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Author Topic: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.  (Read 10434 times)

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Offline Lwood

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It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« on: June 20, 2006, 11:53:50 AM »
"Fortunately, I Keep My T Cells Numbered For Just Such An Emergency"
  -Either Foghorn Leghorn or Johnny Cash

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2006, 12:00:49 PM »
Yes, well it was like waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Very, very painful to think of their deaths and of their final moments.

Violence and death just keeps happening there. What a terrible, tragic mess.

And please don't anyone come back at me with explanations for why we need to be there.

Andy Velez

Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2006, 01:14:01 PM »
Yeah, It also pissed me off when
They killed Robert Kennedy in the name of Allah for his support of Israel as a state. Personally, I wish we could have made some kind of deal with the Jews and traded them Israel for the big Island of Hawaii or maybe a US state. Whose idea was it give the Jews a state in the middle east? dumb,very freaking dumb.
Munich pissed me off.
It pissed me off when they kidnapped our people in Iran
It pissed me off when they bombed the Marines in Beirut
It pissed me off when they bombed the US african embassies
It pissed me off when they hijacked numerous airliners over the past 30 years
It pissed me off when they threw the guy in the wheelchair off the ocean liner.
It pissed me off when they dragged our soldiers,who were there trying to feed the starving masses,through the filthy streets of Mogadishu
It pissed me off when the bombed the the WTC in early 90s
It pissed me off when they attacked and murdered US men and women on the US Cole
They pissed me off on 911.
It really pisses me off when some Americans compare our treatment of prisoners with theirs or as the reason for these acts of horror.
This is what these people do. They will continue to do it till we kill them all. They are committed to our destruction. Our enemy has the idea that our resolve is weak and incidents like todays will hasten our departure and our defeat. The only way to defeat your enemy or keep your enemy in check is if he believes you are willing to do him worse than he is to you.  The Germans and Japanese believed and they surrendered.
We must make these murderous fuckers believe.

Offline Consumed

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2006, 02:16:06 PM »
It is a terrible shame. It has always been and it will continue to always be.

but try and compare the numbers to Normandy. I don't think anyone could tell the children of those soldiers that there fathers lives were not worth as much as the soldiers today. War is terrible but live and let live does not exist. It goes against human nature and the ability for the stronger to survive.

I don't like it but lives were given before so Americans could live, lives will always be given.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2006, 02:17:58 PM by Consumed »

Offline Joe K

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2006, 02:30:51 PM »
I've tried to stay neutral in Iraq, other than opposing the war.  But the actions of the insurgents, or more accurately, the insurgent murders, leds me to believe that we need to start warning Iraqs' to get out of certain cities, where insurgents hide and then level the city and everyone in it.

Do that a few times and see how fast the citizens give up these cowards.  I still believe the Iraqi's could handle more of these problems, but I expect they won't until we go home.

We have no business there, never did, so let's get the hell out.  If the Iraqi's want peace so bad, then let them work with it and sacrifice their soldiers to fight the insurgent murders.

Offline SAGirl

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2006, 02:42:39 PM »
There is a fundamental difference between soldiers and civilians in a war, if you can call the American invasion of Iraq, a war. Soldiers have a choice, they sign a paper before being sent away and they earn money for the job they do. Civilians do not get this luxury. How many soldiers died in Iraq? How many civilians were murdered?

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2006, 02:50:24 PM »
U.S. Had Key Role in Iraq Buildup
Trade in Chemical Arms Allowed Despite Their Use on Iranians, Kurds

By Michael Dobbs
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, December 30, 2002; Page A01

High on the Bush administration's list of justifications for war against Iraq are President Saddam Hussein's use of chemical weapons, nuclear and biological programs, and his contacts with international terrorists. What U.S. officials rarely acknowledge is that these offenses date back to a period when Hussein was seen in Washington as a valued ally.

Among the people instrumental in tilting U.S. policy toward Baghdad during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war was Donald H. Rumsfeld, now defense secretary, whose December 1983 meeting with Hussein as a special presidential envoy paved the way for normalization of U.S.-Iraqi relations. Declassified documents show that Rumsfeld traveled to Baghdad at a time when Iraq was using chemical weapons on an "almost daily" basis in defiance of international conventions.

The story of U.S. involvement with Saddam Hussein in the years before his 1990 attack on Kuwait -- which included large-scale intelligence sharing, supply of cluster bombs through a Chilean front company, and facilitating Iraq's acquisition of chemical and biological precursors -- is a topical example of the underside of U.S. foreign policy. It is a world in which deals can be struck with dictators, human rights violations sometimes overlooked, and accommodations made with arms proliferators, all on the principle that the "enemy of my enemy is my friend."

Throughout the 1980s, Hussein's Iraq was the sworn enemy of Iran, then still in the throes of an Islamic revolution. U.S. officials saw Baghdad as a bulwark against militant Shiite extremism and the fall of pro-American states such as Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and even Jordan -- a Middle East version of the "domino theory" in Southeast Asia. That was enough to turn Hussein into a strategic partner and for U.S. diplomats in Baghdad to routinely refer to Iraqi forces as "the good guys," in contrast to the Iranians, who were depicted as "the bad guys."

A review of thousands of declassified government documents and interviews with former policymakers shows that U.S. intelligence and logistical support played a crucial role in shoring up Iraqi defenses against the "human wave" attacks by suicidal Iranian troops. The administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush authorized the sale to Iraq of numerous items that had both military and civilian applications, including poisonous chemicals and deadly biological viruses, such as anthrax and bubonic plague.

Opinions differ among Middle East experts and former government officials about the pre-Iraqi tilt, and whether Washington could have done more to stop the flow to Baghdad of technology for building weapons of mass destruction.

"It was a horrible mistake then, but we have got it right now," says Kenneth M. Pollack, a former CIA military analyst and author of "The Threatening Storm," which makes the case for war with Iraq. "My fellow [CIA] analysts and I were warning at the time that Hussein was a very nasty character. We were constantly fighting the State Department."

"Fundamentally, the policy was justified," argues David Newton, a former U.S. ambassador to Baghdad, who runs an anti-Hussein radio station in Prague. "We were concerned that Iraq should not lose the war with Iran, because that would have threatened Saudi Arabia and the Gulf. Our long-term hope was that Hussein's government would become less repressive and more responsible."

What makes present-day Hussein different from the Hussein of the 1980s, say Middle East experts, is the mellowing of the Iranian revolution and the August 1990 invasion of Kuwait that transformed the Iraqi dictator, almost overnight, from awkward ally into mortal enemy. In addition, the United States itself has changed. As a result of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, U.S. policymakers take a much more alarmist view of the threat posed by the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

U.S. Shifts in Iran-Iraq War

When the Iran-Iraq war began in September 1980, with an Iraqi attack across the Shatt al Arab waterway that leads to the Persian Gulf, the United States was a bystander. The United States did not have diplomatic relations with either Baghdad or Tehran. U.S. officials had almost as little sympathy for Hussein's dictatorial brand of Arab nationalism as for the Islamic fundamentalism espoused by Iran's Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. As long as the two countries fought their way to a stalemate, nobody in Washington was disposed to intervene.

By the summer of 1982, however, the strategic picture had changed dramatically. After its initial gains, Iraq was on the defensive, and Iranian troops had advanced to within a few miles of Basra, Iraq's second largest city. U.S. intelligence information suggested the Iranians might achieve a breakthrough on the Basra front, destabilizing Kuwait, the Gulf states, and even Saudi Arabia, thereby threatening U.S. oil supplies.

"You have to understand the geostrategic context, which was very different from where we are now," said Howard Teicher, a former National Security Council official, who worked on Iraqi policy during the Reagan administration. "Realpolitik dictated that we act to prevent the situation from getting worse."

To prevent an Iraqi collapse, the Reagan administration supplied battlefield intelligence on Iranian troop buildups to the Iraqis, sometimes through third parties such as Saudi Arabia. The U.S. tilt toward Iraq was enshrined in National Security Decision Directive 114 of Nov. 26, 1983, one of the few important Reagan era foreign policy decisions that still remains classified. According to former U.S. officials, the directive stated that the United States would do "whatever was necessary and legal" to prevent Iraq from losing the war with Iran.

The presidential directive was issued amid a flurry of reports that Iraqi forces were using chemical weapons in their attempts to hold back the Iranians. In principle, Washington was strongly opposed to chemical warfare, a practice outlawed by the 1925 Geneva Protocol. In practice, U.S. condemnation of Iraqi use of chemical weapons ranked relatively low on the scale of administration priorities, particularly compared with the all-important goal of preventing an Iranian victory.

Thus, on Nov. 1, 1983, a senior State Department official, Jonathan T. Howe, told Secretary of State George P. Shultz that intelligence reports showed that Iraqi troops were resorting to "almost daily use of CW" against the Iranians. But the Reagan administration had already committed itself to a large-scale diplomatic and political overture to Baghdad, culminating in several visits by the president's recently appointed special envoy to the Middle East, Donald H. Rumsfeld.

Secret talking points prepared for the first Rumsfeld visit to Baghdad enshrined some of the language from NSDD 114, including the statement that the United States would regard "any major reversal of Iraq's fortunes as a strategic defeat for the West." When Rumsfeld finally met with Hussein on Dec. 20, he told the Iraqi leader that Washington was ready for a resumption of full diplomatic relations, according to a State Department report of the conversation. Iraqi leaders later described themselves as "extremely pleased" with the Rumsfeld visit, which had "elevated U.S.-Iraqi relations to a new level."

In a September interview with CNN, Rumsfeld said he "cautioned" Hussein about the use of chemical weapons, a claim at odds with declassified State Department notes of his 90-minute meeting with the Iraqi leader. A Pentagon spokesman, Brian Whitman, now says that Rumsfeld raised the issue not with Hussein, but with Iraqi foreign minister Tariq Aziz. The State Department notes show that he mentioned it largely in passing as one of several matters that "inhibited" U.S. efforts to assist Iraq.

Rumsfeld has also said he had "nothing to do" with helping Iraq in its war against Iran. Although former U.S. officials agree that Rumsfeld was not one of the architects of the Reagan administration's tilt toward Iraq -- he was a private citizen when he was appointed Middle East envoy -- the documents show that his visits to Baghdad led to closer U.S.-Iraqi cooperation on a wide variety of fronts. Washington was willing to resume diplomatic relations immediately, but Hussein insisted on delaying such a step until the following year.

As part of its opening to Baghdad, the Reagan administration removed Iraq from the State Department terrorism list in February 1982, despite heated objections from Congress. Without such a move, Teicher says, it would have been "impossible to take even the modest steps we were contemplating" to channel assistance to Baghdad. Iraq -- along with Syria, Libya and South Yemen -- was one of four original countries on the list, which was first drawn up in 1979.

Some former U.S. officials say that removing Iraq from the terrorism list provided an incentive to Hussein to expel the Palestinian guerrilla leader Abu Nidal from Baghdad in 1983. On the other hand, Iraq continued to play host to alleged terrorists throughout the '80s. The most notable was Abu Abbas, leader of the Palestine Liberation Front, who found refuge in Baghdad after being expelled from Tunis for masterminding the 1985 hijacking of the cruise ship Achille Lauro, which resulted in the killing of an elderly American tourist.

Iraq Lobbies for Arms

While Rumsfeld was talking to Hussein and Aziz in Baghdad, Iraqi diplomats and weapons merchants were fanning out across Western capitals for a diplomatic charm offensive-cum-arms buying spree. In Washington, the key figure was the Iraqi chargé d'affaires, Nizar Hamdoon, a fluent English speaker who impressed Reagan administration officials as one of the most skillful lobbyists in town.

"He arrived with a blue shirt and a white tie, straight out of the mafia," recalled Geoffrey Kemp, a Middle East specialist in the Reagan White House. "Within six months, he was hosting suave dinner parties at his residence, which he parlayed into a formidable lobbying effort. He was particularly effective with the American Jewish community."

One of Hamdoon's favorite props, says Kemp, was a green Islamic scarf allegedly found on the body of an Iranian soldier. The scarf was decorated with a map of the Middle East showing a series of arrows pointing toward Jerusalem. Hamdoon used to "parade the scarf" to conferences and congressional hearings as proof that an Iranian victory over Iraq would result in "Israel becoming a victim along with the Arabs."

According to a sworn court affidavit prepared by Teicher in 1995, the United States "actively supported the Iraqi war effort by supplying the Iraqis with billions of dollars of credits, by providing military intelligence and advice to the Iraqis, and by closely monitoring third country arms sales to Iraq to make sure Iraq had the military weaponry required." Teicher said in the affidavit that former CIA director William Casey used a Chilean company, Cardoen, to supply Iraq with cluster bombs that could be used to disrupt the Iranian human wave attacks. Teicher refuses to discuss the affidavit.

At the same time the Reagan administration was facilitating the supply of weapons and military components to Baghdad, it was attempting to cut off supplies to Iran under "Operation Staunch." Those efforts were largely successful, despite the glaring anomaly of the 1986 Iran-contra scandal when the White House publicly admitted trading arms for hostages, in violation of the policy that the United States was trying to impose on the rest of the world.

Although U.S. arms manufacturers were not as deeply involved as German or British companies in selling weaponry to Iraq, the Reagan administration effectively turned a blind eye to the export of "dual use" items such as chemical precursors and steel tubes that can have military and civilian applications. According to several former officials, the State and Commerce departments promoted trade in such items as a way to boost U.S. exports and acquire political leverage over Hussein.

When United Nations weapons inspectors were allowed into Iraq after the 1991 Gulf War, they compiled long lists of chemicals, missile components, and computers from American suppliers, including such household names as Union Carbide and Honeywell, which were being used for military purposes.

A 1994 investigation by the Senate Banking Committee turned up dozens of biological agents shipped to Iraq during the mid-'80s under license from the Commerce Department, including various strains of anthrax, subsequently identified by the Pentagon as a key component of the Iraqi biological warfare program. The Commerce Department also approved the export of insecticides to Iraq, despite widespread suspicions that they were being used for chemical warfare.

The fact that Iraq was using chemical weapons was hardly a secret. In February 1984, an Iraqi military spokesman effectively acknowledged their use by issuing a chilling warning to Iran. "The invaders should know that for every harmful insect, there is an insecticide capable of annihilating it . . . and Iraq possesses this annihilation insecticide."

Chemicals Kill Kurds

In late 1987, the Iraqi air force began using chemical agents against Kurdish resistance forces in northern Iraq that had formed a loose alliance with Iran, according to State Department reports. The attacks, which were part of a "scorched earth" strategy to eliminate rebel-controlled villages, provoked outrage on Capitol Hill and renewed demands for sanctions against Iraq. The State Department and White House were also outraged -- but not to the point of doing anything that might seriously damage relations with Baghdad.

"The U.S.-Iraqi relationship is . . . important to our long-term political and economic objectives," Assistant Secretary of State Richard W. Murphy wrote in a September 1988 memorandum that addressed the chemical weapons question. "We believe that economic sanctions will be useless or counterproductive to influence the Iraqis."

Bush administration spokesmen have cited Hussein's use of chemical weapons "against his own people" -- and particularly the March 1988 attack on the Kurdish village of Halabjah -- to bolster their argument that his regime presents a "grave and gathering danger" to the United States.

The Iraqis continued to use chemical weapons against the Iranians until the end of the Iran-Iraq war. A U.S. air force intelligence officer, Rick Francona, reported finding widespread use of Iraqi nerve gas when he toured the Al Faw peninsula in southern Iraq in the summer of 1988, after its recapture by the Iraqi army. The battlefield was littered with atropine injectors used by panicky Iranian troops as an antidote against Iraqi nerve gas attacks.

Far from declining, the supply of U.S. military intelligence to Iraq actually expanded in 1988, according to a 1999 book by Francona, "Ally to Adversary: an Eyewitness Account of Iraq's Fall from Grace." Informed sources said much of the battlefield intelligence was channeled to the Iraqis by the CIA office in Baghdad.

Although U.S. export controls to Iraq were tightened up in the late 1980s, there were still many loopholes. In December 1988, Dow Chemical sold $1.5 million of pesticides to Iraq, despite U.S. government concerns that they could be used as chemical warfare agents. An Export-Import Bank official reported in a memorandum that he could find "no reason" to stop the sale, despite evidence that the pesticides were "highly toxic" to humans and would cause death "from asphyxiation."

The U.S. policy of cultivating Hussein as a moderate and reasonable Arab leader continued right up until he invaded Kuwait in August 1990, documents show. When the then-U.S. ambassador to Baghdad, April Glaspie, met with Hussein on July 25, 1990, a week before the Iraqi attack on Kuwait, she assured him that Bush "wanted better and deeper relations," according to an Iraqi transcript of the conversation. "President Bush is an intelligent man," the ambassador told Hussein, referring to the father of the current president. "He is not going to declare an economic war against Iraq."

"Everybody was wrong in their assessment of Saddam," said Joe Wilson, Glaspie's former deputy at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, and the last U.S. official to meet with Hussein. "Everybody in the Arab world told us that the best way to deal with Saddam was to develop a set of economic and commercial relationships that would have the effect of moderating his behavior. History will demonstrate that this was a miscalculation."

© 2002 The Washington Post Company

Offline Consumed

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2006, 03:11:07 PM »
murdered by whom?

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2006, 03:19:27 PM »
So, Afghanistan is now a refuge for the Taliban again, and Iraq qill probably follow suit.

Why didn't we skip the middleman and just build terrorist training camps?

Seriously. When has democracy, imposed from the outside, ever worked?

Oh nevermind. I can't even start this conversation.  Just believe me, I vote.

Not that that gets counted, thanks to Diebold.

Joe, can I live with you in Canada?

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline SAGirl

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2006, 03:31:15 PM »
In the war on (why not with?) Iraq,

The body count is quite well known on the American side (2500+) but nobody seems to know how many Iraqi civilians died – estimates vary between 40000 and 100000. If we don’t know who died, how can we tell how they died?  The point is that these are the real victims of the war.

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2006, 03:35:25 PM »
Even the Netherlands was involved in this chemical weapons mess. Turns out a certain Mr. Van Aanraat was involved in arranging the actual shipping of chemicals form the US to Iraq.
He was finally arrested last year but somehow (political pressure?) we don't seem to hear much about it anymore.
So I don't think we escape, because if we are not the US, we are then considered against them, and that's not a predicament any small country wants to be in these days.

I was in college (San Francisco) when the seeds of current events were germinating and did not realize then their importance.
For those of you who were too young in the early 80'ties, here is an interesting link with a synopsis of important historical facts that have lead us to where the are today.


Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2006, 03:35:38 PM »
At this moment I see 4 options.
1.Put our head in the sand and continue to be attacked
2.Appease and continue to be attacked
3.Level the countries and kill as many people as possible as we did to Germany and Japan. Defeat your enemy and have peace
4. The present strategy of a politically correct war run by politicians, in an attempt to start a democracy in hopes that it will spread to surrounding countries. Sort of like a Vietnam/southeast asia Domino theory in reverse.
Our society and media can't stomach option three,so instead we wage limited war with limited US casualties,even though they would be less in option three, but with far less Iraqi civilian casualties. Sort of like Nam.
This strategy was being pushed by the Pentagon in the 90s. They felt is was the only real way to bring peace to the region.

I am and always have been for option three. I dont think bringing democracy to the middle east is worth one US life. Option three would have stopped Iran, Syria, and Korea from being a pain in the ass. They would have all pulled a Khadafi. Under Option three US casualties would have been a few hudred and Iraqi casualties would have  been massive. Thats WAR!

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2006, 03:41:41 PM »
<<Level the countries and kill as many people as possible as we did to Germany and Japan. Defeat your enemy and have peace>>

Thing is, the terrorists do not have allegiance to any particular country. Its not like they care about us leveling Iraq. As a matter of fact, it plays right into their plan to keep America on the Most hated list.

We'd have to level Syria, Pakistan, Iran, North Korea, and most of the middle east in order to accomplish this goal. Are you seriously suggesting this?

Why not train some of those elite soldiers we keep bragging about, give them the state of the art technology we keep touting on the Discovery Channel, and send them to exterminate  the terrorists in a surgical, rather than a carpet-bombing strategy?

I just thought we were beyond the scorched-earth warfare.

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Offline Dachshund

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2006, 03:42:45 PM »
Thanks Jonathan,I could not agree with you more. Let me state FACTS again,just for the sake of argument.

1. This is an occupation,not a war.

2.There were no foreign fighters in Iraq until we invaded.

3.To quote George W. Bush "Saddam Hussein and Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11"

3. A half trillion dollars spent and counting.

4. Iraq will soon become a theocracy aligned with Iran.

5. Civilian deaths are not even reported but estimates range from 60,000-150,000

6. Where is Osama Bin Ladin? The mastermind behind 9/11.

7.The Taliban regroups in Afghanistan.


Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2006, 03:49:26 PM »
grasshopper, I for one loved the Iran Contra deal. It was sweet. We sold short range missles for a huge profit,which we used for C entral America and also got the hostages released.
At the same time the democrats were waging their own secret war in Afganistan. The Democratic congress under the leadership of Tip and Charlie Wilson shifting money(probably from social programs)to the cia to arm the afgan rebels via Pakistan. And they kicked the russians butts. Only one problem. Most of the arms and money went to the groups that now make up Al Quaeda,Taliban,and Osama. You could say Tip Oniel,Charlie Wilson,and Casey created Osama. Its no different than saying Reagan created Saddam and maybe more valid.
This secret war was OK because it was supported and instigated by democrats.
Explain this to me, if it was ok to fund freedom fighters in Afganistan against russia, why was it wrong to support freedom fighters against Russia in Central America???
I guess my point is both parties and every country that has ever been involved in the middle east has made a mess of it. Thats past history. We need to stop fucking around and win the war.

Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2006, 04:00:18 PM »
Jonathan, I really hate war. Everyone should hate war. And I have no idea why we arent doing more of what you suggest. Why dont we have these drones floating over the Iraq border killing anything that moves?
The terrorists are now being funded by syria,iran,and iraq before we invaded.
If we level one of these countries those countries left will fall in line. They hear our media, and think we dont have the stomach for this affair, and we dont. I dont have the stomach for the present strategy of losing 5 or 6 soldiers a week for the next 5 years. It doesnt bother my stomach at all if we level one of these countries.
Iran and Korea are calling our bluff. The Iraq war and the way we are waging it leads them to believe we dont have the stomach(guts) to use our full military power.
If Bushes strategy works, the whole region will topple,including Saudi Arabia and Egypt,two of the worst dicatorships, but it will take a very long time.

Offline Dachshund

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2006, 04:02:05 PM »
Jake we have a word for your little plan and it is called "genocide". Many on the right would love to employ your plan when dealing with the HIV pandemic. First we quaranteen, then we...well you get the picture.

Is there an age limit when carpet bombing? Thank God I know you are not serious.


Offline Grasshopper

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2006, 04:23:07 PM »
grasshopper, ..........
I guess my point is both parties and every country that has ever been involved in the middle east has made a mess of it. Thats past history. We need to stop fucking around and win the war.

Do you mean that despite being wrong in the past, this war should be continued and won ?
What would the merrits of that victory be ? Should "we; the West" be proud of it ?

What & who shaped Iran ? :

The Tragedy of Iran

Gary Hucul
April 25, 2006

How did Iran arrive at the crossroads that it finds itself at today? Many Westerners believe Iran to be an angry anti-Western entity that, for some unknown reason, took Americans hostage in 1979 and has maintained a passionate hatred for America and the West ever since. The truth is, that there is much more to Iran's story.

Iranian Oil and World War II

Previous to America's emergence as a world super-power in the mid-20th century, it had been Russia and imperial Great Britain that had the most influence on Iran. Great Britain had large, controlling oil interests in Iran by way of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, but many Iranians rightfully saw the agreements as being overly generous towards Great Britain. The agreements were so overbearing that the 1933 Concession Agreement with the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company included an extension covering the years from 1961 to 1993, but did not allow for inflation. For 32 years, Iran would get the same fixed price for its oil no matter what the state of the oil economy. Great Britain was able to achieve this type of control over Iran's oil by having British officials representing Iran's oil interests during negotiations.

World War II saw Iran declaring neutrality but its strategic importance as a bridge with which to move munitions to the Soviet Union saw it invaded by both the Soviet Union and Great Britain. By guaranteeing Iran's independence after WW II, Britain and the Soviet Union secured Iran's dropping of its neutral status and Iran agreed to declare war on Germany. By 1947 both the Soviet Union and Great Britain had indeed withdrawn from Iran. Although the Shah of Iran had asked that America intervene in the British/Russian invasion of Iran, America's involvement at this point remained somewhat peripheral.

Mohammed Mossadeq

Mohammed Mossadeq was born on May 19, 1882, the son of a Qajar princess and an Iranian finance minister. His upbringing was one of privilege but belied his concern for justice and the common man. Educated in Paris and Switzerland, Mossadeq received a Ph.D. in law in 1913 and shortly after wrote the first of his many books, "How Iran Can Grow." When Dr. Mossadeq returned to Iran in 1914, he began a campaign against government waste and corruption. Various political involvements over the next few years saw him take the post of finance minister in 1922. He opposed the dictatorial rule of Shah Reza Khan and for that was arrested and released only to be placed under house arrest.

Many years later, in 1941 in what can only be seen as a satisfying twist of fate, Mossadeq was able to return to public life with the abdication and exile of Reza Khan. He was then elected First Deputy from Tehran but failed at his bid for re-election to parliament because of voter fraud. It was this subsequent parliament which gave further oil concessions to Great Britain. Mossadeq was again elected to parliament after fraudulent ballots were disqualified. Throughout WW II, Mossadeq fought against foreign presence in Iran and was outspoken about matters of Iranian oil.

After World War II, Dr. Mossadeq headed up the Majlis (Iranian parliament) Oil Committee, which studied the oil agreements imposed on Iran by Great Britain during the last 45 years. On Nov. 25, 1950, the specific Supplemental Agreement was put to a vote and Mossadeq's influence resulted in a "no" vote. Mossadeq was now providing the backbone with which Iran would attempt to reclaim its self-destiny. On March 15, 1951, the Iranian parliament voted to nationalize Iran's oil industry and on May 6, parliament elected Mossadeq the Prime Minister of Iran.

Mossadeq was now at the height of his popularity. In his book, "Iran and the Capitulation Agreements", Mossadeq wrote that "Iran could develop modern, European-style legal and political systems if it took one vital step. It must impose the law equally on everyone, including foreigners, and never grant special privileges to anyone." He was a world-renowned figure and champion of justice, democracy, and his nation's interests. His influence was so great that in 1951 Time Magazine chose him over Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, and Winston Churchill as its Man of the Year. Taken in the context of the American viewpoint of the time and with America's soon-to-follow overthrow of the man, the article was not totally flattering, but remains a high watermark of Mossadeq's influence on world politics.

A Tragic Figure

"Not only are most Americans not aware of how important this 1953 coup was, but they're not even aware that it happened." -- Stephen Kinzer, author of "The Roots of Middle East Terror"

Now the legacy of Dr. Mossadeq turns from that of a champion fighting in the best interests of his country, to that of tragic figure. In 1953, the CIA and British intelligence toppled the government of Mossadeq in an organized coup d'etat (Operation TPAJAX) that installed Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran, into power. With Britain at risk of losing its vested oil interests in Iran, they convinced American president Dwight Eisenhower to come onboard for a coup using the "Soviet threat" angle. America was soon in charge. There is little evidence to suggest that the Soviet Union had designs on Iran as they had withdrawn from Iran only a few years earlier. Former president Harry Truman saw no similar threat and had previously turned down the British request to oust Mossadeq over the oil issue or any issue -- but this was the era of the Rosenbergs and Joe McCarthy, and Britain found a willing participant in Dwight Eisenhower for the ousting of Mossadeq. There is also little evidence to suggest that Mossadeq would in any way acquiesce to any Soviet interference. Indeed, that suggestion goes against everything known about Mossadeq to this day.

After the coup d'etat, Dr. Mossadeq was imprisoned for 3 years and following that placed under house arrest by the Shah until the day he died in 1967. The CIA's overthrow of Dr. Mossadeq was the first time the CIA engaged in such an action and served as a blueprint for subsequent similar American operations in other countries over the following decades.

The Shah of Iran and Revolution

The dynasty of the new Shah was brutal. With the assistance of the CIA-backed secret police, (SAVAK, formed in 1957) the Shah went on to murder and torture Iranians for 26 years. In 1976 Amnesty International declared Iran as having the single worst human rights record on the planet. But the Shah was the darling of America in the Mideast and received billions in aid; his human rights abuses were not only overlooked by various American administrations, but aided, with CIA members training SAVAK in torture methods that were originally used by the Nazis. The seeds of hatred towards America were being planted. Soon those seedlings would break ground.

During his rule, Pahlavi offended not only students and intellectuals seeking democratic reforms, but in contrast, also offended Islamic religious leaders who feared losing their traditional authority. After Pahlavi allowed government officials to swear their oaths of office on religious books other than the Koran, the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini became the Shah's sworn enemy. The Shah's continued repression of the people caused increasing discontent as his policies benefited some classes at the expense of others; the ruling elite lived in luxury but the main populace simply lived. If they chose to speak out, there was SAVAK to deal with. In September of 1978, amidst repression and government corruption, the seeds of revolution broke ground with multiple demonstrations and the Shah imposing martial law.

From exile, Khomeini coordinated the demonstrations and opposition to the Shah and on January 16, 1979 the Shah fled Iran. The brutal dictator was deposed, and without a popular democratic figure like Mohammed Mossadeq to rally around, on February 1, 1979, a cheering crowd of more than one million people welcomed Khomeini home to Iran. America's hegemonic influence in Iran was over and a failure. In the face of repression and in the absence of the democratic system that America removed in 1953, Iranians, in effect, chose religion to be their governing authority.

After being diagnosed with cancer while still in Iran, the Shah sought treatment in the United States. Enraged by what Iranians saw as America still caring for the man who murdered so many of their own, on November 4, 1979, Iranian militants took over the United States Embassy in Tehran and took 52 Americans captive. President Jimmy Carter failed to bring about a resolution to the hostage crisis and was soundly defeated by Ronald Reagan in the 1980 presidential election. In an ironic twist, Iran had now deposed an American leader. On the day of President Reagan's inauguration, the United States released $8 billion in Iranian assets and the hostages were freed. This was not the only time Reagan would pay for the release of hostages.

The Iran-Iraq War

Any wounds that were beginning to heal between Iran and the United States were reopened on September 22, 1980. On that day Iraq attacked Iran and shortly afterwards America re-established diplomatic relations with Iraq, which had been broken in 1967 because of Iraq's involvement in the six-Day War with Israel. Over the next eight years, America provided Iraq with satellite intelligence about Iranian troop movements, missile technology, removed Iraq from its list of nations supporting international terrorism and at the same time failed to condemn Iraq's use of chemical weapons on Iranian troops. According to Col. Walter P. Lang, a senior American DIA officer at the time, "The use of gas on the battlefield by the Iraqis was not a matter of deep strategic concern."

America then took things a step further when they provided Iraq with Bell crop-spraying helicopters which Saddam Hussein used to spray chemical weapons not on Iranians, but on Kurds in 1988. Also by 1988, America had increased its presence in the Persian Gulf with Kuwaiti shipping carrying American flags and American naval ships making incursion-runs into Iranian territorial waters. On July 3, 1988, while in Iranian territorial waters, the U.S. Navy cruiser USS Vincennes shot down an Iranian airliner with the loss of all 290 passengers and crew, furthering 35 years of Iranian discontent with America.

The Iran-Contra Affair

Throughout the 1980s and during the Iran-Iraq war, 30 Westerners, including a number of Americans were kidnapped and held by militant Islamic extremists in Lebanon. American intelligence officials believed that Hezbollah (founded in Lebanon in 1982) was behind most of the kidnappings with an unknown degree of aid being given by the Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran. There is no adequate segue to link up with what takes place next. The Contras were opponents of Nicaragua's ruling Sandinista Junta of National Reconstruction and had the backing of the Ronald Reagan administration. Despite legislation being in place that would prevent any American government aid of any kind going to the Contras, in 1986, the administration of President Ronald Reagan approved a plan where an intermediary would sell arms at a considerable profit to Iran with the proceeds of those arms sales going to the Contras of Nicaragua.

The Reagan administration would achieve 2 goals; it could circumvent the law and current legislation and financially support the Contras, and it would appease the Iranians who would influence Hezbollah to release the American hostages being held in Lebanon. Things didn't go exactly as Reagan had planned. As a result of the bargaining, three hostages were released but on November 3, 1986, the Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa exposed the illegal dealings of the Reagan administration. American Colonel Oliver North was soon maxing out his Pentagon credit card on IBM paper shredders and the scandal was on. President Reagan was forced to admit that he had indeed negotiated with terrorists and his approval ratings plummeted to 46 before finishing his presidency with a strong rebound. The effects on Iranian-American relations as a result of the Iran/Contra Affair were few, other than tarnishing the historical memory of a president in the eyes of some Americans.

Towards an Axis of Evil

Throughout the late 1980s and all of the 1990s, to a certain degree, Iran flew under the American radar, resurfacing on occasion mainly through its alleged ties to Hezbollah. In April of 1995, President Bill Clinton signed an executive order banning trade with Iran because of alleged terrorist activities. On June 25, 1996 in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, a bomb exploded outside the Khobar Towers -- 19 America servicemen are killed and more than 500 others are injured, 240 of them Americans. In March of 2000, American Secretary of State Madeleine Albright acknowledged U.S. involvement in the 1953 coup that overthrew Mossadeq, but failed to apologize. Instead, the U.S. lifted sanctions on Iranian luxury goods. In June 2001, an American federal grand jury indicted 13 Saudis and a Lebanese for the bombing of the Khobar Towers. Prosecutors said they were given support by Iranians. U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft refused to name the Iranians but claimed that they "inspired, supported, and supervised" the named suspects who belonged to a group called Saudi Hezbollah. Iran denied all accusations that it was involved in the bombing. Interestingly, Ashcroft did not chastise the government of Saudi Arabia and saved his criticism for Iran.

On September 11, 2001, the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were attacked with 3,000 lives lost.

On January 29, 2002, American president George Walker Bush accuses Iran of being in an "Axis of Evil" with Iraq and North Korea. Interestingly again, and in contrast with previous accusations made towards Iranians, the men who murdered thousands of Americans on September 11 were almost exclusively Saudi, yet the involvement of Saudi citizens didn't merit Saudi Arabia's inclusion in the Axis of Evil. Also, in contrast with Iran, diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia were not severed and no sanctions were imposed.

Few Lessons Learned: The Tragedy of Iran

"Now it seems that the Americans are pushing towards the same direction again. That shows they have not learned anything from history." -- Ibrahim Yazdi, former Iranian foreign minister.

The seeds of discontent in Iran were planted with the installation of Shah Pahlavi, they grew into an Islamic revolution in 1979 and blossomed into an oppressive regime with someone now in charge of Iran who was born and nourished on the crops grown out of American foreign policy. Today, George Bush speaks of "domino democracy" in the Middle East and some people wonder why Iranians are skeptical of American influence in the region and why Iran is possibly acquiring nuclear capabilities after being named a member of the "axis of evil" by the leader of a country that has treated it decidedly poorly in the past. Iranians may have a different definition of "evil" -- that being, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, SAVAK and the countries that enabled and installed them.

Dr. Mohammed Mossadeq is surely one of the great tragic figures of history. Passionate in his goals of fair play for all, only to be removed by a foreign power that ironically longs for someone like him now to take the place of the ruling parties in Iran. But the tragedy goes far beyond one man; all Iranians have suffered, those who were oppressed and killed under the regime of the Shah and those who are now oppressed and killed under the current government. The dream of Iran under Mossadeq is just that; a dream and nothing more. What he would have done is pure speculation, but the man's character indicates that he was capable of great things. Unfortunately, Mossadeq never had the chance to move Iran forward with his noble vision of a modern democracy. The trickle-down effect of his overthrow, though, can be measured in hundreds of thousands of lives lost and a nation's continuing discontent with those responsible not only for the coup that signaled Mossadeq's demise, but for 53 years of hostile foreign policy.


Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2006, 04:55:14 PM »
Grass, so you think we should just pack it in and come home? I dont know much about he middle east other than everyone there has made a mess. Would any of these countries have discovered oil and produced it ontheir own? I dont think so.  Oil has given their rulers great wealth and is dragging all kicking and screaming into the 21st century and civilization. The dictators discovered that the easiest way for them to distract their citizens from their horrible economic coditions was by financing and promoting a radical religion that uses the US and non moslems as their devil or as Hitler used the Jews.
If you are the US where do you start? W ith the Saudis? hmmm. We get a ton of oil from them and even though they are no better than the present Iranian whackjobs we feel we can deal with the Saudis, I guess, I dont know, no one knows. They like to drink and chase pussy when away from home and in that enviroment we can deal with them. I really have no idea.
All I know is,we are the good guys. The US is the home team. I am pulling for us,not them. Now we can argue over the quarterback and the coach and the owner and the game plan, but we both want to win the game, dont we? The question then is, WTF is the game? I was for attacking Iraq and then Iran and syria if they dont get in line, but I never heard anything about this bringing democracy to the middle east till after we had won the war in 4 weeks.

Offline Dachshund

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2006, 05:40:19 PM »
Please Jake spare us the football metaphor's...this is not a game.

Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2006, 05:44:08 PM »
This is what these people do. They will continue to do it till we kill them all.

okay - now you're scaring me

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2006, 06:10:32 PM »
All I know is,we are the good guys.

That's your reality and your truth, and that's fine with me.

Sometimes it's hard to to spot the splinter in someone else's eye when blinded by a beam in one's own eye.


Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2006, 06:12:20 PM »
I am talking about the terrorists. You should be scared. We should all be scared. As long as the present goverments of syria,iran,egypt,and saudi arabia exist we will have to fight terrorists. They use the fanatics to divert attention from their dictorships and use them to shift blame for the economic condition they live in to US and other non moslem countries.
The best thing that could happen to the people of the area is for Bush's strategy to succeed. But for it to succeed we must be willing to keep our troops on the firing line for several more years.
We can give up and come home and leave the problem for our kids.
Or we can fight a war to win and be done in a couple of weeks.

Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #23 on: June 20, 2006, 06:20:49 PM »
Grass, its good to know where you stand. If you dont think we are the good guys, you have more than 4 options. You can convert the entire country to fanatic moslems and join these fanatic moslem animals in rape and pillage. 
You can sit around and pontificate that 911 didnt happen or wouldnt have happened if not for US actions.  But what do you do next time these hoodlums attack us? At some point you have to draw the line. Wait a minute, I forgot, we aren't the good guys, so they should attack us and kill as many of us as they can.
Just give up. The barbarians are at the gate.

Offline whizzer

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2006, 09:10:44 PM »
The bottom line is we attacked a sovereign nation that posed no threat to us.  We allowed our President and his mouthpieces to deceive us and take us into war because he didn't like Saddam, and was bound and determined to finish the job that was perceived by the right as being left unfinished by W's father.  Oh, and they thought it would be an easy grab of oil and a place for military bases so we could get out of Saudi Arabia. 

There has never been a well thought out plan about how to occupy and rebuild Iraq.  We are still waiting on one.  We keep doing the same thing hoping for a different result.  It is madness.

When the American death toll in Iraq exceeds the number who died on 9/11, then President Bush will have killed more Americans than Osama did.  Of course, he will have spent a hell of a lot more money doing it.  Let's not even talk about the legless and armless servicemen and women who fill the hallways of Walter Reed and Bethesda.  There are ten of them for every death.

And, of course, there are the big winners in this war.  Halliburton and their ilk.  They have profited handsomely and will continue to do so as long as we keep up this war.  And they are very closely tied to those who got us into this mess in the first place.

It was unnecessary.  It was foolish.  It was a mistake.  We can leave and watch Iraq descend into chaos.  Or we can stay and oversee Iraq's descent into chaos.  The only difference is how much capital we want to spend, in lives, in money, and in worldwide goodwill.

Offline J.R.E.

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #25 on: June 21, 2006, 08:23:56 AM »

I was really hoping this would turn out differently. Fuck.

Yes, this has been bothering me quite a bit, since hearing of their capture. I wish it could have turned out differently. My heart goes out to their families.

This is really tough to handle. We were just talking last night at work about this.
I still want to know, in an area heavy with insurgents, WHY there wasn't more reinforcement. Too many lifes, too young...

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Offline carousel

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2006, 09:22:52 AM »
« Last Edit: February 15, 2007, 12:13:10 PM by carousel »

Offline lydgate

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2006, 10:59:46 AM »
The only part of the Newshour with Jim Lehrer I can't watch is at the very end -- the photographs of dead soldiers, shown in silence, with ages and hometowns.
Her finely-touched spirit had still its fine issues, though they were not widely visible. Her full nature, like that river of which Cyrus broke the strength, spent itself in channels which had no great name on the earth. But the effect of her being on those around her was incalculably diffusive: for the growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts; and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.

George Eliot, Middlemarch, final paragraph

Offline david25luvit

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #28 on: June 22, 2006, 08:43:46 PM »
It was once said," War is Hell" and truly it is.  It is unfortunate that ours and other countries soldiers are dying in Iraqi.  I don't think this has anything to do with terrorist though...  I think its about OIL.  My heart goes out to those two soldiers and their families.  And all the others who have given their lives.
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Offline Joe K

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #29 on: June 23, 2006, 08:28:23 PM »
When will we learn that you cannot spread the "seeds" of democracy, you can only provide fertile ground for it to take.  You can't box and import ideas that just become reality.  The arrogance of this administration in its handling of this occupation is a travesty.  We need to amend the Constritution all right, but that would be so we could call for a "vote of no confidence" in an administration, which would immediately trigger new elections.  Why wait every four years to throw the bums out?

But our bozos made this mess and we've got to salvage something.  Too bad we can't get an administration that actually knew what to do.  We certainly have one who has shown us all the things NOT to do.

Offline alisenjafi

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #30 on: June 23, 2006, 10:05:50 PM »
Does this piss you off more than say atrocities by the US on unarmed civilians? Not to be looking for a fight but the biggest reason we liberals are so against what is happening is our leader feels there are no consequences to his war. I don't understand how a nation that choose to liberate itself feels the need to take over others- too bad Haiti or Tibet doesn't have oil.
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Offline Val

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #31 on: June 25, 2006, 05:57:56 AM »
Wise words!  Funny, though, how fifty people dead in London plus fifty dead in Madrid;  and two thousand and counting more dead on the U.S. side compare to the more than one hundred thousand  innocent Iraiqi civilians killed by the U.S. and British Armies (some during the unlawful invasion of Iraq) and the bombs of the so-called terrorists!  It seems to me that these innocents' deaths,  which go on daily in Iraq,  don't ...""piss people off""... as much!  Is there a reason for that? Or is it that Iraqi's lives are deemed less valuable than Westerners?
As for the so-called terrorists, I say this: ""If I was an Iraq citizen,  and my country had been invaded by a bunch of Westerners who basically violated every single rule in International Law; who went against the representatives of all the nations of the world (The U.N.) and lied --- emphasis on 'lied' --- to this same organization, well, you bet I'd take up arms to defend my country from the invaders!""  And this regardless of the reason they chose to invade my country: be it oil or democracy! In other words, the U.S. unlawful invasion of this country may have created thousands of new ...""terrorists?""
Also, I'd say this is a blatant example of what you get when you elect to the White House  a bunch of uneducated, wild cowboys. 
Every time the American president travels around the globe nowadays,  there are thousands and thousands of people protesting his visit.  Whenever he visits some place other than the U.S., he brings anger, dispair, revolt and rage to the places he visits.  America, today, must be one of the most hated countries in the world ---  and unfairly so!  The great American people do not deserve this.

P.S. Just before Bush's arrival in Vienna there was a poll throughout Europe regarding his visit.  The great majority of Europeans --- even the English --- affirmed that the American president is the number one threat to world peace today...


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Offline jack

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #32 on: June 25, 2006, 06:44:43 PM »
Does this war have something to do with oil? Of course. Was it an oil grab by US? Please,dont make me laugh. Was the war some scheme to enrich Haliburton, a company that Cheney was ceo of before he was chosen as VP? That is insane. Haliburton has been the choice of every administration since the 1950s for no bid contracts. Cheney owns no stock in the company,he sold it before the election.
Terrorism doesnt appear to be our biggest enemy, it could be ignorance.

Offline ImagineFL

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #33 on: June 26, 2006, 12:44:00 AM »
I am and always have been for option three. I dont think bringing democracy to the middle east is worth one US life. Option three would have stopped Iran, Syria, and Korea from being a pain in the ass. They would have all pulled a Khadafi. Under Option three US casualties would have been a few hudred and Iraqi casualties would have  been massive. Thats WAR!

I too like Option 3. 

When we took out Abu Musab al-Zarqawi recently, the news pumped up the "civilian casualties"...  The first thing I thought to myself was, Why are these people hanging out with Zarqawi?  They know his head was wanted!  To bad they died, but it was there own fault for hanging out with this guy.

If this guy even got near me... I'd be hiking it right out of there ASAP!!!

Offline Cliff

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Re: It takes alot to piss me off, this did.
« Reply #34 on: June 26, 2006, 06:19:25 AM »
Some were probably his buddies, and yeah, it's hard to feel bad for them, (as I'm sure they were involved in terrorising Iraqis).   But some were also family members, a wife who probably had little choice in the matter and children, who definitely didn't have any choice in the matter.  Does that mean what the troops did were wrong?  Not necessairly (depending on your point of view, of course).  But you should always try to minimize innocent casualties.  I have faith that the troops do try to take the necessary precautions to reduce the killing of innocent individuals, but with this type of warefare (well with any type of war) that's easier said than done.

And to be honest, I don't think the US troops are involved in a lot of innocent Iraqi deaths (of course there are a few bad apples and innocent casulaties of war).  However, the vast majority of the deaths from the civilian populations, is coming from insurgent activity, not from the coalition forces.  I think it's unfair to blame the soldiers for the continuing (and mounting) deaths of Iraqis.  They are actually trying to stop it.


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