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Old 11-27-2007, 06:48 PM   #41
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Amen!

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Old 11-27-2007, 08:31 PM   #42
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Gumby,
A very comprehensive post, thanks.

For twelve years, since his own invasion of Kuwait, Saddam had defied all significant requirements set by the UN. Of the 26 demands made by the UNSC since 1990, Saddam had complied with only three. (Significantly, a number of the demands related to the requirement for verification of Iraqi destruction of chemical weapons. Had Saddam complied with these, the US would have had no reason to believe Iraq was keeping any of these prohibited weapons/stockpiles. Saddam was not only cruel and barbarous--he was an idiot).

So, by early 2003 it was evident that the UNSC would not compel Iraq to comply with UNSCR 1441 or any of the preceding UN resolutions. Specifically, in March 2003 to UNSC refused to approve military action by the coalition as a response to the failure of Iraq to comply (the two members which balked: Russia and France. Hmmm--we've since learned enough about how Saddam bought off these nations and the UN bureaucracy that their motivations are very clear).

So, the coalition invaded,in part, in order to enforce UN resolutions.

Almost immediately after this intervention, the UNSC unanimously passed UNSCR 1483 which, among other things, recognized the coalition as the appropriate "authority" in Iraq. I wonder why they did that if the military action was illegal?

Of course, all of this is largely beside the point to a "realist." The UN is useful primarily as a place to talk things over. It has no effective means to employ military force (thank goodness!), and so it is largely irrelevant in the most fundamental sense to the security questions facing nations. A realist laughs at the idea of a "legal" or "illegal" war.
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:42 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Gumby View Post
Hey, I thought it was clever.

I understand well those who adopt the realpolitik view -- we're stuck now, how can we make the best of it? But really, you cannot divorce the current situation from its genesis, which was and is a continuing violation of international law. Those principles, as established at the Nuremburg Trials and memorialized in the U.N. charter and resolutions, are that crimes against peace, including waging wars of agression, are war crimes.


Our invasion, which was not in response to an attack or even a legitimate threat of attack from Iraq, as well as our continued occupation, clearly violates these international principles in that we have violated their sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity. (I won't even get into the extraordinary rendition and torture, which is a separate war crime). A number of high ranking Nazi officers and political figures were indicted, convicted and executed for precisely these crimes.

Sometimes the issue really is this simple -- We broke the law. We continue to break the law every day. We should stop.
I am convinced that your mind is made up on this issue, so I won't bother trying to change it. I'll just say that I think you are dead wrong this is an illegal war. In fact this is arguable the most "legal" war since WWII be the US or any country.

Simply stated in Feb 1991, the US and other coalition forces (operating for only the 2nd in history with a security council resolution) defeated Iraqi forces. Iraq according to UN resolutions had waged an illegal war of aggression against Kuwait.

Iraqi signed a cease fire agreement not only with Coalitions forces but also a bilateral cease fire agreement with the US. Saddam had to agree to whole host of conditions (the vast majority of which he was again found by the UN Security Council to have not upheld) However the principal condition that Saddam agreed "was an immediate and permanent halt to any attacks on US Armed Service personal". In April of 1991 Iraqi Air Defense units shot SAM missiles at US planes patrolling the Northern, this breaking the 3 month cease fire.

For the next almost 12 years Iraq and coalition force (primarily the US) engaged in constant fighting. During this time, Iraq fired on coalition force more than 10,000 times expending thousands missiles and hundreds of thousand of anti aircraft rounds. The US in turn dropped thousands of missile and bombs against Iraqi Air Defense targets and command and control centers. On at least two occasions (Desert Strike, Desert Fox) the US launched pretty major air offensives against Iraq, Desert Fox for example used more Tomhawks missile than were launched in the first Gulf war. During these attacks hundreds of not thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians were killed or wounded.

Both sides attempted to kill the other sides leadership, with the US by all accounts targeting high ranking Iraqi officials, and Iraq attempting to assassinate President Bush (Senior) along with some Saudi ministers.


Now I don't know what you call it when two nation's armed forces shoot at each constantly, try to kill the leaders, and one side blockades the other side. But I think meets the commonly accepted definition of war.
War is a state of conflict involving two or more factions fighting
It seems to me that when two nations are involved in a war that invasions and occupations are pretty much part of the bad stuff that happens.

Finally, from a legalistic viewpoint. You say it is illegal based on the UN and Nuremberg trials, I say the invasion is simply the logical end to a 12 year long conflict with Iraq. If you are right as mater of international law surely some organization must agree.

If the conflict is in conflict with the UN Charter as you contend how come the UN hasn't done anything about it?
There is no security council resolution condemn the invasion (not even submitted for a vote)
No General Assembly resolution (not subject to a US veto)
No International Court of Justice case resolved or even filed.

Is it really illegal just because you and Moveon.org say so?
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Old 11-27-2007, 10:07 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Gumby View Post
Our invasion, which was not in response to an attack or even a legitimate threat of attack from Iraq, as well as our continued occupation, clearly violates these international principles in that we have violated their sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity. (I won't even get into the extraordinary rendition and torture, which is a separate war crime). A number of high ranking Nazi officers and political figures were indicted, convicted and executed for precisely these crimes.

Sometimes the issue really is this simple -- We broke the law. We continue to break the law every day. We should stop.
It'll be interesting to see if this approach helps 1LT Watada. He's attracting some fairly heavy-duty publicity-hungry military-litigation talent.
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Old 11-28-2007, 06:04 AM   #45
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Gumby,
A very comprehensive post, thanks.

For twelve years, since his own invasion of Kuwait, Saddam had defied all significant requirements set by the UN. Of the 26 demands made by the UNSC since 1990, Saddam had complied with only three. (Significantly, a number of the demands related to the requirement for verification of Iraqi destruction of chemical weapons. Had Saddam complied with these, the US would have had no reason to believe Iraq was keeping any of these prohibited weapons/stockpiles. Saddam was not only cruel and barbarous--he was an idiot).

So, by early 2003 it was evident that the UNSC would not compel Iraq to comply with UNSCR 1441 or any of the preceding UN resolutions. Specifically, in March 2003 to UNSC refused to approve military action by the coalition as a response to the failure of Iraq to comply (the two members which balked: Russia and France. Hmmm--we've since learned enough about how Saddam bought off these nations and the UN bureaucracy that their motivations are very clear).

So, the coalition invaded,in part, in order to enforce UN resolutions.

Almost immediately after this intervention, the UNSC unanimously passed UNSCR 1483 which, among other things, recognized the coalition as the appropriate "authority" in Iraq. I wonder why they did that if the military action was illegal?

Of course, all of this is largely beside the point to a "realist." The UN is useful primarily as a place to talk things over. It has no effective means to employ military force (thank goodness!), and so it is largely irrelevant in the most fundamental sense to the security questions facing nations. A realist laughs at the idea of a "legal" or "illegal" war.
Samclem:

UNSCR 1441 directed Iraq to allow access to weapons inspectors and to submit a report detailing its destruction of its chemical or other WMD's. A very extensive report was submitted but dismissed by the Bush Administration as incomplete and untrue. Yet the Iraq Study Group reported several years after the invasion that

While a small number of old, abandoned chemical munitions have been discovered, ISG judges that Iraq unilaterally destroyed its undeclared chemical weapons stockpile in 1991. There are no credible Indications that Baghdad resumed production of chemical munitions thereafter, a policy ISG attributes to Baghdad’s desire to see sanctions lifted, or rendered ineffectual, or its fear of force against it should WMD be discovered


It seems that Iraq's report in 2002 was not, in fact, untrue and that Iraq was not, in fact, failing to comply with UNSCR 1441.

Besides that, if the Security Council does not authorize the use of military force to compel compliance with its resolutions, how are we unilaterally empowered to make that decision? I think the answer is that we are not.

Frankly, the invasion and destruction of Iraq became inevitable on January 20, 2001. There was nothing that Saddam could have done to stop it. Mr. Bush was going to have his war come hell or high water. UN be damned.

As far as UNSCR 1483 goes, recognizing the reality on the ground -- that the US and Britain invaded and destroyed the Iraqi governnment and that there was no realistic alternative source of control over the territory -- is not a validation of the invasion.

You are correct that thhis is a legal argument and that there is no way to force the US to comply with international law, but aren't you concerned about living in a country that so blithely ignores that law? I am.
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Old 11-28-2007, 06:17 AM   #46
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I am convinced that your mind is made up on this issue, so I won't bother trying to change it. I'll just say that I think you are dead wrong this is an illegal war. In fact this is arguable the most "legal" war since WWII be the US or any country.

Simply stated in Feb 1991, the US and other coalition forces (operating for only the 2nd in history with a security council resolution) defeated Iraqi forces. Iraq according to UN resolutions had waged an illegal war of aggression against Kuwait.

Iraqi signed a cease fire agreement not only with Coalitions forces but also a bilateral cease fire agreement with the US. Saddam had to agree to whole host of conditions (the vast majority of which he was again found by the UN Security Council to have not upheld) However the principal condition that Saddam agreed "was an immediate and permanent halt to any attacks on US Armed Service personal". In April of 1991 Iraqi Air Defense units shot SAM missiles at US planes patrolling the Northern, this breaking the 3 month cease fire.

For the next almost 12 years Iraq and coalition force (primarily the US) engaged in constant fighting. During this time, Iraq fired on coalition force more than 10,000 times expending thousands missiles and hundreds of thousand of anti aircraft rounds. The US in turn dropped thousands of missile and bombs against Iraqi Air Defense targets and command and control centers. On at least two occasions (Desert Strike, Desert Fox) the US launched pretty major air offensives against Iraq, Desert Fox for example used more Tomhawks missile than were launched in the first Gulf war. During these attacks hundreds of not thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians were killed or wounded.

Both sides attempted to kill the other sides leadership, with the US by all accounts targeting high ranking Iraqi officials, and Iraq attempting to assassinate President Bush (Senior) along with some Saudi ministers.


Now I don't know what you call it when two nation's armed forces shoot at each constantly, try to kill the leaders, and one side blockades the other side. But I think meets the commonly accepted definition of war.
War is a state of conflict involving two or more factions fighting
It seems to me that when two nations are involved in a war that invasions and occupations are pretty much part of the bad stuff that happens.

Finally, from a legalistic viewpoint. You say it is illegal based on the UN and Nuremberg trials, I say the invasion is simply the logical end to a 12 year long conflict with Iraq. If you are right as mater of international law surely some organization must agree.

If the conflict is in conflict with the UN Charter as you contend how come the UN hasn't done anything about it?
There is no security council resolution condemn the invasion (not even submitted for a vote)
No General Assembly resolution (not subject to a US veto)
No International Court of Justice case resolved or even filed.

Is it really illegal just because you and Moveon.org say so?
I understand the counterargument that this was simply a continuation of the Gulf War, but I see that as an illegitimate pretext. In my view, our writ arising out of the Gulf War was to kick Saddam out of Kuwait (why it was any of our business who runs Kuwait (or Korea for that matter) is a different discussion). George H.W. Bush did that and wisely refused to go further. We should have left it at that. I think the "no fly" zones, which were the source of most of the subsequent conflicts were unaccceptable restrictions on a sovereign nation -- we would never tolerate the same in our country. We bear as much responsibility for thhe countinued friction as Saddam.

And lest we forget, the same argument was presented to the UN Security council in 2002, which rejected the use of force to compel compliance with its prior resolutions. So clearly the UN did not view this as a continuation of the prior war.

As samclem points out, the UN cannot compel us to behave, so I would take no comfort in the fact that they have not really tried.

As far as moveon.org, I don't know their position. Based on your post, I gather it is similar to mine, but any implication that mine is derivative is unwarranted. My views are based on my own research and philosophy, not a political action group.

Finally, even if the war were not illegal, it is a colossally stupid waste of American blood and treasure.
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Old 11-28-2007, 06:48 AM   #47
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Besides that, if the Security Council does not authorize the use of military force to compel compliance with its resolutions, how are we unilaterally empowered to make that decision? I think the answer is that we are not.
If someone is attempting to unilaterally punch you in the face after they said they would stop are you not unilaterally authorized to beat the snot out of them? The answer is yes you are. Iraq was constantly lighting up our planes with their SAM radar (even in an area they allowed us to patrol as a condition of us stopping the beating they were receiving). They NEVER stopped being the aggressor. They never complied with the cease fire agreement THEY signed. I can't count how many times I saw our planes leaving the airfields full and come home empty. France didn't have a dog in the fight they were there for training. The US and Britain were the nations at risk.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:41 AM   #48
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It's ironic that Saddam probably believed that he had WMDs and that Iraq was not sponsoring Al Quaeda training camps. A key to effective bluffing is to behave as if you believe it's the truth.

By invasion time he'd probably so intimidated his staff and his subordinates that they'd tell him anything... or maybe they felt that was the only way to use him to influence the gullible Americans to get rid of him.

The Navy has had abusive COs on many of its ships, and they get away with their behavior because no one's in a position to effectively challenge the culture. However investigations of incidents on these ships have collected many statements like "Yeah, that was a problem but the CO didn't want to hear about it." Whether their statements were true or not is irrelevant to the fact that it became a way to isolate the COs and eventually get rid of them.
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:30 PM   #49
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If someone is attempting to unilaterally punch you in the face after they said they would stop are you not unilaterally authorized to beat the snot out of them? The answer is yes you are. Iraq was constantly lighting up our planes with their SAM radar (even in an area they allowed us to patrol as a condition of us stopping the beating they were receiving). They NEVER stopped being the aggressor. They never complied with the cease fire agreement THEY signed. I can't count how many times I saw our planes leaving the airfields full and come home empty. France didn't have a dog in the fight they were there for training. The US and Britain were the nations at risk.
Actually, that part of my post was in response to the argument that we only invaded to enforce the UN resolutions. You cannot simultaneously use the resolutions to justify your conduct while ignoring the UN when it declines to authorize force to compel compliance with those same resolutions. Either the UN counts or it doesn't. (I suspect you are in the "doesn't count" camp).

As far as your observation about our planes, all it tells me is that we unloaded a lot of ordnance on Iraq. It doesn't say anything about what Iraq may or may not have done to us. But for sake of argument, let's assume that they did light off their SAM radars. How does that justify the full scale invasion and destruction of their country? At best, it might justify the bombing of those same radar stations and missile batteries (which is what I believe happened). But frankly, was there any useful purpose served by provocatively flying over their airspace in the first place? I doubt it. And were we or Britain really at risk from Saddam and his SAM radar? Again, aside from the pilots unnecessarily flying over their country, the answer is no.
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:45 PM   #50
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Every time our pilots went up they were at risk. As far as how much risk did Iraqi SAM's pose ask John McCain, I believe he was shot down by an older version of the same system. Once there is a lock you better do something. Heck as soon as the system came on you better be doing something aggressive. There is only one use for those systems and it is to kill the planes. As far as did we have to fly over their airspace, yes we did. It was part of the end of the war. Remember the end of the last war, Saddam agreed to ALL of our conditions that was one of them. Then he disagreed when he discovered we wouldn't enforce them.

It is obvious we are not going to come to any sort of agreement on this. Your opinion seems to be one of extreme passivity. While mine is formulated from years of studying the art of warfare and dealing with the mopes who wish to do peaceful people harm.
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:56 PM   #51
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Just so we're clear, I do not disagree that our pilots were at risk when the SAM radar locked on. (although I don't recall hearing that there was ever a subsequent launch). I am not so ignorant of military matters as you may think. And, no, I don't reject all use of military force. When it is necessary to defend our nation, I am all for it (heck, I spent plenty of time defending this nation), but as my mother said to me when I was young, "People who go looking for trouble always find it." I think it would be much better for us and the world at large if we would spend more time minding our own business and less time screwing around with others.
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:26 PM   #52
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Just so we're clear, I do not disagree that our pilots were at risk when the SAM radar locked on. (although I don't recall hearing that there was ever a subsequent launch).
Just to tie up this loose end: There were SAM launches. And there were plenty of AAA firings.

As for the reason for Operations Southern Watch and Northern Watch, a look at the brutal attention Saddam lavished on the Marsh Arabs and the Kurds helps explain a lot of it. At the end of the Gulf War, these groups were particularly at risk, and it should be a particular point of pride to Americans that we helped protect them (though there were some notable shortfalls in that protection and Saddam killed many in both groups despite out efforts. We undoubtedly saved tens of thousands of lives). Anyone arguing that we were wrong to protect these groups would, I suppose, also argue that there's no particular reason to prevent the present-day descent of Iraq into a downward spiral of increasingly violent ethnic and religious violence. This is consistency of reasoning alright, but it is hard to admire from a moral standpoint.
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:07 PM   #53
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Just to tie up this loose end: There were SAM launches. And there were plenty of AAA firings.
Thanks. I didn't know that.
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:09 PM   #54
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I understand the counterargument that this was simply a continuation of the Gulf War, but I see that as an illegitimate pretext. In my view, our writ arising out of the Gulf War was to kick Saddam out of Kuwait (why it was any of our business who runs Kuwait (or Korea for that matter) is a different discussion). George H.W. Bush did that and wisely refused to go further. We should have left it at that. I think the "no fly" zones, which were the source of most of the subsequent conflicts were unaccceptable restrictions on a sovereign nation -- we would never tolerate the same in our country. We bear as much responsibility for thhe countinued friction as Saddam.
We have very different world views. I happen to think that US has moral obligation where practical to work aggressively to replace bad/evil
regime with better ones. In the case of Iraq, the opportunity to remove A one of the worst dictators in the world B. somebody who was a source of huge trouble to volatile region, C a guy we believed was a threat to our national security, made this worthwhile use of military force. Obviously C turned out be exaggeration, but it does not change A or B. I think the stupidity of the war can't be judge for at least another decade. We just now are starting to see the benefits of the Balkan peace keeping/and Kosovo intervention.

My opinion about all of these matter is best explained by Tony Blair in his speech before Congress back in 2003.
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As far as moveon.org, I don't know their position. Based on your post, I gather it is similar to mine, but any implication that mine is derivative is unwarranted. My views are based on my own research and philosophy, not a political action group.
Me bad, you obviously are NOT parroting the "Bush Lied People Died, Bush=Hitler crowd". I respect your opinions, and appreciate not having to deal with typical name calling that gets involved at this point in the debate.
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Old 11-28-2007, 11:27 PM   #55
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Gumby, I'm with ya. The contempt for the rule of law that this administration exhibits is unprecedented. Just look at the CIA outing, the telecom immunity they want, the going over the heads of even the Secret FISA court... Neither the courts nor our representatives have any say in how this country is currently run. Just write a signing statement and Bush opts to "make it so".

Sam, there is precious little "way forward" in Iraq. The violence may diminish due to ethnic cleansing and sheer exhaustion, but Iraq is not a coherent country and we can't force it to be one by applauding and wishing hard and putting cheap ribbon-shaped magnets on the ol' SUV. What we HAVE done that is concrete, however, is thrown out our own adherance to the Geneva Conventions, thrown out habeas corpus, thrown out our own nominal restrictions on domestic spying, etc. For what? WHAT was the proven threat of Iraq? I care as little for the posturing of Democrats as I do for the posturing of Republicans. Looking at past players' foolish statements does not excuse the current players of equal or greater actual foolishness.

Now the republicans are trotting out the same old players (Chalabi, Richard Perle) to spread some magic pixie dust on the debacle. Ha! According to them, we are "heroes in error". Will Perle stop at Iraq? No! He has his sights set on Iran and Syria for an equally salubrious Iraq treatment.. and the neocons generally are now agitating to take on Pakistan, a real nuclear entity.

The fun has just begun as far as they are concerned!

samclem, there are a lot of peoples suffering and we don't have the same impetus of intervention. The Marsh Arabs are a retroactive fig leaf, and really I recall no instance of Bush having even mentioned their existence.

After the occupation, the Marsh Arabs were actually rather contrary to the British and Italian forces in their area:
Portrait of a Rebellion -- In These Times

Their leader was wanted in the killing of a police officer:
Former member in the Iraqi governing council wanted in a killing case
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Al-Muhammadawi supporters condemned the warrant of arrest against him and doubted the objectivity of lawyers appointed by the Americans. A statement issued by the federation of the Iraqi tribes and published in the Iraqi daily " al-Sabah" said that " the occupation is the one who formed these courts to undermine the dignity of the Iraqis." It added " we stand in support of Sheikh al-Muhammadawi and deplore the illegal courts of the occupation."

Al-Muhammadawi is viewed as an alley for Ahmad Chalabi who used to be the favorite man for the Americans in Iraq but his relations with Washington deteriorated recently.
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Sheikh al-Muhammadawi, from the powerful Al-Bu Muhammad tribe, a sort of aristocracy among the looked-down-upon Marsh Arabs, organized his people into the Iraqi Hizbullah. He and his fighters took Amara on April 7, two days before the fall of West Baghdad, and the Americans and British rewarded him by putting him in charge there. Paul Bremer put him on the Interim Governing Council.

In the past year, a lot of Marsh Arab slum dwellers have gone over to Muqtada al-Sadr and become Sadrists and Mahdi Army. A minority appear instead to have joined the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq and its paramilitary Badr Corps. There is tension within the Marsh Arabs, not only between Sadrists and SCIRI (Iraqi Hizbullah as an independent movement seems in decline), but also among various clans that feud with one another. In summer of 2003, two Marsh Arab tribes came into Basra, the Ghamchi and the Basun, and began feuding with one another. At one point they fought a 4-hour gun battle because one group had killed a water buffalo belonging to the other.

When the Americans besieged Fallujah and then came after Muqtada al-Sadr, Sheikh al-Muhammadawi angrily resigned from the Interim Governing Council and deeply criticized the Americans. This move reflected the fact that most of his tribesmen had become Sadrists (indeed, the whole city council of Amara followed Muqtada).
How can we pretend to foist a modern "egalitarian" democracy on people who have not gone through any political or societal 'evolution' beyond tribalism? It's not only an inconceivable luxury, but a fool's errand. In Iraq, half of marriages still take place between first or second cousins. And really, how far are we ourselves, when you think about it, from tribalism?

What you have to consider is that the tribal system, with all its corruption and nepotism, has been the human organizational standard for 99.9% of human existence. It is still quite prevalent even in modern 'democracies'; you need only witness the Bush/Kennedy intergenerational dynasties as evidence. The Gores. The Stevens of Alaska. The Dalys in Chicago. The Rockefellers, the Lodges. The Ghandis of India, the Bhuttos of Pakistan, the Perons, the Duvaliers, the Aquinos, etc., etc. It goes beyond party affiliation and beyond our concepts of right and left. I live in Italy, and a more feudal, FAKE democracy would be hard to find, though the ties are slightly less obvious along familial lines, notwithstanding the constant political presence of Mussolini's grand-daughter.

The US itself has found it hard to shake its tribal inclinations, in which there is to be found comfort, protection, contacts, power and security. How can we pretend to preach abstinence from this, and in many cases certain death, to others?

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Quote:
Every time our pilots went up they were at risk. .. in an area they allowed us to patrol as a condition of us stopping the beating they were receiving
I am without words here.
I wasn't convinced at first, but Gumby's batterer example is correctly invoked.

Quote:
the American people are sheep and until something effects them directly and painful, they are content to eat their happy meals, download their itunes, watch American idol, and stress about the careers and kids?
Correct. At this point in time, this is exactly correct.



the state of Marsh Arab concern at the time:
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QUESTION: I had no idea this was going on in Iraq at the time. I had never even heard of this ecocide before this event. How did the international community allow this to happen? My question is how will the upcoming election affect the redevelopment of the marshes if Bush or Kerry gets elected?

CURTIS RICHARDSON: The last part of the question is very interesting because the United States to this point has only put $4 million into the restoration of the marshes. The Canadians have put in $3 million, the Italians are putting in $10 million, but the USAID program for actual marsh restoration is very limited. Ambassador L. Paul Bremer and others have gone to the marshes, but other needs were considered so great that they have not been given attention.

My personal opinion is that they could have stabilized the small villages of the lower third of Iraq with simple seeds and some aquaculture and some other basic things that probably could have been done for $50 or 100 million dollars to start off. But this was not done.

What will happen it the future I do not know; that's an open question. The program that I am being funded by and the USAID runs out in December, so what will happen then I do not know.

QUESTION: Is it feasible in any way that the marshes could be brought back to where they used to be when Mr. Wheeler photographed them during the 1970s? We also must bear in mind that the marshes are sitting on a reserve of 1 billion barrels of oil, known as Majnun Oil field.
The Marsh Arabs of Iraq: The Legacy of Saddam Hussein and an Agenda for Restoration and Justice

The marshes at this point (2004) had been destroyed for over ten years. Not clear what amount of the population was interested in returning to the previous habitat, even assuming it could have been rehabilitated.

In the meantime, we are willingly pulverizing entire Appalachian mountain chains to get at the 3- or 4-foot-wide coal seams within, and in so doing 'passively' evicting mountain dwellers through pollution and destruction and ruin in our very own country. Spare me the new-found republican/'conservative' eco-social concern...
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Senate Rejects Regulating Iraq Combat Tours
Old 12-04-2007, 06:48 PM   #56
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Senate Rejects Regulating Iraq Combat Tours

Hello I am back.

Here is an interesting read on USA today Opinion: Editorial Pieces & Current Events Perspectives - USATODAY.com

Per the USA Today article "A new NIE on Iran produced a very different kind of bombshell Monday. Seemingly at odds with recent bellicose statements from President Bush and Vice President Cheney, it concluded that Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003, appears "less determined" to develop nukes than previously thought and probably couldn't get one before 2010 to 2015."

Just like with Iraq I hope that the American people do NOT eat up Old George W's and Cheney's lies and half truths "hook, line and sinker" as it now pertains to the possible "World War III" with Iran.

God Bless
Wags
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Old 12-04-2007, 07:49 PM   #57
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Hello I am back.................
Gee, it has been nice quiet.
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Old 12-04-2007, 10:20 PM   #58
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Wags, we missed you. I see you've decided to make up for lost time by posting everything twice.

Anyway, as I'm sure you know, the NIE is a product of various elements of the US government. In fact, all the organizations which put it together are part of the executive branch. That's the branch of the government headed by President Bush.

So, are "Old George W's and Cheney's lies and half truths" of which you speak the ones in the newly moderate NIE? Or are you now ready to praise an administration that candidly released an assessment that is at odds with their position? Pick your gripe and stick with it, please.

Good news is bad news to some people . . . even to "doves."
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Old 12-04-2007, 11:38 PM   #59
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Wags, we missed you. I see you've decided to make up for lost time by posting everything twice.

Anyway, as I'm sure you know, the NIE is a product of various elements of the US government. In fact, all the organizations which put it together are part of the executive branch. That's the branch of the government headed by President Bush.

So, are "Old George W's and Cheney's lies and half truths" of which you speak the ones in the newly moderate NIE? Or are you now ready to praise an administration that candidly released an assessment that is at odds with their position? Pick your gripe and stick with it, please.

Good news is bad news to some people . . . even to "doves."
Yes, the NIE is good news because just maybe it will keep Old George W from starting another war. As a dove I am always very happy when innocent people and our troops are not put in harm's way.

Putin was right on this one. Score on Iran - Putin -1 World Atomic Agency - 1 Old George W - 0.

But the question remains when did Old George W know about the NIE report and why did he continue with the advocacy for war with Iran?

Those are questions that may be answered in the near future.

It is good to be back.

God Bless
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Old 12-05-2007, 04:26 AM   #60
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I heard George say at his press conference yesterday that he first heard about the conclusions in the NIE only last week. He may be the president but I wonder sometimes who is really running his show.
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