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Thread: A plea to all guests: Educate yourselves about this war....

  1. #1
    Good Doctor HST Guest

    A plea to all guests: Educate yourselves about this war....

    Just saw a great article from the Common Dreams website. It's written by David Michael Green, titled "Support Our Troops". Kind of lengthy, but well worth the time. I'll post the part of it I liked best:



    "But while we so assiduously affix yellow ribbons to bumpers in order reassure ourselves of our fidelity to the troops, we actually fail them in this most essential form of support. The least we can do for them is to learn about the war and carefully consider its wisdom before asking them (or letting our government ask them) to fight and die in our name.

    But, by and large, we haven't bothered to do even this. How many Americans have clicked off the television, or put down a magazine, or given up bowling night to spend a couple hours educating themselves about this war? Informed consent is the very minimal and most indispensable form of support we can provide the troops. But how many of us know, for instance...

    * That according to former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill, planning for the invasion of Iraq began from the very first days of the Bush administration, well before 9/11 occurred, without evidence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, and at a time when the administration was actually ignoring ringing alarm bells concerning terrorism?

    * That according to Bush's former top terrorism advisor, Richard Clarke, on the day after 9/11 the main actors in the president's war cabinet were talking about invading Iraq, even though they knew Saddam had nothing to do with the attacks? And that on that same day the president was forcefully pushing his team to look for links between Saddam and 9/11, even though it was al Qaeda which had attacked us, not Iraq?

    * That according to the Downing Street Memo leaked from Tony Blair's cabinet, the administration actually knew its case for invading Iraq was "thin", so they "fixed" (twisted) the intelligence on WMD and terrorism to sell a war policy they had already decided upon?

    * That Paul Wolfowitz, then-Deputy Secretary of Defense and according to many the architect of the Iraq war, admitted the WMD 'threat' was agreed upon for "bureaucratic" reasons, meaning a rationale that everyone in the administration could agree upon and could use for marketing the war? And that he later said the reason that we have attacked Iraq, which had no WMD, but not North Korea, which actually has been going nuclear, is that "economically, we just had no choice in Iraq. The country swims on a sea of oil"?

    * That WMD scare tactics were employed because, as another of the memos states, "US scrambling to establish a link between Iraq and al-Qaida is so far frankly unconvincing. For Iraq, 'regime change' does not stack up. It sounds like a grudge between Bush and Saddam"?

    * That the president and his team made important claims before the war - such as those about Saddam's supposed nuclear efforts, or about him supposedly refusing to cooperate with the UN - that they knew were false at the time they said them? And that they continue to do so today?

    * That they presented the case for war as if they had air-tight, unassailable evidence of an imminent and frightening threat, when in fact Saddam not only had no weapons of mass destruction and hadn't even had a WMD program since 1993, but the intelligence they were getting was infinitely more ambiguous than they told us? And that much of what they relied upon came from a single source, an Iraqi spy appropriately code-named 'Curveball', whose German handlers had told the US was a useless drunkard and a pathological liar?

    * That the president demanded the UN weapons inspections with the real intention of getting Saddam to reject them, so there would be a pretext for war?

    * That when Saddam unexpectedly foiled this plan by allowing inspectors in and giving them full cooperation, the president claimed an urgent need to start the war anyhow, thus forcing the inspectors out before they could finish their job? And that, since no weapons existed in Iraq, had he just waited another month or two, tens of thousands of people would still be alive today, including over 1,700 American soldiers?

    * That the president insisted he would demand an up-or-down vote of the UN Security Council to authorize war, but when the US could garner only four out of fifteen votes there, he withdrew the resolution rather than lose the vote? And that he instead claimed that previous resolutions authorized an invasion, and that it was up to each country in the world to decide when to 'enforce' UN 'decisions', an opinion not shared by the Security Council or any single other country in the world, including Britain?

    * That the US and Britain actually began attacking Iraq in the summer of 2002 - not March 2003 - again, in order to bait a military response from Saddam which would justify war?

    * That there is widespread expert agreement that many of the problems in Iraq were directly caused by deploying insufficient troop levels for the task, which occurred because the administration insisted on testing its pet theory of using a smaller force to wage 21st century warfare? And that when Army Chief of Staff General Eric Shinseki testified that more troops would be needed, they fired him and ended his career in the military? And that the same thing happened for the same reason to three-star General John Riggs, whose distinguished 39-year Army career ended with a demotion and 24 hours to clear his desk, no parades, speeches or ceremonies?

    * That the administration had an extensive invasion plan, but almost no preparations for the aftermath of the invasion, the period in which almost all American casualties have occurred?

    * That the president thought the war was over, and - wearing his pilot's flight-suit - announced "mission accomplished", before the fight had really begun?

    * That Vice-President Cheney believes the enemy in Iraq is now in its "last throes" even as recent violence there has escalated, and America's top general in charge of the region is saying that the insurgency is just as strong as it was six months ago? And that all of this has caused a conservative Republican senator (and Vietnam veteran) to say "the White House is completely disconnected from reality. It's like they're just making it up as they go along"? * That far from enhancing American security, Iraq - complete with the Abu Ghraib scandal - has now become a massive recruiting ground for newly-enraged and newly-minted anti-American terrorists? And that Osama bin Laden, who - unlike Saddam - actually did attack us four years ago, remains free while the president says he doesn't really think about him anymore? And that while Iran and North Korea genuinely are acquiring nuclear weapons, the Bush administration has done next to nothing about it, and demonstrate none of the urgency which preceded the invasion of Iraq, which didn't have such weapons? And that almost nothing has been done to protect American ports and nuclear and chemical facilities in the years since 9/11? And that almost all of our country's land forces are bogged down in Iraq, while the military is under enormous strain and recruitment is plummeting?"


    The entire article can be found here:

    http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0701-06.htm

  2. #2
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    Nice post.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


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