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Regrettable beheadings notwithstanding, the War in Iraq was still worth it

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It is only with the most intense horror that I heard and read about the brutal beheadings of Eugene Armstrong and Jack Hensley. It is horrifying stuff indeed. And I feel no less regret or sadness for Kenneth Bigley, the third remaining hostage. We can only hope and pray for Bigley.

And it’s also depressing news that two Italian aid-workers were recently killed.

Now, as an ardent war supporter, I feel uneasiness with these beheadings. I will admit this. Also, anti-wars had a point when they said the War in Iraq was launched with no thought as to the ramifications and the aftermath. I’ve not admitted that until now, but I will finally cede that they’re right. Post-war planning seemed a mere afterthought.

The Louisville Courier-Journal puts it bluntly, and, initially, what they write can’t be denied: “Daily car bombings, beheadings of foreign hostages, insurgents’ control of key cities and rising public outrage are hardly markers on a road to a peaceful and prosperous democracy,” so say the editors.

But again, I said initially it makes sense to any thinking person about the situation in Iraq. But ultimately, all “analysis” like this amounts to, is preaching to the choir.

President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi have defended the war, and so they should. We must remain vigilant and not give in to the terrorists. Beheadings and car-bombs have indeed made a mess of things, but the terrorists must be made to understand that we will not back down. There will be no negotiating with them. They don’t even want negotiations; they want our destruction. Evil cannot be reasoned or bargained with.

But, at the very least, we have taken the battleground to the terrorists, they have been coming out of the woodwork like carpenter ants since the fall of Saddam. To fight them on their ground is much more preferable to battling them on ours. As President Bush said, “If we stop fighting the terrorists in Iraq, they would be free to plot and plan attacks elsewhere, in America and other free nations.”

Sean Hannity writes in his excellent book Deliver Us From Evil:

The Bush administration saw early that we could not repeat the mistake of 9/11; we could no longer wait for the enemy to attack us once again. From this point on, we would have to take the action to the enemy, before he had the chance to strike. And we would have to be willing to strike “pre-emptively” when necessary – at both the terrorists and the nations sponsoring them – in order to preserve our national security.

As the chief U.S. weapons inspector David Kay made clear, the intelligence about WMDs cited as an excuse for the war was flawed only to the extent that “the Iraqis tried to deceive us and in part they tried to deceive us and others into believing that they really did have those weapons,” and that evidence on paper of their weapons program definitely existed.

Furthermore, I don’t care what the anti-wars say, Saddam Hussein was interested in working with al-Qaeda. As for the charges that the Ba’athists were secular and couldn’t give a damn about jihad, Saddam saw himself as a grand Arab ruler, with the full blessing of Allah. Given his desire to see America humiliated and his grand design to control the Middle East, despatching with Saddam was the only sane thing to do. As Tony Blair said in 2002, “I for one do not want it on my conscience that we knew the threat, that we saw it coming and that we did nothing.” Nor would I, Tony.

Would the anti-war agitators prefer that we gave Saddam time to investigate further ways to work with al-Qaeda, to implement his planned weapons programs, to acquire a nuke? How would they feel then? Yes, that’s right, the old “No Nukes” folks would blame Bush and Co. for not acting: “You see, Iraq’s got a nuclear device now, and it’s all Bush’s fault!”

We must stay the course in Iraq and not give into the terrorists. Given time, we will eradicate more of the likes of Al-Sadr and al-Zarqawi and all of their jihadic followers than they will of us. That may be what this war’s become, but however regrettable, it is the right thing.

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  • Hal Pawluk

    “MEM” Since the fall of Saddam, terrorists have been revealing themselves like never before.”

    So sending out Americans as decoys was The Plan? And it was worth the deaths, the maimings, and the wrecking of lives?

    Did you run out of meds?

  • Rob Onderwater

    Unfortunately when vermin runs riot, it tends to multiply.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    No, I’m fine, Hal. I think the desire to not see another significant part of an American city burning black smoke proves I’m OK.

    How are you doing? Terrible, I would guess, given your penchant for appeasement and denial of evil.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Ah, the old right-wing religion is still alive and well, is it, MEM?

  • Hal Pawluk

    And here’s your boy telling us about Iraq as compared to the situation in America:

    “I saw a poll that said the right track/wrong track in Iraq was better than here in America.” –George W. Bush, Washington, D.C.

    Now isn’t that embarrassing.

  • Vic

    I’ve read that Iraq is now drawing terrorists from all over the world like a magnet.

    Isn’t that a *good* thing? Easier to kill roaches once they’re all in the roach motel as opposed to when they’re hiding all over the kitchen.


  • Hal Pawluk

    No, Vic.

    See, there are 140,000 American targets there now, and they’re dying almost daily.

    Further, more and more terrorists have been created just from the fact of inserting the targets (ask Rumsfeld for details).

    And what that has done is removed the focus and drawn away resources from improving security *here*.

    Thanks for asking.

  • Eric Olsen

    Excellent, measured and conscientious post, MEM, perhaps your best.

    This is a deeply difficult and troubling time, every death hurts, especially innocent noncombatants of whatever nationality; BUT the cause is right, necessary, and we must continue to improve, learn from our mistakes, and finish the job of helping Iraqis like Allawi create a functional democracy in the Middle East.

    War is always full of fuck-ups, miscalculations, poor planning, and hell – the worst thing we can do is lose hope and give up before the Iraqis can fend for themselves, although the sooner the better, obviously.

  • Hal Pawluk

    I agree, Eric, that we stepped in it and now have to finish it.

    It appears, though, that the American invasion will not create a democracy but instead will leave behind a pseudo-representative government, with much of it in the upper reaches consisting of foreigners like Allawi and the rest of the American-chosen governing council and people they pick. This will be voted on by perhaps three-quarters of the population (like having an election here with voting in only 40 of our 50 states).

    Even that will be better than just pulling out, but it is so screwed up that whoever got us into this should be fired.

  • Tim Hall

    It’s nice to see at least some righties have stopped drinking the Kool-Aid, and recognise that Rumsfeld has fucked up.

    I’m still not sure whether ousting Saddam as the highest priority was really the right thing to do.

    But I have no doubt the if the US Army, the State Department and the British all insisted that far more troops were needed for the initial invasion, that they were right and Rumsfeld was wrong.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Hal P: “Ah, the old right-wing religion is still alive and well, is it, MEM?”

    I sure hope it is, Hal, considering the presence and sad influence of your political kindred.

    I think it’s very telling that anyone who dares to think that the toppling of Saddam Hussein was a good thing is immediately accused of promulgating a “right-wing religion.” I wouldn’t know about that. I worship at the altar of common sense.

    What will it take, Hal, 3,000 more deaths on American soil for you and a great many others here to realize that appeasement and negotiation with these sub-human primates doesn’t work?

    But hey, just sit there and equivocate and moralize in piously isolationist tones and pretend nothing’s wrong, Hal. It’s what the Left is very good at these days.

  • boomcrashbaby

    What will it take, Hal, 3,000 more deaths on American soil for you and a great many others here to realize that appeasement and negotiation with these sub-human primates doesn’t work?

    It is the legitimate view of many, that the war in Iraq has NOT done much towards guaranteeing that the chances of 3,000 more deaths on American soil have been lessened.

    The war in Afghanistan would make a better argument for that. Also homeland security, airline security, etc. These issues would be easier to prove would make a difference in protecting us. I understand the long-term strategy in attempting to democratize Iraq, but that is long-term, years away, as of NOW and for quite a bit of the foreseeable future, the war in Iraq has given us NO guarantee that fewer Americans will die over here.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Good grief, MEM, what kind of perversion is that?

    You accusing me of pretending there’s nothing wrong?

    Mind you, it is a documented right-wing technique: accuse the opposition of the very thing you are doing. You can look it up, but here’s a head start from an interview with right-wing writer Matt Labash:

    MATT LABASH: We’ve created this cottage industry in which it pays to be un-objective. It pays to be subjective as much as possible. It’s a great way to have your cake and eat it too. Criticize other people for not being objective. Be as subjective as you want. It’s a great little racket. I’m glad we found it actually. [Interview with Matt Labash, The Weekly Standard — May 2003 opens in new window]

    Orwell was a piker!

    And what will it take “for you and a great many others here to realize that” you can’t implant and enforce democracy at the point of a gun?

    Bush, the neocons and all the other hawks should have stuck to the war on terrorism.

  • Eric Olsen

    Hal, I think #9 is quite reasonable – the problem is you can’t just fire someone, you have to bring someone else in, and I am more concerned about Kerry’s lack of resolve than Bush’s mistakes, many though they may have been.

  • Hal Pawluk

    “Resolve” alone is a poor criterion, I think, and could as easily be a flaw if it takes one in the wrong direction (lemmings come to mind).

  • Eric Olsen


  • Steve Rhodes

    If Kerry said beheadings were “regrettable” Bush would have attack ads on tv a few hours later.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Right-wing tactics, Hal? That’s a fuggin’ laugh.

    The lefty “peace” protestor modus operandi can be summed up as follows:

    1. Person A (Lefty, liberal, “peacenik,” bullshitter – take your pick) doesn’t like what person B (conservative, Bush supporter, right-winger, man of common sense – take your pick) stands for.

    2. Person A, instead of realizing that America has freedom of speech, decides to “resort to physical violence” to solve his problems, or make himself “feel big.” (A formula repeated by the “peaceniks” time and time again.)

    3. Person A, even now, instead of confronting the person, instead does an underhanded, sneaky “sucker punch”, because Person A would probably have gotten his ass whooped.

    4. Person A, with bad judgement (For Kerry + Violence), gets led away by the police.

    But, with regard to Person A, we all know BUSH MADE HIM DO IT!

    Now lecture me again about “right-wing tactics,” Hal. I can’t wait.

  • Shark

    Today’s Replacement for “We’re Going to War to Find Weapons of Mass Destruction”:

    “…To fight them on their ground is much more preferable to battling them on ours.”


  • Bob A. Booey


    Your comment is everything that’s wrong with the current political debate. No regard for facts; no regard for the details; stark, racist language; illogical appeal to false analogies.

    Way to go, buddy.

    Go to the other thread (Olsen’s) and offer a response that isn’t just flaming rhetoric about “sub-human primates” and pseudo-moral talk about courage and fighting the fight. Defend, specifically, why the war makes us safer. Any citations to articles by military science academics, foreign policy journals, experienced diplomats or international relations professors would be a pleasant surprise.

    That link you have above for Saddam’s link to al Qaeda is laughable. The true mark of a “reasoned” commentator (as Olsen calls you) is dismissing the overwhelming consensus of opposing evidence by people who actually know about these things outside their computer screens and basements as “I don’t care what the anti-wars [didn’t know it was a noun now] say …”

    Where’d you go to school, Mark? I’d like to send my kids there someday if they learn to argue and write they way you do.

    That is all.

  • Bob A. Booey

    I can’t believe you quoted Hannity, by the way. You are what you choose to read.

    Now try and think before you respond. Calm yourself down, use your brain, turn off the right-wing talking heads, do some research, and debate the facts.

    OK? Thanks.

    That is all.

  • Hal Pawluk

    You proved it with your post, MEM (as someone else has already noted).

  • Big Time Patriot

    “As the chief U.S. weapons inspector David Kay made clear, the intelligence about WMDs cited as an excuse for the war was flawed only to the extent that “the Iraqis tried to deceive us and in part they tried to deceive us and others into believing that they really did have those weapons,”

    I followed the link and that is what David kay said. Another way of phrasing this is that the intelligence about WMD’s was flawed only in that it was FALSE. So you are siting as justification for the war that the Bush administration was duped by Saddam? How many have to die because we were duped? If we were duped, doesn’t that make the war a mistake? Do you want to keep in power those who were duped into sacrificing a 1000 people on a dictators lies? How many more chances are you going to give them to be duped again? (They seemed to have been duped by those CBS memos just recently, since the White House was the ones handing them out, doesn’t say much for their judgement).

    Just don’t quite get how being attacked by Islamic fundamentalists means we had to attack a non-fundamentalist dictator when Islamic fundamentalist terrorist are still around as viable targets.

    Talk about taking your eye off the ball. It’s not just leadership we need, America needs and deserves COMPETENT leadership. Don’t settle for any old hack with decent speech writers and a history of failure. America CAN do better…

  • RJ

    “foreigners like Allawi”

    That’s a lie.

  • RJ

    The Left thinks liberating Iraq was a “mistake.’ They think killing Saddam’s monstrous sons was a “mistake.” The think Saddam in a prison cell was a “mistake.”

    So does John F. Kerry (this week, at least).

    Of course, most American voters will likely disagree in five and a half weeks…

  • Shark

    RJ: “The Left thinks liberating Iraq was a “mistake.'”

    The Right thinks they’ve ‘liberated’ Iraq.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Allawi is a foreigner, RJ.

    He left Iraq in 1972 at the age of about 25 and did not return until America inserted him into the Governing Council. He’s more foreign that Iraqi, and that’s how he’s seen by many Iraqis.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Iraq has been liberated? Bartender, I’ll have what he’s having.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Your comment is everything that’s wrong with the current political debate. No regard for facts; no regard for the details; stark, racist language; illogical appeal to false analogies.

    You’ve got some nerve calling me a racist, pal. Well, I’m sorry. Al-Zaqawri and his followers are sweet people, noble fighters, indeed modern-day “Minutemen” in the words of that gracious polemic Michael Moore (who says white people were to chicken to attempt to thwart the hijackers on 9/11, despite black box evidence to the contrary, yet we all know reverse racism is fine and dandy. Not to be noticed, not to be cared about …)

    Anyway, “Bob A. Booey,” I’d like to just say that I really couldn’t give a goddamn what someone whose nom-de-plume came courtesy of The Howard Stern Show thinks, especially my choice of talk shows. (“Hannity and Colmes,” for instance.)

    Now be a good boy and re-bury your head in the sand.

    And as for the rest of the usual liberal suspects here, go attack a Bush supporter. Rip their “Bush-Cheney” signs off their lawns and crap all over them. G’won, you know you want to. That, after all, is what amounts to your contribution to our “flawed” national debate.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Furthermore, do you really know what’s driving you all absolutely nucking futs, Shark, Boom, “Bob A. Booey,” Hal?

    It’s because our estimable editor, Eric, had the colossal nerve to congratulate me on an “excellent, measured and conscientious” post – in his opinion, my best yet.

    Thanks for that, Eric. It’s always a brave thing to speak the truth, while causing BC’s usual crop of left-wing crazies to froth at the mouth.

    (That’s nothing compared to how they’ll feel come November, but hey … we’ll leave it until then.)

  • Hal Pawluk

    Wrong again, MEM – how could anybody possibly be jealous of your “talents,” especially if this is your “best yet?”

    Froth on.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    No matter how extensively researched and measured an entry I write, it will always be overlooked as trash by the likes of you and yours, Hal. Christopher Hitchens, no conservative (neo or otherwise), has detailed the abuses of Saddam better than anyone, and yet you’ll still dismiss him as a dangerously minded (and no doubt religioulsy influenced, despite Hitchens’ well-known atheism) idiot …

    Yet, if I were on your side, and simply wrote, “Bush is a moron. He’s wrecked the economy, put people out of work, threw us into two wars, controls the media to make us all paranoid and scared to vote for him, and is the real world’s worst terrorist.” That would be all I’d have to write and the number of BC’ers lining up to kiss my rear end would be substantial.

    You’re not interested in information and links and research that conflicts with your views, Hal. Who the hell do you think you’re kidding? I’ve provided them – you simply won’t listen. Yet, as with the fake entry I’ve outlined above, that is all I’d need to write and you’d love it and accept it unquestioningly as approved dogma for the masses.

    In the meantime, Hal, keep eating those sour grapes. *smack, smack, smack!* Don’t worry, you’ll get used to the taste. Especially come November.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Totally wrong as usual, MEM – none of your fantasy projections in this post bear any resemblance to reality whatsoever.

    I’m not sure that I can even imagine the sort of mental world you must live in, but I am very thankful it’s not mine.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Hal P.: “I’m not sure that I can even imagine the sort of mental world you must live in, but I am very thankful it’s not mine.”

    The feeling couldn’t possibly be more mutual, Hal. Believe you me. At least I won’t be the one cringing from embarassment once Iraq becomes a stable democracy in the Middle East. But, of course, like all good extreme Lefties, you’ll just ignore it and move on to another perverse, fetishistic hatred … and it won’t be reserved for fascistic dictators, that’s for damn sure.

    Oh, and Bob A. Booey? A thought just occurred to me: You’ve made perfectly clear how much you love and admire the bombing fucktards like Al-Sadr and Al-Zaqrawi, given your penchant for sticking up for them. But have you honestly ever criticized the state of Israel or the concept of Zionism?

    If the answer is yes, then don’t DARE to tell me that I’m racist. Got it???

  • Hal Pawluk

    You just can’t avoid using hate speech, name-calling and mischaracterizations, MEM, can you?

    Give it a rest – it’s unbecoming and, from your perspective, counter-productive because it weakens any valid positions that may be there behind the spew.

    Have a nice weekend.

  • Bob A. Booey


    The best you can come up with to anything I said was some stupid Howard Stern joke and somehow thinking I support Iraqi insurgents — I dare you to find that anywhere in what I wrote. Yet you have no real ability to argue the substance of these points.

    I won’t get into why you violate every logical fallacy of argumentation you should have learned in your freshman writing class if you had ever gone to college. That’d make you too happy since you could get into a cheap ad hominem attack game instead of realizing you have nothing to say about the issues.

    Again, make the argument (based on fact and not flaming rhetoric), with evidence, why Iraq made us safer and why this administration has done a good job on national security and homeland defense.

    No “you support the terrorists cuz you’re not with us” bullshit, no references to Michael Moore or Sean Hannity, no creepy rants about Zionism (why do I think you’ve saved a few of your choice racist phrases for that part of the Middle East as well in your past too?), no paranoid rants about “perverse fetishistic hatred,” no kissing Olsen’s ass, no more cowardly evasion of the issues.

    Write a “measured and extensively researched entry” already. Surprise us all. Don’t make excuses about how the liberal media makes it impossible for you to have a logical viewpoint (huh?). Where’s your information and research? I don’t see any except for a link to another rambling blog in your original post.


    Somehow, I doubt this will get anything constructive out of you, but I’m offering you the chance again to have a rational (as opposed to bitter and emotional) take on this issue.

    Otherwise, have fun with all the hate and childishness, buddy.

    That is all.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    I don’t have to prove anything to you, “Bob A. Booey” or Hal. You both found it perfectly acceptable to jump down my throat for daring to use my freedom of speech to defend the perfectly defensible War in Iraq. Again, all your vemon being aimed at me is nothing but a ruse for your own hatred and desires for any political debate to be one-sided, i.e. the domination of liberals in the political debate.

    As you say, “Bob,” that is all.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Perfect, MEM, and Matt Labash would be proud of you: criticize others for what you do.

    He’s right, it’s a great racket you folks have.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    “so devoid of knowledge about global issues.”

    In other words, I’m not willing to consult with France, Germany and the useless, powerless U.N. to decide what’s best for the U.S.

    In other words, I’m unwilling to let American decision-making be in the hands of a faceless, international bureaucracy.

  • boomcrashbaby

    do you really know what’s driving you all absolutely nucking futs, Shark, Boom, “Bob A. Booey,” Hal?

    What are you talking about? You asked Hal a question. I took the liberty of responding (comment 12). I told you a point of view that people have. My response was presented as simply matter-of-fact. Now suddenly I’m frothing at the mouth?

  • the gaulieter

    imagine a world leader with a couple hundred thousand troops, ill equipped, trying to take on millions of fanatics bent on world domination and destruction….what a war mongering idiot that churchill was….thank god it was the brits and not the french doing the fighting in north africa, cuz if the nazis had reached the oilfields, we might all be speaking german now… was all about oil then too. (you libs must love reading that) they ran out of gas. really! read speer’s book….those who don’t understand history are condemned to repeat it….i think another big attack here in the u.s. anytime soon would give rise to a wave of vigilante justice against middle easterners…. i know of two palestinian brothers that owned and operated a gas station a few miles from me who fled less than a week after 9/11….fbi snooping around and everything….can you say sleeper cell….all you friggin “oblios” better WAKE UP!!!!! they kill the smart ones first

  • Bob A. Booey

    Each more hopeless than the last….

    Read what you wrote, Gaulieter. Do you not realize you sound like a lunatic? Your blue-collar hate-speech anecdotes about people you know are always the best proof of your political positions, really. The only thing you hate more than common sense is punctuation, apparently.

    Oh, and Justene, baby … it’s not a personal attack if I point out that someone’s argumentative style is hopeless and irrational, as I did with Mark’s comment. I think you’re getting a little carried away there.

    Somehow you choose NOT to edit out hate speech like “subhuman primates” though … interesting choices you make.

    I think your panties are on too tight for this censorship business. Instead of censoring out entire paragraphs, if you must censor, try taking out the offending words, ok, honey?

    I’ll spank you.

    That is all.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    “Bob A. Booey,” no-one is beginning to sound more ridiculous, spiteful, irrational, hopeless and like a lunatic but yourself, witness your language towards Justene.

    Somehow, in your strange little world, it’s condemnable to say a politically incorrect word about the terrorists committing atrocities in Iraq, but it’s OK to be as sexist as you like towards a female moderator whose style you simply don’t agree with.

    Showing your true colors, Baba-booey, true colors.

  • Bob A. Booey


    That’s really the best you could do?

    Yeah, I’m the sexist. Why do I think you’ve saved many of your choice, hateful rants for feminism?

    Talk to me when you get out of your angry white male cave and decide to support abortion rights and gender discrimination law.

    Beyond projecting and offering cowardly, fearful little repetitions of what we all already perceive about you, do you have anything to offer?

    For someone who’s every entry is talking about how opponents of the war are evil and can’t debate the issue, you CONTINUE to evade the topic. Offer a reasoned, evidenced case why Iraq made us safer. All we’re getting from you is emotional, childish paranoia.

    I fully expect that you will continue to be afraid to have a rational discussion. What’s it like to live your life driven by so much fear?

    That is all.

  • Bob A. Booey

    That should be “whose entry.” I can’t type late at night.

    And there’s a difference between kidding and calling people “subhuman primates.” I don’t think Justene or anyone else would consider my silly jokes anything near your level of hatred.

    Go on the other topics discussing the war in Iraq and offer a real response.

    No one takes your views seriously or respects what you have to say on this issue since you have no evidence for your emotional claims, which don’t even qualify as arguments. Look at the responses you’ve gotten on this topic.

    That is all.

  • Shark

    MEM, you’re coming unhinged, but it’s a lot of fun to watch. Keep it up!

    BTW: Iraq is STILL an ongoing disaster, quagmire, stalemate, continuous body count, drain on the US treasury, excellent recruiting event for more terrorists, and UNWINNABLE.

    Today’s Quiz for Mark Edward Manning:

    Name one successful military occupation that fought against a nationalistic insurgency.

    Just one.

    Thanks in advance,
    Shark (a funny lucid “nucking fut”)

  • Tim Hall

    Name one successful military occupation that fought against a nationalistic insurgency.

    (1) The British campaign against Malayan communists in the 50s. Ironically we’d armed them in the first place during WW2, hoping to use them against the Japanese. But the Japanese surrendered first.

    (2) Northern Ireland. We did actually beat the IRA, despite what some (including the IRA themselves) would have you believe.

    I think Iraq would be doing better if the American commanders had listened to their British counterparts in the south a little more. We Brits have more experience in counter-insurgency campaigns, and have learned (the hard way) that pissing off the majority of the local population is not a winning strategy.

  • JR

    “Name one successful military occupation that fought against a nationalistic insurgency.”

    The British campaign against Malayan communists in the 50s.

    Um, the Southeast Asians nations are all independent now, aren’t they?

    Northern Ireland. We did actually beat the IRA, despite what some (including the IRA themselves) would have you believe.

    Hmmm, perhaps. Although the IRA isn’t dead yet.

  • Tim Hall

    Um, the Southeast Asians nations are all independent now, aren’t they?

    Yes, but Malaysia isn’t and never was Communist, because we beat the Communists, Something America failed to do in Vietnam. And I believe an independent Iraq is still the eventual goal of the US.

    Hmmm, perhaps. Although the IRA isn’t dead yet.

    Japan lost World War 2, but the Emperor Hirohito remained on the throne. That doesn’t mean they didn’t lose. ‘Defeat’ is not always the same thing as ‘totally destroy’.

  • Shark

    re: Malaysia in late 1950s – that was ethnic Chinese (communist) guerrillas.

    The Malaysians, for the most part, wanted to keep their UK capitalist masters, their economy, and their cricket courts.

    Try again.

    re: Northern Ireland –

    Whoo-hoo! Good work, Brits! Very encouraging! You shared the same language, the same culture, were up against maybe 1.5 million hostiles — and it only took just over 30 years to “win” in Northern Ireland.

    And 30 years to arrive at a political compromise (!) — since the Brits could never have won an a ‘military’ fight against an ad hoc, organic nationalistic terrorist group.

    PS: Americans can’t wait 30 months. We have ADD when it comes to that sort of thing.

    PPS: We have 130,000 troops in a country of 25,000,000 — and we don’t speak the language.


    “Victory in 2034!”

  • Shark

    Oh — and did I mention:

    1) …that these Jihadists make the IRA look like choirboys and soccer hooligans?

    2) …IRAQ: It’s over folks.

    3) …WE LOST.

    4) …Yankee Come Home?

  • Tim Hall

    Cricket courts

    Is this the equivalent of baseball courses? Or Football tracks?

    I don’t believe they play much cricket in Malaysia; unlike India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka or the West Indies, they’re not a test-playing nation.

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Shark: “Name one successful military occupation that fought against a nationalistic insurgency.”

    I hope I’m not too late to answer this, I honestly missed this challenge.

    The best example I can give of a miilitary occupation that fought successfully against a nationalistic insurgency is our own Civil War, or War Between the States, if you prefer.

    Abraham Lincoln, much in the manner of Bush, was widely condemned, even among some in the North, for trying to keep the Union together in the face of a faction that saw itself as a completely different culture. And the battles were long, hard and very bloody. But, after four years, Lincoln won, because he persevered.

    And that’s the type of leadership and mindset we need for Iraq. Bush realizes this, Tony Blair realizes this. I have never said I think this will all be over in months. I think this situation could well drag on into 2006.

    That’s unfortunate, but the job must be done. We need to the gamble that Lincoln took. It was worth it.

    And I think you are in error for calling the situation in Iraq a “nationalist” insurgency. These sub-human pri … oops, I meant poor, misguided souls, have no allegiance to a nation, just a warped theocratical ideology.

  • Shark

    The American civil war:

    Oh. My. Gawd.





    Manning, your grasp of history is even worse than your grasp of politics.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Wow, MEM – just “wow.”

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Shark: “Manning, your grasp of history is even worse than your grasp of politics.”

    According to you, Sharkie. The day I let a liberal – who likes nothing better to revise history to put their little twist on things – lecture me about history is the day I inherit the British monarchy.

  • Taloran

    From the original post: “as an ardent war supporter”

    An ardent supporter of ALL war, or just this one? I would have stated that this question was tongue in cheek, but reading through what Manning has to say on this and other threads, I’m not completely uncertain that he might be one of those true nutjobs who believes “any war is better than no war at all.”

  • Dennis Revell

    What a fuckwitted blogger started this off, talking about “being all right” because he didn’t want to see more smoking American cities!?!

    Where’s he been?

    1. Iraq had NOTHING, repeat NOTHING to do with 9/11.

    2. Anyone with 2 peas to make a brain KNEW that Iraq was no threat to the US or the West – after more than a decade of debillitating sanctions. No Scott Ritter needed – although he’s useful as a former insider.

    So the bleeding heart for Americans here (but for absolutely NO ONE else) thinks it’s OK to proxy someone else’s country for the showdown at the OK Corral with Al Qaeda – in the process finishing off the destruction of that country that the sanctions started.


    The Nuremberg Tribunal’s main conclusion was that the waging of unprovoked war was the ultimate war crime. The invasion of Iraq was that ultimate war crime.

    It’s nothing but an exercise in the largest mass murder this side of the millenium’s turnover.

    Of course, being unnecessary, at least for the lying reasons given, (the real reasons being too murky and underhanded to give publicity to – see PNAC’s “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” (sic)), there’s a strong argument that the consequent deaths and maimings of Armed Services personnel also constitutes high treason on the part of those that sent them.

  • Eric Olsen

    the above is so extreme it’s hard to decide where to begin, but surely no one not living incommunicado in a bunker for the last five years would blame the “destruction of Iraq” on sanctions?? The sanctions were the only reason WMD weren’t found, which the commenter himself acknowledges. this is quite astonishing.

  • Hal Pawluk

    Actually quite sound, Eric, with a bit of the emotion removed.

    The sanctions were destroying Iraq as a significant power, and there were no WMDs to be found. It was not necessary to spend $130 billion, cause the deaths of more than 1,100 Americans, main another 8-9,000, kill 20-30,000 Iraqis, main uncounted others, and turn their cities into piles of rubble (cf. Fallujah as we speak).

    All that the unilateralist American invasion and occupation of Iraq has done – and is doing – is spread terrorists farther and increased their number faster than anything Osama could have dreamed of.

  • Eric Olsen

    too tired today to reiterate the opposing view for the 369th time: anyone who cares already knows

  • Hal Pawluk

    And they know Iraq was a diversion from the war on terror, and increased the threat worldwide.

    With additional “collateral damage” in Iraq and America.

  • Gee Dubs

    Try this hat for size…..

    Our country’s leaders thought it was in the best interest’s of all americans (even those crazies up north)to plant several hundred thousand soldiers in Iraq. The majority of voters recently re-elected these same leaders. Perhaps Hal & company should think about that for awhile. While you are entitled to your opinions, you are not assigned the task of solving this issue. Get it??? We already have a sec. of defense and you’re not it. How about we let them (the people in charge) complete their work.


  • Hal Pawluk

    No, Dubs, you don’t know that “Our country’s leaders thought it was in the best interest’s of all americans … to plant several hundred thousand soldiers in Iraq.”

    You only have their word for it, and their word is no good. They changed that word 27 times as to their reasons for the unilateralist American invasion.

    Perhaps you “should think about that for awhile.”

    Their flip-flopping on the issue would make a whirling dervish look calm.

  • Gee Dubs

    Hal & Company,

    You are indeed jaded if you truly believe that they are not acting in the american public’s best interests. To me you are just being obstinate. To assume that your country’s leaders would for some strange reason engage in a war that reaped no benefit for the american people is truly bizzarre. Consider this, maybe just maybe they have information that leads them to believe that our occupation is good for the western world. Perhaps they haven’t shared all this info with you and Company. Perhaps you are in the dark Hal.

    No matter, it’s really has nothing to do with you. We already have filled the post of sec of defense and we already the joint chiefs of staff. Our leaders have decided what is best for this nation and correct me if I am wrong but nobody but nobody asked you or your buddies for any advice.

    Now are you starting to see the picture?


  • Hal Pawluk

    Not bizarre, truth.

    And it has everything to do with me … and you and him and her.

    “You are indeed jaded [deluded] if you truly believe that they are not acting in the american public’s best interests” rather than in their own.

    The invasion of Iraq has already proven not to be in the best interest of the American public – American deaths, families devastated, billions wasted in the sands of the Middle East while they could have been spent at home to fix health care and Social Security, more terrorists – it’s a long, long list.

  • Gee Dubs

    Poor misguided Hal said…
    And it has everything to do with me…

    So how come Bush and company didn’t ask for your advice if it’s all about you?

  • Hal Pawluk

    You’re right – your childish dismissiveness in the midst of an attempt at a serious conversation is annoying.

    You really do need to make an effort at comprehension, though. It will stand you in good stead for the rest of your life.


  • Gee Dubs

    Ditto Hal ditto

  • Mark Edward Manning

    Gee Dubs: “While you are entitled to your opinions, you are not assigned the task of solving this issue. Get it??? We already have a sec. of defense and you’re not it.”

    *applauds loudly*

  • Dennis Revell

    No comments yet?
    Where’s my comment, you censoring shithead war-mongering bastard?