pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #0 of 41: angie (coiro) Mon 12 Apr 04 18:27
A topic for war news and discussion.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #1 of 41: angie (coiro) Mon 12 Apr 04 18:29
Do we or don't we need more troops in Iraq?  Last week, the word out
of Washington was yes, we do; then Bush said no, we don't; now the
commander  of US Forces in the Middle East says, yes, we do:

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #2 of 41: angie (coiro) Mon 12 Apr 04 18:32
and ...
Seven contractors from a Halliburton subsidiary are missing in Iraq:

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #3 of 41: My Pseud was sent to India (gerry) Mon 12 Apr 04 21:30
I think, as a gesture of good will, we should hand over Halliburton,
lock, stock, & barrel, and all of their corporate officers, too, to the
people of Iraq.   
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #4 of 41: [the lack of coherence is intentional] (wellelp) Mon 12 Apr 04 21:51
You really must hate Iraq!
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #5 of 41: Erik (levant) Tue 13 Apr 04 04:48
Technically, there have never been enough Coalition troops in Iraq 
to garantuee a regulary occupation. That was clear from he start when 
after the fall of Bagdad, the US troops couldn't protect hospitals 
or museums. Nor garantuee safety on the street. And they aknowledged 
as much when they withdrawed their troops from the towns and put 
them in fortified compounds outside the cities. 

But it's not just more troops. The US needs more troops who understand 
Iraq or are willing to learn. And are trained in policing cities. The 
few US commanders who reach out to the local population and are aware 
of the local sensibilities are the exception. The Iraqis themselves 
point out how Basra has been relatively calm because the British there 
have historicals bands with their ex-colony, and learned community 
policing in Northern Ireland.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #6 of 41: The wind will catch your feet and set you flying (ckridge) Tue 13 Apr 04 05:55
Suppose we just say "Whoops no WMD after all, sorry about all the dead
people," agree to pay reparations, and go home?
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #7 of 41: Erik (levant) Tue 13 Apr 04 06:16
Or eat humble pie, and ask NATO and/or UN in to avoid 
a full-blown civil war. The "Iraqisation" has totaly 
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #8 of 41: Jett Rink (jettrinkjr) Tue 13 Apr 04 07:48
Don't let that word "Coalition" fool ya!
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #9 of 41: Cleave the general ear (ronks) Tue 13 Apr 04 09:22
From today's online BBC news:

"Foreigners are urged to leave Iraq, as four Italians join a list of 40
hostages held by the US-led coalition's opponents."

I imagine this does not include troops, alas.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #10 of 41: the antithesis of snacky (judge) Tue 13 Apr 04 09:40
"We ain't no furriners!  We're the OCCUPYING FORCE!"
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #11 of 41: Jett Rink (jettrinkjr) Tue 13 Apr 04 10:06
Surrounded though we may be!
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #12 of 41: angie (coiro) Tue 13 Apr 04 10:39

9/10/2001: Ashcroft turns down appeal for more anti-terrorism funding!

From Reuters:
(The 9/11 commission) focused on a May 10 Justice Department document
that set out priorities for that year. The top priorities cited were
reducing gun violence and combating drug trafficking. It made no
mention of counterterrorism.

When Dale Watson, the head of the counterterrorism division, saw the
report, he "almost fell out of his chair," the report said.

"The FBI's new counterterrorism strategy was not a focus of the
Justice Department in 2001," it added.

Then-acting FBI Director Thomas Pickard said he appealed to Ashcroft
for more money for counterterrorism but on Sept 10, 2001, one day
before the hijacked airliner attacks, Ashcroft rejected the appeal.<<

The whole story at:
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #13 of 41: angie (coiro) Tue 13 Apr 04 16:07
Four mutilated bodies found - not clear if they're some of the missing
Halliburton employees:

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #14 of 41: Mr Izzard's oeurvroruevree (woodman) Tue 13 Apr 04 16:55
The pre-9/11 actions of the Bush administration, interesting as they are,
are a dog that won't hunt if you're looking to sway voters. The average
citizen never gave a thought to terrorism before 9/11, and won't want to
blame the admin for doing likewise. The stuff to concentrate on is the
post-9/11 actions: the depletion of the Afghanistan forces in favor of Iraq,
the lies about WMD, the lack of even one conviction out of all those people
locked up at Guantanamo, etc.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #15 of 41: Cleave the general ear (ronks) Tue 13 Apr 04 17:04
> The average citizen never gave a thought to terrorism before 9/11,
> and won't want to blame the admin for doing likewise

I'm not sure that's true; I can easily imagine someone faulting the
administration for failing to anticipate and address the problem before it
burst onto the public consciousness.  It's plausible both psychologically
(people don't always excuse others for making the same mistakes they
themselves made) and materially because, well they're supposed to be looking
out for threats more acutely than the average citizen does.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #16 of 41: Mr Izzard's oeurvroruevree (woodman) Tue 13 Apr 04 17:24
I'm presupposing a voter who hasn't long since concluded that the current
administration is a moron's breakfast -- IOW, somebody predisposed to excuse
and support this administration.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #17 of 41: angie (coiro) Tue 13 Apr 04 18:29
Funny, I was wondering just minutes ago how such an audience
(predisposed to excuse and accept) were reacting to his transparent
dodging of questions at his press conference.

In the little I heard, he fielded three questions, and answered none
of them. The two I recall: is the characterization of you as a man who
won't take responsibilty for his mistakes fair, and do you feel the
administration should take its cue from Richard Clarke, and apologize
for errors that led to death. He didn't even pretend to link his
answers to the original question - just talked about Osama and
Clinton's administration.

So, I wondered how that would set with someone who supports him.
Frankly, I can't think of anyone to ask. 
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #18 of 41: angie (coiro) Tue 13 Apr 04 23:21
Early returns on the prez. speech are pretty darn lukewarm. From Tom
Shales in the WashPost:

>>"When I say something, I mean it," George W. Bush said decisively
near the end of last night's prime-time presidential news conference.
Nobody called out, "When will you say something?" -- the White House
press corps is too mannerly for that -- but some reporters, and some
viewers, must have been thinking it ...

>>Although the short speech was well-written, especially toward the
end, Bush looked upon it as an address in which all sentences were
created equal. He never stressed any particular point or added any
emphasis. He might as well have been reading letters off an eye chart.

>>Indeed, most of the questions seemed to go unanswered. A reporter
asked, twice, why Bush and Vice President Cheney insisted on appearing
together when they testify before the 9/11 commission. Bush ignored the
question both times, uttering familiar generalities instead.

>> In contrast to the emotionless delivery of his prepared remarks,
during the Q&A Bush appeared passionate at times, answering
journalists' questions with an almost religious fervor. Bush said that
freedom was given to Americans by "the Almighty" and encouraging
freedom throughout the world is "what we have been called to do." Later
he said, "It's a conviction that's deep in my soul." Isn't the mixing
of earthly political concerns with religious beliefs one of the things
that thwarts and frustrates the United States and its allies in the
Middle East? 

And from the BBC:

>> For those in the US who have questions about the country's
direction - and polls show an increasing number of Americans do -
President Bush did not give them any new answers .
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #19 of 41: Chuck Charlton (chuck) Tue 13 Apr 04 23:31

We Americans don't get real news any more.  We have reason to
question, but we don't have data from which to question.  Unless,
of course, we read foreign news sources.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #20 of 41: angie (coiro) Thu 22 Apr 04 09:12
Well, at least the barrier to seeing the dead arrive has been broken,
and it's causing quite a stink. A woman and her husband have been fired
for taking these pictures - she took the pics, the reason for the
husband's firing is being kept private:

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #21 of 41: Authentic Frontier Gibberish (gerry) Thu 22 Apr 04 21:02
Wow, that's disturbing.  Thanks, Angie.  The truth must be told, and
it must be known.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #22 of 41: Gail Williams (gail) Mon 10 May 04 16:26
I find this persuasive:
It's Howard Zinn on withddrawal from Iraq,  Excerpts:

The only rational argument for continuing on the present course is that
things will be worse if we leave. There will be chaos, there will be civil
war, we are told. In Vietnam, supporters of the war promised a bloodbath if
U.S. troops withdrew. That did not happen.

Truth is, no one knows what will happen if the United States withdraws. We
face a choice between the certainty of mayhem if we stay and the uncertainty
of what will follow.

There is a possibility of reducing that uncertainty by replacing a U.S.
military presence with an international nonmilitary presence. It is
conceivable that the United Nations should arrange, as U.S. forces leave,
for a multinational team of peacekeepers and negotiators, including,
importantly, people from the Arab countries. Such a group might bring
together Shiites, Sunnis, and Kurds, and work out a solution for self-
governance, which would give all three groups a share in political power.

Simultaneously, the U.N. should arrange for shipments of food and medicine,
from the U.S. and other countries, as well as a corps of engineers to begin
the reconstruction of the country.

To those who worry about what will happen in Iraq after our troops leave,
they should consider the effect of having foreign troops: continued,
escalating bloodshed, continued insecurity, increased hatred for the United
States in the entire Muslim world of over a billion people, and increased
hostility everywhere.

The effect of that will be the exact opposite of what our political
leaders--of both parties--claim they intend to achieve, a "victory" over
terrorism. When you inflame the anger of an entire population, you have
enlarged the breeding ground for terrorism.

What of the other long-term effects of continued occupation? I'm thinking of
the poisoning of the moral fiber of our soldiers--being forced to kill,
maim, imprison innocent people, becoming the pawns of an imperial power
after they were deceived into believing they were fighting for freedom,
democracy, against tyranny.

I'm thinking of the irony that those very things we said our soldiers were
dying for--giving their eyes, their limbs for--are being lost at home by
this brutal war. Our freedom of speech is diminished, our electoral system
corrupted, Congressional and judicial checks on executive power nonexistent.

And the costs of the war--the $400 billion military budget (which Kerry,
shockingly, refuses to consider lowering)--make it inevitable that people in
this country will suffer from lack of health care, a deteriorating school
system, dirtier air and water. Corporate power is unregulated and running

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #23 of 41: Doesn't everybody sniff it first? (plettner) Mon 10 May 04 16:51
Gene Burns on KGO AM Radio, who claims to know quite a bit about the middle
east, thinks we should withdraw.  (His politics are Libertarian, btw.)  His
belief is that we could stay there 100 years, and the minute we leave, there
would be civil war.  The divisions that create the conflict there are not
new ones, and merely occupying the country for some number of years isn't
going to do anything about that.

I've wondered why we shouldn't just break the country up into its natural
parts (but also wonder how the northern parts would survive without the oil
of the south, if I'm remembering the resource distribution in that country.)
Molly Ivins yesterday, however, quoted from another person whose name I
can't remember in saying that the country should become a federation, broken
into states, with a presidency that rotates through the three states on a
regular basis.
pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #24 of 41: angie (coiro) Wed 12 May 04 12:21
Ari Shapiro did a fine piece today on Morning Edition. Nick Berg's
teachers, family, and life-long friends paint a picture of a guy who
once moved to Africa to help the villagers learn new brick-making
technology, and went to Iraq with the same open heart - didn't plan to
make money, wanted to help disadvantaged people. It's not an easy
listen, but a worthwhile one. The audio link is near the top of this

pre.vue.80 : US v. Iraq
permalink #25 of 41: angie (coiro) Sun 23 May 04 12:54
Tough words:

>>(CBS) Accusing top Pentagon officials of "dereliction of duty,"
retired Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni says staying the course in Iraq isn't
a reasonable option.

"The course is headed over Niagara Falls. I think it's time to change
course a little bit or at least hold somebody responsible for putting
you on this course," he tells CBS News Correspondent Steve Kroft in an
interview to be broadcast on 60 Minutes, Sunday, May 23, at 7 p.m.

The current situation in Iraq was destined to happen, says Zinni,
because planning for the war and its aftermath has been flawed all

"There has been poor strategic thinking in this...poor operational
planning and execution on the ground," says Zinni, who served as
commander-in-chief of the U.S. Central Command from 1997 to 2000.

Zinni blames the poor planning on the civilian policymakers in the
administration, known as neo-conservatives, who saw the invasion as a
way to stabilize the region and support Israel. He believes these
people, who include Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas
Feith, the undersecretary of defense, have hijacked U.S. foreign

"They promoted it and pushed [the war]... even to the point of
creating their own intelligence to match their needs. Then they should
bear the responsibility," Zinni tells Kroft.<<


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