COMMENTS: Innocents
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Mine turn came when 'Nam was heating up. I learned basic Korean in a year, then served on a mountain top on a small island south of North Korea...
Learning there the real truth, that Freedom is NOT free, and that I was willing to pay the price for your, my, OUR freedom. There is an essential difference between the Bush-types and the Communist Dictator types. Only one of these two kills its own people to subdue and enslave the remainder in chains of fear, hunger and lies.

Posted by Dr O'Kay at March 20, 2003 03:15 AM

Wait, so I guess this means that Iraq and Saddam played a role in Sept 11th...

How many American civilians has Saddam killed? (waiting for an answer)

How many Iraqi civilians has Saddam killed?

And how many Iraqi civilians has the United States Military killed in the past 12 years and are going to kill in the coming weeks and months?

If you are going to use ignorant statements to support an un-provoked attack against another nation, which will no doubt kill American soldiers as well as Iraqi innocents, I suggest looking back a year and a half ago and see that Iraq didn't kill any American civilians.

Just because you support a stupid President doesn't mean that in turn you have to be stupid.

Posted by Micah at March 20, 2003 09:12 AM

Micah ... No one here has asserted that Iraq was directly involved with 9/11 nor that they needed to be in order to be attacked.

Posted by Allen Forkum at March 20, 2003 09:29 AM

Micah-
Chirp, chirp, chirp. I suggest you look back in six months and calculate the number of civilian Iraqi casualties caused by coalition forces liberating Iraq and compare it to the number of Iraqis that Saddam would have killed by his typical repression. The we will have a true apples-to-apples comparison!

Why is it that we only hear encouragement for this war of liberation from Iraqi ex-patriates?

In case you have been asleep the last 18 months the world has undergone a sea-change and we have changed to survive. Now small groups of radicals with the assistance of fascist nation states can conduct mass destruction. How can you fail to understand what that means? These Islamist true believers were disappointed in the mere 3,000 dead from 9-11, they had intended on 50,000 or more.

Please get a copy of Eric Hoffer's classic book "The True Believer" and gain some understanding of just what we face!

What part of their pledge to destroy the West or convert it to their perversion of Islam do you not believe? How many Western cities must you see obliterated before you finally see?

Thank God we have such a "stupid" President with the integrity to care more about right and wrong and his oath of office to protect this nation than the opinion of the "chirping cicadas" such as yourself. (thanks to Oriana Fallaci and her "The Rage and the Pride").

The world has changed and we will do what we must to protect our civilization. YOU will continue to be free to chirp away because of that power and our will to use it.

God bless our coalition forces. May the battle be swift and as humane as possible. May Saddam and his courterie soon rot in Hell. May the other Islamists and fascists take notice before it is too late for them!

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 09:43 AM

So I assume that this cartoon then means that the civilian casualties when we attack are justified because we lost lives in a totally unrelated terrorist attack? Didn't we agree that attacking other nations in a manner that will result in innocent lives being lost was wrong after we were attacked by terrorists? Isn't killing innocent civilians considered cowardly? I seem to remember terrorists being called cowards for blowing up civilians, and if we do it in Iraq, (hopefully not intentionally) are we not then both hypocrites and cowards? I think we learned that American smart bombs have about the same intelligence as the command-in-chief ordering them dropped ? they are known to hit the wrong targets. The thing is that we don?t hear that much about them missing their targets and hitting civilians, we only hear about them when they kill American troops, or Canadians, or Chinese Embassies.

The message of that cartoon means to me that America doesn?t care about the Iraqi lives that will be lost, it seems to uphold the new American motto: Look out for #1. That message goes against the whole notion that we are in there to liberate these people that will be killed in the battle. When America goes to war, all we care about are American body counts, and dropping as many bombs as possible will keep that number low. So no longer does one have to give his life for his country, those days are over. The only people who are going to lose their lives in this fight for freedom in Iraq are the people we?re trying to bring it to.

Posted by Micah at March 20, 2003 10:15 AM

So, Micah, your position is that the US should not use force to deal with threats to world safety and security? That any Iraqi deaths we may cause outweigh the Iraqi deaths that Saddam has caused? That if we cause the deaths of any innocent Iraqis who have been herded into military targets to act as human shields we are hypocrites and cowards?

That does not sound like a reasonable position to me. Let me pose a hypothetical question: You have someone who is absolutely insane. If this madman is not stopped, he will vaporize a city. Negotiation will not work; he must be killed before he pushes the button. He has a large number of hostages. You have one opportunity to take him out with a sniper, but the sniper will have to shoot through and kill one of the hostages. Is it cowardly and hypocritical to sacrifice one person to save a city? Is it moral?

Posted by wheels at March 20, 2003 10:34 AM

Wait, when did Saddam ever tell America to convert to Islam or die? When did Saddam ever attack America? I know you like to paint the picture that Saddam and bin Laden have the same ideals, sure they both don't like America, but for different reasons. Saddam doesn't hate the west because he is Islamic, he hates the west because we wouldn't let him do what he wants. Saddam isn't a 'true Islamist' as you like to say. I'm not saying that he isn't a bad guy, but I won't buy that he wants terrorism in the same way that Islamists like bin Laden want. It's easy to get the public behind attacking Iraq if we can say that he supports terrorism, but just because Bush wants to go to war doesn't mean he can lie to the public.

And just because I'm a Christian and I don't support war doesn't mean I'm naive. We are hated by some in the middle east, as well as around the world, sometimes for very valid reasons. Perhaps attacking a country unprovoked will motivate some to move from anger towards the US to acting on that anger. Perhaps this is how terrorists are created...

Posted by Micah at March 20, 2003 10:43 AM

Micah-
You need treatment for white liberal perfectionist guilt syndrome (WLGPS). Of course some civilians will die in war. But please name any other power who has taken so many efforts to minimize collateral damage (perhaps the Isreali's). And please name me an Arabian strongman, Islamist, or fascist who has EVER considered their own people as anything but vassals and cannon fodder.

And YES I do consider US and our allies lives more important than enemy soldiers and even Iraqi civilians. I am a proud citizen of the best nation in the world, not a "citizen of the world". The world does not protect my rights and liberties!

No we are not perfect, just the greatest force for good the world has ever seen. We self-critique and continuously improve as a nation and as a culture.

In this new world we will go after terrorists and the states that support them. Iraq under Saddam meets this definition in spades.

Take your self-hating guilt that we cannot protect ourselves because we cannot guarantee zero civilian casualties and talk it out with your shrink!

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 10:53 AM

Micah ... We are not in Iraq primarily to liberate Iraqis but to disarm a fascist, censoring, mass-murdering dictator who is a threat to America and its allies. Obviously though, the Iraqi people will be the first beneficiaries of the tyrantís demise.

Contrary to your implication, a terrorist intentionally targeting civilians is not morally equivalent to an American soldier dropping a bomb who unintentionally kills civilians in enemy territory. The terrorist is initiating force; the soldier is responding to force or to the threat of force. All Iraqi deaths in this war, innocent or otherwise, are the fault of Saddam and his thugs.

The op-ed that accompanies the cartoon sums up the issue of innocents well: ďThe U.S. government, properly and morally, in the name of defending the lives of its citizens, ordered the shooting down of the airplanes-become-missiles [on 9/11], even though this meant killing not only the terrorists but also the innocent American captives onboard. If this principle applies to Americans onboard their own planes, how much more so does it apply to people in Afghanistan or Iran?" Or in Iraq, I would add.

Posted by Allen Forkum at March 20, 2003 10:55 AM

wait wait wait -- all those "innocents" were americans, so it's okay that they were killed. they are inherently guilty because they were americans! all americans are inherently guilty and can be killed at any time by their poor, innocent, oppressed betters!

/sarcasm.

Posted by bkw at March 20, 2003 11:06 AM

Micah-
Saddam was behind the first WTC attack. He funds pali homicide bombers who intentionally target civilians. He would dance at the thought of Manhattan disappearing in a mushroom cloud. I am not willing to take the chance that he will NOT cooperate with terrorists to achieve that end. Our right to self defense is paramount.

We are hated by the Islamists because we are so supremely successful, yet infidels. How can allah allow this? No wonder they hate us.

Please stop equivocating unintentional civilian casualties by coalition forces with intentional attacks on civilians by our enemies. Believe it or not, sometimes those with the might are in the right!

Perhaps terrorists are created by behaving like a paper tiger. Remember Usama saying "When people see a weak horse and a strong horse, we know which one they like."? I believ that the biggest build-up in the terrorist base occcured during Clintoon's watch, when all we did was show how ineffectual was our force and will to use it.

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 11:09 AM

Craig,

Saddam was *not* behind the WTC attack, I don't want to call you a fool for thinking that, but there is no real proof at all that he was connected (Although Bush would like the public to think so). I know Saddam supports suicide bombers in Palestine, but the US is supporting the terrorists in Israel (and yes, both sides are wrong in that conflict).

I think that you listen to Pat Robertson too much when you think that most of the people of the Islamic faith see us as godless infidels. That sounds like an argument from 6th grade, like they hate us because we are better than they are. America, while is has the might, and is sometimes in the right, has done a lot of things to upset a lot of people. I'd have to say that I can see good reason why some with be pissed off with some of the things done in the name of all Americans.

There are better alternatives to disarm Saddam and help the people, and attacking Iraq will not stabilize the middle east, and frankly I'll blame any future terrorist attacks against us in retaliation on Bush for taking this action. Maybe it is possible that America is hated for doing this very sort of thing: attacking others without consensus from the rest of the world, blindly doing what it wants because it can.

I am in no way endorsing or supporting any action that kills Americans, I think that all lives are equal, but the US has a history of not thinking the same way. Dropping cluster bombs may not be intentional on the part of the US, but it sure is careless. By placing landmines in SE Asia didn't mean that we intended to blow the legs off of children, but it is careless. Using DU ammo isn't intended to poison civilians (and US Soldiers), but we know it does and we continue to use it. I really don't see attempts by the US Military to avoid civilian casualties.

Just because we don't mean to kill them doesn't mean it is OK that we do. Drunk drivers that run over children are still accountable for children that they run over, and so should the US Military.

Posted by at March 20, 2003 12:07 PM

Michah,

I see, you'd rather permit Saddam to continue repressing and killing his own people (including committing genocide against the Kurds and Marsh Arabs), than have the chance of some civilians casualties when Iraq is liberated. That makes sense. Are you familiar with Utilitarianism, namely that for the greater good, there may have to be sacrifices of a subset? How about Jefferson's famous quote that the tree of liberty must from time to time be watered with the blood of patriots and tyrants? Why don't you just come clean and tell us that you don't really care what happens to the Iraqis and our troops?

God bless our troops and the Iraqi people.

Posted by iagofest at March 20, 2003 12:24 PM

Micah,

You say that "there are better alternatives to disarm Saddam and help the people", but you neglect to mention that every one of them that has been tried has failed miserably. Sanctions have not worked. Containment has not worked. Attempts to get Hussein and sons into exile did not work.

That only reason Hussein even bothered with the pretense of the co-operation with the UN was because the US had 200,000+ troops parked on his doorstop. They cannot be maintained indefinately, and once they leave, that's it, Hussein goes back to his old tricks, with no one to stop him.

The basic question is whether or not the US overthrowing Iraq will be good for the US, and for Iraq. I believe it to be both. Yes, innocent people will die, just as innocent Germans and Japanese died in WWII. However, by not acting, even more will die.

Hussein has killed over two million of his own people over the last decade. Had the US and UN deposed him in 1991, it may have cost thousands of lives to do so, but it would have saved millions. How many more will die in the next ten years if the US does not act this time?

You talk about war-inflicted casualties in a vacuum, as though we were invading peaceful Switzerland. This is a regime that is killing its' own people already. Innocent Iraqis will die whether we go in or not.

War is not the right answer, because there is no right answer. But war is the least wrong answer.

Posted by William de Haan at March 20, 2003 12:25 PM

Micah-
I was referring to the earlier WTC bombing.
I do not listen to Pat Robertson at all.
I do not believe the majority of Muslims are Islamists, but I do believe that they are not living up to their resposibility to muzzle those who are doing wrong under the guise of their religion. If the mainstream Muslims cannot control the extremists, the task falls to us, as we are being attacked by them!

If you blame all future terrorist attacks on Bush for the war on Saddam, then I blame the WTC collapse on Clintoon's feckless responces to terrorism in the 90's.

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 12:54 PM

Micah-
"The US is supporting Israeli terrorists"- WFT? Please explain to me how attempting to control a homicidal/suicidal populace is terrorism? And please do not use that false equivolence of soldiers attempting to bring terror masters to justice with the terrorists themselves- I believe that is a morally bankrupt comparison.

There is a right and a wrong side in the pali issue and Israel is clearly on the right. This mythical "palistinian state" never existed, the Arabs lost four wars of aggression against Israel and the disputed territories should not even be disputed!

Why have the Arabs and the UN allowed so many people to remain homeless for fifty years? The palis are being used by both.

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 01:40 PM

Ah yes, the DU canard. Thoroughly debunked on the LGF website months ago. Just because a fascist regime shows pictures of deformed babies does not mean DU caused the deformities! Gee, they wouldn't have an agenda to support now would they?

There are so many ways to take down the DU argument- The deformities shown were nothing foreign to two separate OB/GYNS on the LGF site. No data is presented on frequency, while even in the US such birth defects occur at a rate of appx. 3%!

Now I will agree that breathing of any finely divided heavy metal is not health inducing, but I will argue that the major risk is lung cancer in 20 years plus. The stuff is HEAVY and falls out of the air very fast. It would be very hard to get enough to reach heavy metal poisoning levels. The stuff is barely radioactive beyond normal background levels. The extremly long half life is used as a scare tactic, in fact it is an indication of how "cold" of a radiation source DU is.

We even use DU as a shielding against "hot" radiation sources, this is widespread in industrial as well as military applications. The only precaution needed for handling solid DU is a shielding the equivolent of a sheet of paper- NO LIE! Three or four inches of AIR are adequate shielding. Your dead skin cells stop it's form of radiation cold. Of course in normal application we go beyond that and handle it in thin sheet metal containers.

Further, we are converting to tungsten shells to placate the greenies. Now here is a real doozy- the tungsten is less effective of a weapon. That's right, we are so concerned about public image that we are converting to less effective armaments. Saddam must be laughing his butt off. We are taking on MORE risk in the battle field for what? A maniacal dictator who deliberately poisons his own people with nerve gas, uses thallium poisoning as a torture method, and considers oilfield fires and mass oil spills typical methods of war.

If you want to talk birth defects, talk nerve gas. These chemicals are known carcinogens and heavily suspected as mutagens. The odds of any of those babies being abnormal beyond the typical level is much more likely due to Saddam's use of gas on the Kurds than some DU dust on the desert floor miles away from population centers! BTW weren't most of those DU shells shot in Kuwait? Where is the flood of abnormal Kuwaiti babies?


Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 02:13 PM

Most importantly, DU is not radioactive in the usually understood sense. But it Sounds Scary(tm), so that's enough for some people.

Posted by Ian S. at March 20, 2003 02:49 PM

Micah ... Despite your proclaimed desire not to see Americans killed, everything you advocate would lead to more American deaths. The one theme of all your posts (besides the petty ad hominem attacks) is anti-Americanism. You readily hold Bush responsible for future terrorist attacks, yet you aren't willing to hold Saddam responsible for the deaths of his civilian, both those murdered by his own orders and those who will be killed in the war to disarm him. You heap scorn on America and those who defend it, yet you say nothing about Saddam and his socialist tyranny, nor do you offer constructive ideas on how to end it. You have all these restrictions and demands on how America should behave, yet no restrictions or demands for Saddam. You donít merely have a double standard, or even no standards; you have a pro-tyranny standard.

It is long, long overdue that America be pro-active in militarily defending itself against its enemies, unilaterally and preemptively if necessary. The only way we can protect ourselves from another 9/11 atrocity is to end terrorist-sponsoring states. The fact that anti-Americans like you will be offended is irrelevant.

Posted by Allen Forkum at March 20, 2003 04:25 PM

The human body is more radioactive than DU. Also, DU is so dense that even DU dust is difficult to move by simple wind. As noted above, if your "logic" held true, all of the deformed babies would be Kuwaiti, not Iraqi.

Finally, like so many intellectually bereft anti-war, anti-Bush types, he throws out that there are "better alternatives to disarm Saddam" yet fails to even mention one that either has not already been tried--and failed--or is absurd on its face. In this case, there was absolutely no alternative mentioned, just the mentioning that there was some mystical alternative. Thanks for the (lack of) input.

Posted by addison at March 20, 2003 05:09 PM

To be totally fair to Micah, I took off on the deformed baby topic since it is a common screech of the chirping cicada class (CCC) a subset of people almost directly common with the willpigs (white liberal perfectionist guilt syndrome sufferers ). Micah really only mentioned poisoning civilians and US military personnel, which is quite an oblique criticism.

But I remain firm, how do you get a high dosage of DU dust unless you are right in the plume of an explosion? And if you are that close you are probably one of the tank crew killed immediately by the pyrophoric fireworks bouncing around the inside of your tank.

To be as totally impartial as possible I do believe that moderate doses of DU dust may eventually lead to long term illnesses and deaths like lung cancer. In this case, the mild radioactive source is trapped in the lung and is exposes all that delicate, rapidly reproducing lung tissue to an increased rad dosage. I am a metallurgical engineer, not a radio-physician, so please take my thoughts with an appropriate size grain of salt. I would be happy to hear from anyone with more knowledge on the topic.

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 07:05 PM

To the Esteemed Cox & Forkum,
My belated gratitude for such a delightful website and simply indescribably delicious political cartooning. You are in the league of the immortal Thomas Nast.
Keep up the good fight!
Yours,
Craig Johnson

Posted by Craig at March 20, 2003 07:16 PM

I think the thing to remember that everyone that supports terrorism and oppression, wether they directly attack the US or not is our enemy. Saddam has been proved to support terror (he has given hundred of thousands of dollar to Hamas). He will eventually be a direct threat to the US, and it's time to take him out and free the Iraqi people.

Posted by Shawn at March 20, 2003 08:52 PM

As a student of history and a Navy fighter pilot on shore duty, let me explain what "conquering" armies have done to their victims. (Think Persians, Greeks, Romans, Huns, etc.)
Any force that laid down their arms was spared IF they agreed to fight for the victorious king. Any force that opposed the conqueror was killed, their families taken into slavery, women raped, property pillaged, and homesteads burned. Either way, the resources of the region would be used to enhance continued conquest.
All male children (who could rise up and avenge their father's death) were murdered. The son of a conqueror with a slave woman would continue to be a slave.
This is why people in the crossroads of the world: Serbs, Croats, Greeks, Kurds, Turks, and Arabs ALL hate each other, as they were conquered back and forth over the last three thousand years.
A U.S. Soldier or Marine who commits such atrocities would be sentenced to imprisonment at a General Court Martial and dishonorably discharged from the service.
This war is not about conquest, it is about U.S. national security. We HAVE BEEN at war with Iraq since the Gulf War ended, responding with air power tit-for-tat as Iraq's military has fired on coalition aircraft. Iraq was forbidden to fly in no-fly zones, use acquisition radars to target coalition aircraft, sell oil for militayr hardware, etc. It is about time we took the action that should have occurred when the U.S. media portrayed the terrible "Road to Basra" picture that changed public opinion and ended the Gulf War with a cease fire and a "conditional surrender".

Posted by Jim at March 21, 2003 07:09 AM

Jim,
Amen!

Posted by Craig at March 21, 2003 07:47 AM

Micah's concrete-bound inability to see the connection between Iraq and terrorism is unfortunate but not uncommon.

There are two things that have to be kept in mind in this connection. First, it is simply impossible for widespread terrorist activity on the scale required to perpetrate 9-11 to occur without state sanction -- support from governments that provide them material and safe haven to operate and organize. Second, the Iraqi regime is hostile to America and is in a position to support terrorists with weapons of mass destruction. Even if there were no evidence that they have been supporting terrorism (and there is), the fact that they are a hostile regime that is in a position to do so is ALL that is necessary to justify pre-emptive military action to prevent it.

One might argue that there are other nations that have been more directly responsible for sponsoring terrorism -- such as Saudi Arabia and Iran. That is probably true. But the president obviously opted for the (not entirely unreasonable) strategy of continuing the war on terror by targeting next a regime with which we are already at war. (Remember, the 1991 Gulf War never eneded -- we only have a cease-fire, the terms of which Iraq has violated for 12 years.)

Posted by Tony Donadio at March 21, 2003 08:01 AM

"I think the thing to remember that everyone that supports terrorism and oppression, wether they directly attack the US or not is our enemy."

100% correct. That's why we're calling it a "War on Terrorism" instead of a "War on al Qaeda" or a "War on Whoever Hit the Twin Towers But Not Any Other Terrorists or Terrorist Sponsors."

Posted by Kevin McGehee at March 21, 2003 08:13 AM

For Micah - In case you did not know, our World Trade Center was attacked in 1993.

1993 WTC Tragedy

Or use google, I am sure you can find something about it.

Posted by Michelle at March 21, 2003 09:42 AM

As a member of the international community, the United States has a couple of good reasons to attack Iraq. First, there is substantial intelligence implicating Iraq in the funding, equipping, training, and directing of terrorist attacks against the United States and her allies. The actions of numerous terrorist groups may be attributed to the state of Iraq. (See, Nicaragua v. United States creating the "effective control" standard and The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia which establishes an even lower threshold for attribution.)

Even if you don't buy the first argument, Iraq violated customary international law- specifically the Geneva Conventions, International Declaration of Human Rights, and Convention on the Rights of Women and Children. (It is generally agreed these conventions and treaties have risen to the level of customary law.) Any violation of customary international law creates an erga omnes obligation on behalf of all states to stop the violations. The U.S. tried to negotiate through diplomatic channels, but Iraq was not interested in such talks. Military force is the next, and perfectly acceptable, step. I'm sorry if you disagree, but this, friends is basic international law. The U.S. is right to act.

Posted by Beth at March 21, 2003 12:59 PM

... and in Sadam's prisons

... and in Sadam's killing fields

Posted by htom at March 21, 2003 02:27 PM

Micah is leaving out an important point -- the "peace" movement started on 9/14/2001. That was before the US moved against al'Qaeda in Afghanistan, and while the ruins in NYC were still burning.

The "peace" movement was against us defending ourselves from the very beginning. Their current infatuation with Iraq and belief in its innocence is just a phase; they said the same things about the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Posted by Robert Crawford at March 21, 2003 02:39 PM

Being an Iraqi woman who suffered personally at the brutality of Saddams regime, I am offended by Michahs anti-war messages. Michah, you were not raped, Michah your father was not tortured, your childrens feet were not crushed and their toungs cut out in front of their innocent parents to get them to "confess" to fabricated "crimes" of dissent. I was lucky to escape, but not before being tortured and raped repeatedly by Saddam's own son. We Iraqi people stand together with President Bush to bring this devil to justice, to free our people. HOW DARE YOU INTERFERE in this justice with your stupid antiwar messages. Go home little girl to your nice home and thank your government for the freedoms you take for granted!! Yes, maybe some of my family will die in this liberation, but their deaths will not be in vain. They will go to their grave knowing that their people will be free and they will be blessed.

Posted by Amira at March 21, 2003 02:57 PM

My crime? I committed no crime. My father was accused of denouncing Saddams brutality..he was innocent. He is dead. Uday taught him a lesson by destroying his family. I was only 13 years old. This is the monster Michah is defending.

Posted by Amira at March 21, 2003 03:08 PM

Hard to come up with a more compelling reason than that.

My point would have been to ask Micah to get out a map and draw a circle. I want him (?) to nominate people to die. Tell us who has to die first before he decides that we should do the right thing.

His logic is like tolerating a crack house on your block because none of the bullets have hit your house yet.

Posted by Mauser at March 21, 2003 04:15 PM

Micah,

Trolling is fun, isn't it? Rile up the decent people who actually think you care. But then Amira (2:57pm) spoiled it with her story. Hey, hakuna matata, just don't mention her suffering when you relate your triumph to your pals.

Here's another account for you to sneer at:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3284-614607,00.html

It begins with testimony given by an Iraqi witness to the human rights group "Indict": "There was a machine designed for shredding plastic..."

Bite me. Better yet, show some spine and respond to Amira.

Posted by AMac at March 21, 2003 05:12 PM

Amira, we are doing are damndest to help prevent this in the future. I am sorry for what has happened to you, but I feel even more sorry that the very people who think they are trying to "help you" (i.e. The peace movement) are totally blind to your suffering.

I've yet to hear a story from an Iraqi that wasn't for the US.

Posted by Robb at March 22, 2003 08:37 PM

Very telling, the trip from first Comment to this near-wrap position... Micah appears to have had enough courage and enough decency and enough wisdom to have closed his mouth in deep consideration of what others have offered, rather than continue trying to scoff and deny...

Argument after argument was rebutted, and he came back again, until Reality reared its Real head so many times that Micah, thinking perhaps of HIS mother, HIS sister and HIS nation, began to GET the message... HE HAS, truly HAS the freedom to mouth malformed ideas, misplaced ideals and illogical arguments... Secret Police DON'T knock on HIS door at 0200 in the morning... He can say whatever he wants about Cox and Forkum. Period.
And suddenly, he gets it. "I CAN SAY whatever I want in America about the government..." and a sense of the depth of his own debt to his homeland humbles him for a moment, his mind quiet at the thought of those Americans before him, who unwillingly took up arms in defense of this, their nation, under God, with its ideals of liberty and justice for all.

Posted by Dr OKay at March 23, 2003 10:04 AM

Hey guys, you might like this sound byte from a radio station. It's an ex-Iraqi calling in and bashing a pro-peace lady. Makes some good points:

http://www24.brinkster.com/velocity5/mp3redirect.html

Posted by Joseph Caliente at March 23, 2003 09:26 PM

"What is bringing on this rant is the question that has been bugging for days now: how could “support democracy in Iraq” become to mean “bomb the hell out of Iraq”? why did it end up that democracy won’t happen unless we go thru war? Nobody minded an un-democratic Iraq for a very long time, now people have decided to bomb us to democracy? Well, thank you! how thoughtful."

-- from the "Dear Raed" blog.

There's your Iraqi questioning the war, kids. And Dr. Okay, to assume that the silence of your opponent means their capitulation is to exercise one of the cheapest Net debate tactics that there is. For all you know, Micah took a couple weeks off. My anti-war friends are taking apart the arguments on this thread on my own journal right now, and we're having a wonderful -- and easy -- time of it.

Posted by at March 24, 2003 01:47 AM

Whatever happened to a good old-fashioned assassination? Like, it's illegal by UN standards to just assassinate someone, but once war is declared it's no longer illegal, isn't it? So war's been declared, missiles are being fired, etc. Where are the snipers? Seems to me that if a few well-placed shots can be made, a lot of trouble can be avoided...

Posted by at March 24, 2003 02:22 AM

unknown at 222am-
Yes a clean sniper shot would be very nice. Yet quite improbable. Saddam is not just going to openly stroll along the banks of the Tigris! He will stay in internal rooms well out of any direct outside windows. If he does move from safe house to safe house he will do it in civilian ambulances which are pulled into and out of garages attached to the safe house.
Further, his entire Tikriti/Ba'athist cadre must be dealt with. This snake can re-grow it's head!

Posted by Craig at March 24, 2003 08:40 AM

"First, it is simply impossible for widespread terrorist activity on the scale required to perpetrate 9-11 to occur without state sanction -- support from governments that provide them material and safe haven to operate and organize."

Tony, WTF?! Surely you're not submitting that as evidence that Saddam Hussein was a primary funder of al-Qaeda and was thus behind 9-11? Remember, al-Qaeda has ACTIVELY ADVOCATED THE OVERTHROW of the "infidel" socialist government of Iraq. Why the hell would Saddam fund a terrorist group that's got him on its target list? The fact that he's several notched further down the list than the USA is NOT a good enough explanation.

Thumbs down, from an anti-war skeptic who's not 100% against the war, but feels she could shoot down most of the flimsy arguments on this thread -- if she had time, and it was worth the trouble to expose herself to stock catch-phrase insults like Craig's...

Posted by H Kincaid at March 24, 2003 10:00 AM

To [Anonymous], 1:47am:

>Dr. Okay, to assume that the silence of your opponent means their capitulation is to exercise one of the cheapest Net debate tactics that there is. For all you know, Micah took a couple weeks off.

Umm. Let's see. In his 4 posts, "Micah" fits in 11 straw-man arguments (7 as questions), 6 lies, 4 misleading statements, 2 insults to other posters, and 3 insults to Bush. But do your own count. Then Amira (3/21, 2:57pm) challenges Micah, sharing an incredibly painful story of being raped and having her family tortured by Ba'athists. Maybe she made it up? We can't know, but it sure rings true, and similar testimony keeps emerging.

Robb (3/22, 8:37pm) offers his condolences; your contribution is to smear Dr. Okay for his hopeful fantasy about why Micah stopped her trolling.

>My anti-war friends are taking apart the arguments on this thread on my own journal right now, and we're having a wonderful -- and easy -- time of it.

How nice for you and your chums to have such a wonderful and easy time, agreeing with Micah on the absence of Ba'athist ties to Al Qaeda.

Maybe I'll contribute this compilation of the evidence to your hard-hittin' weblog:

http://www.hereticalideas.com/archives/000106.html

Oh, gee, Anonymous, I can't--you forgot to list the URL! That's OK, never mind. I have a good idea of what I'd find there.

Posted by AMac at March 24, 2003 11:59 AM

this cartoon expresses an eye-for-an-eye sentiment that i feel must be disagreed with. if people want to support a war, fine. it's america, you can theoretically choose to disagree or support. but when you say, "but they did it first" like the cartoon, you're begging to be proved wrong. we've done, as a country, far, far worse in history. no one is without stain.

i think bush should do some reading on the ottomon empire. he might learn something about coexistence, and not calling other countries (like korea) evil. say what you will, but it's bad form, bad politics. or he should at least get some sort of education. the fact is, a world power does not stay in power with poor leadership and bullying, which is what most countries see us doing. i feel that heís acting and supporting acts of revenge and rage; which is pointless and i'm terrified.

if iraqis want to be liberated, fine, but whether they even want our involvement--want to be bombed, have cities and homes leveled--how are we to really, truly know? i can't speak for anyone, only myself.

Posted by purgingsky at March 24, 2003 02:25 PM

H Kincaid wrote: "Why the hell would Saddam fund a terrorist group that's got him on its target list?"

Ever hear the phrase (common in the Arab world) "The enemy of my enemy is my friend?"

"The fact that he's several notches further down the list than the USA is NOT a good enough explanation."

Sure it is. Why wouldn't it be? I could fill this page with examples of historical or ideological enemies joining forces against a common foe. Also, anti-American hostility takes other forms in the world than Islamic Fundamentalism. Try looking at reality in coming to conclusions on this issue.

Iraq does have established links to terrorism, even if there is little evidence that they were a major player in 911. Saddam Hussein, for example, hasn't let his differences with Fundamentalist terrorists stop him from writing $25k checks for the families of Palestinian homicide bombers -- who are hardly lacking in religious motivation. What makes you think he would somehow draw the line at funding or supporting anti-American terrorism?

But as I said, none of that matters, because retaliating against those who perpetrated 911 is NOT what the war on terrorism is all about. 911 was a wake-up call telling Americans that we can no longer afford to turn a blind eye to the dangers posed by killer regimes around the world. In a world where a nuclear or biological weapon in the hands of maniacs could kill millions, self-defense requires that we be proactive in disarming those with the means and the motive to kill us. I and many others have been saying this for years if not decades. And that's what the war in Iraq is about.

Posted by Tony Donadio at March 24, 2003 02:32 PM

purgingsky wrote:

"i think bush should do some reading on the ottomon empire. he might learn something about coexistence, and not calling other countries (like korea) evil. say what you will, but it's bad form, bad politics. or he should at least get some sort of education."

I'm continually amazed at the arrogant ignorance of those who presume to attack President Bush's intelligence. It's one thing to disagree thoughtfully with the president's policies. But trying to to pretend that he is stupid or ignorant is just plain dishonest.

FYI, George W. Bush has a Bachelors Degree in History from Yale University, and an MBA from Harvard Business school. Can your resume boast degrees from two Ivy League colleges?

If you want to argue against his policies, offer a rational argument. Don't insult our intelligence with clueless posturing about the intelligence of a man who is likely a lot smarter than you are. And please offer something more substabntive than that "It's bad form" to call a nation like Korea evil. That doesn't even begin to approach being an argument.

I think that a very good historical argument can be made that "coexistance" with evil regimes absolutely *requires* naming them for what they are and taking an uncompromising moral stand against them. That was one component of how the "Evil Empire" of the USSR was eventually defeated (and peacefully, I might add). And a 20th century counterpoint -- which was allowed to grow strong, thanks to appeasement -- were Nazi Germany and the Axis powers.

You'll forgive me, but if anyone is lacking in education and historical perspective here, I rather think it is you and not President Bush. He should have taken this stand long ago, and I'm glad to see that he's finally doing so. I just hope it's not too late.

Posted by Tony Donadio at March 24, 2003 02:54 PM

In my last post, I meant to write:

"And please offer something more substabntive than that "It's bad form" to call a nation like _North_ Korea evil."

Obviously, I think there's a profound difference between North and South Korea. The poster I was responding to didn't make the distinction and I forgot to re-insert it when composing my response. My apologies.

Posted by Tony Donadio at March 24, 2003 03:22 PM

Purgingsky (2:25pm):

>[Bush] might learn something about coexistence, and not calling other countries (like korea) evil.

Bush never said that North Korea is evil. It's the ruling Kim Family Regime that he called "evil".

They are.

One of many links, "Death, terror in N. Korea gulag":
http://www.msnbc.com/news/859191.asp?0cl=cR

>say what you will, but it's bad form, bad politics.

On the one hand, "bad form." On the other: North Korean, South Korean, and American lives resting on the whims of a murderous Stalinist dictator. Oh, and truth.

"Bad politics:" check www.parapundit.com and this key analysis:
http://www.wizard.net/~npec/papers/Bradner.htm
Then offer your constructive suggestions on what the US ought to be doing in light of the scary reality and our limited options. Asides on bad-such-and-such don't count.

Posted by AMac at March 24, 2003 04:21 PM

purginsky- "a world power does not stay in power with poor leadership and bullying, which is what most countries see us doing. i feel that heís acting and supporting acts of revenge and rage; which is pointless and i'm terrified"

The large majority of Americans support the President, and certainly do not consider his leadership to be "poor" or "bullying". I place very little weight on supposed "world opinion", and consider few other countries to have our moral authority. The world opinion does not elect our president, and it is OUR COUNTRY, not the world, who protects our rights and liberties.

Acts of "rage" imply some sort of thoughtless rush. How can this be? We have allowed a 12 year farce to play out. We took MONTHS to attempt to use the route of the UN.

Finally "pointless"? I think President Bush made his aim quite clear- to bring terrorists to justice and to make no distinction between terrorists and the state which support them."

H Kincaid- if you cannot take the time to present your case against such "flimsy arguemnts", too bad. If you cannot take a little banter, too bad. I doubt that you will be swayed by debate at this late date.

Posted by Craig at March 24, 2003 04:37 PM