Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Obama's October Hat Trick Surprise

As Election Day draws near, the shifts and alterations of the various players has made this campaign more interesting than it might have been otherwise.

For Americans, the latest shout-outs are drawing attention to the unstable nature of our political currents.

The most surprising development is Colin Powell’s public endorsement of Barry Obama. I don’t need to link this story; it’s all over the American news outlets.

Remember, though, that this is the guy Daily Kos pulled through the mud, headlining his appointment as Secretary of State under Bush as “Uncle Tom Powell Stumps for Massah Bush”. No, I don’t visit Daily Kos so I haven’t read their latest take, but somehow I think Powell’s endorsement of Obama, and Obama’s announcement to have Powell as his advisor, will generate ecstatic responses in Kosland. All his former treacheries (he was a Republican, after all and in Kosland, Republican=Treachery) will be forgiven and forgotten. Sudden virtues, formerly hidden by Powell’s Republicanism, will be created and polished to a fine sheen.

Powell has been a problematic character ever since the first Gulf War.
- - - - - - - - -
His decision not to run for President back in the 2000 race was a wise one, for Powell is not cut out for it. In fact, he wasn’t really cut out for his position as a General in the Army, or as our Secretary of State. In the former, he failed to lead vigorously and we ended up backing down from Saddam, only to cause the deaths of many Iraqis who believed us the first time. Those deaths are Powell’s burden.

Our intervention after September 11th, when Powell went to the UN to state the case for entry into Iraq, was a weak one also. Even then, as Claudia Rossett pointed out, he knew about the overwhelming corruption of the oil deals being made by Saddam with China and France. He could have used that leverage in making his case for war, but by then Powell was under the spell of the State Department and so he kept quiet.

Bush’s replacement of him after the first term could not have endeared Powell to the Republicans. In fact, it’s clear that he is quite estranged not only from the Republican Party, but from conservative policy itself (yes, I realize that the two are not coterminous. The Republicans have drifted to Big Government solutions much too often, but that discussion is for another time).

General Powell’s endorsement of Obama is embarrassing. His reasons for turning tail and joining the Democrat camp are as airy-fairy thin as Obama’s own policies, so in that sense they make a good fit. Obama has announced that there will be a place for Powell in his administration, thus the latter’s motivation stands in clear relief against the background of his conversion.

However, Powell is not the only October surprise.

There is the Christopher Buckley case. For our European readers, Mr. Buckley is mainly famous for being the son of William F. Buckley, the founder of the monthly conservative magazine, National Review. Mr. Buckley claims that the Republican Party is not his father’s party any more and thus he must leave…to actively support a socialist instead? Go figure.

Of course, the fact that control of his father’s magazine was not part of his inheritance might have some bearing on his resignation. Buckley is a good example of the reversion to the mean. He is neither as intelligent nor as charming as his father was. William F. Buckley was one of a kind; his shoes would have been impossible to fill.

Perhaps William Buckley’s recent death, with all the grief that must entail, was part of the son’s reason for leaving the loyal ranks his father helped create. Perhaps it was his realization that his temporary job at National Review was about to end as Mark Steyn returned to the magazine’s back page. Buckley’s residence there was only ever meant to be temporary, so maybe he felt the need to leave with a flourish instead of waiting to be asked to vacate the page.

Buckley claims he was “fired” but the editors at National Review have his chirpy, let’s-be-friends resignation email to counter this claim. It will be interesting to see how he manages to ally himself with a socialist Democrat and still retain any fidelity to his family’s heritage. It is true his father didn’t like George Bush’s policies in Iraq, but that never would have converted William Buckley into a supporter of the kind of politician that he founded his magazine to fight.

Barry Obama represents everything that William Buckley disdained. For whatever reason, his son has gone over to the dark side. I think it is a decision he will live to regret deeply.

The third public endorsement of Obama that is of interest is the one by Google’s CEO, Eric Schmidt. Though not of the “sudden conversion” variety, this public support smells to high heaven. Bob Parks, a black conservative running for state office in Massachusetts, uses the news article in The Wall Street Journal to form his own judgments about Schmidt’s move. Like Powell and Buckley, Schmidt has his reasons:

Mr. Schmidt said his planned endorsement of the Illinois senator is a “natural evolution” from his role as an informal adviser to the Obama campaign.

The Google chief plans to join executives from other technology companies to announce their support for Sen. Obama.

[…]

Congress is considering measures that could have an adverse impact on Google’s business, including laws that could limit companies’ ability to deliver personally targeted online advertisements and rules that would allow telecommunications companies to charge different prices for different levels of Internet service.

Lawmakers’ and regulators’ scrutiny of Google, in particular, is intensifying. The company’s proposed ad-sharing agreement with Yahoo Inc. triggered a Justice Department probe into whether the deal would give Google too much control over the market and lead to higher prices for online advertisers.

“My sense is, the Justice Department makes judgments on these issues independent of politics,” Mr. Schmidt said. “It would be unfair to Justice to imply [that supporting Sen. Obama] would make a difference.”

Yes, he really said that with a straight face: “It would be unfair to Justice to imply [that supporting Sen. Obama] would make a difference.” It makes you wonder what else he expects us to swallow regarding Google. This is the company that helped China set up its anti-free speech network, the same company that will no doubt work with the EU to do the same when they begin to focus seriously on closing down anti-statist blogs. Think of Google as an evolved Soviet system and you begin to get an idea of its business plan and its eventual reach into your life.

Thus endeth the October surprise(s). No doubt there will be more.

Oh, wait. We hear another voice from the crowd. This has become a hat trick with a spare: it is rumored that Bernanke, head of the Federal Reserve Commission, is endorsing Obama. If so, it is because he believes Obama will win, and Bernanke, like all the others elbowing their way into position, wants to hang onto his job.

It is enlightening to discover the price of a man’s soul.

64 comments:

Afonso Henriques said...

"Those deaths are Powell’s burden."
That may be a little extreme...

However, it apears that Obama does not really have American Nationality or Citizenship or whatever.

Beach Girl said...

Baron, please allow me to engage in a little "link whoring" here. I had thought to write about Powell but I have always considered him a RINO, and so it goes.

I have just finished a post, Obama, Ayers' greatest coup? Not on our watch. Of course, I'm not sure of the link, here. Hope it works. I believe the supposition is at least true in part. The greatest success the Devil achieved was to convince us that he doesn't exist.

Thank you... Ayers, like the others of his ilk, plan and work patiently for decades...and centuries.

Beach Girl said...

I guess if one is to be a "link whore", one should get the link right - Obama: Ayers' greatest coup? Not on our watch!

Thank you...

Henrik R Clausen said...

Powell should have left the Republicans much earlier. In 2003, when they pressed him to present bad evidence at the United Nations, it was a good time to balk and leave with honour. Would also have prevented a somewhat pointless war.

What he does now is plain hollow. His endorsement of Obama is a stack of clichés - so obviously that I'm getting puzzles about it. Did someone buy him to do that? Has he been promised some nice, profitable seat? I think so.

I fear that the US, possibly ruled by a super-majority of 'Democrats', will move towards socialism at a staggering speed. As if the Soviet Union had been a success or something...

Henrik R Clausen said...

Hm. Obama just confirmed my guess - Powell *will* get some 'advisor' role in his administration.

After seeing Anders Fogh taking the bribe of promises, it seems I'm getting able to recognize it elsewhere. Interesting.

spackle said...

Powell was the consummate "Good Soldier". Yes sir, no sir. He also knew on which side his bread was buttered. I would have had a lot more respect for the man if he stuck by his principles from the start. Be they left or right.

Homophobic Horse said...

"What's next" the ranting maniac asks?

That Obama is George Bush on steroids and so it really isn't remarkable that some Republicans now support Obama.

Obama, despite his opposition to the Iraq War, is in no way a change of track for American politics. Indeed, to me he represents the very culmination of the psychological tumult that has been brewing in America ever since Bill Clinton initiated the multicultural bombing of Serbia, ever since George Bush claimed said “Freedom is God’s Gift to All” and that America has a special mission to spread freedom to the whole world by socially engineering a progressive “democracy” in the heart of Muslim Mesopotamia.

With the above in mind, Barack Obama–-the personification of multiculturalism–is the “One” America has been “waiting for”, he is America incarnate: the new American spirit made flesh.

It’s too early to say for sure what is going to happen, but I think Barack Obama will be the peculiarly American fascist dictator: nationalised banks, Cultural Marxism (which the NeoCons more than share), ideology, militarism, lies, absurd denials, lies, ridiculous lies, lies, belligerence, complete with personality cult and youth movement who pray to him as though he were God.

Dymphna said...

In 2003, when they pressed him to present bad evidence at the United Nations, it was a good time to balk and leave with honour. Would also have prevented a somewhat pointless war.

It was not "bad" evidence, Henrik. It was the best evidence at the time available to the Brits and tothe US. We did not do this on our own. Or have you forgotten the impotence of those forty or more "resolutions" by the UN?

If Colin Powell had his way, he'd still be standing at the podium talking.

You may label the war mistaken, but it was not dishonourable. I resent the inference a reasonable person could make from your statement re the motives of the US in the Iraq war.

What *was* dishonourable was playing footsie with the Russians and French as they continued to get their oil supply from Saddam. That's why they fought the invasion -- it ended their cozy arrangement.

I don't know if Claudia Rossett has done a book on her investigation of this subject but she certainly has the definitive information in her long series on the level of corruption in the UN re oil/Saddam/France/etc. She plumbed the depths there and came up with enough filth to cover everyone in that building.

John Bolton was right: the UN needs to go somewhere else.

Personally, I think the building would make excellent council housing. And during the coming financial squeeze in NYC, the absence of the UN would go a long way toward allieviating the city's debt.

The UN is such a Belgium kind of place that I nominate Brussels for its new headquarters. I'll even help them pack their boxes and donate toward the shipping costs.

Oh to be rid of the UN. Its very presence on American soil is an affront.

Zenster said...

The Republicans have drifted to Big Government solutions much too often, but that discussion is for another time).

Yes and no. It is precisely because the republican platform has become so similar to that of the democratic party whereby large numbers of voters have little problem crossing over partisan lines. In this repect, the republicans have stumped rather vigorously for Obama.

McCain's tepid campaigning has only served to exacerbate this mass departure. By landing so few solid blows upon Obama's patently glass jaw, McCain has served to give Barrack an appearance of strength where none should or does exist.

While America may not deserve an Obama presidency, should such a travesty occur, the republican party certainly needs to have that disaster laid directly at their feet.

Finally, after watching the interviews by Howard Stern's street reporter, it is truly difficult not to assign Powell with the same blind vote-by-race motivation that appears to be so common among other minority voters.

Should Obama be elected, it will be due to a convergence of factors whose astonishing improbability are only exceeded by Barrak's total lack of qualifications.

Henrik R Clausen said...

It was not "bad" evidence, Henrik.

It was, or insufficient. Certainly not 'casus belli'. I watched him present it, and - contrary to my own government - made up my mind that I was unconvinced about the necessity of this war.

It was the best evidence at the time available to the Brits and to the US.

And it was not good enough. It wasn't then, the WMD were never found, and the alledged Al-Qaeda links did not exist.

Or have you forgotten the impotence of those forty or more "resolutions" by the UN?

No. Those were an interesting exercise in implementing a world government through the UN.

Dore Gold has an interesting account of the process in Iraq. Bush was trying to revitalize the power of UN in this case, which was underreported in the press who didn't care for the nuance in this.

But is going to war - and paying for it - just due to resolutions from UN really worth it?

I think the UN should be abolished.

Zenster said...

What is almost unanimously neglected in discussions about the run-up to Gulf War II is how Saddam eagerly portrayed himself to the Arab world as having these WMDs (even if he did not).

Seeking to play the strong horse and, also, buying himself some security against any Iranian incursions, he unwittingly set himself up for prosecution.

None of this even addresses the convoys of trucks that departed for Syria immediately prior to the invasion. Convoys that our military might have been able to intercept had Turkey not betrayed us with respect to the Northern Iraqi Front.

I still find it hilarious that liberals want to impeach Bush over (what hindsight has shown to be), scanty evidence for these WMDs. Not just existing intelligence estimates, but a significant degree of global opinion supported the invasion of Iraq.

As Dymphna has already pointed out, those who were rather profitably gaming the Oil for Palaces scandal (including Kofi Annan's son, Kojo), were the only major objectors.

We'll try to ignore the irony of having created a distinctly LESS secular Iraqi state that now prosecutes Christians and Jews even worse than before. That is almost entirely due to America's abject stupidity in allowing shari'a law to be enacted after liberating Afghanistan and Iraq. If any war crimes occured, it was the rebirth of shari'a in those nations.

Henrik R Clausen: ... the alledged Al-Qaeda links did not exist

Please get your facts straight. Saddam was allowing al Qaeda terrorists, including Osama's son (now sequestered in Iran) to use Iraq for safe transit. There is also evidence that one of al Qaeda's top leaders (Zarqawi) received medical treatment in pre-war Iraq.

While not overwhelming evidence of complicity with al Qaeda, Saddam's additional sponsoring of Palestinian suicide bombers and other financial assistance to terror organizations gave us plenty of reasons to make sure he got to swing.

james said...

Average World IQ 90: Our Western future.
http://weird66.blogspot.com/2008/10/overloaded.html

Click skip in right hand corner to skip pop-up ad.

Homophobic Horse said...

"We'll try to ignore the irony of having created a distinctly LESS secular Iraqi state that now prosecutes Christians and Jews even worse than before."

But we musn't forget, it fact it is entirely the point. Iraq would be better if we had never invaded.

"That is almost entirely due to America's abject stupidity in allowing shari'a law to be enacted after liberating Afghanistan and Iraq. If any war crimes occured, it was the rebirth of shari'a in those nations."

Multiculturalism--a cultural marxist invention-- as we are painfully aware, prevents Westerners from coming to negative conclusions about Islam.

Obama represents the nadir of this, as I try to make clear with my 10/21/2008 5:40 PM comment.

Anonymous said...

Powell was always a liberal. It was obvious for years.

His endorsement is very obviously based on the fact that Powell (admittedly) finds the idea of a "black" American president to be very exciting emotionally.

I.e. Powell turns out to be a racist. What a shock ;-)

He'll favor an obvious anti-American communist with nothing to recommend him, on the basis that he is "black". (And don't get me started on Obama's credentials as an American black person).

And all this under circumstances where it is not clear that Obama is even a natural born citizen of the US, and is likely to be legally ineligible.

It is notable when one looks at the demographics of political polls taken among America's military that the numbers average about 75% in favor of McCain among every demographic except blacks who come in at about 88% in favor of Obama.

pleas said...

Hasn't anyone caught on that the Bushites and the GOP have effectively nationalised the banks already? There's no worry about Obama & the federal government taking over everything - the Republicans, as a consequence of their corruption and incompetence, have done it for him.

I would say, regarding Powell, Buckley and Schmidt leaving the Republicans, that it is a clear case of the ships abandoning the rats.

Czechmade said...

Zenster

Iraq is extremely interesting.
We get a staunch ally in Iraqi Kurdistan defining itself as a sort of local Israel, while loosing symetrically Turkey as a clear ally.

Iraqis loose gradually any illusion about "Arabs", slowly remembring they used to be "Uruq" a non-Arab nation.

Basra was betrayed in the nineties with the help of James Baker to please the Saudis as far as I was able to find out. Iraqis also dislike Palestinians, who were treated like kings under Saddam.

Basra used to be a very mondane place not fitting at all in the Saudi or Iranian mullahs patterns.

The British did very little for Basra, only recently the place recovers from Iranian control freaks.

The obligatory blowing smoke screen
fed to the media every weak never occurs in Basra. It might be the missing pole to change Iraq for good.

Dymphna said...

@pleas --

Hasn't anyone caught on that the Bushites and the GOP have effectively nationalised the banks already? There's no worry about Obama & the federal government taking over everything - the Republicans, as a consequence of their corruption and incompetence, have done it for him.

Well, your version of the story has a certain interesting tilt. Unfortunately, you've left out the long march of the socialists thru our financial institutions, demanding "fairness" for people who couldn't pay their bills and had no business with a mortgage.

Fannie and Freddie were not bloated up by "Bushites". In fact, Bush tried to rein them in, but Pelosi wasn't having it. McCain predicted this mess back in 2005, but no one wanted to hear it.

Where in God's green world do you get your news, fellah?

Henrik R Clausen said...

Zenster, I believe I do have my facts straight. You'll notice that I explicitly said 'Al-Qaeda'. Saddam had links to a slew of other terrorists, but was not in with Al-Qaeda in any significant way. That still makes him an international criminal, but it disconnects him from 9/11, which was a main rationale of the war.

Yes, Saddam used to have WMD's. We know it because he used them. And the credible threat of war made him get rid of whatever he had left at that time, while upholding the pretense that he still had them. Hans Blixt was ineffective, and even respected those 'presidential palaces' where anything could have been stored, and probably was. His predecessor was much better. We could have found them, had we been effective.

What was too hot to handle was not the war itself, but the aftermath. We were given the expectation of a peaceful, democratic Iraq, and example for the entire region, but botched the after-war effort both in premises and in execution.

The worst bad premise, of course, was that Saddam was the cause of the mess. He wasn't, he was just an expression of the culture of the area, predominently Islamic, which lends itself to rule by either Islamic or not-very-Islamic tyrants.

That's something we never looked at changing, and that precludes true democracy, for most Iraqis have little idea how that works in practice and what part they need to take in it. Voting is all very good (I talked to happy Iraqis after the vote), but the freedom that needs to exist for democracy to work just wasn't there, and still isn't. As is the case in most Islamic countries.

Instead of continuing with Iraq (the Oil-for-food programme was another UN scandal), we should have heeded 9/11 and gone for the Islamic challenge. But Bush and Blair, stupidly, declared Islam to be a Religion of Peace and kept beating the drum on Iraq. Had they examined the ideological underpinnings of Islam and the consequences in the world, they would have left Iraq to its misery and gone elsewhere to fix our problems.

BTW, Obama for president actually does have one silver lining. The name of that is Joe Biden who, according to a Greek friend of mine, has a much more meaningful understanding of the Balkan situation. That isn't bad.

Henrik R Clausen said...

Hasn't anyone caught on that the Bushites and the GOP have effectively nationalised the banks already?

We noticed. It's a bipartisan effort to implement more state control, at the expense of the taxpayer (as usual).

I prefer the common sense of common people.

You can also quote the interest rate during the Bush administration to be creating the bubble.

It's all a dreadful culmination of the events that Democrats, from FDR through Carter to Clinton set in motion. McCain tried to deflated the bubble as late as in 2005, but Democrats blocked the attempt.

But now Bush has run up some complicity in the matter, for sure. I wonder when the US will return to sound capitalistic markets...?

pleas said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Homophobic Horse said...

I jump up and down like a child desperate for attention:

It’s too early to say for sure what is going to happen, but I think Barack Obama will be the peculiarly American fascist dictator: nationalised banks, Cultural Marxism (which the NeoCons more than share), ideology, militarism, lies, absurd denials, lies, ridiculous lies, lies, belligerence, complete with personality cult and youth movement who pray to him as though he were God.

Henrik R Clausen said...

youth movement

Hm, for a moment I thought that the Blue Eagles was such a youth movement. But it seems to be a slip of memory.

But do have a look at the Wiki article. It has some interesting points of the fascist inspiration of the FDR administration.

Fortunately, the US has a good Constitution.

Homophobic Horse said...

From the Blue Eagles crapipedia article:

"the emblem was abolished and its future use as a symbol was prohibited."

LoL. It goes to political hell, let us never speak of it ever again.

Afonso Henriques said...

"Iraqis loose gradually any illusion about "Arabs", slowly remembring they used to be "Uruq" a non-Arab nation."

That is just whishfull thinking. Statements like this, however how well intended, can only throw sand to the people's eyes exactly in the same way the European mainstream Media does.

You see, a fast move towards Wikipedia's page on Iraq has this:

Shia ARABS (people who identify as ethnically Arabs but follow the Persian influenced sect of islam): 55%

Kurds (Indo-European speakers; muslims, non Arabs): 21%

Sunni ARABS (people who identify as Arabs and follow the same sect of the Saudis): 19%

So, ethnically speaking, you have 74% Arabs, 21% Kurds.

If the Iraqi population was not so "mixed", if they had not multiculturalism in each city, we could easily offer the Sunni Arabs to Saudi Arabia, the Shia Arabs to Iran and do whatever Mr. President wanted to do with the Kurds. And in the middle, we would get all the oil in Western/American hands.

But no, that is evil. And what we will be seeing is this.
Well, we are already seeing:
1) Turks invading Kurdistan
2) Fights over influence in Iraq by Arabs (Sunni) and Iranians (Shias).
The difference is that Iraq will not be divided between Saudi Arabia and Iran but there will be a long period of suffering to control Iraq. The Iraqi people will pay for their multiculturalism untill the Caliphate is reborn. Under Saddam, those who payed the highest price for multiculturalism were the Kurds. You reall HAD NOT much RESISTANCE from the part of Arabs did you? Both in the Shia and the Sunni sect. Why's that? My little secret: They are Arabs. Like half of Iran is Turk-Arab.

And you see, "Mesopotamia" has not been "that" centre of Civilisation for a while. In the VII century, Arab hordes invaded and conquered and since then there have been free movement from Arabia to Iraq. Iraq only exists as a political entity since the 1920s, it did not existed before. Iraq is not a Nation. After that, Iraq was ruled by Turks, Arabs, Iranians and Iraq had many centers to atract foreign peoples, like, Bagdad, the sit of the Calif ("Califa", the one who rules the Califate).
But before Turks, Arabs and Iranians rulled it, Persians did.
And before it it was a region that was already disputed by Romans and Persians. And I think Alexander and the Mongols also passed by.

My point is: very little remains from Mesopotamia. In fact, genetically, there is no difference between the Iraqi Arabs and the Arabian Arabs. The genetical difference that exists there is North of the Tigris (or is it the Euphrates?) where - surprise! - the Kurds live.

And that is it. The Kurds, the only ones who do not identify as Arabs. You see, Mesopotamia has vanished, it will not comeback.

It is this that people do not understand. Do not matter how many examples we can give you, you do not understand that Multiculturalism kills and that death is forever.

When the lands which today are inhabited by Europeans are to be inhabited by "brown people", it's not only the white people who will disapear, it will not only blondes who will disapear - and yes, I think the probabilities of getting a blonde out of a crossing of an Indonesian and a Congolese is a bit difficult - it will be the whole culture.

You cannot sustain "the West" with brown people. Look to fricking Mexico!

Afonso Henriques said...

I have to say that I agree pretty much with Henrik. I only differ because I am a bad person :)

"The worst bad premise, of course, was that Saddam was the cause of the mess. He wasn't, he was just an expression of the culture of the area, predominently Islamic, which lends itself to rule by either Islamic or not-very-Islamic tyrants."

This says it all. Henrik is right. This war was a stupidity. Even Bush and Israel have suffered / will suffer due to this. The ones who really proffited were some companies like Blackwater and Shell (I don't know any American oil company).

But Henrik continues and suggests we should have exported democracy to Iraq. That is Iraqis problem in my view.
Also, those happy Iraqis are just as idiot as us who cherish for democracy. Yesterday the local PM said, after winning the elections in the Azores:
"This is the festival (party) of democracy!"

Indeed, democracy is a circus and the voter is 90% of the times, the clown.

Zenster said...

Henrik R Clausen: Saddam had links to a slew of other terrorists, but was not in with Al-Qaeda in any significant way.

Nowhere do I state that Saddam was in thick with al Qaeda. None of that changes how he willingly and very likely, knowingly, assisted them. Given Saddam's tight rein upon all subversive activity in Iraq, it is doubtful in the extreme that Zarqawi could have entered Bagdhad without him knowing.

Also, nowhere do I attribute any complicity of Saddam with the 9-11 atrocity. Nor did Bush make any direct connection as well. Saddam's WMDs were the central issue at all times.

The worst bad premise, of course, was that Saddam was the cause of the mess.

Yes and no. Totalitarian rule throughout the MME (Muslim Middle East) is a cause of the terrorist "mess" we are currently confronting. Only in such non-transparent states can such evil thrive without significant intervention. However, Saddam is merely one piece of a much larger Islamic puzzle, whose elephantine presence in the global parlor is still vehemently denied by most Western leaders.

Instead of continuing with Iraq (the Oil-for-food programme was another UN scandal), we should have heeded 9/11 and gone for the Islamic challenge. But Bush and Blair, stupidly, declared Islam to be a Religion of Peace and kept beating the drum on Iraq.

Please define your own interpretation of going for "the Islamic challenge". I totally agree that the after-war effort was botched entirely. If we were to conquer Iraq, the simple fact of Islam's existence should have mandated a stringent post-war military dictatorship (more benevolent than Saddam's, as in no rape rooms, industrial shredders, etc.), that simply quashed shari'a law and most Islamic practices under penalty of summary execution. Kept in place for one or two generations, there might have been some hope for a free, democratic Iraq. Instead, we see the same results of what "democracy" brought to the Palestinians. A nascent terrorist state that is merely waiting for our corrective presence to evaporate so it can resume jihad against the West. Net change = 0.

In some respects "the Islamic challenge" was met in that we capped Saddam's evil @ss. That is the challenge which remains throughout the Islamic world, eliminating its jihadist leadership and continuing to decimate its ranks until the global caliphate is foresworn.

At present very few, if any, Western leaders understand Islam's intransigent nature and the consequent need to snap its totalitarian spine like a dry twig.

As to any "silver lining" of an Obama presidency, there is only the near-guaranteed prospect of Barrack damaging the democratic party in ways that will make the compound fracture Bush inflicted upon the republican party look like a flesh wound.

Zenster said...

Afonso: Indeed, democracy is a circus and the voter is 90% of the times, the clown.

I'll ask that you remember what Winston Churchill had to say about democracy:

"Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."

Henrik R Clausen said...

There was a report from the US Congress that examined the terrorist links. And concluded that Saddam had significant ties to a lot of terrorist orgs - but specifically not A-Q. Sure, he'd let some through etc., but Saddam was not directly involved with the perpetrators of 9/11. We should have focused on that challenge instead of going after a semi-secular dictator.

I don't think I need to define the "Islamic challenge" much. One could call it the Jihadist Movement, the Islamic subversion of democracy, Islamism, whatever. That movement was responsible for 9/11, not Saddam. Wrong enemy.

Authoritarian rule is a consequence of the predominating philosophy, not the other way round. OTOH, going to the Iraqis and telling them to discard their Qurans for something better would have been some challenge. Probably it should be done in an underhanded way, such as broadcasting sensible television to the nation, letting the Iraqis know that better philosophies than Islam exist.

On the other hand, I'm pretty sure the Saudis much preferred having Saddam taken off their flank over having investigated the Wahhabi philosophy that caused 15 of their citizens to participate in the attack. Saudi influence suspected...

Probably the best approach would have been to sit back and wait, totally vigilant and doing everything to prevent it, for the next major terrorist attack. Then pulverize those people as complete as we kicked the Taleban regime in Afghanistan.

Afonso Henriques said...

Zenster.

In Churchill's time there were not four or five parties battling to desconstruct Brittain in the way they pleased.

You're right. But, the times of the "most loyal oposition to His Majesty" are long gone.

I think Churchill would never dream of a Labour Brittain.

Somebody said that democracy is a luxury only some can attain. Excepting Americans and the Swiss, most peoples have not been capable of sustaining what some call "a functioning democracy".

If Obama is elected I think you will understand the difference between the two democracies.

Zenster said...

Henrik R Clausen: Authoritarian rule is a consequence of the predominating philosophy, not the other way round.

To be clear, I did not say that totalitarianism is the cause of terrorism. It is a cause of terrorism in the way that Islam and totalitarianism dovetail with near 100% congruence.

OTOH, going to the Iraqis and telling them to discard their Qurans for something better would have been some challenge.

Not "discard their Qurans", just refrain from any attempt to practice Islam outside of their homes or die in the trying. Whether we like it or not, admit it or not or act promptly or not, the practice of Islam—in its current form—must eventually represent a capital crime with death as its only penalty.

To date, shari'a law continues to be little else but one massive violation of human rights, just as Islam is nothing more than an ongoing crime against humanity. Both must be treated as such and—as a direct result of that—deserve only swift and irreversible elimination from the sphere of human life.

Finally, I will note—as is so often the case—that, after clarification, we are very much in raucous, violent agreement.

Henrik R Clausen said...

Zenster, thanks for the agreement. We're having some fun here :)

However, I am inclined to disagree on a few points still. Specifically:

There's a distinction between 'totalitarian' and 'authoritarian'. The former means that the state (or some other entity) regulates every aspect of life, guarantees the happiness of the individual, provided one has complete faith in the system and submits to its ideas. Fascism and Islam are similar in that respect.

'Authoritarian' is something else, namely that some dictator, elite or similar has uncontested power. We can name Franco, Caesar, Napoleon and other emperors historically, or we can look around and see similar systems in Moscow, Brussels, Teheran, Riyad etc. Some of these systems are also totalitarian, others not. For example, I would not consider the Putin regime to be totalitarian, as it is not controlling every silly aspect of life. The other three, however...

Refraining from practice in public is equivalent to discarding the Quran. Islam has no spiritual dimension, it consists only of submitting to the will of Allah, Muhammad and their representatives.

Islam is both totalitarian and authoritarian. It's not nice.

Zenster said...

Henrik R Clausen: There's a distinction between 'totalitarian' and 'authoritarian'. The former means that the state (or some other entity) regulates every aspect of life, guarantees the happiness of the individual, provided one has complete faith in the system and submits to its ideas. Fascism and Islam are similar in that respect. [emphasis added]

As you yourself also come to recognize at the end of your last comment, Islam epitomizes the notion of a totalitarian regime.

Islam = shari'a law = totalitarianism

Few things better exemplify a system that "regulates every aspect of life" than shari'a law.

Refraining from practice in public is equivalent to discarding the Quran. Islam has no spiritual dimension, it consists only of submitting to the will of Allah, Muhammad and their representatives.

As my friend's drill sergeant once told him, "Son, my heart pumps piss." I understand what you mean but Islam is rotten to the core. Mohammad, the hadithas, the suras, the Quran itself are all intensely flawed and useless to the civilized world. This is proven constantly on a daily basis. There is nothing to justify Islam's public practice and every reason to prohibit it. I have yet to see anyone name a single redeeming feature of Islam.

Given that, there is absolutely no sane reason for tolerating Islam's public practice.

Afonso Henriques said...

Henrik,

a very good and eloquent statement over concepts that may be a bit tricky.

However I'd like to answer you something. Nobody contests that islam is both, totalitarian and has a great potential to create also autoritarian leaders but, and Christianity?
Do you think that the Church or the Vatican or what else was at some point totalitarian?

And I don't mean Puritanism in America or the like, but mainly the way Christianity influenced the life of the people (mainly in Southern Europe, perhaps) by simple cohercion and "social intimidation" or fear of ostracisation.


Tahnk you.

Kirk Parker said...

Dymphna,

I, too, certainly agree with Bolton, but why Belgium? Is there no room left in Hades?

Robohobo said...

To the deniers about WMD in Iraq and the Plame/Wilson idiocy.

Did you miss that bit of news all over the MSM about Iraq selling and transferring 550 METRIC TONNES of yellowcake to Canada a while back? FWIW, yellowcake is the last stage of uranium refinement before the metal itself comes out. IOW, he was ready to make fissile material.

Oh, yeah, you missed it because it was an inch long article on the very back page and did not fit the meme of Bush and the US being such horrid people. Criminal even.

Pray for the US in the coming days because if the 0bummer is elected the rest of the world is screwed as are we here at home.

Dymphna said...

@pleas --

I had to delete your comment because of the long URL you used.

At the top of each and every comment section you will see a notice requesting that all URLS be put into an HTML format so that they are a live link. There is even a template provided for your convenience.

You didn't do this, thus causing the post to load waaay down the page. Anyone opening this post would think the page was empty unless they knew from experience that someone had pasted in a long URL which went past the margins. At that point they would begin the very long scroll down to the post, which locates itself well below the equator when this happens.

Below is your comment, with this HTML format in place for both URLS. Please follow this in the future. In formatting your two links, I had to guess at the titles. Otherwise it would've entailed cutting and pasting each one in a separate window in order to ascertain the exact title. I don't have the time to do this so you get a creative guess instead.

[And a hint: our readers, like other perusers of blogs, are willing to click a link. However, they aren't willing to cut and paste a long URL unless you're promising something they'd work for. Like maybe pornography or juicy gossip?

But then if you did that, I'd have to delete it anyway. A lose-lose deal.)

Meanwhile, you were saying...(and I didn't actually check these links to see if they worked. If they don't, come back on and put in the correct ones)...

Dear Mrs Dymphna:

Given your amusing statement that I've "left out the long march of the socialists thru our financial institutions, demanding "fairness" for people who couldn't pay their bills and had no business with a mortgage", I wonder what spin you would like put on to President Bush's "Zero Down Payment Initiative", which was introduced into Congress by that famously rabid socialist Democrat Representative Patrick Tiberi?

Regardless of its having bipartisan sponsorship, this pandering legislation - all too truly predicted by the Congressional Budget Office as likely to generate enormous losses - was pushed by Bush as part of his 2004 re-election campaign.

See

Zero Down Mortgage Initiative by Bush is Hit

and

An aricle from HUD's website?


Bush and the Republicans did not have to sponsor this socialist giveaway to minorities (and to the banks that bankrupted America – to put it mildly) but tempted by votes and rewards for their fat cat constituents, they did. The result – the biggest nationalisation in history (Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae) – has been foisted on the country through the fault of Republicans.

I admire the nerve of Republicans and their supporters, though. They can shove through socialist legislation that makes Roosevelt look like a right-wing piker, and yet claim themselves to be supporters of the capitalist system through whose heart they have shoved a dagger.

Dymphna said...

Kirk Parker --

Brussels is hell. Why do you think those wicked Flemish want out so badly?

They could leave and the UN could take their place.

Make everybody happy.
____

rohobo--

You're right about the Obama effect on the rest of the world should he be elected. The French and Germans will learn, one more time, the hard lesson of having to live with what you pray for...

...oops, I forgot: they don't pray. Well, they'll just have to learn one more time not to go around wishing on a star, or closing their eyes real tight and repeating, "I hope, I hope, I hope, etc."

Obama would be America's cruel joke on Europe. I'll bet they think he's just going to withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan.No one has told them about drawing down those troops from Germany as he miniaturizes the military into non-existence.

This would be a joke if it weren't so lethally ugly.

no2liberals said...

"but it disconnects him from 9/11, which was a main rationale of the war."
Henrick, the re-invasion of Iraq had nothing to do with 9-11. Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq.
If there is an upside in the election of B-HO, it certainly isn't the brain damaged Biden, but that the donks policies will be so unacceptable, that the Congress will return to GOP control in 2010.

Zenster said...

Robohobo: Did you miss that bit of news all over the MSM about Iraq selling and transferring 550 METRIC TONNES of yellowcake to Canada a while back? FWIW, yellowcake is the last stage of uranium refinement before the metal itself comes out. IOW, he was ready to make fissile material.

Actually, purification of refined yellowcake ore into metallic uranium involves oxidization and conversion of the intermediate into a gaseous hexafluoride compound prior to gas diffusion extraction of the feedstock into a tetrafluoride compound suitable for calcium or magnesium reduction that produces a metal suitable for further enrichment.

That (mouthful) said, none of this changes the fact that Saddam was heavily engaged in producing various WMDs. Far more interesting would have been even a cursory examination of the truck convoy he sent into Syria days prior to America's invasion.

It is more than a little curious how Syria subsequently managed to construct a reactor facility of such potential threat that Israel (with likely US assistance), felt compelled to tip its stealth hand and bomb the crap out of an unfinished site just because. Who knows what role Saddam's supply of intermediate refined compounds may have played.

A final footnote in this is how Israel sent a rather unmistakable message to Iran that their air force can use advanced stealth technology, electronic aliasing or just plain jamming level defeat of all of the same Soviet ... er, Russian radar systems which both of them own.

In light of what has probably transpired with this Iranian "death ship", Tehran can count on getting its nuclear R&D @ss whipped into a creamy lather at some point in the very, very near future.

Again, my heart pumps piss.

Henrik R Clausen said...

Basically, I don't think Christianity is totalitarian or even leans in that direction. There are some points in history worth discussion.

For one, I think it'd have been better if the Roman Empire had collapsed around AD 200, and independent Christian nations had arisen. I believe in that case we could have avoided the mega-churches (Assyrian, Orthodox, Catholic) and have a more distributed interpretation of Christianity.

In the Middle Ages, Christianity really set free the potential of dilligent men. Coupled with technical and intellectual progress in the monasteries, Capitalism and Democracy were invented, and progress swept central Europe, from Northen Italy over the Netherlands to England. That is pretty amazing.

Sure, after the Middle Ages the Church slid back towards control (Inquisition and the like), but at the time of the 30 Years War, it's spell over people was broken.

Translating the Bible and printing it in millions of copies helped a lot. That delivered the message of Christ directly to the individuals, and showed that the Church had taken undue power in the name of religion.

For Islam, distributing the relevant scripture - the Sirat in particular - will show that this powergrab is inherent to the religion. It isn't to Christianity.

BTW, I agree that Brussels sucks :(

Henrik R Clausen said...

No2liberals, the public perception was that the invasion (V 2.0) of Iraq had *everything* to do with 9/11. The shock was still deep, and the desire to do something meaningful was strong.

Iraq might have been meaningful in a different context, but 9/11 should have rendered that conflict moot.

Afonso Henriques said...

Thank you Henrik, got your opinion.

So, you don't think that to impose one religion of State is totalitarian. Me neither.

-------------------------------

Somebody said for us to pray for Obama. Well, I will not because it is not good to incomodate the People on the clouds to prevent Obama to become president. Not that I do not believe in miracles but because people have to be responsible for their actions (especially so when living in a democracy) and, if Obama is not president today, someone like him will became president tomorrow.

It will not be fair to inopurtunate the People in the clouds every time Americans go to vote... and with ACORN and the like... well, I've talked too much... but what's the point of being asking the Divine to constantly delay the future?

Czechmade said...

Afonso,

of course it is wishful thinking.

At this stage. We have also radical therapy with the heaps of corpses of your neighbours.

And the Arabs all over the world expecting Iraqis to display a love for Saddam. Even in the West.

We should stop pretending we know everything. The final scenario can be something very different. The best way is anticipating maximum varieties of outcomes/solutions.
None of us is able to define next stages.

Henrik R Clausen said...

The Syrian reactor, BTW, is a very fine example of how the Israeli Air Force makes the ROI (Return On Investment) of these facilities negative.

The Air Force was, according to rumour, ready to strike Iran in May, but Bush said 'NO' :(

The whole death ship story sounds plausible, even though bits are missing. But the lack of sources for it makes me put it aside.

no2liberals said...

Henrik, popular perception, being what it is, has an unknown and unqualified poseur listed on the ballot as a candidate for POTUS.
The perception of Iraq being involved with 9-11, is just that, but it is not factual. Stating it as fact deserves a correction.

Henrik R Clausen said...

No2liberals, in that case I'll rephrase what I said:

The aftermath 9/11 was misused to deceive the US population and much of the world into an expensive war that has provided no tangible benefits, nor broken the will of the Islamist movement to undermine Western democracy.

Better now? Or not?

costin said...

Obama? No Merci Beaucoup!!

no2liberals said...

henrick
Not!
I detect BDS, a condition that is self-imposed.
Neither President Bush nor Congress deceived anyone in the task of forcing Saddam to comply with seventeen unanimous UN resolutions. The left, later aided by opportunistic leftists in politics, are the one's who were the deceivers.
Was the re-invasion of Iraq a part of the GWOT? Absolutely!
You say no tangible results, I say there were and are. Saddam is back-stroking down the River Styx, the Iraqi people have a representative government, and large segments of their population are no longer victims of a cruel tyrant. The only mass graves dug in Iraq in the past five years were done by Al Qaida, and none recently.
That over 20,000 mufsideen have died due to our coalition forces, is to me, a very significant achievement.
Does the victory in Iraq satisfy your narrow subjective checklist? No, nor was it required to.

Dymphna said...

@Henrik R Clausen:

The aftermath 9/11 was misused to deceive the US population and much of the world into an expensive war that has provided no tangible benefits, nor broken the will of the Islamist movement to undermine Western democracy.

Better now? Or not?


Unpacking your premise about how the aftermath of 9/11 was "used" would take a thesis so I won't go there.

However, your conclusion, "Better now? Or not?" asks for comparisons. Thus, it is essentially unanswerable in any rational way.

We don't have an alternate universe -- one in which this "expensive" war didn't happen and some other event or events transpired instead -- so we can't even respond to the question.

You have set up a straw man here, and that is dishonest rhetoric.

What happened on 9/11 was historically unprecedented. That the two major responses on America's part were only Afghanistan and Iraq is quite remarkable.

One wonders: what would Russia have done if the Kremlin were attacked and annihilated?

What do you think the response would have been to Osama's cackling video in which he gloated over his success?

How many people do you think would be dead seven years later?

How many countries would be powder?

Really, Mr. Clausen...if you're going to do unanswerable comparisons, at least do some with a little meat on their bones.

The "evil-Bush" meme has stale dated now.

Besides, you're talking in simplifications. These past seven years, not to mention the many incidents that preceded September 11th, are far more complex than you indicate.

You make the history of the last years sound like it's all about George Bush. You give him far more power than reality does.

I second whomever it was who sussed a case of BDS here.

Zenster said...

no2liberals: Was the re-invasion of Iraq a part of the GWOT? Absolutely!
You say no tangible results, I say there were and are. Saddam is back-stroking down the River Styx, the Iraqi people have a representative government, and large segments of their population are no longer victims of a cruel tyrant. The only mass graves dug in Iraq in the past five years were done by Al Qaida, and none recently. That over 20,000 mufsideen have died due to our coalition forces, is to me, a very significant achievement.


However impressive that list is, you have left out one of the most critical accomplishments of all.

At the risk of repeating myself, please remember that Iran and Iraq fought for some eight years, killing almost one million Muslims between them, while senselessly slaughtering the flower of each nation's respective youth. The entire bloodbath ground to a halt in what can only be termed a stalemate.

Now, imagine what sort of profound humiliation and dismay was experienced by the entire Islamic world when America landed in Iraq and rolled up its sidewalks in all of three short weeks. We turned the "Mother of All Battles" into, "Yo Momma!" If there was one single resounding message sent to every Muslim nation on earth, it was this:

YOUR @SS IS OURS WHENEVER WE GO SHOP FOR IT!

Whatever "quagmire" people want to point towards in the liberation's aftermath is of little, if any, consequence. The central and undeniable fact remains that there is not a single Muslim majority nation on earth whose butt America can't put in a sling before the devil can get his shoes on.

Henrik, I also am obliged to concur with no2liberals that you seem to be suffering from BDS. Permit me to ask you a simple question:

Should Bush be made to stand trial for war crimes?

Zenster said...

Dymphna: That the two major responses on America's part were only Afghanistan and Iraq is quite remarkable.

Truly so. This is yet one more thing that is so disturbing about a greenhorn like Obama getting behind our nation's military wheel.

Obama's complete lack of military experience makes it far more likely that he might respond to the obliteration of one or two American cities with massive nuclear retaliation. That or surrender.

Without any solid knowledge of how war-fighting is conducted, it is all too easy to envision a peacenik like Obama going binary in such a situation.

As with how Iran managed, much to its eventual dismay, to put Reagan in the White House. Should Islam's efforts to get Obama elected bear fruit, Muslims may be in for some fearsome surprises once their terrorist brethern start trying to throw their weight around.

Henrik R Clausen said...

BDS? Ah, Bush Derangement Syndrome :)

Nah, leave the war crime charges behind. If we were to do that, the Balkans would indict Clinton, too. That would discredit the entire political system of the US, and undermine the current US policy in the Balkans.

I must say my respect for Bush fell significantly when the US government took a full week to 'support' Denmark in the Muhammad cartoon crisis. And when the 'support' eventually arrived, it was so timid that our foreign minister thought it a mistake and requested the US government to send the correct document. They already had done so.

Still, I reject the accusation of BDS. Bush spearheaded the logical and effective response in Afghanistan, which showed to the world what fate awaits people who attack us. I didn't say "Bush is evil", I said "Iraq (Saddam) was the wrong enemy to crush."

The "Better now? Or not?" remark was a teaser, for sure. I stand by my use of the word 'deception' (which is not the same as 'lying', not at all) in leading us to the war in Iraq. Starting a major war is not something undertaken lightly, we should do so only when absolutely necessary. Violations of UN resolutions do not, in my opinion, reach that level.

As for Russia, we know what they do. They stick to their own borders, and there they are ruthlessly effective.

The term GWOT (Global War On Terror) suffers a linguistic flaw, that it avoids naming our real enemy, political Islam. We didn't go to war against Hitler to defeat 'Blitzkrieg', we did to defeat the evil Nazi ideology.

Now it's renamed 'The Long War'. I hope everyone here has read 1984, where society is in a similar state of perpetual war, the main objective of which seems to be disempowering the citizen.

Iraq and what happened there is not without benefits, and Al-Qaeda there seems to be broken, finally. But not without a great expense in money and human lives.

The Christian minority, in particular, has suffered severely through all of this. Saddam upheld some level of protection for them, but with him gone, Islamist goons were free to assault their leaders, their churches and their societies. Over the last 5 years, the Christians in Iraq have dwindled from approx. 1 million to around ½ million.

Yes, I think a great deal of deception went into the rationale behind the Iraq war. Tainted intelligence from people with axes to grind is one source. The desire to be seen as pro-active and powerful was another. Saudi influence probably helped, as I am quite sure the House of Saud was more than happy to see Saddam taken off their flank.

Finally, if one is really to take the UN path, the decision to do so should have much broader support. It would have been better to back down at that point, noting that others were in disagreement with the US position, and await further developments. They would have come, for sure.

I think the war in Iraq was wrong. Sorry 'bout it.

What I think we should have done, and that's a tad late now, was to await the next move of the enemy, and then crush him mercilessly as we did in Afghanistan.

Zenster said...

Henrik: Saudi influence probably helped, as I am quite sure the House of Saud was more than happy to see Saddam taken off their flank.

Now that we've gotten you past your attempt to smear Bush with "deception", you are beginning to identify the real problem. If Bush is to be lambasted, it must be for his overly-cozy relationship with the House of Saud, America's true enemy.

Still, you persist in making another false assumption vis a "linguistic flaw". The GWOT (according to White House documents), refers to the Global War on Terrorism, not "Terror". While, even in its proper format, the GWOT does not correctly identify our true enemy, your own critique of the terminology is based upon a false premise.

What I think we should have done, and that's a tad late now, was to await the next move of the enemy, and then crush him mercilessly as we did in Afghanistan.

That would have involved crushing Saudi Arabia and far too many of America's and various world politicians are so deep in the Saudis' pocket that they floss with pubic hair.

As always, the words of Srdja Trifkovic ring ever more true:

The elite class has every intention of continuing to “fight” the war on terrorism without naming the enemy, without revealing his beliefs, without unmasking his intentions, without offending his accomplices, without expelling his fifth columnists, and without ever daring to win. Their crime can and must be stopped. The founders of the United States overthrew the colonial government for offenses far lighter than those of which the traitor class is guilty. [emphasis added]

Henrik R Clausen said...

Sorry for the glitch on terror/terrorism.

But I stand by what I said of deception, much the same as the construction of the European Unions is also based on deception. It's not illegal, just immoral.

As usual, I am in agreement with Trifkovic :)

no2liberals said...

Henrik, your said deception is your own. I hope it keeps you warm in the winter.
By your standard, the U.S. involvement in the European Theater of WWII was based on a deception.
Germany never attacked us, but Japan did. From 1941-1945, 450,000 American military lives were lost, an average of 112,500 per year. What a high cost in blood and treasure that was, to have gained so little in tangible results. As evidenced by the state of things in Europe today.
Hitler never tried to violate any truces he signed with the U.S. and it's allies, or tried to shoot down our planes each and every day. Hitler never tried to assassinate a former U.S. President.
He did kill hundred of thousands of his citizens, like Saddam, and attacked his neighbors, but that doesn't matter does it? Not when pretzel logic, and recalcitrance in the face of irrefutable evidence is involved.
Yeah, your logic is flawless.

As to your claim that now it is renamed the "Long War," that is not new, and if you had taken the blinders off, and the ear plugs out, you would have known President Bush informed the American people of the GWOT being a long war, back in 2002.
If you have just bought into the notion that the war was wrong, just say so. Espousing fallacious information, as though it were fact, will always deserve a smack-down.
The political left in this country expressed solidarity with the President in this matter, up until the 2004 election cycle, when they saw an opportunity to gain political advantage from it, and get John Kerry elected.
This video shows just what came from the mouths of todays critics of President Bush, until 04.
If the MNF had declared war on islam, as you have declared as your default position, Saddam would still be in power. The Kuwaitis would not have allowed us to stage in their country, and all the members of OPEC would have wrecked the global economy, by turning off the spigots. They call them baby steps for a reason. Surely you wouldn't expect an infant to walk immediately, or write a thoughtful thesis on Tolstoy, as soon as it is born?
The ME has been nothing but trouble my entire life, and before, and most likely will be after I'm gone, but I Thank God daily, that we had President Bush at the controls after 9-11, a leader, despite criticism, that took direct action, instead of waiting for the next attack, and took the fight to our enemies. I can only pray that the next President will do the same, instead of falling back to the heel-rocking, change jingling, diplodink methods of the past.

Henrik R Clausen said...

No2liberals, just briefly:

Nazi Germany declared war on the United States immediately after Pearl Harbour.

As for the 'Long War' term, it's fine to state that the war will be long. It will be, it is already. What I object to is the attempt to rename the effort - I think the British government spearheads this - for it looks like another shying away from naming the real enemy, political Islam. We need to be clear what we're out to defeat.

BTW, both "War on Terror" and "War on Terrorism" has been used by the US administration.

no2liberals said...

Henrik,
"Nazi Germany declared war on the United States immediately after Pearl Harbour."
And yet, they never attacked us.
You are being deceived by your own perceived deception.
Had you bothered to listen or read what was going on at the time, or do research after the fact, and apply rational thinking to the subject, you could have disposed of your self-imposed deception.
For example, this speech on 20 Sep 2001.

"Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes visible on TV and covert operations secret even in success.

We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place until there is no refuge or no rest.

And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation in every region now has a decision to make: Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.

From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime. Our nation has been put on notice, we're not immune from attack. We will take defensive measures against terrorism to protect Americans."


Or this one, at the conclusion of major combat operations in Iraq.

"The liberation of Iraq is a crucial advance in the campaign against terror. We have removed an ally of al-Qaida, and cut off a source of terrorist funding. And this much is certain: No terrorist network will gain weapons of mass destruction from the Iraqi regime, because the regime is no more.

In these 19 months that changed the world, our actions have been focused, and deliberate, and proportionate to the offense. We have not forgotten the victims of September the 11th — the last phone calls, the cold murder of children, the searches in the rubble. With those attacks, the terrorists and their supporters declared war on the United States. And war is what they got.

Our war against terror is proceeding according to principles that I have made clear to all:

Any person involved in committing or planning terrorist attacks against the American people becomes an enemy of this country, and a target of American justice.

Any person, organization, or government that supports, protects, or harbors terrorists is complicit in the murder of the innocent, and equally guilty of terrorist crimes.

Any outlaw regime that has ties to terrorist groups, and seeks or possesses weapons of mass destruction, is a grave danger to the civilized world, and will be confronted.

And anyone in the world, including the Arab world, who works and sacrifices for freedom has a loyal friend in the United States of America."


No, I do not accept your premise that the re-invasion of Iraq was a deception to the free world.
I reaffirm my assertion that you have chosen BDS as a default setting on this matter. Which is fine if you admit it, but not when you try and deceive by hiding it.

One last thing about Saddam's assistance to, and support for, terrorism, suicide bombings in Israel have been reduced to near zero, once his payments to their families ceased. Sometimes victory is just like pornography, it isn't always easy to explain, but you know it when you see it.

Henrik R Clausen said...

We have removed an ally of al-Qaida

This is an example of the deception I'm alluding to. Saddam was a criminal, sure, but he was not an ally of Al-Qaeda. He was an ally of many other terrorist, but not A-Q.

Saddam was tangential to what should have been our primary purpose, breaking the will of the Jihad movement to impose the Caliphate on the world.

Oh, could I ask you to step down a bit from the denigration? Thank you.

no2liberals said...

"but he was not an ally of Al-Qaeda"
Not according to a great deal of info.

"Saddam was tangential to what should have been our primary purpose"
ZAH?
Saddam was central to what was our central purpose.
Once again, baby steps. Referring back to your notion of popular perception, just how could anyone convince the free world that islam was the problem, given the state of the situation in Europe, as an example. The conversation seven years ago is not the same as it is today. Declaring war on islam, and over a billion of it's adherents, would have been less than useless. This blog didn't exist then, sadly, but even if it had, most people in the free world don't know about it, or it's efforts to inform. Advancing the intent of islam, and what it aspires to do, is not common knowledge, even now.

I'm not certain I have been denigrating, even though your comments have made me angry. Actually, I thought I had displayed remarkable restraint.

Henrik R Clausen said...

how could anyone convince the free world that islam was the problem?

Investigation, research, information and patience. Listening to the few, like Robert Spencer or Daniel Pipes, who knew what was going on and immediately identified the enemy. Instead, our leaders idiotically called Islam 'A Religion of Peace' and shut the door to alternative interpretations.

It wouldn't be as 'presidential', but it would have been more prudent.

BTW, talking about 'deception', please take it easy. It's just that, not corruption or high treason. I live in the friggin' European Union where this has been going on all the time, from founding to the Treaty of Lisbon. It still goes on, left and right, and we try hard to battle it.

It's not like I'm saying Obama would be better - in fact I think he'd be much worse.

Zenster said...

Henrik: This is an example of the deception I'm alluding to. Saddam was a criminal, sure, but he was not an ally of Al-Qaeda. He was an ally of many other terrorist, but not A-Q.

Clearly, you still don't get it. As is evidenced by the occasional loon—even here at Gates of Vienna—that still claims Iraq was better off under Saddam, Herr Hussein kept a very tight grip upon every last rein of power in his land.

Whether you want to admit it or not, Saddam giving aid and succor—in the form of medical treatment—to the NUMBER TWO al Qaeda commander makes him an "ally" of those terrorists.

As I noted before, there is almost no way that Saddam could have been unaware of Zawahiri's presence in Iraq. Just as he could not of avoided knowing that Osama bin Laden's son, Sa'ad bin Laden, had been given safe transit—along with other al Qaeda operatives—in their attempts to skirt detection by opposition forces. Something they managed to do precisely because of Saddam's complicity.

While Bush has many faults, the specific duplicity you continue to assign him isn't among them. Consider the ramifications if America had followed your advice to "await the next move of the enemy, and then crush him mercilessly as we did in Afghanistan", our campaign could just as easily have led us into Iran.

Check a map, Iran is many times the size of Iraq, has several mountain ranges along with far more dispersed military and civilian centers of activity. Try to comprehend how many orders of magnitude—with respect to military effort—that would have required. We won't even go into the skyrocketing casualties of such a necessarily land-based invasion.

The other "enemy" would most probably have been Saudi Arabia. I invite you to write a brief essay about the sort of economic upheaval that interruption of Saudi petroleum exports would have had on the global business world. Please be sure to include an assessment of how unlikely it would have been for America to recruit any allies in such a negatively perceived campaign. Furthermore, at that time—by attacking the custodian of Muslim holy sites—perception of America's war on terrorism as a religious crusade against Islam would have been inescapable. Thusly, at the very onset of the campaign against our enemies, some 25% of the world's population would have been polarized directly against us.

While it is just as easy to interpret our liberation of Iraq as part of making sure that "the House of Saud was more than happy to see Saddam taken off their flank", the world's predominantly Sunni population of Muslims was quite likely gulled into a larger silence by our assault of a much reviled Bathist / Shiite regime.

As one of the sole opposers of Islam—the true enemy—America has taken a crucial first step in projecting its military power (and ideology), into the MME (Muslim Middle East). While we may not have bagged the most central figure in supporting global terrorism, we have firmly planted in many Islamic leaders' minds the image of Saddam slowly twisting in the breeze.

This is in addition to—as I previously noted—serving the entire Muslim world due notice that at the time of our choosing, we can roll any of them up like a cheap cigarette.

None of this changes how Islam is the true enemy. None of this changes Bush's exceptional culpability in promoting the "Islam as religion of peace meme". I have never admired Bush but must give him grudging credit for having taken the fight to our enemies.

Can you imagine what sort of response to the 9-11 atrocity might have ensued had Al "Carbon Credits" Gore been sitting in the Oval Office on that day in infamy? We might still be waiting for some sort of retaliation while this supreme political dilettante tallied up how many trees we'd have to plant in order to compensate for flying over each batallion of Marines.

Worst of all is the prospect of Obama—in four short years—handily abandoning so much effort and hard won turf for the sake of appeasing his Multicultural base and our Islamic enemies. If you thought Bush was too friendly with the Saudis, just wait until you see what happens when a truly naive political huckster comes face to face with this world's most well established and supremely deceitful fascists.

Zenster said...

PS: Keep up the good work, no2liberals. This is one meme that needs quashing very badly. It continues to be used as a way of tainting America's crucial first moves against Islam and thereby discrediting the entire importance of making sure Islamic ideology finds its way into history's dust bin.

no2liberals said...

Henrik, when I made the comment you just quoted, I was referring to the world seven years ago, not seven years later.
Look at how slow the progress has been in getting more people informed as to the malicious intent of Islam. Waiting for another attack, possibly of even greater loss of life, was unacceptable to nearly everyone in this country, at that time, and still is too many of us. It's completely unrealistic to think now, that President Bush then, could have some how educated enough people in our country, and others, to gather enough support for an all out war on Islam. Even after all this time, with all of the various sources available to inform and educate our citizens, the vast majority still don't understand how maladaptive and malicious Mohammed's pathetic tome is.
Initiating the fronts of the GWOT in Afghanistan and Iraq, has produced remarkable results, on many fronts, including killing many mufsideen, closing off financing sources, as well as communications.

Deception:the act of deceiving someone or the state of being deceived/something that deceives; trick/a misleading falsehood/a lie.
No sir, you go easy on the use of deception, as it is a false assertion. If you think deception is a mild word, you are incorrect. Perhaps you should chose another word more descriptive of what you mean, if deception isn't appropriate. I take exception to it's use in this instance.
I'm proud of the conduct of our President and of the MNF coalition, in taking the fight to our shared enemies. Heathen forces that attack us, causing such grief and destruction, and forcing people to leap one hundred stories to their death, because it was their last best hope to live, is/was and always be unacceptable to me.
I, like you, wish my input into how to deal with Islam and it's adherents would be followed by our leaders, but it isn't, and neither is yours. Most people would hide in a closet, if they got one morning security briefing like the President does each day. That he has stayed so focused, and directed such a successful effort in the GWOT, with all his detractors, is nothing less than remarkable. I don't think anyone could have done as good a job, or better, than he. That he inherited decades of feckless responses to the growing threat, is more an indictment on our citizens than on President Bush. We should have believed those forces that demonstrated, in word and deed, what their intentions were, instead of following the traditional approach of thinking that some how, we could convince them how nice we all are, and how great it is in our respective countries, we just need to be patient with them. They will come around. There is rightfully a limit to patience, when the lives of innocent people are concerned, and where a continued threat to our very way of life is threatened.
I will settle, for now, stopping the murders of our citizens, by eliminating the threats by force of arms. Then we can talk.
I want islam relegated to the dust bin of evil history, or reformed, but until then, we have a lot of work to do.

One other thing. I let a lot of stuff slide, that I read in the comments. I don't comment on matters I do not understand, unless it is a desire to be better informed, and ask questions. I respectfully request that you do the same, when it comes to matters you don't fully understand.
I also respectfully request that you refrain from making provocative interrogatories, such as "better-or not," and then complain when I respond forcefully.
I'm a gentleman, but I am not a wuss.

no2liberals said...

Zenster, thanks.
I agree, I have been battling this distortion of history for years. Just as truth is the first perfection of God, I believe it should be with man.
Disingenuous dialogue, whether by lack of information, mistake, or malicious intent, needs to be challenged whenever it appears.
The ME mindset understands power, even if they do not understand the natural yearning of man is to be free. That region has learned a very valuable lesson about our resolve, at the hands of President Bush's leadership. While I disagree with him on many, many issues, he has my unending gratitude for the manner in which he has prosecuted the GWOT, and for his leadership. We needed a man of action, at the point in history when he arrived, and not another insincere diplodink.