- This topic has 138 replies, 24 voices, and was last updated 16 years, 6 months ago by PerryChase.
November 12, 2006 at 9:23 PM #7900November 13, 2006 at 1:23 AM #39831qcomerParticipant
I dislike Bush and strongly disagree with the Iraq war and the reasons for this war. Let me make it very clear that this war was redundant/useless and it has made America weaker. As I always say, the war ideology lacked basic understanding of the middle east culture/values as well as the fragile Shia/Sunni equation of Iraq.
Having said all that,to equate Bush with terrorists like OBL or alqaeda is absolute rubbish and naive. Just as I cannot stand the neo-cons, I also cannot stand the ultra liberals who see Bush as a retarded, christian fundamentalist, who is fighting this war in Iraq as a crusade. Bush was elected by the American people as the comander in chief of their armed forces. He used this mandate to decide Iraq war was justified and would help American interests in the region. He also doesn’t instruct American soldiers to kill Iraqi civilians intentionally. That is the difference between Bush and a terrorist who intentionally blows bombs to kill civilians.
Secondly, I don’t buy the report’s claim that most people killed in violence are by coalition bombings. Most innocent people being killed in Iraq are murdered in bomb attacks carried out by their fellow muslims (Sunni vs Shia and vice versa). There are no numbers for terrorists killed in any reports because they mask themselves as civilians.November 13, 2006 at 6:45 AM #39832BikeRiderParticipant
powayseller, this is the greatest country in the world, proved by the fact that you can say what you just said about our president and you aren’t executed. Now, for what you said….. no person should speak about our president like you did. You should be ashamed of yourself.
I feel that he took the fight overseas so that more blood wasn’t shed in our country. Keep them busy over there so they don’t have time to regroup and come over here. I fear that once the Democrats succeed in stopping the fight, we’re going to have bombs going off in our streets and malls. You want to see home prices tank? Well, that would give you your wish. And I don’t know what kind of freedoms would be taken from us in the name of National Security. Troublesome. There are no easy answers to all this. You are dealing with people that are totally insane, willing to blow themselves up. Don’t care if they kill women and children. Everyone is their enemy.November 13, 2006 at 7:52 AM #39835powaysellerParticipant
The excess death claim comes from the Lancet, one of the most respected medical journals in the world.
“A study published by the Lancet says the risk of death by violence for civilians in Iraq is now 58 times higher than before the US-led invasion.”
If you disagree, please link a study which shows Iraq is safer now. Doctors Without Borders, UNICEF, NATO, IMF… surely someone can vouch for this war?
I just checked Doctors Without Borders website. They are a non-political humanitarian organization run by volunteers and donations. “according to the United Nations, more than 400 specialized doctors have left Iraq since hostilities began in 2003. Furthermore, hundreds of other doctors have been killed. This is why, for example, the General Surgical Hospital of Baghdad currently has only one orthopedic surgeon. The threats against doctors also affect their patients as well, since this type of surgery requires an average hospital stay of three weeks—three weeks during which the patients are at the mercy of revenge operations by the various armed militias.”
Anyone who is defending this war, should first read some first-hand accounts of how much worse off Iraq is today than before Bush sent our troops over there.
In this Sept 2006 article, A Health Care System Overwhelmed, an Iraqi orthopedic surgeon describes the situation.
Iraq: A health care system overwhelmed
Dr. Bassam is an Iraqi physician specializing in orthopedic surgery, who took part in the launch of this project. He now lives with his family in Baghdad, and is a member of the partner team working with MSF. He explains the current situation of the Iraqi health care system, and talks about his collaboration with MSF:
How would you describe the health care system in Iraq today?
The level of medicine has deteriorated considerably in Iraq. It had already dropped after the Gulf War, but it has really gotten worse in the past few years. Before the war, a lot of patients came to Iraq for surgery, from Syria, Jordan, and elsewhere. It wasn’t expensive, and there were a lot of specialists. And medical care here had a good reputation. The situation deteriorated after the Gulf War, but got even worse after 2003. Now, security issues have top priority for the few existing financial resources, and medical needs are forced to take a back seat. This morning, dozens of people were killed in Fallujah. Yesterday it was Baghdad. And that’s not counting the wounded, who add to the long list of emergency cases packing the hospitals. Every day brings a new batch of dead and wounded1. In this context, patients simply cannot receive proper treatment from an increasingly overwhelmed health care system. Some are forced to sell their car, or even their house, to get certain kinds of care in the few hospitals able to provide it.
Which areas of medicine are primarily affected by the situation?
Specialized procedures are very difficult to provide, particularly when they require sophisticated techniques. For example, when it comes to reconstructive surgery, congenital malformations, microsurgery, or neurosurgery, it’s almost impossible right now to get operated on in Iraq. All the more so, since many doctors have gone farther north, or left the country, looking for someplace safer. As a result, there are fewer and fewer specialists, and—on top of everything—they are being particularly targeted. Many of them were kidnapped after the war began in 2003. They are caught between a rock and a hard place. Either they work for the Iraqi health care system, and earn a salary that makes them targets of abduction and ransom demands, or they get jobs with foreign nongovernmental organizations, and risk being perceived as working for the Americans.
How do you keep working, in this context?
The task is especially hard when, in addition to the shortage of doctors and specialists, you have overcrowded hospitals, little adequate equipment, corruption, and the constant insecurity and curfew requirements restricting our practice. This is why, in partnership with MSF, we are trying to seek out patients waiting for reconstructive surgery. We offer them the chance to come to Jordan for treatment; we take care of their medical paperwork, their administrative paperwork, and the logistics of their transfer to Amman. In addition, we are making contact with various Iraqi hospitals, which will allow MSF to supply them regularly, depending on their needs. Security constraints, however, prevent us from taking action and publicizing the project in the way we would like. Indeed, MSF is considered to be a foreign organization, which exposes its collaborators to the risk of abduction, or worse. So we have to keep a low profile, as much for our safety as for that of the patients. This is why a huge amount of discretion is a must, in order for a project like this to succeed. On the other hand, we have an excellent network of doctors in Iraq, whom we know, and with whom we are in contact. I graduated in the 1980s, and others even before that. So we have many relationships in the country. But despite our respective experience, we are running into many difficulties.
What are the difficulties facing patients trying to go to Jordan?
Before the war, it was very easy for people in northern Iraq to get to the south. For example, if someone living in Ninawa wanted to get to Baghdad, 400 miles away, it would take him four hours of traveling. Today, the trip takes two or three times longer. Given the numerous checkpoints, the risk of being targeted, and the bombings, people are afraid to come to Baghdad; they prefer to treat themselves, and stay home. The second important point has to do with getting passports. They are very hard to get right now. For example, one of my colleagues, under direct threat in Iraq, had to flee the country and now works for MSF in Jordan. But his wife waited more than a month to get a passport. The third point has to do with the nature of the project, which is focused on three narrow areas: maxillofacial, orthopedic, and plastic surgery. There are so many patients needing other types of surgery, which we cannot provide in Amman.
1 According to a Pentagon report written at the request of the U.S. Congress and released on 1 September, in three months, the number of weekly attacks increased by 15 percent, and that of Iraqi victims—civilians and soldiers—by 51 percent.”November 13, 2006 at 8:15 AM #39836BikeRiderParticipant
Poweyseller, stop posting this crap and start babbling about housing again, like you normally do. Of course they are in more danger. It is a war, against people that blow themselves up and target civilians while doing it. Put yourself in their place for one minute….. Ask yourself…. would you rather be ruled by a dictator or fight for freedom? Would you rather be FREE or live under the rule of one horrible leader unable to speak your mind? I would want to fight for freedom, no matter what the media said or some asshole study said. I’d rather be dead than live under a dictatorship.
You think that the war stopping ends everything? Nope. They will just come over here and start blowing themselves up. You’ll want action then for sure. I say take the fight to them and keep taking it to them. You make our country look weak.November 13, 2006 at 9:01 AM #39840PDParticipant
Powayseller’s posts are exactly the kind of thing I was talking about when I said our policy had been “niced up” in attempt to pacify the media and the left. Even though we have gone to the most extraordinary lengths in the HISTORY OF THE WORLD (and warfare) to prevent civilian deaths while also trying to mitigate problems for them, powayseller wastes no time in declaring our president a terrorist. That makes me sick.
War is ugly. The occupying country is usually unbelievably harsh. We have been phenomenally benign in our occupation. Anyone who says otherwise needs to pick up a history book.
Powayseller wants us to stick our head in the sand like an ostrich while muttering about peace and love. Meanwhile, our a**es would be waving in the air, the perfect target for our next butt kicking.
Take your Bush and anti-America hate somewhere else.
Does anybody really think our problems with radical Islam are going to get better because we turn tail and run now that the Democrats have control of the House and Senate? Do they have any good solutions? I don’t think so. They certainly had a bag full of blame and a lot of finger pointing at their disposal, however.November 13, 2006 at 9:34 AM #39842powaysellerParticipant
PD, you are right that the Democrats have no answer either. Bush made a huge error in entering Iraq, and the intelligence at his dispoal, including his own father, predicted that civil war would result. Bush wouldn’t listen. Now, it is hard to fix this mistake. I don’t know what can be done now. I’m sure the Democrats are real worried, since they are expected to solve this difficult problem. Bush created a bad situation. He should have finished the job in Afghanistan, instead of cutting tail in Afghanistan.
PD, why do you think that people should not speak out against our politicians if they disagree? We should never impeach anyone? You think that anyone who disagrees with you should be silenced, or go away? Where would they go? Another forum, or another country? I can be friends with people who disagree with me, as long as they can be respectful toward me. Can you?
I’d like to hear your response to the quotes by der Spiegel, Lancet, Doctors without Borders, and how you will convince Europe and the rest of the world that this war is worthwhile for our national interest. It is the rest of the world that you must convince.November 13, 2006 at 9:36 AM #39844surveyorParticipant
Before the Iraq war, the Europeans and Iraqis were accusing us of genocide because of our embargo. Osama Bin Laden used the Iraqi embargo as rationale for attacking us. So the good old U.S. decided to approve and institute an oil for food program, which was corrupted. Still, the Europeans and Iraqis were accusing us to genocide. So, in an effort to improve the situation, the U.S. undertook a war to remove a threat to the world. And these same people still call us terrorists and accuse us of genocide. So non-partisan or not, these criticisms are hardly credible.
And incidentally, Powayseller, you always complain when others make personal attacks on you. At least show others the same courtesy, even the President of the United States. Name-calling is not useful in a debate, and it decreases your credibility.November 13, 2006 at 9:43 AM #39846PDParticipant
PS, you talk about being respected yet you give none to the President of the United States. You even go the unbelievable lengths of calling him a terrorist. You spew hate and vitriol at the President yet expect respect for yourself?
I don’t think we have the obligation to convince the rest of the world of anything.
We have one obligation – protect and nurture the United States of America.November 13, 2006 at 9:59 AM #39848PerryChaseParticipant
The opinion expressed by powayseller is how most of the world thinks of Bush. They just don’t say it because they fear our military power and they want commerce with us.
I don’t think that comparing GWB to OBL is useful.
But let’s take a step back and look at how Iraq began. We started with good intentions but because our reasoning for the war was misguided, the war turned into a quagmire.
Let’s look at the consequences of our actions. Approximately 150,000 Iraqis and 2,900 American soldiers have been killed. What do we have to show for?
I agree with PD that war is brutal. However, Iraq wasn’t supposed to be a war of conquest. We promised to bring democracy and prosperity to Iraq. But what did we bring instead? Deaths and more deaths. By these measures, we have completely failed.
It’s not a matter of looking weak or strong. It’s a matter of integrity and living up to our ideals. In that respect, America failed miserably.November 13, 2006 at 10:20 AM #39851sdcellarParticipant
This just occured to me for the first time, but you say that “because our reasoning for the ware was misguided, the war turned into a quagmire.” I’ve heard this sentiment many times, but thinking about it, what would be different if we had found these much ballyhooed WMDs? I suppose we might have more global support at this point, but also feel that such support might be in spirit only. Either way, we’d still be there right now, wouldn’t we?
Not trying to pick sides or anything here. I’m just wondering how things would be different. For some reason, I don’t feel they’d be that different–war sucks, nobody likes it, and when it’s all said and done, people want it over.
(also PC, you didn’t say WMDs yourself, I just wedged that in there because I seem to hear it a lot elsewhere… and I’m just kind of running stream of conciousness here)November 13, 2006 at 10:38 AM #39852AnonymousGuest
Bush to resign and take job with the NAR.November 13, 2006 at 11:03 AM #39853AnonymousGuest
NewFlash: For all you ingnorant Bush apologists, Iraq and Hussein had no connection with Al Queda. So, quit using the lamb rallying cry “We would rather fight them over there than over here”.
If you want to fight Al Queda, then why not invade Saudi Arabia, they had a more proven track record with developing Al Queda terrorists.
Doen’t it bother any of you that the entire world is against this war, and the entire world thinks Bush is a buffoon? Woudn’t it be better if the world respected our country and President? It may be nice someday when we actually need coalition support for a legitimate military operation.November 13, 2006 at 11:14 AM #39854PerryChaseParticipant
WMDs or not, the world was against this war. They thought that we could contain Iraq like we contained the Soviets and the Chinese for half a century.
Think of it this way. Bush is the boss of America, the biggest company in the world. When the boss wants to make an acquisition really bad, he bullies the lower level managers into submission. They have no choice but to fall into line if they want to remain employed.
If the boss succeeds, he’s on the covers of magazines that proclaim him to be a visionary.
If the boss fails, people snicker behind his back and undermine him. Eventually the boss gets fired if the company looses too much money. The only way to turn around a failed organization is to hire a new chief executive. That new boss will then take the products from that failed acquisition and try to develop them into saleable items. The company will go through new bosses until it can turn around or go bankrupt.
Iraq is America’s failed acquisition and the products from that acquisition are all junk that will need a lot of engineering. America has a new Board of Directors but since the CEO’s contract is not up yet, he’s still hanging on. Meanwhile, America’s competitors are developing new products and building market share. If we don’t watch out, 10 years from now, we’ll still be stuck in Iraq while the rest the world moved on.November 13, 2006 at 11:20 AM #39856JJGittesParticipant
Why should the Country “hold Bush accountable” regarding Iraq, when it just put into power people who said the following…… once upon a time:
“I will be voting to give the president of the United States the authority to use force – if necessary – to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security.” — John F. Kerry, Oct 2002
“The threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real, but as I said, it is not new. It has been with us since the end of that war, and particularly in the last 4 years we know after Operation Desert Fox failed to force him to reaccept them, that he has continued to build those weapons. He has had a free hand for 4 years to reconstitute these weapons, allowing the world, during the interval, to lose the focus we had on weapons of mass destruction and the issue of proliferation.” — John Kerry, October 9, 2002
“(W)e need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime. We all know the litany of his offenses. He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation. …And now he is miscalculating America’s response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction. That is why the world, through the United Nations Security Council, has spoken with one voice, demanding that Iraq disclose its weapons programs and disarm. So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real, but it is not new. It has been with us since the end of the Persian Gulf War.” — John Kerry, Jan 23, 2003
“We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandates of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them.” — Carl Levin, Sept 19, 2002
“Over the years, Iraq has worked to develop nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. During 1991 – 1994, despite Iraq’s denials, U.N. inspectors discovered and dismantled a large network of nuclear facilities that Iraq was using to develop nuclear weapons. Various reports indicate that Iraq is still actively pursuing nuclear weapons capability. There is no reason to think otherwise. Beyond nuclear weapons, Iraq has actively pursued biological and chemical weapons.U.N. inspectors have said that Iraq’s claims about biological weapons is neither credible nor verifiable. In 1986, Iraq used chemical weapons against Iran, and later, against its own Kurdish population. While weapons inspections have been successful in the past, there have been no inspections since the end of 1998. There can be no doubt that Iraq has continued to pursue its goal of obtaining weapons of mass destruction.” — Patty Murray, October 9, 2002
“As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, I am keenly aware that the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons is an issue of grave importance to all nations. Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.” — Nancy Pelosi, December 16, 1998
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