We're asking wrong questions on war

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There you go again talking about the "war on terrorism." That phrase will become the most remembered sound bite of the Bush administration. I am not suggesting that we do not need to prevent terroristic attacks on the United States, but the battlefield of that war is Iraq. What Americans need to ask is:

- Was Iraq a hotbed of terrorism before the U.S. invasion?

- Are there other countries where the fight against terrorism would have a higher yield?

- Would the hundreds of billions we spent in Iraq have been better spent elsewhere?

- Are our borders, ports, chemical factories, etc., better protected now than before 9-11?

It is sad that, by our bumblings in Iraq, we have set up a school for terrorism. We have increased the number of fanatics willing to die to hurt us. It is even more sad that Gen. David Petraeus, when asked whether our battle in Iraq has made us safer, honestly answered that he did not know.

It is sad that we abandoned Afghanistan and our hunt for Osama bin Laden to invade Iraq. It is sad that we have not accomplished all that the 9-11 commission said we needed to do to prevent an attack in this country.

But the saddest of all is that the Bush administration has not fully taken responsibility for the mess they are going to leave for the poor Democrat who gets elected president. History will hopefully remember.

Harold M. Szerlip, Martinez

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jade
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jade 09/18/07 - 12:18 am
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"there you go again"? this

"there you go again"? this might be a poorly written letter, but it asks several important questions that the bushies and their apologists have ignored for far too long.

Vulcan_Rider
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Vulcan_Rider 09/18/07 - 03:34 am
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Abandoned Afghanistan? If

Abandoned Afghanistan? If this is true, why do I keep sending care packages and letters to my Army friends that are stationed in Afghanistan now? Wake up and smell the coffee.

bccinco
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bccinco 09/18/07 - 04:13 am
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Afghanistan may not be

Afghanistan may not be totally abandoned, but the war in Iraq has definately impacted our efforts to capture Bin Ladin and put the Taliban out of business.

The_Last_Word
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The_Last_Word 09/18/07 - 04:17 am
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Liberals love asking

Liberals love asking questions instead of taking action that needs to be done. Was Iraq full of terrorists before the war? Yes. Are there other countries to fight? Yes - but why fight that war over there when we have this war going on now? Would the billions spent on Iraq be better spent elsewhere? Well, no, we have a war going on there now - what could be more important than protecting our troops? Are we safer now than before 9/11 - Yes - since we can still ask this question in a language other than Arabic and our dhimmi tax has not been deducted from our salary, yes, we are much safer. No successful terrorist attacks on US soil in six years is not too bad. That is no thanks to liberals by the way. General Petraeus' answer to the question, "Are we safer?" was "I don't know" to Sen. Warner but to Sen. Bayh it was a "Yes" with much more elaboration. But to ask the question one must believe that on 9/10 we lived in a safe nation and that is the furthest thing from the truth there is! Vulcan Rider answered the "abandoned Afghanistan" nonsense. The MSM may have abandoned Afghanistan but not our Soldiers. A "poor" Democrat? Just how does this happen when their hands are in our pockets?

_kpc_
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_kpc_ 09/18/07 - 04:37 am
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I ask again until you get the

I ask again until you get the courage to answer, Mr. Cain. WHY can't you stop calling the Republican party the "Republic Party" or "Republic War Party?" If you insist on using your spin words to make your argument appear as though it has merit, why not use the "Fairness Doctrine" and say "The Democrat Surrender Party?"

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 09/18/07 - 05:13 am
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I agree with every point made

I agree with every point made in Harold M. Szerlip's LTE except he omitted the possibility that the next President could be a Republican. That isn't likely unless President Bush, urged on by Vice President Cheney, orders military strikes on Iran & perhaps Syria. In that case, someone like Rudy Giuliani will tout his executive experience & claim he is "ready on Day One to be Commander in Chief & our next Wartime President". With war raging in the Middle East from Lebanon to Iran & perhaps beyond, American voters may yet again be freightened into electing a President who is a member of the Republic Party of Perpetual War. The possibility is doubly likely since both radical rightwing warhawks & the religious right, led by James Dobson et al, are politically aligned for an Armegeddon-like showdown with "militant Islam" to save western Christian corporate civilization. George W. Bush, spurred on by Dick Cheney, has proven he is foolish enough to pull the trigger on another FIASCO of Biblical proportions (double entendre intended). Bush, Cheney & Dobson must be stopped. Funding the war in Iraq is killing the troops. Cut funds for the war. Say NO to war with Iran. God bless John Abizaid

bone
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bone 09/18/07 - 05:25 am
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to answer each question: no;

to answer each question: no; no; no; yes. i agree with cain: i hope a republican is not elected due to fear of weak foreign policy democratic candidates.

patriciathomas
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patriciathomas 09/18/07 - 05:56 am
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It's going to be interesting

It's going to be interesting if a "redeploy" leftist gets control of the White house with our current congress. We're out of Trade Towers, I wonder what will be next.

GACopperhead
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GACopperhead 09/18/07 - 06:02 am
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Word, it has been proven and

Word, it has been proven and confirmed by Bush's own commission that there was no Al Qaeda in Iraq before our invasion. How can we be safer when 94% of all cargo bins coming into the country are unexamined for bombs, nukes, etc.? As stated before, we succeeded where no one has before....we have ended the Arab-Persian hatred for each other by giving them a common enemy. Iraq is now allied with Iran, and you say that makes us safer? How?

Bizarro
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Bizarro 09/18/07 - 06:25 am
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It was lame for Bush to say

It was lame for Bush to say terrorism is directly linked to Iraq, but nonetheless it is something that Clinton or Bush Sr should have done. We don't just invade countries or send troops because of terrorism. We like to get nutjobs like Milosevic and Hussein, of course the next thing the CIA props up some nutjob in another country. Iraq is a hotbed of terrorism now with al Qaeda presents there. If Bush had any sense he would given Hussein WMDs to attack Iran again. He could have served our purposes as a diversion while we go after bin Laden and al Qaeda, of course there is the guilt of knowing the maniac would probably use the weapons on his own people also. If we can be assured of al Qaeda leaving Iraq then lets leave today. The Iraq War turned into our diversion while terrorism is flourishing. Flourishing not because of our actions,but inactions. We should be putting the pressure on Afghanistan and Pakistan. There is no way to protect against terrorism that is their whole method. Whatever we do any moron will quickly figure a way around it.

GACopperhead
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GACopperhead 09/18/07 - 06:33 am
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How come nobody seems to

How come nobody seems to worry about our "ally" Saudi Arabia? most of the 9/11 attackers were Saudi, bin Laden is Saudi, members of the Saudi government still support Al Qaeda. Pakistan forms treaties with the Taliban, refuses to give us access to be able to find and kill bin Laden, and these are our friends? With friends like these, who needs enemies?

shivas
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shivas 09/18/07 - 06:53 am
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Very good questions that no

Very good questions that no one on the far right wants asked, or brought-up during the upcoming election. However, Democrats better come-up with a coherent strategy that addresses the issues of Iraq and terriorism, or we will simply be perceived as political complainers.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 09/18/07 - 07:12 am
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The Sunni Baathists will take

The Sunni Baathists will take care of Al Qaeda in Iraq if United States
leaves. It is the raging Shia vs Sunni civil war that is the extant
problem. That requires a regional solution. Keeping U.S. troops in Iraq
to referee a civil war isn't workable. Both Iran & Saudi Arabia
must be bought off, co-opted, or otherwise precluded from backing the Shiite
& Sunni sectarian factions in Iraq respectively. Bush's new game plan "pick a
winner" is to side with the Sunnis, incl. elements that supported
AQ in Iraq & Saudi Arabia against the Shiites & Iran. Seymour
Hirsh reported months ago that Cheney's people incl. Elliott Abrams
(another neocon) met with Saudi Prince Bandar. A deal
was struck. Cash flush Saudi Arabia provided the funds. Bushco &
Saudi Arabia are backing militants in Lebanon who were formerly allied
with AQ against Syria & Hezbollah. Politics makes strange
bedfellows. Bush has now picked Saddam's base to be the winner in Iraq
& Sunnis to be the winners regionally. It is Bushco allied with
both Saudi Arabia (the ideological & financial base of Al Qaeda)
& Iraq's secular Sunnis incl. Baathists against Moqtada al Sadr
& other Iranian backed Shiites, Syria & Hezbollah.

Dedicated
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Dedicated 09/18/07 - 07:19 am
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Cain...you are an

Cain...you are an idiot....the Sunni make up what....20% of the population.....and they will take care of Al Qaeda........this one post shows how totally misguided you are. Keep up the gibberish.

GACopperhead
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GACopperhead 09/18/07 - 07:23 am
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Cain, that's how we need to

Cain, that's how we need to argue this,no politics, just fact. We backed bin Laden against Russia, played both sides against each other in the Iraq/Iran war, and are trying to do the same again in Iraq. By arming the Shias in Iraq we are just preparing them to send the next round of attackers against us.

Bizarro
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Bizarro 09/18/07 - 07:25 am
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Good point Copperhead!!! Bush

Good point Copperhead!!! Bush is reluctant to talk with Iran or North Korea, but he buddies up the Sauds who we should hold in contempt. I feel much the same about Pakistan. For a global war on terrorism we sure have dismissed much of the globe. I wonder is there any real global plan. In any case I don't see how anyone could believe that Harry Reid or any Democrat is our ray of hope for the future. The Dem have done much to polarize Americans against their opposing political party instead of uniting with a common bond against a terrorist enemy-demonizing Bush or saying the Party of corruption is idiotic (especially because they are just as demonic and corrupt). I hope the next President is a Dem so when he screws up people will finally wise up to being duped by political machines and propaganda that any communist would envy. We should offer a bounty on all al Qaeda heads in Iraq with a promise that once al Qaeda is gone were gone. The Iraqis have no love for the Iranians and I bet in two months Iraq would be terrorist free, of course the civil war will continue. I think the Iraqis deserve the right to fight their civil war unhampered by foreign influences.

justus4
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justus4 09/18/07 - 07:25 am
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Asking Wrong Question eh?
Unpublished

Asking Wrong Question eh? Yea, its a core principle of elites that rule. If there is a God, the US will pay for its arrogrance and the people will not understand. First, this is not a war! Fools!!! This is a campaign! Just learn that. Thats enough for today. The lack of intellegence is too much.

GACopperhead
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GACopperhead 09/18/07 - 07:25 am
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Dork, the only REAL progress

Dork, the only REAL progress against Al Qaeda has been made by Sunnis! Anbar province? or don't you even read the ramblings of Dub, et al?

lariat98
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lariat98 09/18/07 - 07:29 am
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Im with fred, I just wish he

Im with fred, I just wish he would run independant!!

Bizarro
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Bizarro 09/18/07 - 07:38 am
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Justus4 you sound like a

Justus4 you sound like a communist with the rantings about class warfare. The poor can become elites and the elites can become poor (ask a few homeless people about their previous life). It is kinda of a oxymoron to talk about a lack of intelligence when you didn't spell it correctly (it is early!!!). I find people talk about elites as phantoms manipulating the system, but then ignore a Murdoch or Soros who actively manipulates the system. We have already fought the war and won. Now we are in police mode, and we should have trained enough Iraqis to deal with their own problems.

mag5
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mag5 09/18/07 - 07:47 am
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Cain - "Both Iran & Saudi

Cain - "Both Iran & Saudi Arabia must be bought off...."

Lets just buy everyone off Cain! Isn't this typical LLD thinking that gets us into even more trouble? How absolutely Moronic to embrace a policy of buying off terroristic states!

LaTwon
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LaTwon 09/18/07 - 07:55 am
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isreal bombed syria the day

isreal bombed syria the day before yesterday. anyone read that in the msm? bush the moron has bankrupted our country. the financial crisis will get much worse. we are closer to zionist armegeddon than we may realize. war solves lots of problems.

LaTwon
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LaTwon 09/18/07 - 08:02 am
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Bizarro
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Bizarro 09/18/07 - 08:08 am
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We have been buying off

We have been buying off countries and they all hate us. Zionist don't believe in armageddon that is Christian new testament Revelations. The jews are still awaiting their political messiah-they had found a number of them till they discovered they were in error. Oh you mean Christian zionist-sorry. War has changed the face of this planet and is a part of the evolutionary history that has created the present populations. War is biological and obviously serves an evolutionary purpose just like religions. You may not like war or religions but that has nothing to do with how they have molded the human race. War is not unique to humans, but religions are. I think a financial crisis is looming. My question is why aren't we after bin Laden?

Bizarro
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Bizarro 09/18/07 - 08:50 am
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Why do we think we can

Why do we think we can appease extremist? Leaving muslim lands is only one aspect. We would also have to reduce women in our society, kill homosexuals, end abortion, etc. Oh I forgot convert to Islam. It is a war of cultures that is looming not religions. Religion is just one aspect. We can't undo the past so there is no appeasement (it is like charma that will come back to haunt us). I think a major global war is inevitable and I just hope I am on the winning side-whether we are right or wrong.

shivas
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shivas 09/18/07 - 09:35 am
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Bizarro, I actually agree

Bizarro, I actually agree with much of what you have said! However, your comments do not leave me with a good sense of well-being. Is there any hope our cultures will begin to work better together as a result of this war/campaign?

Republicant
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Republicant 09/18/07 - 10:01 am
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So help me through this... We

So help me through this... We invade iraq because we think they have wmds, because they helped Mohammed Atta, because they are a training ground for terrorists, because Saddam is a sadistic jerk, and though true that Saddam was a piece of Dung and needed to be removed, there are many other dictators that we havent stepped in to remove for the same reasons. Doesnt it make you think something else is going on there? Surprise surpise! Iraq is now the biggest recruiting tool Al qaeda could have ever hoped for, along with it being the best training ground Osama could ever want! If Bin Laden wrote his own best case scenario for his diabolical plans, he couldnt have written one more in favorable than this. So, we invade Iraq because it is a possible training ground for terrorists, and now it is definately a training ground for terrorists. YAAAAAY!

Republicant
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Republicant 09/18/07 - 10:07 am
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So, I imagine those of you

So, I imagine those of you who didnt previously know of the battle of Thermoplyae at least saw "300" ? Isnt this tactically the same thing? They obviously cannot fight us in a land war, that would be suicide without the glory of martyrdom. So the have us in an untenable position of exposing ourselves in a war that we cant maneuver ourselves in, we cant find the enemy because they meld back into the public, and they can slowly drain us. They can make a small investment of 22$ and destroy several million dollars of equipment, isnt that just good business?
So conservatives and liberals, since everyone has all the answers, what do we do? Do we start a draft? You do realize that if we draft, the war will be over shortly thereafter, when America wakes up and realizes their children are at risk as well.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
576
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 09/18/07 - 10:43 am
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Those who are gung-ho for war

Those who are gung-ho for war as the "solution" to international
disputes too easily dismiss diplomacy. When we make an enemy or
potential enemy an offer they can't resist we co-opt their reasons to
resort to force. Take North Korea. You don't think Bush offered
something for North Korea to give up its nuclear arms? From what I
understand Bush could have had this same deal in 2002. Now Bush is
looking for a legacy & is willing to COMPROMISE. Iran has a nuclear
program. There is no evidence they have enriched uranium beyond to 4 to
5% level required to fuel nuclear power plants. Even Iran will reach
peak oil soon & reserves thereafter begin to diminish. We are
looking at a 20 yr timeframe. For Iran to be willing to forego the
technology & expertise required to make nuclear weapons, they need
to be assured they will not be invaded. Bush could broker a
non-aggression treaty against Iran & ofter trade incentives or at
least allow Iran to trade freely in exchange for open inspections of
their nuclear facilities. We can still work through such a diplomatic
opening to democratize Iran PEACEFULLY. Iran has not attacked United
States. Another illegal "preventive" war is not in our interest.

dani
12
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dani 09/18/07 - 10:49 am
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In my humble opinion, the

In my humble opinion, the best hope we have is that a Republican is again elected as our president and the Dem's will thensee that that basing an election on "hate Bush" doesn't work, and that they actually have to work together for the people.

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