Marching off to war.

I don’t support the resolution that congress just passed. I don’t support the Bush administration’s obsession with Oil^H^H^HIraq, and I think it gives way too much power to the president.
So I wrote my senators (my US Rep is a hardline Republican so I didn’t bother) and I asked them to please oppose the vote.
Boxer voted no, Feinstein voted yes.
I was very upset with Feinstein’s yes vote…but after reading this from her, I am absolutely apoplectic.

“I serve as the senior senator from California, representing 35 million people. That is a formidable task. People have weighed in by the tens of thousands. If I were just to cast a representative vote based on those who have voiced their opinions with my office — and with no other factors — I would have to vote against this resolution

Yeah.
If she’d, oh, respected the wishes of her constituents, and *gasp* represented> us, she’d have to vote no.
If she’d listened to those pesky voters who put her into office so that she’d carry out our wishes in this silly representative republic we have here.
But there are these mysterious “other factors” that she speaks of, right? Maybe she knows something that we don’t, because she refers to herself as

“…a member of the Intelligence Committee, as someone who has read and discussed and studied the history of Iraq…

Well, that’s pretty compelling stuff, isn’t it? I know that after a year of nebulous warnings I’ve certainly learned to be afraid of my own shadow and turn to my big government to protect me…maybe she’s onto something there, and we shouldn’t mobilze the entire state to throw her out for failing to cast a representative vote based on those who have voiced their opinions with her office.
But there’s this other guy, you see, who ]co-chairs the same committee, and who is privy to the same information. His name is Senator Bob Graham, and he’s a Florida Democrat who disagrees with Feinstein:

Iraq is ”the wrong target” in the war on terrorism, Graham said in an impassioned speech moments before the Senate early Friday gave President Bush sweeping powers to attack Iraq. The Senate overwhelmingly approved the resolution, 77-23, with Graham among the “nays.”
”I predict we will live to regret this day,” declared Graham, who is co-chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee and privy to a gamut of classified information on global terrorism. Graham said it would be ”irresponsible” to go to war with Iraq before confronting more imminent terrorist threats to the United States.

Surely he can’t be serious! Isn’t he privy to the same information that Feinstein has? Maybe he’s paying more attention to the report from the CIA:

Then there is the awkward matter of the CIA report on Iraq released last week, which concluded that U.N. inspections actually worked before they were halted in 1998, leaving Saddam’s military and his chemical-weapons program weaker than they were in the 1980s.
In other words, the head of American intelligence and a top military man don’t think Saddam is planning terrorist attacks against the U.S. now, but might if he was convinced we were coming in after his head. And the CIA says that Saddam’s military machine poses less of a threat to the U.S. than it did a decade ago.

Boy, it sure seems that anyone who doesn’t have something to gain politically is telling us all that the war against Iraq is at best unnecessary, and at worst A Very Bad Idea(tm).
Dianne Feinstein may not be “against us” by the Bush administration’s definition, but she’s certainly against the wishes of her constituents, and is therefore unfit to represent us in the future.
I’ll be thinking about this in November 2006.
—-
Sources:

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2002/10/11/senate_iraq/print.html

http://www.miami.com/mld/miami/4266351.htm

http://www.salon.com/news/col/scheer/2002/10/09/cia/print.html

http://www.salon.com/politics/feature/2002/10/10/intelligence/print.html

197 thoughts on “Marching off to war.”

  1. I have mixed feelings about your post. I too do not support war in Iraq. Based on what I know, I have strong doubts that it is necessary.
    On the other hand, I believe that senators ought to vote based on what they genuinely believe is best for the country, not necessarily as their constituencies wish–because they “in theory” have information you and I don’t. The fact that other senators who voted against it had the same information merely tells me that either (a) one of them is misinterpreting the information, or (b) one of them has a political agenda. But it doesn’t tell me which one it is, though your secondary information is compelling (though what secondary information there is that would support Feinstein, I don’t know, because I haven’t researched it).
    My final point is this: we’re not going to war with Iraq for oil. Or for terrorism. We’re going to war because Bush hopes that war will (a) take our minds off the economy, and (b) spur the economy (it worked in WWII, so ergo, it must work today).

  2. Well, I’m so far down on this list, I’m sure no one will read this.
    It seems that Wil has forgotten about the luxury of freedom that he enjoys to post such articles. Sure, it’s not our job to create carbon-copies of our government, but we have to keep these guys on a short leash?
    I understand that we don’t have any hard evidence that these guys have nuclear weapons. So, let’s just pretend (and hope) they don’t for a second. Leaving the threat of nuclear war behind, the charges against Iraq are as follows:
    1.) Attempted to INVADE other countries (see Nazi Germany)
    2.) Kill/rape/terrorize their own people who don’t share their religious/political views (see Hitler)
    3.) Constantly attempt to shoot down our planes (OUR PLANES!) that are flying over the zones *they* agreed to have patrolled.
    These are the charges against Iraq that merrit removing Saddam from office. Oil is not the number one factor. I’m sure it’s a factor, but no president wants to be in office when a terrorist strike happens. And, I know, no president wants to be in office when a terrorist strikes and an evil country nukes us.
    I respect and follow our president, George W. Bush.
    I know it’s the cool thing to say that your political views learn towards Barbra Streisand or Martin Sheen.
    But for this guy, I’m proud of my country right now. And despite what the media is saying, the world is watching us in awe. We have the responsibility to set the example. Because we are a country not run by religious leaders, but by a democratic society.

  3. I had the same problem.
    Patrick Kennedy (yes, that Kennedy) did the same thing. Talked to thousands of Rhode Islanders who all said they are against the war, and yet voted for it anyway. So at best he is a failed representative. At worst the representative system is a failure and should be abolished in favor of actual democracy.
    But seriously, it’s fucked up when your state has the only Republican senator to vote against the war, and the ‘liberal’ Democrat votes for it.
    Too bad I just closed on a house in RI. I won’t have been living there long enough to vote in the elections in November, and I am no longer eligible to vote in MA.

  4. For anyone interested in the reality of war with Iraq: I suggest reading this article written by Patricia Axelrob, Military Scientist and Writer, at http://www.newsreview.com/issues/reno/2002-10-10/news.asp?Print=1
    According to her report based on a trip to Iraq in 1992, the US dropped one hundred thousand tons (read: 200,000,000 pounds)of bombs on Baghdad and it is “hypothesized that as many as 300,000 civilians died in the conflict.”
    300,000 civilians is equivalent to 3 Jumbo Jets full of people crashing every day for a year or the WTC attacks happening 100 times in a row.
    Do the Iraqi people deserve this? Are we sure we have exhausted all other possibilites to avoid this tragedy? I doubt it. There hasn’t even been a debate. Most people who have the type of knowledge and experience needed to come up with alternate plan aren’t speaking up because of our “with us or against us” attitude.

  5. is the role of a senator to simply represent the majority will of her constituency, which may or may not have access to the same information she does, or is it to vote her conscience, believing that she was elected for her beliefs and willingness to take what she sees as the coorect stand?
    i personally am against the administration’s decision to take war to iraq, but the question regarding the true role of the senate still stands.

  6. I don’t have time to read the comments before mine, but I wanted to come play devils advocate.
    1. If every member of the continental congress voted based on the opinions in the letters they received, which is by nature composed of a self-selecting and therefore flawed sample of the population, the U.S. would never have ratified the Declaration of Independence.
    2. On “sure seems anyone who doesn’t have something to gain politically is telling us all that the war against Iraq is at best unnecessary, and at worst A Very Bad Idea” has something to gain – democratic and independent votes. It is totally a party issue.
    all for now. cheers!

  7. but on a related note… when will bush admit that the us government has become irrelevant, and that citizens may take unilateral preemptive action against snipers and enron executives?
    cowboy diplomacy. it’s all good.

  8. fluffy: Yes, Israel and Zimbabwe have violated resolutions, another reason why the legitimacy of the U.N. is meaningless. Its legislative, executive, and judicial powers are a sham, meaning absolutely nothing when they are utilized in any manner. Since when was the last time you ever heard anyone heed the Secretary-General at any point in the U.N.’s history? Did it stop the Soviets from invading Afghanistan? Or North Korea from invading South Korea? Or North Vietnam from invading South Vietnam? The answer is no, because the U.N. is impotent and powerless. It resembles the League of Nations in the years before World War II, powerless to do a damn thing about a bad problem, and seemingly unwilling to as well.
    And as for suggesting someone that is better, I am more than willing to put forth that the U.S. is infinitely better at deciding the issue than the U.N. will ever be. Mind you, the U.N. gives every last dictatorial and tyrannical regime on the planet a solid voice that they do not deserve. Is such an organization, then, trustworthy in the matter of a debate on the issue of Iraq? Might I point out that the United States is the ONLY country in the world that has had and continues to have a genuinely reasoned debate that involves both sides of the issue. The matter has been discussed ad nauseaum, in casual conversation, in the media, and amongst the fringes of both sides of the political spectrum. Only in America have both conservative and liberal viewpoints been considered and weighed in the debate. Congress held a debate on the issue, lest you forget, and the President has re-stated his case over and over in speech after speech. He’s made quite clear the reasons as to why he’s doing this (and don’t give me any leftist B.S. saying that this is about oil or revenge for Daddy. At the beginning of his presidency Bush signaled he wanted to withdraw from the world and curtail the activities of the U.S. in the realm of “global policeman.” That included Iraq – note that when he came into office, you didn’t hear any proclamations of taking any kind of action against Iraq in any way; it stayed that way until the shock of Sept. 11, which forced him to rethink his foreign policy completely).
    And to suggest that the U.S has attacked countries simply because it suited them is a ridiculous accusation: The bomb was used on Japan to end the war with as minimal a loss of American life as possible (note that evidence has come out that shows Japan was working on a nuclear device, and had we not used ours, Japan would have sure used theirs – they weren’t too far from finishing it), Saddam was our ally because Iran was the bigger threat at the time (it seems like a mistake now, but remember that the U.S. has a history of allying with bad nations in order to take out bigger evils – a perfect example is World War II, and our alliance with the architect of the Gulag, Josef Stalin), and Bin Laden – though helped by the U.S. in the war with Afghanistan, was by no means a creation of the U.S., which is to say that we didn’t train him, nor develop his beliefs, nor teach him the ins and outs of terrorism, or a total hatred of all things Western – we just gave him money to fight the Soviets, and he used it. And you said it yourself: “a host of other psycho’s” – note that if someone is in charge of a nation and is acting like a total psycho (LIKE Saddam) it is better to go in there and get rid of said psycho before that person WILL cause any future harm. We saved Kosovar Albanians from being massacred by Serbs, we got Noriega out of Panama, we marginalized Qaddafi at a time he needed to be marginalized, and we went after Saddam in the First Gulf War after he started bulldozing his way into Kuwait. To suggest that getting rid of these problems is somehow a vice is amazing to me.
    The U.N., sadly enough, was never meant to be any kind of legitimate international government, but more of a sounding board for the grievances of the nations of the world, whatever they may be. That’s why it was born into the world a cripple, and remains one to this day. To suggest that it is anything else BUT a tool is to read more into the U.N. than is there.
    I’m not saying that unilateralism is the way to go (although there is a planetload of evidence in defense of the idea), but to say that we NEED the U.N.? When it can’t even decide whether or not Saddam is a bad person? Give me a break.

  9. Following wil’s lead, I will share what I have learned reading all the posts:
    Its one thing to criticize your government, it is another thing to say the gov’t is wrong because it does not listen to your ‘opinions’
    If you plan on criticizing and speaking out on issues then you should be able to accept the criticism as well
    ‘Liberals’, ‘Conservatives’, ‘Whatever’…who in their right mind prefers war/bombings/terrorism/etc???? The difference is that some people are only willing to take so much before standing up for themselves while others will go out of their way to avoid any conflicts.
    Vigorous discussion and debate on an issue is one of the best characterstics of our country. Thing is…once decided, we should unite and go forward to resolving the issue!
    Vote! This process is imperfect but I still think it is the best there is. Nothing in this world is better!
    Where I stand on Iraq?
    ———————-
    1) I am terrified that this country has or continue to try and obtain weapons of mass destruction.
    2) I am terrified that Al Qaeda and its like will be able to obtain these weapons from Iraq, etc.
    3) I think back to pre 9/11 and wonder if Clinton/Bush came to the public and said they have information that Al Qaeda is planning to attack the US and we have to go into Afghanistan and wipe them out, who would have said Yes? Are we in that same situation now? I do not feel secure with Saddam on the loose.
    4) I don’t think its about Oil. If we wanted the oil, we could have dropped the embargo and made a deal with Saddam. Easier than trying to convince the World to attack Saddam.
    5) I don’t think its about revenge. Although I do think taking Saddam out provides Bush the additional satisfaction of wiping out the guy who tried to kill your dad.
    6) I don’t think its about American imperialism. If we wanted to take over any part of the world, who the hell is going to stop us?
    7) I don’t want to bomb Iraq to the stone age. I want Saddam out (killed, arrested, etc). The people do not need to suffer. Just him and his cohorts.
    8) I think the Arab ‘governments’ are doing nothing. Status quo works for them. I would love to see them all come tumbling down. Let the people their decide for themselves like we do in the USA.
    9) Peace through War…a path that mankind has always followed through the ages.

  10. While I’m not for war, when force is deemed necessary, it’s time to do it and stop babbling over it. Just EXACTLY how many U.N. resolutions have to be broken without any response from the U.N. does Iraq have to pull before anything is done? Just how close to either threating or launching a nuke before we get out of this mentality of “Everything is fine, let’s talk about it for another decade” mentality many have. OIL is NOT the ONLY factor involved in this and to think that, is NOT looking at the whole picture. I’m sure you remember the old adage, “first they came for. then they came for me”. What does it take to get any action out of the nay sayers before you want to respond? MORE innocent lives and a smoking gun? What will your response be then? “Oh, we should have acted sooner!” Enough is enough. If the U.N. isn’t going to have the backbone and or will to carry through it’s obligations, it’s well overdue for action, and to simply sit back and say that the U.S. is ONLY in it for oil, is not only shallow-minded, but ignorant. Speaking of oil, I’m sure you don’t mind driving your vehicle around on a daily basis do you, yet…again, you want no drilling within OUR borders. Time to stop flip-flopping and make a real case! Bottom Line: You can’t have it both ways. To back up nay sayers, it’s always, none of our allies our going..well let me add, you’ll see them jump on board, or they quietly want it, but public denounce to cover their ass. I think it’s time to stop making excuses not only for Iraq, but for ourselves.

  11. Ah, more liberal blather from Uncle Willie(tm). You are very open minded, reading all your news from one or two sources, salon. Wow. How enlightened.
    An answer to jean bond, “Since when did war ever make sense?” Hmm, try the one against Hitler. It is so clear to me, those opposed to the war with saddam have the same mindset as ones that were opposed to the war with the nazis. Saddam uses the same tactics as Hitler. Just look at his recent re-election. He got roughly 100% of the vote – just like Hitler. Of course you appeasers ignore the fact that those voting against him would be executed. Wow, he is a the friend of the liberal. And the liberal perports to support freedom, equal rights, and all that good stuff. Their words and actions here tell a much different story.
    What the left needs to do is look at returning to a mind set where the RULE OF LAW exists in the world. They have lost a total concept of legal and illegal, what is right and what is wrong. It is wrong to target civilians for slaughter, it is not wrong to defend civilians from a madman (saddam)[you liberals are so ignorant you may have thought I was reffering to W]. We need a return to the concept of the rule of law.
    Herr Fluffy, I see you retain you fascist opinions, how quaint. I can tell from your statements that you believe that American lives are worth less than anyone elses. That is because an American life is not worth defending. That is what Bush is trying to do here save lives. Save Iraqi lives. Save Israeli lives, save Scottish lives. We don’t want him to become more powerful and then be forced to stop him, stop him NOW while he is weak. We know he is a war criminal of Hitleresque proportions. The proof that the left seeks is now proof that I want the world to experience, a biological, chemical or nuclear attack on the US, Israel, the UK, or any other nations.
    To use the arguement that we should not attack Iraq now, because he might use weapons, we should wait til he gets them is repulsive. We should wait until he has nuclear weapons, and then stop him, that is ignorant.
    I have a dream, that one day, one day the left will awaken and get an open mind, one that uses logic and has a sense of fairness, and a sense of the rule of law. It is good to be compassionate, but not to be a slave and bend to the wim of the likes of saddam, or OBL.
    I hope that saddam will allow inspectors in, to inspect his ‘palaces’ and war can be avoided. Is it likely that he will do so? No. I don’t want to see anyone be killed, not even saddam, but he must comply. If not God save him.

  12. As an Aussie, I was againt a war with Iraq (Australia would most likely send SAS and possable a brigade of infantry with armour support).
    Now with the bombing of Bali, I can see that we will notbe going to war. Most of our defense assets will be needed back here in case we deploy to Indonesia.
    This wont be a war as such, as if we do go in, it will most likely with Indonesian political support (But NOT with Indonesian Millitary support, they are still pissed with Australia because of our East Timor support). If our PM John Howard pushes for war with Iraq in this political climate (much like 9/11 in the US, but per capita terms, this is a MORE severe attack. I am not belitttling 9/11, Australia until now has been relitively terrorsim free, so this is a REAL shock to our system.) hge will most likely get slapped by the people.
    The major question is that, after 50 years of steadfast support of the US, will the US support us? I think not. The Bush administration has a burr up its ass with Iraq, when the real threats in the war against terrorism is in fact Saudi Arabia and the Pakastani intelegence comunity. The Talaban was a Pakastani movement, supprted by the Pakastani military intelgence, yet no action has been made to reign these people in. If the US can not focus on the real threats, what chance have we got of US assistance if we need it for overseas operations?

  13. Darryl,
    Are you NUTS? Do you honestly think the U.S. would abandon its allies? If there’s one thing the U.S. is, it’s faithful. If you need our help, you can be damn sure that we’ll be there with you. That’s the thing about the United States. We’ll sit here and take every last piece of anti-American bashing from our allies, but when the chips are down, we’ll be right there to help you out. The fact you even think we wouldn’t is insulting.
    And here’s one for all you liberals/progressives/socialists/communists on the board here:
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37017-2002Oct16.html
    North Korea ADMITS to having a Nuclear Weapons Program in VIOLATION of an agreement signed with the Clinton administration!
    If the North Koreans would lie to us so blatantly, what makes you think Saddam and the Iraqi terror regime wouldn’t lie about having chemical/biological/nuclear weapons? Chew on that one.

  14. Wil, I have no idea why you aren’t for this. There is nothing good about Saddam Hussein. Saddam is a very evil person. He has experimented with Biological, Chemical and is researching Nuclear Weapons. Sometimes it is in our best interests to make a preemptive strike to prevent another 9/11. Also, we have evidence that Saddam could have supported Al Qaida. Wil Bush said it best….we cannot continue to stand by and wait for a sign that we need to go and get rid of Saddam. The sign that we wait for could very well be a mushroom cloud. I am not saying Bush is entirely right. Personally, I like that he is trying to work with the UN on this. If Saddam will let inspectors back in and they are allowed to go anywhere, including Saddam’s Palaces, well, I don’t see a need to go to war. Oh Wil, Iraq has just had an election where 100 percent of the possible voters voted and the all voted for Saddam. One of Saddam’s top advisors said that turn out was absolute. You mean noone was sick? Everyone that could vote did? Wow. Something that we can’t even achieve here.

  15. I’m new to the site (this is my first post) and I am constantly impressed with the site’s content. There is a good discussion going on here and it is refreshing to see. I’ll read the site more often.
    Several people have posted that war in Iraq is inevitable. I hope it’s not, but it may be. But now? Without international support? With Bush leading the charge? No.
    Bush did not run his campaign on an international platform. Far from it in fact. Ironically, he has had three or four major international issues for every national one. None of the international issues went particularly well, and most of them could have been avoided with a less arrogant stance. I’m not saying that the US should always bow to international pressure. But the US is one country out of 200 in the world, and since Bush took office the country has not been well represented on the world’s stage. Kyoto. ABM Treaty. Iraq. China/Spy plane. Israel-palestine. Steel taxes. Lumber taxes. The list goes on and on and on. When will the Bush administration learn that it represents just one country in the world and that the United States is a member of the international community? The US has a lot of ground to make up internationally, and as the economy and other national priorities continue to be neglected, it’s losing ground nationally as well.
    Something needs to be done. Invading Iraq unilaterally is the wrong thing to do.

  16. Let’s assume that we are going to attack Iraq, one way or another. We must do one hell of a job of public relations (PR) to try to get as many Muslims (all Muslims are not Arabs) as possible to see it our way, that it is justified, and to approve of our actions. Many of the more than 1 billion one hundred eighty-eight million Muslims in the world believe that it is a duty laid on them by God (Al= The, Lah = God) that if any Muslim, anywhere, at any time, is attacked by a non-Muslim (infidel or not; Christians and Jews are NOT infidels, they are people of the book; all others are infidels) they must go to his aid, no matter what he did to provoke that attack in the first place. So if all those Muslims perceive that our attack against Iraq is an attack against Islam, not just against a madman Hussein, we Westerners (not just Americans) will be getting wiped out one by one, in countries all around the globe, from Arabia to Zanzibar. If they have to die to do it, they believe so much the better. They go immediately to Paradise, and don’t have to wait around until Judgement Day (they believe Jesus will come back then, not the Prophet Mohammed, pbuh) to be judged and see if they even get to go into Paradise. Totally ignoring the Muslims and pushing them aside to attack Iraq would be like deliberately kicking a beehive with nearly two billion killer bees inside. Granted that only a small percentage would actually be involved in stinging us, but that is still a large number. I have lived about 15 of my adult years in Islamic countries, most of them are good people, but easily stirred up by a fiery Mullah in the Masjid (mosque).

  17. Wil, I agree with you on Iraq but don’t follow your logic on representative government. In my state, the majority of people seemed to favor the war resolution. Does that mean that my senators were right to vote for the resolution, as both did? Yes, we elect people to represent us but we also elect them to use their best judgment. Sounds like Sen. Feinstein has crummy judgment, though.

  18. Wil,
    Thanks for having the courage to not follow the sheepy mentality of so many other Americans who get most of their news from the FoxNews Channel.
    I too am extremely disappointed in Feinstein and will definitely remember this. She’s been pissing me off more and more as of late, and this just takes the cake.

  19. Ah, I see that NYC has returned, and is in full flow once again. Hello from Scotland.
    First of all, I would like to start with a Geography lesson. Sitting between Scotland and Germany is a large body of water, often called a sea, and a country called France. You continued use of the term “herr fluffy” in regards to myself is quite erroneous, and the implication that I am some sort of Nazi is more than a little upsetting. It is a great shame that you seem to be incapable of putting forth reasoned arguments without resorting to unneccessary and unsupportable insults. You also call me a fascist, which is rich coming from someone who is openly supportive of a war which you know, BEYOND DOUBT, will kill innocents as well as the guilty. And I see that you WANT a nuclear or biological attack on the West. More death. More destruction.
    Im sick of death.
    You accusation that I somehow value American lives less than any others is simple proof that you are better at being blinkered and twisting what people write than you are at understanding what they write. You wrote: “I can tell from your statements that you believe that American Lives are worth less than anyone elses.”
    I challenge you to supply evidence of this unfounded BS. Where in my previous posts have I made such a statement?
    I wrote this:- “Is human life really so cheap to you people? or do you think that only American lives are worth anything?”
    and this:- “please sir, tell me why, we stick a man on the moon but life down here’s so cheap?”
    I did not write anything like what you are suggesting I wrote.
    For religious reasons I view all human life to have equal value, no matter who they are or where they come from. All people have the same potential to enhance the sum of humanity, and their lives have equal value until they knowlingly and willingly do something to reduce that value, such as rape, murder or cruel exploitation for personal gain. This is not a fascits viewpoint. You cannot judge a persons worth by their race or their nationality, only by their actions. In this way I view Saddam to be a prime candidate for hellfire kindling. I believe he has forfeited his lifes worth and is due punishment, as have many in his government and his army. But there are millions of people in Iraq who have not done so, whos lives have real value exactly because they are not murderers or monsters, just people trying to survive. These people will suffer worst, and before Saddam would in the event of a war. IF we go after Saddam, let it be in a manner which will not end in thousands or millions of people dying. You talk of fairness, but I cannot see anything fair about slaughter.
    I have never argued that we should wait until Saddam gets WMD or until he uses them before we do anything. I am saying that he will DEFINATELY use them if we attack in a full force military manner and that some other solution should be sought. I am saying that we should listen to what the politicians, the observers and the watchdogs are saying when they say that a military assault on Iraq will have massive repurcussions around the Middle East and could very easily turn into a bloodbath that spans all the nations there and even beyond. All the indications are that the US is not taking this weapons inspections thing seriously, and is not giving it the chance it needs to work. I know it failed in the past, for many reasons (Saddam being intractable for one, and that the inspection teams were often exaggerating the size of his arsenal for another), but if we don’t give it enough of a chance to succeed NOW, then we are nothing more than warmongers.
    You talk of appeasers…again. I while back I posted for you a dictionary definition of that word. Very few of the Liberals on this board, if any, who are begging for us to find a way to neutralize Saddam without more DEATH, fit into that definition. Your view on those who oppose Saddam is very simplistic. The parralells only go so far. Hitler was invading countries left, right and centre, and persecuting jews. The people arguing against fighting him were fools. Saddam hasn’t invaded anyone since the Gulf War (and I recall that my reaction to his invasion of Kuwait went something like this, “Fucking hell! He’s attacking Kuwait! Fuck! Someone do something!”, and so we did.), and hasn’t shown any sign of it. The argument that we should attack him because he has or MAY have WMD does not hold, specifically because there are a host of other nations who are also controled by vile regimes and that have WMD, who we are not threatening to attack and in some cases have been selling weapons and calling allies, (Pakistan and Israel, anyone?). The US and Britian are both possessed of WMD, yet we condemn others for possessing them? If that was a strong reason for invading other nations half the world would be at war by now. The Soviet Union had nukes during the Cold War, but I notice that there wan’t a Unilateral, full scale invasion by the West into Russia.
    I’ll close with some statements.
    I agree entirely with the following statement.
    “I want Saddam out (killed, arrested, etc). The people do not need to suffer. Just him and his cohorts.”
    and I’ll repeat this one.
    “there is no garauntee that bombing the shit out of Iraq will kill only those who deserve death, or prevent terrorism from continuing its blood-soaked excesses.”

  20. At least you have a representative and two senators to contact, Wil. Here in the “capital of the free world,” a/k/a Washington, D.C., we have no representation.

  21. Lucky for you, Wil, Senators are supposed to act in the public good when they deem it necessary. They’re not supposed to bend to your every whim.
    Whereas you can sit here and hug a tree, we’ll take out an oppressive dictator who is most likely armed to the teeth.
    Pussy.

  22. Don’t be an idiot. I hate to be clique but war is not pretty and neither is standing up for your freedom. Get off your pompus knees and enjoy your liberty. Many would love to take it away from you. I can’t believe how MORONIC everyone who wrote you sound. Do you need a kick in the face to see REALITY! Life is tough and full of hard decisions. Protecting our country is one of them. Ray Brower must be spinning in his grave.

  23. is our freedom being threatened…will iraq bring us to our knees…will saddam rule us too…c’mon some of you are so hungry for war that you have lost perspective on the real problem…SADDAM HUSSEIN…he is not a country…he is a man!…he should be the target!…not all of iraq.

  24. d.burr, hmmm, interesting are you saying the US should assasinate saddam? I can’t advocate that, unless war is declared. In that case, I would not be opposed. Do you think war should be declared, and then send a team to ‘remove’ him?
    It is a provacative idea. I can see some potential problems, saddam’s son is more virulent than his dad, do we remove him too, or risk him coming into power and using the weapons they do have as revenge for his father? I don’t want to risk that! If we get both then can you assure me that no general or other person could take over and be worse than saddam.
    I agree saddam is not a man the world should tolerate as leader of a nation. If we don’t get the total weapons inspections needed, what do we do nothing? That is not acceptable. If we face that situation and do nothing the rule of law is gone, the US and the UN will be polically impotent. Is that what the left really wants? Do they want a criminal like saddam, to hold the world hostage, as he will WHEN he gets nuclear weapons. He will also likely give those weapons to terror groups, or make his own groups and deploy them around the globe. If he hasn’t already. Something needs to be done, and the sooner then better. The longer we wait, the bigger threat he is to us all.
    Just look at the CF(cluster foxtrot) that Clinton caused with North Korea, his unwillingness to enforce inspections of the nuclear plant HE had built, and now they too have nukes. The US basically gave the DPRK nuclear weapons. The French and Germans are doing the same with saddam. No, not because they are appeasers. Let me explain. The Germans, gave saddam the plans for the NATO approved nuclear process for making warheads. Germany folks. The same Germany calling Bush – Hitler. The GERMANS are quickly moving in the direction of becoming the worlds biggest threat. The German spy responsible for delivering these plans to saddam, was tried and convicted in Germany, found guilty of HIGH TREASON, given a fine equvalent to 30 thousand US dollars and RELEASED. Now Germany is unwilling to stop the monster they are creating. To me that makes Herr Schroder sound like Frankenstein. Now for France, they have albiet in the past done a Clinton, and tried to build Nuclear plants in Iraq. Does Iraq still have nuclear material? We don’t know the weapons inspectors weren’t allowed to look where they think the stuff was located, why because it was in saddams ‘palaces’. These sprawling cities are the locations where biological, chemical and possibly nuclear weapons are being made. Can saddam make dirty nukes, it is almost a 100% possiblity.
    I also keep hearing this insipid saying something like, the US and the west has WMD so why should’nt Iraq and other countries be able to have them. The US and the west have democracies accountable to the people of their countries. There is NO MORAL EQUVALENCY. Iraq WILL use them, the US has them as a deterent, and reference material to produce vaccines. And if you who take this stance belive that Iraq is morally equivalent to the US then you are too unreasonable to have a discussion with.
    As my reference to Herr Fluffy, above I shall not respond to his attacks. I stand behind what I said, you are an antiamerican arabist fascist. My hertitage is Scottish, and if you are a representative of what they have become, then thank GOD my ancestors moved here. In the war with Iraq, yes some inocent people will die, but if we don’t stop him then ALL of those that die will be inocent. I have total trust that God will be fair in His judgements, the thing is I don’t want saddam to present Him a list with any more names of the innocent. You do. I do care that Iraqis who are blameless will die, but that is saddam’s fault, not mine, yours or Bush. To gain insight on my perspective read the Book of Job. In that book he asks God questions relating to human suffering. One of those questions was why do the strong get to dominate the weak and kill and drive them to despair. Why does God allow these people to commit atrocities. The answer was that the light scares those people and like insects in a blanket when it is unrolled and flipped, they crawl under the rocks, but return at night. And the answer on stopping these people is to help yourself. He will make them pay in death, it is your responsiblity to sto them in life. Saddam operates at night, he is the insect. He kills, steals, lies, bullies and destroys. We must help ourselves and stop him. We need to be the light. Do you Fluffy advocate a stronger dark – more suffering of the weak. Or should we bring light and hope to the afflicted and allow those in Iraq to live in peace, without an evil dictator, fearing everyday for life and family. Fluffy, Hitler perceuted Jews, saddam persecutes the Kurds, and other muslims. He is doing it now as I write and will in another 11 years if we do nothing. Inspectors can do nothing to help them. You speak of the innocent dieing. It seems you only care about the ones an attack MAY kill, not the ones he is now torturing and executing. Be consistent.
    You give a quote, “there is no guarauntee that bombing the shit out of Iraq will kill only those who deserve death, or prevent terrorism from continuing its blood-soaked excesses.”, I can guarantee that if nothing is done about saddam, ONLY those you say are deservant of death will prosper, and kill more innocents, steal their propery and create more fear. Be the light Fluffy, be the light.

  25. NYC
    I get the feeling that we are both pointing in roughly the same direction, but takingwidely differing courses.
    I think I’ve made it fairly clear that I hate Saddam and do not like the idea of him continuing as leader of Iraq. I have stated time and again that he needs to be removed, decisivly. I just don’t think that Unilateral War is the correct, or only, way to do it, and all of my posts have tried to urge people to look for alternatives. Many people are assuming that war is the only option and not looking at any others.
    I would like you to explan something. This sentence to be exact.
    “you are an antiamerican arabist fascist”.
    By “antiamerican” I assume you mean that i hate America. I don’t. I don’t see boundaries of Nations. In the end, we are ALL human. Even Saddam was, once. Now Im not so sure. What I hate is certain attitudes that exist within America (but are by no means confined there…they exist within Britain too, and beyond), about the right of might, wealth and power. I don’t like the way that America insists that it is the best country on the planet, yet has the highest % crime rates in the world, and is one of the worst polluters. I cannot fathom the NRA (who are pushing for the conviction of a 4-year old girl for accidentally shooting her father with his own gun) or America’s rampant gun culture. But in the end, I don’t hate America. It too complex an issue for that. I hate generalizations.
    By “arabist”, i assume you mean that I am sone sort of apologist for people like Saddam, and support the Arab world over the West. Hell no. Saddam is a cunt. I fervently ask for the opportunity to watch him die. I want to inject Bin Laden with Ebola Zaire and lock him in a Lvl 4 Hot Zone and leave him to bubble away and suffer for what he has done. Much of the Arab world is oppressive towards women and minorities, and is seeded with corruption, by people who have read the Koran by don’t get the real meaning it was trying to convey.
    And I still don’t get where the “fascist” thing comes from. My trusty Encarta dictionary tells me that a Fascist is someone who “supports or advocates a system of government characterized by dictatorship, centralized control of private enterprise, reppression of all opposition and extreme nationalism.” Since I have never advocated dictatorship, or supported Saddams regime, AM supportive of freedom of expression and opposition and enterprise, and am not particularly nationalistic (as I said earlier, I see people, not boundaries), I don’t see how you can call me a fascist. I would like for you to support that claim, and have asked you to do so several times, but you have not. If you continue to fail to do so, I’ll just have to conclude that you cannot justify it and are resorting to name-calling.
    I am not advocating that we do nothing about Saddam, and never have, but I am disturbed by the extremely high possibiliy that a Unilateral war will turn the entire Middle East into a sea of blood, and escalate into a slaughter on such a scale that the costs of removing Saddam by purely military means could be catastrophic. Too many trained, experienced observers and polititians are warning of that possibility, they should not be ignored out of hand.
    What scares me is the indication that many of Americas leading polititians and generals seem to be treating the new weapons inspections as some sort of formality, a diversion while we get our weapons in place to whup Iraqi ass. We need to give the weapons inspections every viable chance to succeed.
    We are fighting monsters. lets make sure we don’t become like them.

  26. Fluffy, you are scaring me, we are pointing in the same direction. lol. Listen, I just think that saddam has flipped off the world for 11 years, he wont let us go where he has WMD’s, you know that. This is just more pussy footing, the guy has to be stopped. Weapons Inspectors can’t do it. That Blix guy is a fraud. Kofi Annon is almost brain dead. This UN thing is just a big distraction. Do I like war, no hell no. Is it inevitable with saddam, sadly yes. And most unfortunately, the UN is or has become meaningless. If the US acts without a new UN resolution, it will be the fault of the French and Russians. The US will leave the UN, and it will be totally limp and dead. I don’t want that to happen. Saddam can thumb his nose at the world and you guys say, ah give him another chance. So what US and British pilots are shot at every day, so what one day one will be shot down and executed by saddam. At least no innocents will die, right? Yikes! The weapon inspectors can help the Kurdish, and other groups being exterminated by saddam. What are we saying, the world has ignored their suffering for time inmemorial, why should we stop to help them now? Bush the elder was wrong, he should have taken out saddam, but so was the UN for not putting that in their resolution. Is the US now to be blamed for a world decision?
    Fluffy, we live in a world with very few good guys, it amounts to only the US, UK, Australia, Canada, Israel, and a few other minor countries, just a handfull. We are it, the light. There are borders, thank God. Because around that border of light is true dark and evil. I too believe that most people are good and decent, but their governments are not, and it is impossible politically to seperate the two. In most countries, the government in effect owns its citizens, they cannot leave or express opposing opinions. What we can’t do is allow those evil governments to spread, or gain power. If we do it may not be possible to stop it, and the entire world will enter darkness again, like it did with the fall of Rome. Only this time, we may not be able to regain civilization, at least not one I want to live in, or our children deserve to live in. We must be constantly vigilant, checking, and checkmating, if necessary, evil powers. In the world today the nations of Islam are a source of great evil. The people, the religion may not be, but the governments are, so it is impossible to distingush the two, until the government is toppled. At that time, we have a different story.
    So, you want saddam removed, HOW? PLEASE, BE VERY SPECIFIC.
    Now for my labeling you as an antiamerican, arabist fascist. The three are linked. I disagree with the definition you use for fascist. While I am pleased you purchase software from the evil microsoft empire (lol), their dictionary is sub-par. My definition comes from the 1967 edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, unabridged. It says, and I am paraphrasing, it is a person unwilling to look at other sides of an arguement, is unbending, unwilling to compromise. By the way, any dictionary after that time is shite. So let me use a ramdom quote, ‘I hate is certain attitudes that exist within America’, so we should all be weak, penniless, wusses. How quaint. The US is the BEST country in the world, and if you don’t believe it, just ask my uncle. Sam is his name, he’s one mean hombre. Of course ask a Brit, and he/she is likely to say England is the best country in the world, or Scotland or Wales, or Ireland but just ask John… John Bull he’s one mean hombre. And they would be right, that is what we all think. Our country is the best. Don’t hate a guy because he loves his country, that would be fascist. Being British, I thought you would use a real dictionary, with the Queens English. Unfortunately, being an American I can never truely speak the Queen’s English, but I do aspire to that.
    As for the NRA thing, huh, what? What are you reading, I’m taking your library card away. Remember, don’t smoke pot and read salon.com at the same time, it destroys brain cells, I’ve read it is more effective than a lobotomy.;> No, but seriously, I never have heard of such a thing and I’m a member of the NRA. You see guns are fun to shoot, try it! People sometimes fear a firearm until they fire one, and then they are hooked. They are good for protection, not only from criminals, but unfriendly governments too. What if jolly olde England didn’t have them, you guys would probably be speaking French, German and Russian by now. Instead you get to share a tongue with us, how unseamly. You know our crime here is directly proportional to the number legal gun owners in a city. Yup, DC, NYC, LA all have terrible crime rates, and guess what people there can’t legally own guns. And guess what else, the criminals still get guns. Hmm, I wonder where from? Ah, yes other criminals, who make money by selling it other criminals who in turn attack at will unarmed people in their homes. Places where guns are legal, in this country, have significantly lower crime rates. In the city where I live, they are legal, and in the last month 2 robberies in the same night were stopped by a homeowner with a firearm. The Police said, well I guess that will stop crime in that part of the city for awhile. Which guy are you going to rob or kill, one with a .357, or a guy holding a plastic fork. Three guesses and the first 2 don’t count. That is why we Americans like firearms, we are free while we have them, when we don’t we are slaves, of crime and corruption and liberals. Why in the UK, I have noticed a steep increase in crime since guns were outlawed, hmm coincidence. The government there has taken away your most basic of freedoms, the right to self protection, and you applaud that, inconceivable. That said, I don’t hunt, but respect those that do. So long as they do so humanely, not shoot to wound but to kill. Be accurate. Again, try firing a round, be a free man.
    Now as for being an arabist, by arabist I mean one who prefers islam to other cultures, to the point of being traitorous to their own country. Protect your own citizens first and foremost, that is the primary duty of every free government, read Thomas Paine. Read John Locke. You say we shouldn’t go to war, that that is wrong. You say you want to take out saddam, well ok, which is it. But how does one accomplish this with out an armed conflict. He is their leader they aren’t going to say ok, here saddam is, praise Allah. In a perfect world they would give him up, there would be no war, everyone would be happy and well fed, they would be Americans and gun owners …. oh I got ahead of myself. We don’t live in a perfect world, this isn’t LaLa Land, we must face facts. They are rough, and brutal and depressing, but this is what has to be done for the safety of the world.

  27. To continue on with why gun ownership is important, read below. Mr. Luttig may have lived had he had a firearm. Not suprisingly amnesty international never replied to my letter, they are fascists of the highest regard. Please read their link below, and look at independent news reports to see how misleading the AI page truely is.
    Sent to: [email protected]
    To whom it may concern,
    I happened upon your webpage concerning, Beazley, a man executed in Texas. The site was, http://web.amnesty.org/ai.nsf/print/AMR511052001?OpenDocument
    I am troubled by what I read. There seems to be an extreme lack of sense of justice and empathy and sympathy. I would appreciate a response to the following aspects of concern in your report. I have fully read it, and find some thing inexplicable.
    First, with what logic are you justifying the statement that the US and in particular Texas, is executing minors. At the end of the report, it clearly states that those executed were over 18 and in most cases in there 30′s. These are NOT children. They are not 13 or 14, as the victims of execution in Iran and other nations. To compare the two, undermines some good work you could perform in those nations. It seems as though your agenda blinds you to actual injustices in the world. You confuse the age of conviction with the age of execution. Age CAN NOT be an EXCUSE for murder. Mr. Luttig, a veteran and elderly man was an innocent, executed by Beazley, and his thug friends. A noticeable omission from your report was that they tried to murder Mr. Luttig’s wife Bobbie. In fact Beazley executed Mr. Luttig, and then tried to execute his wife, she escaped and then Beazley turned and shot Mr. Luttig again, point blank in the head. This is not the act of a kind – caring person, it is the act of a – unspeakable person. One with any sense of justice should have no sympathy for such a person, capable of unspeakable evil.
    Secondly, the way in which the report reads, it is as if you are trying to impugn the character of Mr. Luttig, the report says, is it possible that the identity or status of the murder victim and his family played any role in the prosecutorial decision? Here you seem to be implying that his death was less important than some social role. In addition, it bashes the family. Has your organisation no shame. To use the victim of a crime to further your agenda. This is SICK! Mr. Luttig and his family are the innocent victims. It was Beazley’s selfish and evil act that effects and affects his family. For the victims to seek JUSTICE you compare their pain, with the victimizer’s family, in a gross twisted putrid way. The victimizer’s family can say, bye to the murderer, they can prepare. The victim’s family is afforded no such luxury; they must spend the rest of their days mourning for the evil selfish act of another. An indefensible act. If we were to be solely interested in how punishment would affect the murder’s family, we would not punish the murder at all. Perhaps this is your ultimate goal, to punish the victims and praise the executioners of the innocent? After all, we would not want to cause any stress to people, paying for their actions.
    Thirdly, the case is muddied by an unclear argument. Your real target of attack is the death penalty itself. It makes no difference to you how the victim’s family feels, and what their wishes may be. This makes your argument morally steadfast? The way I see the question is this; can you ensure that those who would kill indiscriminately will remain imprisoned until death? Can you ensure they will never kill another? I can! The death penalty insures that murder can never kill again, never hurt another!
    Is your real argument with 17 year old being charged as 18 year olds, or is it the sentence? It is obvious. The sentence, regardless of the age.
    In conclusion, I hope one day your organisation can go after the real sources of totalitarianism: Iran, Iraq and other such regimes and allow just punishments, capable of ensuring the guilty can not hurt the innocent. Please in the future, be intellectually honest and not misrepresent the facts. The US does not execute 17 year olds or younger prisoners. As for the death penalty, if it causes Europeans to refuse investments in the US, so be it. We don’t need the arrogance of the French with their bloody hands at the guillotine, the Germans and the death camps, to tell us how to punish our criminals. They and the rest of Europe can coddle their murders, and allow them to murder more of the innocent in an area with a total lack of morality, so be it. Leave the US alone; we have our laws, you have and, apparently, will continue with your imperfect ones.
    Sincerely,
    NYC

  28. NYC
    Don’t be scared. Fear is the mindkiller, and all that. Seriously, is it really that hard for you accept that maybe, just maybe, I might actually agree with you on certain points. Shock horror. I think I just felt the world tip on its axis.
    What do we agree on, you ask? Well, for one thing we both agree that Saddam is evil. Hows this, be both agree that Saddam should be removed from office (whoa man….lets not get crazy, fluffy and NYC agree on something!? surely not.)
    Unfortunately there are lots of things we don’t agree on. (you list Israel amongst the “good guys” – the ordinary people, maybe, but not the murderers in charge). I’m also concerned with your simplistic view of the world. “Good guys” and “bad guys”. White hats versus black shirts. You know its not that simple. Good guys don’t act the way we have in the past (some of those bad guys were made worse for OUR causes). Its just not that simple, and if we blinker ourselves in that way then we’re all fucked.
    “We must be constantly vigilant, checking, and checkmating, if necessary, evil powers.” – Im all for that, up to a point. Such vigilence becomes pointless if liberty becomes indistinguishable from serfdom, and we can no longer fund, support or give aid to evil powers, such as we did with Iraq and Bin Laden. Frankly, we should not have done so anyway.
    We cannot justify a butchery of Islam. Islam itself is not evil, and if we did we would be moving into a “holy war”, and death and hatred would be the only result. Haven’t we evolved past that now? Well?
    I urge people to look for alternatives. I urge you to do so. There must be some way we can depose Saddam without killing half of the Middle East. I’m not a strategist and I don’t pretend to be, so I can’t give you highly specific and detailed set of options. Someone suggested sending in a special forces squad, such as the SAS to infiltrate Iraq and remove Saddam and his cronies, while simultaneously ensuring that there are people able to step into his place who would be sympathetic to the West and would comply with International law. Hey, Im not saying its a good idea…its just an option. Thats all. Whats annoying me is that Bush has trundled out the “lets invade Iraq” plan, and all the hawks are shouting “yes, invasion is clearly the only way and everyone who suggests moderation or alternatives is a commie-fascist-pinko!”. No one is looking for alternatives, and anyone who suggests that we should is being attacked, on every level. So much for reasoning.
    On the Encarta Dictionary. Yup its from Microsoft (bastards -why can’t you gits code software properly?), its in book form. Narf. Your definition “a person unwilling to look at other sides of an arguement, is unbending, unwilling to compromise.” sound more like you than me. If you were to take the time to re-read all of my posts on this and all the other subjects that we have discussed, you would find that I have been comprimising, and conceeding points where due, time and time again. You refuse to even consider that war may not be the best way of dealing with Saddam. Don’t you fit your own definition quite well? I’m not a fascist and you are not a fascist and we both know it. Neither of us supports oppression over liberty, and both of us are trying to understand a complex situation.
    “so we should all be weak, penniless, wusses.” – No. of course not. But we should not see exploitation, wealth and physical might as a virtue in of itself.
    “Don’t hate a guy because he loves his country, that would be fascist.” I don’t. Your right it would be fascist. I understand patriotism. I don’t hate Americans for loving America, but I do hate it when Americans expect everyone else in the world to love America also. As you say, we love our countries too, and we get annoyed when Americans expect tell us that they are better than we are and expect us to agree. I dont go around telling preople that Scotland is better than England, or Spain, or Canada, or Ireland or France, or Holland or Sweden or any of the other places I’ve visited.
    You jibe about the “Queens English” is an old one. I got tired of it a long time ago. American English has added many words and phrases to the greater whole of the language, many that are really usefull. So I decided to accept the fact that Americans pronounce and spell many words differantly, and let it go. So should you. Languages need to evolve to survive.
    About guns and the NRA.
    “guns are fun to shoot, try it!” I know, I have. Several times. Shotguns, rifles and one pistol.
    I bet that sniper who is waltzing around America just now (any more news on if the authoriies are closer to catching him yet?), really loves guns. I bet he’s getting a real kick out of it.
    “you guys would probably be speaking French, German and Russian by now.” Theres a large differance between Britian and America. We don’t have a gun culture in the smae way as America and we didn’t during either of the World Wars. The army and the Volunteers carried the guns, onto the battlefield, but few other people had them or where.are allowed to use them. The % of gun-related deaths in Britian is miniscule compared to that of America. However, I would be very interested to see your evidence that there is a correlation between anti-gun laws in Britian and any rise in violent crime. (this is called conceeding that you might have a point and asking to know more – how fascist of me)
    “The Police said, well I guess that will stop crime” – isn’t that the job of the Police? Stopping crime?
    “by arabist I mean one who prefers islam to other cultures” – I don’t I thought I had made that clear. I don’t like Islam as a religion, particularly, and I don’t like most Islamic states. Any country that wants to stone someone to death for adultery, but cannot be bothered even trying to find out who she was adultering with…well, lets just say they get a big thumbs down from me.
    I really don’t understand you. Do you hate me that much, just because I’m not too happy with the concept of going to war. Why is war the ONLY answer?

  29. EXPLANATION.
    I just read something I wrote in that last post, and it reads VERY badly. It is the following line.
    “Such vigilence becomes pointless if liberty becomes indistinguishable from serfdom, and we can no longer fund, support or give aid to evil powers, such as we did with Iraq and Bin Laden. Frankly, we should not have done so anyway.”
    This should be stating that if we are truly the good guys then we cannot justify funding Iraq in the way we did, or Bin Laden or any other such people. We can no longer stride the world aiding the enemy of our enemy, not when it means funding terror.
    Sorry for this. it was a badly written line

  30. First, let me say that I am appalled that our congress has gone along with this idiotic war.
    However, I have to say that it is our representatives’ RESPONSIBILITY to be more than a mouthpiece for their constituents. They must weigh their own opinion, balance it with what they know, and what their constituents believe, and then vote accordingly.
    You, then, have the right to vote for or against that representative based on their record overall, but they do have the responsibility to use their personal judgement.
    Read the script/see the movie or play 1776, and pay close attention to the words of Lyman Hall, just before the final vote on independence. He’s quoting Edmund Burke, a member of the English Parliament, but the setting and the words he uses say it better than anything I could do myself.
    Allen White

  31. We are going into Iraq whether you like it or not! Resistance is futile!
    PS I never did like you as Wesley. Now I know why!

  32. Fluffy, I sincerly apolgize that my words have come out sounding as if I hate you, I certainly do not. I actually appreciate that you express your opinions, and that we can have a dialog on the issues. That said, I cant ignore what I precieve as certain, lets say biases. I have them, I am an American, NRA supporting, anti big government kind of guy. I do love America, but not everything she has ever done. That said, she had done more alot more good than bad, can any islamic nation say that? Can more than a handful of nations say that? I respect the UK, for being a bastion of freedom (from sometime after the revolution:>). So I do have biases. I hear in your statements, undertones of a type of counter-culture prevalent in Europe, particularly in regard to world trade. It is this neophyte communist ideal, that the west is solidly money-grubbing, anti-poor, racist warmongers. It is an anti-capitalistic movement. I would say anti-american. I don’t believe that movement to be fair, and will speak up when I hear it, you say you don’t belong with that group, I accept that you are truthful – I believe you.
    I agree with you that funding or protecting a terror is repulsive. That is why I think it wrong to help fund the governments of islam – Iraq by purchasing oil, Saudi Arabia by buying oil and proping up their government, Egypt the same as Saudi, Syria, Lebanon, Lybia, Yemen Pakistan, and on and on and on. I don’t agree that Israel uses terror. They are protecting themselves from militants, the miltitants that target civilians – that my friend is terror. The Palestinians are the terrorists. Sharon is a war hero and unless any real proof otherwise is given I will stand by that. I find it interesting that some groups believe that as long as an arab is killing a jew, that is ok, but as soon as the jew responds killing an arab (who is a militant) are being terrorist. How is defending yourself from terror, a terrorist act. Israel DOES NOT target unarmed civilians, as the Palestinians do. I see a real difference. I see a moral difference.
    To say that we should never help the enemy of our enemy is simplistic, of what logic you accuse me of using, should the US and Britian in WWII, not given arms to the Soviet Union, to defeat the greater menace – Hitler and his Nazis. I see the fight against Totalitarianism, as the greatest victory for morality the world has ever succeeded in gaining. Should WE have allowed Germany to overrun Russia, and provided no aid? One may argue that it would have forced the Nazis to pull deeper and deeper into Russia, using up forces by stretching them longer and longer into hostile territory. It may have succeeded in destroying the Soviet menace, but the greater theat – Hitler would be more powerful and have greater resources.
    Should the US and her allies not repulsed an Iraqi invasion of Kuwait? Effectively giving saddam global dominance over the world’s oil supply and trounce the rule of law.
    Today Iraq is a theat, one that grows daily. It will not grow weaker, or be more humane if the UN has its inspections. Nor will they affect the Iraqi effort to produce nuclear capacity.
    You oppose the war, I symphathize, but you give no viable alternative. It is easy to attack a plan. It is more difficult to create one. Have the anti-war side create a viable alternative and I WILL listen, and switch sides faster than a democrat in a New Jersey Senate Race, but give me an alternative, not vague theories and what ifs. We KNOW the UN has failed for 11 years in Iraq, we KNOW that Iraq is attacking OUR allied air forces. We KNOW saddam is commiting genocide.
    Now, WHY should we wait, tell me that and I WILL listen. I may not agree, but I would better understand a position of containment. As it stands containment is foolish. The result WILL be a madman with nuclear weapons. Do you want to explain to your kids, why Iraq was allowed to gain weapons like that, and you have the capability to stop him, but chose not to do so. I don’t. I don’t want to increase the risk of nuclear war. And allowing saddam to gain those weapons – due to inaction is the same thing.
    My concept of Iraq may be simplistic, just like it is of the Nazis. Maybe not all Nazis are evil, but quite frankly I don’t care they are pond scum. Saddam is of the same calibre. It is appeasement, and until a REAL solution, not requiring force, is given I will not be swayed.
    About the Queen’s English, that was not a jibe, I mean it. Just a guy having one of your accents and using that verbiage makes him sound like he has about 10 IQ points higher than he really does. Plus, I think the accent is cool. In the US give Einstein an accent like a hillbilly – like Clinton, and it makes the percieved IQ about 20 points less than reality. My accent gives me the percieved IQ right on par with reality. Is that biased too, yeah probably but I’ll admit it. Take that guy Hugh whats his name from the English Patient, his percieved IQ is probably about 100, in reality it is probably around 90. LOL.
    I Do like you Fluffy, I can’t help it. Since you don’t like generalizations, I won’t use any about you. Oh, and you really made me mad when you called the President a shrub. I mean I don’t go around saying, yeah I just looked at Price Charles, and thought, ‘boy, I guess thats what you get from a thousand years of inbreeding.’ Because that would be rude. :> The British are usually not rude, leave that to the French. ;>
    If I ever get to Scotland, I would like to buy you dinner and a pint, quart or whatever you want of what ever you want, because I don’t hate you. Please don’t think so.
    Oh yeah, I’m glad you have fired weapons. You can’t tell me it wasn’t fun.
    Agreeably yours, NYC

  33. NYC
    Thanks for the reassurance. I was really beginning to get some hate-like vibes from your direction. Which would really suck. Good to know I was wrong.
    I’m not an anti-capitalist as such. All the cool stuff that I have, all the TV shows I like, all the games for my PC, all of these come from capitalism, and probably wouldn’t exist otherwise. What I don’t like about capitalism is the widespread tendancy for big companies and multi-nationals to exploit what they shouldn’t, like people. I hate it when companies decide to use sweat-shops, or that their profits are more important than the natural ecosystem and when they in the words of the song “pave paradise and put up a parking lot”. THAT I hate.
    But Im not going to smash up a Mcdonalds because of it.
    I don’t agree with the idea that Sharon is a War Hero, and there is ample evidence that he has done some very awful things in his history, things which suggest to me that he is a very dangerous man and may be a War Criminal. Heres a couple of links. One of them is from the BBC, so at least that one is going to be well researched.
    http://aztlan.net/theaccused.htm
    http://www.larouchepub.com/pr/site_packages/2002/sharon/020430sharon_crime_hist.html
    http://www.palestinefacts.org/pf_1991to_now_sharon.php
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2001/07/01/world/main299293.shtml
    http://www.hrw.org/press/2001/06/isr0622.htm
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/1933309.stm
    On Israel, I agree totally that Israel is under attack from Terrorists. There is no other description for people who suicide bomb civilians. However, it is also clear that Israel is very heavy handed and vicious towards Palistine. Several months ago there was a missile attack that killed a number of civilians. Ariel Sharon declared it to be “one of our greatest successes.” heres the news articale.
    GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (July 23) – In an attack criticized by President Bush as ”heavy- handed,” an Israeli warplane fired a missile that flattened a Gaza City apartment building early Tuesday, killing a Hamas leader at the top of Israel’s most wanted list. At least 14 other people, including nine children, died in the airstrike. Haleema Matar, 45, was on the ground floor of the targeted building, while children in her family were sleeping upstairs when the missile hit. “The children died. If I died it would have been better, I would not have to see this,” she said. Five children in the extended Matar family were killed. Shehadeh, his wife, Leileh, their 14-year-old daughter, Iman, and a bodyguard were killed. Shifa Hospital in Gaza City released a separate list of 11 dead, that included eight children, aged 2 months to 11 years, and three adults. The hospital also said that more than 100 people were wounded.
    Its a very difficult and complex situation, but I cannot help but thin, when I see reports like this, that Israel doesnt give a shit about civilian casualties, not when they are Palastinians. One time a riot happened and two Israeli soldiers were killed. The BBC televised the Israeli response, which involved gunships firing missiles into the town.
    I’ve seen footage of Israeli tanks driving over Palastinian ambulances, and of Palastinian fire-truck riddled with bullet holes. The Israelis are occupying land which the Palastinian people believe to belong to them, not Israel, and the Palastinians are treated worse than third class citizens. There is a cycle of violence there which neither side seems willing to end. All I’m saying is that Israels hands are as bloodied as the Palastinians.
    We should never help the enemy of our enemy of that means helping a complete bastard, like Bin Laden. Otherwise we become mired in our own hypocrisy when we cry out for truth and justice. If we say that we must be vigilant, “because we still live in a dangerous world” (Bush senior), there must be no way that anyone can legitimately say “because of you!” to us.
    From what I learned from discussions with a mate of mine, called Stuart, who is a passionate student of WW2, there was no way that the Nazi’s could have overrun Russia, the sheer weight of numbers was too much for them. (think about, the Russians lost more soldiers than the UK and the US combined and were still a viable military force). Their idea of a artillary barrage was twelve hours of continous bombardment from several THOUSAND cannons.
    I see your point though, it is sometimes advantageous to give that sort of aid. But when that sort of aid ends up being given to someone who cheers when his people fly two passenger planes into the World Trade Centre, then the policy needs a rethink, yes?
    Nazis, pond scum? Isn’t that an insult to pond scum? I always invisioned the Nazis as the sort of people that makes God reach for his “Flood-O-Matic”. Nothing can justify what they did. Nothing.
    As for the Language thing. I think you mean Hugh Grant. Except it wasn’t him in the English Patient, it was Ralph Fiennes. Bu t I know what you mean. It just looked like you were taking the piss. I misunderstood, my bad.
    Prince Charles is an Inbred loon. He talks to trees. I thinks he’s great. That kind of eccentricity is a great aristocratic institution and I love it. Philip is great as well.
    I have fired guns, and i did enjoy it. I don’t think I could fire at a live target though. I’m a big fan of Paintball. Its not the same thing, but its fun.
    I’ll try and get some more info on the 4 year old thing. One of my mates collects stories like that.

  34. Excellent, Wil. You oughta throw your considerable weight behind some sort of voter registration deal (if you aren’t currently).
    I’m generally inclined to believe that we get what we deserve with our elected officials, because we do not demand better. But when a normally competent representative like this decides that she knows better than the tens of thousands of people who actually took the time to contact her with their express wishes, then we all need to get off of our fat asses, and punt.
    Incidentally, in case you hadn’t heard, I’m running for Governor. I’m not on the ballot because I didn’t have a thousand bucks.
    Vote Sims! Thank you.

  35. Wil, you did a great job on Star Trek. It is apparent that you could use some education in world politics.
    The problem with Iraq and other 3rd world countries is their instability. These countries which have nuclear capabilities would blow their asses up along with millions of others because they do not have the checks and balances in their nuclear weapons programs.
    In the United States, it takes much more than a president to issue an order to deploy a nuclear weapon (or any weapon of mass destruction). The United States does not have a supreme leader. Our president does not have final word in what the United States does. The opposite is true for Iraq. The leader of Iraq can in reality order a nuclear strike. He has proven that he is capable of killing innocent civilians such as his Iraqi citizens he has gassed to death.
    The best policy in world politics is to be safe than sorry. Taking out the cancer is better than giving it room to spread.

  36. There are=many posts in teh caffee
    the words=long the words are likelast time whenwe are in=places for things like also
    like the time when BERRYS FACKEN DAVIDwent out from the storeinto where wekeep teh thignsfor the shed to use when itgets=hotteh dogs=bark like
    shouldnot BE IN WAR MIGHT BE DEATH might=hurt
    also wasinto the moviewith the DEATHshould not bein=war will = DEATHlike the DEVIL IN HELLplease jesus
    AUGUST 2002!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  37. While there are those few politicians who actually represent their constituents, most do seem more out for their personal agenda. If Feinstein did indeed vote “yes” just for political gain, that isn’t much different from anyone else in congress. If she voted “yes” because she genuinely thought that that was best for our country, then perhaps one ought not be so harsh.
    I’m not saying that I agree or disagree with the resolution or that I think we ought to go to war with Iraq, I’m just saying that perhaps she did feel what she was voting for was best, though it went against what a majority of her constituents who actually wrote her wanted. And unless she polled all of the constituents, she can’t really see a true representation of what everyone wants.
    In addition, if you don’t vote for her next time, you’ll most likely just get someone else in office who is the typical politician who cares more about his/her own career than the feelings of their constituents.

  38. What a load of rubbish. I agree with the poster that said there has not been a solid arguement against the war. I’m so tired of the rethoric about Bush’s daddy, secret agenda, yada yada yada. You wouldn’t believe the trash I’ve seen that was either incorrect, half-truths or just outright lies. Where was all this venom for a president when that immoral SOB Clinton was in the White House and performing CRIMINAL acts like lieing under oath? Hmm…you liberals couldn’t talk fast enough defending him. Bush didn’t plan 9-11, (actually, if anyone is to blame for 9-11 it’s Clinton’s criminal behavor in office and his gutting of the intelligence network). If 9-11 didn’t happen, I doubt the push to attach Iraq would have even come up, or not in this intensity.
    Saddam is like that kid who’s causes trouble, then sits back and watches the parents fight over it as one defends him while the other want’s to punish him.
    Personally? I think all this is just to get Saddam back to the table and to let inspectors back in. He wasn’t even talking about it till Bush started making noises.

  39. Wil, I cant help but wonder how many guns you have lying around in your home, and machine gun nests set up in your front yard, just waiting for the police to turn bad and try to take away your home and family. Grow up. Reality is not what you get off those gimpy TV shows.

  40. As A Trek fan, it’s disturbing for me to find out just how many rabid (probably way more rabid than me) fans are so pro-war. I’ve found myself unsubscribing from Trek newsgroup after Trek newsgroup because so many people on them seemed to be homophobic, really pro-war and really pro-Relgious Right. I wonder how Rodenberry, a conirmed Humanist would have felt about all this? Well, thanks for letting me sound off. Your site is great!

  41. Even “Kirk” realized that war wasn’t the end all in all conflicts. We all saw his maturity grow in that area. But, we also saw that even with that growth came the understanding that at times we can’t “not” fight. I think the over 10 years of diplomacy ended on 9/11. I even believe Gene Roddenbury would have agreed. I think the real question is when to fight and when not to fight.

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