Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

War and Politics: Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and Ron Paul for President

with 5 comments

burning_oil_tanker.jpg
War with Iran illustrated, one guess what this would do to the price of gas…

Just a few notes about the wars we are in and the war with Iran we are still considering. The first thing that caught my eye was today’s statement by President Karzai of Afghanistan. He basically gave an angry speech denouncing the Allies for not coordinating military operations and particularly air strikes with his government, thus leading to avoidable civilian casualties, which of course build support for the Taliban insurgents.

This is absolutely correct, and neatly illustrates the horrible catch-22 the west is caught up in. Since Karzai’s government and military is riddled with Taliban sympathizers and informants, coordinating with them is the same as giving the Taliban advance notice of NATO attacks. This has some obvious downsides, it would allow the Taliban forces to escape, or worse, allow them to ambush NATO forces. Yet if we keep them out of the loop, civilian casualties are unavoidable. The main lesson that should be learnt here is simple, if you can’t trust the ally you are fighting for, it’s a no win situation. The exact same logic applies to Iraq as well unfortunately.

I came across another article, Imperial Poker, that made me smile. It’s of interest in its own right, and details some of the west’s mistakes and manipulations in Kosovo, but that is not what made me smile. The author makes the case that despite claiming to be Texan, Bush apparently has never played a game of poker in his life. I have been making this claim since before the invasion of Iraq, so I’m tickled I’m not the only one who has noticed. He bet the farm on the invasion of Iraq without having seen the other side’s cards, which is crazy. By that I mean he expended all of his political capital and post 911 international goodwill on the invasion of Iraq, guaranteeing he would be paralysed if Iraq wasn’t a smashing success.

And since then he has committed another cardinal poker errors, putting good money after bad for example. It’s obvious he has a losing hand in Iraq, yet he just keeps on betting while our enemies sit back incredulous and do what they can to encourage him to pour ever more money into the kitty. And of course his bluff has been called so many times that half a dozen nations around the world are simply in open defiance to the USA, and numerous of our friends and allies aren’t treating us much better.

Maybe I’m wrong, but I pray Bush doesn’t make the last and worse error in gambling…increasing the size of the bet to recoup previous losses. In this case that would be attacking Iran, which sadly there still seems to be preparations afoot for. And in that vein I came upon a statement made by one of the few politicians who has both feet on the ground. This would be Rep. Ron Paul from Texas, and his statement on H Con Res 21. This resolution calls upon the UN to indict President Ahlmadinejad for the crime of genocide because of his calls for the destruction of Israel…

“This resolution is an exercise in propaganda that serves one purpose: to move us closer to initiating a war against Iran. Citing various controversial statements by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, this legislation demands that the United Nations Security Council charge Ahmadinejad with violating the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

Having already initiated a disastrous war against Iraq citing UN resolutions as justification, this resolution is like déja-vu. Have we forgotten 2003 already? Do we really want to go to war again for UN resolutions? That is where this resolution, and the many others we have passed over the last several years on Iran, is leading us. I hope my colleagues understand that a vote for this bill is a vote to move us closer to war with Iran.

Clearly, language threatening to wipe a nation or a group of people off the map is to be condemned by all civilized people. And I do condemn any such language. But why does threatening Iran with a pre-emptive nuclear strike, as many here have done, not also deserve the same kind of condemnation? Does anyone believe that dropping nuclear weapons on Iran will not wipe a people off the map? When it is said that nothing, including a nuclear strike, is off the table on Iran, are those who say it not also threatening genocide? And we wonder why the rest of the world accuses us of behaving hypocritically, of telling the rest of the world “do as we say, not as we do.”

I strongly urge my colleagues to consider a different approach to Iran, and to foreign policy in general. General William Odom, President Reagan’s director of the National Security Agency, outlined a much more sensible approach in a recent article titled “Exit From Iraq Should Be Through Iran.” General Odom wrote: “Increasingly bogged down in the sands of Iraq, the U.S. thrashes about looking for an honorable exit. Restoring cooperation between Washington and Tehran is the single most important step that could be taken to rescue the U.S. from its predicament in Iraq.” General Odom makes good sense. We need to engage the rest of the world, including Iran and Syria, through diplomacy, trade, and travel rather than pass threatening legislation like this that paves the way to war. We have seen the limitations of force as a tool of U.S. foreign policy. It is time to try a more traditional and conservative approach. I urge a “no” vote on this resolution.”

I hear Rep. Ron Paul is running for president. Right now he has my vote.

(The above image of a burning oil tanker in the during the Iran-Iraq war is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. It is not being used for profit, it is central to illustrating the post, and it is an historically important image. If anyone knows the source I’ll attribute it properly.)

Written by unitedcats

June 23, 2007 at 8:33 am

Posted in Bush, Iran, Iraq, Politics, War

5 Responses

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  1. Afghans will always have more sympathy for Taliban instead of foreign occupation military because they don’t have anything in common. This is what is happening in Iraq they majority of the Iraqis support and protect their militant groups except few who are co-operating with occupation military for power and money.

    Right now playing Hold ’em Texas online so leave you with these few sentences.

    QB

    June 23, 2007 at 1:35 pm

  2. 3mullah cimoc
    February 25th, 2007 21:42 Mullah Cimoc say yes working so good for ameriki lose eight helicopter 2 weeks, and this admitting from usa invader. So obvious for all ameriki people if the eye opeing. him iraki man have the gonad, this gonad making this man fight for protect the woman and the child. Him never stop fighting. Him not be obedient slave of masters in tel aviv like aemeriki man. him not taking the hair gel and the daughter not being for slut of all boy wanting whore. google: mighty wurlitzer cia and learning the so complicated methods of ameriki government make the people so stupid and not know the gonad story and reason for fighting. Now usa government wanting all the girl take the shot for destroy the reproducting organ. so ameriki destroy self killing the baby abortion and the man become like the woman withe the beautiful hair and the fingernail during this time aztec and maya take back all land but ameriki so blinding.

    mullah cimoc

    June 23, 2007 at 10:38 pm

  3. QB,

    After living in Afghanistan for 3 years I can say without a doubt that your statement was made in complete and utter ignorance. Afghans generally despise the Taliban because they revile the Pakistani’s.

    After 16 months in Iraq previous to that I can also condemn your other statement as well. Utter nonsense.

    Mike

    July 12, 2007 at 12:08 am

  4. Mike: I almost didn’t approve this comment, but as long as you’re talking about QB’s opinion and not QB, it passes muster. I would also say, that as a member of the occupying forces, might it be that the Afghanis and Iraqis you dealt with were telling you what you wanted to hear? I would secondly say that insurgencies like we are seeing in both countries do not occur without the support of a large segment of the population. Thanks for your input, hope to hear more.

    unitedcats

    July 12, 2007 at 6:02 am

  5. Vote Ron Paul for President.

    What a breath of fresh air. A true Statesman.

    ET

    August 7, 2007 at 12:08 am


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