Anybody hear Sen.Boxer and Condie Rice?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Steve Buckner, Jan 18, 2005.

  1. Great discussion! We would be great politicians if we wern't so busy fishing.

    Why didn't we debate before Death?

    Fear? Greed? Nostalgia?

    There's no debate. Stop thinking, Silly. There's nothing friendly about fire. We have Intelligence.

    The answer is "Both".

    Mutual exclusivity is the china-shop; think outside. This is the post-New World. Be Brave.

    "Us" or "Them".

    Just not in that order. Get it, finally? You're a Bull. Hurry up! We need to defend.

    Don't throw stones. Janus speaks. Kill to protect.

    Death NOW, so we can live forever. War IS peace.

    Get it? Shhh...not so loud....
  2. We didn't enter into full blown war of aggession in any of these but WW2. better knock me out first punch and hope I don't get up... :thumb:
  3. BR, I think you'll have a tough time comparing the "freeing of the Iraqi people" to the freeing of Europe from the Nazis but I'd love to see your arguments for such. If "freeing of the Iraqi people" would have been on par with freeing Europe from the Nazis, there would have been overwhelming support from the entire world and that's clearly NOT what happened. Let's see your argument.

    I think you'll also have a hard time making a valid argument that the Iraqis were secretly requesting the US to come in all along and start democracy but please, give it a go. Their traditions, customs, and philosophies are thousands of years old. To complicate your argument further, the US was the country that put Saddam in power by supplying him with whatever weapons he needed during the Iran/Iraq war, if democracy had been an agenda, it could have started long ago.

    Did/do the Iraqis like Saddam? No, but maybe some do. Do they like the US? NO, but maybe some do. Certainly there is historicaly evidence that during the war in 1991, the US had promised many Iraqis that the US would continue it's invasion and tried to get Iraqis to rise up against Saddam but the US didn't continue and those who revolted were killed.

    Just like GWB, it sounds like you would agree that we're not occupying Iraq either, that somehow the US millitary is playing the same role as the Peace Corp would be if it were safe enough. We're building bridges, putting in water, making gardens. I wonder if the US bombs played any role in ruining their country to begin with? ;)

    Did you hear about the Iraqi run newspaper that the millitary silenced because they were printing anti-US literature? No, this is no really happened. So much for free press in Iraq, if it goes against the US objective of "Democracy" in Iraq.

    But to use one of your examples, over 140 years have past since the slaves were free and we still have many racial issues in our country. The south is still ravaged by hate. Everything looks good on the books though, but that isn't reality and it's not reality to believe that the Muslims of the world are looking for Democracy, or your brand of Christianity for that matter.

    It is interesting that when all of the fighting between the Tutsis and Hutus in Rwanda was taking place, literally millions died, that the US showed now real interest in sending troops there. Any idea why? If anybody could have used a good ol' shot of democracy, it seems like it would have been them. Maybe if only they would have had oil, or white skin...To use a much more recent case, even last year, when the Haitians were pleading for help from the US, the US was very slow in sending any aid whatsoever. How many weeks and months went by before the US sent any help at all? It would have been a quick plane ride, nothing at all like sending troops to the middle east. Certainly you must remember that.

    Are you suggesting that the US role in the world has now changed to save all countries from tyranny? If it is, it sounds like we're going to need a few more in the millitary...we're spread pretty thin right now. I'm guessing we'll need to start right away and take care of Iran, Syria, Korea to name a few. Are you ready for a big tax hike to fund all of this? GWB has declared this "the american century", I think he has big plans...

    If a country meets our need for oil or our other economic agendas, we're always glad to help.
  4. It might be worth noting that we had near the same disdain for the Jews as the Germans did. Our resoning for going to war with Germany was more based upon self preservation than on some romanticized notion of freeing the Jews. Similar to the romanticized notion of the civil war being about freeing the slaves.

  5. While again being mindful of the admonition to keep things civil and not attack anyone in particular, the assertion that our nation 60+ years ago held "near the same disdain" for the Jews that Germany held is an affront to not only our national character, but is almost too ridiculous to take seriously. Almost.

    True we did not enter into the war actively and publicly until after Pearl, we had long been a supporter of the allies and had clandestinely helped for a number of years. It is also true that we did not enter into the war actively and publicly to "free the Jews". At the point we entered the war their treatment was know to only be that of a discriminated against class, with discrimination, restriction, some relocation and some killing. Right or wrong, not the defining characteristic of the Axis that it has become.

    Had the treatment and extermination of the Jews,Gypsies and others been widespread and public knowledge I have no doubt that we would have been inclined to act. If one were to avail themselves of the history they might note that while the terror was present, the wholesale and widespread genocide did not get run in high gear until the spring/summer of 42'. In the 36' through 42' era they had yet to perfect their terror machine to the point of effective mass gassing and extermination.

    Frankly rebutting your vile and ignorant comment makes me ill.


  6. As repugnant as Monk's statement is, it's actually closer to the truth than any red-blooded American would care to know. The anti-semitism he speaks of was not only restricted to Germany and the United States. It was pervasive throughout practically the whole of the Western World. It was only when the horror of the concentration camps was revealed that everyone got the reality check. The horror was double, because everyone saw their own racial hatred manifested in what the Nazis did. As usual, in denial of our own sins, we double-damned the Germans and the Japanese so that we would not have to confront our own transgressions. Were there early Jewish refugees fleeing the terror that were turned away from our shores? Though I won't state so categorically, I do think I did read something to this effect some time ago. Still, I won't assert this without having a firm reference.

    Nonetheless, though I think going to this length in discussing matters of the Bush Adminstration is going a bit far, I have to recommend reading Howard Zinn's "A People's History of the United States." It's the real deal. One will quickly see that our nation's history isn't as rosy as we have been lead to believe. What the Bush Adminstration is and has been doing is pretty much to form. And it ain't pretty.

    Just remember: What most Americans want and believe this country to be is different than the designs of the rich and powerful elite would have.
  7. Steve; "The south is still ravaged by hate"...

    Yes, but I think that our entire human civilization is.
    Hate is indeed alive and well, on every corner of the planet. Racisim is just another piece of that.
  8. jbrandon: Good points, but pretty cryptic writing. We are just simple fly fishermen in here. Keep it simple..... ;-)
  9. Again, I hate to say it, but... iagree That's why I believe in the politics of niceness. And, never forget, being nice doesn't mean you're weak.
  10. It is sad, but many in the 30's thought that all the problems (including the depression) were a result of the Jews. This was a Worldwide phenomenon and enabled Hitler to eradicate the Jews in Lithuania without even lifting a finger. The Lithuanians did it themselves because they really did think that the Jews were the only problem.

    It is sad that we did not have the greatest of intentions but no-one will argue that our going to war was the right thing.

    I think that this current war is no different. The reasons may have been bunk (I certainly thought so) but I think that regardless we should have finished the job in the first place. The only reason I wanted to go to war with Iraq was to wipe the slate clean after we betrayed the Kurds in 1991.
  11. What is sad is that many of my friends in Seattle blame 90% of the Nations problems on the Jews and state that "our nation is run by israel and the Jews in New York." Clearly we have seen the result of this kind of talk and this must cease.
  12. Sounds like you need some new friends...

  13. That's what happens when you hang out with climbers. They are the most "extreme" :rolleyes: people in the World! Even when it comes to politics.

    That is why I haven't been rock climbing in 5 months.
  14. Monk sorry if I came off sounding a little harsh. Not my intention.

    There is an underlying thing in this thread I have found interesting. No one has a clear sense of our mission in the middle east.

    There is an WWII vet who lives a few houses up the street from me and I talk to him about the war and the one thing I always get from him is the sense of pride that those soliders and the nation had in the 40's. They fought hard and had a concrete goal to get the Nazis's out of control in Europe. That was the mission they were there to do and everyone was on the same page from the women at home buliding airplanes to the generals on the field.

    I also used to work at the veterans hospital for a few years on Beacon Hill and came into contact with a lot of vietnam vets. Talking to them them was such a different feeling than what old guy up the street talks about. They had no clear mission and no concrete goals and what happened...they floundered and a great loss of life followed with no real purpose. Folks on the home front were not behind them. How terrible must it be to be out risking your neck for a country who is not totally behind you. No wonder the continuing mental anguish experienced by the nam vets is so much greater then those who served in WWII.

    From reading your posts I fear the same thing is happening. I do not care to debate who is right but the underlying message I get is this country has no idea what the mission is. Are we fighting terrorism, dictatorships, just spreading a thing called democracy? I really do not know anymore. The only concrete thing I have seen is a lot of peope being killed and a ton of cash being spent. Our troops are working hard and being shot at , maimed , and killled for what exactly? To put on an election where only 60% of the population is going to have the chance to vote in?

    I am still hopeful this administration can get this ship righted. It is going to take some major reconciliation on both sides but it has to be done. We all need some clear direction and a plan to get there. Otherwise the question "What are we fighting for?" just aint going away...

  15. Sure, Skinny, I’ll swing at that pitch, but only because I don’t think the argument is nearly as difficult to make as you’re imagining.

    We were asked to liberate Iraq. Begged, actually. Thousands of expatriated Iraqis had been pleading with the U.S. for more than a decade. After the U.S. repelled the invasion of Kuwait in 1991, we led millions of Shiite Iraqis to believe liberation was on the way. They believed us, and defied Saddam Hussein. But when we turned our back and let Saddam remain in power, he retaliated ruthlessly against the Kurds and Shiites, murdering tens of thousands of them. Ever since then, exiled Iraqis had been pleading with the U.S. to liberate Iraq, assuring us that it was what the silent oppressed masses inside Iraq desperately wanted.

    How do you think we got the idea that we’d be welcomed with waving American flags? Supposedly, exiled Iraqi’s were getting word from their families inside Iraq that the populace were just waiting for the U.S. troops to arrive so they could drape themselves in Old Glory and revolt.

    Unfortunately, our information was coming from guys like Ahmed Chalabi who, as it turned out, had an agenda of his own. We pulled a Dan Rather and played loose with our fact-checking. Why? I suppose it was because Chalabi’s presidential ambition to obtain Shiite rule in a free Iraq was complementary to our own agenda of ousting Saddam and stabilizing a powder keg. It wasn’t because we longed to liberate an oppressed people – we can be sure of that. But that doesn’t mean the Bushies didn’t believe what they were hearing. It was very believable stuff and, better yet, it fit nicely into the U.S. plan.
    Careful now, Skinny. Your arguments are getting a little sloppy. In the context of your argument that we shouldn’t bring democracy to Iraq (because it is unwanted and won’t work), it sounds like you’re suggesting that today’s racism is proof that we should not have emancipated the slaves. I know you well enough to know that is not what you meant, but that doesn’t mean I won’t call you on poor logic.
    No. Bringing democracy to Rwanda or Haiti would have been a great thing for Rwandans and Haitians, but it wouldn’t have done much for the United States. According to our Constitution, the charter of our government is, among other self-serving objectives, “to secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.” The underlying goal of any U.S. foreign policy should be Will it be good for the United States? A democratic Iraq will be very good for the United States and will be worth the sacrifice. The fact that it is also good for Iraqis is just gravy. But a democratic Rwanda? Kind of a non-starter.

    But back to your characterization of democracy in Iraq as being the equivalent of imposing Communism. The suggestion is ludicrous. Democracy = Freedom. How do you “impose” freedom? After January 30th, a 275-seat assembly of elected Iraqi’s will draft a Constitution – whatever Constitution they want. It may be a Muslim theocracy. It may be a Shiite Muslim theocracy. They could declare a king, or emperor, I suppose. They get to decide. How dare we “impose” such freedom on them? We should realize that they are incapable of self-government. Their history, culture, and religion mandate that they will only be content under the tyranny of a dictator. That’s a sad philosophy, my friend. And I don’t buy it.
  16. "We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." --George Orwell

    You are losing it start a discussion with the likes of Barbara Boxer and then to argue that emancipation of the slaves didn't work? :confused: Like it or not, it is the American way to bring democracy to the corners of the globe...especially when we are preserving things necessary to our way of life.

    BR...I hope I don't have to write any opposing briefs against you anytime soon. :D
  17. Nice post, Sean. I think you’ve done a beautiful job of describing the source of Americans’ uneasiness with this war. Every war – even the most just of wars – must be sold to the families who are sending their sons and daughters to fight and die. Bush has done a poor job of articulating the exigency for war. He was wrong about WMDs and people can sense that the liberation spin is just a disingenuous second bite at the apple. In their hearts, Americans know that this war was never about WMDs or liberation. Bush will never recover his credibility with Americans or the world, and that is unfortunate, because he’ll need it.

    But Americans also know in their hearts that the war is not about oil or American Imperialism or any of the other ridiculous pretexts that Bush critics allege. So what is it about? Americans cannot articulate it, because it has so rarely been properly explained. It is difficult to explain, because it is complicated. But it must be explained, because it is important.

    The enemy in this war is organized global terrorism. The enemy’s stronghold is the nations of the Middle East. The enemy itself consists of the radical Islamic fanatics whose ambitions are to control the people of the Middle East, and to blackmail the rest of the world with weapons of terror. Saddam Hussein was not the enemy – his regime was like a strategic hill or a critical beachhead that must be taken in order to gain an advantage in the war. We’ve now taken that beachhead, but it’s proving tough to secure. Osama Bin Laden is not the enemy – just a general in the enemy forces. We’ll get him too, eventually, but that won’t end this war either. It will be fought for years to come until the agents of organized global terrorism have been substantially destroyed, wherever they are.

    The enemy is everywhere. They are in Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, etc. We cannot invade all of these countries, can we? Should we? I don’t know. But I know we cannot just hunker down and protect ourselves. I know that we cannot protect ourselves by appeasing terrorists or investing in better baggage screening devices. Doing so will result in more, not fewer, Americans killed. We must, as we have, take the fight to the enemy. It isn’t easy. No one ever said it would be. There will be setbacks and mistakes. Disastrous mistakes – there always are in war. But don’t lose heart, and don’t for a moment think that the precious American blood spilled in Iraq will not be every bit as meaningful as the blood spilled in Europe during World War II.

    We are winning the war on terror, and we are winning in Iraq.

    Not that it isn’t messy. The news coming out of Iraq is indeed discouraging. Daily car bombs; assassinations; threats of more violence to come; rumors of civil war. Large numbers of Americans are weary and losing heart. Who can blame them? Even many prominent Republican leaders are shifting their feet. I supported the war, but I wouldn’t have disbanded the Iraqi army, or I wouldn’t have isolated the Sunnis, or I would have held elections sooner, or later, or … fill in the blank.

    But it would do us well to recall that even the best fought wars are a litany of mistakes. World War II is considered a model of military success. And yet if you study it you’ll see that it was a tale of heartbreaking disaster after heartbreaking disaster – poor planning; botched execution; failed intelligence; wrong assumptions. The Korean War was a mess from start to finish. And it’s not just the combat phase that is messy, but the reconstruction too. World War II left whole cities in ruin. Millions of Europeans nearly starved to death in the aftermath. We spent billions to destroy Germany and billions more to rebuild it. To this day, we still have a combined 157,000 troops in Germany, Japan, and Korea (more than are presently in Iraq). Granted, their function has changed over the years, and they’re no longer being killed. But the same will be true in Iraq, eventually.

    And yet throughout both World War II and the Korean War, the press, the pundits, and scores of ordinary Americans said all of the things that the critics of the war are saying now, with just as much heartfelt conviction.

    They were wrong, and so are today’s critics.

    Less than two years ago, Iraq was ruled by one of the most ruthless and powerful tyrants of our time. Yet, less than two weeks from now a democratic election will be held there. Iraqi people will choose their own leaders for the first time. Is the magnitude of this achievement totally lost on us? Do Americans not realize the potential this has to change the entire Middle East, the war on terror, and the world itself?

    I could be wrong. I’ll admit that. The Sunni triangle may escalate into full civil war and never fully unify with a democratic Iraq. A Shiite controlled government may take over and never look back, imposing a Shiite Theocracy. January 30th may be the first and last Iraqi election ever. Iran may take over.

    I don’t know what will happen. None of us do. World War II started out to save Europe from the Nazis and ended up ensuring that Eastern Europe was enslaved by Stalinists. But I think democracy can work in Iraq, and if it does, it will be an unparalleled military victory at an historic minimum of lives lost. It will change the world forever, if we succeed.

    But it will take two things to succeed (three if you count luck) – power and will. In the war on terror, our enemies have the will to defeat us, but they do not have the power to defeat us. We have more than enough power; the question is whether we have the will to do what must be done to prevail. President Bush has the requisite will. But does anybody else? Thank God for the “Greatest Generation.” For I get the feeling most of us would have given up in 1943. "Europe's problems are Europe's problems," we'd have said.“We should have just kept Hitler in his box.”

    President Bush has called this war against global terrorism “an inescapable calling of our generation.” He is right. But like you, I wish that he could do a better job of explaining it. For that matter, I wish I could too.
  18. BR,

    That is probably the most eloquent and clear explaination of why we are in Iraq that I have read. :thumb:

    I wish that President Bush could explain it half as well.

    I (and I think you do too) realize that most critics of this war really do have the best interests of our nation at heart. I would only ask that they give us the same benefit of the doubt as it may take 50 years to know which side is on the side of the truth!
  19. Yes, Islamic fanatics, but they would have little to no currency if there wasn't fertile ground for their seeds to take hold. In other words, the USA has to take a level of responsibility for not the fanatics but those who follow in their footsteps.

    Yes and no. Saddam Hussein was a dictator that did a very good job of keeping in check or eliminating Islamic fanatics. Mind you, those that are blowing up our troops in Iraq are actually the Sunni minority that were previously represented by Saddam Hussein. On top of that, our troops are also having to deal with the Islamic fanatics that were/are against both Hussein and the USA.

    What of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade in Spain (Research what the subject of Picasso's painting, "Guernica," was all about.)? These were Americans who realized that the real problem in Europe was the rise of Fascism. They were at the vanguard of the fight against Franco, Hitler, and Mussolini. They were also a group that would have been defamed as "Liberals" in our age. Prior to them, it WAS the American sentiment that "Europe's problems are Europe's problems." Heck, Henry Ford of Ford Motors was in a love-fest with Hitler all prior to America's involvement in 1941. Were Hitler, Franco, Mussolini, and Tojo all a collective bunch of S.O.B.'s? Darned right. But was America on the up and up about what the real deal was before Japan bombed Pearl Harbor? Eh, I'm skeptical.

    Smoke up our collective *sses--even though the goal of democracy in Iraq--on their terms--is a worthy one.

    Whoops! I'm getting dizzy up on this soap box. I best get off.... ptyd

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