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Wikileaks documents Bush's war disasters





handfleisch
Among the damage caused by the Bush administration that we will have to deal with for years and years, there is probably nothing worse than the way the war effort in Afghanistan was neglected in order to invade Iraq. By most accounts the US was winning the war against the Taliban until Bush proceeded with his pet project of occupying Iraq. Now up to a trillion dollars later we are still bogged down and Iraq will be a mess for decades at least. Not to count the hundreds of thousands murdered and how their surviving families will understandably feel about the USA for generations.

The biggest lie of the 21st century was Bush's claims about the need to wage war on Iraq, and we'll spend the rest of the century dealing with the catastrophe.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/25/the-war-logs/
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
Among the damage caused by the Bush administration that we will have to deal with for years and years, there is probably nothing worse than the way the war effort in Afghanistan was neglected in order to invade Iraq. By most accounts the US was winning the war against the Taliban until Bush proceeded with his pet project of occupying Iraq. Now up to a trillion dollars later we are still bogged down and Iraq will be a mess for decades at least. Not to count the hundreds of thousands murdered and how their surviving families will understandably feel about the USA for generations.

The biggest lie of the 21st century was Bush's claims about the need to wage war on Iraq, and we'll spend the rest of the century dealing with the catastrophe.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/25/the-war-logs/
Handfleisch, I wish we could get away from Bush for a change. We've been there, done that over and over and over again. Everyone agrees with you that we should never have invaded Iraq, but that is almost a decade ago now. Obama has been in the seat for long enough, so that one could probably refer to what he is doing in the present, rather than delving in the past all the time? And the Wikileaks contain plenty of information about omissions during Obama's watch as well. Most of it actually has to do with the period leading up to December of last year. Both bad for Bush as well as Obama.
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Among the damage caused by the Bush administration that we will have to deal with for years and years, there is probably nothing worse than the way the war effort in Afghanistan was neglected in order to invade Iraq. By most accounts the US was winning the war against the Taliban until Bush proceeded with his pet project of occupying Iraq. Now up to a trillion dollars later we are still bogged down and Iraq will be a mess for decades at least. Not to count the hundreds of thousands murdered and how their surviving families will understandably feel about the USA for generations.

The biggest lie of the 21st century was Bush's claims about the need to wage war on Iraq, and we'll spend the rest of the century dealing with the catastrophe.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/25/the-war-logs/
Handfleisch, I wish we could get away from Bush for a change. We've been there, done that over and over and over again. Everyone agrees with you that we should never have invaded Iraq, but that is almost a decade ago now. Obama has been in the seat for long enough, so that one could probably refer to what he is doing in the present, rather than delving in the past all the time? And the Wikileaks contain plenty of information about omissions during Obama's watch as well. Most of it actually has to do with the period leading up to December of last year. Both bad for Bush as well as Obama.


You're wrong and misinformed.

1. The Wikileaks covered a period up to 2009, not under Obama

2. With people's (especially Americans) tendency to have very short term memory and with the Republicans and right wing trying to take advantage of that by blaming Bush's disasters on Obama, we have to keep reminding ourselves constantly about why we are in the mess we are in (the Republican policies).
silverdown
I wish they just bring the troops home and just send a few teams or so a month to help them. Yet the war just keep going on, leading to nothing but money cost and death.
Bikerman
Well, on a point of information, the Wikileaks cover 1/1/2004 to 31/12/2009.
I have them in front of me and am working through them when I have time, but I haven't reached 2009 yet so I can't say what, if any, damning revelations there are in the current administration's 'watch'.
handfleisch
Bikerman wrote:
Well, on a point of information, the Wikileaks cover 1/1/2004 to 31/12/2009.
I have them in front of me and am working through them when I have time, but I haven't reached 2009 yet so I can't say what, if any, damning revelations there are in the current administration's 'watch'.


The leaks document the shifting of resources from the war in Afghanistan to the war in Iraq for Bush's war there. At the time the US was having success in the defeat of the Taliban, but Bush's bizarre occupation of Iraq gave the Taliban the chance to come back, and now it's pretty much a quagmire there. That's the kind of thing I referred to when I said the leaks document Bush's war disasters. I highly doubt there is some shocking revelation about Obama's 2009 management of the mess, since he hasn't made any really big moves except basic maintenance, and the right wing attack dogs have already exhausted themselves trying to find such things.
Bikerman
Still not found the time to read the last bit where Obama is in charge. A lot of it actually don't sensibly apply that far up the foodchain - much of the stuff that is dodgy are decisions made futher down the chain of command.
ocalhoun
Bikerman wrote:
- much of the stuff that is dodgy are decisions made futher down the chain of command.

(And the same sort of thing that could be found in any war in human history, if those wars were well-documented enough.)

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm certainly NOT a fan of the Bush administration, which has racked up a few of the worst examples of corruption I know of.
But, he's out of office. Can we stop beating the dead horse now? Please?
(We have a live one to beat now Twisted Evil )
handfleisch
ocalhoun wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
- much of the stuff that is dodgy are decisions made futher down the chain of command.


Now, don't get me wrong, I'm certainly NOT a fan of the Bush administration, which has racked up a few of the worst examples of corruption I know of.
But, he's out of office. Can we stop beating the dead horse now? Please?
(We have a live one to beat now :twisted: )


That's a recipe for forgetting history and repeating the mistakes. In this case, recent history. And that also would let guilty parties (pun intended) off the hook. Also, we traditionally remember and review the actions of disastrous leaders in order to learn what went wrong, and so current and future generations can avoid catastrophes. And then there's the fact that we are living in, and will for many years, the disasters (too many to list here) that were created, caused, condoned and/or presided over by the Bush administration.
ocalhoun
handfleisch wrote:
ocalhoun wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
- much of the stuff that is dodgy are decisions made futher down the chain of command.


Now, don't get me wrong, I'm certainly NOT a fan of the Bush administration, which has racked up a few of the worst examples of corruption I know of.
But, he's out of office. Can we stop beating the dead horse now? Please?
(We have a live one to beat now Twisted Evil )


That's a recipe for forgetting history and repeating the mistakes. In this case, recent history. And that also would let guilty parties (pun intended) off the hook. Also, we traditionally remember and review the actions of disastrous leaders in order to learn what went wrong, and so current and future generations can avoid catastrophes. And then there's the fact that we are living in, and will for many years, the disasters (too many to list here) that were created, caused, condoned and/or presided over by the Bush administration.

I just mean that these mistakes are remembered, except by those who never acknowledged them in the first place. There isn't much chance of them being forgotten by those who accept them.

Given that, there's no reason to keep bringing up reminders when it distracts us from what's going on right now and in the future. -- Except when prosecuting the criminal mistakes.
Bikerman
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......
handfleisch
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
Bikerman
Yes, I agree that some of the leaks are indeed relevant and do speak to Presidential decisions...
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
I still can't get over that they invaded Iraq. I still can't understand that the rest of the world bought the "weapons of mass destruction" story! Such a serious invasion, with obviously not enough evidence, including a weapons inspector from the UN, who in the end had to resign because he took an opposing position in the matter, i.e. found that there were no WMDs. Surely Bush could not have done that on his own however, he had enormous approval ratings at the time. So one can't really blame him on hs own, as he does come from a democratic country? Or does he?
liljp617
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
I still can't get over that they invaded Iraq. I still can't understand that the rest of the world bought the "weapons of mass destruction" story! Such a serious invasion, with obviously not enough evidence, including a weapons inspector from the UN, who in the end had to resign because he took an opposing position in the matter, i.e. found that there were no WMDs. Surely Bush could not have done that on his own however, he had enormous approval ratings at the time. So one can't really blame him on hs own, as he does come from a democratic country? Or does he?


Blame Bush solely? Probably not, there's plenty of blame to go around. Blame his administration largely? Sure. And assuming he was informed of and asked for support in everything his administration was doing...he gets as fair amount of the blame as anyone else.

The administration did play on the fears of people, that much is obvious. The war effort support was backed by a certain level of hysteria from 9/11 and the Bush Administration seemed to make no attempt to keep this hysteria under control. They twisted what was going on, intentionally led an ill-informed public even further off the path of truth, and started the war machine into Iraq. They weren't stupid people, they knew precisely what they were doing.

Examples:

Quote:
Like his colleagues, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld cited the Sept. 11 attacks in making his case that the world cannot wait to see what Iraq may do. ''Imagine a Sept. 11 with weapons of mass destruction,'' he said on the CBS News program ''Face the Nation.'' ''It's not 3,000; it's tens of thousands of innocent men, women and children.''


Quote:
The president's national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, said ''there will always be some uncertainty about how quickly'' Mr. Hussein can acquire nuclear weapons. But, speaking on CNN's ''Late Edition,'' she added: ''We don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.''


Quote:
Mr. Cheney cited what he called a credible but unconfirmed intelligence report that Mohamed Atta, one of the Sept. 11 hijackers, had met at least once in Prague with a senior Iraqi intelligence official a few months before the attacks.


http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F10C17FD345A0C7A8CDDA00894DA404482

I mean, you simply don't go on record and say these things to the general public when you're so unsure of what it is you're saying. It's misleading, it builds fear, it builds resentment. Of course, that's exactly what they were after. And for that, yes, I will put a good portion of blame on them.
deanhills
liljp617 wrote:
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
I still can't get over that they invaded Iraq. I still can't understand that the rest of the world bought the "weapons of mass destruction" story! Such a serious invasion, with obviously not enough evidence, including a weapons inspector from the UN, who in the end had to resign because he took an opposing position in the matter, i.e. found that there were no WMDs. Surely Bush could not have done that on his own however, he had enormous approval ratings at the time. So one can't really blame him on hs own, as he does come from a democratic country? Or does he?


Blame Bush solely? Probably not, there's plenty of blame to go around. Blame his administration largely? Sure. And assuming he was informed of and asked for support in everything his administration was doing...he gets as fair amount of the blame as anyone else.

The administration did play on the fears of people, that much is obvious. The war effort support was backed by a certain level of hysteria from 9/11 and the Bush Administration seemed to make no attempt to keep this hysteria under control. They twisted what was going on, intentionally led an ill-informed public even further off the path of truth, and started the war machine into Iraq. They weren't stupid people, they knew precisely what they were doing.
But who did that hysteria belong to, who reacted, and aren't they responsible as well? Almost as though once people have voted, they have washed their hands off everything and sit back and become critics. No longer "we", but "they did"? "Bush did" or "Bush did not" or the Administration did, or the Defense Dept. did? And one can understand if it is just for a year or so, but this war in Afghanistan has been going on for longer than 8 years? And people are still pointing fingers away from themselves? It's almost as though the American people are being "lulled" by their political system in some form of trance? With exactly the same kind of refrains running during each and every script?
liljp617
deanhills wrote:
liljp617 wrote:
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
I still can't get over that they invaded Iraq. I still can't understand that the rest of the world bought the "weapons of mass destruction" story! Such a serious invasion, with obviously not enough evidence, including a weapons inspector from the UN, who in the end had to resign because he took an opposing position in the matter, i.e. found that there were no WMDs. Surely Bush could not have done that on his own however, he had enormous approval ratings at the time. So one can't really blame him on hs own, as he does come from a democratic country? Or does he?


Blame Bush solely? Probably not, there's plenty of blame to go around. Blame his administration largely? Sure. And assuming he was informed of and asked for support in everything his administration was doing...he gets as fair amount of the blame as anyone else.

The administration did play on the fears of people, that much is obvious. The war effort support was backed by a certain level of hysteria from 9/11 and the Bush Administration seemed to make no attempt to keep this hysteria under control. They twisted what was going on, intentionally led an ill-informed public even further off the path of truth, and started the war machine into Iraq. They weren't stupid people, they knew precisely what they were doing.
But who did that hysteria belong to, who reacted, and aren't they responsible as well? Almost as though once people have voted, they have washed their hands off everything and sit back and become critics. No longer "we", but "they did"? "Bush did" or "Bush did not" or the Administration did, or the Defense Dept. did? And one can understand if it is just for a year or so, but this war in Afghanistan has been going on for longer than 8 years? And people are still pointing fingers away from themselves? It's almost as though the American people are being "lulled" by their political system in some form of trance? With exactly the same kind of refrains running during each and every script?


The hysteria and anger following the attacks is a normal, expected reaction in my opinion. I don't blame the average person for having an emotional reaction to multiple airliners being hijacked and flown into skyscrapers/buildings.

It is the responsibility of those who wield the power to make important decisions (like say, waltzing into an uninvolved nation with guns) to keep this emotional reaction from getting out of control and effecting future political decisions. At the very least, it is the responsibility of those in charge of making the important decisions to be sure they're not increasing this already present level of hysteria and resentment.

Sure, people should not have let their anger or fear determine whether or not they supported the invasion of Iraq. That's an irrational approach as any. But you don't think a majority of the blame should be on the individuals at the highest levels of authority who propagated a known lie to the public? These are people at the highest levels of authority knowingly fear-mongering with the sole intent of gaining support for an unnecessary invasion of another nation -- "Think about 9/11. Imagine that with WMDs. We must invade Iraq now" and "We don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud." How is the public expected to react reasonably to their leaders telling them there's a legitimate threat of nuclear warfare on their doorstep?

I believe a large portion of the anger and fear after 9/11, especially by 2003, could have been squashed had those in authority attempted to do so (which again, I believe is their responsibility). Instead, they capitalized on the opportunity, purposefully misled the public with plain lies and fear-mongering, and proceeded to walk into Iraq.

Again, for that, I pin a large amount of blame on them.
deanhills
liljp617 wrote:
deanhills wrote:
liljp617 wrote:
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
I thought that I was actually saying that much of the stuff didn't really have much to say about the President in any case? I wasn't beating any dead horse, but the OP is on wikileaks and Bush.......

I acknowledge the point, but it was my understanding that the leaks document the transfer of resources and attention from Afghanistan to Iraq, which allowed the Taliban to resurge back to power and that's why we are still in a mess there today. Also, there's the "buck stops here" issue -- and in this case the buck is thoroughly owned by Bush, who started a war for no reason and on no instigation whatsoever.
I still can't get over that they invaded Iraq. I still can't understand that the rest of the world bought the "weapons of mass destruction" story! Such a serious invasion, with obviously not enough evidence, including a weapons inspector from the UN, who in the end had to resign because he took an opposing position in the matter, i.e. found that there were no WMDs. Surely Bush could not have done that on his own however, he had enormous approval ratings at the time. So one can't really blame him on hs own, as he does come from a democratic country? Or does he?


Blame Bush solely? Probably not, there's plenty of blame to go around. Blame his administration largely? Sure. And assuming he was informed of and asked for support in everything his administration was doing...he gets as fair amount of the blame as anyone else.

The administration did play on the fears of people, that much is obvious. The war effort support was backed by a certain level of hysteria from 9/11 and the Bush Administration seemed to make no attempt to keep this hysteria under control. They twisted what was going on, intentionally led an ill-informed public even further off the path of truth, and started the war machine into Iraq. They weren't stupid people, they knew precisely what they were doing.
But who did that hysteria belong to, who reacted, and aren't they responsible as well? Almost as though once people have voted, they have washed their hands off everything and sit back and become critics. No longer "we", but "they did"? "Bush did" or "Bush did not" or the Administration did, or the Defense Dept. did? And one can understand if it is just for a year or so, but this war in Afghanistan has been going on for longer than 8 years? And people are still pointing fingers away from themselves? It's almost as though the American people are being "lulled" by their political system in some form of trance? With exactly the same kind of refrains running during each and every script?


The hysteria and anger following the attacks is a normal, expected reaction in my opinion. I don't blame the average person for having an emotional reaction to multiple airliners being hijacked and flown into skyscrapers/buildings.

It is the responsibility of those who wield the power to make important decisions (like say, waltzing into an uninvolved nation with guns) to keep this emotional reaction from getting out of control and effecting future political decisions. At the very least, it is the responsibility of those in charge of making the important decisions to be sure they're not increasing this already present level of hysteria and resentment.

Sure, people should not have let their anger or fear determine whether or not they supported the invasion of Iraq. That's an irrational approach as any. But you don't think a majority of the blame should be on the individuals at the highest levels of authority who propagated a known lie to the public? These are people at the highest levels of authority knowingly fear-mongering with the sole intent of gaining support for an unnecessary invasion of another nation -- "Think about 9/11. Imagine that with WMDs. We must invade Iraq now" and "We don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud." How is the public expected to react reasonably to their leaders telling them there's a legitimate threat of nuclear warfare on their doorstep?

I believe a large portion of the anger and fear after 9/11, especially by 2003, could have been squashed had those in authority attempted to do so (which again, I believe is their responsibility). Instead, they capitalized on the opportunity, purposefully misled the public with plain lies and fear-mongering, and proceeded to walk into Iraq.

Again, for that, I pin a large amount of blame on them.
Think perhaps we have been talking about two different things here and I do agree with what you have said. Yes, the reaction was completely normal, and for that matter, I think very much under control and here Bush did also something good. He had then cautioned the people publicly and urgently not to take their frustration out on Moslems. Being a typical politician he of course also traded on the euphoria that came from deciding to take on the terrorists on their own home turf. But what I meant was that once the US had invaded Iraq, and the people were getting very critical of him and his administration, he still managed to get re-elected and continued to be criticized along very severe lines for years to come, before he finally stepped down. So somewhere in those many years of supporting him in his position as President, including electing him, the people would also have to take responsibility for that, and not just pointing fingers at him, his administration or the political system. I don't see anything really that passionate in the Congress either, to the same extent one would find under those who had been unhappy with him. Check through blogs of that time and there is almost no comparison with Congress's discussions of the President. So basically the representatives in Congress are just behaving well and playing games in Washington DC earning their usual top dollars? There must be some who are trying, I'm certain, but are all the representatives working fully for the benefit of the people? Or are they really wasting lots of taxpayer money with no benefit for the people? And so if the people have put them in Congress to start off with, is there not a certain responsibility that goes with that?
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