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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Oct 2, 2003.
Wouldn't surprise me - it was the thing that let him hold on to power for so long.
Boy did that backfire though!
Y'know, you read back about the Iran-Iraq war; the various things he did to the Kurds; the invasion of Kuwait, and then the general pattern of behavior through the 1990s...I can't help but give the man high marks for ruthlessness and a certain amount of cunning.
But I dunno how low to rate him for basic smarts in any understanding of the world at large.
It doesn't matter about anybody's opinion of Bush and the Administration's policies and actions. One thing you just flatout don't do is jack your jaws against the biggest biker in the bar!
(Probably rhetorical) How could Saddam not realize he was high on the Bush family "hit list"? How could he not know that 9/11 had this whole country pretty much wanting revenge on somebody? And after all those years of UN resolutions against him and WMD, how could he not have a clue when the Bushies started accusing him of having WMDs?
Which is why I question his actual smarts and understanding.
Ever since the UN weapons inspectors were unable to find anything this year, I've maintained that SH was little more than a paper tiger. An old, graying tiger who had shot his last wad and was roaring at the world as loud as he could. I'm sure he was surrounded by a group of yes men who were interested in looting as much as possible from Iraq yet were able to convince him that Iraq was still a force to be reckoned with. Why didn't the intelligence forces realize this?
'Rat, what about North Korea? They seem to be a much more tangible threat to world peace yet gw & co. have done little or nothing to defuse the situation. KJ now has at least 2 nuclear weapons and seems to be working as fast as possible to create more. I think it is much more likely that the WH knew that there were no WMD and that SH would be an easy target and the world would lay themselves at gw's feet in thanks. Seems like they went after the wrong guy for all the wrong reasons.
gw's god isn't going to look too favourably on gw's actions, of that I have no doubt.
Right. One of the qualities of leadership is a willingness to surround one's self with people who will tell them things they don't necessarily want to hear. Tyrants have a way of lopping off the heads of people who bring them bad news, and Saddam was certainly no exception. He was isolated from reality, and consequently, his days were numbered. Ironically, I think a version of this phenomenon is at work in the Bush administration. They've worked pretty hard to make the facts fit their theories. Alternative views certainly are not welcome.
Another thing we often forget about Saddam: he had (or has) a martyr complex. People like that often don't work as much towards self-preservation as how they will be remembered.
Ugg, even without nukes, NK is a miserable deal. They have an incredible number of soldiers, incredible numbers of artillery pieces, and incredible amounts of ammunition. The terrain does not at all favor our style of warfare. Winters are raving bitchkitties.
WE certainly couldn't use nukes, even if there were no bad PR. There is a real fallout problem for Japan, China, Russia and South Korea, varying only with the winds. (A possible solution in this arena might be that of neutron bombs, but I'm ignorant as to our possession of them.)
However, all that said, the big problem is knowing which way the Chinese will jump. The Chinese love being able to sit back and tease us with "What if..." stuff. It's been a game for them for almost 50 years.
Let me say first that I think Saddam was capable of some very, very stupid tactics in order to save his power. However, this talk of a bluff on WMDs miss one very important point. The Iraqis stated publicly many, many times they had no such weapons.
May I suggest another look at the intelligence that might have a more believable spin than this? Perhaps Bush and Blair believed what they wanted to believe for other reasons than Iraqi deceit? Perhaps they used this idea because they wanted to get rid of Saddam and it was a convenient excuse?
Of course, these ideas are not acceptable because there is too much evidence to actually back them up and it is also what most of the rest of the world believes. But what the heck, it had to be the Iraqi's fault we made a mistake about WMDs and invaded, right?
Just in case anybody doesn't get it the sarcasm is definitely intended.
With all due respect this speculation about Saddam's bluffing is a very minor sideline to the astonishing admission of Kay that no WMD have been found.
Just think - having seen all the publicly available intelligence at the start of the year, most of the world, and huge numbers in the US & UK, came to the conclusion that Iraq wasn't a threat.
That has been proved true, and all the protestations about "hard" evidence that the WMD not only existed but were a real and present threat (e.g. Powell's submission to the UN in February, the UK's dossiers on WMD in Sep 2002 and Feb 2003) now turns out to be ALL RUBBISH.
Perhaps the most cynical decision is now to extend the inspections indefinitely in order to postpone the admission of error until (they hope) people's attention has waned.
The question is, will Bush and Blair be allowed to simply brush this issue aside and, if so, what does that say about the state of politics and democracy in these countries today?
i can't wait until bush cites "faulty intelligence"
Well, if the intel is indeed found to be faulty. I somehow don't expect them to admit this right away (if ever). If it is faulty, I doubt they'll admit it untill after the next election, doing it before the election is political suicide (ok, maybe not suicide, but you get the idea, I hope)
After all, politicians generaly do whatever they have to, to cover their a$$. But then again, they might be able to brush the hole matter to the side, since people tend to have short attension spans and won't remember the reason why they went to war in the first place.
I've found it kinda intersting how the administration (and people defending it)have been shifting the focus as to WHY they attacked. First they say'd that saddam was "An imminent threat to the US" and "Saddam has WMD's" and they say it was NOT about regime change. And now, since no WMD's have been found yet the focus has gone to them saying "It was about freeing the iraq's of an evil dictator" and "To democritaze iraq" (if that isn't regime change, I don't know what is) and "Iraq has WMD PROGRAMES".
Now, don't get me wrong. I'm all for removing Hussein in some way, I just think they did a piss poor job att finding ACTUAL proof BEFORE they went in and that the whole way they went about starting the war. Their biggest mistake was not doing enough to get an "ok" from the security council, and then running off alone in their little illegal war (ok, not alone, but close enough), and yes it was illegal, sadly. Being quite familiar with the U.N charter and having read the resulutions regarding Iraq (such as 1441) it was quit obvious that the war was illegal by default according to the U.N charter (and no, the U.N does not have to explicitly say it was illegal since it's illegal by definition).
Personaly, I feel they were in to much of a hurry. And I feel the administration has taken the attension almost totaly off the fight in afganistan against Al qaeda and the taliban. Which I find quite disappointing, considering the damage Al qaeda has done and continues to do, not to mention the taliban which continues to make life difficult for people in afganistan.
Interview with David Kay
NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
Well, we can only hope both the administration and the anti-war crowd leave the guy in peace, to do his job, and don't try to influence him, one way or the other.
But while Iraq stated they had no such weapons they still defied the weapons inspectors. AFAIK up until the war started Blix was still saying the Iraq's were holding back and not following the guidelines set out before them.
Like I first mentioned way back in Feb or so, this whole time Saddam could have just been baiting the US and setting himself up for martyrdom<sp?>. After the first Gulf War he gained a lot of respect from the Arab world for being the guy who stood up to the west and "won" (I put that in qoutes because I'm sure Saddam as well as many Arabs took the fact of him remaining in power as a victory). Even people who hated Saddam and how he ran Iraq felt a begruding respect for him. Now it's 12 years later and he ain't got crap. Although he still wants to be seen as a powerful figure and save face in the Arab world so he again stands up to the west by hindering the weapons inspectors. Of course he also pleas his innonce in an attempt to turn other countries against the US (another feather in his cap maybe?). And if the US invades and no WMD's are turned up his deception will cause a lot of problems for the US led invasion and if he is killed durring the attack then he probably would become a martyr (which would cause even more headaches for the west). So, in a very long winded explination, Saddam had a lot of reasons of keep up the WMD charade.
If this does come to pass do I get a cookie or something from bringing it up first?
Hey, that's as good a guesstimation of Saddam's thinking as anything else I've read! (That might be damning with faint praise, however... )
Heck, a box of cookies.
Two things. First, this is one of the most convoluted explanations of Saddam's motives and actions I've ever seen (Kay's not yours, Lethalwolfe.) We are to believe that Saddam knowing the US is looking for a reason to invade (his folks read the neocon manifestos also) is going to hand them the very reason they are looking for? Try this simple explanation on first. Saddam, totally defeated in the first Gulf War, tries to show his defiance against the US in anyway he can within whatever wriggle room he can find under the rules set by his surrender and UN resolution. He drags his feet at every opportunity, but what he doesn't do is rebuild programs that if their existence became known would provide the excuse for his removal. Why do we have to add this twist, that while denying the existence of WMDs he is simultaneously trying to trick the US into believing that he has them? The only "proof" we have of this is defectors who have every reason to give the US the information they want.
Secondly, this report fits too well into an attempt to deflect blame from the administration for the absence of WMDs in Iraq. Bush has a need to show that it wasn't his fault that he invaded another country without an imminent threat to the US. It is in this context that Kay's report should be read - spin control.
What is very clear is the Bush administration had, from its very beginning, at the top of its agenda the overthrow of Saddam. To the extent that they believed their own propaganda around WMDs (a very debatable topic) it was only an excuse used to further that already existing aim.
What is equally clear is that it is the responsibility of our so-called leaders to make sure they get the judgment right. If they make the wrong call, the "war" becomes nothing less than mass-murder, for which they are responsible. That is why "pre-emptive wars" (in other words "wars of aggression") have been outlawed by the international community since WW2.
Absolutely, no argument from here.
and helps explains why bush is asking for an additional $600 million (on top of $300 million already spent) to keep looking for WMD.
in all serious and honesty, i'm a little surprised they haven't been planted yet.
Not that I would put it past some of the members of this administration, but I understand that at least with bioweapons that the DNA signature would tell from where they came. One can tell which strain they originated from. It would be very strange to have a strain straight out of a US lab turn up in Iraq at this late date because, even if the rumors are true that that is where the original Iraqi bioweapons came from, they also have a relatively short shelf-life. I don't know if there is anything similar about chemical weapons.
the million dollar questions
Why did Saddam choose not to cooperate with the UN weapons instructors?
If he had WMDs, why didn't he get rid of them and then let weapons inspectors in? And why didn't he use the WMDs in the war?
if he had WMD programs, why didn't he cancel the programs and then let weapons inspectors in?
If he didn't have any WMDs, why didn't he just let the weapons inspectors in?
Any ideas? I haven't heard a theory which makes sense. Saddam's not a dumb guy, the war wasn't a surprise to him, and he had already seen American military power. Why didn't he think the situation through and cooperate? I just don't get it.
Re: the million dollar questions
The UN weapons inspectors WERE let into Iraq and the search was on. I believe it was the U.S. who suddenly imposed a deadline and the inspectors had to get out before the bombs dropped.
Re: the million dollar questions
Ok, why dont you just ask one question, instead of four saying exactly the same thing? Why didnt he let the inspectors in at once as it first was asked?
Well, they where in after GW1. After some petty argument with Saddam where to inspect and where not they where sent out and where only left back in as the new war dawned. As it turns out, letting them back in didnt help anything because the US didnt give them enough time as vwcruisin correctly pointed out. The Inspectors had less time than the current search is taking, and they found exactly the same (still nothing).
Oh, by the way, some thinking stuff: If it weren't completely clear already that the US had ABC weapons, and the UN would want to send inspectors in, would the US let them look everywhere? Even into military areas where practical no one is allowed to? (Nuke Silos, The White House, Testing Grounds, Hell - even the ridiculous Area 51 (guess the US simply wants to play a practical joke on the UFO Believers there)).
I would doubt it.
Re: the million dollar questions
No need to make this so complicated.
First, Saddam was positioning himself as the Arab strongman of the Middle East. Having big, bad weapons (or at least looking like he had them) was an essential part of that image. Second, he had/has a martyr complex. Martyrs are mainly interested in how they will be remembered, and Saddam wants to be remembered as a great Arab folk hero.
Who said he had them? Not Saddam. It was Bush and Blair, both against the advice of their "intelligence" services. If he didn't have them, how could he "co-operate"?