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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 05:01 AM Thread Starter
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Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan (Reuters) - U.S. President George W. Bush made a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Wednesday to see for the first time the emerging democracy that replaced the Taliban ousted in 2001 after September 11.

Bush was to hold talks with President Hamid Karzai and other officials of the U.S.-backed government that took power after the Taliban regime was overthrown for refusing

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to hand over leaders of the al Qaeda network responsible for September 11.
Security was tight for what was expected to be a five-hour visit to Kabul and Bagram, the main base for U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

A group of low-flying helicopters carried Bush and his entourage from Bagram across the dusty plain over mud brick homes to Kabul, where he was received by Karzai.

"This is an opportunity to show support for a good friend and ally and an emerging democracy," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said after announcing the visit on Air Force One when the plane took off from Shannon in Ireland after refuelling.

"We stand firmly with the people of Afghanistan as they work to chart their own future," he said, adding that the visit was also an opportunity for the president to personally thank U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan.

Bush will participate in a working lunch with Karzai and hold a joint news conference. He will also participate in a ceremony to officially open the new U.S. embassy in Kabul.

The U.S. president was due to fly to India later as part of a tour that will also take him to Pakistan, another important ally in Bush's declared war on terrorism.

Bush is visiting Afghanistan at a time when the country is still troubled by a stubborn Taliban insurgency that has claimed 1,500 lives since the start of last year, including dozens of U.S. soldiers.

RELATIVE SUCCESS STORY

U.S. officials have portrayed Afghanistan as a relative success story compared to the U.S. front in Iraq.

Millions of war refugees have returned to the country and presidential elections installed Karzai in October 2004 and the country's first democratically elected parliament in September.

But more than four years after U.S. troops toppled the Taliban, al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and Taliban chief Mullah Mohammad Omar remain at large.

U.S. Lieutenant General Michael Maples, director of the Defence Intelligence Agency, provided a stark assessment of the situation while speaking at a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

He said that insurgents represented a greater threat to the expansion of Afghan government authority than at any point since the Taliban's overthrow in late 2001.

He said the Taliban-dominated insurgency remained "capable and resilient" and would be active in the coming spring, having been emboldened by perceived tactical successes.

Maples said suicide attacks had increased almost four-fold over 2004 and insurgents were increasingly using beheadings to terrorise the local population.

"This more active enemy will continue to negatively impact Afghan government and international efforts to create a stable Afghanistan," he said.

Bush's visit comes as U.S. forces have been seeking to scale down their commitment in Afghanistan while a separate NATO-led forces involved in peacekeeping take a greater role.

There is an 18,000-strong U.S.-led force stationed in Afghanistan, along with around 9,000 NATO-led peacekeepers.

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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 06:23 AM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan


Funny how they left out the part where 100,000 citizens of New Dehli protested Bush being there and the REAL reason for him being there,that being a contract for India to buy nuclear fuel from us.

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 06:49 AM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

This way, or another this is the source of the best joke I've heard this month.
"Bush Confident Bin Laden Will Be Captured"
http://home.peoplepc.com/psp/newsstory.asp?cat=news&referrer=welcome&id=2006030 1/44052a50_3421_1334520060301-1756724145
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 08:04 AM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

Another Bush tactics. When the heat is on in the home turf, he gets out of dodge. How predictable.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 02:30 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

Quote:
Kajtek1 - 3/1/2006 8:49 AM

This way, or another this is the source of the best joke I've heard this month.
"Bush Confident Bin Laden Will Be Captured"
http://home.peoplepc.com/psp/newsstory.asp?cat=news&referrer=welcome&id=2006030 1/44052a50_3421_1334520060301-1756724145
I just read this.
Bin Laden also came up in Bush's interview yesterday with ABC News anchor Elizabeth Vargas. More on that interview further down, but here's an excerpt:

"VARGAS: If when you leave the Oval Office, the White House, Osama bin Laden is still at large, will you consider that a failure?

"BUSH: What I'm looking at is management structure, operators, and whether or not we're doing everything we can to protect the American people. Of course, we'd like to bring him to justice, and we'll stay up -- you know, the only thing I can tell the American people, so long as I'm the president, we'll stay on the hunt and we'll use resources and power and influence to convince others to join us on the hunt as well. And, you know, I'm an optimistic person. I believe we will bring him to justice."

Five years, five months, 18 days and counting.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/linkset/2005/04/11/LI2005041100879.html

IMO it will be a colossal failure. I just want to wring his neck when I think about the fact that Sh!t head OBL is still alive. If anyone thinks that letting the man who orchestrated 9-11 go free for the last 5 years hasn't sent the wrong message to terrorists, then they better f-ing pony up and share whatever the hell they are smoking with me. I can barely express my rage at the Bush's lack of focus and competence on finding this guy without cursing. If anything really makes me hate Bush its this.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 02:56 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

The guy is a lying son of a bitch!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Flip, Flop & Fly: President Bush's Shifting Concerns for Catching Osama bin Laden

"I am confident he will be brought to justice. What's happening is, is that we got U.S. forces on the hunt for not only bin Laden, but anybody who plots and plans with bin Laden. There are Afghan forces on the hunt for not only bin Laden, but those who plot and plan with him. We've got Pakistan forces on the hunt." -- President Bush, Kabul Afghanistan News Conference, March 1, 2006

"I thought it [bin Laden releasing a tape days before the 2004 election] was going to help. I thought it would help remind people that if bin Laden doesn't want Bush to be the president, something must be right with Bush." -- President Bush, Quoted by author Bill Sammon in Strategery, released February 28, 2006

"I don't know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don't care. It's not that important. It's not our priority."- President Bush, March 13, 2002

"The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him."- President Bush, September 13, 2001

http://watchingwashington.blogspot.com/2006/03/flip-flop-fly-president-bushs-shifting.html
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 05:15 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

I wish OBL pops a good one at him while he parades around Afghan.

Bush is a focking waste.

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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 06:59 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

Quote:
Nutz 4 Benz - 3/1/2006 8:23 AM


Funny how they left out the part where 100,000 citizens of New Dehli protested Bush being there and the REAL reason for him being there,that being a contract for India to buy nuclear fuel from us.
Funny how you left out that over 60% of Indians consider the USA a friendly country.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 07:15 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

Quote:
Botnst - 3/1/2006 8:59 PM

Quote:
Nutz 4 Benz - 3/1/2006 8:23 AM


Funny how they left out the part where 100,000 citizens of New Dehli protested Bush being there and the REAL reason for him being there,that being a contract for India to buy nuclear fuel from us.
Funny how you left out that over 60% of Indians consider the USA a friendly country.

Bot
Bot, the news doesn't try to desensationalize events like that, there is no money in it! However, India has something like 1.1 Billion citizens, and if only 440,000,000 are represented by those demonstrators, I think it is probably not wise to taunt them. Given the way things work in the world, and that many of the 660,000,000 of India's pro-American leaning population does not seem inspired to counter demonstrate, I would not really count on that 60% as supporters. Jim
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 07:32 PM
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RE: Bush finally takes to Afghanistan

Quote:
JimSmith - 3/1/2006 9:15 PM

Quote:
Botnst - 3/1/2006 8:59 PM

Quote:
Nutz 4 Benz - 3/1/2006 8:23 AM


Funny how they left out the part where 100,000 citizens of New Dehli protested Bush being there and the REAL reason for him being there,that being a contract for India to buy nuclear fuel from us.
Funny how you left out that over 60% of Indians consider the USA a friendly country.

Bot
Bot, the news doesn't try to desensationalize events like that, there is no money in it! However, India has something like 1.1 Billion citizens, and if only 440,000,000 are represented by those demonstrators, I think it is probably not wise to taunt them. Given the way things work in the world, and that many of the 660,000,000 of India's pro-American leaning population does not seem inspired to counter demonstrate, I would not really count on that 60% as supporters. Jim
Who is taunting them?

Put another way, the demographics of the demonstration reveal that it was predominantly Muslim. Looking at Indian politics, not ours, what will the reaction be of the Hindu majority?

Probably a massive demonstration of Muslim discontent will be largely ignored by the Congress I and their supporters. But it will inflame the nutty side of the Hindu party (can't recall it's name at the moment) You know, the nationalist group that murders Muslims as an expression of Hindu nationalism. They will use this as even more evidence of a Muslim threat, which they don't much need given the attack on the Indian Parliament and so forth.

What are the long-term implications for the USA? Which faction in India, if any, should we view as sympathetic to the USA? Which, if any, should we view as harmful?

It is more interesting to me to look at the world as greater than what one sees when viewing through the lens of George Bush. There's an awful lot of interesting things going on in which he is not an important figure. It is more that likely that Americans are guilty of supposing they are of greater importance than they are. Projecting Bush into everything is an example of that mindset.

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