IRAQ; No Phobia

[Taken from a post of mine from the Outpost Galifrey bulletin board in the third quarter of '02 and edited to meet the requirements of a generalized reader as well as being updated to some time before the invasion]

The hot topic in the media today is Iraq and will we or won't we as well as some rather myopic views on should we. One doctrine of psychohistory is that if you know where a system has come from and by what path then you know where it will go.

OK: Let's roll.

None of this is data that originated with me. It is either sourced or was common knowledge from news reports. Those whom I quote are either Conservative or of unknown ideology so I am not parroting the left here. If you can think clearly and have some knowledge, you should be able to know if my conclusions are likely to be true (though some of my predictions may not pan out).

In 1990 the Iraqis lodged several complaints with the US and other powers that Kuwait was slant-drilling for oil in Iraq and requests that these powers adjudicate the matter. Here was the perfect opportunity to bring Hussein into the civilized world. What was said by April Glespie was that "We have no interest in this conflict". So, Iraq settled the matter in the manner that such matters are settled where law does not rule. The US got all bent out of shape and thence came Operation Desert Shield then Operation Desert Storm. At this time, I was in favor of ousting Hussein. This was not done. The reasons stated were that the power vacuum would lead to actions by Iran, the Northern Kurds and some others that would partition Iraq and possible create another Islamic Republic. So, canning Saddam was out. The mission of Desert Storm was specifically defined as " eject the Iraqi army from Kuwait".

But, at the end, Iraq was required to accept terms that had nothing to do with the stated purpose of the operation. This included weapos inspections (this questions the honesty of the Bush I Administration). One of the other things was a "no fly zone" for fixed-wing aircraft over Southern Iraq under the principle that such planes could be used to attack "Coalition" forces stationed in Kuwait, which may have been perfectly reasonable. Then came the no fly zone in Northern Iraq. This, according to Scott Ritter, who headed the UNSCOM weapons inspection team, on the Jim Bohannan Show just this week was to for the following "The Kurds were in revolt in Iraq and Hussein was suppressing them harshly. They were fleeing into Turkey and the Turks didn't like this" The Kurds have been trying for years to create a Kurdistan out of pieces of Iran, Iraq and Turkey. Of these no-fly zones. Gene Burns, Libertarian talk show host on, at the time, WRKO 680 AM Boston MA. said. "This is wrong. Since they left Hussein as the sovereign of the country for good or ill, it is incumbent on them to let him run the country as best he can". Another thing inflicted upon Iraq was the "oil embargo" of which the official statement was that it would end when Iraq was found free of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons programs. According to Mr. Ritter "Jim Baker said "The sanctions will not end until Hussein has been removed". None of this was any part of the Desert Storm actions. The net result I get of this is that the US was trying to set Hussein up for a fall in a sneaky way.

Fast forward to the mid-'90's. Bill Clinton is taking gas in the polls, next thing we know is that he's bombing Iraq. Conservative editor Arnaud de Bourchgrave, on The McLaughlin Group is telling the tale of him in the Near East and aopologizing all over the Arab world and one of the Sultans or Emirs saying "You don't have to do this, We undertand that your President is trying to increase his standing in the polls"

1996 or 7 According to Howie Carr, Conservative talk show host WRKO 680 AM Boston on Iraqi attacks on Kurdish rebel positions in nortern Iraq and the subsequent US bombings of the Iraqu troops: There are two Kurdish factions, one more pro-Western than the other. These two factions came to loggerheads over control of black market items. the more fanatic group attaced the Pro-western side and the attacked Kurds called to Hussein for help and when he responded, the US led coalition bombed his troops.

1998, On the afternoon that Clinton was impeached by congress, he ordered bombings of Iraq that ended a few days later and, to the best of anyone's knowledge, served no military purpose. Read; Wag the Dog

Now we stand on the brink of war. under the notion that Iraq is in possession of nuclear or "weapons of mass destruction" (on of those PC terms that I first heard on the leftish TV show STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION). with such statements as the one by Vice President Dick Cheney that Iraq may have these weapons. Of this Mr. Ritter, A former or present US Marine said "You can't start a war becuase you think someone is acquiring weapons of mass destruction" (echoing the doctrine that the only justification for war is "clear and present danger"; the doctrine that has been the basis of conduct among competing, sometimes antagonistic nations and the basis for adjudication a just war and the abandonment of which would sink the civilized nations to the same level as the savage, and worse, by eliminating, in ascending order, rules, laws, standards and concepts of justice, make any war, agressive or defensive, by anyone, civilized, barbarian or savage, for any cause, reason or no reason at all, pre-emptive strike, conquest, looting or ethnic/religious hatred, at any time, morally equivalent to any other war. Thus reducing the US to the level of the Skrouyu savages of East Cupcake by playing the game with all cards being wild.). Of Mr Cheney's quote, Ritter says that this would, by law, be made to oversight committees of the Senate or Congress and evidence submitted and "I am not aware that such briefings have taken place". Of the no fly zones Mr. Ritter said that they may be in violation of law. He also said that the sanctions on Iraq have left Hussein more well-entrenched than ever. There was another thing he mentioned; In '98 Richard Butler pulled the UNSCOM inspection team out becuase the (Clinton) Administration had used it for espionage (this I do remember being in the news) in violation of law, to try and take out Hussein in Operation Desert Fox.

Now, prior to the last 5 years, Iraq was NOT listed as a terrorist state. It seems to me that if someone has his heel on your neck you take him out however you might, particularly if his hands are not clean so I really can't fault Hussein for cutting a deal with Al Qaeda if, in fact, he did, which is yet to be proved. When a nation like the US and ESPECIALLY the US because it is the ultimate creation of the Age of Enlightenment and the (both self-appointed and recognized) stronghold of Western values violates, over time and wholesale, not just a piece once or twice, the principles it purports to uphold in a given area of behavior, it loses its credibility in that area and becomes a fair target: Is it proper that the gods complain that men do not behave like gods when the self-same gods behave like men? However, because Al Qaeda is, at the root a terrorist group, and separting the perfidy done to Iraq, the US has every right to go in and obliterate Al Qaeda however it sees fit (although, by pulling Israel off Arafat's back as it has been doing, and by behaving in a lawless fashion as it is threatening to do, it is fast losing that right): The difference here is that Al Qaeda is not a national entity and has attacked US targets peremtorily. The principles here are that Iraq is behaving defensively and Al Qaeda behaves as an agressor. Much of the really fun part of this is that Iraq has a better Human Rights record than Syria, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and RED China, up whose arse the US has it's head so far that a good sneeze will give China a high calonic and a good burp. Even as I write this US officials are talking with "Exiled Iraqi opposition leaders". Be rest assured that if I ruled a country in the manner that Arabs rule their countries, there would be no "exiled oppostion leaders" for my enemies to talk to. All MY enmeies are having rather lengthy conversions with worms (can I help it if they have personality flaws that can trigger deadly results if exploited?) and I'm generally a nice guy.

Why is this important enough to me to go off like this? As a person who supports the principles that are the foundation of the United States, The cornerstones of our laws and traditions, and the very heart and soul of being an American, I would find that if the United States violates those principles, she sinks from the highest beacon of cvilization to the lowest, crappiest kind of scumbag nation. If you talk the talk, YOU BETTER FRIGGIN' WALK THE WALK! and failure to do so makes you far, far, worst then the lowest pigeon-droppings anywhere. Look at what is happening to the Catholic Church today. Given all of this, I must conclude that the whole US policy towards Iraq has been dishonest and aimed at the removal of Saddam Hussein in a sneaky, underhanded way for the last dozen years. Having failed and earnd a walloping for being so scummy, the US politicians now wish to resort to naked force. Please note that the Democrats are more united in support of this than the Republicans and thd military. As an American, meaning that I support the rule of law (which has been absent here), honesty in policy (which has been non-existent here since '90) and open declaration of purpose which is the hallmark of the honest, enlightend peoples. I find this whole business dispicable and beneath contempt ESPECIALLY when carried out by the purported and actual most advanced nation in history and MOSt ESPECIALLY by the nation that claims my allegience as a civilized being, and therefore, intolerable. It's every thing that is opposite to what is rational, honest, decent and honorable and just plain sucks.

Now, where does this go if we go in and yank Hussein?

Any US intersts in the rest of the world are toast, Pakistan's "moderate" president is dead meat. The Saudis will torch their oil fields, Al Qaeda gets more troops, money and equipment than it knows what to do with. The US forces in Bosnia and Kossavo can stick their heads between thir legs and kiss their arses goodbye, what China, which has actually supported terrorism materially and propagandistically, may feel that they can get away with is unclear but they like to roll us when they get the chace, Remember the P-3 incident in '01? We really showed THEM a thing or two. They used us for a bag of Doritos and we took it and kissed their feet. And what will replace Hussein? Two chances in three that it will be an "Islamic Republic", either Sunni or Shi'ite (as in Ayatollah Khomeine), possibly the partitioning of Iraq with the North going to the more agressive Kurds who will then harrass Turkey to created the long-desired Kurdistan, Iran will go in after a hunk of Iraq and maybe absorb the Shia section into itself and the remainder will be another Islamic Repubic to join with the REAL bad guys or a weakling regime like the Baktiar-Gopspasdei Iranina regime that the West put together after the Shah left and which was easy picking for the Shi'ite forces, followed by a Sunni Islamic Republic (all the bad stuff we wanted to avoid in '91). This we should want? This ls like cutting off your face to spite your nose. This is why we have more to gain from Hussein being in there than out. The West doesn't have the stones to do what has to be done when it's crunch time. As President Truman once said of one of our less savory allies "He's a son of a bitch, but he's OUR son of a bitch".

Saddam Hussein, for all of what he is is a secularist not an Islamicist. What we should do is give him a chance to make nice and let him know that there's something in it for him (he's ruthless, not crazy). He has expressed an interest in restoring Babylon; how's about we encourage that activity (it should keep him off the streets). If he's becoming problematical in a low-level way, well, that's what we have Israel for. They bombed his weapons reactor at Osirak in '81 for which they were thanked by getting the diplomatic back of the hand from the rest of the world-including the US.

There is currently a "civil war" in the US Pentagon that divides along civilian-military lines. The civvies want to go in but the soldiers don't.

This doe not mean we have to like Hussein or even wish him a happy birthday. The nature of international alliance is not palsy-walsy, it is common interest. As was once said, "The United States has no permanent enemies and no permanent friends, only permanent interests". Most of the terror network; Islamic Jihad, Hezb-Allah (translation: "The Party of God), the "Mujahadim" of Afghanistan that we gave aid to in the 1980's, which I was against at the time, that included Mullah Omar and Bin Laden and grew into the Taliban (hint: "mujahadim" means "holy warriors) and including Al Qaeda which has ties with the Taliban and Mujahadim has a strong connection to (extremist) Islam. Hussein is a secularist and is considered to be an apostate which is only a couple of notches up from an infidel. Now which fits our interests, including our anti-terrorist interests better; coming to terms with Hussein or rolling the dice and most likely strengthening the "Islamist" and therefore terroist position?

Some updates since this was written:
First; in late August/early September, one of the Right's favorite colunists, Bill Gurtz (sp) was asked by Matt Drudge if he thought that Bush made the case for moving on Iraq and Gurtz said "He hasn't made the case yet".
Second: During the week of September 23rd, when Tony Blair was waving around a "dossier" promising to be convincing proof of the need to attack Iraq, I heard on NPR a spokesman for Jane's Defence Weekly say that "...ther's is no smoking gun".
Third: In mid-October, A report quoted George Tenent, Head of the CIA that, Iraq poses no threat to the US and has avoided direct involvement with torrorism (at least international terrorism: It's dealings with Israel have for for years been placed in a different class as one of the "fronbline states" in some kind of Near East quasi-war).

Beyond all of this is the following: America is the product of the Age of Enlightenment. That was a product of the Rannaissance, which means Rebirth, what it was in fact was the rebirth or the supremacy of reason in the affairs of Man. Reason is the mental faculty that organized the material provided by the senses and perception into a NON-CONTRADICTORY, organized and systematic whole. The tool by which this is done is logic. Well, let us look at the logic and integrity of this endeavor to see if an enlightened person can support it. Not only is ther no "smoking gun" but the "evidence" has had to be dragged out of the Aministration as though it were the Clintons and never presented in a timely fashion, which challenges its credibility.. According to Steve Laveille (sp?), WBZ AM 1030 Boston, a talk show host and former newsman at ths station and whose position on this war I don't know, in the last quarter of '02, Mr. Bush has been talking about doing this since the 2000 election-almost a full year before 9/11, and he was NOT privy to anything then. A guy I know who supports this war and saw the Powell speech at the UN says that the evidence was a frame-up. As for the Administration's overall presentation. We have the supporters always speaking in terms of "could", "could be" and "might be" and one supporter, John Di Petro WHJJ 920 AM Providence RI, apparently from and Administration source, said that this is a departure from normal foreign policy by launching a pre-emptive strike against a "...prospetive attack". Do I have to tell you what that does to the doctrine of "Clear and Present Danger" and what THAT could unleash on the world?-A bellic age that ends in a few atom wors. "It is up to Saddam to prove that he dows not have these weapons" This is no more than trying to shift the burden of proof to the negative side of the argument and is called "The Fallacy of the Argument from Ignorance" and is Logic 101. From Donald Rumsfeld; "The lack of evidence [of "weapons of mass dstruction] is itself evidence". Now change the terms from "Donald Rumsfeld" to "Ted Kennedy" and "weapons of mass destruction" to "global warming" (in lignt of the past 2 months) and woudl you buy the act? Returning to the "could", "could be" and "might be". A lady once told me "woulda-coulda-shoulda is like an untied shoelace or a too-long skirt upon which one coustantly trips" A lot of things "could be" that's why Occam made his famous Razor and that's why the maxim of logic is "reason FROM the known TO the unknown" with emphasis on KNOWn. When you delve into the Woulda-coulda-shoulda, you get into the hidden, mysterious, mystical, mirky where sticks could really be snakes and the moon might really be made of green cheese or a thousand other things of varying probabilities. All of this blurs then as events go along the logic of the chosen path, obliterate the boundary between reality and falsehood. This kind of thing is identified in abnormal psychology in an individual as an illness of "paranoid thinking",and in a stronger form, "paranoid personality" and is the "what if" that plagues the superstitious, You could scare the bejeezis out of anyone with what "might" or "could be" At any rate, a reasonable person would reject all of this out of hand. Ayn Rand once said "There are only two ways men have to deal with each other: Logic or a gun, That is reason or force" If you fear the weapons that Hussein might have, what about the weapons North Korea, China and Russia DO have and Iran and Syria in the near future WILL have? Do you wish, by abandoning reason and logic and the rule of law to throw the world into a new bellic age? Would you put it past North Korea or China to slip or to already have slipped Al Qaeda what they need. Remember Iran and the Silkworm missiles? They didn't get them from Venus. We're in the Balkans and Afghanistan. if we go into Iraq and have to stay thaere as is likely, what do we do when the next incident arises. Would not the forces we would need to commit to Iraq be better used to secure our borders or things that will need doing? Do we really need to heap more on our plate than we have now?

Beyond all of this, we are told that Hussein has aggressive tendencies. It seems reasonable to measure such tendencies by the standard of what country has lauched the most military actions on countires that are no real threat, like Panama, Bosnia, Serbia, Haiti or Iraq (the Gulf War was not justified given what preceded it, tha tacit approval of Iraq settling its dispute however it might-and don't say they didn't know that Iraq would attack Kuwait. If they didn't they should be executed for crininal incompetence) and launched these actions without the PROPER means: the Declaration of War as set forth in the Constitution, relying instead on the corner-cutting mealy-mouthed and unmanly methods such as "War Powers Act"s, resolutions granting the use of force or other equally cowardly and dishonest doublespeak. How many countries has Hussein attacked in the last 14 years.

Also this whole thing is premised upon a UN resolution. Not all of the UN is on board and the Administration is setting itself up to go it alone. If you were in a business arrangement that involved a number of persons and one of the partners arrogated to himslf the carrying-out of some of the terms without and over the objections of some of the others, what would you think? Further, since 1 Feb '03 The US had been meeting with Libyan intelligence to co-operate in the fight against Al Qaeda (Right, Libya, Qadaffi, Pan-Am 103, Lockerbee, you know the drill) and also meeting with Iranian envoys to get them to stay out of the putative Iraq war That's right folks Iran of "[da da da da] Nightline-The Hostae crises:day four-forty two" fame. Here's one for the books: During the week of 2. Feb '03. I heard on a radio news report form WCBS, the voice of Richard Armitage of the State Department say that "...Iran should be taken out of the 'axis of evil'. It is in a different class...". As for punishing North Korea for waving its atomic sword at us; one of the things that has been suggested is giving them some aid (that'll REALLY fix THOSE essobees)

Do I have to say any more or are you getting it? It seems passing strange to me that an otherwise good president is willing to commit what would amount to a trillion dolors to the military and "nation-building" that this will entail in the name of the liberal notions of disarmament and social work (not exactly two favorites with the Conservative movement which is fast discrediting itself by supporting them "just this once") in a nation halfway around the globe and in the presence of tyrannies more ready, willing and able to take a cut at us and even cut deals with one of those tyrannies. Now granted, I'm not a rocket scientist but it seems that If we want to kick some groin (a thing to be devoutly wished for), there are more pressing and deserving targets than the equivalent of grade-school kids. Beises, don't we have enough on our plate with North Korea, China, The economy both long and short term (having been overtaxed, over-regulated and degraded into a "Service" economy by the de-industrializers: Who does not make what they use end up dancing to the tune of those who do), protecting our borders and dealing with the rotting away of our culture (to which the "security" freaks, because the model for a secure nation for the last 30 years has been a Fascist state, are contributiong)?

But, you say, what if Saddam does take a crack at us? Well First and formmost. Who started the fight? When you hit, you get hit now stop whining. Second. He's ruthless, not nuts. Why should he think he could do what would be a mere pinprick and run the risk of being turned into hot glass unless he believes that his downfall is in the works already and as either revenge or making the doing not worth the price? That question is answered by this favorite phrase of mine "You cannot do to those who cannot be done to" and what makes you think that you look so weak that someone would try?. If we are that weak, then Iraq is the least and last of our probems-you can guess who the most and the first of them is