‘Staying the Course’ Isn’t an Option
September 26, 2004 6:34 PM   Subscribe

‘Staying the Course’ Isn’t an Option "If Bush is re-elected, there are only two possible outcomes in Iraq:

Four years from now, America will have 5,000 dead servicemen and women and an untold number of dead Iraqis at a cost of about $1 trillion, yet still be no closer to success than we are right now, or The U.S. will be gone, and we will witness the birth of a violent breeding ground for Shiite terrorists posing a far greater threat to Americans than a contained Saddam."
posted by specialk420 (50 comments total)

 
This administration has done such a brilliant job tying Iraq to 9-11 that I wonder what will happen when US solider casualties break 3000. What will it mean when the war in Iraq results in more dead Americans than the attacks of 9-11?
posted by wfrgms at 6:46 PM on September 26, 2004


What will it mean when the war in Iraq results in more dead Americans than the attacks of 9-11?

Devil's advocate: It is an "investment" to prevent future attacks.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 6:59 PM on September 26, 2004


How does any of this prevent future attacks?
posted by muppetboy at 7:02 PM on September 26, 2004


What will it mean when the war in Iraq results in more dead Americans than the attacks of 9-11?

Then people will start comparing the injured!

Realistically, it will just be a blip, like the 1000 was and the 2000 will be.
posted by rough ashlar at 7:04 PM on September 26, 2004


How does any of this prevent future attacks?

It doesn't. But it wouldn't surprise me as that the argument may actually be used in the near future. I think it is actually already being used.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 7:05 PM on September 26, 2004


From the whitehouse.gov: We're determined to challenge new threats, not ignore them, or simply wait for future tragedy."
posted by swordfishtrombones at 7:09 PM on September 26, 2004


One of the interesting things about the whole campaign to me (which the article touches tangentially) is the number of things the Kerry campaign could have said that would sound astute by comparison to Bush regarding Iraq. Even something as non-specific as "we'll actually listen to our career military professionals for advice" ... but it hasn't happened. Why?

Some folks are speculating that Kerry's greatest hours are generally when closing, and he's saving the strongest stuff for the last weeks of the campaign, and that's when we'll see him define himself as something besides "not Bush."

I think that if this isn't true, Kerry will lose the election. Narrowly, probably, but as my high school math teacher used to say, close only counts in horshoes and with hand grenades.
posted by weston at 7:21 PM on September 26, 2004


what about the 11,000 plus iraqi civilians - women, children, grandmothers, grandfathers killed to date? one would imagine iraq is no longer a "threat" to "us" why is the US still killing iraqi civilians - and who is going to be held responsible for the ones killed to date?
posted by specialk420 at 7:23 PM on September 26, 2004


and who is going to be held responsible for the ones killed to date?

Well, the US chose not to be under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 7:31 PM on September 26, 2004


Some assassin will get Bush one day. Or worse, they'll get us because of his war. How many millions of Iraqis have been added to the list of people that hate us?
posted by amberglow at 7:41 PM on September 26, 2004


weston:One of the interesting things about the whole campaign to me...is the number of things the Kerry campaign could have said that would sound astute by comparison to Bush regarding Iraq. Even something as non-specific as "we'll actually listen to our career military professionals for advice"...but it hasn't happened. Why?

It has happened. Kerry said this in a September 24 speech at Temple University:
Instead of listening to the uniformed military, his own State Department, Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress, and outside experts about how to win the peace in Iraq… the President hitched his wagon to the ideologues who told him our troops would be welcomed as liberators. That was the wrong choice.
That speech and his September 20 speech at New York University have had plenty of criticism for the Bush administration and spell out how Kerry claims he'd do better. I think the bigger question is "Why isn't this covered more?"
posted by kirkaracha at 7:44 PM on September 26, 2004


what about the 11,000 plus iraqi civilians - women, children, grandmothers, grandfathers killed to date?

Or the 3029 identified dead civilians.

who is going to be held responsible for the ones killed to date?

Not the people who started the war. They'll live out their lives in comfort while others pay for their decisions.
posted by homunculus at 7:48 PM on September 26, 2004


[kerry could have said] Even something as non-specific as "we'll actually listen to our career military professionals for advice" ... but it hasn't happened. Why?


Um, he has said that. Pay more attention.
posted by delmoi at 8:02 PM on September 26, 2004


That speech and his September 20 speech at New York University have had plenty of criticism for the Bush administration and spell out how Kerry claims he'd do better. I think the bigger question is "Why isn't this covered more?"



Um, I saw it on CNN.
posted by delmoi at 8:02 PM on September 26, 2004


I think the bigger question is "Why isn't this covered more?"

Because the Democratic Party still thinks that the media will do their work for them, while the GOP is extensively networked with talking points, media contacts, and the like.

If the Democrats don't get their heads out of their asses in time to save Kerry's candidacy, I'm switching independent. I've had it with this train wreck.
posted by PrinceValium at 8:04 PM on September 26, 2004


i wonder how many of those who still support bush's rush to war - and his handling since, would have gone themselves knowing what we know now or sent their sons or daughters? like the chickenhawks themselves my guess is very few ...
posted by specialk420 at 8:35 PM on September 26, 2004


Most republicans are hoping to shake the confidence of democrats enough to make them vote independent. They don't have to get everybody to vote republican. They just have to get us to not vote democrat, or not vote at all which is what the majority of Americans do already. If you do the math, it rules out any room for indecision: If you vote for anyone other than Kerry, or don't vote at all, it's the same as voting for Bush.

Staying the course will get more people dead. I don't care if Kerry's got the brains of a kumquat. He's not Bush, and a change away from this illusion of violence as a solution or fear as a political tactic is what this country - this planet - needs.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:36 PM on September 26, 2004


Um, I saw it on CNN.

Hmmm. Sorry.

You know, maybe there are times when not watching television is a liability.
posted by weston at 9:39 PM on September 26, 2004


Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:56 PM on September 26, 2004


why is the US still killing iraqi civilians - and who is going to be held responsible for the ones killed to date?

I've been living outside of the US long enough for this much to become clear to me: the Bush administration is a terrorist organization. They have hijacked America, the world's foremost millitary power, just like a caravan of screaming Islamic extremists swarming and commandeering an American tank.

They're using American lives, American money, American clout, and what's left of America's legitimacy to pursue a radical agenda that is killing thousands of innocent people for the benefit of a weathy few and to the greater risk of the whole world. How is this administration not a terrorist organization? Can someone tell me? Does having more money, or claiming to "fight terror" mean the US cannot be terrorists?

Wake up and smell the coffee: we're not the good guys, no matter what they say on Fox or even NPR; we're fucking the world up but good, and the mainstream media will never say so.

If we relect these terrorists, or allow the brothers from Ohio to hack the election into their hands, we deserve everything we're going to get for it.
posted by squirrel at 9:58 PM on September 26, 2004


Bush:Would Give 'Mission Accomplished' Speech Again

President Bush said he had no regrets about donning a flight suit to give his "Mission Accomplished" speech on Iraq in May 2003 and would do it all over again if he had the chance, according to excerpts from an television interview released on Sunday.

When asked by Fox News if he still would have put on a flight suit to declare major combat operations in Iraq over, Bush replied, "Absolutely."


Why does this make one think of

I don't believe, Mr. Frankel, that the Yugoslavians consider themselves dominated by the Soviet Union. I don't believe that the Romanians consider themselves dominated by the Soviet Union. I don't believe that the Poles consider themselves dominated by the Soviet Union....

Gerald Ford, 2nd Carter/Ford Debate 1976
?
posted by y2karl at 10:30 PM on September 26, 2004


W is just showing that he's a "strong leader". that means never changing your mind about anything, no matter how wrong you might be or how dangerous the consequences might be to others.
posted by muppetboy at 10:46 PM on September 26, 2004


If you do the math, it rules out any room for indecision: If you vote for anyone other than Kerry, or don't vote at all, it's the same as voting for Bush.

Really? Let's do the math.

Assume that there are eleven people-- four Bush-backers, five Kerry-backers, and two undecided. If the two people vote for "Other," or choose not to vote, Kerry wins. If they vote for Bush, Bush wins.

Therefore, voting for someone other than Kerry (or not voting at all) is not the "same as voting for Bush."

Have I done the math incorrectly?
posted by trharlan at 10:49 PM on September 26, 2004


Some assassin will get Bush one day. Or worse, they'll get us because of his war.

The assasin won't be able to complete his job. He'll be too torn by conflicting priorities. "Do I go for Bush first, or should it be amberglow and the Mefites? I just can't decide."
posted by Krrrlson at 10:49 PM on September 26, 2004


The afordisplayed chart is pretty useless seeing as American involvement in Vietnam didn't really begin until '65 (Vietnam War: Most historians of the Second Indochina War concern themselves primarily with the American Phase of the conflict, 1965-73...).

This blows...unless you think the US could be gone as a result of the Iraq war as stated in the title of the post...what?
posted by lightweight at 12:07 AM on September 27, 2004


Gone from Iraq, lightweight.
posted by squirrel at 12:32 AM on September 27, 2004


This war is not some noble endeavor, some great struggle of good against evil as the Bush administration would have us believe. We in the military have heard these grand pronouncements many times before by men who have neither served nor sacrificed. This war is an exercise in colossal stupidity and hubris which has now cost more than 1,000 American military lives, which has empowered Al Qaeda beyond anything those butchers might have engineered on their own and which has diverted America's attention and precious resources from the real threat at the worst possible time.

Finally somebody wrote this in an American magazine. The American news media has been more interested in making war seem like heroic and glorious.

There was also a link to a picture gallery in the Newsweek story where a fallen guardsman is pulled out from his Stryker. I hadn't seen such pictures in main stream media before.
posted by hoskala at 2:23 AM on September 27, 2004


Ahha - thx squirrel.
posted by lightweight at 2:29 AM on September 27, 2004


Wow... all this stuff is packed into this one msnbc.com article? Fantastic post! Not.
posted by Witty at 3:08 AM on September 27, 2004


> If Bush is re-elected, there are only two possible outcomes
> in Iraq:
>
> Four years from now, America will have 5,000 dead servicemen
> and women and an untold number of dead Iraqis at a cost of about $1
> trillion, yet still be no closer to success than we are right now,
>
> or
>
> The U.S. will be gone, and we will witness the birth of a violent
> breeding ground for Shiite terrorists posing a far greater threat to
> Americans than a contained Saddam."

OK, I'll bite. If Bush is re-elected we're damned if we stay and damned if we go. If Bush is not re-elected, how will this conjure up some third option that isn't either staying or going?
posted by jfuller at 4:37 AM on September 27, 2004


Just to be clear, I did read Col. Turner's four points, and I can't find an option anywhere in them that isn't staying or going.
posted by jfuller at 4:41 AM on September 27, 2004


...or should it be amberglow and the Mefites? I just can't decide."

Sure, if i and everyone else here had actually started a war based on lies that's killing people daily and occupying another country. Idiot.
posted by amberglow at 4:53 AM on September 27, 2004


OK, I'll bite. If Bush is re-elected we're damned if we stay and damned if we go. If Bush is not re-elected, how will this conjure up some third option that isn't either staying or going?

Bush is bad at his job. Bush should be fired.
posted by Space Coyote at 6:26 AM on September 27, 2004


"Do I go for Bush first, or should it be amberglow and the Mefites? I just can't decide."


classic krrrlson.
posted by specialk420 at 7:39 AM on September 27, 2004


Assume that there are eleven people-- four Bush-backers, five Kerry-backers, and two undecided.

that assumes there are 4/11 who support bush and 7/11 who do not. I do not think that is an accurate assumption.
posted by mdn at 9:52 AM on September 27, 2004


My argument holds even if you dislike the assumption in my example, mdn.

Do you really not understand why a vote (or block of votes) for Nader will not have the same effect as a vote (or block of votes) for Bush?
posted by trharlan at 10:32 AM on September 27, 2004


No, of course I do: mathematically they are not identical. If a vote for Kerry is +1, then an independent vote is a 0 and a Bush vote is a -1. But, if Bush supporters can convince enough maybe-Kerry votes to become independent or non-voters, then they go from +1 to 0, which could cost Kerry the election. Given that the likely breakdown of your 11 votes is more like 4.75 for bush, 4.75 for kerry and 1.5 undecided, the undecided could be very important.

The point is, in reality either bush or kerry will win. To vote independent or not vote is still taking votes away from Kerry, if that's who you prefer between the two actual possibilities.
posted by mdn at 2:40 PM on September 27, 2004


Sure, if i and everyone else here had actually started a war based on lies that's killing people daily and occupying another country. Idiot.

You're the one who said it right here you delusional dolt.
posted by Krrrlson at 11:17 PM on September 27, 2004


Now there's a cutting remark with an edge by Nerf.
posted by y2karl at 12:27 AM on September 28, 2004


He meant 'us' as in the general public - you know, the kind of folks working in the WTC, for example.

Pot, Kettle, meet delusional dolt, or something.
posted by bashos_frog at 1:20 AM on September 28, 2004


And I chose to make light of his alarmist and hysterical remark. But I see you've all grabbed each other already so let me get out of the way before the circle jerk gets going.
posted by Krrrlson at 9:56 AM on September 28, 2004


I'm sorry, make that *really* gets going.
posted by Krrrlson at 9:56 AM on September 28, 2004


There's only one jerk here.
posted by amberglow at 10:11 AM on September 28, 2004


Circle him!
posted by hackly_fracture at 10:36 AM on September 28, 2004


I am SO look forward to the Metangush of November 3. The Electoral Vote map is turning more and more red. Obviously, most Americans are too stupid and too immoral for you.

Barring a catastrophe Thursday night, you're all sentenced to four more years.
posted by ParisParamus at 10:50 AM on September 28, 2004


And four more years of typographical errors. On the other hand, assuming the President is re-elected, you'll have the impression of a more liberal ParisParamus. Why? Because at that point, with foreign policy in good hands, it will be time to steer the ship a bit to the Left domestically.
posted by ParisParamus at 11:03 AM on September 28, 2004


Well, you'll have plenty of time to gloat when you're held without trial for years as an "enemy combatant."
Or when we are paying off the deficit for the next 80 years.
Or when you are deported and declared no longer an American citizen because of your "conduct."

A vote for Bush is a vote against the Constitution.
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:14 AM on September 28, 2004


There's only one jerk here.

Hear that, Paris? I think you're off the hook.
posted by Krrrlson at 2:40 PM on September 28, 2004


On the other hand, assuming the President is re-elected, you'll have the impression of a more liberal ParisParamus.

Polishing our mirror, are we? Sounds like you got yourself circled.
Narcissus Paramus...
posted by y2karl at 3:04 PM on September 28, 2004


Paris, you and who are going to "steer" the country to the left domestically? Most of what I have learned about the "red" states centers around an understanding that domestic policies are what has steered the country to the right in the first place. That the red states see the conditions of the world as a domestic issue is exactly the problem with our involvement (or lack thereof) in the world community at this time.

I recently had the pleasure to meet my nephew's girlfriend. They currently live in Iowa. She has lived in the same small town all her life. She is afraid of cities because of what she has heard. She wants a career defending Christian groups against the forces of secularism (as they limit overt Christian displays in public). In her world, Mexicans commit all crimes. Hell, Minnesotans are the only murderers in her state. (Keep in mind she is actually a very smart girl.) She is afraid of the world and considers the protection of her corner her first priority.

To extrapolate, she may have been been inexplicably convinced that the US invasion of Iraq is part of her protection. I can't explain it and harbor no ill will toward her for it, but let me reiterate: this is domestic policy, intimately linked with other socially conservative causes. For her and others like her, foreign policy simply does not exist as conventionally considered.
posted by Dick Paris at 4:06 PM on September 28, 2004


« Older If All Stories Were Written Like Science Fiction S...  |  Why the 9/11 Fund was a Mistak... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments