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Old 02-14-2010, 01:22 AM   #496
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This never happened. Bush went FURTHER away from congress after the November 2006 election Iraq. Bush should be credited for sticking to the right plan for Iraq regardless of the democrats political success or what the polls were saying. The Democratic congress tried repeatedly in vain during 2007 to FORCE Bush to withdraw all US combat forces from Iraq. Instead, Bush successfully launched a massive 33% increase in combat forces with the Surge despite the new Democratic congress's fierce opposition to the plan and proposals to do the EXACT OPPOSITE!
Of course it did. He accepted minimum wage, 9/11 recommendations and a time line. The Democrats did not get their way on the surge, which was a 23% increase, not 33 as you say. I'm not wrong here.



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Baker by the way to this day still supports the removal of Saddam, the surge and credits Bush with succeeding at all these things as well as putting Iraq on the road to successful development!
All well and good. I never denied that. I don't have to agree with Baker on everything to know that he is not an ideological nut like Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld and Cheney. That is the point I was making.

On to the ignore feature, Strongbow.
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:38 AM   #497
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Actually, Snowe's vote helped the health care bill out of the Finance Committee and onto the floor of the Senate.
All well and good. That did not translate to allowing the full bill to go for a vote in December. A bill that was now without a public option entirely, something she had reservations about when she voted it out of Finance Committee. So it is a little odd that Snowe had what was her biggest public reservation removed entirely from the bill between when she voted yes and when she voted no. In a cynic's world, it shows just how far "R" party loyalty goes these days.



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I was poking fun at Biden's complete spin job on the Larry King show. I could care less about Inhofe.
10-4. I shouldn't have suggested it was you using Inhofe, it was the Fox article.

Biden has a way of talking and never shutting up(lol), but his position, as I pointed out is not unreasonable. He at least defends it with examples, explains himself, etc. Nothing like Republicans who bring the talking points to Larry King and just repeat them endlessly.
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:41 AM   #498
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If that were the case, they would have already put through whatever the f they wanted. They have been unable to do this, mostly because the Democratic Party is an ideologically diverse party while the Republicans have become a bunch of sheep.

The other big impediment of course is the GOP filibuster machine. "No matter what the cost" would more accurately describe what Bush-Frist-DeLay did with about 54 votes in the Senate and a much more narrow House majority than the Democrats have now. And you accuse me of being asleep for 8 years of Bush? I don't remember the Democrats filibustering all of Bush's agenda, or even a substantial amount of it at all. One time, the Democrats threatened to use the filibuster in 2005 over court appointments, and what did the Republicans do? They screamed and cried like little babies and tried to employ the "nuclear option" to eliminate the filibuster. Where has Reid proposed anything this extreme? Which would be, by the way, well within his right and would be reasonable given the mindless obstruction of the GOP of 2009-10.

I think it was Bush who did whatever the f he wanted at all costs, pal, and the Democrats largely disagreed but still respected his majorities. We are paying for it now, the countless earmarks in exchange for absolute party loyalty on Iraq, Medicare prescription drug boondoggle, Social Security privatization, the list goes on. Obama actually gets push back from Democrats in Congress, what a novel idea. Reagan got push back from Republicans, Carter from Democrats, etc. So the unprecedented party loyalty used by Bush was truly "at all costs" as there was a clear price in pork for said loyalty.
Or condensed down to palm-size:

sheep
filibuster
cry-babies
Bush b'doggle
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:47 AM   #499
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Where do you get the 1% number?
Office of Management and Budget had it at 1%. Could not find the numbers, but that is not too far from what we have been hearing from objective sources all along.

The Congressional Budget Office did a study debunking Republican claims that this would kill the private market. 6- 10 million would sign up they figured. Divide that by 305 million Americans and you have 1.9% and 3.2% respectively.

PERRspectives: CBO Slams GOP Claim on Public Option and Employer Coverage
A Public Option Primer - Political Hotsheet - CBS News
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/10/us...anted=4&_r=1(I know this is Obama, but everything he says here can be verified with a few google clicks)

The point I was making is that the public option was way too insignificant(in terms of market share) to make a difference in prices and by the same token, was way too insignificant an item for Lieberman to get his panties in a bunch over. Sure, he could have registered his preference for dropping it, as I certainly would of had I been a Senator, but to let something this small derail your support for the entire bill as he was doing? I think not. That was an excuse for the real reason- the health care lobbyists own Lieberman.

My personal opinion is and always was that the public option is a bad idea- it left the Democrats open to false socialism charges and at the same time, did nothing to address competition or costs. It was a bone for the far left in hopes they would take it in place of the single payer they have always wanted but do not have anywhere the number of Democratic Party votes to get. In spite of what Republicans say, the US is not Sweden. That is just as true with Democrats in power as it is with Republicans.
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:52 AM   #500
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Originally Posted by INDY500 View Post
Or condensed down to palm-size:

sheep
filibuster
cry-babies
Bush b'doggle
Only you would find it better to discuss things condensed down to a few bullet points. Better than intelligent discussion, right?

The insinuation here is that I am a predictable broken record and not you??

I have never seen you depart from a talking point, where I always have issue specific points to bring.

So try it again, Indy and tell me where anything I said did not happen.

Go ahead and show me where the Democrats filibustered large amounts of Bush's agenda. Show me more than a few Republicans who are not on board with the extreme right wing of their party. I can give you a whole list of various ideologically diverse groups within the Democratic party. We have liberals, moderates, conservatives, what do you have? What was wrong with my analysis of the Republican nuclear option threats in 2005? Where am I wrong about Delay's tactics in holding the floor open for a vote on the prescription drug benefit longer and longer so he could go to appropriations and get the wavering Republican some pork? Tell me how you like paying for the prescription drug benefit, which could have been done with about 500% more effectiveness at half the cost.
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:08 AM   #501
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Yes, but this does not show how this legislation is "so bad even the supermajority would not take it."

Landrieu, Ben Nelson, Conrad and Durbin have all supported cap and trade.

This is not a repudiation of the idea itself, but rather, a perfect case study in the "politicians have no balls" textbook.

They are talking elections, and election year politics, only worried about their short term electoral prospects. Obama has my respect because he sees the fundamental issues like health care and climate change as worth losing an election to get done. He talks to the American people like adults, which is somehow, in the world of people like Palin, talking down to them. Makes him an elite.

Congress will never live up to the standards of you or I, bluer white! They can not walk and chew gum at the same time, and they routinely get so little done that we would be fired from our jobs for doing 50% more than them!

They can pass a jobs bill, that is actually going quite smoothly, but there is only so much they can do about the economy. Any economist will tell you that no matter who was in office, unemployment was going to keep rising throughout 2009. Obama told us this. I don't know why these Senators don't go out there and explain this- that there was no economically feasible way to have 5.5% unemployment this year and we have actually done quite a bit that has helped: the stimulus(yes, its helped alot) and now the jobs bill.

As usual, they have decided to do all this economic posturing when in reality, anything they do beyond stimulus, jobs bill and credit loosening(done or advancing at a fast pace) will not knock the unemployment rate down by more than it already will fall just due to the recovery.

It will be these Senators who regret talking tough and promising to be one man job creating machines when in November, we have around 8.5% unemployment. The economy is getting better, and the Congress deserves credit for bringing it back from the brink, but they should be honest and not pretend to be able to defy economic gravity.

Either way, showing disagreement with the timing of climate change legislation on the part of Democratic Senators is no way a repudiation of the entire idea of cap and trade. More an acknowledgment of the fact that we don't feel like working or explaining our positions to the voters.

Obama acknowledged this reality that the Senators speak to by trying to do Climate Change in 2009, which the Democrats were on board with and the Republicans were not. So it was the GOP obstruction machine that pushed things into 2010 in the first place.
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:16 PM   #502
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1.)you were told by the moderators to ignore me.

Well this is a surprise. I was never told to put anyone on an ignore list. I do recall you claiming that you would never ever respond again to someone with the name strongbow or STING2. But, I guess you changed your mind. What a turn around. Thanks for responding.

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2.)We have been over Iraq a million times before, no one except for you is still saying they were a threat.
LOL, the majority of the US military as shown through the annual military times polls still consider Saddam a threat worth removing from power. Colin Powel, Michael O'Halen, Kenneth Pollack, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Joe Lieberman, James Baker, as well as many other prominent figures still consider that removing Saddam from power was the right thing given the threat he posed to the region and the world.

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A.)Obama's never said in his video that the military could not make security progress. The question is how sustainable the political situation is, which is still very much in question, though progress has been made.
He said in the video that "we can send 15,000, 20,000 or 30,000 more troops, but that it would not make any significant difference on the ground. In fact, there is another video where he says the SURGE will make things WORSE! LOL

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B.)Clinton was speaking in 1998, when the weapons inspectors were still in Iraq and Saddam was having tiffs with them.
Wrong again! On December 16, 1998, all of the inspectors had been withdrawn from Iraq because they Iraqi's were preventing them from being able to do any work.

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Plus, Clinton was under a significant amount of pressure to call Iraq a threat by PNAC.
LOL, Clinton did what he thought was in the best interest of the United States at the time and simply stated what the intelligence showed, and what Saddam's behavior showed, that he was indeed a THREAT. Can find anyone in December 1998 that did NOT consider Iraq a THREAT?

If people did not consider Saddam a THREAT, there would be no attempt to keep together the largest sanctions and weapons embargo regime in history ever mounted against a single government. The United States would not be dropping hundreds of thousands of pounds of bombs on Iraq in the middle of December 1998 if Saddam was NOT a threat.

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Here is what Scott Ritter, the head inspector in Iraq, had to say about Iraq's WMD capability after 1998:'Iraq has been fundamentally disarmed' - Scott Ritter.
Well, the last time that Scott Ritter was actually in Iraq and in fact in his testimony before congress in December 1998, this is not at all what he said.

Something happen to Scott Ritter after 1998, and he even made a movie with the help of Saddam.

Then Scott Ritter was arrested attempting to pick up a 15 year old girl at Burger King. To bad Chris Hanson's Dateline MSNBC show was not around at the time.

Scott Ritter's on testimony from 1998 contradicts what he said later. His strange behavior later on also shows that he seemed to be having some problems.

In any event, the overwhelming resources of the US intelligence community showed that Saddam still had WMD capabilities and other assets that were in violation of the Gulf War Ceace Fire agreement.

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Statements Clinton made under pressure from people who were forming Gore's opposition team are to be viewed somewhat dubiously, especially since they were from the same people who pushed the war. Plus, even if Clinton meant it, which common sense says he was just posing, I will believe Scott Ritter over him.
Even Scott Ritter in December 1998 in his testimony before Congress said that Iraq had not been disarmed and that there were still thousands of stocks of WMD unaccounted for!!!!!!!!

If you want to believe one person, Scott Ritter statements years later after 1998, over the entire US intelligence community and foreign policy establisment as well as the President and his national security team go ahead. Clinton was not being pressured into anything, nor was he posing! LOL

If anyone's behavior was indeed questionable, Scott Ritter's attempts to pick up underage girls and make a movie with the help of Saddam would show that he is the only one who's thinking may have been compromised in some way!


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There is no way you can claim Iraq was a threat or that they had WMD given this and Powell/Rice's statements in 2001. Wolfowitz even admitted that they knew in advance there were no WMD, just settled on it for bureaucratic reasons
Powell and Rice did not say Saddam was not a threat in 2001. They never said Saddam had complied with the UN Security Council Resolutions, and that there was no need to try and rebuild the crumbling sanctions and weapons embargo at the time.

Again, even if we disregard WMD capabilities lets just look at Saddam's conventional military capabilies in 2001:

Total Armed Forces manpower: 400,000
Total number of main battle tanks: nearly 3,000
Total number of artillery pieces: over 2,000
Total number of armored personal carriers: over 2,000
Total number of combat aircraft: A little over 300.

Those are well known facts. That level of conventional military strength alone would pose a threat even to a medium sized well armed country. But the country were really looking at is little Kuwait. The CIA and US military admitted at the time that Saddam still had the capability to OVERRUN KUWAIT and even strick into the Saudi Oil Fields in northern Saudi Arabia if SADDAM made an ALL OUT effort to do so!

In fact, in October of 1994, Saddam moved just TWO of his Republican Guard Armored divisions to the border with Kuwait and the United States mobilized nearly 100,000 troops and sent them to Kuwait. The only problem was that it took TWO MONTHS for all these troops to get there and be in place.

It only took 12 hours in August of 1990, for TWO of Saddam's Republican Guard divisions to overrun Kuwait!!!!!!

All this WITHOUT considering how WMD would play a role in adding to Saddam's capabilities of what he could do in the Persian Gulf!


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Everything you mentioned about "the belief of liberal zealots" and foreign government intelligence was comprehensively rebutted by me here in 2008. The facts have proven me right over time, so I am not going over it again. If France was so worried about Iraq, they would have supported the war.
LOL, maybe in ones dreams.

When it came for voting for things at the United Nations, France voted for the resolution 1441 which authorized the the coalition invasion of Iraq. Then in the summer of 2003, FRANCE voted to support the resolution that AUTHORIZED the occupation which resulted from the INVASION of Iraq, RESOLUTION 1483. EVERY YEAR SINCE 2003, FRANCE HAS VOTED TO APPROVE THE OCCUPATION OF IRAQ BY COALITION FORCES!!!!!!!!!!!


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So we have years of you making roundabout, unsubstantiated claims about Iraq's capability to threaten us, and we have the facts. I'll go with the facts.
Well, you have not listed any facts. I have listed factual figures for Iraq's conventional military forces at the time. There is also the factual intelligence the CIA had at the time on Iraq which indicated he had WMD. There is also the UN weapons inspectors who still said that Saddam had not accounted for THOUSANDS OF STOCKS OF WMD. Remember, the key issue here is VERIFIABLE DISARMAMENT! Saddam was still in violation of 17 UN Security Council Resolutions at the time of the March 2003 invasion.

Colin Powel, James Baker, the Clintons, most of Clintons advisors from when he was president, the majority of the US military all still say that Saddam was a threat that had to be removed from power.

The issue goes far beyond simply whether or not Saddam had WMD in 2003. It involves the the crumbling of the key components of containment, the Sanctions and Weapons Embargo placed on Iraq. This was starting to severely erode by 2000 and the ability to fix or restart it was being rebuffed by many key countries. Without an effective sanctions and embargo regime, containment of Saddam would be IMPOSSIBLE! The only alternative to containment, is REGIME REMOVAL!

So even if you dismissed all the CIA intelligence on Saddam's WMD capabilities at the time, and you dismissed all the unaccounted for stocks of WMD which the UN Weapons inspectors reported at the time, the mere fact that the key components of containment were essentially gone by 2003 by itself made the removal of Saddam from power a necessity!
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:27 PM   #503
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Peter Feaver, and you, do not even know the definition of partition.

Anyone who calls the Biden plan a forced partition ends the debate right there. They don't understand the issue.

Nothing in the planned called for a partition, it was, for the 100th time, FEDERALISM.

Yes, three largely autonomous regions with a weak central government to control the borders and distribute the oil. IS THAT WHAT WE HAVE IN IRAQ TODAY? Of course not!

The Iraqi military which is majority SHIA is deployed through out a Iraq except in the very far north. The Bush plan for a palimentary style government is what is being followed. Its how each election is being conducted. There is no such thing as Sunni-stan or Shia-stan. You don't have a seperate constitution or seperate laws for these non-existent autonomous regions.

The only region that has some sort of autonomy are the far northern Kurdish area's. But Mosul and Kirkuk are largely under the control of the Iraqi central government.

You do not have a Shia military, Sunni military and Kurdish military like in Bosnia early on where there was a Serb military, Croat military and Bosnian muslim military. OVER THE PAST 6 YEARS THERE HAS ONLY BEEN ONE IRAQI MILITARY!

Biden is not even following the Biden plan!
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:28 PM   #504
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Only you would find it better to discuss things condensed down to a few bullet points. Better than intelligent discussion, right?
Well it would be easier than answering your "all over the place" posts. I applaud you for taking the time but there is something to be said for concise answers as well.
And your tone. Maybe it's just me but when you write "I think it was Bush who did whatever the f he wanted at all costs, pal," I feel like you're pushing me in the chest trying to provoke a bar fight or something. Are you auditioning to be spokesman for the "angry-Left" or something?

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Go ahead and show me where the Democrats filibustered large amounts of Bush's agenda.
Dems held up what was to be a center piece of Bush's 2nd term. Social security reform. They also stymied banking reform. We're paying for both of those now.
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Show me more than a few Republicans who are not on board with the extreme right wing of their party.
You completely misread the internal fight in the GOP. The rebellion is against the "go along with big govnt, just get along" moderates, not the "extreme right wing," whatever that is.
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I can give you a whole list of various ideologically diverse groups within the Democratic party.
So can I. You have the socialists, the progressives, the liberals, the anti-capitalists, the militants, the radicals, the hyphenated caucuses, the truly unhinged and a few moderates on abortion or out-of-control spending.

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We have liberals, moderates, conservatives, what do you have?
"We" have fiscal conservatives, social conservatives, hawk conservatives, squishy moderates, the Maine gals, a maverick, a terminator, a Palin and of course an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, sexist, ex-nude model, tea-bagging supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees, aka Scott Brown.

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What was wrong with my analysis of the Republican nuclear option threats in 2005?
The Republicans only threatened the "nuclear option" in response to the Democrat's before unknown filibustering of judicial nominees. Republicans have respected the senate's advise and consent role whereas Democrats act more to block or embarrass. You can point to no Republican senate doing to a Clinton or Obama selection what Democrats did to Robert Bork, Clarence Thomas or judge Alito. The last 3 Democratic appointees to the Supreme Court passed with an avg of 14 no votes. The last 3 nominees of Republican presidents got an avg of 37 no votes.

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Where am I wrong about Delay's tactics in holding the floor open for a vote on the prescription drug benefit longer and longer so he could go to appropriations and get the wavering Republican some pork? Tell me how you like paying for the prescription drug benefit, which could have been done with about 500% more effectiveness at half the cost.
All I remember in detail is that the 2003 Democratic Drug Benefit was much more expensive and was to be government-managed whereas the final bipartisan bill passed in the Republican congress was much less expensive (400 billion) and insisted on private insurance plans.
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:56 PM   #505
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1.)you were told by the moderators to ignore me.
Well this is a surprise. I was never told to put anyone on an ignore list. I do recall you claiming that you would never ever respond again to someone with the name strongbow or STING2. But, I guess you changed your mind. What a turn around. Thanks for responding.


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2.)We have been over Iraq a million times before, no one except for you is still saying they were a threat.

LOL, the majority of the US military as shown through the annual military times polls still consider Saddam a threat worth removing from power. Colin Powel, Michael O'Halen, Kenneth Pollack, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Joe Lieberman, James Baker, as well as many other prominent figures still consider that removing Saddam from power was the right thing given the threat he posed to the region and the world.


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Gulf War I-No Democrat ran for President who opposed it in the 90s. Nothing remarkable here, no one was running in a Primary against an incumbent President. The Democrats had no problem putting up Kerry in 2004, nor did Biden have to explain his opposition in order to be on a ticket that won big. Neither you or I have any idea why Sam Nunn did not run for President in 1992, but lets look at some facts: Nunn was widely considered for Sec Defense or Sec of State under Clinton, widely considered as running mate for both Gore and Kerry, was tapped by Clinton to lead the forcible departure of Cedras from Haiti, led the securing of loose nukes in Russia and was widely praised by military brass and colleagues of both parties as an expert on defense issues. Still is today. Safe to say, the people who actually make these decisions, not Republican hacks like you, do not see Gulf War I as some kind of foreign/defense policy litmus test. Not an issue that defines expertise. One can be an expert regardless of their stance on an issue. Another thing we went over in 2008.
Sam Nuns position on the Gulf War at the time in 1992 prevented him from running for President. In hind site, the Democrats position that SANCTIONS alone could get Saddam out of Kuwait proven resoundly false, and was rejected by the rest of the international community including FRANCE which supported the invasion with military forces.

The decision of whether to use force or not in 1991 was a key litmus test from the point of political/security/ and military decisions. It involved ones ability to accurately assess Saddam's capabiliities as well as the coalitions military capabilities. You had to understand why sanctions would not work in this situation, the consequences to the world of waiting, as well as understand technical military capabilities and strategy of the forces involved.

Time has a way of eroding events of the past and the overwhelming success of the 1991 Gulf War and its short duration has meant that there are many people who have either forgotten the events that surrounded it or are in fact completely ignorant of what happened. Thats part of the reason why Kerry was able to run in 2004 without this dogging him too much as well as Biden in 2008. But in 1992 it would have been impossible for either of them to win the nomination for the Democratic party, let alone be elected as President because of their position on the Gulf War.


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Before the Gulf War, containing Saddam was not necessary, he was our friend. I am not going to debate the Gulf War with you again, but suffice it to say, Bush Sr was consulted about Saddam's designs on Kuwait and said nothing when he was given ample opportunity to forcefully tell him that was a no go. Something we would respond to strongly. The whole thing could have been avoided.
LOL, another liberal Democratic myth. In July of 1990 when Saddam first moved his Republican Guard divisions to the border of Kuwait, almost no one believed that Saddam would actually invade the country let alone overrun it and annex it. All of the Arab states were adament that Saddam was only bluffing. NEVER IN THE HISTORY OF THE ARAB WORLD HAD ONE ARAB STATE INVADED OR ATTACKED ANOTHER!!!!!

AT the CIA and throughout the US intelligence community, the overwhemling concensus was that an invasion was definitely not going to happen. There were only 3 CIA officers that believed and invasion was going to happen. One of them was KENNETH POLLACK who later became Clinton's chief advisor on Iraq.

Kenneth Pollack also felt after the invasion that Saddam believed that the United States would respond immediately with military force. The evidence for this is the fact that it only took 2 Republican Guard divisions to overrun the country in 12 hours, but in the hours after that, Saddam sent the rest of his Republican guard divisions into Kuwait along with regular Iraqi army troops.

This shows that Saddam fully expected a US military response to his invasion and that he was not at all detered by such a prospect. After all Saddam had often said that the United States was weak in that they "gave up after losing 50,000 troops in Vietnam, while he had continued in his war with Iran after losing 50,000 troops in ONE BATTLE!

It was actually only after the United States demand Saddam to leave Kuwait and began sending military troops to Saudi Arabia, that Saddam officially annexed Kuwait.

Next, Saddam was given 6 months to withdraw his forces in the face of a massive coalition military build up in Saudi Arabia. If Saddam was not really intent and taking and holding Kuwait in the face of certain US military opposition, he had a perfect opportunity here to just walk away. HE DIDN'T, which is the nail in the coffin in this idea that some sort of US diplomacy in the summer of 1990 could have prevented Saddam's invasion of the country!
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Old 02-14-2010, 03:21 PM   #506
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Congress will never live up to the standards of you or I, bluer white! They can not walk and chew gum at the same time, and they routinely get so little done that we would be fired from our jobs for doing 50% more than them!
I think it can get better, but we'll probably have to wait until the shenanigans of an election year are over. The jury is out on Scott Brown, but he has the chance to be an independent-minded guy. I was watching a little Meet The Press this morning, former Congressman Harold Ford was on, and he would be an excellent Senate candidate out of NY. Ford's on the Morning Joe show pretty often too, he makes a lot of sense and has a great presence.

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They can pass a jobs bill, that is actually going quite smoothly, but there is only so much they can do about the economy. Any economist will tell you that no matter who was in office, unemployment was going to keep rising throughout 2009. Obama told us this.
I agree, presidents can't push a button and magically create or destroy jobs. And that goes for the economy under Clinton, Bush, and Obama (since that's argued in here all the time). It's so much more complicated than simply attributing success or failure to the White House.
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Old 02-14-2010, 03:41 PM   #507
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You can point to no Republican senate doing to a Clinton or Obama selection what Democrats did to Robert Bork, Clarence Thomas or judge Alito. The last 3 Democratic appointees to the Supreme Court passed with an avg of 14 no votes. The last 3 nominees of Republican presidents got an avg of 37 no votes.
Remember Miguel Estrada being blocked from the federal bench?

When Sotomayor was picked, and politicians were making a big deal about her personal Latina story, it reminded me of some of the same politicians derailing Estrada. I think he would've made it to the Supreme Court as the first Hispanic...and they must have thought the same.
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Old 02-14-2010, 04:16 PM   #508
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No, the sanctions were not over in 2000. You are just dead flat wrong. Once again. The sanctions were in place up until the war began, and what are you talking about the only means of addressing the threat? There was no threat, the inspectors took away all of Saddam's weapons between 1991 and 1998, and Colin Powell and Condi Rice said as much. Condi said he was not even a regional threat. Sanction enforcement could have been done from Kuwait and the no fly zones alone, we did not need the troops in Saudi as Saddam never threatened Saudi in 1990 anyway.
I never said sanctions were over in 2000, I said they had been severely eroded! If there was NO threat as you claim then there would not be any reason for sanctions or weapons embargo. If there was no threat as you claim, there would not be any need for "No Fly Zones" or to contain Saddam in any way shape or form. You're basically contradicting yourself.


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Sanction enforcement could have been done from Kuwait and the no fly zones alone, we did not need the troops in Saudi as Saddam never threatened Saudi in 1990 anyway
Maybe in disneyland but not in the real world. Let me explain to you some basic geography. Iraq is bordered by 6 countries, not just one! Iraq is bordered by Iran, Turkey, Syria, Jordon, Saudi Arabia and yes Kuwait. The no fly zones were not in any involved in sanctions enforcement. They were simply put up to intercept Iraqi combat aircraft over a certain area.

Of all the countries that border Iraq, Kuwait probably has the smallest border. If you only did sanctions enforcement from Kuwait, goods could pass freely overland from Turkey, Iran, Syria, Jordon and Saudi Arabia. Sanctions enforcement just from Kuwait would accomplish NOTHING, except to prevent Kuwait from conducting several forms of trade with Iraq.

In order to have an effective sanctions and weapons embargo regime, Iran Turkey, Syria, Jordon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait all have to secure and inspect any goods going back and forth across their borders and BLOCK anything that is illegal. Any purchase buy Saddam of food or humanitarian assistence had to be done through the United Nations. The selling of any Iraqi oil for anything outside of that framework was ILLEGAL!

Quote:
There was no threat, the inspectors took away all of Saddam's weapons between 1991 and 1998, and Colin Powell and Condi Rice said as much. Condi said he was not even a regional threat.
Any such claim by either Powell or Rice would have been 100% incorrect. One's past behavior and current capabilities vs bordering countries is what determines whether one is a threat. The size of Saddam's military conventional military forces alone made him a threat in the region. The proximity of so much of the worlds oil supply to the borders of Iraq made Saddam a threat in the region. If Saddam were not a threat, there would be no need for a sanctions regime and weapons embargo, no need to contain him at all. You don't try to contain and periodically bomb a country that is supposedly not a threat! Why can't you see that?


Now lets take a detail look at the erosion of the sanctions and weapons embargo regime around the year 2000.

1. In 1999, Iraq made $350 million dollars in illegal oil sales. By 2002, this figure had increased to an annual total of $3 BILLION

2. The greatest problem at the time in terms of violating Sanctions was Syria. Syria was letting Iraq pump 250,000 barrels of oil per day through the Iraqi-Syrian Oil pipeline, with the possibility of boosting this figure to as high as 800,000 barrels a day. Trucks are shipping another 50,000 barrels of oil per day across the Syrian border in 2002. The Syrians were also allowing Iraq to import essentially anything it wanted by 2002.

3. Turkey, a US ally was also involved in smuggling Iraqi oil in 2002. On average trucks carried about 150,000 Barrels of oil per day over the Iraqi-Turkish border in 2001, with Turkey planning to increase the level of smuggling by 50%.

4. Iraq made nearly half a Billion dollars from smuggling Iraqi oil through Jordon in 2001.

5. Even Iran has allowed Iraq to smuggle oil over its border or through its waters in the Gulf.

6. As said before with Syria, its not just that Iraq is picking up billions of dollars from smuggling oil by 2002, but that ever more illegal goods are now allowed to flow into Iraq. That was the real danger from the break down of the sanctions and weapons imbargo. That Iraq would be able to import import items illegally for its conventional military forces and WMD programs. With more cash available, Iraq could make breaking the embargo more worthwhile for arms dealers and scientists. Saddam could use the cash to bribe customs agents and other government officials to look the other way when shipments that were claimed to be going to say Jordan or Syria, but were actually headed for Iraq. As smuggling became more important to Iraq's neighbors, they would be more than willing to turn a bliind eye to the flow of illegal goods across their borders.

7. It was very difficult to know at the time what Saddam was successfully able to import by 2002. But here are a few things that were discovered: In June 2002, the Indian government brought charges against the executives of an Indian company for selling atomized aluminum powder and titanium engine parts to Iraq in such quantity and of such quality that India's Defense and Research Development Organization concluded they could have only been intended for chemical warfare and ballistic missile production.

Another example would be in 2000 when the United States discovered that China was constructing a nationwide fiber-optic communication system for the Iraqi government that would have been employed by the Iraqi military and internal security forces. China is a permanent member of the Security Council and here it is violating UN resolutions against Iraq. If a country like China no longer respected the UN sanctions and weapons embargo, its only a matter of time before other countries that were formaly respectful decide to get in on a some of the money being made through illegal trade with Saddam.

8. Another indication of the erosion of sanctions and the weapons embargo, is the disintegration of the ban on air travel to Iraq. In August of 2000, the Russians began to fly commercial aircraft into Baghdad without permision from the United Nations or an inspection. After this, the floodgates opened. Iraq demanded that countries resume flying to Baghdad if they wanted a share of its oil, and since the Security Council did nothing, Iraq's trade partners lined up. Jordan followed Russia's lead, followed by planes from Yemen, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emerites, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Lebanon, Ireland, Iceland, Greece, and FRANCE.

9. A problem with trying to fix the sanctions and weapons embargo by 2002, was that Saddam was now using the sale of his oil, either illegally or through the UN-oil for food program, to politically influence key countries adherence to maintaining any sort of sanctions or an embargo on the country.
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Old 02-14-2010, 04:55 PM   #509
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Originally Posted by Bluer White View Post
Remember Miguel Estrada being blocked from the federal bench?

When Sotomayor was picked, and politicians were making a big deal about her personal Latina story, it reminded me of some of the same politicians derailing Estrada. I think he would've made it to the Supreme Court as the first Hispanic...and they must have thought the same.
You're right. Thanks for reminding me.
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Old 02-14-2010, 04:55 PM   #510
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Originally Posted by U2387 View Post

3.)Bush and the aircraft carrier. What other President has done anything remotely similar, taking credit for the bravery of the troops? It was a photo op, pure and simple. Does not matter that he acknowledged the long rebuilding process ahead, he said "major combat operations are over" when we had thousands more casualties after that. Whatever, keep defending your draft dodging loser President for using the troops as a photo op while simultaneously proposing to cut combat pay and restrict the viewing of fallen troops' flag draped caskets.
He did not take credit for the bravery of ANYONE! Major combat operations were over in Iraq as of May first, 2003. Anyone in the military can testify to the fact who was there at the time. The second phase, the REBUILDING AND SECURING, yes thats right SECURING of Iraq had just begun. Bush said this in the speech at the time. It acknowledges what had just happened in Operation Iraqi Freedom, as well as the new phase that the mission was entering into. He makes no statement at all about casualties or what type of cost would be the result of the process of REBUILDING AND SECURING IRAQ but that it would be difficult!

As for the other crap, President Clinton also dodged the draft, had his own so called photo ops with the military and restricting the viewing of fallen troops.

Overall military pay under George Bush was increased more than at any other time in US history. According to the Military Times poll nearly 80% of people in the military supported the re-election of George Bush in 2004!


Quote:
4.)The security situation was already improving in 2006, the surge helped with security, no one denies this, but the political situation is still extremely volatile and not really capable of being judged as of yet. The Democrats were not advocating immediate withdrawl or abandonment, but a responsible time line that left a residual training force behind to assist the Iraqis. A time line which, by the way, Bush accepted. Bottom line, you have no idea what would have happened had the surge not taken place, don't pretend to, it makes you look bad. The casualty levels in 2010 are very small, good observation- I was talking about the Spring/Summer of 2007, right after the surge, when they were EXTREMELY HIGH.
The security situation was improving in 2006? Your obviously completely ignorant of the casualty levels during that year as well as the major explosion in sectarian violence that occured during 2006 do to the bombing of a Key shiat Mosque. The last half of 2006 and the early part of 2007 before most Surge troops got to Iraq was the bloodiest time of the war for Iraqi civilians. Here are the montly casualties charts from iCasualties: Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom Casualties. Read and learn!

First is the month and year followed by Iraqi military and police deaths and then civilian deaths:

Aug-08 85 226
Jul-08 98 321
Jun-08 77 373
May-08 110 396
Apr-08 113 631
Mar-08 161 819
Feb-08 110 564
Jan-08 69 485
Dec-07 72 476
Nov-07 89 471
Oct-07 114 565
Sep-07 96 752
Aug-07 76 1598
Jul-07 232 1458
Jun-07 197 1148
May-07 198 1782
Apr-07 300 1521
Mar-07 215 2762
Feb-07 150 2864
Jan-07 91 1711
Dec-06 123 1629
Nov-06 123 1741
Oct-06 224 1315
Sep-06 150 3389
Aug-06 233 2733
Jul-06 217 1063
Jun-06 132 738
May-06 150 969
Apr-06 201 808
Mar-06 191 901
Feb-06 158 688
Jan-06 189 590


Now lets take a look at US monthly combat deaths in Iraq from December 2006 through December 2007:

Dec 2006 - 95
Jan 2007 - 78
Feb 2007 - 71
Mar 2007 - 71
Apr 2007 - 96
May 2007 - 120
June 2007 - 93
July 2007 - 67
Aug 2007 - 56
Sep 2007 - 43
Oct 2007 - 29
Nov 2007 - 29
Dec 2007 - 14

Its important to not that all the surge troops did not ARRIVE in Iraq until the middle of the summer of 2007 and its after that time, once all the surge troops had arrived that there is a steady significant drop in casualties among US troops and among Iraqi civilians and Iraqi military forces.

This dramatically shows the success of the surge. Obama is on record as saying that the Surge would make things in Iraq worse, or do the reverse of what it intended!
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