Time for another war yet?

I know we all agree that George W. Bush is the best war president the US has had since Roosevelt, that his courage is comparable to that of Lincoln, his intellect to Jefferson, and that his place in history may rival even that of Washington. He's clever, well-spoken and trustworthy. Don't get me wrong: I find it difficult to imagine anyone who could have handled the events of September 11 better than him.

But it's important not to idolize Bush, and I believe it is time to bring up a question the Bush cheerleaders have ignored: Has Bush turned into a wimp? Consider: It took him only a month after September 11 to launch the counterattack on Afghanistan. After securing one of the fastest and cleanest victories in US history, he immediately began planning for a war on Iraq. It is true that he let himself be distracted for a while by the world tyrant club known as the UN, but not for long. Iraq was invaded in March 2003, and conquered a few weeks later, in another historically efficient victory. The objectively pro-Saddam weasels in France and Germany would rather Saddam had continued his reign of terror and his research on nuclear weapons, (they'll be found any day now!) But then they never did believe much in democracy. Bush does, and he faced down "international" opinion with courage and resolve.

But it has now been nearly a full year since Baghdad fell on April 9, 2003, and there are no signs that Bush is planning another war any time soon. What is going on here? Does he think the forces of Evil take breaks off from scheming the downfall of the West? Does he believe that if he holds off his next campaign against the Islamofascists they will hate the US less in return?

Has the incessant whining of relativists, postmodernists, nihilists and other liberals finally gotten to our man in the White House?

I know many of you don't want to hear this, that in your eyes Bush can do no wrong. But it must be asked.

"But surely," you're thinking, "we have no more enemies. Bush has beaten them all." Hah! That's the same kind of naivety that gave us September 11 in the first place. Our enemies are everywhere. They are many, and they are plotting our downfall like never before.

"Ok," you think, "I can't argue with that, but who then should we attack next?" Good question! I have made a list of candidates. Which country we begin with is of less importance, and will depend on who it is most convenient to attack at any time. But we must get started soon, or we'll never be done by the time Bush ends his second term in office, and that's assuming he gets one. We never know when our proud, God-fearing Republican will be replaced by a treacherous, adulterous nihilist of Democrat. Making the world safe for democracy is a job too important to entrust some random future president - it must be done now.

Iran is an obvious candidate for invasion. Officially an enemy of the West since the Islamic revolution in 1979, a country that is even closer to building nuclear weapons than Saddam was a year ago, and yet with a largely pro-American population, Iran is both a high priority target, and an easy win. It will fold like a paper tiger. Remember how American troops were cheered and welcomed everywhere they went as they liberated Iraq from the Baathists? That will be nothing compared to the scenes of joy they'll be met with as they liberate Teheran. The Iranian people hate the Mullah's, and their government is very close to building nukes. Iran is a no-brainer.

Or take Syria. I can't really think of a lot of reasons why it's important to invade Syria right away, but hey, why not? It's a petty, mean little dictatorship. It follows the same Baath ideology as Iraq did, so it's bound to start researching wmd's sooner or later. It also supports terrorist groups in Israel. I can think of no better time to send a message to the democratic forces of the Arab world of just how far we're willing to go to ensure the safety of our friends in Israel.

North Korea is an even better target. Basically one big totalitarian cult ruled by a madman, the North Koreans are our sworn enemies. They threaten all of their neighbours, and cooperate with all of our enemies. It is true that they may already have nuclear weapons, but only a few, so it's important to invade them now before they have time build any more. "But", I hear a voice of "compassion" protest, "millions of people are going to die if we invade North Korea!" Perhaps, but they will die in the cause of freedom. Remember the words of Thomas Jefferson: The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of martyrs - and boy is the tree of liberty going to be healthy and vigorous by the time we're done with North Korea.

I've thought a lot about this, and I believe it is both politically wise and militarily feasible to invade and conquer all these countries as soon as possible. Perhaps some of you are curious why I'm so confident about this. Well, I haven't actually been in the military myself, but I've read a lot of books about war, not all of them novels, so I think I know what the general idea is. I know that makes me vulnerable to accusations of being an armchair general, but why should planning wars that may change history and kill millions of people be a privilege for professionals? And it's purely a coincidence that I'm not a soldier myself, that I don't know any soldiers, that in fact I live in a completely different country than that of the soldiers I believe should fight these wars, a country where I avoided military service because I was a pacifist. Purely a coincidence, and a distraction from the real issues.

The important question, the one that separates champions of liberty from the apologists of death cults, is this: Do you want total war? If necessary, do you want a war on Islamofascism more total and radical than anything we can even imagine today? I know I do! Now somebody tell Bush.




Comments

A very thoughtful post, Bjørn, but why did you leave out France? When are we going to punish them for supporting Saddam and being so damn arrogant? Those cheese-eating surrender monkeys need to be taught a lesson.


John: A very thoughtful commentary to Bjørn's thoughtful post. The French totally suck. Bush has gone way too easy on them. Remember, there's no form of arrogance a little nuke against downtown Paris won't humble!


This is exactly the perspective I'm missing in the Norwegian media. When was the last time you read an Aftenposten editorial that called for pre-emptive war on North Korea, Iran _and_ Syria? Probably never! This total lack of objectivity is the reason I've now stopped reading any other news source than your blog, Bjørn. Keep up the good work!


What are you kidding? I'm sure that the UN is is even now planning bold, decisive, multilateral, multicultural, and green (tm) measures that will result in global peace within the next 18 months. George has had his 15 minutes, now it's Kofi's turn.

That is if he can tear himself away from the oh-so-attractive and much more convenient graft opportunities afforded by his current "leadership" position.


Comic relief aside, I don't think there is a need for other large-scale military action in the near future. The Iraqi and Afghani situations are still developing and will take close management to turn out positively for their respective populations. Coalition action there has already inspired positive change across the Islamic world and turned the tide in this war on radical Islam. Witness the recent terrorist cells broken up in Uzbekistan (though not without loss of life) the Phillippines, and Britain. It has only been a few short months though; it will be 3-5 years before we really see a permanent effect.


John, Jane:

Don't worry about France. I have it from very highly positioned sources that plans have indeed been set in motion regarding the solution to the French Question.

It's still in the pre-operative phase though, so I would appreciate if you can keep a secret what I'm going to reveal to you until the plan comes to fruition.

It involves a slightly worn fishingboat, an old Spitfire, some firecrackers, Normandie, and the geriatric ward of the Illinois State Hospital. I have probably divulged more detail than I should have, but I'm told it's going to be a walkover, so I figured, what the hell..

Expect wheelchairs and Chirac's head on a stake outside the Elisee tomorrow at noon! (And an extra X in Bjørn's new banner.)


“ . . . in your eyes Bush can do no wrong . . .”

*wheeze*, *cough* . . .

Huh? I am certainly a staunch supporter of the war on terror in general and the Iraq war in particular, but I have grave doubts about whether that balances the ledger. As a rabid anti-leftist, it is clear to me that the Bush Presidency has been an unmitigated disaster. The damage that spineless, pandering coward has done to this country is serious, and it will be lasting. Bush is nothing more than a belligerent, socially conservative Democrat--and a liberal one at that.

Frankly, I am left longing for Bill Clinton (whom I never fully appreciated): a president who ABOLISHED a welfare entitlement for the first time in history, and who pronounced the “era of big government” over. As president, Bush created a huge new welfare entitlement out of whole cloth, which he then rammed through Congress by deceiving and bullying Members. He then publicly pronounced the aspiration of small government dead.

I live in a key “battleground” state for the 2004 election, and I take my responsibilities as a voter seriously. I know that the outcome of this election is paramount. But I just don’t know if I can vote for Bush. There is more than one way this war can be lost; democracy in the ME will be little comfort for America when our economy lies in ruins, crushed under the weight of profligate military spending and a bloated welfare state.


"Iran is an obvious candidate for invasion."

I have posted comments on prior threads that the US will confront Iran sooner than later. Probably this summer. But I don't believe the US will invade Iran. Invading and occupying Iran is a much more difficult military proposition than invading either Afghanistan or Iraq.

The Iranian nuclear bomb program will have to be stopped by the US. If the US fails to stop the Iranian nuclear bomb program this year, Israel will be forced to attack Iran to stop their nuke bomb program. The only way Israel can effectively do that is by using nuclear bombs. Israel does not have the luxury of using fighter jets to deliver a knockout blow as they did with Iraqi program in 1981. Israel has stated that Iran's nuke program is an existential danger. Former Iranian President Rafshanjani has stated that when Iran aquire the nuclear bomb Israel will be destroyed. One thing I can assure my European friends. If Iran's nuclear bomb isn't stopped in the next few months through diplomacy it will be stopped by war. There is nothing that scares the US and Israel more than jihadists armed with nuclear bombs.

I have no faith that either the IAEA or the UN will be able to decisively stop Iran's nuclear bomb program. Get ready. The Rubicon will be crossed sooner than most realize. The US will probably use the same tactics they used to attack Serbia. High altitude bombing to weaken the regime and hope revoltution takes place. Unfortunately, bombing the uranium reprocessing plants will cause a Chernobyl style environemntal disaster so it will be a last resort.

Get ready for the real war. Iraq and Afghanistan were weak easy targets. Iran will be a much bigger challenge. Who will the Europeans support? I believe they won't support the US and act in a very similar manner that they did with Iraq.


Ah, is it April 01. already..? You thought that it was appropriate to give "the other side" the aprils fools this year.. But I`m sorry, you gave yourself away in the very first paragraph, I`m sorry (?) to say..

But I think you have a breach in your assesments - I think few of the countries you "suggest" invading for freedom will pose threat of substantially bigger casualities than Iraq did - IF the N. Korea does not posses WMD, which would change those odds dramatically, though not unbeatable. Iraq was considered the 4th biggest military force in the World before Kuwait. When that is said I really havent thought the reasoning through for these propositions - I would though expect it to be almost impossible for the US to do any of these invasions in the near future, considering the huge amount of personell needed in Iraq and Afghanistan, considering that there is a much greater chance for US allies in these countries pulling out, than chipping in more troops. If one sees the political climate of the West today, I think that very few reasons would tempt the Bush administration to embark on new "adventures" right now. And only a shot in the head of the Pope (or perhaps, (far higher in my wishlist) Fischer, Schröder or Chirac) would change Europes heart further in a US-supportive way.

I suppose I cannot take anything in this post really seriously, but I am disappointed in you if you have not been in the military, considering that you run a war/peace blog - you can perhaps easily counter this with many arguments - though I have few kind words about that desicion among my friends, I generally think less of that group dodged draft these last year than the ones that served, because the far higher percentage of the first being slobs (I have many friends among both) - I was done with my military duty last summer, and well aware of many solutions that could make me never see one day of duty to my country - the way this country treat those who actually DO serve is how ever, a disgrace, though it is possible on the verge of being a little bit improved now.. but Im rambling - Any way; Yes Jefferson Did say implicitely: "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of martyrs " - What he exactly; "The tree of liberty have to be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots AND TYRANTS"

Night. G


I've been waiting 365 days for this post. Where's Alex Beam in the discussion? ;) I'm sure he'd have something intelligent to say!


Whoops. It's actually been 366 days!


Another classic!


Now this is totally inappropriate. Being a liberal scum-bastard of a son-of-a-terrorist's goat, I won't put up with this. The French are such lovely people and....HEY there's not that much cheese in Wisconsin. Let's face it. We'd miss the French and their GREAT cheese the minute we nuked'em. I will not stand for this, and I will never ever post on this war-mongering blog on this day again! A final question: Do Syria or North Korea manufature their own dairy products? If not... let's nuke those terrorist hatching turkeys!


Okay, it's an April Fools post. But there's a lot of truth in that first paragraph. Bush's America liberated 50 million Muslims from horrific tyrannies in Afghanistan and Iraq, at an incredibly small cost in both American military and civilian lives. Those two wars are the most successful on record in terms of accomplishing their objectives. Bush has been a great war president, resolute in the face of carping by so-called allies. And his administration's War on Terror has been so successful in disrupting our enemies' plans that there have been NO further Muslim terrorist attacks in the United States.

I'm not quite ready to put him up on Mount Rushmore yet. Let's see how many more people he liberates by the end of his second term before getting the stonemasons ready. That said, I'm going to vote for him without reservation in November, because a vote for Kerry would give aid and comfort to our enemies. Our enemies WANT Kerry as our president, because they think he'd be weaker in defending American interests. They are probably right. And I'm not going to give them that satisfaction.


Bjorn:
This post has left me paranoid.
Now I have to go back over every one of your blog posts that I've commented on, just in case I have overlooked your wry humour and made a fool of myself!

Anders:
Don't worry too much about French cheese. Tasmania makes better cheese than the French. (Roaring Forties blue is a particular favourite, but a few days ago I had a Tasmanian double brie that was superior to any French white cheese I've ever tasted).

When I was in Sweden, I had a lovely 'green' cheese from, if I'm not mistaken, Denmark. And my fiancee just brought home some lovely (Norwegian) Jarlsberg, which I shall enjoy tomorrow.

Let's not forget English stilton.

My goodness I like cheese.


Bjørn, I really have turned into a Right Wing Death Beast, because I didn't think your post was far enough over the top. Iran, Syria, North Korea, forsooth! What about France, Canada, and Mexico? What about China (allies of France, now)? We never did get to stomp the Russkies good. And, frankly, I think Colombia needs a good shaking out. We can clean out all those drug dealers and secure the coffee supply at the same time. (You think OPEC's a gang of thugs, just wait until OCEC gets organized. Anyone remember the Brazilian coffee freeze?)


All hail the Hypnotoad!
http://web.qx.net/lhaddix/htoad.htm
The Hypnotoad will secure the 2008 election and ensure the democratic revolutions of Afghanistan and Iraq are carried on to the entire world!


John: No need to do anything abour France. After we whup the rest of the world into shape, France will be BEGGING us to let them come over here and be our sex slaves.


either it's april fool's day in Norway or a gigantic boat of hashish has just arrived on her shores.


I was beginning to think: Yeah! Now that's a Viking!! or he hit his head... April 1st always catches me off guard.


>>John writes: No need to do anything abour France. After we whup the rest of the world into shape, France will be BEGGING us to let them come over here and be our sex slaves.

yeah don't hold your breath. all you chickenshit warriors were telling us that france would fall in line in 2002 and that they wouldnt have the balls to stick to their position. except that they stood firm and went all the way in the face of tremendous pressure from the u.s. government and mass hysteria from the slavish, easily manipulated american right wingers. that's why you hate the french: they stand up to you! how dare they! it turns out they have balls, unlike the sheeps that bend over for bush and make excuses for his every lie. hehe. that's the problem with right wingers, they just love authority, they love to be used and manipulated as long as they guy doing it is wearing jackboots (or a flight jacket). in that sense, they are not free, but that's ok but they're not worthy of freedom.


Gard: "I am disappointed in you if you have not been in the military, considering that you run a war/peace blog - you can perhaps easily counter this with many arguments - though I have few kind words about that desicion among my friends, I generally think less of that group dodged draft these last year than the ones that served, because the far higher percentage of the first being slobs (I have many friends among both)"

I really was (or thought I was) a pacifist a couple of years ago, and escaped military service as a conscientious objector, (which is about as difficult as it is to say "I don't want to kill anyone" in a few more words). I'm not proud of it. On the other hand, conscription is wrong and inefficient, so I only disagree with my reasons for escaping service.

You might be amused by this entry I wrote two years ago fisking the letter I wrote to escape the military: http://www.bearstrong.net/warblog/2002_01_01_archive.html#8462365


WeenieBoy: ".. they stood firm and went all the way in the face of tremendous pressure from the u.s. government.."

Yes, I think you got it right. Their stubborn will to fight whatever initiative that might get them involved in an actual fight, truly are acts of bravery that all other nations should strive to emulate. To quote a certain bard:

Brave Sir Robin ran away,
Bravely ran away, away.
When danger reared its ugly head, he bravely turned his tail and fled.
Yes, brave Sir Robin turned about
And gallantly, he chickened out. Bravely taking to his feet,
He beat a very brave retreat,
Bravest of the brave, Sir Robin.

I think it's time the Marseillaise took a break and let this more fitting anthem take over.

Of course, knowing how much weaponry France has supplied Saddam with over the years, it is perhaps not so strange that they were so adamant in their resistance to go to Iraq. *Selling* weapons is France's thing, not *using* them.

Oh, and lighten up. French-bashing is *fun*! :)


Yeah, the frogs have such balls, they have everyone else do their dirtywork, unless they're giving the enemy our bombing targets.


Hmm... Iraq has oil, Iran has oil, Syria has oil, what other country has oil, a tiny army, and a population desperately in need of rescue from a quasi-communist, paternalistic leadership?

I hear the US Marines are busy taking lessons in Norwegian...


Bjorn, Yea, Let'er rip. As a typical American I just acquired my twenty-fifth firearm and 5,000 rounds of ammo (for a rainy day, of course). But we should start right here in Sacramento (and San Francisco) with those suck-ass 60's multiculturalist Che lovers.


http://invadefrance.us/


This is satire isn't it?


I'll have to pitch in with the front page of this weeks economist:

http://www.economist.com/images/20040403/20040403issuecovUS400.jpg

Gotta love them :-)


To all of you who argue that the Fench are chickens and the USA knows where to go when and does everything right and bla-bla bla...
Have you heard of MONUC? ....(No answer)...
Have you heard of a country called Congo?
No??..I thought so... It's located on a continent called Africa. Heard of that?? Good, good you impress me. Now go to the marvellous search engine called Google. You'll find it at www.google.com (Oh Thank You Al Gore! :-))) Copy and paste this phrase and search:

"As Congo Collapses, France Steps In"

Now read articles, enlighten yourselves and learn to love France! The cheese is even marvellous! MONUC resembles what the USA did in Liberia which was quite nice.

You see, you don't need 200.000 troops to promote peace. But you sure need that if you have amnitions of Empire, or if you have to disarm people of weapons they don't posess.


(puzzled) Why is nobody mentioning the obvious benefits to the Americans of immediately initiating a long-term occupation of Somalia? If there wasn't some profit lurking there, Chomskyan theory proves beyond a doubt the Americans would never have gone in before.

It's evil too, most certainly evil. And surely we all agree that America is morally obligated to remedy by force of arms any evil happening anywhere in the world.

So go for it! With an annual reconstruction budget of $200 million or so for the next - you know, till Africa is all nice - this could be a successful project, as long as the Somalis themselves prove to be pleasant, cooperative people.

Think of all that free government money! (Everyone in Africa, and indeed most of the world, knows that the Americans have infinite free money, and its only their selfish failure to disburse it to the proper custodians that causes world poverty, racial disharmony and other ills.) With worthy Europeans getting contracts from multi-hundred-million dollar reconstruction project in (pause for breath) Afghanistan Iraq Iran Syria Libya Somalia and North Korea (phew) the EU and world economy should boom like never before!


Lest I forget: this should all be done while vastly increasing American free-money funding for fighting AIDs in Africa, preventing sex slavery worldwide, and pursuing other worthy humanitarian projects.

Or has he already done that? It's hard to keep up with the man, he really is a marvel of compassion.


Anders - you mean the w(hine) swilling, cheese-eating surrender monkeys' chocolate-maker BELGIAN Congo???

Talk about quagmire.

Would Anders care to refresh our memories of what happened, say, around 1960 using said google?

Africa is France's continent - part of their EMPIRE, and a wonderful job they've done. It's their responsibility.

It'll bleed the frogs white, and with that EU "Constitution" you'll be paying for it (with what color is the Euro, anyway???).

The downside, Africa will bleed even more red.

Run away, Run away!


IXY - I don't think so, there is anger here.

There's also pavefrance, f***france and watchfrance. I'm sure there's more, but those are the 3 I'm aware of.


Anders: "To all of you who argue that the Fench are chickens and the USA knows where to go when and does everything right and bla-bla bla...
Have you heard of MONUC? ....(No answer)...
Have you heard of a country called Congo?
No??"

Are you really sure you want to talk about France's relationship with Africa in such a facile way? Let me pose you a counter-question: Have you heard of a country called Rwanda? No?? In 1994, as the french-armed Hutu-regime had massacred between half a million and a million Tutsis, president Mitterand, incredibly, sent in 2500 troops to protect the Hutu-dominated government; today, the total death toll has reached 4 million.

The crisis in Rwanda has a very direct relationship with the conflict in Congo. You see, as a result of the genocide, huge numbers fled to the north-eastern parts of Congo, leading to a further destabilization of an already frail country. The continuing influx of weapons and raiders from neighbouring Rwanda and Uganda, still remains the most important obstruction to the prospects for peace. You see, the mess that France is trying to clean up now, is partly a result of their earlier unilateral actions. Contrary to what you imply, it is far from clear whether they are succeeding. (AFAIK)

If you're still connected to that there Al Gore-invention, I suggest you go to the marvellous search engine called Google. You'll find it at www.google.com. Do some searches such as "France + Gabon", "France + Central African Empire", "France + Ivory Coast", "France + Algeria". For good measure, you can add "unilateral"; your number of hits won't be diminished significantly.


John: A good post. I agree to most of it.

I am no expert on Africa. A college of mine is, and she has a chronicle/feature article on the reasons of the genocide in Rwanda in Dagbladet tomorrow.
I agree that France does not have an honorable legacy on the continent, (Rwanda were among the worst chapters) but MONUC is in fact quite successful. And mind you... the world at large wanted MONUC unlike the infamous war in Iraq. You tend to accuse me of worshipping France. I accuse you of hating France and loving America.

Now, let's look at America in Africa:
Something happened in 1993...Mogadishu. Since then the US has left Africa to bleed on its own. (Like for instance the war in Rwanda that started 10 years ago.) To be frank...The USA chickened out Africa and peacekeeping until terrorism hit them in the face on 9-11. "Boots on the ground" had turned into a derogatory phrase. Clinton even promised publicly that he would not under any circumstances send troops to support the air-war. (What a brilliant thing to tell your enemies!!! Good going poker-face Billy!!) There is probably no area in the world where more lives are at risk than in Africa. Does this concern the USA? Not too much. They sent in a few marines in Liberia, but that is the only military legacy with a positive strain. They do contribute to the battle against HIV-AIDS, I appreciate that. But condoms (ooopss... I meant sexual abstinence :-)) don't make peace.

The USA chose to start a war in Iraq, instead of trying to end wars in Africa. The USA is the number one military power. It could have made a MAJOR difference in Africa if it chose to. Why don't they? I know why I believe they won't. Now why do you believe they won't?

Now since you live under the illusion that France is unilateralist and the USA is not. Let's turn to "the Western hemisphere". I would love to see you write a post on approx. 500 words titled:
"The USA in Latin America: Multilateral solutions for the benefit of all"

I promise to read it :-)


The Air-war in the previous post was against Milosevic in 1999. Sorry.


I think the answer is Yes - black turban Sadr is a proxy for Iran

and

isn't this special???

Thieves have stolen 660kg (1400lb) of dynamite from an unstaffed storage depot in Norway, say police. Around 5,000 detonators were also stolen, raising fears of a terrorist attack, officials told state radio.
The missing dynamite was more than six times the amount used for the bomb attacks on trains in Madrid nearly a month ago. Last May, a taped message attributed to al-Qaeda's second-in-command urged Muslim militants to hit Norway. In the message, a man identified as al-Qaeda deputy leader Ayman al-Zawahri advocated attacks on the embassies and interests of the United States, Britain, Australia and Norway, to drive them from Muslim countries.
The NRK state radio network reported that the storage depot, on the outskirts of the remote town of Gol, had a fence and heavy doors - but no alarm system....

Via Rantburg.


Tom in Norway:
[[ Hmm... Iraq has oil, Iran has oil, Syria has oil, what other country has oil, a tiny army, ]]

Let me just point out that Iraq did not have a tiny army. In fact, before the 1991 Persian Gulf War, Iraq had the third or fourth most powerful army on the planet.

Iraq was relatively easy to defeat in 1991 and 2003 because (a) the American military (particularly in combination with its many allies) is more powerful than any other by a staggering margin partially because of its technological advantage, (b) many of the Iraqi troops could see more advantage in losing than winning, (c) the Iraqi strategic doctrine was based on outdated Soviet models of static warfare that America had been wargaming against for decades and (d) in the 2003 war, the Australian SAS drove deep into Iraq on jeeps, knocking out the Iraqi airforce before the war began and thereby saving the lives of hundreds of Iraqi pilots.


Anders: "You tend to accuse me of worshipping France. I accuse you of hating France and loving America."

I don't so much hate the French as I loathe them. Well, not really. I'm just trying to point out that a lot of the things the US is getting accused of, the French are practicing themself.

"Something happened in 1993...Mogadishu. Since then the US has left Africa to bleed on its own."

Let's not leave Mogadishu so quickly. First, why do you think the US intervened in Somalia? According to your dogmatic view of the US, it would have been to scoop up their oil or something, right? The truth, however, is that this was the first major hunger crisis that was televised world-wide, causing a major public outcry for humanitarian intervention. So the US went in. We all know what happened in Mogadishu afterwards, and the sad fact is that it caused the US to shift policy regarding on the ground interventions. Public opinion regarding losses of troops on foreign ground has been something of a hot button issue ever since Vietnam. When it happened in such a brutal fashion as it did in Mogadishu, it caused Washington to become increasingly wary of foreign interventions. When Rwanda happens less than a year later, it's not so hard to imagine why the US didn't intervene.

"There is probably no area in the world where more lives are at risk than in Africa. Does this concern the USA?"

Sure it concerns the US. It's in their interests, as well as ours, to have a stabilized and growing Africa, and I have no problem admitting that I wish they'd have a more hands-on approach towards Africa. Still, the US has only a finite amount of resources to "police the world", and I for one don't blame them for focusing on the Middle East right now.

France, on the other hand, should not only be "concerned with Africa", they should admit responsibility to the effects their neo-conolialistic behaviour in the region has caused. Time and again, France has intervened unilaterally in Africa to protect their own interests. These interests have seldomly coincided with the interests of Africa, to put it carefully.

"Now since you live under the illusion that France is unilateralist and the USA is not."

Hogwash. I have never said that the US hasn't acted unilateral at certain points in their history, nor have I said that they *shouldn't*. Since the Monroe doctrine, the US has recognized that the cost of not protecting their interests sometimes outweighs the cost of losing international goodwill. What I'm saying is that France is just as bad. Probably worse, even. In latter times, the US has adopted a doctrine of spreading democracy as a way to protect their interests. France has no such benevolent redeeming factors in their foreign policy.

"I would love to see you write a post on approx. 500 words titled: "The USA in Latin America: Multilateral solutions for the benefit of all""

I'll give you three words instead: The Cold War.
The spread of Communism in Latin America was a very real threat and required some methods that was not very admirable in a human perspective, but you've still got to remember the stakes here. Remember Cuba, and what almost happened there.

That, of course, doesn't excuse the interventions made on behalf of United Fruit. Those were despicable any way you choose to look at it. (See? I can say negative things about the US too!)


Ah, yes, we have "TO DO" something. And what do we get for our efforts?

18 dead.


Don't lay Allende at our feet, there's books out there by others it was the Chileans.

http://val.dorta.com/archives/000343.html

The Allende Myth
The failed and tragic attempt by Salvador Allende and the Popular Unity at creating socialism in Chile in 1970-1973 has become a myth for the world left, presented as the possibility of a peaceful and democratic transition to socialism that was destroyed only because the almighty CIA acted as master puppeteer of the Chilean reaction. The myth reinforces itself; while the Cold War context is never mentioned, neither is the fact that the CIA’’s workings are well documented whereas the Cuban and Soviet interventions are still mostly unknown. The Allende myth may be good for keeping the socialist faith alive, but it evidently contradicts the historical facts.
While Augusto Pinochet’’s brutal post-coup repression and terrorism cannot be justified, it is essential to explain what led him and the Chilean armed forces to the fateful coup d’’éétat, outside of the fantasy that had him bursting onto the democratic Chilean political scene on September 11, 1973 with readymade CIA orders to stop a beautiful, pacific and liberating socialist dream. For I have no doubts that if the Chilean Marxist experiment had ended in civil war, as it appeared to most observers at the time, it would have been an even greater tragedy or, had it ended as the totalitarian society it pointed to, it would have lasted much longer and would have brought Chileans much more suffering than Pinochet’’s ugly but temporary dictatorship....

Read it for yourselves, if you want a different perspective.


Interesting post John. I acknowledge the fruit company bit :-)

You, like most others trying to legitimize current US foreign policy, are a utilitarianist. The spread of communism was SO bad: it was legitimate to break the rules. The threat Iraq posed was SO bad: it was legitimate to break the rules. Now when there turned out to be no large stocks of WMD (not even modest stocks!) the rationale is once again utilitarian: "Well..what the heck, the world is a much nicer place without Saddam so the war was ok since were all better off."
Are you getting my point? There are double standards at work here. And the US tends to define "supreme emergencies" (BTW you did read Walzer?) a little too often these days.

To me some of your arguments seem to have this structure:
What the US does may be breaking rules,norms and principles of international society.
But France is worse!!....so it's OK!

What France does is not always of major importance. They're not a superpower. They're just MAXIMIZING and squeezing the most out of their only truly effective tool. The right to veto UNSC resolutions. What America does is always of major importance. That's why it's so BLOODY annoying when you feel that they're doing the wrong thing ---


Anders: "Interesting post John. I acknowledge the fruit company bit :-)"

Hmm.. Let me show you what part of your post I acknowledge:

"The spread of communism was SO bad"

I quite agree with you there Anders. We, of the generation that was only toddlers when the threat of nuclear armageddon was a possible outcome of the cold war, tend to ignore the fear the generation before us had to live with. It wasn't just an irrational fear either, like the fear of Marsian Invation was at the time. Read up on the Cuban missile crisis, and tell me afterwards if you would have liked all the Latin American countrys to be enrolled in Comintern.

""Well..what the heck, the world is a much nicer place without Saddam so the war was ok since were all better off."
Are you getting my point? There are double standards at work here"

Not at all. Show me where French unilateral foreign interventions have provided positive bieffects, and you might have an argument.

Besides, I'm not convinced by the anti-war crowd that the justification for going to war against Iraq was illegitimate because no WMD were found. Saddam, according to res. 1441, had an obligation to provide documentation that he had destroyed the WMD he still hadn't declared in '98. He failed to do so. Therein lies the justification. We just couldn't trust his word that he'd destroyed the WMD.

"BTW you did read Walzer?"

Haven't gotten around to him yet. My reading pile is just too high these days to consider adding more. But I'll probably read him at some undetermined point in the near future.

"But France is worse!!....so it's OK! "

Once again, you fail to get the point. The point is that France is championing herself to be the arbiter of what is Right and Good and Multilateral in the world, while pointing to the US as the Loose Cannon That Must Come To The UN And Repent It's Sins. To condence my point: Irony, thy name is France.

"They're just MAXIMIZING and squeezing the most out of their only truly effective tool. The right to veto UNSC resolutions."

That's revoltingly apologetic, considering the consequences of their actions in large parts of the world.

"What America does is always of major importance. That's why it's so BLOODY annoying when you feel that they're doing the wrong thing"

To me it seems, that it doesn't matter much whether they're doing the right or wrong thing, but whether they're doing what Europe wants it to do or not.

You'll note that the discussion of the Iraq War seldomly lingers on the fact that Saddam was a brutal dictator responsible for killing million(s) of people, but that the Casus Belli for the war may have turned out to be less than sound.


Anders: "Interesting post John. I acknowledge the fruit company bit :-)"

Hmm.. Let me show you what part of your post I acknowledge:

"The spread of communism was SO bad"

I quite agree with you there Anders. We of the generation that was only toddlers when the threat of nuclear armageddon was a possibly outcome of the cold war, tend to ignore the fear the generation before us had to live with. It wasn't just an irrational fear either, like the fear of Marsian Invation was at the time. Read up on the Cuban missile crisis, and tell me afterwards if you would have liked all of the Latin American countrys to be enrolled in Comintern.

""Well..what the heck, the world is a much nicer place without Saddam so the war was ok since were all better off."
Are you getting my point? There are double standards at work here"

Not at all. Show me where French unilateral foreign interventions have provided positive bieffects, and you might have an argument.

Besides, I'm not convinced by the anti-war crowd that the justification for going to war against Iraq was illegitimate because no WMD were found. Saddam, according to res. 1441, had an obligation to provide documentation that he had destroyed the WMD he still hadn't declared in '98. He failed to do so. Therein lies the justification. We just couldn't trust his word that he'd destroyed the WMD.

"BTW you did read Walzer?"

Haven't gotten around to him yet. My reading pile is just too high these days to consider adding more. But I'll probably read him at some undetermined point in the near future.

"But France is worse!!....so it's OK! "

Once again, you fail to get the point. The point is that France is championing herself to be the arbiter of what is Right and Good and Multilateral in the world, while pointing to the US as the Loose Cannon That Must Come To The UN And Repent It's Sins. To condence my point: Irony, thy name is France.

"They're just MAXIMIZING and squeezing the most out of their only truly effective tool. The right to veto UNSC resolutions."

That's revoltingly apologetic, considering the consequences of their actions in large parts of the world.

"What America does is always of major importance. That's why it's so BLOODY annoying when you feel that they're doing the wrong thing"

To me it seems, that it doesn't matter much whether they're doing the right or wrong thing, but whether they're doing what Europe wants it to do or not.

You'll note that the discussion of the Iraq War seldomly lingers on the fact that Saddam was a brutal dictator responsible for killing millions of people, but that the Casus Belli for the war may have turned out to be less than sound.


Fuck, sorry for the double post.


Anders - we listened to *the world* in 1991 for the sake of harmony, peace, fluffy bunnies, baby chicks and kumbaya.

You should have let us finish the job.

As to commie, you don't think it was so bad, move to Cuba.

Vote w/your feet.

BUt you won't, you just talk big.

Typical, sing the praises but don't live there.

Britain I'm willing to protect, the rest of you, you were a waste of my country's blood, effort, time and my hard-earned money. Should have let Misha eat you.

And I'm not the only one who feels that way.


If you go to Google and type in French military victories and then hit "I'm feeling lucky", you get a screen that says "nothing found, did you mean defeats? :-)


You my friend, have lost your mind. I suggest you stay off Fox News and other corporate media. Remember, Dr. Mario is not a real doctor!!!


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I find it absolutely hilarious that you compare George W. Bush to the likes of Abe Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson, absolutely hilarious.


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