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another WAR 2003 Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 15th February 2003
  #91
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mac black's Avatar
The un is short for uselessness.....
Old 15th February 2003
  #92
Yhis Jules posting live from a nice tapas bar after the march. Any one see me on TV?

:-)
Old 15th February 2003
  #93
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mac black's Avatar
your reflection blinded my screen.....
Old 15th February 2003
  #94
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Knox's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jules
Any one see me on TV?

:-)
Yea Jules, I saw you . . no one can wear a dress like you can!
Old 15th February 2003
  #95
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
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Here's another point of view by John Mauldin. I've cut it down somewhat to fit within the max post length here on GS - Jon

*******************************************
For The Want Of A Nail

For the want of a nail, the shoe was lost; For the want of the shoe, the horse was lost; For the want of the horse, the rider was lost; For the want of a rider, the battle was lost; For the want of the battle, the kingdom was lost; All for the want of a nail.

A small event can change things far beyond the seeming initial circumstance. The stirrup, the cotton gin and the steam engine all changed economies in ways that the inventors and those who first observed them could not imagine. The assassination of a minor Austrian Duke led to World War One. Chamberlain's trust of Hitler led to catastrophe rather than "peace in our time."

I have given a great deal of thought these past few weeks to the behavior of Chirac and the French. I think there is something much deeper going on than mere antagonism to war.

The Union of European Socialist Republics

This week Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, former president of France, presented a document that is the basis for a new European constitution. It is an attempt to force French and German socialist policies on the rest of Europe. The same policies that produce 10% unemployment in France and Germany.

The Financial Times writes "Europe will soon have a new constitution. But if the draft presented by Valéry Giscard d'Estaing last week is anything to go by, it will be imbued with old ideology. The document ignores the free-market economy. There is not a word about the protection of property and no commitment to free enterprise and the division of labour. Instead, it contains dubious secondary objectives such as "sustainability" and "balanced economic growth", as if a constitution could ensure that such concepts become reality."

Much of Europe is moving in the opposite direction. Yet France and Germany hope to push this document through, which will put them in the driver's seat of the new Europe. However, they view the current European budget rules which they developed and forced the rest of Europe to go along with as mere points for negotiation when it threatens their economies. Germany was in violation of the 3% budget deficit rule last year and will do so as well this year. You can bet the French will do the same when it suits them.

This does not sit well with some of the other members of the central bank. Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell, Austria's probable candidate for a seat on the European Central Bank's executive board, said she sees no reason to loosen Europe's budget rules even if there is a war in Iraq. "The rule limiting budget deficits to 3% of gross domestic product shouldn't be relaxed." (Bloomberg)

Now, think through with me on this. Chirac and Schroeder know they will need something to unite Europe if they are going to get this new constitution through. They need to be able to demonstrate what political power a United Europe could have, and with that carrot hopefully get the rest of Europe to go along with what will not be an easy sale.

Chirac especially, sees this as a way to lead Europe into a new era. A union that in the French mind will be the equal of, or superior to, the US on the world stage.

Who might want to run for president of this new union? The Economist wrote this week: "Now [Chirac] is free to release his pent-up energy and fulfil his re-election promises to "make a united Europe our horizon" and to "do everything to resolve international conflicts" - free to fulfill those promises on his own terms as the EU's senior leader."

To demonstrate the potential world-wide political clout of the European Union, they need some cause to stand up to the US and project European power. They need something around which to rally a feeling of European unity: us against them. Specifically, Chirac also wants to assert French leadership of this new union.

Schroeder's narrow win gave Chirac his opportunity to stand up to the US. Schroeder is publicly committed to opposing the war. It was a central part of his election campaign. If a Christian Democrat had won the recent German election, I do not think Chirac would have stood alone in Europe against the war. You can't lead if the troops don't follow. If you are wanting to get the rest of Europe to go along with a new constitution of your creation, you don't start out by antagonizing your neighbors.

I do not believe the driving factor is, as many suggest, the fact that Germany and France do very large amounts of business with Iraq, nor that Saddam offered Germany $2 billion as a gift for their anti-war stance. Normally, I suggest to follow the money, and the money clearly goes to France and Germany. If it was only money, they could simply negotiate assurances they get the business, and Bush would go along. The US would lose nothing in that case. But the opportunity to create a cause which they felt would unite Europe was too tempting for primarily Chirac and secondarily Schroeder to resist.

Chirac assumed that the rest of Europe would go along as they usually do if the French and Germans take the lead. Besides, he has polls in most of the other major countries which shows enough popular support for an anti-American (or perhaps anti-Bush) war stance that he believes the rest of his fellow European leaders would go along.

So, Chirac and Schroeder began a public campaign to actively oppose US intervention in Iraq.

And now we come to the small event: Donald Rumsfeld makes an off-the-cuff remark about "That's just Old Europe." Chirac and Schroeder respond vehemently, talking about American arrogance, the power of the European Union, and the need for world-wide consensus (which for them means their consensus and recognition of their importance, which they need so they can push their constitution). They draw a line in the sand. Stay with me, as the line will become more important than the issue.

At the same time this is going on, a European Wall Street Journal editor is calling a few other leaders of European countries asking them if they would like to speak out about their support of the US.

Donald Rumsfeld opened a hole a mile wide for the rest of Europe to assert itself against French and German domination, and they drove a truck through that hole. In just a few days, 8 countries had an editorial asserting their support of US policy. Later, 15 more countries which all want to be a part of the European Union signed a separate letter of support.

I can fully believe that France and Germany (Chirac and Schroeder) are opposed to a war, and believe that those countries which signed the letter support the US, all for principled reasons. Support for or against the war is not the important issue in this analysis. The line in the sand has become more important than the war, as far as the future of Europe is concerned.

I also believe that Chirac was caught totally by surprise by the Wall Street Journal letter. He broke the first two rules of politics: "#1. Never ask a question if you don't know the answer. #2. Never call a vote until you know what the result will be." He did not consult with his fellow European leaders to see if they would go along with him.

I should note that I make a difference between Chirac and Schroeder. Chirac is the leader in this operation. Schroeder is political history, and everyone knows it. He will lose the next elections, and the new leader (likely Angela Merkel or her compatriots) will say, "Don't blame us. It was that other guy. We were really with you all along."

In an odd way, Germany gets a pass on this one. They are not the one with the UN veto, so when Germany changes their leadership (or if Bush loses in 2004), everyone will talk about a new era of cooperation.

Make no mistake about it. This is a defining moment for Europe and the direction of world politics. The Iraq's of the world will come and go, but Europe is a major economic and political power. How they organize, and what philosophical economic guidelines they use, will be of far greater economic importance in the long run than a short war with Iraq.

(continued next post...)
Old 15th February 2003
  #96
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
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Betting the Whole French Ranch

As we say in Texas, Bush is betting "the north 40" -- just part of the farm. If he is wrong, he will lose the next election and the US will survive as a major economic player and world power for the rest of this century, even as China and India grow in power. The balances will change, but they will change slowly.

Chirac, however, is betting the whole French ranch on Iraq. He should have chosen another issue around which to unite Europe. This will go down as one of the all-time worst diplomatic moves in history.

He is betting the ability of the French to really lead in a united Europe. He has bet whatever influence the French have in the NATO alliance. And if he puts the UN in a position of being seen as impotent, he will be betting France's permanent veto on the Security Council.

There is precedent. Taiwan was replaced by China on the UN Security Council. The rest of the world will be asking, "Why does France get a veto?" There are clear reasons for China and Russia. But why is France more important than India, the second largest nation in population, an up and coming economic powerhouse, a nuclear and growing military power? For that matter, why should France have a permanent veto if there is a true European Union?

I have nothing against the French. I love the country, the French people, the food and the wines. There is a great history in the nation, and justifiable reasons to be proud of being French.

My feeling is that Chirac will not back down. He has pushed all his chips onto the table in the world power poker game, and has nothing to win by changing his mind.

It really makes no difference. Bush is going to see that Saddam goes, with or without France. He has no choice. Russia will come along, as will most of the rest of the world. Has anyone noticed how much support for the US is brewing among Arab countries, with a few notable exceptions?

Chirac has made the bet, and he has lost. The rest of Europe will now feel quite able to begin crafting the future of a united Europe themselves, along guidelines with which they feel comfortable. France will have a significant say, of course, as they are an important part of Europe. But now they will just be a part.

I believe we are watching the changing of an era. 50 years from now, historians will be talking about the seismic shift that occurred because of an off-the-cuff remark by someone called Donald Rumsfeld.

We will not know the full implications of this new order in Europe for some time. The leaders in Europe will have to work that out for themselves.

by John Mauldin

Feb. 14, 2003
Old 15th February 2003
  #97
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mac black's Avatar
jon- wise words my friend wise words
Old 16th February 2003
  #98
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malice's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
The Union of European Socialist Republics

This week Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, former president of France, presented a document that is the basis for a new European constitution. It is an attempt to force French and German socialist policies on the rest of Europe. The same policies that produce 10% unemployment in France and Germany.


Unemployment decreased drasticly while Jospin, a socialist, was prime minister. Now that the "right" is back in business, unemployment raises.

Quote:

The Financial Times writes "Europe will soon have a new constitution. But if the draft presented by Valéry Giscard d'Estaing last week is anything to go by, it will be imbued with old ideology. The document ignores the free-market economy. There is not a word about the protection of property and no commitment to free enterprise and the division of labour. Instead, it contains dubious secondary objectives such as "sustainability" and "balanced economic growth", as if a constitution could ensure that such concepts become reality."


unfortunatly, Giscard Destaing does not represent the leading party in France. Is party (UDF) vanished after Chirac re-election, as RPR made a fusion with all the little party, including the more "liberal" ones closer to american ideology as well as the author of this article "ideology"

Quote:

Now, think through with me on this. Chirac and Schroeder know they will need something to unite Europe if they are going to get this new constitution through. They need to be able to demonstrate what political power a United Europe could have, and with that carrot hopefully get the rest of Europe to go along with what will not be an easy sale.


What's wrong with that ? Europe needs to have a political power ...

Quote:

Chirac especially, sees this as a way to lead Europe into a new era. A union that in the French mind will be the equal of, or superior to, the US on the world stage.


I know THAT'S pissing a lot the US governement.

Quote:

To demonstrate the potential world-wide political clout of the European Union, they need some cause to stand up to the US and project European power. They need something around which to rally a feeling of European unity: us against them. Specifically, Chirac also wants to assert French leadership of this new union.


over simplistic point of view. There is a raising of a "European political consciousness" that is something else than governement will.
People are in the street against war, even in GB, Spain or Italy, something to have in mind and think about.



Quote:
Betting the Whole French Ranch

Chirac, however, is betting the whole French ranch on Iraq. He should have chosen another issue around which to unite Europe. This will go down as one of the all-time worst diplomatic moves in history.


I would not bet on that myself

Quote:

There is precedent. Taiwan was replaced by China on the UN Security Council. The rest of the world will be asking, "Why does France get a veto?" There are clear reasons for China and Russia. But why is France more important than India, the second largest nation in population, an up and coming economic powerhouse, a nuclear and growing military power? For that matter, why should France have a permanent veto if there is a true European Union?


mmh, there are better arguments for France being at the UN security council than India, especialy with the problems with Pakistan. Thinking that France will lose this position might be an issue in my neiborhood "cafe", but that doesn't seem serious...

Quote:

It really makes no difference. Bush is going to see that Saddam goes, with or without France. He has no choice. Russia will come along, as will most of the rest of the world. Has anyone noticed how much support for the US is brewing among Arab countries, with a few notable exceptions?


Not from Saudi Arabia, and that makes a UDGE difference. You must have in mind we are talking governement support, not street support !

Quote:

Chirac has made the bet, and he has lost. The rest of Europe will now feel quite able to begin crafting the future of a united Europe themselves, along guidelines with which they feel comfortable. France will have a significant say, of course, as they are an important part of Europe. But now they will just be a part.


another american dream ? nothing's gonna change.

Quote:

I believe we are watching the changing of an era. 50 years from now, historians will be talking about the seismic shift that occurred because of an off-the-cuff remark by someone called Donald Rumsfeld.


That's the problem with you americans, you're even more self centered than the french, IMHO



Interesting and brilliant article, based on mistaken facts, unfortunatly ...

malice
Old 16th February 2003
  #99
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Quote:
Originally posted by mac black
i dont see the relevance of germans and french to the situation( two countrys that have always made the wrong decisions and still do so).
that is a lame undocumented and stupid post. Every country that are involved in this issue could be blame of what you just stated.

malice
Old 16th February 2003
  #100
Gear Head
 

random thoughts

Just popping in, perusing the various posts. Thoughts:
1. Anybody that truly believes the US is doing this for the people of Iraq must be sadly ignorant of the history of US foreign policy. The challenge is to find any US-supported foreign leader who was not a despot.
2. I think Jon argued long ago that the US gets less of its oil from the Middle East than many countries, ergo this is not an oil war. One neglected point: Iraq nationalized its oil industry many years ago, much to the chagrin of some large American corporations. If the US overthrows Saddam & installs its puppet regime, I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts that one of the new regime's first actions will be to privatize the oil industry. And who will benefit? A handful of large American petroleum interests. So, I guess I'm saying that yes, this war indeed is about oil.
3. Please to remember that inspections worked pretty well last time around--even though Iraq was very resistant throughout. You may also recall that the first inspectors were tossed when Iraq charged there were US spies on the inspections team. Turns out there were. So the US blew it the first time around, & now are pissing & moaning about those wily Iraqis.
4. Possibly the best reason for opposing this war is the precedent it sets. Which country will be next in line to attempt to overthrow the govt. of another sovereign nation? Will it be India challenging Pakistan? China against Taiwan? Canada v. US?

Gots to go now.
Old 16th February 2003
  #101
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Re: random thoughts

Quote:
Originally posted by hodad
Just popping in, perusing the various posts. Thoughts:
1. Anybody that truly believes the US is doing this for the people of Iraq must be sadly ignorant of the history of US foreign policy. The challenge is to find any US-supported foreign leader who was not a despot.
Hmmm. Lemme see. After WWII, Japan? Germany? Italy? South Korea? Now some of the most prosperous and independent nations on earth, thanks in part to a helpful USA. Any of those do the trick for you?

I don't suppose liberating most of the world a time or two, then leaving them better off than we found them counts. Ahh, yeah. Now I remember. After we went into Kuwait in 1991 to liberate them from Iraq, we took over both countries and set ourselves up an oil monopoly, didn't we?

Oh, wait. I guess we didn't actually do that. It seems that both Kuwiat and Iraq are still soveriegn countries, in spite of your cynical view. It seems that one of them is still run by the same tyrrant responsible for the invasion and rape of his neighbor and the worst intentional ecological disaster in the history of mankind.

Yeah, we suck. Sorry.


Regards,
Brian T


P.S. A direct quote from President Chirac in answer to the question "Do you think Iraq has nuclear weapons?"

Chirac: " I don't think so. Are there other weapons of mass destruction? That's probable. We have to find and destroy them."

Good idea. It's only 12 years after this was supposed to be a condition ending the war started by Iraq invading Kuwait. Yeah, I think we're being awfully hasty here after 12 years.

I can't understand how when President Chirac says publicly that he believes Iraq still has weapons like these and obviously supports terrorism (large checks sent to suicide bombers families, etc), he still thinks we should chill out 12 years later. This is a repeat of some very bad European history.

Pray that Saddam Hussein doesn't discover he has a terminal illness. Because when he goes, he will take some people with him, using the weapons he "doesn't" have.
Old 16th February 2003
  #102
Just to cover all bases here's Jules, Meg & Bev with two different suggestions..

Here's the pro war stance
Attached Thumbnails
another WAR 2003-attack-iraq3.jpg  
Old 16th February 2003
  #103
And here is the Anti war photo!
Attached Thumbnails
another WAR 2003-dont-attack3.jpg  
Old 17th February 2003
  #104
Gear Head
 

on the other hand...

Brian T

Nicaragua
Philippines
Viet Nam
Iran
Panama

Do I need to say more? This is why I don't consider myself so cynical. Perhaps I overstated, but not so drastically.

As for Iraq having been required to get rid of its WMD 12 years ago: had there not been US spies on the inspections team the first UN mission would not have ended so precipitously. We might not be in this mess at all had the US not screwed the pooch the first time around.
Old 17th February 2003
  #105
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Re: on the other hand...

Quote:
Originally posted by hodad
Brian T

Nicaragua
Philippines
Viet Nam
Iran
Panama

Do I need to say more? This is why I don't consider myself so cynical. Perhaps I overstated, but not so drastically.

As for Iraq having been required to get rid of its WMD 12 years ago: had there not been US spies on the inspections team the first UN mission would not have ended so precipitously. We might not be in this mess at all had the US not screwed the pooch the first time around.
I still see your view as cynical.

We turned the Panama Canal Zone back over to the sovereign state of Panama, as per the treaty from many years ago. At this point, the Chinese operate the ports at both entrances to the Canal, to the potential detriment of the US. But a deal is a deal, and we kept our end.

You said the challenge was to find "any US-supported foreign leader who was not a despot". I named several.

Consider the challenge met.


Regards,
Brian T
Old 17th February 2003
  #106
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the first un teams didn't find anything until saddam's own son in law and others defected

europe couldn't even clean their own outhouse (yogaslavia)

human rights- my ass- iraq is nothing but a great gulag ruled through terror, rape and fear

.......north korea is even worse

to equate the u.s. to such regimes is to relinquish ANY grasp of historical or analytical reason

as to what regimes the u.s. supports, have you ever heard of the marshall plan
japan- democracy
germany- democracy
russia- democracy - whom we are giving huge amounts of money, albit not enough, to help them disarm and clean up the horrid waste created by the ever so enlightened bolshviks in their own quest to gift the world their humane revolution

point of fact - since the sixties, and before, the left of europe and america have continually worked for the ultimate goal of appeasment to tyrannical regimes of the communist persuasion, while those regimes enslaved and butchered their own populations, true revolutionary courage in the later 20th century probably can be best found in the countries no longer suffering the yoke of such oppression - ie. the countries of the formerly enslaved eastern block and the few who physically survived the brutality inside the former soviet union

and a few who have escaped such gulags as iraq and north korea

it was the great nemisis of the left, RONALD REAGAN who is looked to as a hero to such people of sacrifice and courage
enough to make you liberals rech i suspect

while the world totters at the edge of doomsday brought to our doors by religious zealots and madmen, the tired proclamations by spoiled children of of spineless liberalism shows it for what it is in some of the posts here - an ostrich mentality that proclaims george bush and the american government he leads to be on the same moral level as saddam hussein's iraq - no if one did not know better, lower than iraqs, for there has NEVER been a march or gathering to oppose the wars or daily butchering that the iraqi people must endure by any leftists or the enslaved population of north korea for that matter

your liberal leftist blather is so one sided and old and without moral integrity as to be meaningless

to understand the rights that even the most heinous criminals enjoy in this country (america)
and to hold this system in comparison to the terrible darkness of saddam's torture chambers where many thousands of good and noble and valuable people have been raped or beaten or strung-up on meathooks is to forfeit any plausible exceptance of reality

the moral equivalent to the catholics or protestant churchs of europe as they plausibly denied the facts of hitler's ongoing
genocide of the jewish race during WWII
same rubish, different spineless assholes is all.
Old 17th February 2003
  #107
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probably the source of those different opinions in politics and behaviour during a situation like this between the "US" and "EUROPE" may be ...

different education & different history

europe already had their wars in front of their housedoors . everybody was effected . god bless most of us havent even arrived on planet earth during those times . but we saw and heard about it since we are little .

no matter if italian , french , spain , german , british ...

there are no heros left , you wont find GERMAN RAMBO movies bout world war 2 . there are just a very few people who are still proud on dfegad what happened . most of us wont have those times back ... NO MATTER WHAT IT TAKES .

the US on the other hand , was never affected by a war , sure a little bit of pearl harbour , but thats basically it . anyway , it was the US again who dropped the first a-bomb . and that , dont blame me for that , shows a lot . they still have their hollywood movies bout their war heros . i never heard one single word like " how could they do that " , no its forgotten and we dont talk about it .

speaking bout terrorism : in europe we still have and had terrorism , was it the raf in germany , looking at ireland , the eta in spain , france , independent radicals for korsika , italy the balkan andandand . why dont we start solving those problems first ??? i read once in a magazine that during the year 2000 we had ~80 wars on our planet .
i cant even come up with 80 different countries .
what have we done about that ??? people are starving in the 3d world . it wouldnt take a war to help em . but we dont , why ?
you can have your own opinions bout that , but it looks like

" NO CASH , NO HELP "

p.s nice pics jules



Old 17th February 2003
  #108
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Quote:
Originally posted by 5down1up

" NO CASH , NO HELP "
5down1up, you nailed it, big time.

Ignorance of historical events and misinterpretation of thoses seems to be the major issue of this discussion.

About US saving the world from tyranny and massacre, well, I might enlight some of the oblivious posters ("the tired proclamations by spoiled children of of spineless liberalism shows it for what it is in some of the posts here", Catfish, I supposed this is partialy directed to my posts).
US did nothing when one million tutsi died in Rwanda if I remember well.
Why suddenly we can trust Bush over this "Saving Iraqi people from oppression" ****.
Let's face it, at the end of the Gulf war, whan US had the oportunity to take Saddam out, and when they had the support of France, Germany, and a udge coalition that included arab countries, they stoped, and set up an embargo that killed hundred of thousand innocent people, making in the same move Saddam stronger to the eyes of his people as the martyr of US agression. France stood up clearly against such embargo, and have never been listen.
other historical event:
Did US droped the A-bomb to liberate Japan?
C'mon, we are not in a kindergarden anymore, they did this to scare the **** out of USSR, undred of thousand deaths in unbelievable sufferings for geopolitical reasons.

another one :Did US solved the Balkan problem : are you ****in kidding me, thoses guys hate their guts since middle age, they will do this again, mark my words. So when you say Europe did not took care of the problem, I have bad news for you : you either.

And as I'm to be flame now, and I couldn't care less about that, I might had something to the "US saving the world" ****, and the recent comments from your main official medias, and even from your governement : yes, USA saved Europe, and we are your allied for that matter, as well as we owe big time to the thousands of US soldiers that are buried in our land.
But that don't make us your vassals for the rest of our existence, only friends, and allied, that HAVE the RIGHT to express their disagreement in a so important matter as going to war and taking innocent lives (cause there WILL be innocents live taken).
Remember that we owe big time to Stalin and the russian people too, does it mean that we should have been communist after the war ?

Is it about war against terrorism ?

America did not, before the 09/11 events suffered much about terorism, and obviously, they don't have the solutions to eradicate it from the face of the Earth. You want to put an end to it, time to solved the illness causing it first. Time to find a solution about palestine, time to stop selling weapons (and that goes for france too), time to stop dealing with scums as Noriega.
You are afraid about Nuclear weapons in the hands of dangerous countries that support indirectly Jihad : start to look at your allies : Pakistan has the bomb, and that is for real, and the chance they are hidding Bin Ladden exceed largely the chance YOU have to put one finger on him in a distant future. Start messing with Saudi Arabia where the terrosism money come from.

I'm not convinced by this "crusade", to say the least. I'm for peace, and REAL solutions that involves REAL care about humanity, and True will of making things better, at last.
The reason I obviously change the tone of my posts is nothing less that I DON'T want to hear that "US do that for the good of Humanity" bul**** no more. Such manicheist short minded vision is vain IMFHO.

One last thing: I also believe that the vision of leaders are not the vision of the street, and the millions of people that were in the street, even in pro-war countries makes me think there is hope in humanity. I still feel I have brothers in all over the world, even in the states. Go figure.

Now you can flame

malice
Old 17th February 2003
  #109
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Knox's Avatar
 

Re: Re: random thoughts

Quote:
Originally posted by BrianT
Hmmm. Lemme see. After WWII, Japan? Germany? Italy? South Korea? Now some of the most prosperous and independent nations on earth, thanks in part to a helpful USA. Any of those do the trick for you?

I don't suppose liberating most of the world a time or two, then leaving them better off than we found them counts.
Yes, but what about taking some of the TRILLIONS of dollars that we are going to spend bombing and killing to liberate Iraq and liberate some of our own multitude of problems RIGHT HERE?

Have you ever thought what THAT kind of money could do RIGHT HERE without killing little brown people in a small foreign country? Homeless problems, finding cures for diseases, farmers, economy on and on. I watched my Mom suffer the most indignant miseraable death with Alzheimer's disease, seen friends rot with Aids, friends loose their limbs one by one with diabetes. What about THEM right here in America?
Old 17th February 2003
  #110
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america has fought a war on its own soil
the civil war......bloody as hell
slightly different than let's say, germanys racist war for more leiberstraum (sp)
or the strange royal family feud that took around 30,000,000 in 1914-17 - we made a bunch of $ on that one too no doubt

economically war is a waste yet one might want to gauge how much the U.S. has lost since the relativally small attack of 911
that can definetly be measured in trillions

war in iraq will probably cost around a 100 billion not trillions
and i am sure it will be worth every penny maybe even for the slaves that will be freed by such action (ie. read iraqi citizens)

the point i suppose and what i believe is a very real fear by our elected (well almost) leaders is what would be the cost of a let's say medium smallpox release or of the detonation of a dirty bomb
in one of our cities

you are correct war builds nothing, but these middle eastern idiots are by there own words become our avowed enemies and have shown by ACTION that they mean to do us harm

unfortunatley for them and probably some innocent others it IS more financially realistic to go on the offensive rather than try to turn a huge free nation (the only nation by the way with such long UNDEFENDED borders) into a fortress

by the way the un mandate of 1991 did not allow for the removal of hussein only that of his army from kuwait
times change.....

o, i forgot we made a bundle in yogaslavia too.

rawanda did not attack america this is not about saving the world it IS about disarming a madman who DOES happen to sit on vast oil reserves in a region of vast oil reserves who HAS shown the inclination on several occassions to use force to gain control of an even greater % of the world's oil supply and if he had waited a wee bit longer he WOULD have had nuclear weapons and WOULD have been able to take the kuwaiti fields and perhaps the saudi ones too

to think that our concern stems only or even mainly from humanitarinism or altrustic motives is foolish
the industrial world is sadly responsible for the genocide in africa
it is a direct result of ongoing arms sales and proliferation
anything for a $
and the residual effect of the cold war

my point is that it sure would be nice to take these grusome weapons out of the hands of dictorial monsters
if not now, when?
if not america, who?

we own two cars a 4 cylinder nissan work truck and a 4 cylinder ford focus
it IS sad that our gross consumerism and addiction to that middle eastern black slime could drive forgein policy, but it does
our system is far from perfect but it does allow for evolutionary
change
the 21 century world truely is a village are we to turn our backs entirely as whole portions of humanity are turned into slaves to impower pychotic egomainiacs who epitomize EVIL?
or does EVIL indeed not exist?

if you think that french and german government motivations do not take into a account there relationship with the present regime in iraq you are mistaken
real politik was invented in europe
by the way the last time i checked even the altrustic french still drove cars

by the way milosivik was killing people in REAL time now he isn't.
that is reality - not your stupid argument that we shouldn't act cause they will just do it again
how do you know that, you don't

there are many valid points to not going to war rapid anti-americanism and myopic hatred of george bush do not in my opinion validate the argument
Old 17th February 2003
  #111
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

I don't agree with everything written here, but it is extremely interesting to read and listen to everyone's contrasting viewpoints. Thanks, guys, for contributing your thoughts so far.

I hear quite a bit of the military angle, as some of my family back stateside serve in the reserves.

Here's a letter written by a marine pilot:

***********************************

Dear Terrorist,

I am a Marine Aviator. I was born and raised in a small town in New England. I come from a family of five. I was raised in a middle class home and taught my values by my mother and father. My dad worked a series of jobs in finance and my mom took care of us kids. We were not an overly religious family but attended church most Sundays. It was a nice small Episcopal Church. I have a brother and sister and I am the youngest in my family. I was the first in many generations to attend college.

I have flown Marine aircraft for 16 years. For me the flying was never a lifelong dream or a "calling," it just happened. I needed a job and I liked the challenge. I continue to do it today because I feel it is important to give back to a nation, which has given so much to me. I do it because, although I will never be rich, my family will be comfortable. I do it because many of my friends have left for the airlines and someone has to do it. My government has spent millions to train me to fly these multi-million dollar aircraft. I make about 70,000 dollars a year and after 20 years will be offered a pension. I like baseball, but think the players’ make too much money. I am in awe of firemen and policemen and what they do each day for my community, and like teachers, they just don't get paid enough. I respect my elders and always use sir or ma'am when addressing a stranger. I'm not sure about kids these days but I think that's normal for every generation. I voted for George Bush not for his IQ, but because I like him. I think I made a pretty good choice.

I tell you all this because when I come for you, I want you to know me. I won't be hiding behind a woman or a child. I won't be disguised or pretending to be something I am not. I will be in a U.S. issue flight suit. I will be wearing standard U.S. issue flight gear, and I will be flying a Marine aircraft clearly marked as a U.S. warplane. I wish we could meet up close in a small room where I could wrap my hands around your throat and slowly squeeze the life out of you but, unfortunately you're hiding in a hole in the ground so we will have to do this a different way. I want you to know also that I am very good at what I do. I can put a 2,000 lb bomb through a window from 10,000 feet up. I generally only fly at night so you may want to start sleeping during the day. I am not eager to die for my country but I am willing to sacrifice my life to protect it from animals like you. I will do everything in my power to ensure no civilians are hurt as I take aim at you. My countrymen are a forgiving bunch. Many are already forgetting what you did on Sept 11th. But I will not forget, and my President will not forget. I am coming. I hope you know me a little bit better, see you soon...sleep tight.

Signed,

A UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS PILOT
Old 17th February 2003
  #112
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by catfish11
war in iraq will probably cost around a 100 billion not trillions
and i am sure it will be worth every penny maybe even for the slaves that will be freed by such action (ie. read iraqi citizens)
I'm going by quotes that were given (they stated trillions).
Old 17th February 2003
  #113
Gear Head
 

panama

Brian--
You're either dodging the issue or simply missing the point here. I was thinking of US support of Manuel Noriega, CIA associate, drug smuggler, etc.

Would you care to defend the Pineapple-faced One?
Old 17th February 2003
  #114
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 

Jon . . . I don't hear anyone say we wouldn't fight for OUR country. I know I certainly would. Attacking the WTC, hell yea, that was our country . . it pisses the hell out of me. I have heard some say things like, "Peaceniks, liberals" and all that crap for some of us that seek a possible different solution then War. That is their bull**** to me. These gung ho posts are great for a Ronald Reagan movie and I believe in America and what it stands for . . . but let's don't forget those are simply words posted on the internet. People will die, countless money spent.

If the millions of people in Iraq are so unhappy . . . how many would it take for them to over throw their own governement and make change? 20,000?

I for one, am not saying change is not important in that region, but change is important right here as well. Have ALL other options failed? Is this the last option?
Old 17th February 2003
  #115
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Knox
I for one, am not saying change is not important in that region, but change is important right here as well. Have ALL other options failed? Is this the last option?
I don't know the answer, but I guess the question is, what is the best option?

If we continue to leave it up to the inspectors, then when the inspections stop someday, or perhaps even as soon as the US military presence around him goes away, it's fair to guess that Saddam will start arming again...so we'd be chasing our tail. Of course, no one wants to see Iraqi civilians and our men getting killed, even in a hopefully quick war.

And as far as the cost of war is concerned, we're already paying for it...our military is already mobilized. The longer they stay to reinforce & credibilize the UN inspections that the rest of the world want to see drawn out, the more it costs...the US. No wonder we're in a hurry while no one else is. We're paying for it. And the more time these resources have to remain there so that Saddam respects the inspectors and their mission, the less those resources are available to deal with other, serious problems around the globe.

So it comes down to, what is the best option? (I wish I knew).
Old 18th February 2003
  #116
Gear Head
 
nick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Knox
If the millions of people in Iraq are so unhappy . . . how many would it take for them to over throw their own governement and make change? 20,000?
Hundreds of thousands if not more allready dead?
Old 18th February 2003
  #117
SawSlut
 
OzNimbus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
I

Here's a letter written by a marine pilot:

***********************************


That was an absolutely great post!
Old 18th February 2003
  #118
SawSlut
 
OzNimbus's Avatar
 

I'll try to keep this as brief as possible!

Well, unlike the Loony Left, I have a differing opinion. With all of the cries of "No blood for oil" it just makes me wonder... have any of these people read a history book?

Consider the second world war: Was that a war over oil? Most would say, "no." However, what where the Germans doing in North Africa? Capturing oil fields. What were they doing in Romania? Capturing oil fields. (Read about the USAAF's raid on Ploesti sometime, GREAT story)
What were the Japanese doing in the Pacific? Capturing oil fields on any island that had one.
But we know the second world war was about more than oil. There was racial genocide, fanatacism, and hunger for power.

Kinda sounds like the present, doesn't it?

Look, I'm all for saving as many lives as possible, but the dictators of "Middle eastern ****hole of your choice" aren't going to give up their seats voluntarily. They must be taken out, wether it's exile or a bullet, they've got to go.
The real solution to this whole terrorism thing is Democracy. REAL democracy. How many Islamic countries in the middle east have a democratically elected government? Zero.

When you have no rights and nothing to live for, Martyrdom looks pretty good. If you give these countries a constitution, a bill of rights guaranteeing equality for ALL, and free elections, things will change. Give people a chance to prosper, and all of a sudden terrorism doesn't look so promising any more.

In the meantime, something has to force the change. Sorry, but I don't think protests are gonna cut it. Try holding a rally to oust Hussien in downtown Baghdad and see how long you live.

Protests didn't get rid of the Taliban. The USAF took care of that.... and boy, the people of Kabul looked really disappointed the day the Taliban were run out of town.

So, if the US goes to war with Iraq, I say, Give 'em hell. I support my friends in the air force, and wish them the best of luck. After all, where do you think I got the name for my studio? A good friend of mine is a gunner on an AC-130 Spectre Gunship.
Old 18th February 2003
  #119
Lives for gear
 
Knox's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by nick
Hundreds of thousands if not more allready dead?
My point was . . . if everyone in Iraq is as unhappy with Saddam as people say. If everyone in Iraq knows he is insane as people say. If we are going in to 'save the people in Iraq' for human rights as some people say. My point was, are you telling me that his staff, his army, his people are so afraid of this man that they can't over throw him on their own?
Old 18th February 2003
  #120
Lives for gear
 

Re: panama

Quote:
Originally posted by hodad
Brian--
You're either dodging the issue or simply missing the point here. I was thinking of US support of Manuel Noriega, CIA associate, drug smuggler, etc.
I think I'm exactly on the point. You were hyperbolic in your indictment of the US government's ill intentions. You said the challenge was to find "any" US supported leaders who were not at one point dictators. I pointed out several cases to the contrary.

Now you're making the much more balanced assertion that the US government is not perfect and that some really poor decisions have been made over the years. That I agree with.

But to be fair, name another government, or even individual for that matter, who has not made some bad choices.

If finding mistakes made by the government interests you, you can likely stay occupied throughout the remainder of your lifespan by any single government in existence. However, that fact does not make hyperbole about the supposed malevolence of the US government into truth.


Regards,
Brian T
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