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No, instead we should bury our heads in the sand and let the anti-west sentiment grow to even more horrifying proportions. Perhaps like the less than sterling Arab governments who permit this chaos to secure their own fortunes. We should "reason" with fanatics, murderers and thugs, correct? And did we forget the Europeans are not innocent in the development of the current mid-east situation? France was one of the most assertive colonial powers of the 19th and 20th century (Algeria, Morocco, Africa, Pacific-Rim, etc.) Maybe you're not aware that they also essentially created the situation in Viet Nam. Most people aren't even aware that it was a French colony and that the French committed unspeakable atrocities there––like slaughter and real torture. And they have the nerve to condesend to us. What a joke.



Turns out they're afraid of there own Muslim population, too. And you see how well the election in Spain worked out. How 'bout another beheading?
 

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Thanks for clearing that up, boys. I gotta get me one of them OSRs (Offical Squid Rulebook). I've got to be losing thousands of potential points everyday.
 

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Bingo, VWW. However, somehow this whole Saddam- 911 connection theory has evolved from the ether. I don't remember anyone asserting that the Saddam was involved in 9/11 (if that is the implication). Only that he was a threat and was in contact with terrorist elements. With the disovery of the documents of this past week, that would seem to be true to some extent. It is entirely possible that the Islamist elements and a secular dictator like Saddam would form an alliance. Anyone who asserts that it could never happen is woefully unaware of history and the history of that region in particular. By the way, Saddam was flagrantly violating international law for 12 years. That in itself is justification enough to remove him from power. What kind of precedent was the U.N. setting by never taking action?



And let's say we never went to Iraq. And one year later threre was a biological attack on Chicago that was linked with Iraq. Would we have another 9/11 Commission-style witch hunt that blamed the Bush adminsistration for missing the threat. I think we would. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.



What many don't seem to understand is that the Iraq war was a bold STRATEGIC move, not a tactical one in direct response to the 9/11 attack. We could all argue at this point that it was a mistake, but I choose to wait for the situation to develop fully. Strategic consequenses rarely play out in a matter months or even a couple of years.



 

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"Hmmm... whatever the French (or indeed the Germans, talking about unspeakable atrocities) have done in the past justifies very little the absurdity going on now. "



That's not my point. European governments were, in large part, responsible for this mess. The resentment of the west started under European rule, not American rule. We are hated now mostly because we have become the preeminent power and symbol of the west. How did that happen? Mostly by bailing the Europeans out, particulary the French, whenever they botched something beyond recognition (usually successfully).



Most of the damage was done before George W. Bush was born, son. And now the Europeans want to take the path of least resistance once again. Reminds me of the 1930's all over again. But, history's not important, now, is it?



So the U.S. has to deal with the problem once again. Maybe we're sick of hearing how terrible us Americans are. Did you ever think that maybe we have something to be resentful about?



I'm sure the world would be a much better place if left to the Europeans. They've got such a wonderful track record.
 

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"Hmmm... whatever the French (or indeed the Germans, talking about unspeakable atrocities) have done in the past justifies very little the absurdity going on now. "



That's not my point. European governments were, in large part, responsible for this mess. The resentment of the west started under European rule, not American rule. We are hated now mostly because we have become the preeminent power and symbol of the west. How did that happen? Mostly by bailing the Europeans out, particulary the French, whenever they botched something beyond recognition (usually successfully).



Most of the damage was done before George W. Bush was born, son. And now the Europeans want to take the path of least resistance once again. Reminds me of the 1930's all over again. But, history's not important, now, is it?



So the U.S. has to deal with the problem once again. Maybe we're sick of hearing how terrible us Americans are. Did you ever think that maybe we have something to be resentful about?



I'm sure the world would be a much better place if left to the Europeans. They've got such a wonderful track record.
 

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No VWW, I didn't miss any of it. While I respect your opinion, I had never once heard that anyone in the Bush adminstration believed that Saddam was directly involved in the the 9/11 attacks. In fact, they went to great pains to be specific about their assumptions about Saddam. Many were wrong, but none contained the explicit accusation of him being directly involved in 9/11. I can't speak for this poll you're referencing except to say that I'm not aware of it. I remember many polls in which a majority of the population believed there was a connection between Al Qaida and Saddam, but never one that confirmed a majority belief that Saddam was involved in 9/11.



I think that there is a bit of revisionism going on in the press and the collective-conscience of America.



As to the War being illegal, I can't agree. This is revisionism on the part of Dubya's opponents. Congress gave the authority to use military force. Whether or not you believe the administration knowingly decieved Congress can be argued untill the cows come home. I, myself, am not sure.



As to the WMD question. Saddam was doing everything in his power to make us believe he was hiding something. Maybe this was an attempt to maintain his standing in the region (as Hans Blix has theorized), maybe not. But he was given every opportunity to come clean. He never did.
 

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I can agree with that. But maybe there are many people who want others to hate us. And I'm not talking Islamists here. Maybe there are others who have something to gain in all this, no? And maybe, just maybe, that's why the old lady in the flower shop hates us. Distortion is a powerful tool, my friend.



By the way, If we must be refered to as an "empire," I challenge you to go back through the annals of history and find a more benevolent one.



Funny how people forget what this country has done when they don't have to think about things. Now that we're just force-fed information, we don't have to chew on it.



Or maybe it's just jealosy. Or maybe, just fear that we're too powerful-- that the U.S. military will come marching into a town near you. I really don't think you have to worry.



P.S. Is is possible that someone actually hates Sweden?
 

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First of all, tell me "pbad" was a typo. Or are you stealing material from Kpaul? God forbid.:)



Secondly, as you know, there was no official declaration of of war, just as there was none in Vietnam and the Korean War. This is all old news. There was also no official declaration of war during the first Gulf War and in Kosovo. Does that mean that all of those conflicts were illegal, too? (you can certainly argue that some were misguided, though.) The fact is that Congress sanctioned military action from both sides of the political divide.



As far as lewrockwell.com is concerned, I know something of it, although I can't say I've read it in-depth. I'm sure at least some of it is accurate. I do think that this administration was overly optimistic when interpreting intel data. But I'm not going to run around calling everyone associated with this administration a criminal based on one person's account. That is irresponsible at best.



I also don't think you would hand over military intel to the U.N. inspectors who were being manipulated at every turn. Especially when it's been proven that the U.N. had a stake in making sure Saddam stayed in power.
 

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Not true. Not at least technically. When someone successfully challenges these "illegal circumventions," I'll be with ya. But to my knowledge, no one has to date.



I'm not saying I'm totally comfortable with this, either, but the Constitution does allow a certain amount of interpretation to meet different times and situations.
 

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Well, isn't it obvious that the U.N. usually plays both sides against the middle? The U.N. resolution was watered down to allow wiggle room and the interminable delay in enforcement. This type of obfuscation is a hallmark of all bureaucratic organizations. "Let's give everyone a little bit of what they want, and nothing will change." The difference is that this time, someone called them on it. Whether it was right or wrong is a matter of opinion, but the U.N. most certianly didn't bank on us taking action.



As far as the Bush team was concerned, I've already stated that I think they were overly optimistic in interpreting intel. Do I think they lied outright? No. Do I think certain members extrapolated conclusions from incomplete intel and sold it as solid info. Yes, I do. Is that wrong? Of course. I'm not happy about it, either.



But also remember that there were plenty of "experts," including U.N. weapons inspectors, who believed that Saddam was hiding WMD. Plus his evasiveness certainly only added fuel to the fire.



But, to insist, as some do, that the administration knew that they would find no WMD, seems to me an error in logic. Would they invite all of this scrutiny and embarrassment upon the Bush adminsitration and the nation as a whole by knowingly invading a country under false pretenses and then have to admit that they were wrong? Or worse, that they lied. For what reason? Please don't give me the "war for oil" argument (I know you're smarter than that). I find that whole line of thinking simple-minded and ridiculous. If we were only interested in oil we would have been playing ball with Saddam, not trying to remove him. It would have been a hell of a lot cheaper, too.



Believe it or not, I, like you, happen to think both parties suck. Government is way too big and the American public is being duped into thinking that more government is better. When you look at the facts, more government is usually a disaster.



The U.N.? Well, I think it's next to useless. The only thing it does reasonably well is provide humanitarian aid. How anyone can think that a world organization with democratic values can work when many of the member nations are ruled by thugs is beyond me.



Anyway, on a related note, read John Stossel's book, Give Me a Break, if you haven't already. It's no literary masterpiece, but you'll love it. It will also make you very mad.
 

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Fine, listen, it's pretty clear that the Nigerian document was a fraud. How it was handled and disseminated is what's not entirely clear to me.



I still don't buy the "war for oil" argument. However, you are correct that we will have a significant strategic advantage in the area. In fact, I believe that was one of the obvioius goals. If that enables us to better to influence the political climate and insure a secure oil supply, great. It's still a leap to insist a war was prosecuted strictly for corporate profiteering.



By the way, I love all of these enviro-extortionists who oppose even the most reasonable and sensitive plans for oil exploration in our hemisphere. That group has some of the biggest liars around. (Sorry, just a side rant.)



 

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(Um, I believe you were the first to go off topic there, cruiz. I only responded.)



Right you are. The crusades were the beginning of the European colonization of the Middle East. And I'm not trying to "wash our hands." We've supported our European allies in most of their endeavors in the region. It's just that you seem to pretend that all the problems in the Middle East began at our door. That's silly. We've basically been Arab enemy #1 since the end of the second World War. Much of that has to do with our support of Israel, which was created in large part because many of our galant European bretheren didn't want "all those Jews" in their countries. What bothers me is the feeling that Europe is not acting in virtue, but fear. Witness Spain.
 

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Nah, HK, no flames. I can see where you sit, and that's fine. I don't mean to be an apologist for G.W. I think both parties have severe shortcomings. I just don't think many of the attack dogs are making much sense. Millions of jobs lost all attributed to Bush? That's unrealistic at best. The President doesn't have that much influence over markets. I seem to remember that we were being warned about recession at the end of Clinton's presidency. I also remember a substantively bankrupt internet boom that started going bust for real around that time. Surely this had something to do with job loss, no? Then we had 9/11. Not good for the economy. But when times were "good," everyone seemed to ignore the brewing storm in the Islamic world. We were all wrapped up in our 401ks and wholly unrealistic expectations of 3% unemployment forever. (Leading economic indicators are about the same now as they were all through the Clinton years. You've heard that before.)



Speaking of 9/11, why does everybody pretend that all was more or less cuddly with our Arab friends before the Iraq War? I was in New York on 9/11. I knew people in those buildings. I don't remember many wholehearted condemnations and hearfelt tears from the Arabs--even those living in this country. In fact, we only got a little backhanded sympathy with qualifications something to the effect that we brought the attack on ourselves. I also remember some dancing in the streets overseas.



I do think we need to get along with other nations. However, given our standing in the world, nations also need to be able to get along with us. Eventually, we will all probably find common ground. And as for the argument that most of the world thinks we're wrong in Iraq, they may be right. But they also may be wrong. And no matter where you stand on this issue, you must agree that brave decisions are not always popular. Leaders can lead because they have the ability to make unpopular decisions. We elect people that we feel can make the best decisions based on knowledge, experience and information that we don't have. If those decisions turn out to be wrong, we fire those leaders.



So do your best to fire Dubya. That's your right.



All I'm saying is that the jury is still out on Iraq.
 

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No, of course not (but very funny nonetheless). What I mean is that the French, as always, are trying to assert themselves as a world power. It's nice to have us as a quasi-enemy to position themselves against. And other European nations, somewhat understandably so, are a little nervous about the U.S. being the only superpower.



At least we can agree on the fact that the French should stick to rhetoric and stay as far away from the battlefield as possible. :)



P.S. Who knew the Scandinavians could be hostile? I thought that went out with the Vikings?

 

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Nah, HK, no flames. I can see where you sit, and that's fine. I don't mean to be an apologist for G.W. I think both parties have severe shortcomings. I just don't think many of the attack dogs are making much sense. Millions of jobs lost all attributed to Bush? That's unrealistic at best. The President doesn't have that much influence over markets. I seem to remember that we were being warned about recession at the end of Clinton's presidency. I also remember a substantively bankrupt internet boom that started going bust for real around that time. Surely this had something to do with job loss, no? Then we had 9/11. Not good for the economy. But when times were "good," everyone seemed to ignore the brewing storm in the Islamic world. We were all wrapped up in our 401ks and wholly unrealistic expectations of 3% unemployment forever. (Leading economic indicators are about the same now as they were all through the Clinton years. You've heard that before.)



Speaking of 9/11, why does everybody pretend that all was more or less cuddly with our Arab friends before the Iraq War? I was in New York on 9/11. I knew people in those buildings. I don't remember many wholehearted condemnations and hearfelt tears from the Arabs--even those living in this country. In fact, we only got a little backhanded sympathy with qualifications something to the effect that we brought the attack on ourselves. I also remember some dancing in the streets overseas.



I do think we need to get along with other nations. However, given our standing in the world, nations also need to be able to get along with us. Eventually, we will all probably find common ground. And as for the argument that most of the world thinks we're wrong in Iraq, they may be right. But they also may be wrong. And no matter where you stand on this issue, you must agree that brave decisions are not always popular. Leaders can lead because they have the ability to make unpopular decisions. We elect people that we feel can make the best decisions based on knowledge, experience and information that we don't have. If those decisions turn out to be wrong, we fire those leaders.



So do your best to fire Dubya. That's your right.



All I'm saying is that the jury is still out on Iraq.
 
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