Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Melathys » Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:24 pm

that whole argument of no one wants there is, honestly, a damned if you do, damned if you don't kinda thing. If we didn't we'd be getting bitched at for being the most powerful nation on earth and letting things happen by not doing anything. But we did do something, so we get bitched at for being the most powerful nation on earth that can't mind our own business.

I can tell you from personal experience that we are not universally reviled in Iraq. I've been in the streets, and had Iraqi people thank me for being there...which I'm sure is more than most of the CNN sackriders can say. After seeing events happen before my eyes, then hearing the retelling of those events on CNN, I've stopped watching CNN. The news stories are more story than news.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Arjuna » Sat Aug 28, 2010 1:07 am

thegreatheed wrote:
Fridmarr wrote:Honestly, I don't really believe that the intelligence community of most of the western world was lying, pretty much all believed Sadam retained his known WMD capacity or expanded it. I mean the UN hearings on the matter were public, and I watched them. However, in my opinion the WMD argument was mostly convenience. I believe the Bush administration was more interested in establishing another westernized government in the heart of the middle east than they were about the perceived threat posed by Sadam and his WMD.

Exactly, there was credible intelligence of WMDs before Iraq2. To say half the developed world was "lying" is so conspiratorial it's funny. I am not arguing whether or not Bush has alterior motives, that's beside the point. Saddam has the capability to produce WMDs. Saddam had used WMDs in the past. So he was capable and experienced to use WMDs. In the scheme of the war on terror, a dictator who has in the past produced and used WMDs, who is also facing huge UN sanctions, is a very real threat. Al-Qaeda did exist in Iraq, did participate in the insurgency BY THEIR OWN ADMISSION. This was a bad situation, and one that needed solving.

credible intelligence?

You haven't been on this side of the pond very much, right? Most of us over here was pretty convinced(along with our governments) that he didn't have any WMDs. The countries that went in -03 weren't very many...and opposition against the war over here was very very high! (up at 90% of the populace in some countries)
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Koatanga » Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:35 am

Yeah it's pretty silly to use the WMD excuse any more. The US pretty much shoved that down the world's throat, and only their staunchest allies went along with the sham.

Hussein did show the ability and inclination to use WMDs, but not against the US, and certainly represented no direct threat to US land because they lacked a delivery method for any alleged WMDs.

Iraq was in the midst of a civil war, and the US stepped in to the middle of it. Now the US is stepping out, but the puppet government won't last long and the US better be prepared to deal with whatever faction ends up on top.

Saddam was a dick, but at least he was a known one.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby knaughty » Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:25 am

thegreatheed wrote:Exactly, there was credible intelligence of WMDs before Iraq2. To say half the developed world was "lying" is so conspiratorial it's funny.


(1) Only three countries claimed that Saddam had WMDs for Gulf2:
Bush
Blair
Howard (Aussie Prime Minister)

I have no information on what Bush and Blair were told, though no credible evidence for Saddam having WMDs in 2003 has ever been released, and none has ever been found.

I can, however, state what Howard was told.

Andrew Wilkie was an Intelligence analyst, working for the Australian Office of National Assessments. This office is responsible for collating all available intelligence information from all australian (and allied) agencies, analysing the information, and then presenting their reports to the Prime Minister and Cabinet. The ONA is the PM's personal intelligence agency. Wilkie was apparently senior enough (how senior isn't clear to me) that he had access to what was being presented to the PM.

He resigned from the ONA in 2003, stating basically two things:

(1): There was no credible evidence that Saddam had WMDs in 2003.

(2): The Office of National Assessments was being pressured to exaggerate available evidence to indicate that Saddam did have WMDs.

Howard tried (and failed) to put Wilkie in jail - Wilkie fired back by standing against Howard in his own electorate at the next election and scored a substantial swing against Howard (though not enough to unseat him - that happened the following time).

As of last week, Wilkie has been elected to parliament in Australia as one of the Independents who will hold the balance of power. Laughably, the Liberal party (Howard's party) promptly apologised for trying to stick him in jail once it was clear that the Liberals would need his vote to form government. Sadly, they didn't apologise for lying about the WMDs.

In Australia, it would seem fairly safe to make both of the following statements:

1: Almost no one believes that Saddam had WMDs in 2003.

2: Most people believe that Howard was aware that Saddam had no WMDs, was being briefed by his personal intelligence agency that Saddam had no WMDs, but chose to lie in order to support Bush.

Worldwide, it would seem fairly safe to make both of the following statements:

(1): Since 2003, no credible evidence has ever been released to demonstrate why Bush, Blair and Howard were claiming that Saddam had WMDs - their "compelling evidence" has never been shown.

(2): Saddam did not have WMDs in 2003.

Obvious Conclusion:

There were no WMDs. The three amigos knew there were no WMDs. They decided to lie to have an excuse to invade.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby knaughty » Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:32 am

I'd also point out that the USA, Britain and Australia is not half the developed world. And in Australia, even in 2003, a hell of a lot of people thought Howard was lying. Seven years later, it would certainly be a majority.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby thegreatheed » Sat Aug 28, 2010 1:26 pm

knaughty wrote:

(1): Since 2003, no credible evidence has ever been released to demonstrate why Bush, Blair and Howard were claiming that Saddam had WMDs - their "compelling evidence" has never been shown.

(2): Saddam did not have WMDs in 2003.

Obvious Conclusion:

There were no WMDs. The three amigos knew there were no WMDs. They decided to lie to have an excuse to invade.


I remember the press conferences and public sharing of some of the intel. They showed some of the facilities and structures that Saddam had that were capable of WMD production. These existed. These were shown on national television. Honestly what is the difference when Saddam had the ability to produce these weapons, had produced them in the past, had used them in the past, and Saddam's own actions, yanking UN inspectors around, limiting access, etc, lead to the belief, pressured or otherwise, that more WMDs existed. This was not an irrational belief. When something walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. He was capable, willing, and obviously evasive.

[1] Proven, known existence of WMD production capability.

[2] History of manufacturing and use of WMD.

[3] Evasive and dishonest treatment of UN inspectors.

What do those 3 mean to you? Nothing? Along with a strong Al-Qaeda presence in the region, a presence which had flat-out declared war on the US, what do you do? Hand them more sanctions so more children can die? What other choice was there? The sanctions weren't working, the sanctions were devastating on the country. Saddam wasn't cooperating with anything or anyone. What should the US have done? Give Saddam figurative victory? And tell me how exactly the "three amigos" knew this madman did not have WMDs? His every action and history said that he did. Inspections were routinely denied and delayed. How is an amount of doubt a "lie"? Bush presented his case publicly about the production capabilities and history of WMDs. He was forced to suspect that Saddam had WMDs, because every single sign pointed towards it. Could they have absolute knowledge there were no WMDs? Definitely not. There's 100% no way for Bush, Blair and Howard to know for certain either way, much less to conspire and lie about the situation.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby knaughty » Sat Aug 28, 2010 2:49 pm

thegreatheed wrote:Could they have absolute knowledge there were no WMDs? Definitely not. There's 100% no way for Bush, Blair and Howard to know for certain either way, much less to conspire and lie about the situation.

What part of "Howard's personal intelligence agency was telling him that Saddam no longer had WMDs in 2003" are you not understanding?

I'm not denying Saddam wanted them.

I'm not denying he'd used gas in the past.

Yes, he also interfered with inspections.

Despite all that, prior to the war the ANO was telling Howard, in effect, "sanctions worked, he ain't got nothin'". Howard's response was "Make up something plausible", Andrew Wilkie resigned and went public with what he knew.

Your 3 points are true, they do not mean that Saddam had WMDs in 2003, in fact, the Australian intelligence agencies knew that he almost certainly didn't have them. It beggars belief that Aussie intelligence agencies would have the scoop on the Brits and the USA and not share with them.

I recall (but can't cite, and I'm too busy to look it up) that Hans Blix, the head of the UN weapons inspection team! was saying the same stuff - "Nothing here, we must have got it all"

/signing off this thread.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Brekkie » Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:25 pm

Personally, I don't find the whole WMDs rationalization credible either.

I just view the other justifications for what the US has now accomplished in Iraq to be sufficient. The country IS rebuilt/rebuilding. The country IS relatively stable and in no danger of collapsing into civil war. The people ARE happier and safer than they have been in decades. Democratic institutions HAVE taken root. All that is directly from the boots on the ground that have been conducting humanitarian efforts and building hospitals and schools and bridges for ten years straight, not from a liberal news media trying to spin things like Iraq in 2010 is the same as Iraq in 2004.

I didn't enlist because of WMDs. I was still in high school in 2003. I enlisted because even after it was pretty obvious there were no WMDs to find, I still viewed it to be a war worth fighting.

Also, the little mentioned fact about Saddam's previous use of WMDs and alleged continued possession of them was the tiny tidbit that HE GOT THEM FROM US.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Thornir » Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:34 pm

I'm sure this thread has derailed quite a ways away from the track here.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Koatanga » Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:40 pm

The US demanded proof that Iraq did not have WMDs. That was obviously impossible, because everything Iraq could present as "proof" was discredited by the people whose agenda was to invade Iraq.

Iraq could no more prove it didn't have WMDs than you can prove you are not a space alien. It's simply not logically possible to prove that you are not hiding something. The other side simply counters with "he's lying" (no proof of that exists, either) and "he's just hiding it so well we can't find it" (which could still be true, but that must be one HELL of a hiding place).
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Arjuna » Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:21 pm

Brekkie wrote:Personally, I don't find the whole WMDs rationalization credible either.

I just view the other justifications for what the US has now accomplished in Iraq to be sufficient. The country IS rebuilt/rebuilding. The country IS relatively stable and in no danger of collapsing into civil war. The people ARE happier and safer than they have been in decades. Democratic institutions HAVE taken root. All that is directly from the boots on the ground that have been conducting humanitarian efforts and building hospitals and schools and bridges for ten years straight, not from a liberal news media trying to spin things like Iraq in 2010 is the same as Iraq in 2004.

I didn't enlist because of WMDs. I was still in high school in 2003. I enlisted because even after it was pretty obvious there were no WMDs to find, I still viewed it to be a war worth fighting.

Also, the little mentioned fact about Saddam's previous use of WMDs and alleged continued possession of them was the tiny tidbit that HE GOT THEM FROM US.

The end justifies the means, eh? Screw international law...

Iraq had quite a high standard of living before -90/91 as well you know...
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Brekkie » Sat Aug 28, 2010 10:09 pm

End justifies the means? That implies there are unscrupulous means. As a member of the military, I'm kind of offended by that. We fought a perfectly clean war and defense afterward, and have continued to bleed our own blood to maintain that humanitarian effort. We aren't the ones blowing up crowds of civilians. Nor did we just sit inside the wire comfortably and view it as not our job. We were the ones building hospitals and guarding schools. Losing lives to IEDs to ensure that areas were kept secure with frequent patrols.

We went in based on our commander in chief telling us that there was a clear and present threat of WMDs against our homeland. We toppled a corrupt regime with a proud military within weeks. We found out that the justifications we were given for the initial invasion were unsubstantiated, for whatever reason.

We did not JUST LEAVE. That is important. We did not just say "Oops, fuck it. Guess it wasn't worth spending the lives or soldiers and Marines on after all. Pack it up, boys." We followed through on our commitment, fixed our mess. At least made the country a better place than it was before we invaded, and waited until it was back on it's feet before conducting a heavy withdrawal.

Yes, Bush is a jerk. We get it. We aren't too fond of him either.
Yes, America is a pretty passionate country and we tend to get caught up in our emotions and it led to some sketchy stuff getting pulled off by people driving the bus in the couple years immediately following 9/11 riding the tide of public outrage.

But we stayed there and fixed our mess, even when all that became apparent. And considering how susceptible to war-weariness democratic countries with short terms of office tend to be, that's something I am proud of. It's very easy for the peanut gallery of the western world to sit on a pedestal and talk smack about the stuff we try to do in the world, but when you come down to it, I don't see any of them in Zimbabwe either.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Arjuna » Sun Aug 29, 2010 2:33 am

Brekkie wrote:End justifies the means? That implies there are unscrupulous means. As a member of the military, I'm kind of offended by that. We fought a perfectly clean war and defense afterward, and have continued to bleed our own blood to maintain that humanitarian effort. We aren't the ones blowing up crowds of civilians. Nor did we just sit inside the wire comfortably and view it as not our job. We were the ones building hospitals and guarding schools. Losing lives to IEDs to ensure that areas were kept secure with frequent patrols.

Did I EVER imply that it was about you personally or about the actual fighting? (English isn't my first language so if I seemed to be accusing you, I wasn't) If I dog attacks me I wouldn't blame it, but it's master. Politicians are behind the war, and they are the ones that used unscrupulous means to justify it. And unfortunately, it means that the troops have to pay to fix their mistakes...

And, yes, you have been in there rebuilding the place. But that doesn't have anything to do with why you were there in the first place!


And yes, workplace deaths are always horrible.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby Brekkie » Sun Aug 29, 2010 10:11 am

I find the concept that Bush simply wasn't very intelligent and was manipulated by people who had a conflict of interest with the the military-industrial complex and big oil more compelling than that he was a dastardly plotting liar.

But either way, blame the master, not the dog, as you put it.
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Re: Controversial topic inc: Muslim cultural center+mosque in NY

Postby laterna » Sun Aug 29, 2010 7:05 pm

Brekkie wrote:I find the concept that Bush simply wasn't very intelligent and was manipulated by people who had a conflict of interest with the the military-industrial complex and big oil more compelling than that he was a dastardly plotting liar.

But either way, blame the master, not the dog, as you put it.


I'll add my own opinion, despite not being US. I'll give you my opinion as someone who does not care about what happens, and is as an neutral person to this as you'll get. I've also served in the military (albeit not marines or US) for two years.

a) There were no WMD's not before, not during and not after the invasion by US forces.
b) Its very easy to control what a group of soldiers sees. Many a bad commands that came to my office that would create lots of issues to our troops , were never published, mainly before our commander said so.
c) The army will fuck you up. For people working there, its their job, they don't care if you get the short end of the staff as long as they get what they want.
d) Muslim mosque near ground zero? Let them build it, why on earth do you have freedom of religion in your country? Unless your goverment declares war against all muslims, not allowing them to build it, is purely, illegal.
e) Was bush retarded? Yes. Was he aware that there were no WMD's ? Unkown. The whole white house could know everything, and he could very well know NOTHING.
d) Can 1 person, president, monarch,commander, ruler w/e, keep in track of everything that happens around him, and remove all methods of deceiving him ? NO. Every person is corruptible. Weapons developing companys thrive during wars. Could they not have paid to make it appear that there were alot of WMD's in there? Yep of course, and easily.
f) Brekkie, you are 1 man, in a many thousand strong force stationed there. Could you have known everything that happened? Would you have known if any soldier raper a single woman there? Of coure you wouldn't.

It is very easy to think that the attack of 9/11 was what trigured everything in the War against Terror. People are dump though and still act on primal thought processes. You feel that you have a point brekkie, because you were there, and you saw it with your own eyes. What happens behind closed scenes is far beyond your understanding. What people do, and how, especially in higher commanding positions is not based on morality. Its based in maximazing profit. Lots of folks in the US will continue protesting against the mosque. Inside people's mind it feels like adding salt to a wound. "THEM MUSLIMS TRYING TO MOCK THE GREAT US, KILL KILL KILL". Take a step back and realise, that what are you doing, and what you experience, is only a fraction of what is going on. And the rest is presented to you, through US channels.

Personal experience:
I saw a BBC filming group, stage a "battle" in the middle of the road, including US troops, with the blessing of their commanders. The camp I served as an aid from my country, was merely 100 meters away. The next day, my mother filmed the same scene, saying that "Its proof that the muslimes there are agressive, and bloodthirsty".

Take everything you read/see with a grain of salt. Try and picture both sides. Does it make sence on both sides? Do not think that because people have different religious beliefs as muslims, that makes them all crazy people.

They used to say the winners wrote history. Nowadays, its the one with the most media resources. (Hello 3/4 of the people I know thinking the US won the Vietnam war....)
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