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How do you know the recruiter hasn't been to Iraq?

Posted By: Devil's Advocate on 2006-05-10
In Reply to: Exactly. - PK

How do you know where he has been?  As punishment, he should be sent to war.  In other words, off with his head!  My, the mask is off now, isn't it. You know the mask.  The one where you pretend to hate the war but support the troops. 

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And that statement is ridiculous, Iran and Iraq enemies, remember the Iran-Iraq war? Iraq would jus
Bush didn't destroy Iraq. He helped to liberate Iraq.
Exactly, hasn't shown us one way to pay for any
At least she hasn't EVER put down her country
SO far he hasn't proven anything
Yes, why hasn't anything been mentioned about that?
She had the meeting yesterday with them. I didn't hear a thing about it.
What makes you think he hasn't?
He hasn't been officially charged

so it's all just hearsay at this point.  This is all a witch hunt pure and simple, however, everytime dems open up Pandora's box they are the ones who really get burned by it.

I'm not saying people who do something illegal and are found guilty shouldn't be punished Dem. or Rep. alike, but when people start opening up other people's closets they better be darn sure their's are squeaky clean....

Democrat hasn't won the presidency yet.
Mostly because I can't wait to see what you all have to say when the country is still in shambles with a Democrat behind the wheel. I can't believe you all actually think a Dem in office will help. Entire Congress is Dem right now. What has it done lately?
Hasn't McCain only been in Congress also?
What executive experience does he have? From your answer, Palin seems more qualified than McCain even.
blaming someone you know nothing about for something that hasn't happened
Good question...why hasn't he? However,
adopted by a Kenyan man which makes him a Kenyan by law and because this man was Muslim, he was also Muslim, even though we already knew that because his mother brought him up Muslim. ANyway, he cannot be a citizen of this country after being adopted by this man from Kenya. He then has to go through immigration dept and their entire process to apply for US citizenship, which he has no papers to prove that either.

It has been nasty, hasn't it? On both sides...
McCain certainly would not have been my first choice either, but I voted for the candidate that I thought was the better of the two--I actually prefer a more conservative candidate than McCain. I do think that it is a shame that everyone has become so mean. I have tried not to be that way to anyone, although I guess some people see me as "rabid." What can you do? I at least know that I am not a name-caller or a racist, regardless of what others might think. Perhaps it will cool down. At any rate, have a good night!
I agree. It is a disgrace that he hasn't done it before now! nm
Yeah, or he just hasn't got a clue!
How come it hasn't worked for the last 8 years?
Messiah of MT Stars - tells us oh revered and feared of the freak forum!
The big "O" aleady the worst and he hasn't been....
there a year yet. The next would be Jimmy Carter. Read up on the economy under HIM. Obama doesn't give two hoots about what "we" want. He is pushing through his personal agenda at lightning speed and the worst of it is he really believes this will work...kinda like Caesar fiddling while Rome burned around him. Well, they say ignorance is bliss and he must be one deliriously happy camper right about now.
Oh, please. She hasn't been drawn and quartered.
Including smart Republicans who absolutely do NOT want to see her as president.
Of course in your book it's old news; he still hasn't
Joe Biden hasn't had invasive melanoma...

McCain has.  And you think McCain's mind is still sharp?  If it is, it hasn't been coming across that way lately, especially last week.  He better come across as sharp this week and at the debates.  Speaking of McCain's health, I'm going to post something up at the top about that. 

Respectable? Hah! He hasn't even earned trust yet!

Give it a few months for the media orgy/love fest to end then the scandals will begin (quite a few already).The dems are already at each other throats....this is gonna be good!

Hasn't healthcare been "unionized" for decades (sm)

now?  It's been used as a bargaining chip by unions when negotiating a new contract.  Just imagine how discontinuing healthcare from employers would help everyone!  Vendors could sell their products for less.  The insurance obligation would be placed somewhere else, maybe someplace it belongs, and the employees wouldn't have to pay a "co-pay" to their insurers.

Like Obama, I believe that if you like the healthcare you have, then you can keep it.

I've been very ill for 3-1/2 years now, and not only do I NOT qualify for regular health insurance, I also don't qualify for Mediaid.  When my social security disability claim comes through, I believe I'm not eligible for Medicare for something like 2-1/2 years after being approved.  So that's 2-1/2 YEARS to deny someone who was approved based on ILLNESS!  Isn't that kind of crazy?

If the option of an insurance plan that I can afford is "on the table," then I'd snatch it up as quickly as I could, while being perfectly agreeable with you keeping your own policies.

Some of us are falling through the cracks.

Because so far I'm still allowed to express my honest opinion. He hasn't taken that away from us

Those are his words, and what is scary is that I think he believes it. It's bad enough we've got enemies who believe they're in a religious war. With each passing day, I'm starting to think HE believes he's in one, too. If that's the case, we're in more trouble than anyone could have thought.

My post was about HIM, not about you. But it isn't the first time a Bush groupie has PERSONALLY attacked a poster for expressing their opinion about BUSH. Now, how do you think that makes YOU look? Maybe it's YOU who should grow up or at least WAKE up and see what he's doing, not just to us but to the entire WORLD.

As long as we all still have freedom of expression, I'll continue to express my views, whether you like them or not.

And I hope you keep posting. Nobody can prove my point for me like a Bush groupie, and I do appreciate the help!!

my 401K from a previous employer hasn't lost much
but it's in low risk investments, a lot of bonds, and so when things get better, it probably won't rise as quickly as other 401k's. I'm a chicken.
thanks, Marmann, I miss JTBB, hasn't post since yesterday evening, you o.k?..nm
why are we in iraq?
I think the reasons we are in Iraq were said best at the Downing Street Memo hearing held by Representative Conyers and attended by Joe Wilson, Cindy Sheehan (mother of a son killed in Iraq), Ray McGovern, an ex-CIA analyst and Mr. Bonifaz, attorney.  We are there because of *OIL* - Oil, Israel and Location.  We need to get out of Iraq NOW.  Bush lied to America and the world.  There were no WMD, which most of us enlightened people knew, there was no threat from a country broken down by sanctions we placed on it after the Gulf War.  Bush needs to be impeached..Just my 2 cents, folks..
why are we in Iraq?
BUSH---Bring our boys back home...they don't need to be there to get killed...and every day there are more and
more....lucky Bush had daughters...or maybe he would ha ve the boys home by now..but he got away doing things so, his daughters if they were sons...would too....
Gee, wasnt one of the many reasons Bush and Blair told America and England for invading a soverign country was that it would make us safer??  Doesnt the warmonger in the White House still say that??  Lying once again..It has made us less safe and has caused a few terrorists to grow to thousands around the world that hate us totally and want to destroy us.  Thanks, Bush, you screwed up again. 
Why we're really in Iraq.

Two years before 9/11, candidate Bush was already talking privately about attacking Iraq, according to his former ghost writer

Houston: Two years before the September 11 attacks, presidential candidate George W. Bush was already talking privately about the political benefits of attacking Iraq, according to his former ghost writer, who held many conversations with then-Texas Governor Bush in preparation for a planned autobiography.

“He was thinking about invading Iraq in 1999,” said author and journalist Mickey Herskowitz. “It was on his mind. He said to me: ‘One of the keys to being seen as a great leader is to be seen as a commander-in-chief.’ And he said, ‘My father had all this political capital built up when he drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait and he wasted it.’ He said, ‘If I have a chance to invade….if I had that much capital, I’m not going to waste it. I’m going to get everything passed that I want to get passed and I’m going to have a successful presidency.”

Herskowitz said that Bush expressed frustration at a lifetime as an underachiever in the shadow of an accomplished father. In aggressive military action, he saw the opportunity to emerge from his father’s shadow. The moment, Herskowitz said, came in the wake of the September 11 attacks. “Suddenly, he’s at 91 percent in the polls, and he’d barely crawled out of the bunker.”

That President Bush and his advisers had Iraq on their minds long before weapons inspectors had finished their work – and long before alleged Iraqi ties with terrorists became a central rationale for war – has been raised elsewhere, including in a book based on recollections of former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill. However, Herskowitz was in a unique position to hear Bush’s unguarded and unfiltered views on Iraq, war and other matters – well before he became president.

In 1999, Herskowitz struck a deal with the campaign of George W. Bush about a ghost-written autobiography, which was ultimately titled A Charge to Keep : My Journey to the White House, and he and Bush signed a contract in which the two would split the proceeds. The publisher was William Morrow. Herskowitz was given unimpeded access to Bush, and the two met approximately 20 times so Bush could share his thoughts. Herskowitz began working on the book in May, 1999, and says that within two months he had completed and submitted some 10 chapters, with a remaining 4-6 chapters still on his computer. Herskowitz was replaced as Bush’s ghostwriter after Bush’s handlers concluded that the candidate’s views and life experiences were not being cast in a sufficiently positive light.

According to Herskowitz, who has authored more than 30 books, many of them jointly written autobiographies of famous Americans in politics, sports and media (including that of Reagan adviser Michael Deaver), Bush and his advisers were sold on the idea that it was difficult for a president to accomplish an electoral agenda without the record-high approval numbers that accompany successful if modest wars.

The revelations on Bush’s attitude toward Iraq emerged recently during two taped interviews of Herskowitz, which included a discussion of a variety of matters, including his continued closeness with the Bush family, indicated by his subsequent selection to pen an authorized biography of Bush’s grandfather, written and published last year with the assistance and blessing of the Bush family.

Herskowitz also revealed the following:

-In 2003, Bush’s father indicated to him that he disagreed with his son’s invasion of Iraq.

-Bush admitted that he failed to fulfill his Vietnam-era domestic National Guard service obligation, but claimed that he had been “excused.”

-Bush revealed that after he left his Texas National Guard unit in 1972 under murky circumstances, he never piloted a plane again. That casts doubt on the carefully-choreographed moment of Bush emerging in pilot’s garb from a jet on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln in 2003 to celebrate “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq. The image, instantly telegraphed around the globe, and subsequent hazy White House statements about his capacity in the cockpit, created the impression that a heroic Bush had played a role in landing the craft.

-Bush described his own business ventures as “floundering” before campaign officials insisted on recasting them in a positive light.

Throughout the interviews for this article and in subsequent conversations, Herskowitz indicated he was conflicted over revealing information provided by a family with which he has longtime connections, and by how his candor could comport with the undefined operating principles of the as-told-to genre. Well after the interviews—in which he expressed consternation that Bush’s true views, experience and basic essence had eluded the American people —Herskowitz communicated growing concern about the consequences for himself of the publication of his remarks, and said that he had been under the impression he would not be quoted by name. However, when conversations began, it was made clear to him that the material was intended for publication and attribution. A tape recorder was present and visible at all times.

Several people who know Herskowitz well addressed his character and the veracity of his recollections. “I don’t know anybody that’s ever said a bad word about Mickey,” said Barry Silverman, a well-known Houston executive and civic figure who worked with him on another book project. An informal survey of Texas journalists turned up uniform confidence that Herskowitz’s account as contained in this article could be considered accurate.

One noted Texas journalist who spoke with Herskowitz about the book in 1999 recalls how the author mentioned to him at the time that Bush had revealed things the campaign found embarrassing and did not want in print. He requested anonymity because of the political climate in the state. “I can’t go near this,” he said.

According to Herskowitz, George W. Bush’s beliefs on Iraq were based in part on a notion dating back to the Reagan White House – ascribed in part to now-vice president Dick Cheney, Chairman of the House Republican Policy Committee under Reagan. “Start a small war. Pick a country where there is justification you can jump on, go ahead and invade.”

Bush’s circle of pre-election advisers had a fixation on the political capital that British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher collected from the Falklands War. Said Herskowitz: “They were just absolutely blown away, just enthralled by the scenes of the troops coming back, of the boats, people throwing flowers at [Thatcher] and her getting these standing ovations in Parliament and making these magnificent speeches.”

Republicans, Herskowitz said, felt that Jimmy Carter’s political downfall could be attributed largely to his failure to wage a war. He noted that President Reagan and President Bush’s father himself had (besides the narrowly-focused Gulf War I) successfully waged limited wars against tiny opponents – Grenada and Panama – and gained politically. But there were successful small wars, and then there were quagmires, and apparently George H.W. Bush and his son did not see eye to eye.

“I know [Bush senior] would not admit this now, but he was opposed to it. I asked him if he had talked to W about invading Iraq. “He said, ‘No I haven’t, and I won’t, but Brent [Scowcroft] has.’ Brent would not have talked to him without the old man’s okaying it.” Scowcroft, national security adviser in the elder Bush’s administration, penned a highly publicized warning to George W. Bush about the perils of an invasion.

Herskowitz’s revelations are not the sole indicator of Bush’s pre-election thinking on Iraq. In December 1999, some six months after his talks with Herskowitz, Bush surprised veteran political chroniclers, including the Boston Globe’s David Nyhan, with his blunt pronouncements about Saddam at a six-way New Hampshire primary event that got little notice: “It was a gaffe-free evening for the rookie front-runner, till he was asked about Saddam’s weapons stash,” wrote Nyhan. ‘I’d take ‘em out,’ [Bush] grinned cavalierly, ‘take out the weapons of mass destruction…I’m surprised he’s still there,” said Bush of the despot who remains in power after losing the Gulf War to Bush Jr.’s father…It remains to be seen if that offhand declaration of war was just Texas talk, a sort of locker room braggadocio, or whether it was Bush’s first big clinker. ”

The notion that President Bush held unrealistic or naïve views about the consequences of war was further advanced recently by a Bush supporter, the evangelist Pat Robertson, who revealed that Bush had told him the Iraq invasion would yield no casualties. In addition, in recent days, high-ranking US military officials have complained that the White House did not provide them with adequate resources for the task at hand.

Herskowitz considers himself a friend of the Bush family, and has been a guest at the family vacation home in Kennebunkport. In the late 1960s, Herskowitz, a longtime Houston Chronicle sports columnist designated President Bush’s father, then-Congressman George HW Bush, to replace him as a guest columnist, and the two have remained close since then. (Herskowitz was suspended briefly in April without pay for reusing material from one of his own columns, about legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden.)

In 1999, when Herskowitz turned in his chapters for Charge to Keep, Bush’s staff expressed displeasure —often over Herskowitz’s use of language provided by Bush himself. In a chapter on the oil business, Herskowitz included Bush’s own words to describe the Texan’s unprofitable business ventures, writing: “the companies were floundering”. “I got a call from one of the campaign lawyers, he was kind of angry, and he said, ‘You’ve got some wrong information.’ I didn’t bother to say, ‘Well you know where it came from.’ [The lawyer] said, ‘We do not consider that the governor struggled or floundered in the oil business. We consider him a successful oilman who started up at least two new businesses.’ ”

In the end, campaign officials decided not to go with Herskowitz’s account, and, moreover, demanded everything back. “The lawyer called me and said, ‘Delete it. Shred it. Just do it.’ ”

“They took it and [communications director] Karen [Hughes] rewrote it,” he said. A campaign official arrived at his home at seven a.m. on a Monday morning and took his notes and computer files. However, Herskowitz, who is known for his memory of anecdotes from his long history in journalism and book publishing, says he is confident about his recollections.

According to Herskowitz, Bush was reluctant to discuss his time in the Texas Air National Guard – and inconsistent when he did so. Bush, he said, provided conflicting explanations of how he came to bypass a waiting list and obtain a coveted Guard slot as a domestic alternative to being sent to Vietnam. Herskowitz also said that Bush told him that after transferring from his Texas Guard unit two-thirds through his six-year military obligation to work on an Alabama political campaign, he did not attend any Alabama National Guard drills at all, because he was “excused.” This directly contradicts his public statements that he participated in obligatory training with the Alabama National Guard. Bush’s claim to have fulfilled his military duty has been subject to intense scrutiny; he has insisted in the past that he did show up for monthly drills in Alabama – though commanding officers say they never saw him, and no Guardsmen have come forward to accept substantial “rewards” for anyone who can claim to have seen Bush on base.

Herskowitz said he asked Bush if he ever flew a plane again after leaving the Texas Air National Guard in 1972 – which was two years prior to his contractual obligation to fly jets was due to expire. He said Bush told him he never flew any plane – military or civilian – again. That would contradict published accounts in which Bush talks about his days in 1973 working with inner-city children, when he claimed to have taken some of the children up in a plane.

In 2002, three years after he had been pulled off the George W. Bush biography, Herskowitz was asked by Bush’s father to write a book about the current president’s grandfather, Prescott Bush, after getting a message that the senior Bush wanted to see him. “Former President Bush just handed it to me. We were sitting there one day, and I was visiting him there in his office…He said, ‘I wish somebody would do a book about my dad.’ ”

“He said to me, ‘I know this has been a disappointing time for you, but it’s amazing how many times something good will come out of it.’ I passed it on to my agent, he jumped all over it. I asked [Bush senior], ‘Would you support it and would you give me access to the rest of family?’ He said yes.”

That book, Duty, Honor, Country: The Life and Legacy of Prescott Bush, was published in 2003 by Routledge. If anything, the book has been criticized for its over-reliance on the Bush family’s perspective and rosy interpretation of events. Herskowitz himself is considered the ultimate “as-told-to” author, lending credibility to his account of what George W. Bush told him. Herskowitz’s other books run the gamut of public figures, and include the memoirs of Reagan aide Deaver, former Texas Governor and Nixon Treasury Secretary John Connally, newsman Dan Rather, astronaut Walter Cunningham, and baseball greats Mickey Mantle and Nolan Ryan.

After Herskowitz was pulled from the Bush book project, the biographer learned that a scenario was being prepared to explain his departure. “I got a phone call from someone in the Bush campaign, confidentially, saying ‘Watch your back.’ ”

Reporters covering Bush say that when they inquired as to why Herskowitz was no longer on the project, Hughes intimated that Herskowitz had personal habits that interfered with his writing – a claim Herskowitz said is unfounded. Later, the campaign put out the word that Herskowitz had been removed for missing a deadline. Hughes subsequently finished the book herself – it received largely critical reviews for its self-serving qualities and lack of spontaneity or introspection.

So, said Herskowitz, the best material was left on the cutting room floor, including Bush’s true feelings.

“He told me that as a leader, you can never admit to a mistake,” Herskowitz said. “That was one of the keys to being a leader.”

URL: http://www.gnn.tv/articles/article.php?id=761

I wonder if any conservatives have noticed that this adminstration is not allowing "live combat" on TV, like they did when President Bush, Sr. was president and we were whipping butt.  I received horrible, horrible pictures this week, how they have to dig big holes in the sand, to protect their eyes from sand damage, not to mention being shot upon at the same time.  How could anyone come on here and flame J. Carter, a man, not the smartest, but who has built thousands of homes for needy people AT HOME and not worried about foreign policy, which his failed, but my goodness, the current president is doing no better. I have actual war pictures from my nephew, infantry in Iraq, this adminstration does not want the American people to know how brutal this war is - if they did CNN would be permitted to be in there with their cameras, and yet right wingers wave the flag and don't have a clue of the bloodshed - until it is their own and it WILL come to that.  I guarantee you, there will be a drastic change of heart when one of their's dies over there.
Iraq war
I agree, no war. But, look, has anyone really done research on the Muslims and their plan for all of us infidels? Even if we hadn't gone to war, they would still be doing their terrorist thing. Yes, there are some Muslims who are peaceful, but Muhammad was a piece of crap and so are most of the men who belong to that, ah, religion? Whatever, don't think that by not reacting they won't terrorize. That's the mistake some European countries are making. I've lived in Europe and I know what the Muslims are like firsthand. Having said that, we have plenty of our own sh*t right here in the U.S. I still kiss the ground when I return home from other countries! Believe this, there will be no more peace, only government take-over in the name of peace, and we, the people, will lose our freedom.
Iraq better off, LOL
and..we are any better in Iraq now?  We are allowing them to vote for a constitution which is controlled by religious fanatics, aligned with Iran, which takes away rights women had under Saddam..We have allowed the Taliban to come back into Afghanistan and they are now running for office..the opium trade in Afghanistan is thriving, Osama, our **real** enemy is still on the loose..sooo....what did we accomplish?  Nothing.  At least under Saddam, they had security, electricity, jobs, clean bacteria free water, knowing what the future held..the Iraqis have nothing now because of the USA..We are gonna invade and bring democracy to a foreign country..How naive..How stupid..You do not bring democracy into a country by invading it and forcing your beliefs upon it..OMG, idiotic and we are paying a severe price for it now..Frankly, I think the only ones who should be paying a price for this debacle are Bush and his administration..they ought to be tried as war criminals and tarred and feathered..then given to the relatives who lost loved ones in this immoral war and let them do what they want..
was stable?  I guess as long as you're not the one having your tongue ripped out, or you're not a 9-year-old boy languishing in a filthy prison, I guess it was stable.  Okay.  Saddam was  a known keg  of dynamite.   If you don't think he wouldn't  have liked to see us dead as much as any other terrorist would, you're delusional.  He did  pay money to every family who sent forth a suicide bomber in Israel.   Sounds like a terrorist to me.  Again, without using those wonderful 20/20 hindsight glasses, would you be willing to take a chance in a post 9/11 world, given the intelligence available AT THE TIME?  I wouldn't.  And, the administration never ever said that he was linked to 9/11.   That's something a huge chunk of the ingnorant in this country  think, but never heard. 

Germany didn't attack us in World War II, either; Japan did.  Who did we go after first, though?  The evil was the same and had to be dealt with, regardless of which country attacked us.  It really boggles my mind as to why you think the people in Iraq are less deserving of being freed from the grips of a brutal tyrant than the people in Bosnia and Yugoslavia?  If you think Saddam and his epitomy-of-evil sons didn't commit atrocities, what news outlets have you been getting your information from?  You would have to be living in la-la land not to know these facts.  Our troops have uncovered thousands of dead bodies buried in mass graves since going to Iraq, victims of Saddam's cruel and outright savage regime.  As far as President Clinton and Bosnia, I supported his going to free those oppressed people from that brutal dictator they were under.  I'm a humanitarian and a patriot and don't believe in playing politics during war like you democrats do.  By the way, Clinton promised when he sent our troops to Bosnia that they would all be home by Christmas of that year, but guess what?  We still have troops there and he had several years to bring them back but didn't.  As far as our troops being deployed all over the world under Clinton, he had our troops spread so thin, and he did this himself and did not inherit the problem, that we didn't even have enough troops here at home to support us if we were attacked.  This is per the military themselves, not my report.

 The problem with you democrats is that you are being fed talking points from a group of news media outlets so biased they are about to fall over the cliff from leaning left.  You are being lied to by them, and I admonish you to get the facts, not their talking points.  Don't let them do your thinking for you.  Research and get the truth for yourself.  The media outlets you listen to have an agenda - to  make this country lose this war against terror, but mainly to make this country into a socialist nation.  This has been their agenda for years and years and you are being dumbed-down by them because of your gullibility.  For the sake of our children and grandchildren, wake up!!

By the way, there were over 100,000 terrorists prior to our going to war against them, so 17,000 is quite an achievement I would say. Do you want them living in your neighborhood, having access to the schools, shopping malls, and supermarkets in your neighborhood, because that's what you'll have if we don't win this war.

Iraq. sm
Now that the islamofascists see Iraq as their cause celebre' we can ill afford to lose there.  This is one fight we absolutely must win.  Our denizens of hatred have been here since the 60s. Their agenda has only gotten stronger and they keep it close to their hearts. Visit the campus of nearly every institution of higher learning and you will find them.  They are the ones who after 9/11 made statements, such as Ward Churchill, that the WTC was full of little Eichmanns' who deserved their death.  Or as Chomsky has said, with glee, that we are finally getting what we had coming. They will settle for no less than hopefully dozens of mushroom clouds in American cities. They have their dancing shoes on. 
Bad in Iraq...
The President has never said it was not bad in Iraq. He says it constantly. What he did say was that we had to stay the course, and by that he meant not abandon Iraq until they could handle their own security. He did not mean that nothing should change. He admits that things could have been done better....of course he does. Things could have been done better in every conflict this country has been involved in. Hindsight is always 20/20. Military advisors of both political bent had input into going into Iraq and the result of such is as much their responsibility as anyone's. And need I remind you that the President alone can't send soldiers to war...Congress has to do that, and Congress did, with the same information the President had, no matter how much the left wants to deny that. I still believe and will always believe that us being in Iraq is what has kept Al Qaeda from making worse and bigger attacks on our own soil. They are afraid that this country under this President's leadership might come into other Arab countries searching for them if they did, and what they DO NOT want is American boots on more of their soil. I believe strongly that we did the right thing. What I think that is happening now is that perhaps the President is losing some of his resolve because of political pressure. I hope that is not the case. We would be much better served if we tried to come up with a consensus as an answer....if the Democrats really cared about fixing the situation they would have put forth ideas in the years before the election other than cut and run. But that would not be politically expedient...it was to their political benefit for the situation to remain bad. And THAT, my friends, is SAD. And yes, I recognize that it has happened on both sides, and the fact that it has become more important to elect a party than to take care of this country as a whole is also SAD. That is what happens when moral decline permeates a society, when it becomes about me, me, me, or little groups of us, us, us, and power; and MUCH LESS to do with the wellbeing of the country as a whole. And that is exactly what has happened. ALL groups hold some responsibility. It used to be God, Family, Country. Now God is out, Family is out, and Country is on the way out. Heartbreaking.
We went to war with Iraq because the...
stated policy of this country was that if attacked we would go after the terrorists and the states who supported them. And Saddam was linked to 9-11, though the liberal media did manage to pretty much squash that by not reporting extensively on it. See below.

Saddam supported terrorists monetarily, he gave them refuge. He paid bounties to suicide bombers' families. Saddam provided diplomatic help to Islamic extremists, one being Abu Abbas, former secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Front. He masterminded the October 7-9, 1985 hijacking of an Italian cruise ship whose name, sadly, is now synonymous with terrorism. The Achille Lauro was on a voyage across the Mediterranean when four Palestinian terrorists seized it on the high seas. They held some 400 passengers hostage for 44 hours. At one point, they segregated the Jewish passengers on board. One of them was a 69-year-old New York retiree named Leon Klinghoffer. He happened to be confined to a wheelchair. Without mercy, Abu Abbas’ men shot Klinghoffer, then rolled him, wheelchair and all, into the Mediterranean. The hijackers surrendered to Egyptian authorities in exchange for safe passage to Tunisia. Abu Abbas then joined them on a flight to freedom aboard an Egypt Air jet. However, four U.S. fighter planes forced the airliner to land at a NATO base in Sicily. Italian officials took the hijackers into custody. But Abbas possessed the ultimate get-out-of-jail card: An Iraqi diplomatic passport.

How do we know this?

The source for this information is not Ann Coulter or Rush Limbaugh. It is none other than Bettino Craxi. At that time, he was Italy’s prime minister. As Craxi explained in an October 14, 1985 UPI story: “Abu Abbas was the holder of an Iraqi diplomatic passport…The plane was on an official mission, considered covered by diplomatic immunity and extra-territorial status in the air and on the ground.” Seeing that this terrorist traveled as a credentialed Iraqi diplomat, the Italian authorities let Abbas flee to Yugoslavia. After political parties furiously withdrew from Craxi’s coalition, the Italian government collapsed. After escaping Italian police in October 1985 following the Achille Lauro hijacking (thanks to his Iraqi diplomatic passport), Abu Abbas finally ended up in Baghdad in 1994, where he lived comfortably as one of Saddam Hussein’s guests. U.S. soldiers caught Abbas in Iraq in April 2003.

Another is Hisham al Hussein, the former second secretary at Iraq’s embassy in Manila. The Philippine government expelled him on February 13, 2003, just five weeks before the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Cell phone records indicate he had spoken with Abu Madja and Hamsiraji Sali, two leaders of Abu Sayyaf, al-Qaeda’s de facto franchise for the Philippines. The timing was particularly suspicious, as he had been in contact with the Abu Sayyaf terrorists just before and after they conducted an attack in Zamboanga City.
Abu Sayyaf’s nail-filled bomb exploded on October 2, 2002, injuring 23 individuals and killing two Filipinos and one American. That American was U.S. Special Forces Sergeant First Class Mark Wayne Jackson, age 40. As Dan Murphy wrote in the February 26, 2003 Christian Science Monitor, those tell-tale cell phone records bolster the televised claim by Hamsiraji Sali, a top Abu Sayyaf terrorist, that the Iraqi diplomat had offered this group of Islamo-fascists Baghdad’s help with joint missions.

Beyond cash and diplomatic help, Saddam Hussein was the Conrad Hilton of the terrorist world. He provided a place for terrorists to kick back, relax, and reflect after killing people for a living.

Abu Nidal lived comfortably in Iraq between 1999 and August 2002. As the Associated Press reported on August 21, 2002, Nidal’s Beirut office said he entered Iraq “with the full knowledge and preparations of the Iraqi authorities.” Prior to his relocation, he ran the eponymous Abu Nidal Organization — a Palestinian terror network behind attacks in 20 countries, at least 407 confirmed murders, and some 788 other terror-related injuries. Among other savage acts, Nidal’s group used guns and grenades to attack a ticket counter at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci airport on December 27, 1985. Another cell in Austria simultaneously assaulted Vienna’s airport, killing 19 people. Among the five Americans that Abu Nidal murdered that day was John Buonocore III, a 20-year-old Fairleigh Dickinson College student who had studied in Rome that fall semester. Buonocore was shot in the back while checking in for his flight home. He had hoped to return to Wilmington, Delaware to help his father celebrate his 50th birthday.
The New York Times reports that Abu Nidal's Fatah Revolutionary Council murdered the following 17 Americans, at a minimum:

Americans killed in the Abu Nidal Organization's December 27, 1985 attack on Rome's airport:

*John Buonocore III, 20, of Wilmington, Delaware

*Frederick Gage of Madison, Wisconsin

*Natasha Simpson, 11, of New York

*Don Maland of New Port Richey, Florida

*Elena Tomarello, 67, of Naples, Florida

The New York Times, December 29, 1985

American executed during ANO's 1986 hijacking of a Pan Am jet at Karachi, Pakistan's airport:

*Rajesh Kumar of Huntington Beach, California

The New York Times, September 7, 1986

Americans slaughtered in ANO's September 8, 1974 bombing of a TWA jet over the Ionian Sea en route from Israel to Greece, killing all 88 aboard:

*Eitan Bard of Tuckahoe, New York

*Seldon Bard of Tuckahoe, New York

*Ralph H. Bosh of Madison, Connecticut

*Jon L. Cheshire of Old Lyme, Connecticut

*Jeremiah Hadley of Poughkeepsie, New York

*Katherine Hadley Michel of Poughkeepsie, New York

*Frederick Hare of Bernardsville, New Jersey

*Margaret Hare of Bernardsville, New Jersey

*Don H. Holliday of Mahwah, New Jersey

*Dr. Frederick Stohlman of Newton, Massachusetts

*Mrs. Frederick Stohlman of Newton, Massachusetts

The New York Times, September 10, 1974

If there is any justice here, perhaps it is the fact that Abu Nidal died in August 2002. Saddam Hussein’s government claimed that he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head — four times.

So far, we have documented that Saddam Hussein harbored terrorists (many with al-Qaeda links) responsible for international mayhem and even the incidental deaths of Americans. But is there any evidence that Iraq sheltered those responsible for attacks on America?

Enter Abdul Rahman Yasin. This Indiana-born, Iraqi-reared terrorist remains wanted by the FBI for his role in the February 26, 1993 World Trade Center attack. President Bill Clinton's Justice Department indicted Yasin for mixing the chemicals in the bomb that exploded in the parking garage beneath the Twin Towers, killing six and injuring 1,042 people in New York. Soon after the smoke cleared, Yasin returned to Iraq. Coalition forces have discovered documents that show he enjoyed housing and a monthly government salary.
Former ABC News correspondent Sheila MacVicar looked for Yasin, and here is what she reported on July 27, 1994: “Last week, [television program] Day One confirmed [Yasin] is in Baghdad…Just a few days ago, he was seen at [his father’s] house by ABC News. Neighbors told us Yasin comes and goes freely.” Since Iraq was liberated, Yasin remains at large.

Medical Treatment for Terrorists

Saddam Hussein’s general store for terrorists included medical care, too.

Abu Musab al Zarqawi. After running an al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan, he found his way to Baathist Baghdad, where he reportedly checked into Olympic Hospital, an elite facility run by the late Uday Hussein, son of the captured tyrant. Zarqawi is believed to have received medical treatment for a leg injury sustained while dodging American GIs who toppled the Taliban. He convalesced in Baghdad for some two months. Once he was back on his foot, Zarqawi then opened an Ansar al-Islam terrorist training camp in northern Iraq. Zarqawi is thought to be behind the October 28, 2002 assassination of Lawrence Foley. Foley was a U.S. diplomat in Amman, Jordan who worked on international development projects. For that transgression, he was gunned down and killed in his driveway at home.

According to dissidents, journalists who have visited, and even United Nations weapons inspectors, Saddam Hussein appears to have offered training to terrorists, in addition to funding, diplomatic help, safe haven and medical care.

The Associated Press reports that Coalition forces shut down at least three terrorist training camps in Iraq. The most notorious of these was the base at Salman Pak, about 15 miles southeast of Baghdad. Before the war, numerous Iraqi defectors said the camp featured a passenger jet on which terrorists sharpened their air piracy skills. This satellite photo shows an urban assault training site, a three-car train for railway-attack instruction, and a commercial airliner sitting all by itself in the middle of the desert.

Sabah Khodada, a former Iraqi army captain who once worked at Salman Pak. On October 14, 2001, Khodada granted an interview to PBS television program “Frontline,” stating, “This camp is specialized in exporting terrorism to the whole world.”

He added: “Training includes hijacking and kidnapping of airplanes, trains, public buses, and planting explosives in cities ... how to prepare for suicidal operations.”

He continued: “We saw people getting trained to hijack airplanes...They are even trained how to use utensils for food, like forks and knives provided in the plane.”

Does that sound familiar?

A map of the camp that Khodada drew from memory for “Frontline” closely matches satellite photos of Salman Pak, further bolstering his credibility.

General Vincent Brooks, who briefed reporters throughout the initial phases of Operation Iraqi Freedom, had his own observations about Saddam Hussein's terrorist pedagogy. Speaking at an April 6, 2003 press conference, General Brooks said: “The nature of the work being done by some of those people that we captured, their inferences to the type of training that they received, all of these things give us the impression that there was terrorist training that was conducted at Salman Pak.”

An al-Qaeda Link?

So does all of this, or anything else, suggest a tie between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda? Some evidence is interesting but far from solid, such as this image that appeared on the front page of the March 27, 2003 New York Post showing U.S. troops at an Iraqi military base in Nasariyah. They encountered a mural that seems to celebrate the destruction of the Twin Towers.

Al-Qaeda link? Recall that Abdul Rahman Yasin, one of the al-Qaeda bombers who hit the World Trade Center in 1993, fled to Iraq after that attack and lived there freely, reportedly with a government salary. That’s one clear link to al-Qaeda.

Then there is the interesting case of Ahmad Hikmat Shakir — an Iraqi VIP facilitator who worked at the international airport in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Citing a foreign government service, page 340 of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on pre-Iraq-War intelligence indicates that, Shakir claimed he got this job through Ra'ad al-Mudaris, an Iraqi Embassy employee in Malaysia. On January 5, 2000, Shakir greeted Khalid al Midhar and Nawaz al Hamzi at Kuala Lampur’s airport. He then escorted them to a local hotel where these September 11 hijackers met with 9/11 conspirators Ramzi bin al Shibh and Tawfiz al Atash. Five days later, according to The Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes, Shakir disappeared.
Khalid al Midhar and Nawaz al Hamzi subsequently spent the morning of September 11, 2001 flying American Airlines Flight 77 into the Pentagon, killing 184 people.

Shakir, the Iraqi airport greeter, was arrested in Qatar on September 17, 2001. On his person and in his apartment, authorities discovered documents connecting him to the 1993 WTC bomb plot and “Operation Bojinka,” al-Qaeda’s 1995 plan to blow up 12 jets simultaneously over the Pacific. Interestingly enough, as a May 27, 2004 Wall Street Journal editorial reported, Ahmed Hikmat Shakir's name appears on three different rosters of the late Uday Hussein's prestigious paramilitary group, the Saddam Fedayeen. A government source told the Journal that the papers identify Shakir as a lieutenant colonel in the Saddam Fedayeen.

Ahmad Khalil Ibrahim Samir al-Ani was Consul and Second Secretary at Iraq's Czech embassy between March 1999 and April 22, 2001. He long has been suspected of meeting with September 11 ringleader Mohamed Atta, most likely on April 8, 2001. Perhaps at other times, too. While skeptics dismiss this encounter, Czech intelligence found Al-Ani's appointment calendar in Iraq's Prague embassy, presumably after Saddam Hussein's defeat. Al-Ani's diary lists an April 8, 2001, meeting with Hamburg student. Maybe, in a massive coincidence, Al-Ani dined with a young scholar and chatted about Hegel and Nietzsche. Or perhaps Al-Ani saw a former student from Hamburg named Mohamed Atta to discuss more practical matters. The Czech government sticks to their contention that they did observe this Iraqi diplomat meeting with Mohamed Atta just five months before 9-11. As Czech U.N. Ambassador Hynek Kmonicek explained in a letter to Philadelphia attorney James Beasley, Jr.: “In this moment we can confirm, that during the next stay of Mr. Muhammad Atta in the Czech Republic, there was the contact with the official of the Iraqi intelligence, Mr. Al Ani, Ahmed Khalin Ibrahim Samir, who was on 22nd April 2001 expelled from the Czech Republic on the basis of activities which were not compatible with the diplomatic status.” Al-Ani was kicked out of Prague for casing the headquarters of Radio Free Europe and Radio Free Iraq, presumably because he wanted to blow them up. Of course, we know what happened next. Mohamed Atta and his henchmen went to airports on the East Coast. Within just three hours, he and the other pilots were in the air, about to reshape history. He and his evil colleagues turned this lovely vista of America's premier city into a towering inferno. They stole 2,749 innocent souls from the American family and decapitated the most powerful skyline man ever built.

Would This Hold Up in Court?

So would any or all of these ties between Iraq and terrorism or Iraq and al-Qaeda, in particular, withstand judicial scrutiny? That’s the question the families of two of those murdered at the World Trade Center wondered. The survivors of George Eric Smith, a 38-year-old senior business analyst with SunGard Asset Management Systems and the family of Timothy Soulas, age 35, a foreign currency specialist with Cantor Fitzgerald, sued Baathist Iraq and the Taliban for damages connected to the murders of their loved ones.

The federal trial judge was Harold Baer, Jr. a Clinton appointee. He took testimony from Clinton-designated CIA director James Woolsey and American Enterprise Institute scholar Laurie Mylroie, an adviser to the 1992 Clinton campaign. Baer learned about the Salman Pak camp, and considered other evidence of Saddam Hussein’s ties to al-Qaeda. To be fair, Baer did not hear Hussein’s side, as the Iraqi dictator did not respond to the suit. Nevertheless, Baer issued his decision.

As the May 8, 2003 New York Post and other news outlets reported, Baer ruled that Saddam Hussein’s government was complicit in the September 11 attacks and that the Baathist government owed the plaintiffs a judgment of $104 million.

As Baer stated on May 7, 2003:

“I conclude that plaintiffs have shown, albeit barely, ‘by evidence satisfactory to the court’ that Iraq provided material support to bin Laden and al Qaeda.” This lead to the following headline from the CBS: “Court Rules: Al Qaida, Iraq Linked.” Thus, there is abundant and undeniable evidence that Saddam Hussein provided money, diplomatic services, shelter, medical care, and training to terrorists of every stripe, including those complicit in the 1993 WTC bombing and — according to a Clinton-appointed federal judge — the September 11 attacks. The Iraqi dictator aided al-Qaeda and other global terrorists who murdered Americans, both at home and abroad.

Saddam Hussein was a living threat to American national security and the safety of the civilized world.

well then I should say pro war in Iraq...sm
Excuse me for pointing out that some folks are pro - war, and let me rephrase that to pro - military action in Iraq (which happened to lead to war).

This is an old pic I have seen floating around, and I don't agree with it. Just become some liberals writers have come out on record hating the troops, doesn't mean a hill of beans to me. Matter of fact, conservative media, writers, etc who repost it ad nauseum are just as guilty of bringing down the morale of the troops IMHO.
9-11 and Iraq---
are related. When I see video footage of Mohamed Atta meeting with one of Hussein's generals in the weeks before the attack, I don't write that off as a coincidence. WHen they found that 747 in the desert in Iraq, fully equipped, I don't think it was there a a tourist attraction. I rather think it was there to train hijackers. But if some want to ignore that, let them. It is definitely their right. I just don't think it takes a rocket scientist to figure out that Hussein definitely had ties, and most likely money, in the 9-11 attack. And I also believe that Bush believed that, his advisors believed that, and that Congress believed that (liberals and conservatives alike) because they voted to go to war. Bush did not do it by himself. Of course, now that elections are upon us, the liberals are backpedaling 100 mph just like they did before...I voted for it before I voted against it...oh I just authorized use of force, didn't mean he had to USE it, yada yada. Please. I am so tired of the buck passing.

My head is not in the sand...my posts have demonstrated that. I believe the reason to go in was a good one. I believe the response of the Iraqi people was overestimated. If they had held onto the feeling they had when they were dancing in the streets and pulling down Hussein's likenesses all over Baghdad, it would have been a different story. If Iran had not bankrolled terrorists and intervened...if, if, if. No one knows how a war is going to go. However, one thing I do know...we have not been attacked on our own soil since we went into Iraq. I do NOT think that would have been the case had we not gone in. I still stand by the idea that it set Al Qaeda back on its heels. They did not expect that. They expected a Bill Clinton-like response in Somalia. We would just whimper and lick our wounds and wait for the next hit. Perhaps you do not worry about buses, trains, malls being bombed. Perhaps you think we are isolated and that will never happen here. Perhaps you still think Iraq has nothing to do with all that.

And no, love won't cure terrorism. Fighting will not cure it, but it will certainly deter it. Would you rather terrorists kill our soldiers in the streets of New York? Los Angeles? Dubuque Iowa? Tulsa Oklahoma? Would it be easier for you to take if they were dying here at the hands of terrorists? Would you be willing to fight then? Just wondering.
Maybe he should go to Iraq and

get hit with shoes, too. That might wake him up. LOL

I agree that he is arrogant and I've never seen this in my lifetime. It sets a new precedence [sic] (I'm tired) for this to happen every election. What I really like about him is the way he "wiggles" when he takes questions and you can see him just trying to find the correct words to fit the question without answering it.

Only time will tell...and for you bashers, this is my opinion. I am going to "sort of" give him a try but the first itsy bitsy mistake he makes, I'll be all over it with glee.

The war in Iraq has nothing to do with
The Bush administration's disastrous foreign policy and national security decisions post-9/11 lost us more allies and more consitutional rights than we gained in retribution.
Over the last 5 days over 160 people in Iraq have been killed in bombings.  However, in 5 days (by the 30th) US troops are supposed to pull back and stay on US bases unless asked for help by the Iraqi forces.  This is in accordance with the legislation/agreement that Bush signed before he left office.  I just hope the Iraqis can handle it and we can go forward with the plan to get out of there.
Iraq And Bush

I would like to call him "The Hitler of the 21st Century". Any comments?

Of interest, Iraq and oil

"The invasion of Iraq plays a crucial role in the agenda of the neoconservatives. Iraq has the second largest oil reserves in the world.  It could replace, in case of need, other producers such as Saudi Arabia, a fragile ally of the United States. The control of oil production and prices gives the United States potential power to pressure consumer states such as Russia, China, and many in Western Europe."

This is by the former French ambassador to Tunisia, now a journalist.  I guess I hadn't realized that Iraq was that oil-rich.

Iraq war..what did it accomplish
Im no Saddam lover, neither do I love Bush, however, seems to me under Saddam, the people had jobs, electricity to help with fans under the 125+ heat, food, a stable way of life, fresh water, security in the streets. It has been said under this new regimen women have less freedom and rights and under the regimen that will be voted in, they will have even less rights.  Who has killed more Saddam or Bush?  We should have NEVER invaded Iraq, I cannot believe the destruction and death we have caused over NOTHING.  Bush, Cheney, et al..need to be brought up on war criminal charges..As of today, only 38% of American people think the war in Iraq was justified..
Iraq Veterans Against The War

t r u t h o u t | Iraq Veterans Against the War
DSL | 56K
Windows Media
DSL | 56K
DSL | 56K

Some of them are in Iraq. And some of them have died. sm

The issue of illegal immigration has been around way long than Bush's term in office.  While I do agree it is an even bigger problem with terrorism looming, this was something that should have been addressed long long ago.

Thought you said you were going to Iraq.


iraq is a quagmire
There is no doubt Saddam was a tyrant and feared but the people had jobs, electricity, clean water, security and safety in the streets..Sure you had to adhere to Saddam's ideas and frame work for his country but if you did adhere to that, you were living an okay life..We have not given them what we said we would..They now with this new constitution will be worse off than before we invaded..It is linked to Iran, takes away womens rights, alienates parts of their society..and right now there is no security in the streets, electricity for a few hours a week, water they bathe and drink is water in the streets..We should never have invaded a country to try to impose our beliefs on them..you cant do that..changes have to come from within a country..and then once we invaded, we had no real idea how to establish everything our govt said it was going to..Iraq is a lost cause..My heart breaks, an ancient country that we have destroyed..If we stay, more lives, both ours and theirs, will be lost, if we leave a civil war will erupt..there is just no good decision on Iraq.
Well gee, let's see...do we believe there were WMDs in Iraq?
Do we believe Bush was actually elected by the American public in 2000 or 2004? Do we believe terrorists lurk in every street here in America? Do we believe our troops have been given the best equipment with which to do their jobs? Do we believe Repubs want to fix Social Security? Do we believe Jeff Gannon was an accredited reporter?

Well, looks like you're going to have to find another explanation for yourself - we're obviously not believing everything we hear and apparently aren't half as gullible as you.
She said she had been to Iraq and would re-enlist if necessary
She never said she was going back right now.  There's the distortion