Wednesday, November 15, 2006
1. V said
I think your idea for simply turning the Iraqi Shiites loose on the Sunnis right after the invasion would have smelled too bad. As it is, the whole invasion stinks, on the international scene. It demonstrates that we were openly and directly responsible for fomenting genocide would not do a lot to improve our image.
2. Liberty or Death reply
Your right Americans would howl. But that is not what you do. You train and equip the Shiites and do no harm to the Sunnis. Stay 300 miles from the Sunni triangle. You pack up and leave. The Shiites are going to kill the Sunnis with us there now or with us gone. We can't stop it today. No one is going to blame the Americans. The will rightly blame the Shiites. Why help the Shiites? Our lack of help has driven them squarely into the Iranian camp. Bad outcome. This could and still might be avoided by supporting the Shiites via the Iraqi government who is supporting the Shiites anyway.
3. V said
I will agree that it SHOULD be possible to blockade North Korea into submission, but we clearly have no hope of doing that. It's really great to know that our presidents and State Department have used the 30 years since the fiasco in Vietnam to increase our political leverage in the Far East. I'm not actually recommending any US attacks on North Korea. Instead, I'm trying to argue that the US attack on Iraq made LESS sense than a similar attack on North Korea. In the same way that Castro and Dear Leader Kim will simply die of old age EVENTUALLY, Saddam was isolated and bankrupt and would also have died of old age, eventually. There was no clear threat. There was no urgency. Bushie and Da Boyz simply had always wanted to knock over Iraq and so they did. That's the WHOLE story.
4. Liberty or Death Reply
Completely agree. We just need to ring North Korea with destroyers carrying the anti ballistic missile version of standard arm in case he does go nuts. Catching ICBMs in the boost phase is the easiest kill. Mach 5 is tuff.
5. V said
I have a book written in the 1950s about the Italian invasion of Greece in 1940. It was written by an Italian general who explains in the introduction that the reason he wrote the book was that he had begun to hear people seriously suggest that there had been any rational reason for the invasion or any planning. So he decided that it was necessary for him to help set the facts straight. There was no reason. There were no plans. Benito simply WANTED to conquer Greece and he was bored that weekend. And Adolph and those horrid Germans had shown him up with their blitzkrieg across France (Mussolini was an Italian nationalist who hated Germans as one of his fundamental principles.). The New Roman Empire was going to blitzkrieg through Greece and stage a triumphal Roman parade through Athens. Boy, THAT would show those barbarians in Berlin!
6. Liberty or Death Reply
Did catch Hitler by surprise. Aren’t allies a bitch? A neutral Italy and a Japan on its own, with peace overtures to America in public would have delayed American entry into Europe by as much as a year.
7. V said
I can't support your ideas of fighting short, violent wars and then leaving a mess for the locals to clean up. Not because I disagree with the problems of contested occupation, but because I can't imagine any threat to American national interests that requires such an invasion in the first place. If such a threat existed, then we should be serious enough about resolving that threat that nukes and a formal declaration of war are part of the planning from the very beginning. And a decent set of War Aims. And an Exit Strategy. Violating the territory of sovereign countries is a serious matter. The US should start acting like we understand it's serious when we do it.
8. Liberty or Death reply
Disagree, there are and will be (not often) when we just want to wreck a country as punishment for a crime against us. Afghanistan is an example. But we should have gone further. We should have taken out the southern and eastern tribes when we went in, and then gotten out. Yes, the Taliban would come back and reorganize. So what? We go in with the northern alliance and wack them again. An invasion is cheap in blood and treasure when compared to occupation. America will always accept short decisive victories. You don't even need congressional approval. Americans supported Panama because it was fast and victorious. No congress. Any debate over whether we were justified to invade was academic. It was over. Even the Dems and the liberal press could not get the American people mad at Reagan even though Panama was not harming the US. I think you misunderstand the American people. They will always support a quick victorious war. It’s when you drag in the congress, the UN and especially the American media in advance of any action that the support of the people gets undermined.
9. V said
I don't view American leaders, especially Bushie the Lesser and his barons, as weak-willed. I do think that they don't believe that they can be honest with the American people about what the heck they were trying to do and why. Oh, and of course they're stupid. ("dumb" means you lack mental horsepower. "stupid" means you have no idea how to USE your mental horsepower. The Bushites aren't dumb.) If Bush simply told Americans WHY he wanted to knock off Saddam, we would have impeached him and sent him off to the funny farm. Since he knows he can't tell us what he really thinks, he and Da Boyz shopped around ideas until they found a combination that it looked like they could sell.
Similarly, FDR had always desired to have a war with Germany. He knew that his reasons for desiring this war, which would have as its purpose the fulfillment of the punishment that Germany escaped in 1919, wouldn't excite most Americans, especially those citizens who lived west of Philadelphia and didn't grow up loving England as "the mother country". So FDR simply lied about his war. What its purpose was. What "victory" would mean. Lying to the voters is always the FIRST choice of American politicians. It is, how you say, an American Tradition.
Other than The Revolution and stomping Southerners during the Civil War, which was a great idea, and maybe Korea in 1950, I can't think of another American war that was justified or worth the investment of blood and treasure. Since we aren't very good at it, we should probably stop doing it altogether.
10. Liberty or Death Reply
I disagree with you about Korea. A communist South Korea is the same threat as a communist South Vietnam. Should have never gone into Korea. How was Korea different from Vietnam?