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Cost of War

Aug. 24th, 2005 04:34 pm
teabiting: (rumors internets)
So far, the US has invested billions of dollars into the war machine, and billions of dollars into fighting an illegal war. Remember when we were told, "Oh, 80 billion dollars US, that's it. That's all it will cost." Right now, we're up to over 189 billion dollars, and still counting, considering our dear President would like to stay in Iraq until the oil fields are dry.

For 189 billion, 719 million, 960 thousand dollars, we could have built nearly 2 million additional public housing units, enough for the population of Kansas City. We could have funded a world-wide AIDS program for 18 years (or given about 9 million, 450 thousand people the best care available for the disease for one year). We could have made sure that every child in the world had basic immunization from many of the diseases ravaging third-world countries... for 63 years. If the US hadn't spent all this money on Iraq, we could provided over 9 million high-school students with scholarships to attend college for four years. Or, instead, we could have hired 3.2 million additional teachers for public schooling. Wouldn't that have been fantastic?
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Among the oh-so-many reasons that George Bush Jr. is the worst president ever...

  • When asked about his reasons for so far, not meeting with the mother of a dead soldier that showed up at his (nearly literal) doorstep, he said this: "I think it's... important for me to go on with my life, to keep a balanced life." In addition to the two-hour bike ride, Bush's Saturday schedule included an evening Little League Baseball playoff game, a lunch meeting with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, a nap, some fishing and some reading. "I think the people want the president to be in a position to make good, crisp decisions and to stay healthy," he said when asked about bike riding while a grieving mom wanted to speak with him. "And part of my being is to be outside exercising." [source]

  • His government went from high-minded ideals for a new, Democratic Iraq to: "We set out to establish a democracy, but we're slowly realizing we will have some form of Islamic republic," said a U.S. official. "That process is being repeated all over." [source]

There's also the whole "no justification for a war in Iraq" to begin with, being insensitive to troops' needs, letting his politicians run Iraq when it could be better done by people who are there, and in general being a lying, cheating git.

In comparison, Canada's kind-of bumbling Prime Minister looks like a perfect angel.
So often I hear from my Liberal friends, "We're in an illegal war! Stop the war, it's not right!" They don't support the troops that are over there, fighting for their lives every day. They don't support the fact we are cleaning out the terrorists, we're bankrupting their ranks by detaining them, jailing them and, in some unfortunate cases, killing them. We freed the people in Iraq from an oppressive leader, they can now walk relatively free on the streets where they couldn't before, for fear of "disappearing" and being tortured. Yet people still can't support this war.

First of all, they are our troops that are over there, giving their time and lives to this. This is no Vietnam where our troops slog through the backwater areas, on alert for guerrilla fighters. This is Iraq- we have superior weaponry and superior armor, and our citizens are over there, fighting for the freedom of the Iraqi people, so they can walk down to their grocer without the fear of being captured and tortured, so they can drive freely throughout their cities without being detained, so they can have families and live and work productively. Denying the war is denying them that hope and freedom, denying support to our troops should be likened to saying that we don't want the Iraqi people to have that freedom, since the troops are the right hand of liberty, in a way.

As for wars being illegal... aren't all wars illegal? When does the UN or any other watchdog organization think it's ok for people to be in mortal danger? Isn't killing another person in cold blood always illegal? The 3,000 Americans that died on 9/11, their deaths were illegal. We don't condone terroristic events in our country, yet the Democrats and the Liberal media would have us not punish those wrong-doers, they would have us let them walk free. They are criminals, would probably be subject to the death penalty under American law, and here we have some of our own citizens wanting them to walk free. Where is the logic in that?

I hear, too, that some group went over and "proved" that Saddam didn't have anything to do with 9/11, and therefore we shouldn't have gone to war in his country. Isn't that sweet? So the man who is a terrorist himself, who killed thousands of people and tortured untold more, isn't a terrorist, and our troops shouldn't be in Iraq because he's not connected with the murders of our own citizens (except, of course, in the Gulf War, right?). The people under his thumb shouldn't be freed, because HIS terrorism doesn't have anything to do with THAT terrorism. Do you see how weak an arguement this is? Terrorism is terrorism is terrorism - there is no changing that. Whether the terrorist be an American like Timothy McVeigh, or a nameless suicide bomber who blows up our citizens, terrorism is the same. It has the same objective and the same result, and should therefore be fought in any arena that presents itself, including Iraq. If we don't counter terrorism wherever it springs up, and if we don't counter the ideas that terrorism enfolds, the sheer lack of freedom it would impose upon all the people in the world, we have no right in calling ourselves Americans.

(no subject)

Jul. 19th, 2005 01:55 pm
teabiting: (be bold)
via [ profile] throwingstardna
Raed of Raed in the Middle reports his brother Khalid Jarrar, the blogger who writes Tell Me A Secret , who had been missing, has turned up ... in an Iraqi jail—jailed by the new Iraqi mukhabarat (secret police):
* Raed in the Middle - Targeting Iraqi Civilians in Msayyab: "My brother is spending his 6th night in jail. He's just one of the thousands of people in Iraq who disappeared and ended up in one of the many jails and prisons around the country without a clear reason."

* Bellciao - Another Casualty in Rumsfeld’s Information-war - Blogger in Iraq captured by government for providing news on his blog about what is really happening in Iraq.

* Shlonkom Bakazay - Sign the Petition & Write your congressional representative and senator: Petition to demand release of Khalid Jarrar, an Iraqi blogger captured by government and imprisoned for reporting Iraqi news on his blog.

* A Star from Mosul - Give us our Khalid back : Email, phone DC: "You may go here to get your specific congressional representative's number and address."

* Baghdad Burning - Prayers for Khalid: "Khalid of the blog Tell Me a Secret has been abducted by the new Iraqi mukhabarat."

Help free Khalid by publicizing this on your blogs. Reporting the news should not be a jailable offense, anywhere in the world, but particularly not in a country where we have lost more than 1,700 lives in the name of "securing freedom."
The US has, for the very first time, acknowledging torturing prisoners in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay. Let me just say this:


Finally, acknowledging what the rest of the world already knew. As if pictures, posters, complimentary tee shirts, news articles and coffee mugs weren't enough, the US government finally owned up, if secretly. Of course, though, the document from Washington won't be made public until the official UN inquiries in May, 2006. Were you expecting anything else? Real disclosure, perhaps? Owning up to the citizens of the country that they were wrong and lied to us all? Pshaw! Not in this government. That was for the last President, see. This President is King of Eternity, and who cares that his ratings are dropping, most Americans dislike his government, and even his own party members disagree with him?

But wait, he still has Rumsfeld! Oh, wait, and Cheney too! Because, you know, the Iraq insurgency has been in it's last throes for a very long time now, or something. How long have we been hearing this?

The thing I hate about this government is they assume that everyone is stupid, and will read and listen to every word they say. "Ignore that Newsweek behind the curtain, we have the REAL story, and there wasn't any torture of detainees! They're LIARS! Liberal liars, at that!" Do they honestly think that Americans are that stupid?

Oh, oh right. Apparently, they do.

(no subject)

Jun. 19th, 2005 12:04 pm
teabiting: (rumors internets)
Sometimes, I tire of reading about the Bush government. Everything is so screwed up, and he's sitting there in the prince's seat and saying, "Pull out of Iraq? We can't!" (NYTimes, requires login). Because, you know, we absolutely CANNOT pull out over there, it might cost us the war on terror! We have to train those new policemen over there (nevermind they're getting blown up every other day or so). The bright side of it is, though, that finally, the GOP might be seeing the light. One of the major proponents of war in the GOP party has helped table a resolution to get all the troops out of Iraq by October 1st, 2006. The President, of course, sits up on his high seat and decrees that it's all wrong- we can't pull out, they're just starting that democracy over there!

Because, you know, he's just the King of Democracy. A stolen election? In Iran? That's probably going to be the reason we go over there. "It was a sham!" Dubya will cry, riding atop Cheney as they gallop around the oval office, "A sham of democracy! Those people didn't actually vote in their President! Let's go free them, too!" Iran is right there, after all- only a short jaunt for our troops.

Is it any wonder that most people in the US would rather ignore politics and delve into the latest Michael Jackson case?
My mom likes to watch FOX news, because she likes to "hear what the Republicans are saying." True, it's always good to be informed about who they're slandering next, but last night, after the Bob Dole Memorial Tour, Bill O'Reilly's show came on, and shattered all my previous thoughts of Republican bias.

Some of you may be familiar with it. He says, in the beginning credits, "THIS IS A NO SPIN ZONE." Practically everyone should know by now that FOX news is not "fair and unbiased", it's incredibly biased, most often towards Republican causes. This doesn't really bother me, except when they start "reporting news" that is so obviously skewed it's painful.

Last night, amid Muslim-bashing and other lovely amusements, he talked about the people that are fighting for prisoners in Guantanamo Bay to have lawyers and legal representation, and how wrong that is. He went on for a few minutes about the insurgents and ji'hadists that are willfully murdering "our citizens" and how that is SO wrong that until we complete this war on terrorism, Guantanamo Bay ought to remain open and recieving prisoners, because that's one more ji'hadist we don't have to worry about.

Arguably, Saddam Hussien is one of those ji'hadists and probably an insurgent as well, seeing as he didn't bow like sheep to the slaughter, yet he gets a lawyer. His lawyer even gets to sue people, like the "Sun" newspaper in the UK that ran photos of Saddam in his underwear. He gets a lawyer... yet thousands of "insurgents" in Guantanamo Bay get less than that. There has even been some discussion that atleast some of those men imprisoned there have had no contact with the "insurgency"*, and know nothing- they were rounded up in Iraq and shipped out because they *might* be insurgents.

Does anyone remember the phrase, "innocent until proven guilty"? Does anyone remember how that used to be a bastion of American law and justice? Yet, very few (if any at all) prisoners in Guantanamo Bay have been charged with a crime. Indeed, if any American was overseas and went years without being charged with an official crime, oh how the American people would rally. Yet we keep our own prisoners, informally charged with the vague and often insubstantial charge of "terrorism", in a place that's noted for torture- because that's just the American way?

So, by about Bill O'Reilly's fourth or fifth sentance, I was wishing I could reach through the television and slap him. He trips blithely over facts and fictures and appeals to the emotions of the American people, he plays heartstrings so sweetly with hard-bitten sentances and that flat look in his eyes that makes him look dead, all while pounding his desk and interrupting his guests. Need I say how emotions should be put away and facts looked at? Need I say how rights of anyone should NOT be ignored? Need I say how pissed the American people were when our troops were prisoners in "Desert Storm", how we called for justice, how we shouted and screamed and lamented and tied ribbons on our flagpoles for all those poor troops being possibly tortured and killed?

Yet our government manages to do it to our own prisoners. Because, you know, that's just good politics, right?


May. 26th, 2005 08:47 pm
teabiting: (mel brown)
So, yeah. Remember all that about Newsweek and the Koran being flushed down the toilet?

Ahem: Well, they might not have FLUSHED it, atleast.
"Senator [Coleman], in everything I said about Iraq I turned out to be right and you turned out to be wrong and 100,000 have paid with their lives, 1,600 of them American soldiers sent to their deaths on a pack of lies."