Politically charged...

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by _bnkr612, Mar 10, 2006.

  1. _bnkr612 macrumors 6502a

    _bnkr612

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    #1
    I think "President" Bush has abused the term "war on terror".

    What is his approval rating, 34%? Where in that percentage does it say he has the right to speak?

    Someone needs to pull the superficial cross off his lapel and give him realization that he has become the worst "elected" President in our history and future! England said it best with the saving of the Queen.

    America, we need to chant, "God save the United States."

    Eh, Bush and his cronies make me throw up in my mouth.
     
  2. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #2
    I remember when they switched to calling it, "the global struggle against extremism." - Guess it never caught on.
     
  3. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #3
    isn't the most recent marketing attempt "the Long War"?
     
  4. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #4
    While sagging poll numbers certainly don't take away Bush's right to speak, I would agree that the vapid 'War on Terra' is an overused term used to justify the president as unitary executive -- aka 'King'.
     
  5. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #5
    I think it sounded too self-referential.
     
  6. toontra macrumors 6502

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    #6
    Bad move - why rebrand a product that you have spent billions on marketing and that has been succesfully swallowed by millions of Americans.
     
  7. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #7
    Because it isn't working anymore. People are sick of the term being used to justify anything and everything. Americans are fickle and have short attention spans.
     
  8. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #8
    This is really the thing that pisses me off:

    The above quote is good advice, so good in fact, that it is supremely obvious. Kinda like "In order to walk through this door, we must first turn the handle and open it".

    With reference to GWB though, this presents a couple of problems - first, you actually have to formulate a paln of action to do so - otherwise it becomes a throwaway phrase, instead of an obvious, yet sensible part of a solution.

    This leads into the second, much more important problem - one of perception and credibility.

    Because no matter how good an idea is - a policy or strategy or whatever, if you destroy the credibility of it by not doing anymore than repeatedly mentioning it, it is ruined - and is no good to anyone - even someone who might later makes something of the idea - and that is a travesty.

    Relatedly, if you have no credibility as a messenger, you also effectively accomplish the same thing - the doom of an otherwise viable concept at worst, and an unneccessarily protracted and tangental fight for acceptance at best.

    This is really why I don't like Bush as our President right now, because he has destroyed almost all his credibility and that of some decent and well-worn concepts - all of which severely limit his ability to govern effectively or honestly or both.

    I'll be honest, I never liked Bush's Domestic Policies - I am practically and ideologically opposed to almost every one. I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on Foreign Policy, however - I agreed with the intervention in Afghanistan, and although I vehemently disagreed with the decision in Iraq - I felt that once commited it had a possibility to be an improvement over what preceded it, possibly even more - an opinion that some on this board surely don't share.

    But that didn't happen, and many cherished concepts and phrases and ideas, that are bigger than any President, that the world identifies as US values and concepts, were dragged through the mud till they were either made empty or perverted beyond recognition.

    And this process, which has a kind of ironic brilliance in the fact that it makes things so confusing and conflicting, has divided us all - in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in the US - everywhere in the world that knows of the US - it has made us all question what we once held as true, it has pitted us against ourselves internally and with others everywhere - because with these ideas gone, empty or perverted, we collectively don't know which way is up anymore - we are in chaos. And in chaos, whether in the streets of Iraq, or the space of our minds - we search for security, however imperfect, with whoever looks like they will give it, give us certainty - artificial divisions form and harden.

    Look, some may dismiss this as a partisan rant, but that is not it. What it is a description of the essence of non-leadership.
     
  9. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #9
    Didn't he have trouble doing even that a little while ago?
     
  10. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #10
    This president represents corporations,little else. America is more then corporations but this president doesnt get it. He will go down as the most hated two term president in history.Oil,Pharmacy,Iraq,Katrina,Mexico border,Arab Ports,list doesnt end. He gets 1 star for the ability to chant out short phrases.... dividing this nation and surrounding himself with draftdodging scum who infest the republican party.
    The war on terror should be rephrased the war on extreme Islam. Thats what it is.
     
  11. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #11
    Actually I'd say it was a war on oil. There are some pretty extreme extremists out there that we call allies. Iraq was a pretty usual place to invade over "terrorism". But I agree with blackfox, if Iraq was actually justifiable and had gone better, I'd be praising Bush instead of criticizing him. Considering Bush's approval ratings drop from 90 something % to 34%, I'd say most of us feel this way.

    But yeah, we're all dirty liberal hippies because we hate Bush, so whatever. Couldn't possibly be because of what he does. Or in this case, what he doesn't do.
     
  12. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #12
    "Because no matter how good an idea is - a policy or strategy or whatever, if you destroy the credibility of it by not doing anymore than repeatedly mentioning it, it is ruined - and is no good to anyone - even someone who might later makes something of the idea - and that is a travesty."

    Seems to me that applies to danged near all our so-called "security". Airports, borders, infrastructure...

    To a great extent, what the Bushies have proposed about foreign affairs has made sense--as proposals. What seems to be the case is that they don't really know how to go about doing what they want to do.

    Iraq, e.g.: They were told more men were needed. Seal borders against these hostiles who have poured in. Sit on hot-spot areas like the Triangle, until an Iraqi system could be put in place. Nope, they went in, anyway. the guys on the ground are doing as well as could be, but there weren't/aren't enough of them.

    And it's not just the Bushies. Both parties have cooperated fully in such as the Patriot Act. Both parties have cooperated fully in creating this case of bureaucratic elephantiasis known as the Department of Homeland Security or whatever this mess is called.

    TPTB are so busy buying votes that we have the catering to such as Tyson foods so they can hire illegals without penalty, and little is said because they want the Latin vote. They want the Old Farts' vote so they come up with freebie pills and potions--for the group with the most buying power, if all those RVs are any indicator.

    Hey, pick your party and puke!

    'Rat
     
  13. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #13
    Yeah, might as well just shut up, roll over, and let it happen, huh? No point in even arguing politics if there's nothing we can do about it...
     
  14. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #14
    This whole thing is a waste of time if you dont address the root of the problem? The problem is extreme Islam that teaches kids to hate the infidel. I have yet to hear 1 word , not 1 word from our President on what you do about this. As long as kids are taught hate there will allways be terrorists in this part of the world. Islam isnt what you would call a tolerant religion yet no one from this administration wants to touch this so we just keep hearing about the war on terror while kids are growing up in the mideast brainwashed with their reigion ready to become the next bomber or terrorist.
     
  15. SPG macrumors 65816

    SPG

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    #15
    There is a problem with radical Islam, as there is a problem with any radical religion or belief.
    How do you feel about the people shooting at our troops in Iraq?
    How do you feel about the people who blow up cafes in Israel?
    How do you feel about the people who flew planes into the World Trade Center?
    I'm sure you feel quite a bit of hatred for these people for their actions. I do too.
    What you need to realize however is that these are not some crazed zombies, but real people with real (though misguided) reasons for doing this. For example before we invaded Iraq, on a personal level why would any american get on a plane and fly all the way to Iraq to kill people? There was no reason. But do you see a reason for an Iraqi to shoot at american soldiers after his baby daughter is blown up as collateral damage? Do you see a reason why a Palestinian that is locked into a life of squalor and degradation at the hands of the Israeli government would become so hopeless as to think that becoming a suicide bomber is a real avenue to change? The 9/11 hijackers are harder to get a handle on, but I could see how they could be convinced that the US is the "great satan" out to destroy them based on everything else that has happened in the mideast over the last century.
    I can't condone any of these actions but you need to realize that they aren't actions in a vacuum. These are all reactions to situations that can't be condoned either.
    Some would say that our foreign policy is more radical than anything the terrorists could have done. Over 100,000 dead in Iraq, propping up totalitarian governments, threatening other countries, none of it plays well to the conservative religious leaders in the mideast. Is it a surprise then that some of these people would become radicalized?
    We have radicals here too. Remember Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma federal building? Ever listen to Pat robertson and the televangelists? The crazy s### they say is just as wacky as a lot of the crazy s### the radical mullahs spew. The difference is that most people here don't have the personal reasons and the targets to become terrorists.
    I fully agree with you that radical Islamic leaders are contributing to the problem, but I completely disagree with you that Islam itself is the problem. Islam is a religion of peace, as the vast majority of the billions of Muslims will readily tell you. Christianity is a religion of peace and tolerance, but the fundamentalists and evangelicals believe that it is their duty to spread Christianity and convert every person on the globe. How do you think that will jibe with the Muslims? Do you really think that an evangleical president who used religion to get elected can go out and tell the world that Islam is the problem? Do you recall a few years ago when bush f'ed up and used the word crusade? The mideast didn't like that too much, to put it mildly.
    We shouldn't be looking at starting a religious war here, but should be looking for ways to ease the tensions of the world and make people's daily lives a little more hopeful so that the lure of radical Islam and negative reaction to the west will be less attractive. That is a lot harder than dropping bombs on everyone, but in the long term will be the only solution.
     
  16. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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  17. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #17
    On a side note they want to kill a guy in Afghanistan, turns out he converted to Christianity and that calls for his death according to Islam. Tolerance:rolleyes:
     
  18. XNine macrumors 68040

    XNine

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    #18
    The one thing all of us can agree on is that this is a ****ing disaster as far as wars go. Even Vietnam saw more success, or so I read in history books.

    SPG brought up some very good points.
    I agree that the only thing we've successfully done thus far, has been our consistant unsuccessfulness (isthataword?). So a few thousand Iraqi's (Jihad or not) and American soldiers and citizens are dead now... "So what? We're doing this for FREEDOM." The people were more free under Saddam's rule than they are without. Now they have to worry about road-side bombs from their own people killing their children. Missiles and bombs from American machines killing innocent babies. And for what?

    Now those who didn't hate us do. Those who hated us hate us even more.

    The way I see it, we have three options:

    1. Nuke em. (not practical or justified, but it's there)
    2. Grin and bare it. The president went after Iraq because of terrorism and WMD's (which, if you watch Arrested Development, turned out to be Tobias' balls.) We've taken away any sense of government and control those people had, and now they're not only killing American troops but each other.
    3. Get the hell out of there! Just pick up and leave. Say "Um, sorry, wrong house" and get the **** out and pray to God everything works itself out right. (which it won't)

    Any way you cut it, we're in this deep and for a long time. Even if a Democratic, or, for once, an Independant president were to take over, we'll still be in it deep. The next President is gonna be like "WTF did I run for? Was I stupid?!"
     
  19. tristan macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    There are some other solutions - one is to split the country up until three zones, one for the Kurds, one for the Sunnis, and one for the Shiites. It's easier than trying to make everyone get along.
     
  20. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #20
    That could indeed be the only solution, destabilizing as it may be. I have a feeling this genie won't go back into his bottle.
     
  21. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #21
    The worst of it is, this entire post-9/11 thing could have been handled in such a way that America's (pace you nit-picking geographers) standing and influence would have been enhanced, the entire middle east could have been transformed, and dictators everywhere might be mending their ways. Instead, these guys borrowed someone else's ideas and agenda, failed miserably in their crude diplomacy, created a military disaster and a political desert, alienated and antagonized practically the entire world except Puerto Rico and Berlusconi, and showed any potential enemy how a few motivated fighters could pin down 150,000 heavily-armed US troops and probably force an ignominious climbdown in the long run. If Afghanistan had been sorted out properly, if Bin Laden had been captured or killed, and if the US had pulled back again, this mess need not have happened. But that obviously wasn't the Bush/Blair agenda. They had to try for a strategic knock-out, using the combined mental resources, geopolitical savvy and tactical expertise of a packet of breakfast cereal. Boys trying to do a man's job. We're all going to be paying for their prideful idiocy for many generations.
     
  22. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #22
    It might be the default solution, better known as, letting the chips fall where they may.
     
  23. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #23
    from a greedy "let's protect america" aspect, this sounds like the best bet. the factions will be so busy fighting each other, not to mention drawing the attention of iran, syria and turkey (and saudi arabia, and israel, and...), that insurgents and potential terrorists will look inward rather than outward.

    possibly.

    and all imo.
     
  24. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #24
    ...then again, such destabilization in the region would probably choke our oil supply...
     
  25. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #25
    There are a number of options on the table, but one must remember this is a multi-stage process. Our best options lie in the first stage - that of military objectives. The subsequent civil and political stages are much less clear as to the number of options and their success.

    I am hopeful with regards to military objectives, because the US does have one of the best militaries in the world, judged by the calibre of it's mid-level officers and general discipline, not to mention technological knowhow.

    We have been ham-strung in Iraq, not because of an inherent deficiency in our military prowess, but because of International Politics, Domestic Politics and Bureaucratic infighting among the branches of the Armed Forces who still cling to an outdated Cold War heirarchy which along with mass columns of Infrantry, are no longer relevant to the fighting of modern wars such as Iraq.

    I read the President's speech from Cleveland, and I was somewhat bouyed by the description of Tel Afar, in terms of military strategy. The Us forces, integrated with local units planned and took the city, then held it - to rebuild the services, interact with the locals, improve relations with the populace, gain valuble intel through such interaction and promote local leadership structure. This slow, deliberate policy, with a relatively small US footprint, coupled with Iraqi units who are given most of the credit is military strategy par excellence - and one that could work - one area at a time.

    It is just so lamentable that it took so long for planners to come around, but if this is indicative of future strategy, we might very well come close enough to neutralizing the insurrgency that the real work of building the economy, social and education services, and the civil/political structure can begin.

    This is where the options become less clear - as Iraq is not a prime candidate for any Democratic success - comparisons to WWII Germany or Japan are way off base, as are even comparisons to former Yugoslavia. A more apt comparison is to many West African countries, which have truly comparable levels of societal advancements/make-up as relates to conditions for Democracy. Which is to say, not bloody likely.

    So any policy based on Democracy or Elections, unless a PR veneer, is doomed to chaos and failure. Most likely any successful policy must play to Iraqs strengths, which might incorporate the following:

    1. The strength of tribal structure, which while not necessarily conducive to Central Governance, may have the wherewithall to resist Islamic radicalism.

    2. Economy/trading. Iraq has large oil reserves and a relatively sophisiticated trading class, especially with regards to operating incognito under the Hussein Regime. Iraq could prove economically dynamic, although not necessarily on a Western model - perhaps more akin to the Iranian/Jordanian "bazaari" model. This could prove to be the glue that holds any future Iraq together.

    3. Nationalism, if not necessarily as an "iraqi", at least held in opposition to Saudi Arabia and Iran - two neighbors not necessarily liked.

    4. Military. Properly trained (by the US), by US SF teaching Iraqi Elite units and then the training filtering down, with continued low-level US SF integration in Iraqi Units for the next decade (this footprint could be under 1,000).

    So, roughly speaking, a road to relative success in Iraq would be the development of a strong military force to keep order, initialy heavily supported by US forces, with a phaseout of these forces down to specifically-placed SF units. The re-establishment of order, along with Iraqi/US efforts at the restoration of the Service infrastructure, the creation of local jobs in Public Works programs, the providing of Medical and Dental services for the locals by US forces, which the credit is always given to the Iraqi forces, would have the effect of cementing a working, pragmatic relationship between the people and the military. Political structures could be experimented with, with the true power being held by the Iraqi military, although local power would be referred to the tribal/religious leaders. Investment is encouraged and initally started by the US.

    I don't know beyond that - but it seems like a start. Whether it is worth doing, is a subject of continued debate...
     

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