Comments on: Catch-22 and the long war in Afghanistan Thu, 21 Jul 2016 07:57:19 +0000 hourly 1 By: Hmmm Tue, 13 Oct 2009 01:13:12 +0000 @ the Ring.

You are absolutely right. America isn’t a monarchy, and the President is not all powerful. This means that the President does not always have the ability to make massive sweeping changes.

Unfortunately, this is the image that Obama presented to the public during his election. He made very few promises. But he carefully cultivated the image of a political messiah, who was ready to take America to the promised land.

And for creating such an image, he can not then turn around and pretend he didn’t. America will expect him to make practical action, or they will start to take a dim view of how he used image to win the election.

By: The Ring Mon, 12 Oct 2009 17:36:37 +0000 Make no mistake I’m not writing to defend the President because I’m a huge supporter…i would give any president this benefit of the doubt. I keep reading and hearing all the things that the president is suppose to be doing and isn’t and how he hasn’t done anyting. I think people forget this isn’t a monarchy. The president really doesn’t have absolute power to make things any way he wants…so when blame is to be cast it should also include the rest of congress that not getting things done as well…The president is our leader but don’t forget how our government really operates. It is designed specifically to deterr one man or woman from having complete power. So it confuses me to hear the inconsistant criticism of the presidents. I can still remember the chastizing the last president took for doing thge opposite of Obama and trying to “go it alone”. Criticism is not nessesarily a bad thing, but when you put someone in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation there aren’t any winners.

By: Anon Sun, 11 Oct 2009 02:58:48 +0000 “Do you think Bush, Pelosi, Cheney, Obama care about what’s best for you and me before they make their decisions in the middle east?”

Yes. Most certainly.

But the issue is that the job of a government is to consider the national interest. And that includes domestic, military, foreign, civil, legal and economic considerations.

So if you believe one of those considerations takes priority over everything else, it is understandable that you would be upset when the overall direction of the nation does not comply with your priority.

Government has always been a balancing act of pragmatism. That is something the Obama government is beginning to learn right now. Something they shouldn’t have forgotten in the first place. But such is life.

One thing I disagree with is isolationism. A neutral diplomatic stance will not further American interests. Nor will it further Western interests, of which America is a central part.

Nor do I believe that abusive groups such as the Taliban or Saddam should be allowed to repress their own people. That doesn’t mean America has any moral right to be policeman. But at the same time, it doesn’t prevent us from doing as we please. Once again, pragmatism.

Were I taxed into oblivion in order to do this, I would probably think otherwise. But then I wouldn’t be thinking in an objective manner, would I?

By: Michael Ham Sat, 10 Oct 2009 12:57:24 +0000 Anon,

I’m different from the vast majority of the peace movement. I’m a constitutionalist, our founding fathers formed this country with a neutral foreign policy. We wouldn’t even intervene in the French Revolution even though without the French we would have no country.

Imagine the tax cuts that could be given to Americans if we stopped these wars, imagine how much more disposable income civilians and businesses would have if our military budget didn’t skyrocket every single year no matter what the party in control is. I’m a small government guy. I don’t understand how those of you with a party think our bureaucrats are complete idiots when it comes to healthcare but all of a sudden turn into geniuses when it comes to foreign policy and vice versa. It’s the same people making the judgement decisions.

I want your opinion on this. Do you think Bush, Pelosi, Cheney, Obama care about what’s best for you and me before they make their decisions in the middle east? Do you think they ask themselves “how can I help average joe american with our military”? Do you think your Republicans had us middle class americans in mind when they went to war with Iraq?

I guess just having watch government fail at everything from balancing budgets to delivering mail efficiently to not blowing up tankers in crowded markets just makes me a little more cynical of whether they know (or give a damn) about doing what’s right.

By: Peter H Sat, 10 Oct 2009 08:04:26 +0000 Annon, I recommend reading “Fenian Fire: The British Government Plot to Assassinate Queen Victoria”
by Christy Campbell. It doesn’t explain how a theoretically religious fanatic blows up a theoretically fellow religious adherent, but it is a very interesting study in how the leadership of the supposed enemy is in cahoots with their supposed “enemy”. I don’t know if it is relevant to the current situation in Afghanistan or Iraq, but suspect it possibly, in an abstract way, is. It seems to be about money, power and manipulating public opinion.
Have a nice day!

By: Anon Sat, 10 Oct 2009 01:28:55 +0000 As a fellow Athiest (albeit a right-wing, pro-military interventionist republican) I agree.

But you would think that as these innocent civilians are all muslim, they wouldn’t fit the criteria for being an infidel.

So why would a freedom fighter blow himself up in a market place, when there are no military targets around? Killing nobody but innocent men, women and children. All muslim?

It seems a bit confusing for a freedom fighter to focus one’s efforts on killing the “victims” of occupation.

Which is why I do not see it as the actions of resistance or freedom fighter group. It is the efforts of a small armed group, seeking to impose it’s will on the civilian population. And they will do whatever it takes to get control of those people, even if they have to kill them.

And this will only get worse if America pulls out of Iraq and Afganistan before they are stable. Just because peace supporters think its not our business anymore once we leave, won’t stop the countless deaths and suffering that will result if we pull out too early.

And that is why we need to stay for the moment. Because it is a peacekeeping operation. And the “peace” in those countries now is much better then what will happen if we cut and run.

By: Michael Ham Fri, 09 Oct 2009 21:28:02 +0000 Anon,

I’m not defending car bombers and suicide bombers. It’s more of a religious thing, they think they’re killing infidels. Both the Bible and the Quran say to kill non-believers so when people are entrenched in those beliefs you’ll see them follow the words of their scripture.

Me being an atheist, i find those beliefs as crazy.

By: Anon Fri, 09 Oct 2009 13:51:05 +0000 Mr Ham.

If America was invaded and occupied by a foreign power, you bet I would be up in arms. Hell, I would probably fight along side you.

But you know one thing I wouldn’t do? Get a car bomb and blow it up in the middle of Detroit, killing fifty innocent men, women and children. Would you?

Care to explain why this is happening in Afganistan and Iraq? Why islamic “freedom fighters” are killing innocent civilians with marketplace carbombs, and murdering people and burying them in mass graves?

I can’t really seem to get it. Being so entrenched in my beliefs and all that…

By: Michael Ham Fri, 09 Oct 2009 13:03:50 +0000 Anon,

We taught militant islam to Afghani’s when they were fighting Russia. We supported militant islam when we backed Saddam Hussein in his war against Iran. We support King Abdullah a militant islamic dictator in Saudi Arabia. We have double standards when it comes to Israel and every other nation in the area, Israel obviously jewish, so people who are against those double standards are going to be pushed further and further towards militant islam.

Now we see a christian nation invade, attack and/or occupy 3 islamic countries in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan. So moderate Islams are going to be driven to militant extremist Islams because they’re sick of watching their families and friends be killed by people of different faith from another part of the world.

Anon, you’re a smart man, but people like you will never get it. You’re too entrenched in your beliefs. I hope that no matter what the odds, if a foreign country ever invades and occupies us here in the US that you and I would fight shoulder to shoulder rather than just rolling over and submitting like you want all the enemies of the US in the current world to do.

By: Gaspard Fri, 09 Oct 2009 07:30:03 +0000 Hmmm, Ham and Anon’s

We keep losing sight of the fact that a sectarian war is a civil/religious war. There is bankrolling etc. amongst Sunni and Shiite/Shia. What are THEY really fighting about ? Money ? What is the source of that money ? Power ? What is the source of this power ? The US should shed its obsession of being a ‘presence’ outside their own borders. It has enough off-shore assets now, let’s not erode cash flow and capital assets even further. Add branding.

It is bad to land in the cross-fire of something you are unfamiliar with, and this is a separate reality.

I associate Kabul with kite-runners, not flying bullets and shock waves