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Bush’s Rhetorical War in Iraq

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Last week, the administration released an intelligence summary that warns al-Qaeda is getting stronger.

The president pointed to this as proof that Iraq is central to fighting AQ. Asked if the report actually demonstrates that Bush’s efforts to defeat AQ aren’t working, he replied that things would be far worse if he hadn’t invaded Iraq.

Mull that over for a second. It’s a rhetorical get-out-of-jail-free card. You’re Bush, and six years later things are getting worse, not better. No problem! Just claim that things would really be dire if not for your brilliant leadership. It’s a completely irrefutable claim, because you can’t rewind history and try again.

Unfortunately for Bush, such a bald assertion relies heavily on his credibility on security matters. And he has (charitably) almost none left. He’s made so many blithe assertions that have turned out to be flat wrong that nobody believes him anymore.

This ties in with Bush’s continuing efforts to tie our opponents in Iraq to 9/11. During a speech at the end of June, he noted that the people we’re fighting in Iraq “are the people that attacked us on September the 11th.”

Except that for the most part, they aren’t. Al Qaeda in Iraq is a mostly local group that arose in 2003 in response to our invasion of Iraq. It has established some contacts with AQ Central and pledged it’s loyalty to AQ. But they are at best a local franchisee using the AQ brand name. They are not the people, or even the same group, that attacked us in 2001. Further, they represent only a small portion of the combatants in Iraq.

No matter how you slice it, painting Iraq as a war on al-Qaeda is a flat lie. “War on Islamic extremism” might be closer to the truth, and even that doesn’t encompass the growing, unrelated sectarian violence between Shia and Sunni.

As far as AQ goes, invading Iraq did nothing but help them. Sure, we’re killing a few insurgents and jihadists, and some of them are truly bad people. But we haven’t hurt AQ at all. Instead, we’ve given them a major recruiting tool and a place for jihadists of all stripes to hone their tactics – tactics that are starting to show up in Afghanistan. AQ itself sits fat, happy and generally safe in the tribal regions of Pakistan.

Speaking of which, it was a hopeful sign when Pakistani troops stormed the Red Mosque in Islamabad. Any government that wants to be taken seriously simply cannot allow armed groups to challenge them, and the extremists in Pakistan have simply gotten bolder and louder in the absence of government pressure. Gen. Pervez Musharraf’s born-of-necessity truce with extremists bought temporary stability in Pakistan, but it gave extremists a safe haven that has helped destabilize Afghanistan.

Now tribal leaders have renounced the truce, with accompanying violence, and Musharraf is moving thousands of troops into the region to try to keep order. Sucky as it is for him, it’s good for us. Fighting with Pakistani troops diverts resources the Taliban would otherwise focus on Afghanistan; the military incursion disrupts their rest and training operations; and Musharraf’s survival is increasingly tied to defeating the insurgents. All these things should help — assuming Musharraf both survives and doesn’t cut another deal.

On the downside, the fighting could spur more tribal members to join the fight against either us or Musharraf. But at least we’re attacking a known insurgent stronghold, not gallivanting off on a distracting adventure in, say, Iraq.

A fight like this — against known extremists in known extremist areas — is the kind of fight I and many others can support. It may be hard, it may be bloody, but there’s no doubt about who the enemy is or why we’re fighting them.

Which puts the lie to one final Bush rationalization. On Thursday he referred to the American people’s “war fatigue”, as if we’re all wrung out by four years of fighting.

Maybe he just means people are tired of the war. But the “war fatigue” locution rings strongly of a paternalistic displacement of blame. The war’s fine; people are just (understandably, but wrongly) getting “fatigued” by it.

Framed as such, the idea of “war fatigue” is nonsense. The term calls to mind a society stretched by privation, the way the French were wrung out by the end of World War I — economy in shambles, bled white by the carnage at the front. But as far as Iraq goes, what’s there to be fatigued about? The war simply doesn’t impact your average citizen except as headlines and images on TV. Bush has borrowed the money to fight it; the war has been accompanied by tax cuts, not tax hikes. It’s being fought with a volunteer military, and most Americans don’t actually know anybody who has served, much less anyone who was killed or wounded. The military death toll, while the highest since Vietnam, is still pretty small measured by population or even a percentage of soldiers in theater.

People aren’t tired of the war on terror; they are tired of the war in Iraq. But it’s not because of the strain it has put on society. It’s because the war has been shown to be a misbegotten idea badly executed, a mind-bogglingly expensive waste of resources, lives and national prestige.

While al-Qaeda recovered and grew stronger. Nice work, Mr. President.

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About Sean Aqui

  • moonraven

    I already posted this on another thread, but it is more appropriate to this one:

    Published on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 by the Telegraph/UK
    Bush Told Iraq War Has Helped al-Qa’eda
    by Tim Shipman
    WASHINGTON – President George W Bush was facing increasingly blunt criticism of his Iraq policy last night as a US intelligence report suggested that the war has made al-Qa’eda attacks on American soil more likely.

    Senator George Voinovich, a close ally of Mr Bush, delivered a withering assessment of the situation in Iraq, declaring that the Bush administration had “f****d up the war”. The Ohio senator revealed that he warned Karl Rove – the President’s chief political adviser – last week that Mr Bush must devise a new plan for Iraq or he would vote with Democrats on Capitol Hill to withdraw troops from Iraq.

    He spoke out as a declassified National Intelligence Estimate of the terrorist threat to the US indicated that the Iraq war has helped al-Qa’eda “raise resources and to recruit and indoctrinate operatives, including for homeland attacks”.

  • http://loosechange911.com Elaine Johnson

    9/11 was STAGED. 9/11/2001, Pentagon. Where is the Boeing 757-sized hole? In fact, where is the Boeing 757?

  • Clavos

    Yaaaaawwwnnn…

  • Dr Dreadful

    Clavos, I hope you’re responding to comment #2, not the article. You can’t be that cynical.

    …Clav? [shakes shoulder, nudges] …CLAV…? Wake up!!!

  • Alec

    Sean – RE: Asked if the report actually demonstrates that Bush’s efforts to defeat AQ aren’t working, he replied that things would be far worse if he hadn’t invaded Iraq.

    This is a variation of the other rhetorical gambit these guys love, “However bad things are now, they would be worse if you vote a Democrat into office.”

    A very good and well-reasoned post. Sadly, the GOP true believers will continue to grasp onto Busn’s weak reasoning like a drowning man grabbing at a stick.

  • moonraven

    Uhem–they ARE drowning men grasping at a stick.

    And 9/11 WAS staged–although a bit differently than Elaine implied.

    Wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Another female actually posted on this semen-only site!!!!!!!!

    Watch clavos and Nalle claim she is a drag queen.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Two female posters, and both are 9/11 conspiracy theorists. What are the odds?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Sean…the Article was a goo0d read, and raises plenty of Questions to chew over…

    this Article takes a stab at some of it, relating to OBL and the insanity surrounding this Administration’s policies…

    looks like the foreshadowing there has borne out, sad to say…

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    zzzzzzzzz……Huh/ Whazzat?

    Oh, hi, Doc….No, no, I’m not that cynical; it WAS comment #2 that put me to sleep.

    Just finished…..reading…..number…..6…….zzzzzzzz.

  • moonraven

    There are millions of those “theorists” all over the world.

    Not a single person in Mexico, for example, beieves that 9/11 was done by anyone other than the Us government. That’s what–106 million now.

    Only you domestic dumbells bit for the smoke and mirrors–just like a retarded guy and his handlers said you would.

    If I were you, I would hang my head–and everything further down–in shame.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    There are millions of those “theorists” all over the world.

    And not one has any actual, you know, proof.

    Tangentially, I’m highly impressed by the hive mind uniformity of Mexican citizens….

    I’m no fan of Bush, God knows. But I actually require evidence before making rash assertions about conspiracies and coverups.

  • Clavos

    “Not a single person in Mexico, for example, beieves that 9/11 was done by anyone other than the Us government. That’s what–106 million now.”

    WOW!! You are one busy abuelita, mr!

    Interviewing 106 MILLION people about their opinions on 9/11!!

    Tell me something: when you interviewed the Tarahumaras, did you use an interpreter, or are you fluent in their language?

    As isolated a lifestyle as they lead, I’m surprised they’d even heard of 9/11, much less formed an opinion on it.

  • moonraven

    Easy to know what folks think here–I personally was on tv in Toluca on the news the evening of 9/11, and nobody’s comments were anything but agreement with what I said. Guillermo Almeyra’s piece “Los marcianos hablan inglés” on 9/12 did not result in any disagreement, either.

    I was giving a training to elementary school teachers while ole Dickhead Cheney was orchestrating everything from his bunker and the Cross-eyed Cretin was TRYING without much success to read My Pet Goat to a group of 2nd graders in Florida.

    Even the 6th graders at the school in Metepec didn’t buy it. They said the US was just trying to start another world war to steal the world’s petroleum. Out of the mouth of babes….comes wisdom.

    Out of the mouth of gusanos, pure nonsense. If you eat bullshit everyday, what else could come out….

    Sean: YOU require. Hah! Tell Bush that YOU are now The Requirer.

    You guys have sold what was left of your souls for less than a plate of lentils, but YOU require.

    This is not Alice in Wonderland.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    YOU require. Hah! Tell Bush that YOU are now The Requirer. You guys have sold what was left of your souls for less than a plate of lentils, but YOU require. This is not Alice in Wonderland.

    I’d respond to this if I had any idea what you’re talking about.

  • moonraven

    Re-read your arrogant post. YOU are not The Decider, YOU do not require anything. YOU are just a lemming to be ordered over the cliff.

    Evidence, my ass….

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Re-read your arrogant post. YOU are not The Decider, YOU do not require anything.

    You have a real problem with understanding idiom.

    When I say I “require” evidence, it means I need persuasive evidence before I will sign on to claims of a coverup. How is that “arrogant”?

    YOU are just a lemming to be ordered over the cliff.

    This insult would make a lot more sense if I actually supported either Bush or the war in Iraq.

  • moonraven

    You bought 9/11.

    Ergo, you will buy anything.

    You probably even bought Iraq’s involvement in 9/11 as an excuse to grab for the petroleum and destroy the country and its people.

    It’s arrogant of YOU to demand anything and foolish to think that YOU make up your own mind about anything. All you do is swallow propaganda.

  • Baronius

    Sean, I don’t agree with your article, but you’re awe-inspiringly good on the comment board. (Too bad, really. These days, just about the only thing the Right has going for it is the kookiness of the conspiratorial Left.)

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    This is getting amusing.

    You bought 9/11.

    Yes, yes I did.

    Ergo, you will buy anything.

    Interesting leap of logic. And a circular excuse for you to dismiss anyone who doesn’t agree with you.

    You probably even bought Iraq’s involvement in 9/11 as an excuse to grab for the petroleum and destroy the country and its people.

    Do you even read the posts you respond to? Like the part where I said I oppose the war in Iraq? To be clear, I’ve opposed it from the beginning.

    Try addressing the reality of individual commenters, not a strawman or the demons in your head.

    It’s arrogant of YOU to demand anything

    I see. It’s arrogant of me to say I’ll make up my own mind, but it’s not arrogant of you to call me names because I disagree with you.

    and foolish to think that YOU make up your own mind about anything. All you do is swallow propaganda.

    Wow, you can deduce so much about me from the single datum that I accept the official 9/11 explanation. Amazing.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Baronius: LOL!

    I cut my political teeth on a political discussion board. That’s why I’m probably better at back-and-forth than standalone essays.

    Well, and some folks make it easy.

  • moonraven

    Yeah, well I am not ONE of those who makes it easy.

    You have great skill at proving my point that your ideas are as original and worthy of reading as a used condom.

    You have, in fact, presented no EVIDENCE to show you that you make up your mind about anything.

    I DO. Ergo, I can be as arrogant as I feel like. It suits me.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    You have great skill at proving my point that your ideas are as original and worthy of reading as a used condom.

    Oh, *that* was your point? Sorry. I thought you were talking about 9/11. My article, as you may have noted from the headline, is about Iraq. I’m not aware of you having actually addressed the content thereof.

    You have, in fact, presented no EVIDENCE to show you that you make up your mind about anything.

    Whatever that means.

    I DO. Ergo, I can be as arrogant as I feel like. It suits me.

    It sure does, and don’t ever stop. Just don’t use “arrogant” as a perjorative when you freely admit to being arrogant yourself. Doing so makes you a hypocrite.

  • moonraven

    Who contributed the first post on this thread, Magoo?

    Just for the record, people ARE tired of the War on Dandruff–er, Terror (pax, dear Gore Vidal).

    Any adjective that applies to me is always positive.

    Sucker.

  • http://midtopia.blogspot.com Sean Aqui

    Who contributed the first post on this thread, Magoo?

    Please quote the words of yours from that comment that address the original article.

  • moonraven

    Note that I said CONTRIBUTED in response to your having said that I did not ADDRESS the content.

    I addressed the content by indicating that the article was appropriate to the topic and posting the beginning of the article (which I know that you did not read on CommonDreams, even though you claim to have an interest in the topic you wrote about).

    Don’t try to change the rules of language to suit your adolescent aims.

    It won’t work.

    How about those baby teeth that fell out of your mouth. Isn’t it time to replace them with permanent teeth?

    I have all of mine–in perfect condition.

    In fact. I have sharpened them on the carcass of another infantile sniveler just a couple of hours ago.

    Looks like Imight as well hang your dandruff-ridden scalp up outside next to the door of the teepee, too.

    Gringo scalps have to be aired out before they can be brought inside….

  • STM

    Yes Sean, I bought 9/11 too and I still do. I bought Bali as well, and Madrid, and London … I’m a great believer in weighing up the evidence, and I have to say it’s overwhelmingly in favour of the notion that these atrocities were committed by al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiyah (al-Qaead’s Asian offshoot), rather than the US, Australian, British or Spanish governments.

    But Iraq, well, no, I didn’t buy that. I don’t believe the Iraqis had anything to do with it.

    Sadly, many of them now do.

  • troll

    for once I can say that I agree with STM without exception …except the CIA/mujahidin connection muddles things

  • STM

    Ah, but that was a different war. The Soviets, remember? Our enemies until a decade ago.

  • Anthony Grande

    STM, they had nothing to do with it but they were a part of this terror madness. Among other things, Saddam was supporting Palestinian suicide bombers in Israel. Since Saddam the invasion of Iraq haven’t you noticed a huge decrease in suicide bombings in Israel?

    Remember Germany did not bomb Pearl Harbor or have much to do with it…but they were still apart of the madness that was happening in the world at the time. Same with Saddam.

  • moonraven

    If that’s the case, suckers, why is Osama Bin Laden still on the CIA payroll?

  • Baronius

    The “CIA” is a fictitious organization created by the Church Committee to cover its investigation into alien involvement in the meat-packing industry.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    @moonraven in #30

    please do cite your proof of that one, try as i might, i have yet to find any ties between OBL and the CIA after the Company pulled out of Afghanistan

    some could conjecture that it was the Company leaving the mujahadeen high and dry in both direction and funding which lead to the Taliban take over of Afghanistan after the USSR left, and hard feelings could indeed be part of the motivation OBL has against the U.S. along with his wanting U.S. troops out of the “holy lands” of Saudi Arabia as he has stated.

    Excelsior?

  • Anthony Grande

    #30 is not far fetched because I have also been on the CIA payroll for the last 4 months. They gave me orders to come back here ;)

  • moonraven

    Excuse me–You are asking for PROOF?

    You believed BUSH when he swore that Saddam Hussein had WMDs up the wazoo, but you don’t believe ME when I mention in passing that Bin Laden is still on the CIA payroll?

    I find that highly reprehensible.

    I also find it just a bit unbelievable that you expect to google Bin Laden’s CIA income.

    Ask yourself why he hasn’t been found–even with a 50 million dollar bounty on his thobe and sandals.

    The US under Bush Broccoli-Hater invaded Panama and killed 3500 plus Panamanians because Noriega did not WANT to be on their payroll.

    They got him.

    They put him in a jail in Florida on phoney drug charges (that’s before they decided to use Guatanamo for dicey cases and not bother charging anyone with anything except for a vague resemblance to Cat Stevens) from where he is scheduled to leave back to Panama in September.

    Since nothing like that has happened in regard to Bin Laden–no, Afghanistan was invaded because the Taliban prohibited the opium poppy trade and backed out of the pipeline deal they cut with Occidental Petroleum when they were being wined and dined deep in the heart of Texas–we should be able to sort this out by using basic logic.

    1. Bin Laden has not been found because they do not want to find him.

    2. They pay him a princely sum to keep a low profile and to make occasional poor-quality videos and audiotapes threatening to bury the US, a la Krushchev. (If they had had videotapes in 1960 Nikita might have passed on pounding his shoe on the table at the UN.)

    3. If they found him they wouldn’t be able to trot him out as a pretext every time the Bush administration needs a moment of distraction and wants to remind folks in the US that they are all peons by making them wait in long lines at the airport to have their fillings taken out and examined by fat people in too-tight uniforms.

    4. If they found him they would not be able to blame him for all the nasty capers Dick Cheney gets up to.

    5. If they found him he might even spill the beans. They already have taken the Bin Laden of this hemisphere, Posada, out of jail and have given him a fat expense account to keep his mouth shut in Miami because he threatened to point the finger at the CIA for among other capers: The assassination of JFK, the helicopterazo that killed Torrijos, the carbombing in Washington DC of Letelier and his assistant, and a host of other tasty bits including the bombing of the Cuban airliner that killed 73 passengers and crew.

    How can you ask, with apparently a straight face, for evidence of the CIA’s slush fund line item for OBL?

    And I thought you gringos were starting to wise up. My bad….

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    moonraven, once again you are factually mistaken

    one example..right here on BC i have spoken many times about my NOT believing Bush and Co about Iraq

    i linked earlier to my own article about the Administration closing the bin Laden section

    as for the rest of your screed, entertaining, even plausible in some areas…but still merely speculation at best, with NO substantiation for many of the claims

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    And just what would you DO, gonzo, if you had that substantiation?

    I suspect you would DO the same as you are doing right now–looking for an excuse, any excuse, not to get off your duff.

    Sorry, but I do not have more time to put pearls before swine here–I am going to eat a good, favorful Mexican lunch of cochina pibil: swine, prepared en the style of the Yucatan.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    enjoy your carrion, lunar corvid…

    but allow me to express that the sheer volume of what you do NOT know about myself…among a myriad plethora of other things, is simply staggering

    so we will just chalk up your dodge to the fact that you have NO substantiation for your allegations, them being merely a product of your fertile imagination and tropical sunlight until and unless you DO provide some proof

    enjoy your day…

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    Would YOU put proof of Bin Laden’s continued CIA affiliation on this site?

    If you would, then you are fucking crazy–which is something I did not know about you, for sure.

    And since when is it my responsibility to know anything at all about you? Although clavos and nalle put my age, place of residence and a bunch of other info on this site last fall–I considered that to be an invasion of privacy and more heckling–this is SUPPOSED to be an anonymous situation–virtual space and all that.

    You can believe in the Easter Bunny for all I care.

    By all means NEVER think outside the box, or color that bunny outisde the lines….

  • Clavos

    “Although clavos […] put my age, place of residence and a bunch of other info on this site last fall…”

    Not true, someone else “outed” you. I LATER added details, including your age, but not your location.

    And, in any case, all the information about you that was put on this site is PUBLIC, readily available on the internet by googling.

    It doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to realize that if you publish on the internet under your real name, any other information about you is easy to find.

    If you’re concerned about your privacy, DON’T use your real name.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    moonraven – if your citations are public knowledge, such as many substantiating links are around here…then indeed put them up, what can it hurt?

    as for your attempt at rhetorical Trickery…you fail again, my assertion was in your statements concerning things like this Quote from you, “I suspect you would DO the same as you are doing right now–looking for an excuse, any excuse, not to get off your duff.”

    since, due to some medical problems, i have not sat on my “duff”, or indeed been off my feet, for the last few days…but you keep making brad, unsubstantiated, blanket statements…it appears to give you some kind of pleasure while bearing no semblance to either Reality or Truth in many instances…

    as for “outside the box”…you are talking to the wrong person there…or haven’t you ever read any of my stuff?

    i guess even for night birds, ignorance is bliss…

    Excelsior?

  • Alec

    Troll – Re: for once I can say that I agree with STM without exception …except the CIA/mujahidin connection muddles things

    It’s unfortunate that people forget that the mujahadin were not a monolithic group, but a union of at least seven groups that fought the Soviets. And people who see the US as the sole power in the universe can’t seem to keep ahold of the fact that the US, the Saudis, the Chinese and Pakistan’s notorious Inter-services Intelligence also supported the mujahadin. More critically, after the Soviet pullout, the Taliban, with Pakistani support, crushed opposition militias, culminating in the assassination of Afghan leader Ahmad Shah Massoud on September 9, 2001, a pre-cursor to 9/11.

    Anthony Grande- Re: STM, they had nothing to do with it but they were a part of this terror madness. Among other things, Saddam was supporting Palestinian suicide bombers in Israel. Since Saddam the invasion of Iraq haven’t you noticed a huge decrease in suicide bombings in Israel?

    This is completely wrong. Saddam Hussein gave money to the FAMILIES of dead suicide bombers, an empty cynical gesture. He did not fund suicide bomb operations. The Saudis and others also give support to the families of suicide bombers, but somehow Bush never decided to bomb Saudi Arabia. If you can document an actual connection between the fall of Saddam Hussein and any decrease in suicide bombings in Israel, you would win a Pulitzer Prize.

    RE: Remember Germany did not bomb Pearl Harbor or have much to do with it…but they were still apart of the madness that was happening in the world at the time. Same with Saddam.

    Huh? What an odd non sequitur. Germany and Japan were allies, along with Italy. Germany declared war on the United States after we declared war on Japan. On the other, Saddam Hussein never declared war on the US. Also, no official government group within Iraq ever asked us to help liberate them.

    Since Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11, the conspiracy nuts are doubly irrelevant. However, it should be noted that the chaos in Iraq has prevented Iraq oil production from being increased, so even if Bush and Cheney had some crazed plan to “get control” over Middle Eastern oil, it obviously is not working.

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    George Bush was raised as a spoiled child and the US public has become his Enabler, taking over the job from his foolish parents.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    i don’t know that the Public has been the Enabler…i think the GOP controlled House had a lot to do with it from ’01-’07…NO oversight, or checks and balances

    and his Parents might say he turned out just they way they wanted…he became President, after all

    now, does a certain segment of the Public, who stand behind W right or wrong” have some shared culpability?

    i’d say yes indeed…but all?

    nah…many have been hollering that this “emperor” has been “nekkid” since day one…

    Excelsior?

  • moonraven

    NOW we have clavos posting on the wrong thread.

    Gonzo, at what point did I claim the evidence was PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE?

    In fact, when talking about folks in the US, that phrase becomes an oxymoron, as the public is deliberately ignorant.

    I told you that one could come to the conclusion by using simple logic. I have examples to demonstrate it.

    If you choose not to follow the logic, that’s your choice, but don’t blame me.

    The CIA has been following me around since April 10, 2003 in Caracas.

    Maybe they should be following someone else? Like YOU?

  • moonraven

    Incidentally, putting links to Rage against the Machine is HARDLY an example of thinking outside the box.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    they don’t need to follow me, moonraven..some of my olde students work there currently

    as for “simple logic” it can indeed indicate a theory for further investigation, but it doesn’t prove shit…much less an accusation of the magnitude you assert

    if you read the closing of the bin Laden department article i linked earlier, you might find some interesting bits of logic that would preclude your postulate on the same grounds

    i have my own suspicions and theories, but not enough proof to even desire to type them out as speculation , due to no substantiation

    you’re assuming…..again, note i said “if” when it comes to “public knowledge”, as in links on the web…articles, newsclips…anything to give some credence to your statements…

    caw…caw…

    Excelsior?

  • Clavos

    “NOW we have clavos posting on the wrong thread.”

    Umm, mr:

    Check your own comment #38 (on THIS thread).

  • Baronius

    You heard it here: Moonraven has no evidence.

  • moonraven

    But he already posted the identical comment on another thread….

    Gonzo, You are under no obligation to believe me.

    You don’t accept logical process as proof. Fine, go back to reading Bush propaganda.

    Not my problem. I don’t live in the US.

    And frankly, I do not care whether Bin Laden is an agent or not.

    It’s just obvious that he is. Nobody ever really gets out–and do not ask me how I know that–there is plenty of public domain stuff on that.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    moonraven – you got one thing correct, i am indeed under no obligation…

    that being said, i would be genuinely interested in reading anything you could care to site on the topic that might sustain your allegations

    one would logically think that any amount of funds that could possibly interest a man whose personal worth exceeds $300 million dollars would show up on a budget somewhere…even hidden/laundered, that would still be too large a sum to not blip on someone’s radar…no black ops slush fund has those kinds of zeros, especially for the length of time you are speaking of

    could be done…but unnoticed and unaccounted for that many years? low probability indeed

    oh yes…now putting in RAtM links alone may not be too far outside the proverbial *box*….but one might suggest that utilizing musical/video links for contextual sub-references of images/sound/lyric to bolster a discussion in this digital forum as a post modernist argumentative tool could be considered….different

    Excelsior?

  • Rick

    “You probably even bought Iraq’s involvement in 9/11 as an excuse to grab for the petroleum”

    Uh, lets do some simple math.

    The war costs the U.S. 200 MILLION dollars a DAY.

    Iraq is producing about 2 MILLION barrels of oil a DAY.

    A barrel of oil sells for 76 dollars.

    76 times 2 equals 152 MILLION dollars a DAY.

    152 minus 200 is equal to NEGATIVE 48 MILLION DOLLARS A DAY.

    So were losing 48 MILLION DOLLARS a day and that is assuming that the U.S. gets all the oil money (which we don’t). We’re actually losing close to 200 MILLION DOLLARS a day because we are NOT getting ANY of Iraq’s oil money. Come on this is simple economics. Obviously the U.S. is not doing this for the oil.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Rick – one could suggest that the no-bid contracts that Haliburton and subsidiaries are getting paid for (a big chunk of that $200 mil a day) might have something to do with it…

    not saying yes or no…but it could be a factor, given the variables involved…

    you might also want to look into the various private military forces (read:mercenaries) are getting, and investigate the ones that were part and parcel of not only the planning stage of the invasion, but also paid for their “research” and “consultation” leading up to said invasion

    just a Thought…

    Excelsior?

  • Rick

    “One could suggest that the no-bid contracts that Haliburton and subsidiaries are getting paid for”

    It’s always possible, but if the government wanted to they could just as easily spend defense money WITHOUT a war. Our military budget is huge. It was huge BEFORE the war. We have spent BILLIONS (maybe TRILLIONS?) on stuff that our army will probably never use in the battle field. We definitely DON’T need a war to frivolously spend the taxpayers money.

    I’m sure if haliburton wanted more money they could have just charged the taxpayer 20,000 dollars for a roll of toilet paper or something like that. Assuming of course Cheney or Bush was in on it.

  • Zedd

    Sean,

    I haven’t been able to figure out why it was important for this lot (Chaney and Co.) to go to Iraq.

    I’ve long discredited the idea that it was for more monetary gain. Chaney for instance is a man on his way out. He is an overweight man at the age of the average male lifespan with a heart condition. Certainly money is not a motivating factor at this point in his life. He’s got money. There has to be something more profound.

    I went back to what was being said prior to the start of the war. There was this notion of Iraq being the puzzle peace to managing or conforming the Middle East; the entry point for transforming this prideful world into a society which respects everything western.

    I see the Iraqi attempt by these men to be a huge gamble that could potentially land them in the history books for transforming the world and ushering in a new world order, perhaps even paving the way for the evolution of human societies into our next phase.

    These men have made various calculations many of which have landed them their great fortunes. They have made their drug the pursuit of the big windfall; their goal, a passion to sacrifice family life and simple life enriching engagements for. After leading the most significant government in the world, what’s left? What is the next pay off? I would suggest that it would be immortality. Being considered among Lewis and Clark, Jefferson and all of the great men of history for such men would be worth such a sacrifice. Off course they convince themselves of the benefits to humanity from their endeavors.

  • Baronius

    Zedd, that sounds like a compliment.

  • Rick

    Here’s what I think is why the U.S. went to war in Iraq.

    The upper echelons of the Bush administration thought that they could both depose Saddam quickly and then install a U.S. and Israeli friendly democracy.

    One big reason that the U.S. wanted to get rid of Saddam was because of the THREAT of weapons of mass destruction. I really do think that Saddam decieved the U.S. intelligence agencies into thinking he had Weapons of Mass Destruction even though in reality it was just a bluff. Saddam mistakenly thought that the U.S. would never go to war with him if they thought he had nukes or biochemical weapons. Though the evidence the U.S. administration had was weak, I don’t think they necessarily made it up.

    The Bush administration mistakenly thought that a democratic government could work in the middle east. They thought they would install a friendly regime in Iraq similar to what the U.S. did in Japan and Germany after WWII. Once this was accomplished, they thought that other middle eastern countries would follow iraq’s lead and also become U.S. freindly democracies. Sort of like a domino effect. However it was a mistake to think that you could forcibly try to install a liberal western democracy in a country with islam as the dominant religion. While it is not impossible (Turkey being the prime example), Iraq is much different than Turkey. I don’t think the neoliberals anticipated the sectarian violence between the sunnis and the shiittes either. They also didn’t recognize that muslims tend to elect a government that is not necessarily friendly to the West or Israel. Hamas is a prime example of how democracy in the middle east can go against the U.S.’s interest.

    I don’t think Bush personally has any malice toward anybody in the Middle East. I also don’t think this war was done as a genocide or to somehow make money or get oil. Bush is a fairly religious man and I think he had “good intentions” (although he may be a bit deluded by the extent of his religiosity). Unfortunately as the saying goes, the road to hell is paved with “good intentions”. Many people with “good intentions” have ultimately had disastrous policies.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    @ Zedd in #54 – good points, but i think you have to throw some considerations of the older neocons into the mix…

    Cheney , Rumsfeld and some others go all the way back to Nixon…and some of their Agenda appears to be about getting things back they thought they *lost* after Nixon resigned…like the Unitary Executive stuff…a nice little War they could win easily(they thought) which would finish what those who were around in the Reagan and Bush Sr. administrations wanted to finish…revenge on the “liberal media”, among other sordid sundries…

    @ Rick..i really do suggest you look up what those mercenary and Haliburton et al contracts are valued at over the long haul…you will be disgusted, but you have some good thoughts in those comments…more poking around might open your eyes to some other Variables in the Equation

    Excelsior?

  • REMF

    “I haven’t been able to figure out why it was important for this lot (Chaney and Co.) to go to Iraq.”
    – Zedd

    That’s easy, Zedd. To make up for skipping out of Vietnam. Except for Colin Powell, of course (Bronze Star with “V”, Purple Heart), who disassociated himself from them immediately after learning the WMDs were a lie.

  • Clavos

    Oh right. Like either one of them gives a rat’s ass about “skipping out of Vietnam.”

    If anything, they should be glad they got out of it.

  • http://www.elitebloggers.com Dave Nalle

    I have to point out that there was no such thing as a neocon during the Nixon administration, so if their beliefs date back to that era, then they predate the existence of the Neocon philosophy which means that perhaps they aren’t even Neocons at all, but good old fashioned hawkish Republicans.

    dave

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    @ #60 – correct, the neocon movement had not coalesced by that time..but you will note how many of those folks go that far back with each other (Wolfowitz being one of Scooter’s professors, i mentioned Cheney and Rummy…plenty more in the crowd that go that far back)

    many of the younger ones are acolytes…this crew would indeed have been a subset of the olde ‘hawks

    the “good” part is eminently debatable

    Excelsior?

  • REMF

    “Oh right. Like either one of them gives a rat’s ass about “skipping out of Vietnam.””

    Then why did GW lie about why he wasn’t flying at Dannelly AFB? And why did Cheney lie about why he dodged the draft?
    – MCH

  • Clavos

    Oh, I dunno….maybe because they were being attacked by partisan assholes???

  • http://LesPaulisanexcellentguitarplayerwithanadmirablegraspofgoodjazz. bliffle

    Bush can throw all the expensive rhetoric he wants at Iraq and he’s still going to lose. He’s an ignorant charging bull and has been caped by Matador OBL. While Bush bangs his head futiley against a brick wall OBL has slipped behind him into Pakistan. Ironically, the sanctuary OBL enjoys in Pakistan was prepared by Bush to buy the overrated support of Musharaf, another experienced matador.

    While Bush fatigues himself the fleas that cling to his back, oh, like the assortment of deluded BC supporters so evident here, must be getting a terrible shaking. I suppose they shall nimbly jump to a new bull to parasitise with a new name but same old bullshit.

  • moonraven

    The cost of the war is not a valid argument whatsoever for saying that Bush and Co. did not go to Iraq for the petroleum.

    Being the ignorant and arrogant sods that they were and are–and having no idea whatsoever in regard to military engagement (the folks that are PAID to know about that stuff told them it was going to be a disaster–but THEY knew better–HAH!)–they thought it was going to be a piece of cake to depose Saddam, install a puppet government and take over Iraq’s petroleum.

    Their idea was that they would quickly recover the cost of the war and it would be all gravy from there–and that they would then go for Iran and it would also be a piece of cake. (And then, flush with success, for Venezuela….)

    They were, predictably, WRONG.

    The least democratic government in the history of the US did NOT invade Iraq to install a democracy–they could not possibly care less about democracy.

    And if anyone at this point even harbors a small suspicion that the Bush Gang DOES care about democracy, boy have I got some great deals for you on bridges, swampland and snake oil….

  • Baronius

    REMF, we’ve been through this before. You’re the one with the Vietnam service fixation, not Bush and Cheney.

  • REMF

    “Oh, I dunno….maybe because they were being attacked by partisan assholes???”

    Now there’s a typical excuse from the “Party of Accountability” … it’s someone elses fault!!

    Are you sure it wasn’t because of that 1971 Kerry speech…??
    – MCH

  • REMF

    “…(the folks that are PAID to know about that stuff told them it was going to be a disaster–but THEY knew better–HAH!)–…”
    – moonraven

    Yes, and they also knew that it wasn’t going to them or their children that would do the fighting and dying over there.
    – MCH

  • Clavos

    “Now there’s a typical excuse from the “Party of Accountability” … it’s someone elses fault!!”

    How is that “someone else’s fault?” I indicated they were responding, not shifting blame. What “party of Accountability?” I belong to no party, and voted Libertarian last presidential election.

    Are you sure it wasn’t because of that 1971 Kerry speech…??

    Good point. Probably was. Fuckin’ Kerry’s to blame for everything wrong with Vietnam. The scumbag.

  • Clavos

    “REMF, we’ve been through this before. You’re the one with the Vietnam service fixation, not Bush and Cheney.”

    A strange obsession for an individual who’s never been anywhere near the place.

  • REMF

    “Good point. Probably was. Fuckin’ Kerry’s to blame for everything wrong with Vietnam. The scumbag.”

    Yeah, much worse than Bill Calley.

  • Clavos

    Much worse for Americans for sure.

  • moonraven

    Considering the string of military thugs being convicted of murder in Iraq (even of physically challenged people!), and further considering that the lion’s share of the murders committed by US soldiers will never even result in charges, I would say that old Calley and his My Lai caper looks like a Sunday school picnic….

  • STM

    I did try, yet I was determined to have a nice cup of tea and I couldn’t find the lawnmower.

    Before I knew it the police had arrived and the dog was fed and despite my son breaking his nose in the rugby match my daughter’s room needed a bloody good clean.

    That’s what happened …

  • Clavos

    LOL Stan,

    You are truly a funny man!!