No thanks; Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld – you guys broke it, you fix it

Here we go again. The congressional elections are approaching and the war drums are pounding louder.

saddamSaddam Hussein was the despot that we helped prop up to manage an arbitrarily created piece of real estate known today as Iraq. Like most of the Middle East, the European “infidels” in their great wisdom carved up these tribal lands of this vast area into random divisions and installed puppets to run them. When countries got too uppity like Iran, and installed a democratic government, we helped overthrow those who were elected and put up the Shah. When the Shah was deposed after a revolution, we armed the strongman Saddam Hussien and the Iraq-Iran war was launched. It lasted for 8 years and cost up to a million and a half lives. It also saw Hussein using western supplied weapons of mass destruction against civilians. If they get too militant, like invading their neighbor (who happens to supply us with lots of oil) we launch wars like Desert Storm. But if they attack a neighbor we don’t like (Iran), we egg them on and supply lots of arms.

Our biggest blunder came after 9-11 when, just because George W. felt like it, we attacked and overthrew our puppet that we had armed and supported all those years. Remember all the promises of success and how all the oil money would pay to set up a new democratic Iraq?

What we got, is what will always happen in the Middle East as soon as the boot heel of oppression is lifted. The sectarian rivalry’s made worse by artificial and arbitrary borders flare up again.

So now the Sunnis, who are the majority across the Middle East but an oppressed minority in Iraq and Sryia, are rising up to set up their own country the Islamic State of Levant or Syria.(ISIL/ISIS)

Meet the new bosses even worst than the old despot boss

Meet the new bosses even worst than the old “despot” boss

Why the hell would we stick our nose back in this mess?

In Countries like Pakistan, Yemen and Somolia, that we have not declared war on, we are bombing and shooting men, women and children (not to mention assassinating US citizens). Our continued drone strikes and targeted assassinations are already starting to create new terrorists around the world, whose perceived enemy is the US.

Involving ourselves in the civil war in Syria and Iraq would only create more such terrorists bent on killing Americans. There is no possible outcome that favors the average American except staying out of this civil war. The best way for the US to stay secure is to stop meddling in the Middle East and to use the tax money saved on the implements of war to bring our country into true energy independence.

 

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19 thoughts on “No thanks; Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld – you guys broke it, you fix it

  1. Why the hell would we stick our nose back in this mess?

    Why? So we don’t have to deal with right wing national defense strategies. Strong soft diplomacy needs to be consistent and permanent to avoid the spikes in international “diplomacy” we get from the right.

    Why? Because last I checked, we can’t separate ourselves from Bush’s policies. We as a country broke it, not Bush as a person or even as a party or philosophy.

    Why? To prevent another enclave so anti-civilization and so violent and repressive that a terrorist plot can be hatched a-la 9/11. Understood, Giuliani and right wing talking point, but true. If we don’t come to grips with it, Cruz or Christie will use it to win the election in 2016. (Rand Paul is not going to be nominated.)

    Why? Because we are still the greatest military on earth and until we can convince other countries to share the burden, we are the last best hope of the people under the repressive and violent warlords.

    Why? Because we can’t allow a narrative that basically thinks that ISIS in some way is inherent in Islam. ISIS is the inevitable result of a region devoid of a natural national security system. Guess who is at least partially responsible for that?

    Sometimes there are moments when a little push here or there – done with a real international coalition that probably will not include China and Russia can have a great domino effect into the future.

    One such time was when Assad was up against the ropes. Liberals in the UK and here failed and we did not act as an international force. Predictably most of the people we would have liked to partner with are dead or refugees or have found a home in the last man standing who can protect them against what basically breaks down to ethnic cleansing by Assad.

    I am not for bombing necessarily. I know ground troops are absolutely out of the question. However, there does need to be something between what you and Rand Paul are advocating and aerial bombing. Options include a robustly international no-fly zone which would mean extremely limited and targeted air-to-ground bombing, to some sort of sever economic sanctions.

    Critical to any international action would be commitment and action from neighboring states.

    *******************************************************************************************

    The people of the Middle East are what this is all about and they are not destined forever to be ruled by the likes of Saddam Hussein in Iraq, the Ayatollah in Iran, or whatever regime stems from the continual assassinations in Pakistan or sadly Tunisia.

    Our responsibility as a great and powerful nation is to yes a) reduce our military budget by 2/3rds which will allow us to “our country into true energy independence” among many other things, but b) continue the type of soft diplomacy I hope the Obama administration is conducting that does not react with “shock and awe” to world-wide crises like Crimea, but takes a more long term and non-military stance. Get the majority of the world’s communities with us and move forward with economic sanctions that do in the end work. Any questions on that? Ask South Africa.

    Isolationism is tempting. I get that. Especially post-Bush. But it’s still the wrong answer.

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  2. LJ-

    I have to disagree with your line of reasoning. You don’t sound much different than the imperialists such as Teddy Roosevelt or Lloyd George. Your argument reminds me of a poem by Rudyard Kipling:

    Original title : “The White Man’s Burden: The United States and The Philippine Islands”[11][12]

    Take up the White Man’s burden, Send forth the best ye breed
      Go bind your sons to exile, to serve your captives’ need;
    To wait in heavy harness, On fluttered folk and wild–
      Your new-caught, sullen peoples, Half-devil and half-child.

    Take up the White Man’s burden, In patience to abide,
      To veil the threat of terror And check the show of pride;
    By open speech and simple, An hundred times made plain
      To seek another’s profit, And work another’s gain.

    Take up the White Man’s burden, The savage wars of peace–
      Fill full the mouth of Famine And bid the sickness cease;
    And when your goal is nearest The end for others sought,
      Watch sloth and heathen Folly Bring all your hopes to nought.

    Take up the White Man’s burden, No tawdry rule of kings,
      But toil of serf and sweeper, The tale of common things.
    The ports ye shall not enter, The roads ye shall not tread,
      Go mark them with your living, And mark them with your dead.

    Take up the White Man’s burden And reap his old reward:
      The blame of those ye better, The hate of those ye guard–
    The cry of hosts ye humour (Ah, slowly!) toward the light:–
      “Why brought he us from bondage, Our loved Egyptian night?”

    Take up the White Man’s burden, Ye dare not stoop to less–
      Nor call too loud on Freedom To cloke your weariness;
    By all ye cry or whisper, By all ye leave or do,
      The silent, sullen peoples Shall weigh your gods and you.

    Take up the White Man’s burden, Have done with childish days–
      The lightly proferred laurel, The easy, ungrudged praise.
    Comes now, to search your manhood, through all the thankless years
      Cold, edged with dear-bought wisdom, The judgment of your peers!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You left out some important details in your history of US meddling in Iraq/Iran. The reason the US embassy was taken over by militants was their anger over the US giving the monster Shah Pahlavi sanctuary (urged by James Baker, approved by President Carter); the treasonous secret deal candidate Reagan made with Iran to unfreeze their assets and sell them weapons and other war equipment to keep them from negotiating with Carter to release the hostages; Reagan’s false accusations that it was Iran who gassed the Kurds which he used to justify further arms sales to Iraq; Pappy Bush’s Ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie’s virtual green light to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait because they were vertical drilling into Iraq to steal oil; his encouragement of Shiites to revolt against Hussein after GWI resulting in their slaughter; the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi’s who died from the embargo; all of which eventually led to the US invasion of Iraq and toppling of Hussein. That Dubya’s original plans for US oil companies to take over Iraqi oil were cancelled doesn’t negate the fact that they were the motive behind it all.

    That being said, there is no amount of military force that can bring peace to 3 disparate groups of people who hate each other but were forced into 1 country for the benefit of the West. The oil companies would hate it it, but dividing Iraq up into 3 parts and attaching the Kurdish part to Turkey, the Sunni part to Kuwait and the Shiite part to Iran might bring the poor people some peace.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I hate what I am about to say… it sounds like I don’t give a damn:

    We must let them work it out for themselves.

    Imposed solutions are nothing but the pretty tree-lined lanes leading toward the road to Hell (you know, the one paved with good intentions).

    Years of intervention, both well meaning and self serving, have done nothing but intensify the pain. After nearly a decade of spending our own lives and treasure (not to mention Iraqi lives) we’ve accomplished at best nothing. It’s difficult for us to turn our backs on all of that and walk away.

    When after all the sacrifice you leave behind a self serving despot who’s priorities are to settle old scores over rebuilding his nation; when you leave behind an army that has so little commitment to their own nation that in the face of an enemy a thirtieth of it’s size (around a thousand vs. 30,000) bolts and abandons their equipment and uniforms… it comes time to admit we don’t know what the hell we are doing and are only bound to make things much worse.

    The Brits and the French created the mess and we (the US) knowingly bought into maintaining that mess. Now it’s time to step away, try to alleviate the suffering as best we can and see ourselves for what we are; outsiders motivated by both charity and greed.

    We failed. Now we learn, take the lessons to heart and move on.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. JP. The good news is it’s no longer the white man’s burden. It’s all of us white-brown-etc and we are trying and actually getting to the point of running a pluralistic society and world. Personally, my concerns are as informed by my mother’s links to this country as my two father’s links (long story) to the Middle East (Tunisia and Turkey).

    I would have probably agreed with what I take to be your and Rudyard’s anti-colonial perspective. What I’m speaking of today is dealing with real problems. Not for protection of shipping lanes and resources nor to promote a clash of civilizations, but because we had acted for the previous reasons and left 30 million people and many more in the region-at-large in a power vacuum.

    Now, people on the left and right, those interested in not using our military whom I usually agree with, and those interested in just washing our hands of a problematic region. (Please understand that at the root of much of the Paulian isolationism is a deep strand of anti-semitism. Just for the record)

    I agree with Rudyard and you in general, but we as Western Civilization having drawn the lines* and taking much of the wealth of that region do have a responsibility and a link to the people beneath the leaders and rulers in that region. This post-Saddam Hussein era represents a great chance to help the people in that region get a less repressive leadership – whatever it is they choose.

    We’ve seen positive changes in Tunisia and even Iran, and, from what I can tell mostly negative changes or the status quo in many other countries. Time will tell about Egypt, Libya and Pakistan. All I am asking is for HumCo and America’s left to not walk away from this conversation. If we do, Bush, Cheney and or the new blokes being driven by Halliburton or whatever multinational comes next will try to take the reigns again from the Department of Defence AND the State Department.

    I think we would be much better served by liberal leadership in both. We only do that by paying attention and being realistic about people’s (both American’s and non-American’s) real security concerns.

    * Sir Archibald Mapsalot the third…
    http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/kovgs5/sir-archibald-mapsalot-iii

    “That is exactly the kind of mindless imperialism that…your casual ignorance has doomed this region to live in a perpetual state of…”

    I know Sir Mapsalot is the ultimate straw man, but still, I think there is a great deal of truth in that skit. I think there is a right path for the U.S. and that is a path informed by…information… and liberalism. Not by the right whose main concern is continued resource extraction and promoting for personal profit a clash of civilizations.

    Also, here** is a good analysis which unfortunately comes from the conservative side of the aisle. In it he mentions the real-life Sir Mapsalot – Sir Mark Sykes and François Georges-Picot.

    ** http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/15/opinion/sunday/ross-douthat-changing-maps-in-the-mideast.html?hp&rref=opinion

    His conclusion, one I agree with “But two successive administrations have compromised those interests: one through recklessness, the other through neglect. Now the map is changing; now, as in early-20th-century Europe, the price of transformation is being paid in blood.”

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    • Lj-

      I agree to disagree. Your point seems to be: Again, because we have more military might and are more ‘civilized’ than the people we’ve been victimizing, means we should continue to embroil ourselves in middle east politics….possibly using the force of arms?

      That is, as I wrote before, eerily similar to the stated interests of many imperialists. Like the liberal party leader, Lloyd George. Fixing a region we don’t fully understand is a folly that has played out too many times in history already. Believing that we’re so advanced we can do what hasn’t been done before is completely conceited. Trying to enforce or coerce ‘liberalism’ onto the people of the middle east is insanity mixed with hypocrisy.

      Haven’t we messed up enough already?

      Liked by 2 people

    • But we’ve done such a great job with our 100+ years of intervention in Haiti!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Just more blame Bush, and the reaosn it is falling apart is directly tied to the president. Pulled out all at once. as they have proven they can reach us from there just fine so to be in my oppionon ignorant to the fact that if you leave them alone they wont bother us. Or the U.S ask for what it gets by sticking nose into other countries business is ignorant to history. How did ignoring hHitler work out for the world. How many more people lost there life by allowing hitler to get big and spread his ideology? should we have not stopped Hitler? Also dont forget the hr speech done on the sentae floor by illary clinton in support of iraq war. And how she laid out the 8 years as first lady how she knew saddam had WMD from her own inteligence from her husband term as president. Hillary was not relying on BUSH’S INTEL she said herself that she relide on her own knowledge. http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Hilary+clinton+war+speech&qpvt=Hilary+clinton+war+speech&FORM=VDRE#view=detail&mid=9323CC2E445AFCD65E909323CC2E445AFCD65E90. This liberal blame everyone but themselfs helps no one. Just look at IRS scandal. For a year the liberal have blamed it as phony scandal. Then last week IRS said that loius lerners computer crashed and they lost all her emails to and form the white house. And even a liberal can understand that IRS computer dont crash and wipe out emails they are backed up and even a liberal has to admit that this was deliberatly done to hide the trith that the iRS scandal is forsure real and bigger than we even know. This obvious act of is direct proof that this is way bigger than nixon scandal. nixon was accused of using IRS against apponents and bugging a motel room. This goes far beyond that. and only brings merit to all the scandals from fast and furious,irs,Bengahzi the blantant abuse of power so far beyond anything Bush did. And no fast and furious was not a bush policy. his was called wide reciever and all guns had tracker built in and he tracked all the guns. Obama started fast and furious in 2009 and had all tracking devices removed from the guns, and forced gun shop to sell to people who should not have been able to buy until guns hops refused to anymore.

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  7. He forgot BENGHAZI! I’d suspect he just didn’t know how to spell it but for all the spelling errors in his post.

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  8. Just realized he did mention Benghazi, but spelled it wrong too. LOL!

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  9. But an he name the 13 plus embassy attacks during the previous admin??
    Oh that’s right they want us to quit dwelling on what the previous prez did, NOTHING IS W’s fault to them.

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  10. I recognize Mr Truther. He dropped in on Fred’s blog with the same spiel yesterday. He claimed that GWB can’t say anything now about the present Iraq situation because of some “action” by Obama. Did Obama have him trussed up and shipped off to Cuba while nobody was looking? Has anyone even seen Bush, Jr lately, much less heard from him? Has Laura checked the bathtub lately? Hmmm. I smell yet another illegal Kenyon Konspiracy we’ll be hearing about soon.

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  11. The News media keeps calling these guys Al-Qaeda linked. I thought they were fighting each other in Syria. The disinformation campaign is in full swing.

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