"Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our mind.” - Bob Marley

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Real Reason We Went to War in Iraq?

It appears to me that all the various reasons given at various times - imminence of threat, pre-emption of threat, WMD, links to Al Qaeda - are not why we actually went to war in Iraq.

There is plenty of evidence that Bush-43 came into office in 2001 bound and determined to bring down Sadam.

What we have here is history's first recorded case of inherited blue balls. Bush-41's unconsummated business in Iraq left Bush-43 with such a raging erection for Sadam that nothing was going to stop him until he found or manufactured an excuse to go in.

At least one neo-con agrees with Bush on this pre-determination.

9 comments:

MAWG said...

OK, let me explain it simply. It doesn't matter. How we got into Iraq is a moot point.

Many people believe that 9/11 was an inside job, pointing to the collapse of Tower 7 as proof that an implosion was caused by government agents. Let me put it simply. It doesn't matter; nothing at Tower 7 matters. Why would the government go to all the time and effort to plant explosives in Tower 7 to bring it down when it simply didn't make a dent in the news or in the other events of 9/11. If I was told that the government, under the cover of night, secretly implanted explosives in a shed in the middle of Montana, it would make as much difference. It would make no difference whether the government was involved or not.

We are in Iraq. We are prosecuting a war involving radical Islam. How we got there is history that can be debated over the next 200 years.

Let's say you are mad at Bush because we are in Iraq under false pretenses. So what! Congress in on vacation, I am still paying $4.00 per gallon for gas; do you actually think that Congress would interrupt its busy schedule to, say, impeach Bush? And could it be done prior to his leaving office?

Prioritize!

The simple question we need to ask is what do we do now?

On the one hand, we are spending blood and treasure, fighting people who apparently want to fight us. If we successfully conclude this war, people who have joined our side will think well of us, will experience more freedoms than perhaps they did previously, and there will be considerably fewer who want to fight against us.

Let's say, on the other hand, we just pick up and leave, potentially leaving behind a sizable number of people who want to fight against us, and a population that will eventually pay the price of fighting with the Great Satan.

Also, having a standing army here at home, without much to do...isn't the best idea for preserving our liberties.

What matters in the end is going forward; in being progressive, eh? Who is going to best preserve your liberties and infringe on your rights the least.

Focus!

bobn said...

MAWG

It doesn't matter. How we got into Iraq is a moot point.

True - in the sense that we have to look to our own best interests and some moral obligation to the Iraquis to not leave in a manner that causes a genocide or an Al-Qaeda takeover.

and

False - the truth about what happened always matters. Even assuming no impeachment or prosecution will happen, it still matters. We had lots of options before. Now we have far fewer.

We are in Iraq. We are prosecuting a war involving radical Islam.

Agreed.

We won the Iraq war - but then we lost the peace for the next 3+ years. It's still an open question in my mind that we will ever achieve Bush's original plan of a secular democracy in Iraq - I'm just pretty sure that such is very dificult given the population being 60% Shia. There have been some hopeful reports, but only time will tell.

What matters in the end is going forward; in being progressive, eh? Who is going to best preserve your liberties and infringe on your rights the least.


That is indeed the question.

Barack Obama, in spite of his protestations, has no use for the 2nd Amendment and he lies about it too. He has never met gun control he didn't like. I happen to like the 2nd amendment very much.

John McCain seems to have little use for the first amendment, witness McCain-Feingold.

Neither seems to care for the the 4th amendment, see the recent FISA bill.

One clear difference was their postion on the Military Commissions Act. For a truly frightening interpretation of that bill by a Circuit Court, see here. McCain helped push that through, Obama voted against it and spoke oiut against it as well. So we have a great difference on Habeas Corpus and the right to trial by jury before you are denied your freedom forever.

And of course we have the apparent differences on the war - though here I tend to think Obama is pandering. I think he is too smart to pull out of there leaving genocide or an Al Qaeda stronghold behind. Pretty weird when you have to *hope* that a candidate is lying, though.

I still have no idea who I will vote for - and I've voted a straight Democratic ticket for the last 24 years.

Carl said...

As the self-described Neo-con to whom bobn links, I note that I said:

"Of course Bush entered office intending to topple Saddam--that's why I voted for him! How does that support your point?"

bobn hasn't so far addressed my question.

In addition, let me ask this audience the relevance of George W. Bush's long-standing resolve to topple Saddam. Doesn't it (1) prove Bush never used 9-11 as an excuse to invade Iraq; and (2) force critics to examine Bush's oft-proclaimed reasons for invading (as opposed to straw-men)?

bobn said...

Hi, Carl. Thanks for reading and commenting.

"Of course Bush entered office intending to topple Saddam--that's why I voted for him! How does that support your point?"

bobn hasn't so far addressed my question.


My point is that Bush was going to invade Iraq regardless of whether the facts supported such a move. As you may have noticed, war is a serious business, epecially when you are already in another war. But Bush was so strongly predisposed to do so, and knew that Congress and the american needed more than his predisposition, so he pressured the Intelligence Apparatus into producing the White Paper he wanted in odrer to go forward. The congressional study you reference condemns the production of the non-classifed White Paper from the classified NIE - I do not buy that the differences between those documents are some accident that happened independent of White House pressure.

I know you don't believe this, and further, youu believe that you have rebutted it. I'm still not convinced.

And I believe the Downing Street memo confirms this - as of 23 July 2002, before the NIE and White Paper were produced, "There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. " So, more evidence of predisoposition. The memo goes on to state: "But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy." The meaning of fixed has been debated, with some stating it meant "arranged" and others saying it meant modified or selectively used to justify - that debate seems not to have been resolved.

Further, the Downing memo says: "The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."

Here we see more predisposition, more disdain for facts, and an early indication of Wahington's willful ignorance of the need for planning for a post-Sadam Iraq.

Really, by continuing to bring up the Downing Street memo, you are not helping yourself.

I remain convinced that W was deeply biased, and willfuly ignorant.

The Right loves to claim that the Left is awful about what it does due to the Laft's alleged conviction that it is 'doing the right thing and the end justifies the means'. How is this action on the Right any different?

Carl said...

Do you concede that every foreign government and intel agency concluded Saddam had WMDs? And do you think that the governor of Texas had the ability to alter Federal intel?

bobn said...

Carl,

I think the differences between the NIE and the White Paper speak for themselves.

I think the PotUS had time between inauguration and invasion to exert the needed pressure.

And as I said previously, I don't think he cared about the facts - and neither do people who talked to him months before 9/11.

Carl said...

bobn:

You have somehow avoided addressing my points, including that the Administration's assessment of Saddam was shared by every Democrat, foreign leader and foreign intel service; that changing to a policy of preemption meant Bush had less incentives to exaggerate the threat; and that the fact that Bush entered office determined to topple Saddam strongly suggests that his rationale for invasion went well beyond the intel to which he didn't have access until 2000.

bobn said...

the Administration's assessment of Saddam was shared by every Democrat

Relying on the Administration's white-paper and other distortions?

foreign leader and foreign intel service

That's not what I get from readiong the Downing Street Memo.

that changing to a policy of preemption meant Bush had less incentives to exaggerate the threat

He needed to get Congress and the American people worked up enough to do this. Pre-emption does need a threat to work, just not one this minute.

and that the fact that Bush entered office determined to topple Saddam strongly suggests that his rationale for invasion went well beyond the intel to which he didn't have access until 2000

Wasn't that exactly my point - that he didn't care about intel, but caused it to be massaged to convince everybody else?

Carl said...

He didn't need to--every Democrat, including the Clinton Administration, and foreign leaders agreed. It was mostly mistaken--but a widely shared error that predated the Bush 43 Presidency.

About Me

I'm a 57 year old geek. I voted Democratic for 20 years, because I disliked the Republicans more. But now, nobody really speaks for me. I'm for Guns, for more correct government regulation of the financial world, against illegal immigration and amnesty. (in 2008 I ended up voting Republican - too many questions about Obama, and voting against anybody who voted for TARP 1.) In 2010 I voted a stright republican ticket because the Democrats have completely lost their minds.