View Full Version : Why War Is The Right Choice by Tony Blair

02-16-2003, 06:02 PM
The following is the text of a speech delivered by Prime Minister Tony Blair at Labour's local government, women's and youth conferences, SECC, Glasgow, on Saturday, February 15, 2003. (end excerpt)

I won't butcher Mr Blair's speech by cutting and pasting excerpts.

In his speech, in addition to presenting his own thoughts and some facts/statistics, he quotes a letter from a member of a family of an Iraqi exile, and includes a quote from Dr Safa Hashim.


02-16-2003, 06:40 PM
does he mention babies being thrown out of incubators? (remember that propaganda thing which was totally false)

02-16-2003, 09:46 PM
If you'd read it you'd know whether he mentions it or not.

C'mon brad, why do you so often try to be obtuse?

02-16-2003, 10:14 PM
just mentioning a well known propaganda stunt right before gulf war.

if you cant see the parallel dont blame me. heh

02-16-2003, 11:10 PM
Thanks for the link, very well done by Blair. It's fairly obvious to me that people who oppose imposing a deadline (which he has had plenty of time to meet) on Iraq disarmerment with military action as the consequence for not meeting the deadline simply don't feel that Saddam is a an immnenent nor serious threat. One poster stated that you can't prove a negative i.e. if Saddam doesn't have WMD's he can't very well remove them. This is a belief I don't even think Blix has. Basically all of the "players" are in agreement that Saddam has to be disarmed just not how.

BTW Blix's report on Friday IMO was a disgrace. I saw an interview with Democratic House Representative Alcee Hastings by Geraldo last nigtht. Hastings stated that there was no way that 200 inspectors or even 600 inspectors in an area the size of California are going to find WMD's that Hussein wants to hide. I certainly wouldn't call Congressman Hastings politically aligned with Bush either. It clued me in that the Congressional Democrats know what the score is regarding Saddam and WMD's. How many Congressional leaders were out there protesting this weekend against using military force to disarm Hussein? There must have been a few.

02-17-2003, 01:20 AM
Thanks for posting the speech. It is well done and honest in tone. Though this may illict all the more ridicule. As to the ultimate reasons for the necessity of war, He makes his points clear and gives plain, understandable reasons. A commendable speech.

CSPAN usually airs the questions to the prime minister and I listen sometimes. Mr. Blair is articulate and can field questions well. Something Mr. Bush would never be able to do well, in this respect he follows his father.


02-17-2003, 01:54 AM
"....simply don't feel that Saddam is a an immnenent nor serious threat"

This certainly sums up a large portion of my view on the subject.

02-17-2003, 08:22 AM
I saw the parallel, but it's an out-of-place comment given that you hadn't read the text of Blair's speech when you made it.

If Blair's speech contains something worth picking on, then go ahead if you like. But to cynically suggest that his speech contains propaganda lies before you even read it is unworthy of a serious discussion.

nicky g
02-18-2003, 08:56 AM
This bit from Blair's statement is an outrageous piece of intellectual dishonesty and a study in absurdity (my phrase of the week /forums/images/icons/tongue.gif ):

"A country that in 1978, the year before he seized power, was richer than Malaysia or Portugal."

Saddam was vice-president from early 70s (1969 I think, in fact?), and noone disputes that he was running the country from the moment he came into office. The President, Bakr, had no real power and was a mere figurehead that Saddam finally dispensed with in 1979 (prior to then his office was referred to as "the tomb of the well-known soldier", so decrepit and inactive he was). All major policy decisions in the 70s were taken by Saddam. So Blair is in fact giving Saddam credit for Iraq's economic success here.

"A country where today, 135 out of every 1000 Iraqi children die before the age of five - 70 percent of these deaths are from diarrhoea and respiratory infections that are easily preventable. Where almost a third of children born in the centre and south of Iraq have chronic malnutrition. Where 60 percent of the people depend on Food Aid. Where half the population of rural areas have no safe water."

I am astounded that Blair can get away with this. This has been the case since the sanctions were imposed. It is outrageous of Blair to pretend that Saddam took over a previously prosperous country and deliberately starved the populace. All the figures Blair lists are direct consequences of the sanctions. Yes if Saddam had stood down (and let's face it, nothing short of that would have brought them to an end), they probably would have been lifted and eveyone would have been far better off. But that clearly was not going to happen, , and the West decided to let 1000s of people die anyway. You can argue all you like about Saddam spending all the money on palaces in WMDs but how exactly could he "spend" the medicines that have been prevented from treating the easily preventable diseases that Blair is so concerned about?
People like Blair rely on the public's ignorance for blatantly dishonest statements like this. Moreover, Saddam may have been the first person to use gas "against his own people" (I doubt the Kurds would describe themselves as such, and don't particularly appreciate the West's support for their repression by Turkey and co, but anyway), but Britain was the first nation to gas the Kurds and has very little to be proud of. I don't see why Saddam doing it is worse than the RAF doing it. The 20th century in IRaq consisted of endless US, British, Soviet and French (manly the first two, by a long shot) meddling, plotting and killing that led directly to the kind of situation there is now and it's a damn shame the 21st is shaping up for more of the same. Blair is a liar and a phoney and we'll be well rid of him if this adventure is his downfall.

02-18-2003, 10:25 AM
It is untrue to assert that Saddam could not have spent the money on medicines. He damn well could have but didn't because he WANTED those children to die so he could point to the sanctions and say: "See what your sanctions are doing?" Anything he wanted to buy which were prohibited by sanctions he could have had smuggled in--just as he did with his nuke program materiels--and just as he secretly redirected revenues from the oil-for-food program to his military. To believe otherwise is naive IMO.

The sooner we get rid of Saddam the more the Iraqi people will thank us. Wait and see.

nicky g
02-18-2003, 10:36 AM

Blair silent on Iraq democracy

Matthew Tempest, political correspondent
Tuesday February 18, 2003

Tony Blair today refused to specify what sort of regime might follow Saddam Hussein's in Iraq - despite making the "moral case" for overthrowing the Iraqi dictator by military action.
The prime minister avoided committing to a democratic regime at least three times under questioning from reporters at today's monthly press conference.

And although the Downing Street press office handed reporters emails from the Iraqi Exiles in the UK group, Mr Blair merely said Iraq should be put on the path to democracy, but that discussions about what may happen after any military action were still continuing.

Jon Snow of Channel 4 news asked the prime minister if the Shia majority in the south of Iraq will be allowed to vote for a non-secular government.

"The future governance of Iraq is something to discuss with the UN. There are a lot of difficult issues to be resolved without speculating about that," Mr Blair replied.

The prime minister did repeat his line that the "territorial integrity of Iraq" would remain, but specifically refused to answer a question from a journalist on the presence of 40,000 Turkish troops in northern Iraq, saying that was a matter for governments.

Asked if Britain would support breakaway elements which wanted to create a Kurdish state in what is now northern Iraq or a Shi'ite Islamic state in the south, Mr Blair insisted that his commitment to Iraq's territorial integrity was "absolute".

Later, Mr Blair would only say that "we have to be committed to the humanitarian consequences of renewing Iraq", when asked to guarantee Iraqi exiles' request for a democracy post-Saddam.

"Before Saddam came to power, Iraq was a thriving country" Mr Blair reminded reporters. He pointed out that northern Iraq currently has greater autonomy due to the policing of the US/UK no-fly zone, compared with central and southern Iraq.

The prime minister also said that one sixth of the Iraqi population had gone into exile in the last 20 years - the equivalent of 10 million Britons leaving the UK.

But pressed on exactly what would follow President Saddam's regime, Mr Blair would merely repeat that "lots of discussions are underway".

He said that he hoped that democracy could be restored in Iraq if President Saddam was overthrown.

"This something that has to be discussed not just with allies but with the UN and with people inside Iraq. But the more that we can at least set ourselves on a path towards on greater democracy the better," Mr Blair added.

He told journalists to look at the example of Hamid Karzai in Afgahanistan, who he revealed would be visiting the UK shortly.

Despite his recent comments on the "moral case for removing Saddam", Mr Blair stressed that "regime change" was not government policy, and that the argument for removing President Saddam rested on the dangers of his weapons.

He called on what he dismissed as "thousands" of anti-war protesters to listen to the testimony of Iraqi exiles about the horror of President Saddam's regime, and their wish for him to be removed from power.

Mr Blair added: "There was a huge emphasis by people on the march about the consequences of war, their fear about that. I think it is important we address that better."

He suggested that many of those marching did not fully understand the nature of President Saddam's regime.

"A poll indicated that a large proportion of people disagreed with the statement 'Saddam is a cruel tyrant'," he said.

"There is a failure of communication, which I take responsibility for, if that is the case."

He said he accepted that the marchers were "sincerely motivated and convinced" in their opposition to the use of military force, but called on them to accept that it was possible to be equally sincere and convinced that it might be needed.

Mr Blair told Jon Smith, political editor of the Press Association, that he had no doubt that they could work with any new administration in Iraq and "locate this stuff and deal with it".

He was referring to nerve gas and other material which has not so far been found.

At the start of the press conference, the prime minister published a letter written to him by a group calling itself Iraqi Exiles in the UK - which urges him to stand firm against President Saddam.

Mr Blair told his monthly news conference: "These are voices that deserve to be heard."

The group, based in Manchester, said in their letter: "We are praying that you will stick to your resolve to liberate our country from a dictatorial tyranny which over the past 30 years has caused the deaths of nearly two million men, women, sons and daughters.

"We have suffered enough."

The letter goes on: "Today, in the face of so much opposition, we look to you to remain steadfast for all that is decent and honourable, as you already have done.

"The anti-war coalition ignores the terror we have lived under for so long, offers no alternative to our nightmare, can only be construed as supporting Saddam Hussein and helping to maintain his regime indefinitely."

The letter also urges the West not to impose a military leader on Iraq saying: "The people of Iraq should be given a chance to form their own democratic government after the liberation of Iraq and in the future."

nicky g
02-18-2003, 10:47 AM
Surely those administering theaid would know what was happening to it - if monies were being misspent wholesale etc? And yet they resigned not in protest at what Saddam was doing but in protest at the effects of the sanctions.

nicky g
02-18-2003, 10:56 AM

"Because it can only legally import goods under the oil-for-food program established in 1996, Iraq is unable to meet the needs of its 22 million people. In theory, the program allows for unlimited oil exports. But because of Iraq's decaying infrastructure, which has been further hobbled by the blocking of spare parts, it can produce at best 75 percent of its pre-sanctions output of 3.5 million barrels of oil a day.

Iraq never sees a penny of this money; it's controlled by the U.N. Of that, only 70 percent is allocated for goods. The rest goes toward administrative costs and reparations. So, according to VITW, while Iraq sold more than $37 billion worth of oil from 1997 through 2000, only $9 billion of goods actually arrived in Iraq. For the average Iraqi, this means less than 40 cents a day is allocated to meet all her humanitarian needs. "

" Iraq never sees a penny of this money; it's controlled by the UN ". The goods are bought directly by the UN and shipped to Iraq, and often blocked under spurious "dual use" regulations. So again, how is Iraq misspending actual goods under the oil-for-food programme? Selling it on the black market?

Where is the evidence for your claims?

02-18-2003, 11:25 AM
Sorry nicky but I don't bookmark every article I've read in forming my opinions. I think Bush also mentioned that Saddam has surreptitiously misused the oil-for-food program to enhance his military, and I think we will see more evidence of thit forthcoming after he is deposed.

What's more, you still haven't addressed the simple fact that he somehow had on balance PLENTY of money to spend--as evidenced by his massive military and WMD expenditures--and his choice was to let his people suffer. Not that that's anything new for him--the man is a cold-blooded sadist from long ago--and so is his son.

Free the Iraqi people--why aren't you for freeing the Iraqi people? Would YOU want to live under his terror and tyranny, or would you rather a foreign power steps in to relieve you and your people of the suffering and slavery you would have living under Saddam?

Why people aren't for saving the Iraqi people from the tyranny of this monster is almost beyond me--the horrors of war are NOT necessarily worse than than the horrors of despotism, and personally, I would MUCH rather live free or die than live in constant fear of my family being tortured and executed by a monster such as Saddam. I guess some folks think slow death by tyranny isn't worse than fast death by war, followed by freedom.

Resist tyranny--depose Saddam. We should do it for the Iraqi people even if no other reasons existed.

nicky g
02-18-2003, 11:46 AM
"What's more, you still haven't addressed the simple fact that he had on balance PLENTY of money to spend somehow--as evidenced by his massive military and WMD expenditures"

But those were prior to the sanctions. No doubt money is still spent on the military, and there may be a smaller WMD programme, though noone's found any evidence for it, but the times when he was spending vast fortunes on these things was before the period we're arguing about, and when the Iraqi standard of living was comparatively high (in economic terms; obviously not in human rights terms). I bleive I have in fact made this point in response to your point previously.

"I think we will see more evidence of that forthcoming after he is deposed."

Maybe but that's not a legitimate argument to go to war; bomb first, produce evidence later. I don't doubt he's a monster but I think it's clear that the sanctions have a terrible effect on the people of Iraq regardless of Saddam's machinations.

02-18-2003, 12:36 PM
Well after we get rid of Saddam there won't be any more sanctions;-)

Chris Alger
02-18-2003, 02:23 PM
"Basically all of the "players" are in agreement that Saddam has to be disarmed just not how."

I'm not sure who the "players" are but this is definitely not the position of those with power that oppose the war. According to UNSCOM inspector Scott Ritter, Saddam is already 90-95% disarmed of WMD, and certain toxins that he allegedly failed to account for have a shelf life of only af few years. More importanly, the means of producing these materials in Iraq have been abolished or severely curtailed. There is also no reason to believe that Saddam can regenerate a large inventory of WMD without foreign assistance that has not been forthcoming in years and under the noses of not just UNSCOM but U-2's, satellites, electronic evesdropping and spooks. The reality of Saddam's power is perhaps most evident in optimistic Pentagon predictions of US forces being able to invade, topple and withdraw within as little as 90 days. Such regimes are rationally referred to as defenseless rather than serious threats to the world.

According, despite the pro-war template argument of "if he can't show that he's 100% disarmed, the US and UK should be allowed to invade," I think most of those presently opposed to the war would not demand an accounting of every toxic grain to justify remaining opposed.

02-18-2003, 03:49 PM
"every toxic grain"??? Didn't the UN team say there are thousands of tons of chemical/biological weapons unaccounted for? Who cares if that's 5% or 50%--it's more than enough to wreak havoc and commit genocide.

Let's not forget about the countless Iraqis who will die and suffer if Saddam is left in power, too. Who speaks for them??? Who hears their cries and pleas, the countless thousands of Iraqis who Saddam has mutilated, raped, tortured and executed---some mere children. Is there any reason to believe he won't go on doing this?

As Blair said, to leave Saddam in power is the truly inhumane choice.

Sometimes it's best to just do away with evil wholesale.

02-18-2003, 04:31 PM
Good post M.


Annan says Iraq has to move fast to cooperate with inspectors


Some quotes from Annan in the article:

Annan, who received the Vatican's thanks for his "constant personal commitment for peace" around the world, warned Baghdad on Monday that its failure to disarm under U.N. resolutions could lead to war.

"If they were to continue their defiance ... the members of the (U.N.) Security Council may have to make a grim choice, a grim choice of whether to declare them in material breach and the serious consequences that should follow," Annan told reporters in Brussels after an EU summit on the Iraqi crisis.

He repeated the message Tuesday in Rome.

"I think everybody is determined that Iraq should disarm and the message has gone out very strongly to the Iraqi leadership not just from the U.N. but from the Arab League and its neighbors. And I hope they heed that call and cooperate, and cooperate fully, with the inspectors.


Even Annan states that Iraq has to disarm. The obvious conclusion is that Annan believes Iraq is in possession of WMD's. Maybe he, Annan, actually meant remove water pistols when he said disarm. Maybe pigs can fly too.

Chris Alger
02-19-2003, 12:40 PM
"Who cares if that's 5% or 50%"

Because substantial progress over time toward eliminating Iraq's WMD is compelling evidence that inspections can work and that war is unecessary for this reason.

"Let's not forget about the countless Iraqis who will die and suffer if Saddam is left in power, too. Who speaks for them??? Who hears their cries and pleas, the countless thousands of Iraqis who Saddam has mutilated, raped, tortured and executed---some mere children."

The major enemy of Iraqi children during the last ten years has been the U.S., so I doubt the U.S. speaks for them. As for the U.S.-backed alternatifve to Saddam being better, you no basis to believe that this will be so. Your purported compassion for the people of Iraq rings hollow, as you could care less about people being murdered and oppressed by regimes backed by the U.S., which could much more easily reverse their plight than it can in the case of Iraq. Further, war will mean guaranteed suffering for thousands and probably hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. Whether Saddam will start up the terror campaigns that ended 10 years ago is pure speculation.

"Didn't the UN team say there are thousands of tons of chemical/biological weapons unaccounted for?"

No. Do your homework.

02-19-2003, 02:14 PM
No, I believe Saddam manipulated the sanctions to kill those children and did nothing to alleviate their suffering when much was in his power to do so had he chosen.

It's IDIOTIC to think that a replacement for Saddam will not be better, as nobody could be worse. The chances of one being better than Saddam are close to 100%.

Past actions by the US in supporting bad regimes taken out of the Cold War context, and without considering the alternatives, are an intellectually dishonest way of condemning the US far too severely and broadly--and my arguing that you have to take into account the larger picture in no way implies that I don't care about people being murdered and tortured: this is not the first time you have wrongly criticized my compassion or my motives, based on your own flawed assumption which seems to be that to disagree with your analysis is somehow evidence of a non-compassionate outlook.

Your position that Iraq has little of significance in the way of WMD will be clearly proven to be completely off-base after the war commences. Indeed, given the facts now present as well as the testimonials of ex-Iraqi scientists, etc. I would say that anyone who believes this is either very naive, or deliberately taking such a position to attempt to thwart the USA or to aid Saddam.

Whatever the U.N. team said, it's obvious that even Blix doesn't believe Saddam is free of WMD. The other Arab states don't and are calling for him to step down or to reach for the suicide revolver, and some will be supporting the US invasion materially.

I guess Chris Alger is more pro-Saddam/anti-US than are even the Arabs.

02-19-2003, 03:31 PM
I guess Chris Alger is more pro-Saddam/anti-US than are even the Arabs.

I just love how a rational criticism of a nation's policies somehow means a love for the victims of that nation's policies.

You might want to consider the possibility that he considers Iraqi lives just as significant as American lives. You might then consider that he considers the continued propagation of our economic imperialism to be a bad thing for the Iraqi people.

Chris has condemned Hussein in many posts. The only reason you get all worked up about his posts is that he's equally critical of US policies.

02-19-2003, 03:41 PM
M: "Didn't the UN team say there are thousands of tons of chemical/biological weapons unaccounted for?"

Chris Alger: "No. Do your homework."


"But chief inspector Hans Blix reported to Security Council members that Iraq had failed to account for 1,000 tons of chemical agent, 6,500 chemical bombs, 25,000 liters of anthrax, 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin, 500 tons of sarin, mustard gas and VX nerve agent and 380 rocket engines useful in the delivery of biological and chemical agents."(end excerpt)

02-19-2003, 04:50 PM
'"One must not jump to the conclusion that they exist. However, that possibility is also not excluded," he said. '

from your link. but the reason he says that is because all the stuff destroyed in gulf war '91 is 'unaccounted for'.

and US knows he had them prior to gulf war because US sold/gave him all those chem/bio stuff!

but i really salute you for supporting your argument with a fact. but the main benefit may be that others can branch off of your supporting facts and attack and/or support them and more info comes into play and makes for better arguments.

p.s. note i didnt give any support for my statements but i think its common knowledge. heh

02-19-2003, 07:39 PM
brad: "from your link. but the reason he says that is because all the stuff destroyed in gulf war '91 is 'unaccounted for'."

No, that's not accurate. Blix is not referring to "all the stuff (actually) destroyed in the gulf war" here.

Iraq claimed it destroyed a lot of WMD unilaterally--which was in direct violation of resolutions supervised destruction--and offered absolutely no evidence that it actually destroyed many of these WMD. In other words Iraq carted off these WMD then claimed it had destroyed them.

Blix here is simply stating the fact that there remain huge quantities of WMD unaccounted for--for which Iraq has offered no documentation nor evidence of their destruction, and Iraq chose to not even address the question of unaccounted for WMD in its 12,000 page report recently, although it was required to do so by Resolution 1441.

By the way, don't salute me for presenting what should be a well-known fact--I did it for one reason only.

02-19-2003, 07:41 PM
M no matter what you say or I say or Annan says or Blix says about the necessity to disarm Iraq, many will just ignore the obvious.

Chris Alger
02-19-2003, 08:46 PM
"1,000 tons of chemical agent" used in bombs that Iraq has not produced since 1988 and who's facilities for producing them have been destroyed is not the same as "thousands of ton of chemical/biological weapons" capable, as you said, of "genocide." The issue concerns approximately 6,500 chemical bombs that represent the difference between how many Iraq said it produced and how many it used in the 1980's. Although Blix claims that UNSCOM must "presume" they are not accounted for, the only evidence for their existence amounts to a discrepency of numbers.

02-19-2003, 08:50 PM
Although Blix claims that UNSCOM must "presume" they are not accounted for, the only evidence for their existence amounts to a discrepency of numbers. Try using that logic with the IRS Chris and see how well you do during your next audit.

Chris Alger
02-19-2003, 09:09 PM
"It's IDIOTIC to think that a replacement for Saddam will not be better, as nobody could be worse. The chances of one being better than Saddam are close to 100%."

It could get quite a bit worse. 60% of Iraq's population is Shiite and likely to want better relations with Iran, but any Iraqi government supported by the US will undoubtedly be hostile to this notion. Nobody has any idea what the consequences could be. What do you suppose is going to happen to the Kurds, when they start demanding and agitating for independence, both for themselves and their Kurdish brothers and sisters in Turkey? Do you think it's "idiotic" that Saddam's replacement will treat them much better than Saddam did when he was killing them with US and British support? Or that they'll be treated much better than Kurds are treated in Turkey? What happens if the pro-US Baghdad regime places them under "curfew" like the Palestinians or locks up their dissidents and political leaders like Turkey? Given that the Bush administration refuses to acknowledge human rights abuses in Turkey and Israel, what makes you think they'll acknowledge them when they're committed by a pro-US regime in Iraq?

"Past actions by the US in supporting bad regimes taken out of the Cold War context...."

There isn't any "cold war context" for Indonesia's US-supported carnage in Timor, Israel's illegal occupation or Turkey's treatment of the Kurds, and the latter two are ongoing, not "in the past."

nicky g
02-19-2003, 09:56 PM
I do think whoever replaces Saddam is very likely to be much better than him, given the terrible things he's done. I just don't think that outweighs the likely human costs of the war, and I don't think Saddam is in a position any more to repeat his past outrages (given for example Kurdish de facto autonomy, wich will be ended with the war and looks likely to turn into a fight with the pretty brutal Turks). Noone have any comments on the link I posted about Blair refusing to say that the post-Saddam regime will be democratic? I say that if the US wanted a democratic regime in the Middle East it could stop propping up Egypt and co rather than dropping bombs.

MMMMMM regarding your cold war comments, if you look at Chile for example, that was a country which was regarded as a model of democracy in which all the main parties were opposed to US intervention to topple Allende, as was the army chief; the US had him assasinated. I don't think that squares with your defence of US policy.

02-19-2003, 10:53 PM
1,000 tons + 25,000 liters + 53,000 liters + 6,500 chemical bombs + 500 tons + rocket engines: all unaccounted for.

Blix isn't presuming they're unaccounted for; they ARE unaccounted for. Whether that means they exist in whole, part or not at all is a different matter...but only a fool would presume that Iraq really destroyed them all unilaterally and without verification.

It's amazing how you seem so intent on giving the benefit of the doubt to Saddam Hussein--who is quite possibly the least deserving person of the benefit of the doubt in the world today.

02-19-2003, 10:58 PM
As I've said before, I'm not using the Cold War context for ALL cases; I'm just saying that taking US actions out of any context (including the Cold War context) is an unfair way to judge.

John Feeney
02-19-2003, 11:51 PM
The gist of Blairís speech seems to be: War is the right choice because if we donít remove Saddam from power the consequences will be horrible. As you might guess, my response is to ask where is the really, really solid evidence that war is the only way to remove him from power? Should we not demand such evidence before resorting to war?

A lot of dictators have been removed through nonviolent movements of one sort or another. Yet Iíve seen little evidence that the U.S or any European country has done much to enable this to happen in Iraq. Iíve seen a rare reference to the U.S. encouraging resistance from within Iraq, but no evidence of any concerted organized efforts from the U.S. to bring this about in a way that might be effective.

Is there any real reason to believe Saddam is somehow so different from other military dictators that he could not possibly be susceptible to nonviolent tactics?

Isnít it both logical and humanitarian to demand evidence that such efforts have been exhausted before turning to war? I don' t get the sense that war is being reserved as a last resort here.

I really donít want to argue with any of you guys about this; I just truly feel thereís something disturbing about choosing war without first showing convincingly that no other option exists for accomplishing the same thing. I think this is what we should be demanding from our government.

02-19-2003, 11:54 PM
A lot of dictators have been removed through nonviolent movements of one sort or another. Please list two by name John and the successful nonviolent methods employed.

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 12:04 AM
Jimbo, I said I didn't want to argue, and I think you're trying to provoke argument. Why you've had a hostile attitude toward me in a couple of posts I don't know. (Yeah, I know you said 'please.') But if you can shift to civility and not pop quizes, I'll humor you by citing two instances as you request. But you'll need to make such a shift by tomorrow when I'll be offline for a few days.

BTW, I probably couldn't go into much detail on the nonviolent methods used, since I haven't looked into it in great depth. I never claimed to be an expert on it. But I think when something is common knowledge, as is my assertion about dictators having been so removed, a reference to it is quite acceptable. To challenge someone, then, to prove such common knowledge is simply argumentative.

02-20-2003, 12:25 AM
Honestly John if it was common knowledge I wouild not have asked. I am actually attempting to see if your point of view may have it's merits. Considering your response I can only assume two examples may be difficult to find. If it is not a lot of trouble I would be interested in other alternatives than either war or a lifetime of perpetual inspections.

As far as arguing with you I see no value in that at all, most liberals are firmly convinced they are taking the high moral ground and are unlikely to be swayed by either arguing nor conservative logic.

ps: Since Masons policy on these forums seems to be to hold published authors to higher standards I fail to see why my simple request should seem so threatening to you.

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 12:41 AM
It's not threatening. I just don't care to argue.

It's not hard at all to come up with examples. I think Marcos and Pinochet both qualify. I'll leave it to you to research and report back on methods used. Such research should take no more than a couple of hours on the net, a couple of hours I don't have tonight. Please cite dates, central figures involved and references for each instance. /forums/images/icons/wink.gif

Also, your comment about authors and higher standards is again just an effort to provoke argument rather than productive discussion. Why? (I expect you to play innocent, but I'd rather you answer genuinely.)

BTW, I'm not a liberal.

02-20-2003, 01:17 AM
On February 22,1986 two of Marcosís key military supporters publicly turned against him. Secretary of Defense Juan Ponce Enrile and Deputy Chief of Staff Fidel Ramos staged a military mutiny, seizing two vital military installations in suburban Manila. This mutiny presented Marcos with an immediate challenge that his cousin General Fabian Ver, the armed forces chief of staff, wanted to meet with decisive force. Cardinal Sin, using Radio Veritas, summoned the Philippine people into the streets to block General Verís tanks. Thousands of civilians flocked into the streets and formed a human barricade on Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA), the main boulevard between the two military bases. Marcosís troops lacked either the brutality or the political will to attack unarmed civilians, and they were effectively immobilized by the strong show of what Filipinos called ďpeople power.Ē

Now this was less than nonviolent but did not require war nor inspectors. On the other hand his Army refused to inflict death and destruction on their own people unlike Saddams' Army.

I have yet to do research on your other suggestion but will complete that by tomorrow. I fully expect that his dictatorship was eliminated by violent means as well. See what I meant by not common knowledge? I expect all posters attempting to change others opinions to substantiate their claims particularly when they attribute something to "common knowledge" when I have reason to believe it may be otherwise.

02-20-2003, 01:44 AM
Circumstances surrounding Pinochets departure are much more vague. All I could find about his deposition was this from Encarta (as was the Marcos information): In December 1989, in Chileís first presidential election in 19 years, voters chose the Christian Democratic candidate, Patricio Aylwin. Pinochet resigned the presidency as planned in 1990. Although he did initially seize power through a military junta it appears he relinquished his post as President of Chile through voluntary democratic elections. Do you think this might happen with Saddam?

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 02:26 AM
Seems to me, your quotation supports my point. That a military mutiny (not war initiated by an outside country) was involved as well does not eliminate the fact that nonviolent resistance was central.

Now, you quoted this part. emphasizing ďtanks.Ē:

ďCardinal Sin, using Radio Veritas, summoned the Philippine people into the streets to block General Verís tanks.Ē

The tanks were those of the forces against which nonviolent methods were used. So you support my point there.

You also put in bold face ďhuman barricade.Ē I think that qualifies as nonviolent.

You say, ďNow this was less than nonviolent but did not require war nor inspectors.Ē

The nonviolent part was just that, and was a key factor. And youíre right, it did not require war - exactly the point Iíve been trying to make.

As you know, but apparently donít want to hear, I never said, ĎThe exact same methods that have been used in some other instance should be used in Iraq.í Yes, perhaps in the case of Marcos they were able to play on some ultimate bit of compassion that would not exist with Saddam. Who cares; there are a thousand other tactics to consider. Please show me that lots of them have been considered or tried with regard to Iraq.

It certainly is common knowledge that many dictators have been removed with nonviolent methods. Not every case has involved no violence whatsoever. These things are messy. Lots of things happen. And each case is different. But the levels of violence have in many cases been minimal compared to war. Thereís Poland, Berlin, and many others. If you want to scurry around and find every instance of violence in these and other cases to try to refute me, fine. But show me the wars. In all of these cases, and others, one thing is clear: Nonviolent resistance played a central role in regime change, and war was not necessary. Show me the convincing evidence that no option other than war could work with Saddam.

Neither you nor I have any idea if some kind of nonviolent methods (beyond diplomacy and sanctions) might work in the current case of Iraq. As far as either of us knows, they havenít been tried or even suggested by our government. I'm just saying they ought to be exhausted before resorting to war. Do you not think war should be a last resort?

Mason Malmuth
02-20-2003, 02:44 AM
"Let's not forget about the countless Iraqis who will die and suffer if Saddam is left in power, too."

Estimates are as high that over 50 million people were killed in Russia/Soviet Union. That's nuclear war statistics. There are other comparisons like this as well.


John Feeney
02-20-2003, 02:44 AM
"Although he did initially seize power through a military junta it appears he relinquished his post as President of Chile through voluntary democratic elections."

Nonviolent tactics were key in bringing that about.

Mason Malmuth
02-20-2003, 02:50 AM
Hi John:

I don't see the dictators in the Arab countries going down quite as easily as they do elsewhere. That's just a historical fact. I'm not quite sure of the reasons for this, but it may have something to do with the possibility that these dictators have learned from the communist model of government.

Best wishes,

Mason Malmuth
02-20-2003, 03:01 AM
Hi Jimbo:

Dictators get removed when they lose control. Now non-violent can be defined in different ways but two possible examples might be Baby Doc in Haiti and Franco in Spain.

If my memory is right, Baby Doc lost control of his secret police, and Franco died. Now you may argue that Franco's death wasn't exactly removal, but his successor, King Juan Carlos, immediately moved towards democracy.

Another less clear example is the Russian Czar. Because of diasters in the war against Germany, his government basically fell all by itself. It was then replaced by a democratic government under Alexander Karensky that lasted about six months.

And finally, an even more debatable example would be the Shah of Iran. His government fell because there were millions of people demonstrating in the streets everyday. It didn't fall because of an armed insurrection.

Best wishes,

02-20-2003, 03:11 AM
While I ageee with you that non-war methods have perhaps not been exhaustively brainstormed nor tried, there are several other factors that are part of the equation too:

1) Time:

a) delay allows Saddam more time to further his WMD programs, or to get his existing WMD to neighboring states or even into the hands of terrorists

b) delay allows Saddam more opportunities to terrorize, torture, rape and murder Iraqis

2) Plausibility:

when there are possible alternate solutions to a problem, I usually get at least some sense, however vague, of what one potentially workable idea might be, or in what direction it might lie. However, just as I can't think of anything nonviolent that would have convinced Hitler or Stalin to step down, I can't imagine what nonviolent method might possibly convince Saddam. Indeed if he does step down it would almost surely be only to avail himself of a chance to escape at the last moment. The best bet might be a coup or assassination by his inner circle, but as we can see, he just placed his Defense Minister under house arrest--he's an old fox who has survived 30 years in a most brutal power structure.

3) Strategic Reasons:

a) a large US military presence in Iraq would be desirable in the near future: it would make an excellent vantage point from which to target major terrorist groups in the ongoing war on terror, and from which to help the people of Iran effect their much longed-for regime change (most Iranians favor regime change, but the Islamo-fascist government rules with an iron hand and executes dissidents daily). Since Iran is the premier nation when it comes to arming terrorists, this could effectively kill two--or three--birds with one stone.

b) other more subtle strategic reasons such allowing the USA less dependence on Saudi oil--and more flexibility in pressuring the Saudis to reform their Wahabbist teachings which are breeding anti-Western fanaticism at a very high rate, and more flexibility in pressuring them to stop the financing of terrorism

So it's more complex than just the suggestion that we should exhaustively try all other avenues--if for no other reason than the fact that time is working against us (and against the victims of Saddam Hussein's regime as well).

In a more general sense, I like your notion of think-tanking for possible nonviolent solutions to major worldwide problems, but feel that this needs to be tempered with realistic time-frames. If it were ever to be implemented, I would also be curious to see if certain elements would try to subvert the true purpose in order to further their own political goals--my guess is that this would almost surely occur to some extent at least--and while it's not truly comparable, I can't help think of just how much the U.N. has been a vehicle for attempted furtherance of political agendas rather than a problem-solving organization with the welfare of the world's nations in mind.

All in all I think your idea of think-tanking for solutions is an important idea which should perhaps be tried (although not now with Iraq) while bearing in mind practical considerations and constraints. Also, given that the participants will probably not have intimate knowledge of classified information, some of their suggestions could be suspect or even detrimental (if for instance they were to suggest something like what occurred in the Philippines, since that involved action some elements of the military).

Mason Malmuth
02-20-2003, 03:19 AM
Although he did initially seize power through a military junta it appears he relinquished his post as President of Chile through voluntary democratic elections. Do you think this might happen with Saddam?

No. The reason has to do, in my opinion, with the fact that Chile is a far more capitalist country than Iraq which is far more socialist. Capitalism sometimes promotes economic freedom, which can carry over to other aspects of how people think. This is not as likely in countries that are more socialist.

I'll let that other guy with similar initials elaborate.

Best wishes,

02-20-2003, 03:31 AM
I'd like to elaborate but I'm too tired right now;-)

It's good to see you adding to these discussions on this forum, though.

Rick Nebiolo
02-20-2003, 04:52 AM

Thanks for the link. This forum might be as good as the best blogs and I wish I had time (or perhaps the brains) to contribute.

Anyway, here is a lint to a related column by Michael Kelly, Editor of Atlantic Monthly.


~ Rick

Chris Alger
02-20-2003, 05:44 AM
Exactly. I think almost everyone agrees that improving Iraq's government neither justifies war nor is the reason the U.S. is determined to wage one.

Chris Alger
02-20-2003, 06:06 AM
In the first place, you're double counting. The "1,000" tons of chemical agent are the hazardous indgredients in the "6,500 chemical bombs."

I'm not presuming that Iraq destroyed all WMD it might have possessed -- I'm aware of its record of deception. But you have no evidence that these WMD exist and, in several cases, that they ever existed. With Anthrax, for example, Blix's report notes that UNSCOM has no proof that Iraq either destroyed or even produced the amounts it said it did.

The UNSCOM report, as its author emphasizes, shows the need for further inspections and accounting. It has nothing to do with trusting anyone or providing the benefit of a doubt. It amounts to no case for a war which could render such efforts impossible and even lead to the use of WMD.

It's strange that you contend that war opponents have an affinity and incliniation to trust Saddam when they are not doing anything of the sort and are often the same people that castigated the US and the UK for supporting him in the first place. It's the pro-war crowd that's motivated by an irrational, emotional attachment to the U.S. You insist on trusting the U.S. to make Iraq democratic despite it's track record of supporting tyranny there and elsewhere; of trusting the U.S. to curtail WMD despite its track record of ignoring and even supporting their proliferation; and of trusting the U.S. to present the case for war with Iraq in a straightforward and honest manner despite its record of deception and lying about Iraq.

In other words, those that remain unpersuaded by Bush and Blair are using rational skepticism to jusitfy peace, while supporters of the war are relying on blind faith to justify mass destruction. In this sense, the war effort is, as Bush once said, a "crusade," perhaps as likely to have terrible repercussions for centuries onward as those of an earlier era.

Chris Alger
02-20-2003, 06:23 AM
I won't respond to Kelly's whole article but the following phrase is particularly galling:

"If Iraq should be allowed to defy the law, the U.N. will never recover, and the oppressed and weak of the world will lose even the limited protection of the myth of collective security. Immoral."

One characteristic of crude propaganda is the refusal to even acknowledge basic points that undermine the writer's argument. As war opponents have been saying for many years, more loudly recently, the U.S.'s biggest client in the Middle East has defied international law for decades. These violations are countless and ongoing only because of U.S. veto power in the Security Council.

02-20-2003, 09:50 AM
Even if I was double-counting the chemical bombs, doesn't 1,000 tons + 25,000 liters + 38,000 liters + 500 tons add up to "thousands of tons?"

I do trust the USA more than I trust Saddam. I also trust the other nations which claim supporting knowledge of Saddam's WMD more than I trust Saddam.

The USA did't install a tyrant in Afghanistan; I suggest we consider what the USA is most likely to do based on most recent history and current context.

02-20-2003, 10:00 AM

02-20-2003, 10:05 AM
I took exception to that paragraph too, but for different reasons: I don't think the U.N. should have legal authority over any sovereign nations. If "bad" nations have to be dealt with, they can be dealt with, as Iraq probably will, even without the blessing of the U.N.

The U.N. is a horribly flawed organization and to allow it to exert legal control over individual nations is a step in the wrong direction IMO.

02-20-2003, 10:51 AM
Whatever the amount unaccounted for adds up to, it's a lot closer to "thousands of tons" than to your "every toxic grain." In other words, it's a helluva lot, and those concerned about it aren't just worrying about minuscule amounts.

Chris Alger: "I think most of those presently opposed to the war would not demand an accounting of every toxic grain to justify remaining opposed."

Chris Alger
02-20-2003, 10:52 AM
There is nothing in Blix's January 27 report following the UNSOM inspections about 38,000 liters or 500 tons of anything, or about botulinim toxin. If you track down the various links from your source, you'll find it difficult to attribute any of these numbers to Blix. I couldn't. My guess is that they come from the U.S. government, and with regard to biological weapons, are not what Iraq has not "accounted for," but reflect what Iraq could conceivably make with unaccounted growth media, some of which Iraq will retain in any event as you can find it in any hospital or, for that fact, any chocolate factory.

Chris Alger
02-20-2003, 11:08 AM
If you disagree with that statement then I think you have to admit that requiring Iraq to prove that it is 100% disarmed is mere pretext for war and that other nations wishing to avoid becoming targets should arm themselves with WMD as quickly as possible, following N. Korea's example. More than 2 dozen countries have WMD, including unstable dictatorships with ties to terrorists like Pakistan and notorious proliferators like China. Many of these countries receive aid and support from the US. Therefore, you can believe either that (1) Iraq's WMD are cause for war because the US unaccountably picked Iraq at random, or (2) there are other reasons at work that make for bad press, such as Iraq being is weak militarily, isolated from potential allies, oil rich and strategically located, and an excellent jumping off point for further US adventurism.

02-20-2003, 11:26 AM
Hi Mason,

Yes I believe Baby Doc is a good example that John was representing. As far as Franco dying, heck that is all most of us want to happen in Iraq. /forums/images/icons/smile.gif

The Shah of Iran is a novel approach of a military dictatorship moving to quickly towards democracy and western ways. I am particularly knowledgable about his circumstances since I was living in Iran in 1978 and early 1979. In fact I left the country just a day or two before he was evacuated. As far as nonviolent removal it was impossible for most Americans to leave our homes during the last few months of 78 and the first few days of 79 till we were allowed to leave the country. I heard gunfire, chanting (Allah Akbar) every night around 6PM when curfew started. Funny it was quiet during the day when you were allowed to be on the streets and majority of the dangerous confrontations began afterwards. If not for my Armenian landlords willingness to purchase groceries for most of our families in the local bazaar many of us Americans would have suffered serious hardships during the "peaceful" demonstrations.

02-20-2003, 11:37 AM
Yes John I do believe war should be the last resort. The main disagreement we seem to have is when we will reach that last resort. In my opinion as well as many world leaders we are just about there. If we wait long enough Saddam will simply die of old age but what additional harm may he cause either directly or indirectly during those additional years we allow him to remain in power?

I agree that nonvilolent revolt of the people is necessary to overthrow a dictator but so is his loss of his military power and I just do not see that happening with the current regimen of inspections delaying outside impetus needed to encourage his Generals to rebel. Perhaps there is a nonviolent method to accomplish the stated goals but as long as the inspections are considered to be the preferred method we are simply spinning our wheels.

02-20-2003, 12:33 PM
Iraq could act in good faith rather than bad faith; it doesn't have to prove 100% it has disarmed--but Iraq isn't even addressing the issue of the unaccounted-for weapons. Also, hiding a 3,000 page document in an Iraqi scientist's home instead of turning it over is bad faith--Iraq was supposed to turn over all relevant documents. More examples of bad faith abound and it should be clear that Iraq is not even trying to truly cooperate. The issue isn't really about proving anything 100%--it's about cooperation in disarmament (which includes providing at least some documentation regarding the unaccounted-for weapons).

The Iraqi and North Korean governments both pose especial problems in the matters of WMD: both are immensely hostile to the USA, and both may well provide other rogue states or even terrorists with WMD. This needs to be prevented. Also, Iran, under its current fanatic regime which also materially supports terrorists, should not be allowed to develop nukes. Pakistan doesn't appear to be inclined to either threaten the USA or to provide WMD to terrorists or our enemies. China's WMD missile threat can likely be mitigated greatly when the missile shield is operable, and China has long been too pragmatic to rashly threaten the USA as Iraq and the DPRK have done. China does pose a problem in the area of proliferation however and hopefully this can be satisfactorily resolved in the coming decade. In many ways, China poses a unique problem.

North Korea should be disarmed of its nukes and prevented from building more. Hopefully the DPRK will see the wisdom of accepting the carrot in the carrot-and-stick approach. Failing that, I think its reactors and nukes should be taken out in air strike in conjunction with Kim Jong-Il privately being told to sit down and shut up or else.

It's interesting that you refer to the coming war with Iraq as a jumping-off point for further US adventurism. By "further", do you mean that you view Afghanistan as essentially an exercise in US adventurism? I think the Afghani people would probably disagree with that assessment.

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 04:31 PM
Thanks for the very civil tone, Jimbo Your comments show that we're really not that far apart on some key issues. Yes, it's possible there isn't enough time left for a nonviolent approach. I'm not sure how anyone, least of all folks like us, could really know. It looks to me like there might be enough time, assuming some well devised plan could be effective over a year or two, but who knows. I agree, though, that inspections are likely to remain the current choice. I doubt much more will go into implementing other nonviolent methods.

As an aside, I find the rhetoric from North Korea more troubling than that from Iraq right now. I would think the threat there may be more imminent (supposedly cult-like dictator announcing heís in possession of nuclear warheads that could reach the West coast of the U.S., and that he wouldnít hesitate to use them if ďprovoked,Ē and who sounds as if heís almost feeling provoked...) That weíre likely going to war with Iraq, yet seem far from it with North Korea, thus seems a bit odd.

I do see a threat from Iraq, but not one requiring immediate war, setting a precedent with unilateral attack which may have grave political consequences for the U.S. down the road. I say I donít see it, but as I said, I certainly donít know. I donít think any of us knows.

Looking beyond the current situation, I think thereís a glaring need for much more R&D on nonviolent methods, so that next time, or the time after that, they could be implemented long before thereís any question about how much time there is for them to work. I think thereís room for tremendous development of both the ďpeopleís resistanceĒ approaches often used to date, and approaches which might be applied by governments. The latter could get pretty interesting, since a large government naturally has far greater financial resources than any peopleís movement. I donít want to speculate here about possible tactics since theyíre yet to be developed and anything I toss out, just to give an idea of what kinds of things might be possible, is sure to be attacked by someone trying to suggest that I was offering an actual solution.

What I do see clearly is that those who bash the recent protestors, for example, continually equate refraining from war at present with supporting Saddam. That is wrong, at least for some sizable portion of the protestors. As I hope Iíve shown, I for one am talking about looking into other methods of getting rid of the guy.

BTW, much of my thinking about his springs from one simple (maybe simplistic) observation which keeps hitting me over the head: Weíve come so far technologically and in our sophistication in fields like medicine, yet when it comes to international conflict, weíre really only a little more sophisticated at dealing with it than we were when one guy would get mad at another and bash his head in with a rock. Itís just that now the rocks are cruise missiles. What do you tell a child coming into the world today about the world our species, with itís collective intelligence, has prepared for them? I wish we could tell them something better.

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 04:51 PM
M, Iíll offer my response to Jimbo as a partial reply to you as well. Just to touch on the plausibility issue: I just think itís a huge unknown. So little has been invested in developing nonviolent methods of conflict resolution, relative to defense budgets, for example, that it just seems crazy not to develop programs to see just how often we might be able to prevent wars. (What might work right now in Iraq, I donít know. Those who know more than I do about such things might have some ideas. But without funding, well, Iím not sure what they could do.) Worst case is we only make a little progress in that direction. But Iíll bet even that would save a lot of lives. Best case is a serious dip over time in the frequency of war.

Iím aware there could be other unintended, undesirable consequences to this stuff. (ďNonviolentĒ methods used for less than ethical political manipulations...) But it looks like a risk worth taking.

Before our military went into Afghanistan I saw some very creative, sometimes slightly goofy ideas suggested for non-military tactics we might use to accomplish some of our goals. (I said in my reply to Jimbo, why Iím not going to toss out such ideas here.) Though some of the ideas were less than realistic, it was nevertheless the kind of brainstorming thatís needed. To see it implemented on a larger, more organized scale would be a great thing.

John Feeney
02-20-2003, 05:03 PM
"I don't see the dictators in the Arab countries going down quite as easily as they do elsewhere. That's just a historical fact."

Mason, I'm sure that's true. Looking beyond the current situation, this is why significant R&D aimed at making existing nonviolent tactics more effective, and developing new ones is called for. I don't think anyone disagrees that if war can be avoided through the use of other methods, it generally should be. What some seem to ignore is the need to develop those methods. In many ways itís simple risk-reward stuff.

Well, Iím offline for a few days now. I hope you guys can all come up with some ingenious nonviolent way to remove Saddam before I return. /forums/images/icons/cool.gif

Roy Munson
02-21-2003, 05:57 PM
50 million killed at the hands of a brutal totalitarian regime. What a great ally for the US during WW II.
This was far from the only time that the US has been allied with genocidal maniacs. The Taliban in the fight against our former WW II allies during the Soviet/Afghanistan conflict is one example, our relationship with Saddam Hussein during the Iran/Iraq war is another.
With the US Government showing an increasing inability to protect its own citizens from attack, it seems highly unlikely that they will accomplish their stated goal of protecting the rest of the world against attack.
Unfortunately the likely result of the proposed military action against Iraq will be increased hostility towards the US and a greater threat of violence that the government is unable to prevent.

02-21-2003, 06:04 PM
Unfortunately the likely result of the proposed military action against Iraq will be increased hostility towards the US and a greater threat of violence that the government is unable to prevent. I always love this arguement! It is like ; Gee, the bully beats me up after school on the way home so I sure don't want to do anything to "really" make him mad!

02-21-2003, 07:40 PM
Oh....that's right. The bully (apparently Hussein) has been beating us (the US) up. Your genius continues to amaze.

02-21-2003, 08:00 PM
IrishHand you are so pompous. Please read the quote I responed to in it's context tnen quietly apologize whilst slinking back into your hole.

02-21-2003, 08:44 PM
Well before too long he won't be beating anyone up--nor torturing, raping or murdering. Of course there are some who will be disappointed at this.

02-21-2003, 11:19 PM
Point: Attacking Iraq will lead to increased anti-US sentiment and terrorism.
Jimbo's response: "I always love this arguement! It is like ; Gee, the bully beats me up after school on the way home so I sure don't want to do anything to "really" make him mad!"
Irish's response: You're saying Hussein is the bully who's been beating up the US? That's stupid.
Jimbo's response: You're stupid.

I'd rather be pompous than argue like a 5-year old. /forums/images/icons/smile.gif

02-21-2003, 11:28 PM
Hey, I've got an idea:

What if the war goes quickly and smoothly and the people of Iraq actually thank us for liberating them from the evil Butcher of Baghdad...maybe the war will actually lead to less anti-American sentiment and less terrorism? Do you think that's even remotely possible, Irish?

02-22-2003, 12:54 AM
The point: Unfortunately the likely result of the proposed military action against Iraq will be increased hostility towards the US and a greater threat of violence that the government is unable to prevent. We are already being attacked by terrorists in case you haven't noticed IrishHand. I am sure my point was clear that not attacking Iraq was unlikely to lessen that threat and just as unlikely to make it much worse than it already is. You are the one who chose to incorrectly insert Hussein as the bully. I merely suggested you read rather than assume Mr. anonymous attorney.

02-22-2003, 09:10 AM
Do you think that's even remotely possible, Irish?

02-22-2003, 09:42 AM
M: "What if the war goes quickly and smoothly and the people of Iraq actually thank us for liberating them from the evil Butcher of Baghdad...maybe the war will actually lead to less anti-American sentiment and less terrorism? Do you think that's even remotely possible, Irish?"

IrishHand: "No."

So you'd be happy to lay 10,000-1 odds right?

Roy Munson
02-22-2003, 11:26 AM
If the bully(Saddam) attacks the US then I would agree to attack him with great force. Saddam, however, is most interested in self preservation and knows that any aggression on his part will be met with a military response that is sure to overwhelm him.

02-22-2003, 12:27 PM
So you'd be happy to lay 10,000-1 odds right?
I don't bet unless it involves two cards in my hand and 5 on the table.

Why do you think that there is such a strong anti-US sentiment througout the Middle East?