Iraq: Moving forward after the 'Three Week's War'.

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Red-Seven, Apr 24, 2003.

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  1. DorkmanScott Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
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    The people who hate us have a new martyr to rally under. If it was supposed to act as a deterrent or set an example, it was a misguided gesture, seeing as how terrorists embrace death. He would have made a better example rotting in a cell for the next 20 years.

    M. Scott
  2. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Yay, now democracy and peace and McDonalds and baseball and apple pie and all the other glories of freedom will finally be able to come to Iraq! Right? Right?

    And who claimed that his execution would bring any of those things? It was KW who characterized it as the biggest anti-climax in history, and I'd say he is correct. The current Economist article about Hussein's execution opens with the phrase "The statement by an appeals court judge this week confirming that Saddam Hussein will indeed face execution, possibly within days, has been greeted with little more than a shrug by many Iraqis. It may be that the ruling was considered all but inevitable." But really, what does the Economist know anyway?

    It's been Western organizations that have been obessesed with Saddam death watches or have been trying to extrapolate the case into larger capital punishment concerns and such, and it's funny, but I have yet to see anything about actual Iraqis wasting too much thought over Hussein himself. I'd be willing to bet that the majority simply see it as a step toward moving on.
  3. Shadow_of_Evil Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Nov 18, 2001
    star 6
    My thoughts exactly, Dorkman.
    Not only is death an easy way out, but it the islamic 'radicals' have a completely different view on dying than Westerners do. No one, no matter what faith and cause will find it honourable to rot in a cell. At least that's what I think.
    People supporting Sadam will see this as dying for the Jihad against their enemy and it'll only inspire them to follow.
    Except they'll be dying with carbombs and so forth, killing many more coalition forces and the poor Iraqi civilians trapped in the middle, instead of with a rope around the neck.

    Clearly if we westernize them with morbid obesity, hypercholesteremia, diabetes mellitus, and other cardiovascular/endocrine diseases, the world will be a shiny happy place.

    Don't forget to add immorality aswell. That's a disease.

    I'd be willing to bet that the majority simply see it as a step toward moving on.

    No doubt...but that's certainly not how G.W. and the US Media made it out to be.
    They made it seam like the war on terror would be all but over once Sadam was captured, he was the key...etc.
    Then again, the war against Iraq was only a "three week war" right? [face_plain]
  4. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
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    People supporting Sadam will see this as dying for the Jihad against their enemy and it'll only inspire them to follow.

    Except who are you characterizing as "people supporting Saddam?"

    The Iraqi Baath Party has been stripped of any power, and hasn't existed in any great strength since the late 60's. The party has issued a statement that his execution represents another "red line," (a statement which captures imagery that Saddam himself used) but this in itself doesn't represent any great shift in philosophy. Zebari has indicated that he fully expects the execution to result in an upswing of violence, but Saddam himself doesn't represent some sort of mass appeal martyr.
  5. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    Yeah, I was being sarcastic. The Iraqi's don't care. I've heard expat Iraqi leaders commenting on the joy of the event, but like with Iran, expat leaders tended to be from the faction that lost in the power struggle that installed the regime they fled from.

    I think KW's being generous, frankly. The thing about Iraq, and I touched on this earlier, was that Saddam wasn't unlike Tito in Yugoslavia. HE kept the two sides from petty wars, and so with Saddam gone the only discernable difference was the umbrella which would kill you several times over if you started any trouble.

    So really, the only thing getting Saddam out of power has done is removed restraints, and that's he's dead doesn't strike me as cause for celebration. Seems the Iraqis agree...

    E_S
  6. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    I don't think it's fair to call it a complete non-event though. It is what it is.

    It's not like it is as mudane as "Hey, look! There's a sale at David Jones-oh yeah Saddam was executed as well- but 20% off of socks, now that's a big deal!"



  7. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    I think many people recognise it for what it is, Mr44. It's a showtrial. "Yes, Saddam was going to die, and yes it's probably better to pretend to be objective about the trial itself..." and the like. And how does it affect the globe, precisely?

    E_S
  8. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    I'm not sure it has to affect the globe at all. As I posted in the other thread, at least this trial wasn't like Milosevic's, which defied all standards of reason and purpose.

    I mean really, was there any doubt how the Nuremberg trials would end up, or despite how asinine it was, how the ICTY would rule? There is something about the nature of these that make the processes themselves pointless, and I don't think it can be avoided... I mean, Goring was on trial for his role in killing 6 million people- it would seem rather silly to argue that exhibit "A" was actually mislabelled.
  9. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    The arguement of it being a show trial doesn't make sense to me in so much as Saddam did commit many atrocities, and him being guilty of atrocities was something that would not seem to be in question. That he got as much trial as he did, I think, does say a lot.

    I also don't see him viewing his execution as making him a martyr as I'd thought Saddam wasn't actually religious, and so it makes me think that his use of religion has not been because he believes it, but because it would be advantageous.
  10. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    It was a show trial because everyone knew he was guilty from the start. It's not as if there were heaps of evidence showing that he didn't commit any crimes at all.
  11. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    If that's the case then it shows that even those that are most obviously guilty will have a trial before being sentenced.

    What's wrong with that?
  12. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    There's nothing wrong with it, but no one should think that it was anything objective. If he'd been given life in prison then the illusion of fairness could have been kept somewhat. It doesn't show that this is any great leap forward for Iraqi justice. The trial's just more of the same. As I said in another thread, "Yeah, it shows that Iraq's getting back on its feet, they even had a show trial. It?s like Saddam never left. Ahh?democracy?? Make no mistake, justice wasn?t served here. And it didn?t help Iraq at all.
  13. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    Saddam didn't warrent the death penalty? Then what does?

    Keeping him alive would have made the trial appear fair? How so?

    And of course it helps Iraq. For the first time in modern history Iraq had an open and free trial. Terrorists from both sides killed layers and took hostages, yet the trial went forward...openly and without negotiations. Even terror could not stop the hand of justice in Iraq and this trial showed that. That shows the government, for all it's failings, does have a will to fight for it's own relevance.

  14. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    No, Saddam didn't warrant the death penalty. He was a monster, yes, but monsters deserve to rot, not to die as death is never the worst thing you can do to someone like that. And keeping him alive would have sent a different message, "Yes, we realize that this man was one of the worst to ever live. But he'll keep his life despite probably deserving death because we're better than him." Or something along those lines, but no, what do you do? Crave his blood and kill him. Yeah, that's not really a good way to start off a democracy. Also when the US could have done the same against the military leaders for the Brits in the revolutionary war, but didn't. Somehow I think humanity's gotten worse in this regard. But at least that's how I see it.

  15. J-Rod Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2004
    star 5
    No, Saddam didn't warrant the death penalty.

    Then who does?

    And keeping him alive would have sent a different message, "Yes, we realize that this man was one of the worst to ever live. But he'll keep his life despite probably deserving death because we're better than him."

    That doesn't give the message that Iraq is better than the terrorists. It gives the message that Iraq is weaker than the terrorists. Death is the only sentence that would show strength.

    Or something along those lines, but no, what do you do? Crave his blood and kill him. Yeah, that's not really a good way to start off a democracy.

    It is the only way to show that the democracy has the strength and will to live. It speaks the language of the region.

    Also when the US could have done the same against the military leaders for the Brits in the revolutionary war, but didn't. Somehow I think humanity's gotten worse in this regard. But at least that's how I see it.

    We gave Saddam the very chance you are referring to in '91. He refused it.
  16. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 8
    Because a) nobody could argue the courts in Iraq would have been objective, b) The outcome was assured, and c) It was not about making sure Saddam received an inalienable right - it was about showing that Iraqis could do the things real societies do too.

    You're right, he trial was somewhat conspicuous since he could have just as easily been shot in the hole he was hiding in. A big deal was made about it. That says to me it was less about Saddam, for whom the death penalty was assured since he was found, and more about show ponying the fledgling Iraqi judiciary.

    J-Rod, you may have noticed all but once civilised state still executes people - the US maintains such delightful company as the People's Republic of China, Somalia, Saudi Arabia et al in still barbarically executing people. The state has no right over a person's life. All but America of the civlised world recognises this. Yet I'm sure God said thou shalt whack criminals in cruel and gaseous ways, for thou art Americans who now surpass Jews in God's eyes, Amen. :p

    We're supposed to be better than regimes like Saddams but not bartering away the lives of our citizens for public bloodlust, no?

    E_S
  17. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    Then who does?

    How about?.no one? Does someone really need to die to pay for their crimes?

    That doesn't give the message that Iraq is better than the terrorists. It gives the message that Iraq is weaker than the terrorists. Death is the only sentence that would show strength.

    Gee?with thoughts like that it?s a wonder we don?t torture more people. Because true strength comes from killing people?.hmm?.yeah?you go ahead and keep thinking like the terrorists as far as death is concerned. I?ll keep my moral high ground.

    It is the only way to show that the democracy has the strength and will to live. It speaks the language of the region.

    I?m sure in the bizzarro world that you live in that this makes perfect sense, but the point of democracy (or at least the stated goal) in the Middle East was to show the region how much better it was and that they?d ?fall like dominoes?, remember that? So, you have a show trial and then you sentence the person to death as a result of that show trial. I don?t know about you, but when I look at it like that it really doesn?t speak well for democracy.

    We gave Saddam the very chance you are referring to in '91. He refused it.

    [face_laugh]
  18. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6




    Since I've always advocated the opposite of what you are attributing to me, I don't think your above post is accurate at all. What I've always called for is for people to support their points with illustrations so that debate topics stand or fall on their own.

    For example, how did I use the "werewolf" comparison? ("Wolverines" were from the movie Red Dawn, which I'll admit is an 80's icon) It was certainly never to compare the groups ideologically, but rather to illustrate that there are historical examples of select groups continuing to fight after combat operations are concluded. There are certainly more differences between the Nazi Werewolves and the ethnic/religious fighters in Iraq, but that was never the point of the comparison, which you are failing to address now.


    Actually, you were right on this point and I apologize -- at least in the time frame. The first mention of the werewolves in this context were arguments alluded to by ShaneP, and then articulated to larger degrees by foofaspoon. The former of which has not been seen lately, and the latter of which has faded into complete obscurity. You in fact did mention the Wolverines close to the time period I stipulated, but in reference to the 80's icon movie and an operation undertaken against Hussein that took the Wolverine name and the movie name for detailed parts of that operation.

    The rest of your post supports the exact idea I wanted to illustrate. As you point out, I suppose someone could hypothetically start the WWII clock at 1931 to make some point about combat. Of course, the obvious fact is that fighting had not broken out yet, and it's generally accepted that the "war" part of WWII began in 1939, but these would become obvious in relation to the point the person wanted to make. To quibble about it is just as pointless as labelling the Korean conflict a "police action" so it isn't included in other comparisons like Iraq.

    But you have quibbled in the past, and to state the war beginning in 1939 as opposed to 1941 is itself a quibble. In my country, yes, the beginning of WWII is clearly regarded as 1939 as it is in the rest of the Commonwealth. But this is not what I see when I read American media, the very country where you live. There, it would seem 1941 is more or less the date. 1931 is when the Japanese began thier war against China, no doubt the Chinese have a different memory. And Russians have an even more radical accounting of "The Great Patriotic War".

    So yeah, picking 1941 is in relation to the point the author wanted to make. But taking 1939 as the starting point, when America was not involved, is in relation to the point you want to make. And the point I want to make is that if anyone has motive to lessen the image of the Iraq conflict two years from now, they could just say "Iraq hasn't lasted longer than WWII! WWII actually BEGAN in 1931!". And you could say that Iraq hasn't lasted as long as the Korean war because the Korean war is technically still on (which you did not say this time, but you have made that quibble before). And you also make claims about the generally accepted timeframe of the Korean War and the Civil War, but you must see the news and realize those argumentative positions are doomed... it will be 4 years by March, invalidating the nominal Korean time, and this situation has every indication of staying constant over 2007.


    My focus isn't the numbers. Yeah, after 3 years in Iraq, the US death toll surpassed that of the WTC attacks. Ok... What point does that illustrate? It's one thing to say "Iraq is taking longer because the characterization of the opposition was misread, so let's examine X, Y, and Z." It's another to make a random comparison. Is there really any comparison between the two, or is the number itself supposed to make Iraq "bad?" Because in that same period, some 57,000 people died in DUI crashes, 54,000 more than 9/11. During a similiar period, almost 34,000 US troops died in Korea, or 31,00 more than 9/11. For this year, Feb was the month that
  19. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    Mr. 44, while reading over the past thread -- that is, this thread -- I became stunned by some of the posts I saw. You are not altogether incorrect in your sort of "collary versus causal" argument recently, but looking at that, your comments on the Iraq study group and comparing them with these past statements I see something truly unfortunate. Basically put, though you are not alone in this respect, it is a bright, intelligent, cunning defense of policy and the current administration that did not deserve the defense it was given.

    Fresh in my memory is another unattributed accusation I made in the recent past concerning your comments on Chilabi: I had mistakenly thought KK had made these claims but they were in fact made by yourself, claims to not be concerned about Chilabi, or at the very least ones that ran counter to those saying Chilabi should not be trusted. I don't have THOSE quotes in particular but I know they exist and can be found. To them I add these, combined with the month and year in which you made them:

    Sept. 03

    All which illustrates perfectly the result of the Iraqi action that is most often ignored by its detractors:

    The long term international stability that is being developed because of what our action symbolized.

    We demonstrated that we uphold the principals of democracy, and will defend those principals to the end..

    Especially in the Arab world, where culturally, deeds are much more effective than words.

    Using our example, and without direct intervention, Syria is self-instituting governmental reforms..

    The popular democratic uprising, that again, came from within, in Iran is gaining power every day, bolstered by American-style reforms..

    ...

    For those who are blinded by their short term criticism of the action, I can only resommend that they open their eyes and look to the long term..



    Nov. 03
    By late Dec or early next year, sufficient Iraqi personnel are projected to be trained to take over security..



    April '04

    Does Spain's withdrawl somehow hold more weight than Poland's willingness to continue?



    Now look, by throwing this back in your face I would expect you to say something along the lines of "Well what do you want me to say, that I was wrong"?

    No, more to the point I guess you could say I want you to stop being wrong. I look at this and your more recent statements and similar to the Bush administration I see the 'the more things change, the more they stay the same'.

    I just think it's time, mr44. You've spent too long on this and your job has been made far more difficult than it ought to have been. It's time to end the overall mood of defense of the Bush Administration and its policy decisions for the better of the Republican party. On this board, most have already done so or have disappeared. The Iraq conflict goes on and America will always go on, but in Washington and for Bush, the gate is broken, the wall is taken and the castle is aflame. Quotes such as the above show in part how it happened.

    I would not insult you to say you were misled (and I will never allow America to give the excuse it was misled into Iraq), but your faith was misplaced. And you were at a disadvantage in that from the beginning since had it been a Democratic president that invaded Iraq, the political situation and your own might be very different. You had faith -- in fact, I do you a disservice by describing it as faith, it is better described as a RATIONAL ASSUMPTION, that this man Bush had foresight and wisdom. He had neither.

    Long ago, at the very beginning, over the 2000 election, I had a friend or two saying the same things to me. I did not believe them. I had no like nor dislike for Bush, but I rationally assumed if Al Gore lost, what was the big deal? Surely the man the Republican sought to replace him would be something like his father, and his father was a perfectly reasonable chap. And then 9/11 and the Afghan war came, and I would defend it against people who said the US would get bogged down there, te
  20. DorkmanScott Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    I just hope the next President doesn't go pardoning Bush before he's forced to answer for what he's done.

    M. Scott
  21. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    Incarcerating Bush would be the best thing this country's done in a while. He needs to rot in a cell.
  22. DarthArsenal6 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 16, 2001
    star 5
    ^ amen to that [face_laugh]


    EDIT Don't forget Blair aswell
  23. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    I appreciate posts like that, Gonk. The ones that "lay it on the line," so to speak. But is that supposed to be a healthy dose of reverse psychology for me?

    I've repeatedly said that I have no interest in defending Bush personally, so insults directed at him really have no bearing on my own position. As a politician, Bush is beholden to opinion polls. Both political parties are beholden to opinion polls. The actual situation in Iraq isn't. However, I'd still be willing to defend any statements that you attributed to me, because not one was made in "blind faith" to Bush or anyone, but they were made by researching what my own thoughts were.

    My position is that the Iraq of the past couple of years represents a continuation of decades of prior Iraqi policy. I've always repeated my mantra of "context, context, context" until I know people are sick of it. Not once have I ever said "Because Bush told me so..." Now, of course, there is still some overlap. As an example, I still think Rumsfeld is one of the best SecDef's we have had based on what he's done, but that doesn't seem to matter in relation to the "Rumsfeld is evil" crowd.

    I will admit that is is frustrating when I point out something like the latest report indicates that violence in Iraq is largely confined to 3 providences, driven largely by Shia militias, and all people will respond with is "but Bush is dumb.." Because you do bring up an interesting point, one which does bother me greatly. "It's done," as you say, because perception has replaced the analysis that I love so much- the same analysis that gets me criticized all the time around here. I hate to use this term because it sounds so trite, but hating the Iraqi invasion has become trendy. People don't focus on Iraq anymore, they focus on what the opinion polls say about Iraq.

    Wrong? You show me what I'm supposed to be wrong about, and I'll examine it. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong. But I'm not going to "be wrong" simply because it's the easy way out or the trendy thing to be.


  24. beezel26 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2003
    star 7
    How about?.no one? Does someone really need to die to pay for their crimes?

    You really haven't read up on every barbaric thing saddam and his sons and his regime actually did. people were brutally murdered for sport and for no other reason then they being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Kurds got it thru mustard gas and random round ups of killing and the people in baghdad got randomly round up when Uday and his brother needed a girl to rape for the evening.

    Saddam wasn't your average gang member killing another gang member in a drive by.
    what do you think of Hitler, a misunderstood leader who never killed a jew or gypsy in his life?

    sorry its hard to fathom how some people think that killers who take large amounts of life deserve a slap on the wrist. its almost if they ignore the faces of the souls who died. These are women and children and fathers and sons. Its like watching your neighbors get a bullet to the head and not even caring. Calling the authorities barbarian for meeting out justice yet not even caring about the various people that died. It might be barbaric to meet out the proper justice on those who take the lives of others but at least its not completely callus and inhuman ignoring your fellow human beings who were killed.

  25. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    Actually I know a lot about Saddam. He still shouldn't have died to pay for his crimes. The worst thing (psychologically) anyone could've ever done to Saddam would have been to lock him up and make him fade into obscurity. Instead you've made him memorable and a bit sympathetic in the eyes of some people. So instead of actually getting rid of him you've made him live on longer with his death. That's really not the way it should have been.
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