bombings in Africa
    So doing nothing, has just led to larger attacks.
    So Finally, We did something.

    I also, find it funny that many of you people think the only Mass graves are from people who rose up after 1991 (Of course our fault)
    Come down to dearborn and listen to Iraqi exiles. Saddam did a lot more killing then just the folks who rose up. Which is why you lose credibility, you can’t even admit the guy was a murderous dictator practicing genocide… well beyond, just those who rose up.

  • x

    I don’t care what the lefty scum thinks. Bush rocks!!!

  • John

    I’m ashamed to say that the U.S. supported Hussien’s regiem in the 1980’s. However, he was fighting those wonderful supporters of civil rights, the Revolutionary Guards in Iran. In WWII, the U.S. supported the Soviet Union under Stalin against the Nazis under Hitler. Stalin was far worse a tyrant & mass murderer than Hitler ever was, but we lavished millions of tons of aid to Stalin, so NO ONE can claim a moral “high ground”. My only hope is that in the long run, we can help the Iraqis establish a more stable &, dare I say it, democratic society. Will this happen? Only the Iraqis themselves can anwer this. In the same way, only the Israelis & Palestinians can decide that the war of attrition they are fighting must end. The best the U.S. can hope for is to set the stage for these situations; not force the solutions down the throats of the participants. Trying to do this will only lead to frustrating failure.

  • John

    I’m ashamed to say that the U.S. supported Hussien’s regiem in the 1980’s. However, he was fighting those wonderful supporters of civil rights, the Revolutionary Guards in Iran. In WWII, the U.S. supported the Soviet Union under Stalin against the Nazis under Hitler. Stalin was far worse a tyrant & mass murderer than Hitler ever was, but we lavished millions of tons of aid to Stalin, so NO ONE can claim a moral “high ground”. My only hope is that in the long run, we can help the Iraqis establish a more stable &, dare I say it, democratic society. Will this happen? Only the Iraqis themselves can anwer this. In the same way, only the Israelis & Palestinians can decide that the war of attrition they are fighting must end. The best the U.S. can hope for is to set the stage for these situations; not force the solutions down the throats of the participants. Trying to do this will only lead to frustrating failure.

  • ken ortman

    “You people want to run a half-ass Bill Clinton war on terror.”

    So what exactly do you suppose the rest of the world would have thought if the United States had conducted a ‘war on terror’ TM of the magnitude that we’re seeing under Bush BEFORE 9-11? It would not have been justified. If 9-11 occured while Clinton was in office do you honestly believe he would not have done anything about it? That’s absurd.

    “Germany never attacked the USA, yet, we went to war to liberate europe.”

    Germany declared war on us first…we did not decide to liberate Europe.

  • C kay

    Ken… Quite a leap you make about the USA entering the war and causing all the problems of WWI. I find that impossible that Churchill (The man whose main doctrine was keeping the english speaking democracies of the world united) would have made a comment. Yet, that is a leap, to say that this, this and this, would have happened differently. It’s safe to say that if the war had never began, things would have been different. But, to think Germany would have lived under the Kaiser, forever, because the USA stayed out of the war is a joke. The Great depression, and a horrible peace (with large war repirations) played a role. I agree with most of your post, though, I would love to read the part, you quote just to get a better feel for the context. Certainly, the overall point of your post is well taken by me.

    Paris… get over yourself. if our actions lead us down a terrible path, nobody will care that you can say i told you so. I would disagree with your main premise. I think we have done nothing too risky. Risky would be going after the real source of terrorism Saudi Arabia and Iran. Who has been duped? My eyes are wide open.

    And Ken, I think we should pat ourselves on the back for occupying a country at a small price in blood, although, we all knew iraq would fall easy. I thought, we would lose much closer to a 1,000 people.

    Granted, it has just begun.

  • Ken Ortman

    The point I was making in my ‘big leap’ was that you never can tell what the consequences will be down the road.

    Granted, we’ll never know what the consequences of NOT invading Iraq would have been, will we?

    The point Churchill was making is that WWI was shaping up to be a stalemate. America upset the balance. The rise of Naziism can be directly linked to the way Germany was forced to shoulder the blame for the war and the resulting economic collapse in that country. No one doubts that WWII was a direct result of WWI.

    What will be the result of the war in Iraq? If it ends up being good for the Iraqi people, it could lead to greater stability in the region. If it turns out to be a sham, look for more hostile feelings towards us and more terror attacks. It’s too early to say.

  • C Kay

    Germany did declare war on us, and many people wonder what we would have done if they didn’t do that. I think most evidence shows we were going to help Europe regardless. I mean we did give England 24 WWI destroyers before we got into the war. FDR was always trying to do what he could for England without getting the America firsters mad.

    This brings us to Bill Clinton. I agree. politically it would have been tough. But, you could make the Sudi’s let us investigate the Khobar towers… then when you know it was Iran, you could at least rattle the swordd. The same goes for Yemen’s treatment of our FBI when investigating the Cole. Everyone, put up roadblocks and they continue to do it today, the more decisive action we take the more they tend to help.

    Clinton could have taken Bin laden when the Sudanese govn’t offered him up. We didn’t want him because he had no charges to file aginst him.

    WTC in 1991 could have be treated as an international act of war (Which we know now that it was) and not a criminal justice issue. That may have been the most harm he did in the war on terror, that first WTC bombing trial. We gave up too much info on methods and sources.

    Clinton could have admitted defeat and pulled everyone out of Somalia, in such a manner that showed weakness and left our troops overseas vulnerable. He could have kept his eye on the ball in the mid east, instead of going to Haiti.

    I could go on and on and on about things Bill Clinton could have done in the pre-9/11 political state of the world.

    I mean he called for a regime change in Iraq and the senate voted on it and nobody cared. He just didn’t follow through. Do you think the left would have protested Clinton? The right wouldn’t have protested any war in the arab world.

    Any way you look at it, Clinton was asleep for 8 years. It’s always easier to stamp out a movement before it gains success and rallys people.

    Clinton did a great job in the middle east peace process, but, he proved good intentions, does not mean Arafat won’t stab you in the back…. which led to a right wing reaction in israel (which got us to Sharon)

    In the end, give me one foreign policy victory Clinton had, other, then Serbia. And Sebia did nothing for us, we fought for the muslims (gave us no capital with their people) and did it for europe (Which gave us no capital with their people) This had nothing to do with uS national interests. I am glad to see a scumbag like Milosovich go down, but, really Al-Queda’s help to the muslims during that war gave them a foothole into Europe. So that war was contrary to US national interests.

    I have no doubts that 20 years from now historians will be discussing the failed foreign policy of Bill Clinton. That being said, I could use his economic policies, right about now, times are tough in Michigan.

  • Ken Ortman

    Mind you, I was no fan of Clinton while he was in office either. Though he may not have done much to thwart the terrorists, neither did he do much to provoke them either.

    My fear with Bush’s foriegn policies is that he’s locking us into a vicious circle of attack/retaliation just like Israel is going through. Sharon’s heavy-handed approach only seems to strengthen the Palestinian’s resolve. Are we doing the same thing?

  • Mark

    How can you Bushies construe chaos in Afganistan and Iraq as victory or even liberation? Initial military victory over fourth rate powers(400 billion vs 1.4 billion) was the easy part. We will see whether the Bush administration has the staying power for nation building, or contributes to further instability and lawlessness in the Middle East.
    In the meantime, with our military overextended, and more and more of our nations resources going to military purposes, life in these United States will deteriorate. At the same time, China, the ultimate concern of the Neocons, is reving up its economic engine. China could become a major economic threat “to our interests,” which the Neocons would attempt to confront militarily. The Middle East is just the appetizer in the Neocon plan for continuing global domination.

  • Paris

    “The psychosis of the left wing Bush haters is very deep. It must be way more difficult to quit than smoking. Only a few percentage of the left wing have gotten their sanity back even after the liberation scenes. Sad. Very Sad and Very Sick.”
    mhw
    Thank you for so eloquently describing what you’re incapable of seeing in a mirror. I couldn’t have said it better about such a deluded and myopic group. I disagree only with one point: contrary to your belief– to hate someone of the likes of Bush is no great effort especially when you line up the number of failures on his resume alone. Hence, it’s quite easy to release oneself from the irrational, immoral, the illegitimate. You should try it sometimes…it’s ‘liberating’. Get well soon! :)

  • Snide

    The thing that makes me chuckle as i read the Bushies and the anti-Bushies argue among themselves is that I very much doubt the people who actually write the articles on this blog give a shit about either position. they have made it clear they do not think Bush was ever out to liberate Iraq because they are libertarians who wanted the war for their own reasons and not Bush’s reasons…and they do not really care why it was done just so long as it WAS done.

    So message to the conservatives: these guys really don’t think much of your president or Blair either, they just think they happened to do the right thing this time.

    and message to the anti-liberation guys: the fact you do not think you are supporters of tyranny is irrelevent. You tried to prevent a fascist regime from being overthrown and that makes you a de facto supporter of tyranny regardless of what you think you are. get used to it.

    And to the MORON who think that having the US control Iraq’s oil is worse that having Saddam control the Iraqi people… so I guess for you, oil matters more eh?

  • chola

    “If the UN had shown any resolve, instead of mocking the United States for its earnest effort in coming to them, war might have been avoided.”

    If the United States had presented credible evidence and motive for the war, the International community would have responded accordingly, but it didn’t. The UN got misleading dossiers about the dangers of WMD. The premise of this war was not about “liberation” it was about the supposed link between WMD’s and terrorism. No one, save a few countries desperate for US aid, bought the argument. Why should they have bought it? Despite having control of Iraq we have yet to find ANY evidence of agents that would do either the United States or the world community harm.

    I am all for ending tyranny and I support any effort to end torture, extrajudicial killings and injustice, but I was never convinced, as is the case with war protesters and world leaders, that this was about justice. If justice exists, why is Hussein not before a tribunal where he can be tried for crimes he has committed against humanity.

    The United States has a tyrant just off its shores, but when have we ever lifted a finger to help the Cubans liberate themselves? It hasn’t been for lack of support from the Cuban population. Dissidents are being tortured and imprisoned as we speak in Cuban jails. Where is the US response?

    The United States, had it gone before the world and taken an active role in making a true committment to justice and respect for human right, would have probably gotten a much better response than its tactic of presenting a bunch of misleading dossiers about WMD? Why insult the intelligence of world leaders?

    Earnest effort? Dossiers based on plagarized PHD papers? You call that earnest?

    The UN has a plethora of shortcomings, but it can be an effective instrument for insuring that humanitarian concerns are not completely ignored. Is it an accident that the only food/water aid shipments are not coming from the United States?

    War could not have been avoided as Bush had already decided he needed to go to war in April, even before Villepin or Putin or anyone else opened their mouths. Who are you kidding?

    I am not suggesting that it is the UN is a sure-fire support for stability, human rights, etc. I am suggesting that if given a chance, it CAN be. Unilateral planting of democracy is a recipe for disaster. Look at Central America. Violence and terror seem to be the rule in countries like El Salvador and Guatemala, rather than the exception.

    As far as stability and liberation are concerned…I’ll pat you Bush lovers on the back when I see some real results. As I said before, don’t blame it on time. The United States had plenty of time to figure out how to promote both stability and democracy. It’s not as if Bush didn’t know he would be going to war. War was a foregone conclusion.

    The Iraqui people deserve much better than the chaos this venture has created.

  • Scott

    None of the anti war activists I know ever said that Saddam Hussein was a humanitarian leader. However its expected of us as Americans to forget the support of Saddam Hussein when he was killing masses in Iran. Saddam Hussein’s actions were not labeled as inhumane until US petroleum sources in Kuwait were threatened. The US illegally jumped the gun and attacked iraq without a mandate. Then backed out of the country when an uprising against Saddam Hussein started. The Bush administrations plans for a new iraq sound so beautiful when you ignore the history of this countries military actions and also ignore the actions of this court appointed oil tycoon that is our president.

  • None of the anti war activists I know ever said that Saddam Hussein was a humanitarian leader.

    So what? Who cares what the anti-liberation protesters THINK they are supporting or protesting against. As an earlier commenter said, the fact is that by trying to stop Saddam Hussain from being overthrown in Iraq, the anti-liberation protesters were doing exactly what a mass murdering tyrant wanted them to do, ie leave him and his Ba’athist cronies in power, which makes the people who tried to stop his overthrow his supporters in reality even if not in their own minds.

  • Ken Ortman

    Well then by your logic, we Americans are all guilty of supporting every other tyrranical government in the world simply because we have not decided to overthrow them.

    The humanitarian motives that you attribute to the Bush administrations are laughable. You act as if they were the reason for military action all along because his original reason turned out to be a smokescreen and YOU are the ones who cannot admit that YOU were wrong.

    Saddam being ousted has been a happy side-effect for many of the Iraqi people, yet I doubt they view the chaos that now reigns in the streets as being an improvement. Maybe the Bush administration will see things through and give them a better life than they had before…but how much better? After all, if he’s so willing to worsen the lives of the majority over here for the benefit of the wealthy few, what reason do we have to believe things will be different in Iraq (or anywhere else?)

    Money over people is the Republican mantra.

  • Mick_McMick

    >Saddam being ousted has been a happy side-effect for many of the Iraqi people, yet I doubt they view the chaos that now reigns in the streets as being an improvement.

    Then I guess the looting that went on in Berlin 1945 meant we should have left Hitler in power.

    You know, there were clones of you guys in the ’40s who used to say “At least he got the trains to run on time.”

    The trains to Auschwitz, that is.

    Heck, you can just look to see who funded the huge “peace” marches: Marxist anti-capitalists and anarchists. Those who were suckered to march under these banners because they were told it was about saving Iraqi babies are the dupes of the world.

  • Ken Ortman

    Germany declared war against us. We were in a state of all-out war. We crushed the Nazis and rightly so. It was the only logical thing to do.

    You are comparing apples to oranges.

    Bush knew full well that he’d topple Saddam. He knew many months ago. He had all the time in the world to assemble a proper plan to replace him and quickly restore law and order. That would have been the responsible thing to do if he was truly concerned about the Iraqi people. All the Iraqis have gotten so far to replace Saddam is one big clusterfuck. Oh, but at least the oil fields and oil ministry were kept safe.

    Oh, by the way…there were clones of YOU about 100 years ago saying “Remember the Maine!” lol

  • Ken Ortman

    …oh and since you want to accuse me of being a Nazi sympathizer…

    Who’s grandfather was found guilty by Congress of providing aid and comfort to the Nazis?
    Bush!

    Who freed Nazi war criminals to work for them against the U.S.S.R.?
    Hint: It wasn’t the Democrats!

  • PANTHER

    Bare with me here i am about to express my views but can’t promise it won’t turn into rambling. So…..
    I can’t believe i’m still hearing ” it’s about the oil” mantra! Yes, i am all for the U.S. going after tyrants. For example: (1) Saddam – no need for clarification (2) north korea’s kim – when pushing around your own people isn’t enough; go for the nuke option when you can’t get what you want but you want what you know you can’t have!
    I am also for going after terrorists too, like osama bin laden ( Hey when going after the u.s. is too hard of a target go for more vulnerable targets like the recently reported threat to norway)! A terrorists does what their name implies. Am i terrorized; not in the least. But i am concerned enough to stay decently informed!
    But to hear it’s about the oil is alot of crappy nonsense! If we really wanted the oil so badly we could’ve just as easily have taken it in 91′ . Yes sir, it time to retire that old song where it belongs, except it will have to wait; our blocks sewers are being cleaned so in a couple of hours there should be plenty of room for it.
    And as for WMD we may not find them this year or this decade or the first half of this century, or maybe never unless, thousands of iraqi innocents start to die in thousands due to radition poisoning. Hopefully, the latter will never come true!
    Also, the apparent snafu in iraq is not entirely our fault! Yes, we should have been more prepared, but no one can be totally prepared for the impossible! The disapperances of all government was so complete that future generations will still be discussing it( maybe on how not to liberate a country)! Who knows maybe movie deals or publishing of books either from all participants or by an outside observer looking in! To look at it for what it really is, when a govt. is so centralized to the point of knowing what each and every one of it’s citizens are doing 24/7 and telling them what to do 24/7 that in hindsight it’s not very surprising to me that it happened at all! To loot when the looting is good. To kill those who were responsible for a murdered love one , even those remotely connected to saddam’s govt. ect…ect… and so on. Our lives and way of life is being threatened whether by terrorists or a certain govt. between china and japan, that in situations as this that you can’t sit around to wait for another sucker punch! 9-11 was bad enough and i certainly don’t want to add another date of rememberance to my calander! If we don’t do something now, then who knows by the end of this century america will mark a certain day of the year for national mourning instead of every day of the year from suicide attacks! ( yes i know i’m stretching it , but hey the impossible can always become possible just ask an israeli)!
    To the anti-war protesters out there who were truly anti-war i commend you for speaking up! To those who are anti-bush and hid behind the anti-war movement, all i can say is, i may not agree with the anti-war on this occassion but, atleast they’re convictions were humane and not political!

  • Wendy

    Before a war is started..protest is fair and understandable…but once it has started…support the troops..and the USA…you basically slap our soldiers in the face…and as a Mother of one….you DON’T do that to MY son and the country he has chose to defend..and the sad thing is..he is also defending your rights…and you do nothing but slap him in the face….

  • chola

    “Before a war is started..protest is fair and understandable…but once it has started…support the troops..and the USA…you basically slap our soldiers in the face”

    Hussein also started wars which many Iraqui citizens did not support. Are you suggesting that if Irquis loved their country, they should have remained quiet while at war, even if you they did not agree with Iraq’s right to wage war in the first place?

    And if you thought the war to be baseless before it started, why would that change once war did start? If you thought lives were being loss for no good reason, why would you want to continue putting those lives in harm’s way?

    Hussein was a sick, egotistical, inhuman dictator, but his removal does not safeguard my rights or make my country a safer place. Until I see an Iraqui state which guarantees the rights of Iraquis, I won’t claim that the soldiers are defending Iraq either.

  • war protesters suck

    and if you wouldn’t steal from me to send your kid to school, what the hell makes it moral to steal from me to kill people?

    —> what a silly psuedo argument. no one drafted any of those in our armed forces. they knew the risks when they signed up. and no one stole anything from you. i don’t want my tax dollars to pay for the police to put in overtime because a bunch of hippie pro-saddamites want to march against america, but i have no say in how my taxes are directly spent and neither do you.

  • Tom

    For most of the anti-war crowd, this has been an issue of legality and international collective security agreements. If the UN had agreed that action was necessary to dismantle the Iraqi regime, then there would not have been the kind of anti-war outburst we’ve seen around the world.

    The anti-war cause is still alive and well and important because legality is still a critical issue in world affairs. To argue otherwise is to argue for empire, and any patriot of America should be vehemently against empire.

    Arguing for a rational foreign policy based on international law (which the US has had an important role in bringing about) does not make one pro-Saddam or anti-American, it makes one enlightened.

  • A. Spencer

    The most obscuring question in this Iraqi war was posed as, “Don’t the Iraqis need to be free of Saddam?” Of course the answer is not. Pose the question this way instead, “Should we free Iraq at the expense of world freedom, peace and sovereignty?” The answer becomes, “No, but we all need to be free. Let us free the Iraqis in a way that preserves all our freedoms.” This I pose, is what the timing and the manner failed to do. The Iraqis are not free, ask the Shiite majority, and the world has lost its tenuous peace.
    A.S.

  • steve

    lemme get this clear….we invaded iraq because of human rights violations? wow…now that is a good one!! the same people who helped saddam cover his butt when he committed those violations (mostly in the 80’s) are now those who have a new found respect for democracy…
    yeah…

  • ana

    Yes, perhaps, and please allow me to insist, PERHAPS, there was no other way for Irak to get rid of that tyrant. Yeah, of course the “right” wouldn`t have opposed a war in the Middle East, had Clinton started one, I`ve heard the Defense department tops the priorities when it comes to budget for the Republicans and “conservatives”. But the Bush administration should have been firm and clear on the fact that the main reason for going to war was to liberate that country, and everything else, WMD included, were secondary or even irrelevant if they were not found, since that monster was killing his own people and gassing his neighbours -things which he, just by the way, started doing some 15 years ago or more, AND THE WORLD KNEW. Both the Republican administration (1981-1993), and the Democratic one (1993-2001) have a responsibility for the atrocities committed in Irak in that interval, but specially the Republican. Weren`t they supplying arms to Irak in the mid 80`s (Yes, most of them will say “they didn`t know about it, it was only Ollie”)? Why didn`t they finish Gulf War I (removing Saddam)? Who started the embargo? As for Clinton`s foreign policy, I still have to learn what intelligence information he got, that could have prevented 9-11. So far, I`ve only read about that VP Al Gore document which he wrote to make reformations on airlines, which they strongly opposed. But, did they have any data on the subject of terrorists probably planning to hijack American planes, like apparently the Bush administration did? Overall, they are both responsible, the Rep. and the Dem. parties. And the world. The pro-wars. The anti-wars. Even the neutrals! We all have a responsibility to our brothers and sisters in the world who are suffering, not just from famine or natural disasters, but also from tyrants and injustice practices. But we should act when we know of the facts, not 20 years later, and only when we think WE might be getting affected. Why? What, aren`t we all humans? And aren`t the Americans and the British primarily (and supposedly) “Christian”, compassionate countries? I agree, in my own way, with the “pre-emptive” war ideology. But for the right reasons (I mean “correct” by that, not opposed to “left” reasons, uh?). How come the Bush administration was so sure there were WMD? It`s true, they`ve been there only for a couple of months, versus the years the other guys had been looking for them. But let`s not forget that now there`s no more Saddam, Baath party nor republican guard in their way. If they were so sure, wouldn`t it be logical to think they at least had a clue as to where the WMD were? In conclusion, this war started by Bush Jr., on the excuse that Saddam, through Al-qaida and Osama bin laden`s connections, had something to do with 9-11, and was threathening the USA (and maybe the world) with his WMD -not found yet, by the way, AND NOT FOR COMPASSION FOR THE IRAKIS. So, you pro-wars (and particularly you, Bush administration), don`t even try to fool the world into thinking that you did this out of compassion for the Iraki people. And the Dems and the anti-war also need to stop their hypocrisy (they would probably have supported Clinton overwhelmingly or any other democratic Prez… I only suspect the Dem Prez would have said from the very beginning, “this goes for the Iraki people`s liberation”…. Even if it wasn`t true!), and the world their indolence; PERHAPS a war was needed after all. But not in 2003. A long, long time ago.
    ANA

  • Assmund

    This guy has a pretty “warped view.” After all,

    Two wrongs (US-led invasion of a sovereign nation on baseless charges vs. Evil Saddam) don’t make a right.

    Seems to me that most of the world’s population was against the war. Are all of us wrong?

    Assmund

  • Lynn Miller

    As a mother of a US soldier, I couldn’t be any prouder of the way the boys handled this. It wasn’t about WMD , we will never know what has happened to those. It’s all about we are so tired of being the victim and now you had better think twice about threatening our people. It’s really sad that while the anti-war protestors were saying “Not in my name”, innocent people were being tortured and kille?Is it fair that we can sleep peacefully in our beds and on the other side of the world , you can be dragged out of your bed ? If the protestors wanted to do something great , replace the parents who were killed and comfort the mothers whose children will never come home. How can they explain Saddam with gold toilet and lots of porno while the little child goes to bed hungry?It’s not always our place to police but something needed to be done . Explain how all these people could be murdered and someone not care? As far as what we should or shouldn’t be told , we aren’t God. I support our country and my heart goes out to the grieving masses .

  • {AO}MiKeMyErZ

    Hi dear readers,

    With our hard earned money, they have taken a partion to build their army, like any and all governments. We have the greatest mobility strike force on the planet, yet where were we when the Congolese were fighting their civil war, and until this date 3.3 MILLION people have perished, and still more are perishing daily. We have got to screw our heads on straight, cuz our priorities are messed up.
    It’s a shame to think, all my hard earned money is not saving people, but killing people :(
    Very concerned person…..

  • Charles

    Number of people killed by 2003 U.S.-led military action in Iraq ranges from 5,428 to 7,044 (only includes civilians).

    http://www.iraqbodycount.net/bodycount.htm
    —————————–
    Senator Questions Iraqi Arms
    Associated Press
    Friday, May 30, 2003
    If Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction posed enough of a threat to justify war, they should have been found by now, the top Democrat on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence said yesterday. Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (W.Va.) challenged comments by Bush administration officials that the weapons are well-hidden and may not be located soon.
    “You can’t quite say that it’s going to take a lot more time if the intelligence community seemed to be in general agreement that WMD was out there,” Rockefeller said in an interview.
    He said that if the weapons are so well-concealed, the United States should have considered giving U.N. inspectors more time to find them.
    The Bush administration’s main argument for the war was that Iraq possessed chemical and biological weapons and was possibly developing nuclear weapons. Those weapons threatened the region and, if given to terrorists, could be used against the United States, it said.
    Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said yesterday, as he has before, that U.S. teams are unlikely to find any weapons of mass destruction unless Iraqis involved in the programs tell the officials where to look. “We do believe they are there,” he said in an interview on the Infinity Broadcasting radio network.
    —————————–
    Good Will
    by Ronald S. Kraybill
    So what is the alternative to recurring war? Up till now we have practiced “demand side security” that focused only on our needs as consumers of security. “What will make us safe?” was the question and “build a wall of armaments” was the answer. The well-being of others, least of all the well-being of our detractors, was of little concern. In the future we will have to practice “supply side security” and ask questions we ignored when we looked only at the world as consumers of security. What are the sources of enmity against us, and how could those sources be reduced? How can we increase the supply of goodwill, which is ultimately the most stable and plentiful source of security? We will have to take SERIOUSLY the goal of hearing and understanding needs, building economies, schools, hospitals; earning a reputation for deep, impassioned commitment to the well-being of all and genuine (not feigned) accountability to the world community.
    There is an old saying: If the only tool you have is a hammer, everything you see is a nail. It is time for America to demonstrate to the world that we have more tools in our security toolbox than big hammers. Our task is to leave no doubt that we care as much about the survival of others as our own. And we don’t even need to be generous to do this. The truth is our own survival is at stake.
    —————————–

  • Tyler H

    The United States: “You can’t have weapons of mass destruction, only we can.”

  • jen

    You know, I really am proud I protested the war. For one, debate is the soul of democracy and so should always be needed and looked to for times such as these. Secondly, I feel that by protesting I was raising the bar for what it is to be american. Aren’t you tired of the worlds stereotype of us which is unfortunately true? The ugly american: we’re arrogant, we have the attention span of knat, and we worship at the temple of capitalism. We think that just because we believe something we have the unadulterated right to foster it on other countries other cultures. Because we have the money and the huge military, it is easily achieved and then once its over we go back to our humdrum lives and wait for the TV movie to come out. How dare we steal from the Iraqis the right to defend and riot and take over their own country. Just think how different america would be if instead of the American Revolution the French or the Chinese or some other big power in the 1700’s beat us to the punch and “liberated” us. That would have sucked. Yes, with this war we have taken away Saddam an evil evil creature. But we have also taken away the Iraqis dignity by not letting them achieve freedom themselves. What is really gauling is we are the reason the Iraqis were burdened with Saddam in the first place. We put him in power. We gave him weapons (did you know the chemicals and the helicopters used to kill the Kurds were originally given to Saddam from American businesses for a profit and also to fight the Iranians. Oops we really messed up there). We had the opportunity to kill him Gulf I and we let him live. And then we have the gall to arogantly accuse the “world” of allowing Saddam to rule and we are suppossedly the saviours of Iraq. If anything we should have the common decency to let the World pass judgement on him and then figure out what to do. Maybe the only way was military. But not this way. Not this way.
    I ask you hawks out there. Lets say you found out that Saddam was on this bus full of 100s of school children, would you blow it up. Is the risk of waiting for Saddam getting off the bus and get away worth these childrens lives. Because 1000s upon 1000s of Iraqis did lose their lives just because they were caught in the cross fire. Or what if you were driving that bus and you had the opportunity to drive off a cliff- killing Saddam but also killing yourself? Would you do it? I will never be able to justify war. Violence begets violence.
    Peace out.

  • QuinnC

    Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines

    ……And they went to the front lines and kicked some ass.

  • QuinnC

    Those calling for the “liberation” of the Iraqi people should have been the first ones on the front lines

    ……And they went to the front lines and kicked some ass.

  • Ken Ortman

    Funny how those who want U.S, soldiers sent off to get shot at for no good reason are “supporting the troops”.

    Also funny how when a Republican is in office, the Republicans say that you have to support the President or you’re being “anti-American”. When a Democrat is in office, all they can do is whine, bitch, and moan about him.

    The Republican party is for the rich that fools the poor dumb yahoos by hiding behind the flag. All their talk about freedom isn’t about you & me…it’s the freedom of the corporations and banks.

  • panther

    (Also funny how when a republican is in office, the republicans say that you have to support the president or you’re being anti-american. When a democrat is in office, all they can do is whine, b*tch, and moan about him)

    With due respects Ken however, it’s also funny when:
    1867 – 7 republicans risked their political lives to exonerate pres. johnson( democrat)
    1998-99′ – the majority of senator’s (rep. & dem. alike) voted not to impeach pres. clinton while the minority (rep. & dem.) voted to impeach!
    The fact is, you can’t put one particular party( republican) in a sealed off room and expect them to agree on everything (there is also such a thing as a liberal republican and a conservative democrat and vice versa); or else america has ceased to be a republic! You know as well as i do that what makes this country great is that; while i may not agree with everything you say or what others might think; if given a chance i would lay down my life to protect yours and others right to say it! Now isn’t that funny.
    sincerely – the republican panther!

  • ana

    According to all polls, MOST Americans were in favor of a war in Irak, and MOST people in the rest of the world were against it. Majority equals right? Following this logic, if you were for the war living in the USA, you were right. But if you lived abroad, then you were wrong. And viceversa.
    “Two wrongs (US-led invasion of a sovereign nation on baseless charges vs. Evil Saddam) don’t make a right.”????
    Depends on what you call “baseless”… WMD? So far, WE were right (the ones who didn`t believe that charge and were against the war FOR THAT REASON)…
    You mean only a “US” led invasion is wrong, or EVERY invasion -from any country- is wrong? And what happens when there`s no other choice but to go to war (Japan bombing Pearl Harbor, Hitler threathening almost everybody, Saddam gassing and killing his own and others, etc.)? What happens to the “sovereignity” of a country when you have a HITLER or a Saddam ruling it? I`d like to read everyone`s thoughts on this… And also, am I correct when I say everybody knew this tyrant had to go? I`m anti-war, but Saddam was in power for two decades. So far I haven`t read of any convincing plan to end his rule, without at least a bit of bloodshed. Forgive my ignorance, what are the choices for THE WORLD who is watching a monster commit atrocities against his own people (and let`s not forget Saddam apparently was actively supporting terrorists against the WORLD, but even if he wasn`t…), just watch and wait if they get tired of it sooner or later, and do SOMETHING about it? Just asking, maybe, if everybody, or MOST people think we better have sovereignity even when that means what Irak had to live through, then ok, I`ll go on with my life and stop worrying about my neighbours`s suffering… and the rest of the world`s. I know the USA can NOT fight every war for every country. They would be warring 100% of the time! But my point was that, as the pro-war and the Bush administration are saying now, if this war was to liberate Irak, they should have done so a long time ago (and for many other countries as well!). I think MOST of us in the world know that`s not precisely accurate, who’s gonna buy that? Well, for a start, maybe the same who have supported Bush all along, particularly with the WMD charges. Some are already starting to say “we may never know what `happened` to those WMD”, but I feel like they should be saying “we will never know if there were in fact those WMD (at the time of the charges that they still had them)”. Amazing. I say they should now start pondering why those horrific events on 9-11 took place in New York and Washington, D.C., and not in, say, Paris, London, Madrid, Amsterdam, or any other part in Scandinavia, places in which (I don`t really mean to hurt you Europeans, uh? But this is what I`ve read and heard, first hand) sexual inmorality, drugs, etc., are worse than in all of the Americas. So where did the Americans got their “nickname”, The big Satan, in the Middle East? How come they beat all of Europe on the contest to get it? For what reason? Any clue? I wouldn`t say Hollywood (have you watched European movies?). I`ll be waiting while you`re reflexing…
    A BIT CONFUSED
    Ana

  • Jen is a marvel… she thinks that making folks feel good about themselves and their dignity trumps stopping a mass murderous regime from slaughtering people.

    See someone being raped? Don’t help them because “How dare we steal from the [person being raped] the right to defend and riot and take over their own [body]“.

    The people in Iraq tried to rise up against Saddam in 1991 and were slaughtered because the US did not help them after having called on them to do it in the first place.

    As for her ‘facts’… she knows nothing about Iraqi history or she would not make preposterous claims that ‘we’ were behind the 1968 Ba’athist coup (anyone care to bet she did not know there was a Ba’athist coup in 1968 or who the Ba’athists actually are?). And if ‘we’ supplied him with most of the weapons which kept him in power, why were the vast majority of those weapons of Russian, Chinese and French manufacture? Your ‘facts’ are either just a tissue of lies or the product of complete ignorance.

  • TCLAN

    Reverse the roles and imagine a man of Saddam’s caliber possessing the werewithal of a United States. You hand wringing naysayers would all be disolving inside vats of acid in a political climate like that.

    Sorry folks, it’s out with the old, and in with the new. 9/11 signaled a fundamental change in how we do that particular sort of business. Get used to it. It’s not going to go away.

    I love my country being the world’s policeman. I can’t think of any other country I’d want to have in charge.

  • Nathan Speed

    First I’d like to say that many of the posts from both sides of the issue on this board were quite well-written and eye-opening. Normally, I engage in far more argument than discussion, but this environment is a breath of fresh air and a break from the hurried sparring one finds in an AOL chat room.
    I was particularly struck by Lazarus Long’s post. He said that the human rights and WMD angles of the pro-war argument were facades, with which I agree, and that the real reason for the war was it would create a broad strategic front against terrorism, by positioning us in the region and by sending a strong message to Arab leaders. It’s clear already these leaders have truly felt the “ripple effect” of the war, realizing that we mean business, as can be seen in Bush’s recent peace summit in Jordan, and the cooperation he is receiving from them.
    Although he didn’t spell out the reasons why he thought it was naive to believe that we invaded Iraq because of the human rights issues or Iraq’s alleged WMD, I’ll go ahead and lay out some of them for him.
    It’s beginning to seem clear that the WMD charge was, at the very best, based upon faulty intelligence. There is also suspicion about the motives of the Bush administration in pushing that intelligence on the American people. In any case, the WMD haven’t been found (at this point…but, I think the possibilities are looking grim). And while it is true that Iraq, certainly, possessed WMD at least up until 1998, a pre-emptive invasion of Iraq (five years later) was neither ethical nor internationally legal unless there was proof, in the affirming sense, that there was a clear and imminent threat against the United States, or another invading country, from them. That is the standing UN law; however, that proof could not have been there (and didn’t seem to me to be there before the war, anyway) considering that there are no WMD. Further, any argument basing the invasion on UN resolutions is invalid, because the UN did not authorize this invasion.
    As far as the human rights issue, it’s true that the war protestors never protested while Saddam was carrying out his horrendous acts against his people. However, neither did the pro-war people. NO ONE did, really. No one, on a large scale, paid attention or really cared enough to say anything. Similarly, no one cares now that there is a massive civil war going on in the Congo. I realize I’m generalizing quite a bit, here, that some people really do care and want the UN to do something about it. But, those people look to the UN- they don’t take action unilaterally, particularly when the majority of the rest of the world disagrees, for some reason, with them. AND- those people don’t make somewhat racist jokes about the people they’re supposedly helping on late-night television or early-morning radio talk shows. The human rights argument is simply a post-war, transparent, pseudo-sentimental justification. The sentimentality certainly hasn’t saturated our culture.
    This can also be seen in that it doesn’t seem that the US is going to give the Iraqis their freedom at all. Just today thousands of Shiite Muslims, who represent 60% of the population of Iraq, took to the streets of Baghdad protesting the installation of a secular interim government. Democratically, these people want an Islamic fundamentalist government, but the US is not going to allow them to have it.
    As a corollary to this point about human rights, I’d also like to mention the word “integrity.” Many say that the thousands of Iraqis killed during the war do not compare to the hundreds of thousands Saddam killed over the years- that although we had to break some eggs, we made an omelette. This is a utilitarian-type argument commonly seen in the study of ethics. The problem with the argument, and utilitarianism, is the word mentioned earlier- integrity. Although the ultimate results in terms of the number of deaths may…MAY… be much better if we did, we should not compromise our ethical principles (those against killing civilians) simply because the consequences could end up, perhaps even just slightly, better. Now we have innocent blood on our hands. And although we’d like to be able to say that Saddam “forced” us into doing what we did, that is just not true. We made a choice. A deeper understanding of why we need to maintain our integrity will be seen later when I discuss this issue in relation to terrorism.
    To Be Continued…

  • Robin Fletcher

    So my not supporting the war means I support Saddam? What a load of ****! How dare you! I don’t support the war of Bush the warrior because of so many reasons I cannot get into them all. Chiefly: A) it is for American corporations to benefit, such as what we have seen with VP Dick Cheney’s former company Halliburton, which has already lied about its profits, which are enormous for one corporation, thus far half a billion, which… you get the idea; B) We are Bully, hear us roar…the U.S. has lost all credibility with the world, alienated its allies, frightened every small country in the shadow of this herculean giant, and the U.N has been weakened by our warmonger of a president and HIS war. C) we went into Iraq to not capture Daddy George’s old enemy but to get the weapons of mass destruction, none of which have been found; and D) the likelihood that a pro-American leader will follow Saddam is almosgt nonexistent, given that the Middle East fears and hates our nation, and rightly so. Thus, the Iraqi people will fall under the next dictator, who may very well turn out to be worse that the last. And who allowed all this and caused all this and will ultimately be punished for all this? Bush I, Bush II and every one of us Americans for generations, if not centuries to come.

  • Peter

    “Who sold all those weapons to Saddam and Iran?”
    The americans that you love so much.

    “and why?”
    Well duh, I thought it’s obvious. Because they’re a bunch of dirty little capitalist pigs who want to make as much money as possible, regardless of how many people they kill.

    “what make were those weapons?”
    American

    “The brave and mighty US military succeeded in giving a good slap to the arab ego”
    You mean massacring thousands upon thousands of innocent civilians is a slap to our so-called “ego”? Way to go, bitch. And by the way, I am christian too.

    “making them realize what they knew all along: that they were cowards. Cowards not being able to oust their tyrant.”
    Why don’t you get off your ass and oust your own tyrants instead of your hollow trash talk? Good luck!

    “and not grateful at all”
    Grateful for what? For being killed and massacred by america’s bombs of freedom and missiles of democracy? Or for being subjected to 12 years of humiliating sanctions that ruined their country and massacred over a million of them? Or for being oppressed by the US-supported Saddam Hussein?

    “Freedom, for a long oppressed nation can have little meaning,”
    Yeah, especially if you don’t have clean running water, electricity, gasoline for the car, food to feed your starving children, security forces to protect you when you leave your home, or any kind of government to run your country.

    “I have deep hope for democracy to be born in my country”
    As long as america remains in charge, don’t count on it ever happening.

    “As a son of a state department official. I got to live in both Cairo and Panama”
    As an egyptian, I say it’s a shame that someone of your ilk got to live in our country and drink from our nile. You’re not welcome and do us a favour and never come back again.

    “Those were places, where dissent was squashed”
    Thanks to US-supported dictators.

    “The war on terrorism, is a war against a group who doesn’t like our power in the world. Period.”
    True. It’s a war against anyone who refuses to be a slave and puppet to the new global order of Pax Americana and their imperialist corporate interests.

    “These arabs are all tied together because they are the big losers in the 21st century”
    Don’t count on it. Soon you and your country will go down the toilet. We’ll make sure of that.

    “The American empire is contrary to fundamental Islam. ”
    iIt is also contrary to freedom, democracy, human rights, international law, etc……

    “So the arabs need to clean their own messes up or we will clean them up for them. ”
    We’re more than happy to clean the planet of you and your ilk.

    “During the months and months of delay, he destroyed much of them, ”
    Right. Saddam: Ok boys, now you hurry up and destroy all those powerful WMDs, the only weapons that can save our asses from america, so that when the war is over and we are overthrown and I am killed or captured, prosecuted for war crimes, and left to rot in a solitary cell, Donald Rumsfeld would have tough questions to answer about our WMD.
    Now that made a lot of sense Kay (note sarcasm)

    “Do you think Lieberman as VP would change the war or Kerry as president?”
    Yes.

    “Because these people do want to kill us at all cost.”
    Hmmm…. I wonder why. Surely it has nothing to do with american terrorism against middle eastern peoples, their support for the racist and oppressive israeli entity, and their cozzying up to autocrats and military thugs. Surely.

    “We need to stay on the offensive”
    Translation: We need to keep bombing the crap out of weak 3rd world countries because we are cowardly losers who cannot pick on somebody our own size.

    “give Israel the green light to drive them into the sea.”
    Considering the rest of the filth you spew, I wouldn’t be surprised if you support this Nazi-style ethnic cleansing, you piece of dung.

    “The US is the greatest country the world has ever known”
    LMAO! Have you been smoking something lately?

    “You seem to belive that if the US didn’t lead, then we would all live in a type of utopian existence”
    No one knows what it would be like if the US didn’t lead, but it very likely will be better.

    “OBL is trying to resurect an islamic state over the middle east. That is his vision for world dominance. ”
    I don’t recall OBL ever aspiring to world dominance. If you heard him say so, please tell me.

    “Our vision may not be perfect, but, it is better then his”
    Victims of OBL “terrorism”: <4000
    Victims of US terrorism: millions
    Hmmm…. still insist your “vision” is better?

    “Many bitch about our support for dictators, well, if we didn’t have our thug buddies in the middle east. The world’s economy could be held hostage right now by islamic fundamentalists.”
    That’s what racist and ignorant fools like you always erroneously assume, that the arabs, if not oppressed by US puppets, will always automatically resort to taliban-type theocracies.

    “Does anyone doubt that without the Saudi Royal family’s repressive regime, that Saudi Arabia would be Afghanistan on steriods for Al-queda and their people”
    Yes, I do. In fact, if it wasn’t for al-Saud’s official sponsorship of wahhabism in schools and mosques and state media, islamofascism could have possibly been eliminated from saudi society.

    “The Saudi royal family are gangsters and pay protection money and do all kinds of bad things, but, they are better then the alternative.”
    You can’t be so sure when you don’t even know what the alternative is. And don’t say a taliban theocracy, because you can’t possibly know that for sure.

    “Why do you think we gave Israel so many nukes.”
    Let me guess………….to enslave and subdue the arab world in favour of america’s imperialist ambitions?

    “We were spending a billion dollars a year to starve people for the past 12 years”
    At least you had the decency to admit it. I would have thought you would have blamed Saddam for “abusing” the sanctions.

    “Matt, if you don’t like America. you can leave”
    If you don’t like the middle east, YOU can leave (hopefully)

    “A huge part of the war on Terror is shutting down areas, in which they gain sympathy and support”
    You can start by “shutting down” america, the biggest state sponsor of terrorism on the planet.

    “To pretend it’s about oil, ruins your otherwise, substantial case against the war. ”
    Wolfowitz himself admitted it was about oil, not WMD, so don’t be stupid and deny it.

    “We did nothing after hezbollah killed 243 marines
    We did nothing after the Khobar towers
    We did nothing after the USS Cole
    The first WTC bombing we tried them in open court, so they could understand how our FBI operates, etc.
    We did nothing after the Iran hostage crisis
    We did nothing after Saddam tried to Kill George Bush 41
    We did nothing after the embassy bombings in Africa
    So doing nothing, has just led to larger attacks.”
    Actually you did something. You increased your support for israeli colonialism and for undemocratic arab puppet regimes, not to mention your tightening of sanctions on iraq to starve its people, and bombing a pharmaceutical plant in sudan (a war crime by all standards).

    “Come down to dearborn and listen to Iraqi exiles.”
    Oh yes, our dear exiles, America’s sweetheart, the thief and embezzler ahmad chalabi and his goons. Dear Kay, please note that exiles like your buddy chalabi have their own political aspirations and it is in their own personal interests to overthrow saddam so they can replace him on baghdad’s throne. They’re not exactly a very trustworthy source. That being said, everyone knows saddam’s murderous history is very old and goes back far longer than 1991, in fact it goes backt to the days when he was your “friend” and “ally” in the war on iran, remember those days? When saddam used to have tea and biscuits with donald rumsfeld and discuss the re-opening of the american embassy in baghdad at the same time the iraqi people that you are so eager to “liberate” were being beaten and killed in saddam’s torture chambers.

    “And Ken, I think we should pat ourselves on the back for occupying a country at a small price in blood,”
    If 5.5-7 thousand civilians and many many many more soldiers is a “small price” for you, then you must agree that 3000 lives in NY are essentially worthless.

    “I don’t care what the lefty scum thinks. Bush rocks!!!”
    I don’t get it. Are you saying bush and rocks? Or bush on rocks? I don’t think bush grows on rocks or near them. According to what I know, bush needs soft fertile topsoil to grow.

  • panther

    Dear peter,
    Being the christian that you are, i will not question what you believe. That goes for any other religon too! However……….

    The hate you are writing is abuntantly clear and duly noted! However, i must ask you, what you think would have happened had their not have been a sept. 11th in america? Speaking for myself, i think bush would have been unelectable in 2004! Saddam would still be in power, more innocent iraqi people would have died, the isreali’s govt. would not have started pulling their settler’s out of gaza, american troops would not be in iraq and people would have less to complain about america! There is enough blame too spread around for all parties concerned and my friend if you believe everything you read or have been told by your govt. or by the left or right for that matter , then all i can say is i’m sorry that you are missing the entire picture by your blind hatred of us american ilk!
    Hope to hear from you soon – panther!

  • Chad Comer

    Liberation is no justification for War with Iraq. If it is, the United States needs to send soldiers to Congo, Sudan, Zimbabwe, China…

  • Quincy

    The frenzied screams of the left and others against American liberation of Iraq were the screams of people who hate American power and values far more than they hate tyrannies.

    To those who say war is never the answer..NEVER…what would you have done in the instance of Nazi Germany. Sanctions?(but you are harming the children) A harsh talking to? Demonstrations? That would have brought them to their knees, yea right.

  • Quincy

    The frenzied screams of the left and others against American liberation of Iraq were the screams of people who hate American power and values far more than they hate tyrannies.

    To those who say war is never the answer..NEVER…what would you have done in the instance of Nazi Germany. Sanctions?(but you are harming the children) A harsh talking to? Demonstrations? That would have brought them to their knees, yea right.

  • Peter

    “what you think would have happened had their not have been a sept. 11th in america? ”
    Huh? I hope you’re not implying that if a pair of buildings did not collapse and a handful of americans did not blow up, the US would have been any more peaceful or humanitarian than it is right now.

    “Speaking for myself, i think bush would have been unelectable in 2004! ”
    Uh, is that a bad thing?

    “Saddam would still be in power,”
    As opposed to a US puppet.

    “more innocent iraqi people would have died,”
    and they still are being killed everyday by their “liberators”

    ” the isreali’s govt. would not have started pulling their settler’s out of gaza,”
    they still haven’t

    “american troops would not be in iraq”
    good

    “and people would have less to complain about america!”
    Not really. There are way too many reasons why people hate America, most of them quite logic and justified.

    “There is enough blame too spread around for all parties concerned”
    Hopefully americans would grow a set of balls and learn to take responsibility for their actions.

    ” and my friend if you believe everything you read or have been told by your govt. ”
    That’s american, and I am glad I’m as unamerican as I can ever get.

    “The frenzied screams of the left and others against American liberation of Iraq were the screams of people”
    who hate shedding blood for oil, hegemony, and supporting racist apartheid settler states.

    “American power ”
    Of course we hate the power that is the source of all this mess.

    “and values ”
    Actually, “lack of values” would be a far more accurate term to use.

    “far more than they hate tyrannies”
    Which tyrannies are you talking about? The ones supported by america, or the ones that used to be supported by america until they became more useful dead than alive?

    “To those who say war is never the answer”
    Well I’m not such a person. I do believe at certain times, war maybe necessary. For example, I wouldn’t be too upset if someone volunteered to bomb the crap out of america and rid us all of the mother of all terrorists.

  • panther

    Dear Peter,
    My friend, you seem too have put all americans in a box. And while i admire cultures(even yours) around the world, and i am sure you do too(except american), putting us all in a box is too much of an easy way out to explain a culture you obviously don’t understand! While it’s your perogative too choose to hate me, i on the other hand don’t hate every single egyptian who follows islam or any other religon they choose to believe in. (it’s only extremism in religion and politics that i detest any where on earth)!
    The other reason i don’t hate you is because i don’t really know you & what little of your posts i have read so far i find quite distasteful!! What happened to you in your personal life to want someone else to bomb the crap out of america(the mother of all terrorist; [note]: cheap soviet propaganda from the past at it’s worst!) besides regional issues which are obviously dear to your heart is beyond me? Might i add that choosing america as a scapegoat to the world’s problems is only an excuse to avoid the real issue! The fact is middle eastern people are not stupid, but afraid of change(not saying anything bad about their bravery in battle though), the uncertainty of what will follow that keeps them stuck in their current situation is of their own doing!
    My friend in my heart i truly believe what we are witnessing today is a by product of the cold war, or as the soviets use to call it (not so) peaceful co-existence. to say both sides(usa & soviets) practiced propaganda is an understatement! Whereas the soviets were much more successfull in the *middle east* propaganda war against the u.s., the u.s. on the other hand could not & still does not grasp middle eastern way of thinking! Regionally the soviets were in the best position to exploit the situation in their favor. Don’t believe me, for a sampler: if you can look up in an old military handbook and see for yourself what weapons were used in the arab – isreali war(western calander of 1967). And 5-6 years later as the isreali’s call it the yom kippur war of october 1973 You’ll get a grasp of who was really bankrolling the purse strings of your government! Yes, even my own govt. was doing the same for the isreali’s (their only ally in the middle east at that time, so it stands to reason)along with other western governments! The difference in this is where we gave them only as much (as they could afford) as we would to any ally governments(and the isreali’s put it to use to protect themselves because they had to), the soviet govt. gave & sold at a discount their weapons, but with political strings attached. And yes, the soviets saw the u.s. as a terrorist state (because we sold weapons to states in their area of interests; part of cold war tactics of how many friends can you buy, which goes to show you love certainly wasn’t one of them) providing they did not start wars or the trade will certainly stop and embargoes and sanctions would start! Where as the soviets( might i add not all soviet party members were as callous to human life as the upper echelon) would actually fund and equip actual terrorist groups to not only kill americans(as you so sorely wish) but also their own people as well! What made the situation ironic during the soviet invasion of afghanistan was the very terrorist they funded rose up against them! And the fact that terrorist don’t care who they kill, then look at the recent bombing in algeria( majority in the country are muslims) with many muslim deaths followed by earthquakes which did not help the situation any , saudi arabia where apparently western civilians [note: not just american civilians either]were targeted, just to note the most recent. And if i understand what other muslims have said, the koran does not condone the killing of innocent people and the bible does not condone it as well! What makes this entire episode in the chapter of humanity a pity is that the 9-11 bombings at the trade center (in my mind) was the culminate aftershock’s of the cold war, where not just americans civilian’s died, but also at last count i heard of around 500 foreign( not americans) civilian’s as well. Now my friend i do not condone war or wish it upon anybody, no sane person could really wish for war , but part of our fault lays in not taking terrorism so seriously (and those who sponsor and fund terrorism) like iraq, korea etc…. And contrary to what you may believe my friend we are not going to invade every country in the middle east, but we are going where ever the terrorist are( and it does not always mean invasion either)! And to quote yourself a christian and wish all americans to be bombed to hell, is only showing others on this board that you are not only hateful but a hypocrite as well who supports terrorism! And if you still don’t understand or care to and choose to twist my words to suit your own personal bigotry, then if i may change your quote so succinctly, americans have always had a set of big balls, it’s just that those who have not noticed were too busy sucking other people balls to really care! Sorry if that is crude, but truth is always stranger than fiction! – panther

  • Peter

    “My friend, you seem too have put all americans in a box”

    For your sake I sure hope you’re not trying to say that there is a diversity in american public opinion or that american public opinion is a mosaic of different and opposing views. Sure, that may be true for domestic issues like abortion, gun control, tax cuts, religion, etc…, but when it comes to world politics, americans with very very few exceptions are all the same: extremely illiterate, and extremely fascist, not to mention arrogant, snobbish, and self righteous.

    “and i am sure you do too(except american”
    Culture? What culture? Don’t be stupid. Unless you consider some hamburgers, coca cola, gas guzzling SUVs, and a few ridiculous “action” movies to be a “culture”. And by the way, I know all about your “culture”. I’ve been there a few times, not to mention I am currently living in your puppet, Canada. So I know how hollow, materialistic, and devoid of any values, your “culture” is.

    “(it’s only extremism in religion and politics that i detest any where on earth)”
    Does that mean you hate the Bush government, or are you willing to make an exception here and there?

    “what little of your posts i have read so far i find quite distasteful”
    Oh, really? Cry over it. You and your friends who keep whining “why, why o why do they hate us?”, I have one question: What else do you expect?

    “What happened to you in your personal life to want someone else to bomb the crap out of america besides regional issues which are obviously dear to your heart is beyond me?”
    The answer is in your question you idiot. What you call “Regional issues”, which comprise your aggression and brutality against iraq and its people via war and sanctions, your oppression of democracy and your support for despotic autocrats just because they are pro West and don’t attack Israel, and finally your stalwart unconditional and unwavering support for our traditional and long time nemeses, the zionists, and their entity established on the land of Palestine, while ignoring the pleas of the palestinians oppressed by the jews and yearning for their freedom. If that is not enough justification in your eyes for our hatred ofyou, what is? And can you give me just ONE reason for us to like you?

    “(the mother of all terrorist; [note]: cheap soviet propaganda from the past at it’s worst!) ”
    Really? I never knew the soviets invented that term. I say they had a good point.

    “Might i add that choosing america as a scapegoat to the world’s problems is only an excuse to avoid the real issue! ”
    No one is blaming america for the world’s problems. We only blame them for america-caused problems.

    “The fact is middle eastern people are not stupid, but afraid of change”
    “Change?” Into what? We’re afraid of “change” because “change” as desired by america would have all 22 arab states become militarily weak and incompetent pro-West capitalist corporate states obedient to israel’s demands and eternally dependent on america’s technology, expertise, and “culture” for existence. The arab world would have no culture or values of their own but end up being too americanized and end up another de facto state of the United States, just like Canada is.

    “the uncertainty of what will follow that keeps them stuck in their current situation is of their own doing!”
    Of our own doing? That’s some rather big talk there punk and you must be prepared to defend it. Was it arabs that brought a bunch of fuckin jews from europe and planted them into Palestine to establish their state and gave them shitloads of money and weapons with the “Holocaust” as an excuse but in reality in order to subdue and crush the arabs? Was it arabs that helped overthrow the nationalist Qassem in iraq and replace him with Baathist tyranny? Was it arabs that propped up obedient dictators all over the middle east? Was it arabs that encouraged saddam to wage war against iran? Was it arabs that told saddam to invade kuwait only to use it as an excuse to bomb the shit out of iraq and impose a decade of starvation sanctions and cripple the country? Was it arabs that let the CIA encourage and support the mujahedeen fighters of afghanistan that later became al qaeda and others who created and expanded the islamic extremist current?

    “Whereas the soviets were much more successfull in the *middle east* propaganda war against the u.s., ”
    Of course they were. Do I really need to explain why?

    “what we are witnessing today is a by product of the cold war”
    The cold war has nothing to do with it. America’s greed, arrogance, and moral bankruptcy is the root cause of the crisis. The US is the only superpower and their power and influence in the middle east is unrivalled. America can easily establish peace and prosperty in the middle east if they wanted to, but domestic politics, greed, capitalism, racism and arrogance prevent that from happening. What has the US done for middle east peace and prosperty since the Soviet collapse in 1991?

    “the u.s. on the other hand could not & still does not grasp middle eastern way of thinking”
    Good to see we agree on something.

    “see for yourself what weapons were used in the arab – isreali war(western calander of 1967). And 5-6 years later as the isreali’s call it the yom kippur war of october 1973″
    I know damn well what kind of weapons were used. Our ONLY weapons supplier was the soviet union and yes, they gave us the weapons for the two wars. The zionist army used western weapons given to them by france, britain, america, and perhaps west germany (not sure about that though).

    “You’ll get a grasp of who was really bankrolling the purse strings of your government! ”
    The soviets of course. The only people on earth who took our side and wholeheartedly supported us at a time when ALL the western powers were lined up against us and vehemently in support of our zionist enemies in their continued aggression against us.

    “(their only ally in the middle east at that time, so it stands to reason)”
    I think it’s safe to say the reason you had no allies in the arab world at the time, and will likely never have is your support of israel.

    “The difference in this is where we gave them only as much (as they could afford) as we would to any ally governments”
    That’s a pile of crap. Governments of egypt, saudi arabia, jordan, turkey, kuwait, colombia, the philippines, singapore, uzbekhistan, mauritania, mexico, and others are “allies” of the US, but you don’t give them anywhere remotely close to what you give israel. And the “as they could afford” part is just ignorance. They couldn’t afford anything. They were all just a bunch of miserable refugees from WWII who had nothing on them. They were literally GIVEN everything for free. The country, the army, the weapons, the technology, the experts. Everything was a gift from the west to those oh so poor holocaust “refugees”.

    “and the isreali’s put it to use to protect themselves because they had to”
    Of course they had to. You don’t just steal someone else’s land and expect them to simply turn their backs and walk away towards nowheresville.

    “the soviet govt. gave & sold at a discount their weapons, but with political strings attached”
    You’re saying I shoud hate the soviets because they gave us lots of weapons for a cheap price? Ok, that makes sense. Now I just have to fall in love with america, because you guys give us few weapons for a very high price. Oh, wait a minute, the evil soviets attacked evil and hideous “strings” to their weapons.

    “And yes, the soviets saw the u.s. as a terrorist state ”
    Soviets were smart. They were the first to observe what took everyone else decades to discover.

    “Where as the soviets( might i add not all soviet party members were as callous to human life as the upper echelon) would actually fund and equip actual terrorist groups to not only kill americans(as you so sorely wish) but also their own people as well! ”
    I will have to assue you actually have some form of PROOF that the soviets supported terrorism. I will also assume you can list the names of those terrorist groups. And lastly, I will assume you can actually prove to me beyond doubt that the US never had any history of sponsoring terrorism, and that their support of israel, the afghani mujahedeen, the contras, etc…… is just a myth fabricated by our evil anti american arab governments and leftist commies.

    “What made the situation ironic during the soviet invasion of afghanistan was the very terrorist they funded rose up against them!”
    And all this time I thought it was the CIA that funded the mujahedeen. Oh how ignorant I was.

    “And the fact that terrorist don’t care who they kill, then look at the recent bombing in algeria”
    What bombings?

    “saudi arabia where apparently western civilians [note: not just american civilians either]were targeted”
    Non american westerners are just as bad as americans and are just as deserving of being targeted. Wasn’t it the british and the french that created and supported israel before america did? Didn’t the australians and italians and spanish come out strongly in favour of the war on iraq despite the pathetic arguement the US and britain offered as justification? All the West is complicit in starving and oppressing other countries. Westerners are no saints. You should know that.

    “the koran does not condone the killing of innocent people and the bible does not condone it ”
    Who said anything about killing innocent people?

    “500 foreign( not americans) civilian’s as well”
    That’s “collateral damage”. Heard of it? Or are the jews and the americans the only people allowed to “accidentally” kill “collateral damage”?

    “but part of our fault lays in not taking terrorism so seriously”
    After seeing what you did to iraq, I’d say the entire world now began to take US terrorism seriously. Countries that are less than friendly to america are now scrambling to get as much WMD as possible to save their hide from the US. Just ask Iran, Syria, and N. Korea.

    “and those who sponsor and fund terrorism”
    You mean the jews and the americans? Can’t speak for everyone else, but I take them seriously enough.

    “And contrary to what you may believe my friend we are not going to invade every country in the middle east”
    Of course not. You will only invade countries that are run by leaders not so sympathetic to US demands, have lots of oil, and are a military threat to the zionist state.

    “but we are going where ever the terrorist are”
    You don’t need to go very far. You’ll find a lot all over your neighbourhood.

    “a hypocrite as well who supports terrorism! ”
    I believe a mirror will help you find who the real hypocrite is. As far as supporting terrorism, go to hell.

    “americans have always had a set of big balls”
    Since when punk? You got your asses kicked in Mogadishu and 18 of your “heroes” were killed by a bunch of starving “skinnies” (I believe that’s what you call them in your movies) and you immediately surrendered and withdrew, despite that on the same day you managed to slaughter thousands of “skinnies”. 18 vs thousands. Hmmm………. That’s quite a good ratio. Much better than we ever scored, yet apparently the thought of little johnny coming home in a body bag was just too much. You went to vietnam and unleashed a holocaust, massacring millions of them, yet a few tens of thousands of your troops were killed and you came out running like a bunch of animals running from a fire. You tried to rescue the hostages in iran, but upon failure you completely gave up. And more recently, you got a couple of buildings knocked down, and a handful of americans incinerated, yet you made it into an international “tragedy” of tremendous magnitude and shoved down our throats your pathetic and incessant whining and moaning about the “evil” 9/11 attacks every single day since the attacks until now. Don’t speak about balls, because you don’t have any. If you did, why don’t you get your cowboy carcasses down into the ground and fight the “terrorists” one on one on the ground instead of blowing up the “bad guys” from inside your jet fighters from far away while staying high enough to ensure your enemy doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of shooting you down?

    “it’s just that those who have not noticed were too busy sucking other people balls to really care!”
    I don’t suck anyone’s balls shithead. Only america’s “friends” and “supporters”. You know, the likes of britain spain italy australia japan estonia poland latvia and their ilk.

  • panther

    Peter,
    Regarding your hatred for all things american, i hope you don’t feel that i am trying to change your perspective on where you stand(i’m not), I am merely suggesting at looking at both sides of the coin! I will try to accommodate you on your views, only if you are willing to accommadate on mine(or others on this post)! If my postings are causing me to cry a river, then brother you need to stop drowning in your own flood of tears! (Note this is not meant as an insult to: palestinians, isreali’s, or draught stricken africa or large diverse groups enduring hardships throughout the world, but to those who propagate there own personal hate with illdefined reasons!)
    Honestly, personal jabs and insults a side, i hope you can see that i am willing to listen, and perhaps agree with you on certain points. Otherwise, to keep replying to your hatefilled anti-american diatribes is pointless!
    BTW, i admit my “insinuation” of calling you a terrorist was remarkably crass, on the otherhand you been saying things on a far more crassier nature! – go to go – panther

  • Peter

    Panther, please don’t cry because I don’t “accomodate” your views, because I do, and they don’t impress me one bit. Your arguements would be worthy of respect if they actually made some sense and related to reality, not the hogwash propaganda that you are fed by your self righteous right wing media and politicians. And no, I’m not drowning in my tears. Crying would not change a thing. Nuking america (hopefully) will. Hopefully Kim Jong Il rids us all of your menace and your arrogant bullying. As for my “anti american” posts, of course you idiot. Where else would you expect criticism of your policies? Rush Limbaugh’s radio show? The zionist-controlled NY Post? Whitehouse spokesmen? Now why do I get the feeling you actually do expect these sources to be oh so fair and objective regarding US policy?

  • Sorry but Peter, you are way out of line and abusive. You are not welcome here anymore. Further remarks will be deleted if you persist in personal abuse directed at other commenters.

  • Yitzhak

    Peter here seems to be spewing hate. His comments should be offensive to everyone, weather you are for or against the war in Iraq.
    His statements are not worth a consideration as an “alternative” viewpoint.

    “why don’t you get your cowboy carcasses down into the ground and fight the “terrorists” one on one on the ground”
    Peter I strongly urge you to travel to Iraq and give it a try, but I suspect you will not leave the safety and tolerance of Canada/western nations to do so.
    It is interesting that you are in Canada by the way. I assume you are there for the education or employment opportunities your own country/culture cannot provide for you. Again Peter, please go to Iraq.

  • Robert

    It is nice to see that a forum such as this can contain opposing viewpoint. I’m an American who is vehemently against our involvement with the invasion of Irag. I served in the military during the the original Gulf War when a invaded nation called for our aid and we responded.

    This conflict is quite different. I agree that Sadaam was evil. He slaughtered many innocent people, and needed to be removed regardless. It facinates me how these people can win elections in the first place.

    The matter that confuses me most is: Where were the brothers and sisters of Islam during the suppression of Iraqis? Why whould two minority Christian countries(U.S./Britain) have to aid Iraq while a much larger Muslim majority sits doing nothing?

    The hatred of the U.S. by Islamic nations continues to confuse me. I am a Christian who has read the Glorious Koran and found it to be filled with magnificent wisdom. Since Muslim nations do not separate church and state like we do, why do their policies contradict the Holy Koran?

    When small terrorist organizations declare Jihad on the United States, they should direct their anger toward Islamic-based governments that hide behind religion but stand idle while fellow Mulsims fall prey to the bullets, hatchets, cleavers, swords, and machetes of suppressive overlords.

    The United States, who does not have a long list of friends, should have stayed out of this one. Our invasion did not heal the wounds of September 11th and did little to bring the mastermind closer to justice.

    Oddly, even after “liberating” the people of Iraq. The outcry against the U.S. is ever stronger. Point proven……..

  • Robert

    It is nice to see that a forum such as this can contain opposing viewpoint. I’m an American who is vehemently against our involvement with the invasion of Irag. I served in the military during the the original Gulf War when a invaded nation called for our aid and we responded.

    This conflict is quite different. I agree that Sadaam was evil. He slaughtered many innocent people, and needed to be removed regardless. It facinates me how these people can win elections in the first place.

    The matter that confuses me most is: Where were the brothers and sisters of Islam during the suppression of Iraqis? Why whould two minority Christian countries(U.S./Britain) have to aid Iraq while a much larger Muslim majority sits doing nothing?

    The hatred of the U.S. by Islamic nations continues to confuse me. I am a Christian who has read the Glorious Koran and found it to be filled with magnificent wisdom. Since Muslim nations do not separate church and state like we do, why do their policies contradict the Holy Koran?

    When small terrorist organizations declare Jihad on the United States, they should direct their anger toward Islamic-based governments that hide behind religion but stand idle while fellow Mulsims fall prey to the bullets, hatchets, cleavers, swords, and machetes of suppressive overlords.

    The United States, who does not have a long list of friends, should have stayed out of this one. Our invasion did not heal the wounds of September 11th and did little to bring the mastermind closer to justice.

    Oddly, even after “liberating” the people of Iraq. The outcry against the U.S. continues to grow.

  • mark

    robert who is the mastermind [ re 9/11 ]. you should do some research into the events leading up to that day and what has happend in the u.s.a and around the world since.”inportant” KNOWLEDGE is the best thing to have in this life. so try and look at the big picture; and not some patsy scapegout called ‘osma’

  • rogers

    So smart guy…..what about the 1000’s of war casualaties caused by this war? Still people died and are still dying so think before you speak. Don’t believe evrything this government does is right. Most of the time they tell us lies.

  • Carolyn

    This war is along these lines:
    ‘We’ll “liberate” you, free you from an oppressive dictator and mass murder as long as we can control you when we’re done. It’s terrible for Saddam to kill his own people, so let’s drive him out and kill them ourselves?’

    As far as I can see there have been no ‘WMDs’ or diseases found anywhere. And what now? Bush is blaming the -looters-? Is that a joke?

    ‘Hey, look, nuclear warheads! Let’s take ‘em! Deadly diseases! Let’s take ‘em! We can hide them from the UN weapons inspectors and the United States armed forces, no problem!’

    Riiiiiight. I’ll believe that when I see it. In a month it’ll be ‘The dog ate my WMDs.’ The best we could do was find some decades-old empty shells. Is Iraq a threat when we’re waging war on the world? Fantastic. Who’s next, Syria? North Korea? Iran?

    And most of the clods who bring up Sept. 11th (which is in no way connected. Oh yeah, Saddam had ‘weapons systems’ or ‘insanely obscure relations’ with Al-Qaeda.) don’t even realize that the CIA gave Osama bin Laden (whatever happened to him? He’s like Furby: one day he’s there and then he’s old news. We need someone else to blame everything on.) 3 billion dollars and professional training to kill Soviet soldiers. They then gave Iraq money to kill Iranians, but changed their minds and gave Iran money to kill Iraqis. Military intelligence is thus an oxymoron.

    You are all familiar with the success of Adolf Hitler’s plan to exterminate all races he deemed inferior … Well, here is a quote from one of his henchmen, Herman Goering. Chillingly relevant today.

    “Why of course the people don’t want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don’t want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.”

    Sound familiar? Strange, isn’t it? So watch who you’re calling a Nazi.

    As far as liberation goes, I always say “Dead Iraqi would have loved freedom!”

    —–> Carolyn

  • panther

    Dear Carolyn,

    The world is an oxymoronic place to live in! There are disaster’s happening all across this globe, it has been that way since the dawn of man, whether it is man made or not and unfortunately it will continue that way for the forseeable future!

    If you wish to mention the oxymoron military intelligence of the 80’s that was directed toward the soviets; and then the same applies to the similar situation the u.s found itself in in the 60’s in that certain country called vietnam [When the communists first applied it against the u.s.]!

    While i don’t doubt your sincerity in which you speak, it is still too soon to speak of there not being WMD in the first place! But, i feel it was well worth the effort to get rid of saddam, even if he was not directly harming us, he was directly harming his own people!

    While yes, at last count several thousand innocent iraqi’s lost their lives in the war! it must be pointed out that in 91 alone saddam killed several hundred thousand of his own people, and yes we should have taken him out then, but alas, promises are promises[ to our coalition partners] and it became a d*mned if you do or d*mned if you don’t situations! Hindsight is always better than 20/20 though!

    Don’t worry i don’t think your a nazi, like you said you thought the quote was chilling relevant! War should never, ever be the first answer. But if it’s the only last answer, then make it a loud one!