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June 02, 2005

The WOT Gospel According To Brother Conason

So this is the enduring standard by which our foreign policy is to be judged, the Gospel According to Joe Conason:

"Most Americans no longer approve of administration policy."

Years from now in a more enlightened Age, the wise man shall teach his son of the astonishing folly of a leader who dared to ignored the vox populi, the focus group, the Gallup Poll, the petty tyranny of the here-and-now and instead tried to build a better world for future generations. Mr. Conason is not amused. He complains:

When things momentarily went well last winter during the Iraqi elections, we were urged to proclaim an imminent triumph—just as the right-wing pundits and politicians did so deliriously back then.

This is a declaration of "imminent triumph"? You have to love the Left's repetitious use of the word "imminent" to misquote the President. I mean, how many years has it been now? Get over it. (sourced from the President's SOTU speech, in which he said, AND I QUOTE, "Some have said we must not act until the threat is imminent. Since when have terrorists and tyrants announced their intentions, politely putting us on notice before they strike? If this threat is permitted to fully and suddenly emerge, all actions, all words and all recriminations would come too late." Translation: we cannot afford to wait until the threat is imminent - we must act now.)

The commitment to a free Iraq now goes forward. This historic election begins the process of drafting and ratifying a new constitution, which will be the basis of a fully democratic Iraqi government. Terrorists and insurgents will continue to wage their war against democracy, and we will support the Iraqi people in their fight against them. We will continue training Iraqi security forces so this rising democracy can eventually take responsibility for its own security.

There's more distance to travel on the road to democracy.

Sounds to me as though the President portrayed the elections as just the first step on a long process to peace. Where is Mr. Conason getting his information?

But Conason is just full of helpful information and inaccurate quotes, like the oft-cited "cakewalk" quote that turned out to be, not from a Bush administration official at all but from an article written for the WaPo by Ken Adelman, assistant to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld from 1975 to 1977, and arms control director under President Ronald Reagan.:

Many months ago, C.I.A. analysts indicated that bitter conflicts among Iraq’s competing ethnic and religious groups were driving the country toward civil war. At the time, Mr. Bush brushed aside such warnings as mere static from habitual critics. Yet now we can see that the car bombings, partisan assassinations and sectarian massacres are vindicating that grim assessment.

Would this, by any way, be the same CIA that couldn't decide whether or not Saddam had WMDs? Or whether the Soviet Union had nukes pointed at us decades ago? Both questions of some interest to our national security. Of course one might simply ask the Iraqis for their assessment of the current situation:

What I see happening now is a big change in the strategy of fighting terrorism in Iraq; instead of waiting for the terrorists to build strongholds and then respond to their attacks (like the way Fallujah, Sadr city and Najaf were dealt with) now terrorists are being chased in almost simultaneous operations nationwide and this will make it much harder for the terrorists to reorganize their lines and regroup in new bases.

It is quite true that Iraqi civilians, police and army have received very high casualties in the last month but looking at the other side; we'll find that terrorists have received heavier blows in this very month than anytime earlier this year.

We have said earlier that the winner in this war is the camp that has more resources and determination and so there's no doubt who's going to win at the end but the new thing is that at these rates of losses for the terrorists and if Iraqi and multinational troops keep the same current pressure on, then I guess what that officer said could be quiet close to the truth.

But lest you think I only quote good news or pro-American viewpoints, here's some less happy news. Yes, my friends, things have gotten very bad indeed in Iraq. The Iraqis are taking to the streets:

Not against terrorism and not against "occupation".

Around a hundred Iraqis went to the street in Baghdad yesterday in a demonstration that is considered the 1st of a kind against…..smoking!

I read about it this morning in the Iraqi paper Al-Mashriq:

Signs and banners saying things like "No to the culture of addiction" and "Smoking and poverty are circles of the same chain" and similar slogans against smoking.

Talking about higher taxes on tobacco makes me feel nervous.
Time for a cigarette break!

Ask an Iraqi what he thinks of the illegal American occupation of Iraq, and it's not pretty:

Time may be passing and we may forget the calamity in which we were living. And this is what happened to us, we Iraqis. After two years since our delivery from the regime of Saddam the criminal, who was slaughtering us, torturing us and driving us like a herd of cattle to the arenas of his loosing battles, with execution squads behind us; we have forgotten how we used to live in constant terror and how we were afraid to say any word that might lead us to dark torture chambers in the “Department of General Security” or the “Governorate”, or the “Fifth Branch”. And how we have forgotten those who delivered us from the hell in which we were living and from which we did not even dare dream of getting out. Nay, but more than that; we see today Muqtada Al-Sadr and his followers coming out in demonstrations to demand the exit of what they call “occupation”, and burning images of President Bush; when they were meek and humiliated during Saddam time, not daring to utter a single word. And when Muqtada himself received a sum of money from Mohammed Hamza Al Zubaidi during the funeral reception of his father who was murdered by Saddam and his followers; and there was Muqtada receiving money from the killers of his father !!!!

What prompted me to write about this subject today is watching the film that was shown on the “Iraqiya” on the anniversary of the fall of Saddam, that showed the cutting of tongues and heads, the breaking of arms and other fearful tortures in the prisons of Saddam the “Haddam” [the wrecker-translator]. These things would have continued to our present day had the Americans not intervened to depose this savage animal and his criminal Baathist regime.

I asked myself there and then: How can I thank the American liberators who have avenged us and avenged all the victims of Saddam’s regime? How can I avoid being ungrateful like Muqtada and his followers, who are enjoying now the freedom that America brought while at the same time shouting insults at this same America ? I could find nothing in my possession to thank these liberating soldiers except these words:

Thank you, soldiers of the United States of America and soldiers of her allies. Thank you our true friends. Thanks to all your sacrifices that delivered us from the darkness of Saddam to the light of freedom, elections and democracy.

We shall never ever, forget what you have given us, liberators “

Those words of hateful calumny will burn in the Bu$Hitler's forehead like a brand of shame for all eternity, I can tell you.

Conason points out that the American occupation has turned Iraq into a literal factory for terrorists, churning them out by the dozens:

The cities and villages beset by the insurgency have become training camps for militant Islamists, the future cadre of the next terrorist movement. As Joshua Micah Marshall noted, the Iraqi killing fields are creating new terrorists, just as the bloody civil war in Afghanistan encouraged the rise of Al Qaeda.

The war’s advocates once suggested that Iraq would serve as "flypaper" for those terrorists, gathering them all in one place where our superior firepower and tactics could decimate them. "America will be safer in the long run when Iraq, and Afghanistan as well, are no longer safe havens for terrorists or places where people can gather and plan and organize attacks against the United States," insists Mr. Cheney.

But according to The Washington Post, Bush administration counterterrorism officials now anticipate the "bleeding out" of "hundreds or thousands of Iraq-trained jihadists back to their home countries throughout the Middle East and Western Europe."

Initially I was confused by this argument. If Bush argued that Iraq would become "flypaper for terrorists" and Marshall is arguing that Iraq has become a magnet or breeding ground for terrorists, then wouldn't that make the Bushies...right??? Of course Bush also argued that they were being trained there before the war and there is evidence that this was the case... umm... Doh!

And then... wait! Let me think! If all the terrorists are concentrated in Iraq, and we're stepping up the offensive right now and killing them, then that would make Cheney.... right! Doh!

But if Cheney is wrong and the terrorists suddenly up and leave Iraq and disburse all over the world (umm...why are they going to do this again??? Oh well, nevermind.) then Iraq would be free of them and democracy would have been established, leaving Iraq a free nation. And that would make Bush .... right again. And the war would have been successful.

Maybe the American people might even approve of administration policy again and those elusive poll numbers might once more swing upwards.

I wonder what Mr. Conason will write about then?

Posted by Cassandra at June 2, 2005 07:08 AM

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Stop with cursed reasoning, you devil woman! You only seek to distract us from the horrors of the gulag at Guantanmo Bay!

Posted by: spd rdr at June 2, 2005 09:39 AM

Spoken like a card-carrying member of the meatriarchy. Those pinstripes can't conceal your true agenda - I demand that you renounce your unearned gender privileges immediately.

Posted by: Cassandra at June 2, 2005 10:18 AM


Posted by: spd rdr at June 2, 2005 10:43 AM


If we're talking oinkery, then I suppose even I must reluctantly concede that your credentials are both impeccable and indisputably well-earned.

On the otter heiny, you are most definitely a man, which leads me to believe that you must be at fault in some way. Res ipsa loquitur is the phrase that leaps to mind (the ordinary, and not the legal definition).

Posted by: Cassandra at June 2, 2005 11:24 AM

Listen, wench, I earn my manhood every day when I scrape my face with cold steel and then do battle against the evil gods of traffic! I don't sit at home my bunny slippers lobbing snark balls at the unsuspecting, go to work and do it!

Posted by: spd rdr at June 2, 2005 12:03 PM

Break! Grab your pillow and retreat to your respective corners.

Posted by: KJ at June 2, 2005 12:19 PM

I take it all back, Cass.
Please don't pick me.
I'm really busy.

Posted by: spd rdr at June 2, 2005 01:42 PM

I know that - don't worry. I wouldn't do that to you.

Posted by: Cassandra at June 2, 2005 01:52 PM


Posted by: spd rdr at June 2, 2005 03:32 PM

Ah. Now *that* was worth the price of admission!

Posted by: John of Argghhh! at June 3, 2005 04:55 PM

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