Meta-Blog

SEARCH QandO

Email:
Jon Henke
Bruce "McQ" McQuain
Dale Franks
Bryan Pick
Billy Hollis
Lance Paddock
MichaelW

BLOGROLL QandO

 
 
Recent Posts
The Ayers Resurrection Tour
Special Friends Get Special Breaks
One Hour
The Hope and Change Express - stalled in the slow lane
Michael Steele New RNC Chairman
Things that make you go "hmmmm"...
Oh yeah, that "rule of law" thing ...
Putting Dollar Signs in Front Of The AGW Hoax
Moving toward a 60 vote majority?
Do As I Say ....
 
 
QandO Newsroom

Newsroom Home Page

US News

US National News
Politics
Business
Science
Technology
Health
Entertainment
Sports
Opinion/Editorial

International News

Top World New
Iraq News
Mideast Conflict

Blogging

Blogpulse Daily Highlights
Daypop Top 40 Links

Regional

Regional News

Publications

News Publications

 
An Iraqi’s plea
Posted by: McQ on Monday, April 30, 2007

From Pajamas Media Baghdad editor Omar Fadhil (also from Iraq The Model):
I am an Iraqi. To me the possible consequences of this vote are terrifying. Just as we began to see signs of progress in my country the Democrats come and say, ‘Well, it’s not worth it.Time to leave’.

To the Democrats my life and the lives of twenty-five other million Iraqis are evidently not worth trying for. They shouldn’t expect us to be grateful for this.

For four years everybody made mistakes. The administration made mistakes and admitted them. My people and leaders made mistakes as well and we regret them.

But now, in the last two months, we have had a fresh start; a new strategy with new ideas and tactics. These were reached after studying previous mistakes and were designed to reverse the setbacks we witnessed in the course of this war.

This strategy, although its tools are not yet even fully deployed, is showing promising signs of progress.

General Petraeus said yesterday that things will get tougher before they get easier in Iraq. This is the sort of of fact-based, realistic assessment of the situation which politicians should listen to when they discuss the war thousands of miles away.

We must give this effort the chance it deserves. We should provide all the support necessary. We should heed constructive critique, not the empty rhetoric that the ‘war is lost.’

It is not lost. Quitting is not an option we can afford—not in America and definitely not in Iraq.
Encapsulated in those few paragraphs (and there is more, so feel free to read the whole thing) is the argument for the surge and giving it the time and room necessary to accomplish (or not) its mission.

When it comes to Iraq, I'm often accused of being a dead-ender, a Bushbot, someone who can't see reality of the situation on the ground (as if anyone who isn't there can) and someone who is backing an utter failure in terms of policy. Obviously I disagree. So in a sort of semi-annual "let's get this straight" post, let me use Omar's plea as a launch platform to answer a few questions.

1. Was the war in Iraq wrong?

Answer: that's irrelevant now. We're there. But for the record I've never considered it to have been "wrong" or the result of a "lie". It may have been ill considered, but that's easy to say in 2007 and wasn't at all easy to say in 2003.

2. Have mistakes been made?

Answer: by the boatload. Wrong assumptions were made by about everyone who could have made wrong assumptions and, unfortunately, it was those assumptions which were followed. Yes, we've made mistakes, and yes, it is very understandable that there is a feeling among Americans that Iraq has been a disaster to this point. But the fact that mistakes have been made doesn't mean it is appropriate to throw the baby out with the bath water. What is important is that we recognize the mistakes, correct our approach and ensure the corrected approach doesn't repeat those earlier mistakes. That, in my opinion, is what is now being attempted.

3. So what has changed that we should continue to support the effort in Iraq?

Answer: the entire focus of the mission has changed and, interestingly, in line with recommendations from the ISG which the Democrats were so eager to see the Bush administration implement. If you take the time to study the new doctrine and it's aims, you'll find that it is key to actually doing what is necessary to defeat the insurgency.

As Omar says, it must be given the time to completely unfold on the ground and be implemented. Then when that has been done and sufficient data has been collected, assess the effort objectively and make a recommendation. It is then, at least militarily, that we should pull the plug and begin to stand down if it isn't working (you don't reinforce failure) or we should expand the effort as necessary if it is being successful.

Gen Petraeus says August. I don't think it is asking too much to allow him the funds and manpower necessary to implement his strategy and assess the results at the proper time.

4. What about the politics of this?

Answer: Frankly I find them to be disgusting and distracting. They should be set aside to allow this plan - the surge - to succeed or fail on it's own merits. Look, we either have to trust Petraeus to report objectively on this or not. If not, then there is no reason to continue the charade and Democrats should pull the plug now (as they can by defunding the war). Instead we get nonsense like this from John Edwards:
Finally, he reiterated to reporters what he had said in his speech: That if the president vetoes the bill, approved by the House and Senate, to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq, Congress should submit the bill over and over. "Given where we are today, it's really important for Congress to stand its ground," he said.
That is not an example of Congress standing it's ground. That's an example of Congress trying to have it both ways. Standing it's ground would be to pull funding - now. Otherwise, get out of the way, fund the troops and let them do their job and then hold Gen. Petraeus to his August review and revisit the subject then.

5. What about the benefit of the political debate putting pressure on the Iraqis?

Answer: well that's about the only positive thing which has come out of this so far. But, as should be obvious now, the point has been made, not only by Congressional Democrats, but by SecDef Gates in his visits there.

Some have spoken of acceptable compromise within the supplemental funding bill incorporating benchmarks for the Iraqi government but dropping timelines for troop withdrawal. I think that may be an acceptable way to proceed as there are few out here on either side of the debate who don't want to see the Iraqis step up the process. That being said, it is important to remember that the government is about a year old and still getting its feet under it. But we all certainly agree it must do more and it must do it more quickly. We should do all we can to enable that process and speed it up ... and that is another purpose of the surge.

6. Why do you continue to support the effort in Iraq?

Answer: Because failure there, in any sense that our enemies could claim "victory" would, in the long run be disastrous.
In no time al-Qaeda and all similarly extremist factions will start boasting about how America is fleeing Iraq under the heavy blows of the “Mujahideen” planned by OBL himself.

The Democrats just offered al-Qaeda victory on a silver plate. For free. An imaginary victory for sure, for now, but it can still be used by al-Qaeda to promote their ideology of death and attract more recruits. As Omar notes:

“America’s will can be broken, America is not invincible,” they will say in a thousand ways. Is this the kind of message you want to send to the enemy?
Of course not ... but that will be the result of doing what Edwards suggests and/or playing games with funding.

We cannot afford to lose in Iraq or commit to any action which would be perceived as a loss. And we have the tools and the ability to "win". But there is a third and indispensable part to that equation. We must also have the political will.

Unfortunately it is that part of the equation we seem to be most lacking at this point. Was the war and it's duration undersold? Yes. Is that the fault of the administration? Yes. Does it matter now? No. At least not in the sense that we should abandon Iraq because we're disgusted with the way the war was sold. That makes no sense at all. It is a dirty, nasty, brutal little war which is going to take time and, unfortunately, lives. And although Adm. Fallon at CENTCOM wants to drop the term "long-war" that's precisely what it is. We need to recognize that, internalize it so we can place the effort in context and commit to what that means if - and that's a big if - we consider the defeat of radical Islamists to be among our most important national goals for the security of our future.

If all of that makes me a dead-ender, a Bushbot or whatever slur you prefer, then so be it. But I strongly believe that it is in our best future national interest to deny our enemies any sort of claim to victory. And while I know the cost and probably understand it as well or better than anyone, I also know it is a necessary cost which we must bear to deny a ruthless enemy any semblance of a claim to victory in Iraq.
 
TrackBacks
Return to Main Blog Page
 
 

Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
You bushbots have not learned from Vietnam. All losing Iraq will cost us is a genocide or two (such as a Pol Pot). Meanwhile we can still be pleased that we love brown people. No big whoop.
 
Written By: Parody?
URL: http://
The difference between Viet Nam (as far as this thread is concerned - there are about 2700 other differences) and Iraq is concerned is when we left VN, they did not follow us here with the intent to continue the war. (They followed us by the boatload, pardon the pun, but not to continue the war but to escape the bloodletting)

For Iraq, you cannot say that. (Dhimmocrats will say it but even they know it is a lie) Al Qaeda and virtually all of our enemies in the region have stated on numerous occasions that the war will continue, they will follow us home, and ultimately they want to see a crescent flag flying from US Capital.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
Because failure there, in any sense that our enemies could claim "victory" would, in the long run be disastrous.

In no time al-Qaeda and all similarly extremist factions will start boasting about how America is fleeing Iraq under the heavy blows of the "Mujahideen" planned by OBL himself.
Again, fears of what enemies will say are not a reason for policy.

Unfortunately though, you are right that we can’t simply ignore Iraq or wash our hands of this mess. But I don’t see how our mission there has changed so dramatically and there are many signs that the surge is not only failing but, as TIME notes, it may be backfiring. Neither the White House nor the Democrats offer a viable option of how to procede. I won’t write more here, but I do have my analysis of the problem — the need for an alternative other than military success or leave Iraq to the Iraqis — on my blog for today, April 30. (Actually my entries from April 25 and 27 address these dilemmas).

I think its time to take a step away from the pro-war vs. anti-war arguments and think creatively about the issue, putting aside the politics. The stakes are indeed high — too high for any of us, regardless of what we think of current policy, not to challenge our assumptions and beliefs.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
But I strongly believe that it is in our best future national interest to deny our enemies any sort of claim to victory
Unfortunately, McQ, you/we/Bush can’t do anything to keep that from happening.

Our enemies are going to claim victory when we leave, no matter the circumstances under which we leave. ’Victory’ is in the eyes of the beholder, especially in situations such as this where we can’t keep track with the standard metrics such as territory seized. Our enemies are like the Black Knight in Holy Grail... no matter how much of a beating they take, no matter how many of them we kill (which, by the way, since the Pentagon doesn’t release enemy body counts, we’ll never know how many) so long as there are but two terrorists left somewhere in the world, the moment we pack up and leave, they’re going to claim victory, that they drove us out. And it’s not as if the International Arbiter of Winning is going to send Al Qaeda a nasty letter forbidding them from declaring victory, is it?

So if one of the goals of the Surge is that it will keep our enemies from declaring victory, the Surge is predestined to fail. And the fat lady is left waiting for its supporters to come up with their next greatest idea for ’winning’.
 
Written By: steve
URL: http://
But McQ, the bill the President is going to veto does all that you ask. It funds the surge. It gives us till well past August. Even more time if we can certify progress then. And if it is succeeding, we’ll be able to draw down with no worries. And if it’s not we will still have to leave. It is exactly what you suggest we need. What makes Bush unhappy is that it’s not a blank check, that he can’t, after this, whine for another second chance.

And what Steve said. If real victory is countering Al qaeda PR, our resources in Iraq are mistargeted.
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
Our enemies are going to claim victory when we leave, no matter the circumstances under which we leave.
We agree on one point, Steve ... they’re going to try. It’s up to us as to how credible their claim will be ... and that’s the point. They have to establish it as a credible claim, and to do that they will essentially have show some level of control over Iraq after we leave.

So how, in your estimation, is that a foregone conclusion? I know you’re tuning up the fat lady, but other than doing what the Democrats want, how do our enemies credibly establish that claim?

 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
But McQ, the bill the President is going to veto does all that you ask.
Uh, no, it doesn’t. Did you miss the part about withdrawal timelines?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
We agree on one point, Steve ... they’re going to try. It’s up to us as to how credible their claim will be ... and that’s the point. They have to establish it as a credible claim, and to do that they will essentially have show some level of control over Iraq after we leave.
The key is to focus on strategic realities and conditions, not what any group might "claim." That is a focus on the emotional or the rhetorical. It has very limited value. We shouldn’t care what al qaeda might claim, we should worry about what they have the capacity to do, and to weaken them while improving our strategic position. Concerns about what claims might be made is irrelevant — that’s the political spettacolo, not reality.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
McQ: yes, it is a foregone conclusion. What we do is irrelevant as far as how the other side views this conflict, and it won’t matter to them if we think they have no credible claim to victory. They’ll write their own history books. You really think crazies who deny the Holocaust will have any trouble describing themselves as the winner here? They’ll the ultimate goalpost movers; no matter what we do, they’ll focus on something we have’t done and say we lost because of that.

Look at Afghanistan: we go in and kick the Taliban out. Victory for us, right? No, because Bin Laden got away, so we lost. We went into Iraq and got rid of Hussein, so victory for us, right? Nope. And it won’t matter how many statistics you can muster in support of our victory, the other side will come up with some way to claim victory for themselves.

And I agree with you Scott, we should ignore Al Qaeda’s claims of victory and focus instead on what they have the capacity to do. I only brought that up to counter those who argue that we need to stay in Iraq to keep Al Qaeda from claiming victory.

 
Written By: steve
URL: http://
Timelines that are well beyond the August date by which Petreaus says he’ll see progress or not.

McQ, what exactly is the difference between your current plea for time for the surge plan to work and your previous pleas for time for the 3 Phase Withdrawl Plan from last summer to work? And is that plan now one of the mistakes you suggest we’ve made? Is your passionate support to that mistake also just a good faith error, or will you support whatever bogus plan the next rebranding of our keep-dying-in-Iraq strategy comes with?
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
McQ, what exactly is the difference between your current plea for time for the surge plan to work and your previous pleas for time for the 3 Phase Withdrawl Plan from last summer to work?
The fact that there are set-in-concrete withdrawal dates regardless of success or failure.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
And I agree with you Scott, we should ignore Al Qaeda’s claims of victory ...
As usual, you seem not to get it ... it isn’t about what we believe, Steve. If it were, there’d be no al Qaeda.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Jihad Watch: Hugh Fitzgerald: Captain Queeg at the Ship of State, 29/05/06

"...Truman and those who followed him were not Messianic. They were not out to bring Paradise on Earth to everyone. They were determined to protect, in the first place, the United States, and then those countries in Western Europe that with the United States formed the West. They were not about to invade Russia, or China, or anywhere else. They were out to contain Communism.

What does Bush want? Bush tells us that this is what he wants:

"The message has spread from Damascus to Tehran that the future belongs to freedom, and we will not rest until the promise of liberty reaches every people in every nation."

Look at those lines above. Think about the quality of mind of someone who could utter such lines. He wants, this would-be Truman, to bring the "promise of liberty" to "every people in every nation." Good God. I don’t. I want to rescue my own country, and Western Europe, and Israel, Australia and a few other places. And if the rest of the Infidel world can also be saved, fine. Did Churchill and FDR stop, during World War II, to bring the "promise of liberty" to "every people in every nation" — or were they perfectly willing to aid, to the hilt, the Red Army, in order to stop Hitler? During the Cold War, were we determined to bring the "promise of liberty" to "every people in every nation," or were we simply trying to prevent the further spread of Communism and the power of the Soviet Union?

Bush here again demonstrates his naivete, his obstinate inability to admit that he has been wrong all along about Islam, and thus wrong about the usefulness of propping up a nation-state in Iraq (or Afghanistan) at such great cost to Infidels, rather than doing what he should be doing: using the sectarian and ethnic fissures in Iraq, and Afghanistan, to divide and demoralize the camp of Jihad. He can’t even think in those terms. They would disturb him. They are cruel. They imply a willingness not to bring toys and good things to eat to all the children on the other side of the mountain..."

After the Second World War, some of the men of Munich said ruefully: If only at the time I had read Mein Kampf. Does anyone believe George Bush has read the Koran? It’s not a long read. He’s had five+ years to try. If he had ever done so, he could not say or do the nonsense that McQ obligingly regurgitates.

Enough with propaganda: "GWOT", trust Bush, trust Petraeus, "mistakes were made", a 20,000 soldier surge can do what 150,000 can’t. To gain a proper appreciation of islam (not "radical" islam or "islamofascism"), jihadist ideology, and unrelenting 1500 year moslem enmity to the West, go to Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch: http://www.jihadwatch.org/.
 
Written By: Jeb Hallam
URL: http://
Memo to: Professor Erb

Re: Results of Meeting (including the Right Wing View Consultants input)Concerning Your New Image

I met with the “Academic” team following the monthly “Narrative Notes” committee meeting. By the way, don’t miss the Stewart show tonight, he’s going to run a visual effect for use with GW that we think will be killer.
As I told you, we would find out why you are not having more success on QandO. We came up with some great stuff.

1. First, we got the OK for you to use “spettacolo” without defining it. We checked and it’s not in the latest MS Word thesaurus or most dictionaries. We think it will underline your academic credentials and burnish your image as a wordmaster.
2. Next, they suggested that you be more conciliatory in your comments. Use the phrase “you are right” when you can, but watch for any hint of sarcasm.
3. Refer to MSM a little more. We got a hit piece in TIME speculating that the surge is backfiring; use that if you can.
4. They said your comments are too long. Be briefer on QandO and refer to your blog for the details.
5. Try to re-cast the argument. They are definitely winning the pro-war versus anti-war framing with their regular readers. Try to frame issues on Iraq so you can use “new” concepts that have not been shot down. Ease into it as if you are feeling your way. We have some columns coming in the Times that will lend credibility to this approach.
6. Finally, more general background.
a. It looks like the surge is going to be more or less successful and the funding gambit has outlived its usefulness. We have to move the goal-posts. It may happen quickly if too much good news leaks through the filter, so be ready to follow the lead taken by the Times as that will be our stopgap source for you until we can provide more in-depth material.
b. Use less emotion and rhetoric. Take the high road. Ooze objectivity, while still sticking on message. Tough to do, I know, but you can do it.
7. Keep up the good work.
sarcasm/humor alert
 
Written By: notherbob2/robert fulton
URL: http://
As usual, you seem not to get it ... it isn’t about what we believe, Steve

cheap shot aside, how isn’t this about what WE believe?

It doesn’t matter if the American people don’t believe in what Bush is trying to do? It doesn’t matter if the American people don’t believe that we’re winning? If doesn’t matter if the American people don’t believe they can go to sleep and wake up safely the next morning?

And why shouldn’t we disregard upcoming Al Qaeda’s claims of victory? Were the American people wrong to have disregarded the Japanese claims that our invasion forces were being pushed back into the sea?
 
Written By: steve
URL: http://
cheap shot aside, how isn’t this about what WE believe?
Uh, if you’re the one recruiting or trying to rally people to your cause, why would you care what your enemy believed, especially when you had a plausible case to support your claim?

Oh, and I retract the "cheap shot".
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Did Churchill and FDR stop, during World War II, to bring the "promise of liberty" to "every people in every nation" — or were they perfectly willing to aid, to the hilt, the Red Army, in order to stop Hitler? During the Cold War, were we determined to bring the "promise of liberty" to "every people in every nation," or were we simply trying to prevent the further spread of Communism and the power of the Soviet Union?
Do you even read what you write? We had the following 40 years of trouble because we aided the Red Army in a short term bid to defeat the Nazis.
 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
"We shouldn’t care what al qaeda might claim"

Said a man who has repeatedly argued that Iraq is a recruiting bonanza for terrorists.
 
Written By: Phil Smith
URL: http://
McQ, perhaps I was unclear. As you point out the deadlines are actual deadlines in the democrats’ bill, and not in the 3 Phase Plan. But what I intended to ask was what the difference is in your support today for time for this Surge Plan to work versus your support for time for the 3 Phase Plan to work last summer. I know this is now the right plan and the old one was a mistake but, last summer the 3 Phase plan was finally the right plan that just needed time to work. And that plan was in many ways the opposite of this plan. The only thing they have in common is that they demand more time for them to work, more months in which whe can pretend that we haven’t got our genitalia stuck in a meat-grinder in Iraq, and hope for the horse to sing. The democrats bill gives time for this Surge to work, but it also says there won’t be another shiny new plan for the next six months even if it doesn’t. Maybe teh time it allows is too short, but you just told us Petreau will see progress by August.

Regardless of Congressional timetables, there is a deadline fast approaching. If we haven’t seen troops coming home because Iraq has been won by the middle of next year, the next President of the US will be the candidate that most credibly promises to end the engagement in Iraq fastest.
 
Written By: Retief
URL: http://
Our enemies are going to claim victory when we leave, no matter the circumstances under which we leave. ’Victory’ is in the eyes of the beholder, especially in situations such as this where we can’t keep track with the standard metrics such as territory seized.
They aren’t going to claim anything if they’re dead. Victory is not in the eye of the beholder. That’s the reason we haven’t won a war in 50 years, because everyone seems to have forgotten what victory is and the terrible price it requires. War is fought as a last resort for a reason you know.

yours/
peter.
 
Written By: peter jackson
URL: www.liberalcapitalist.com
Our enemies are going to claim victory when we leave, no matter the circumstances under which we leave. ’Victory’ is in the eyes of the beholder, especially in situations such as this where we can’t keep track with the standard metrics such as territory seized.

Steve!!! Thank you!!

McQ, not that this isn’t a serious column you wrote, because it is, but:

Answer: Because failure there, in any sense that our enemies could claim "victory" would, in the long run be disastrous.

Isn’t being able to kill 1000 US soldiers a year also a convincing basis on which to claim victory? It sure seems like it, seeing how Al-Quieda in Iraq has grown and grown since we arrived.

We have no prospect of being able to control the borders, the population, or the hardware in Iraq as a whole. Meanwhile, we repeatedly and inevitably undermine our attempts to build lasting coalitions against the extremists in Iraq, through to and because of our force-posture. We’re going through another "rosy" phase in Anbar right now (actually, this is optimism-biased-wording - in parts of Anbar - , where the Baathists hate the Queda-ists more than us - until the Queda-ists patch things up, or are beaten into dormancy, or the Shiite government does some irritating thing, or Baathist dissidents and implants provoke a U.S. response - and we go right back into the downcycle.

In real, quantitative terms, the Army is breaking under the strain of the war, and our economy cannot handle many more double-digit defense increases. Iraq is quantitatively weakening us and strengthening Al-Queida, because it’s a losing paradigm. It’s a dream come true of the classic insurgency strategy - the classic strategy of all weaker strategic hands - lure the bigger guy into an unfavorable environment, bleed him, and grow stronger.

You know what ’sunk costs’ are, McQ? You’re still unable, like the rest of the elite, to get past the thought of psychological failure - a failure whose long-term importance is overrated. Hezballah fought the IDF well enough in Lebanon to be handed that golden apple, the propaganda claim of "victory". So what? Who cares? What’s the genuine significance? Well, Israel is in a bad mood. And in real capabilities...well, Hizballah lost. They’re less of a threat than when they started. They only ’won’ in the sense of denying Israel the amount of victory they foolishly claimed they were going to have. And because Israel left, rather than hang around in Lebanon for a decade - their political position has done nothing erode. If Israel had attempted to stay in Lebanon, it would have been throwing Hizballah a golden rope of rescue. That’s how Hizb became strong in the first place.

Al-Quieda will have the minimal victory, the chimerical, irrelevant propaganda boost from Iraq, no matter what. As long as we’re fighting a hot war in Iraq, it will be a mess, and Iraq has a virtually unlimited ability to sustain a hot war with us.

Once that boost is over, everything for those guys in Iraq will go downhill fast. The Sunni dictatorships in the region are hate and fear Islamists. The ruling Shiites in Iraq want to hang them by the gonads. The only thing keeping them in the game is how much everyone else hates Americans.

Advocates of these policies are keeping Al-Quieda in Iraq in the game where they would soon otherwise be exiting it, a**-first.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Peter: we’re not going to be able to kill them all and the ones that escape will claim their survival is ’victory’ and use their victory as a recruiting tool to pull other crazies into the fold. My point of raising this is only to discount those who say we have to stay in Iraq because the terrorists will claim our leaving means they won.

Mcq: what we think is important. While it’s possible to rally the folks round a loss or defeat (Pearl Harbor, the Maine, 9/11), if America thinks it’s winning the fight, we’re better able to keep the pressure on the enemy, in large part, because those wishing to throw in the towel are seen as idiots (to illustrate, where were the Reids and Pelosis when our troops were first rolling into Iraq?). And this goes to one of the big problems I have with the way Bush has run things. By not defining, in detail, what ’victory’ entails and by not providing us with the scorecard so we can all follow at home, he has all but ensured that the American people will think we’re losing. We get told how many Americans have wasted their lives in Iraq (100 dead in April alone), we hear of insurgent attack after insurgent attack. To the extent we get any positive news, lacking the scoresheet, it is darned near impossible to put it into context (it’s like hearing your team scored a touchdown but not knowing the score of the game. you don’t know whether it’s worth cheering or not). And as such, a good number of people have, and reasonably so, figured we’re losing.

And the sad thing is that it didn’t have to be this way.
 
Written By: steve sturm
URL: www.thoughtsonline.blogspot.com
From Pajamas Media Baghdad editor Omar Fadhil (also from Iraq The Model):

I don’t accuse you of being anything, McQ, but I accuse Omar from Iraq the Model, as being, in literal terms, the Ahmad Chalabi of the post-invasion era. I’ve also read he’s getting funding from certain people related to the DoD to make his case.

He’s also wildly unrepresentative of Iraqis as a whole, according to their surveyed opinions. I applaud you, McQ, that you’re at least attempting to make serious arguments about Iraq policy. A serious argument deserves a serious study. Look deeper into the Iraqi blogosphere. There’s a thin candy shell of people dependent on American backers and telling them what they want to hear: then there’s a larger network of non-connected Iraqi bloggers telling the truth. They sound very little like the Pajamas Media editor.

It’s the oldest occupation story in the world.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
War is fought as a last resort for a reason you know.
Alas, this was not a "last resort" war by any stretch of the imagination, and hence the dilemmas and loss of public support when success wasn’t easy and cheap.

You’re still unable, like the rest of the elite, to get past the thought of psychological failure - a failure whose long-term importance is overrated.
I also think a lot of emotion has been generated about the war, sometimes entrenching positions that really should be re-thought. I think that’s why so much bile is heaped upon Representative Murtha — he went through a rethinking of the situation and realized he had been wrong. That breaks through the left-right partisanship, a pro-military representative changed his mind. Rather than deal with what that means, it’s easier to demonize him.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Isn’t being able to kill 1000 US soldiers a year also a convincing basis on which to claim victory?
Heavens no ... we kill a 1,000 in training every year. Some context please. If we’re still there they can claim nothing.
You’re still unable, like the rest of the elite, to get past the thought of psychological failure - a failure whose long-term importance is overrated.
Heh ... yeah, that’s why tin pot dictators such as Saddam and terrorists such as OBL have used past "failures" to justify and rationalize their actions against US interests .... something you’ve yet to understand or admit.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Peter: we’re not going to be able to kill them all
And why not? This is one of those bits of "conventional wisdom" frequently asserted but rarely substantiated. And it’s completely wrong.

We fought religous zealots in Japan during WWII. They were committed to fighting until the last Japanese—and they would have, but it became clear to them that with the atom bomb that we could oblige them with little or no sacrifice. Then they gave up. And that’s what happens most of the time, before one side or the other is obliterated completely, they give up.

Our enemy, imeasurably weaker than we are, is simply doing what weak enemies always do, playing for a stalemate. They won’t give up because they believe, based on the United States’ habits of the last fifty years, that we will be the ones to give up. If we leave, it won’t matter what they, or you, or anyone thinks or says, our enemies will be victorious in point of fact.

yours/
peter.
 
Written By: peter jackson
URL: www.liberalcapitalist.com
And why shouldn’t we disregard upcoming Al Qaeda’s claims of victory?
It worked for them in Lebanon, and Somalia, and now Iraq.

Thank you, Perestroika, for creating a self fulfilling prophecy where there be be more and greater attacks. Thank you. I hope blaming Booosh! for the next set of calamities will give you some comfort.
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
Peter: are you really comparing Japan in WWII with our enemy today? Japan was a top-down society, and when the leaders decided to throw in the towel, the rest of the country followed suit. That isn’t the case with the terrorists we face. Do you really think that, if Bin Laden was to go on TV and give up, that the crazies would all follow? Isn’t it more likely that someone else would claim his mantle and take over the fight against the Great Satan?

And under what circumstances do you see the crazies ever giving up?

And your answer didn’t address my point that we can’t kill them all.
 
Written By: steve sturm
URL: www.thoughtsonline.blogspot.com
"I think that’s why so much bile is heaped upon Representative Murtha — he went through a rethinking of the situation and realized he had been wrong. That breaks through the left-right partisanship, a pro-military representative changed his mind. Rather than deal with what that means, it’s easier to demonize him."

You’d think wrong.

The bile heaped on Murtha has little to do with his "rethinking" and everything to do with what he has expressed as true about our men in the military, about individual soldiers and the military mindset. Personal attacks and insults from him that in no way whatsoever can be termed as "pro-military."

What the fire of this war has revealed about his "pro-military"-ness is that it was never based on respect for soldiers, as individuals moral beings, but on pity of them and a habit of voting for funding. Yes... Murtha voted for military funding reliably. Yay.

But his demonstrated willingness and apparent glee at pronouncing our soldiers guilty of atrocities without trial, apparent pleasure in the political bennies of publicly pronouncing our military unwilling to investigate even while investigations were underway, his willingness to suggest that the military would be unreliable in prosecuting soldiers, and his insistence that every man over there was walking the wire edge of psychological break-down and massacre, earned him the title EX-marine from many of his *former* brothers.

His slanders were personal ones, not disagreements about this war. They were slanders of soldiers who take enormous pride in their professionalism and profession.

What is more comfortable than dealing with what this means and taking some time to understand military culture, is deciding that people were just mad about his politics.

I’ve made fun of him for his tactical idiocy. The Okinawan Option is always good for a hoot. But good for a hoot isn’t motivation for bile. If it was just Okinawa, it would just be laughter.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
But his demonstrated willingness and apparent glee at pronouncing our soldiers guilty of atrocities without trial, apparent pleasure in the political bennies of publicly pronouncing our military unwilling to investigate even while investigations were underway, his willingness to suggest that the military would be unreliable in prosecuting soldiers, and his insistence that every man over there was walking the wire edge of psychological break-down and massacre, earned him the title EX-marine from many of his *former* brothers.
He was angry about how young men and women were put in positions where they could become cold blooded killers like at Haditha, and numerous other cases (let alone the check point shootings and other acts that destroy innocent Iraqi lives). Oh, and if you really think one has to wait for a trial to claim someone is guilty when the evidence is clear, you had better also condemn those who claim OJ Simpson is guilty — a trial "proved" him innocent.

Psychological problems are extremely high with returning vets, and the strain on the military and military officials (as noted in Time’s story a couple weeks ago) is intense. Murtha is right, he understands what’s going on, he’s speaking for a lot of people inside the Pentagon who are angry about the war and will vent to him because they trust him, and know they can’t be open about their views. Don’t you see — for all the noise and rhetoric, REALITY about the war is undeniable — this is a failure, and the war critics are being proven right as time goes on. That reality cannot be defeated by smears, attacks, or political rhetoric. That’s why the attacks on Murtha failed — they ended up sounding shill and silly.

Alas, all that is meaningless anyway. The problems in Iraq are real, and attacks and defenses of political figures like Murtha is just noise, distracting from the real issues.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
You still don’t get it. You don’t get how that is a mortal insult to our soldiers.

The milbloggers I read, while upset that Murtha declared those soldiers undeniably guilty when it’s a basic American RIGHT to the presumption of innocence, were absolutely clear that if guilty they were actually *guilty*. But you see that you have just done exactly what Murtha had done. ALL soldiers are guilty. The only difference being circumstance. Murtha, like you just did, slandered all of our soldiers. There’s no question of the Haditha Marines’ guilt because all of our soldiers are cold blooded killers. All of them. Some simply haven’t had the opportunity. You *believe* this and Murtha is a huge part of the reason that you believe this.

And that pissed the soldiers off, go figure. That gets the soldiers bile flowing. Amazing, that.

Do you know what it’s like to jump at noises, Scott?

You make claims about the psychological problems returning vets face as though you know anything about it. As though the people having those problems are some people over there somewhere and not the very ones who are infuriated by Murtha.

Because Murtha played into a stereotype of our soldiers, an insulting, slanderous, Hollywood stereotype that just happens to coincide with your preconceptions you think that he was being brave and honest and noble to defend those poor twisted souls...

That’s what the bile is about, Scott.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
Just consider that you’re basing your firm belief on the military situation in Iraq on the supposed secret communications with someone who the majority of soldiers and veterans revile and whom are prohibited by the UCMJ of openly criticizing.

I’d like to suggest actually seeing what the soldiers have to say. Amazing thing, they like to talk. They blog. They post pictures. I’d like to suggest Yon who has a very nice photo essay up. Totten does photos and commentary. Look for some blogs of people who are deployed or have been recently. See what they have to say. Then go back to traditional sources and start looking up Anbar.

You could probably get some more current information about the prosecution of the soldiers over Haditha if you were actually interested in how that is going rather than it being done and over with since Murtha decided trials weren’t necessary.

 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
You still don’t get it. You don’t get how that is a mortal insult to our soldiers.
A mortal insult? Mortal? They’ll be killed by that insult? What happened to sticks and stones? Look, I don’t care if the soldiers take it as an insult or not. Nobody ever said that makes all soldiers guilty — I doubt soldiers are so soft and fragile that they’ll not be able to make these distinctions. Haditha and Abu Ghraib happened, as have other atrocities. That happens in every war, due to the intense stress put on people in those conditions. There are numerous reports of psychological problems of returning vets — problems that will likely be around long after the ’support the troops’ phase has passed. That’s reality. I also doubt you speak for ’the soldiers.’ Don’t rely on blogs, many of them are propaganda, controlled and censored.

I suggest you read Chris Hedges’ book War is a Force that Gives Us Meaning
. Hedges is a Pulitizer prize winning war reporter who has seen more war than most soldiers and civilians alike. It is a powerful book — and it makes a distinction between those who want to mythologize war (which you seem to want to do) and those who deal with reality. And for psychology, check out Gen. Romeo Dallaire’s Shake Hands With the Devil. Dallaire was the head of UNAMIR, the Rwandan peace keeping force that witnessed the genocide and was abandoned by the world. He did more to try to help Rwandans than the world, but suffered PTSD and severe problems in the aftermath. (I have my students read both books — much more powerful than textbooks).


 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Peter:
but it became clear to them that with the atom bomb that we could oblige them with little or no sacrifice.
Gas prices would skyrocket and any attack near Mecca & Medina would likely escalate conflict to include wider Muslim world (including Pakistan - nukes). These are the significant sacrafices that make up the "why not".
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
Peter: are you really comparing Japan in WWII with our enemy today?
Only insofar as they were a religiously motivated, committed enemy.
Japan was a top-down society, and when the leaders decided to throw in the towel, the rest of the country followed suit.
Right. And as a result, we didn’t have to kill them all and lose a million soldiers in the process.
That isn’t the case with the terrorists we face. Do you really think that, if Bin Laden was to go on TV and give up, that the crazies would all follow?


Well it’s not like Hirohito said let’s throw in the towel and his generals said no and fought on, so your comparison isn’t really apt. If Bin Laden and his staff surrendered and issued a fatwa instructing Al Queda everywhere to "bear the unbearable," and we hung most of them like we did in Japan, then yes, I think a great many jihadists would quit being jihadists. Certainly that isn’t to say that they would suddenly like us, any more than the Nazi defeat resulted in Germans suddenly liking Jews, but they did quit fighting.
Isn’t it more likely that someone else would claim his mantle and take over the fight against the Great Satan?
Only if they thought they had something to gain by doing so.
And under what circumstances do you see the crazies ever giving up?
If you don’t mind me saying, I believe that your characterization of our jihadist enemy as "crazies" is the start of your misapprehension. It’s hand-waving really, a method by which you can dismiss them and by doing so avoid taking their threats seriously. From their perspective you as an American may be rich, but you’re also arrogantly immoral and unconsciously unclean. But more to the point, they see you as fatally weak. So—are you?
And your answer didn’t address my point that we can’t kill them all.
It wasn’t a point, it was an assertion. By not giving me an argument you haven’t really given me anything I can rebut, and I’ll try.

When I say we can kill them all, I’m saying that we can kill enough of them to matter. Even if we can’t kill every jihadist to a man in short order, (which I believe is what you’re saying), that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t set out to systematically do so, in order to get our enemy to conclude that his cause is hopeless and give up. That’s why I brought up Imperial Japan. But even so, given time, can they literally all be killed? Ask an Aztec or a Comanche.

You know, nothing I’m saying here is terribly radical. Warfare and the nature of victory have been understood by civilization for millenia. You want peace? Peace proceeds from victory over a committed enemy, and nothing else. Unfortunately it’s still an open question as to how many wars we’ll eventually have to fight in Iraq before we remember.

yours/
peter.
 
Written By: peter jackson
URL: www.liberalcapitalist.com
Scott, you brought up Murtha and made a guess as to why people got so mad about what he said. You were wrong.

Now maybe that doesn’t matter to you. But if you are wrong about that it means that your world view, the way you interpret events, is wrong. Is it an error that matters?

I think it does.

I think it matters because it is a world view that *requires* that our soldiers and veterans are broken and unreliable, it *requires* that milblogs are "propaganda, controlled and censored" because they *must* be for what you believe about the military and about the war to make sense, to fit together coherently.

PTSD is real and not a person comes back from deployment without at least an adjustment period. Some, just as veterans from other wars, may have nightmares and combat flashbacks for the rest of their lives. Using this to suggest that soldiers are all potentially unstable and are made, by their circumstances, into cold-blooded killers, rapists perhaps, or murderers is an error and a serious one.

I sometimes think that people find the idea almost romantic in a shivery sort of way. They imagine themselves on that edge of madness and it’s seductive.

 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
By that I mean to point out that I’m not the only one who seems intent on mythologizing war.

 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
If we do withdraw most of our forces and just leave training teams, etc., we may not end up with the worst case scenario. Iraq can end up like a Colombia or something. But, we need to be cautious not to leave so soon that they end up being over-run.

Its actually quite tricky to know when we should do it...but isn’t it obvious the Dems want the war over before "their" election in 2008 so they can ignore these pesky foreign policy matters and concentrate on domestic affairs?

I doubt the enemy will be so accomadating.

p.s. insurgencies last a long time.

p.s.s. If we are going to avoid them in the future, we need to revert to the Kosovo strategy of supporting ethnic enclaves and stop trying to keep Humpty Dumpty together. Imagine our forces only occupying Kurdistan and building up an independent nation there. Killing of Ansar Al-Islam there and then slowly working on the rest of Iraq to rise up. But hey that would violate international law.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
"Haditha and Abu Ghraib happened, as have other atrocities. That happens in every war, due to the intense stress put on people in those conditions."

And out of a perverse need to be accurate I’d like to point out that Abu Ghraib had nothing whatsoever to do with the stress put on people in those conditions. The major actors in that affair were scum buckets, by *all* accounts, long before they got there. Lindy and her boyfriend (who’d been employed as a civilian prison guard) were behaving pretty much like they always did, but with greater opportunity. That they were able to do so was a gross failure of leadership and for that the Army is responsible. But the war did not make a previously decent girl suddenly think dog leashes were funny. To say that Abu Ghraib was due to the intense stress put on people in those conditions is to make excuses for inexcusable behavior.

Haditha *may* be an example of soldiers committing an atrocity due to intense stress or frustration.

Or it may not.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
I think it matters because it is a world view that *requires* that our soldiers and veterans are broken and unreliable, it *requires* that milblogs are "propaganda, controlled and censored" because they *must* be for what you believe about the military and about the war to make sense, to fit together coherently.
The world isn’t black and white. The history of warfare and atrocities attest to the fact that in such conditions many humans break, some do acts of evil, others are devasted. Many do not break, many are courageous against those who would commit atrocities, most keep their honor. Every bit of evidence I see on Haditha and a few other cases — much of it from the military — makes it pretty obvious that atrocities were commited. Saying so is not wrong. Moreover, we should expect that in war; one reason I think this conflict is so misguided is the double whammy of putting young Americans in such situations where something like Haditha can ruin the lives of otherwise honorable people, while at the same time giving groups like al qaeda propaganda images and stories that arouse anti-Americanism. We have to confront that reality, we can’t just say "our soldiers are brave and we shouldn’t do anything that might seem to insult them."

It is just as misguided to say that all veterans are broken and unreliable as to say all soldiers and veterans are honorable and commit no bad deeds. Humans are humans, and there are a variety of reactions — the extremes don’t hold. Yet getting to the human cost — innocent Iraqis killed at check points and in cases like Haditha, or otherwise good honorable Americans harmed by being put in positions of extreme stress — is important. It cuts away from the abstract geopolitical logic or pro/anti- war slogans. Ultimately when I look at Haditha I really feel more sympathy for even the perpetrators who probably lost it in a moment of rage and stress than I do for the policy makers who created that situation. Yet the policy makers sit pretty while the soldiers go to trial.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
BTW, this is why I very much oppose claims that we need to continue fighting because of what al qaeda might say in its propaganda. We’re playing with real lives and consequences on families, soldiers and innocent Iraqis, all because we’re worried about the propaganda a terrorist organization might put out?! Surreal.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Its actually quite tricky to know when we should do it...but isn’t it obvious the Dems want the war over before "their" election in 2008 so they can ignore these pesky foreign policy matters and concentrate on domestic affairs?
Harun, isn’t it obvious as well that the Bush Adminstration wants to "punt" the Iraq problem to the next President ??
 
Written By: Ivan
URL: http://
"...who probably lost it in a moment of rage and stress..."

Pesky accuracy thing again...

A moment of rage and stress is not at all "cold-blooded" murder (a word Murtha used) and does not describe *at all* what was claimed to have happened which was that our soldiers, well after being attacked and having one of their member killed, coldly chose to retaliate and massacre a bunch of people, including children, that they knew were not responsible.

Besides which, why put that "probably" in there. I thought you knew they were guilty even without a trial. I presumed that meant that you knew what happened that day. Now I wonder if you even knew what was *claimed* to have happened that day.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
A moment of rage and stress is not at all "cold-blooded" murder
Yeah, I see your point there. I think the term is used, though, to note that the killer had no sympathy or feeling for the person being killed, treating the person like an almost inhuman object. In that sense, I do think the use of the term ’cold blooded’ is not mutually exclusive with rage and anger.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
I think the term is used, though, to note that the killer had no sympathy or feeling for the person being killed, treating the person like an almost inhuman object.
Huh... Lotta WWII, Korea, and ’Nam vets out there just became Cold-blooded murderers, thanks to the magic of the Erb-Gibberish Dictionary...

Guess what, Erbbie? In war (or when, say, being shot at) most folks don’t give two Goddamns about the "person being killed"...

And somehow I doubt you consider the people slaughtering - by the gross-lots - women and children via carbomb and the like to be "cold-blooded Killers".

For some reason I suspect you only count US Soldiers...
 
Written By: Scott
URL: http://
One of the most striking things that I’ve read about this war was one soldier’s discussion of this exact thing. He only spoke for himself, making no claims for his fellow soldiers. He wondered, as some might, what killing people might do to him. What he found, and what amazed him so much that he was writing about it, is that he was able to kill attackers with no more emotional aftermath than a gladness that they hadn’t succeeded in their attempt and that he’d killed them... but that this didn’t affect the way he felt about the people at all.

The people, the shopkeepers, the children... he lost no tenderness about them whatsoever.

It’s quite all right with me if our soldiers view the enemy as inhuman and so suffer no traumas for killing them. Considering what some of these people do and have done, killing them clean is a mercy.

 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
It’s quite all right with me if our soldiers view the enemy as inhuman and so suffer no traumas for killing them. Considering what some of these people do and have done, killing them clean is a mercy.
If the start seeing any Iraqis in those terms, or any suspected possible enemy in those terms, they have descended into evil, and the psychological consequences will likely be with them forever as they enter the normal world. The kind nof thinking you consider "all right" is exactly the kind of thinking that allowed the Holocaust to occur, the Rwandan genocide, and Stalin’s atrocities. That is the kind of thinking which led 19 young religious fanatics to think that it was OK to fly planes into the World Trade Center and Pentagon (the latter being a military target, after all). It is, in fact, the kind of thinking that enables terror.

The fundamental evil in human affairs is not to see others as human and put political cause ahead. In your view the people attacking our soldiers are doing evil. In their view they are fighting an outside invader/occupier who is trying to install a Quisling regime, and they are attacking our people with the same thinking and vigor you or I might attack an outside invader if one were to take over the US.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
In my view they are doing evil.

In their view they are doing good by gutting innocent aid workers, sawing heads off of journalists, using children as camo so our soldiers aren’t suspicious and then blowing them up, releasing chlorine bombs into market places, and holding courts to convict women who dare eat a cucumber or sit in a chair. Torturing captured soldiers to death and sticking their genitals in the mouth of their severed head seems pretty heinous to me as well.

If they aren’t doing evil in your opinion, fine. Makes me wonder what you consider evil, but there you go.

I don’t feel that their feelings about the rightness of all this is relevant and I think that fighting evil is a valid and good thing that our soldiers should feel good about doing.

I realize that it’s SOP for armies to vilify the enemy, but we’re not talking about German boys who got drafted. We’re talking about people who habitually and deliberately hide behind children because they *know* that *our* soldiers will do just about anything to avoid killing children. Protecting the children by killing the bastards seems like the moral high ground to me.
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
In their view they are doing good by gutting innocent aid workers, sawing heads off of journalists, using children as camo so our soldiers aren’t suspicious and then blowing them up, releasing chlorine bombs into market places, and holding courts to convict women who dare eat a cucumber or sit in a chair. Torturing captured soldiers to death and sticking their genitals in the mouth of their severed head seems pretty heinous to me as well.
You’re looking at a small minority of hard core terrorist types. Most insurgents and definitely most Iraqis are not in that category. Just like you can’t say all Americans are like those who participated in Abu Ghraib and Haditha, you can’t paint all insurgents or Iraqis with that kind of brush.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
I don’t even know how to answer that. A small minority *just like* the small minority of Americans? Or the suggestion that I’m painting all Iraqis that way?

Oh for the love of Pete.

It isn’t a minority, not even close, that is attacking civilian targets over there. This is the standard way of business. So is torturing and killing captives. The couple of our guys who got captured must have been severely *unlucky* to happen to get caught by the *small minority* of the noble resistance who thought a big party, torture to death, decapitate and desecrate thing was a hoot!! I mean, what were the chances?

What were the chances, Mr. Scott Erb? Miniscule no doubt. They were just unlucky enough to get caught by the *small freaking minority* who would kill them like that. Bummer, dude.

It’s not a minority, no matter how much you want to like these guys, it’s standard practice for Al Qaida to saw the heads off of prisoners and film it and distribute the film. Because this is what they are proud of. They don’t set off car bombs in markets by accident. It’s not some small minority of their otherwise noble soldiers who murder civilians.

You know what is worse evil than dehumanizing the enemy? Moral equivalence.

How did tolerating evil become a virtue? Just how much should we tolerate?




 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com
Why is standing by, without judgment, virtuous?

How can it be?
 
Written By: Synova
URL: http://synova.blogspot.com

It isn’t a minority, not even close, that is attacking civilian targets over there. This is the standard way of business.
You are absolutely wrong. That kind of thinking leads to collective dehumanization and atrocities. You come off sounding like a bigot. And this statement shows part of your confusion:


It’s not a minority, no matter how much you want to like these guys, it’s standard practice for Al Qaida to saw the heads off of prisoners
Al qaeda is a small minority, especially within Iraq.

I don’t tolerate evil — evil is evil in anybody’s name, and collective demonization based on the actions of some is evil.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Woops, way to strong. Collective demonization is a step towards evil, it makes act of evil more likely.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm

 
Add Your Comment
  NOTICE: While we don't wish to censor your thoughts, we do blacklist certain terms of profanity or obscenity. This is not to muzzle you, but to ensure that the blog remains work-safe for our readers. If you wish to use profanity, simply insert asterisks (*) where the vowels usually go. Your meaning will still be clear, but our readers will be able to view the blog without worrying that content monitoring will get them in trouble when reading it.
Comments for this entry are closed.
Name:
Email:
URL:
HTML Tools:
Bold Italic Blockquote Hyperlink
Comment:
   
 
Vicious Capitalism

Divider

Buy Dale's Book!
Slackernomics by Dale Franks

Divider

Divider