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Author Topic: U.S. Says NO To Democracy For Iraq
rubble
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posted 06 February 2003 12:07 AM      Profile for rubble     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Iraq Dissidents say they would like the U.S. to leave after the removal of Saddam and to let them implement a Democracy. But the U.S. says NO. "No Democracy for Iraq".

They actually say that if it were to become a democracy, then the Shiitee majority would gain power. Hmmmmm... then what does the U.S. stand for? Where is the freedom in that. Where is the right to self determination that so many Arab nations lack? When there is an absence of democracy, you have oppression, and supported by America (again). The "U.S." call 9/11 an attack on freedom. Then what is this?


From: Earth | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Can-Am
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posted 06 February 2003 12:13 AM      Profile for Can-Am     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
rubble,

Where, pray, is a source showing that the US has publicly declared a policy of "No Democracy for Iraq"?

I'm not saying that they couldn't or wouldn't do such a thing, but this looks more like a rubble-gram than a response to an actual event.


From: Canada | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
mandrake
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posted 06 February 2003 12:17 AM      Profile for mandrake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Where, pray, is a source showing that the US has publicly declared a policy of "No Democracy for Iraq"?

I'm not saying that they couldn't or wouldn't do such a thing, but this looks more like a rubble-gram than a response to an actual event.


Sources? We don't need no stinkin' sources. We're our own source. Who else is going to fuel our delusions?


From: erehwon | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
rubble
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posted 06 February 2003 12:22 AM      Profile for rubble     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Can-Am

Your so predictable. How's the new job promoting the National Post? Good I hope.

As for your question, I actually heard it on the second half of "The National" tonight. Sorry Can-Am, I didn't have my tape recorder running. I don't see any delusion about this at all.


From: Earth | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Amy
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posted 06 February 2003 12:23 AM      Profile for Amy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
click!

doesn't sound like democracy to me.


From: the whole town erupts and/ bursts into flame | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
rubble
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posted 06 February 2003 12:37 AM      Profile for rubble     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
A democracy would mean that the people would have somewhat of a say about the Oil. Isreali's fear, is a Shiitee ruled state.

[ 06 February 2003: Message edited by: rubble ]


From: Earth | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
verbatim
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posted 06 February 2003 12:49 AM      Profile for verbatim   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Analysts believe disunity in the Iraqi opposition would make it near impossible to form a transitional government from its ranks, leading to speculation that the US will have to effectively occupy Iraq for a year or longer to maintain order.
"Analysts" huh? How about the US at least giving them a shot at it first? I mean, at least providing the pretense of democratic self-determination for Iraqis?

From: The People's Republic of Cook Street | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Can-Am
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posted 06 February 2003 12:57 AM      Profile for Can-Am     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I believe the plan all along has been for the US military to administer Iraq for a year--maybe longer. This was done in Germany and Japan after WWII with good results (and there are still US troops in both nations).

I'm not claiming everything will necessarily work out for the best. But I have yet to be convinced that the US is planning anything other than some form of representational government, even though it will take time to establish it.

Of course I could be wrong. But if the US was truly as bad as some people say it is then none of us would be writing on this board right now. There would be no rabble, no Canada (we would have been annexed decades ago) and quite possibly, no us.

All we can do is wait and see. I believe (at least I fervently hope) that some good people in Iraq will get to govern. I also don't believe that the US is just going to seize Iraq's oil. Yes, they will make some favourable deals with the post-Saddam regime, but how is that any worse than France and Germany, which have sweetheart oil deals with Saddam today (which is a major reason they oppose the war--they benefit from Saddam and could care less about the Iraqi people).


From: Canada | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
pogge
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posted 06 February 2003 01:18 AM      Profile for pogge   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
From the Toronto Star on Feb. 4, 2003:

quote:
British planning for 3-year occupation of Iraq: report

LONDON (AP) — The British army is preparing to occupy Iraq for up to three years after a war, the British Broadcasting Corp. reported today.

(snip)

The BBC, which cited an unnamed senior military source, said army officers had just started planning to occupy Iraq. It said that under the plans, an occupied Iraq would be divided into three sectors, with a different country responsible for each sector.



From: Why is this a required field? | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 06 February 2003 01:23 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think you misunderstand what we say about the US. The claim is not that US policymakers are Insane, at least not Insane in a narrow sense. Of course they don't blow up Canada. They follow a specific pattern of interests and choices, and this are malicious because they are induced by the framework in which they make these choices and the somewhat rational interests they represent.


Consequently, my contention, if not the contention of others, is that it is wrong and naive to think that decidedly non-utopian means will somehow reach semi-utopian goals. The non-utopian means and motives that have driven the past century in the Middle East are exactly what led us to our current predicament, and I sometimes envy those who believe that they will also lead us out of it. So forgive me for my skepticism if I don't think that Japan and Germany are very good analogies for anything at all in the Middle East. It hasn't been before and it's most likely not going to be now. The US' reasons for hindering democracy in those countries is not one that will produce transitional administrations, but rather one that will deter democracy for so long as the geopolitical situation of the past 50 years continues on its current path. I see no movement off this path, especially not with a war.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Can-Am
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posted 06 February 2003 02:06 AM      Profile for Can-Am     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
for so long as the geopolitical situation of the past 50 years continues on its current path.

It is not on the same path. The vast majority of American military intervention in those decades was to counter the (real or imagined) threat of Soviet expansion. Now, you can argue as Moredreads would that the Soviets should have won, but that doesn't change the fact that the US was in Vietnam to stop communism, not for oil or anything else.

Obviously, that is no longer a factor. The "peace dividend" has not materialized because the threat has changed from communism to a perversion of Islam (some say Wahabbism) which was responsible for 9/11, etc. The Soviet Union--being a huge military threat in its own right--could only be countered through military confrontation (culminating in the threat of nuclear war). Wahabbism is far more threatened by: democracy, women's rights, secularism, etc. It is very much in the interests of the US to have stable, democratic nations in the Middle East. The Americans don't have to annex countries and steal their oil. They don't want an empire--in fact there are daily calls to get US troops out of Germany and Korea. America does just fine selling stuff to other countries. Call it economic imperialism if you must, but it beats the military variety practised by the British for several hundred years.

Some will repeat for the 13,000th time: "What about Chile?", "What about Nicaragua?". Both of those involved American wrong-doing. But in many of these cases it was a matter of choosing the lesser of two evils (i.e., the anti-commies), even though the "lesser" part was so marginal as to be imperceptible in many cases. There is no super-power behind Saddam and the various other tyrants that oppress the people of the Middle East. There is no particular reason to prop up bad guys in order to thwart a bigger, badder guy. There is only ONE big guy now, and he can act more out of principle than out of grubby realpolitik.

You may be correct, Mandos. The Americans may be the blackguards you allege. I have lived in seven different States over 22 years and I have a much less dark view of our neighbours. It is quite possible to construct perfectly legitimate scenario whereby Canada comes off as one of the world's most oppressive nations. Certainly from the point of view of our aboriginal population we are genocidal colonials who "occupy" their territory in a far more criminal and unjustifiable fashion than the Israelis occupy the West Bank. We quire literally stole this land from its rightful owners through genocide. Unlike Israel, we have no 5,000 year-old territorial claim in North America. We should not be here at all, plain and simple.

But the world moves on. We aren't all going to head back to Europe, even if morally speaking we should. The US is also guilty of much, but it is just unrealistic to keep painting them as the source of all evil when this is patently not so.

[ 06 February 2003: Message edited by: Can-Am ]


From: Canada | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Markbo
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posted 06 February 2003 02:15 AM      Profile for Markbo     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Actually a more accurate title for this thread would be.

"U.S. says NO to Theocracy For Iraq"

A statement that all thinking people would agree with.

Nice attempt at spin however. Create a dispute where there is none. Is that how it works now?


From: Windsor | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 06 February 2003 02:28 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I am not denying that America has its qualities. But I think you are simply wrong to say that American policy has changed fundamentally due to the fall of the Soviet Union. It accomplished its goal and it moved immediately to the next logical step: unilateralism. This is clearly an extension. It is not a relaxation.


Discussion of "calls for withdrawal" in America once again have the effect of conflating the internal qualities of the US with the external ones. I am glad that there is a peace movement in the US. I even believe that in the future it could have a significant impact of foreign-policy making, and that will be a time when the politics have changed and we can move onto solutions. This is where I would stand with you and say that the US and Iraq differ--and so would most other folks on the left.


But the fact is, though the US doesn't have to steal oil, under present conditions it is imperative that it has secure control over the oil, the locations, etc. It is absolutely imperative, and US policy is directed to ensure that this imperative is implemented--imperative, meaning within their calculus of interests as they see it. Realism. This is probably the biggest factor that drives the present situation. I'm sure they'd like Stable Happy Countries in the Middle East as much as the next guy. But there is a conflict between the absolute guarantee they require and the freedoms of the people who live in those places. The endless Middle East conflict is an attempt to square that circle, along with the support of Saudi Arabia, etc. Because a Happy Liberal Middle East is not necessarily a compliant one, and this possibility is obviously intolerable in the long run.


In the long run, however, I have hope that people will see that this circle cannot be squared. Until then, the sword.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Jacob Two-Two
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posted 06 February 2003 04:10 AM      Profile for Jacob Two-Two     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Mandos sings a sweet song of truth.
From: There is but one Gord and Moolah is his profit | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Can-Am
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posted 06 February 2003 04:32 AM      Profile for Can-Am     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
under present conditions it is imperative that it has secure control over the oil, the locations, etc. It is absolutely imperative, and US policy is directed to ensure that this imperative is implemented

Mandos, I don't reject your identification of American realpolitik and Machiavellian manipulation and scheming. It's just that every other nation does EXACTLY the same thing, in so far as they have the power or influence or money to pull it off. There are no shining examples of moral purity on the world stage. There are, however, a lot of states which are vastly worse than the US--states who are dangerous not only to their own people but to their neighbours as well.

The US acts in its own interests. True statement. What the hell do you expect them to do, Mandos, work against their own interests?

The whole oil thing shows a similar shaky grasp on reality, I'm afraid. Of course oil is VITALLY important to the US. It is VITALLY important to Canada, Europe and the whole damned world as well. If all oil supplies were magically cut off tomorrow, many 10's of millions of people would die in the resulting massive world-wide famine and economic collapse. One of the most idiotic notions foisted on the public during this whole episode is that "the war is only about oil". Well first of all that's not true, but if it WAS true so what? Oil is a perfectly legitimate thing to fight over--as are water and food. Oil--energy sources in general--are not optional, Mandos. The morons who say things like: "War so that you can drive your SUV" are just that: morons. Without energy Canadians would perish by the millions this winter. I'm sorry but that whole line is just unbelievably shallow. Compared to things that others have gone to war over (Germany to kill Jews, France and England over colonies) fighting over the oil that is the lifeblood of civilization is positively humanitarian.

And before anybody jumps in with "alternative energy" and "oil dependence"--yes we should lessen our dependence on oil. No, there are NO viable alternatives to carbon fuels + nuclear + hydro that drives most of the world right now. I wish there were viable alternatives, and we should be researching them, but right now there are none.

So Mandos, if the OPEC cartel decided to unilaterally shut off all oil to the US then you can fucking well bet they'd bomb the shit out of them in short order. You'd do the SAME THING if someone cut off your water. Unless you're unwilling to defend your own life.

All this stuff about America's motives and such--what is your point? What the hell do you expect? "Multilateralism" with the likes of France and Germany? Right. That'll work. Not.

Until there is a viable multilateral framework (well there is the emerging US/UK/Russia axis) then it's going to be more or less unilateralism. You want the US to come to heel to, to what? Canada? The Euro-weenies? Well, it ain't gonna happen soon. The Americans are becoming unilateralist because they believe--with some justification--that much of the world is run by fuck-ups and strongmen.

I'm half-American so half of me understands this very deeply (the other half kind of agrees with you).


From: Canada | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Polunatic
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posted 06 February 2003 11:00 AM      Profile for Polunatic   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Democracy? If the U.S. was so concerned about "democracy", why are they slagging Germany, France and other countries where the vast majority of the citizens oppose a war and their governments (to a certain extent) are reflecting that popular opposition? Same goes for Canada which is waffling precisely because of opposition to the war.

There's more to democracy than electing unaccountable governments to do whatever they want. Democracy is supposed to express the will of the people. I guess "democracy" is OK as long as it jives with U.S. interests. And given that U.S.-style democracy allows the likes of Dubya to be elected with less votes than his opponent, I suppose in the U.S., it really doesn't matter what the people think.

Can-Am, you've lost all credibility by spouting the Reaganite line about Nicaragua being a Soviet-Cuban client state. You really do believe there are some things worse than death don't you? You've shown that you can't think for yourself and might as well just link us to your direct sources at CNN and the White House rather than waste your time with long posts paraphrasing.

[ 06 February 2003: Message edited by: Non-partisan partisan ]


From: middle of nowhere | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
swallow
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posted 06 February 2003 12:05 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Mandos sings a song of truth all right. Although maybe the song is more bitter than sweet.

Look, the US at the end of WW2, in many cases out of genuine if naive idealism, had a vision for the planet. There would be one world, free-trading and policed by the US and its allies. It would be a world where depressions were impossible, where everyone had the benefits of US freedoms and liberties. A world "safe for democracy" and safe for American prosperity. The vision meant the world had to accept US leadership, no one could hold their raw materials outside the US-led international trading system, and so forth. And this vision had two enemies: communists and nationalists, both groups that wanted to keep their countries outside this world order. So the US set about fighting these enemies, and when it could not fight them, containing them. That's still the US vision, and the end of the cold war changed it only by expanding the area of US global leadership. Or empire without the need for direct military intervention, most of the time.

US policy has always been "independent internationalism." Work with others where they share the same goals, work alone if they don't.

quote:
Until there is a viable multilateral framework (well there is the emerging US/UK/Russia axis) then it's going to be more or less unilateralism. You want the US to come to heel to, to what? Canada? The Euro-weenies? Well, it ain't gonna happen soon. The Americans are becoming unilateralist because they believe--with some justification--that much of the world is run by fuck-ups and strongmen.

This is what bugs me. "Until there is a viable multilateral framework." The current multilateral framework is what the framers of the UN made it, and the chief framer was the US government. As the balance of votes in the mostly powerless General Assembly shifted, the system was no longer as amenable to US interests, so the US began to stress other mechanisms. And it adopted a policy of thwarting multilateralism.

The current multilateral framework is fucked up. So the response is to try to wreck it completely? Why not try to fix it? Why go around signing treaties with other countries promising that the US will never extradite their war criminals to the International Criminal Court, for instance?

Why are so many countries (fewer than during the cold war, however) run by dictators? Because pliant dictators were put in place and propped up by the USA and the USSR. Democracies were overthrown with US and Soviet aid. It's more than a little disinenuous to now say "We can't work with the world, it's a bunch of dictators." And throwing around terms like Euroweenies, of course, is merely an excuse for actual thought. Why won't multilateralism with France and Germany work? Is it because they won't follow orders?

The US is dominant, but it needs to accept abroad something that is an article of faith at home: checks and balances.


From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged
Smith
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posted 06 February 2003 01:17 PM      Profile for Smith     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Without energy Canadians would perish by the millions this winter.

The Middle East is not our only source of oil, nor is oil our only source of energy. We don't need to eliminate oil, only to use less of it.


From: Muddy York | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 06 February 2003 01:47 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Not to mention that oil is not simply energy. It is the basis of every industrial economy. Take a look at your desk. How much of it is made out of oil? Start with your computer monitor.

We seem to be able to get most of the way there, we acknowledge that the realpolitik is that the upcoming war is simply about oil, and the response is, so what if it is, everybody does it? Well, the so what that we're facing right now is, so what if the US corners the world market in oil by force? We're looking at world where US interests will be able to direct Europe's economy, Russia's economy, Asia's economy, for the next 50 years. And nobody in Europe or Russia or Asia will have any control over US policy. Does this strike you as a harmonious or attractive world, one run by officials elected only by Americans in Washington for the benefit of a couple of guys in Dallas who are elected by no-one? Are the French really so fucked up that they deserve government without representation?

I'm half-American too, and that scenario scares the shit out of me.


From: gone | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
satana
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posted 06 February 2003 01:59 PM      Profile for satana     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think Can-Am's post is the first I've read on babble from an American-supporter that actually makes some sense.

Attacking Iraq is about American hegemony in the middle-east. Its about attacking European interests. Nothing to do with "democracy". Its important people realise that. But supporting American actions after recognising that has no intention of supporting democracy anywhere in the world is just wrong.

[ 06 February 2003: Message edited by: satana ]


From: far away | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
rubble
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posted 06 February 2003 04:59 PM      Profile for rubble     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
The whole oil thing shows a similar shaky grasp on reality, I'm afraid. Of course oil is VITALLY important to the US. It is VITALLY important to Canada, Europe and the whole damned world as well. If all oil supplies were magically cut off tomorrow, many 10's of millions of people would die in the resulting massive world-wide famine and economic collapse. One of the most idiotic notions foisted on the public during this whole episode is that "the war is only about oil". Well first of all that's not true, but if it WAS true so what? Oil is a perfectly legitimate thing to fight over--as are water and food. Oil--energy sources in general--are not optional, Mandos. The morons who say things like: "War so that you can drive your SUV" are just that: morons. Without energy Canadians would perish by the millions this winter. I'm sorry but that whole line is just unbelievably shallow. Compared to things that others have gone to war over (Germany to kill Jews, France and England over colonies) fighting over the oil that is the lifeblood of civilization is positively humanitarian.

PUKE ! How do you make sense of that? We could have done away with Oil years ago, if we put our resources together and do some positive research. We are delaying, because there is too much money to be made from Oil. So make it while you can. Among other reasons of course (Money Pit Israel)

Click!


From: Earth | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 09 February 2003 01:00 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Moving this to the Middle East forum.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cougyr
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posted 09 February 2003 01:14 PM      Profile for Cougyr     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
"The US acts in its own interests. True statement. What the hell do you expect them to do, Mandos, work against their own interests?"
______________________________________
I expect the US to join with other countries for the benefit of all. The problem has always been US "unilateralism" (which is another word for bullying).

From: over the mountain | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 09 February 2003 02:40 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Attacking Iraq is about American hegemony in the middle-east. Its about attacking European interests. Nothing to do with "democracy".

They brought democracy to Kuwait, didn't they?

Oh right, they forgot.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
rbil
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posted 09 February 2003 03:31 PM      Profile for rbil     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Swallow this is interesting ...

quote:
Democracies were overthrown with US and Soviet aid.

I'm trying to think of a democracy that was overthrown with Soviet aid and just cannot think of one. Could you please enlighten me (us)?

Thanks


From: IRC: irc.bcwireless.net JOIN: #linuxtalk | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
'lance
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posted 09 February 2003 04:19 PM      Profile for 'lance     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Czechoslovakia.
From: that enchanted place on the top of the Forest | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 10 February 2003 02:16 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
They also tried to subvert the democratic process in Austria. Actually, so did the west, only the west was more effective.
From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sisyphus
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posted 10 February 2003 03:21 PM      Profile for Sisyphus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Hungary was also de-democratized by the Soviets. And of course, the USSR prevented democracy throughout Eastern Europe, without actually toppling existing democracies. Ah, the priviledges of the Liberation Army, eh?

Edited to add:

quote:
The US acts in its own interests. True statement. What the hell do you expect them to do, Mandos, work against their own interests?"

Moving from the the grown-up realpolitik argument, to the naive idealist's moral one:

What the hell do you expect an armed robber to do, put away his gun, working against his own interests, and just leave you alone? Sheesh, live in the real world, whydoncha?

[ 10 February 2003: Message edited by: Sisyphus ]


From: Never Never Land | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
josh
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posted 12 February 2003 02:50 PM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Bush plans to have military governor rule Iraq after war is over:

http://tinyurl.com/5qbo


From: the twilight zone between the U.S. and Canada | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
satana
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posted 12 February 2003 07:03 PM      Profile for satana     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Ahmed Chalabi seems to be Bush's favoured "governer" so far.
From: far away | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged

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