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US forces 'move on Baghdad centre'
April 5, 2003 1:07 AM   Subscribe

US forces 'move on Baghdad centre'.
US tanks and armoured vehicles are advancing on the centre of Baghdad after reaching the southern outskirts of the Iraqi capital on Saturday morning, US officials say.
Also, US troops in 'Baghdad centre'
Wow, this is definitely breaking news.
posted by y2karl (136 comments total)

 
Today is probably not a good day to be a Saddam double at a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new Baghdad shopping center.
posted by Dunvegan at 1:17 AM on April 5, 2003


Is 'Baghdad Centre' an enclosed mall?
Does it have a Mrs. Fields or Cinnabon?
(/rimshot)

Now, is MetaFilter the place for "breaking news"? Oh, that's right, Sean-Paul's taking a break to get married. I'll bet Rumsfeld timed the attack just so Agonist would miss it.
posted by wendell at 1:36 AM on April 5, 2003


Empire™Filter.
posted by Opus Dark at 1:46 AM on April 5, 2003


See also: CNN.
posted by hama7 at 1:46 AM on April 5, 2003


Now, is MetaFilter the place for "breaking news"?
Well, um, under the circumstances...
U.S. Forces Head Into Heart of Baghdad (WaPo)
U.S. forces sweep across central Iraq (MSNBC)
Oh, that's right, Sean-Paul's taking a break to get married.
Yeah, he's getting married to, in his words, his wife...
posted by y2karl at 1:48 AM on April 5, 2003


Well, um, under the circumstances...
You mean the same kind of circumstances we've had for weeks now?
(sorry, I know the grumbling is also tedious, but what part of "If you're going to make a post related to Iraq and the impending war, please reconsider, as the topic has been discussed previously many times" isn't clear?)
posted by malevolent at 2:17 AM on April 5, 2003


Yeah, he's getting married to, in his words, his wife...
Yeah, I know: civil ceremony in February, church shindig now, honeymoon in October... If I'd wanted to tell the whole story, I woulda just cut-and-paste without attribution (y2karl, if YOU think I'm a painintheass, just imagine what S-P would think of me if he had the time to read this...)

And I'm making a prediction that the U.S.ofA. will make a preemptive strike on North Korea during Sean-Paul's honeymoon...

Now for the real issue: Does this mean the War is going to preempt the Saturday Morning airings of "Rugrats" on CBS, and "Croc Files" on NBC? As of 2:45AM Pacific Not-Yet-Daylight Time, they haven't gotten the anchors out of bed, yet. (And the regularly scheduled shows on now are pretty scary themselves...)
posted by wendell at 2:49 AM on April 5, 2003


I refuse to add a comment to a post that doesn't even need to be here.

oops.
posted by TheFarSeid at 2:54 AM on April 5, 2003


There are things to talk about though. It's not just the news, it's what you think about it.

I am just amazed at the way it is being televised live. There are cameras everywhere. I don't ever remember a conflict that got so much live action coverage. It is surreal.

Are you watching it live?
posted by tami at 3:14 AM on April 5, 2003


But where are the americans ? From Le Monde :

- 12 h 40 : Pas de soldats américains dans Bagdad, selon un journaliste sur place

Un correspondant de Reuters présent à Bagdad indique n'avoir vu aucun soldat américain après avoir parcouru en voiture le centre et le sud de la capitale irakienne. "Je me suis rendu dans les faubourgs sud, sud-est, sud-ouest, aux palais présidentiels et sur les principaux sites des services de sécurité, explique Khaled Yacoub Oweis. Je n'ai pas vu de troupes américaines." Soldats et miliciens irakiens, a-t-il ajouté, se préparent néanmoins à les affronter et d'intenses tirs d'artillerie ont été entendus. Un porte-parole de l'armée américaine avait auparavant affirmé que des GI se trouvaient dans le centre de Bagdad, assurant qu'ils y menaient plus qu'une brève patrouille.


He mainly says that he strolled through the south of Baghdad, but he didn't see any coalition soldiers. Whom to believe ?
posted by Masi at 3:30 AM on April 5, 2003


really y2, after all the discussion thats been on this site about the situation in iraq, you have to come up with some lame post about the us forces reaching the iraqi capital.
Anyone should know thats not a significant reason for making a post about iraq.
How are Imac users responding to this conflcit ?
thats what i really want to know.
posted by sgt.serenity at 3:34 AM on April 5, 2003


Yes. I was wondering about this. I saw the headline as I walked home tonight. I've been thinking about it a bit.

I mean are they really in "downtown" Baghdad by now?

Doesn't matter, as long as the world's public believe -- for now -- that the "Centre of Baghdad" has been penetrated. It's a fact, though more likely a myth that is more important to be widely believed than it is to be factual.

What a lie. What propaganda. Expect much much more of it for years and years to come.

This is where the real war, the prolonged future of terrorism and generalized fascism commences. Foreverwar has begun.

You can't roll in victory, "liberation" or "democracy" any more than you can roll in the truth. The truth is the truth. The same is true with liberty and democracy.

On preview:

sgt.serenity let's begin with you. There are millions of humans that live in that city. Are you safer now as we find ourselves "two weeks in"? Cue the color codes. . .

Enjoy everybody. Gentlemen, start your hate.
posted by crasspastor at 4:11 AM on April 5, 2003


crasspastor, don't worry, Saddam is still alive for now. You can have a happy breakfast.

What has apparently happened is that the ever-innovative Franks is avoiding an all-out house-by-house assault and instead instituting an approach whereby we pretend, politically and militarily, as though the regime does not exist. (Which alone is designed to infuriate them.) We'll send armored patrols in at will and they will -- by experience with Iraqi tactics thus far -- draw fire. This will have the effect of allowing us to identify attackers and deal with them as necessary. This is an "inside-out" strategy successfully used by other armies and likely to minimize both Coalition and civilian casualties.
posted by dhartung at 4:20 AM on April 5, 2003


Don't fucking accuse me of being on the side of anyone dhartung. Innocent people are dying in this madness. That's all I care about.

Take your just-so imputations on what you'd like your adversary to wish and apply them to someone else. I can't believe how unconstructive you Iraqi reconstructionists are. Think of that! You're an Iraqi now. Or are they suddenly now American? God. What confusion.

Welcome to foreverwar
posted by crasspastor at 4:34 AM on April 5, 2003


Saddam is still alive for now. You can have a happy breakfast

I love the smell of cheap shots in the morning.

anyway , the America-hating Saddam-loving appeasers at the NYT report that
instead of maneuvering in the open desert, where the forces can see 3,000 to 5,000 yards, they will be operating in an arena where the visibility might be limited to 300 to 500 yards. The weapon of choice will no longer be the M-1 tank, which can handily outrange the Iraqi T-72 tank, but small arms, weapons the Iraqis also have in abundance. The formations will also be different. Instead of being spread out, they will be compact.
The Americans will try to take full advantage of air power to deliver precision-guided strikes. But the urban setting will force American commanders to be far more selective in bombing their foe.


anyway, there's also the possibility of watching some serious bunker-busting action.

and since we're discussing cheap shots, one hopes that Saddam does not manage to escape and vanish into thin air, Osama-like -- the nice patriots who are apparently salivating at the thought of eating his liver (stir-fried in a Wok with some nice ginger soy sauce, side order of Freedom Fries and Taboulet) would be very, very disappointed.
posted by matteo at 4:52 AM on April 5, 2003


dhartung, since there is no way I'm ever going to get involved with threads like this and I'm a known lefty (or, to you, terrorost) you can strawman me as much as you want without fear of retribution. Now for a 'happy' breakfast! Alphabits or Grape-Nuts, Saddam?
posted by n9 at 5:05 AM on April 5, 2003


heh, I said "terrorost."
posted by n9 at 5:06 AM on April 5, 2003


"Selon l’un de nos envoyés spéciaux, une atmosphère de fin de règne, voire de fin de guerre, régnait, samedi matin, dans la capitale."

--Le Monde.

From a French publication, almost a concession.

Just when will they acknowledge that this war is a good idea?
posted by ParisParamus at 5:22 AM on April 5, 2003


MSNBC is reporting they've found a major supply of WMDs. Bastards.
posted by ParisParamus at 5:26 AM on April 5, 2003


Metafilter : It's not just the news, it's what you think about it.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:31 AM on April 5, 2003


Woudn't the IRAQI PEOPLE (?????) be bigger bastards if they'd used their horrible "WMDs"? Too bad this is all about "Saddam" and not the Iraqi people who are paying for it with their sure to be macabre sense of the past.-- but liberated, their sense of the past now is. Oh and "Saddam should just step down" we hear from the neo-conned all the time. As if these people, newly liberated, have any choice any longer.

How does one build a decent life in an imposed "democracy" with such memories?

You tell me.
posted by crasspastor at 5:44 AM on April 5, 2003


You're an Iraqi now. Or are they suddenly now American? God. What confusion.

Why don't you freak out and over-react a little bit more. Such a drama queen you are.
posted by Witty at 5:48 AM on April 5, 2003


MSNBC is reporting they've found a major supply of WMDs. Bastards.

If I had a monkey for every time the US (or the press, for that matter) thought that they've found WMDs over there, I'd have a house full of monkeys.

Bastards.
posted by adampsyche at 5:49 AM on April 5, 2003


flit
posted by crasspastor at 5:50 AM on April 5, 2003


How does one build a decent life in an imposed "democracy" with such memories?

You tell me.


No one said it will be easy. Japan and Germany are models (unless one is a racist, and believes that Arabs are not capable of democracy--is that what's really behind La Position Chirac?) But for better or worse, the bottom line is to create An Improvement. And perhaps, the other bottom line is not to have a French-European passive pessimistic outlook.

Have the protesters realized what immoral a-holes they are yet?
posted by ParisParamus at 6:00 AM on April 5, 2003


Have the protesters realized what immoral a-holes they are yet?

Wow, ParisParamus, that brush you got there is broad enough to paint the entire county.

Look, I have profoundly mixed feelings about this whole situation and also about the anti-war movement. Yes, Saddam is a murderous sonuvabitch(and i have yet to find a single person defending Saddam on mefi, no matter what anybody likes to imply), but i'm not sure this is the way to do it. And yes, I think we may be entitled to mete out some justice(and yes that would probably involve some formof military response) on the people behind 9/11, but nobody's convinced me that Iraq was behind it. And of course, I do question Bush's motives.

Plus the worlds fulla despotic sunzabitches. Are we gonna be traipsing to ever country on earth enmired in civil conflict or just ones with oil that are connected to the Israel/Palestine conflict?

Now, yes some people in the anti-war movement are opportunists wedging in other causes and there's assholes like Nicholas De Genova shooting their mouths off, and probably a lotta kids of to have thier "my first protest" experience, but for the most part it seems to come from genuine concern as to wheteher this whole mess is worth the lifes of American servicemen and Iraqi civilians. So to paint everybody with doubts and questions as an "immoral a-hole" is not only insulting it's idiotic. And I've read your posts on non-mideast topics and know that you're smarter than that.

n9: Saddam's favorite breakfast cereal is Cap'n Crunch. The whole naval motif and the loud crunches get him positively giddy.
posted by jonmc at 6:33 AM on April 5, 2003


Three hour incursion. You know, like Gilligan? The Skipper, too? The millionaire? And his wife? "This is not the end. This is not the beginning of the end. But it is the end of the beginning."
posted by hairyeyeball at 6:35 AM on April 5, 2003


Have the protesters realized what immoral a-holes they are yet?

That will never happen. Appeasing and pretending that amoral fascist dictators do not exist is part and parcel of the cowardly "anti-war" facade. China springs to mind (the first of several).

Cheerleading dictators like Hussein and Kim Jong-il should be left to Germany and France, and not to actual human beings.
posted by hama7 at 6:47 AM on April 5, 2003


jonmc: I have it on good authority that Saddam's favourite breakfast cereal is in fact Coco Wasps. Apparently.
posted by rikabel at 6:50 AM on April 5, 2003


I mean are they really in "downtown" Baghdad by now?

Doesn't matter, as long as the world's public believe -- for now -- that the "Centre of Baghdad" has been penetrated. It's a fact, though more likely a myth that is more important to be widely believed than it is to be factual.

What a lie. What propaganda.


hmmm ... who should i believe? The US and every credible media outlet or crasspastor and Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf (the Iraqi information minister)?

(Although, I don't think Sahaf actually says the stuff he is saying.)
posted by probablysteve at 7:16 AM on April 5, 2003


... believes the stuff he is saying).
posted by probablysteve at 7:17 AM on April 5, 2003


jonmc: I have it on good authority that Saddam's favourite breakfast cereal is in fact Coco Wasps.

Well it certainly sounds tastier than the troll food FreedomParamus and hama7 are trying to get out of everyone.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:19 AM on April 5, 2003


But i'm not sure this is the way to do it.
Well, how many ways are there to do it? And how many are left after more than two decades of his regime, and a 1991 brush with destruction, and 12 years of UN sanction? At some point, one has to reasonably conclude that the mature folk opposed to this war either don't care the Hussein regime exists; are benefiting from it in some way; or have a pathological hatred of the US similar to that many Republicans seem to have of Bill Clinton.

The protests, at least as I viewed them on TV, were not simply anti-War; they have been anti-US, as if only a government out of control, run by a looney could launch such a war.

And of course, I do question Bush's motives.
And I may too, but what's the worst case scenario for his motives? The "war for oil" idea is moronic, but even assuming, just for the sake of argument, it was valid, that would still leave Iraq and the world in a far better position than it was pre-War.

Plus the worlds fulla despotic sunzabitches.
Not on this scale. Not with unlimited funds due to the arbitrary fact of having huge oil reserves.

I think you could make the argument that since Hussein has/had the power he has/did due to dollars provided to him by the US and Europe, we have a moral obligation to get rid of him.

So to paint everybody with doubts and questions
See above; see all the anti-Israel and Nazi allusions used in the protests.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:26 AM on April 5, 2003


Let the killing begin.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 7:41 AM on April 5, 2003


Amoral a-holes hiding behind a cowardly "anti-war" facade unite! We have nothing to lose but our shame!
posted by hackly_fracture at 7:42 AM on April 5, 2003


Ridiculous. His "unlimited funds" would have meant nothing if the United States just chose not to sell him weapons in the first place. I suppose you could argue that he could just have bought them elsewhere, so what does that mean? That as long as he was going to buy weapons, we might as well have profited? Where's the moral obligation now?

And if you really believe the idea that "moral obligation" is the reason for this, perhaps the administartion could say that one of these days, hmm? I haven't heard Ari Fleicsher or Donald Rumsfeld go to the podium and say "considering all the money the U.S. gave Saddam, it's our obligation to get rid of him now." All I've heard is the weekly excuse about ridding him of WMD. No, it's about the Iraqi people. No, it's about Al-Qaeda. No, it's about...
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:44 AM on April 5, 2003


"...as if only a government out of control, run by a looney could launch such a war.

I think everybody knows that could never happen here in the US.

Could it?
posted by jaronson at 7:52 AM on April 5, 2003


I can't understand why some conservatives are so flummoxed about opposition to the war, when the whole notion of staying out of "foreign entanglements" is essentially a conservative one. (Just think about Rice scoffing at "nation building" a few years ago, or Bush promising to yank American troops out of the former Yugoslavia.) This new idea of aggressively "region-building" the Middle East is a long way away from that.
posted by Ljubljana at 7:59 AM on April 5, 2003


I apologize for the post--what I read surprised me, it seemed like the end. It wasn't. My bad.

don't worry, Saddam is still alive for now.

How to make for a better MetaFilter--a senior member shows the way:
Authoritative blather about tactics and strategy plus slur.
The hysterics are becoming nearly unbearable.
Pot meet kettle.

Cheerleading dictators like Hussein and Kim Jong-il should be left to Germany and France, and not to actual human beings.

That's definitely not avoiding hysterics.
posted by y2karl at 8:01 AM on April 5, 2003


For you, hama7, and everyone else applicable, left or right:

On using extreme rhetoric that serves only to shut down open discussion

via cbrody (for the link, click on the date at the bottom, Chris)
posted by y2karl at 8:14 AM on April 5, 2003


Ridiculous. His "unlimited funds" would have meant nothing if the United States just chose not to sell him weapons in the first place.

Nonsense. Let's see. There's Russia, North Korea, Pakistan, France, Germany...

Are you really serious?

Why are some of you in denial about Americans in Bagdhad? It's as much a liberation as being in Paris in WWII. Actually, in many ways, more so.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:26 AM on April 5, 2003


because they do not like the taste of crow.
posted by Mick at 8:43 AM on April 5, 2003


Nonsense. Let's see. There's Russia, North Korea, Pakistan, France, Germany...

Are you really serious?

Are you fucking illiterate? Thank you for not even reading the succeeding sentence of that comment.

Why are some of you in denial about Americans in Bagdhad? It's as much a liberation as being in Paris in WWII. Actually, in many ways, more so.

Well, yeah. Paris in WWII was also invaded by an overwhelming military force despite offering no prior offensive against said invader as a result of a national leader of dubious legitimacy claiming the need to start a war for the security of his own people. But let me guess, that's not what you meant.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:48 AM on April 5, 2003


think terrorists planning the next big attack on the united states or its whats left of its allies are having any trouble justifying their plans today? or recruiting loose cannons to carry out their attacks? while the the powers that be start their squabble over who will get rich on the spoils of war.
posted by specialk420 at 8:51 AM on April 5, 2003


Are you fucking illiterate?


Now come on..... It's none of our business if ParisParamus has a significant other that never learned to read. Perhaps he/she has a learning disability, but that doesn't mean ParisParamus can't have a strong, meaningful, and fruitful relationship with that person...
posted by bradth27 at 8:56 AM on April 5, 2003


That as long as he was going to buy weapons, we might as well have profited? Where's the moral obligation now?

The weapons, very conventional ones, I might add, were sold when he was at war with a Iran. That was a long time ago. It was also before gassing and murdering a million+ people.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:58 AM on April 5, 2003


How to say this? The war will end soon and I am a little saddened that we lost. The pro-war people will cheer because "we won". The anti-war people like me will be (mostly happy the killing has stopped, but also a little) depressed because we lost:
  • 1. this war is the most dubiously justified one the US has waged in the last 50 years, and our talking didn't prevent it.

  • 2. this war had the most unfavourable public opinion prior to start, and our marches didn't prevent it.

  • 3. the anti-war/pro-war discussion was significant and often very intelligent, but when it ends we will not have learned anything to prevent future repetitions.


  • The anti-war side should be winning because the argument is not symmetrical: there is a spectrum of opinions on the war -- at the extremes of the spectrum there are many anti-war people who believe that all wars are bad, but almost no pro-war people who believe that all wars are good. In any discussion of war in general, the asymmetry is even greater against war. But when it comes to a war in specific, it happens anyway. Against this war, we should have won.
    posted by mediaddict at 8:58 AM on April 5, 2003


    "On using extreme rhetoric that serves only to shut down open discussion"

    Somehow I suspect this was written by a shut-in with little perspective on life, on the limits of Mefi and the Web. A little hyperbole is a legitimate rhetorical tool.
    posted by ParisParamus at 9:00 AM on April 5, 2003


    A little hyperbole is a legitimate rhetorical tool.

    That's quite possibly the most brilliant observation you've ever made! Or anyone, ever!
    posted by umberto at 9:08 AM on April 5, 2003


    This is where the real war, the prolonged future of terrorism and generalized fascism commences. Foreverwar has begun.

    Thank you Nostradamus. We are ready for your next Quatrain.


    (this might be quicker)
    posted by Dennis Murphy at 9:17 AM on April 5, 2003


    A little hyperbole is a legitimate rhetorical tool.

    Also, a little morphine is a legitimate painkiller. Unfortunately for you, Pee-Pee, and the other members of the Parade of the Gleefully Deluded, you just don't know when to stop swigging at that vial. Anyway, if this is what you call a victory, then you're fucking welcome to it. Not that you will welcome it, because you just can't wait for other people to take bullets for you against Syria and Iran and the Palestinians, you crapulent fundamentalist.
    posted by riviera at 9:37 AM on April 5, 2003


    1. this war is the most dubiously justified one the US has waged in the last 50 years

    Grenada?
    Panama?

    Against this war, we should have won.

    How do you figure? Iraq was in many ways an ideal target for a US war, both politically and militarily.

    Politically, despite the lack of an 18th UN resolution demanding compliance with the Gulf War cease fire terms, Iraq's regime was isolated internationally. It had been belligerent locally, scaring the gulf states into cooperating with the US, and is, let's face it, the #1 or #2 abuser of human rights in the world. These guys aren't boy scouts, or even run of the mill thugs. Saddam and his crew are monsters.

    Militarily, the Iraqi army is broken and dilapidated, their battlefield commanders are incapable of successful improvisation and reliant on huge amounts of firepower that they don't possess. The irregulars have mostly gotten themselves killed while inflicting no strategically significant casualties on their foes. The freelance jihadis have fared worse, throwing their lives away in fruitless attacks on US forces.

    The antiwar movement didn't stand a chance on this one. Don't beat yourself up over it.
    posted by ednopantz at 9:39 AM on April 5, 2003


    but when it ends we will not have learned anything to prevent future repetitions.

    You know, if this is the model for future military interventions, I will be very happy. This is the most justified American military intervention since WWII. It showed who the weasels are; what a failure the UN is; what medieval islamofascist and secular freaks inhabit much of the Mideast; how magnificent the US military is; how scary a tyrant can be; and how President Bush, obsessive ANWR, other environmental and tax viewpoints notwithstanding, is a great leader.

    Truly, in my 40 years, I have never been more proud of my country (whether I'll vote for the guy in 2004 is a different question...).
    posted by ParisParamus at 9:50 AM on April 5, 2003


    The freelance jihadis have fared worse, throwing their lives away in fruitless attacks on US forces.

    Any evidence of this? One of my fears is the possiblity of Iraq being transformed into a combination Lebanon/West Bank.
    posted by ParisParamus at 9:53 AM on April 5, 2003


    ...you crapulent fundamentalist...

    Riviera that is the only thing you've ever said with even a whiff of (albeit unintentional) humor. My hat is off to you!
    posted by dhoyt at 10:06 AM on April 5, 2003


    Ljubljana: word. i have been thinking that the bush junta is easilly the LEAST conservative administration we've had in 50 years. what about preemptive warfare and "spreading democracy" jives with classical conservatism? it is like Operation Iraqi Freedom was conceived by a pcp-addled bastard child of king kong and woodrow wilson.
    posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 10:08 AM on April 5, 2003


    because you just can't wait for other people to take bullets for you against Syria and Iran and the Palestinians, you crapulent fundamentalist.

    Palestinians? Which ones? Certain murders, yes, as in Iran and Syria (Assad is dead, so that satisfaction is lost forever...)

    What can be hoped is that Iraq's oil wealth can be taken out of the picture, with the result that Syria, and Lebanon lose their "Saddam Subsidy," and the government in Syria falls.

    Riviera: $10 that you would never EVER live in one of these paradises of places you seem to love so much. Any chance you're just angry because they won't let you into the US?
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:14 AM on April 5, 2003


    The death thralls of the diluted anti-war folk is fun to watch.

    Paris, poke them with the stick again and see if they have any fight left in them.
    posted by Mick at 10:16 AM on April 5, 2003


    Mick: the college-age protesters get a pass, as do the Germans. The Europeans, with their statutory five or six weeks of vacation should use some of it to learn what the words "morality" and "principles" and "courage" signify. I'm not sure it could have been avoided, but Europe has spent way too much time, in effect, masturbating in the form of the European Community/Union, and way too little on the above-mentioned issues.

    Although I do not celebrate the death of anyone, other than perhaps, known murderers and orchestrators of murder, this piece from the current NYT web front page is satisfying:

    "KUWAIT, April 5 — An armored force of 60 American tanks and other vehicles wheeled suddenly into the center of Baghdad today, taking the city's defenders by surprise and triggering a rolling firefight along boulevards lined with some people waving, and others shooting.

    The demonstration of American force left at least hundreds of Iraqi fighters dead and was intended, United States military officials said, to show the 4.5 million residents of Baghdad that the Army and Marines now encamped at the city's edges could attack at will.

    "We just wanted to let them know that we're here," said Maj. Gen. Buford C. Blount III, commander of the Third Infantry."

    Well, the US is "here," and perhaps the Iraqi nightmare, indeed the overall Mideast nightmare, may be drawing to a close."


    I mean, what must it be like to be 20 or 30 years old, and to really know nothing but Saddam Hussein?

    Has anyone watched the reports of Bob Arnot on MSNBC? Great reporting from a very good journalist. He's a real Mensch.
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:29 AM on April 5, 2003


    (That last italicized paragraph is mine; not from the NYT, and should not have been italicized)
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:31 AM on April 5, 2003


    I'm not sure it could have been avoided, but Europe has spent way too much time, in effect, masturbating in the form of the European Community/Union

    60 years ago, they were at each other's throats for the second time in a century. In the intervening years, they've managed to overcome nationalist tendencies enough to not only form one of the world's most important political unions, but even adopt a common currency. Just out of curiosity, do you think that you'd be less likely to consider that "masturbating" if you weren't a bigot?
    posted by Armitage Shanks at 10:41 AM on April 5, 2003


    If I had a monkey for every time the US (or the press, for that matter) thought that they've found WMDs over there, I'd have a house full of monkeys.

    I wish I had a house full of monkeys. Monkeys are funny.
    posted by homunculus at 10:42 AM on April 5, 2003


    This would have been a good post for WarFilter, btw.
    posted by homunculus at 10:44 AM on April 5, 2003


    Just out of curiosity, do you think that you'd be less likely to consider that "masturbating" if you weren't a bigot?

    Notwithstanding that I'm not a bigot....:

    I'm not suggesting there shouldn't be an EU; only that they went overboard; turned a good idea into something delluding, distracting and undemocractic.

    OK. So maybe the EU is not to blame for Europeans being unappreciative towards, and feeling threatened by the United States.

    I withdraw that comment.
    posted by ParisParamus at 11:05 AM on April 5, 2003


    What's your definition of a bigot? Someone who calls a murder a murderer? Someone who calls someone afraid to take action a coward?
    posted by ParisParamus at 11:06 AM on April 5, 2003


    According to a new Los Angeles Times poll:
    Americans are divided almost in half when asked whether the United States should take military action against Syria, which Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has accused of providing Iraq with military supplies. Syria has denied the accusation. But 42% said the United States should take action if Syria, in fact, provides aid to Iraq, while 46% said no.

    More Americans take a hard line on Iran, which recently disclosed an advanced program to develop the enriched uranium that could be used in nuclear weapons.

    Exactly half said the United States should take military action against Iran if it continues to move toward nuclear-weapon development; 36% disagreed. Perhaps surprisingly, women are slightly more supportive of such action than men.
    World War IV, here we come!
    posted by homunculus at 11:10 AM on April 5, 2003


    Wait a minute, Paris, you're forty years old?
    posted by Grangousier at 11:12 AM on April 5, 2003


    Alas, yes.
    posted by ParisParamus at 11:21 AM on April 5, 2003


    (tosses out frisbees)
    posted by clavdivs at 11:21 AM on April 5, 2003


    and reliant on huge amounts of firepower that they don't possess
    hahahahhahahahahahhaaha!

    The "war for oil" idea is moronic, but even assuming, just for the sake of argument, it was valid, that would still leave Iraq and the world in a far better position than it was pre-War. FreedomParamus

    You can not state that as fact. Things could quite easily get worse, as Muslims think more and more that they have no other choice than to oppose us through terrorism.
    posted by Espoo2 at 11:21 AM on April 5, 2003


    These are not the threads you are looking for ...Move along.
    posted by ZachsMind at 11:32 AM on April 5, 2003


    they have no other choice than to oppose us through terrorism

    The trouble with that is it didn't work. Not even close. America in April of 2003 is MUCH more powerful than America in August of 2001.

    So the strategy of attacking the US has backfired. I wish someone would say this on al-Jazeera.

    In fact, all of the Arab world's attempts to solve their problems through political violence have failed. Between them, the Arab states have lost something like 28 wars. If I was 0 for 28, I would reconsider my strategy. The Intifada irregulars are getting their collective asses kicked as well.

    Of course that won't stop lunatic jihadis from trying, and if they have to try, let them try now. If there was a good time to piss off the Arabs, that time is now. Our name is already mud, so it can't get worse, al-Q is severely damaged and is not able to process new recruits allegedly generated by the war. Local intellegence agencies are also directing massive resources at the these groups. There is a window of opportunity here.

    With the Iraqi regime gone, the first democratization efforts can begin, eliminating some of the sense of frustration and powerlessness that is a root cause of terrorism. Despite the fantasies of critics, the US is not about to put another thug in charge of Iraq. It may not be a perfect democracy, but it will be the only one the Arabs will have.
    posted by ednopantz at 12:28 PM on April 5, 2003


    Speaking of fantasies, thanks for sharing yours.
    posted by y2karl at 1:38 PM on April 5, 2003


    The trouble with that is it didn't work. Not even close. America in April of 2003 is MUCH more powerful than America in August of 2001.

    So the strategy of attacking the US has backfired. I wish someone would say this on al-Jazeera.

    Wrong. The strategy of attacking the U.S. with the intent of easing relations with the Arab world, structuring a viable Middle East peace, and securing military victory over America has failed. The strategy of attacking the U.S. with the intent of terrorizing national mood, damaging the U.S. economy, and making the government play right into their hands by driving a astronomically larger rift between the Western and Arab world, thus strengthening localized support of terrorist organizations, has been a complete success. And you have to admit that regardless of what side you take.

    The conflict you fail to recognize is that Bush is seeking some kind of security/retribution in the idea of "protecting the United States from terrorist invasion." That isn't what bin Laden and Al-Qaeda want, at least not in short term. What bin Laden wants right now is lots of Arab states sympathetic to his cause, willing to host his assets and having citizens willing to join his causes.

    Your notion that Al-Qaeda is crippled is temporary only to the extent of the current military action. A present but non-active U.S. force maintaining a presence in the region is going to change the lack of activity very quickly.

    In addition, I find it sort of annoying that your singling out the Arab world as failures in using violence to "solve their problems." Rubbing in the constant "losses" the Arab states have suffered at the hands of whatever side the United States was funding at the time doesn't rally positive sentiment either. All it does is strengthen the idea that the United States supports whatever position it finds feasable to its own profit in the Middle East. You're not going to convince me, or anyone else, especially the Arab world, that Israel is a "better people" because of their military power. You're just going to remind them why they hate the U.S. again.

    As far as "power" goes, to claim the U.S. is more "powerful" than it was two years ago is just flat-out ridiculous. Are you implying that our military strength now is enough to take out Iraq, while a mere two years ago our World's Strongest Military WASN'T powerful enough to stop a plane from flying into a building? For that matter, is it strong enough to prevent a terrorist attack now? Wouldn't it be better to stop doing what causes these attacks in the first place? Our military isn't being any more powerful, it's merely being more aggressive; the exact opposite of what it should be doing.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 2:13 PM on April 5, 2003


    Hey guys, no time to congratulate yourselves for your hard work towards the war effort. There are many more regimes to change before next November. Next stop, Iran!
    posted by 4easypayments at 2:17 PM on April 5, 2003


    MetaFilter: Are you fucking illiterate?

    I can't believe no one threw this one out yet.
    posted by adampsyche at 2:39 PM on April 5, 2003


    I must say.. for being Downtown Baghdad, there sure are alot of trees and not too many buildings. (from what I saw on the footage)

    I'm sure that doesn't mean anything though..
    posted by RobbieFal at 2:46 PM on April 5, 2003


    You're not going to convince me, or anyone else, especially the Arab world, that Israel is a "better people" because of their military power.

    No. It's better because of its ideas: (1) doesn't squander its wealth; (2) not a theocracy; (3) doesn't repress women and (4) ethnic minorities; (5) educates and (6) feeds its citizens; (7)is largely democratic. It's the Arab world that needs to understand that those things are "better," else it is doomed to a future which looks like its past and present.

    Wouldn't it be better to stop doing what causes these attacks in the first place?

    Yes, the Arab world has to stop "doing" (1)-(4) and start doing (5)-(7). The problem lies mainly with the Arab world; there's only a limited number of things we can do.

    Our military isn't being any more powerful, it's merely being more aggressive; the exact opposite of what it should be doing.

    Our military is now doing precisely what is should be doing. And it's doing it magnificently. And it's the most civilized military in history--as we should insist it be.

    By the way: where's all the terrorism the war was supposed to foment? And where are the post-9/11 Al Qaeda attacks? Seems like we've got our act together pretty well.
    posted by ParisParamus at 2:51 PM on April 5, 2003


    Is 'Baghdad Centre' an enclosed mall?
    Does it have a Mrs. Fields or Cinnabon?


    As long as it doesn't have a Thomas Kincade Gallery, I think this War is worthwhile...
    posted by ParisParamus at 2:53 PM on April 5, 2003


    "BAGHDAD, Iraq, April 5 — Senior Iraqi officials remained defiant today in the face of American military might, asserting that Iraqi soldiers and suicide bombers had "crushed" American troops at Baghdad's international airport and broken the American advance on the capital into isolated pockets that were surrendering to relentless Iraqi attacks."

    I surrender.
    posted by ParisParamus at 3:01 PM on April 5, 2003


    Wait a minute, Paris, you're forty years old?

    no way, he meant _four_
    posted by matteo at 3:02 PM on April 5, 2003


    I surrender

    well, only eighteen long, rabid comments, we haven't gotten your point yet
    posted by matteo at 3:07 PM on April 5, 2003


    There are four issues:

    1) claim the U.S. is more "powerful" than it was two years ago is just flat-out ridiculous

    Just count the number of places with intelligence sharing deals with the US before and after Sep 11. Count the bases, look at the defense spending, and more importantly, look at the commitment. Bush was basically an isolationist before Sep 11, now there is a consensus at all levels that a policy of aggressive engagement is the only way to go.

    2) On the "clash of civilizations" argument: That was definitely the goal of the actors themselves, but here too they failed. Name a Middle Eastern government that is actively opposing the US on the WOT.

    3) Pride and War
    Annoying or not, my point on power and violence is that violence hasn't served the Arab world well at all. For all the sturm and drang, these people have been totally unable to use violence to achieve political goals. (Libya lost a war to Chad.)

    Clearly, this is a case that needs to be made, and it is starting to be heard in places, namely among Palestinian legistators who now realize what they lost by reverting to violence. Because of the pursuit of bombastic militarism, they are poorer, less well educated, less free, and less influential than they could have been. Is the US probably all of those things because it often relies on violence to achieve goals? Probably, but the US usually won. These guys have always lost.

    4) al-Q weakness:
    Of course, the weakness is temporary, which is why the "root causes" need to be dealt with. Root Cause #1 is the lack of democracy. That is why a representative govt needs to be set up fast in Iraq. Their misery and oppression is a threat to our security, and none of these thugs are going to give up power voluntarily.

    Anyway, we have had this argument before.
    posted by ednopantz at 3:14 PM on April 5, 2003


    If the Frisbee reference was addressed to me, sorry, but I missed that by a few years.
    posted by ParisParamus at 3:20 PM on April 5, 2003


    *There's alot of love in this room.*

    Also, what he said.
    posted by asok at 3:50 PM on April 5, 2003


    (raises eyebrow)

    i address those whom i attack.

    don't worry, its a rhetorical metaphor.
    posted by clavdivs at 3:57 PM on April 5, 2003


    (1) doesn't squander its wealth
    Israel has wealth? I guess that means we can stop wasting US tax dollars on them. That should make the tax cuts just a little bit easier to manage.
    posted by thirteen at 4:04 PM on April 5, 2003


    paris: By the way: where's all the terrorism the war was supposed to foment? And where are the post-9/11 Al Qaeda attacks? Seems like we've got our act together pretty well.

    They're coming. It's not long now, but either way, they have all the time in the world.
    posted by jdaura at 4:08 PM on April 5, 2003


    FMD

    Frisbees of mass destruction.
    posted by crasspastor at 5:02 PM on April 5, 2003


    No. It's better because of its ideas: (1) doesn't squander its wealth; (2) not a theocracy; (3) doesn't repress women and (4) ethnic minorities; (5) educates and (6) feeds its citizens; (7)is largely democratic. It's the Arab world that needs to understand that those things are "better," else it is doomed to a future which looks like its past and present.

    1. Right. Gets HOW much from the United States again? I know a real easy way to not need several billion dollars a year. Sharon doesn't seem to want to do it; instead he chooses to play right into Arafat's hands by allowing violence to continue. By the way, the money Israel's not squandering on military defense as an alternative to a viable peace plan:well-spent. How many thousands dead at last count?

    2. (Spits soda across monitor) Please, explain to me how The Jewish State lacks aspects of theocracy. I'm fascinated by this concept.

    3 & 4. Israel actively discriminates against the Israeli Arab population in the name of "defending" Israeli culture and structure. God knows why, after all it's not like it's a government ruled by religious belief or anything, remember? This in turn allows Arab women within Palestinian territory to be discriminated against even more than they are under Arab rule. In ironic addition, one of the strongest examples of long-term unity in the Middle East is among Israeli and Palestinian women's rights groups, many of whom advocate the end to war and settlement oppression as the principal actions towards Middle East Peace and improved life for both peoples.

    5, 6, & 7. If Israel believes the Occupied Territory belongs to Israel, then the people currently living in that area are among the most impoverished and devoid of education on the face of the earth. Even if it doesn't, the condition in which Palestinians in the refugee camps decreases significantly their chances of an accelerated move towards a democratic government. To force a people into poverty, squalor, and ignorance is to destroy their chances of intellectual government. Additionally, to say that Palestinians lack an appropriate education system is somewhat hypocritical: Israel's denial of Palestinian statehood hinders the formation of Palestinian infrastructure. A people that are having trouble holding onto water rights can't really focus much attention of a Board of Education.

    Inarguably, the presence of fundamentalist Islam in Arab governments contributes to the repression of democratic thought. But just like the failure of military action in the West Bank has proven, the idea that, to note ednopantz's comment, the United States can somehow invade and "force democracy" on anyone is simply impossible. It is crucial to any attempts to stabilize the Middle East to form a peace/nationhood deal in the West Bank, which even today is being used as an excuse for the promotion of fundamentalist terrorism I mentioned before.

    Even if, as ednopantz noted, we could "force Democracy" on Iraq, how can we ignore our refusal to attempt this for Palestine? Why must the Iraqis be freed from their tyrannical dictator by the Coalition of the Willing whilst the Palestinians are left to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and electively remove their own leader at the whims of the Coalition of the I Don't Give a Rat's Ass? Furthermore, why is Israel allowed to violate numerous U.N. resolutions demanding various actions, possess Weapons of Mass Destruction, and be led by a man who very likely is responsible for murderous war crimes? If it's merely because "Israel's a democracy," then hell, sounds like Iraq already democratized itself 20 years ago.

    In the sense of quality of life, yes, Israel is better off than many Arab nations, primarily Syria, Iran, and post-1991 Iraq. But in terms of current military and political positions, Israel is essentially no better than many Arab nations in terms of engaging in actions solely serving its own cultural-linked interest. The difference is that with the help of the United States it has the military funding to back up its demands.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:03 PM on April 5, 2003


    With the Iraqi regime gone, the first democratization efforts can begin, eliminating some of the sense of frustration and powerlessness that is a root cause of terrorism. Despite the fantasies of critics, the US is not about to put another thug in charge of Iraq. It may not be a perfect democracy, but it will be the only one the Arabs will have.

    You are describing your hopes. Hope Is Not A Plan. But thanks for sharing your wishful thoughts.

    Bush was basically an isolationist before Sep 11, now there is a consensus at all levels that a policy of aggressive engagement is the only way to go.

    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously makes about as much sense as that sentence.

    We have had this argument before. Yes, and your argument is straight from the Onion: Trust me, it's all going to work out perfect. Nothing bad is going to happen. It's all under control. Why do you keep saying these things? I can tell when there's trouble looming, and I really don't sense that right now. We're in control of this situation, and we know what we're doing. So stop being so pessimistic. Look, you've been proven wrong, so stop talking. You've had your say already. Be quiet, okay? Everything's fine. You're wrong.
    posted by y2karl at 5:07 PM on April 5, 2003


    Geraldo Rivera just reported that Sadaam Hussien was captured trying to flee Baghdad in a Chevrolet Blazer while wearing a Burkha. Baghdad Bob countered that Sadaam was home watching Jerry Lewis movies and that everyone knows he only travels in BMWs and Peugots.
    posted by Mack Twain at 5:32 PM on April 5, 2003


    Shady Acres, My postwar plan. -Jonah Goldberg

    "This will hopefully put the naysayers in the uncomfortable position of either waxing nostalgic for Saddam's policy of car-battery interrogations and mass rape, or shutting their pie holes. Only time will tell."
    posted by hama7 at 6:52 PM on April 5, 2003


    Project for a New American Century -Elliott Abrams, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Jeb Bush and Paul Wolfowitz

    "... the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event - like a new Pearl Harbor... While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein."

    aka, their pre-postwar plan.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:04 PM on April 5, 2003


    From Parameters: US Army War College Quarterly Spring 2003:

    The Bush Doctrine and War with Iraq by Jeffery Record

    Five observations therefrom:

    1. The threat of WMD proliferated among suicidal or otherwise undeterrable terrorist groups is new, real, and potentially catastrophic, but the Bush Administration’s primary focus on regime change in Iraq may be a focus on the periphery rather than the heart of the threat.
    2. The Bush Doctrine correctly dismisses the effectiveness of deterrence against suicidal terrorist organizations, but it may be mistaken in dismissing its effectiveness against rogue states.
    3. The Bush Doctrine rightly focuses on the principle of regime change as the most effective means of defeating threats posed by rogue and terrorist-hosting weak states, but actual regime change can entail considerable, even unacceptable, military and political risk, depending upon local, regional, and international circumstances.
    4. In transforming an implicit policy option—striking first—into a declaratory doctrine, the Bush Administration has reinforced an image of America, widely held among friends and adversaries alike, of a unilateralist, overbearing “hyperpower” insensitive to the concerns of others.
    5. The Bush Doctrine invites abuse and establishes a dangerous precedent for others to follow.


    two paragraphs therefrom:

    A Brookings Institution critique concludes that the Bush Doctrine’s “silence on the circumstances that justify preemption” raises the danger that other countries “will embrace the preemption argument as a cover for settling their own national security scores. . . . [U]ntil the Administration can define the line separating justifiable preemption from unlawful aggression in ways that will gain widespread adherence abroad, it risks seeing its words used to justify ends it opposes.” Russia has already invoked American endorsement of preemption as justifying possible military action against Georgia, from which Chechen separatists (or terrorists, if you prefer) conduct operations in Chechnya. India could attack Pakistan, happily invoking the Bush Doctrine on the charge of Pakistan’s sponsorship of terrorism in Kashmir. And China could justify a preventive war against Taiwan as a means of forestalling its threatened independence or unfavorable (to China) alteration of the military balance across the Taiwan Strait. “It cannot be in either the American national interest or the world’s interest,” argues Henry Kissinger, “to develop principles that grant every nation an unfettered right of preemption against its own definition of threats to its security.”

    However convincing the case for an attack on Iraq, preemption as a declaratory doctrine lacking criteria but applicable to a generic category of states invites real trouble after Iraq, and for that reason could turn out to be a poor, even impossible basis for America’s relations with the rest of the world.

    posted by y2karl at 8:43 PM on April 5, 2003


    OK. So maybe the EU is not to blame for Europeans being unappreciative towards, and feeling threatened by the United States.

    Maybe it is because the Project for a New American Century says our "Strategic Goal" is to "preserve Pax Americana" and our "Main military mission(s)" include "deter rise of new great-power competitor" and "exploit transformation of war"?
    posted by Sirius at 9:03 PM on April 5, 2003


    The strategy of attacking the U.S. with the intent of terrorizing national mood, damaging the U.S. economy, and making the government play right into their hands by driving a astronomically larger rift between the Western and Arab world, thus strengthening localized support of terrorist organizations, has been a complete success.

    Bullshit. The US is not a puppet on OBL's strings, man, get a hold of yourself. They did no long term damage. Terrorism is not stronger and the US is not weaker. The economy was already weakening before they attacked... it took a hit, but it didn't collapse, and it's not going to. If you think 9/11 was some great success for terrorism, you've been living in a fantasy world for the better part of two years now. OBL, like Saddam, has been reduced to sending video tapes to news stations calling for jihad. AND NO ONE IS LISTENING TO HIM. Every few weeks, "Hey, everybody, it's time to jihad." A couple weeks later, "You guys, I said jihad. Let's jihad now." Pretty soon he's going to snap, we'll see a tape of him screaming, "I keep saying jihad and no one is fucking jihad-ing! I said jihad, god damn you! I am fighting jihad by myself and i can't leave my fucking cave! Please jihad!"

    What is "terrorizing national mood" supposed to mean, anyway? That they opened the door for the US to go and kick all the ass that they've been dying to kick for the past two decades? Good Fucking Plan.
    posted by David Dark at 10:10 PM on April 5, 2003


    my favorite PNAC quote, from '98:
    We believe the U.S. has the authority under existing UN resolutions to take the necessary steps, including military steps, to protect our vital interests in the Gulf. In any case, American policy cannot continue to be crippled by a misguided insistence on unanimity in the UN Security Council.

    OK, maybe not my favorite, but pretty tight. I am inclined to agree with Sirius' sentiments that maybe the world hates us because they resent our leaders' publically stated desire to conquer them.

    No, it must be that their swarthiness and unholiness have rendered them blind to the righteousness of our sword.
    posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 10:16 PM on April 5, 2003


    About that lob at the French; I totally forgot one of the finest dissenting French voices on the web:

    The Dissident Frogman!!

    61 million others like him: aucun problème!
    posted by hama7 at 10:16 PM on April 5, 2003


    David Dark - On the contrary. Most of the world now views the US as a belligerent menace and the Islamic world is currently abuzz with Pan-Arab and Pan-Islamic sentiments concerning hatred of US foreign policy....

    Here in the US, many now openly declare that anti-war protesters should be shot in the head because of their political views.

    I would say that 9-11 very effectively polarized both the US (internally) and the world and that OBL is quite pleased.

    Meanwhile, Iraq may prove to not have had much of a WMD threat, but don't worry - there are plenty of loose (ex-soviet) nukes floating around (so I hear). Dealing with this threat - preventing terrorist pilfering of the vast stocks of existing Russian/ex-Soviet WMD's is currently a back burner issue for the US.

    Sleep tight.
    posted by troutfishing at 10:52 PM on April 5, 2003


    OBL, like Saddam, has been reduced to sending video tapes to news stations calling for jihad.

    As opposed to... what, the rock videos he was allowed to have before 9/11? Don't you see that you just proved my point? What did you know about Osama bin Laden prior to September 11th? You think even a fraction of the country- a country whose majority can't even FIND Iraq on a map - knew what the hell an "Al-Qaeda" was before this?

    What in the hell are you talking about bin Laden being "reduced" to having massive international coverage of who he is, his message, and his goals?

    This is a man who stated specifically that his goal is a psychotic holy war against the Western World, and Bush responded a week after September 11th by actually calling our retaliation "a crusade" against Islamic terrorists. bin Laden probably cackled when he heard that.

    If you think 9/11 was some great success for terrorism, you've been living in a fantasy world for the better part of two years now.

    No, I've been living in New York, so first of all don't fucking tell me nothing's changed and no one felt terrorized when I spent two weeks being ordered to keep my windows closed to prevent fumes of burning corpses from entering my room. More importantly, I'm an American, and I'm an observant one. And frankly, the "terrorizing national mood" is the status that Bush and Ashcroft have allowed this country to sinkhole into, and it's more frightening to me than the prospect of another terrorist attack.

    "Good fucking plan?" I'll tell you a "good fucking plan." Caring more about putting this country in a goddamn lockdown with nothing but quasi-racist martial law, psychotic border inspections, rampant right-wing xenophobia, and ignorant media drivel being fed to us in the form of color codes instead of actual information about what's going on in the world. Deciding that a "new Pearl Harbor" is the incentive to start our "necessary dominance" of the Middle East region, while paying all the other terrorist-harboring countries to look the other way. Saying that everything will be better once we get rid of Saddam Hussein, because there's not a single other country in the world that hates us even though we've been kind enough to sell countless amounts of weaponry to.

    But no, I suppose that's all just great, because it allows me to marginalize that down to a phrase like "kicking all the ass I've been dying to kick for the last two decades," because, you know, I'm a goddamn eight-year old child.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:53 PM on April 5, 2003


    Most of the world now views the US as a belligerent menace and the Islamic world is currently abuzz with Pan-Arab and Pan-Islamic sentiments concerning hatred of US foreign policy....

    And before it was, what, warm and fuzzy hugs and kisses for the US from the rest of the world? Two years ago the rest of the world was in love with US foreign policy? I think not. Nothing's changed.

    Here in the US, many now openly declare that anti-war protesters should be shot in the head because of their political views.

    As opposed to a month ago, when many would only declare in the privacy of their own homes that anti-war protesters should be shot in the head because of their political views. How many anti-war protestors have actually been shot in the head because of their political views? Settle down, tiger. Sticks and stones.

    I would say that 9-11 very effectively polarized both the US (internally) and the world and that OBL is quite pleased.

    I wouldn't. Having spent the better part of a decade planting terrorist cells all over western society only to see one group after another arrested and jailed before they could act probably doesn't make a man smile. Opinions be damned, these are men of action, and their lack of it means they are either short-handed or ill-equipped. Neither is a pleasing scenario.

    ...there are plenty of loose (ex-soviet) nukes floating around (so I hear). Dealing with this threat - preventing terrorist pilfering of the vast stocks of existing Russian/ex-Soviet WMD's is currently a back burner issue for the US.

    Sleep tight.


    How so? Terrorists acquiring nuclear weapons isn't a problem for the military, that would be CIA territory. And whether it's on their front or back burner, I have no way of knowing and neither do you.

    So, I guess I'll sleep the same way I always sleep... lightly or not at all.
    posted by David Dark at 11:36 PM on April 5, 2003


    even though we've been kind enough to sell countless amounts of weaponry to.

    You know that Dissident Frogman link about 4 posts up? If you click it and scroll down a little you'll come to a little graph which shows just who has been selling the weapons to Iraq, country by country.

    You might be surprised. I was not.
    posted by hama7 at 11:38 PM on April 5, 2003


    As I listened to WBAI in NY today I was struck by how much panic seems to be happening in the "peace" movement - as the war In Iraq continues things are becoming clearer:

    1) The Iraqi people are begriming to show their support for the US now that they are gaining confidence Saddam will go.

    2) Saddam and his men were vicious, murdering thugs who ruled by fear born of torture and oppression.

    3) The propaganda machine of the Saddam regime is becoming more ridiculous as they broadcast denials of things that are, in fact, happening.

    4) Widespread military support for Iraq from it's allies has completely and utterly failed to materialize.

    5) Civilian casualties are at an incredibly low level for a major military conflict.

    So - with things going so well, why am I hearing voices on the radio today literally hoping that we lose in Iraq? Hoping for bloody defeat that will end in the re-establishment of Saddam control.

    Why are people who claim to be pro "freedom" and pro "peace" hoping that Saddam regains power so he can slaughter anyone who appeared to defy him?

    These protestors who claim that the US isn't "free" because they get arrested for an hour or two when they block traffic openly support the continues empowerment of a man who would torture them to death in his country for the same demonstration.

    Amazing... they SUPPORT Saddam as the "leader" of Iraq and claim that they live in a nation without freedom. So I guess murdering your political rivals is OK - just don't arrest them for a few hours.

    Insanity.

    Clearly, there must be more to it... and there is.

    They Hate Us, Too
    posted by soulhuntre at 12:30 AM on April 6, 2003


    You know that Dissident Frogman link about 4 posts up? If you click it and scroll down a little you'll come to a little graph which shows just who has been selling the weapons to Iraq, country by country.

    It looks like Dissident Frogman's point is that France is opposed to us invading Iraq because France made / will make money from selling weapons to Iraq. Using the same reasoning makes me wonder if we invaded Afghanistan and Iraq instead of doing something about Saudi Arabia for the same reason?
    posted by Sirius at 12:37 AM on April 6, 2003


    What did you know about Osama bin Laden prior to September 11th?

    Well, more than you, obviously, but what does it matter? The Arab world knew plenty about him, his message, his goals... he hasn't exactly been silent over the last decade, earning his spot on the FBI's top 10 and all. You think there were many middle-easterners walking around on Sept 11 going, "Who's this Bin Laden dude?"

    You think even a fraction of the country- a country whose majority can't even FIND Iraq on a map - knew what the hell an "Al-Qaeda" was before this?

    So, post 9/11, you and the rest of the country who can't find Iraq on a map suddenly know who public enemy number 1 is. Everyone calls for his head on a platter, the world rallies for the cause and grants the US power and authority to take any means necessary to fight terrorism world-wide, then special forces and intelligence officers begin scouring the globe for him and his buddies... and this is a good thing for him? It's probably been quite some time since he's done any cackling.

    As to the rest of your comment, I sort of keep getting lost in the hysterics and fear and delusions. I'm sorry that you were so close to the WTC attack and had to experience all of that, and I hope you were able to get therapy to help you deal with some of the trauma.
    posted by David Dark at 12:51 AM on April 6, 2003


    I wonder what Dissident Frogman would think of this opinion about how the United States is making the Middle East more dangerous by selling Saudi Arabia our high tech weapons? :

    Through these sales, the U.S. government has dramatically raised the standard of combat aircraft and munitions of U.S. allies in the region, many of whom are engaged in a "cold peace" with each other. Large-scale sales of advanced conventional weapons to our Middle Eastern allies play into the threat perceptions of "unfriendly" governments as well, in this case Iran and Iraq, spurring them to seek countervailing weapons. Such sales by the United States also give the green light to other arms exporters to introduce new levels of military technology into this and other tense regions. A 1995 report by the CIA's non-proliferation center noted that "as countries' reliance on exports to maintain their defense industrial base grows, pressures will increase to export advanced conventional weapons and technologies to remain competitive with the United States in the world arms market" (emphasis added). By making multi-billion dollar sales of extremely advanced weaponry to the Middle East, the United States government has diminished credibility in pressing other governments to refrain from making sales that it views as dangerous. [See U.S. Nonproliferation Policy, hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Committee (Washington: U.S. GPO, 1994), pp. 27-29 on the difficulty the United States faces in persuading Russia to forgo arms exports to Iran, given high level U.S. arms transfers to Persian Gulf countries.]
    posted by Sirius at 12:53 AM on April 6, 2003


    Why are people who claim to be pro "freedom" and pro "peace" hoping that Saddam regains power so he can slaughter anyone who appeared to defy him?

    I think people are opposed to Operation Iraqi Freedom because it looks like the United States' foreign policy seems to have become just like Saddam's internal policy, slaughter anyone who appears to defy us.
    posted by Sirius at 1:04 AM on April 6, 2003


    "The way to prevail against the anti-American protests, therefore, is not by mollifying the U.N. or bribing our "allies"—but by resolutely acting on our moral right to defend ourselves, regardless of the wishes of any other nation."

    Great link, soulhuntre.

    slaughter anyone who appears to defy us.

    You mean "slaughter" as in: shoot people who wave to U.S. helicopters and drag their corpses through the streets, or just murder great swathes of civilians wholesale? Meet the Hussein regime.

    The "defy" part is hard to take too, because Hussein is merely defying his own promises he made 12 years ago, as the loser in a war he started, not "defying us" as in America. Nobody but Saddam has gassed and killed hundreds upon thousands of Iraqi civilians.
    posted by hama7 at 5:12 AM on April 6, 2003


    "Hand wringing"

    "Meet the Saddam regime"

    Can the absurdity of you zealots be any more stark?

    Some of you talk as though people can be programmed.

    /handwring

    Or am I supposed to believe that people cannot be programmed so long as they're American?

    /further handwring flit

    "I'm proud to be unprogrammable. Where at least I know I'm bzzt ffflt bzzt free."

    Children, women animals and men are scared and are being blown to bits. And the only counsel you pro-war people can muster is that "we're winning"?

    You kids need to read your history books.

    I really think we're dealing with psychosis here.

    Yilch! Earth apparently wasn't made for me.
    posted by crasspastor at 5:34 AM on April 6, 2003


    Good Lord. There should of course be a comma between women and animals!
    posted by crasspastor at 5:41 AM on April 6, 2003


    You mean "slaughter" as in: shoot people who wave to U.S. helicopters and drag their corpses through the streets, or just murder great swathes of civilians wholesale? Meet the Hussein regime.

    Yes, that sounds quite a bit like the definition at dictionary.com:
    The killing of a large number of people; a massacre: “I could not give my name to aid the slaughter in this war, fought on both sides for grossly material ends” (Sylvia Pankhurst).
    and it sounds a lot like this report from CNN talking about the incursion through Baghdad Saturday and Sunday:
    U.S. Central Command spokesman Capt. Frank Thorp said more than 2,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed or injured during the missions.
    The "defy" part is hard to take too, because Hussein is merely defying his own promises he made 12 years ago, as the loser in a war he started, not "defying us" as in America. Nobody but Saddam has gassed and killed hundreds upon thousands of Iraqi civilians.

    Mmmmmmm, OK. The President of the US told Saddam a few months ago that if he didn't do exactly what we (the US) told him to do, we would kill him. Saddam refused to submit to or cooperate with the President. I say he defied the US.
    posted by Sirius at 5:51 AM on April 6, 2003


    Or am I supposed to believe that people cannot be programmed so long as they're American?

    I know I'm not programmed, I only watch CNN and Fox news (sometimes I buy USA Today for sports scores). They're really good American news sources, and they'll tell you what the truth is. I heard if you try to get your news from somewhere else (like the InterWeb), you might run across some crazy commie conspiracy site like this. Not me!!!! I'll never be programmed!
    posted by Sirius at 6:11 AM on April 6, 2003


    Meanwhile, Iraq may prove to not have had much of a WMD threat

    Not that that matters, since "a growing majority of Americans believe the war in Iraq is justified even if the United States does not find weapons of mass destruction."
    posted by kirkaracha at 9:19 AM on April 6, 2003


    David, your onnoxious and self-centered attempt to pass off your obvious lack of insight about the emotional impact of September 11th is incredibly hypocritical considering the overwhelming... complete lack of veracity to your claim that you somehow know more than me about this entire situation. I find it even funnier that someone who says things like "kicking the ass we've been wanting to kick" or, for example, screaming at people that "the world isn't ready for peace" while questioning a lack of militant rage, has the right to duck a debate by accusing me of emotional problems. Please. I'll save the outright insult on behalf of friends who actually were psychologically scarred by the loss of loved ones in 9/11 and just deal with the less petty parts of your comment.

    So, post 9/11, you and the rest of the country who can't find Iraq on a map suddenly know who public enemy number 1 is. Everyone calls for his head on a platter, the world rallies for the cause and grants the US power and authority to take any means necessary to fight terrorism world-wide, then special forces and intelligence officers begin scouring the globe for him and his buddies...

    ...and fail miserably. Now, not only have we not caught bin Laden, but Bush's cronies are now openly suggesting that we can "achieve victory" without even deposing Saddam Hussein. Again, this inspires confidence in our forceful initiative against terrorism... how?

    As for the rest of your comment, I sort of keep getting lost in the absurdity of the spin job you gave in your very first comment about bin Laden, which I must proudly admit is the most fantastic way of ducking around the fact that bin Laden "earned his spot," as you said, by being trained by the United States.

    Though I must admit, Mr. I-know-more-than-you-because-I-said-so, you have quite a focus on current events to make such broad claims about national mood:

    How many anti-war protestors have actually been shot in the head because of their political views? Settle down, tiger. Sticks and stones.

    No, not sticks and stones, just fists, trucks, and, oh look- getting shot. There is a difference between saying privately and publicly your desire to kill protestors. The fact that it's now part of public discourse means people are starting to do it. Let's not forget all the things being done to Mosques these days by "true Americans."
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:25 AM on April 6, 2003


    "This will hopefully put the naysayers in the uncomfortable position of either waxing nostalgic for Saddam's policy of car-battery interrogations and mass rape, or shutting their pie holes. Only time will tell."

    It will not work on me, as Saddam and Iraq itself have almost nothing to do my opposition. Even if a swallowed this "liberating army" business whole, I want to know where the US is justified in starting a war on such reasoning? The fact that Iraqis may want the US there does not mean anything to me. Should I take the opinion of oppressed Iraqis on socialized medicine, or literature to hear as well as I make decisions in life? I suspect that these people mean nothing to the hawkish either. They are useful to slop out when they agree with you, but if it appeared that they felt the other way I doubt you would concede it is time to go home. When the quoted fellow gets around to deciding on which of the only two options he seems to want people to choose from put me down for "You wasted my money and the lives of all the dead US armed forces on a war that does not serve the interests of the American citizen"

    Not that that matters, since "a growing majority of Americans believe the war in Iraq is justified even if the United States does not find weapons of mass destruction."
    "The public wants what the public gets"

    And now I am just going with it: All the talk of low civilian causalities, and how well the war is going because of that really disturb me. There is a war going on where these people live. Imagine a ground war with shelling and bombs in America. It is an unacceptable situation for me, and I cannot think it is any different for them.
    posted by thirteen at 9:44 AM on April 6, 2003


    They Hate Us, Too

    I wanted to go, but I had to address this quickly. This is from the Ayn Rand Institute? It is hardly a document I would imagine Ayn would be proud to have her name associated with.
    "I swear - by my life and my love for it -- that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine."

    Is there an exception for soldiers? Wouldn't Ayn think it was the responsibility of the Iraqi people to overthrow Saddam on their own? One would imagine that if Ayn thought George Bush wanted Saddam dead, he should have gone and killed him himself. The whole article is a failure and obscene.
    posted by thirteen at 10:01 AM on April 6, 2003


    Cheerleading dictators like Hussein and Kim Jong-il should be left to Germany and France, and not to actual human beings.

    While the real humans take up the noble task of blindly lending their frothing support of strategically deficient foreign policies built on a popsicle-stick framework of absurd moral dichotomies. Great post, hama, one of the top ten in the SewerFilter category. "Actual human beings"... priceless.
    posted by holycola at 10:17 AM on April 6, 2003


    Give me a gun, just a small pistol that is all I need. I will walk the streets of Baghdad, I will crawl in the sewers. Geraldo Rivera and I will find Saddam Hussein, we will find him and we will shoot him in the head. We will kill him and drag his corpse through the streets and the Iraqi populace will fall to their knees and weep with joy. They will salute us and they will celebrate the glory of Democracy and the American spirit.

    YES! LET FREEDOM RING!
    posted by bargle at 10:36 AM on April 6, 2003


    Wow, I'm impressed. You were up all night, weren't you? That might have been my first comment ever, did you read all 235 of them? Well, that's what I get for trying to be nice. New tactic: XQUZYPHYR, fuck you and all your bullshit. You like that better, don't you? (Now don't get all upset, I don't really mean it.)

    ...complete lack of veracity to your claim that you somehow know more than me about this entire situation.

    You asked me a direct question and I answered it, theorizing that you were including yourself in the "most people" who didn't know who OBL was before 9/11. If you were one of them, then I knew more than you. If you were an OBL expert prior to 9/11, then you knew more than I. I don't care which of those statements is more veracious. You decide.

    I find it even funnier that someone who says things like "kicking the ass we've been wanting to kick"

    That's the second time you've played musical pronouns with my words. For the record, I didn't say I or me or we or you. I said they, and I was referring to the US Gov'ment. Delusions, anyone?

    or, for example, screaming at people that "the world isn't ready for peace" while questioning a lack of militant rage

    The world isn't ready for peace. Duh. Or have you been vacationing away from the planet earth your entire life? There's war, somewhere, every single day. As for questioning a lack of rage, I had just gotten here and didn't yet know where I was. I would never pose such a silly question to this group today. I now understand perfectly the lack of rage on mefi.

    ...not only have we not caught bin Laden, but Bush's cronies are now openly suggesting that we can "achieve victory" without even deposing Saddam Hussein.

    Are you sure deposing is the right word? I don't think it means what you think it means. For all practical purposes, SH is already deposed. If you mean kill, that's different. But, as with OBL, it's not necessary for the man himself to be dead, as long as he's rendered ineffective it's the same thing.

    Again, this inspires confidence in our forceful initiative against terrorism... how?

    Because it's worked.

    ...the most fantastic way of ducking around the fact that bin Laden "earned his spot," as you said, by being trained by the United States.

    Oh yeah. Ahem. *megaphone*: BIN LADEN WAS TRAINED BY THE UNITED STATES! There. So what? This may surprise you, but when some nutjob goes on a shooting spree and kills a bunch of people, my first thought is not, "Who the fuck taught that guy how to shoot?"

    ...just fists, trucks, and, oh look- getting shot.

    Jeez. A bar fight? You mean people got drunk and started fist-fighting? Damn those terrorists and their successful campaign! And whoa, that truck stopped 10 feet away from those people! The horror! The Horror!! And yes, one guy did get shot, by a drunk, in a bar, and the shooter will spend the rest of his life in prison for it. These things happen every day, over a wide range of topics from pancakes to war. Such is life. It's not like the federal government sent in troops to indiscriminately kill anti-war protesters, even though they are a bunch of quasi-racist, martial law imposing, psychotic border inspectors with rampant right-wing xenophobia. Riiiiight.
    posted by David Dark at 11:12 AM on April 6, 2003


    Oh yeah. Ahem. *megaphone*: BIN LADEN WAS TRAINED BY THE UNITED STATES! There. So what? This may surprise you, but when some nutjob goes on a shooting spree and kills a bunch of people, my first thought is not, "Who the fuck taught that guy how to shoot?"

    So, maybe it would make the world safer if the United States stopped doing piss-poor half-assed jobs of doing whatever they find useful at the moment without thinking about the long term to satisfy its "Pax Americana"-style goals. After this long, it might might not be the first thing, but sure as hell seems important to question who taught this guy how to shoot so we don't do it again. Unfortunately, we're likely too late. The "Northern Alliance" that took over Afghanistan is largely composed of former Taliban members who switched sides, just like they switched sides when the United States bribed them to fight Russians. It's very naive, and very stupid of the U.S. government in the long term, to assume nothing will change. Considering how we almost decided to not give the country any aid this year, it's very likely that we'll see more trouble from Afghanistan in the future. And I suppose when that happens we can talk about how we didn't give a fuck about the country after bombing it and letting the anti-American sentiment return and you can just say "so what?" again.

    We trained bin Laden. So what? We gave billions of dollars to Contras and Arab terrorists. So what? We're suspending the constitution to "protect America." So what?

    I'm really not sure how else I can press a point with you here, David. You don't seem to think there's anything wrong with the U.S.'s history of manipulating foreign governments biting us back in the ass later, you don't seem to think that there's been any change in sentiment against various ethnic groups within this country, and you apparently believe any incident of a protestor being assaulted or a citizen being detained at a border for questionable reasons is a lie. Exactly what is the issue here if you believe that absolutely nothing is going wrong with the world today?
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 11:40 AM on April 6, 2003




    Well, the issue here is supposed to be US Forces Move on Baghdad Centre, but that was quite some time ago.

    But as to this issue of training OBL, of course we did, for at that time Afghanistan was being invaded by Communist Russia. We gave them weapons and helped them defend themselves. This was a good thing. Sure, we wanted to stop the spread of Communism, but also, the Afghanis didn't want to be conquered, and they had the right to fight to not be conquered.

    If we could go back and do it over again, we'd have to do the same thing. No amount of introspection or second-guessing would do a damn bit of good. Are you saying that we should have let the Russians invade and conquer and rape and pillage and slaughter to avoid the possibility that one day one Afghani soldier might turn psychosis into a movement? And would that make you pro-war or anti-war? Doesn't matter. While they're defending, we help them defend. Once they turn from defenders into aggressors, it's a completely different game. But we can't predict the unpredictable. There is no Hari Seldon. Stop me when this starts to make sense.

    And now here you are, in all of your wisdom, calling the US gov't naive, stupid, piss-poor, half-assed... are your delusions of grandeur so far progressed that you actually believe that you are more capable than they of making these kinds of decisions? YOU, who didn't know who OBL was 19 months ago? Give it a rest. Blowback is a valid concept to evaluate the present based on the past, but there's no indication that doing nothing provides a better future than taking action. It's a dangerous business, walking out your front door.

    ...you don't seem to think that there's been any change in sentiment against various ethnic groups within this country, and you apparently believe any incident of a protestor being assaulted or a citizen being detained at a border for questionable reasons is a lie.

    Where are you getting this stuff? Did you seriously read all of my comments? That's unbelievable.
    posted by David Dark at 1:01 PM on April 6, 2003


    First of all, I know who bin Laden was well before September 11th. My opposition to armed conflict was just as strong when we previously heard about him during Clinton's term and the concurring bombing of aspirin factories. I don't understand why you thought I was implying myself, consdering the lack of merit one would have if they actually made a comment about how little they knew about a position they were defending.

    Nor do you hold much on the difference between calling the government of the U.S. in general the terms I used instead of what I said about a specific aspect- i.e. our current military and foreign policy- exactly what it is: naive, piss-poor and half-assed.

    Are you saying that we should have let the Russians invade and conquer and rape and pillage and slaughter to avoid the possibility that one day one Afghani soldier might turn psychosis into a movement? And would that make you pro-war or anti-war? Doesn't matter. While they're defending, we help them defend. Once they turn from defenders into aggressors, it's a completely different game.

    Are you saying the world should allow the United States to invade and conquer and pillage and slaughter to avoid the possibility that one day one Iraqi soldier might be an actual threat, maybe? Would that make you pro-war or anti-war? Doesn't matter. While they're doing nothing, we attack. Once we turn from defenders in aggressors, it's a completely different game.

    are your delusions of grandeur so far progressed that you actually believe that you are more capable than they of making these kinds of decisions?

    I'll stand proudly by the fact that I think my oppositon to war and support of strengthened inspections, increased humanitarian aid, and aggressive and immediate negotiations for peace in the West Bank is a better idea that the plan that, as many have already noted in this thread, half of Bush's cabinet drew up years before the Sept. 11th attacks. For one thing, it wouldn't leave over a hundred soldiers and a thousand soldiers (at last count) dead. These aren't decisions being made, they're instructions from a manual written years ago while Dubya was still running failed businesses and baseball teams.
    posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:43 PM on April 6, 2003


    Not just weapons, but 'intelligence' as well.
    'The infamous massacre at Halabja -- the gassing of the Kurds -- took place in March 1988. Six months later, on September 19, a Maryland company sent 11 strains of germs -- four types of anthrax -- to Iraq, including a microbe strain called 11966, developed for germ warfare at Fort Detrick in the 1950s'

    'The Central Intelligence Agency has been secretly supplying Iraq with detailed intelligence, including data from sensitive U.S. satellite reconnaissance photography, to assist Iraqi bombing raids on Iran's oil terminals and power plants in the war between the two nations, according to informed sources. '
    The Washington Post. December 15.
    Arms control isn't one of the subjects that I have heard raised with respect to this whole horrible mess.
    posted by asok at 5:09 PM on April 6, 2003


    Oh, do I regret posting this. No good came of this.

    I don't see things the way you do, ednopantz, but you were the soul of restraint here in the comments you made. Your language was neutral for the most part and at your sharpest, you weren't mean. You never did any injury to me and I mocked you. I said mean things to you. I can not remember you ever saying mean things to me, or showing me the disrespect I showed to you here. That's just not right.
    You have my apologies.
    posted by y2karl at 10:04 PM on April 6, 2003


    Don't sweat it y2, people get keyed up sometimes.

    Someone asked for references to Marines slaughtering Jihadis. This was from today's WP:

    U.S. military officials said Sunday that some of the toughest combat that American forces have encountered in recent days has been with non-Iraqi Arabs who have come from other countries to fight. U.S. officers described the foreign Arab fighters as relatively small in number, lightly armed and mixed in with regular and Republican Guard units.

    "What we've seen at times were 25 to 30 individuals trying to swarm a light armored vehicle and the light armored vehicle with its weapons was just mowing them down," said Lt. Col. George Smith, a top Marine staff officer. "Some of those that survived the fire would just get back up and continue to charge."


    If these loonies must attack, let's have them attack marines in Bradleys instead of tourists is buses.
    posted by ednopantz at 8:45 AM on April 7, 2003


    My reference above to "EU" was for European Union; not Etats Unis.



    WBAI: swill on the fm dial.
    Talk about an ensemble of people who should be in therapy!


    What's the latest on the capture of Hussein? Does he get a War Crimes Tribunal or a bullet in the head? I'm looking forward to the depression on the Palestinian Arab street when he's caught or gone; really, if you needed objective PROOF of the odious nature of the "movement" for a Palestianian state, support of Hussein is it.
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:03 AM on April 7, 2003


    If these loonies must attack, let's have them attack marines in Bradleys instead of tourists is buses.

    In fairness, it musy be said that some of these people are attacking because they will be shot if they do not.

    No one should celebrate the death of anyone, except, perhaps people in positions of authority. Most of these poor slobs are just that. Which is tragic.
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:07 AM on April 7, 2003


    For example, celebrating the death of that vile "information minister" and "Chemical Ali."
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:09 AM on April 7, 2003


    US National Public Radio reports 20 medium-range BM-21 missiles equipped with sarin and mustard gas found near Baghdad. Top official with 1st Marine Division quoted as saying rockets were ready to fire. DEBKAfile’s sources do not confirm this report.
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:12 AM on April 7, 2003


    PP, by loonies, I meant the Yemenis, Palestinians, Syrians, etc. who want to travel to Iraq to fight the US. I would much rather have them attack hard targets like soldiers than soft ones like civilians.
    posted by ednopantz at 10:33 AM on April 7, 2003


    Ednopantz: I saw a news report yesterday in which said loonies were driving to Iraq from the Syrian border where they cross the border to get on another bus.

    We can only hope that they're being interdicted somewhere along the way.

    By the way, "loonies" paints such people in too positive a light. These are sick bastards; the products of sick DEATHSTYLE cultures.
    posted by ParisParamus at 10:37 AM on April 7, 2003


    For example, celebrating the death of that vile "information minister" and "Chemical Ali."

    Agreed about Ali, but not the Information Minister. He's hilarious! He's the only funny thing about this war and I think I will actually miss his antics.
    posted by homunculus at 11:18 AM on April 7, 2003


    "Agreed about Ali, but not the Information Minister. He's hilarious! He's the only funny thing about this war and I think I will actually miss his antics."

    Yes, you have a point (an SNL skit? I don't watch that show any more, but...), and for all we know, there's a guy with a gun, stage right, keeping him from running away or just blurting out the truth.

    Keep in mind that Mr. Information Minister is probably not far away from Mr. Information Minister in Syria, North Korea, the West Bank, Gaza, in much of Africa. Comical. and yet pathetic.
    TALK ABOUT WHY I DIDN'T GO INTO PUBLIC RELATIONS!
    posted by ParisParamus at 11:33 AM on April 7, 2003


    Oh, do I regret posting this. No good came of this.

    Yet this was the Capitol of Iraq, Baghdad, home to Saddam. Most war footage seen in one spot of Germany in WWII, The Fall of Berlin.
    posted by thomcatspike at 1:05 PM on April 8, 2003


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