November 25, 2006

Chuck Hagel, conservative GOP senator from Nebraska, finally calls a spade a spade with the mess in Iraq

The mess in Iraq was caused by the same incompetents who helped cause the late great housing ponzi scheme at the same time - namely a corrupt Congress, a boob of a President, and a clueless US population who went along willingly.

This Washington Post op-ed from Chuck Hagel will go down in history. I thought it was important that HP'ers saw it and understood what it meant. I'll give you the highlights but please read the entire piece.

Hagel admits we screwed up, infers Bush is a dimwit on a misguided God-complex mission, admits Congress aided and abetted, admits to $500 billion down the tubes, although we all know the true cost will be well over $1 trillion when this is over, and calls for us to get out. Let Iraq, Iran and Syria clean up our mess.

And oh, what a mess it is.

Leaving Iraq, Honorably, By Chuck Hagel

There will be no victory or defeat for the United States in Iraq. These terms do not reflect the reality of what is going to happen there. The future of Iraq was always going to be determined by the Iraqis -- not the Americans.

The time for more U.S. troops in Iraq has passed. We do not have more troops to send and, even if we did, they would not bring a resolution to Iraq.

We have misunderstood, misread, misplanned and mismanaged our honorable intentions in Iraq with an arrogant self-delusion reminiscent of Vietnam.

America finds itself in a dangerous and isolated position in the world. We are perceived as a nation at war with Muslims.

The world will continue to require realistic, clear-headed American leadership -- not an American divine mission.

The United States must begin planning for a phased troop withdrawal from Iraq. The cost of combat in Iraq in terms of American lives, dollars and world standing has been devastating.

We are destroying our force structure, which took 30 years to build. We've been funding this war dishonestly, mainly through supplemental appropriations, which minimizes responsible congressional oversight and allows the administration to duck tough questions in defending its policies. Congress has abdicated its oversight responsibility in the past four years.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

The Iraq war was just the first act.

FlyingMonkeyWarrior said...

The Muslims should be treated and regulated as if they are a Political Party/movement, not a Religion, according to Pat Campbel, WFLA Radio.

WhiteTower said...

"America finds itself in a dangerous and isolated position in the world. We are perceived as a nation at war with Muslims."

An insipid, craven statement out of an otherwise insightful opinion piece.

It is the Muslim world that is at war with the rest of the world -- as it always has been -- not we who are at war with the Muslim world.

keith said...

we are indeed perceived (by the muslim world) to be at war against muslims

perception IS reality

So now that that reality is there, what do we do? Finish the war or walk away?

I of course believe we need to get out of Iraq, immediately. Let them settle their own affairs.

Then we need to bomb Iran's nuke capabilities to smithereens. We're going to do it eventually, so might as well do it today.

But no matter what, get our troops out of there. Bring 'em home.

foobeca said...

the rats are fleeing a sinking ship

keith said...

Hagel calling for us to get out, while McCain is calling for us to send more troops

I'll take Hagel as the GOP nominee in 2008. McCain is toast.

Anonymous said...

Hagel is not a conservative GOP senator.

Anonymous said...

Now, if you look at my record, my voting record — I've been in the Senate 10 years. Do you have any idea what my voting record is in support of the Bush administration position the last six years, the Republican Party? It's about 95 percent over 10 years. My record is about as conservative as any conservative Republican in the United States Senate. It is constantly — the American Conservative Union constantly rates me as one of the highest.

So I don't apologize, Chris, to you or anyone else for my position. My conservative credentials are pretty clear.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,209499,00.html

Anonymous said...

housing talk anyone? i'm going to visit ben's blog

Natural Eyebrows said...

So Iraq is a "blunder" says Senator Hagel. He voted to authorize this blunder, as did every other Republican senator save one, and many Democratic senators.

Have any of them admitted their mistake and apologized to the American people or to the people of Iraq?

corvinus said...

The corrupt Chuck Hagel was one of the main pushers of Boosh's amnesty for illegal aliens last year. Add to that the fact he's a Bilderberger.

Forget Hagel. He's one of them.

Anonymous said...

We are destroying our force structure, which took 30 years to build. We've been funding this war dishonestly, mainly through supplemental appropriations, which minimizes responsible congressional oversight and allows the administration to duck tough questions in defending its policies. Congress has abdicated its oversight responsibility in the past four years.

Let's be a little more specific, shall we? Let's avoid the unspecific evasive.

There's been plenty of other people who didn't drink the neocon delusions and have been trying to examine the mess for those same four years.

REPUBLICANS abdicated all their responsbity about everything in the last four years. They snidely and cruelly accused those who thought otherwise that they were anti-American traitors who were on the side of the enemy.

And don't try to pull any crap about them "not being ''real'' conservatives".

As our esteemed and newly unemployed SecDef might have quoth:

You go to vote for the Republicans that you have not the Republicans that you want.

bubble_watcher said...

"America Vulnerable to Military Adventurism

...

But perhaps that would have been a good thing, suggests Robert Higgs, senior fellow at the Independent Institute and editor of THE INDEPENDENT REVIEW, in a new op-ed. Higgs suggests that, as it is, American political culture is too vulnerable to military adventurism initiated by the commander in chief.

Which characteristics make America especially vulnerable? "The essential components," writes Higgs, "are autocratic government, favorably disposed mass culture, public ignorance and misplaced trust, cooperative mass media, and political exploitation for personal and institutional advantages." "

[Link]

Anonymous said...

Stop talking about the Republicans, you Democrats are in charge. Stop whining and do something. You voted your people in, so tell them to fix the situation. All you Democrats do is f***ing cry. So, what's your solution?

AmazingRuss said...

We elected (within a statistical coin flip) the boob that took the lid off the nuthouse that is Iraq.

We are responsible for the mess there now...which is still a mess because we didn't commit the brainpower or manpower to make it otherwise.

Now everybody wants to wash their hands of it. Pathetic. Our country SCREWED UP IRAQ. Honor demands we make it right. People are squeaking about all the blood and treasure, as they sit here comfortably in the US. A few thousand of us have died from this debacle. Tens of thousands of Iraqis have, and tens of thousands more will. Their economy is destroyed. Their infrastructure is destroyed. Their new government is a farce.

We want to leave it like this, and we piss and moan that they are spineless. Projection, plain and simple.

What SHOULD happen is we mobilize the country WW2 style, get a million, 2 million, or however many million troops it takes over there and impose order. There should be no other goals until that is met. THEN we can help them rebuild. It will a decade or more, and cost several trillion.

We as a country could probably pull it off...if we were willing to pull together and make sacrifices. We aren't. We don't give a damn about responsibility or honor, either.

So what WILL happen is we'll piss away a few hundred billion more, pull out, and watch the whole country descend into a tribal cesspit/terrorist staging area...just like Afganistan did after the Russians invaded, destroyed it, and withdrew.

George the first had advisers that told him this would happen if he went to Bagdad in the first Gulf war. Funny thing...turns out they were right.

Dick and Bush wrote a check they can't cash. They will end up causing the deaths of millions because of this collosal blunder. They both should be hanged alongside Saddam.

Anonymous said...

Only winners of this Iraq sh!!t are defense contractors who got lavish un-bid multi-billions $ contracts. Everyone else are losers specially poor people of Iraq.

Anonymous said...

Cut military spending by 80%.

Bring all American troups home.

Work toward complete energy self-sufficiency in the U.S. as the number one and emergency priority. Fund this effort by raising gas prices to $5/gallon immediately.

Call a constitutional convention.

Limit campaigns to 60 days; 100% public funded. Media is required to donate a defined and limited amount of time for each candidate to state his/her position. NO CAMPAIGN ADS other than this.

..those a few starters

AmazingRuss said...

Good ideas...I'm glad I'm not the only inhabitant of Cloud Cuckoo Land.

AmazingRuss said...

Good ideas...I'm glad I'm not the only inhabitant of Cloud Cuckoo Land.

Anonymous said...

Stop talking about the Republicans, you Democrats are in charge. Stop whining and do something. You voted your people in, so tell them to fix the situation. All you Democrats do is f***ing cry. So, what's your solution?

Impeach Cheney first.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...
Cut military spending by 80%."

What a great idea. Let's just forget that Radical Islam wants to destroy Western Civilization. Let's then abandon all of our bases throughout the world and become xenophobes. I'm sure the United Nations will step up and police the world in our absence and have our best interests at heart. Their peacekeeping forces have a great track record, if you discount the corruption, murder, thievery and rape that usually accompanies their deployment.

dan said...

America is going to hang Bush and his gang members.

dan said...

"Let's just forget that Radical Islam wants to destroy Western Civilization."

It simply does not matter what the bogeyman wants. It is what the bogeyman is capable of that is important. People like you blew the threat so far out of proportion that we wound up fighting a preemptive war that preempted nothing and brought us to the point we are presently at. Go to hell.

Democrat said...

From the reactions it is very clear that there are people that have been made so afraid for Muslims. In the old days, the communists were the enemy. Nowadays, a new enemy has submerged (or, put in place), Muslim-extremists.

As a result of this relentless fear mongering, brought to you by TV and newspapers, you seem willing to give up anything in the world to keep the perception that you are safe. A Patriot Act, Homeland Security Act and Military Commissions Act 2006. All these Acts are put in place to fight the terrorists and to protect you, isn’t it? The truth may be a little bit different.

If you haven’t lost any freedoms under these Act, your government would not have wanted this Act, supposedly to be able to protect you and other citizens. If these Acts would not give it any more power than without these Acts, it would be useless Acts for it and law enforcement agencies.

These Acts do limit your freedoms in favour of anti-terrorism agencies. Was terrorism not a crime under the laws before implementation of these Acts? Of course it was a crime, these acts merely give government more power and take away more of your civil rights for this ‘War on Terror’. Otherwise, these acts would not have been requested or even needed by your government.

It is not crystal clear from these acts who is considered a terrorist and who is not. With the passing of these Acts, it is not absolutely clear and written in law who is a terrorist and who is not. Therefore, judges are still required to establish who can be considered a terrorist in a given case and who is not. The term ‘terrorist’ is merely be based on the interpretation of these Acts, their purposes and the way authorities would interpret it at any given moment.

That leaves us with an interesting proposition. Let’s consider that I can be considered a terrorist. Just our mere discussion here at this blog establishes contact between you and me. If I would call you or just send you a letter with instructions, you would have “contact with a terrorist”. Due to the enormous room for interpretation of the new set of rules (remember Rumsfeld’s memo on prisoner interrogation and Gitmo?), and in combination with that healthy suspension of habeas corpus for ‘enemy combatants’ you would be defenseless. Plain utter defenseless. Not tomorrow, not in 5 year. None of that all. You would be defenseless today under current legislation and solely dependent on the interpretation of vague terms such as ‘terrorists’. You will not have access to an independent judge to separate bad arguments from the government authorities from good ones. This is today, and you seem to be fine with that, based on the perception that these acts are against terrorist and not fine American citizens. No American citizen will be harassed by government by these new rules.

Well, let’s consider the following. And please note that I have already heard of American citizens arrested on the basis of anti-terrorist legislation for wearing anti-Bush t-shirts and so.

Your country is walking a thin line here. You won’t notice anything of these changes if the government leaves you alone. Who needs civil rights and protection against government if it is not after you? You will only appreciate your civil rights fully when you really need them. If your rights are not there anymore when you need them most, it will be too late.

We’ve just run roughly through the current state of affairs with respect to government legislation and power towards alleged ‘terrorists’. We are able to conclude that ‘terrorists’ are breaking the law and, since October 2006 I believe, do not have habeas corpus anymore (officially, unofficially that was already the case, fully supported by the masses). The one and only authority deciding who is a terrorist and who is not is the great commander, not an impartial judge. Once labeled a terrorist, no impartial judge may decide otherwise, the legal defeat for the terrorist will have come into effect immediately.

This system makes the government a very, very powerful guy compared to you and your fellow citizens. If government can label people as terrorist at will, government virtually would have citizens’ lives in their hand. The ‘great commander’ in every aspect. Government could do anything to protect its goals and plans. Is that what the Constitution is all about: unchecked power for the great commander?

There is a reason for you hanging around on this blog. The disastrous decline of the US housing market is key issue here, along with the grave negative consequences that result from it. Therefore, the following assumption should not impose any problems for most readers here.

Let’s assume that things will be going a bit less better in the US. Let’s just assume that things will outright suck in the US. The economy goes down the cliff, unemployment is soaring, people get very angry. The great commander wants to keep the masses aligned and happy. A scapegoat is easily found: the Mexicans. The Mexicans caused all the trouble with their illegal invasion of the country and their cheap labor. Mexicans are arrested everywhere and put into special prisons. The great commander has every tool required to do so, by labeling these Mexicans as ‘terrorist’ impairing the interests of the US gravely with their illegality and cheap labor. The masses will be cheering and support any and every action in this respect, even turning in their neighbors if they are Mexicans or have Mexicans working for them.

Then all Mexicans have been arrested and taken away. Things still suck, the economy is still going further down and turns into an outright depression. People barely have food on the table, and are still angry. A new scapegoat needs to be chosen. The story goes further and further until people like you are picked as a scapegoat.

Well, if you understand the consequences of a serious decline of the housing market and the US dollar, you will know civil unrest will follow.

In theory, under these circumstances you would want to incriminate your neighbors earlier than they would incriminate you. A mere incrimination is sufficient to take you away forever, nobody is interested in your side of the story. Scapegoats don’t get that courtesy. You are defenseless and may remember the story I just told you anno 2006. Now it is not too late, but then it would be.

Unchecked power, the tools are already in pace today. Civil unrest won’t be a problem anymore for government, and they put these rules in place during your watch, when everything was still cozy, except for that hyped ‘War on Terror’ of course. You’ve had 911, other plots to bring terrorism to your country (Sears Towers) and a relentless stream of video’s of a man that once was your friend, Osama Bin Laden (in fact, Bin Laden family still is a friend of your President). These rules were put in place for the fight against these terrorist and all media channels work very hard to incite the fear of this terrorism into citizens’ heads.

Instead of fearing fear itself, step back for a moment and oversee the battlefield. How many people died of terrorism the last 6 year? How many died in traffic and how may by lighting? Are these new rules really required or are these new rules just preparation for the economic inevitable?

The tools are in place, and, in fact, you, the people, will be considered the terrorist once civil unrest starts to come.

The rules, implemented after 911 as a pretext and (fake) terror plots nowadays. Muslim extremist are no greater threat to you than they were 10 years ago. The only threat that has been added is your government. Pure, unchecked power of government. You will learn history the hard way, eventually. It was all planned upfront.

beebs said...

Hi Keith, Iran doesn't have a nuke capability. We should be building nuke tech for them. IMHO.

beebs

beebs said...

What SHOULD happen is we mobilize the country WW2 style, get a million, 2 million, or however many million troops it takes over there and impose order. There should be no other goals until that is met. THEN we can help them rebuild. It will a decade or more, and cost several trillion.

Pure insanity. We need to pull out now.

beebs

Anonymous said...

I live in Nebraska but I certainly don't back Hagel, who stands for continued US world hegemony.

This article was purely a play for the 2008 election. Look at his voting record. I heard him comment on the radio: "Someone's got to do it."

What was the "it" he was referring to? Stationing US troops all over the world.

Don't be fooled by this guy. He's part of the problem, not the solution.

Anonymous said...

Iraq can't be stabalized.

Japan and Germany welcomed us after a while and rebuilt their countries. These people would rather die than rebuild anything. They'd rather burn the oil then sell it, even if they starve to death.

We gave them 'freedom' as in no more Saddam. They don't want it. Time to leave.

Why are we in Anbar province 'guarding' and 'policing' them when 80% of their population approves of insurgents killing US troops? What's the point of that? We're spending billions rebuilding Anbar province and have to dodge IEDs to do it? CRAZY. To hell with them.

SeattleMoose said...

I do want more troops in Iraq!!!!

I want every SOB who voted for Bush in 2000 and 2004 to have their sons/daughters immediately drafted so they can be held accountable for putting the Bush Nazis in power.

You want a "war"?

Then walk the walk chickenhawks!!!

dan said...

Yes the chickenhawks, driven by sheer patriotism, will save the day in Iraq by enlisting in record numbers. I can see it now ....... Oh bad dream again.

honica jewinski said...

Did he call it a jew war?

monkeykeeper said...

I guess the monkey is awake....

Anonymous said...

Libs and Dems all suck. You are all the same.

Anonymous said...

Prediction! Iran (Shia majority) join forces with the Shia majority in Iraq and crack down on the Sunnis and Kurds (with some help from the Turks in the North who are putting up with some Kurdish aggression on their border) and bring some much desired stability to the country as the Americans withdraw or draw down forces. The Iranians and their new Shia brethren in Iraq restore the law and order in grisly fashion but the regular Joes in Iraq are o.k. with it because Muslim on Muslim violence is o.k. compared to American on Muslim violence. Joe Iraqi is o.k. the crackdown because by then he's really sick and tired of car bombings and the destruction of his country. Now the bad news, Iran now controls an even larger share of the world's known oil reserves and has Chinese clients who have contracted for oil with them over the past several years. Oil may be sold to the West but it will be at a premium and with the special "infidel tax" imposed on same. Other countries within the region and OPEC will decide that's a way cool idea start gouging the West as well. Just a thought, have a nice day and ask your elected officials to show some balls and start working toward energy independence NOW! The American Way is NOT to play world cop or Imperial Powerhouse. The American Way is to show some independence and courage, tell those who are gouging you to go f*ck themselves and figure out a way to meet your needs without the aid of as*holes who mean to exploit us. The American Way is to start being independent of these jack asses and tell them that since they love their damn oil so much they can go drink it and we won't be buying anymore of it from them. Just a thought. Smug Bastard