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7843 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Feb 2007 at 5:32 PM (7 years ago)   |  Favorite   |  Watch    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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  2007-07-24 03:00:26 PM  
trog69

That made me think: Maybe it's time for good ol' China to step up to the plate. Their citizens are under direct attack from Al-Qaeda/Taliban? in Pakistan. This is a chance for Hu to show the rest of the world that he wants an end to terrorism as much as the next guy, and that the PRC is going to shoulder some of the load. Also, if all that happens is China goes after the specific threat, pounds the crap out of it (or helps Musharraf do so), and then leaves, they will look a lot better than we do right now. Granted, that's wishful thinking. I'd prefer they help out elsewhere first.
 
  2007-07-24 08:07:33 PM  
Why Pakistan???

Obviously there are terrorists there.....

But there are also terrorists in Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and just about every other Mid-East country that you could think of.

And some Non-Mid-East countries...

The government of Pakistan is at least trying to combat terrorists. The problem is that the govenrment of Pakistan isn't exactly what you would call strong.

Rushing into Pakistan with our guns ablazing could very easily cause more problems than it would be worth.

Now if we could work more with the government of Pakistan in combating terrorists I think it would be a good thing.

I admit that I'm not sure what steps we should try to take with the government.

Perhaps some sort of covert operations....

Who knows.... covert ops might be taking place as we type....

The threat that we face is from islamnic extremistts.

It doesn't matter what country they are in at some point we (or others) will need to face them

Some we will need to face with our guns while others will hopefully be faced by more moderate muslims.

Unfortunately innocent lives will be lost.....

IF we do nothing innocent lives will be lost....

IF we try to use non-violent tactics innocent lives will be lost....

We face a threat that will not go away any time soon.

We will be dealing with this threat for years to come.
 
  2007-07-24 11:47:28 PM  
dottedmint: Why Pakistan???

Why Afghanistan? When we went into Afghanistan in 2001, the entire planet knew that Pakistan was 'ollie, ollie, oxen free' for Al Qaida/Taliban fighters. It would still have been wrong to invade a sovereign nation, but at least, at the time, we still had a pocketful of 'Trade Center Bombing Bucks' to spend. We were still on relatively moral high ground. Of course, now we know that Bush's neo-con nitwits had no intention to go after terrorists. Pnac doctrine declares terrorism as the price of Imperialism. Man, I'm gettin' pissed off just typing this shiat.

If we are keeping up pretenses of Pakistan being an ally of ours, and knowing that many of the perpetrators/enablers of 9/11 are now taking over the NW pakistan tribal region, then don't we have some responsibility to help eradicate them?
 
  2007-07-24 11:58:56 PM  
c7hu1hu fh746n: That made me think: Maybe it's time for good ol' China to step up to the plate

Why would they? After seeing the hornets nest we've stepped in, why spend any money or resources when the US is already doing their dirty work for them? You're correct, though; we should be pressuring them to roll up their sleeves and do the right thing. Fat chance.
 
  2007-07-25 12:10:01 AM  
dottedmint: It doesn't matter what country they are in at some point we (or others) will need to face them

That seems to be the problem here, isn't it? Musharraf is appalled that we would even entertain the idea of going into his country. Yet the tribals are admitting that they are outgunned and outmanned. The US admitted the other day that we have been using drones and other covert ops to size up the situation, but Al Qaida is entrenched in some brutal countryside.

Man, what a mess.
 
  2007-07-25 12:13:41 AM  
And that's not even touching on the nuke situation. If Musharraf loses control we will have to step in.

Iraq is starting to look like a cakewalk, comparatively.
 
  2007-07-25 01:57:21 AM  
dottedmint: Who knows.... covert ops might be taking place as we type...

Oh yeah. Count on it.

Surveillance Operation in Pakistan Located and Killed Al Qaeda Official (new window)

U.S. aborted raid on al Qaeda chiefs in Pakistan in '05 (new window)

Why Pakistan???

Google "CIA" and "Pakistan" and see what you find.

A very tangled web dating back decades. The CIA never ceases to amaze me...
 
  2007-07-25 07:00:30 AM  
OK.....

Let's say that we pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan and go full force into Pakistan.....

The terrorists pull out and move back to Afghanistan, Iraq, and even perhaps Iran.......

Of course we already have terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan and does anyone in here honestly think that there are not terrorists in Iran?

Look.....

I'm not saying that at some point we (or someone) won't need to clear out the mountains in Pakistan.

I'm just questioning if the situation in Pakistan is currently the biggest danger we face in that region.

And of course there is the danger of us pulling out of Iraq and Afghanistan too soon and having the situation in those countries getting much worse.
 
  2007-07-25 07:47:33 AM  
dottedmint: Let's say that we pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan and go full force into Pakistan.....

Why would we pull out of Afghanistan?
 
  2007-07-25 07:49:39 AM  
trog69: Why would we pull out of Afghanistan?

Never mind, I forgot...no oil.
 
  2007-07-25 01:12:13 PM  
dottedmint: 'm just questioning if the situation in Pakistan is currently the biggest danger we face in that region.

And of course there is the danger of us pulling out of Iraq and Afghanistan too soon and having the situation in those countries getting much worse.


Did somebody hijack your login? ;)

I have to agree that I really don't understand the logic of spreading this country's military resources that thin.

We're basically talking three mountainous Vietnams here.

Or a terrorist shell game. We're not going to "win" doing the same old crap we've been doing. We're not going to get rid of terror by being the same topheavy country dishing out more reasons for more volatile militant groups to hate us.

We've got to change our ways and stop electing arrogant do-no-wrong Presidents like what we've got.

If we are the Leader of the Free World, we're going to have to start acting like it.
 
  2007-07-26 12:07:22 AM  
whidbey: Did somebody hijack your login? ;)

I gotta tell ya, after listening to a law professor who writes for the National Review teeing off on Bush/Cheney and practically begging for impeachment, then reading the comments from Bruce Fein, the man who drafted the articles of impeachment against Clinton, say the same things, my faith in the conservative's honesty is starting to be restored. My faith that congress will grow a set, on the other hand...
 
  2007-07-26 10:37:32 PM  
We're not going to get rid of terror by being the same topheavy country dishing out more reasons for more volatile militant groups to hate us.

Maybe....

Maybe not....

And what I mean by that is that yes.....

Sometimes going in with our guns ablazing would be a huge mistake.

HOWEVER.....

There will be times when the only option is for us to use military actions.

And for the record....

For some militant groups the only crime that you need to be guilty of in order for them to want to kill you is to not be an extreme islamic.

But again I need to question if the situation in Pakistan is the greatest threat that we, that region, and the rest of the world face.

Iran????
 
  2007-07-27 09:24:06 AM  
dottedmint: But again I need to question if the situation in Pakistan is the greatest threat that we, that region, and the rest of the world face.

Iran????


Why Iran? Because they might be(probably are)developing a nuclear weapons program? While Pakistan already has nukes? After the run around we got with Iraqi WMD, I need a little more than sabre-rattling from Halliburtoon's agents in the WH before I agree to bomb Iran. If Isreal is so sure about it, Let them bomb Iran.

I also agree that our forces can't be spread out much more. That's why I think that we should concentrate on the Afghanistan/Pakistan region now. Which means no more Iraq BS.
 
  2007-07-27 09:10:06 PM  
Trog: "Why Iran? Because they might be(probably are)developing a nuclear weapons program? While Pakistan already has nukes? After the run around we got with Iraqi WMD, I need a little more than sabre-rattling from Halliburtoon's agents in the WH before I agree to bomb Iran. If Isreal is so sure about it, Let them bomb Iran."

The difference between Iran and Pakistan isn't the fact that Pakistan has nukes while (as of yet) Iran does not have nukes.

The difference is the fact that the president of Iran has more than once called for a holly war against anyone and everyone who is not Muslim.

He has called for Isreal being wiped off the map.

This isn't based on what Isreal or anyone from Halliburton is saying.

It is based on what Iran is saying....

Of course....

Let's not forget that there is some evidence that Iran (officially or unofficially) is supplying weapons to the terrorists in Iraq.

And there is evidence that the Iranian government has been supporting terrorist groups other than in Iraq.

While terrorists are currently in Pakistan the government is not supporting them.

They may not be hunting them down as much as we would like but they are not supporitng them.

BTW....

IF tomorrow we wake up with news that Iran set off a nuke and had more where that came from would we feel safer?

Would you still feel that Pakistan was a bigger threat?
 
  2007-07-28 12:33:00 PM  
trog69
While Pakistan already has nukes?

Remember how this administration handles nuclear threats. If you already have them and threaten the U.S./U.S forces abroad or allies (N. Korea and China) or make active threats against neighboring countries (N. Korea again, India, Pakistan, China again), this country sticks its thumb up it's ass and does nothing. If you don't have them, we make up evidence that they are there and invade (Iraq). When a country is in the refining/building process (Iran, N. Korea), we bluster until they actually test one (N. Korea), in which case we start talks. Pakistan is safe from us now. Iran has seen this and wants in on the 'U.S. won't fark with us because we have nukes' club. From that angle I don't blame them at all. That all said, no one should have them (us included), but that's a completely separate (and complex) argument for another time.

With regard to the IF tomorrow we wake up etc.

Know what that sounds like?

Facing clear evidence of peril, we cannot wait for the final proof -- the smoking gun -- that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud.
-GWB on Iraq.

I'm sick of the 'you'll be sorry when they nuke us' crap.
 
  2007-07-28 01:54:08 PM  
c7hu1hu fh746n: I'm sick of the 'you'll be sorry when they nuke us' crap.

Exactamundo.

Another angle is that while Pakistan has Al Qaida fomenting all kinds of evil, and a great many in their country rooting for them, Iran is relatively stable, with a great many who are rooting for the US. Once any bombing occurs, they will immediately cling to their leadership.
 
  2007-07-28 09:15:52 PM  
"Iran is relatively stable, with a great many who are rooting for the US."

Wait....What????

A "great many" (in Iran?) "are rooting for the US"??????

Am I reading that correctly?????

I don't recall ever seeing pro-US rallies in Iran.

Maybe you have seen them but I haven't.

I know I've seen MANY anti-US and anti-West rallies in Iran.

Facing clear evidence of peril, we cannot wait for the final proof -- the smoking gun -- that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud.
-GWB on Iraq.


Ya know....

I really don't feel like posting all of the quotes from Dems that basically said the same things as what Bush said but to put it simply MANY Dems said the exact same thing that Bush said.

I'll ask again....

IF Iran blows up a Nuke tomorrow and have a couple to spare would you feel safer?

And again....

IF the government of Pakistan is (if not pro-US) at least neutral to the US while the government of Iran has made numerous threats against the US and our allies why would Pakistan be more of a danger than a government that is openly threatening us?

But in any case.....

IF we go into Pakistan and clean everything out eventually the threats that Iran pose will need to be dealt with.....HOPEFULLY before they get Nukes.

Or would you rather we wait until they get Nukes....
 
  2007-07-29 01:20:32 AM  
Nearly 70% of Iran's population is under 30. Most of them are disinterested in Ahmadinejad's rhetoric. They are increasingly frustrated with Iran's lack of social fredoms. They are not interested in war. They are at odds with the government about its rhetoric. Guess what bombing/invading will accomplish? Give up? I'll give you a hint. They will ABSOLUTELY NOT side with us. I'd even side with a douchebag like Mahmoud Ahmcrazyindahead if the retards that didn't like him were bombing my neighborhood. There goes your formerly progressive majority. In fact, I'd wager they turn into radical insurgents when the first U.S. bomb falls.

Guess what? When the Dems found out that they had been lied to, they changed their tune. Bush did not. He still thinks that Iraq has 9-11 ties. Even prominent Repubs realize that that is some of the most intentionally dishonest bullshiat to come out of the White House. Besides. I'm not a Dem, so the 'dems said it too' line means almost nothing to me.

Absolutely none of that makes the 'nuke tomorrow' scare tactics any less stupid. Doesn't make tomorrow (or even the next few years ) a likely date for an explosion. Doesn't make that explosion likely to be more than a sub-kiloton test. Doesn't give them a delivery system even remotely capable of reaching this country. Right now my tactical/strategic assessment of Iran is: all talk. I feel perfectly safe, because they pose no threat to the homeland. They're no more competent than N. Korea. When Kim does something worth talking about with the nukes he already has, talk to me. If you want to be terrified by the nuclear bogeyman, go ahead.
 
  2007-07-29 12:21:58 PM  
"Nearly 70% of Iran's population is under 30. Most of them are disinterested in Ahmadinejad's rhetoric. They are increasingly frustrated with Iran's lack of social fredoms. They are not interested in war. They are at odds with the government about its rhetoric."

That is not the same thing that Trog said....

"Iran is relatively stable, with a great many who are rooting for the US."

Even IF a good portion of Iranians are not happy with their own government that does not mean that they are rooting for the US.

However.....

IF a good portion of Iranians are increasingly frustrated with Iran's lack of social fredoms perhaps they would welcome our support in their attempts to improve their situation.

I'm not saying they would welcome an all out invasion but if we approached some of the more moderate leaders in Iran (are there any?) they might welcome our help in taking back their country from the extremists.

"Guess what? When the Dems found out that they had been lied to, they changed their tune."

Funny how many of them saw the same intel that Bush was given.

And if I recall correctly Hillary even had said something to the effect that she didn't rely on what the Bush WH gave her. She had used intelligence from Bills WH.

And of course let's not forget that Bill Clinton and Al Gore were saying the exact same thing.

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country." Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002.

Absolutely none of that makes the 'nuke tomorrow' scare tactics any less stupid. Doesn't make tomorrow (or even the next few years ) a likely date for an explosion. Doesn't make that explosion likely to be more than a sub-kiloton test. Doesn't give them a delivery system even remotely capable of reaching this country.

At some point Iran will be only a day away from having Nukes. When that'll be we don't know but at some point it will be here.

You can keep you head in the sand or up your .... well .... up something but if things continue the way they are going we will at some point see a nuclear Iran.

I hope that before that happens the government of Iran will become more moderate than it is.

If it continues to be as hostile to the US and the West when it gets Nukes will you feel safe?
 
  2007-07-29 12:43:53 PM  
dottedmint: If it continues to be as hostile to the US and the West when it gets Nukes will you feel safe?

Yes. They have no delivery system that will reach the U.S.
 
  2007-07-29 04:02:11 PM  
dottedmint: That is not the same thing that Trog said....


After doing some hindsight adjustments, I find that I was wrong about the positive views of the US by the Iranian public. In fact, one poll I read shows "very negative views on BOTH sides: Link (new window)

Perhaps my wires were crossed when reading something similar to this:Link (new window)

One paragraph that provides an extremely lame excuse: Iranians even overwhelmingly support their government providing full inspections and a guarantee not to develop nuclear weapons in return for trade and assistance from other countries. The popular will to live in a democracy open to the West and the United States, with greater economic opportunity, comes from every region and segment of Iranian society...


I'm not saying they would welcome an all out invasion but if we approached some of the more moderate leaders in Iran (are there any?) they might welcome our help in taking back their country from the extremists.


Yeah, that regime change thing has been workin' out just great for us so far...maybe the CIA can go in there and lend a hand? Howsabout we quit saber-rattling and propose REAL ideas to help them, economically? In the meantime, a country having real Al Qaeda/Taliban problems inside their borders, with a population that doesn't like us much more than Iran does, and ALREADY HAVING NUKES might be where we should be concentrating any possible military options, since it seems that AQ doesn't particularly care to sit down and talk to the natives, much less anyone else.
 
  2007-07-29 04:30:41 PM  
dottedmint: they might welcome our help in taking back their country from the extremists.

How would we do that?
 
  2007-07-29 05:30:53 PM  
Bonnie: Yes. They have no delivery system that will reach the U.S.

YET

But of course they could reach Isreal and other allies in the Mid-East as well as Europe.

OH....and could Iran not have a cargo ship that could reach our shores?

Trog: "Howsabout we quit saber-rattling and propose REAL ideas to help them, economically?"

Such as????

Give them all money?

Usually introducing freedom and capitolism ends up helping people the most....

Of course I find it funny that we are supposed to "quit saber-rattling" when it comes to Iran but we are supposed to go into Pakistan with our guns blazing.

"In the meantime, a country having real Al Qaeda/Taliban problems inside their borders, with a population that doesn't like us much more than Iran does, and ALREADY HAVING NUKES might be where we should be concentrating any possible military options, since it seems that AQ doesn't particularly care to sit down and talk to the natives, much less anyone else."

Since we don't want to cause problems politically for a government that is at least neutral towards the US it probably wouldn't be a good idea to cause the general population of Pakistan to toss out the government.

Most of the polls that I have read show that OBLs popularity in Pakistan isn't exactly high.

Yes....in certain areas he is popular but not in the entire country.

Unfortuanatly ours isn't either.

IF we can help the Pakistani government to go after OBL and the terrorists without us taking the lead it would not harm our image as much.

C-S: "How would we do that?"

Don't know.....

But if some moderate leaders from Iran contacted us and asked for help in bringing freedom and democracy to their country do you think we should try to find some way of helping?

I find this conversation rather interesting....

It seems that you people are saying that we need to .... well basically ... invade Pakistan to finish off OBL / AQ / Taliban.

While I would not mind in one bit to see OBL be introduced to one of our bombs getting rid of him will not make us any safer.

And it would be great to get rid of the last of AQ and the Taliban from Pakistan but I question if a frontal military assault would work.

I think working from behind the scenes in Pakistan would be better.....

But when I question if we need to consider some military action against Iran the response is.....

'No...No...No.... We can't even think about using the military in Iran.'

It's like even the idea of using the military in Iran is taboo.

As I said in one of my earlier comments....

The threat that we face is from Islamic extremeists.

It doesn't matter what country they are in, we (or someone) will eventually need to face them.
 
  2007-07-29 06:52:29 PM  
dottedmint: But if some moderate leaders from Iran contacted us and asked for help in bringing freedom and democracy to their country do you think we should try to find some way of helping?

Like how?

I remember some time ago, there was this guy... what was his name? Oh right, Ahmed Chalabi. That stalwart of freedom and democracy in Iraq who we were championing as Iraq's savior, so that...ummm... oh yeah wait a minute he was busted for fraud, counterfeiting, and even suspected of spying for the Iranians (pops). All of that after Clinton basically handed him and his cronies $100m for "liberty and democracy" in Iraq.

Are these the characters we should be supporting in Iran? Probably not. Point is, how do you a) know who is reliable, b) support them so they don't get killed, and c) do it without getting your hands dirty? I don't see any of those being possible all at once. Let dictators like Ahmani-whatever his name is crap their own beds with their own failures, (like the recent gasoline rationing, which is pissing everyone off over there) because all of our attempts at regime change have so far failed miserably and not exactly been in the name of "democracy."

In fact I think that's the more important point. You are seriously kidding yourself if you think we are going to Iran to try and give them freedom and democracy. Same with Iraq. We've already proven that isn't our goal many times before. Case and point? Iran, 1953. (pops) (History repeating, mistakes learning etc. etc.)
 
  2007-07-29 07:25:23 PM  
Another double post:

If we are worried about nukes, we should be looking at countries that not only have nukes already, but have the technological capabilities to make them small and mobile. In other words, suitcase bombs. Making a nuke is one thing, but making them small requires even more technological know how, and not many countries can. Which brings us to our old friend, Russia.

This House subcommittee hearing (pops) from 1998 is noteworthy for this troubling quote from a Pen. rep.:

" I am equally concerned by Moscow's lack of candor about the safety and security of the Russian nuclear arsenal. False reassurances that everything is OK only heighten my alarm, especially when there is so much evidence to the contrary.

Allow me to briefly recap the issue of possibly missing nuclear-suitcase bombs. In May 1997, when Ranking Member Pickett and I were leading a congressional delegation to Russia, we met with General Lebed and were told that when he was Secretary of the Security Council an audit of Russia's nuclear stockpile indicated an apparent inability to account for all of the suitcase-sized nuclear weapons."

Possibly missing suitcase bombs? Inability to account for all the suitcase sized nuclear weapons? Ummm yeah that's a little worrying. Granted that's from 1998 but I don't think this problem has really been solved, and if anything now we have more countries with nukes and more people running around with money and the ambition to do us harm. From a "national security" standpoint, (i.e. "am I going to be killed anytime soon by a nuke") as far as nukes go I'd be a lot more concerned with issues of corruption and infiltration into nuclear programs in Russia, NK, China and India (and Pakistan?) and the proliferation of small, mobile nuclear weapons than some nutcase in Iran who doesn't even have nukes yet, and probably won't ever have the ability to hurt us with them if he ever does.

Iran is about oil and control of the middle east, not nukes, and certainly not "freedom and democracy." As others have pointed out above, if nukes were our concern, there are bigger fish to fry.
 
  2007-07-30 01:46:07 AM  
dottedmint: It seems that you people are saying that we need to .... well basically ... invade Pakistan to finish off OBL / AQ / Taliban.

I'm against this...dottedmint: It's like even the idea of using the military in Iran is taboo.

Considering the crappy job we've done in both Afghanistan and Iraq, it shouldn't even be on the table, period. The United States has proven its leadership is incompetent when it comes to militaristic foreign policy. We shouldn't let this government have the keys to the armory any more.

Again, the United States is going to have to come to terms with its tendency to shoot first and ask questions later.
 
  2007-07-30 04:12:06 AM  
dottedmint: Bonnie: Yes. They have no delivery system that will reach the U.S.

YET

But of course they could reach Isreal and other allies in the Mid-East as well as Europe.

OH....and could Iran not have a cargo ship that could reach our shores?


If they figure out how to make a nuke and if they get a delivery system and if they are ok with the idea of MAD then maybe I'll worry about Iran.

Europe took care of itself long before the U.S. was born so I don't see a need to worry about them.

Tough luck for Israel that they'll only get a brazillion dollars in aid and weapons from the U.S. this year. I really do hope they can eeek through this somehow.

What?!

I can't hear...what?

Israel has nukes and they're closer to Iran?!

Yougottabeshiattingme.

Well, what do you know about that!
 
  2007-07-30 07:26:06 AM  
dottedmint: Usually introducing freedom and capitolism ends up helping people the most....

You'll have to pardon the Iranians if they describe our method of introducing freedom and capitalism as "Horseshiat."

Perhaps I came on a little strong on the 'military options' as to Pakistan. I also agree that we have to work with Musharraf and the tribals to assist them in ousting the Fundamentalists/Al Qaeda threat. One problem with no military options on the table is the RELENTLESS destruction of infrastructure/roadways by these terrorists crossing into Afghanistan.

US: "Well, looks like we took care of the bad guys for ya. How's that freedom feel, huh?"

Afghan: "Yes, it is very nice. Now remember, you promised you wouldn't leave us stranded like you did when we fought against the Russians, right?"

US: Yup, we're on it...S'okay if we just take a few of our guys sightseeing over there in Iraq? You'll be okay 'til we get back, right?"

Afghan: "But, all you did was chase the bad guys into Pakistan. What happens when they try to come back? And we still don't have any roads or infrastructure outside of the major cities; The warlords will just take over again if we don't help lift the people out of their abject pov...aawww, I'm just talking to myself."
 
  2007-08-01 11:13:17 PM  
So Barack Obomma agrees that we need to be willing to invade Pakistan.

Earlier he said that IF the government of Pakistan does not do more to hunt down the terrorists that are in that country that we (The US) under his Presidency would actually invade Pakistan even if the government of Pakistan does not agree with us.

What I find ironic is that IF Bush had said the same thing that Obomma had said the anti-war left would be attacking Bush as war mongering.

So far I have not seen any of the anti-war left attack Barack.

Or does the left not attack Dems who go to war???

I also find it funny that Barock was basically talking about UNILATERALLY ATTACKING AN INDEPENDENT COUNTRY THAT DID NOT ATTACK US ON 9/11.

As I have said in earlier comments, I am not against going after the terrorists in Pakistan.

I just have to question the idea of launching an invasion into Pakistan even if the government of Pakistan does not want us to.

And I always thought that the Dems felt we couldn't use military actions without UN approval.

OK.....

So we launch an attack into Pakistan....

Obviously we hope everything goes well and we all live hapily ever after.....

The odds of that????

Between Slim and None....

But......

There is a chance that the government of Pakistan would be overthrown and a civil war may result.

Worse case.....

Either a part of the terrorists or people who are supportive of the terrorists gain control of Pakistan.

This means that they gain control of the Nukes.

They use the Nukes.

Or of course......

The government of Pakistan realizes that we just invaded their country.

They are unhappy with that and decide to defend their country.

They figure that if they do not stand up against the US that they would be kicked out of office by the rest of the people of Pakistan.

Of course....

They have Nukes...

And how much outcry would there be from the rest of the world for invading an independent country that did NOT attack us on 9/11?

Maybe Bush should HINT to doing exactly what Obomma suggested...

Something tells me that the Dems wouldn't know what to do.....

IF they attack Bush they also attack Obomma.

IF they do not attack Bush they are saying that they agree with going into an independent country that did not attack us on 9/11 to hunt down terrorists.
 
  2007-08-02 01:09:23 AM  
Obommma? ;)

But seriously. I found his remarks disappointing. He's definitely caving in to pressure. Why I thought that tendency would be confined to one party, I don't know.

We are in rare agreement, but not for the same reasons, dottedmint. Although it looks to me like Pakistan's government would allow for an Afghanistan-type strike.

But methinks Obama drank some of the kool-aid, caving into pressure from Hillary Clinton, who as we know is a real class act. What a joke.

We really don't need a candidate in office to continue the failed policies of the Bush administration. It's time for a new approach, and he's definitely trying to please the wrong people.
 
  2007-08-02 02:38:25 AM  
What did he say? I haven't heard any of this. Although lately Obamma's health care policy stuff didn't really sit well with me either. If he said that, that is indeed unfortunate and I think he's wrong.
 
  2007-08-02 01:09:51 PM  
And I always thought that the Dems felt we couldn't use military actions without UN approval.

Don't know where you got that idea, but I also have a hard time fitting people into boxes like "Democrats" and "Repulicans", so perhaps I'm not the Dem you're looking for.

I do not support an invasion of Pakistan, but I do believe that some (more) black ops in coordination with the Pakistani government with the sole purpose of finding Bin Ladin would be most acceptable and about farking time. Of course, I think the US has enough money that a little greenback diplomacy would generate some results in finding that fark, too.

Why the fark we're sticking our dick in Iraq I guess I will NEVER farking understand.
 
  2007-08-02 02:11:19 PM  
Soup4Bonnie: Why the fark we're sticking our dick in Iraq I guess I will NEVER farking understand.

Makes a lot of sense to me for two reasons:

1. The resources and the strategic location
2. The invasion of Iraq was supposed to be a neat little checkbox on a checklist of "Nations that Harbor 'Terror'" that we were supposed to easily hurdle after a couple of months and then move on to the next checkbox on the list...:)

It failed miserably, obviously.

And C-S, read 'em and weep:

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Wednesday that he would possibly send troops into Pakistan to hunt down terrorists, an attempt to show strength when his chief rival has described his foreign policy skills as naive.

The opening paragraph from here (new window)
 
  2007-08-02 03:39:15 PM  
Thanks for the link whidbey. It's unfortunate that Obama thinks dispelling foreign policy naivety requires saying he will use military force. He could have left it at Clinton's vote for the Iraq war and been done with the issue... Then again I guess these people are still all politicians and are still full of it so what should I really expect?

Looks like another election where I am not voting for who I want, but against who I don't want...


On a related note, this (pops)site has a handy chart of all the candidates (rep and dem) and a simplified view of where they stand on certain issues. It's a little hard to match up the candidate to the issue as the chart's pretty big, but it's pretty cool, if anyone's interested.
 
  2007-08-02 07:23:25 PM  
You said it, "...people are still all politicians....." and they say and do things to get elected. It has always has been and always will be the case so it's not an insult, it's just a fact.

Now the next question, if you care about the future direction of the country, is how to work within this reality and manipulate it to your advantage or, at least understand it so you're not chasing their superficial moves but the real power play behind it. I'm not saying I'm an expert at this but I have a lot of fun learning.

If you attack their moves on the surface then you're bringing a 'checkers' strategy to a 'chess' game and will lose every time. We're all aware of how much $$$ is spent on politics but some people underestimate the amount of brain cells expended as well. There are some VERY intelligent people in the mix (in front and behind the scenes) who spend their entire lives learning how to play the game.
 
  2007-08-03 12:05:45 AM  
the_deciderer: Now the next question, if you care about the future direction of the country, is how to work within this reality and manipulate it to your advantage or, at least understand it so you're not chasing their superficial moves but the real power play behind it

That's such a Machiavellian habitrail, though. Why does politics have to be so evil, self-serving and so dependent on serving a minority of the citizens of this country instead of everyone?

I believe that if you want things to change, you reach out to the people you want to elect you, get them to support you. Millions of everyday people.

Get contributions from smaller businesses instead of big-ass corporations with strings attached to their donations.

I know it sounds ridiculously simplistic, but we've never been in a better position to make things change for the better. We take the Internet for granted, but look at all the information and discourse of ideas we find, site after site, board after board.

There's never been a status quo filled with so much possibility.

I say we ditch both parties completely and elect people grass-roots style from now on. Getting the word out would be so much easier, and less dependent on the bloated expensive campaign drudgery we've seen in the past 25 years.

"Playing the game" is fine if you're cool with the Good ol' Boys club. I'll bet you most Americans are sick of that, across the board.

Sick of having to put up with a system where people say "that's just the way it is."
 
  2007-08-03 12:47:26 AM  
whidbeyThat's such a Machiavellian habitrail, though. Why does politics have to be so evil, self-serving and so dependent on serving a minority of the citizens of this country instead of everyone?

I believe you're trying to say that I am implying that things can or should not be changed. On the contrary! All I'm saying is that it doesn't do a lot of good to complain about them being what they are. I see so many postings poking holes in the day-to-day quotes of the candidates and highlighting inconsistencies on both sides. Although this makes for interesting banter, it avoids exaclty the kinds of issues you're pointing out.

whidbeyI believe that if you want things to change, you reach out to the people you want to elect you, get them to support you. Millions of everyday people.

Its good that you believe that but I believe its a pipe dream if you're purely analyzing them based on how many times they "flip flop" or "sell out". Actually, I believe its exactly what they want. They're happy with you arguing with each other over the simple details which keeps the discussion at a high level and avoids the types of low-level analysis that might actually expose their weaknesses.

whidbeyI say we ditch both parties completely and elect people grass-roots style from now on. Getting the word out would be so much easier, and less dependent on the bloated expensive campaign drudgery we've seen in the past 25 years.

OK, that sounds nice (I guess) but you better look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself, truthfully, "what exactly would I do if my anti-party was in power?" How would you solve the world's problems differently considering you would deal with the exact same world dynamics that the current parties deal with? What ideas do you have to solve the problems that plague this country? How would you avoid becoming exactly what you say you disklike? Lastly, and most importantly, how would you inject change without risking the future of the greatest country in the world?

If you want to get specific, here's your first debate question. What is the root cause of radical Islam? Will your anti-party do anything about it? If so, what?

As originally stated, you can't do any of this with "checkers" strategy. It's a world-class chess game being played.......what's your opening move?
 
  2007-08-03 01:14:48 AM  
the_deciderer: It's a world-class chess game being played.......what's your opening move?

Again, "the game" is what is getting us into trouble.

Old skool politics needs to be phased out.

Think about it: if you had the votes of millions of people, if you went to them directly with your message, who needs political machines? Cut out the middle man. Cut out the smoke-filled room. Usher in a new age.

The "strategic chess" motif is outdated and counterproductive to peace and progress as a society. I don't see the value in looking at our future as a "game." That kind of Machiavellian thinking has run its course for the time being. People don't trust it, and have felt betrayed by the timeworn image of the slimy politician trying to please everybody.

But hey, if you want to get technical, I guess you would say that's "my move." A new bold strategy that gives people hope. Clinton got elected because he pretended to be this kind of candidate in 1992, and the people fell for it.

Why not do it for real? Make a difference instead of being a slimebucket. I believe such a strategy is certainly possible, it just takes a very strong-willed person to pull it off. We are a nation of almost 300 million. Where are these kinds of people nowadays?
 
  2007-08-03 01:29:17 AM  
the_deciderer: what exactly would I do if my anti-party was in power?

I believe the President of this country has his work cut out for him when he's elected, no matter what his ideology is going in. There's a lot of hard work already waiting for him in the Oval Office upon arrival.

Domestic issues, international issues, working with a Congress that is also aware of these issues and are churning out legislation for you to the Pres to sign or reject.

I think the big problem this country is having is the tendency to influence other countries using fear, coercion, outright force, and even darker strategies like throwing elections, inciting insurgencies and even toppling elected Democracies.

Worrying about the root cause of Islamic violence might be a fun exercise, but we know the real issues are here at home, and there some very worrisome enclaves of our government that don't even feel like they're accountable to the President, Congress or the Constitution, and yes, I'm talking about policy like Iraq, or what's going to happen in Iran, or meddling in South America in the 1970s, Afghanistan in the 1980s and the 1990s covert follies.

And I really don't know how my "anti-party" would handle that. I do know that I got elected in a landslide victory and I have the people on my side.

I want this country to be more honest, and actually believe in its values, not say one thing and do another because it was "necessary." We have a real fetish for necessary evils. And paranoia. But of course they're out to get us: we've pissed a lot of people off in the last 50 years alone.

So, I believe the key is communication. Talking with people about what they want this country to be. Discussion and debate. Town hall meetings. Candidates taking a good hard look at their faults, taking criticism.

The secrecy and paranoia and warmongering need to be similarly addressed. They've held way too much power and importance in our lives.
 
  2007-08-03 04:40:30 PM  
Heh. Don't everybody comment at once...;)

Sorry for the long posts...

I just truly believe that the time is now for some real change, that the same-old same-old isn't doing anything for us except further our decline as a nation.
 
  2007-08-03 05:07:20 PM  
whidbey:paraphrased of course 'I believe the current system sucks and that a new system is needed that fixes everything bad and only does good........

Sounds great. What's your plan. As it stands right now, there are two very strong parties and a very weak independent push and there are elections in less than 18 months. Whoever is elected will be in power for 4 more years and likely 8. That's a good part of a generation! While I am a strong participant and contributor to the new information age and get my information from a wide range of sources, I also choose to keep myself close enough to the ground so I can make the best choice with what I have to work with in the real world.

whidbey:And I really don't know how my "anti-party" would handle that. I do know that I got elected in a landslide victory and I have the people on my side.


Oh really? How exactly do you plan on being elected in a landslide. That's exactly what I'm talking about......all words but no real plan.

And just to recap you're answer to my quesitons:

whidbey:Worrying about the root cause of Islamic violence might be a fun exercise, but we know the real issues are here at home, and there some very worrisome enclaves of our government that don't even feel like they're accountable to the President, Congress or the Constitution, and yes, I'm talking about policy like Iraq, or what's going to happen in Iran, or meddling in South America in the 1970s, Afghanistan in the 1980s and the 1990s covert follies.

So is you're answer that you don't think its a problem and your anti-party won't address it?
 
  2007-08-03 05:22:06 PM  
the_deciderer: If you want to get specific, here's your first debate question. What is the root cause of radical Islam?

Good question. To use your analogy though, wouldn't the "chess move" consider things further down the line than the problem staring us in the face, i.e. terrorism and radical Islamic extremism? How about asking why radical Islam has become our problem? Or, how can we lessen the negative impact of radical Islam on the daily lives of Americans, and on the future of this country?

Whatever the cause of the present incarnation of "radical Islam," I think it's safe to assume it isn't going anywhere anytime soon. With that said, we should seriously consider alternatives to our present intimate relationship with the Middle East. Obviously, oil and the billions of dollars we now have invested in Iraq make the Middle East our problem. (Not to mention the lives of the people we have over there.) What are the alternatives? Can we ween ourselves off oil? Can we lessen our consumption of it to the extent that we are not so dependent on having such a huge presence in the Middle East? Can we, as a country, not only develop energy alternatives, but develop more efficient and sustainable consumption habits?

In short, can we get to a point where "the root cause of radical Islam" becomes nothing more than a mildly interesting cocktail party discussion?
 
  2007-08-03 07:21:48 PM  
Now we're talking!

I agree that it should be a multi-pronged approach. I fully support the rapid development of alternative energy sources to lesson our dependence on middle-east countries (or any country for that matter) and it should be a central part of the "strategy".

I can't however, buy into the fact that by lessoning or removing our dependence that radical Islam will magically no longer matter. It is here to stay, it is on the move and the objectives go beyond our oil dependence. I'm also not signing up for the "kill em all" strategy either but that's why I want to have a discussion with thinking people about the root cause and what can be done to shorten its lifespan.

I believe the root cause are dictatorships that oppress their people and then feeds them with anti-west propaganda. They starve their people and divert their anger to America and their allies. Yes, we have some blame in world problems but they push their people into believing we should be wiped off the face of the earth. They strengthen this message by weaving it artfully into the message of Islam which then provides them with a very powerful weapon...a martyr.

In addition to solving the other problems stated by whidbey, we should take proactive steps to attack this problem. It can be a mix of military, diplomatic and humanitarian methods but it should be done. I do not want to pass this problem onto my 4 and 7 year old son to get drafted into WW3.
 
  2007-08-03 07:25:41 PM  
the_deciderer: Sounds great. What's your plan.

How would you solve the world's problems differently considering you would deal with the exact same world dynamics that the current parties deal with?


I would run on a platform of getting this country's respect back, for one thing. Put out a call to the best minds in America (or even minds in other countries) to create a team of skilled negotiator/diplomats who are willing to listen to the grievances that other countries and individuals are leveling against us. I would guess most Americans don't even know why. And no, I'm not talking about appeasing anyone. But we need to do some listening, it sounds like, if we really want peace.

What ideas do you have to solve the problems that plague this country?

Obviously, I would promise tax relief. Give the middle class a break. I think they would appreciate it for once. Give them more purchasing power.

And also make a serious effort at getting a single-payer health care system to be a reality. Something people could pay into and not get hosed.

The fictional candidate (because it sure wouldn't be me, I don't have that kind of charisma) would offer the people hope. Peaceful solutions instead of war. The creation of jobs with green results in mind to curb emissions and get us off oil, or at least find a way to reduce consumption so we're not buying so much oil. Specifically? You're going to have to give me a little leeway, I don't really know, but I do know that there some very smart, dedicated people in this country that would like to take a crack at solving that problem. Kill the subsidies and tax breaks to oil companies and put that money into research and development.

How would you avoid becoming exactly what you say you dislike?

Stick to my guns. Do whatever it takes to convince people that my deeds are sincere. No flip-flopping.

Lastly, and most importantly, how would you inject change without risking the future of the greatest country in the world?

There's always a risk, though. Of course my plan is risky. This kind of honesty has never really been tried since I don't know when. The trick would be not to do too much too soon, but focus on some goals that could be taken care of in one term, with the hope of being elected to a second one to complete the work.

The focus would be on keeping jobs and industries here at home. Discourage outsourcing. Give businesses a break that stay here in the United States.

But like I said earlier, so much could be accomplished by merely rolling up the sleeves and getting to work on everyday issues, not spreading oneself thin trying to be everything to everybody.

Making a real effort to bolster our image to atone for past mistakes would be a hell of a good first step. And stop ignoring the UN, actually get in there and USE that resource instead of blocking it and ridiculing it and giving other countries lip service with speeches and half-hearted deeds.

I really think you'd see an improvement.
 
  2007-08-03 11:53:53 PM  
I admire your optimism and idealism. It is important to have someone looking towards the future unburdened by too many realities. I do encourage you, however, to start thinking about how to implement the most basic steps in your plan.

I would also warn that some of your items are too idealistic considering the lack of control you would realistically have on so much of the world's dynamics. Even though you use words like "slime bucket", in actuality, most politicians are who they are because of the realities that slap them in the face. I'm sure you would agree that some % of young politicians enter the trade with idealistic intentions not unlike yours and then slowly bend over time. They have to make a hard decision either to not bend and get omitted from viability or bend slightly in some areas in order to accomplish others. It's too easy to say all politicians are evil and corrupt just like everyone makes out all lawyers to be criminals.
 
  2007-08-04 12:18:31 AM  
Good evening, the_diciderer.

I agree with your view regarding Islamic tyrants in the ME, and while I agree that we must redouble our efforts in reducing oil consumption, it raises an awkward twist. The ME, by and large, has no real export infrastructure, complex enough to sustain even a basic economy, if you exclude oil. They will become, to us anyway, an extension of the woes we are evading in Africa, presently. As whidbey pointed out, it's going to take some pretty sharp minds, devoid of petty political motivations to tackle these problems. It will require some painful economic truths explained to all the industrialized nations, that we must give up some of our wealth, in order for these countries to break out of the abject poverty rut that fuels the hatred.
 
  2007-08-04 03:00:58 PM  
Good morning trog69.

Let's not underestimate the ability of a set of free people to invent ways of building up an economy and infrastructure. Just like welfare immediately begins to feed upon itself and creates a spiral of dependence that is almost impossible to break, so it is with oil. The people with oil-to-burn (pardon the pun) have no motivation to do anything else. It quickly becomes a crutch that once remove, as you correctly pointed out, creates a void. Couple that with the oppressive regimes, there's no doubt people on the outside view them as one-dimensional. I'm not saying they won't need support but I have no problem spending money propping up fledging, FREE, economies. It is an investment that will pay back many times over.

One major flaw we (mostly Americans) make is that we reduce timescales down to our attention spans. We can't treat any action in these countries as a reality TV show where we need a conclusion in 6-9 months or even 3-4 years. Let's get this out in the open......THINGS WILL TAKE DECADES AND GENERATIONS AND MAY GET WORSE BEFORE THEY GET BETTER. There is no rule book lying around that says you have to turn around a country in no more than 46 1/2 months and there are not enough brains in the world that can formulate the perfect plan that guarantees linear progress without days, weeks, months or even years of setbacks. The world just doesn't work that way no matter who's in power.

All, I know I'm new on this forum but I do appreciate everyone's open-mindedness and hope my posts are not too long. I've never been good with short points.

Gracias
 
  2007-08-04 03:35:14 PM  
I find this whole idealistic debate about changing politics (not to mention the global view of the US) somewhat interesting.

We want to elect people who are honest and want to do what is best for America.

The first problem with this idea is that what I think is "best for America" may not be what others think is "best for America".

I think keeping people from sneaking across our boarders would be something that is "best for America" while obviously others don't.

Others say that we need to change how people campaign/run ads, that the inernet is the best way to connect with more Americans.

Perhaps it is and perhaps we will see a day when more campaigning is done online than over TV and Radio.

It just isn't here yet and even when that day does come that is no guarantee that politics in the US will improve.

I'm all in favor of improving government.

One thing I dislike is earmarks.....having 10 million dollars for a bike path in Iowa (Don't mean to pick on Iowa) stuck in a spending bill funding the troops in Iraq.

Oooops......running out of time.

I'll have to try to finish my comments tonight.

Hopefully I'll remember my line of thinking.....
 
  2007-08-04 05:32:53 PM  
I have no problem with people working to "change" things. Actually, one of the things that makes the country great is how quickly we can reinvent ourselves.

The thing to keep in mind is the even with a new'system' you can't get away from the core challenges and realities that face us today.

Just as you say, we'll then be faced with differing.opinions of what's good or bad for the country and the world.

As a group of engaged individuals, I feel we should, at least, be discussing these differences intelligently and not superficially. My current toic is ME, its root causes and how best to limit its lifespan (or not) and therefore the risk it brings to the free world.

I am so tired of arguing the same ole question only on their surface. Did Bush lie and peole die? Should we be in Iraq or even if we should pull out.

Its like driving down the street not knowing the destination but someone asks you should I turn left or right? How can we decide the right move if we don't even know where we're going.

The core approach against ME is to try to establish free Muslim nations so the people start worrying about how to make a better life for themselves and thei families. Right now they have no hope of a future so what do they have to lose by buying into the ME mindset?
 
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