It’s Now Time for Bush Vindication

I’ve spent some of tonight watching the live coverage of our last combat troops leaving Iraq. Of course, we are leaving about 50,000 soldiers there (“military consultants” … kinda reminds me of the “military adviser” jargon in the early days of Vietnam) but I can accept that. It’s an acknowledgment that terrorism is still a problem there and some anti-terrorist presence is called for.

I didn’t like this war. Many didn’t. Iraq is still far from ideal. However, we’ve got some indisputable facts to celebrate tonight. First, the “surge” turned things around. It did not achieve its stated goal of giving the Iraqi government breathing room to clean up their act. The government is still shaky at best. But the mere increase in troops smacked down the enemy and allowed Iraqi forces to get a bit better at protecting their own. Without the surge, we wouldn’t be able to leave today.

Second, working with the Iraqi government, Bush committed to get us out of there. He agreed to a timetable of sorts, one which Barack Obama has made good on. One might go so far as to say Bush fought the wrong war the right way.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”false” link=”term=iraq+withdrawal&iid=9561636″ src=”http://view2.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/9561636/soldiers-the-1st-battalion/soldiers-the-1st-battalion.jpg?size=500&imageId=9561636″ width=”234″ height=”146″ /]

So now we wait and see what happens next. If in the next five to ten years Iraq emerges as a democracy it will be a grand victory directly traceable to George W. Bush. We will probably all acknowledge that the false pretense that got us into the war mattered less than the outcome, a democracy in a region badly in need of democracy.

I would hate to think the past seven years were a complete waste. So let’s hope that Iraq can keep its act together. And regardless of what happens, let’s pause to welcome our troops back home and honor the memory of those who were not so lucky to see this day of withdrawal.

Respectfully,
Rutherford

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75 thoughts on “It’s Now Time for Bush Vindication

  1. R, I think your post is pretty much on the nose, though I would disagree on the political breathing room bit. It absolutely provided breathing room because it fostered dialogue between the Sunni population and the government.

    I spent 15 months in Iraq, in the heart of the Sunni Triangle, from the summer of 2006 through to the late fall of 2007. I was caught up in the surge, being asked to extend my time there twice. I had the unique experience of being involved in the Tribal Reconciliation initiative, and was a plank owner in developing the policies for how we were going to deal with the movement.

    I’ve made many trips to Baghdad and had an opportunity to watch a lot of the national leaders. It reminded me of Washington without the polish and focus groups. My role and responsibilities also had me traveling all over the northern portion of the country and I had the pleasure of many “goat pulls” with local tribal and political leaders, so while my opinion of how Iraq will do is based on a lot of anecdotal information, I think it is in line with reality- the kids will be alright.

    P.S. I appreciate that you give the proper credit to Bush and don’t make the mistake- like Biden- of claiming this is a huge success for Obama. Obama has not changed any of the policies for Iraq- it has been on auto glide since Bush left office. And besides, Obama still hasn’t admitted that he was wrong on the surge…

  2. But this is what he said in 2005…

    I believe the proper response to this is, “you lying, two-faced sack of shit.”

    Of course, he is not alone.

    Democrats in their own words Covering up the Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Scam that caused our Economic Crisis.

    And here is a fellow blogger who has laid out what has got to be one of the most complete and thorough examinations of the complicity of the Dems in the Fannie and Freddie disaster.

    I think we, as conservatives, appreciate the internet far more than anyone, because without it, who would expose these bald face liars? The media?

  3. Recovery anyone?

    Weekly Jobless Claims Post Surprise Jump, Hit 500,000

    New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly climbed to a nine-month high last week, government data showed on Thursday, yet another setback to the frail economic recovery.

    Some additional food for thought…

    And let me repeat my own mantra: The Fed can produce new money, but it cannot produce new jobs. Fiscal policy — and its threat of overtaxing, over-regulating, and overspending — is what’s ailing the economy. And that threat is reverberating through stock and bond markets. (The stock market, by the way, is still about 11 percent below its late-April peak.)

  4. Call me gullible, call me naive – I may be only one of two people still believing this. But…

    (1) I say Osama Bin Laden died some ignominious death in a barren cave, a beaten and bitter man who was shocked at America’s response;

    (2) There will come a day that we will find WMD was moved from Iraq to Damascus before the war started – and I think Damascus will suffer greatly on account of it to the point of becoming uninhabitable (a little prophecy at work here).

    Fair article Rutherford.

    I think your conclusion is pretty sound, and I only take issue with two things. First, I don’t ever believe Iraq could be looked at as a complete waste because our military sent a clear message – we are the greatest, bravest and most humanitarian country on earth. I think that message has a chance to ripple through the Muslim world that America is not the self-serving ‘Great Satan.’ Second, I believe our military decimated Al Qaeda, not in Afghanistan but Iraq. And like Truman, I believe one day years from now George Bush will be looked at far more favorably than he was at his departure. Matter of fact, that is already happening.

  5. The Iraqi War was unstoppable. A raving lunatic, celebrating 9/11 and bragging about WMD driving 100 miles per hour on a collision course with a wounded and rightfully paranoid America The war to me, reminded me of WWI. It just seemed the tides of history produced it. it was destiny.

    1. Those people who talk about the Bush administration “lying” are so whacked in the head, rational conversation is impossible.

    2. The Dems, and our current president in particular, were dead wrong about the surge and defeatist in nature.

    3. The war was a mistake.
    a. WMD wasn’t found. We spent a wad of street cred on finding that shit and I feel it has severely hampered us in containing Iran. We never had to go “all in”. We could have just “checked” and still been in for the pot. We didn’t need stake our reps on WMD to invade.

    b. While the “surge” was a success, the consequences of the initial invasion was a disaster. Ba’athists should have been taken on board right from the start. Instead we smacked a wasp’s nest with a baseball bat and wondered why we were being stung so many times. The Mission Accomplished Sign even made it more ridiculous.

    c. I no longer believe a democratic Iraq will serve as a mighty catalyst for the Middle East as a whole. Democracy will never ‘radiate” out of Baghdad. Ironically, I believe Iran to be ripe for democracy.

    d. if I was forced to bet, I would say democracy will fail in Iraq. Even worse, a nuclear Iran may emerge. This to me is a massive failure and one that may hang over Bush for centuries.

    e. Our troops were awe inspiring.

    Nation building sucks, particuarly in places where the Enlightenment of the 18th century never occured.

  6. All I can say Rabbit is that you never cease to amaze me. The last thing I expected from you was a condemnation of the Iraq war. I’m not sure where you get Saddam Hussein celebrating 9/11. I honestly don’t recall that. Mind you, I’m not saying he condemned it but I don’t recall his celebrating it.

    Tex, no way we can debate whether or not bin Laden has shed his mortal coil. I tend to think he’s still alive but who knows for sure. Your guess is as good as mine.

  7. Gorilla, let me ask you a question. Do you think private enterprise has any fault at all in the current economic situation? Tell me why a company that survived the Great Depression without laying off a single worker, suddenly in the 1990’s found it necessary to start laying people off … a way of doing business that has become entrenched.

    I submit that we could lower the corporate tax burden to zero and companies, now addicted to “doing more with less” would continue sending jobs overseas, using cheap labor at every opportunity, and screwing the American worker. OH …. and still not selling sh*t because they can’t come up with a quality good idea to save their lives.

    Why don’t we make anything anymore G? How can we balance exports with imports when we have nothing to export?

    I’m sorry… it’s real easy to blame the government. You’re all for individual responsibility but you give corporations a free pass.

  8. True enough Rutherford. My basis for finding UBL dead is that his past record indicates not only is he a rabid fanatic, but a megalomaniac as well.

    I am simply making the assumption that (1) he was rumored to be in bad health anyway, (2) that kind of lifestyle stresses the system as there no easy access to competent medical care, (3) his last real known completely verified appearance (immediately after 9/11) and shortly after Tora Bora, UBL was looking like death – including the gray beard and shaking left arm, (4) the fact that I don’t think that ego would allow him to remain silent when Al Qaeda is getting obliterated, (5) that the second in command Ayman al Zawahiri has had no problem going public and has apparently become the spokesperson.

    Gorilla, who would be in much better position to formulate a legitimate opinion than some lazy ass like me sitting on his bed typing this, swears UBL still on the run. His conclusions based on real evidence – mine on sheer speculation. But I just have this gut feeling that the legacy of UBL is being propped up like Weekend at Bernie’s. And like I said, I’m one of the few that I know still making all these assumptions.

    Either way, the U.S. military has rendered him a moot point. I just want him dead and won’t be satisfied until I know he is roasting with the rest of history’s mass murderers in the infernal regions.

  9. You know where else corporations get a free pass? When they play the same stinky finger the Rabbit is.

    I’m amazed how many times big business and investing firms walk away from mortgages. High rise sky scrapers, mega office complexes. You name it.

    It’s a “business decision” when they do it. A moral hazard when I do it.

  10. Reactions to the attacks in the Muslim world were mixed. Most Muslim political and religious leaders condemned the attacks. The leaders vehemently denouncing the attacks included the Presidents of Egypt, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority, Libya, Syria, Iran and Pakistan.[5][15] The sole exception was Iraq, when the then-president Saddam Hussein, said of the attacks that “the American cowboys are reaping the fruit of their crimes against humanity

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reactions_to_the_September_11_attacks

  11. Rabbit,

    Did you decide to finally “walk away?”

    None of my business and you don’t have to answer, but about 1,200 miles from you a few weeks back, I was using you as an example to my beloved that I perceive about how decent and moral people are getting fed up with playing by a different set of rules.

  12. Tex,

    I decided to quit paying in June. Suddenly and magically, the mortgage company is at least acting like they want to work with me now.

    I’m in the process of getting a re-modification right now. They will make me an offer within 45 days. I’m talking a reduction in mortgage principal too, not just interest rate.

    If the offer doesn’t make sense, it appears I will get a Deed in Lieu. They can’t come after me for the 90 grand that the house is under water.

    I was getting no where with them until I stopped paying.

  13. Rabbit,

    That’s not being irresponsible or immoral – that’s playing their game. Good for you.

    If everyone did it your way, the country wouldn’t be in trouble, banks would broker more honestly with their patrons, and we’d all be better off for it.

  14. He’s in my garage, tied up with duck tape and a ball in his mouth. Every day I say I’m going to turn him in for the reward, but I just can’t help experimenting with my fire ant farm.

  15. “Ba’athists should have been taken on board right from the start.”

    I watched “Patton” a few nights ago and was reminded of his genius in keeping the Nazis running services they had been running during the Allied occupation of Germany. It made me think of Iraq and de-Baathification.

    “I’m sorry… it’s real easy to blame the government. You’re all for individual responsibility but you give corporations a free pass.”

    Says the guy who supports bailouts and the “too big to fail” meme.

  16. Says the guy who supports bailouts and the “too big to fail” meme.

    Not sure where you got that idea Huck.

    On the one hand, I accept the premise that the financials had to be bailed out or the repercussions would have been catastrophic.

    However, I was VERY torn on the auto industry and I said so at the time. The domino effect of letting the car companies fail (thereby effecting downstream industries such as suppliers) made me worry at the time. On the other hand, I also felt that they DESERVED to fail and on that score I didn’t want them bailed out.

  17. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

    Dem survey shows George W. Bush more popular than Obama in vulnerable congressional districts

    The advice from Democratic consultants and strategists is almost unanimous: Run away from the president, and fast. A prominent Democratic pollster is circulating a survey that shows George W. Bush is 6 points more popular than President Obama in “Frontline” districts — seats held by Democrats that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee sees as most vulnerable to Republican takeover. That Bush is more popular than Obama in Democratic-held seats is cause for outright fear.

  18. Gorillia. A long, long time ago, the Rabbit spent a year and a half around Arcata, California. That place is crazy. It makes San Fransisco look conservative and I’m not exaggerating.

    That is one very strange place.

    Northern California is a trip.

  19. Ah thanks Alfie … I was hoping someone would opine on the article cited by Bhanu. I can’t say whether or not it’s full of $%*! or not. My grasp of world economics is insufficient for me to render a judgment on a world wide currency and monetary system. I also see all countries becoming territories of a world government interesting as a philosophical ideal but impractical without knowing a lot more details.

  20. I thought the article, taken kind of tongue and cheek, makes a little sense. Separatist movements are a bit silly if they are going to take place within the EU.

  21. I’m late to the party here. Good afternoon, Rutherford. I get incensed by phrases like “fighting the wrong war the right way”. I recognize you can’t turn back the clock, but any discussion of Iraq has to begin with it being a bad decision. Did we do some good? Sure. So why weren’t we in Rwanda? Why aren’t we in Sudan right now? That said, once we were there, bad decision or not, I’ve long said you don’t go in and blow up someone’s country, then say “Oops! My bad! I’ll leave now.” But I draw the line at claiming this to be a victory for GWB and his “legacy”. President Obama had to go in and clean up the mess, and to give GWB credit for that is just insufferable.

  22. Fake, welcome to the blog. Sorry I didn’t get to your moderated comment faster. Now that you’ve been approved, you can post here with no delay so long as you don’t change email address.

    I more or less agree with your assessment. However there are those who will say that stability in the region is worth any cost and if Iraq emerges stable, then they will tie it back to Bush.

    On my Internet radio show today I noted a comment made by Tony Blair, namely that post 9/11 Dick Cheney wanted to “change the world”. Iraq was just the first stop. 9/11 so unnerved Cheney that I think he would advocate a state of perpetual war against all countries that don’t resemble a western democracy.

  23. Fakename2, what a load.

    Obama cleaned up the mess? Obama, like Biden, has yet to be right about any foreign policy issue.

    Put the kool-aid down, take a deep breath, and educate yourself.

  24. Gorilla,

    Perusing thru the appropriately named Fake2’s blog, this is your garden variety lib – no humor, lack of cognitive thought, boring and strange subject material, mixed it with a little politic here and there. 😈

    I’ve already been referred to as troll at Hippie’s site by The Fake. 🙂 Standard fare progressivism, superficial subject material, boilerplated responses, expect the expected.

  25. Fake, how would you know it’s a bad decision? History is still to be played out on Iraq. Now I know you’re probably one of those that think Saddam a “moderate” like I heard the other day, but most of us think Saddam was a really bad guy.

    Worth remembering that if we had left the decision of 2008 Presidency up to Iraq, you’d be saying President McCain instead of peeing in your pants about the abject failure called Obama.

    The majority opinion of Harry Truman of the American public was bad decision and unpopularity – didn’t play out that way. And since Obama has been such an epic failure, it didn’t take 20 months for George Bush to now be more popular.

    A healthy dose of your type in charge on rare occasion is good for America. It reminds us of what not to be when we become complacent and apathetic. Sometimes the really bad example is the best example.

  26. Thank you, Rutherford. If all ends well in Iraq, Bush will get the credit. If it ends badly (and there are many reasons to believe it might), Obama will be blamed. I fail to grasp how anyone can disagree with Obama’s pre-election statement that we took our eyes off the ball in Afghanistan–and now it’s probably too late there. That was an insightful comment about Cheney. Did you happen to read Jane Mayer’s book “The Dark Side”? Chilling.

  27. No I haven’t read “The Dark Side” but I’ve seen enough of Jane Mayer on TV to know it must be one scary read.

    It is interesting to see the entire Dick Cheney ethos played out in entertainment lately. The TV series “24” basically revolved around the question of how far is too far in getting at the truth. It was obvious that the creators were Cheney fans.

    This weekend my wife and I watched the film “The Ghost Writer” in which Pierce Brosnan plays a former Brit PM accused of war crimes. It’s is ripped right from the headlines complete with it’s own fictional version of Blackwater.

  28. You’re right…24 is basically the Cheney philosophy brought to the screen. I watched exactly one episode and could not do it again. Since the subtitle of the book is “The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals”, that pretty much says it all. The progression of events is extremely frightening, and you can lay almost all of the responsibility at the feet of Cheney. He literally usurped the power of the presidency. I was left with a much more sympathetic opinion of GWB. You can say all you want that the President is responsible for whatever happens on his watch, but he can’t make a responsible decision if he doesn’t know the facts. And Cheney was hiding the facts from him. And he trusted Cheney. In my opinion, he was betrayed.

  29. Tex said: Perusing thru the appropriately named Fake2′s blog, this is your garden variety lib – no humor, lack of cognitive thought, boring and strange subject material, mixed it with a little politic here and there.

    Tex, once again you seem to suffer from the delusion that those of who actually write blogs do so for the sole purpose of your personal amusement. In fact, we should be crushed any time you find our material to be boring.

    Hey, if you find stuff boring then start your own blog…

  30. Fake …. I have a similarly sympathetic view of GWB. I think he was duped and ill prepared for the unforeseen crap that went down at the very beginning of his watch. I think it’s commonly agreed that a new Pres needs about two years to get his feet on the ground. Bush had nine months.

    However, I must fess up. I was a big fan of 24. Jack Bauer’s ideology was not enough to keep me away. My wife and I watched every episode.

  31. HP, you obviously didn’t read Chapter 2, article 7 of the Tex Taylor Rules of Debate. Whenever Tex encounters someone in the comments section, he immediately goes to their blog to see what pot shots he can make. It’s part of his modus operandi.

    I’m just waiting for Tex to publish his rulebook. Hey Tex, if you write it, I’ll turn it into an e-book and sell it. Of course I’ll take 10% off the top. As you know, these are hard times. 🙂

  32. Rutherford said: Whenever Tex encounters someone in the comments section, he immediately goes to their blog to see what pot shots he can make. It’s part of his modus operandi.

    Oh – I know it is. I have seen it many times. Tex’s initial reaction to FN was exactly the same as his initial reaction to me. It is something of a rite of passage.

  33. Then let me pose this question to the group: since you’re all so mentally endowed, explain for the class why 1) Iraq was bad for the country and 2) how Iraq did not have an impact on al-Qaida.

    I look forward to your responses…

  34. I’m just waiting for Tex to publish his rulebook. Hey Tex, if you write it, I’ll turn it into an e-book and sell it. Of course I’ll take 10% off the top. As you know, these are hard times.

    5% 😐 I have to pay for this new wood floor being installed. WHAT A NIGHTMARE.

    Unlike with you and Hippie Lou, this little split tail was kind of a lightweight. The rule hardly need apply – it’s just that it is so inviting to go through a perusal of one’s blog to add to your arsenal, I can’t resist. I many need the ammo in the future when she gets hateful.

    Rite of passage is probably a pretty good way to explain it.

    What was funny is for this one to call me a “troll” when her blog was full of fluff – little angel hair fluff that you throw away off the Christmas tree, but if you’re not careful you have a million little paper cuts throwing it away. With a name like “Fakename”, I never assumed I was working with rocket science, but I expected something more than pictures and articles of varmints.

    She’s already avoiding me. 🙂

  35. Gorilla,

    Then let me pose this question to the group: since you’re all so mentally endowed, explain for the class why 1) Iraq was bad for the country and 2) how Iraq did not have an impact on al-Qaida.

    I look forward to your responses…

    They can’t. It’s what they hear on the nightly news and Butch Madcow. I’ve been waiting three years to have this question answered:

    Since our military was killing Al-Qaeda by the buttload on foreign soil, and since our military was there, and since we were disposing of Saddam and his thug sons in the process, and since we’d rather do it somewhere else than American soil and we’re going to fight them Iraq or not, explain to me how that was not a brilliant strategy, to speak nothing of bringing them out of the shadows to blow their heads off.

  36. Upon further reflection of this post and its thread.
    I don’t see how anything regards Iraqs future will be either a Bush or Obama credit.
    The dynamics of Iraq and the region is aligned with the decrease in influence and credibility of the United States of America.

  37. Gorilla asks: Then let me pose this question to the group: since you’re all so mentally endowed, explain for the class why 1) Iraq was bad for the country and 2) how Iraq did not have an impact on al-Qaida.

    I look forward to your responses…

    I will bite….

    1) Invading a sovereign nation that did not pose any direct threat to us, over the objections of many of our strongest allies, was an absolutely foolish move. It is exactly the kind of thing we lambasted the Soviet Union for doing.

    I have said it before: I supported the invasion at the onset because I believed the lie that Saddam had WMDs. When it became apparent that he didn’t – and further that Bush KNEW he didn’t, in advance – well, that finally broke the camel’s back for me and conservative foreign policy.

    2) Gorilla, are you suggesting that there was a significant al-Quida presence in Iraq prior to our invasion? I have never seen any credible evidence for that. In fact, the evidence I have seen suggests that we drew al-Quida into Iraq with our invasion. Further, by invading we handed them a gift-wrapped political talking point. See, they said, America hates Islam – they are invading yet another Islamic nation. Foolish foolish foolish….

  38. Tex said: I expected something more than pictures and articles of varmints.

    Tex, again, you seem to think that bloggers are doing this just for your satisfaction. Believe me, we aren’t. The vast majority of blogs are NEVER political. That someone’s blog fails to be all political all the time is hardly a valid criticism.

    I will repeat what I have said before: If you think what we write is boring, start your own blog. Then we can all drop by and let you know if we are bored by your posts. You know how to write. Go for it.

  39. I will repeat what I have said before: If you think what we write is boring, start your own blog. Then we can all drop by and let you know if we are bored by your posts. You know how to write. Go for it.

    Read again closely. I wasn’t talking about your blog. I was talking about the Weasel Fakename’s blog. 🙄 What you submit is simply wrong. Interesting, but wrong.

    And I wasn’t under the impression people start their blogs for me. I was just noting her blog is fluff. I wouldn’t leave a comment there because it was inane. Have I said your blog is boring? Nooooo…

  40. Gorilla, books can and have been written on why the Iraq war was bad for the country (do you mean their country or our country?) I previously said it was a bad decision, so I’ll address that further. Some years ago I read an article in the New Yorker (either 2004 or 2005) which discussed GHWB’s position on pursuing Saddam back into Iraq after driving him from Kuwait. Over the vehement ojections of Cheney and Rumsfeld, he refused, saying we would end up in a quagmire, occupying a foreign country with no end in sight. Cheney/Rumsfeld bided their time until they apparently found a more manipulable subject. If you read “The Price of Loyalty”, it’s clear that the plans to invade Iraq (needing only a plausible excuse) were in place as early as the first National Security Council meeting after GWB took office, and that meeting was 8 months prior to 9/11. Cheney and Rumsfeld, but particularly Cheney, had bided his time.

  41. Then let me pose this question to the group: since you’re all so mentally endowed, explain for the class why 1) Iraq was bad for the country and 2) how Iraq did not have an impact on al-Qaida.

    #1. Depends on what one really means by the question.
    Iraq was bad for the country because it showed how pathetic and pussy-ish the UN is.A decade of snubbing ones nose at the international community isn’t something one should stand for.
    As for what Iraq has become as I’ve said earlier we come out of this diminished,nothing but.
    #2.I’m not going link hunting for anyone but Saddam did indeed have some connections and leanings to international Islamic terrorism. Iraq as it stands has been,as with Afghanistan, an Allah send as well as a damnation. It clearly provided notoriety and recruiting pluses. It is equally undeniable that it racked up their body counts which has diminished them. I think AQ will continue to splinter and diminish so in that manner Iraq has been near disastrous for them.

  42. Tex said: Read again closely. I wasn’t talking about your blog.

    I know you weren’t talking about my blog – though indeed you have said similar things about it in the past. Yes – you have called my blog boring in the past. What is funny is that you think I care.

    I do think you are underestimating Fakename. She is quite the intellectual and can certainly run with the big dogs.

    I know that you don’t particularly care for intellectuals – so be it. It is your loss. I will share an Asimov quote I came across yesterday:

    Anti-intellectualism is nurtured by the false notion that democracy means ‘my ignorance is as good as your knowledge’

  43. and further that Bush KNEW he didn’t, in advance

    I’d like to see your sources for this please.

    I never said al-Qaida was in Iraq prior to our invasion. I asked, specifically, how the Iraq war did NOT have an impact on AQ.

  44. Gorilla asked: I’d like to see your sources for this please.

    I am not sure how many times I have to provide those sources – I have done it several times already on this very blog. I am pressed for time at the moment and will try to dig them out.

    Near the top of the list, from memory, is Wolfowitz’s admission that WMD’s were chosen as a justification for the war only because they thought that to be the easiest way to sell the war to the public.

  45. WMD was one of the fundamental legal pillars for the war, along with sanction violations, firings on US and NATO aircraft, etc.

    It wasn’t until after the war, specifically the Dulfer Report, that we assessed that Saddam did not have the WMD that the Western World (Yes, ALL of Europe thought he had them) thought he did. I encourage you to read that report, and Dulfer’s subsequent book- very insightful. We use Curveball as a teaching point now. Bus did not know, before the war, that Saddam did not have WMD, regardless of what DailyKos might say.

  46. the evidence I have seen suggests that we drew al-Quida into Iraq with our invasion. Further, by invading we handed them a gift-wrapped political talking point. See, they said, America hates Islam – they are invading yet another Islamic nation. Foolish foolish foolish….

    Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant using even your own conclusion. Al-Qaeda has no state sponsorship – at least not conclusive state sponsorship. They needed nothing gift wrapped as they had already committed to war with the U.S. By dragging them out of the shadows and on foreign soil, we slaughtered them by the thousands. Even many of your liberal big thinkers admit as much. Is there a remnant? Sure? Are they still dangerous? Absolutely. Are they capable like they were? No way.

    As usual, like your finding Weasel Fake “intellectual”, I find your conclusions academic and shallow. You don’t know what you speak of because you don’t have the foundations to speak – Gorilla does. It’s the same reason you chose your profession. You and your pal Fake don’t run with the big dogs, though you think you’re running with the big dogs. Both of you never leave the world of two-dimensional thinking.

    Sorry to make it personal, because as rule you are a nice guy and I’m sure an expert in your field. But your field is incredibly limited and unworldly. It’s a world of theory without reality, intellect without real world experience.

  47. I know you weren’t talking about my blog – though indeed you have said similar things about it in the past. Yes – you have called my blog boring in the past. What is funny is that you think I care.

    For someone who doesn’t care, you sure seem to both mention and by definition dwell upon it. 🙂

    I continue to be amused that somehow you find me the “anti-intellectual.” How many more diverse degrees to I have to receive from your halls of academia before I qualify as something other than “anti-intellectual”?

    Is it that I’ve noted for all my troubles, I find more great wisdom in one brave soldier than I did in 20 years of higher education?

  48. Tex said: For someone who doesn’t care, you sure seem to both mention and by definition dwell upon it.

    I suspected you might say that Tex, so I have an answer all ready. I only respond to about one percent (or fewer) of the rude things you say. Rutherford responds even less – I suspect that after all these years he is desensitized.

    In the present case I responded because, instead of welcoming a new voice to the blog, you decided to respond with some pretty vile comments. Those of us who are veterans here have come to expect it, but to a newcomer it comes off as pretty shocking. Perhaps I am a little more sensitive here because I personally invited her to Rutherford’s blog, thinking it would be of interest her her.

    I suspect she is about to smack he for acting all chivalrous in her defense. Believe me, that isn’t it. She can handle herself just fine.

  49. Hippie,

    You are overtly sensitive. You can dream up offense where none was meant. I would define you as a “sensitive” blogger.

    So far, I remain unimpressed with your Fake friend. She quotes all of the normal sources (NYT, MSNBC, occasional RINO when it meets the lib criteria for good judgment) with general quips from the tug of the string ala the Progressive Chatty Cathy doll. She’s months behind you and “R” – maybe you guys watch more news.

    In fact, other than distinguishing me as “troll”, I haven’t seen a bit of originality. Like I said, garden variety lib. But then you thought that Maureen whatever her name was ‘intellectual’, so you also have that irritating libbie/effeminate habit of groveling to females believing it defines you as sensitive yet manly. Kind of a metrosexual professor.

    I’m still trying to find my first lib John Wayne. They don’t appear to exist. 😈

  50. Gorilla said: I’m still waiting on your response HP…

    Gorilla, I have a had a bit of firestorm going on over at my own blog, and I don’t think I even knew you had asked me a question.

    If you are referring to your request for sources – it will take some time for me to dig them up. As I remember it included an in-depth article from Salon, and a Time article, plus a variety of quotes made by key players. I have posted them here before, and the reaction was to simply to reject them out of hand as liberal propaganda. I suspect that will be the response again, so I don’t have a lot of motivation to look them up yet again.

  51. Then let me pose this question to the group: since you’re all so mentally endowed, explain for the class why 1) Iraq was bad for the country and 2) how Iraq did not have an impact on al-Qaida.” — G

    These are the questions. You claim Iraq was bad, both for the war on terro and in general, so tell me how.

    Secondly, I want to know how the Iraq war did not impact al Qaida.

  52. Gorilla, first I honor your service and your unique perspective. But I disagree with you that we had to wait for the Duffer report. We had the evidence from the U.N. and IAEA inspection teams prior to the invasion.
    http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/03/21/iraq.weapons/ Who was it who said, “We know better than them”? Dick Cheney.
    The lack of WMD’s was long acknowledged before the Duffer report, at which point the rationale for the invasion became, “Well, Saddam is a bad guy, so it’s good we’re there anyway”. If getting rid of bad guys is our foreign policy goal, I repeat, why weren’t we in Rwanda? Sudan? Why haven’t we invaded North Korea?
    As for the impact of the Iraq War on Al Queda, it was a positive one for them. It gave them a new recruiting base and changed the opinion of Muslims around the world who were previously on fence.

  53. Fake,

    Since I know you’re ignoring the troll (which still gives me a chuckle), I still think your propaganda there is worthy of my response. That may spin well in your circles, but it will be challenged here because you are simply incorrect. I’m sure Gorilla will get around to correcting in detail.

    First, and I’ll do this from memory because I’m too lazy to get the specifics, 109 Democrats also authorized the Iraq war with their own vote. Let’s remember the quotes leading up to the war, shall we?

    http://www.reasons-for-war-with-iraq.info/#Connections_between_Iraq_and_Al-Qaeda

    The lack of WMD was in no way established before the invasion. While hindsight maybe 20/20, U.N. weapons inspectors had a poor track record of WMD prediction all the way back to 1982, when Israeli intelligence said otherwise and forever rid the world of Iraqi nuclear reactors and the production of enriched uranium to great criticism from doves (like you). Iraq finally admitted in 1995 to having a nuclear weapons program. To put faith in the U.N. is folly. How many Iraqi children needed to starve in the Oil for Food Scandal before even you might begin to have doubts about the ability and honesty of the U.N.?

    I can document at least ten reasons why Saddam should have been deposed of long before we acted. Here is but one, of sixteen parts. Saddam Hussein and the Iraqi government continually thumbed their noses at 16 different U.N. resolutions established after the Gulf War, including numerous occasions where U.S. Jets were fired upon while on patrol, biological and chemical weapons manufactured, Kuwaiti prisoners never returned, and the housing of known terrorists, including Abu Nidal. You quote the U.N., but never make mention of this fact.

    You ask then ask If getting rid of bad guys is our foreign policy goal, I repeat, why weren’t we in Rwanda? Sudan? Why haven’t we invaded North Korea?

    Very simple. They are not perceived as a national threat, nor is it in our national interests to do so. In addition, Iraq had the capability of disrupting the world’s oil reserves, and yes, we do go to war for that (see Desert Storm). You can argue that is selfish and inhumane on our behalf. Maybe, but we can’t be all things to all people and we claim sovereignty to decide what is best for America.

    I believe Claudia Rosett defined your type properly:

    One might be tempted to conclude, then, that our only window for intervening in the quest of a threatening, terrorist-linked regime dabbling in WMDs is in that precise time window when there is irrefutable evidence that the rulers are developing WMD capability, but before the wares are ready to be handed out to terrorists or brandished in jelly jars as a “deterrent” to extort concessions from the free world. Except that this seems to be precisely the turf occupied at the moment by Iran, with its nuclear program, and while the clerics there are obviously rushing to get their bombs into production, no one genuinely seems to be preparing to stop that, either.” Yeah, I’ve kind of noticed that. For some people, there never seems to be a good time to take a stand. But of course, they’ll assure you of their firmness. They’re just waiting for the right moment. Like, maybe sometime around 2150 A.D. or so. bq. “We seem to be heading for the surreal conclusion that it is all right to be a murderous tyrant who only thinks he is pursuing weapons of mass destruction–even if he apparently believes it himself strongly enough to take the risk of kicking out U.N. arms inspectors for four years. Somehow, I am not comforted by the vision of a Saddam presiding over a country where he is allocating resources for WMD, terrorists are traipsing through, and whatever is really going on is anyone’s guess, including Saddam’s.” Me neither – but it seems that many Democratic Party Presidential candidates have a different comfort threshold for foreign dictators with ties to terrorism, a long history of diastrous miscalculations, and sons even worse than he is poised to succeed him. After all, our excellent intelligence organizations would tell us if sanctions et. al. were failing, so we’d still have time to protect ourselves… oh, wait. Of course, these same candidates and their apologists get very indignant if people accuse them of being less than serious about protecting their fellow citizens. Can’t think why.

  54. Tex: please note this red-letter day. It is the first and last time I will respond to you, and it is to congratulate you for finally understanding the difference between “avoiding” and “ignoring”. I note I’m not alone, probably because you are embarassing even those who might otherwise agree with you.

  55. Fake, Red Letter Day? Uh huh.

    The silent treatment may work with your puerile friends but it is not very effective with the grown ups. I answer your posts for the benefit of the audience who might actually read your repetitive MSNBC talking points and be a little confused concerning historical accurately. I’m afraid you weren’t provided an ignore button and this isn’t the Yahoo chat rooms you frequent, so toughen up.

    Please note your “avoidance” in the practice of pseudo-psychology dealing with trolls? Won’t bother me a bit as I continue to answer your frivolous posts. It’s not for your benefit, as I don’t care if you spin off the earth. Dims never understood rudeness comes in many forms – another indicator of why your personal lives are generally a wreck, and why I never feel a shred of guilt about mocking quasi-shrinks like you.

    Note to anyone involved. You’ll note my style isn’t the only thing avoided – facts are to be avoided too. 🙂

    As to your charges, this is a banner day as I need only say this once. Being I’ve been here about a million times longer than you, nobody but you would be embarrassed of an answer on an anonymous blog. Therefore, your unnamed avoidance doesn’t hold much sway either.

    I’m always fond of making side bets with Professor Hippie – here’s the new one Hippie; your friend Fake is not nearly as talented as you’d like us to believe and I will prove it to you in the coming weeks, if she sticks around. I know you agree her choice of candidates – but massaging the fragile ‘lady’ egos isn’t as entertaining on blogs as it is in the classroom.

    If you really understood embarrassment Fake, you should better understand the word “strange” – as in your blog. Now I know Hippie has blown up on many occasions of my laughing at certain material, and to each their own, but your own blog seems to serve no purpose. And you might want to review your misuse and overuse of logical fallacies we all learned in PHIL 101 notwithstanding. One semester of Kant does not make for an expert, and two semesters of philosophy should be illegal. It screwed you up.

    I will continue to set the record straight Fake, whether you respond or not. That is the purpose of this blog – debate. 😈

  56. Gorilla asked: These are the questions. You claim Iraq was bad, both for the war on terror and in general, so tell me how.

    Secondly, I want to know how the Iraq war did not impact al Qaida.

    Gorilla, I thought I had answered your questions back in #49. I will elaborate a bit.

    1) I don’t believe that it is our proper role to hunt down all the bad guys in the world. Yeah – Saddam was a really bad guy. There are lots of others that we don’t go after. Tex says that we don’t go after these bad guys because it is not in our national interest to do so. So, bad guy plus national interest is what is required for us to invade someone.

    That sounds OK – but if you look at the argument a little more closely you see it does not hold water. There are plenty of examples of us allowing bad guys to stay in power – even HELPING them stay in power – because it was in our national interests to do so. The Shah of Iran is one shining example of a really bad guy we supported for many years. Hell, we helped Saddam stay in power when he helped us against Iran. We even supported the mujaheddin in their pre-Taliban days. Oh, and maybe the current government of Pakistan…

    So – really – lets leave the bad guy part out of the equation. It has nothing to do with bad guys. It has to do with “National Interests” – the bad guy part is merely an excuse.

    So (recalling my response in #49) In my opinion “National Interest” does not justify invading a sovereign country without support of our major allies – in the process inflaming passions in a Muslin world already prone to see us as the great aggressor and an enemy of Islam.

    That is EXACTLY the type of thing the old Soviet Union used to do, and we rightly condemned them for it. Really – what is the difference? They saw a national interest, came up with a flimsy excuse for an invasion, invaded, and installed a communist government. In Iran, we saw a national interest, came up with a flimsy excuse for an invasion, invaded, and installed a democratic government.

    What – other than the form of government installed – is the difference?

    We used to depict the Soviet Union as the great aggressor. Like it or not, that is how much of the world now views us. Hmmm… yeah…. I would say that is a pretty bad thing.

    2) How did it not effect Al Quida? Al Quida were not in Iraq prior to the invasion. They came, we killed a bunch of them. Is that a victory over Al Quida? No. It is as if I intentionally infected someone with a disease, cured the disease, and then took credit for the cure while ignoring the fact that I had caused the infection in the first place. I also suspect that there are more Al Quida sympathizers worldwide than there were before we invaded – so the invasion actually set us back.

  57. BTW – Tex seems to suggest that drawing Al Quida into Iraq was always part of the plan – in a sense forcing them into the open where we could better deal with them. I have never seen evidence that this was part of the war strategy prior to the invasion. Is there any such evidence? Or (as I suspect) was drawing Al Quida into Iraq merely a “lucky” side effect?

  58. I’ll be glad when these wood floors are done. With the constant whirl of the drills and nail guns, being on the net all day because four TVs are under dust covers, and having to run back and forth to Lowes and Home Depot, I’ve got a headache.

    ———————-

    Hippie, I didn’t say our goal in Iraq was to draw Al-Qaeda in – it was first and foremost to depose of Saddam for a host of reasons. My question to you was that being we were going to fight them anyway, why not do it on foreign soil with the baddest military in history. It was a fringe benefit – but a huge one.

    But your assertion that Al-Qaeda had no connection to Iraq has always amused me. UBL called Iraq the mother of all battles. Oh, they were at the very least, loosely connected and anybody that thinks otherwise has to be a fool. Saddam housed known terrorists including Abu Nidal, Abu Qaswarah and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The only reason Al-Qaeda didn’t set up shop in Iraq before the war was Saddam and the fact the U.S. military was hanging near by. That is one of the biggest lies perpetrated by anti-war crowd.

    Let me ask you a fair question Hippie. Now I want your complete honesty. Do you think simply burning a Koran would take a typical Muslim and turn him into a jihadist? Does that make a bit of sense to you? Do you really not think that all of these “volunteers” were on the leading edge of Islamic radicalism before the war? Come on man. You’re not dumb. These were cold blooded killers coming across the border and you know it.

    To give you benefit, I do have some what I believe legitimate bitches with the decisions made.

    My biggest bitches with Republican Administrations? One, they didn’t do in 1991 because they were afraid of destabilizing the area; (2) though no expert, from half a world away, it appeared to me we abandoned the Kurds to the wolves – another U.N. resolution Saddam broke and another great reason to remove his head; (3) Donald Rumsfield and his interference with the military brass running the show.

  59. Tex asks: Let me ask you a fair question Hippie. Now I want your complete honesty. Do you think simply burning a Koran would take a typical Muslim and turn him into a jihadist? Does that make a bit of sense to you? Do you really not think that all of these “volunteers” were on the leading edge of Islamic radicalism before the war? Come on man. You’re not dumb. These were cold blooded killers coming across the border and you know it.

    Fair question. No, obviously I don’t think that a single act like burning a Koran could turn a typical Muslim into a jihadist. Oh, it might be a final straw for someone already hanging on the edge – but certainly alone it is not enough.

    This does not mean that it is OK to do. It inflames hatreds at a time when that is the last thing we need to be doing. It almost certainly turn moderate Muslims into less moderate Muslims, undermining our attempts to gain favor in the region. It provides recruiting materials for radical elements. Remember, these guys start training jihadists at a very young age. How do you think it will play to the young and impressionable to see a video of a bunch of Americans burning a Koran? We are needlessly giving them propaganda materials, and that is foolish.

    Of course, I also don’t like what it says about some Americans. We are at war with the jihadists, and not with all of Islam. Yet the Koran represents all of Islam. Burning a Koran thus suggests that some Americans don’t understand the distinction. That bothers me.

  60. One last remark: Look at burning a Koran from a cost/benefit perspective.

    What are the costs? More Muslims move in a radical direction.

    What are the benefits? None, that I can see.

    Seems like a no brainer – it is just a bad idea.

  61. Don’t misunderstand the purpose of my question HIppie. I’m not lending credence to inflaming Muslims – they’re already inflamed enough.

    Burning a Koran is stupid and makes me angry that somebody calling themselves “Christian” is leading the book burning – especially a pastor. He’s a fraud.. This poseur and clown having a Koran burning is a disgrace to Christianity, should be widely condemned by Evangelicals. And the only thing that will come of it is to make some people calling themselves Christian look like morons. I don’t buy that it endangers our soldiers. Our soldiers are already endangered every minute, every day.

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