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Thanks For The Genocide!
Much as I think we shouldn't have gone into Iraq (Osama attacks the WTC and we attack a sovereign nation that had nothing to do with it?) and I think it's utterly horrible American soldiers are dying because Bush and his puppeteers were stupid and arrogant -- I also think we can't leave. We broke it, we have to pay for it. For how long? I'm really not sure.

But Saddam, horrible as he was, held back the civil war we've unleashed. And David Brooks points out in The New York Time$, what we've unleashed is worse than civil war -- it's "a civil war using all the tactics of genocide"...

...and it has all the conditions to get much worse. As a Newsweek correspondent, Christian Caryl, wrote recently from Baghdad, “What’s clear is that we’re far closer to the beginning of this cycle of violence than to its end.” As John Burns of The Times said on “Charlie Rose” last night, “Friends of mine who are Iraqis — Shiite, Sunni, Kurd — all foresee a civil war on a scale with bloodshed that would absolutely dwarf what we’re seeing now.”

Iraq already has the warlord structures that caused mass murder in Rwanda, Bosnia, Sierra Leone and elsewhere. Violent, stupid men who would be the dregs of society under normal conditions rise amid the trauma, chaos and stress and become revered leaders.

They command squads of young men who leave the moral universe and have no future in a peacetime world. They kill for fun, faith and profit — because they find it more rewarding to massacre and loot than to farm or labor. They are manipulated by political leaders with a savage zero-sum mind-set, who know they must kill or be killed, and who are instituting strategic ethnic cleansing campaigns to expand their turf.

Worse, Iraq already has the psychological conditions that have undergirded the great bloodbaths of recent years. Iraqi minds, according to the most sensitive reporting, have already been rewired by the experiences of trauma and extreme stress.

Some people become hyperaggressive and turn into perfect killers. Others endure a phased mental shutdown that looks like severe depression. They lose their memory and become passive and fatalistic. They become perfect victims.

Amid the turmoil, the complexity of life falls away, and things are reduced to stark polarities: Sunni-Shiite or Shiite-Sunni, human-subhuman. Once this mental descent has begun, it is possible to kill without compunction.

In Rwanda, for example, the journalist Jean Hatzfeld interviewed a Hutu man who had killed his Tutsi neighbor. “At the fatal instant,” the man recalled, “I did not see in him what he had been before. ... His features were indeed similar to those of the person I knew, but nothing firmly reminded me that I had lived beside him for a long time.”

The weakness of the Bush surge plan is that it relies on the Maliki government to somehow be above this vortex. But there are no impartial institutions in Iraq, ready to foster reconciliation. As ABC’s Jonathan Karl notes in The Weekly Standard, the Shiite finance ministries now close banks that may finance Sunni investments. The Saadrist health ministries dismiss Sunni doctors. The sectarian vortex is not fomented by extremists who are appendages to society. The vortex is through and through.

The Democratic approach, as articulated by Senator Jim Webb — simply get out of Iraq “in short order” — is a howl of pain that takes no note of the long-term political and humanitarian consequences. Does the party that still talks piously about ending bloodshed in Darfur really want to walk away from a genocide the U.S. is partly responsible for? Are U.S. troops going to be pulled back to secure bases to watch passively while rivers of Iraqi blood lap at their gates? How many decades will Americans be fighting to quell the cycle of regional violence set loose by a transnational Sunni-Shiite explosion?

Posted by aalkon at January 28, 2007 11:01 AM

Comments

I don't see the logic in Bush fixing his profound stupidity with... more of the same. David Brooks' tone suggests he's more smitten with his own imagery than with recommending a solution. I assume a number of experts correctly predicted our current failure and, had Bush listened to them, we would have either (1) not entered Iraq or (2) addressed this as the cultural problem it is. Clearly our military presence has only incrementally worsened the conflict. Had we not invaded, Iraqi society might still have reached this point - we merely took the lid off. Are we responsible now? Largely. But we are grossly overestimating our power to fix this, and, again, should address it as the cultural problem it is, which poses the question of whether one nation can fix another nation. The only historical solution I know of is to destroy their culture.

Posted by: Dave at January 28, 2007 6:20 AM

And yet another leftist makes the argument that "arabs aren't capable of self-government, they need a stron-arm dictator to keep them in line."

And if that's true, then the only options we have left are isolation or genocide.

Build walls, or build bombs. Your choice.

I say we have one last go at beating some sense into their heads. If that doesn't work, we write off the entire area, isolate them best we can (which means everyone kicks the oil habit, cold-turkey) and hope that they never develop any industry on their own.

Posted by: brian at January 28, 2007 7:54 AM

> Bush and his puppeteers were
> stupid and arrogant

Millions supported the war. Liberals lose votes when they pretend there was a putsch.

> We broke it,

Decades ago.

> we have to pay for it.

Also, no one else has the balls. It's our responsibility.

> held back the civil war
> we've unleashed.

So put in a sentence, Amy. Like this: "The little brown people can't handle liberty. They don't even want freedom. They're savages who need to be ruled by a firm hand and a sharp whip. They love workin' for the man! You should hear 'em out in the fields, singing...."

Americans rejected that rhetoric. They'd heard it before.

>> "a civil war using all the
>> tactics of genocide"

So there was a *pretty* war that could have happened if only Rumsfeld had been nicer to Helen Thomas?

>> Violent, stupid men who
>> would be the dregs of society
>> under normal conditions

What are normal conditions? Normal for Boise in 1957, or normal for Tikrit in 2002? Listen, I wish this invasion were paying off. After four years, children are coming into adulthood knowing nothing but bumpy Humvees in the street. But let's not pretend it was tidy taxicabs and Bluebird schoolbuses under Saddam.

> Iraqi minds, according to the
> most sensitive reporting

I want more sensitive reporting! There should be more of that! The Sunday LAT should go like this: Front section, Business, Sports, Sensitivity, Book Review, Opinion, Calendar, Fry's insert....

> already been rewired by

GRRR. "Rewired"? *When*? What is the exact hour where we should have changed policy before things got too ugly? 1968? 1979? 1994? And what should we have done?

> Once this mental descent has
> begun, it is possible to kill
> without compunction.

Grade school psychology.

> relies on the Maliki government to
> somehow be above this vortex.

I'm not a surge guy, but...

> How many decades will Americans
> be fighting to quell

What should we have done? Bush played the hand badly, but not cynically.

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 8:24 AM

>What should we have done?


Been a little more patient with the UN. As I recall, even Dominque de Villepin only asked for one more week.

Posted by: Stu "El Inglés" Harris at January 28, 2007 9:08 AM

No, what I remember was that he said France would "never, never" support holding Iraq accountable for it's transgressions against the UN resolutions.

Do you seriously, seriously contend that the world was seven days away from Bliss when the administration fucked it up?

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 9:32 AM

France and Russia were against the Iraq invasion for the same reason they are against intervening in Sudan.

Oil.

France and Russia were the prime beneficiaries of Saddam's largesse under Oil-for-Palaces. They didn't want him held accountable, they wanted him declared in compliance and sanctions lifted so they could exercise all those oil options that they got from Saddam.

France's state oil company has a massive contract with the government in Khartoum. Think they wanna mess that up by imposing sanctions on Sudan?

Follow the money. Yep, even us. Our rationale? It's cheaper long-term to take out the Jihadi breeding grounds than it is to pick up the pieces of a major terrorist attack every 5 to 10 years. And keeping the control of oil in many hands is a convenient side-effect.

If I were assigning fault to the Administration for short-sightedness, I would have to go with the failure to presume the interference of Iran in the internal affairs of Iraq. Bush probably assumed that Iran wouldn't make a play for the region. Hell, I didn't think they had the balls to do it either. But they did.

The $64,000 question is: "Why aren't we doing something about Iran?"

Posted by: brian at January 28, 2007 10:46 AM

I have no idea how to fix things now -- stay, go, add more, take away.

But I would debate the oft-repeated statement that "we broke it, we fix it." As though Iraq was in perfect working order before we got there.

It wasn't. It wasn't broken in the same way it is today, but it was far from a sanctuary of peace and lovingkindness. It was a collection of disparate ideologies being sat on by a big fat grenade of a dictator. We pulled the pin out, and now here's the shrapnel, flying around.

Phrases like "we broke it, we gotta fix it" are easy to say, but they really miss the point.

Posted by: Randee at January 28, 2007 11:09 AM

And yet another leftist makes the argument that "arabs aren't capable of self-government, they need a strong-arm dictator to keep them in line."

I'm no leftist, but it's difficult to find counter-examples to this assertion. Only 1 comes to mind: Turkey. Pretty much the rest of the Muslim world abounds with repressive regimes.

Just sayin'.

Posted by: justin case at January 28, 2007 11:16 AM

"Build walls, or build bombs. Your choice."

I vote for walls.

Posted by: JS at January 28, 2007 11:46 AM

>Do you seriously, seriously contend that the world was seven days away from Bliss...etc


I dunno what we were seven days away from. I just think that Bush/Blair should have let us find out.

Posted by: Stu "El Inglés" Harris at January 28, 2007 12:00 PM

Walls are SO September 10th.

> Just sayin'.

On Meet the Press last month, Brooks said: "A great historian, Michael Oren, says there are three authentic nation states in the Middle East: Turkey, Iran and Egypt. All the rest are phony nations."

We note that Israel was omitted from the list. Perhaps we can regard this as oversight.

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 12:01 PM

> should have let us find out

I call it the Iacocca principle: Liberals want things to go great by accident.

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 12:04 PM

> Just sayin'.

On Meet the Press last month, Brooks said: "A great historian, Michael Oren, says there are three authentic nation states in the Middle East: Turkey, Iran and Egypt. All the rest are phony nations."

We note that Israel was omitted from the list. Perhaps we can regard this as oversight.

Not sure the point here in your response, Crid. Are you indicating that I, as this historian did, neglected to include Israel? If so, a more careful reading of my post is needed.

Or, were you making the more subtle point regarding the fact that the borders of most countries in the Middle East were artificially imposed by ex-colonial powers, and that this historical fact (that we're not dealing with nation-states) may be part of the problem there?

Or something else?

Posted by: justin case at January 28, 2007 12:29 PM

Nothing between the lines, not even about Israel. Most of these nations are bogus, and are manipulated more by sub- and super-national forces than by anything in their statehood.

We (the USA) pushed our luck as far as is could go to get oil cheaply. The problems are not going to go away, can't be contained by walls, and wouldn't have even if Bush hadn't been elected.

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 12:39 PM

Have we EVER "exported democracy" successfully? The "little brown people" who aren't ready for it is, actually, probably, the case. I don't see them as "brown," per se -- simply polarized by conflict based on religious differences; i.e., driven by primitive thinking and behavior to kill each other when a big killer like Saddam isn't keeping a cork in it all.

And how much of this huge mistake is due to the high-level idiots salivating to get into Iran having little knowledge of the society they were "bringing democracy" to? Sunni? Shiite? Oh, they're difference? They don't like each other?

Luckily, we can always count on Condi for her expertise on dealing with the Cold War. Just as we're purging our ranks of Arabic translators simply because they're homos. Genius!

Posted by: Amy Alkon at January 28, 2007 2:48 PM

>Liberals want things...etc


Crid, I've mentioned this before, please do try to keep up. I'm not a Liberal, I'm a Socialist.

Posted by: Stu "El Inglés" Harris at January 28, 2007 2:49 PM

And I agree with you there...the idea of "walls" is not a practical one, and the problems are not going to go away, but attacking Iraq was decidely not the answer, and now we're in. For the long and winding haul. How many more kids are going to agree to be cannon fodder? I guess if people still believe the notion that Saddam was responsible for 9/11. All hail Fox news and the right-wing panderers (the chimps on the left are the conspiracy theorists).

Posted by: Amy Alkon at January 28, 2007 2:55 PM

> Have we EVER "exported
> democracy" successfully?

The tuneups we brought to Germany and Japan made a world of difference.

> driven by primitive thinking

Don't be smug.

> translators simply because
> they're homos. Genius!

You're still upset about the prescription drug thing too, right?

> not a Liberal, I'm
> a Socialist.

Shoezy / fitsy, wearsy.

> and now we're in.

You can't seem to take this point: We were *always* in. Your whole life.

> All hail Fox news

It's amusing how much credit those little fuckers get!

Via Reynolds: http://tinyurl.com/2vawmf

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 3:29 PM

Amy, I know a lot of "right-wingers", and not one of them has ever thought that Iraq had anything to do with 9/11. None.

Iraq is part of the larger problem - that being nations that willingly fund terrorist organizations to take out their vengence on the west.

You seem to forget that we have been at (declared) war with Iraq since 1990, and (undeclared) war with Iran since 1979.

Saddam was part of the problem. Those sanctions? They were on the way out. And Saddam would have had no problem sending money and weapons to Al Qaeda (as he was already doing for the Palestinians) for them to use on us.

This isn't a matter of "your broke it, you bought it". It's a matter of "This dumb son-of-a-bitch still doesn't get it".

Saddam needed to go. Ahmadinejad and the "Supreme Islamic Council" need to go. Any government that is actively preaching Jihad needs to go.

To pursue any other strategy is to (foolishly) put one's faith in maniacs and the imbeciles that follow them.

I was called a number of hideous things for making the point that we realistically have three options - reform, isolate, annihilate. The invasion of Iraq is our attempt at the first. The reason being that we would prefer to avoid the last.

And the day that an "Islamic Bomb" detonates anywhere in the western world is the day that the last option happens.

I think it's reasonable to say that eliminating one fifth of the world's population would be a bad thing, if not politically, then environmentally.

Posted by: brian at January 28, 2007 5:57 PM

Saddam and Al Qaeda were enemies, not collaborators. From the Senate Intelligence Committee report:

http://thinkprogress.org/2006/09/10/phase-ii-report-conclusion/

[Bin] Ladin generally opposed collaboration [with Baghdad]. (p. 65)

According to debriefs of multiple detainees — including Saddam Hussein and former Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz — and capture documents, Saddam did not trust al-Qa’ida or any other radical Islamist group and did not want to cooperate with them. (p. 67)

Aziz underscored Saddam’s distrust of Islamic extremists like bin Ladin, stating that when the Iraqi regime started to see evidence that Wahabists had come to Iraq, “the Iraqi regime issued a decree aggressively outlawing Wahabism in Iraq and threatening offenders with execution.” (p. 67)

Another senior Iraqi official stated that Saddam did not like bin Ladin because he called Saddam an “unbeliever.” (p.73)

Conclusion 1: … Postwar findings indicate that Saddam Hussein was distrustful of al-Qa’ida and viewed Islamic extremists as a threat to his regime, refusing all requests from al Qa’ida to provide material or operational support. Debriefings of key leaders of the former Iraqi regime indicate that Saddam distrusted Islamic radicals in general, and al Qa’ida in particular… Debriefings also indicate that Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al Qa’ida. No postwar information suggests that the Iraqi regime attempted to facilitate a relationship with bin Ladin. (p. 105)

Conclusion 5:… Postwar information indicates that Saddam Hussein attempted, unsuccessfully, to locate and capture al-Zarqawi and that the regime did not have a relationship with, harbor, or turn a blind eye toward Zarqawi. (p. 109)

Posted by: Amy Alkon at January 28, 2007 6:08 PM

Amy - either the senate committee report is completely buggered, or Saddam doesn't consider Islamic Jihad and Hamas to be 'Islamic Extremists'. He was, after all, sending them money and weapons.

Saddam was more than anything, ruled by the doctrine of "the enemy of my enemy is my friend".

Posted by: brian at January 28, 2007 6:11 PM

Hitchens likes to call it "a Hitler-Stalin pact."

Posted by: Crid at January 28, 2007 6:23 PM

And yet another leftist makes the argument that "arabs aren't capable of self-government, they need a stron-arm dictator to keep them in line."
Posted by: brian

Given that the rightys felt the arabs werent capable of standing up to Saddam on their own i would say that people on both sides like to make easy genralazations to score cheap points with their respective sheep

The $64,000 question is: "Why aren't we doing something about Iran?"
Posted by: brian

I wonder if we would have ever had a problem with Iran ad we not overthrown their government in order to gain control of their oil. I also wonder if 40yrs from now politicains wont be making Iraq out to be the boogyman they currently want Iran to be.

Posted by: lujlp at January 29, 2007 12:53 AM

Amy, I know a lot of "right-wingers", and not one of them has ever thought that Iraq had anything to do with 9/11. None.
---Congradulations, you know some smart righties, but anectdotal evidence is contered by other anecdotal eveidence - i got in a fight today with someone who belives that saddam funded the 9/11 hijackers and gave money to al quidea - never mind the fact that Cheany himself said there was no connection this man still belives because of what was falsely reported in the lead up to the war

Iraq is part of the larger problem - that being nations that willingly fund terrorist organizations to take out their vengence on the west.
--- like out alies the saudis, or the untied arab emerites who we were going to let run the ports, and lets not forget that the US trained bin laden, some of his followers, and others in these terorist tactics when they were useful tools against the USSR

You seem to forget that we have been at (declared) war with Iraq since 1990, and (undeclared) war with Iran since 1979.
--- did you ever stop to wonder how all those kuwaites had little american flags to wave for the camera when our soilders first got there?
And maybe we wouldnt have a problem with Iran had we let them run their own country and not overthrown their government

Saddam was part of the problem. Those sanctions? They were on the way out. And Saddam would have had no problem sending money and weapons to Al Qaeda (as he was already doing for the Palestinians) for them to use on us.
--- dont recall the palestinns attacking us, and given saddam got them money while under sanctions why couldnt he get it to bin laden? This is the dumbest comment I have seen you make so far

Saddam needed to go. Ahmadinejad and the "Supreme Islamic Council" need to go. Any government that is actively preaching Jihad needs to go.
--Unless they are an ally and give us a price break on oil, right?

I was called a number of hideous things for making the point that we realistically have three options - reform, isolate, annihilate. The invasion of Iraq is our attempt at the first. The reason being that we would prefer to avoid the last.
----reform thru force of arms? and if you want annihilation just stand back they can do a good job of it themselves

Posted by: lujlp at January 29, 2007 12:55 AM

"Iraq is part of the larger problem - that being nations that willingly fund terrorist organizations to take out their vengence on the west.
--- like out allies the Saudis, or the United Arab Emirates, who we were going to let run the ports, and let's not forget that the US trained Bin Ladin, some of his followers, and others in these terorist tactics when they were useful tools against the USSR"

I don't count the Saudis as our allies. Bin Ladin and his ilk would have risen with or without our aid.

"...maybe we wouldn't have a problem with Iran had we let them run their own country and not overthrown their government"

So a couple of CIA agents arrange for Mossadegh to be hustled out the door, and Iran forevermore has maximum hatred for us. I didn't know the CIA was so powerful. They seem to be slipping lately.

"Saddam was part of the problem. Those sanctions? They were on the way out. And Saddam would have had no problem sending money and weapons to Al Qaeda (as he was already doing for the Palestinians) for them to use on us.
--- dont recall the palestinns attacking us, and given saddam got them money while under sanctions why couldnt he get it to bin laden? This is the dumbest comment I have seen you make so far"

This comment is not dumb. Saddam harbored several high profile terrorists, e.g. Abu Nidal, Abu Abbas. The point was that Saddam had no problem helping terrrorists, including those who harmed us.

"Saddam needed to go. Ahmadinejad and the "Supreme Islamic Council" need to go. Any government that is actively preaching Jihad needs to go.
--Unless they are an ally and give us a price break on oil, right?"

Wrong.

Posted by: doombuggy at January 29, 2007 5:46 AM

Actually, The Pali's did murder a US diplomat. Something our own State Dept covered up until it was declassified.
Now it is old history and not worth covering. Keep those blinkers on.

Of course, they have also killed Americans in suicide bombings.

Posted by: Jon at January 29, 2007 11:28 AM

You may not consider the saudis allies but the american government does.

"Saddam was part of the problem. Those sanctions? They were on the way out. And Saddam would have had no problem sending money and weapons to Al Qaeda (as he was already doing for the Palestinians) for them to use on us.
--- dont recall the palestinns attacking us, and given saddam got them money while under sanctions why couldnt he get it to bin laden? This is the dumbest comment I have seen you make so far"

This comment is not dumb. Saddam harbored several high profile terrorists, e.g. Abu Nidal, Abu Abbas. The point was that Saddam had no problem helping terrrorists, including those who harmed us.
---Acctually your point was 'the sanctions were the only thing stopping Saddam from giving money to one particular group of terrorists' And it was indeed a stupid point.

--Unless they are an ally and give us a price break on oil, right?"

Wrong
---Then why havent we invaded any oppresive oil based regime that is playing nice with our oil supply?

Posted by: LUJLP at January 29, 2007 12:42 PM

"Then why haven't we invaded any oppressive oil based regime that is playing nice with our oil supply?"

We're not done. We have to leave something for Hillary to do.

"Actually, your point was that 'the sanctions were the only thing stopping Saddam from giving money to one particular group of terrorists'."

I didn't write the original post. I saw it as: #1 point: the sanctions were on the way out, opening the door for even more mischief. #2 point: Saddam was helping terrorists anyway, even with the sanctions, and if Al Qaeda ever fit his groove, he would help them.

Posted by: doombuggy at January 29, 2007 3:00 PM

If you think that we are ever going to invade a country that willingly gives us oil then your more of an immoral monster then those who lied us into Iraq

And lets not forget american companies were also ignoring the sanctions on Iraq, its not like we have any right to be upset that the sanctions werent working when we were breaking them ourselves

Also re-read brians posts acording to him saddam was allies with bin laden, therefor if you think clearly about what he had written his point was indeed that sanctions were the only thing stopping Saddam from funding bin laden.

Posted by: lujlp at January 30, 2007 1:59 AM

"If you think that we are ever going to invade a country that willingly gives us oil then your more of an immoral monster then those who lied us into Iraq"

It's good to see you have clarity as to who is the enemy.

"And lets not forget american companies were also ignoring the sanctions on Iraq, its not like we have any right to be upset that the sanctions werent working when we were breaking them ourselves"

Don't let perfection be the enemy of the good.

"Also re-read brians posts acording to him saddam was allies with bin laden, therefor if you think clearly about what he had written his point was indeed that sanctions were the only thing stopping Saddam from funding bin laden."

We can't advance the discussion by dwelling on small details. I'm making the point now, that sanctions were less than effective against Saddam, and he aided terrorists that suited his goals.

Posted by: doombuggy at January 30, 2007 8:39 AM

The US has funded our own terrorists when we saw fit.

Our allies in the middle east fund the terrorists that attack us. The administration wanted to turn over port security to the country which not only launders terrorist funds, but acctually made the process SIMPILER after we asked them to make it harded for terrorists to trasfer their funds.

Tell me again what it was that Saddam did that made him an enemy, aside from his plan to trade oil in euroes.

Posted by: lujlp at January 30, 2007 8:25 PM

"The US has funded our own terrorists when we saw fit."

I suppose you include your local police in this.

"...The administration wanted to turn over port security to the country which not only launders terrorist funds, but acctually made the process SIMPILER after we asked them to make it harded for terrorists to trasfer their funds."

Sometimes comments on the internet veer so far off, they don't need a reply. One hint: it was operation of the ports, not port security that the UAE company was getting.

"Tell me again what it was that Saddam did that made him an enemy, aside from his plan to trade oil in euroes."

He turned Iraq into a seething cauldron of ethnic and sectarian hatred, with no buffering mechanisms, so at the first opportunity, the Iraqis started killing each other.

Posted by: doombuggy at January 30, 2007 10:20 PM

doombuggy your an idiot, the CIA trained bin lden to terrorise the USSR, we funded terrorists and rebels throught central america. What the hell ever gave you the impression that I thoght that cops were terrorists?

You accuse me of veering off?? Where did that come from

As for my coment about the ports, there is very little, if anything, in the way of security at the momment so turning the operation of the ports over to terrorist finaciers makes no fucking sense, and I brought it up to highlight the administrations hypocracy in deciding which countries and regimes they consider to be enemys.
It wasnt off topic moron, it was directly to the point and set up my question of what threat Saddam posed to the USA.

And FYI Iraq was a cauldren of hatred long before its boarders were even drawn, Sunnis, Sheites, and Kurds have been afert each others for centuries.

So try agin brainiac - what threat did Saddam pose to the US. Cause I see no nukes, I see no weapons labs, I dont see tons of chemical and biological weapons, nor do I see fleets of unmaned airial capable of attacking America.

Posted by: lujlp at January 31, 2007 12:26 AM

I can tell by your syntax and spelling that you are really smart.

When you start name calling, that is a signal debate has ended.

I'll answer you just for fun.

Maybe the CIA trained Bin Laden in an indirect way during the Afghan war in the "80s, but that was not a formative event for the fellow. Such a small connection is not something on which to base an argument. Likewise the old saw about South and Latin America. We provided funding and training for some groups that misbehaved, but it is not the policy of the US to use terrorism. Using your logic, since we provide funding and training for local police, does their occasional misbehavior mean the US advocates such?

You veered off onto the path of misunderstanding on the ports. The UAE firm in question is one of only a few companies that operates ports around the world. Alot of our shipping originates in oversea ports that they currently run, yet no one complains about that, because there is nothing there to complain about. It was a manufactured complaint you bought into. The company is separate from the UAE government, which has made pretty big strides to improve their anti-terror record. It would do us better to remain engaged with them.

Saddam made Iraq a worse country through his rule. The historic tensions were heightened under him. But, alas, I guess that is our fault.

Saddam had the desire and almost the capability for nukes. He had chemical and biological weapon programs. He didn't have as much as we thought, but he was enough of a threat to require action. To wish for the good old days is no solution.

Posted by: doombuggy at January 31, 2007 2:13 PM

heya moron, name calling is a polite way to refain from calling you a fucking peice of shit, as for speling and syntax I will admit that I do mispell words, occasionally I fail to hit a key hard enough and often tyoe too quickly and skip the occasional word - however falling back on mistakes in spelling and grammer to invlidate an argument shows a predispostion on your part and allows you to justify ignoring someone elses line of thought

1 - we trained bin laden, we gave him the know how to do what he did, by the way we also gave into his demand to close the bases in saudi arabia - mybe the reason there hasnt been another terrorist attack is because bush gave him what he wanted

2- the UAE is the world leader in terrorist finacing if they will not curb theur activites why should they get any finacial benfit from the US and what would have stopped them from smuggling in weapons or terrorists - true they would not have been in charge of security - but as I pointed out we really dont have much in the way of security at the moment do we?

3 I never said Saddam was a nice guy, but be honest you originally made him out to be the sole reason for ethnic divides - did you back away from that premise because you did some resech or because you knew noone would really swallow that load of shit?

4 Saddam may have desired nukes, but the capability? Prove it, show me one photo of a nuclear enrichment facilty, show me one photo of a weapons lab, show me one photo of a line of drums filled with chemical or biological weapons

Posted by: lujlp at February 1, 2007 2:43 AM

Well, I guess you win the debate because you are the best at name calling.

You're arguments aren't that good. Your typing mistakes detract, also. Just pointing that out. I won't hold it against you.

1 - "we trained bin laden, we gave him the know how to do what he did, by the way we also gaveinto his demand to close the bases in saudi arabia - mybe the reason there hasnt been another terrorist attack is because bush gave him what he wanted"

This is weak reasoning. We may have added to Bin Laden's knowledge base in an indirect way, but he had more influential sources elsewhere.

The Saudi Government asked us to close the bases. Maybe Bin Laden had some influence on them, but we are in the Middle East now more than ever.

There has been several terrorists attempts on American interests since closing the Saudi bases. Al Queda is still after us.

2. The UAE was at one time a banking hub for some money tranfers to terrorists groups. They have since tightened their act.

3. No, I never said Saddam was the sole reason for ethnic divides. I said he was part of the problem.

4. Try this link: http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/iraq/nuke/program.htm

It seems to me you write more for effect, rather than from any understanding of the issues. Often those who know least about a subject write with the most inflammatory passion for it.

Posted by: doombuggy at February 1, 2007 5:43 AM

BTW, I threw in a wording error to make you feel better.

Posted by: doombuggy at February 1, 2007 6:04 AM

1 There havent been any on americn soil

2 Only after we refused to allow them business oppounites within our borders

3 I never said you said he was the sole reason, I said you implied - theres a difference, look up the it up in a dictionary

4 Interesting link, seems 90% focuses on Iaq before the first gulf war, half the links withing the document fail to link to the orginal documnet your page is refering to and of the links that do work most seem to suggest that any program had by Saddam was being curailed by regular IAEA inspectons. I also noticed the document starts out by saying that Iaq never got post the design stage - ie they never started on a bomb just the plans for one. Also it seemed the document focues on what Iaq might have done had they NOT sufferd thru their defeat in the Gulf war.

SO please try again

Also given that we opened the bases in saudi arabia with the blessing of the royal familly why would they want us to close it at the exact same time as a terrorist demaded it and attacked us to drive home the seriousness of his demands?

Posted by: lujp at February 1, 2007 12:42 PM

Just because there hasn't been an Al Queda attack on American soil doesn't mean they wouldn't like to do some more. All videos from Bin Laden and Al Zahawiri have called for more destruction to be visited upon the US.

After 9/11 the UAE threw in with us. It seems we could be decent enough to treat them like the ally they are. That's kind of the point of a war on terror: get all the allies you can, defeat the bad guys.

"I never said you said he was the sole reason, I said you implied - theres a difference" In this context, that is a distinction without a difference.

After the First Gulf War, the ceasefire included an inspection of Iraq's weapon programs. We were shocked at how far along they were. In a way, this set the stage for the 2nd Gulf war. Since our intelligence had erred on the side of optimism pre-1992, policy makers figured they better get on the side of pessimism on such issues later on. Iraq under Saddam was a significant threat to develop a nuclear weapon. Maybe it doesn't scare you now, but few were so sure in 2003.

Bin Laden made three major demands in conjunction with 9/11: stop supporting Israel, stop supporting the royal family in Saudi, and get US troops out of Saudi. I don't think al queda would slack off if we did all these, mainly because they need a ginned up external enemy, and appeasement seldom works (look at Israel's withdraw from Gaza. What did they get? More attacks). Besides, we still have several hundred troops stationed at good ol' Prince Sultan air base.

Posted by: doombuggy at February 1, 2007 11:11 PM

Given all the destruction bin laden is claiming to want to rain down dont you find it odd that bush dosent care about locating him?

The UAE may have claimed to support us after 9/11 but as I pointed out, and as you never argued the point, there government did nothing to curtail terrorist finacing and acttually made it easier.

In 2003 the few who werent sure were those who got their weapons inspection report synopsis from the presidents state of the union address, those who listened to the people acctually doing the job of looking for weapons in Iraq heard them saying that Iraq no longer had the capability - a claim weapons inspectors have never backed away from and everyone conveneintly chooses to ignore.

Hell you directed me to a page which said Saddam never got past planning a bomb as diffinitive proof that he had a working nuke.

There used to be thousands on the air base, and there used to be a second fully manned base as well, also with the saudi royal familly opening their borders and all the young jihadist going off to die in Iraq they really dont need our support anymore - their biggest threat is going off to die.

Posted by: lujlp at February 1, 2007 11:30 PM

I'm sure Bush cares about finding Bin Laden. Maybe more resources would have flushed him. Maybe not. The point here is that he has been driven far underground and away from a leadership posistion.

Yes, prior to 9/11, the UAE was too indiscriminate about who could use their banking system.

It is easier now in hindsight to trumpet Saddam's lack of capability. At the time, the weapon inspectors could not make a definitive case, for a couple of reasons, a large one being the Iraqi opaqueness about the whole deal.

"Hell you directed me to a page which said Saddam never got past planning a bomb as diffinitive proof that he had a working nuke."

The point of the link was that Saddam's program pre-1992 had a good chance of giving him a nuclear capability. You can't wait until he has one and then say "bad boy". You have to get there earlier. That's why there is the concern over N. Korea and Iran now. They don't actually have practical devices, but they have a program in place.

Our relationship with Saudi is...interesting. The Sauds never publicly admitted we had bases. The air base was mothballed and left with a skeleton crew for a possible re-animation in the future. After 9/11 some administration officials wanted to cut all ties with Saudi. (I'd vote for that.)

Posted by: doombuggy at February 2, 2007 12:20 PM

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