Patterico's Pontifications

4/21/2007

Al Qaeda: Surprisingly, Out of Their Minds — And Alienating Iraqis

Filed under: War — Patterico @ 5:04 pm



If we stick it out in Iraq, we could still win — because radical Islam is so crazy it’s alienating the Iraqis:

At least two major insurgent groups are battling al-Qaeda in provinces outside Baghdad, American military commanders said Friday, an indication of a deepening rift between Sunni guerrilla groups in Iraq.

U.S. officers say a growing number of Sunni tribes are turning against al-Qaeda, repelled by the terror group’s sheer brutality and austere religious extremism.

What religious extremism? I’m so glad you asked:

American commanders cite al-Qaeda’s severe brand of Islam, which is so extreme that in Baqouba, al-Qaeda has warned street vendors not to place tomatoes beside cucumbers because the vegetables are different genders, Col. David Sutherland said.

These people are nuts, and Iraqis are starting to see it.

UPDATE: DRJ points to evidence that the cucumbers and tomatoes thing is nothing new. Funny. I’d never heard it before . . .

94 Responses to “Al Qaeda: Surprisingly, Out of Their Minds — And Alienating Iraqis”

  1. “Iraqis are starting to see it”?

    Iraqis have seen it for decades. Iraq under Sadaam was one of the most secular states in the Arab world. That’s why it was always absurd for Cheney and the neocons to insist that there were ties between Sadaam and bin Laden. The two of them loathed each other and Bush did bin Laden a great favor by taking out one of his enemies.

    No matter what happens in Iraq now, it’s very hard to envision al-Qaeda ever leaving the place entirely. We’ve given them a new playground and they’re not about to give it up.

    Oregonian (0ba8e4)

  2. Maybe al-Queda has seen AnimalHouse:
    [in the supermarket vegetable section]
    Eric ‘Otter’ Stratton: Mine’s bigger.
    Marion Wormer: [looks questioningly at him]
    Eric ‘Otter’ Stratton: My cucumber. It’s bigger.
    Eric ‘Otter’ Stratton: I think vegetables can be very sensuous, don’t you?
    Marion Wormer: No, vegetables are sensual. People are sensuous.
    Eric ‘Otter’ Stratton: Right. Sensual. That’s what I meant. My name’s Eric Stratton. People call me Otter.
    Marion Wormer: My name’s Marion. People call me Mrs. Wormer.
    Eric ‘Otter’ Stratton: Oh, we have a Dean Wormer at Faber.
    Marion Wormer: How interesting. I have a husband named Dean Wormer at Faber. Still want to show me your cucumber?

    TomHynes (aab663)

  3. Old news!

    This has been going on at least since February. Bill Roggio’s been reporting on this split as has the Institute for the Study of War

    dubya (c16726)

  4. Oregonian:

    It’s been well-established for at least 8 years that Sadam and his henchmen had multiple dealings with al Qaeda, Ansar al Islam, Hammas, Hezballah and various other Islamic fascist groups. Birds of a feather…

    The root of the evil is the Saudis, though. Islamic fascism will not be defeated until the Saudis and Iranians quit supporting them. Hell, the Iranians are even now supporting the Taliban.

    dubya (c16726)

  5. It’s not a reason to stay it’s a reason to leave.

    Three links to Marc Lynch. You should read him

    AF (d700ef)

  6. Hey AF:

    If the “right war” is terminating al Qaeda, then why should we leave Iraq? It’s an irresitable magnet for the scumbags and gives us opportunity to kill them in great numbers rather than chasing around in the mountains of Afghanistan and picking them off a couple at a time. Besides, we’re getting help with the job from both Suni and Shia there.

    Looks to me like the best reason for staying there.

    dubya (c16726)

  7. dubya,

    The split is old news, I’ll grant you. The bit about the genders of cucumbers and tomatoes, I submit, is new.

    Patterico (cb26f7)

  8. The gender of vegatables issue would be hillarious if it were isolated… the Islamists are on rampages in Indonesia, Pakistan and other countries for all sorts of supposed “insults” to the “religion of peace.”

    dubya (c16726)

  9. The Religion of Peas?

    Green Giant (46b81f)

  10. [trying and failing to imagine a vegetable in a burqa]

    Any believing Christians or Jews in this forum shouldn’t throw any stones. Google “shaatnez” for details, and then branch out to the commandments that forbid planting different species together. But those only forbid putting them in bed together; they are allowed to go out in public together, as long as challah is taken.

    kishnevi (5c0e2a)

  11. No soup for you!

    Green Giant (46b81f)

  12. That’s why it was always absurd for Cheney and the neocons to insist that there were ties between Sadaam and bin Laden.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Never miss an opportunity to restate the BIG LIE that Sadam had no ties to Al Queda.

    http://www.gpoaccess.gov/911/pdf/fullreport.pdf

    described in detail here…

    http://www.nationalreview.com/york/york200407230835.asp

    Now, with the release of the commission’s final report, it is clear what Hamilton and Cheney were talking about. The final report details a much more extensive set of contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda than the earlier staff statement. It also modifies the original “no collaborative relationship” description, now saying there was “no collaborative operational relationship” (emphasis added) between Iraq and Al Qaeda. And it suggests a significant amount of contact and communication between the regime of Saddam Hussein and the terrorist organization headed by Osama bin Laden.

    The report describes a time in 1996 when bin Laden, newly arrived in Afghanistan, could not be sure “that the Taliban would be his best bet as an ally.” In 1997, the report says, bin Laden began making his Taliban sponsors nervous with a number of flamboyant and militant statements. At the time it seemed possible that bin Laden, who had gone to Afghanistan after being forced out of Sudan, might find himself at odds with his new hosts. What then? The report says bin Laden appears to have reached out to Saddam Hussein:

    There is also evidence that around this time Bin Ladin sent out a number of feelers to the Iraqi regime, offering some cooperation. None are reported to have received a significant response. According to one report, Saddam Hussein’s efforts at this time to rebuild relations with the Saudis and other Middle Eastern regimes led him to stay clear of Bin Ladin.
    Since Saddam wasn’t interested, the report says, nothing came of the contacts. But by the next year, Saddam, struggling under increasing pressure from the United States, appeared to have changed his mind, and there were more talks:

    In mid-1998, the situation reversed; it was Iraq that reportedly took the initiative. In March 1998, after Bin Ladin’s public fatwa against the United States, two al Qaeda members reportedly went to Iraq to meet with Iraqi intelligence. In July, an Iraqi delegation traveled to Afghanistan to meet first with the Taliban and then with Bin Ladin. Sources reported that one, or perhaps both, of these meetings was apparently arranged through Bin Ladin’s Egyptian deputy, Zawahiri, who had ties of his own to the Iraqis. In 1998, Iraq was under intensifying U.S. pressure, which culminated in a series of large air attacks in December.
    The meetings went on, the report says, until Iraq offered to formalize its relationship with al Qaeda:

    Similar meetings between Iraqi officials and Bin Ladin or his aides may have occurred in 1999 during a period of some reported strains with the Taliban. According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq. Bin Ladin declined, apparently judging that his circumstances in Afghanistan remained more favorable than the Iraqi alternative. The reports describe friendly contacts and indicate some common themes in both sides’ hatred of the United States.
    The report goes on to say that the September 11 investigators found “no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship.” It also says that the commission did not find any “evidence indicating that Iraq cooperated with al Qaeda in developing or carrying out any attacks against the United States.”

    Nevertheless, top U.S. officials were so worried about the possibility of an Iraq-al Qaeda collaboration that they took care not to provoke bin Laden into a closer relationship with Saddam. In February 1999, for example, the CIA proposed U-2 aerial-surveillance missions over Afghanistan. The report says that Richard Clarke, then the White House counterterrorism chief, worried that the mission might spook bin Laden into leaving Afghanistan for somewhere where it might be even more difficult for American forces to reach him:

    Clarke was nervous about such a mission because he continued to fear that Bin Ladin might leave for someplace less accessible. He wrote Deputy National Security Advisor Donald Kerrick that one reliable source reported Bin Ladin’s having met with Iraqi officials, who “may have offered him asylum.” Other intelligence sources said that some Taliban leaders, though not Mullah Omar, had urged Bin Ladin to go to Iraq. If Bin Ladin actually moved to Iraq, wrote Clarke, his network would be at Saddam Hussein’s service, and it would be “virtually impossible” to find him. Better to get Bin Ladin in Afghanistan, Clarke declared.
    National-security adviser Sandy Berger suggested that the U.S. send just one U-2 flight, but the report says Clarke worried that even then, Pakistan’s intelligence service would warn bin Laden that the U.S. was preparing for a bombing campaign. “Armed with that knowledge, old wily Usama will likely boogie to Baghdad,” Clarke wrote in a February 11, 1999 e-mail to Berger. The report says that another National Security Council staffer also warned that “Saddam Hussein wanted bin Laden in Baghdad.”

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

    And who knows what connections would have been found in the documents that Sandy Berger stole from the National Archives and destroyed (the traitor).

    gm (9e9332)

  13. The vegetable gender story has been out there for almost a year (see here and here). As one would expect, al-Qaeda views cucumbers as male and tomatoes as female.

    DRJ (50237c)

  14. Any believing Christians or Jews in this forum shouldn’t throw any stones. Google “shaatnez” for details, and then branch out to the commandments that forbid planting different species together. But those only forbid putting them in bed together; they are allowed to go out in public together, as long as challah is taken.

    That must be one of the Commandments on the tablet Moses dropped…

    “I bring you Fifteen… TEN! Ten commandments!”

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  15. By the standards of Saddam’s “ties” to Al Qaeda, Nixon had ties to the USSR. You know, ambassadors and stuff like that. Saddam and Al Qaeda didn’t cooperate on any terrorist projects (including 9/11), and by 2002 would probably have shot each other on sight if possible. We’ve been up and down Iraq for years. Why repeat educated (?) guesses from Clinton-era intelligence, if not to avoid the embarrassment that they weren’t correct? If AQ and Saddam worked together, we would have shown the evidence. Years ago.

    The next step in this is claiming that there really were WMD in Iraq which have been given to terrorists in a conspiracy involving even John Negroponte, China, Russia, and who knows what else. The Christian Supremacist nutcase responsible for this rumor is of course getting favorable mention at Powerline, Instapundit, et al.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (628198)

  16. my cucumber is seven inches long and as hard as a rock. i’m wondering if i can still use it after i defrost it.

    assistant devil's advocate (8c7aad)

  17. Just put it in the microwave–turned up to to High.

    Green Giant (46b81f)

  18. Unfortunately, the insurgent vs. insurgent fighting has happened before, and while it sounds like good news, nothing ever comes of it.

    I distinctly remember Captain Ed declaring imminent victory TWO YEARS AGO after linking to an article about “red on red” combat in the western provinces.

    The vegetable thing is wacky, though. What on earth is appealing to ANYONE about these lunatics’ particular brand of extremist Islam?

    Aren’t the normal brands of Islam wacky enough for them?

    The Liberal Avenger (b8c7e2)

  19. If this craziness metastasizes in the Islamic world, it’s going to be a long and very bloody war and it won’t much matter if we leave Iraq or not.

    I had some hope that the Iraq and Afghan campaigns would prevent what I think is coming — a war that makes WWII quaint and nostalgic — but between Bush’s incompetence and his opponents’ unreasoning hatred, this no longer seems possible.

    Sigh. And they’ll blame Bush when Hillary drafts them.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  20. By the standards of Saddam’s “ties” to Al Qaeda, Nixon had ties to the USSR. You know, ambassadors and stuff like that.

    Of course you realize that the USSR was a nation, a superpower, with direct control of many other nations, a permanent seat on the Security Council, and nuclear weapons.

    Whereas al-Qaeda is a terrorist group.

    Please tell me again how the ties are similar, Andrew.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  21. LA asked:

    The vegetable thing is wacky, though. What on earth is appealing to ANYONE about these lunatics’ particular brand of extremist Islam?

    Aren’t the normal brands of Islam wacky enough for them?

    We could argue until LA’s site sees reason and becomes the Conservative Avenger as to whether Islam is the motivation for, or the tool of, the extremists in the Middle East, and still come to no conclusion. (We like nice pat answers to everything.) But one simple fact is indisputable: regardless of cause, Islam, and especially radical Islam, is a significant part of our enemies’ psyche, and oue enemies’ leadership uses it that way.

    I have no idea whether al Qaeda sees cukes as male and tomatoes as female (if you put one cucumber between two tomaotes in the proper orientation, the whole thing would look male), and don’t particularly care, but this is clearly being used as a control mechanism among the populace, a symbol of submission to al Qaeda.

    Dana (556f76)

  22. If cucumbers set them off, just wait till they hear about bananas and asparagus!

    dchamil (c71049)

  23. ONG and think about carrots, turnips and GAWD forbid “Bush Beans”!

    TC (b48fdd)

  24. “Any believing Christians or Jews in this forum shouldn’t throw any stones. Google “shaatnez” for details, and then branch out to the commandments that forbid planting different species together. But those only forbid putting them in bed together; they are allowed to go out in public together, as long as challah is taken.”

    Jews, perhaps. Christians have only one commandment. All the Jewish dietary laws were superceded by the New Testament.

    Dan S (b17f51)

  25. “Christians have only one commandment”
    huh?

    AF (d700ef)

  26. Oregonian,
    Perhaps it’s pointless to once again revisit the issue of cooperation between disparate terrorist groups, but history tell us this is so. Example: Baader-Meinhof started as a group opposing the incomplete de-Nazification of Germany yet a scant four years later were hijacking planes (full of Jews) alongside their jihadi accomplices. Because in asymmetrical warfare, the goal is to weaken your superior existential enemy so that it falls of its own weight; the end always justifies the means.

    Saddam had been bribing or sowing fear through assassination in the West for decades. The reluctance of the US to deal with the ME because of fanaticism served him quite well during his reign of terror. That’s why he supported Abu Nidal, that’s why he supported Palestinian “martyr” families with money and privilege in Baghdad.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  27. Sorry for the OT, but I just wanted to thank you for the link to Kevin Drum’s blog last January, when he lost his beloved Jasmine.
    I just lost my best buddy, Tommkins, to a heart attack, and I’m finding a lot of comfort in Kevin’s blog.
    We are all independents in my household, but we share in the joy of the Supreme Court’s decision against the abominable partial abortion. We at work wrote a pretty good amicus for the case.

    It’s always a pleasure to read this blog, sir.

    Pansy (428193)

  28. “Saddam had been bribing or sowing fear through assassination in the West for decades.”

    We were supporting him until weeks before the invasion of Kuwait.
    This is silly.

    AF (d700ef)

  29. I suspect that if not Islam, there’d be hundreds of other rationalizations that barbaric misanthrops would use to justify their mass murder. It always comes down to “my way or die.”

    dubya (c16726)

  30. We were supporting him until weeks before the invasion of Kuwait.

    You wouldn’t mind detailing that “support”, would you, AF?

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  31. Pablo says:

    the USSR was a nation, a superpower, with direct control of many other nations, a permanent seat on the Security Council, and nuclear weapons.

    Whereas al-Qaeda is a terrorist group.

    Please tell me again how the ties are similar

    Simple, Pablo. The USSR and Al-Qaeda are similar in that both became admired by the American Left, in its reflexive disloyalty.

    “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” The enemy of the American Left is anyone who isn’t springloaded in the accommodation-and-appeasement position.

    Kevin R.C. 'Hognose' O'Brien (88bf29)

  32. Mohammed’s post about the crazed Al Queda and the leftists who appease them is worth noting.

    Yeah, Rumsfeld shook hands with Saddam, blah, blah, blah. Every nation errs–let’s commit to victory or keep the harping to the water’s edge.

    Mohammed’s post

    Patricia (824fa1)

  33. “You wouldn’t mind detailing that “support”, would you, AF?”
    Here’s the simple version.
    Here’s a bt more.
    But maybe you should try the library. It’s easy and free.

    There were votes in congress on trade issues 2 weeks before the invasion. Find someone who pays for Lexis Nexis.

    AF (d700ef)

  34. Andrew J Laz needs to get up to speed about the ties between Saddam and Osama, or perhaps he just needs to stop being dishonest. Either way, don’t expect to be taken seriously by adults until you’ve got the facts straight.

    YFS (a8cd80)

  35. YFS,
    I’ll send the link to Glenn Greenwald. He can put it in is Dave Gaubatz file.

    AF (d700ef)

  36. You can listen to 25 of America’s top Talk Show hosts for free via Streaming Audio at the Internet Radio Network. Check it out here:
    http://netradionetwork.com

    Steve (06ec7b)

  37. Geez, AF, the newest thing Juan Cole has is this:

    10) After the Gulf War of 1991, when Shiites and Kurds rose up against Saddam Hussein, the Bush senior administration sat back and allowed the Baathists to fly helicopter gunships and to massively repress the uprising. President GHW Bush had called on Iraqis to rise up against their dictator, but when they did so he left them in the lurch. This inaction, deriving from a fear that a Shiite-dominated Iraq would ally with Tehran, allowed Saddam to remain in power until 2003.

    So we supported him with inaction? Try selling that one to an ex-wife and see how that works out.

    As for your other link, try supporting that ex-wife with a freaking handshake. That’s really become quite a hackneyed talking point. But since you’re so erudite, why don’t you tell us what that photo means, in terms of real support? Just what did Saddam get out of that handshake with an American envoy, aside from the infamous Rumsfeld cooties? And did Assad just get the same from Pelosi?

    There were votes in congress on trade issues 2 weeks before the invasion.

    And that means what? Lexis-Nexis isn’t necessary. Thomas.loc.gov will have whatever it is you’re talking about.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  38. You quoted me:
    “We were supporting him until weeks before the invasion of Kuwait.
    And now you think I was talking about the 90’s?

    I linked to a pocket history and a little media show. And you pick out one photo? What do you want now, a lecture on “dual use” technology?

    AF (d700ef)

  39. YFS, I read your link as far as the claim Mohammed Atta went to Prague, the third item. Somehow the US government, including Dick Cheney, has (repeatedly) dismissed this as false, much as it would have helped the Administration if it were true (!). Your link complains that the 9/11 Commission interviewed “zero” relevant witnesses. How one finds witnesses to an event that did not take place is beyond me. We do have a relevant witness, by the way, we have Al-Ani, Atta’s alleged Iraq connection, in custody, and he denies any such meeting took place. What can one say to wackos whose observation that Atta is nowhere to be seen on the Prague Airport security videos for the relevant day is really further proof that the meeting was sinister, insofar as Atta was careful to avoid the cameras as he went through the airport? I guess one could say that there are, unfortunately, a lot of people who think Auschwitz is a big hoax, and they have well-designed web sites full of such B.S. “evidence” too.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7959e1)

  40. Does anyone here know Arabic? Is this vegetable “sex segregation” issue a question of the language itself having genders for all sorts of nouns that wouldn’t to most of us seem to have a gender? Of course, French also has such genders, but the French are, it would seem, relatively sane about it.

    DWPittelli (87ad39)

  41. Those who think Iraq’s “civil war” is basically a Hatfields vs McCoys should read this
    TEXT FROM ABU MUS’AB AL-ZARQAWI LETTER.

    Especially revealing is this:

    D. THE SHI’A
    IN OUR OPINION, THESE ARE THE KEY TO CHANGE. TARGETING AND STRIKING THEIR RELIGIOUS, POLITICAL, AND MILITARY SYMBOLS, WILL MAKE THEM SHOW THEIR RAGE AGAINST THE SUNNIS AND BEAR THEIR INNER VENGEANCE. IF WE SUCCEED IN DRAGGING THEM INTO A SECTARIAN WAR, THIS WILL AWAKEN THE SLEEPY SUNNIS WHO ARE FEARFUL OF DESTRUCTION AND DEATH AT THE HANDS OF THESE SABEANS, I.E., THE SHI’A. DESPITE THEIR WEAKNESS, THE SUNNIS ARE STRONG-WILLED AND HONEST AND DIFFERENT FROM THE COWARD AND DECEITFUL SHI’A, WHO ONLY ATTACK THE WEAK. MOST OF THE SUNNIS ARE AWARE OF THE DANGER OF THESE PEOPLE AND THEY FEAR THEM. IF IT WERE NOT FOR THOSE DISAPPOINTING SHAYKHS, SUFIS, AND MUSLIM BROTHERS, SUNNIS WOULD HAVE A DIFFERENT ATTITUDE.

    dubya (c16726)

  42. […] up Looney Tunes and go to the seventh paragraph at this link (HT Patterico) about Al-Qaeda’s problems with other internal terrorist groups): “It’s happening […]

    BizzyBlog » Of Tomatoes and Cucumbers (34f45e)

  43. “I read your link as far as the claim Mohammed Atta went to Prague, the third item.” And then of course you stopped reading, because it hurts so bad.

    Al-Ani could doubtless sell you and the rest of your useful-idiot friends the Brooklyn Bridge.

    YFS (a8cd80)

  44. And you pick out one photo?

    Oh, there was more that that? Is any of it of any better caliber? I clicked over and saw the Rumsfeld picture, and I assumed that if that was part of your evidence of support for Saddam that it was probably all crap, like the Juan Cole nonsense.

    What do you want now, a lecture on “dual use” technology?

    No, I’d like you to tell me how trade is support.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  45. Pablo, get flash player 9
    “Juan Cole nonsense.”
    You’re not defending an argument you’re ranting.

    “I’d like you to tell me how trade is support.”

    When it includes anthrax? and weapons? Lists of people to be killed? Support of a coup (or two)? The CIA helped install him. It’s all well documented. Read a book.
    And if you don’t know what dual use technology was and is in this context, then you’ve got no more business talking about the history of Saddam Hussein than about particle physics.

    Attitide doesn’t equal knowledge.

    AF (d700ef)

  46. —We were supporting him until weeks before the invasion of Kuwait.

    Yet another lefty lie. Keep repeating it, it doesn’t make it true.

    gm (9e9332)

  47. “Juan Cole nonsense.”
    You’re not defending an argument you’re ranting.

    No, scroll up to my 4:05 and argue with it.

    When it includes anthrax? and weapons? Lists of people to be killed? Support of a coup (or two)? The CIA helped install him. It’s all well documented. Read a book.

    Please, do tell us about all the weapons we sold him. And about weaponized anthrax. (You see, we send bugs to research labs the world over. For the other side of the “dual purpose”) And let’s recall that Iraq was not under any sanctions prior to invading Kuwait.

    Are we supporting nearly every nation on the planet, AF? How does our trade with pre-GWI Iraq differ from our trade with anyone else?

    The fact that you’d love for Saddam Hussein to be our fault does not make it so, and it completely ignores the Cold War and the fact that Iraq was a Soviet client state. Read a book.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  48. When it includes anthrax? and weapons?

    Another myth. I’m a Desert Storm vet and had to memorize Iraqi vehicle silhouettes. As one who knows the geopolitics would expect, they were all Russian and French. Sadam was a Soviet client.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    In the absence of relations with Europe and the United States, Iraq once again reluctantly turned to the only party with which it has been able to deal consistently over the years: the Soviet Union. These two nations have a long and stormy relationship and deal with each other out of pragmatism rather than from mutual respect, according to Middle East analysts.

    Saddam Hussein has periodically killed Iraqi communists, has expressed displeasure at Soviet ties to rivals in Syria and Iran and has eagerly sought Western technology to develop his industries and military.

    But time and again, he has had to turn to the Soviet Union when he has alienated other countries or has been caught in a tight spot.

    http://www.boston.com/news/packages/iraq/globe_stories/022091_soviets_iraq.htm

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Baghdad still owes Russia at least $8 billion from the days of the cold war when, as a client state, Iraq outfitted its military with armor bought on Soviet credit. Then there are billions of dollars in oil contracts with Russian companies, and billions of dollars more trading that could be done with a pro-Russian government in Baghdad.

    –A New York Times article posted at
    http://www.iraqfoundation.org/news/2002/bfeb/4_russia.html

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`
    The bio-weapons sale was an illegal sale by a private US corporation that was prosecuted for the violation.

    gm (9e9332)

  49. “Another myth. I’m a Desert Storm vet and had to memorize Iraqi vehicle silhouettes. As one who knows the geopolitics would expect, they were all Russian and French. Sadam was a Soviet client.”
    You don’t know your history.
    And this took me about 20 seconds to google:
    National Security Archive.
    This took me 30 seconds more: Global Policy Forum – US and British Support for Hussein Regime

    AF (d700ef)

  50. “The fact that you’d love for Saddam Hussein to be our fault does not make it so,”

    “During its alliance with the United States in the 1970s and 1980s, Iraq had active programs producing chemical and biological weapons, and researching and working towards production of a nuclear weapon. These programs were actively and knowingly supported by U.S. corporations and the U.S. government, as revealed in 1994 House Banking Committee hearings. Those hearings revealed, among other things, that the American Type Culture Collection, a company outside of Washington DC, had provided Iraq with the seed stock for biological weapons agents including anthrax, botulinum, e-coli and many more, under license by the U.S. Commerce Department.

    A leak in the German newspaper die Tageszeitung of some of the 8,000 pages that Washington deleted from Iraq’s December 7, 2002, arms declaration provided further information. The deleted sections documented 24 U.S. corporations, 55 U.S. subsidiaries of foreign corporations, and a number of U.S. government agencies that provided parts, material, training and other assistance to Iraq’s chemical, biological, missile, and nuclear weapons programs throughout the 1970s and 80s, some continuing till the end of 1990. The U.S. corporations include Honeywell, Rockwell, Hewlett Packard, Dupont, Eastman Kodak, Bechtel, and more. U.S. government Departments of Energy, Commerce, Defense and Agriculture, as well as federal laboratories at Sandia, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore, were also involved.

    A major front-page article in the Washington Post (December 30, 2002) further documented U.S. support for Iraq’s WMD programs, especially the chemical program, including trade in weapons and other military goods. The article also detailed the active involvement of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, then a special envoy of President Reagan to Iraq, in reestablishing full diplomatic relations and improving trade and other economic ties that bolstered Washington’s military support of Iraq.”

    This is getting really stupid. And if you’re going to deny CIA involvement in is rise to power, look around in the last couple links. It’s in there.

    AF (d700ef)

  51. YFS and “evidence”: In favor of the Atta meeting in Prague, we have one single uncorroborated informant. Against we have airport videos, border entry records, and the conclusions of the investigations of the highest priority by multiple American security agencies. That’s before we weigh in on the fact that, far from the original complaint that no relevant witnesses were interviewed, that the most pertinent living potential witness states that the meeting did not occur. I haven’t noticed any skepticism about detainee statements that support American claims, so no matter what you say, it’s one more item (but by no means the only one) indicating that the Atta-in-Prague story is the Bushbot version of the Grassy Knoll and the 9/11 Missile Strike at the Pentagon delusions.

    Yes, YFS, it did hurt to read your link, whose other factoids are, I assume, just as bogus under examination. I’ve looked at Holocaust Denial sites and Bush Planned 9/11 sites, and they hurt, too. When people are so devoted to a cause, or rather, a cult, that they auto-lobotomize, that’s both sad and frightening.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (0fe558)

  52. Great, right back to the handshake.

    AF, we deal with every country on Earth, save just a few. How were our pre-GWI dealings with Saddam Hussein and Iraq any different from those we had with any other sovereign country, aside from that Iraq was a country at war with one of the very few countries we don’t deal with, based upon their seizure of our embassy and the kidnapping of it’s staff for 444 days?

    Try the Q & A for the Riegle report. The first answer should help you put your inner conspiracy theorist to bed for the evening.

    I see a lot of “suggests” and titles like these in your globalpolicy.org link:

    Did Saddam Die for Our Sins?
    This Was a Guilty Verdict on America as Well
    The True Iraq Appeasers
    Saddam’s Arrest Raises Troubling Questions

    and my personal favorite:

    Shaking Hands with Saddam Hussein: The US Tilts Toward Iraq

    Would you do me a favor and point me to where we armed him, and what we gave him? I look at a linked document entitled US Military Assistance to Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq War and the smoking guns are helicopters and loan guarantees.

    Where’s the weapons, and where’s anything more than “suggestion” that we put him in power?

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  53. French also has such genders, but the French are, it would seem, relatively sane about it.

    The French love to mix their vegetables, especially if one cucumber invites another one along–melage a trois. :)

    Patricia (824fa1)

  54. Pablo why don’t you read the articles rather than the titles?

    The Riegle Report:
    “Records provided by the supplier show that, from at least 1985 through 1989, the period for which records were available, the United States government approved for sale to Iraq quantities of potentially lethal biological agents that could have been cultured or grown in large volume in an Iraqi biological warfare program. These exported materials were not attenuated or weakened and were capable of reproduction.”
    ——-
    Again, why don’t you read?

    While many have thought that Saddam first became involved with U.S. intelligence agencies at the start of the September 1980 Iran-Iraq war, his first contacts with U.S. officials date back to 1959, when he was part of a CIA-authorized six-man squad tasked with assassinating then Iraqi Prime Minister Gen. Abd al-Karim Qasim.

    In July 1958, Qasim had overthrown the Iraqi monarchy in what one former U.S. diplomat, who asked not to be identified, described as “a horrible orgy of bloodshed.”
    According to current and former U.S. officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, Iraq was then regarded as a key buffer and strategic asset in the Cold War with the Soviet Union. For example, in the mid-1950s, Iraq was quick to join the anti-Soviet Baghdad Pact which was to defend the region and whose members included Turkey, Britain, Iran and Pakistan.

    Little attention was paid to Qasim’s bloody and conspiratorial regime until his sudden decision to withdraw from the pact in 1959, an act that “freaked everybody out” according to a former senior U.S. State Department official.

    Washington watched in marked dismay as Qasim began to buy arms from the Soviet Union and put his own domestic communists into ministry positions of “real power,” according to this official. The domestic instability of the country prompted CIA Director Allan Dulles to say publicly that Iraq was “the most dangerous spot in the world.”
    In the mid-1980s, Miles Copeland, a veteran CIA operative, told UPI the CIA had enjoyed “close ties” with [the] . . . ruling Baath Party, just as it had close connections with the intelligence service of Egyptian leader Gamel Abd Nassar. In a recent public statement, Roger Morris, a former National Security Council staffer in the 1970s, confirmed this claim, saying that the CIA had chosen the authoritarian and anti-communist Baath Party “as its instrument.”

    According to another former senior State Department official, Saddam, while only in his early 20s, became a part of a U.S. plot to get rid of Qasim. According to this source, Saddam was installed in an apartment in Baghdad on al-Rashid Street directly opposite Qasim’s office in Iraq’s Ministry of Defense, to observe Qasim’s movements.
    Adel Darwish, Middle East expert and author of “Unholy Babylon,” said the move was done “with full knowledge of the CIA,” and that Saddam’s CIA handler was an Iraqi dentist working for CIA and Egyptian intelligence. U.S. officials separately confirmed Darwish’s account.

    Darwish said that Saddam’s paymaster was Capt. Abdel Maquid Farid, the assistant military attaché at the Egyptian Embassy who paid for the apartment from his own personal account. Three former senior U.S. officials have confirmed that this is accurate.

    The assassination was set for Oct. 7, 1959, but it was completely botched. Accounts differ. One former CIA official said that the 22-year-old Saddam lost his nerve and began firing too soon, killing Qasim’s driver and only wounding Qasim in the shoulder and arm. Darwish told UPI that one of the assassins had bullets that did not fit his gun and that another had a hand grenade that got stuck in the lining of his coat.

    “It bordered on farce,” a former senior U.S. intelligence official said. But Qasim, hiding on the floor of his car, escaped death, and Saddam, whose calf had been grazed by a fellow would-be assassin, escaped to Tikrit, thanks to CIA and Egyptian intelligence agents, several U.S. government officials said.
    Saddam then crossed into Syria and was transferred by Egyptian intelligence agents to Beirut, according to Darwish and former senior CIA officials. While Saddam was in Beirut, the CIA paid for Saddam’s apartment and put him through a brief training course, former CIA officials said. The agency then helped him get to Cairo, they said.

    One former U.S. government official, who knew Saddam at the time, said that even then Saddam “was known as having no class. He was a thug — a cutthroat.”
    In Cairo, Saddam was installed in an apartment in the upper class neighborhood of Dukki and spent his time playing dominos in the Indiana Café, watched over by CIA and Egyptian intelligence operatives, according to Darwish and former U.S. intelligence officials.

    One former senior U.S. government official said: “In Cairo, I often went to Groppie Café at Emad Eldine Pasha Street, which was very posh, very upper class. Saddam would not have fit in there. The Indiana was your basic dive.”

    But during this time Saddam was making frequent visits to the American Embassy where CIA specialists such as Miles Copeland and CIA station chief Jim Eichelberger were in residence and knew Saddam, former U.S. intelligence officials said.

    Saddam’s U.S. handlers even pushed Saddam to get his Egyptian handlers to raise his monthly allowance, a gesture not appreciated by Egyptian officials since they knew of Saddam’s American connection, according to Darwish. His assertion was confirmed by former U.S. diplomat in Egypt at the time.

    In February 1963 Qasim was killed in a Baath Party coup. Morris claimed recently that the CIA was behind the coup, which was sanctioned by President John F. Kennedy, but a former very senior CIA official strongly denied this.
    “We were absolutely stunned. We had guys running around asking what the hell had happened,” this official said.

    But the agency quickly moved into action. Noting that the Baath Party was hunting down Iraq’s communist, the CIA provided the submachine gun-toting Iraqi National Guardsmen with lists of suspected communists who were then jailed, interrogated, and summarily gunned down, according to former U.S. intelligence officials with intimate knowledge of the executions.
    Many suspected communists were killed outright, these sources said. Darwish told UPI that the mass killings, presided over by Saddam, took place at Qasr al-Nehayat, literally, the Palace of the End.

    A former senior U.S. State Department official told UPI: “We were frankly glad to be rid of them. You ask that they get a fair trial? You have to get kidding. This was serious business.”
    A former senior CIA official said: “It was a bit like the mysterious killings of Iran’s communists just after Ayatollah Khomeini came to power in 1979. All 4,000 of his communists suddenly got killed.”

    British scholar Con Coughlin, author of “Saddam: King of Terror,” quotes Jim Critchfield, then a senior Middle East agency official, as saying the killing of Qasim and the communists was regarded “as a great victory.” A former long-time covert U.S. intelligence operative and friend of Critchfield said: “Jim was an old Middle East hand. He wasn’t sorry to see the communists go at all. Hey, we were playing for keeps.”
    Saddam, in the meantime, became head of al-Jihaz a-Khas, the secret intelligence apparatus of the Baath Party.

    The CIA/Defense Intelligence Agency relation with Saddam intensified after the start of the Iran-Iraq war in September of 1980. During the war, the CIA regularly sent a team to Saddam to deliver battlefield intelligence obtained from Saudi AWACS surveillance aircraft to aid the effectiveness of Iraq’s armed forces, according to a former DIA official, part of a U.S. interagency intelligence group.
    This former official said that he personally had signed off on a document that shared U.S. satellite intelligence with both Iraq and Iran in an attempt to produce a military stalemate. “When I signed it, I thought I was losing my mind,” the former official told UPI.

    A former CIA official said that Saddam had assigned a top team of three senior officers from the Estikhbarat, Iraq’s military intelligence, to meet with the Americans.
    According to Darwish, the CIA and DIA provided military assistance to Saddam’s ferocious February 1988 assault on Iranian positions in the al-Fao peninsula by blinding Iranian radars for three days.
    The Saddam-U.S. intelligence alliance of convenience came to an end at 2 a.m. Aug. 2, 1990, when 100,000 Iraqi troops, backed by 300 tanks, invaded its neighbor, Kuwait. America’s one-time ally had become its bitterest enemy.

    AF (d700ef)

  55. “Just what did Saddam get out of that handshake with an American envoy, aside from the infamous Rumsfeld cooties?”

    -Pablo

    How about “Legitimacy”?

    Leviticus (68eff1)

  56. Interesting conversation guys. Very interesting.

    To the Gulf War I vet, can you possibly email via my site http://www.regimeofterror.com, I’d like to ask you some questions about Saddam’s terrorist links or efforts to crack down on them.

    Thanks for your service.

    Mark (80f0da)

  57. Oregonian,
    Instead of believing what the antiwar crowd tells you about Saddam’s “secularism” maybe do a simple google about Saddam and Islam or Saddam and jihad.

    You could use a lesson or two on the topic.

    The man had a Koran written in his own blood and spent MILLIONS of dollars on mosques in Iraq. Go read for yourself though.

    http://www.regimeofterror.com

    Mark (80f0da)

  58. Andrew Lazarus,
    Please tell me a.) why al Ani would tell the truth and b.) how you know entirely what he said

    Only small portions of his testimony have been released.

    Mark (80f0da)

  59. for some reason, my attempt to reply to 58 keeps getting held up. Short version: This isn’t a question of Al Ani, who might be lying, against one other person. This is Al Ani plus other evidence. The pro-meeting crowd has nothing but one person’s statement, and if it hadn’t been taken up by neo-conservatives, it would have been forgotten long ago. Second point: the implication of part (b) is that although Ani’s denial of a meeting has been leaked, the Bush Administration has somehow withheld a part of Al Ani’s statement that would totally justify the Iraq War. That’s not possible.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7d46f9)

  60. Very old news. There have been reports of conflict since early last year. Unfortunately, it may not be a sign of a weakening Al Qaeda, but a strengthening one that is attempting to take over the entire insurgency. Regardless, the fighting between the two factions will not deplete the power of either Al Qaeda or the insurgency, so we shouldn’t really be celebrating these reports just yet.

    Xanthippas (e941fa)

  61. “Another myth. I’m a Desert Storm vet and had to memorize Iraqi vehicle silhouettes. As one who knows the geopolitics would expect, they were all Russian and French. Sadam was a Soviet client.”
    You don’t know your history.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

    That’s rich, I’m telling you as a veteran what I had to memorize to prepare for warfare in 1991 and you tell me I don’t know my history. Hah. I expect no less of a cognitively challenged lefty. —No, sorry, what was I thinking, you are clearly the all knowing Prince Vardzul of Pincipitiy. My knowledge is as nothing before yours

    As for your link titled “National Security Archives” – are we supposed to be impressed by that like its an official, authoritative source? Its not its just another lefty made up source. Did you notice that I had the courtesy to quote the New York Times one of your more lefty mainstream sources?

    Give you lefties another couple of years and you will have Saddam wearing an Uncle Sam hat and the real source of bj’s in the White House.

    gm (9e9332)

  62. There have been reports of conflict since early last year. Unfortunately, it may not be a sign of a weakening Al Qaeda, but a strengthening one that is attempting to take over the entire insurgency. Regardless, the fighting between the two factions will not deplete the power of either Al Qaeda or the insurgency, so we shouldn’t really be celebrating these reports just yet.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Nice to hear from Al Queda’s public relations department

    gm (9e9332)

  63. I linked (#5) to an educated opinion.
    Anyone read it?
    I doubt it.

    AF (d700ef)

  64. Unfortunately, it may not be a sign of a weakening Al Qaeda…

    Okay, you all win. You convinced me. We may lose in Iraq (especially with half the nation and all the world’s wanna be superpowers working against a victory). We should give up on Iraq and war all together–one soldier and one civilian death is one too many, in this modern day and age. After all, we cause these attacks upon us by the horrible behavior of our politicians Republicans! We don’t deserve to win because we are the CAUSE OF ALL EVIL in the Middle East, and the world. Let’s disband the military and give away free food to “undocumented” people instead. Let’s get down on our knees and beg forgiveness from the world because we are, were, and are condemned by our very intrinsic nature to always be, A BAD COUNTRY. Maybe we could build a protective dome around the nation if that’s not too “offensive” to some self-appointed crackpot human rights watchdog.

    Everything will then be fine. Justice, at last.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  65. “I linked (#5) to an educated opinion.”

    Of course you did, bubbie. You are the echo of a voice crying in the wilderness. You have my sympathy.

    nk (49aa3f)

  66. Here’s a more educated opinion, AF. What with experience being the best teacher and all…

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  67. GM, would you explain to me why the fact Saddam was a major client of the USSR (including getting Soviet tanks) precludes his also being a client of the USA (including BW and CW)?

    Andrew J. Lazarus (99a32f)

  68. Leviticus,

    How about “Legitimacy”?

    So, like, people would think he was the President of Iraq or something once Rumsfeld met with him? Amazing.

    AF,

    Pablo why don’t you read the articles rather than the titles?

    I did, and you should too.

    “Records provided by the supplier show that, from at least 1985 through 1989, the period for which records were available, the United States government approved for sale to Iraq quantities of potentially lethal biological agents that could have been cultured or grown in large volume in an Iraqi biological warfare program. These exported materials were not attenuated or weakened and were capable of reproduction.”

    Right, to their equivalent of our CDC from our CDC And to whom else did we provide such bugs? (Hint: virtually any country that wanted them) Dual means two, AF. One legitimate use, and that’s the one they were authorized under. The suggestion that this was a bio weapons transaction is absolutely asinine. In other words, typical for the America hating left.

    As for the Sale piece, I’m shocked and astounded at the revalation that we didn’t care for the soviet supported Communists. And I am amazed at the revelation that the were “contacts” and that things happened “with full knowledge of the CIA,” Knowledge! I just can’t believe that the CIA had knowledge! What have we come to? And they had lists!?! The HORROR!

    That’s it. I see the light, AF. Time to go join the jihad. You coming?

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  69. Like those bug creatures in that movie version of LOST IN SPACE they are eating thier wounded

    krazy kagu (d982eb)

  70. Pablo, when we found dual use technology in Iraq in 2003, the Right tried to champion it as proof-positive of WMD and the righteousness of Operation Quagmire.

    I admit you are more likely right this time than last time, that our sales to Saddam were unremarkable. But the double standard (I could have posted many other such links) is remarkable.

    Somewhat off topic, but don’t miss Jon Stewart’s collection of George Bush’s statements we are making “progress” in Iraq. Just about monthly for the last two years. (H/T dKos) If you want to know why so few people care about the latest alleged positive signs in Iraq, it’s a great lesson in how Bush counts unhatched chickens.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (99a32f)

  71. “So, like, people would think he was the President of Iraq or something once Rumsfeld met with him? Amazing.”

    -Pablo

    No, they’d think that the US was, like, offering him a seat at the Big Boy’s table, or something.

    Leviticus (1daf74)

  72. What table is that, Leviticus? The President’s table, perhaps?

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  73. Another example of how the Nattering Nabob of Negativism er, Harry Reid is determined to lose the war in such a way that he can BLAME BUSH.

    DC’s a cesspool — where’s the flush handle?

    dubya (c16726)

  74. “Eventually, I learned the joys of killing”
    That’s from your link Pab. Right on the front page.
    That doesn’t quite rank with On the Virtues of Killing Children but it’ll do for my purposes.

    I linked to an expert on Iraq, who speals Arabic fluently and reads the arabic press and even jihadi websites daily. You linked to a hollywood refugee on a mission from god. I give to links from historians and journalists, you give me Steven Soderburgh’s agent.
    Brilliant, son, just’s effing brilliant. There’s no use arguing with you because you’d never admit that you’re wrong about anything. This isn’t about the war or the troops, it’s about you.
    Enjoy your bitterness. It bores me.
    I’ve posted a lot of links, for someone to read. it won’t be you.
    And of course you forget the reputation Saddam had even in the 60’s. He was always my enemy, son. He was your friend for a long long time. I’m sure the Shah was too.
    scum all around.

    AF (d700ef)

  75. I linked to an expert on Iraq, who speals Arabic fluently and reads the arabic press and even jihadi websites daily. You linked to a hollywood refugee on a mission from god.

    No, I linked to Marine 1Lt Matthew McGirr, who is doing his second tour in Ramadi. You linked to Juan freaking Cole.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  76. You linked to Pat Dollard, and I liked to Marc Lynch
    And I will do it again.

    But since you think you know more than Lynch or Cole[!!] I could link to him again too. And no, the surge is not working.
    What a waste.

    AF (d700ef)

  77. Cause we all know the surge would instantly improve things.

    G (950c9a)

  78. So, 1Lt McGirr doesn’t count, AF? Because you don’t like the guy he wrote that letter to?

    That, my friend, is pathetic. But you support the troops, right?

    Marc Lynch is associate professor in the Department of Political Science at Williams College, and author of the popular Middle East politics blog Abu Aardvark. His most recent book, Voices of the New Arab Public: Al-Jazeera, Iraq, and Middle East Politics Today, was published this year by Columbia University Press.

    Funny that a guy who writes for The American Prospect (“My favorite left-of-center magazine” – Markos”, Daily Kos) and the Grauniad trumps a USMC officer whose boots are on the ground because he chose to write to a Hollywood refugee who he met while his boots were on the ground, despite said professor preaching from his perch in Williamstown, MA. Because, well, your guy reads Arab media!

    Brilliant, AF. Just brilliant.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  79. …don’t miss Jon Stewart’s collection of George Bush’s statements we are making “progress” in Iraq. Just about monthly for the last two years.

    Only incredibly stupid, or unbearably cruel, people make or laugh at jokes about war repeated for two years.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  80. Marc Lynch has spent more time on the ground there than any US soldier and much more than you. He also knows more about why both he, and that soldier were and are there. This war was begun by “experts” who didn’t speak arabic and is now being defended by fools who know less. Do you think there’s not a soldier I could interview who would say this thing is lost? Do you think I cant get 20? What’s grotesque is that I can get thousands who think the planes on 9-11 were manned by Iraqis.

    Knowledge means nothing to you.

    AF (d700ef)

  81. Supporty the troops. Support Pat Tillman’s Family

    In a transcript of his interview with Brig. Gen. Gary Jones during a November 2004 investigation, Kauzlarich said he’d learned Kevin Tillman, Pat’s brother and fellow Army Ranger who was a part of the battle the night Pat Tillman died, objected to the presence of a chaplain and the saying of prayers during a repatriation ceremony in Germany before his brother’s body was returned to the United States.

    Kauzlarich, now a battalion commanding officer at Fort Riley in Kansas, further suggested the Tillman family’s unhappiness with the findings of past investigations might be because of the absence of a Christian faith in their lives.

    In an interview with ESPN.com, Kauzlarich said: “When you die, I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right? Well, if you are an atheist and you don’t believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to? Nothing. You are worm dirt. So for their son to die for nothing, and now he is no more — that is pretty hard to get your head around that. So I don’t know how an atheist thinks. I can only imagine that that would be pretty tough.”

    Asked by ESPN.com whether the Tillmans’ religious beliefs are a factor in the ongoing investigation, Kauzlarich said, “I think so. There is not a whole lot of trust in the system or faith in the system [by the Tillmans]. So that is my personal opinion, knowing what I know.”

    Asked what might finally placate the family, Kauzlarich said, “You know what? I don’t think anything will make them happy, quite honestly. I don’t know. Maybe they want to see somebody’s head on a platter. But will that really make them happy? No, because they can’t bring their son back.”

    Kauzlarich, now 40, was the Ranger regiment executive officer in Afghanistan, who played a role in writing the recommendation for Tillman’s posthumous Silver Star. And finally, with his fingerprints already all over many of the hot-button issues, including the question of who ordered the platoon to be split as it dragged a disabled Humvee through the mountains, Kauzlarich conducted the first official Army investigation into Tillman’s death.

    That investigation is among the inquiries that didn’t satisfy the Tillman family.

    “Well, this guy makes disparaging remarks about the fact that we’re not Christians, and the reason that we can’t put Pat to rest is because we’re not Christians,” Mary Tillman, Pat’s mother, said in an interview with ESPN.com. Mary Tillman casts the family as spiritual, though she said it does not believe in many of the fundamental aspects of organized religion.

    “Oh, it has nothing to do with the fact that this whole thing is shady,” she said sarcastically, “But it is because we are not Christians.”

    After a pause, her voice full with emotion, she added, “Pat may not have been what you call a Christian. He was about the best person I ever knew. I mean, he was just a good guy. He didn’t lie. He was very honest. He was very generous. He was very humble. I mean, he had an ego, but it was a healthy ego. It is like, everything those [people] are, he wasn’t.”

    Nothing here today about Tillman. Nothing about Jessica Lynch’s appearance before Congress. Nothing. No support for them

    AF (d700ef)

  82. What’s grotesque is that I can get thousands who think the planes on 9-11 were manned by Iraqis

    Bring those boys on, AF.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  83. Marc Lynch has spent more time on the ground there than any US soldier

    Does he have a bio that indicates that? I can’t seem to find that bit of information in any of his profiles. His Iraq expert credentials are not evident.

    From what I’m able to find, Hollywood refugee Pat Dollard has spent more time in Iraq than Lynch has, let alone 1LT McGirr.

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  84. Gee, Patricia, I don’t usually see you attacking George W. Bush. Did you forget the uproariously funny (not!) video he made searching for WMD under his desk?

    But I didn’t point to Bush saying we’d made progress over and over again as a joke, at least, not as a funny joke.

    Everyone knows the pre-war vision of a pro-American, democratic, anti-theocratic Iraq is gone. All that’s happening now is the GOP trying to figure out how to escape the blame.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (3e8dbe)

  85. Everyone knows the pre-war vision of a pro-American, democratic, anti-theocratic Iraq is gone.

    Really?

    Probably should tell the Iraqis, then… They seem to still want us there.

    Well, the insane ones don’t, but they blow themselves up infront of schools, so what do they know?

    They can’t even tell a school from a US military base…

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  86. Scott Jacobs:”Probably should tell the Iraqis, then… They seem to still want us there.”
    When was the last time you read a newspaper??
    The Washington Post :

    BAGHDAD, Sept. 26 [2006] — A strong majority of Iraqis want U.S.-led military forces to immediately withdraw from the country, saying their swift departure would make Iraq more secure and decrease sectarian violence, according to new polls by the State Department and independent researchers.

    In Baghdad, for example, nearly three-quarters of residents polled said they would feel safer if U.S. and other foreign forces left Iraq, with 65 percent of those asked favoring an immediate pullout, according to State Department polling results obtained by The Washington Post.
    Another new poll, scheduled to be released on Wednesday by the Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland, found that 71 percent of Iraqis questioned want the Iraqi government to ask foreign forces to depart within a year. By large margins, though, Iraqis believed that the U.S. government would refuse the request, with 77 percent of those polled saying the United States intends keep permanent military bases in the country.

    I wonder why they would think that?

    AF (d700ef)

  87. Well, Scott, guess AF shows you should catch up on your reading. The greeted-with-flowers dream is so Spring 2003.

    But even that isn’t all: how many of those Iraqis who still do want us there see us as helping them implement some sort of undemocratic and perhaps theocratic state with their group on top?

    We’re a team that is eliminated from the playoffs but still relevant to which of the other teams will win.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (7d46f9)

  88. Those who oppose Bush and his criminal gang should accept the fact that those who support Bush are really fascists that have only one agenda.. Pretend to love the troops and the country but work for the destruction of the two party system and give all power to the Commander in Chief who can do what he wants and never be challenged or questioned. There is a name for that kind of government..I think it begins with F ..

    Charlie (55cd2b)

  89. Wow, Charlie, heavy, dude! Did you mean “fascist”? Wow again, I’m so stunned by your laser sharp remarks and your friends’ links (and hatred) I’m going to vote for Dennis Kucinich from now on. I hope and pray you all are right and Iran installs a theocracy in Iraq–think of all the senate seats the Dems will pick up!

    Patricia (824fa1)

  90. Patricia, as I commented elsewhere, the fact that we disprove those “facts” of his is completely lost on him and his ilk…

    I’d say he was an AF sockpuppet, but there aren’t 8 paragraphs of quotes of someone else’s work and three links that are so blatantly biased as to actually sicken…

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  91. …give all power to the Commander in Chief who can do what he wants and never be challenged or questioned…

    The power of the President is spelled out in Article II, The Constitution of the United States, Charlie. Maybe you ought to read it once in a while.

    You can get your own copy here.

    dubya (c16726)

  92. Great, now AF is gonna start in with his BS again about congress actually having authority to run wars…

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  93. Scott, I await your essay on Congress terminating our military mission in Somalia.

    Charlie isn’t so far off. We don’t live in an elected dictatorship, but the remaining Bushbots seem to wish we did.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (a2bcbe)

  94. Scott, I await your essay on Congress terminating our military mission in Somalia.

    They passed a bill to cease funding. Everyone agrees they can do this. The issue is with their attempt to dictate command policy which is a clear breach of seperation of powers.

    All of the congressional war powers listed in the constitution deal with raising, funding, maintaining, and setting rules of conduct for the military. There is no mention anywhere of congress being able to order the military to do anything with the exception of calling them up to repel invasion or insurrection.

    The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices,

    There is the only text in the constitution delaing with command and control of the military. I don’t see congress mentioned anywhere, do you?

    Charlie isn’t so far off. We don’t live in an elected dictatorship, but the remaining Bushbots seem to wish we did.

    Can we drop the stupid dictator/monarchy nonsense already? It’s like you seem to think that seperation of powers means to somehow seperate the president from power. It never seems to occur to some on the left that in trying to divest the president from his constitutional authority out of partisan malice that they are doing grave harm to the entire system.

    Taltos (c99804)


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