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#32566 - 09/21/07 12:32 AM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: Senator Hatrack]
stereoman Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/30/04
Posts: 15646
Loc: Asheville, NC
Well yes, I see you get my drift. In the case of Iraq and SA, there is no "far away". The point is that it was the US that convinced SA to allow our troops into their country under the pretext of a "grave and gathering threat". The Saudis knew darn well what was going on, as did the US. And so did OBL, as you know.
_________________________
Steve
Give us the wisdom to teach our children to love,
to respect and be kind to one another,
so that we may grow with peace in mind.

(Native American prayer)


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#33055 - 09/24/07 12:45 AM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: ]
a knight Offline
journeyman

Registered: 11/07/06
Posts: 754
Loc: inner mountain west
 Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
I think, Senator, that you are forgetting the impact of Omri's deposing of Zimri following the murder of Elah in about 875 B.C.E. Of course, that presupposes that the source of the conflict cannot be better attributed to Nebuchadnezzar's subjugation of Jerusalem. After all, Nebuchadnezzar was Babylonian, which eventually, after a few incidental occurrences, became modern Iraq. So really, President Bush was just atoning for that malfeasance.


Although this step into the past may be a bit too long in its stride for proper appreciation by persons whose historical knowledge can be quantified as being within population deviations less than the median, it is still a valid thrust, and one that offers more understandable results in a search for cause, using a tail of temporal proximity to the present that's a bit longer than Just Back to the Clinton Admin.

One need to also take into account Rumsfeld's past incongruities; as the GOPs handshaker with the devil goto guy, and as member of the Swiss Based Corporation ABB:
 Quote:
Donald Rumsfeld, the US secretary of defense, was on the board of technology giant ABB when it won a deal to supply North Korea with two nuclear power plants.

Weapons experts say waste material from the two reactors could be used for so-called “dirty bomb

The Swiss-based ABB on Friday told swissinfo that Rumsfeld was involved with the company in early 2000, when it netted a $200 million (SFr270million) contract with Pyongyang.

Jacob Greber, "Rumsfeld was on ABB board during deal with North Korea", SwissInfo, February 24, 2003


This admixture of "he may be a devil, but he's our devil' irrationality and blatant crony capitalism, offers an illuminative perspective atop hubris' hill, when investigating the Administration of GHW Bush for cause, whose members were discovered, trousers dropped to their ankles at the Fall of The Soviet. An Administration that then immediately began a fervent vivisection of the ensuing "Peace Dividend" overseen chiefly by the Secretary of Defense, Dick Cheney, to assure it was chopped into pieces easily digested by that Administration's corporate cronies. It is quite arguable that it was Cheney's preoccupation with this, which was a determinative factor for one of the other miserable failures of GHW Bush's Administration; being blind-sided when former Reagan-client Saddam invaded Kuwait.

Finger-Pointing can be so much fun.

This also offers a fine opportunity to remind all that use of the assertion:
"But Mom, Billy-Jeff Did It First!"
is valid only in argumentative cases counterproductive to the causes of its proponents. Its users offer anecdotal evidence that contemporary conservatism continues along its path of orbital decay into the gravity well of the black star, relativism. It users, who so vehemently exposed to the US Public the deficiencies of the previous presidential administration, now also provide evidence that the Bush Administration hasn't the ability to hit its marks, even when using the exceedingly low referential standard of the Clinton Admin.


Edited by a knight (09/24/07 12:46 AM)

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#33599 - 09/27/07 02:40 AM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: a knight]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 16363
a knight, you raised for me a very interesting point, and started an illuminating thought pattern. As I have been in the military since the first round of BRAC (Base Realignment and Closure) process, I am well aware of the debilitating effect that has had on the military. This is, of course, to ensure "efficiency" and "cost-effectiveness" of the military. The reality has consistently been far more expensive and inefficient than projected, and has had a significant negative impact on military budgets. But the process has generated significant income for certain elements of the "military industrial complex," so it must be continued, and, of course, a significant amount of the labor force must be shifted to the private sector, meaning that private contractors are now doing much of the DoD work previously performed by military personnel and DoD civilians - naturally at a much higher cost, but at a significant profit for some well-known and well-connected major military contractors who also happen to be major political donors (you can guess to whose party). See BRAC Real Effects While there were always rosy projections about the cost savings closures would mean (estimated at $14 Billion immediately, and $5 Billion a year or so thereafter, CRS Report, the reality was that there was a net expense from the first four rounds, rather than any savings, and that the net savings represented less than 1% of the annual budget). Much of the cost has been hidden, and the "savings" have been exaggerated for political purposes. For example, when 5 installations were "aligned" the "savings" produced by elimination of jobs was touted, but the fact that jobs were transferred to, or created at, the receiving bases was not reported. Many of these new positions, of course, were filled by contract personnel, and thus were not accounted for in the budget.

What did not occur to me, until you mentioned it, was that this process was driven by the very individuals who are now profiting from its enactment. How naive I can be. Once again corporate profit is obscured by claimed public savings which never really materialize. Little did I realize at the time how specifically focused that process was on producing profits for particular parties, or how cynically manipulated it was from the outset.
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#33645 - 09/27/07 12:28 PM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: ]
Ardy Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/22/05
Posts: 12006
Loc: San Jose, Ca USA
 Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer

What did not occur to me, until you mentioned it, was that this process was driven by the very individuals who are now profiting from its enactment. How naive I can be. Once again corporate profit is obscured by claimed public savings which never really materialize. Little did I realize at the time how specifically focused that process was on producing profits for particular parties, or how cynically manipulated it was from the outset.


I had forgotten about this program. And of course , for those of us at some distance.... the idea seems logical enough.

One good argument for a limited government is the propensity of government action to be promoted as good policy when in fact it is perverted policy to serve private interest.
_________________________
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#33657 - 09/27/07 01:38 PM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: Ardy]
stereoman Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/30/04
Posts: 15646
Loc: Asheville, NC
I suggest to you that "limited government" is itself a perverted policy to serve private interest. We will never be able to solve the problem of perverted government, IMHO, until we are willing to tackle the problem of perverted private interests. See my sig line for more information. It applies to America just as surely as it applies to any given foreign country.
_________________________
Steve
Give us the wisdom to teach our children to love,
to respect and be kind to one another,
so that we may grow with peace in mind.

(Native American prayer)


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#33685 - 09/27/07 09:30 PM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: a knight]
Senator Hatrack Offline
member

Registered: 08/14/07
Posts: 1068
 Quote:
Although this step into the past may be a bit too long in its stride for proper appreciation by persons whose historical knowledge can be quantified as being within population deviations less than the median, it is still a valid thrust, and one that offers more understandable results in a search for cause, using a tail of temporal proximity to the present that's a bit longer than Just Back to the Clinton Admin.

I agree a knight. One of the problems I have with many opposed to the war is they cannot see further back in history than the election of George W. Bush. Our enemies, the Islamists, think that the Crusades are current events while we, meaning the general American public, see the Carter administration as ancient history. (This reference to Pres. Carter is not an attack on him but as an example of how short our memory is.)
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Just because I'm a conservative that doesn't mean I'm always right.
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#33687 - 09/27/07 09:38 PM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: stereoman]
Senator Hatrack Offline
member

Registered: 08/14/07
Posts: 1068
 Originally Posted By: stereoman
I suggest to you that "limited government" is itself a perverted policy to serve private interest. We will never be able to solve the problem of perverted government, IMHO, until we are willing to tackle the problem of perverted private interests. See my sig line for more information. It applies to America just as surely as it applies to any given foreign country.

If limited government is a "perverted policy" it is only something that unfortunately happened recently. The private (special) interests are a problem. A problem that has helped and was caused by the growth in the size of our government. A private (special) interest see that it can get a subsidy from our government and then other interests realize they can get on the gravy train too. All of sudden we don't have limited government we have government by private (special) interests.
_________________________
May you always walk in beauty.
Just because I'm a conservative that doesn't mean I'm always right.
Conservative Revolutionary

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#33689 - 09/27/07 09:51 PM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: Senator Hatrack]
stereoman Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/30/04
Posts: 15646
Loc: Asheville, NC
 Originally Posted By: Senator Hatrack
Our enemies, the Islamists, think that the Crusades are current events while we, meaning the general American public, see the Carter administration as ancient history.

Sometimes, Senator, you come up with a real gem.



There is so much truth in what you said there.
_________________________
Steve
Give us the wisdom to teach our children to love,
to respect and be kind to one another,
so that we may grow with peace in mind.

(Native American prayer)


Top
#33695 - 09/28/07 01:28 AM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: Senator Hatrack]
a knight Offline
journeyman

Registered: 11/07/06
Posts: 754
Loc: inner mountain west
 Originally Posted By: Senator Hatrack
I agree a knight. One of the problems I have with many opposed to the war is they cannot see further back in history than the election of George W. Bush. Our enemies, the Islamists, think that the Crusades are current events while we, meaning the general American public, see the Carter administration as ancient history. (This reference to Pres. Carter is not an attack on him but as an example of how short our memory is.)

I do not exist within the limitations of linear partisanship, and am quite willing to return to elements of cause from the end of The Carter administration. It should also be pointed out though, that contemporary conservatives will never do this with honesty, because it tends to greatly diminish their primary idol's stature; Ronald Reagan, offering evidence that he wasn't really responsible for the Fall of the Soviet, and receives those accolades for nothing more than fortune from the blind chance of being there.

Over a several year period in the 1990s, The National Security Archives conducted many interviews as feeder content for use in the production of CNN's Cold War doumentatary Series, First Aired on September 27, 1998. One of these was the Interview With Dr Zbigniew Brzezinski-(13/6/97). From, that Interview:
 Quote:
Interviewer (Int): How did you interpret Soviet behavior in Afghanistan, such as the April revolution, the rise of... I mean, what did you think their long-term plans were, and what did you think should be done about it?

Zbigniew Brzezinski (ZB): I told the President, about six months before the Soviets entered Afghanistan, that in my judgment I thought they would be going into Afghanistan. And I decided then, and I recommended to the President, that we shouldn't be passive.

Int: What happened?

ZB: We weren't passive.

Int: But at the time...

(Interruption)

Int: Right, describe your reaction when you heard that your suspicions had been fully justified: an invasion had happened.

ZB: We immediately launched a twofold process when we heard that the Soviets had entered Afghanistan. The first involved direct reactions and sanctions focused on the Soviet Union, and both the State Department and the National Security Council prepared long lists of sanctions to be adopted, of steps to be taken to increase the international costs to the Soviet Union of their actions. And the second course of action led to my going to Pakistan a month or so after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, for the purpose of coordinating with the Pakistanis a joint response, the purpose of which would be to make the Soviets bleed for as much and as long as is possible; and we engaged in that effort in a collaborative sense with the Saudis, the Egyptians, the British, the Chinese, and we started providing weapons to the Mujaheddin, from various sources again - for example, some Soviet arms from the Egyptians and the Chinese. We even got Soviet arms from the Czechoslovak communist government, since it was obviously susceptible to material incentives; and at some point we started buying arms for the Mujaheddin from the Soviet army in Afghanistan, because that army was increasingly corrupt.

Int: How united or divergent were the views in the Carter Administration, responding to the invasion of Afghanistan?

ZB: They were surprisingly uniform. That is to say, I remember that the State Department, which earlier had opposed taking a very tough stand on Afghanistan, and certainly didn't want us to be issuing any public warnings directed to the Soviet Union, came in with a long list of something like 26 or 28 proposed sanctions against Soviet Union, including the most severe ones that subsequently were adopted by the United States. So once the Soviets had acted, some of the hesitations and reticence regarding how we should respond to the Soviet challenge, dissipated almost instantly.

Int: But you managed to increase the powers of the National Security Council?

ZB: Well, I didn't increase the powers of the National Security Council, but obviously what the Soviets did confirmed what we were arguing for some time: namely, that if we don't draw the line clearly enough, we're going to get an escalation in Soviet misconduct, that simply acquiescence was not good enough. And in that sense, yes, I suppose one could say the political scales within the US Government were somewhat tipped in the favor of the NSC.

(Background talk)

Int: How tough was President Carter's approach to the Cold War?

ZB: I think, on balance, it was much tougher than most people realize. Not only did he take some historic decisions which no other president had before - such as the decision to aid directly the Mujaheddin against the Soviet army - but he took a very tough position in December 1980, when the Soviet Union was poised to invade Poland. He took that decision, and it was a very tough decision, and we did all sorts of things to convince the Soviets that we wouldn't be passive. In addition to it, he took the decision to engage in a strategic relationship with the Chinese, and it was again directed at Soviet expansionism. But what is even less known is that even in the early years, when he was generally perceived as being soft and overly accommodationist, he took some very tough-minded decisions which were simply not known publicly. Robert Gates, the subsequently director of the CIA, and at that time a member of my staff, reveals in his book that as early as 1978, President Carter approved proposals prepared by my staff to undertake, for example, a comprehensive, covert action program designed to help the non-Russian nations in the Soviet Union pursue more actively their desire for independence - a program in effect to destabilize the Soviet Union. We called it, more delicately, a program for the "delegitimization of the Soviet Union". But that was a rather unusual decision. He took some others along these lines, too. So his public image to some extent was the product of his great emphasis on arms reductions and a desire to reach an agreement on that score with the Russians. But it didn't quite correspond to the reality, and it certainly didn't correspond even to the public reality in the second half of the Carter Administration.


Now add to that, this excerpt from an Interview of Zbigniew Brzezinski by Le Nouvel Observateur, published January 15-21, 1998:

 Quote:
Q: The former director of the CIA, Robert Gates, stated in his memoirs ["From the Shadows"], that American intelligence services began to aid the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention. In this period you were the national security adviser to President Carter. You therefore played a role in this affair. Is that correct?

ZB: Yes. According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.

Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?

ZB: It isn't quite that. We didn't push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.

Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn't believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don't regret anything today?

ZB: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic [integrisme], having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

ZB: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

Q: Some stirred-up Moslems? But it has been said and repeated: Islamic fundamentalism represents a world menace today.

ZB: Nonsense! It is said that the West had a global policy in regard to Islam. That is stupid. There isn't a global Islam. Look at Islam in a rational manner and without demagoguery or emotion. It is the leading religion of the world with 1.5 billion followers. But what is there in common among Saudi Arabian fundamentalism, moderate Morocco, Pakistan militarism, Egyptian pro-Western or Central Asian secularism? Nothing more than what unites the Christian countries.


David Corn noted on October 19, 2001

 Quote:
A few days ago, I called Brzezinski, and he told me he still has no regrets. He maintained that the Carter Administration funded the moderates, not the fundamentalists. The true problem, he asserted, was that the Soviet Union, then supporting terrorists around the world, "pulverized" Afghanistan society through the 1980s, and that set the stage for the ugly infighting of the 1990s and the subsequent rise of the Taliban. How can you assume, he asked, that there would be no terrorism today, had there been no U.S.-supported resistance to the Soviets in Afghanistan? Perhaps if the Soviets had not been confronted and drained in Afghanistan, he suggested, the Soviet Union might have lived on a little longer and might have, in that time, fostered other sorts of terrorism.

Perhaps. Historical what-ifs are impossible to prove. But Brzezinski is quick to note that the policymakers who succeeded him in subsequent administrations screwed up by bugging out once the Soviets had departed: "That was immoral." In other words, they messed up the project he began.


So here's the rundown: contrary to promulgated myths, Carter was not passive or ineffectual in response to the Soviet threats, but instead worked covertly, and never felt it proper to toot his own horn. Part of the proactive response was allowing Brzezinski to set a bloody bear trap for them to get bogged down in the muddy runoff from the Hindu Kush. The Soviet's claim of cause for the Afghanistan invasion, that their client state "ally" needed support because the rebels who were fighting against it has received foreign weapons aid was true. This was vehemently denied by both the Carter and Reagan Admin. It was an American act of provocation, which still did not justify the Soviet's Invasion. The communistic Afghan client of theirs had implemented Marxist politics with extremism, and that was the cause of the rebellion. Brzezinski is Polish-born, whose father was Poland's Canadian Ambassador in 1938, when the Nazis invaded Poland. Because of the repression and destruction Poland experienced at the hands of the Soviet, his acts could easily be construed as vengeance. Still, Brzezinski's plan was limited to supplying the Afghans with eastern block weaponry. It was the Reagan Admin that ran with the concept straight to hell by pouring funding into Pakistan's military intelligence wing, the ISI, which was at that time headed by none other than Pervez Musharraf. This suited the CIA. The recent Congressional investigations into convert ops had caused the agency great pain, so the thought of a third-part intermediary sat well with them. Even today, field agents on the ground in Pakistan during the '80s still offer less than compelling denials that they never directly aided or shook hands with Arab freedom fighters. If they were competent, they knew damn well that their ISI buds were doing just that, and that young potential Arab troublemakers had been encouraged to engage in jihad against the Soviet in Afghanistan. They know the Aghan freedom fighters, using US provided funding, had been trained in the terroristic arts of insurgency, had Stingers placed upon their shoulders, and sent into the fray down through the Khyber Pass. Contrary to Reagan's public statements, after the Soviet retreat from Afghanistan, we walked away from the carnage that we were partly responsible for, and forgot the Afghanis, letting the nation slip even further into hell in the ensuing civil battles between competing warlords.
 Quote:
"The United States does not intend to forget these brave people and their struggle. We have said repeatedly that we support a negotiated settlement for Afghanistan predicated on the complete withdrawal of Soviet troops. We joined the vast majority of the world community at the United Nations again in November in support of a resolution calling for a settlement along these lines. Just a few weeks ago, during his visit to the United States, I discussed with President Zia of Pakistan the need for a solution to the Afghanistan problem. We are both committed to a negotiated settlement that will return Afghanistan to the ranks of independent, nonaligned nations. - Ronald Reagan, "Statement on the Third Anniversary of the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan", December 26, 1982
/ * * * /*/ * * * /*/ * * * /*/ * * * /
"The struggle for a free Afghanistan continues. This is not because of any outside manipulation, but because of the Afghan people's own desire to be free. And their struggle will continue until a negotiated political settlement can be found to allow the Afghan people to determine their own destiny.

Our goal is to do everything we can to help bring about a peaceful solution which removes the Soviet forces from Afghanistan, ends the agony and destruction of the Afghan nation, and restores that country's independence and nonalignment. Clearly, a neutral and nonaligned Afghanistan would not be a threat to its huge Soviet neighbor." - - Ronald Reagan, "Statement on the Fourth Anniversary of the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan", December 27, 1983
/ * * * /*/ * * * /*/ * * * /*/ * * * /
"The sixth round of United Nations negotiations aimed at achieving a political settlement in Afghanistan has just come to an end with no significant change. If the Soviets want progress, they must simply put forward a timetable for the withdrawal of their forces from Afghanistan and for the restoration of the rights of the Afghan people. As I said, the United States will do everything in its power to make this the course which the Soviets choose. Indeed, we're prepared to serve as a guarantor of a comprehensive Afghan settlement so long as it includes the complete withdrawal of foreign forces within a fixed timetable; ensures genuine independence, not de facto Soviet control over the Afghan people and their government; and allows the millions of Afghan refugees to return to their homeland in safety. Only then can the process of national reconciliation and rebuilding Afghanistan begin and the killing of Russians and Afghans alike come to an end." - - Ronald Reagan, "Radio Address to the Nation on the Soviet Occupation of Afghanistan", December 28, 1985

Where is the honour in any of this?

In December, 2001, Mr. Bush turned away the American military, from the good fight against our real enemies up at Tora Bora, so they could be readied for a War Against Iraq, the facts notwithstanding. We had al Qaeda leadership in our sights, and should have taken them to ground then and there; not for vengeance's sake, nor only for self-defense, but to also pay down our blood-debt that had accrued in Afghanistan. Mr. Bush let them walk away. The debt owed to the Afghani people has been greatly increased.

You want to assess blame? That's fine with me, there is more blameworthiness in this than there are mosquitoes over a Louisiana bayou in July. Plenty to spread around. You don't expect honesty from contemporary conservatives though, do you? You are confused, and have mistaken them for Classical Conservatives, who began to get purged from the RNC in 1968, when Nixon, from his position as presidential candidate for the Party of Lincoln, used the Southern Strategy to win the election. You are referring to a philosophy which has warmly embraced Trotskyites as their own for over two decades now. No wonder it is the right that presently is the biggest abuser of relativistic spin, and dialectic warfare.

Addendum:
Barbara Elias, National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 227, National Security Archives, August 14, 2007
  • Pakistan: "The Taliban's Godfather"?
  • Documents Detail Years of Pakistani Support for Taliban, Extremists
  • Covert Policy Linked Taliban, Kashmiri Militants, Pakistan's Pashtun Troops
  • Aid Encouraged Pro-Taliban Sympathies in Troubled Border Region





Edited by a knight (09/28/07 02:19 AM)
Edit Reason: typos - add NSA Archive cite

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#33699 - 09/28/07 02:10 AM Re: Whose war is it? [Re: a knight]
Phil Hoskins Offline
Administrator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/07/04
Posts: 21134
Loc: West Hollywood, CA
Wow, that is an impressive post, akinght. Thanks for giving us that information, I had no idea.
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