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November 11, 2005

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jukeboxgrad

JM Hanes: "Let me know if ... "

Let me know if you have the intellectual integrity to explain this ignorant statement you made: "the footnoted reservations which so many claim the Administration somehow hid from view were, in fact, even included in the unclassified version of the pivotal National Intelligence Estimate which was released to the public at large." I pointed out how what you said is essentially the opposite of the truth.

jukeboxgrad

One more thing, 7. You said "fool them into voting (95-5-ish)."

The roll call was 77-23 and 296-133. Sorry to confuse you with the facts. As a famous drooling moron recently said "it is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how that war began."

topsecretk9

There you go, making shit up again.

How I made THIS shit up, I don't just dont know. Oh, thats right...this is approval. Well the American People have consistently approved of the Dems over Repubs, they just voted for the Republicans.

Today marks the date of the blue dress...when they start dusting off the poll numbers MEME---and get ready for this again---the "American People" with various qualifiers like "Vast Majority" you know the argument substance bottom just fell.

However, by using this poll number logic...the Vast Majority of the American People thought perjury was wrong, but the President shouldn't be impeached. So, the Vast Majority think the war and Bush is bad, but still think WE SHOULD FINISH THE JOB.

Works for me. Live and die by the polls, be my guest.

Marcel--

How many pilots did we lose patrolling the no-fly zone? None. How many soldiers and marines have we lost on the ground? Over 2000 and counting.

I am sure those pilots are impressed and understanding (especially on Veterans day, no doubt) for your little concern and ungratefulness. Go buy a mountain dew.

Also, ignore the fact that Saddam also tried to have an American President assassinated, but according to you logic this doesn't matter. Actually, I think you would have celebrated such a thing.

topsecretk9

You guys are just trying to invent reason to justify your misplaced anger at Bush (and the commenter here)...the wars has served that purpose. The panic is the realization that the war in Iraq is ultimately coming to an end.

jukeboxgrad

top: "How I made THIS shit up, I don't just dont know"

I guess that makes two of us. Do you realize you just proved my point, or is it that you just don't know how to read a table of numbers?

It had been pointed out that Democrats are currently showing a strong polling advantage for what's known as "generic congressional vote" ('who do you want to see in control of Congress, Democrats or Republicans?').

You responded "Same question, same answer BEFORE 2004," suggesting that the current polling result, indicating a strong Dem advantage, was also seen "BEFORE 2004" (which I assume means "in the period prior to the 2004 election").

I posted data showing you are wrong. Now you've obligingly posted some more data also proving that you're wrong. How helpful of you.

The table you cited shows a current spread of 11.7% in favor of the Democrats. If you scroll down the page, you see that the "Final Pre-Election Avg" (prior to the 2004 election, in other words) was zero: a tie. Is that what you call "same answer?" Very interesting.

If you scroll down even further, you see the results of about 70 polls, covering the 10 months prior to the 2004 election. About 80% of those polls show a Dem advantage of 6% or less (about half the Dem advantage indicated by current polling). Exactly 3 of the 72 polls show a Dem advantage greater than 11.7% (the Dem advantage indicated by current polling).

In other words, almost none of the polls prior to the 2004 election showed a Dem advantage of the magnitude shown by current polls. Are you really so innumerate that this is what you call "same answer?" Then you're obviously highly qualified to be Dubya's next director of data analysis (following in the astute personnel choices of Michael Brown and Harriett Miers).

"the Vast Majority think the war and Bush is bad, but still think WE SHOULD FINISH THE JOB"

As of a couple of months ago, 63% said we should withdraw some or all of our troops. I guess your definition of the phrase "Vast Majority" is just as imaginative as your definition of the phrase "same answer."

"The panic is the realization that the war in Iraq is ultimately coming to an end."

I guess that means "last throes," right? And I guess the fact that McCain is calling for more troops is a pretty good indication that the war is "coming to an end," right? War is peace, right? Freedom is slavery, right? Ignorance is strength, right?

kim

You know, it might do you a world of good to read some Iraqi blogs.
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jukeboxgrad

I just found the answer to a little mystery, which is the nature of the access that Congress had to the classified NIE. It was not distributed to Congress, but members of Congress were allowed to look at it, under highly restricted conditions. Very few did (link).

Congress voted on the war on 10/11/02, 10 days after the classified NIE was issued. It appears that Congress assumed the unclassified White Paper (issued on 10/4/02) was a faithful summary of the classified NIE. (According to SSCI, p. 286, "the Intelligence Community ... intended the [unclassified White Paper] to ... meet requests from Congress for an unclassified version of the classified NIE.") Unfortunately, it wasn't. According to SSCI (p. 295), the White Paper "misprepresented" what was in the classified NIE.

The White Paper was produced under the direct influence of WHIG, which rejected early versions of it as being "not strong enough." Pincus laid this out in detail two years ago ("Depiction of Threat Outgrew Supporting Evidence," 8/10/03, link).

Later we learned this: "Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), said that had Congress known before the vote to go to war what his committee has since discovered about the intelligence on Iraq, 'I doubt if the votes would have been there.' Roberts characterized some of the redacted parts of the Senate report as 'specific details that would make your eyebrows even raise higher.' " (link)

Later we also learned this: "the fact that there were significant differences between the white paper and the classified versions of the intelligence estimate on Iraq's weapons first became apparent last summer [summer '03]" (link).

A week before it voted, Congress (and the public) was handed a summary which "misrepresented" the underlying data. This "summary" had WHIG's fingerprints all over it. Someone please explain how this is not evidence that intelligence was manipulated.

jukeboxgrad

kim: "it might do you a world of good to read some Iraqi blogs."

It might do a world of good if instead of posting the same insipid suggestion you already posted here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here you would instead simply say something like "please refer to the insipid suggestion I've already posted here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here."

kim

Casey, you still seem stuck on 'outing an intelligencse officer'. Are you not gonna get the memo until after the American people get it, or are you never going to get it at all?

Hint: The 'Bush Lied' meme is wrong , too. Furthermore the Iraqi are a free people and love it. Why don't you?
=================================================

kim

Well you still haven't been getting accurate information from there, there, there, there, and there in Iraq. You've been Juan Colized and subject to the Green Zone 'word of the day'. You are listening to delusions.

The Kurds and the Shia are free. The Sunni no longer abuse them, structurally, now it is random. As is your opposition to the war. It is now a fait accompli; a vigorous and optimistic people are on the way to making a competent nation there. Really, you should rejoice.
===============================================

kim

It appears you still haven't taken my 'insipid suggestion'. Are you afraid that doing so might make you less puissant?
===================================================

kim

You still do not understand; to argue against the legitimacy of the war is to argue for the legitimacy of Saddam's rule.

Keep it up, It's insipid.
=========================================

kim

Ah, the kites were flying. Little did those children know an evil cowboy was plotting to take their patrimony. Even littler did they know that an evil cowboy from the west of Iraq had already stolen the oil of the Kurds and the Shia and was selling it to grease the palms of the most greedy and sophisticated criminals on earth.

And the anti-war wing of the Democratic Party claims to want to look out for the helpless. Well they need a little help with their ethics and ideology, first. I'm talking about YOU, you betrayer of liberal principles.
==========================================

moneyrunner

Kim,

You have to understand that today’s Liberals really don’t give a shit about other people. They are solely motivated to gain access to the levers of American government.

Notice that after The US abandoned South Viet Nam and cut off it military supplies, there was no regret for the millions killed in the killing field of Cambodia? The association between the US government’s betrayal of the people of Southeast Asia and their deaths was never made. Likewise for the hundreds of thousands of “Boat People” who died on the high seas trying to escape the Communists and the hundreds of thousand who suffered in “Re-education Camps.” The Liberals who marched and held “Winter Soldier” shows never acknowledged their complicity in these horrors.

One – I believe it was Anthony Lewis – even had the gall to write a column as Pol Pot was emptying cities and beginning his genocide that we should not make adverse judgments about what was going on, it was part of their culture.

It’s as if we had pulled out of World War 2 and Hitler had been able to fully implement his “Final Solution.”

When by your action millions are slaughtered you have blood on your hands, even if you did not pull the trigger. There is so much blood on the hands of the Left over the last 50 years that it will take a generation to wash it off.

Yet here they sit, cherry picking phrases, waving lawyerly briefs and sniping from the sidelines and giving hope to mass murderers. That what they do best.

Oh, and don’t you dare QUESTION THEIR PATRIOTISM.

Mona Charen gave a speech at Grove City College in 2003 entitle “Useful Idiots: Then and Now.”. Here is a little of what she said:

By contrast, today’s liberals have paid no price in prestige for their disgraceful toleration of tyrants and despots who were, in every relevant respect, Hitler’s equals. In fact, they continue to look back on their so-called youthful activism with pride. They continue to offer their wisdom on foreign policy as if the USSR, Nicaragua, China, Ethiopia, Cambodia, Cuba had never happened. Talleyrand is supposed to have said of the Bourbon restorationists that they had learned nothing and forgotten nothing. Liberals have learned nothing and want us to forget everything….

I’m frequently asked, “Who was the biggest useful idiot?” I think the answer would have to be that it is not one person but an institution: the New York Times. Walter Duranty was the New York Times correspondent in Moscow in the 1920s and 30s. Here’s what he said about Stalin: “Stalin is giving the Russian people, the Russian masses – not Westernized landlords, industrialists, bankers, and intellectuals – but Russia’s 150 million peasants and workers, what they really want, mainly joint effort, communal effort.” Later when Stalin was starving millions to death, Duranty filed dispatches denying that anything was amiss. It was later learned that the Soviet secret police were blackmailing Duranty….

Ten years later the scene was again different. This time it was Southeast Asia, but the New York Times was again telling the world it had more to fear from anti-communists than from Communists. Having succeeded in getting the United States to withdraw all of its forces from Southeast Asia, liberals were scornful of the notion that a Communist victory might lead to a bloodbath. The Washington Post editorialized: “The threatened bloodbath is less ominous than a continuation of the current bloodletting.” The LA Times urged a cutoff of all aid to the Cambodian government, “for the good of the suffering Cambodian people.” Anthony Lewis, who was a columnist at the New York Times for 40 years, wrote: “Some will find the whole bloodbath debate unreal. What future possibility could be more terrible than the reality of what is happening in Cambodia now?” Lewis had an impoverished imagination. But even in the midst of the horror that followed – mass starvation and executions – many liberals could not see the reality in front of their eyes.

I disagree with Charen. They do see the reality in front of their eyes. They just don’t give a shit as long as it does not happen to them. They are the ultimate racists. As long at it happens to others … tough. They’ve got theirs.

Dwilkers

Well, although I disagree with her, at least anonymous liberal can make a coherent case, or point of argument.

Put simply AL, I would just disagree with you about the 1) the prevalence of the nuke claims as well as 2) their importance in influencing people on the war.

To me it was so peripheral as to be almost below the radar.

After reading the rest of the lefty BUSH LIED HE'S A MORON HE'S HITLER HE'S SATAN drivel in this thread I can only say....well, keep it up boys. Its been working so well for you.

kim

I know a number of lovely old hippies, who simply don't understand.
==================================================

Rick Ballard

Kim,

How can they betray that of which they have no knowledge? To write of principles to these buffoons is to murder innocent pixels for nought. They are as unfamiliar with the meaning of principles as they are with honor or duty. They are souless ideologues motivated by hatred, making Bush the focus point. He's only a symbol though. Their hatred is really directed toward the Republic and toward their fellow citizens who have exercised their rights under the Republic to elect representatives to govern in the name of the people. They hate government by the people because the people will never let them become the commissars that they want so desperately to be. They have never accomplished anything in their lives by virtue of merit and they know they never shall because they know that they possess no merit.

They do not have the courage to put their names to the sedition they practice and they practice sedition because they lack the courage to committ acts of treason. They are anonymous cowards and the Republic is fortunate that, altough they are noisy, their numbers are small.

The Republic has withstood seditionists in time of war before. The Copperheads were a bother to Lincoln but they had no affect on the outcome of the Civil War except, perhaps, by lengthening it by fiving false hopes to Confederate leadership that their existence might divide the North until it could no longer prosecute a war the South could never win. In the same way today, the words of the seditious scum and the actions of the spineless politicians who would govern by polls encourage the futile resistance of al Queada and their Baathist allies in Iraq.

There are true liberals posting here who do not merit the label of seditionist or Copperhead but they do merit scorn for not having the spine to identify the ideologues who have stolen their good name and delight in dragging it through the mud. Even they are pale shadows of true liberals and their lack of response brings into question whether they in fact understand liberal principles at all.

kim

BDS is a psyops epidemic. And the vector is native, not cultured.
=================================================

Rick Ballard

Dr. Sanity's take.

Kim,

Cryptic is

clarice

Juke, you and the other this- war- is -illegal crowd, are in luck:Saddam is still alive. All we have to do is return the reins of power to him.

We can't completely restore the status quo ante but all is not lost.

So why don't you guys just come out with it. Stop being so coy.

boris

There is so much blood on the hands of the Left over the last 50 years that it will take a generation to wash it off.

This is a very good point. Avoidence of acknowledging their complicity may be a factor in the twisted thinking they apply to current events. Some seem to credit idealism in the 60s left, but their attitude against Israel even then was too obvious for me.

j.west

The subject of the aluminum tubes was brought up earlier in this thread and although it might disturb the “flow” of conversation, I thought it might be helpful to bring some opinion to the table. This is a subject that I have some knowledge of and the points to be made are relatively technical in nature, but simplified as much as possible.

The gist of the dispute is the arbitrary conclusion reached in the ISG analysis as it pertains to the overall shape as opposed to the tolerancing as the determining factor for discounting use as centrifuge components instead of artillery missiles.

The analysis references “concentricity” (which was held to ridiculous standards for artillery ordnance) as opposed to “cylindricity” which is the obvious determining factor in the quest to find the ultimate end use. In easier terms, although it’s preferable to have missile casings be as round as practical for aerodynamic reasons (and to avoid firing tube interference), the particular aluminum tubes in question were specified with ultra-tight inside diameter (ID) tolerances. This precise ID machining would allow a relatively easy outside diameter (OD) machining to obtain the cylindricity necessary to hold the tight mass specification needed in high speed centrifuge equipment.

It is true, as with any product, that the more precise the components the better they will assemble and operate. With a multiple launch rocket system (MLRS), the theory is to use large amounts of ordnance to “rain death” on concentrations of enemy forces. The individual rockets do not need to be high precision instruments, as the focus of the weapon system is to have a killing field of a certain dimension and that small variations of impact points actual help the spread and effectiveness.

The more interesting factor to consider is the precision needed in MLRS rounds related to the OD as opposed to the ID. Small variations in the ID would only lead to infinitesimal differences in propellant or explosive charges. Conversely, variations in the ID of centrifuge rotors would prohibit the use for that purpose.

Machining a thin walled aluminum tube is difficult for a number of reasons, but one factor remains true regardless of method – that machining the I.D. to precise tolerances is exponentially more expensive than machining the O.D. As discussed previously, in an exercise designed to reverse engineer an MRLS rocket, the O.D. would be the critical factor, not the I.D.

In order to produce a rotor for a centrifuge, a great deal of time and trouble could be avoided by purchasing tubes with a precision machined I.D., which can only be accomplished with equipment not available in Iraq. Tubes could then be fairly easily machined on the O.D. to obtain the critical cylindricity, wall thickness and overall mass dimensions required with equipment that Iraq already had in place.

ISG analysis determined that it could not be proven that these tubes were destined for centrifuges. This is a fact and without finding finished components in mid-assembly to prove otherwise, there is no way to dispute the ISG findings. However, one would need to ignore certain signs that point to a different interpretation of the facts presented in order to maintain that a reasonable person could not have thought these tubes were destined to be centrifuge components.

Although an elaborate cover story was concocted to make it seem like the Iraqis were trying to manufacture their own MLRS rounds with improved capability, the extent of their actions seems far from plausible. Why would anyone institute a program to clandestinely obtain material banned by UN sanctions at extreme costs to replace a piece of ordnance that is not banned and readily available from multiple sources in completed form at a fraction of the price?

There are a number of other points that are associated with the aluminum tubes, from the 7075T6 material to anodizing to how they are packed for shipping. This post barely scratches the surface as it pertains to tolerances. As the subjects come up, each will be addressed.

Sorry for the length of this post.

boris

There is a form of pathological mindset I see too much of in the US. Let me describe if hypothetically this way:

“We were poor, unfree and oppressed so we came to this country the US. Now we are prosperous and free but the culture we live in lacks the comfort of our home culture. So now lets change the US culture to be more like our home country.”
If you like your home culture so much why don’t you go back there?
“Because it is better to be prosperous and free, but we now want both.”
But ... if you recreate your home culture here in very short time you will no longer be prosperous or free. The prosperity and liberty of the US is not an artifact of location it’s the essence of our culture.

The leftists were born here but their thinking is the same. The culture they want to impose just happens to be from La La Land and not from planet Earth.

Clarice

Why apologize for offering up some useful information? And it seems to me you've made a sensible conclusion.

max

"Talk to senior American diplomats and military officers in Iraq today and they will tell you that the insurgents closely monitor the debate here in the United States. As domestic support for the war dwindles, the insurgents increasingly believe they can win; they fight harder, they raise more money, they gain new recruits."

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/006/345qrbbj.asp

So the left, as evidenced on this thread alone, are doing everything they can to make sure we, and the now-free people of Iraq, lose to a blend of Islamic terrorists and Baathists already drenched in Iraqi blood.

The left, headed by the nyt since at least the days of Walter Duranty (as pointed out above in this thread) and aided and abetted by their Big Media Quisling allies does have more blood on its hands than any other group in the world. And now they're going for even more.

PS - Just think of the left's phony outrage against Nixon at a time when real evil enabled by their own lust for power and hatred of humanity was happening in southeast Asia. Why should anyone listen to them now?

Rick Ballard

J. West,

Please don't apologize for length when presenting facts. I've been curious about the use of 7075T6 since I first read about it. Why does the artillery round (or missile) require T6 rather than T5? The structural values (from memory) are not significantly different between T5 and T6 but extruders generally don't like to extrude to a T6 spec (again from memory). Is machineability the only differentiating aspect of the properties or is another factor involved?

TexasToast

The Kurds and the Shia are free. - and on their way to creating Yugoslav style mini-states. Baghdad seem destined to become something like Vienna - a great capital shorn of empire. Say what you will about Saddam's Iraq (an indisputably evil place), it was a shield and counterweight between Iran and the oil. In the future, we may be stuck with statettes, unless we plan to hang around indefinitely.As for me, I have always believed in realpolitik. We have interests, and they trump all this hooey about "democratization". In real political terms, we grabbed control of the oilfields, nothing more, and nothing less.

There were other ways to do this, but these guys thought that military force was the only way.
200? and counting. A constitution with no support in the Sunni areas harboring and supporting the insurgency. When is the next troop rotation?


You have to understand that today’s Liberals really don’t give a shit about other people. They are solely motivated to gain access to the levers of American government.

It’s as if we had pulled out of World War 2 and Hitler had been able to fully implement his “Final Solution". When by your action millions are slaughtered you have blood on your hands, even if you did not pull the trigger. There is so much blood on the hands of the Left over the last 50 years that it will take a generation to wash it off.

They are as unfamiliar with the meaning of principles as they are with honor or duty. They are soulless ideologues motivated by hatred, making Bush the focus point. ... They have never accomplished anything in their lives by virtue of merit and they know they never shall because they know that they possess no merit.
...
There are true liberals posting here who do not merit the label of seditionist or Copperhead but they do merit scorn for not having the spine to identify the ideologues who have stolen their good name and delight in dragging it through the mud. Even they are pale shadows of true liberals and their lack of response brings into question whether they in fact understand liberal principles at all.

Such keen insight! Those of you who think the "lefty/liberals" posting on this board have a monopoly on over the top rhetoric - take note.

Paul

Ah yes, but the left was clever enough to defeat America in SE Asia and yet ensure all that inconvenient suffering and dying stuff was done by little brown people over there, so they could celebrate their victory in defeating their country with a decade long coke and sex binge unhindered at home.

Of course they're far too stupid to realize that losing this war will impact them directly and catastrophically.

j.west

Rick, The T6 designation refers to the hardness of the material, which conceivably could aid in better fragmentation if used in a MRLS round. You have it right that by using T6 the machinability is difficult.

What is hard to get across to everyday people is the lunacy of using expensive, hard to machine material manufactured to ridiculous tolerances for an artillery rocket that was designed to have a low cost-per-kill ratio.

Rick Ballard

J. West,

I'm familiar with the 6063 alloy and not the 7075 but a quick check of properties here leads me to think that 7075 might not be as good for fragmentation purposes as other alloys. The tensile strength is very high and my understanding of fragmentation is that lots of little pieces do more damage to personnel than a few big chunks. Maybe I'm reading it incorrectly though. I'm not an engineer, so it's pure speculation.

SteveMG

J. West:
Thanks for that explanation on the issue. It's one more snapshot of the complexity of this debate re intelligence and more evidence, it seems to me, of how Bush himself could not expected to examine the raw details of the issue. These matters are too complex for ordinary folk to dig into, especially when that "ordinary folk" is dealing, as the president does daily, with hundreds of issues.

Former Secretary Powell's top aide, Colonel Larry Wilkerson - a fierce critic of the W.H. policies - noted in a recent speech that the French came to the State Department and revealed that in order to make the quality of aluminum tubes that Iraq had would be a difficult task.

Wilkerson:
"The French came in in the middle of my deliberations at the CIA [over the question of the tubes] and said, we have just spun aluminum tubes, and by God, we did it to this RPM, et cetera, et cetera, and it was all, you know, proof positive that the aluminum tubes were not for mortar casings or artillery casings, they were for centrifuges. Otherwise, why would you have such exquisite instruments?"

As you explained, why would Iraq go through all that trouble to make tubes of such a fine caliber for use in artillery rockets?

SMG


Rick Ballard

"When is the next troop rotation?"

The 4ID is rotating in right now. Force reduction will begin by March and by this time next year we'll be at garrison levels similiar to those we maintained in Germany for fifty years.

The Kurds are Sunni btw and they care about the Arab tribes along the rivers about as much as I do. Which is to say that they don't care about them at all. The Sunni Arabs can accept minority status and live or they can choose to die. That's realpolitik.

j.west

Rick, You’re absolutely right. There are a number of materials better suited for the type of rocket these tubes were supposedly meant for. 7075T6 is an excellent material for centrifuge rotors due to it’s tensile and yield properties.

Also, because of the nature of 7075T6, this material was banned from acquisition by UN sanctions after the ’91 war. Saddam had a clandestine operation to obtain large numbers of these tubes in violation of these sanctions, with a cover story of reverse engineering MRLS rounds.

Due to the speeds in a centrifuge and the thin wall required, the tensile strength of 7075T6 would be necessary – unless you have the technology to manufacture components with carbon fiber.

p.lukasiak

IF - a big qualifier admittedly - Iraq had WMDs and they had somehow gotten into terrorist hands and used against us Bush would have been eviscerated by the public for not protecting us and stopping Iraq.

Steve, the problem with this is that it assumes there were only two options -- invade Iraq in March 2003, or let Saddam do whatever he wanted.

I'd like to suggest that a third option was available, that may (or may not) have resulted in an invasion. That would have been to allow the inspectors to finish their work, then insist upon continued intrusive inspections in exchange for relaxing the "sanctions" regime.

I think that the most of the international community would have supported such an approach -- and if Iraq did not agree to it, would have supported an invasion. This approach would have been "low risk" in terms of Iraq handing off WMDs to "terrorists" -- continued intrusive inspections would prevent Iraq from making new ones, and military force would remain an option if Iraq interfered with the inspections regime.

CaseyL

"Your party keeps losing."

Guess they don't allow newspapers where you live, huh? Too worried you'll freak out and attack the orderlies, I guess.

The Iraqi people are free and love it."

Sure: the Iraqi people love not knowing if they'll be able to go to work, or go out to buy groceries, or go out to play, without getting shot or blown up. And they sure love that they only have electricity for 2 hours each day, and no running water, and having to buy imported oil. And they do little dances of joy when their friends and relatives vanish into places like Abu Ghraib and are never seen alive again.

And the Iraqis have got to be grateful that US policy turned their country into "terrorist flypaper." Because nothing says "Success in the WoT" like AQ setting up shop in Iraq and sending bombers to Jordan.


j.west

Casey, again this is a little long and written previously for another doubter, but it goes to your point.

"Sometimes a little bit of chaos can be a good thing"

This paraphrase that Donald Rumsfield uttered during the looting following the fall of Baghdad, was the policy statement that the mainstream media missed. Although they heard the words, their outrage that the Iraqi National Museum was not guarded left them with the impression that these remarks from Mr. Rumsfield were insensitive and flippant.

What the media, liberals and a few interview-addicted conservatives missed was the outline of the plan for bringing democracy to Iraq. True democracy. Lasting democracy. Not just imposed order and the semblance of democracy.

As the pundants are fond of saying, "you can't bring democracy from the barrel of a gun". Mr. Rumsfield knows that no truer words have ever been spoken. You cannot replace a tyrannical all-powerful ruling government with a benevolent all-powerful ruling government and call it a democracy. The only way Iraq will achieve true democracy will be for the Iraqi people to band together to improve their situation.

People improve their situations at the moment they realize that someone else is not going to improve it for them. Our current troop levels in Iraq insure that the former regime will not regain control, but do not allow for a contingent of soldiers to patrol every street corner. Electricity outages, gasoline shortages, unemployment, kidnapping for profit and innocent civilian deaths in suicide bomb blasts provide the "little bit of chaos" necessary to instill the outrage necessary bring forth the one Iraqi that will start the process of democracy.

He won't be the hero type. Perhaps an engineer or dentist. But some chain of events in his life will bring him to the realization that, at least in his portion of Iraq, things have to change. He will declare that the neighborhood bordered by the store that his wife shops at, the school his child attends, the mosque that he attends and his home is now a sanctuary, and that anyone violating the calm will pay the price of his outrage.

Then the bomb will explode, or the RPG round will be fired in his well defined world, and knowing who the insurgents are in his 10 square block area, he will yell something that literally translated would read "son of a diseased dog", but by the time this same statement is repeated and retold through a dozen other Iraqis it will be morphed into a statement as eloquent as "give me liberty or give me death". Others will join him in his anger and as the offending insurgents are dragged into the street for their public demise, a feeling of self determination and individual empowerment will be born.

This will be the moment that true democracy will take hold in Iraq. No amount of imposed order from outside forces can equal the power of individuals taking responsibility for their own well being. By allowing this "little bit of chaos" policy, Mr. Rumsfield is following the only course that will bring the type of democracy that is permanent.

TexasToast

The Kurds are Sunni btw and they care about the Arab tribes along the rivers about as much as I do.Which is to say that they don't care about them at all. The Sunni Arabs can accept minority status and live or they can choose to die. That's realpolitik.

But but ..... I thought it was the liberals who didn't "give a shit" about people?

The Sunni Arabs don't seem to be accepting minority status very well. In fact, they seem to be harboring the likes of AQ - one of those darn unintended consequences.

I'm sure the Turks are just loving the thought of an independent Kurdistan just across the border. Do you think the Kurds in Turkey will also take your advice about accepting minority status or dying?

Yikes!

p.lukasiak

Rick, You’re absolutely right. There are a number of materials better suited for the type of rocket these tubes were supposedly meant for. 7075T6 is an excellent material for centrifuge rotors due to it’s tensile and yield properties.

I guess the fact that Iraq had once bought the Medusa rocket that used this same alloy, and the fact that Iraq had tried other materials in its efforts to reverse engineer the Medusa and found they weren't up to the task, isn't considered a relevant consideration. Nor is the fact that the tubes in question were of the wrong size for any centrifuge that had ever been designed.

The reality is this. 7075T6 is an alloy that can be used in centrifuges, and when one analyst noticed that Iraq was importing tubes made with 7075T6, he theorized that they could be adapted for use in centrifuges. Because this theory was consistent with what the administration wanted to believe, it was vigorously pursued to the point where all contrary evidence was virtually ignored.

So, instead of being told that Iraq had imported aluminum tubes that were perfectly suited for use in a specific rocket that Iraq had in its inventory, but were also theoretically possible to adapt for use in a theoretical centrifuge that would be highly inefficient, we were told that the tubes were suitable for use in a centrifuge, and that the explanation that Iraq had given for the tubes (ie to be used in rockets) was not plausible.

This was manipulation of intelligence of the highest order. The question that you should be asking is "who was responsible for this"?


kim

You are a little out of date on the electricity situation. If you had to put up with terrorists blowing up your domestic scene, you'd be glad the Iraqi police and armed forces are gradually neutralizing the criminals.

It may be that Sunni Iraq will remain problematic for awhile. It is their choice, and the adults among them are making good ones, lately.
==========================================
==========================================

boris

and that the explanation that Iraq had given for the tubes (ie to be used in rockets) was not plausible

There were no stockpiles of meth but the basement was stacked with 400 lbs of cold remedy and a well equipped chem lab. The occupants claimed they were expecting a very bad flu season.

j.west

p.luk, My point was less aimed at the material than the tolerancing. 7075T6 is used in the Medusa, but as an extruded shape with specified O.D.

Even you would have to question clandestinely ordering this material machined to ultra-tight tolerances on the I.D., which makes little sense for an artillery round.

The critics do not question that the tubes could be used for a centrifuge, just that it was not proven that it was the only use. As for the inefficiency of the centrifuge design, I attribute that as a trade-off for the cover story of the artillery rounds.

Sue

Taking a stroll through leftist blog sites and reading the comments here this morning just reaffirms my earlier conclusion. As long as Bush is 'taken down' who gives a rat's ass about anything else? There's old bin Laden, sitting over there giving high fives to his 'insurgents' saying "See, I told you so, keep up the good work and the US will divide itself, just like Vietnam, buddies, just like Vietnam".

boris

jw

Arguendo accepting dual use, I got the impression that in some sense the possibility of WMD application rendered these items as contraband.

boris

the US will divide itself, just like Vietnam

Not this time Sue. To the extent the other side can pretend they are making progress, it's delusional. The core that keeps the country safe and free knows better and we only escalate when necessary.

Sue

Boris,

I don't know. Only time will tell, but I don't have much confidence in our elected republicans out-shouting the growing cabal (I like that word when applied to the 'other' side) of democrats who are louder and have major media in their hip pockets.

I believe if our country had stood together, Iraq would be just about ready for us to leave. As it is, they see the divide they are creating and as long as they can outlast us, they win. But, as long as Bush isn't credited with a win, well, hey, who cares? I cannot understand the mindset that doesn't understand if Bush loses we all lose.

TexasToast

Sue (OT)

On a lighter note

Go read Drum's thread on "what is the most annoying pretention?" Pretty darn funny. My favorite (so far) would be "parsing other people's prose to a hair" but that would probably get me banned from JustOneMinute.

jukeboxgrad

money: "today’s liberals have paid no price in prestige for their disgraceful toleration of tyrants and despots."

Let us know how you feel about this act of "disgraceful toleration." Or this one. Especially since it took place just a few days after this.

"Liberals have learned nothing and want us to forget everything…."

These things I point out you either never knew are have happily forgotten.

clarice: "Saddam is still alive. All we have to do is return the reins of power to him."

I guess you mean sort of a replay of this.

"Stop being so coy."

Uh, the coyness is all yours, since I see you (and your pals) you can't be bothered to address a variety of simple, obvious and highly relevant questions, such as the one that ended this comment.

boris: "There is so much blood on the hands of the Left"

If you look closely, you might notice the hand your guy was using was actually his Right.

jukeboxgrad

west: "Small variations in the ID would only lead to infinitesimal differences in propellant or explosive charges."

Wrong. "Small variations in the ID" could be associated with problems with eccentricity, which translates into accuracy. "Increasing the rocket motor launcher exit spin rate" is an alternate way of achieving accuracy, but there's reason to understand that these "other strategies, such as those pursued by the US military, may have been too challenging for Iraq to discover or implement."

"The individual rockets do not need to be high precision instruments, as the focus of the weapon system is to have a killing field of a certain dimension and that small variations of impact points actual help the spread and effectiveness."

More distortion. The tubes are for rocket motors, not for warheads (which means you're being either disingenuous or ignorant when you make a comment about "explosive charges"). Accuracy is desirable. Iraqis working on these rockets found "that inconsistencies between rockets resulted in variations in range and accuracy—a problem they chose to address, in part, by reducing mass differences between rockets and components by tightening specifications."

These issues are discussed here and here. Also see this pdf. A good non-technical summary of the tubes issue is here.

An interesting comment can also be found here: " they didn't actually need the relatively-tight tolerances, but their engineers were being ridden hard by management to *do something* to improve the rockets' accuracy, and asking their foreign suppliers to make the tubes more precisely was a lot easier than figuring out what was really making the rockets inaccurate and fixing it."

"As the subjects come up, each will be addressed."

A good place to start would be to tell us why you think you're smarter than Duelfer. Then you can tell us why you think you're smarter than David Albright.

I also wonder what you think of the fact that the CIA first reported that the Iraqi tubes were "successfully spun to 90,000 rpm" when in fact four of the five tests failed or were stopped. Or the fact that a later report admitted that actually 31 spin tests were done, and only one of them succeeded (and this using a peculiar definition of "success"). Or the fact that the CIA initially claimed the test lasted for two hours, and later admitted it was only 65 minutes. (See SSCI p. 107.)

Or the fact that while the CIA wrote at least 15 reports about these tubes, "they did not state what Energy Department experts had noted - that many common industrial items, even aluminum cans, were made to specifications as good or better than the tubes sought by Iraq" (link).

"What is hard to get across to everyday people is the lunacy of using expensive, hard to machine material manufactured to ridiculous tolerances for an artillery rocket that was designed to have a low cost-per-kill ratio. "

What is hard to get across to faux experts like you is that Saddam was getting the tubes for as little as ten bucks each (SSCI p. 105). Not exactly a giant dent in his OFF revenues.

"There are a number of materials better suited for the type of rocket these tubes were supposedly meant for."

Right. I guess that's why SSCI said (p. 100) that "lightweight rockets ... typically use 7075-T6 aluminum for the motor casing because of its strength and weight."

"The T6 designation refers to the hardness of the material, which conceivably could aid in better fragmentation if used in a MRLS round."

Fragmentation is not an issue, since the tube is used for the rocket motor, not the warhead. Please keep revealing how ignorant you are.

Rick: "my understanding of fragmentation ... I'm not an engineer, so it's pure speculation."

You don't have to be an engineer to understand the difference between a warhead (which would be designed to fragment) and a rocket motor (which wouldn't be). Here's a suggestion: start with the basics.

smg: "why would Iraq go through all that trouble to make tubes of such a fine caliber for use in artillery rockets?"

Duelfer gives that question a very clear and detailed answer, if you bother to read it. Also see SSCI, p. 102: "The DOE told Committee staff that over-specifying tolerances is quite common when poor or average engineers try to reverse engineer equipment as the Iraqis were attempting to do."

boris

Sue

When (not if) Iraq is free and democratic and the bulk of the troops have returned:

They will carry themselves with pride for their service.

Their contribution to a better world will be honored by the overwhelming majority of Americans.

Their POV on the history of the WOT will lead public opinion.

The revisionists will appear small and mean.

That's why revisionists want to cut and run too soon, so it can fail and they can escape their doom.

jukeboxgrad

west: "Sometimes a little bit of chaos can be a good thing"

I guess you're describing the "logic" behind allowing Saddam's nuclear sites to be looted.

Nigerien yellowcake that Saddam was not going to get was used to scare us into war. Meanwhile, the actual 500 tons of yellowcake that was already in Iraq is now gone, disappeared, because we didn't bother to keep an eye on it. So much for the idea that our government is really interested in controlling yellowcake proliferation. The priority they place on controlling yellowcake is about as high as the priority they place on respecting classified information.

By the way, it was never plausible to suggest that Saddam was trying to get 500 tons of yellowcake from Niger. Saddam already had 550 tons of yellowcake, which was useless to him because the lacked the means to enrich it. Why would he be trying to get another 500 tons?

jukeboxgrad

max: " ... the left ... are doing everything they can to make sure we ... lose"

Are you saying that criticizing the commander-in-chief is a form of sedition? I wonder how you feel about this.

boris: "The core that keeps the country safe and free knows better"

I guess by "core" you mean the 32% that still approve of the way Bush is handling Iraq, and who believe "Bush is being honest and straightforward with the public." Luckily this group knows better than the 57% who believe "Bush deliberately misled people to make the case for war" (link). Why do you hate democracy?

paul: "a decade long coke and sex binge unhindered at home."

Bush has put all that behind him, and it's really quite unfair for you to bring it up.

boris

Sue,

The revisionists have made the WOT harder, more dangerous and more costly. You know that, I know that, W knows that and said so. When the returned and honored tell it, it will be devastating.

Truzenzuzex

p.lukasiak:

So, instead of being told that Iraq had imported aluminum tubes that were perfectly suited for use in a specific rocket that Iraq had in its inventory, but were also theoretically possible to adapt for use in a theoretical centrifuge that would be highly inefficient, we were told that the tubes were suitable for use in a centrifuge, and that the explanation that Iraq had given for the tubes (ie to be used in rockets) was not plausible.
Don't you find it at all suspicious that this particular aluminum tube was:

a) not the best material suited for its alleged purpose of artillery rockets;
b) was way more expensive than tubes equally well suited to that purpose;
c) was specifically controlled by reason of its suitability for centrifuges, whereas other less expensive alternatives equally well suited were not so controlled;
d) were relatively easily machined using indiginous technology to make a centrifuge, whereas other more suitable (and legally obtainable) alternatives were not?

As j.west mentioned, and rightly, it was never proven that these tubes were purchased with the intent to create a centrifuge with a cover story that contained a legitimate, non-nuclear defense purpose. But their questionable suitability (including cost vs. benefits and legal availability) would cause any reasonable person to suspect (and perhaps even conclude) a nefarious ulterior motive.

This was manipulation of intelligence of the highest order. The question that you should be asking is "who was responsible for this"?
Was it? Or was it simply looking at an anomalous situation in a way that best fit all the facts, and not just those convenient to the views of those who suggest the war was begun on false pretenses?
SteveMG

Jukeboxgrad:
Duelfer gives that question a very clear and detailed answer, if you bother to read it.

You continually refer to post-war reports and studies to undermine pre-war intelligence and conclusions.

In order to determine whether and how the Bush Administration fixed intelligence, we have to examine what they knew at the time, not we know now.

What you're doing is simply prosecuting the White House. You examine pre-war statements and then ferret the internet to find a source that undermines what they said. However, you never include intelligence or material that buttresses or gives credibility to their pre-ware pronouncements.

With a $40 billion intelligence budget that funds the operations of thousdands of individual and departments and divisions and agencies and with highly technical issues involving a myriad of issues, we can always find dissenting views on intelligence matters. There's never unanimity, I'm sure.

A fair reading of the pre-war statements looks at the totality of evidence to ascertain whether those statements had credibility. But fairness goes out the window whe one side simply assumes the worst about the other and is simply interested in capturing power.

SMG

Sue

TT,

It was interesting but not particularly funny to me. Thanks for pointing it out though. It further confirms my opinion that progressive liberals only tolerate that which they perceive as tolerable to them.

TexasToast

Sue

Everyone tolerates what they percieve as tolerable to them, right? Do you tolerate the intolerable?

I was intrigued by the glimmer of hope that you percieved that there were two sides to this debate supported by real people - not the "cartoons" drawn by words like seditionist, copperhead, and the idea that the other side is an enabler of "the Final Solution." Your statement that the motive of the left must be the defeat of Bush at all costs is a similar cartoon, and i had hoped to talk about that.

I guess I was wrong.
Yabba dabba doo!

Marcel

So the aluminum artillery tubes could conceivably been intended for use in centrifuges! Yes, there are 2 supportable theories. Too bad that when this threat was presented to the public in early 2003, there was only one theory mentioned. Bush supporters argue that it is OK to present one theory and suppress the other. That might be acceptable in a totalitarian state, but not in a constititional democracy.

Patrick R. Sullivan

I'd pointed out that several comments regarding political pressure put on intelligence types were in error, as the Robb-Silberman Report could find no evidence of that. In rebuttal I was given this from that report:

"[W]e were not authorized to investigate how policymakers used the intelligence assessments they received from the Intelligence Community."

Which is an obvious non-sequitur. And typical of the quality of the logic of the Bush-phobes here. The political pressure would have been BEFORE whatever use was made of the intelligence.

TM

Richard III “killed” the princes in the tower because the Tudors wrote the history first. GWB, by this speech, is trying to create "common knowledge" by gettin' his "history" written first – therefore all that follows is “revisionist”. What a crock.

Texas T is right - it's hard to complain about re-writing history, when it has not been written yet.

And early meme alert - keep an eye out for mentions of the Tudor princes elsewhere.

I'lll never catch up on this thread, and sorry if I am repeating a point made earlier, but - Section IX of the SSCI">http://web.mit.edu/simsong/www/iraqreport2-textunder.pdf">SSCI report is devoted to the question of whether intel analysts were pressured.

Start on p. 282 of the .pdf.

The bipartisan conclusions (voted out, I guess, when Dems were still under the influence of Rove's mind-rays):

(U) Conclusion 83. The Committee did not find any evidence that Administration officials attempted to coerce, influence or pressure analysts to change their judgments related to Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities.

(U) Conclusion 84. The Committee found no evidence that the Vice President's visits to the Central Intelligence Agency were attempts to pressure analysts, were perceived as intended to pressure analysts by those who participated in the briefings on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs, or did pressure analysts to change their assessments.

clarice

I don't know about you, but I am getting fighting mad at Levin and Rockefeller..They know better.

Get me in touch with Hadassah, because I'm willing to hit the hustings to set the record straight with the kind of people who once they get hold of these two phonies won't let go. LOL

Patrick R. Sullivan

Adding to TM's post above, this is from the letter introducing the Robb-Silberman report:

'Mr. President:

'....We conclude that the Intelligence Community was dead wrong in almost all of its pre-war judgments about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. This was a major intelligence failure. Its principal causes were the Intelligence Community's inability to collect good information about Iraq's WMD programs, serious errors in analyzing what information it could gather, and a failure to make clear just how much of its analysis was based on assumptions, rather than good evidence. ....

'...the Commission found no indication that the Intelligence Community distorted the evidence regarding Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. What the intelligence professionals told you about Saddam Hussein's programs was what they believed. They were simply wrong.'

arrowhead

"...it's hard to complain about re-writing history, when it has not been written yet."

The President doesn't need anyone to explain what he meant by "re-writing history" in his reference to the Democrats' obvious and pathetic attempts to change their story to suit their political aims. Simply put, there are glaring differences between what they said about Saddam Hussein and Iraq as far back as 1998 through 2003 and what they would have us believe they said today. Further, a review of the intelligence on Iraq and its weapons programs conducted by a bi-partisan committee has debunked the democrat rants about lying and manipulation of that intelligence leading up to the invasion of Iraq.

Those statements are cast in concrete. Call it "history" or the "record", the attempt by the Democrats and the liberal media to alter it so drastically is not lost on the American public.

SteveMG

Bush supporters argue that it is OK to present one theory and suppress the other. That might be acceptable in a totalitarian state, but not in a constititional democracy.

Not to parse words (too much; otherwise there goes the fun of posting) but how did they "suppress" it? That's a pretty loaded term, a term meaning (to me) preventing it from coming out.

Are you seriously arguing that Presidents must give all sides on a dispute on what a particular piece or pieces of intelligence mean? This is a demand that has never been asked before. Clinton, when discussing Saddam's WMD program in the nineties or after he ordered the attack on the al-Shifa plant, didn't give both sides of his intelligence theories or arguments.

Whether we like it or not, we elect people to make these decisions using their best judgments. They are privy to information that we cannot see. Bush, based on the advice given to him by his national security team, came to the conclusion that this material would be used for Saddam's nuclear program.

Anyway, based on what we read about this topic, if Saddam could have used the tubes for centrifuges or his nuclear program, do you think he wouldn't have? Given his history, given what we know from the Kay and Dueffler Reports re his desire to continue and/or re-start up his WMD programs.

Well, we've now gone from Bush lying and fixing intelligence in order to promote the war to now arguing whether he needed to give the fifty-odd plus opinions on what the intelligence meant or indicated.

Some progress, I guess.

SMG

Patrick R. Sullivan

' How many people are killed every year in NYC?'

Ah, that, and similar, logic--which one would normally have to be playing in a sandbox to hear--reminds me that GT has yet to give up the name of the Phd program he claims to have graduated from.

If one wants an answer to, 'What can Islamic terrorists do to us?', contrasting how many people were killed on 9-10-01 vs. 9-11-01 would be the answer. Which would be obvious to anyone who really was an economist, I'd wager.

moneyrunner

My, my, TexasToast. An admirable display of passive aggressive behavior. I would be very careful about criticizing the use of language if I played on the team that includes a man who says “screw them” when referring to civilian contractors killed, dismembered and then hung from a bridge in Iraq; and others who describe the war as a plot to make profits for Halliburton. There is literally no way anyone on the Right could top that.

Whining is not a pleasant thing to see in anyone; especially anyone who uses Texas as part of his nom de plume.

There is a movie character you remind me of. Do you remember the rapist murderer in “Dirty Harry?” Same M.O.

You know, you may be too young to have the blood of good men on your hands, but you have chosen to join the team that virtually drowns in it. You should really spend a few hours examining your conscience. You may find you have one.

Walter

The President's approval rating is down to 36% in today's Newsweek poll, and 35%-39% in other recent polls. President Reagan saw his approval rating fall by 20% to 46% in his 2nd term before he made the crucial decision to apologize and appoint new senior staff. The result: a rebound in the polls and the election of a Republican successor. President Nixon got as low as 24% and 27%, never recovered, and watched the White House go to the Democrats. The difference between those 2 is that Reagan took responsibility for mistakes made by his staff; Nixon would never let himself "show weakness".

President Bush could learn a lesson from Ronald Reagan, and recover enough support to finish his Presidency with 3 strong years of achievement. Or he could stay with the same top aides, the same stalled agenda, the same tired speech. Based on Friday's speech, it looks like more of the same.

SteveMG

Or he could stay with the same top aides, the same stalled agenda, the same tired speech

He's not going to name Bill Moyers as his new press secretary or David Gergen as his new secretary of defense.

Geezus, let's hope not.

Speaking of Tomas Torquemada Gergen: Is there any dispute that he doesn't think can be solved by simply having the Republicans give up?

If I'm ever in a foxhole with Gergen, the first thing I do is shoot him (speaking entirely metaphorically and tongue-in-cheek).
SMG

moneyrunner

Walter,you have not been paying attention.

It's not about the next election.

It's about not getting blown up while attending a wedding.

It's about little Christian girls having their heads sawed off.

It's about not getting stoned to death for adultery or having your brothers kill you to avenge the family's honor if you date an infidel.

Hello, is there anyone home?

TexasToast

My, my, Monneyrunner. An admirable display of aggressive behavior (I searched high and low for any pasivity, but saw none). Thanks for your concern about those on my side who abuse rhetoric - coming from a person who abuses language as you do, the warning has great force. Lets see, a Godwin violation, tu quoque, ad hom, strawman, pejoritive labeling - need I go on?

Whining is not a pleasant thing to see in anyone; especially anyone who uses Texas as part of his nom de plume.

I'm sure you are a most pleasant person to spend time with - as long as no one speaks unless spoken to and responds with "Yes Sir!". A hint - broader society is not the military.

There is a movie character you remind me of. Do you remember the rapist murderer in “Dirty Harry?” Same M.O.

Rapist murderer? Thanks for reaching across the divide. I'll refrain from finding my own movie persona to describe your character (because the passivity of it will probably annoy you further.

You know, you may be too young to have the blood of good men on your hands, but you have chosen to join the team that virtually drowns in it. You should really spend a few hours examining your conscience. You may find you have one.


Virtue through killing. How lovely.

moneyrunner

There's an excellent essay by Dr. Sanity about the psychological aspects of Bush Derangement Syndrome. Click HERE

boris

Virtue through killing

Non Sequitur.

Freedom is not free. If you don't know that then maybe you fail to appreciate where yours comes from.

moneyrunner

Actually, TT, I found your whine sort of funny, all things considered. By all means, don’t give up on it; it may well be your most endearing feature.

My reference to the “bad guy” in “Dirty Harry” was not meant to imply that you are both a rapist and a murderer. After all, I don’t know you and don’t know what you do in your time off. But if you remember the movie, the character was a cringing coward who hid behind the law. An over-the-top passive aggressive.

If you haven’t seen the movie, it’s a little dated now, but the character is fully up to date. In fact, he may well be more current now than he was then.

TexasToast

Boris

Actually, its not a non sequitur. If you look back, you will see that I have been critical of those on my side who use the "chickenhawk" argument. Money seems to think that only those who have experienced death at very close range have a right to a "conscience". That is an equally pernicious "chicken" argument. Of course freedom is not free, but that has nothing to do with the decision to go to war in Iraq.

Money

An endearing cringing coward?

I didn't know you cared! Thanks!

boris

is not free, but that has nothing to do

This next point might be a challange for your teeny tiny noggin ...

... others purchased your freedom for you ...

Iraq's freedom is being purchased as you yourself sit back and whine like a spoiled brat that the craven politicians you support can't win jack sh!t.

TM

Whew. Having made it through the whole thread (subject to skpping lightly past some of the posts), let me just say that I am quite proud to ba a part of this.

That said, Money, if you could dial it back just a little bit that would make my day - I am not in agreement with Texas T all that often myself, but I don't think I have ever resorted to rapist-murderer comparisons.

On other points:

Anon Lib spoke to the emerging nuclear threat. This is from the unclassified Dec 2000 CIA country reports. I am guessing that Dec 2000 preceded the balefaul Bush-Cheney influence:

We believe that Iraq has probably continued low-level theoretical R&D associated with its nuclear program. A sufficient source of fissile material remains Iraq’s most significant obstacle to being able to produce a nuclear weapon. Although we were already concerned about a reconstituted nuclear weapons program, our concerns were increased last September when Saddam publicly exhorted his "Nuclear Mujahidin" to "defeat the enemy."

That, BTW, is in paragraph 7 of the Iraq section; in later years, the nuclear paragraph gains more prominence, IIRC.

Most Americans don't care when Joe Wilson was in the green room, or whether he was there when Vallely was. But they do know outing an American intelligence officer to get back at her husband is wrong.

Ahh! The outing was accidental, and an attempt to put her husband's conflict of interest in perspective!

(Doesn't everyone know that? Google on "Miserable failure" and get this blog).

...the most annoying pretention?" Pretty darn funny. My favorite (so far) would be "parsing other people's prose to a hair" but that would probably get me banned from JustOneMinute.

Banned? There wouldn't be a blog left to ban anyone from.

arrowhead

"The President's approval rating is down to 36% in today's Newsweek poll, and 35%-39% in other recent polls."

Rasmussen has the President's approval number at 46%. I'll take his poll numbers over Newsweek or the "other recent polls" you cite any time.

The situation between the Reagan second term and that of President Bush is not the same. The left seems to be obsessed with this notion of the need for an apology. Apologize for what? Responding to 9/11 forcefully and effectively? Taking out a brutal dictator who posed a threat to the Middle East and by extension the west? Keeping Americans safe and employing all the resources of the government to obstruct and defeat terrorists and their activities world wide?

Why would he want to change anyone on his staff? With the exception of Andy Card who has been there too long, they have served him and us well. I know that the left cannot abide the "evil genius" Karl Rove, but that's their problem, not the President's.

As someone said in an earlier post, what the left fears the most about the Iraq theater in this war on terror is that we are succeeding and that the security of that country will soon be turned completely over to the Iraqi government and its military. Apologize? Not a chance.

moneyrunner

TT, if whining works for you, work with it. It does get a lot of people their way.

You really should see the movie, the resemblance is amazing.

JM Hanes


TM - UPDATE? Correcting History:

Don't know if the NYTimes Article included this correction yet when you looked at it:

"An earlier version of this article today about President Bush's speech on the war in Iraq misstated the subject of a comment he made to Matt Lauer of NBC in August 2004, "I don't think you can win it.'' He referred to the war on terror, not the war in Iraq."

Had to laugh -- after all those blistering editorials asserting that the war in Iraq and the WOT are Not. The. Same. Thing. there's a certain irony in this particular mistake.

j.west

Jukebox, I stepped out for few hours and return to find I’m being ripped to shreds.

Point one concerning the mystery of increased spin rate to overcome variances in mass due to eccentricity – you may be right. This bit of physics is only known to our weapons scientists and high school quarterbacks that throw passes.

Point two concerning accuracy – you may be right again. The Iraqis could have thought that a difference of a few yards could make the difference in a weapons system design to place multiple rockets over an area the size of a football field.

Point three concerning Iraqi engineers “being ridden hard” to increase accuracy – I guess, if you stretch really hard, you could believe that Saddam was so concerned about a few yards difference in accuracy that he would order internal production of a commonly available (and allowed) product using material explicitly banned under the UN sanctions.

Point four concerning spinning the tubes - As I said in my initial post, the tubes were ordered with the difficult machining accomplished. If the tubes were test spun without the subsequent O.D. (read easy) machining to bring the cylindricity to specifications, I would be amazed if the tubes could take 90,000 RPM.

Point five concerning price – If you know of any place I can buy these tubes for $10 each, let me know – I’ll take all you can find. Use your fantastic internet search skill to visit any supplier and you will find the raw material cost higher than that. Then to machine these little puppies to an ID with tolerances of +.1mm/-0 over a length of about a yard while maintaining roundness and concentricity would bring the cost to at least 5 times the raw material cost (and I’m being very conservative).

Point six concerning the tolerances being “common” and used “even for aluminum cans”. – The only way you can get information this crazy is to read the NYTimes.

Point seven concerning other material better suited for MRLS rockets. If you want to examine the same rockets manufactured by at least 5 other countries, you will find the U.S. is only one using the 7075T6. We like shit expense.

Point eight concerning use of the tubes for motors as opposed to warhead casings, think about this for a moment. They are one and the same. Why would you go to the trouble of machining something to those tolerances for a motor and then connect a warhead in a separate operation to throw the mass off center. Why not just duct tape a rock on the end?

Point nine concerning Iraqi engineers “over engineering” due to inexperience. – You might have this one right again. Poor engineers do have a tendency to over compensate for their lack of understanding. However, engineers who suggest building products clandestinely to replace items easily and cheaply available legally are usually taken out back and shot.

Juke, you have a tendency to give Saddam more than the benefit of a doubt concerning a great many items. In the post 9/11 world, I’ll stick with a president that uses common sense and eye towards the worst case scenario.

moneyrunner

TM, my reference to the bad guy in Dirty Harry was a reference to the character’s persona. I described him as a rapist/killer because that is why he was being pursued. I did not mean to imply that TT was a criminal, but if you saw the movie you would immediately remember the passive/aggressive defenses he used against the character named Harry Callahan.

This behavior is, unfortunately typical of a lot of the Left. They call the President a war criminal, a Nazi and a mass murdered who invaded Iraq to enrich Halliburton and the oil companies.

But let someone on my side point out the horrors that have been perpetrated by the Left throughout the world we are suddenly accused of being mean to the girls. We are told to tone it down. Well, I for one have had it up to here with the tone of the Left; and I don’t just mean the Kos Kids. I’m talking about Kennedy, Dean, Rangel, Reid, Pelosi and the entire panoply of Democrat headliners who should show a modicum of restraint, but don’t.

There is nothing that I have said today that is more over-the-top than these worthies. Mark Steyn has it right when he says that the Republicans may be arrogant, but the Democrats are insane.


j.west

Juke, In referring to my “A little bit of chaos” post you used the following sentence:

“Saddam already had 550 tons of yellowcake, which was useless to him because the lacked the means to enrich it.”

I guess he just wrote this yellowcake off to concentrate on that pesky accuracy problem with his MRLS.

“Forget about a nuclear bomb! If we can just get a few more feet of accuracy with our artillery, we can defeat the Infidels.”

If liberals ever get control back, I’m moving to a bunker.

Paul

" Of course freedom is not free, but that has nothing to do with the decision to go to war in Iraq."

Stated like a priest handing down the word of God.

Obviously everyone who disagrees with your position first and foremost disagrees with this lofty opinion presented as incontrovertible fact.

Over and over the administration has made the case that spreading freedom in the ME is the antidote to the violence and nihilism that festers there and is exported to the rest of the world.

Obviously you don't accept that premise, which is to be expected since the left derives it's ideological heritage from the 19th century collectivist philosophers who roundly rejected the Lockean notion of the preeminence of individual rights and their concomitant, a free market.

In short, the left truly is anti-American in that it's traditions are based on a school of thought that rejects the principals the nation was founded on. Period.

I don't consider it fruitful to argue with or to try to persuade you and your ilk. I seek merely to mobilize to defeat you and your failed leftism, which is responsible for the greatest, bloodiest acts of democide in history.

You prevailed in the Viet Nam war, with the bloodbaths, reeducation camps, boat people and two generations of the misery and poverty of communism. (You can look at South Korea to get an idea of how South Vietnam might look today if the Democrats didn't break our agreement to the government of SVN, allowing the communists to overrun the country.)

To allow you to prevail now will merely repeat paying the catastrophic cost of the historically proven wages of appeasement, and I suggest were that to happen the wrath of the vast majority of Americans will come to bear on the leftists who sold America down the river.

Walter

Jim, you seem to think that everyone who is not 100% happy with the Administration is a leftist. A good many Republicans also have doubts about the direction of the country. Republicans in Congress have opposed the White House on issues such as budget cuts, the exemption for the CIA on interrogation policy, the previous judicial appointment. It is understandable that the most partisan Republicans will circle the wagons, deny that there are problems within the Administration, and blame the Democrats for everything. But the public has stopped buying it. Maybe some on the left want to disrupt the Administration, but the vast majority of Americans want to have 3 years of good government and strong leadership. We are not getting either.

boris

the vast majority of Americans want to have 3 years of good government and strong leadership. We are not getting either.

Yes we are. Much better than the alternative. Much much better.

coyote

"i feel like a pair of brown shoes in a room full of tuxedos."

"first we kill all of the lawyers."

i wonder how many people we'd have here still blogging if the second quote were taken to heart?
my point of view is shaped in part by the fact that
i lived in a middle eastern country for the past three years. i know, up close and personal, some iraqis, including an ex ba'ath party member as well as people from libya, quatar, iran, saudi arabia, the sudan and palestine.
maybe it doesn't surprise me, but i do find it remarkable that none of these people even attempted to belittle me the way the bloggers here go at each other. the self- righteousness, arrogance and blind certitude exhibited here is pretty much breath-taking. as a result of my experience, however anecdotal, i'm especially turned off by the ones that have taken it upon themselves to speak for the iraqis. one of the few things that we americans can say about iraq with any authority is that sadam and his regime were monsters.
judging by the way we got into this war and what has happened since the fall of bagdad, more than two and a half years ago, it seems pretty obvious that we were not prepared for what would happen after that seemingly momentous event. we were not prepared, even though we had been warned pretty much what would happen. we did not have enough boots on the ground (shenseki warned us). even bush's good friend, the saudi foreign minister, warned us.
in hindsight, one of the most ironic moments was when colin powell told bush "if you invade iraq you will own it, and the problems that you will face will suck all of the oxygen out of the rest of what you hope to accomplish."
yes, hindsight is 20/20. but only if you're willing to look and be honest about what you see. can that be said to democrats and republicans alike? no doubt about it.
i'm not a democrat or a republican but one thing you may be sure of: i will vote. my own strategy is and has been for some time: if i don't like what i see i'm going to vote for the other side next time. the incumbent party doesn't like to lose. the only real power that americans have is to punish the incumbents by ousting them.

bush went to war in haste. we didn't have enough troops to secure the peace. he was warned and he chose to ignore that warning. our troops were not well enough equipped. too many of them have paid the ultimate price for going in on the cheap.
what are we going to do now? there is no good answer.
cut and run? not a good answer.
stay there as we are? not a good answer. send in more troops? we're running out of available soldiers and recruiting is down. bush's only strategy seems to be to tough it out. how many years? how many troops? how many more americans dead? will the end result honor their sacrifice? it seems very uncertain at this point, partly because our reasons for going in kept changing.

bush and his administration made a huge and hasty gamble. it is remotely possible that some good may come out of it. for the sake of our soldiers i hope it does.

Walter

There is no alternative for the next 3 years and some of the alternatives available at that time so far do not interest me at all. But is it wrong to expect the Administration to get their act together now? Is there a plan for Iraq that we haven't heard about? Is there a plan to reduce the deficit and stop the decline of the dollar? Is there a plan to control our borders?

Rick Ballard

Oh, goody. Phony seminar posters.

kim

Bush is collecting the pot in Iraq, and coyote hasn't even looked at his cards. The plan for Iraq, Walter, is in the Iraqis hands, the dollar adjusts itself, and the US will be a desirable place to emigrate for as long as we have a national debt.
===============================================

Syl

coyote

Your bona fides don't mean much to me, whatever they truly are, for you are only demonstrating what you believe, not know, to be the situation in Iraq.

Do you have any understanding of democracy? The individual has a say in a government of their own choosing in a country that is theirs.

For democracy to have any meaning, it must be wanted, it must be legitimately gained, and it must be believed in.

Pouring more troops into Iraq would only have given the Iraqi people the feeling of more oppression. An american on every corner? Who wants that! Get them out of here!

Instead the Iraqi people slowely awakened to the fact that Iraq is theirs, and if they want thier democracy they have to work for it..themselves.

If they want the slaughter to stop, they have to to turn against the insurgents and the foreigners.

Without an American on every corner, they must take action themselves. There's one over there! That house has bomb making stuff in it!

And they have. For themselves.

You think only in terms of Bush, and totally ignore the Iraqi people themselves. We have a great symbiosis here of American ingenuity and resolve joining with the desire of people to own their own country.

And. Damn it. It's working.

So go piss on someone else.


Paul

"Bush is collecting the pot in Iraq, and coyote hasn't even looked at his cards. The plan for Iraq, Walter, is in the Iraqis hands"

What the quagmirists all fail to grasp is the sea change in Iraq over the past months. The ISF is growing and maturing, and taking over the responsibilities of security, which has been the plan along as those of us paying attention know.

There was no quick painless way to do this. There was no quick way to tranfer security duties from the US military to the Iraqis. It also was inevitable that it would take time to disabuse the Iraqi people of the notion that America was their enemy and Al Qaida their friend, but that message is sinking in.

Anyone who studies warfare in history sees chaos, plans gone awry, improvisational responses to unforseen events on the ground, and almost without exception a vastly greater body count than what we see in Iraq.

boris

My brother, who saw combat in Nam with the USMC, recently returned from his 2nd tour in Iraq with the Army Corps of Engineers interfacing between military and contractors.

I believe him over the MSM and coyote on military effectiveness and planning. It's working, it's gonna work out and when it does the whiners and crybabies are gonna look stuck on stoopid.

I predict the cynical flip flopping opportunists are all gonna claim they were true blue all along and only wanted to go harder and faster.

Pete

On the issue of Iraq, Bush got all he wanted (in the run up to the war). Now that things are not going the way he thought that they would - Bush is looking to pass the buck.

Bush is right on one count - that history is being rewritten. What he omits to tell is that it is his administration that has been rewriting the history.

It should be clear to anyone that the Bush administration knew every little detail that supported their case for the war. And the Bush administration claims to know nothing about the things that did not support their case for war. Wilson's report got a wide distribution but they did not know about it. Nor do they seem to know the other reports from Niger (the ambassador, and the US general). Hadley acted as the firewall for Bush when the CIA was telling them that the Niger information was unreliable (and instead of firing Hadley Bush promotes him, saying "wink wink it is ok as long as it gives me deniability"). Despite the CIA's opposition to the original language in Bush's state of the Union speech, the Bush administration insisted on putting something in there about the nukes.

It was Bush's solemn duty to honestly evaluate the situation then, and to give the public an honest viewpoint then. Instead the administration was hyping the case for war quoting mushroom clouds in speech after speech.

Bush should admit his mistakes and move on. If he continues to do what he is doing it is not going to do anything to improve his numbers either on the Iraq issue or on the honesty issue.

Syl

Pete

Bush should admit his mistakes and move on

I think the Democrats should admit theirs and go back to healthcare.

Crew v1.0

Please count this registered Democrat for Bush -- in 2004, on Iraq (then as now), and on the war against radical Islam. Put me, please, in the column that says: I'm not so sure I like W.'s position on tort reform, but I'm 100% sure that W. did not lie to me about Iraq, WMD, or anything else in the run-up. Bush did not trick me. Bush did not hypnotize me. Bush did not sell me aluminum siding, a vacuum I did not need, or Girl Scout Cookies I can do without. He didn't flummox, bambooze, or con me. He didn't manipulate me. And if John Kerry or any of the other Democrats (or Republicans, if any feel that way) that voted yes on the resolution feel they were snookered, hoodwinked, or taken advantage of, then every single one of them should admit it and then RESIGN RIGHT NOW; go back home; watch everything go down on C-Span; put their assets in trust and hire a guardian, so they aren't snookered by penny stock salesmen; and just flat shut up.

boris

Wilson's report got a wide distribution

Wilson didn't write one. The CIA discounted his verbal report because it added nothing.

W told the the country the reasons for invading Iraq. He was supported on that basis in HIS decision. It wasn't up for a referendum and retrospectively spinning it as one is just dumb and dishonest.

Syl

Pete

Your posting is so full of outrageous errors. At least show the courtesty of reading the many blog postings on these issues before opening your mouth and putting your foot in it.

The dishonesty is all yours.

owl

Don't have time to read 400 posts now but absolutely want to put in my 2 cents on the subject. ABOUT TIME W.

Of course he didn't have to make the case to me as I was already convinced. You just can't beat those smooth tongued devils of 1998 when it comes to Iraq's WMDs and even a connection to AQ. When that group of slick willies explained it to me, passed a resolution of regime change and then bombed a factory.....well say no more. After 9/11 it was a done deal if W had never said a word.

I call their free speech now, something else, and certainly worthy of criticism. I think he should set up ads where they just debate themselves on the issue.

Rick Ballard

Boris,

I believe that we will hear "Finally, they're starting to listen to us." as the planned drawdown begins in the spring. All the arm waving going on today is just setting the table for the announcement of the start of the drawdown.

Of course, we'll be drawing down because "the Iraqis don't want us there - why, look at these polls". The SoS party leaders and its adherents should have little stickers on them so people don't try to walk through them.

Truzenzuzex

j.west:

First, let me give you a kudos for your first-rate, fact-filled comments.

“Saddam already had 550 tons of yellowcake, which was useless to him because the lacked the means to enrich it.”

I guess he just wrote this yellowcake off to concentrate on that pesky accuracy problem with his MRLS.

Let's see if I have this right. The ISG final report says, in summary:
Saddam wanted to recreate Iraq’s WMD capability—which was essentially destroyed in 1991—after sanctions were removed and Iraq’s economy stabilized, but probably with a different mix of capabilities to that which previously existed. Saddam aspired to develop a nuclear capability—in an incremental fashion, irrespective of international pressure and the resulting economic risks—but he intended to focus on ballistic missile and tactical chemical warfare (CW) capabilities.
Yet we are to believe that he ordered tubes which would help him enrich his 550 tons of yellowcake and achieve this objective at his leisure - but he intended to them for MLRS rockets instead, all the while raising the suspicions of the U.S.

What a great idea! You have this "covert" plan to reconstitute WMD's, but in the middle of a debate about your intentions, you order "dual use" material at great expense to enhance an arms system which was unnecessary, according to the ISG:

Reporting indicated that the 81-mm rocket program should have been canceled because other rockets in Iraq’s arsenal were capable of fulfilling its role and posed fewer problems.According to this reporting, the nominal 9.5-kilometer range of the 81-mm rocket could be covered by the 107-mm and 122-mm systems with ranges of 1-8 kilometers and 5-20 kilometers, respectively. According to reporting, many military officers were opposed to the 81-mm rocket system, but they allegedly were overruled by more senior leadership. According to reporting, the 81-mm rocket suffered about twice as much scatter as the 122-mm rockets Iraq produced.
But surely, this "senior leadership" could never have been part of a plot to obtain materials for "recreat[ing] Iraq's WMD program". Nah, too inconvinent - makes Bush look good, and we can't have that.

So some in here would have us believe that Saddam wanted to buy forbidden material to improve a conventional weapons program he didn't need. Why? It's a puzzle - but only to the libs.

Syl

Crew

Well said.

If these Democrats feel they were misled, lied to, snookered, or whatever else they claim--without evidence, none!--by Bush, then they are simply too weak-minded to hold the offices of trust their constituents handed to them.

And if they are simply using 'Bush Lied' as cover to court the $$ from the anti-war base, then they are being unpatriotic as well as stupid.

Either way, they don't deserve to be in office.

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Wilson/Plame