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October 10, 2004

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» POLITICS: Kerry At War, or, Rather, War At Kerry from Baseball Crank
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» Kerry Reveals Himself, and It Ain't Pretty from Fat Steve's Blatherings
Anyone who wonders what Kerry really thinks about the "War On Terror" can find out in an interview Kerry gave to the New York Times magazine. It's windy and vague, as Kerry is, but in the end, his viewpoint comes clear. John Kerry wants to fight ... [Read More]

» John Kerry 's narrow view of terrorism from Ashish's Niti
John Kerry wants to deal with terrorism as we deal with prostitution and illegal gambling. But what he doesn't consider is that terrorists can get their hands on WMD. How he plans to deal with this? [Read More]

» Communication Breakdown from Ace of Spades HQ
The trouble with liberals is an overfondness of explaining every division that splits our nation or our world in terms of "miscommunication." The theory is that if we all just communicated a little better, all of the disagreements that separate... [Read More]

Comments

Cecil Turner

"but they're a nuisance . . ."

Yep, pesky critters, dem terr'rists. Drudge pounced immediately: "KERRY ENVISIONS TERRORISTS AS 'NUISANCE.'"

I bet he wishes he could have that one back.

TLR

I've always found that dirty bombs and small pox can be such a nuisance...why, they can ruin a entire afternoon of windsurfing.

Hrubec

Hey, do any of you idgits actually READ articles in the NYTimes, or is it above your reading level?

Did any of you manage to absorb the parts in the article where they discuss how Kerry's investigational credentials in the Senate (investigating things like Repubs doing that funny Oil-for-Guns for terrorists thing back in the roaring 80s and their sponsorship of Colombian drug cartels that brought us the oh so lovely crack epidemics around the same time) meant that he actually understands the REALITY of terrorism. Unlike the Repub con men who only want Americans to live in endless fear, granting them endless power, enabling their endless profits.

Kerry understood the mechanics of terrorist networks long before we even knew of Al Queda. The fact is, much as you old guys want to hearken this modern menace back to your glory days in WWII or domino theory Vietnam or Cold War Europe or whatever the historical model du jour is, this is NOT a state or a government we can fight. They can exist entirely independently of any state sponsorship. Modern technologies, all relatively cheap, have given them advantages and methodologies no one could have dreamed about even ten years ago. Kerry understands this. He also understands that, far from this being Bush's evangelical "clash of civilizations", it is actually a clash of "civilization against chaos". In other words, all civilized societies, all human beings, have a stake in controlling it. Not just Americans. We are all God's children, as I'm sure the many sanctimonious Christians in the Repub party would be forced to agree.

Why do you guys object to an actual UNDERSTANDING of the problem we face? Do you not want to defeat this thing? It's kind of how Repubs don't want to absorb and understand the facts of the Duelfur report, but would rather cherry pick some line or sentence out of it to justify a mistaken course of action after the fact.

Kerry is wise not to give the Rovian sharks any ammo. I don't think he needs to have this line back, because the way the Repubs are using it exposes them for what they are once again: thugs who want to exploit American ignorance and fear for political gain. I think they may have gone a bridge too far. Any American who beleives that Kerry is saying "Piffle. Terrorism? Just a wee nuisance"...lets put it this way - If they are that stupid, they are already too stupid to breathe...in other words they're probably already voting for Bush. The rest of us are pretty damn tired of having our intelligence insulted by people that obviously don't give a damn about anything other than their political careers.

Old Patriot

As I wrote on my own blog, Kerry still lives in a fantasy pre-Reagan universe. November 3rd is going to be so crushing to his spirit. Most Americans are adult, know we face true evil, and will vote for someone they feel will actually stand up to it. That leaves Kerry still standing at the pier, waiting for John-John to take him for a ride on the family yacht again.

Hrubec

Old Patriot, when did the Repubs learn that we were facing true evil? I guess it was AFTER Dick Cheney had his subsidiaries of Halliburton during his CEO era, operating out of the evil Paris, France, doing business with both Iran and Iraq during the time the US had sanctions on them, just a few short years before 9/11. He sold the subsidiaries right before he chose himself as our next Pres...excuse me "vice" President, making a tidy profit to hold him over during his selfless "service" to our nation.

Did Repubs not think Iran Contra was evil? Reagan went on TV to apologize for it, but somehow Bush has got most of those guys working in his government again. In fact that's how we lost Nicaragua from the "grand coalition"... they weren't going to be a party to any enterprise that included the nefarious Negroponte. Was terrorism good back then? Is terrorism good when it supports right wing regimes?

I always get so confused when I try to understand the noble Republican definitions of good and evil.

I always guess the average age around here has to be 65+. Do you fellows realize there are young people that have to live in this world when you all kick the bucket? Isn't it fair to let people investigate and understand a NEW problem without you guys mixing metaphors in your need to compare this to your pasts? I mean, is this "viral democracy" that we're going to innoculate Iraq with anything like the glorious "domino theory" that went to shit in the bloodbath of Vietnam? Or is it like the glorious WWII where President's children joined side by side with poor guys to fight a clear and present enemy? Or is it like the Cold War where we stared down an antiquated communist society that was crumbling from within?

Just like this fat bastard Cheney with his mechanical heart who wants to spend his last days on this earth poisoning it with his crackpot ideologies, you guys just won't concede that this is all beyond you. You want to mock Kerry. But he's been at this a long time. He's the guy at these debates without the earpiece and the stammering, blinking temper tantrums. He knows what he's doing. And he's going to win, guys. Luckily for our children, he's one old dude that isn't afraid to solve problems by dealing with actual reality. Strange concept, I know, because patriotic calls to arms are so much more rousing for you. Except as we've learned in Iraq, pretty soon we've created more problems than we know what to do with.

You can't fight a problem if you won't even take the trouble to understand it for what it is.

Mr. Bowen

Well, Hrubec, let's filter out all the ad hominem from your cute little five paragraph screed and see if there's anything left worth rebutting, shall we?

Paragraph one: pure ad hominem, lets move on.

Paragraph two: Kerry the great investigator/prosecutor followed by a slur of the entire of Republican party. Yeah, Kerry was a great prosecutor, if by "great prosecutor" you mean "corporation hating socialist hack". I don't want a prosecutor, I want someone who is going to hunt down terrorists and their sponsors, with the goal of making them very dead. Nothing of any substance here, on to paragraph three.

Paragraph three: Ah, so terrorists can be effective without nation-state sponsorship. That's certainly news to me. Why don't you name one terrorist group that's managed to do that in the U.S.A.? The sad fact is, most terrorist groups have nation-state sponsors, and you'd be much more effective arguing that we're going after the wrong ones. Finally, if you really think that Kerry is going to build alliances and convince nations to join him in the fight against terrorism, even after Germany and France both said earlier last week that it didn't matter who won in America, they weren't playing; you're delusional. But we already knew that. On to paragraph four.

Paragraph four: Our understanding of terrorism is very strong, and so is our desire to beat it. Our understanding of the Duelfur report is just as strong, but then, if you read the NYT and believe it, I'm not suprised that you consider a contextual understanding of the report to be anything but. On to paragraph five.

Paragraph five: Oh dear, and here I was expecting you to have something substantial as a big finish, but it's all tinfoil beanies and playground slurs. Oh well, maybe you'll bring something more effective next time you wander in.

Mr. Bowen

Poor Hrubec. I was going to give your second post a go, but it's all tinfoil beanies, Cheney/Halliburton (twice! that ought ot be illegal!) specious generalizations about the regulars, and assorted ad hominem bullshit that would get a college freshman flunked out of Logic 101.

Dude, stop smoking the crack and take up something mellow. Get a bong, get laid, get a job, and get on with life.

weffiewonj

I would like to believe, as Hrubec does, that Senator Kerry does not believe terrorists are a mere nuisance.
But it's a bit difficult to understand Kerry's language if he did not simply misspeak (or get misquoted).
Kerry says we have to "get back to the place we were" when terrorism was a nuisance.
At what point, before 9/11, was there a terrorist threat where they were but a nuisance? What point do we "have to get back to"? On 9/10, we may have thought terrorism was but a nuisance, but we were wrong. Does he mean much earlier than 9/11/2001, when Islamic terrorism was not a threat? But alas, he must mean 9/10/2001, becuase after that terrorism was the "focus" of our lives.
And it is not comforting to know the candidate wishes to reduce it (terrorism, by analogy) to a point where it is not on the rise. Is one 9/11 every 3 years an acceptable loss rate?
His comments have created a logical box he can only bluster his way out of.

Mr. Bowen

Good point. Before 9/11, we paid a price in blood for the continued existence of the terrorists. The first trade center attack, the Cole, the african embassies, we were willing to strike back ineffectually, so long as a minimum number of American lives were lost.

But that approach only emboldens the Islamofascist thugs. Pursuing and killing them, waging war against their supporters, that's the only way I'm willing to let this war be fought.

We must not lose this war, the Fourth World War. Victory is our only chance for survival.

Hrubec

It is impossible to read posts by such as mr. Bowen without sensing the lust he feels for this Fourth World War.

I am so tired of you thugs. I really am. If poor dim George was so intent on catching and killing the terrorists before 9/11, if he was so superior to Clinton, why wasn't he on the case of the Cole bombers the second his feet hit the Oval Office? What was with the constant vacations, the unread memos? Why did the FBI send memos to Ashcroft about Arab students in flight schools that apparently didn't matter to the Bush man who didn't want to "hear anymore about terrorism"? Why do the Bushies STILL insist the August 2001 memo titled "Bin laden determined to attack in US with airplanes" was simply "historical"?

And why the FUCK did he send our troops to Iraq? If you guys know so much, if you are so smugly certain of yourselves, explain in clear language, using ALL the facts, not the cherry picked ones - WHY we went into a country that posed NO IMMINIENT THREAT when there were many others that posed more imminent threats? WHY we didn't use all the forces at our disposal to seal Al Queda into the Afghan Pakistani border and "smoke him out" as Bush so arrogantly promised (before he said he didn't matter). WHY we had to pass a tax cut for millionaires at the very moment we needed to pour resources into securing our own safety - through port security, purchasing rogue nuclear materials, beefing up police and first responders, and a thousand other things we now (according to Bush) can't afford to do.

Yes, Mr. Bowen, terrorists DO operate outside of state sponsors. They were actually doing quite well here in the US before 9/11, as we New Yorkers were unfortunate enough to learn by hard experience. I know you need to believe they are associated strictly with states, otherwise where would you point your guns, how could you use the antiquated historical models with which you comfort yourself that you understand this thing?

What I find so insulting about the Repub method of dealing with this is : You don't come out and say, Kerry claims that terrorism is a global underground network that can thrive and function across state borders and both inside and outside state systems. But we disagree because...WHY? Say why you disagree. I agree with Kerry. I do not understand the Repub viewpoint. Best as I can tell, you think there are corrupt governments supporting terrorism, and all we have to do is disincentive them by showing their people a model democracy in Iraq. You consider this a perfectly conceived and incontestable ideology that is worth any cost in human lives, because, I guess, your belief in it makes it true. You have no interest in facts, in learning, in reevaluation. You just want to believe that if you unleash the fury of the US military on something, it will automatically turn into something good. And from Vietnam the lesson you learned is...um, apparently nothing.

I live here in New York and I want to tell you I believe Kerry is absolutely right on this. I see evil all around me every day. We accomodate to terrorism every day in ways I doubt any of you can imagine. You get smart. You use proper security. You understand your neighbors and your surroundings. And you don't waste time pretending you can ever be perfectly safe or that military might will ever be able to make the world right.

IF you would be willing to take off your tinfoil hats for ten minutes you'd see that what Kerry is saying here is : Terrorism can be solved like a real problem, in a pragmatic way, until it is gradually reduced as an active threat. What Bush is saying is: We're gonna bomb and kill until they're all dead. Without saying who "they" exactly are and without explaining how we're going to stop them from reproducing at the exponential rate they are currently reproducing at.

You guys don't want a solution. Neither does Bush. You want to masturbate your war fantasies, that you will never have to make a single personal sacrifice for, and convince yourselves that makes you superior. Sorry. I live here in ground zero. We don't need your selfserving bullshit. This is the real world. Kerry is right.

And the American people are tired of being played for suckers and morons by this amoral media machine that the Repubs have spent all their energies on when they should have been defending us from attacks like the one that THEY let happen to us.

IceCold

TM, could we get abb1 back? If -- uh -- you know what I mean ...

Just kidding.

(inside joke, kinda)

Jimmy's Attack Rabbit

Hrubec:

Coalition troops are in Iraq because after 9/11 democracies decided it was time for Saddam to go.

Aaron

"Kerry claims that terrorism is a global underground network that can thrive and function across state borders and both inside and outside state systems."

I agree with this. I think everyone would.

The problem is Kerry thinks diplomacy, police work, and international law can take care of this.

I don't think that's a realistic answer. And I do think that some judicious military actions can prompt (encourager les autres) cooperation than simply having conference after conference.

Think outside the diplothink.

Reid

And, we are so very tired of nescient, nonsensical fellows such as yourself, Hrubec.

FYI, the ages here are probably in the range from mid-twenties to mid-forties. We've seen a lot more life than your tender years and, we know what we are dealing with and how to fight it. We have friends and family in Iraq and elsewhere fighting the terror masters so, you can just stuff your idea that it isn't our butts, or those of people we love, who are on the line here.

Go troll somewhere else, ignorant little one.

Mr. Bowen

Okay Hubrec, that's strike three. One bit of total moonbattery, it could be just a bad day. Two, well, maybe a REALLY bad day. But you, little girl, are having a bad LIFE, and I have no need to bother myself with you any further.

Go from us in peace. May your chains rest lightly upon you.

Towering Barbarian

[Blinks several times and rereads the last sentence in the John Kerry quote].

"It isn't threatening people's lives every day, and fundamentally, it's something that you continue to fight, but it's not threatening the fabric of your life.''"

[Blinks again]

So in other words because someone being blown up doesn't happen every day that means it doesn't threaten the fabric of their life when it does happen? O.O;

I guess that's the sort of clear thinking you get from someone who was for a war before he was against it! @_@

Hrubec

Aaron, Kerry would agree with you completely regarding "some judicious military action". The key words being "some" and "judicious'. Not strike blindly at the easiest target, using a crackpot never tested rationale of "viral democracy", infuriate the world, escalate world terrorism fervor, never admit mistakes, weaken future military options...and try to portray this as "resolve". George Orwell would be so proud of George Bush.

Towering Barbarian, you exposed yourself as having not read the article, and have taken the quote, which is posed at some hopeful, future point, out of context. If you want to understand, not just merely follow along guffawing like a hyena, hop over to newyorktimes.com and READ it for yourself. Then you could discuss it on the merits - odd idea, I know. Hard work. Much harder than waiting for Sean & Rush to mock it for your listening pleasure. But nonetheless it's your responsibility - usually abdicated by modern Repubs - to INFORM YOURSELF prior to a critical election.

If that would be too much work, I'll reference a few paragraphs for you:

"But when you listen carefully to what Bush and Kerry say, it becomes clear that the differences between them are more profound than the matter of who can be more effective in achieving the same ends. Bush casts the war on terror as a vast struggle that is likely to go on indefinitely, or at least as long as radical Islam commands fealty in regions of the world. In a rare moment of either candor or carelessness, or perhaps both, Bush told Matt Lauer on the ''Today'' show in August that he didn't think the United States could actually triumph in the war on terror in the foreseeable future. ''I don't think you can win it,'' he said -- a statement that he and his aides tried to disown but that had the ring of sincerity to it. He and other members of his administration have said that Americans should expect to be attacked again, and that the constant shadow of danger that hangs over major cities like New York and Washington is the cost of freedom. In his rhetoric, Bush suggests that terrorism for this generation of Americans is and should be an overwhelming and frightening reality.

Bush had continually cast himself as the optimist in the race, asserting that he alone saw the liberating potential of American might, and yet his dark vision of unending war suddenly seemed far less hopeful than Kerry's notion that all of this horror -- planes flying into buildings, anxiety about suicide bombers and chemicals in the subway -- could somehow be made to recede until it was barely in our thoughts."

"In other words, Kerry was among the first policy makers in Washington to begin mapping out a strategy to combat an entirely new kind of enemy. Americans were conditioned, by two world wars and a long standoff with a rival superpower, to see foreign policy as a mix of cooperation and tension between civilized states. Kerry came to believe, however, that Americans were in greater danger from the more shadowy groups he had been investigating -- nonstate actors, armed with cellphones and laptops -- who might detonate suitcase bombs or release lethal chemicals into the subway just to make a point. They lived in remote regions and exploited weak governments. Their goal wasn't to govern states but to destabilize them. ...This stands in significant contrast to the Bush doctrine, which holds that the war on terror, if not exactly a clash of civilizations, is nonetheless a struggle between those states that would promote terrorism and those that would exterminate it. Bush, like Kerry, accepts the premise that America is endangered mainly by a new kind of adversary that claims no state or political entity as its own. But he does not accept the idea that those adversaries can ultimately survive and operate independently of states; in fact, he asserts that terrorist groups are inevitably the subsidiaries of irresponsible regimes. ...By singling out three states in particular- Iraq, North Korea and Iran -- as an ''axis of evil,'' and by invading Iraq on the premise that it did (or at least might) sponsor terrorism, Bush cemented the idea that his war on terror is a war against those states that, in the president's words, are not with us but against us. Many of Bush's advisers spent their careers steeped in cold-war strategy, and their foreign policy is deeply rooted in the idea that states are the only consequential actors on the world stage, and that they can -- and should -- be forced to exercise control over the violent groups that take root within their borders.

Kerry's view, on the other hand, suggests that it is the very premise of civilized states, rather than any one ideology, that is under attack. And no one state, acting alone, can possibly have much impact on the threat, because terrorists will always be able to move around, shelter their money and connect in cyberspace; there are no capitals for a superpower like the United States to bomb, no ambassadors to recall, no economies to sanction. The U.S. military searches for bin Laden, the Russians hunt for the Chechen terrorist Shamil Basayev and the Israelis fire missiles at Hamas bomb makers; in Kerry's world, these disparate terrorist elements make up a loosely affiliated network of diabolical villains, more connected to one another by tactics and ideology than they are to any one state sponsor. The conflict, in Kerry's formulation, pits the forces of order versus the forces of chaos, and only a unified community of nations can ensure that order prevails. "

The question, as always, is do the Republicans actually wish to debate this vital matter on its merits, or do they only want to misinform and mislead the American public in order to do what they do best - win elections? Given that they leaped on one line in this long article like a pack of wild dogs (much as they did the Duelfur report) to the exclusion of the actual content of the article, the answer is obvious. So who has the best wishes of the American people at heart? Who really wants to get to the bottom of problems and keep America safe? Who wants an honest debate of the issues that face it, who wants to put forward alternative viewpoints and allow the American people to decide - and who wants only to obfuscate, confuse and exploit the natural apathy and ignorance of Americans?

Republicans are seeking to control us by fear. As I've said here before, the natural following tendencies of conservative people makes them a natural fit for the bullying of Republican leaders. However, where I'm from, we value intelligence and courage in a way you all clearly don't. We don't want to be lied to and bullied. We want the truth and we want honest men to look for real answers. At this point, I have no idea what Repubs want other than someone to stroke their illusions of American military dominance as the key to all the world's ills. Even when it ends up WORSENING those problems - because obviously stubborn, rigid dogmatism is the value they respect more than any other.

Hrubec

I noticed the pompous, condescending Mr. Bowen did not respond to a single point I made regarding Bush apathy pre-9/11, Cheney's business dealings with states that sponsored terrorism in violation of US law, the damning indictments of the Duelfer report, the failures of Homeland Security (the department Bush never saw as important as something like a Dept. of Faith Based Initiatives), etc.

That's par for the Repub course. You don't like debates on the merits. Your masters have taught you to always ignore any inconvenient facts. But let's try again anyway. Please read the following article, and explain why it is acceptable for the US President to put his own political future above the safety of our troops and the success of their mission. I know you'd rather just mock and guffaw, since you really don't understand the concept of an informed electorate. But give it a shot for once:

WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration will delay major assaults on rebel-held cities in Iraq until after U.S. elections in November, say administration officials, mindful that large-scale military offensives could affect the U.S. presidential race.

Although American commanders in Iraq have been buoyed by recent successes in insurgent-held towns such as Samarra and Tall Afar, administration and Pentagon officials say they will not try to retake cities such as Fallujah and Ramadi -- where insurgents' grip is strongest and U.S. military casualties could be the greatest -- until after Americans vote in what is likely to be a close election.

"When this election's over, you'll see us move very vigorously," said one senior administration official involved in strategic planning, speaking on condition of anonymity.

"Once you're past the election, it changes the political ramifications" of a large-scale offensive, the official said. "We're not on hold right now. We're just not as aggressive."

Any delay in pacifying Iraq's most troublesome cities, however, could alter the dynamics of a different election -- the one in January, when Iraqis are to elect members of a national assembly."

Paul Zrimsek

While it is not possible to win any sort of final victory against trolls, if people would just ignore them perhaps we could get back to where they were just a nuisance.

Cecil Turner

"Not strike blindly at the easiest target, using a crackpot never tested rationale of "viral democracy", infuriate the world, escalate world terrorism fervor, never admit mistakes, weaken future military options...and try to portray this as "resolve". "

OTOH, going down the list of Mideast terror sponsors, and replacing their governments if they don't stop, isn't "strik[ing] blindly." If terrorists want a war, it's logical to fight it in their country, not ours. (And it should be obvious that having an army in the region strengthens future military options.)

"George Orwell would be so proud of George Bush."

Now that is probably a true statement. (But I don't think it means what you think it means.)

"Pacifism is objectively pro-fascist. This is elementary common sense. If you hamper the war effort of one side, you automatically help out that of the other. Nor is there any real way of remaining outside such a war as the present one. In practice, 'he that is not with me is against me.'" --George Orwell

Hrubec

Cecil, your premise, like Bush's and the neocons, only holds if it is true that the only problem is state sponsorship of terror. A good example would be both Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. Neither government sponsors terrorism. Both are allegedly our allies. However both are ruled by violent despots and both are rabid breeding grounds for terrorism.

If your premise is wrong, as the theory of "viral democracy" most assuredly is, then the entire effort fails, all the death and destruction are for naught. You have no qualms about any of it. You envision the US Army marching around the world systematically "replacing governments" as if we were indeed omnipotent imperialists. The end result of this ancient conceit will be the same as it was for Caesar and for Hitler. It is asinine to think we will single handedly dominate the globe militarily at will for as long as we choose. Especially as we drain our treasury and dig ourselves deeper into the debt of the new emerging superpower - China.

And clearly I wasn't referencing Orwell in that sense, but in the "war is peace" sense, the concept of endless war enabling endless power over a mass of cowed, impotent citizens. Stop cherrypicking. It's like a disease with you rethugs.

jorgen

>While it is not possible to win any sort of final victory against trolls, if people would just ignore them perhaps we could get back to where they were just a nuisance.

Amen to that! Though he *is* actually only a nuisance. I always checks who posts, saving myself from reading a lot of substandard nonsense. Even if the troll should one day grow a small brain, I probably would not miss much.

Hrubec

It's always fun to have the likes of JORGEN, who doesn't even possess elementary grasp of English grammar, telling others to grow a brain...Ah, rethuglicans. But without their cowardice and ignorance, where would our two party system be?

Steve

If I condense all I read of Mr./Ms. HRubec's entries, they can be summarized thusly:

"Mr. Kerry has A PLAN."

Yup, that's just what we need..."a plan". WHAT PLAN? The man has NO details about his plan for the war on terror except an unrealistic view of world cooperation. PLEASE! If Spain is any example, the major powers in europe will continue their appeasement of evil INDEFINITELY even if terror comes home to them in spades. There is NO reason to believe otherwise, no matter who is in the White House.

I don't mean to be rude, but...can anyone make the intellectual rube "Hrubec" shut up? I, for one, would be very grateful.

Hrubec

Uh, no, Steve, didn't say that, moron. I visit here just to confirm from time to time that conservatives STILL can't provide a single factual refutation of any of the charges against this incompetent, untruthful and hypocritical administration.

Today on the way to work I listened to an Army captain in the Chemical Unit in Iraq explain that the USArmy exists to DEFEND AMERICA. As he said, when you ask 1100 American sons and daughters to lay down their lives, it can only be because American security is threatened. You don't do it because a bunch of neocons sitting in an office somewhere decide to play games with the Mideast political map, see if maybe this works, maybe that. Made me think of Cecil, and wish I could hear a conversation between this real life soldier and the fantasists on this site who think this is a game of Risk with plastic horses.

He also said Iraqi security forces believe their job will be much easier when Americans are not around stirring up anger and vengeance every second. Problem is, as the captain noted, it appears that the not-so-secret Bush plan is to install about 16 PERMANENT bases from which to launch imperialist strikes throughout the region indefinitely.

Also said the US military represents a cross section of America, including politically, and their vote should not be taken for granted. The Bush plans to close VA hospitals and cut VA funding in the next congressional cycle are well publicized among the troops.

And Steve, thanks for not breaking the record of no one here bothering to educate themselves for so much as one minute about the realities of the dangers we face. The entire article explained how Kerry's experience of investigating and understanding the kind of international criminal networks that the Bushies & Cheneys have profited from is exactly what gives him the tools to solve problems that Bush can only exacerbate.

Cecil Turner

"You envision the US Army marching around the world systematically "replacing governments" as if we were indeed omnipotent imperialists."

Omnipotent imperialists? Sorry Hrubec, there's a logical disconnect there. It's not "imperialist" to demand someone stop shooting at you. Yes, we're much closer to "omnipotent" than any other nation, and can actually enforce those demands. Or they could, you know, like, stop supporting terrorists. Unlike you, I don't think it's an unreasonable position.

You envision us learning to live with terrorists, and being sensitive to why they hate us. Personally, I'm not terribly concerned about their motivations. I despair of convincing the majority of Arabs that 9/11 wasn't an evil Mossad plot. But we are quite capable of denying them training bases and access to national weapons programs.

As terrorist attacks become increasingly deadly, the law enforcement paradigm becomes less acceptable. Mr Kerry is fundamentally unserious, and this is just the latest manifestation. "Nuisance," indeed.

Crank

BTW, his whining about the "road map" seems of a piece with his refusal to say anything about Israel in the debates.

Those Muslim voters in Michigan must look too tasty.

Lesley

According to Hrubec:

"Hey, do any of you idgits actually READ articles in the NYTimes, or is it above your reading level?"

"The fact is, much as you old guys want to hearken this modern menace back to your glory days in WWII or domino theory Vietnam or Cold War Europe or whatever the historical model du jour is, this is NOT a state or a government we caWe are all God's children, as I'm sure the many sanctimonious Christians in the Repub party would be forced to agree."

"If they are that stupid, they are already too stupid to breathe...in other words they're probably already voting for Bush. The rest of us are pretty damn tired of having our intelligence insulted by people that obviously don't give a damn about anything other than their political careers."

"I always guess the average age around here has to be 65+. Do you fellows realize there are young people that have to live in this world when you all kick the bucket? "

"Just like this fat bastard Cheney with his mechanical heart who wants to spend his last days on this earth poisoning it with his crackpot ideologies, you guys just won't concede that this is all beyond you."

"I am so tired of you thugs. I really am."

"You guys don't want a solution. Neither does Bush. You want to masturbate your war fantasies, that you will never have to make a single personal sacrifice for, and convince yourselves that makes you superior."

"Stop cherrypicking. It's like a disease with you rethugs."

"And Steve, thanks for not breaking the record of no one here bothering to educate themselves for so much as one minute about the realities of the dangers we face."

"It's always fun to have the likes of JORGEN, who doesn't even possess elementary grasp of English grammar, telling others to grow a brain...Ah, rethuglicans. But without their cowardice and ignorance, where would our two party system be? "

Did I miss anything? I am simply bedazzled by ad hominem. It always convinces me of the superior intellect/arguments of its poster. Pardon me while I check out my cue cards: breathe in, breathe out.

Lesley

Hrubec

"You envision us learning to live with terrorists, and being sensitive to why they hate us."

Cecil, never said this. Not that that ever seems to matter to Repubs. I don't want to live with terrorists or be sensitive to them. I want to not live in fear of them and I want not to allow my country be deformed by politicians exploiting that fear. There is absolutely nothing in Kerry's argument that in any way denies the US the right to use military force when needed.

The problem, which you just REFUSE to address, is that the US Army is limited. In size, in resources, in tactical possibilities. This is NOT a video game. It was very enlightening listening to the Army captain and comparing it to the nonsense I read on rethug sites like this one. He sounded like a pragmatist, a professional who wanted to solve the problem and get home. You sound like Dr. Strangelove.

The answer, as Kerry said (which really wouldn't take that much trouble to read for yourself) is to use BOTH necessary, strategic military action AND the techniques of international law enforcement. Did you object to the law enforcement techniques that have resulted in the Al Queda arrests by the Pakistani (not American) governments this summer? Did you endorse the US "outing" of the mole the Pakistanis captured, destroying his usefulness, to boost Bush's political fortunes? And are you willing to admit that you really aren't interested in fighting terrorism and making America safe - what this is about for you is expanding American military dominance, using the American Army to support American political and corporate interests abroad? I'm sorry, Cecil, that is NOT why we have an Army. That is NOT why our kids sign up and risk death. It sounds very cozy to all the neocons (not one I believe who has ever undergone so much as a week of boot camp) but that is NOT what our Army is for.

You need to stick your head out of the neocon bubble from time to time. The only thing those megalomaniacal fantasies have done is create - as the young captain said - chaos. A reporter on the same broadcast, returning to Iraq after 10 months away, said it all feels a thousand times worse now, like being in a prison, albeit an insecure one, where the lynch mob is right outside the fence about to break in at any minute and string you up. He had been in Beirut in the 80s and said it was more terrifying in Baghdad.

Your ideas have failed. Your need to diss Kerry is merely a reflex, the kind that prevents you from even acknowledging that this problem is beyond your understanding.

Cecil Turner

"There is absolutely nothing in Kerry's argument that in any way denies the US the right to use military force when needed."

When will it be needed? After a container with a nuclear weapon detonates in NY harbor? Hey, I've got a great idea, let's give Iran nuclear fuel and see how they use it!

"You sound like Dr. Strangelove."

I ought to sound like a retired Marine officer. (With considerably more experience than the young captain.)

"Did you object to the law enforcement techniques that have resulted in the Al Queda arrests by the Pakistani (not American) governments this summer? "

Of course not. And it ought to be obvious that with when governments cooperate, military force is not necessary. It also ought to be obvious that state terror sponsors with nuclear (or biological) weapons is unacceptable.

Hrubec

"When will it be needed? After a container with a nuclear weapon detonates in NY harbor?"

Cecil, listen to yourself! Don't you realize it is your President, and his skewed priorities, that is responsible for the fact that 97% of the containers entering this country are never inspected? Do you realize it is YOUR President who is doing virtually nothing to secure rogue nuclear materials in the former Soviet Union, and dramatically slowed the pace of that process from where Clinton had it?

What good would military action do if a nuclear weapon DID explode in my city? If we didn't know where it came from, what would you suggest? Just incinerate the planet? And how would that bring me and my family back to life?

I guess you also didn't listen to your Grand Bush-ee when he said at the most recent debate that his strategy for dealing with Iran (state sponsor of terrorism with a nuclear weapon) was to leave it to the - yes, get this folks, Brits, Germans and gasp! French! Did you miss that? Sounds like he's got a far more comprehensive grip on the problem than Kerry...Not.

Kerry is the pragmatist here - looking to shut down avenues of attack and take sensible homeland security measures based on research and analysis. Bush is an unprincipled idealogue - a pawn of political extremists with no plan other than "looking" tough and making profit, true consequences be damned. I know which kind of person I prefer to trust.

As for the young captain, I'd like to respectfully remind you your experience is from a different time and place. This is his world now. He is the one on the ground.He is the one with the responsibilities to make this work. You had damn well better be listening to him and those like him.

Appalled Moderate

A few random thoughts about the new York Times piece:

1. It is interesting that Kerry thinks of the war against terrorism as akin to the "war" on drugs. particularly since the "war" on drugs has been notably ineffective. And the reason for that is that the conditions that allow drug lords to flourish (America's unceasing appetite) have not been addressed by the War. This may be where Bush has it over kerry -- he's actually trying to do something about the conditions breeding terrorists.

2. The question I'd like to ask tall John is actually about Vietnam: "Senator: Do you believe the Viet Kong succeeded because they were supported by an outside state, or because they were an indigenous insurgent movement?"

3. I think our global branding at the moment is "Obsessed by the War on Terror". Thyere's not much to admire in that, is easily translated into "at war against Islam", and it may hurt our chance to convert the world to Democracy.

Kerry is going to get Bushwhacked over his statements in this article. But, since they are reflective of a great policy difference between Kerry and Bush, why shouldn't this be a centerpiece of the debate?

Steve

Dear Mr./Ms. Hrubec,

Sticks and stones, love. But, to the point, I didn't actually see any argument in your reply, except for a lame claim that it's ALL THERE in the Times article! Yeah, right. Mr. Kerry's awesome prosecutorial experience? I suppose that must be akin to his awesome senatorial experience; NO signficant piece of legislation authored in 20 YEARS! Heh.

Now, did you have any REAL arguments in favor of a Kerry presidency, other than "he has a plan"? Right now you're confirming all my worst fears about Kerry and Kerry-supporters - they're incredibly self-centered, myopic and ignorant. That's a bad combination, ol' rube.

Steve

Oops! Forgot to add "arrogant" to that Kerry/Kerry-supporter description. Sorry, ol' rube, but you reek of it.

Hrubec

"This may be where Bush has it over kerry -- he's actually trying to do something about the conditions breeding terrorists."

Wow, that's really great! Can you explain that with any substance?

Of course,Bush himself in his Today show interview (great new Kerry ad by the way), equated this "war" with unwinnable wars like those on drugs. The Repub input on this is always interesting, considering how they were the ones responsible for the influx of crack cocaine to our cities in their bid to illegally fund the Nicaragua contra terrorists. It's always entertaining to trace the Repub ethical network when it comes to terrorism, weapons expansion and the welfare of mankind.

This part of your post made some sense though: "Thyere's not much to admire in that, is easily translated into "at war against Islam", and it may hurt our chance to convert the world to Democracy." Gee, ya think? Cecil might disagree though, because all I think we have to do according to him, is "replace governments" and install "democracy"...sort of like replacing your spark plugs or something. It's simple, really.

The Vietnam question as always left me bewildered. I'm always left dazed by the dinosaurs who still think Vietnam represented a lost chance for American glory, and who, even more dumbfoundingly, hold JOHN KERRY responsible for its failure. Not the architects of the war, not the corrupt and dishonest politicians...John Kerry. It kind of explains all the rest of the blind spots around here.

Cecil Turner

"97% of the containers entering this country are never inspected . . . rogue nuclear materials in the former Soviet Union"

Fine, come up with a practical method of inspecting them (before they're in a position to detonate, mind you). Ain't gonna happen. If you play defense on this one, you lose. The nuclear materials in the FSU are not the main threat (though the buyback arrangement is still a good idea, and ongoing). The main threat is Mideast terror sponsors who pursue WMD programs. Just as the Administration claims.

"his strategy for dealing with Iran . . . was to leave it to the . . . Brits, Germans and [French]"

Umm, no. He said he supported their initiative (which is fine, as far as it goes), and that he hoped diplomacy could solve it. State has already begun the next step, bringing it to the Security Council (which is apparently as far as Mr Kerry is willing to go, and that's not fine).

"your experience is from a different time and place."

Not that I'm convinced it really matters, but my experience "ended" in 2000, and included the first Persian Excursion, so is neither terribly dated, nor a different theater. In any event, I'm not trying to make an argument from authority, and I'm not going to accept one from you (regardless of who you quote).

Hrubec

Cecil, right now in Iraq terrorists are pursuing nuclear and biological weapons. What state is sponsoring them? You are steadfast and bushlike in your stubborn insistence that terrorism can not survive without state sponsorship. Your entire argument rests on it. And yet you can't prove it.

What state is sponsoring the Chechen terrorists? Why didn't Putin's brutality to those terrorists and his narrow minded stubbornness protect those hundreds of children? There you have a perfect example of the utter failure of a secretive, violent, militaristic approach to a terrorist threat. Ironically, one of Bush's few friends among world leaders.

As for tankers and other border security issues: You HAVE to play defense. Europe has been doing it for years quite successfully. Here in New York its a simple fact of life that no one even notices anymore. Bush squandered the funds we could be using to protect ourselves on tax cuts for millionaires. Do you realize equipping our Port Authority to inspect 100% of tankers would cost less than THREE DAYS of the cost of the operation in Iraq?

Appalled Moderate

Hrubec obviously thinks me an agent of the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy. Not so, not so!

I am just a little surprised to see the Democrats embrace the drug war as any sort of paradigm. (The article associates both Holbrooke and Kerry with this line of reasoning, though I don't think it was through direct quotes.)

As for the Vietnam question -- again, the NYT article traces Kerry's foreign policy back to his war and anti-war experience -- and so his beliefs on why we lost that war would be very revealing. I don't care about Vietnam per se.

Reid

Hrubec - the reason nobody tries to refute you point by point is that it is apparent from your incoherent rants that it is not worth the bother. We have familes and jobs to attend to and, your mind is not just twisted, but actually sprained.

I've heard people like you all my life. You offer no evidence besides that provided by unreliable sources on your own side (NY Pravda Times? Give me a freakin' break! Why not just read the DNC news releases directly and cut out the middleman?). Your arguments are rife with logical fallacies and emotional hand-wringing. You rail about the dumb people on the other side, despite the fact that few of you are in any way intellectually gifted. You people argued for capitulation and retreat from the Soviet Union, and cursed Ronald Reagan as a dumb cowboy when he said it would fail and, he would help it to do so. Yet, despite being proved wrong again and again, you have no humility and, you learn nothing from your mistakes.

You are not changing any minds here, just leaving us all amazed and not a little queasy that such ignorant and brainwashed people as you exist. Scram. Beat it. Vamoose. Capite? I'm tired of scrolling past all your bilge to see what intelligent posters have to say.

Cecil Turner

"right now in Iraq terrorists are pursuing nuclear and biological weapons."

Surely you're not trying to argue that terrorists will develop first-class bio agents or nukes on their own? Or that those without access to national weapons programs are as dangerous as those who are?

"Do you realize equipping our Port Authority to inspect 100% of tankers would cost less than THREE DAYS of the cost of the operation in Iraq?"

No, Hrubec, it wouldn't. And unless they inspected every single container while it was still outside the harbor, it wouldn't be effective. And even if you could come up with a workable scheme, you'd then have to repeat it at every harbor in the US, and keep them at 100% efficiency for the foreseeable future. It isn't possible, let alone practicable.

Military planners look for a "center of gravity"--the thing from which the enemy derives his strength or effectiveness. In this case the obvious link is nations who sponsor terrorists (and their national weapons programs). You don't agree, fine. Come up with an alternative. Ignoring the problem is not acceptable (and I see no indication of any "plan" from Sen Kerry--no matter how many time he repeats the word).

SaveFarris

Do you realize equipping our Port Authority to inspect 100% of tankers would cost less than THREE DAYS of the cost of the operation in Iraq?

Oh really? Where is that stat from? And is it a one-time expenditure or a constant expense? (Since I presume you want the Port Authority to remain open in perpetuity, I'm guessing the latter.)

And where will these inspections be taking place? In the harbor before cargo is off-loaded? At that point, why bother? The WMDs are already here! Inspect 10 miles offshore? Better re-calculate total expenses pal. Inspect in every departure point? Good luck sorting out all the jurisdictional issues! Not to mention the additional costs.

The plan has almost no chance of being enacted, plus having the added distinction of being unlikely to actually do anything substantive to protect us. But at least it makes for a good soundbyte! And that's all that really matters in a future Kerry Administration, isn't it?

Hrubec

Reid, if you're looking for intelligent posters, you're on the wrong site. And anyone who refers to the NY Pravda Times clearly has imbibed far too much Kool Aid to be slinging any mud at others.

I've met people like you all my life too Reid, though thankfully rarely in my enlightened home here in the well educated Northeast.

Cecil, thanks for the dialogue. You're the ONLY poster on this entire site who ever tries to defend the indefensible position you Conservatives are in. The rest just wait for the echo chamber to get quiet so they can halloo some more of the same uninspired and irrelevant rhetoric .

I disagree with you about the tankers, but I am curious enough to investigate a bit further your claims. After all, for me, unlike for the rest of you, this is a matter of more than hypothetical importance. I have no intention of voting into office anyone who doesn't have my best interests - that's why I, along with 90% of the great City of New York, will be voting this amoral cowardly bastard out of office come Nov. 2!

I'll leave the rest of you disgruntled old gents to your bigotry and your conceits. See you on November 3rd!

Reid

H - I have 5 years of postgraduate work and enough honors to cover the wall of my office so, whatever edjumacation you've got, mine's better.

You have offered nothing in the way of concrete evidence for any of your conjectures, such as the laughable one about the cost of inspecting shipping. In fact, you offer nothing substantive at all beyond your emotional pleas to be taken seriously. Nobody does. Go away.

Harry

Hrubec,

Young man, you are far too impressed with yourself and your rambling posts. You don't seem to realize that a truly educated man is able to speak about the complex with simplicity. I find it interesting that your visit to this site consists primarily of insults, foul language and little else. Haven't you reached your paragraph limit yet?

You should listen to Mr. Bowen. He has it right.

BTW, you do know of course that after Bush wins the election we will be rounding you up and putting you in the "reeducation camps," don't you?

:-)

TM

Good job by "Appalled" - the fact that the war on drugs is driven by the appetite of the US consumer is yet another reason the analogy to the war on terror is inapt.

As to debating the differing visions of Kerry and Bush - well, we are (and not just at this blog, obviously). Unfortunately, especially this close to an election, "debate" means "Seize on your opponent's weakest point, then distort and ridicule it".

Sort of like our calm, thoughtful discussion of Social Security privatization, or health care reform, or any other issue.

As to the broader point made in this article - Kerry understands this issue, based on his years in the Senate - why has this huge ace on his resume been kept a secret for so long? Here is what Kerry said about his Senate experience in his acceptance speech, when he reported for duty:

KERRY: I ask you, I ask you to judge me by my record. As a young prosecutor, I fought for victims' rights and made prosecuting violence against women a priority.

(APPLAUSE)

When I came to the Senate, I broke with many in my own party to vote for a balanced budget, because I thought it was the right thing to do. I fought to put 100,000 police officers on the streets of America.

And then I reached out across the aisle with John McCain to work to find the truth about our POWs and missing in action and to finally make peace in Vietnam.

(APPLAUSE)

I will be a commander in chief who will never mislead us into war...

And so on. That should have been the part of the speech were he explained about his long study and deep understanding of modern terrorists. Why so coy?

And Glenn Reynolds made this point months ago - Kerry should have been talking about BCCI instead of Vietnam.

[P.S. VERY funny, PZ and Ice.]

Troy

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- Troy ([email protected])

Cecil Turner

"You're the ONLY poster on this entire site who ever tries to defend . . ."

If we're doing mutual admiration Hrubec, you at least make some defensible extrapolations (if mostly from what I believe are wrong premises). If you trimmed your posts down to the essentials, I suspect you'd have much politer responses.

"I disagree with you about the tankers, but I am curious enough to investigate a bit further your claims."

Well, to be clear, I wasn't talking about tankers. Container vessels are clearly the more critical long-term threat, assuming we don't get a handle on nuclear proliferation. (Tankers are the poor man's equivalent, giving a good bang without needing any special equipment--but an order of magnitude or two less destructive than a nuke, and much easier to track and interdict.)

Gary

Paul Zrimsek's post was the best, by far.

An insightful understating of a blaringly obvious nuance, or two.

BD

Hrubec:

Namecalling hardly advances your argument. In fact, all it does is reveal arrogance and intellectual cowardice.

I agree Kerry hopes for the day when terrorism is so rare that it's seen as a nuisance. I just don't believe his approach has a snowball's chance of bringing that day about.

If the left thought Kerry meant any of his 'tough talk' about fighting terrorism he'd be down by 9-10 percentage points in all the polls because the hard lefties who want to bug out, who believe we got what we deserved on 9/11, would be backing Nader.

They're sticking with Kerry right now because they know, deep down inside, that Kerry doesn't mean it - that if elected, Kerry will bug out of the war as soon as he can manage it, with his only concern being how to do it without doing "the cause" too much political damage.

Thomas J. Jackson

Terrorists so annoy me while I windsurf-Kerry.

What else do you expect from a morlock who pledges to end bunker busters when he is asked how he'd end the spread of nuclear weapons in nations like Iran.

Kerry is stuck in the nuclear freeze. The wrong man, at the wrong time, in the wrong place. He needs to run for Emperor of France where he be acclaimed by cheese eating surrnder monkies.

TM

Here is the "InstaPundit Gets Results" post.

And Hrubec, FWIW - I generally read your first comment, and tune out the rest - the first generally is full of insults, and I figure that if you had something to say and wanted people to listen, you would focus on your points rather then your venting.

Mr. Bowen

Thanks Harry, I'm flattered all to hell and back. Gotta say though, I'm a lightweight compared to Cecil. Damn nice work there.

Yes, I think we WILL see Hrubec on Nov. 3, IF Kerry wins, which I doubt he will. More likely, Hrubec will be in jail, awaiting trial on destruction of property charges related to the post election riots he'll be part of as soon as Bush beats Kerry in a landslide.

If the Dims manage to steal the election, Hrubec will no doubt be here to crow about it.

Allan Yackey

Hrubec is a Kerry supporter. I arrived late in this exchange of posting. But my observation is that he is typical of Kerry supporters.

WYSIWYG. This is consistent with the trashing of Bush campaign offices and the stealing of Bush Chaney signs.

There is an old trial lawyer's saying for presenting a case to a jury. "If the facts are on your side pound on the facts. If the law is on your side pound on the law. If neither are on your side pound on the table."

What I see here and elsewhere is a lot of table pounding on the part of Kerry supporters.

Tim

Kerry's quote in the New York Times Magazine illustrates, perfectly, why he'll lose this election. Bush wins when an increasingly smaller pool of swing and other marginal voters realize Kerry and his voters (such as the self-identified "Hrubec" above) hate Bush more than the do the terrorists. Terrorists who, according to the recently disclosed discovery of hard drives in Iraq, are planning to attack schools in the U.S. as they did in Beslan.

Americans aren't pussies, and they aren't going to vote for a pussy who thinks "We have to get back to the place we were, where terrorists are not the focus of our lives, but they're a nuisance," as if the terrorists who plan to kill school children are simply a "nuisance." As for nuicances, well, troll are very nearly at the top of list. Flush twice, open a window, and the smell soon dissapates.

perfectsense

Evidently, in Kerry's mind, the 1000 plunge taken by workers in the WTC was a mere NUISANCE. Its the sidewalk that killed them, not the terrorists. And in DNC think, Halliburtion build the sidewalk therefore its Cheney's fault.

bob

All this chatter about Nuisance and Haliburton is just stupid. Here is the real question that needs to be asked.

How do you stop terrorism? I mean STOP IT -- everywhere. Any suggestions???

Here's my take. Don't let it be effective. If it doesn't work, it will die away. Hopefully, to the ballet box but that's another story...

Here's my suggestion on how to stop terrorism.

1) Don't let it change your position. In fact, make sure the convictions are even more solid than before. If they know you will change your mind and they get their way, they will just keep coming.

2) Whatever pain they inflicted, make sure that they receive 10 times the pain back. When they understand that whatever their cause is, they are actually going backwards, it will stop.

Next question: Which candidate seems to understand this best. Sorry, it's the guy from Texas.

whiskey_1

I'm a lifelong Democrat who will be voting Bush come November. I'm not happy about my first vote for a Republican but I just don't see any alternative.

I read that whole NYTimes article and was appalled. I'd had serious reservations about Kerry before, but that just tore it. [I voted Edwards in the Primary but wanted Gephardt.]

Kerry would be just what the doctor ordered if this was 1972 and he was negotiating sane limits on a nuke arms race with Brezhnev. But as much as he wants to be Nixon/Kissinger with "realpolitik" it's not 1972 and the Cold War is over.

Bush IMHO may be wrong on nearly everything domestically, from the deficit to the environment, but none of that will matter if I'm dead from a suitcase nuke in my city.

Bush to his credit has understood that the only strategic long term solution is to echo FDR's "Four Freedoms." That the long term security solution is to change the Muslim world into one of acceptance with the basic terms of modernity. It may not make them our pals but it will stop the willingness to set off nukes in America. You will only change Muslims attitudes towards the modern world which America represents (and it's why they hate us) by introducing modernity itself. Talking to dicators and kings won't cut it.

While I have many doubts about the wisdom of our involvement in Iraq, Bush at least seems willing to use force against states that harbor, collaborate, or tolerate jihadist activity. Kerry seems to think that returning to the Clinton policies of the nineties will work this time. A few empty threats, futile non-casualtie producing missle strikes (that make us look weak and invite further attacks), and wholesale retreat while we stick our heads in the sand and pretend the bad men will go away seems to be the Kerry policy.

Kerry is right that the law enforcement and intelligence part must not be neglected, but he's all wrong that the current jihad can be managed to "nuisance" levels by that alone. The current losses in Iraq are tragic but don't amount to even one third of what we lost in a single morning (9/11) and pale to our half a million dead in WWII. The next attack attempted won't be planes into buildings but a nuke designed to kill millions and destroy America. The attack after that will be even worse.

Such a plot can only be carried out with State acceptance if not active participation. Hezbollah and Hamas operate in Syria with the state's involvement, the same is true of Iran (with Al Queda added to the mix); Saudi Arabia; Yemen; Sudan; Indonesia (Jemmiat Islamiyah plus Al Queda); Pakistan (Al Queda) and Egypt (Islamic Jihad, Al Queda, and the Muslim Brotherhood plus Hamas and Hezbollah).

Successful deterrence lies not in negotiating agreements with rulers neither able nor interested in arresting terrorists (who are viewed as real Muslim heroes), but rather the credible threat of force prompting unpublicized crackdowns. So that the terrorist threat is limited to guys blasting innocents with AKs in some third world hellhole rather than nuclear weapons in Manhattan.

The guy who will get that done is more likely to be found in an FDR approach to the world than Nixon's.

Reid

Good post, Whiskey_1.

LOL, perfectsense. Maybe John Edwards should sue the sidewalk manufacturers.

Cecil Turner

Mr B.,

"Damn nice work there."

Thanks. I just wish the Administration were halfway competent at PR. I'm sure war college graduates understand what the President is trying to say with "we have to be right 100% of the time"--but many don't.

If he'd make the case to the American public a bit more clearly, it'd force Kerry into a position and raise the level of national debate. Both long overdue, IMO.

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