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September 05, 2007

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Be afraid! Be very afraid. I think your post points out most of the talking points. MONEY

Be afraid! Be very afraid. I think your post points out most of the talking points. MONEY

what happened to my post?

The only way to prevent this folly if at all would be to counter the propaganda right now - before it reaches takeoff speed.

What I am curious about is why Hillary and Obama are getting on the let's get tough on Iran theme? Why Joementum's resolution "condemning" Iran passed with zero no votes? Is there already consensus with the Dem leadership and now this Cheney propaganda campaign is just kabuki for our benefit?

Dems are selling us out seems like it to me.

One of the possible reasons for Peter Pace not getting a second appointment for Chair JCS was that the was the leader of the opposition to an Iranian war. Pace's term ends this Month.

Darclay

The dems are being threatened or blackmailed, I think. Otherwise I can't understand ti either. It isn't like we aren't writing, phoning, e-mailing them saying get us out of there NOW.

(I send out a prayer every couple of days that we don't start a war with Iran. All the help we can get; if there's a higher power, we at least let Hir know we aren't all for war.)

I think it is propaganda and hype to head fake attention away from the failures in Iraq. Dems will trade continued Iraq support for administration assurances not to attack Iran.
Call the Bluff. The military is stretched too thin to manage a 3rd battlefield.

If the Iranian war is derailed, it will probably be Ed Gillespie's doing. He is the plutocrats man in the WH. I can't imagine that big oil or the Chamber of Commerce want a war in the Persian Gulf. He seems to have gotten rid of Rove and Gonzo without too much trouble.

The Dems aren't being threatened or blackmailed. They are doing it to themselves. They are risk-averse. They are afraid of being seen as weak, so they (weakly) cower in the wings and don't take strong stands, and few speak out. Except Ellen Tauscher, who is a prime example of what a little constituent pressure can do. Pelosi is reliably anti-war, but she is a political operator, not a stateswoman, and she thinks (and compromises) too much to protect the ones she thinks are vulnerable. Thus they drag the Party to the right. Most of them hgave been in thrall to consultants for so long they have forgotten how to use common sense and think for themselves.

I'm with you Mimikatz. I have pooh poohed all the talk of attacking Iran as ludicrous given the current state of affairs in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the political climate at home. But it is clear that even while Bush and his chums go on and on about how responsive the elected officials in Iraq are and should be to the people of Iraq, they have stated repeatedly that they don't give a damn what the people here think. Just goes to show you how much of a democracy we have.

If indeed, Cheney gets the war he has salivated over for so long, it will only be because the Dems are complicit. I don't understand it, but there is simply no other explanation. I don't doubt that drational might be right, that Bushco is using Iran as a bargaining chip, but if they are successful in using Iran to get what they want in Iraq, it is only because the Dems are giving them a wink and a nod.

Ok, I'm with you on your post Mimikatz, not your comment. Your comment suggests that the Dems are politically stupid. I just don't see how that is possible. And just for the record, I'm not buying the battered wife argument either. They've been getting an earful from their constituents (or so I have heard), yet they continue to fail to act. That makes them complicit. I won't go so far as to suggest that they are being blackmailed or threatened. I think they are responding to the interests of the corporate lobbyists who bankroll their campaigns. And I think their world view is hopelessly skewed through the myopic lenses of Washington, D.C.

From what I can tell, both parties have become wholy owned subsidiaries of corporate America. Both parties know what to say to their constituents to get their votes (whether Dem or Rethug), but when it comes down to it they promote legislation written by and for lobbyists, and that is what they vote for.

I am very worried. Take a look at this excerpt from "Dead Certain," in which Bush tries to explain the meaning of "strategic thinking" to Robert Draper:

"The job of the president," he continued, through an ample wad of bread and sausage, "is to think strategically so that you can accomplish big objectives. As opposed to playing mini-ball. You can't play mini-ball with the influence we have and expect there to be peace. You've gotta think, think BIG. The Iranian issue," he said as bread crumbs tumbled out of his mouth and onto his chin, "is the strategic threat right now facing a generation of Americans, because Iran is promoting an extreme form of religion that is competing with another extreme form of religion. Iran's a destabilizing force. And instability in that part of the world has deeply adverse consequences, like energy falling in the hands of extremist people that would use it to blackmail the West. And to couple all of that with a nuclear weapon, then you've got a dangerous situation. ... That's what I mean by strategic thought.

Has your head stopped spinning yet? Iran is a destabilizing force because it is backing the Shi'ia against the Sunnis. The Sunni's are the ones we deposed in Iraq in favor of the Shi'ias, although we do wish they could all just get along. But in the meantime, we can't let oil fall into the hands of extremists. But wait -- EVERYONE in Iran and Iraq is an extremist. So we have to get the oil ourselves. Except that anyone who suggests that we are fighting over there for oil is a commie leftists cheese eating surrender monkey.

I'm terrified. Of course, we'll soon hear that no one could have predicted that Iran would get upset that we bombed their country into dust, or that they would fight back, or close the Strait of Hormuz, or that the EU, the Russians, and the Chinese didn't like it much...

My only hope is that somehow, the Joint Chiefs can stop this, as they have been doing so far. Maybe change the locks on the situation room?

Larry Johnson has a post up over at NO QUARTER about that B52 with the mysterious nukes aboard. Serious stuff.
TPM has picked it up but the word needs to be spread.
http://noquarterusa.net/blog/

mahablog has a post on this also. Not for the faint of heart...

http://www.mahablog.com/2007/09/05/iraq-is-just-a-comma/

Meteor Blades over at dKos:

Riverbend of "Baghdad Burning" Now in Exile

Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 02:16:24 PM PDT
Many Kossacks have followed the writings of an Iraqi woman whose moniker is Riverbend, and who writes at the blog, Baghdad Burning. We hadn't heard from her since April. A new piece was posted today.

How does the Lieberman Iran Resolution figure in this?
(http://www.crooksandliars.com/2007/07/11/carl-levin-gives-joe-lieberman-a-big-fat-kiss-over-iran-resolution/).
Can Bush use it, if he wants to, as a green light? Glenn Greenwald wrote that
"the Senate unanimously passed a Lieberman-sponsored resolution gratuitously accusing Iran of acts of war against the U.S. -- a resolution with no purpose other than to strengthen the case for war against Iran. Clearly, Congress can (or at least will) do nothing to restrain the White House."

There was supposed to be a fig leaf about not being a declaration of war that was supposed to be sufficient to stop any such thing, but I can't find it.

Bob in HI

The one thing you can say about the Bush admin is that they develop a plan, and they march forward and forward and forward, with minimal variance. The scary thing is they indeed have "a plan."

Two years ago, I attended a lecture/discussion in Los Angeles sponsored by the University of Judaism. The participants were General Wesley Clark, Tom Ridge, and Dr. David Kay. The most damning thing I heard was from General Clark. He recounted the story of how he was in the pentagon and another general pulled him into an office. Clark said the general closed the door and said that the Bush administration had a plan. It was first to attack and conquor Iraq, then Syria, then Lebanon, then Lybia, followed by Sudan, and then go for Iran. Clark said he was stunned.

I was stunned, along with 3,500 others in the crowd. I guess this plan was secret or confidential, because I have not heard about it anywhere. But I doubt Clark was lying.

So far, we have had a war in Iraq, Lybia capitulated (in the corporate sense -- oil is flowing west), Syria is a two-bit whipping boy that isn't making waves, Sudan helps remind the Fox News crowd how Muslims are violent and horrible, Israel played Bush's surrogate in Lebanon, and then there is Iran. Could it be that the Saudi's are willing to buy a bunch of subprime CMOs (bonds) if we are willing to nuke the biggest Shiite country -- now that we are all warm and fuzzy with the Sunnis?

Phred, I'm with you. Took the words right out of my mouth.

Dead last, I don't Clark one bit. I doubt the admin is moving on Iran because of any feeling of success in the other countries. Iraq has simply pulled so many resources, they they are on plan B which is to go ahead and take a stab at the crown jewel.

Bottom line, these boobs had an illicit plan, and they fucked it up. Now they're going to double down on the ruined hand.

"I don't doubt Clark on bit." Sorry.

The democratic leadership is 100% behind Bush, always have been. Sure they try to talk tough, but on the votes that really count, they ALWAYS vote for Bush.

Clinton and Obama are for starting a war with Iran because their financial backers want in on the war profiteering.

The leadership of this once-great nation are engineering the demise of America, to turn it into a Third-World status nation with them selves at the top. They are accomplishing this by strategically eliminating the middle class.

The only actual difference between the GOP and the Dems is how quickly to declare martial law and recind the US Constitution. The 4th Amendment is long-gone, the 1st Amendmant is almost completely gone, There are vestiges left that the leadership can point to and say 'all is well', but it's all a sham. The Executive branch can search your home, wiretap all electronic communication and 'dissappear' any US citizen without cause or warrant.

Who is going to stop them? The Supreme Court? Certainly not We, The People. Since our 'news' channels are only allowed to report on missing blonde women, the majority of the US citizenry are not even aware that the country is in imminent danger of total destruction.

You can find a couple of my long-winded screeds here and here. I have some new stuff I haven't put up yet. Two things are certain. You can't believe anything you hear, and you just can't know what their plans are, because all that is secret, which is really odd. Unlike any other country in the Middle East, Iran can shoot down our planes and sink our aircraft carriers with their world-class missile defense systems, which I suppose is the only reason it hasn't happened.

The Dems aren't being threatened or blackmailed. They are doing it to themselves. They are risk-averse. They are afraid of being seen as weak, so they (weakly) cower in the wings and don't take strong stands, and few speak out.
I agree but also agree with Comrade Rutherford that they are beholden to big corps. It is shamless greed that drives the Dem and Rep.

What?

The people at TNH are NOT happy with the Democrats in the House and Senate?

What does "go along, get along with all Democratic Office holders" Daily Kos say?

Is Cindy going to get her chance?

The shakiness of the financial markets had seemed to me to argue against war with Iran, since the economic implications of war (increase in oil prices, possible damage to oil fields leading to even higher prices, China gets involved on some economic front, stock market goes down, debt goes up, etc) would seem to exacerbate most if not all of the problems we have now

They're now in Dr Egon Spengler mode (remember Ghostbusters?):

SPENGLER: There's definitely a *very slim* chance we'll survive.
[pause while they consider this]
VENKMAN: [slaps Ray] I love this plan! I'm excited it could work! LET'S DO IT!

I read Pat Lang's blog frequently. This guy knows his stuff - speaks Arabic, was the head of the DIAs Middle East section and is a patriot in the classical sense.

When he feels that the train has left the station its cause for grave concern.

He believes that a strike against Iran would merely be an opening battle in a long war.

Bush has already tasked StratCom to come up with plans for punishing air strikes against Iran. In this context Larry Johnson's post is rather alarming.

This past Dec Col.Lang wrote in a blog post that the probability of Bush ordering an attack on Iran before the end of his term was over 50%

Bush/Cheney will make the most foolish and irrational decisions. One cannot think in terms of how one would act when thinking about how they would act. You've got to put yourself in the shoe of a nihilist megalomaniac. And we cannot expect the uniformed military to be the firewall. They just execute orders from the Commander Guy. That's why the Commander Guy and his Rasputin needs to be boxed in right now. That's why taking impeachment off the table is enabling such lunacy and destruction. Impeachment is a necessity to prevent a holocaust.

We cannot withdraw successfully from Iraq with a hostile Iran in place, with possible nuclear weapons and the capability of closing the strait of Hormuz...even to withdraw successfully and gradually from Iraq requires neutralization of Irans ability to oppose our withdrawl.

Impeach Cheney and Bush or their political power will be uncheckable and we will lose our constitutional democracy, the the Corporate Oligarchy backed by a military junta will take over. We saw what happened before WWII with appeasement. The Nazis and the fascist took power and millions were killed and many countries decinated. This is brinkmanship. Look at the historical comparison. Take a cold shower and some strong coffee. They have been systematically dismantling our rights and priveledges. Moving middle class and service jobs of shore. Without income we are slaves.

Why does the subprime disaster make war more likely? Because we can't pay what we owe. For the sake of argument, assume the following info is accurate: (a) Japanese banks are exposed for $8.4 billion; (b) Canadian fund Coventree couldn't roll over $1 billion in short-term loans; (c) Germany's IKB Deutsche Industriebank AG could lose up to 20% of portfolio in $24 billion invested in subprime mortgages.
More at a theChristian Science Monitor article: http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0817/p01s02-usec.html?s=yaht

CSM money-quote: In the past, such financial market turmoil would have probably driven the US economy into a recession...However, this time a financial innovation called securitization has allowed the packaging of mortgages and other debt obligations that have been sold to investors around the globe....

Then check the Economist, which does its usual good job of sounding calm in the face of panic: http://www.economist.com/finance/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9725698&CFID=17064524&CFTOKEN=25194145

Then check: http://www.economist.com/finance/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9726845
Money quote: ...Even before the latest market turmoil, the challenge for financial regulators had been growing. The development of complex financial products and swift trading across borders and asset types, as well as the growing clout of hedge funds, have forced regulators to work extra hard to keep up with sharp market practices.

ADD TOGETHER:
Weak global markets for more American debt.
The Iraq War requires borrowing from abroad -- but we can't remain in Iraq if we don't borrow.
Add in the bellicose personalities of Bush and Cheney.
Assume Congress has been institutionally eviscerated (first by Gingrich, then by DeLay, now by Bu$hCo and Addington). It's deliberative style is irrelevant in the face of Commander Guy timing.
Cheney doesn't have too much more time to pull off his long-awaited war against Iran; he'll want to move now.
Reports about Cheney's 'marching orders'are coming too fast and thick to start the PR phase of a war against Iran to be puffery; plus, the sources seem very credible.

It'll come down to whether The Generals refuse to obey The Commander Guy's orders, or cave in to BushCheney like their predecessors did.
Congress is too late for this train; unless Jim Webb and Chuck Hagel can help Harry Reid pull off a miracle, it's doubtful that Congress can catch up to this train and stop it.

Ominous.

Pelosi is reliably anti-war, but she is a political operator, not a stateswoman, and she thinks (and compromises) too much to protect the ones she thinks are vulnerable.

Who are the "ones she thinks are vulnerable" in this case, Mimikatz?

I meant the congresspeople she thinks are vulnerable. Mostly the newly elected in reddish or purple districts. That, for example, accounts for her shepherding a positively horrible farm bill through the House.

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