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Geezil

So, we are going to war with Syria?

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Is it only officially defined a moral obscenity when it happens in the middle east? Where is Kerry's official outrage at the moral obscenities going on in Sudan or the Congo?

Not getting enough pub to bother with.

If the reason for the uproar is because of the strategic implications of that region, then fine. But let's say that up front. Hiding the agenda behind "because it is a moral obscenity to mankind" is just so hypocritical.

This doesn't bother me at all. The world is a big place, and I would bet there is not a single instance of a foreign policy statement made by our govt in the last 100 years that I couldnt find a way to attack it for hypocrisy and inconsistency.

The only question to consider is: is the statement true? I think it clearly is. The use of chemical weapons IS a moral obscenity.

So is bombing a public transportation system or burning a school.

Of course.

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

War's not the answer here, I agree. I'm just theorizing that a lot of people will think it's okay as long as it's their guy initiating it.

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

War's not the answer here, I agree. I'm just theorizing that a lot of people will think it's okay as long as it's their guy initiating it.

You know I don't play that. Obama will get no pass from me.

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Aren't we energy independent now...who cares about the middle east. Let countries that need their oil worry about it. We got problems to fix at home.

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Aren't we energy independent now...who cares about the middle east. Let countries that need their oil worry about it. We got problems to fix at home.

No we aren't. We still import about 4 million bpd. We will likely never be fully independent unless we go heavily renewable.

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It actually did work out pretty well in those countries. So I'm cool wirth it.

What's our goal in Syria? Just to eliminate Assad? Then what?
Don't care
Ok, then you don't care. Why even post in this thread?

I care that we are going to war. I do not care what the goal is.

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

War's not the answer here, I agree. I'm just theorizing that a lot of people will think it's okay as long as it's their guy initiating it.

You know I don't play that. Obama will get no pass from me.

I do know that. I also am hoping you don't drive a Volvo.

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

War's not the answer here, I agree. I'm just theorizing that a lot of people will think it's okay as long as it's their guy initiating it.

You know I don't play that. Obama will get no pass from me.

I do know that. I also am hoping you don't drive a Volvo.

No Volvo's. Just bought a Nissan Versa though. Sorry tried to buy "American" put the wife liked the Versa better because it was "cuter". It does drive pretty decent and is fairly peppy for a commuter car. I wish it came with satellite radio though :kicksrock:

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I feel bad for all those people that are going to have to scrape those "War is not the answer" bumper stickers off their Volvos. :sadbanana:

War isn't the answer and we will come to once again regret sticking our nose in if we aren't very, very careful. And very ,very careful really isn't what we do.

agreed. this could get ugly in a hurry.

Edited by Geezil

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So John Kerry and President Obama say there must be accountability for the use of chemical weapons and we must therefore bomb the #### out of Syria thus empowering AQ. Well who gets to hold whom responsible for this:

CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam as He Gassed Iran

The U.S. government may be considering military action in response to chemical strikes near Damascus. But a generation ago, America's military and intelligence communities knew about and did nothing to stop a series of nerve gas attacks far more devastating than anything Syria has seen, Foreign Policy has learned.

In 1988, during the waning days of Iraq's war with Iran, the United States learned through satellite imagery that Iran was about to gain a major strategic advantage by exploiting a hole in Iraqi defenses. U.S. intelligence officials conveyed the location of the Iranian troops to Iraq, fully aware that Hussein's military would attack with chemical weapons, including sarin, a lethal nerve agent.

The intelligence included imagery and maps about Iranian troop movements, as well as the locations of Iranian logistics facilities and details about Iranian air defenses. The Iraqis used mustard gas and sarin prior to four major offensives in early 1988 that relied on U.S. satellite imagery, maps, and other intelligence. These attacks helped to tilt the war in Iraq's favor and bring Iran to the negotiating table, and they ensured that the Reagan administration's long-standing policy of securing an Iraqi victory would succeed. But they were also the last in a series of chemical strikes stretching back several years that the Reagan administration knew about and didn't disclose.

U.S. officials have long denied acquiescing to Iraqi chemical attacks, insisting that Hussein's government never announced he was going to use the weapons. But retired Air Force Col. Rick Francona, who was a military attaché in Baghdad during the 1988 strikes, paints a different picture.

"The Iraqis never told us that they intended to use nerve gas. They didn't have to. We already knew," he told Foreign Policy.

According to recently declassified CIA documents and interviews with former intelligence officials like Francona, the U.S. had firm evidence of Iraqi chemical attacks beginning in 1983. At the time, Iran was publicly alleging that illegal chemical attacks were carried out on its forces, and was building a case to present to the United Nations. But it lacked the evidence implicating Iraq, much of which was contained in top secret reports and memoranda sent to the most senior intelligence officials in the U.S. government. The CIA declined to comment for this story.

In contrast to today's wrenching debate over whether the United States should intervene to stop alleged chemical weapons attacks by the Syrian government, the United States applied a cold calculus three decades ago to Hussein's widespread use of chemical weapons against his enemies and his own people. The Reagan administration decided that it was better to let the attacks continue if they might turn the tide of the war. And even if they were discovered, the CIA wagered that international outrage and condemnation would be muted.

In the documents, the CIA said that Iran might not discover persuasive evidence of the weapons' use -- even though the agency possessed it. Also, the agency noted that the Soviet Union had previously used chemical agents in Afghanistan and suffered few repercussions.

It has been previously reported that the United States provided tactical intelligence to Iraq at the same time that officials suspected Hussein would use chemical weapons. But the CIA documents, which sat almost entirely unnoticed in a trove of declassified material at the National Archives in College Park, Md., combined with exclusive interviews with former intelligence officials, reveal new details about the depth of the United States' knowledge of how and when Iraq employed the deadly agents. They show that senior U.S. officials were being regularly informed about the scale of the nerve gas attacks. They are tantamount to an official American admission of complicity in some of the most gruesome chemical weapons attacks ever launched.

The story is 4 pages long you should probably read the whole thing from Foreign Policy.

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Defense Contractor CEOs have to feed their kids :shrug:

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

Edited by wdcrob

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support, depending on the question. But only 25-30% opposed the war ahead of time.

Proud to have been right on Iraq from the beginning.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support, depending on the question. But only 25-30% opposed the war ahead of time.

Proud to have been right on Iraq from the beginning.

What were you right about? That there were no WMDs?

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It actually did work out pretty well in those countries. So I'm cool wirth it.

In what alternate reality? Because that sure isn't at all true in this one.

I work at Walter Reed and every day I see people missing all sorts of limbs hobbling around base. And those are the ones who were lucky enough to live. I'd ask them if they think their leg or arm was worth the current state of affairs in Afganistan or Iraq, but I'm pretty sure I already know the answer.
Wow. I admire you greatly for the work yoU do and know I couldn't do it myself.

Iraq was a huge mistake. Afghanistan has been tragic, but inevitable: after 9/11 we couldn't leave the ataliban in power. Iraq was NOT inevitable: we had choices and made the wrong ones.

As regards the soldiers, I hope they are at least receiving the very best care possible. I have read news stories at times which suggests they haven't been, which always enrages me. The one saving grace that distinguishes these wars from the Vietnam debacle is that all of the soldiers were volunteers this time around.

I pretty much agree RE: Iraq and Afghanistan. I was in the Army @ the time we invaded Iraq and I thought it was an idiotic waste of lives and resources then and I still do now.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support, depending on the question. But only 25-30% opposed the war ahead of time.

Proud to have been right on Iraq from the beginning.

What were you right about? That there were no WMDs?

About the whole thing. The lack of WMDs. How we would be there for at least a decade. How it would cost billions and billions we'd never get back. And lastly how the lack of planning for what happened next would leave a situation where we declared victory and walked away while the country continued to burn in sectarian fighting.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

so it seems like you supported a war based on who was president.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

Agree on Afghanistan and Iraq (and I gave Bush the benefit of the doubt at first). But I honestly have no idea on Syria. I'm not even sure how you'd go about making a good decision on Syria.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

so it seems like you supported a war based on who was president.

That's quite the leap there, bro.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

This is exactly right. Syria is Iraq, Iraq is Syria. The boundaries created by the Brits & French are totally artificial; the rebels and guerillas, and terrorists, in this region view the Levant (or Mediterranean crescent) as one cohesive place, and in truth that's what it is and that's why the ad hoc boundaries and political systems the Europeans set up have never worked. This extends into Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, Jordan, this is a big arc that reaches over the Arabian peninsula and these battles are all regional but they are also all part of a larger war.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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Government killing their people is a bad thing - is a huge affront to humanity and a monstrous tragedy...but what makes the US feel it is in a morally superior position to enforce anything? Like it or not, we are seen as imperialist invaders. The populace doesn't worry about things like capitalism and democracy - they want to be able to have food and water. We can't even provide that to our own citizens - yet we can enter another war to liberate the people...and then what? Are we dropping food and water bombs for the aftermath? Who do you suppose will fill the vacuum created?

Why is freedom from tyranny OUR responsibility when we are seen as a tyrant ourselves? How many lives do we have to sacrifice at the altar of the military-industrial complex? What national interest does this serve? Our armed forces have sworn an oath to protect and defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. Why are we creating enemies (foreign and domestic)?

Edited by Mr. Know-It-All

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I don't think your viewpoint is shared by all the people we've affected by our actions. The ones that view us as imperialist invaders are predominantly those in power whose apple carts we've upset.

Conversely, there have been huge strides in human (particularly women's) rights in Afghanistan after we took the Taliban out behind the woodshed.

More simply put, I think you're oversimplifying.

Edited by Andy Dufresne

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Right now this seems to be a pretty open saber rattling exercise to see how far the Russians want to go down with the ship and Assad. If we were really, really going to do this we'd have kept our mouth shut about our "plans". In some way Kerry and the Administration are going to have to come up with a way for the Russians to save face here. If we don't they may start getting even more cozy with the Iranian's and their nuclear program ambitions. In the end Iran is strategically more important than Syria - more oil and the Straits - then Syria. This is going to be another tough cleanup job now matter how it goes down - either through Assad going quietly or a real post civil war bloodbath. Hopefully we are really looking at the chess board to see where this is going to take us 20 years from now.

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Right now this seems to be a pretty open saber rattling exercise to see how far the Russians want to go down with the ship and Assad. If we were really, really going to do this we'd have kept our mouth shut about our "plans". In some way Kerry and the Administration are going to have to come up with a way for the Russians to save face here. If we don't they may start getting even more cozy with the Iranian's and their nuclear program ambitions. In the end Iran is strategically more important than Syria - more oil and the Straits - then Syria. This is going to be another tough cleanup job now matter how it goes down - either through Assad going quietly or a real post civil war bloodbath. Hopefully we are really looking at the chess board to see where this is going to take us 20 years from now.

Interesting point. I'd like to believe that you're right about this. Hopefully you are.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

so it seems like you supported a war based on who was president.

That's quite the leap there, bro.

For: Iraq, Afghanistan. Against: Libya, Syria

Bro.

Edited by Fennis

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I don't think your viewpoint is shared by all the people we've affected by our actions. The ones that view us as imperialist invaders are predominantly those in power whose apple carts we've upset.

Conversely, there have been huge strides in human (particularly women's) rights in Afghanistan after we took the Taliban out behind the woodshed.

More simply put, I think you're oversimplifying.

That's incorrect. The ones who view us as imperial invaders tend to have had our chosen strong mans heel on their throat.

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Right now this seems to be a pretty open saber rattling exercise to see how far the Russians want to go down with the ship and Assad. If we were really, really going to do this we'd have kept our mouth shut about our "plans". In some way Kerry and the Administration are going to have to come up with a way for the Russians to save face here. If we don't they may start getting even more cozy with the Iranian's and their nuclear program ambitions. In the end Iran is strategically more important than Syria - more oil and the Straits - then Syria. This is going to be another tough cleanup job now matter how it goes down - either through Assad going quietly or a real post civil war bloodbath. Hopefully we are really looking at the chess board to see where this is going to take us 20 years from now.

They aren't declassifying documents to provide a justification for attack to rattle sabers. They are going to go forward.

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so it seems like you supported a war based on who was president.

That's quite the leap there, bro.

For: Iraq, Afghanistan. Against: Libya, Syria

Bro.

Based on evidence, not who is sitting in the center seat.

And I don't recall saying anything about Libya.

Edited by Andy Dufresne

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It actually did work out pretty well in those countries. So I'm cool wirth it.

What's our goal in Syria? Just to eliminate Assad? Then what?
Don't care
Ok, then you don't care. Why even post in this thread?

I care that we are going to war. I do not care what the goal is.

Isn't the goal pretty important? If the goal doesn't matter or you don't know what goal should be, how can you begin to support or understand the war?

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Aren't we energy independent now...who cares about the middle east. Let countries that need their oil worry about it. We got problems to fix at home.

No we aren't. We still import about 4 million bpd. We will likely never be fully independent unless we go heavily renewable.

We are not physically dependent upon OPEC oil. We choose to purchase and import oil from OPEC for geopolitical and economic reasons. It's far more complicated than simply stating that our country relies on OPEC.

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I thought big bad North Korea was our enemy now?

Stop thinking like a dog and start being the cat you're expected to be. The government and media are dangling a string over Syria right now. Look at it. Look at it! LOOK AT IT!!!!

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America, #### Yeah by Trey Parker

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America...

America, #### YEAH!

Coming again, to save the mother ####### day yeah,

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(#### yeah, #### yeah)

Sportsmanship

Books

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Right now this seems to be a pretty open saber rattling exercise to see how far the Russians want to go down with the ship and Assad. If we were really, really going to do this we'd have kept our mouth shut about our "plans". In some way Kerry and the Administration are going to have to come up with a way for the Russians to save face here. If we don't they may start getting even more cozy with the Iranian's and their nuclear program ambitions. In the end Iran is strategically more important than Syria - more oil and the Straits - then Syria. This is going to be another tough cleanup job now matter how it goes down - either through Assad going quietly or a real post civil war bloodbath. Hopefully we are really looking at the chess board to see where this is going to take us 20 years from now.

They aren't declassifying documents to provide a justification for attack to rattle sabers. They are going to go forward.

I think they are - they have tried the quiet diplomatic approach with Russia through meetings - now they are pulling these out to get the worldwide court of public opinion going against Russia. It's going to be a bit dangerous embarrassing and isolating Putin and Co. - hard to expect where they will go. If we throw them a meaty enough bone in the end and still give them some "sphere of influence" in the region - I think it will work. .It sort of did in Kosovo when the Serbs did not get the backing they needed. I'm not sure what that would look like - the Russian Military Industrial Complex enjoyed making money from Syria just as much as ours does in other places.Certainly we are damaging our relationship with Russia even more and we will really have to work hard at getting them back in the fold.

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Aren't we energy independent now...who cares about the middle east. Let countries that need their oil worry about it. We got problems to fix at home.

No we aren't. We still import about 4 million bpd. We will likely never be fully independent unless we go heavily renewable.

Mostly from Canada and Mexico, but I get what you're saying.

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Andy you're forgetting that something like 99% of the US supported Bush when he attacked the Taliban in Afghanistan, and something like 90% of the US supported Bush when he went to war with Iraq.

The opposition came later -- only against the war in Iraq after it was obvious there were no WMDs there.

ETA: oops. Polls from the time show 60-75% support for the war in Iraq, depending on the question. But only 25-35% opposed the war ahead of time.

For Afghanistan it looks like the number was in the high 80s.

I'm not forgetting. I'm really just taking a shot at that idiotic bumper sticker. War absolutely sometimes is the answer. I still think it was in Afghanistan. It clearly was not in Iraq. Syria looks a lot like Iraq to me.

If you flipped it over and turned it a little, it actually does. I never noticed that before.

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Personally I believe the president is obligated to go to Congress for permission to do this (and even if you think he is not legally obligated then I think he should anyway).

You raise a very interesting question here. Since Eisenhower, each and every President has increased the amount of executive authority over the use of the military. In 1973, Congress passed the War Powers Resolution, which requires a 48 hour notification to Congress and limits the President to 60 days use of military force without the approval of Congress. Every President since 1973 without exception has held that this act is unConstitutional. Reagan and Clinton both deliberately violated it openly, which might have caused the Supreme Court to review, but in both instances Congress chose to take no action.

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Personally I believe the president is obligated to go to Congress for permission to do this (and even if you think he is not legally obligated then I think he should anyway).

You raise a very interesting question here. Since Eisenhower, each and every President has increased the amount of executive authority over the use of the military. In 1973, Congress passed the War Powers Resolution, which requires a 48 hour notification to Congress and limits the President to 60 days use of military force without the approval of Congress. Every President since 1973 without exception has held that this act is unConstitutional. Reagan and Clinton both deliberately violated it openly, which might have caused the Supreme Court to review, but in both instances Congress chose to take no action.

This is my thought about democracy: we should practice it.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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It actually did work out pretty well in those countries. So I'm cool wirth it.

In what alternate reality? Because that sure isn't at all true in this one.

I work at Walter Reed and every day I see people missing all sorts of limbs hobbling around base. And those are the ones who were lucky enough to live. I'd ask them if they think their leg or arm was worth the current state of affairs in Afganistan or Iraq, but I'm pretty sure I already know the answer.
Wow. I admire you greatly for the work yoU do and know I couldn't do it myself.

Iraq was a huge mistake. Afghanistan has been tragic, but inevitable: after 9/11 we couldn't leave the ataliban in power. Iraq was NOT inevitable: we had choices and made the wrong ones.

As regards the soldiers, I hope they are at least receiving the very best care possible. I have read news stories at times which suggests they haven't been, which always enrages me. The one saving grace that distinguishes these wars from the Vietnam debacle is that all of the soldiers were volunteers this time around.

i dont see how afghanistan was inevitable. the taliban WILL be in power again there, its just a matter of time.

so what did we gain? in my opinion nothing,

although, IF the reasons we actually went there were to temporarily remove the taliban, establish a puppet government destined for long term failure, and waste quite a large chunk of change, not to mention countless deaths on both sides. then SUCCESS!

as a nation, we did EXACTLY what bin laden expected us to do. how do u kill a giant? a million small cuts.

Edited by Geezil

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This guy Assad is a cautionary tale. Raised and educated in the west, he rebelled against his father's despotic rule, wanting only to be a doctor (he studied ophthalmology in England). His older brother's death in a car crash put him in line for the head of government. But before he got there, he talked about how liberalism and democracy were his ultimate goals; how he wanted to increase trade, allow free expression of ideas, and even hinted about a peace treaty with Israel.

All that changed the moment his father died (in 2000). Assad ran for office unopposed. Rather than allowing more free expression of ideas, he increased the number of political prisoners. Rather than have peace with Israel, he threw his support behind Hezbollah. In short, he became exactly the same sort of despot that his father was before him, and now it appears that he will do anything to stay in power.

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Personally I believe the president is obligated to go to Congress for permission to do this (and even if you think he is not legally obligated then I think he should anyway).

You raise a very interesting question here. Since Eisenhower, each and every President has increased the amount of executive authority over the use of the military. In 1973, Congress passed the War Powers Resolution, which requires a 48 hour notification to Congress and limits the President to 60 days use of military force without the approval of Congress. Every President since 1973 without exception has held that this act is unConstitutional. Reagan and Clinton both deliberately violated it openly, which might have caused the Supreme Court to review, but in both instances Congress chose to take no action.

This is my thought about democracy: we should practice it.

No we shouldn't. We have never had a democracy. Democracy is very dangerous.

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It actually did work out pretty well in those countries. So I'm cool wirth it.

In what alternate reality? Because that sure isn't at all true in this one.

I work at Walter Reed and every day I see people missing all sorts of limbs hobbling around base. And those are the ones who were lucky enough to live. I'd ask them if they think their leg or arm was worth the current state of affairs in Afganistan or Iraq, but I'm pretty sure I already know the answer.
Wow. I admire you greatly for the work yoU do and know I couldn't do it myself.

Iraq was a huge mistake. Afghanistan has been tragic, but inevitable: after 9/11 we couldn't leave the ataliban in power. Iraq was NOT inevitable: we had choices and made the wrong ones.

As regards the soldiers, I hope they are at least receiving the very best care possible. I have read news stories at times which suggests they haven't been, which always enrages me. The one saving grace that distinguishes these wars from the Vietnam debacle is that all of the soldiers were volunteers this time around.

i dont see how afghanistan was inevitable. the taliban WILL be in power again there, its just a matter of time.

so what did we gain? in my opinion nothing,

although, IF the reasons we actually went there were to temporarily remove the taliban, establish a puppet government destined for long term failure, and waste quite a large chunk of change, not to mention countless deaths on both sides. then SUCCESS!

as a nation, we did EXACTLY what bin laden expected us to do. how do u kill a giant? a million small cuts.

I think you're wrong on this.

There's no way to prove this any more than saying you or I know that Doug Martin will have more FFP than CJ Spiller this year or vice versa, but in my opinion elections in Afghanistan and Iraq have opened a can of democratic rebellion in the rest of the middle east, it has been all about elections, it has been all about getting our forces out of the Saudi peninsula (where they were since Gulf War 1 in 1990), it has been about protecting Israel, and it has been about protecting our interests abroad (including oil and what that means to our economy) and safety at home.

This is one big holistic picture, Obama has carried on Bush Sr's, and Jr's policies there (with some key details missing). If people wanted anything else they should have voted for Kucinich.

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