Where Native America meets pop culture
I agree with Rob's responses, except for the off-topic slam at those who are informed about world affairs and take positive action to stop problems and retaliate against those who have been attacking us and waging unprovoked war (problems such as Saddam's imperial terrorist regime in Iraq).
Iraq didn't attack us. Al Qaeda did. Even our dummy of a president has admitted that, although he keeps trying to fudge the issue.Saddam's "imperial" ambitions extended all the way to neighboring Kuwait, where we kicked his butt. He had no weapons to inflict any damage beyond a couple hundred miles. This despite Bush's lies that the administration was certain about WMDs and that we had to beware a nuclear strike.The war on terror is arguably the multicultural issue of the decade, which is why I have a whole section about it on my website. It's directly related to our national mindset, which says that Americans are great and noble (like cowboys) and that foreigners are sneaky and savage (like Indians). It was precisely this mindset that led our society to attempt to wipe America's indigenes off the map.So...no, my comments weren't off-topic. The topic I'm addressing is what I say it is. And I say it's our culture's attitude toward other cultures--whether the cultures are Native or Muslim.
Hello, writerfella here -- All of Iraq's involvement in 'terrorism' was domestic, prior to Gulf War I and even Gulf War II. Then, the only terrorists there devoted themselves solely to unseating Saddam Hussein, who so tightly controlled his regime that its former warlords and radical clerics only feebly could take aim at him. The good old US of A, all abristle with the emotions of post-9/11, then did what the warlords and clerics had failed to do, remove Saddam and loose them to polarize their nation to the brink of civil war. If there were few terrorists then, there certainly are a lot of them now, all avid to direct their angers and energies at the good old US of A, and all of them created by the US of A. Yet, there is a ray of hope in all of this. Native peoples barely survived on this land being slain by advanced weapons and technologies developed during the American Civil War. But now, the guns and technologies are outside this nation, being aimed at others than ourselves. For that, I am grateful.All BestRuss Bates'writerfella'
1) Saddam's Iraq did attack us: His forces targetted fired on US (along with UK) patrols in the no-fly zones many hundreds of times. These patrols were allowed in the cease-fire. Firing on them even once was an act of unprovoked aggression; an act of war. 2) Saddam's "imperial" ambitions extended at least as far as Israel (much farther than Kuwait), where it was his "Job 1" to try to exterminate the Jews. Along the way it included Saudi Arabia and Qater, both of which he has attacked.3) Bush reported truthfully that Saddam was seeking to build nuclear bombs. He did not say that Saddam had already built them.4) If you are talking about indiginous cultures an those that want to wipe them off the map, you need to look no further than Saddam Hussein (and not at the US in for once, in this instance). Islam, and even Arabs are a relative newcomer to Iraq. The brutal and genocidal invasion into Iraq by the Muslim Empire merely took place a few hundred years earlier than all the horrors Columbus inaugurated. Look at Saddam's treatment of the Kurds, and also of the Marsh culture in the south for strong examples of this. 5) Saddam's involvement in terrorism was international. He provided significant cash funding to terrorist groups inside Israel working to exterminate the Jews. He provided gracious hosting in Iraq to other international terror groups, including a branch of Al Qaeda, and Abu Nidal. Before the US and allies invaded in 2003, Saddam had under his control perhaps the largest terrorist army in the world. This army is mostly gone: there are far fewer terrorists there now.
Iraq didn't attack "us" meaning the American homeland on 9/11. And defending yourself against bombing raids isn't an "attack" either. The bombs are the attacks; the anti-aircraft fire is the defense.Talk is cheap. Every Muslim country has threatened Israel, so why not invade them all? Saddam may have had "imperial ambitions," but except for his invasion of Kuwait, his regime wasn't "imperial." It hadn't done anything imperial except offer the usual bombastic rhetoric.Bush reported falsely that Saddam had WMDs in hand. After we caught him in this baldfaced lie, he shifted his stance and claimed Saddam had WMD "programs." After we caught him in that baldfaced lie, he shifted again and claimed Saddam was seeking such programs. Even that was a stretch. Despite Colin Powell's phony presentation to the UN, Saddam didn't have any programs in place. Even if we did nothing--which wasn't the case--he wouldn't have been able to put together a nuclear arsenal for a decade.No one is excusing what Saddam did to his people. In fact, I (reluctantly) supported the first Gulf War and the subsequent bombing campaign. I also supported the UN inspection efforts, which would've shown conclusively that Saddam had no WMDs if Bush hadn't forced the inspectors to withdraw.What I didn't support was the Reagan administration's cozying up to Saddam the tyrant/killer/Hitler incarnate in the 1980s when it was expedient to do so. Donald Rumsfeld looks like the hypocrite of the decade for shaking Saddam's hand when they met in 1983 as if they were long-lost buddies. Why didn't Rumsfeld shoot or stab Saddam then if he was such a student of history, as he claims to be now?Countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran are probably funding more terrorist activities than Iraq ever did. Al Qaeda allegedly had one camp in northern Iraqi territory that wasn't under Saddam's control. Despite Dick Cheney's repeated fibs to the contrary, no connection has been established between Saddam's Iraq and Al Qaeda except a few vague meetings that produced no results.Saddam and Bin Laden were enemies, not allies. Saddam had a secular vision of Islamic empire and Bin Laden a religious one. They didn't cooperate because they had nothing in common except their professed religion and hatred of Israel. So why attack Iraq while letting Bin Laden slip away at Tora Bora and remain free? Why all the lies about the reasons for invading Iraq? Bush didn't say he was invading to stop Saddam's long-term funding of terrorist activities. (At least not the first 10 or 20 times he explained his unprovoked invasion.) He said he was invading to stop an imminent threat. This threat didn't exist; Bush fabricated it by selectively using faulty intelligence.Finally, the increase in terrorism worldwide since Bush invaded Iraq and stoked Islamic hatred is extremely well documented. Again, a quick Google search reveals all the information you need to know. Educate yourself on the subject with postings such as these:http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/04/26/AR2005042601623.htmlhttp://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5889435http://www.buzzflash.com/contributors/04/09/con04387.htmlhttp://www.btcnews.com/btcnews/1002http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/06/22/powell.terrorhttp://www.vault.com/messages/The_Sandbox/The_Sandbox1344904.html
In Iraq, under the cease fire, Saddam's terrorist regime had no right to engage in any aggression, at all. The anti-aircraft firing was prohibited. The patrols were allowed, as was their firing back at the anti-aircraft or dropping bombs on Saddam's military infrastructure which was still being used "anew" for aggression.Bush reported truthfully that Saddam had WMD in hand. Since the 2003 invasion, more than 500 WMD containing mustard gas and sarin were found. Every one of these was undocumented (hidden from the UN).As for "I also supported the UN inspection efforts, which would've shown conclusively that Saddam had no WMDs": Then they would have shown a false situation to be "conclusive". All the way up to the 2003 invasion, Saddam was resisting the inspections. In all likelihood, the 500 WMD found since then would not have been found if Saddam had stayed in power and kept doing what he had been doing all along (blocking inspections). Any UN report that concludes that there are no WMD while hundreds really remain is not a worthy one.Also, there was no unprovoked invasion of Iraq by the US. It was provoked by numerous and flagrant violations of the cease-fire.Has the operation and occupation been clumsy? Yes. Perhaps it would have been much better with someone like Joe Lieberman in charge: he's a strong liberal. He also happens to have always had a solid and accurate picture of what the Iraq situation has been and what to do about it.
Which cease-fire? You think Saddam agreed to a cease-fire in which the US could bomb his country with impunity and he had to accept it? I don't think so, but show me the evidence.Saddam "resisted" inspections, which means he grudgingly cooperated with them, which is about what any country would do with foreign intruders scouring their labs and installations. Nothing surprising there. If the UN ordered the US to allow inspections of anything, for instance, we'd tell it to go to hell.Ohmigod...you're not seriously regurgitating the discredited claims by Santorum and Hoekstra about the ancient and expired WMDs, are you? These claims refer to the same kind of old, unusable WMDs we've been finding all along. Senior officials in the Bush administration have denied these claims; they've said the claims are worthless. Again, learn the truth of the matter: Defense Department Disavows Santorum’s WMD ClaimsOfficials: U.S. didn’t find WMDs, despite claimsThe Truth on the "WMD Found in Iraq"Bush himself hasn't repeated these claims or asserted that they vindicated him. That tells you all you need to know about their validity. Really, "anonymous," you need to stop listening to Faux News and start listening to real news.Bush's invasion wasn't provoked by anything resembling an imminent threat. It wasn't provoked by any of the first dozen excuses he invented for it. Nor did he wait for a UN resolution to legally authorize his actions. He assumed he had the right to invade with no valid justification.You do know that the neocons have been planning to invade Iraq since before the 2000 election, don't you? That Rumsfeld raised the question of invading Iraq the day after 9/11? This invasion had nothing to do with responding to actual provocations and everything to do with Bush's delusions of grandeur.
With the "Faux News" and "dummy" insults, you are drawing a little too much from Limbaugh's playbook, don't you think?About the cease fire: "You think Saddam agreed to a cease-fire in which the US could bomb his country with impunity and he had to accept it?"No, he didn't, since there was no "bombing with impunity". The bombing only took place against installations that broke the cease fire with new attacks, or against WMD-related institutions that Saddam violated the cease fire agreement with by keeping open.The WMD claims are not discredited. There were hundreds of them found.I checked the 3 links you gave. The second one, MSNBC, did not deny that these were WMD at all. They merely denied that they were NEW. The MSNBC report supported the dangerousness of these existing, older WMD: ""However, even in the degraded state, our assessment is that they could pose an up-to-lethal hazard if used in attacks against coalition forces."The first link (which was like the last one damaged by bad web design and tiny fonts) did have some readable text, did not actually deny that these were in fact existing WMD that were found.The ProgressiveU link didn't really work and went to page with microscopic unreadable size 1 font. Maybe there is good info there, but I've started to boycott badly design pages that need Notepad in order to read them.I listen to and read real news. This includes centrist sources (Fox News), left-wing sources (CNN, NYT, NPR), right wing (Rush Limbaugh) and other more extreme sources, and even blogs such as Blue Corn :)Bush did not need to "invent" excuses to retaliate against Iraq. The unprovoked aggression and blatant cease-fire violations were quite numerous. The threat from Iraq was not "imminent", but it would have been if we had kept to the "status quo". 9-11 taught us not to sit still for a "status quo" of aggression from terrorists."You do know that the neocons have been planning to invade Iraq since before the 2000 election, don't you?"Neocons? Neocons aren't even in power. All imaginary/overblown groups aside, even Clinton had contingency plans to take care of the Saddam problem if he refused to comply with reasonable requirements."That Rumsfeld raised the question of invading Iraq the day after 9/11?"Smart of him. Why let terrorist aggression against us be "status quo"? We failed to treat Bin Laden's threats seriously (both Bush and Clinton) and 9-11 showed us the folly of that. Of course, Rumsfeld was not anxious to invade. He gave Saddam even more ample time to comply with very reasonable requirements."This invasion had nothing to do with responding to actual provocations and everything to do with Bush's delusions of grandeur."We can easily factor out people's personal animosity against Bush. The effort to retaliate against Saddam was supported (in the important votes) by most Democrats as well. People like Lieberman (with his strong liberal voting record) who were also informed about the problem in Iraq and the need to do something abot it.
Since Saddam didn't agree to the cease-fire, he had every legal right to defend himself against attack."The bombing only took place against installations that broke the cease fire with new attacks." In other words, the bombing took place only against anti-aircraft installations that were firing at the bombers bombing them? This sounds like a convoluted way of say the Iraqis were defending themselves against bombing attacks.I said the claims were discredited, not the existence of old, unusable WMDs. Santorum and Hoekstra claimed we found the WMDs we were looking for. Wrong. The Defense Dept. rejected these claims and Bush hasn't repeated them. I guess you can't touch this argument since you only repeated that the old, unusable WMDs existed.All three links work fine and came up in a normal-sized font on my screen. Perhaps you have your default font size set too small. In any case, you shouldn't have to check them. A well-informed person knows that the Bush administration disavowed those claims months ago.As MSNBC noted:Pentagon officials told NBC News that the munitions are the same kind of ordnance the U.S. military has been gathering in Iraq for the past several years, and "not the WMD we were looking for when we went in this time."This is why no one from Bush on down is repeating these claims. Bush, Rumsfeld, Powell, and others stated exactly what kind of WMDs the Iraqis were making. None of these Gulf War-era WMDs matched Bush & Co.'s pre-invasion claims.In case you've forgotten, here are some of Bush's claims that proved to be false. Whatever Santorum and Hoekstra think we found, it's unrelated to these specific claims:"We know that the regime has produced thousands of tons of chemical agents, including mustard gas, sarin nerve gas, VX nerve gas.""We've also discovered through intelligence that Iraq has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. We're concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVS for missions targeting the United States.""The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program. Saddam Hussein has held numerous meetings with Iraqi nuclear scientists, a group he calls his 'nuclear mujahideen'--his nuclear holy warriors. Satellite photographs reveal that Iraq is rebuilding facilities at sites that have been part of its nuclear program in the past. Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons." Fox News is a "centrist" news source?! That's the biggest joke I've heard in a long time. Numerous studies have shown Fox has a pronounced right-wing bias.The Bush administration said or implied the threat was imminent, so they lied on that score. Bush also has lied repeated when he framed the choice as invading Iraq or doing nothing. In reality, nobody on the planet wanted to do nothing. Even liberals backed the UN inspection program, which was proving that Saddam had no WMDs except a few old discards.The neocons didn't have to be in power to plan an invasion. They could bend the ears of fellow travelers like Cheney and Rumsfeld. But Wolfowitz, Perle, Feith, and others held office in the Bush administration, so they were in a position to implement their plans.It was smart of Rumsfeld to waste time on Iraq the day after 9/11? No, what would've been smart was to devote the full resources of the United States to capturing the people who attacked us. Instead, this administration let Bin Laden slip through its fingers at Tora Bora. He's bedeviled us ever since--hence the worldwide increase in terrorism since 9/11.Most Democrats supported the invasion of Iraq because the Bush administration lied to them about the certainty of Saddam's possessing WMDs that posed an imminent threat. The biggest deception was Colin Powell's presentation to the UN. Powell has since said he regretted using information that was false, poorly sourced, or plagiarized.Bush himself has conceded that Iraq had no WMDS of the type we claimed it had:http://www.public-action.com/911/no-wmd-sdut/Yesterday, Bush used the clearest language to date nailing the question shut. "Iraq did not have the weapons that our intelligence believed were there," he said, his words placing the blame on U.S. intelligence agencies.So why are you pretending this is still an open question? Do you think Bush is lying about the lack of WMDs? Or do you think he's too stupid to understand what Santorum and Hoekstra told him? A dunce or a liar: take your pick.
You said Bush didn't need to invent reasons for invading Iraq? But the fact is, he did invent reasons--lots of them. Here's a list of 27 reasons Bush has given so far for invading Iraq:http://americablog.blogspot.com/2004/09/bush-has-changed-his-reason-for.html
Measured from the political center, Fox News is centrist. The "studies" only prove that left-wingers think that Fox News (like the rest of the center) is too right-wing.The statement "Most Democrats supported the invasion of Iraq because the Bush administration lied to them..." is simply not true. There are many strong quotes from Democratic leaders both before and after Bush took office about the problem of Saddam Hussein and the need to do something about it.The WMD question is closed, since hundreds have been found. The "Iraq did not have the weapons that our intelligence believed were there" line merely means that the WMD were not exactly as they were believed to be before Saddam's aggression and violations forced US retaliation. How could they be? Saddam blocked inspections."Bush himself has conceded that Iraq had no WMDS of the type we claimed it had"Excellent evidence that the argument "Iraq had no WMD" has pretty much vanished since it has been proven wrong. Now it is the much weaker argument "Iraq had WMD, but what was found was different than what we believed would be there".
It's not clear you know where the political center is. Measured from anywhere in reality, Fox News is a right-wing organization. If you're ignorant of all the studies proving Fox News's bias, here are some of them:http://www.oreilly-sucks.com/foxbias.htmhttp://www.fair.org/index.php?page=137http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Fox_NewsThe "something" most Democrats wanted to do was continue the inspections, continue pressuring Saddam, and ultimately force him out of office by non-military means. They opted for war only after Bush lied about the certainty of Saddam's possessing WMDs. That's why many of them have now recanted their votes (as have some Republicans): because they realize Bush misled them.Yes, the WMD issue is closed. Bush said we didn't find the WMDs that he assured us were there. Bush's admission of our failure continues to contradict your irrelevant Santorum/Hoekstra claim. Bush has replaced "Iraq had the weapons that our intelligence believed were there" with "Iraq did not have the weapons that our intelligence believed were there." Until you can disprove what he said, you lose this particular debate.
Since you completely ignored a central part of my argument, I'll merely repeat it to clinch the victory:In case you've forgotten, here are some of Bush's claims that proved to be false. Whatever Santorum and Hoekstra think we found, it's unrelated to these specific claims:"We know that the regime has produced thousands of tons of chemical agents, including mustard gas, sarin nerve gas, VX nerve gas.""We've also discovered through intelligence that Iraq has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. We're concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVS for missions targeting the United States.""The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program. Saddam Hussein has held numerous meetings with Iraqi nuclear scientists, a group he calls his 'nuclear mujahideen'--his nuclear holy warriors. Satellite photographs reveal that Iraq is rebuilding facilities at sites that have been part of its nuclear program in the past. Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons."
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