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September 27, 2004

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» There are allies, and then there are allies from Irreconcilable Musings
Such seems to be the mantra of Senator Kerry. He alienates the Australians and the Iraqis for no other apparent reason than they are cooperating with the Bush administration. At the same time he says he can do a better [Read More]

Comments

James Durbin

Funny - from the paper, Dick Durbin seems to be saying that aiding and abetting the enemy isn't treason anymore.

Shame to my name he is.

Patrick R. Sullivan

"'There used to be a time when aiding and abetting the enemy was a treasonous offense,' Senator Richard J. Durbin, Democrat of Illinois, said in an interview."

Sure you want to go there, pal?

abb1

Democratic side has pushed the boundaries of what we suppose they consider to be responsible dissent.

'Responsible' by whose standards? Those who are being criticised, I guess. Lol.

Allawi is a Bush puppet. Are you denying it? I don't believe you do. So, what's the problem - how can the truth be irresponsible?

Diana Kerry's comment in Australia is 100% true. Not only the Australians are in greater danger now, but the Americans as well. This has been said many times over and over by the campaign, by analysts, pundits - dozens of people.

You seem to be arguing that truth can't be told anymore and only war-time propaganda is allowed. Is it what you're saying?

George

You seem to be arguing that truth can't be told anymore and only war-time propaganda is allowed. Is it what you're saying?

You’re playing your own games with “truth,” abb. Is Sharon Bush’s puppet? Is Bush Sharon’s puppet? Both arguments have been made, yet neither is indisputably true. Does Allawi act, on all or most matters, only with the advice and consent of George W. Bush? If you believe that, you’re certainly mistaken.

And as for who is or is not “safer” now or at some other time, this is a rhetorical device that’s mostly good, if at all, for point-scoring. We, the public, don’t actually know whether we’re more or less safe because many details of the war on terror are not made available to us (nor should they be, in general). We thought we were “safe” on 9/10, but we were not. Now many people think we’re “not safe” when in fact we could well be far safer than we were on 9/10.

abb1

No, I don't think it's a rhetoric device; it's an opinion. Plurality in the US think that we are less safe now because of the Iraq war. See here: http://www.pollingreport.com/iraq.htm

Well, if Allawi is not a Bush puppet (which seems ridiculous to deny) then he must be a brutal dictator killing 'his own people' every day. Either way, he has no business to interfere in the US presidential campaign.

I wonder what you'd be saying if, say, Tony Blair came to the US one of these days and started making speeches in the congress about how great Kerry is and how poorly the Iraq war has been executed.

Tim Lambert

Gee, still trying to beat up those comments by Diana Kerry? Where, exactly, in Australia do you think she was when she made them?

JorgXMcKie

Well, abb, if Kerry is not an al-qaida puppet (which seems ridiculous to deny), then he desisres to be a brutal dictator by encouraging terrorists to kill innocent Americans every day. Either way, he has not business in the US Presidential campaign.

I wonder what you'd be saying if, say, Saddam Hussein came to the US one of these days and started making speeches in the congress about how great Kerry is and how Iraq should have been left to the tneder mercies of the Hussein family and how the US should cease persecuting harmless Muslim Wahabbi extremists who only wish to convert us to Islam.

Geek, Esq.

Bush was blatantly using Allawi as a campaign prop. The fact is that he is a political appointee of Bush to the same degree that Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz are.

Actually, that's not true. Bush had to get Senate approval for Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz, while he had no such barrier to installing Allawi.

If Bush were so damn concerned about Allawi being undercut, he wouldn't have trotted him out there according to Karl Rove's script--to force Kerry to either back off his criticisms or undercut Allawi.

Shannon Love

Legitimate dissent is that which is intended to enhance the decision making process and lead to a better outcome for the collective interest.

Illegitimate dissent is intended to advance the selfish interest of a person or group regardless of its impact on the collective interest.

Can anybody tell me how having an official spokesman for a candidate for the presidency of the United States characterizing the interim Prime Minister of Iraq as a "puppet" advances our collective interest in the least?

Does it help our relationship with the people of Iraq? Does it make our soldiers in anyway safer? Does it make our mission there easier to accomplish and more likely to succeed? Does it help or relationship with the other nations of the world?

No it does not. Lockhart's comments were intended to hurt the Iraqi effort and by doing so to hurt Bush and gain power for Kerry and his supporters. It was done for purely selfish reasons with no thought given to the likely negative consequences.

It was not legitimate dissent. It was a mean spirited selfish act that could well have lethal consequences for somebody in Iraq.

buffpilot

As a note. Abe Lincoln killed his own people for years before he died...And the south didn't vote in 1864 either. Yet democracy flourished and expanded...

Iraq is just the easiest of the next...

Cecil Turner

"Can anybody tell me how having an official spokesman for a candidate for the presidency of the United States characterizing the interim Prime Minister of Iraq as a "puppet" advances our collective interest in the least? "

How about this: it helps ensure a clearly unqualified candidate for president doesn't get elected, thus making us all safer.

Harry in Atlanta

"Can anybody tell me how having an official spokesman for a candidate for the presidency of the United States characterizing the interim Prime Minister of Iraq as a "puppet" advances our collective interest in the least?"

It doesn't Shannon. Joe Lockhart was simply using Allawi as a campaign prop.

digitalbrownshirt

Would Allawi be more acceptable to the Kerry supporters if he took the side of the terrorists? Could one reasonably expect him to chart a neutral course and take neither side? Is that possible in a war in his own country? Does then taking the side of the country that overthrew the government that had enslaved his country and now is struggling to nourish a budding opportunity for freedom? Can this reasonable choice really make him a puppet?

Geek, Esq.

Wow, I seriously can't tell if digitalbrownshirt is serious or being slyly ironic.

In the case that he's really that clueless: Taking the side of the US does not mean taking Bush's side in the election.

righty tighty

sKerry could have show us those wonderful alliance strengthening skills he claims to have by embracing Allawi's cause and promising to do better things than Bush to help the Iraqis, but he chose to fling mud and used his sister to scare our good friends in Australia.

Further proof that drinking at Micheal Moore's Kool Aid fountain is damaging to brain cells.

Kerry got his way in Vietnam and millions died, now he wants to do the same in Iraq. With Kerry at the helm what will be the Iraqi version of the Vietnam boat people?

rhodeymark

And if JFnK wins, Allawi can show his support for the US by washing Kerry's, err, the family's SUV!

George

You've pretty much nailed it, digitalbrownshirt. (No wonder Geek is annoyed.) In certain circles, Allawi can only demonstrate his independence and establish his other bona fides by being objectively anti-American.

Ashley Tate

Generally, the anti-Bush posters here are missing the two main points regarding Allawi, Bush, and Iraq:

1) Bush's re-election is inextricably linked to our aggressive, preemptive approach to the war on Islamofascim. A Bush loss will be seen as a repudiation of that policy by American voters, will lessen our chances to reform Iraq, and will be seen as a victory by the Islamofascists just as was the defeat of the Spanish PM Jose Aznar. For this reason it *is* very pragmatic for Allawi to support Bush in every way. Allawi (who has already survived several recent assassination attempts and one by Saddam Hussein in the 1970s) will probably be killed if we fail in Iraq. I'd say that's pretty strong motivation for him to support whichever US Presidential candidate he believes will be best for Iraq.

2) Allawi and the interim government represent Iraq's next step on the path from totalitarianism to democracy for Iraq. Of course the US steers this process in a broad sense by preventing both a descent into anarchy and a reversion to dictatorship. However, this does not mean Allawi is a "puppet". He has placed his life in great danger to help steer Iraq toward democracy and there is nothing dishonorable about working within a US defined framework, as long as is necessary, toward that common vision. One of the greatest challenges he faces from his enemies in Iraq and the UN is overcoming charges that he is an illegitimate puppet of the US. Joe Lockhart and the Kerry Campaign have--whether foolishly, thoughlessly, or maliciously--provided deadly ammunition for these enemies.

The broader lesson here is that John Kerry is *still* providing propagandistic cover to our enemies 30 years after his post-Vietnam debacle!


moptop

Geek Esq,
Kerry has made his main claim to the presidency that he would be a better diplomat than Bush and bring us help in Iraq. Is this true or not?

Kerry's campaign has pressured Australia to leave Iraq . True or not? If not, why not?

Kerry's campaign has called Alawi a puppet. True or not?

Why should the French and Germans send soldiers to support a US puppet?

These are practical questions. This is why I have come to the considered judegement that Kerry is a moron.

Of course, I expect a beside-the-point, name-calling response, if any is forthcoming. I don't despair however, since the more your lunatic ravings are exposed the better Bush's chances.

KC Chicago

Hey abb1,
"Allawi is a Bush puppet. Are you denying it?" YES!!!
Allawi was an Iraqi exile living in London when Iraqi government thugs tried to kill him with axes! Yes abb, axes, and that was just one of the attempts on his life. It is safe to say that his life is on the line every second of every hour. The idea that this man is simply a puppet strikes me as not only naive but as lacking any nuance whatsoever. That this man has not only survived but has in fact done well under those conditions shows me that tactically, Mr. Allawi is light years ahead of Senator Kerry and the flotsam that he has scooped up from the Clinton administration. Earth to Kerry, Lockhart, abb..., the guy is a politician, a good one. His government has not been in lock step with the Americans, those on the ground or those in Washington. As to the question of patriotism, this one is a no-brainer. The Democrats have accused President Bush of ruining our relations with foreign countries by ending or refusing to ratify treaties that were not in the best (or even good) interests of the United States. Senator Kerry is currently directly insulting our allies, even calling their personal intelligence into question, in order to win a political campaign.

abb1

Allawi was an Iraqi exile living in London when Iraqi government thugs tried to kill him with axes!

Actually he was an Iraqi government thug when another Iraqi government thug tried to kill him with an axe. He played dead and survived. Now what?

Once again: how is calling a puppet puppet so bad for me and other American citizens? I didn't get that part; run it by me again, please. I enjoy reading your prose, folks.

Thanks.

Brainster

The Times will cover those stories, the same way they covered Christmas in Cambodia and the VVAW Assassination Plot story; they'll bury in the 65th paragraph of a mind-numbingly dull 75-paragraph article.

JM Hanes

If you didn't hear it yourself on the tube, you'd never know from the Times et al that Terry McAuliffe has actually called the President a liar on multiple occasions, most recently in sync with the (fraudulent) Rathergate story. Even the paper of record prefers to paraphrase, not quote, those remarks. Nonetheless, considering what has made it into print alone, Democrats complaining about the stifling of opposition will look more like folks in need of a reality check than aggrieved parties.

My objection to dissenters these days is that they want to have their cake and eat it too. Dissent is easy when you don't feel obliged to count the cost. The fact that anti-war protest encouraged Saddam is undeniable, for example. Just because such comfort was not the intended goal of many a well-meaning activist does not simply erase the cause and effect relationship.

Give me the dissenter who has who has faced that moral dilemna and, in full acknowledgement of the consequences, has chosen to lift his voice in protest, and I will give that dissenter my respsect. As for the rest, dissent is cheap and hardly worthy of the name. I have never once called anyone unpatriotic myself (unlike Mrs. Kerry), but frankly, I think dissenters who self-righteously object to being called un-American in response still have some real basics to learn about free speech.

George

Once again: how is calling a puppet puppet so bad for me and other American citizens? I didn't get that part; run it by me again, please.

You are free to call the earth flat, but that doesn't mean I can necessarily demonstrate how this is "bad for [you]".

JM Hanes

Update to mine above: Reading on in today's JustOneMinute, I see that the Times has decided that if you can't beat 'em, jump with both feet onto the unAmerican bandwagon. In the context of their complaint, this is just too, too funny. They've become a parody of themselves.

KC Chicago

Hey abb1,
I guess that any person in that situation would be a puppet to you, again naive and not very nuanced. Tactically, what would you do upon being sworn in next January, in regards to Mr. Allawi? What can we expect from Senator Kerry? Further, what do you not understand about having trouble with people whom you have previously called idiots? How is it in the best interests of the United States to call Mr. Allawi a puppet? Why should one believe that Senator Kerry would put our interests in front of his?

Cecil Turner

"Once again: how is calling a puppet puppet so bad for me . . ."?"

Well, it's bad for you because Kerry's defeatist strategy puts him in the uncomfortable position of rooting for the enemy--which doesn't wear well with the US electorate. According to the polls, Bush outscores him on the war on terror by double digits (WaPo calls it 57-35, gallup scores it 61-34) he does slightly better on Iraq, but still trails by double digits (53-37 and 54-41 respectively). Yet he's only behind by a few in the overall standings.

The bottom line is if JFK had a coherent defense strategy, he'd be winning right now. (Though I'm not convinced that'd be a good thing.)

Iraqis for Bush

I wonder whether if the Iraqi soccer team had endorsed Bush they'd have been called "puppets" in the American press?

Greg F

Lets not forget the 25 member Iraqi Governing Council that selected Allawi. They would have to be "puppets" too.

Terry Gain

abb1,
Calling Allawi a puppet is a great propaganda tool for the terrorists fighting the devolution of a peaceful and democratic Iraq. Denigating our best hope for progress in Iraq will encourage the terrorists. Once again Kerry is putting his personal ambitions over what is in the best interest of the country.

Ther is no doubt Bush presented Kerry with a difficult task of how to counter the propaganda value of Allawi's visit , but he handled it the same way he's handled the rest of his campaign- unskilled and amateurish. If the media wasn't covering for him this race wouldn't be as close as it is.

No Oil For Pacifists

Great pick-up, and congrats on the links! I made a similar point (and added a cite to your post) at:

http://nooilforpacifists.blogspot.com/2004/09/monopoly-has-consequences.html

Floyd McWilliams

Hey abb1,

Since you believe that Allawi is a puppet, you'd like the New York Times to report that Kerry's campaign chairman says the same thing. Right?

abb1

Calling Allawi a puppet is a great propaganda tool for the terrorists...

When the truth becomes a great propaganda tool for the terrorists - you have to re-examine what your side is doing. Somewhere you took a wrong turn.

Thomas J. Jackson

Given Kerry's record I'm surprised he'd make an issue of "responsible dissnet." This must be advice from the Hillary team to make sure her options remain open in 2008. Kerry hasn't a clue.

RMcLeod

When the truth becomes a great propaganda tool for the terrorists - you have to re-examine what your side is doing. Somewhere you took a wrong turn.

Tell me abb1, does morale mean anything to you, like in having a value in WINNING a war?

A candidate for president and his spokeman call the leader of Iraq a U.S. puppet. Tell me abb1, how does that play to the people in Iraq? The police? The military?

Does language like that inspire them to believe they have our support in WINNING against brutal fascistic terrorists? Or does it make them wonder whether we're really with them?

And I thought Kerry was the great diplomat? This is the "smarter" way he's going to win in Iraq? By trashing an ally? By telling the Iraqi people that he thinks their leadership is crap? Oh, but I forgot, Kerry has a long history of trashing our allies, the ones we "bought and paid" for.

I've long suspected would rather see us lose the war than see Bush win. Comments like yours, and the mindset behind them, are simply more confirmation...As they clearly are to the voters who are speaking very loudly right now about what they think of Mr. Kerry's strategic vision.

We'll look back on this campaign and find that Kerry is perhaps the WORST Democratic candidate since George "let's negotiate with the South" McClellan.

Mike

Re: "zero coverage," we're not seeing a lot on the Dems' Machiavellian efforts to "disenfranchise" Nader supporters either, are we?

And as for Kerry's superior diplomatic skills, I'd say if he can actually manage to get France and Germany to commit troops to "the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time," then he's probably right about that. Somehow, though, I just don't see it happening. But hey, I could be wrong.

Greg F

"And as for Kerry's superior diplomatic skills, I'd say if he can actually manage to get France and Germany to commit troops ..."

Perhaps if he bribed them with some oil contracts. France and Germany have said thats not going to happen.

Lurking Observer

When Ronald Reagan called the USSR an "Evil Empire," this was dismissed as bad diplomacy. Whether it was true was not the point, the question was whether it was helpful.

When George Dubya called the Iraqis, Iranians, and North Koreans an "Axis of Evil," this was held up as an example of bad diplomacy. Again, whether it was true was not the point, the question was whether it was helpful.

Come John and Diana Kerry's comments, however, and suddenly the metric is whether it is true. Helpful evaporates. And in many cases, it's the same people who enunciated the first two points. One wonders why there is such a difference in the relative importance of truth and "helpfulness."

digitalbrownshirt

"The bottom line is if JFK had a coherent defense strategy, he'd be winning right now. (Though I'm not convinced that'd be a good thing.)"

Good observation Cecil, but if JFK had a coherent defense strategy, he wouldn't be JFK. In politics, one is not defined by one's ID photo, but by one's politics.

Slartibartfast

So far I've seen many, many assertions to the effect that Allawi is a puppet, accompanied by exactly zero evidence.

Repetition does not make the assertion more believable, folks.

bill

So, ABB1, Allawi, a man who was opposed to Saddam and his Bathist dictatorship as early as the 'seventies, when Saddam sent axe murderers to kill him in London, and who has worked for Iraqui democracy for decades, can only be understood as a Bush puppet because now he stands with the only leader in thirty years who can help him achieve his own goals. Lockhart's comment was vile. And what allies does Kerry think we'll have after he gets through insulting the ones we already have? france and Germany? They've already said NOT.

Tim Lambert

I found Krauthammers's attack on Australia so appaling that I had to write a post about it.

TM

TimesWatch compares the treatment of the AWOL charges and the "unsubstantiated" Swift charges.

Gary B.

Kerry said Iraq is in complete chaos, and that the presidents plan has failed. Why? Because Bush didn't listen to every damn thing that Kerry told him. Had Bush done that one thing then we'd have already held ticker tape parades in NY. Bush left the military planning up to the commanders who're in Iraq. So when Kerry says we've failed in Iraq, that we can't eliminate Al-Sadr and that our troops can't even go into some areas of the country, that's a slap in the face to them. That's telling them that they're not as good as the goddamn terrorists who're murdering troops and civilians wholesale. Kerry trying to be the anti-war candidate is the worst thing he can do for the morale and saftey of our soldiers. Troops sent emails telling him to shut the fuck up! But Kerry's already shown that he's more than willing to cross that bridge in order to achieve his own political ambitions. Nothing stands in his way period.

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