December 29, 2003

Oh Goody! Secret Trials!

This is not a good sign:

Juan Cole * Informed Comment *: Saddam's trial is unlikely to be public, according to Iyad Alawi, member of the Interim Governing Council and head of the Iraqi National Accord (mainly ex-Baathist officers who cooperated in 1990s CIA plots against Saddam). Alawi made the remarks in an interview with the London-based al-Hayat newspaper. He said there would probably be no public trial because "it is possible that he will mention names of states or persons to whom he gave money . . ." Asked if Saddam had admitted to smuggling money abroad, Alawi replied, "He has begun to admit it. He has confessed to important things." [Saddam is thought to have squirreled $30 bn. or more away in secret accounts overseas.]...

Posted by DeLong at December 29, 2003 07:01 AM | TrackBack

Comments

Yeah, he might mention Bush, or Cheney, or Reagan. We can't have that, now, can we...

Posted by: Thane Walkup on December 29, 2003 07:42 AM

____

Thane Walkup: The United States is already known to have provided support to Saddam. It was done openly at a time when there were no UN prohibitions. Saddam could embarass countries and firms that secretly provided support more recently, in violation of Security Council resolutions.

I fully agree with Prof. DeLong about the undesirablity of a secret trial.

Posted by: David on December 29, 2003 08:05 AM

____

If any trial must be secret, they might as well just shoot him, and not pretend to give him a trial at all.

Thw whole point of a trial is to confer some legitimacy on the proceeding by being openly, publicly fair.

Posted by: rea on December 29, 2003 08:21 AM

____

If any trial must be secret, they might as well just shoot him, and not pretend to give him a trial at all.

Thw whole point of a trial is to confer some legitimacy on the proceeding by being openly, publicly fair.

Posted by: rea on December 29, 2003 08:22 AM

____

You're quite right, David, that what the government did in the 1980s was perfectly legal. And Alawi's motivation to avoid alienating potential future allies (and benefactors) of an independent Iraq is sensible.

But Saddam could also embarass the current administration in an open trial, by harping on little things like Iraq being given anthrax and botulinum by the US after it began gassing Iranian soldiers. I guess all the parties involved have good reasons to want this trial in the shadows.

Posted by: Harrow on December 29, 2003 08:32 AM

____

I'd prefer a fair and open trial but then I'm culturally descended from that tradition. It's the Iraqi's choice as regards an open trial or not.

_Is_ a fair and open trial a Middle Eastern tradition?

Posted by: Brian on December 29, 2003 08:33 AM

____

The problem with leaving the decision on whether to have a public trial to tradition is that it leaves the issue of whether there will be justice to tradition.

I'm pretty sure that, if we go back far enough, we can find justice administered in the region in a public way under rules meant to be fair. Hammurabi, for instance, put together a dandy little guide book on the subject.

Posted by: K Harris on December 29, 2003 08:56 AM

____

Alas, I find the idea that the Iraqis will decide whether to try Sadam publically themselves, without input from the Bush Administration, hard to credit.

Posted by: Jonathan Goldberg on December 29, 2003 09:18 AM

____

Alas, I find the idea that the Iraqis will decide whether to try Sadam publically themselves, without input from the Bush Administration, hard to credit.

Posted by: Jonathan Goldberg on December 29, 2003 09:23 AM

____

David,

While it is well known to most of us here that Bush Sr. et al gave serveral toys to a boy that did not deserve such toys, one must keep in mind that the vast majority of people are not consciously aware of this information, and having such information stirred up in a trial might actually cause the plebes to *gasp* THINK! about the actions of their leaders, and where these actions inexorably lead.

I'm sure that the wish not to embarrass more recent friends of Mr. Hussein may be partially behind the desire to restrict access to the trial - but I am just as certain that the Bush Jr. administration has its hand in this as well.

Thanks,
Thane

Posted by: Thane Walkup on December 29, 2003 11:00 AM

____

Fatalities

American soldiers 339
British soldiers 20
Coalition soldiers 40
---
399 Since May 2

American 478
British 53
Coalition 40
---
571 Since March 20

Wounded

American soldiers ~2702 Since March 20

Note: American forces have fallen to 130,000
British forces have risen to 12,000
Coalition forces have risen to 12,000

Posted by: lise on December 29, 2003 11:14 AM

____

Lemme get this straight now: Once it became clear that the weapons of mass destruction didn't exist, the story was Bush invaded Iraq to put an end to those hidden dungeons...

Clearly the agenda of civilization for the next generation is the creation of a Europe and an allied Asia strong enough to withstand the descent of America into barbarism.

Posted by: David Lloyd-Jones on December 29, 2003 11:21 AM

____

Democracy in Iraq? Sure.

Posted by: emma on December 29, 2003 11:24 AM

____

December 28, 2003

Revealed: How British Intelligence Sold the Iraq War
By Nicholas Rufford - Sunday Times of London

The Secret Intelligence Service has run an operation to gain public support for sanctions and the use of military force in Iraq. The government yesterday confirmed that MI6 had organised Operation Mass Appeal, a campaign to plant stories in the media about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction.

The revelation will create embarrassing questions for Tony Blair in the run-up to the publication of the report by Lord Hutton into the circumstances surrounding the death of Dr David Kelly, the government weapons expert.

A senior official admitted that MI6 had been at the heart of a campaign launched in the late 1990s to spread information about Saddam’s development of nerve agents and other weapons, but denied that it had planted misinformation. “There were things about Saddam’s regime and his weapons that the public needed to know,” said the official.

The admission followed claims by Scott Ritter, who led 14 inspection missions in Iraq, that MI6 had recruited him in 1997 to help with the propaganda effort. He described meetings where the senior officer and at least two other MI6 staff had discussed ways to manipulate intelligence material....

Posted by: emma on December 29, 2003 12:21 PM

____

A secret trial will mean that the psychodrama will drop off the American radar screen to a greater degree, and Bush will not be able to make as much propagandistic use of his captive in the 2004 campaign.

A secret trial followed by execution will be regarded by most of the world as a travesty, and further erode opinion of Bush.

Posted by: BobNJ on December 29, 2003 12:30 PM

____

Not just the French, not just the Bush I and Reagan administrations

I think Saddam knows too much that is damaging to the future Iraqi elites

For example, just a hypothetical, sending money to Chalabi and Sistani for years. The Iraqis aren't necessarily protecting future allies, but maybe protecting themselves

Posted by: bob mcmanus on December 29, 2003 01:01 PM

____

David:

"Thane Walkup: The United States is already known to have provided support to Saddam. It was done openly at a time when there were no UN prohibitions. Saddam could embarass countries and firms that secretly provided support more recently, in violation of Security Council resolutions.

I fully agree with Prof. DeLong about the undesirablity of a secret trial."

I'd like to emphasize the fact that most Americans probably don't realize/remember that the US supported Saddam. After he 'gassed his own people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!".

In a recent Newsweek, which featured John Stewart (Daily Show) on the cover, there was an article about the capture of Saddam. One of the photo's showed the bodies from an Iraqi gas attack (on the Kurds?), dated 1988. The caption stated that this attack proved that Saddam had WMD's.

It didn't mention that (a) the US (Reagan, Bush, Rusmfield, Cheney) knew this and were willing to furnish him with whatever he needed, and (b) that there was no question that Iraq had chemical weapons before the first Gulf War - as the saying went, 'Cheney saved the receipts'.

And chemical attacks on civilians might not violate UN prohibitions, but it might violate the Geneva Conventions, and is certainly a Bad Thing, Which Americans Don't Support.

Given the state of American ignorance, and the successful propaganda campaign waged over this, Saddam's potential prime time naming of names is in fact a problem for the Bush administration.

Posted by: Barry on December 29, 2003 02:57 PM

____

IMO, there's no way the guy can get a fair trial, nor should he. Any attempt at one is likely to be a farce unless he's tried under Iraqi law, and even then it's still political. Let's be honest here and just let the Iraqis shoot him, a la Ceaususcu.

Even if his defense is, "Ronald Reagan looked the other way while I killed all these people," so what? That says nothing about what should happen now. Just because he was our bastard 20 years ago doesn't mean that he isn't a bastard. Blaming something that Rumsfeld said or didn't say twenty years ago is just silly.

Posted by: Chris on December 29, 2003 04:15 PM

____

err, guys, stop foaming at the mouth and read the damn article.

The concern is that Saddam will make claims about people who he paid off. Arab politicians, arab editors, european leftists, etc.

It would certainly be very interesting to find out who ni the West was in Saddam's pay, but the potential that he would simply lie about it to cause trouble is a worry, no?

Posted by: literate person on December 29, 2003 05:14 PM

____

'A secret trial will mean that the psychodrama will drop off the American radar screen to a greater degree, and Bush will not be able to make as much propagandistic use of his captive in the 2004 campaign.'.........No, it means that Bushco will selectively report and distort whatever Hussein tells them. This whole thing was a coup for Bush and whenever they need a boost they can drop a new line straight from the horses mouth.

Posted by: dan on December 29, 2003 05:24 PM

____

Shame, Professor, for troll-baiting your own blog. And congratulations on your success.

Posted by: Alene Berk on December 29, 2003 06:11 PM

____

David Lloyd-Jones writes:

"Lemme get this straight now: Once it became clear that the weapons of mass destruction didn't exist, the story was Bush invaded Iraq to put an end to those hidden dungeons...

Clearly the agenda of civilization for the next generation is the creation of a Europe and an allied Asia strong enough to withstand the descent of America into barbarism."

Good point, Dave. According to some French postmodernist philosophers, America never left barbarism.

Posted by: non economist on December 29, 2003 07:09 PM

____

Well, non economist, de Gaulle famously once opined that "America is the only power to pass from barbarism to decadence without a period of civilisation in between".

Posted by: derrida derider on December 30, 2003 12:27 AM

____

David,

Whether such actions were legal is beside the point. Regardless of their legality, the Bush administration doesn't want the American people to be aware it happened. Knowing that the Hitler of the Week was a creation of U.S. power in the first place, might subject the man behind the curtain to a little more scrutiny in the first place.

Posted by: Kevin Carson on December 30, 2003 09:01 AM

____

Oops--"scrutiny in the future," I meant.

Posted by: Kevin Carson on December 30, 2003 09:10 AM

____

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/30/national/30SOLD.html

A Soldier's Return, to a Dark and Moody World
By JEFFREY GETTLEMAN

BLAIRSVILLE, Pa. — Jeremy Feldbusch joined the Army to travel the world. Now the only place he can go by himself is the 40 steps from his bed to the reclining chair in the living room.

The stucco walls guide him, past the bathroom, kitchen and closet, past the photographs of him in football jacket and wrestling singlet, past the coffee table, where he sometimes stubs his toe. At last, he finds his chair.

"Mom!" he yelled on a recent day. "I want a drink of some drinky stuff!"

"How about water?" his mother said back.

"No! Mountain Dew!"

"O.K., Jeremy, O.K."

Sgt. Jeremy Feldbusch, a fit, driven, highly capable Army Ranger, left home in February knowing the risks of combat. Two months later, he came home blind.

A growing number of young men and women are returning from Iraq and trying to resume lives that were interrupted by war and then minced by injury. Sergeant Feldbusch, a moody 24-year-old, is one of them, back in a little town in western Pennsylvania, in a little house overlooking trees and snow-blanketed hills he cannot see.

"What happened to my plans to become an officer? Gone," Sergeant Feldbusch said. "Can I ever jump in my truck again and just take off? No. Do I always have to be with my mom or dad now? Yep."

Since the war started, more than 2,300 American soldiers in Iraq have been hurt in combat, many by artillery shells and homemade bombs that spray shrapnel. Bulletproof vests and helmets protect vital organs. But as the insurgency continues, doctors say that severe facial injuries, along with wounds to the arms and legs, are becoming a hallmark of this war.

"There's that little area between where the helmet ends and the body armor starts," said Dr. Jeffrey Poffenbarger, an Army neurosurgeon. "And we're seeing a lot of guys getting hit right there, right in the face."

Back home, one little piece of metal can turn an entire household upside down. Charlene Feldbusch stopped working to take care of her son. She rubs cream on his face in the morning, helps him pick out his clothes, fixes him meals and gives him pills at night so he does not shake.

His father, Brace, started writing a book about him. "He's been such an inspiration to me, accomplishing more at 24 than I have my entire life," said Brace Feldbusch, a former coal miner who lost two fingers to a coal cart before he lost his job. He ticked off the chapters, his son's greatest moments: winning the state freestyle wrestling championship; bench-pressing 405 pounds; graduating from the University of Pittsburgh, a biology major, the only member of the family to finish college; becoming an Army Ranger.

His two brothers, Shaun, 25, and Brian, 17, sometimes feel left out.

"But they understand our entire world has changed," Ms. Feldbusch said. "Somebody has to be with Jeremy all the time. But that's O.K. I'm his mom. And that's what moms do." ...

Posted by: lise on December 30, 2003 09:42 AM

____

I know you folks want so desperately to believe that we provided Saddam with all kinds of weapons and germs and such, but it just isn't so.

For the facts check:

http://www.solport.com/resources/Iraqi%20Weapons.JPG

Yes, expediency prompted us to assist Saddam long beyond the point we should have been telling him to go screw. But the prospect of the Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast was just getting too likely. So sue us.

But get your facts straight.

Posted by: spongeworthy on December 30, 2003 01:47 PM

____

"What happened to my plans to become an officer? Gone," Sergeant Feldbusch said. "Can I ever jump in my truck again and just take off? No. Do I always have to be with my mom or dad now? Yep."

With all respects to Sergeant Feldbusch .. no you don't.

I feel for your injury. I'm sorry your life is turned upside down. There but for the Grace of God goes I. But you don't have to sit on your Mom's couch for the rest of your life.

That's a choice you're going to make, buddy.

Posted by: Brian Dunbar on December 30, 2003 02:24 PM

____

Brian: since when is democracy part of the middle east tradition? Other than the creation of Isreal, where can you point to in the Middle East for a tradition of open democratic government? He is being tried for crimes against humanity, no? An evil doer no less! We had public trials for the Nazis. We have public trial for the crimes in Yugoslavia. Why not here? Even Stalin put on show trials!!!!! What could be a more significant public, political event for the creation of a new government, instilling the rule of law FOR ALL THE WORLD to see than trying Saddam in open court. The emporer will be shown to have no clothes, to have had no clothes, and, now exposed, to be the bad, terrible, ruthless, violent, corrupt man he is believed to have been. And the Iraqi will see how, if they do not create, honor and respect strong democratic institutions and the rule of law, just what the country will return to if democracy fails. I do not have much hope for the future of Iraqi democracy based on Bush; I'll have none if there is not a public trial. Iraqi independence day will be measured from the day of Saddam's conviction in an open court. Not from the day Bushy invaded the country to "secure" the USA from Saddam's WMD.

Posted by: Cal on December 30, 2003 02:52 PM

____

"Yes, expediency prompted us to assist Saddam long beyond the point we should have been telling him to go screw. But the prospect of the Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast was just getting too likely. So sue us"

What prospect whas that? Do you have evidence? Iraq, a.k.a. US puppet, attacked Iran not vice versa. The fact that Iranians hate us makes them nutcases? The fact that they resent us for us having toppled their democratically elected and highly popular government and installing a ruthless dictator against their will has nothing to do with it? The fact that they took American hostages, although a reprehsensible act, is not even on the same planet as what we did to them.

And then murdering their women and children via Saddam our very own henchman (the CIA helped put him in power) and with American loan guarantees and chemical weapons puts us on the moral side?


Talk about historic revisionism! Freepers are all alike.

Posted by: Jacques Engelstein on December 30, 2003 05:49 PM

____

"I know you folks want so desperately to believe that we provided Saddam with all kinds of weapons and germs and such, but it just isn't so."

I refer you to this link: http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2002-09-30-iraq-ushelp-list_x.htm

It seems "expendiency" dictated that the US government give three deadly kinds of germs to Iraq after it was regularly gassing Iranian troops. At least one shipment even arrived after Saddam gassed 5000 people at Halabja. The implicit message: make some biological weapons and use them.

Posted by: Harrow on December 30, 2003 06:41 PM

____

Maybe that's the message you get, but none of the samples sent to Iraq by the CDC were used to create weapons, as your source notes.

And I'm glad to see that those of you who fling the term "freeper" around have come to terms with Saddam's possession of biological weapons. Welcome to reality.

Posted by: spongeworthy on December 31, 2003 07:34 AM

____

"And I'm glad to see that those of you who fling the term ffreeper' around have come to terms with Saddam's possession of biological weapons. Welcome to reality."

Absolute lying garbage. There were no WMDs in Iraq. There was no threat from Iraq to America. Iraq was completely contained and weak weak weak. There was no reason for war.

Posted by: Ari on December 31, 2003 08:17 AM

____

The term "excluded middle" means one think in one context, something else here. Here, the middle is where are the facts are. Spongeworthy wants to pretend that a bunch of people need to come to terms with Saddam's possession of biological weapons. As far as I can tell, opponents to the war were not, as a group, convinced he had no biological weapons at any time. Many merely doubted that he had any serious intention of using them outside his own backyard, that he was any threat to the US, for instance. Many opponents of the war were as surprised as Bush and company that no weapons were found. Ari gets the spirit of the issue right, but misses the point of Spongeworthy's jibe. Ari is right that there is so far no strong evidence that Saddam continued to hold illicit weapons into the period before the war. That does not answer Spongeworthy's weird accusation, since Spongeworthy's understanding of the progress and timing of the program, at least as demonstrated in his comment here, carries too little nuance to debate.

So, if we are going to plow this field again, can we at least acknowledge the extent to which this soil has already been tilled? Saddam had a weapons program. The US facilitated that program when an administration fascinated with proxy wars thought it was in our interest to do so. We did so long past the point that we could justify such an effort under international rules we ourselves had imposed on much of the world, long past the point that it was clear the victims included Saddam's domestic opponents and mostly children in uniform from Iran. Those programs were never a threat to the US in any way that anyone has come close to proving. There is no strong evidence that those programs continued to exist during the run-up to war. Now, come out of your corners and show us what you've really got.

Posted by: K Harris on December 31, 2003 08:44 AM

____

"There is no strong evidence that those programs continued to exist during the run-up to war."

There is no evidence of any sort that Iraq had WMDs on March 20, 2003. There had been inspectors in Iraq. We bombed Iraq for years, we began the war on March 20, and we have occupied Iraq since April. No WMDs have been found. None.

Posted by: Ari on December 31, 2003 08:53 AM

____

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/30/national/30SOLD.html

During the two months Jeremy Feldbusch spent recovering at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, his parents lived at his bedside. Charlene Feldbusch remembers one day seeing a young female soldier crawling past her in the corridor with no legs and her 3-year-old son trailing behind.

Ms. Feldbusch started to cry. But not for the woman.

"Do you know how many times I walked up and down those hallways and saw those people without arms or legs and thought, Why couldn't this be my son? Why his eyes?"

Artillery shells make a certain sound when they are coming right at you. Not a looping whistle, but a short shriek.

On April 3, Sergeant Feldbusch, a 6-foot-2-inch, thickly built mortar man, heard the shriek. He and his platoon of Rangers were guarding the Haditha Dam, a strategic point northwest of Baghdad along the Euphrates River, when a shell burst 100 feet away and a piece of red hot shrapnel hit him in the face. The last thing he remembers was eating a pouch of chicken teriyaki.

The inchlong piece of steel, part of the artillery shell's casing, sliced through his right eye, tumbled through his sinuses and lodged in the left side of his brain, severely damaging the optic nerve of his left eye and spraying bone splinters throughout his brain.

Two weeks later, at the Brooke Army Medical Center, doctors removed the shrapnel and reconstructed his face with titanium mesh and a lump of fat from his stomach in place of his missing eye, so the hole would not cave in.

For five weeks, Sergeant Feldbusch remained in a coma. When he came out, it was still black.

"I could hear my parents' voices," he said. "And I thought, What are they doing here? Am I dreaming? What the hell is going on?"

His mother knelt by his bedside and sang softly into his ear, "When I wish upon a star."

Then she asked him, "Jeremy? Who do you love?" ...

Posted by: emma on December 31, 2003 08:59 AM

____

Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast

right, because the iranian revolution led to islamic governments in how many arab countries? zero. counting iran? again, zero.

if we didn't give saddam the thumbs-up (i.e. battlefield intel) after he invaded and gassed the iranans, we might have at least the spindliest of legs to stand on regarding human rights or WMD* but gassing kurds - no good, gassing iranians - "improve relations at a pace of iraq's choosing"

*I forget what it stands for; they used to talk about it all the time.

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 09:02 AM

____

Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast

right, because the iranian revolution led to islamic governments in how many arab countries? zero. counting iran? again, zero.

if we didn't give saddam the thumbs-up (i.e. battlefield intel) after he invaded and gassed the iranans, we might have at least the spindliest of legs to stand on regarding human rights or WMD* but gassing kurds - no good, gassing iranians - "improve relations at a pace of iraq's choosing"

*I forget what it stands for; they used to talk about it all the time.

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 09:03 AM

____

Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast

right, because the iranian revolution led to islamic governments in how many arab countries? zero. counting iran? again, zero.

if we didn't give saddam the thumbs-up (i.e. battlefield intel) after he invaded and gassed the iranans, we might have at least the spindliest of legs to stand on regarding human rights or WMD* but gassing kurds - no good, gassing iranians - "improve relations at a pace of iraq's choosing"

*I forget what it stands for; they used to talk about it all the time.

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 09:05 AM

____

Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast

right, because the iranian revolution led to islamic governments in how many arab countries? zero. counting iran? again, zero.

if we didn't give saddam the thumbs-up (i.e. battlefield intel) after he invaded and gassed the iranans, we might have at least the spindliest of legs to stand on regarding human rights or WMD* but gassing kurds - no good, gassing iranians - "improve relations at a pace of iraq's choosing"

*I forget what it stands for; they used to talk about it all the time.

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 09:11 AM

____

Iranian nutcases getting a stranglehold on the Mideast

right, because the iranian revolution led to islamic governments in how many arab countries? zero. counting iran? again, zero.

if we didn't give saddam the thumbs-up (i.e. battlefield intel) after he invaded and gassed the iranans, we might have at least the spindliest of legs to stand on regarding human rights or WMD* but gassing kurds - no good, gassing iranians - "improve relations at a pace of iraq's choosing"

*I forget what it stands for; they used to talk about it all the time.

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 09:13 AM

____

I thought this thread concerned whether Saddam would get a public trial or not. Even the Bush administration has moved beyond WMD and terrorist threats to the US to claim that emancipation of Iraq and the overthrow of an evildoer was, and always has been, the primary reason for the invasion and occupation of Iraq. But if that is Bushy's policy why aren't we then compelled to overthrow other evildoers?

Posted by: Cal on December 31, 2003 09:49 AM

____

sorry for all the flatulence, i swear, it timed out six times!

Posted by: flatulus on December 31, 2003 03:27 PM

____

Whew! Flame on in context!
The trial, Boss, the trial!! <----

Can you spell Manuel Noriega?
You even REMEMBER Manuel Noriega?
"First we'll give him a fair trial,
then we'll hang him." Judge Roy Bean ; )

---

Now for you wack-job flat-ass flamers:
http://www.globalpolicy.org/security/sanction/iraq1/oilforfood/2001/0627chen.htm

Cheney was pitching Saddam even in 1998. But the Rushkies got the oil contracts, and then Saddam took out jihads on Israel. Dumb, and Dumber.

This Iraq thing is all about oil, and keeping it dollar valuated, liberally spiced with Zionism and neo-conservative Endtime philosophies. Anyone thinks this Iraq occupation is about democracy must have an anus the size of an elephant trunk!

Who CARES if Saddam gets a fair trial!? It's the magician's feint as he saws the country in half.
Why do you think James Baker is carrying such a heavy ambassador's valice? Baaksheesh. Your taxes.

Posted by: Gob Rep on December 31, 2003 03:33 PM

____

Cal: "But if that is Bushy's policy why aren't we then compelled to overthrow other evildoers?"

And that's exactly what the neocons have in mind.

"President George W Bush was sent a public manifesto yesterday by Washington's hawks, demanding regime change in Syria and Iran and a Cuba-style military blockade of North Korea backed by planning for a pre-emptive strike on its nuclear sites."

"The manifesto, presented as a 'manual for victory' in the war on terror, also calls for Saudi Arabia and France to be treated not as allies but as rivals and possibly enemies."

"The manifesto is contained in a new book by Richard Perle, a Pentagon adviser and 'intellectual guru' of the hardline neo-conservative movement, and David Frum, a former Bush speechwriter. They give warning of a faltering of the 'will to win' in Washington."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2003/12/31/wcons31.xml&sSheet=/portal/2003/12/31/ixportaltop.html


Posted by: Kosh on December 31, 2003 03:37 PM

____

"... The caption stated that this attack proved that Saddam had WMD's. It didn't mention that (a) the US (Reagan, Bush, Rusmfield, Cheney) knew this and were willing to furnish him with whatever he needed... as the saying went, 'Cheney saved the receipts'."
~~~~
"And I'm glad to see that those of you who fling the term 'ffreeper' around have come to terms with Saddam's possession of biological weapons. Welcome to reality."
~~~~
"Absolute lying garbage. There were no WMDs in Iraq."
~~~

That's it. Saddam had no WMDs, and Reagan, Bush & Rusmfeld gave them to him. Just check Cheney's receipts!

Posted by: Jim Glass on December 31, 2003 05:01 PM

____

"Fatalities
"American soldiers 339...
......
"A Soldier's Return, to a Dark and Moody World
By JEFFREY GETTLEMAN

"BLAIRSVILLE, Pa. — Jeremy Feldbusch joined the Army to travel the world. Now the only place he can go by himself is the 40 steps from his bed to the reclining chair in the living room...."
~~~~~

Well, lise, since you read the NY Times you also saw in it today the pictures from videos of Iraqis being executed by hand grenades strapped to their bodies, along with reading...

"Now, nine months after the American occupation began, mass graves are being exhumed all across the country, and charges of war crimes and genocide weighed against Mr. Hussein, whose secret police, by estimates of Iraqi human rights groups, may have killed 300,000 to one million Iraqis..."

So, if you are going to keep running your casualty cost tally, 399 Americans soldiers and counting, etc., I wonder if you might also trouble to add a balancing entry along the lines of "X mass graves not filled by Saddam, Y Iraqi lives saved from death and/or torture."

This is not to give Dubya any credit for same, of course, because all reasonable people know that Republicans have no interest in saving innocent Iraqi lives any more than Democrats do. (Apart from Lieberman, who doesn't seem real popular among Democrats at the moment for having shown a small amount of such interest)

Still, benefits must be accounted for in any honest cost accounting -- even accidental side benefits. So perhaps you'll try?

BTW, I predict Saddam's trial will be about as secret as the Nuremberg trials. Only certain pre-trial depositions will be off the record.

Posted by: Jim Glass on December 31, 2003 05:56 PM

____

Saddam's trial will be as secret as Ken Lay's. Wait a minute, Kenny Boy is still on the lam! ;)

All Saddam's responses will be through a court appointed attorney, in Arabic, the translations will only cover the salient points the DoD wants to prosecute, the gavel will come down, and then we'll get a nice execution slideshow on MSNBC.

I mean, how often do we hear from Fidel? It's not like the man isn't a consummate orator, and has been for 40 years in our own backyard, but the American press only deals in Blair and Bush.

Posted by: Harry Possue on January 1, 2004 12:29 AM

____

There are other reasons why the trial will be secret. Read Robert Fisk's article of 2 Jan 04 in the Independent Newspaper, UK.
Basically, we gave Saddam the gas to gas the kurds, and we argued at the time that it was Iran that did it (in other words we even covered up for him).

Posted by: bluef on January 2, 2004 07:33 PM

____

Post a comment
















__