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View Poll Results: Agree or disagree?
Agree completely 22 61.11%
Mostly Agree 8 22.22%
Uncertain 1 2.78%
Mostly Disagree 3 8.33%
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Voters: 36. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-20-2014, 10:35 AM  
Taco John Taco John is offline
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Rand Paul: America Shouldn't Choose Sides in Iraq's Civil War

America Shouldn't Choose Sides in Iraq's Civil War

Obama has made mistakes but so did Bush by invading. There's no good case for U.S. military intervention now.

By RAND PAUL

Though many claim the mantle of Ronald Reagan on foreign policy, too few look at how he really conducted it. The Iraq war is one of the best examples of where we went wrong because we ignored that.

In 1984, Reagan's Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger developed the following criteria for war, primarily to avoid another Vietnam. His speech, "The Uses of Military Power," boils down to this: The United States should not commit forces to combat unless the vital national interests of the U.S. or its allies are involved and only "with the clear intention of winning." U.S. combat troops should be committed only with "clearly defined political and military objectives" and with the capacity to accomplish those objectives and with a "reasonable assurance" of the support of U.S. public opinion and Congress and only "as a last resort."

Much of the rationale for going to war in 2003 did not measure up to the Weinberger Doctrine, and I opposed the Iraq war. I thought we needed to be more prudent about the weightiest decision a country can make. Like Reagan, I thought we should never be eager to go to war. And now, 11 years later, we are still dealing with the consequences.


Today the Middle East is less stable than in 2003. The Iraq war strengthened Iran's influence in Iraq and throughout the Middle East. Sunni extremists backed by Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar have filled the vacuum. The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has taken over the cities of Mosul, Tikrit and is on the march to Baghdad.

While President Obama said Thursday he will not send "combat troops," he said he is sending 300 military advisers and he has 275 servicemen to guard the U.S. Embassy. Few are advocating for boots on the ground but many are calling for airstrikes.

Let me address both of these. First, we should not put any U.S. troops on the ground in Iraq, unless it is to secure or evacuate U.S. personnel and diplomatic facilities. And while we may not completely rule out airstrikes, there are many questions that need to be addressed first.

What would airstrikes accomplish? We know that Iran is aiding the Iraqi government against ISIS. Do we want to, in effect, become Iran's air force? What's in this for Iran? Why should we choose a side, and if we do, who are we really helping?

This administration, through bad decision-making that I specifically warned against, has already indirectly aided al Qaeda and ISIS in Syria—the very group some now propose to counter with U.S. troops.

For the small group calling for boots on the ground—how can we ask our brave men and women to risk their lives for a country the Iraqis aren't willing to fight for themselves? Iraqi soldiers are stripping off their uniforms and fleeing this fight. We shouldn't ask our soldiers to put their uniforms on to take their places.

No matter what the administration is planning, I also insist that it go through Congress. President Obama declared this war over and even asked Congress to rescind its 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq, something I agreed with. If he or others want a new war or military action, they need a new approval, from Congress, or I will oppose them.

The U.S. spent eight years training the Iraqis and nearly a decade of war has brought us to this point. Those who say it was a mistake to leave are forgetting that Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's government was demanding we leave in 2011.

Those who say we must re-engage in Iraq are also forgetting an important part of the Weinberger Doctrine: "U.S. troops should not be committed to battle without a 'reasonable assurance' of the support of U.S. public opinion and Congress." To attempt to transform Iraq into something more amenable to our interests would likely require another decade of U.S. presence and perhaps another 4,000 American lives—a generational commitment that few Americans would be willing to make.

Many of those clamoring for military action now are the same people who made every false assumption imaginable about the cost, challenge and purpose of the Iraq war. They have been so wrong for so long. Why should we listen to them again?

Saying the mess in Iraq is President Obama's fault ignores what President Bush did wrong. Saying it is President Bush's fault is to ignore all the horrible foreign policy decisions in Syria, Libya, Egypt and elsewhere under President Obama, many of which may have contributed to the current crisis in Iraq. For former Bush officials to blame President Obama or for Democrats to blame President Bush only serves as a reminder that both sides continue to get foreign policy wrong. We need a new approach, one that emulates Reagan's policies, puts America first, seeks peace, faces war reluctantly, and when necessary acts fully and decisively.

Too many in Washington are prevented by their own pride from admitting their mistakes. They are more concerned about saving face or pursuing a rigid ideology than they are with constructing a realist foreign policy.

David Frum, a former speechwriter for George W. Bush and a strong advocate for the Iraq war, said recently that "the United States overestimated the threat from Saddam Hussein in 2003. Without an active nuclear-weapons program, he was not a danger beyond his immediate vicinity. That war cost this country dearly. The United States failed in its most ambitious objective: establishing a stable, Western-oriented government for all of Iraq." He added that "the government in Baghdad is not an American friend, and action against ISIS will not advance U.S. interests."

Other advocates for the Iraq war need to examine the evidence and make rational decisions based on it. That's something lacking throughout Washington. Leadership means admitting our mistakes so we can correct them. We will do ourselves no favors if we simply recommit to the same mistakes and heed the advice of those who made them in the first place.

Mr. Paul is a Republican senator from Kentucky.

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Old 06-22-2014, 12:13 PM   #76
Loneiguana Loneiguana is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donger View Post
If you have evidence that Bush lied about WMD (i.e., he knew that Iraq had disposed of everything), please post it. If you don't, I'd suggest that you cease making claims that he did.

Thanks.
Ten Appalling Lies We Were Told About Iraq

http://www.alternet.org/story/16274/...old_about_iraq

Quote:
LIE #2: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." -- President Bush, Jan.28, 2003, in the State of the Union address.

FACT: This whopper was based on a document that the White House already knew to be a forgery thanks to the CIA. Sold to Italian intelligence by some hustler, the document carried the signature of an official who had been out of office for 10 years and referenced a constitution that was no longer in effect. The ex-ambassador who the CIA sent to check out the story is pissed: "They knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie," he told the New Republic, anonymously. "They [the White House] were unpersuasive about aluminum tubes and added this to make their case more strongly."
Knew they were lies and lied anyway.

Quote:
LIE #8: "Our conservative estimate is that Iraq today has a stockpile of between 100 and 500 tons of chemical weapons agent. That is enough to fill 16,000 battlefield rockets." -- Secretary of State Colin Powell, Feb. 5 2003, in remarks to the UN Security Council.

FACT: Putting aside the glaring fact that not one drop of this massive stockpile has been found, as previously reported on AlterNet the United States' own intelligence reports show that these stocks -- if they existed -- were well past their use-by date and therefore useless as weapon fodder.
Twenty Lies About the Iraq War

http://www.globalresearch.ca/twenty-...aq-war/5327386

Quote:
3 Iraq was seeking uranium from Africa for a “reconstituted” nuclear weapons programme

The head of the CIA has now admitted that documents purporting to show that Iraq tried to import uranium from Niger in west Africa were forged, and that the claim should never have been in President Bush’s State of the Union address. Britain sticks by the claim, insisting it has “separate intelligence”. The Foreign Office conceded last week that this information is now “under review”.
Here, you'll love this one... AKA, knew they were disposed of.

Quote:
9 Previous weapons inspections had failed

Tony Blair told this newspaper in March that the UN had “tried unsuccessfully for 12 years to get Saddam to disarm peacefully”. But in 1999 a Security Council panel concluded: “Although important elements still have to be resolved, the bulk of Iraq’s proscribed weapons programmes has been eliminated.” Mr Blair also claimed UN inspectors “found no trace at all of Saddam’s offensive biological weapons programme” until his son-in-law defected. In fact the UN got the regime to admit to its biological weapons programme more than a month before the defection.
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:31 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Ten Appalling Lies We Were Told About Iraq

http://www.alternet.org/story/16274/...old_about_iraq



Knew they were lies and lied anyway.



Twenty Lies About the Iraq War

http://www.globalresearch.ca/twenty-...aq-war/5327386



Here, you'll love this one... AKA, knew they were disposed of.
Now those are legitimate websites/LibTards
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:49 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Knew they were lies and lied anyway.
And you think those quotes prove that Bush lied?
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:58 PM   #79
Loneiguana Loneiguana is offline
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
And you think those quotes prove that Bush lied?
Do you have any evidence that anything the administration said about WMD turned out to be true?

/yes, the very first one I posted shows that Bush knew it was a lie when he lied.
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:08 PM   #80
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So are you gonna vote in the poll or what? Or just bother Republicans?
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:21 PM   #81
Raiderhader Raiderhader is offline
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Actually, that authorization was unConstitutional because the Congress transferred their constitutional authority or power over to the executive branch to "decide" when he could use military action--in this case the start of an aggressive war.

That's what was wrong with that resolution. Congress cannot just transfer their own Constitutional powers. They get to "decide" and the president executes the war.

TJ argument is that there was not an actual "Declaration of War" by the Congress.

I love how we have those on the right enforcing UN resolutions when they don't even like the UN as our membership erodes sovereignty and does an end run around the Constitution. I thought the Constitution and a strict construction was what the right claimed to support. Guess not.

What in the hell does any of that have to do with what I said? I was not making a case for or against the authorization. I was dispelling TJ's revisionist history.
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:29 PM   #82
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Do you have any evidence that anything the administration said about WMD turned out to be true?
No. That doesn't mean they lied. It could just mean they were wrong. Until I see evidence to the contrary, that is what I'm going to believe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
/yes, the very first one I posted shows that Bush knew it was a lie when he lied.
Actually, no it doesn't. It's a quote from an anonymous source. If that constitutes proof in your eyes, you have an amazingly low threshold for proof.
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:32 PM   #83
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I'm curious..... While still President, did Bill Clinton lie when he said that Iraq had WMDs?
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:56 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Actually, no it doesn't. It's a quote from an anonymous source. If that constitutes proof in your eyes, you have an amazingly low threshold for proof.
Quote:
This whopper was based on a document that the White House already knew to be a forgery thanks to the CIA.
Quote:
The head of the CIA has now admitted that documents purporting to show that Iraq tried to import uranium from Niger in west Africa were forged,
The CIA is a low threshold of proof?

There are 18 other lies there as well, do you have wool to pull over your eyes for those too?
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Old 06-22-2014, 02:44 PM   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
Actually, that authorization was unConstitutional because the Congress transferred their constitutional authority or power over to the executive branch to "decide" when he could use military action--in this case the start of an aggressive war.
That's a pretty weak argument. The Constitution gives the President the power to command the armed forces so he always has the power to use his discretion as to if and when armed conflict starts even after a declaration of war. The Authorization satisfies the Congressional role in declaring war.
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Old 06-22-2014, 02:45 PM   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
Ten Appalling Lies We Were Told About Iraq

http://www.alternet.org/story/16274/...old_about_iraq
Already debunked. So lame.
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Old 06-22-2014, 03:14 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by Raiderhader View Post
They authorized it twice actually. All of the democrats asked for a second vote because they largely voted against it the first time and wanted to change that precisely because the public was very much bought in.

Nothing Teej said there comes remotely close to actual history.
You can say that, but congressional authorization is not the same thing as declaring war. You can wrangle over the legalese of it all you want, but what you can't debate is the idea that the American people ever felt any commitment to seeing this thing through.
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Old 06-22-2014, 04:01 PM   #88
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Originally Posted by Raiderhader View Post
What in the hell does any of that have to do with what I said? I was not making a case for or against the authorization. I was dispelling TJ's revisionist history.
It relates to what you said, in that I ADDED APPLICABLE information that is often omitted when discussing that authorization. If you don't think adding how it was an unConstiutional form of authorization
then that's your error. That may not be what you were talking about per se--but needed commentary, imo. Especially since your post implied it was legally or validly authorized.

Quote:
They authorized it twice actually. ...
Nothing Teej said there comes remotely close to actual history
The above is what you said that is relevant to my post.
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Old 06-22-2014, 04:13 PM   #89
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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
The CIA is a low threshold of proof?
Did CIA know that they were forged before the war began?

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Originally Posted by Loneiguana View Post
There are 18 other lies there as well, do you have wool to pull over your eyes for those too?
Like I said, no, they aren't lies. They were wrong. There's a rather significant difference.
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Old 06-22-2014, 04:18 PM   #90
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Did CIA know that they were forged before the war began?



Like I said, no, they aren't lies. They were wrong. There's a rather significant difference.
It doesn't really matter what the CIA knew or thought they knew about any forgery because the 16 words in Bush's SOTU are about what the British believed and they said at the time that they based their belief on mulitple sources. In a subsequent investigation of pre-war intel (the Butler Review), the Brits concluded that Bush's statement was "well founded".

Even if our CIA had doubts or believed otherwise, Bush's statement wasn't a lie. It's not like the CIA has proved to be the gold standard in terms of divining reality from raw intelligence over the years anyway. They dramatically underestimated Saddam's nuclear program in 1991 and they got it wrong again in the opposite direction on Saddam's WMD in 2003.
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