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Black Dog

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Galahad, I agree all the way down.  Even the NYT comment! (It is funny - in adolescent way.

Ann Coulter has a rather blunt way of putting things...but her bottom line analysis is always bang on.

And I like her humor....but I like Basil Fawlty too...must be the inner child in me.

BD, these guys want you dead. And believe me, they'll go for you first. Have you ever spoken to them, BD?

If things go BD's way I can well imagine the epitaph on his tombstone. It'll read something like:

"In Canada they first put hijabs on all the women,

and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a woman.

Then they came for the Jews,

and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the rest of the infidels,

and I didn't speak because by this time I had grown a full beard to blend in.

Then they came for August1991,

and I didn't speak up because I wasn't August1991.

Then they came for me —

and by that time no one was left to speak up."

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Oh come on. You may buy the clash of civilizations, "us or them" crap, but I don't. It's all very complicated; indeed, too complicated to be broken down in such simplistic terms in a medium like this.

. BD, these guys want you dead. And believe me, they'll go for you first. Have you ever spoken to them, BD?

See, how can one undertake a meaningful discussion when talk degrades into discussion of what "these guys" want. Who are they? What are their motives? What is the greater context. Once it turns into a matter of "us or them", that's when rational discourse is reduced to Bushesque sloganeering.

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I have to question the sense of humour of anyone who'd use the deaths of 168 people as a punchline. Imagine the hue and cry if someone like Michael Moore said that Osama bin Laden should have targette dplanes at Fox News.

Oh Moore just lies like a rug to sell his movies & books...that's better? I'll take the black humor thanks... besides Ann Coulter DID apologize, saying that she should have mentioned that she would evacuate the building with the exception of the reporters & editors.

As for the Times, reporter Judith Miller was a key figure in supporting administration claims of Iraq's WMD capability in the run up to war. Senior columnist Thomas Friedman is one of the biggest boosters of the war on terror. So there may be a bias, but it's not the one you and Coulter see.

I'm not sure which Thomas Freidman YOU are reading...but my reading of his columns shows him to be a very "look at both sides of the picture, I'm a balaced & fair guy" sort of columnist. He writes as many columns against what is going on in Iraq as ones for. And to counter this rabid "middle of the road" columnist they put the almostly insanely left Maureen Dowd on the same page.

Furthermore, perhaps I'd be a little less skeptical of your claims if the ADD president had stayed focused on the task of capturing bin Laden, smashing Al Q'aeda and rebuilding Afghanistan instead of rushing off with guns blazing into Iraq.

Ah, we get Bin Laden & our worries are over. The other few million excitable Islamists will just shut up & go away? We shouldn't walk & chew gum at the same time, you say? That is ADD to you?

Putting aside your initial straw man, and assuming for the sake of argument that the Bush administration's intentions are, in fact, to democratize the Mid East, Iraq presents several problems. First, there is no historical or cultural basis for democracy in the region, making the establishment of a fully functioning democratic state unlikely. Secondly, and most importantly, it's becoming abundantley clear that, as much as the Iraqi people loathed Saddam, they have little love for foreign occupiers and their quislings.

Japan had no history or cultural basis for democracy either. Ditto Turkey. And I still don't get your point. No one likes a foreign occupier...but do you actually think a brutal dictator is better than the wussy little Yanks who won't bomb on Muslim holy days? Hell...the Shias who are killing American troops now have never had it so good. If they'd tried anything like that with Saddam he would have whipped out his chemicals again.

But really, all that's beside the point. As the WMD fiasco showed (and yes, it matters), this administration is not above playing fasty and loose with the truth to suit its own ends. Why, then, should we expect them to be completely forthcoming with regard to its true intentions for the future of Iraq? It's called credibility and in the eyes of many Iraqis and many around the globe, it's something Bush and company are severely lacking.

Everybody thought the intel was good. Yup...even Kerry. Even Bill & Hilary. And actually, it ain't over till the fat lady sings. History hasn't been written on those WMD's yet. What "true intentions" do you think Bush has? A Muslim theme park? Maybe he'll build a few palaces there with his face on them? Get real.

Of course this flie sin the face of conventional wisdom, not to mention your notion of good intentions. As the growth of the Iraqi insurgency illustrates, the more of "them" you kill, the more you piss "them" off and the more they'll come at you. Violence begats violence.

You ARE aware that the USA could wipe Iraq off the face of the earth right? But they won't go into their holy city, won't fight during holy days & just try to target the terrorists...not innocent bystanders. So the problem isn't too much violence on our part...but it could be too little. ( See John O'Sullivan's column in the NP today. The editor of the Washington Post agrees with this. Sorry I can't put it up here Greg would lose his mind convinced that Johhny Cochrane will be on this Website like a flash).

As for conventional wisdom...Hiroshima. Violent. Stopped them in their tracks. End of violence.

911. No preceding violence. Murders of innocents.

Actually, this has never worked. See: Israel vis a vis Palestine.

That's because Israel is civilised. This is the problem...if they WERE as violent as the Palestinians & blasted a few camps after a bus was blown up...I'll bet the nutbars would quiet down very quickly.

Nor is it the kind of policy that guarantees a peaceful world. No sane person would advocate such a policy. Only people like Ann "Kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity" Coulter.

She did appologize for that one ALSO. She said: ..."Some may not like what I said but I'm still waiting to hear a better suggestion." WHAT DO YOU WANT, BLACK DOG? BLOOD? Do YOU have a better suggestion?

Personally, I don't give a rat's ass about Clinton. He's not president and he's not strutting around in a flight suit claiming he's made the world safe from terror. But, just to shut you up, here's a selection of Clinton's anti-terrorism measures.

[The point isn't what Clinton did or did not do. The point is  that Bush has botched the job since 9-11.

The world trade center was bombed the first time on Clinton's watch. He didn't do a damn thing ( that should have stopped them right? No violence begetting violence??)So they came back & put the towers down.

There have been zero attacks in the USA since 911...this is the country Bush is President of. He has done a perfect job.

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Oh Moore just lies like a rug to sell his movies & books...that's better? I'll take the black humor thanks... besides Ann Coulter DID apologize, saying that she should have mentioned that she would evacuate the building with the exception of the reporters & editors.

Thanks for proving my point that Coulte ris an opportunistic hack who uses controversy and sensationalism to peddle her swill. Thing about Moore is, no one on the left takes him seriously (he's seen as an agent proveceteur who plays on emotion more than facts to get his point across), whereas Coulter is regarded as a "wit". :rolleyes:

Ah, we get Bin Laden & our worries are over. The other few million excitable Islamists will just shut up & go away? We shouldn't walk & chew gum at the same time, you say? That is ADD to you?QUOTE]

It's called "finishing what you start".

Note that the "excitable Islamists" (by which you can only-and erroneously- mean Iraq) were quiet as mice before Bush waded in. In the meantime, Al Qeada's leadership remains an elusive threat and the Taliban continues to threaten stability in Afghanistan.

Japan had no history or cultural basis for democracy either. Ditto Turkey. And I still don't get your point. No one likes a foreign occupier...but do you actually think a brutal dictator is better than the wussy little Yanks who won't bomb on Muslim holy days? Hell...the Shias who are killing American troops now have never had it so good. If they'd tried anything like that with Saddam he would have whipped out his chemicals again.

Oh so the 10,000+ dead Iraqi civilians should be thankful thay were killed by Americans instead of Saddam? Though it is refreshing to see a bit of honsety: "No one likes a foreign occupier". That's the essence right there: despite whatever high-minded rhetoric about "freedom" and "democracy" emenating from you and other war cheerleaders, the Iraqi people (y'know, the people who's country is being occupied by a foreign power) see the U.S. as just another western colonial power. They hated Saddam, but they don't care much for their liberators.

What "true intentions" do you think Bush has? A Muslim theme park? Maybe he'll build a few palaces there with his face on them? Get real.

For starters a massive privatization of Iraqi industry to benefit American firms (it's already happening) and a permenant military base from which to assert U.S. military power in the region and maintain a secure supply of oil.

As for conventional wisdom...Hiroshima. Violent. Stopped them in their tracks. End of violence.

Totally out of context. Japan was weakened, on the verge of surrender after 5 long years of brutal warfare.

911. No preceding violence. Murders of innocents

Yeah that's right: 9-11 happened totally out of nowhere, with no context or rationalizations on the part of the perpetrators. they just..uh..hate freedom...or something. :rolleyes:

That's because Israel is civilised. This is the problem...if they WERE as violent as the Palestinians & blasted a few camps after a bus was blown up...I'll bet the nutbars would quiet down very quickly.

Yeah, Palestinians are dying at a ratio of three to every one Israli casualty. Israel is dividing palestinian lands with a wall, demolishing homes and instituting other forms of collective punishment, denying basic human rights to nearly 1.5 million people...and they're showing restraint?!

"Some may not like what I said but I'm still waiting to hear a better suggestion." WHAT DO YOU WANT, BLACK DOG? BLOOD? Do YOU have a better suggestion?

Not bombing, invading and occupying a country that had nothing to do with the 9-11 attacks, thus formenting more anti-American sentiment and breeding yet more terrorists would have been a good start.

The world trade center was bombed the first time on Clinton's watch. He didn't do a damn thing ( that should have stopped them right? No violence begetting violence??)So they came back & put the towers down.

There have been zero attacks in the USA since 911...this is the country Bush is President of. He has done a perfect job.

Dunno why you think I'm a Clinton or Democrat partisan. They're all the same to me.

That said, they caught the guys responsible for the '93 WTC bombings.

As for the rest, Al Q has lauinched 35 successful attacks since 9-11, including devestating one's in Bali and, possibly, Spain. Yeah the U.S. hasn't been hit yet, but i wouldn't give Bush credit for that. Like the Republicans keep saying : it's only a matter of time. (in the interest of full disclosure, I wouldn't brake if I saw him crossing the street either, so there you go.)

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See, how can one undertake a meaningful discussion when talk degrades into discussion of what "these guys" want. Who are they? What are their motives? What is the greater context. Once it turns into a matter of "us or them", that's when rational discourse is reduced to Bushesque sloganeering.

The guys in the Muslim Brotherhood were what I was thinking when I wrote that. Such ilk are a relatively small percentage of the Middle Eastern population.

While I believe rational discourse is almost always possible, I have to admit that this group is an exception. I also more or less gave up trying to figure them out. There is little point. (One theory I had for a while was their sexual frustration.)

But like many bullies, they tend to back down when faced with superior strength. Do you know the Syrian city of Hama and what happened there?

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Would that be the same Hans Blix who is now saying the invasion was not justified by the evidence that existed at the time?

Yep, it sure is.

Ho hum. Here we go again. I wanted to avoid this as it is lengthy. What legal justification do you think the had to US recontinue the Gulf War after Iraq broke the ceasefire agreement, as laid out in UN resolution 687,686 and 678?

Here, I'll save you the searching for the UN Resolution;

686

4. Recognizes that during the period required for Iraq to comply with paragraphs 2 and 3 above, the provisions of paragraph 2 of resolution 678 (1990) remain valid;

686

2. Demands that Iraq implement its acceptance of all twelve resolutions noted above

678

2. Authorizes Member States co-operating with the Government of Kuwait, unless Iraq on or before 15 January 1991 fully implements, as set forth in paragraph 1 above, the foregoing resolutions, to use all necessary means to uphold and implement resolution 660 (1990) and all subsequent relevant resolutions and to restore international peace and security in the area;

On 27 Jan, Blix reported all sorts of stuff still being discovered in Iraq. I HAVE LISTED HIS REPORT IN FULL, AND IN SUMMARY BELOWThey were cooperating he said, 'an encouraging sign' but nowhere near the spirit of the orders they had signed the ceasefire with. For a country that was supposed to be free of 'WMD and all quipment, related material and resources' (including dual purpose stuff) thery sure had a lot that was 'discovered' rather than 'turned in.'

687

8. Decides that Iraq shall unconditionally accept the destruction, removal, or rendering harmless, under international supervision, of: (a) All chemical and biological weapons and all stocks of agents and all related subsystems and components and all research, development, support and manufacturing facilities; ( All ballistic missiles with a range greater than 150 kilometres and related major parts, and repair and production facilities;

Seems that this all adds up to a cease fire that was broken by Iraq. Or should I say, never fullly complied with. Therefore, member states (USA, France, Britain and whoever else including Syria, SA and all) cooperating with the government of Kuwait, acting under res 678 para2 "all subsequent resolutions" can simply resume military action.

BLIX'S REPORT

On 27 Jan, Blix reported all sorts of stuff still being discovered in Iraq. They were cooperating he said, 'an encouraging sign' but nowhere near the spirit of the orders they had signed the ceasefire with. For a country that was supposed to be free of 'WMD and all quipment, related material and resources' (including dual purpose stuff) thery sure had a lot that was 'discovered' rather than 'turned in.'

Paragraph 9 of Resolution 1441 (2002) states that this cooperation shall be "active". It is not enough to open doors. Inspection is not a game of "catch as catch can".. It is not built upon the premise of trust. Rather, it is designed to lead to trust, if there is both openness to the inspectors and action to present them with items to destroy or credible evidence about the absence of any such items.

On 7 December 2002, Iraq submitted a declaration of some 12,000 pages in response to Paragraph 3 of Resolution 1441 (2002) and within the time stipulated by the Security Council.  These reports do not contend that weapons of mass destruction remain in Iraq, but nor do they exclude that possibility. They point to lack of evidence and inconsistencies, which raise question marks, which must be straightened out, if weapons dossiers are to be closed and confidence is to arise.

I shall only give some examples of issues and questions that need to be answered and I turn first to the sector of chemical weapons. The nerve agent VX is one of the most toxic ever developed. Iraq has declared that it only produced VX on a pilot scale, just a few [metric] tons and that the quality was poor and the product unstable. Consequently, it was said, that the agent was never weaponized. Iraq said that the small quantity of agent remaining after the Gulf War was unilaterally destroyed in the summer of 1991. UNMOVIC, however, has information that conflicts with this account. Indeed, even one of the documents provided by Iraq indicates that the purity of the agent, at least in laboratory production, was higher than declared. There are also indications that the agent was weaponizied.

The document indicates that 13,000 chemical bombs were dropped by the Iraqi Air Force between 1983 and 1988, while Iraq has declared that 19,500 bombs were consumed during this period. Thus, there is a discrepancy of 6,500 bombs. The amount of chemical agent in these bombs would be in the order of about 1,000 [metric] tons.

The discovery of a number of 122 mm chemical rocket warheads in a bunker at a storage depot 170 km southwest of Baghdad was much publicized. This was a relatively new bunker and therefore the rockets must have been moved there in the past few years, at a time when Iraq should not have had such munitions. . The discovery of a few rockets does not resolve but rather points to the issue of several thousands of chemical rockets that are unaccounted for.

There are strong indications that Iraq produced more anthrax than it declared, and that at least some of this was retained after the declared destruction date. As I reported to the Council on 19 December last year, Iraq did not declare a significant quantity, some 650 kg, of bacterial growth media, which was acknowledged as imported in Iraq's submission to the Amorim panel in February 1999. As part of its 7 December 2002 declaration, Iraq resubmitted the Amorim panel document, but the table showing this particular import of media was not included. The absence of this table would appear to be deliberate as the pages of the resubmitted document were renumbered.

In the letter of 24 January to the President of the Council, Iraq's Foreign Minister stated that "all imported quantities of growth media were declared". This is not evidence. I note that the quantity of media involved would suffice to produce, for example, about 5,000 liters of concentrated anthrax.

The Al Samoud's diameter was increased from an earlier version to the present 760 mm. This modification was made despite a 1994 letter from the Executive Chairman of UNSCOM directing Iraq to limit its missile diameters to less than 600 mm. Furthermore, a November 1997 letter from the Executive Chairman of UNSCOM to Iraq prohibited the use of engines from certain surface-to-air missiles for the use in ballistic missiles.

During my recent meeting in Baghdad, we were briefed on these two programs. We were told that the final range for both systems would be less than the permitted maximum range of 150 km.

When we have urged our Iraqi counterparts to present more evidence, we have all too often met the response that there are no more documents. All existing relevant documents have been presented, we are told. All documents relating to the biological weapons program were destroyed together with the weapons.

However, Iraq has all the archives of the Government and its various departments, institutions and mechanisms. It should have budgetary documents, requests for funds and reports on how they have been used. It should also have letters of credit and bills of lading, reports on production and losses of material.

This interpretation is refuted by the Iraqi side, which claims that research staff sometimes may bring home papers from their work places. On our side, we cannot help but think that the case might not be isolated and that such placements of documents is deliberate to make discovery difficult and to seek to shield documents by placing them in private homes.

To summarize the summary:

There are also indications that the agent was weaponizied.

Hmmm, that would mean WMD right?

Thus, there is a discrepancy of 6,500 bombs. The amount of chemical agent in these bombs would be in the order of about 1,000 [metric] tons..

Hmmm, that would mean WMD right? Somewhere in the amount of 2 million pounds of it, enough to fill three or four semi trailers.

The absence of this table would appear to be deliberate as the pages of the resubmitted document were renumbered.

Hmmm that would mean deception and not cooperating with inspectors right?

I note that the quantity of media involved would suffice to produce, for example, about 5,000 liters of concentrated anthrax.

Hmmm, that would mean WMD if dropped in one of the warheads they had right?

final range for both systems would be less than the permitted maximum range of 150 km.

Hmmm, scince then Blix has discovered these have a range of more than 600 miles. This would mean prohibitted weapons right?

such placements of documents is deliberate to make discovery difficult and to seek to shield documents by placing them in private homes

Hmmm, scince then they have discovered scientists with crates of 'take home work' documents in their homes. One even had parts for a freakin particle separator in his garden as 'take nhome work' for crying out loud!

Remember now, Iraq was not permitted to have any WMD, material, equipment or dual purpose material or equipment. Clearly, Blix found much of that and Kay has found more as well. No smoking gun per say but enough to easily justify the legalities and Saddam's intent to carry on with his programe of aquiring WMDs.

There is also this little article I came across from THE GUARDIAN

In it,

Maurice Gourdault-Montagne, an adviser to the president, Jacques Chirac, and Jean-David Levitte, the French ambassador in Washington, put the deal to Condoleezza Rice, the US national security adviser.
Instead, the two said that the first resolution on Iraq, 1441, passed the previous year, provided enough legal cover for warand that France would keep quiet if the US went to war on that basis.

The deal would suit the French by maintaining its "good cop" status in the Arab world and safeguarding Franco-US relations.

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