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Jan 12, 2005

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Young

, eventually the truth does reacsfrue. About seven years later, and you see the great strategic advantage of being there, and that's where the truth is, in how things turn out. There is a strategy in place, and no matter who is the president, the reality of the evil of the world forces each president to continue on.I understand you feel misled. Personally, I feel that if we didn't live in a 5 second sound byte type of society, a president will be able to give us the better, and naturally more complex reasons of why we went to war. The president did not lie to you when he cherry-picked his reasons for going to war; neither did the top democrats lie when they agreed with his cherry-picking when they knew exactly what was going on. If you are intellectually honest, you can't deny the president was not alone. For example, just as Nancy Pelosi knew about the water boarding, she also knew the real reason we went into Iraq.And Bush has told us the main reason for war over and again it's no secret. The spread of freedom aimed at tyrannical regimes whose way of life threatens us because two oceans no longer protect us is the best way to secure America's future. And he acted based on that. And a democratic congress funded his efforts. And a democratic president is continuing and expanding Bush's effort.But the truth does come out. You see it in everyday events, or you can zoom out and see it trends across decades. The fact is, America depends on the Middle East, we have multiple interests there, and that's why we are in Iraq. For example, Iran and America are on a crash course. Although Obama reached out to Iran, he only did so to gain the American and world support for when he MAY need to conduct military action to defend our interests. The instability in Iraq is Iran-Syria generated. No different than the instability in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Gaza, West Bank, and Yemen. If there fighters isn't there, their money is. We are also on a course against Russia and China, although it may not be a crash.My point is this: we are a democracy, there is accountability and oversight. Cherry-picking is not lying, it has been done by both sides and will continue to be as long as we are a sound byte society. The threat to our Middle Eastern interests and allies was real (even without WMD's), and the strategic advantage of taking that tyrant out was almost priceless. Now, the strategic position we have against Iran can be seen now, and the truth is coming out every day in the events that occur everyday, and the trends that continue. Just like Bush, Obama will not only stay the course, he will expand it.Here is a quote from Obama during his Noble Prize acceptance speech:“The security environment confronting the United States today is radically different from what we have faced before. Yet the first duty of the United States Government remains what it always has been: to protect the American people and American interests. It is an enduring American principle that this duty obligates the government to anticipate and counter threats, using all elements of national power, before the threats can do grave damage. The greater the threat, the greater is the risk of inaction – and the more compelling the case for taking anticipatory action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy’s attack. There are few greater threats than a terrorist attack with WMD.To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively in exercising our inherent right of self-defense. The United States will not resort to force in all cases to preempt emerging threats. Our preference is that nonmilitary actions succeed. And no country should ever use preemption as a pretext for aggression.”If there is threat that threatens us, as long as WMD scares the public and fits in a sound byte, even Obama will cherry-pick it and go to war, because even as a Republican myself, I know enough about reality to know that even a chicken president, liberal/socialist democrat like Obama will do whatever it takes to protect us, even strike preemptively and say WMD was the reason watch as it happens.

Yupa

Yah, I caught that too, and it was just one more dsinppoiatment about a series that I had high hopes for, especially after the brilliant moment of technobabble in the pilot: antiplastic!.Eccleston is good, love his faces. But the thing that is turning me off, is you can't really get good tacky camp when you use CGI. The bobblehead aliens were in the spirit of the thing, except when they were chasing the humans through 10 Downing Street. Then they moved like velociraptors from Jurassic Park. It just isn't working for me.

Canaria

Mr. MuMu, unlike you, I have actually bothered to talk with UN inspectors who served in Iraq from 91-98 (one of them an American Marine in charge of dissarmament operations), with UN Humanitarian Relief directors Hans von Sponek and Dennis Halliday, who served in the country during the sanctions program, and even the most recent Mr. Blix... and what they encountered was quite different from your interpretation of events.

For starters the dissarmament operations were quite succesfull, with the inspectors declaring Iraq by 1998 to be 95% effectively dissarmed. While you may say "Aha!" at the reminder 5%, let me remind you that currently the US Defense Department cannot account for $1 TRIllion worth of equipment, therefore I hope you understand the impossibility of accounting for 100%.

By 1998, CIA operatives had infiltrated the inspection process, and seemed more interested in sabotaging inspections to ensure the maintenance of sanctions, than in trully verifying Iraq's status, as that would have meant having to lift the sanctions. That's when B. Clinton ordered the immediate pull out of the inspectors, and within 48hrs Iraqi facilities that had just been inspected, were bombed. Which in turn, makes it not so surprising that Saddam would not let them back in.

By 2002 the fire was back on, and after much international pressure, Saddam allowed another inspection team, lead by Hans Blix, unparallelled access to all Iraqi facilities, including his palaces. Remember that? He also provided them a detailed account of his weapons arsenal 12,000 pages long, which somehow was whisked away from the UN inspectors to the White House "for translation", somehow by the time the document got back to the UN, it was missing over 3,000 pages... do you think the US wanted to hide something?

And lastly, for Iraq to be in violation of R.1441, you would have had to actually find WMDs, which you won't, as we all know.

While I despise Saddam's tyrannical rule, it was up to the Iraqis, to determine their future, not America.

So, I hope you'll enjoy your Nuremberg Trials...

Justified Elder of Mu Mu

Are you saying that assasinating a president (or ex-president) isn't an act of war? Absolutely the U.S. committed an act of war when, for example, we murdered or assisted in the murder of the democratically elected leader of Chile. The fact that Central American nations bowed to reality and didn't attempt to invade the U.S. doesn't mean that might makes right. That said, I'm not sure you'd really prefer living in a world without those 6 declared wars...

In any event, my point was only that for all the talk about WMD's, when you read the actual Congressional authorization for the war, WMD's don't come across as the leading justification. As far as Saddam, when you're responsible for 1,000,000 deaths, you've gone beyond your average everyday beligerance and I think some meddling is warranted. I wish the U.N. had meddled in 1991, or in 1998 when he made a mockery of the organization for the second time, or in 2003 when he was thumbing his nose at Resolution 1441. It's the same results they gave the people of Bosnia before NATO stepped-in and is why many of us were too quick to support Bush's invasion.

Canaria

Hey, that gives me an idea! Since the US, by means of convert operations, has attempted to assassinate several foreign leaders throughout recent history, and occassionally has even succeeded... should we take that in the outside world as an act of war? Is that your policy? In that case, I wonder if you have enough troops left to defend yourself from most Latin American Countries... or would that require a draft?

As for Iraq's belligerance, I condemn violence in all its forms, but it's incredibly hypocritical of a nation to invade another claiming invasions that took place 1 and 2 decades ago, while your own nation's history has a rap list that would make Saddam look like the amateur he was. The US score to date: 139 foreign military interventions, 6 declared wars, and the only nation to deploy nuclear weapons on civilian populations... what are we to do with you? should we "liberate" you? Neh... I would be satisfied if we could just liberate ourselves from constant US meddling and sabotaging for a little while.

Justified Elder of Mu Mu

As horrific as the war has turned out, there's still somethings that trouble me about the criticisms. For one thing, they sometimes contradict themselves: most tout how well we were containing Saddam Hussein, but we were doing that by using "genocidal sanctions." Had we removed the sanctions Saddam might well have acquired WMDs, and certainly would have rebuilt his army, once the 4th largest in the world and one that was used offensively to cross national borders twice within one decade. Look how much Saddam was doing with the oil-for-food revenue and smuggled oil sales. From what we've learned since the war, Saddam was playing rope-a-dope on WMD's, trying to make the world think that he indeed had them. He surely wasn't cooperating with Hans Blix. Thus, but-for a war, we never would have known if he had WMD's.

The ugly truth is that we kept the sanctions in place because up to George W. Bush we thought our national interests were in a detoothed Saddam: strong enough to keep Iraq as a bullwark against Iran but too weak to cause real problems. It isn't enough to say "as long as he didn't have WMD's, the deaths caused by the sanctions weren't our fault, they were Saddam's." I'd argue the tragedy in Iraq isn't that it was an "unjust war" or that it was secured with "phony intelligence" but that it was conducted by such a incompetent, immoral administration. Saddam should have been dealt with in 1998.

(It's also worth noting that if you look at Congress' authorization for the war, most of it doesn't concern WMD's. I was always afraid that during the debates somebody would ask Kerry "if a foreign nation attempts to assasinate a former U.S. President, isn't that automatically an act of war?")

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