Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Second War Century

Right now I'm watching (listening to) a Rachel Maddow special on MSNBC. I really don't think that much of Maddow, who is pretty far on the socialist side. Her guest was Chris Matthews, of Hardball fame. I like Matthews a little better, but not much. His love for B Hussein Obama borders on the neurotic.

He was giving a monologue on the reaction of the Bush Administration (and the people of the US) to the destruction of the World Trade Center by mad-dog fascist muslims.

He described Bush's speech a couple of days after the attack, and the fact of Americans' near-unanimous agreement and resolve to bring the planners and financiers of this atrocity to justice, quickly and decisively. The military was quickly mobilized and prepared for action. They were sent to Afghanistan to find Osama bin Llama and all those who follow and protect him.

Matthews continued that, he didn't know exactly how and when, but a neocon cabal led by Cheney, Rove and Ashcroft, perhaps others, swerved the effort into Iraq for ideological reasons still not completely known.

According to Matthews, this act destroyed the trust of many in the Bush Presidency and split the nation.

Matthews' comments ended there, and I have to say that I generally agree with this view. While I certainly will never call Saddam Hussein anything better than a completely evil and despicable dictator, there are many completely evil and despicable dictators on the planet. Why him?

Meanwhile, bin Llama remains relaxing in his villa in the South of France, issuing orders by encrypted email to his lieutenants around the world and enjoying blonde women kidnapped from Stockholm, cuba libres and blt sandwiches.

Every now and then, another bomb goes off somewhere in the world, more often than not in Baghdad, and kills a few people. Bin Llama chuckles.

The one Bushian phrase that rings out, before the body cavity searches in airports, before the wiretapping without a need for a warrant, before the installation of video cameras just about everywhere, before the proliferation of quasi-military police departments in just about every city--even in Mayberry, I'll wager--and before handbag searches everywhere crowds gather, is the one he uttered in one of his early post 9/11 speeches to the effect that the "War on Terror" is likely to last a very long time.

I think he and his cronies are doing their best to make sure it does.

People should not be afraid of their governments; governments should be afraid of their people.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California


TWC said...

Matthews continued that, he didn't know exactly how and when, but a neocon cabal led by Cheney, Rove and Ashcroft, perhaps others, swerved the effort into Iraq for ideological reasons still not completely known.

See that is a BS lie perped by the left to cover their sorry worthless asses. At the time EVERYBODY *knew* that Iraq was a problem. And if you tag GWB with the paint, you must go back another decade and paint those boys with the same brush.


"Saddam's goal ... is to achieve the lifting of U.N. sanctions while retaining and enhancing Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs. We cannot, we must not and we will not let him succeed." -- Madeline Albright, 1998

"(Saddam) will rebuild his arsenal of weapons of mass destruction and some day, some way, I am certain he will use that arsenal again, as he has 10 times since 1983" -- National Security Adviser Sandy Berger, Feb 18, 1998

The fact that our CIA and FBI are useless as you-know-what on a boar hog (see how well they did at preventing 09-11) is the lesson. A divining rod would have worked as well.

And, I'm not sure that spying actually works under the best of circumstances.

Col. Hogan said...


That maa....ay be true to a degree, but the timing is funny--breaking off the search for bin Llama just as they have him bottled up, and letting him do the 1000-yard dash to Pakistan.

Kent C said...

twc said:
"At the time EVERYBODY *knew* that Iraq was a problem."

Exactly right. And along with your earlier citations you could add the statements of almost all the leading Democrats that has access to the info that Bush had - the exact same info - the Senate foreign relations and the intelligence committees, including Biden, Clinton, Kerry, Rockefeller and a host of others, and they backed up that same belief with their votes _at that time_. Of course, they all became Monday morning quarterbacks once Gulf War II didn't go the same way as Gulf War I... and the fact that what they 'knew' from intel - wmd were either taken out of country or (contrary to intel) didn't exist. Even if they didn't exist, it was Joe Wilson who actually gave credence to the idea that they were looking for yellowcake. That and the fact that the scientists who escaped validated that there was a plan to build nukes.

And as long as we're implying 'conspiracy' I'd submit that it is more of a probability that wmd were moved, than the idea that we let Osama go intentionally.

As a side note to the Palin interview on Charlie's gotcha question on the 'Bush Doctrine' - there are at least 8 parts to that, and four major ones. He may have pointed out which one he actually was inquiring about, esp. after she asked 'which part?'.


Col. Hogan said...

KC, & TWC,

The "war" was launched as a retaliation against the attack 'pon the WTC and the Pentagon.

I'll concede that there were UN resolutions against Iraq, and the Hussein government. Who cares? I haven't trusted a word out of the UN for thirty years. Add to that, the UN itself did nothing to enforce these resolutions. Why the US?

There are many belligerent dictatorships that insult, denigrate and threaten the United States. North Korea, Iran and Argentina come to mind. We've been jawing ineffectively with North Korea for years.

North Korea, Red China, Russia, Iran and many other dictatorships have Weapons of mass destruction, and some of them threaten.

Hussein would never attack the United States, beyond taking the odd pot shot at US planes flying over the country.

I've said before: the most significant enemy of the United States right now is Iran. It's from Iran that the ideology of the islamic fascists springs. Additionally, Saudi Arabian tycoons fund these same fascists.

Whether or not the Bush Administration deliberately let bin Llama go, they remain suspect. If they didn't deliberately let him go, they incompetently let him go. News reports, developed from Administration press releases at the time claimed that they knew where bin Llama was within a very small area, and it was simply a matter of tightening the noose.

They blew it. My suspicion is that they blew it because needed troops were being diverted to Iraq.

An old bromide, but true: war is the health of the state. This is our second war century.

steveintx said...

You still have to remember that Bush, Cheney, et al, did not get a vote on the floors of Congress. They did not hold guns to the heads of Pelosi, Clinton, Kennedy and the others...77for 23against in the Senate, 296for 133against in the House.

I lay the 'blame' on the misrepresentatives of the people. Those who sit on their thrones only because they promise to give welfare mommies and crackheads more of my money.

We have to remember that the Pres can only give them the thought. The reps of the people MUST investigate before following blindly. If roadblock were thrown in front of their investigation, ummm "red flags people, lets hold the vote".

Don't get me wrong, I'm thinkin' GWB was sitting back grinning like Alice's cat because he wanted the end result. Congress is to blame if not on it's default.

Col. Hogan said...


Bush might actually end up with what he wants in Iraq: an ally in the belly of the beast. Alliances are fleeting, though, as we remember that Lebanon, Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and even Iraq swoop in and out of alliance with the US with the changing of the seasons.

The whole episode is unConstitutional, as Iraq never attacked the US, and there was no declaration of war. The "war" turned out, after the destruction of the Iraq dictatorship, to be a massive, military run welfare scheme.

The Wine Commonsewer said...

Col, I'm not saying we should or should not have invaded Iraq. I am saying that there was no grand conspiracy of lies perpetrated by GWB and Company with the intent of getting us into an expensive skirmish.

In the beginning I was inclined to give GWB as much of the benefit of the doubt that a certified fence sitter can, but I've long since been done with the mess we call the Iraq war.

Iraq is the size and population of So Cal, it shouldn't take four years to contain and quell the populace. We beat Japan and Germany and Italy in that amount of time.

I'm also pissed that our troops can't drink beer and that they are continually hamstrung by the DOD who sent them there to do a nasty job.

Up until our idiots in command allowed bin laden to get out the campaign was stunningly effective. Course that was Afghanistan and we had good reason to be there. Iraq is, indeed, another story.

There was also that high level Al Qaeda that escaped being killed because the troops had to ask permission from Tommy in Fla and he dawdled around until it was too late.

WTF kind of military campaign is it where one must get permission from a general to shoot a hostile enemy? That alone is grounds to pull every man out of the Middle East. You either have the cojones to do the job or you don't, and we obviously don't.

Agreed that Iran is a problem. Maybe the Brits can help us with that. :-) Wee Knees.

Col. Hogan said...


It was a bit of a conspiracy. GWB wanted Hussein out of power and his advisers helped him figure out a way to do it.

My guess is that they skewed the intelligence (such as it was) as much as possible to get Congress to fund the attack--much like was done in Gulf War I.

Conspiracy is often treated as a dirty word, or proof of lunacy. It's not. It's merely two villains working together toward the same nefarious end. Everything government does is a conspiracy.

steveintx said...

While realizing that there was no formal declaration of war, the congress passed a joint resolution authorizing the use of our Armed Forces against Iraq. Essentially giving GWB carte blanche to do whatever he saw fit. Thus effectivly absolving him of any blame.

Aurora said...

Interesting debate going on here, Col.

You said According to Matthews, this act destroyed the trust of many in the Bush Presidency and split the nation.

I would agree with that as well, though as others here point out, the Democrats are just as bad or worse. My big problem with George W. Bush is not that he's the worst of the politicos out there but rather that he was on a Conservative platform and, in my opinion, he has disappointed his own constituency on border protection and some other policies and dragged Conservatives down in the eyes of the world and the country. And the Conservatives I know DO NOT deserve this ill reputation. Let's hope the next GOP leadership can change that reputation if the damage hasn't already been done.

Col. Hogan said...


It didn't work. Everyone is still blaming him--even though most Democrats voted for the resolution. I'm not sure why a simple declaration of war is so out of fashion in this century, but were I to guess, it involves political correctness.

The Wine Commonsewer said...

this act destroyed the trust of many in the Bush Presidency and split the nation.

There are people who have become disillusioned with GWB, but for the most part he was The Chimp long before he saddled us with debt and war. It wasn't the nation that was split, it was the GOP and their part time alliances of libertarians, conservatives, and certain moderates.

There has never been any split on the left or within the Democratic Party.

For an object lesson in how that works see: Sara Palin

Col. Hogan said...


For me, and for many conservatives and libertarians, Bush became what we now call a neocon when he signed the subsidies for agrabusiness and big steel, not long after his election. Not that they hadn't been subsidized before, but Bush ran, in part, on a platform that included cutting spending.

Actually, the country sort of reunited behind Bush after the speeches he gave following the destrucion of the WTC. Even most high-profile leftists.

They were looking for reasons to criticise Bush. That hard turn into Iraq was the excuse they needed.

We all know what's happened since.

Col. Hogan said...


I agree with that, as I wrote to Aurora above.

Bush sure has a way with people....he'll go down in history, written by leftist historians, as America's dumbest President. They'll only be off by three or four.

Kent C said...

I had a reply to the 'war on Iraq was launched because of the attack on the wtc' but it must have gotten lost in the ether. At any rate, the war on Iraq was one part of the many legged 'Bush Doctrine' where any country that helps or harbor terrorists were considered terrorists themselves. A bold, but good idea, imo. Although at this point it would involve attacking the Democrat party.

Saddam raised the ante for suicide bombers from $10k to $25k and had, despite liberal propaganda to the contrary, Al Quaeda camps in Iraq, on top of the nuclear threat stuff.

See if this one makes it.... not sure whether you have to do the word verification again after preview so I'll skip the preview...

Col. Hogan said...


I hate that word verification, too, but if I don't use it.....spam, spam, spam, spam!

I just can't get my philosophical hands around the notion of militarily attacking a country because it just might possibly attack us. To be consistent, we'd have to be doing a lot of attacking in today's world.

I maintain that Iran is the ideological home of this particular variety of savagery, and it's Iran that has to be addressed. In terms that can be taken in only the most unambiguous, understandable way. Punctuated by a small, clean, tactical nuclear warhead, if necessary.

Prior to that, an embargo against all oil shipments would certainly be in order, United Nations be damned. Cut off all aid to nations that deal with Iran in any way.

But Iraq? Small potatoes.

Kent C said...


I agree with you on Iran but while it seems to be evident that someone in Iran (gov't or just religious fanatics - Shi'a) is (or was) helping the Shi'a factions in Iraq, I don't know of hard evidence of that. We did have hard evidence on the funding of homicide bombers by Saddam and at least 3 training camps, iirc the intel data on that.

Iran has always been and still is the bigger threat, but while Ahmafrickinnutjob has made clear his intentions toward the US and Israel in words (so have others), I don't think the level of actual threat has reached the thresh hold to launch a pre-emptive type strike. I'm guessing, IF that comes about, it will be an attack on Israel, not the US (although that's possible) and how we react to that will determine much of the future.

I'm hoping cooler diaperheads in Iran will prevail.

And yeah, I understand and agree with the spam, spam, spam... seems I've been able to only type that out once even if I preview but I may have just gotten it wrong.

The Wine Commonsewer said...

Kent, I've had some problems with comments posting on other blogger blogs. I think sometimes it's because it looks like it takes the comment but I don't realize I missed part of the captcha (sp) and I left the page before it had time to say, hey, dope, try it again.

I have to say that my comment spam at TWC has dropped to nothing since the advent of word verification. Not that the spam posted, it just was shuttled off to comment spam hell to wait approval of ME.

I was getting 300-400 comment spams a week. Now I get 3-4, of which at least one is NoStar trying to post a link to a blues number.

Kent C said...


That's probably what's happening. I'm focusing more now ;-)

MK said...

Victor Davis Hanson wrote an interesting article on how things have changed post 9/11, The Other 9/11 Story. Well worth a read. He has also written numerous articles on the reasons for going to war with Iraq.

Aurora said...

Col., yes we do know how things have gone since then. Bush is almost universally hated by peoples of all different persuasions for many different reasons. With him, I believe those of us who stand for the things he purported to stand for when we voted him in, go down in the estimation of the vast majority who can't distinguish between him and us.

Aurora said...

...oops. That last sentence got a bit convoluted. Hope it's understandable.

Col. Hogan said...


I'm less concerned about proof of Iran's support for islamic fascists than I am about the fact that radical islam is a philosophy of death. Not that I think Iran should be attacked for that reason, or even because Abbadidaboob, the president of that extremely unwell government, has vowed to destroy Israel (though I'd not presume to advise Israel on their possible courses of action), but some serious non-military sanctions would be a good idea.

Col. Hogan said...


Yeah, that sentence was a doozy, but I get it.

I didn't vote for Bush the second time. I voted for Badnarik, the Libertarian. I don't care much for Barr as a Libertarian this year, but I like Palin's position on guns and self defense, so if I vote, I'll probably vote for her. I still don't think much of McCain, but I guess its a package.

Col. Hogan said...


Thanks for the link.

I wholly agree with Hanson's assessment of the reasons why the islamic fascists are attacking the US, but I don't see it as an excuse for GW Bush to turn the US into the equivalent of an islamic dictatorship.

We are (supposedly) a free country and there's no excuse for changing that fact because of war--a very poorly fought war, at that.

Moreover, when our troops are in a war situation, it's bordering on treason to not let the troops fight to win, no holds barred. It infuriates me that the troops are second guessed as to whether they should've engaged or not. It infuriates me more when battles are won, and the troops are ordered to let the captives go. It further angers me to read that the Administration was air dropping food to the enemy. Then, to top it all off, to leave Afghanistan with a war still in progress, splitting the troops by sending them to another front--and keeping them from winning that one, as well.

Those are the kinds of war crimes the Bush Administration should have to answer for.

TWC said...

has vowed to destroy Israel

He better bring his lunch and a sleeping bag cuz it's going to take a while.

Israel is who you want at your back in a bar fight.

Kent C said...


Same here. Barr lost me when he had Algore at one of his events and bought into global warming. Well, so does McCain, but Palin was a bit more circumvent (can that be used as an adjective?) when talking about it in the Gibson interview - using 'can be' and 'possibility of' when asked about 'man-made'g.w. and emphasizing 'earth cycles' instead. And she thought she could talk McCain into drilling in ANWR ;-) Also, it may only be a 4 year package - I'm looking more to the future with the vote, and (as usual) just hoping on the near future. As Rush says, we can't afford Obama and there is not one principle that he holds, with which I agree and many that scare me more than Islamic terrorists. Almost all real damage are 'inside jobs'.