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post #31 of 152 (permalink) Old 05-14-2005, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown


The Mystery of the Insurgency
By JAMES BENNET

NY Times

WASHINGTON — American forces in Iraq have often been accused of being slow to apply hard lessons from Vietnam and elsewhere about how to fight an insurgency. Yet, it seems from the outside, no one has shrugged off the lessons of history more decisively than the insurgents themselves.

The insurgents in Iraq are showing little interest in winning hearts and minds among the majority of Iraqis, in building international legitimacy, or in articulating a governing program or even a unified ideology or cause beyond expelling the Americans. They have put forward no single charismatic leader, developed no alternative government or political wing, displayed no intention of amassing territory to govern now.

Rather than employing the classic rebel tactic of provoking the foreign forces to use clumsy and excessive force and kill civilians, they are cutting out the middleman and killing civilians indiscriminately themselves, in addition to more predictable targets like officials of the new government. Bombings have escalated in the last two weeks, and on Thursday a bomb went off in heavy traffic in Baghdad, killing 21 people.

This surge in the killing of civilians reflects how mysterious the long-term strategy remains - and how the rebels' seeming indifference to the past patterns of insurgency is not necessarily good news for anyone.

It is not surprising that reporters, and evidently American intelligence agents, have had great difficulty penetrating this insurgency. What is surprising is that the fighters have made so little effort to advertise unified goals.

Counter-insurgency experts are baffled, wondering if the world is seeing the birth of a new kind of insurgency; if, as in China in the 1930's or Vietnam in the 1940's, it is taking insurgents a few years to organize themselves; or if, as some suspect, there is a simpler explanation.

"Instead of saying, 'What's the logic here, we don't see it,' you could speculate, there is no logic here," said Anthony James Joes, a professor of political science at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia and the author of several books on the history of guerrilla warfare. The attacks now look like "wanton violence," he continued. "And there's a name for these guys: Losers."

"The insurgents are doing everything wrong now," he said. "Or, anyway, I don't understand why they're doing what they're doing."

Steven Metz, of the Army War College Strategic Studies Institute, said the insurgency could still be sorting itself out. Yet, he said, "It really is significant that even two years in there hasn't been anything like any kind of political ideology or political spokesman or political wing emerging. It really is a nihilistic insurgency."

He warned that this hydra-headed quality could make the insurgents hard to crush, even as the lack of unity makes it unlikely they will rule Iraq. "It makes it harder to eradicate the insurgency, but it also makes it more difficult for insurgents to gain their ultimate objective - if that is to control the country," he said.

That no one knows if that is the objective is, by historical standards, one of several remarkable, perplexing features of this fight.

A clear cause - one with broad support - is usually taken for granted by experts as a prerequisite for successful insurgency.

But insurgents in Iraq appear to be fighting for varying causes: Baath Party members are fighting for some sort of restoration of the old regime; Sunni Muslims are presumably fighting to prevent domination by the Shiite majority; nationalists are fighting to drive out the Americans; and foreign fighters want to turn Iraq into a battlefield of a global religious struggle. Some men are said to fight for money; organized crime may play a role.

This incoherence is something new. "If you look at 20th-century insurgencies, they all tend to be fairly coherent in terms of their ideology," Dr. Metz said. "Most of the serious insurgencies, you could sit down and say, 'Here's what they want.' "

In Iraq, insurgent groups appear to share a common immediate goal of ridding Iraq of an American presence, a goal that may find sympathy among Iraqis angry about poor electricity and water service and high unemployment.

Average Iraqis may distinguish among the groups within the insurgency and their tactics. Still, the insurgents haven't publicly proposed a governmental alternative, and their anti-American message has been muddied by their attacks on civilians and by the election of an Iraqi government that has not asked the Americans to leave.

If the insurgency is trying to overthrow this regime, it is contending with a formidable obstacle that successful rebels of the 20th century generally did not face: A democratically elected government. One of the last century's most celebrated theorists and practitioners of revolution, Che Guevara, called that obstacle insurmountable.

"Where a government has come to power through some form of popular vote, fraudulent or not, and maintains at least an appearance of constitutional legality," he wrote, "the guerrilla outbreak cannot be promoted, since the possibilities of peaceful struggle have not yet been exhausted."

The insurgents' choice of adversary is unusual. But the recent surge in violence at least follows a time-tested pattern. The insurgents are apparently trying to swamp any progress toward stability with evidence and images of chaos. The killing in that time of at least 250 policemen, soldiers and recruits also fits a pattern, since insurgents have customarily made targets of accused collaborators to isolate a regime. Less obvious is the goal in the killing of some 150 civilians.

The relationship between insurgents and the general population is always complex. Mao Zedong famously postulated that guerrillas move among the people as fish move through water. But he also warned that "a revolution is not a dinner party," and many insurgents, including the Vietcong, effectively used terror - often selectively applied - against civilians to compel segments of the population into at least passive support.

From his experience fomenting Arab revolt against the Turks, T. E. Lawrence concluded that insurgents needed only 2 percent active support from the population, and 98 percent passive support.

What is curious about the Iraqi tactic is that it appears aimed at creating active opposition. The insurgency is powered by Sunnis; the civilians they have killed have been overwhelmingly Shiites and Kurds. The goal appears to be to split apart the fragile governing coalition and foment sectarian strife.

Yet if the insurgents achieve all-out civil conflict, the likely losers are the Sunnis themselves, since they are a minority. Having governed for decades in Iraq, Sunnis are accustomed to the whip hand and may simply assume they will be able to regain control. Or perhaps they are betting that chaos will lead to partition, allowing Sunnis to govern themselves.

David Galula, author of a systematic 1964 study, "Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice," noted the effectiveness of force and intimidation as tools of an insurgency. But he added a crucial caveat: "There is, of course, a practical if not ethical limit to the use of force; the basic rule is never to antagonize at any one time more people than can be handled."

That was one of several mistakes that the Communist rebels made in Greece in the late 1940's. Once the country was liberated from the Germans, the Communists had no majority cause, and they chose to confront a democratically elected government. Lacking much industry, Greece had few proletarians, and the peasants were not particularly restive.

Not that the Communists cared. They had contempt for the peasants and alienated them further by extorting food and reinforcements through threats and executions. They burned villages in hopes of making the peasants a burden on the American-backed government and crippling the Greek economy.

THE guerrillas benefited from support from the Communist dictatorships to Greece's north. Then, in July 1949, Tito shut the Yugoslav border, eliminating Yugoslavia as a sanctuary. But Professor Joes argued that, by then, the insurgents were doomed anyway. "They had already shot themselves in the feet and both knees," he said. In Iraq, American and Iraqi troops have embarked on an offensive in the west partly in hopes of cutting off what the military command says is a flow of foreign fighters and matériel across the Syrian border. But military experts say that without stationing thousands of troops along the border, the military has little chance of closing it off.

If the immediate objective of the insurgents is relatively limited - not to topple the government and drive the Americans out now but to pin them down and bleed them - that at least would have solid precedents. As the counterterrorism expert Bruce Hoffman noted in a paper for Rand last year, "For more than 30 years, a dedicated cadre of approximately 200 to 400 I.R.A. gunmen and bombers frustrated the maintenance of law and order in Northern Ireland, requiring the prolonged deployment of tens of thousands of British troops." Yet the I.R.A. is still far from its larger goal: to drive the British out.

Among Iraq's insurgents, the jihadists are one group that has suggested a sweeping goal. They want to establish a new caliphate - a religious regime with expansive boundaries. For them, the destruction and chaos in Iraq may represent creative forces, means of heightening the contrasts among sects, religions and whole civilizations. Searching for parallels, several experts compared the insurgents in Iraq to the violent anarchists of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. That movement took root among the alienated and uprooted who could find no place in modern society.

Yet it may prove to be one of history's humbling lessons that history itself fails to illuminate the conflict under way in Iraq. No one really knows what the insurgents are up to.

"It clearly makes sense to the people who are doing it," said Dr. Loren B. Thompson, a defense analyst at the Lexington Institute. "And that more than anything else tells us how little we understand the region."

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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post #32 of 152 (permalink) Old 05-15-2005, 10:54 AM Thread Starter
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Well, Condi makes a "surprise" visit to Iraq - following Rumsfeld's "surprise" visit. Of course, the reason they all have to visit by "surprise" is because they would get killed if they told anyone they were coming. Her visit was predictable - a bunch of lies and spin. One line belonged in a stand up comedy routine it was so hilarious, while the other continues the lie that the invasion of NamRaq had something to do with 9-11. I have bolded these outrageous statements from this national nitwit. I hope the nice lady didn't step into any of the buckets of blood and guts her and her boyfriend have brought to Iraq.


Rice makes surprise visit to Iraq
Assassination fails against provincial governor
Sunday, May 15, 2005 Posted: 12:13 PM EDT (1613 GMT)



BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made an unannounced trip to Iraq on Sunday, urging patience for the country's fragile new government and offering encouragement to American troops.

Rice, making her first visit to Iraq as secretary of state, spoke to hundreds of U.S. troops and diplomats in Baghdad.

"I want you to keep focused on what you are doing here," Rice told the diplomats and troops who gathered in one of Saddam Hussein's former palaces. "This war came to us, not the other way around."


"The United States, along with the rest of the free world, believed somehow for a number of years that people in this region didn't care about freedom," she said. "We cared about stability. And what we got was neither. We got a malignancy that was growing that came to haunt us on the fine September day" in 2001.

Earlier on Sunday, Rice took a U.S. military helicopter to Saladhin, the northern Iraqi mountain stronghold of Kurdish Democratic Party leader Massoud Barzani.

The two met to discuss the expected drafting of a new Iraqi constitution by August.

"There needs to continue to be some momentum in the political process," Rice said.

She is scheduled to meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari later in the day, a State Department official said.

Failed attack

Suicide bombers failed in an attempt to assassinate the governor of the Diyala province Sunday morning, a spokesman for the governor said. Five people were killed and 24 were wounded in an attack on his convoy.

Among those killed were three Iraqi police officers and two Iraqi civilians, officials said.

Gov. Raad Rashid was unharmed in the attack, which happened about 40 miles north of Baghdad in the city of Baquba, the spokesman said.

The attack started with a suicide car bomb explosion which was followed by a man walking toward the convoy and detonating an explosive vest he was wearing, officials said.

Meanwhile Sunday, Iraqi officials said the bodies of 34 people were found in three separate locations around Iraq this weekend.

In the town of Latifya, about 15 miles south of Baghdad, on Sunday, Iraqi police said they stopped two trucks on a road and found bodies of 11 Iraqi men inside.

The victims, laborers at a poultry farm, had been shot to death and four had been beheaded, police said.

The drivers of the trucks were arrested, police said.

In Baghdad on Sunday, the bodies of 13 men who apparently had been tortured and shot to death, were found in a garbage dump, Iraqi police said.

The bodies were dressed only in underwear and shirts and those with beards had been shaved, morgue officials said.

On Saturday, the bodies of 10 Iraqi soldiers were found in the Albu Ubaid section of Ramadi, in western Iraq, the Iraqi Defense Ministry said.

Other developments

U.S. National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley said he could not confirm a report in the Sunday Times that militant leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was brought to a hospital in Ramadi wounded and heavily bleeding. "We just don't know at this point," Hadley said Sunday on CNN's "Late Edition."


U.S. Marines said Saturday they "successfully completed Operation Matador," a weeklong hunt for insurgents along the Syrian border that left nine Marines and more than 125 insurgents dead. (Full story)

In Baghdad, insurgents killed 10 people in bombings and shootings Saturday, including five Iraqis near the Ministry of Industry and Minerals. A car bomb there apparently targeted a police patrol.

Also in Baghdad, a Foreign Ministry employee, Jassim Mohammad Gharb, was shot dead in front of his house Saturday night. Three neighbors, who were also standing in front of the house, were wounded in the drive-by shooting.

A 30-year-old male detainee at the Camp Bucca prison in southern Iraq died Saturday of "an apparent heart attack," according to a U.S. military news release

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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post #33 of 152 (permalink) Old 05-15-2005, 11:17 AM
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

I hope someone in the press has the balls to actually question her on these statements soon. Outrageous lies she should have to explain. I cannot understand how she was confirmed for the job. Our government is decaying in front of our eyes. Jim
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post #34 of 152 (permalink) Old 05-15-2005, 11:32 AM Thread Starter
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We have a fundementally dishonest government. They win because "conservatives" are willing to sell out their own basic decency, and turn a blind eye to hypocrisy, theft, murder, and lies.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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More good news from the front

Published on Sunday, May 15, 2005 by the Independent/UK
Iraq is a Bloody no Man's Land.
America has Failed to Win the War.
But has it Lost it?
Ten US troops were killed in action across Iraq last week. The fighting is now sustained and ferocious.
Patrick Cockburn, winner of the Martha Gellhorn prize for journalism, reports from the frontline of America's war on terror

"The battlefield is a great place for liars," Stonewall Jackson once said on viewing the aftermath of a battle in the American civil war.

The great general meant that the confusion of battle is such that anybody can claim anything during a war and hope to get away with it. But even by the standards of other conflicts, Iraq has been particularly fertile in lies. Going by the claims of President George Bush, the war should long be over since his infamous "Mission Accomplished" speech on 1 May 2003. In fact most of the 1,600 US dead and 12,000 wounded have become casualties in the following two years.

The ferocious resistance encountered last week by the 1,000-strong US marine task force trying to fight its way into villages around the towns of Qaim and Obeidi in western Iraq shows that the war is far from over. So far nine marines have been killed in the week-long campaign, while another US soldier was killed and four wounded in central Iraq on Friday. Meanwhile, a car bomb targeting a police patrol exploded in central Baghdad yesterday, killing at least five Iraqis and injuring 12.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, the leader of one of the Kurdish parties, confidently told a meeting in Brasilia last week that there is war in only three or four out of 18 Iraqi provinces. Back in Baghdad Mr Talabani, an experienced guerrilla leader, has deployed no fewer than 3,000 Kurdish soldiers or peshmerga around his residence in case of attack. One visitor was amused to hear the newly elected President interrupt his own relentlessly upbeat account of government achievements to snap orders to his aides on the correct positioning of troops and heavy weapons around his house.

There is no doubt that the US has failed to win the war. Much of Iraq is a bloody no man's land. The army has not been able to secure the short highway to the airport, though it is the most important road in the country, linking the US civil headquarters in the Green Zone with its military HQ at Camp Victory.

Ironically, the extent of US failure to control Iraq is masked by the fact that it is too dangerous for the foreign media to venture out of central Baghdad. Some have retreated to the supposed safety of the Green Zone. Mr Bush can claim that no news is good news, though in fact the precise opposite is true.

Embedded journalism fosters false optimism. It means reporters are only present where American troops are active, though US forces seldom venture into much of Iraq. Embedded correspondents bravely covered the storming of Fallujah by US marines last November and rightly portrayed it as a US military success. But the outside world remained largely unaware, because no reporters were present with US forces, that at the same moment an insurgent offensive had captured most of Mosul, a city five times larger than Fallujah.

Why has the vastly expensive and heavily equipped US army failed militarily in Iraq? After the crescendo of violence over the past month there should be no doubts that the US has not quashed the insurgents whom for two years American military spokesmen have portrayed as a hunted remnant of Saddam Hussein's regime assisted by foreign fighters.

The failure was in part political. Immediately after the fall of Saddam Hussein polls showed that Iraqis were evenly divided on whether they had been liberated or occupied. Eighteen months later the great majority both of Sunni and Shia said they had been occupied, and they did not like it. Every time I visited a spot where an American soldier had been killed or a US vehicle destroyed there were crowds of young men and children screaming their delight. "I am a poor man but I am going home to cook a chicken to celebrate," said one man as he stood by the spot marked with the blood of an American soldier who had just been shot to death.

Many of the resistance groups are bigoted Sunni Arab fanatics who see Shia as well as US soldiers as infidels whom it is a religious duty to kill. Others are led by officers from Saddam's brutal security forces. But Washington never appreciated the fact that the US occupation was so unpopular that even the most unsavoury groups received popular support.

From the start, there was something dysfunctional about the American armed forces. They could not adapt themselves to Iraq. Their massive firepower meant they won any set-piece battle, but it also meant that they accidentally killed so many Iraqi civilians that they were the recruiting sergeants of the resistance. The army denied counting Iraqi civilian dead, which might be helpful in dealing with American public opinion. But Iraqis knew how many of their people were dying.

The US war machine was over-armed. I once saw a unit trying to restore order at a petrol station where there was a fist fight between Iraqi drivers over queue-jumping (given that people sometimes sleep two nights in their cars waiting to fill a tank, tempers were understandably frayed). In one corner was a massive howitzer, its barrel capable of hurling a shell 30km, which the soldiers had brought along for this minor policing exercise.

The US army was designed to fight a high-technology blitzkrieg, but not much else. It required large quantities of supplies and its supply lines were vulnerable to roadside bombs. Combat engineers, essentially sappers, lamented that they had received absolutely no training in doing this. Even conventional mine detectors did not work. Roadsides in Iraq are full of metal because Iraqi drivers normally dispose of soft drink cans out the window. Sappers were reduced to prodding the soil nervously with titanium rods like wizards' wands. Because of poor intelligence and excessive firepower, American operations all became exercises in collective punishment. At first the US did not realise that all Iraqi men have guns and they considered possession of a weapon a sign of hostile intention towards the occupation. They confiscated as suspicious large quantities of cash in farmers' houses, not realising that Iraqis often keep the family fortune at home in $100 bills ever since Saddam Hussein closed the banks before the Gulf war and, when they reopened, Iraqi dinar deposits were almost worthless.

The US army was also too thin on the ground. It has 145,000 men in Iraq, but reportedly only half of these are combat troops. During the heavily publicised assault on Fallujah the US forces drained the rest of Iraq of its soldiers. "We discovered the US troops had suddenly abandoned the main road between Kirkuk and Baghdad without telling anybody," said one indignant observer. "It promptly fell under the control of the insurgents."

The army acts as a sort of fire brigade, briefly effective in dousing the flames, but always moving on before they are fully extinguished. There are only about 6,000 US soldiers in Nineveh province, of which Mosul is the capital and which has a population of three million. For the election on 30 January, US reserves arriving in Iraq were all sent to Mosul to raise the level to 15,000 to prevent any uprising in the city. They succeeded in doing so but were then promptly withdrawn.

The shortage of US forces has a political explanation. Before the war Donald Rumsfeld, the Secretary of Defence, and his neo-conservative allies derided generals who said an occupation force numbering hundreds of thousands would be necessary to hold Iraq. When they were proved wrong they dealt with failure by denying it had taken place.

There is a sense of bitterness among many US National Guardsmen that they have been shanghaied into fighting in a dangerous war. I was leaving the Green Zone one day when one came up to me and said he noticed that I had a limp and kindly offered to show me a quicker way to the main gate. As we walked along he politely asked the cause of my disability. I explained I had had polio many years ago. He sighed and said he too had had his share of bad luck. Since he looked hale and hearty this surprised me. "Yes," he said bitterly. "My bad luck was that I joined the Washington State National Guard which had not been called up since 1945. Two months later they sent me here where I stand good chance of being killed."

The solution for the White House has been to build up an Iraqi force to take the place of US soldiers. This has been the policy since the autumn of 2003 and it has repeatedly failed. In April 2004, during the first fight for Fallujah, the Iraqi army battalions either mutinied before going to the city or refused to fight against fellow Iraqis once there. In Mosul in November 2004 the 14,000 police force melted away during the insurgent offensive, abandoning 30 police stations and $40m in equipment. Now the US is trying again. By the end of next year an Iraqi army and police force totalling 300,000 should be trained and ready to fight. Already they are much more evident in the streets of Baghdad and other cities.

The problem is that the troops are often based on militias which have a sectarian or ethnic base. The best troops are Kurdish peshmerga. Shia units are often connected with the Badr Brigade which fought on the side of Iran in the Iran-Iraq war. When 14 Sunni farmers from the Dulaimi tribe were found executed in Baghdad a week ago the Interior Ministry had to deny what was widely believed, that they had been killed by a Shia police unit.

The greatest failure of the US in Iraq is not that mistakes were made but that its political system has proved incapable of redressing them. Neither Mr Rumsfeld nor his lieutenants have been sacked. Paul Wolfowitz, under-secretary of defence and architect of the war, has been promoted to the World Bank.

Almost exactly a century ago the Russian empire fought a war with Japan in the belief that a swift victory would strengthen the powers-that-be in St Petersburg. Instead the Tsar's armies met defeat. Russian generals, who said that their tactic of charging Japanese machine guns with sabre-wielding cavalry had failed only because their men had attacked with insufficient brio, held their jobs. In Iraq, American generals and their political masters of demonstrable incompetence are not fired. The US is turning out to be much less of a military and political superpower than the rest of the world had supposed.

© 2005 Independent Digital (UK) Ltd
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Quote:
kvining - 5/15/2005 1:32 PM

We have a fundementally dishonest government. They win because "conservatives" are willing to sell out their own basic decency, and turn a blind eye to hypocrisy, theft, murder, and lies.
We have a fundamentally decent government pursuing our nations best interest abroad but are burdened with a minority of whining nay-sayers full of gloom and dispair unable to look beyond their narrow political self-interest and struck mute from saying anything productive or useful. All they do is denigrate and belittle the efforts of others.

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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Quote:
Botnst - 5/15/2005 8:54 PM
We have a fundamentally decent government pursuing our nations best interest abroad but are burdened with a minority of whining nay-sayers full of gloom and dispair unable to look beyond their narrow political self-interest and struck mute from saying anything productive or useful. All they do is denigrate and belittle the efforts of others.

Botnst
Do you actually believe that sappy tripe? Sooooo, we're supposed to sitdown, shutup and eat the steaming bowl of $h!t we're offered just because? Jeezus, that's f@#king naive beyond belief. One needn't be a nattering nabob of negativity to see a pattern of failed policy for what it is. You don't have to stay on the wrong side of history forever, you know. You have a choice, use it.
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Quote:
Botnst - 5/15/2005 8:54 PM

We have a fundamentally decent government pursuing our nations best interest abroad but are burdened with a minority of whining nay-sayers full of gloom and dispair unable to look beyond their narrow political self-interest and struck mute from saying anything productive or useful. All they do is denigrate and belittle the efforts of others.

Botnst
Feeling bloody today, are we? "Narrow political self-interest" = preservation of untold numbers of innocent human lives. Talk about crimes against humanity. How dare we "denigrate and belittle the efforts" of those who promote the mass slaughter of foreigners for political gain.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Here is what pisses me off - this nis now turning into some heavy-duty worldwide shit. Our fascist allies in Uzbek just fired into a crowd of 10,000 demonstrators, killing at least 500 people and wounding thousands, again the result of Islamic Fundy agitation. These koran riots spread to Indonesia and Pakistan, and could continue all this week. Egypt, which was starting to liberalize, has now outlawed public demonstrations as "bad for tourism". The Saudi fascists are manufacturing a population that identifies us as the mainstay of the corrupt government that oppresses them, and the Iranians are merrily building an atom bomb, while the Israelis decide they don't want to pull out of Gaza after all. In Iraq, the latest report state the children of Iraq are starving enmass. We are setting the stage for huge riots throughout the Muslim world. Bush and his cronies are a disaster for humanity.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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RE: Iraq: Meltdown

Quote:
Zeitgeist - 5/16/2005 12:19 AM

Quote:
Botnst - 5/15/2005 8:54 PM
We have a fundamentally decent government pursuing our nations best interest abroad but are burdened with a minority of whining nay-sayers full of gloom and dispair unable to look beyond their narrow political self-interest and struck mute from saying anything productive or useful. All they do is denigrate and belittle the efforts of others.

Botnst
Do you actually believe that sappy tripe? Sooooo, we're supposed to sitdown, shutup and eat the steaming bowl of $h!t we're offered just because? Jeezus, that's f@#king naive beyond belief. One needn't be a nattering nabob of negativity to see a pattern of failed policy for what it is. You don't have to stay on the wrong side of history forever, you know. You have a choice, use it.
Well thank you for helping me understand, without anything more than your own personal beliefs, that my beliefs as sappy tripe. Cogent, thoughtful.

B
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