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Losing the War on Terror, Mr. Bush?


Skeezix
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irregardless is not a word. wave.gif

 

http://www.webster.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=irregardless

 

"usage Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the attention of usage commentators as early as 1927. The most frequently repeated remark about it is that "there is no such word." There is such a word, however. It is still used primarily in speech, although it can be found from time to time in edited prose. Its reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from general acceptance. Use regardless instead. "

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There was a fascinating interview last night on NBC news with a senior CIA official who is extremely critical of both the Bush and Clinton administrations actions regarding bin Laden. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5279743/

 

Among his compelling observations:

 

The war against Iraq is "an avaricious, premeditated, unprovoked war against a foe who posed no immediate threat.”

 

Bin Laden is not merely a psycho who hates us because we have a free and open society. "[H]e's not a man who rants against our freedoms, our liberties, our voting, our — the fact that our women go to school. . . .To think that he's trying to rob us of our liberties and freedom is, I think, a gross mistake. What he has done, his genius, is identify particular American foreign policies that are offensive to Muslims whether they support these martial actions or not — our support for Israel, our presence on the Arabian Peninsula, our activities in Afghanistan and Iraq, our support for governments that Muslims believe oppress Muslims. . . ."

 

"The major problem with the Iraq war is that it distracted us from the war against terrorism."

 

"I think someone should have gone to the president when the, when the discussion of going to Iraq was broached and have said, Mr. President, this is something that can only help Osama bin Laden. Whatever the danger posed by Saddam, whatever weapons he had, is almost irrelevant in that the boost it would give to al-Qaida was easily seen."

 

"Bin Laden, I think, and al-Qaida and other of America's enemies in the Islamic world certainly saw the invasion of Iraq as a, if you would, a Christmas gift they always wanted and never expected to get."

 

This interview for me sums up what is so dangerous about Bush's Mideast policies in general and the Iraq war in particular. Not only do we not go after America's real enemies, not only do we reduce our ability to after our real enemies, we actually contribute to the generation of more enemies.

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Of course a small factoid that all of you have cleverly decided to leave out is that the terror report statistics covered THE WHOLE FUCKING WORLD!

Didn't stop Bush from crowing that "We're winning the war on terror!"

Jon, why should a president have a military background? That is BS. I'd rather have the best guy for the job, irregardless of background. Would you rather have a commander in chief with military background and unsound reasoning or a guy who wasn't in the military but is able to rely on his chiefs, take their ideas and make the important decisions with brain power and reasoning?
Wow! Had to read this one twice. Seems you just made the case for Bush. Does this mean you'll be voting for GW this November?? thumbs_up.gif
He said "brain power and reasoning." Bush has neither.
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This whole thread focuses on BLAME.

 

Personally, I'm sick and tired of blame being directed toward anyone American. Sure, we have made mistakes in international relations and foreign policy - both Democrats and Republicans are guilty, but our mistakes are NOT the reason for Islamic terrorist activity.

 

When trying to levy blame for Islamic terrorism, why not let the Islamic terrorists speak for themselves? And every time they speak, it's in RELIGIOUS terms! Listen guys, this is a RELIGIOUS war! Islamic Jihad! The fatwahs from the mullahs don't condemn Democrats or Republicans, they condemn the HEATHEN. Bin Laden and his fellow thugs were very precise in outlining their reasons for 9-11: the HEATHEN Americans were/are DESECRATING the HOLY LAND of Islam (Saudi Arabia) by their very presence. Note the language of religion, not of politics or economics or any of the other terms the hand-wringing Bush-hating America-blamers use.

 

How to win the War on Terror? Really tough call. I don't think anyone posting on this site, including myself, knows enough to speak with much authority. But it seems to me that short term, we need to:

1. toughen our defenses (as we have).

2. target the Islamic terrorist leaders for elimination. They will not be mollified by diplomacy, concessions or appeasement, only emboldened.

 

Long term, we need to do all we can to change the environments that foster Islamic terrorism - stop the funding of the Islamic mullahs who foment hatred of the heathen, promote secular, democratic governments who will take it upon themselves to crank down on the Islamic religious thugs.

 

Way too simplistic for many of you, I'm sure. Tough thing to do, at best. I do know that neither Democrats nor Republicans have any easy, clean, workable solutions. This war is messy and extremely complicated to fight. John Kerry won't do any better than George Bush.

 

Back to my point - can we at least stop blaming America and America's leaders for the actions of demented Islamic creeps? Please?

 

Thanks for hearing me out.

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good point, the attacks you listed, were there any ties to them and the trade center terrorists. a whacked out tacoma man and his disciple, some physco with a rifle and someone who got his hands on a little anthrax. Granted they did happen then so did columbine and jeffery dahmer. I guess it is all terrorism eh

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The Shah was hardly a saint, but if you compare the death toll under his reign to that of the Mullah's, he certainly starts to look like one.

 

that is certainly not true. the mullahs are terrible and they have to go, but the palhavis were bloody dictators whose actions hardly left a family untouched by repression and torture. moral relativism and revisionist history are leading you astray. let's not forget as well that before we installed the shah, iran had a democratically elected government.

 

For the realists amongst us, the central problem in the Middle East is fostering democratic reform amongst regimes that, while unsavory in many respects, at least pay lip service to the principles that will be wholly abandoned by the people most likely to seize power in their absence, e.g. after a popular uprising spearheaded by millitant Islamists.

 

when you sustain a regime that is so repressive that for decades people can only congregate to the dark corners of mosques to express their opinions, what do you expect the outcome will be. "unsavory" is certainly a euphemism for regimes like that in uzbekistan that boils its perceived dissenters in hot water.

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I'm sick and tired of blame being directed toward anyone American. Sure, we have made mistakes in international relations and foreign policy - both Democrats and Republicans are guilty, but our mistakes are NOT the reason for Islamic terrorist activity.

 

and forget that our tax dollars financed and trained 10,000's of fundamentalists during the eighties in pakistan and afghanistan. these people eventually went back home with their weapons and know how. who do you suspect forms the backbone of extremism in islamic countries nowadays? accountability is essential if you don't want to repeat the same "mistakes".

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I'm sick and tired of blame being directed toward anyone American. Sure, we have made mistakes in international relations and foreign policy - both Democrats and Republicans are guilty, but our mistakes are NOT the reason for Islamic terrorist activity.

 

and forget that our tax dollars financed and trained 10,000's of fundamentalists during the eighties in pakistan and afghanistan. these people eventually went back home with their weapons and know how. who do you suspect forms the backbone of extremism in islamic countries nowadays? accountability is essential if you don't want to repeat the same "mistakes".

 

Just because you educate someone doesn't make you responsible for how they use that education. To stop the spread of communism, it was deemed strategically significant to aid the Afghans against the Soviets.

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Just because you educate someone doesn't make you responsible for how they use that education. To stop the spread of communism, it was deemed strategically significant to aid the Afghans against the Soviets.

We trained the, we funded them, we gave them arms. We're not responsible for their actions, but we'd be stupid to do it again.

 

Communism was on it's way out before Afghanistan.

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"that is certainly not true. the mullahs are terrible and they have to go, but the palhavis were bloody dictators whose actions hardly left a family untouched by repression and torture. moral relativism and revisionist history are leading you astray. let's not forget as well that before we installed the shah, iran had a democratically elected government."

 

Where are you getting your facts? There's no relativism here - I'm talking straight body counts. That's it.

 

My understanding of this matter comes from "Iran Between Two Revolutions," and "Tortured Confessions: Prisons and Public Recantations in Modern Iran," both by the same author.

 

Here's what an Iranian has to say about the latter:

 

"I read this book and it did not add anything to my knowledge about Khomeini's regime. As a person who has lived in that country and his dearest friends and families were killed under the torture or by firing squads this book was not really informative. 1. Its statistics about political prisoners who were executed is not accurate. For example in page 129 it talks about 12500 prisoners who were killed by the Iranian government. It says that 74 percent of them were executed but in page 130 talks about 7943 executed people, obviously 74 percent of the 12500 is not 7943. Iranian regime has killed thousands of political prisoners but the government does not publish the names only the names of 25000 of them were published by opposition groups so you can imagine that the real number should be over 100000. 2. Mr. Abrahamian does not really analyze the reason of the public recantations of some of the prisoners but the heroic resistance of others. What was the reason that some people were so strong and some people not as strong as they were? 3. He does not talk about Khomeini's religious decree to rape virgin girls before execution. 4.He does not talk about Khomeini's religious decree to take the blood of political prisoners before execution.

 

But as a whole, this book has some information about Iran under the Islamic regime for Western scholars. You can read it and you will get a sense of what has gone to our generation."

 

If anything, I think I am giving the Mullah's too much slack.

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You don't think that trusting crappy intelligence and getting into a big unpopular war that drained their resources and killed thousands of their young men over 10 years contributed to the Soviet Union's demise?

 

Phew! Good thing!

 

No, it was the fact that their economy could not compete with ours in an arms race, given that their economy was so centralized on defense spending.

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No, it was the fact that their economy could not compete with ours in an arms race, given that their economy was so centralized on defense spending.

GregW-

Their economy hadn't been able to compete since the early 70's. Increasing demands for disparate consumer goods stressed the central planned economy. The military buildup was also a factor, but that started under Carter.

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You don't think that trusting crappy intelligence and getting into a big unpopular war that drained their resources and killed thousands of their young men over 10 years contributed to the Soviet Union's demise?

 

Phew! Good thing!

 

Hopefully, in 20 years replacing "Soviet Union's" with "United States'" won't make sense. Though it remains to be seen.

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Where are you getting your facts? There's no relativism here - I'm talking straight body counts. That's it.

 

there is no fundamental difference between a regime that butchers 20,000 of its citizens and one that butchers 60,000. at least, not enough difference to make one a regime with "unsavory" aspects but otherwise ok whereas the other would be a bloody dictatorship. pretending, that killing fewer dissidents is ground for acceptability amounts to moral relativism.

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That's a good point, j_b.

But what is the relativistic multiplier between dictators that would distinguish one as more evil than the other? It's an interesting question for sure. x10? x100? x1000?

 

To an American, would an arab dictator who slaughters 10,000 innocent Westerners be worse than an arab dictator who slaughters 1,000,000 of his own people? Good question.

 

Both dictators are bad, but, as Huey Lewis has said, "sometimes bad is bad." Or, as George Thorogood has said, "badder than bad."

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Just because you educate someone doesn't make you responsible for how they use that education. To stop the spread of communism, it was deemed strategically significant to aid the Afghans against the Soviets.

 

That's a pretty glib, simplistic dismissal of a fairly significant issue. Do you really think it's prudent for a nation to engage in this sort of thing without accepting some responsibility for possible outcomes? In fact, it seems that when Saddam was providing weapons to Al Qaeda*, it was deemed to have been a bad thing by the current administration.

 

 

* since revealed to be a lie

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