4 thoughts on “Bush Was Right

  1. My head did explode. Mostly because nowhere in that song did it mention an Iran getting close to nuclear weapons (hey, what would you do if some country started arbitrarily attacking other countries they say harbor terrorists?), a North Korea getting close to nuclear weapons, a guy named Osama bin Laden still on the run, a breeding ground of terrorism, an international community not willing to work with us, a proposal to sell ports to governments that complete financial transactions with terrorists, 2000 dead Americans, underfunded veterans’ health care, death squads in Iraq that are beginning to look like ethnic cleansing, a military strategy calling to occupy a country of 60 million people with 130,000 troops, a war that President Bush says the next president will have to figure out, the fact that three years later only 1 Iraqi batallion is capable of operating without Americans holding their hands, American troops purchasing their own body armor, a guy named Zarqawi, and a debt for the war that is requiring us to sell our currency to China.

    Are there some positives happening in the Middle East right now because of Bush? Absolutely. But that doesn’t negate the fact that the negatives outweigh the positives and that our objectives for this war, whatever they were, could have been accomplished in a manner that protected American lives and simultaneously strengthened American security and strategic interests, rather than weakening them.

    If Bush is right, then it sure is good to be wrong.

  2. Ah, the usual boilerplate:

    …an Iran getting close to nuclear weapons…

    Which is being handled in exactly the “multilateral” way that the left likes – and look how that’s working. Besides, where is the alternative solution for dealing with Iran from the left then? Iran’s nuclear program began long before Bush came to office.

    …a North Korea getting close to nuclear weapons…

    And I thought Madeline Albright’s 1994 Agreed Framework was supposed to prevent that – bloody lot of good that did. Again, North Korea has been developing nuclear technologies for years – and where is the magic solution to that problem that doesn’t involve the destruction of Seoul?

    …a guy named Osama bin Laden still on the run…

    Stuck in a cave, unable to use electronic communications except by courier, and unable to plan the daily operations of al-Qaeda from day to day. Which is a far cry from his life pre-2001.

    …a breeding ground of terrorism…

    Try a killing field for terrorists. Detonating an IED doesn’t take much skill. Not to mention that Iraq has become the world’s foremost laboratory for US counter-terrorism tactics – and it’s a pretty damn easy bet on which force can adapt quicker and has the better technology.

    …an international community not willing to work with us…

    Which again, is pure bullshit. First of all, nearly every recent election has been a victory for the more pro-American candidate: Rassmussen, Merkel, Koizumi, Blair, Howard. Secondly, the argument that the international community is not willing to work with us is ridiculous: you mean to tell me that joint resolution between the US and France on Syria never happened? That the US is somehow unable to broker deals with other countries. That argument doesn’t even remotely resemble reality.

    …a proposal to sell ports to governments that complete financial transactions with terrorists…

    Which is again, wrong. First of all, the deal was killed. Secondly, other than a facile slur against the UAE, there’s no evidence that DPW constituted a security risk in the slighest.

    …2000 dead Americans…

    Which beats having tens of thousands dead in another terrorist attack…

    …underfunded veterans’ health care…

    Since when is a 27% increase “underfunded” – more veterans have health care now than did under Clinton.

    But hey, don’t let such pesky things as facts get in the way of a good talking point, right?

    …death squads in Iraq that are beginning to look like ethnic cleansing…

    Except for the fact that as bad of the violence in Iraq is, it doesn’t even remotely compare to real ethnic cleansing. Darfur is ethnic cleansing – the situation in Iraq is far more limited.

    …a military strategy calling to occupy a country of 60 million people with 130,000 troops…

    Except the population of Iraq is 26 million. But hey, again, I hate to interject with facts.

    …a war that President Bush says the next president will have to figure out…

    Which is only partially true. We’ll probably have some troops in Iraq for a long time, but nowhere near the number we have now.

    By that standard, I guess Germany has been a quagmire for 60 years, since we still have troops there as well.

    …the fact that three years later only 1 Iraqi batallion is capable of operating without Americans holding their hands…

    Except that figure is over a year old. 53 Iraqi battalions are in the fight with US air and artillery support. 45 Iraqi battalions are at “level three” status, which means that they fight with US help – and that help is hardly “hand-holding.”

    To achieve that in three years is pretty damn stunning – contrary to a bunch of armchair generals, you can’t create a military out of nothing overnight.

    …American troops purchasing their own body armor…

    Except most troops don’t want extra body armor because of the added weight. Not to mention the fact that the Army has already sent out body armor to troops a long time ago.

    …a guy named Zarqawi…

    Who happened to be in Iraq before the war started – but wait, I thought that Iraq had nothing to do with al-Qaeda, right?

    …and a debt for the war that is requiring us to sell our currency to China…

    Which is all well and good except for the fact that it isn’t true

    “At the peak of its global power the United Kingdom was a net creditor, but as it entered the twentieth century, it started losing its economic dominance to Germany and the United States. In contrast, the United States is a large net debtor. But in its case, no plausible challenger to its economic leadership exists, and its share of the global economy will not decline. Focusing exclusively on the NIIP obscures the United States’ institutional, technological, and demographic advantages. Such advantages are further bolstered by the underlying complementarities between the U.S. economy and the economies of the developing world–especially those in Asia. The United States continues to reap major gains from what Charles de Gaulle called its “exorbitant privilege,” its unique role in providing global liquidity by running chronic external imbalances. The resulting inflow of productivity-enhancing capital has strengthened its underlying economic position. Only one development could upset this optimistic prognosis: an end to the technological dynamism, openness to trade, and flexibility that have powered the U.S. economy. The biggest threat to U.S. hegemony, accordingly, stems not from the sentiments of foreign investors, but from protectionism and isolationism at home.”

    Here’s a suggestion: rather than regurgitating the same old, tired talking points as everyone else, try spending some time in the library and actually trying to understand the world rather than view it through your narrow ideological lens.

  3. 1.) Iran probably wouldn’t feel a huge need to arm itself with nukes if there weren’t someone threatening them…next door. Better to not create the problem than solve it once you’ve created it. Regardless of when it started, Bush has reinforced the perception of Iranians that they need the weapons.

    2.) Remember when Bush talked about how awesome he was doing with North Korea in the 2004 Election? Bush is really working wonders there.

    In both instances, Bush has made us less stable: Both Iran and North Korea know that the United States would be hard-pressed to complete another military intervention, so they can do whatever they want. We can talk about military intervention being on the table, but everyone in the world knows Bush would not be able to pull that off.

    3.) Osama bin Laden masterminded an attack that killed thousands of Americans. Not only is he still on the run, Bush foreign policy has dictated that finding him is not our top priority. You can’t spin that.

    4.) It’s great that Andrea Merkel was elected, but she is against the war. And Rassmussen is great as well, but the 230 Danish troops in Iraq really leave something to be desired. Similarly, Howard is pretty cool, but the 460 Australian troops in Iraq don’t go very far. Time to get Poland back on the phone, I guess.

    5.) Bush was pro-Dubai Ports deal. He threatened to veto legislation striking the deal. You simply cannot say that I am wrong in pointing that out. And the deal was not killed, DP pulled out. Bush got spanked on this one and everyone except you seems to realize this.

    6.) 2,000 American troops does beat having thousands of civilians die in a terrorist attack. Too bad senior Administration officials and military commanders think the war is creating terrorism. Call me crazy, but I would say more people wanting to attack American civilians makes it more likely American civilians will be attacked. I’d call that the definition of “less safe.”

    7.) Funding for veterans’ health care is getting better. Of course, it took a $2 billion shortfall for the Administration to take any action. Incidentally, every single Democrat in the Senate voted for the Murray Amendment to provide an extra $1.9 billion a couple months before the shortfall became a crisis. They were joined by one Republican, and the Republicans killed that bill, making the crisis in funding imminent.

    8.) Congratulations on being a better student of geography than me. But while we’re considering the facts, how about the fact that the Pentagon says we don’t have enough troops? Or here’s another one: First Gulf War: 500,000 troops. Now that we’re occupying Iraq, quashing a rebellion and establishing a democracy: 130,000 troops. That makes a lot of sense. But, don’t take my word for it, your conservative buddies agree. Oh, and the guy in charge of Iraq when we first took over. Should I stop interjecting with the facts now?

    9.) We can’t say how many troops will be in Iraq for how long because there is no strategy. We could have 130,000 troops there until 2009. Without a strategy, it’s impossible to tell when we have met our goals.

    10.) I apologize for using a figure that was a year old when talking about Iraqi military strength. It turns out that about a month ago CNN reported: “The only Iraqi battalion capable of fighting without U.S. support has been downgraded to a level requiring them to fight with American troops backing them up, the Pentagon said Friday.” Incidentally, the “level three” you trumpet means the battalions “must fight alongside U.S. troops.” I think we can both agree that this is “pretty damn stunning.” In fact, I’m ready for the Iraqis–any Iraqis–to start taking the lead whenever you are.

    11.) If the troops had all the armor and equipment they needed, then why did Congress pass a law saying the Pentagon had to reimburse troops for armor and equipment that troops bought on their own?

    12.) Was Zarqawi in Iraq before the War? Yup. Was he killing Americans? Nope. Seems to be a trend that lots of people in Iraq are following.

    13.) You may be fine with China having considerable influence over American fiscal policy. I am not. That the war is costing us money and that we have a large debt is not in question. It is also not in doubt that China is purchasing a lot of influence over the American dollar. You said it is a “fact that isn’t true,” and then you posted an article that admitted we have a deficit, but debated whether or not this is bad for America. Now, we can have a debate about whether American debt is good or bad, but we cannot debate the debt and we cannot debate the fact that the war is adding to our debt.

    Here’s a suggestion: Chill out. You don’t have to insult me if I disagree with you. We can compare hours spent in the library some time if that’s what floats your boat, but it seems pretty senseless to me. And you don’t have to call what I say “pure bullshit.” It seems to me that someone saying it is “Absolutely” correct that Bush policies have done some good in the Middle East doesn’t exactly have a “narrow ideological lens.” Rather, the narrow ideological lens seems to come into play when someone denies that anything in the Bush foreign policy has ever been a mistake or misguided. Good luck with that one, but I’d rather focus on moving forward, correcting past mistakes and making America more secure.

    I apologize in advance if my links were not typed in correctly or if they are not in the correct format for this site. If you’d like them in a different format, let me know.

  4. Also, I forgot: About 540 Sunnis were killed in about the last month. And by killed I mean kidnapped, blindfolded and murdered. Some hogtied and drilled with power tools. In most cases, Shia terrorists are expected of being the murderers. This is going on throughout Iraq. Does it approach the potentially hundreds of thousands of ethnic-related deaths in Darfur? Absolutely not. But to contend that it “doesn’t even remotely compare to real ethnic cleansing” simply because death tolls are not in the hundreds of thousands is to dismiss reality at best and is morally reprehensible at worst.
    I’m surprised you bring up Darfur, though, because I’m not sure even conservatives would argue Darfur has been a Bush foreign policy success (although I imagine you’ll show me differently in the near future).

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