Pelosi: Real Liberals Want War?

220px-nancy_pelosi220px-B-2_spirit_bombingIn the cult of personality surrounding President Barack Obama, the ultimate test of loyalty is to shoot a cherish value. No one has proven herself more blindly loyal than House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi who previously led the fight to kill privacy in America as a demonstration of absolute fealty. Now, Pelosi appears to be advocating military action. In a meeting with the White House. Pelosi voiced the need for action. Presumably, this means military action — again — because Obama said that the use of chemical weapons would be a redline and of course Obama is not to be mocked. It is a test that England appears to have failed and now there is a concern that the White House views England with suspicion and distrust for balking at war.

Pelosi paid only passing acknowledgement of liberals who oppose war, but suggested that we should attack even if we do so against the wishes of our allies and go in alone. She insisted “it is clear that the American people are weary of war. However, Assad gassing his own people is an issue of our national security, regional stability and global security.” Of course, our sprawling military industrial complex is not weary. We are about to fire off a billion or so dollars worth of missiles that will have to be replaced and could trigger a broader war.

Pelosi is quoted as countering statements from House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) suggesting a more cautious approach with consultation. Pelosi reportedly countered that the United States needed “to do something.”

So now that Pelosi has led the attack on privacy, called for another war, supported warrantless surveillance, and the killing of citizens on the sole authority of the president, it is difficult to see what is left for the democratic party beyond of course Barack Obama.

83 thoughts on “Pelosi: Real Liberals Want War?

  1. Don’t forget in that litany of charges that she also gave traitors and domestic war criminals a pass by saying “Impeachment is off the table.”

    Words do not adequately express how much I loathe this aider and abettor after the fact.

  2. I used to admire Nancy Pelosi. throwing away one’s principles & scruples seems to be the rule of the day in both parties just to further ambition and more power. wherever does it end?

  3. I cannot believe the hypocrisy of Obama or Pelosi. Both claim to honor the legacy and work of Martin Luther King Jr. Yet neither will ever consider the strength, the honor, the courage and the commitment to a better world that following nonviolence demands. Peaceful solutions are not “doing nothing”. They are the best solutions in facing injustice.

    That both these “leaders” utterly reject one of the most noble actions possible speaks volumes about who they both are.

  4. What this Liberal would really like to see…………….. is you, Mrs. Pelosi, and the rest of Congress, to be dropped out of the belly of a Bomber, over the Pacific Ocean……….

  5. “it is clear that the American people are weary of war. However, Assad gassing his own people is an issue of our national security, regional stability and global security.”

    BS to the ultimate. Only a liar or a fool would assert that there is a U.S. national security interest in this civil war. Nancy may be both.

  6. My question is how many people can Assad gas to death before there is an outcry to stop it? Or is the Assad regime allowed to kill an unlimited number of people as we stand by? If it is an unlimited number, then will the US act if he uses gas against his neighbors such as Turkey or Jordan? Will that be sufficient causus belli? There are already attacks going on against those countries because they are allowing refugees to stay in their border areas? it is rather tough to control gases and it would seem reasonable that if Assad has carte blanche to use poison gas, he can be forgiven if a little drifts across the border then. If you are against any military action in response to this attack by Assad, then you had damn well be ready to answer these questions because they will have to be answered one way or another and SOONER rather than later.

    I don’t think it is remiss to point out that pacifism and an absolute horror of war brought about war in WWII. Hitler used the timidity of England and France to his advantage in his destroying the League of Nations, and the peace. One can also be reminded of how the near failure of Congress to renew the draft in 1941 provided the impetus for the Japanese to attack the US at Pearl Harbor. The Japanese leaders cited that vote as a deciding factor in their decision to go to war against the US. They figured that the US was so timid and pacifist that they would seek a negotiated peace at the first opportunity after the initial disasterous engagements. Instead of peace, the isolationists guaranteed war when they voted to kill the draft. Those who are against war or military action often are the ones who cause the very thing that they are against and at a FAR greater cost than otherwise would have been the case had they used common sense.

  7. The arrogance of elected officials in safe districts knows no bounds. This person was the first female Speaker of the House. The only way to go is up.

  8. Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi worshipped at the shrine of Dubya and Dick long before Barack Obama moved in to receive her obsequious genuflecting to corporate power. Hence:

    Nancy the Negotiator

    Nancy the Negotiator
    Gives up first; surrenders later;
    Takes her cards from off the table,
    Then recites her loser fable:

    “We don’t have the votes we need,”
    Nancy says, in tones that bleed:
    “Mean Republicans will whine
    If we do not toe their line.”

    Nancy bows to George and Dick
    While her skinny ass they kick;
    Writes them checks both blank and rubber,
    Then proceeds to lamely blubber:

    “We don’t like what Dubya’s doing.
    Still, we quite enjoy the screwing.
    Masochism’s what we offer,
    Helping crooks to loot the coffer”

    “Sure, the squandered blood and treasure
    Goes to those we will not measure.
    Still, we promise you’ll adore us
    If you mark your ballot for us.”

    “Choices you don’t have assail you,
    Leaving only us who fail you.
    Nonetheless, we’ve gotten fatter.
    Why, then, should we think you matter?”

    Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2007

  9. A congressman from NYC, Democrat, first name Eliot, just got off of PBS and declared that Assad has committed crimes against humanity by gassing his own people. If a state can not gas it’s own citizens then Obama, Pelosi, and our government should send drones to bomb the gas chamber at the Missouri State Penitentiary in Jefferson City, Missoura. You can’t gas your own people!

  10. President Obama rather naively put himself in a box when he made the improvident statement about chemical weapon utilization by Syria crossing a red line. He staked the credibility of the US on his willingness to do something if the Syrians deployed chemical weapons. Over the last few days the Republicans have been pillorying him over his tardiness/reluctance to attack Syria. All indications are that the President will act. In doing so the US has effectively picked a side in a civil war. Something which we have no business doing and will invariably cause this nation much grief later.

    Obama will bomb, somehow over time Syria will retaliate (think terrorism). We will have made enemies with a fair percentage of the Syrian people. But, the Syrian people will still be involved in a civil war.

    Wednesday, Obama gave an interview to PBS where when questioned about the Syrian debacle, he expressed the view that this would be a brief action and that he hoped that it would be viewed by Assad as a “shot across the bow” and that maybe then Assad won’t use chemical weapons anymore. The preposterousness of this notion is obvious. And when Assad does use chemical weapons again or worse, orchestrates a retaliatory attack on the US for this nations aggression in contravention to International law, then what? There is only one thing left to do when that happens. Escalate our involvement in the conflict.

    It is embarrassing that the Democrat’s are rolling right along with this plan. It is deliciously ironic that many of the Republican congressmen and women that were pushing for Obama to salvage American pride by doing something for Syria’s crossing of the line are now preaching restraint and calling for submission to a congressional vote prior to any military action in Syria.

    If Obama were wise, he’d give them their vote. He’d ask permission and watch as Republicans squirm before they vote to intervene. The Democrats would be squirming as they voted to authorize force out of loyalty to the party and the President. They’d both be wrong, but they could maintain that they saved face and preserved the US’s credibility and proved that our nation’s declarations mean something.

    As George C Scott said in that scintillating speech in the beginning of the movie Patton, Americans love war, or was it, Americans love to fight?

    One things for sure, as was observed by many others, the corporations that are making the munitions are positively giddy with their good fortune.

  11. Topple Assad and what do we get? Ted Kopple? Al Qaeda can not wait for us to bomb Assad. Whose side are we on? Hit Assad with missiles? Where? How many collateral casualties of women and children? Obama is as warped as Bush I and Bush II. Of course Iraq and Afghanistan are so much better off today.

  12. Arthur Randolph Erb,

    As President Eisenhower would caution you: “Don’t just do something. Stand there.”

    No nation has killed more innocent people than the United States has over the past fifty years. And none of those millions of deaths had any bearing whatsoever on the “security” or “moral virtue” of the United States. The world today could not possibly have a lower estimate of America’s self-proclaimed “morality.” So please give us all a break from your pious proclamations of puerile pugilistic perfection. Destroying villages to save them sounds so Vietnam.

    Now, if you want to head on over to Syria and straighten out that centuries-long intra-Islamic, post-colonial bloodletting all by your lonesome, then go right ahead. My own government once forced me to participate in one of these Children’s Crusades against “evil over the horizon somewhere” and I refuse to ever again heed the blathering, salivating calls for more of the same.

    You can’t always make a bad situation better, but the U.S. military can always make it worse.

  13. How come all the options that make sense always wind up on the floor instead of on the table where they belong?

    The Answer Off the Table
    (From The Triumph of Strife: an homage to Dante Alighieri and Percy Shelley)

    The bankrupt brainless blowhard beast defies
    The reason to contest stupidity.
    Grown fat and lazy on its loathsome lies,

    The perpetrating predator feels free
    To gorge upon the surface spoils of war:
    Domestic profit far as eyes can see

    Where foreign puppets groomed to play the whore
    Return a portion of their greedy gains
    To congressmen who leave us poor and sore,

    While death upon a target people rains
    And soldiers into pudding pounded are
    By roadside bombs. How little now remains

    Of them and us who suffer while we spar
    Against the bogus baby made of tar.

    Our new commander in his briefs has bought
    The dreary drug of endless, pointless fights
    And thus cannot discern the Truth he ought

    That Quagmire in its sophistry delights
    In making men of straw, red-herrings, too:
    Those lifeless foes whose fragile feeble slights

    Prove easy for the brain-dead to outdo;
    A dialectic dodge that paints “extreme”
    On any choices obvious and true,

    Which leaves decision “centered” in a dream.
    The feckless failures flail about and flop.
    With each New Year they COIN a great new scheme.

    We hear of “options” on the table top,
    Just not the one to clearly think and stop.

    Michael Murry, “The Misfortune Teller,” Copyright © 2009

  14. Nancy’s husband and or Nancy probably will financially benefit in some way from US going into Syria. England refused to do anything; why should we go it alone?

    If we go it alone, Syria will send terrorists to blow us up. What prevents Russia to hint to Syria to send more terrorists to US.

    We don’t gain anything.

  15. “WASHINGTON (AP) €” President Barack Obama says he recognizes the world and the U.S. are war-weary in the face of potential military action against Syria.

    But he says the United States has an obligation “as a leader in the world” to hold countries accountable if they violate international norms.”

    WOW, the US is not a country! Who knew? It’s the only way the US can’t be held to account for violating international norms. This is just sickening.

    Notice how everyone is just so weary of war all of a sudden. But we still have to do it, even though none of the elites is tired of it at all. It’s a wonderful money maker for each of them and nobody they care about will ever be in harm’s way. What’s not to like, Nancy, Barrack, and John?

  16. Michael Murry, as one who watched both Secretary of State, John Kerry and President Obama make their case for retaliation and in the background seeing unseen (by me) footage of so many dead children, I almost changed my mind on what I said just yesterday (don’t go bomb Syria) until I read your comment.
    I’m ashamed to admit that even though I fight for human rights, I am finding it incredibly difficult to decide where I’m at on this issue. I find the use of chemical weapons on people incredibly inhumane but then again, so I find bombing people and torturing them. In both cases innocent people, including children are going to die an untimely death and a very violent one. One thing I can tell you is that I’m sure as hell glad I don’t have to make a final decision. One of the reasons the GOP/TeaParty politicians are now scrambling back from wanting to take Assad to task is the fact that they fear that the Christian minority who under Assad have been living relatively safe and well-off will bear the brunt if the opposition is given a chance. The same goes for the Alawites. Actually, the plight of the Christians has also been taken up the head of the Russian Orthodox Church ( who knew Russia now loves their religious followers?). Can this all get even more complicated? I stand with you and my earlier statement: Obama, don’t go in and if you must, make sure to have Congress vote on it with a clear yes/no. Send in the sons and daughters of those who vote yes FIRST.

  17. nick spinelli
    1, August 30, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    IMO Pelosi was and IS the first and worst female Speaker of the House… Sorry ladies, but face it, she’s weak and corrupt. Women deserve better representation than a Corporate shill.

  18. Maggie Ringland
    1, August 30, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    Correct. This is a good exams of how the Nation is being mislead by a one party of Fascists that wear two faces. One face is Blue and the other, red! BOTH work to keep poor, poor; war, warring; bailouts, flowing.

  19. The Syria Mess, Explained by a Man You’ve Never Heard Of
    By Charles P. Pierce

    Listening to Secretary Of State John Kerry make a statement justifying whatever’s about to happen in Syria, and looking back over the events of the day, I began to think about one person. I began to think about Maher Arar.

    In September, 2002, while on a layover at JFK in New York, Arar, a telecommunications engineer from Canada, was detained by US authorities because they thought he was a member of al Qaeda. He was held incommunicado in this country for two weeks and then sent on rendition, not back to Canada, but to another one of our staunch allies in the War On Terror. Once there, Arar was beaten, and held in a rat-infested 3-by-6-foot cell from which he could listen to the screams of other people being tortured. He was held there in those conditions for 374 days. Eventually, the Canadian government settled a lawsuit brought by Mr. Arar. Facing a similar suit, the United States government invoked a “state secrets privilege” to kill Arar’s efforts to get justice. Ultimately, the United States Supreme Court declined to hear the case.

    The plucky ally that was so willing to cooperate with the United States in the torture of Maher Arar was Syria…

    I do not want to believe that American policy is to weaken Assad but somehow not weaken him enough so that the rebels — whom we do not trust and, frankly, do not know — can actually overthrow him. I do not want to believe that the policy is to let Syria bleed itself white. I do not want to believe this because I remember when Henry Kissinger, that sociopath, actually adopted that policy during the Iran-Iraq War. We armed both sides to keep them at each other so that neither one would win. Thousands of people who were not us got slaughtered meaninglessly. I do not want to believe that American policy in Syria is within miles of that kind of lycanthropic realpolitik. I’d prefer to believe we just don’t know what in the hell to do.

    There is no question, however, that’s it’s on now, probably some time over the weekend. If I were a cynical clod like John Boehner, I’d hide until the missiles were launched and then scream that I wasn’t consulted, and maybe throw a little wink to the impeachment crazies over the president’s actions. If I were the Democrats, I’d be standing up right now demanding to be consulted, and demanding that Boehner get his orange ass back to Washington and put the House into session. And, to tell you the honest to god truth, if I were Maher Arar, I’d be marvelling at the American government’s sudden shock and horror at what a monster Bashar al-Assad is, when it was the very fact that he was a monster on which American policy depended when Arar was picked up at JFK and shuffled off to be held in a rat’s cage for over a year. I’d be marvelling at the horror expressed by an American government — the same government that fought my lawsuit and hid behind secrecy and denied me justice for what the Assad did to me with the encouragement of the American government — at the inhumanity of the Syrian regime. If I were Maher Arar, I might even laugh, although I rather doubt it.

  20. Arthur Randolph…Perhaps you missed the point in 1941 where the Japanese actually dropped bombs on a U.S. territory. Did Assad gas 35, or is it 350,000, or what? The number keeps changing. Or did he do it at all? Did the rebels (whoever they are) do it?

    National security, surely you jest? There is a civil war brewing in the Muslim world, we should stay the F out!

    National security, my A$$

  21. Pelosi is a two-faced loser. She and her ilk are the main reason I gave up on the major parties in 2000. Both parties are gutless thieves.

    I’m always amazed how quickly the war machine can get ready for Middle East conflicts. The oil lobby, the defense complex and the spy networks need a new war to protect their interests. Why is ok that US can indiscriminately kill thousands of women and children with bombs and drones without remorse? Chemical weapons are only supportable when the CIA finds them to be useful to their needs like they did for Iraq. Punishment may be just, but scattershot diplomacy does not send a proper message…

  22. Els DL,

    I salute you for having the intestinal fortitude to sit through more meaningless harangues by President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry. I can’t even stand to look at these moral cretins without seeing Colin Powell and George “Slam Dunk” Tenet at the U.N. lying through their teeth to an utterly disbelieving world. I can’t listen to a word out of their mouths without hearing former Secretary of State You-Know-Her cackling: “We came; we saw; he died,” about the brutal murder of captured Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. As James Carroll wrote in Crusade: Chronicles of an Unjust War:

    “Beware a nation announcing its innocence en route to war.”

    I don’t believe in innocent, “humanitarian” war. And I refuse to credit a single word, look, or a gesture by those American officials who babble hysterically about killing for salvation. That really does sound positively Medieval.

    Put another way by Noam Chomsky in Failed States:

    “[Samuel] Huntington’s observations about the need to create misimpressions to control the domestic population illustrate what should be the merest truism: professions of benign intent by leaders should be dismissed by any rational observer. They are near universal and predictable, and hence carry virtually no information. … If we are serious, we will ask about their actions, paying little attention to their words.”

    Given the evidence of its actions over the past several decades, the U.S. government doesn’t give a damn for the lives of women and children in the Muslim world, or else it wouldn’t keep killing and starving so many of them for purposes which the U.S. government will never share with the American people. The U.S. government deals only in misimpressions deliberately designed to anesthetize and control the domestic U.S. population, large segments of which like to vicariously enjoy someone killing someone else while congratulating themselves on their own moral superiority for condoning and encouraging the killing. Holy bread and circuses!

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has proven herself as worthless to the American and Syrian people as House Majority Leader John Boehner. I have nothing but contempt for them both.

  23. This interview/comments below sounds real, is it??

    NEW YORK – USA – In a remarkable admission by former Nixon era Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, reveals what is happening at the moment in the world and particularly the Middle East. [ACCURATE SATIRE]

    Speaking from his luxurious Manhattan apartment, the elder statesman, who will be 89 in May, is all too forward with his analysis of the current situation in the world forum of Geo-politics and economics.

    “The United States is bating China and Russia, and the final nail in the coffin will be Iran, which is, of course, the main target of Israel. We have allowed China to increase their military strength and Russia to recover from Sovietization, to give them a false sense of bravado, this will create an all together faster demise for them. We’re like the sharp shooter daring the noob to pick up the gun, and when they try, it’s bang bang. The coming war will will be so severe that only one superpower can win, and that’s us folks. This is why the EU is in such a hurry to form a complete superstate because they know what is coming, and to survive, Europe will have to be one whole cohesive state. Their urgency tells me that they know full well that the big showdown is upon us. O how I have dreamed of this delightful moment.”

    “Control oil and you control nations; control food and you control the people.”

    Mr Kissinger then added: “If you are an ordinary person, then you can prepare yourself for war by moving to the countryside and building a farm, but you must take guns with you, as the hordes of starving will be roaming. Also, even though the elite will have their safe havens and specialist shelters, they must be just as careful during the war as the ordinary civilians, because their shelters can still be compromised.”

    After pausing for a few minutes to collect his thoughts, Mr Kissinger, carried on:

    “We told the military that we would have to take over seven Middle Eastern countries for their resources and they have nearly completed their job. We all know what I think of the military, but I have to say they have obeyed orders superfluously this time. It is just that last stepping stone, i.e. Iran which will really tip the balance. How long can China and Russia stand by and watch America clean up? The great Russian bear and Chinese sickle will be roused from their slumber and this is when Israel will have to fight with all its might and weapons to kill as many Arabs as it can. Hopefully if all goes well, half the Middle East will be Israeli. Our young have been trained well for the last decade or so on combat console games, it was interesting to see the new Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 game, which mirrors exactly what is to come in the near future with its predictive programming. Our young, in the US and West, are prepared because they have been programmed to be good soldiers, cannon fodder, and when they will be ordered to go out into the streets and fight those crazy Chins and Russkies, they will obey their orders. Out of the ashes we shall build a new society, there will only be one superpower left, and that one will be the global government that wins. Don’t forget, the United States, has the best weapons, we have stuff that no other nation has, and we will introduce those weapons to the world when the time is right.”

    End of interview. Our reporter is ushered out of the room by Kissinger’s minder.

  24. “BS to the ultimate. Only a liar or a fool would assert that there is a U.S. national security interest in this civil war.”

    I think I have to agree. What ever the threat to US national security it certainly is not immanent. It clearly does not require immediate action. There is time for further discussion if we would only use it.

    And the threat to global security? Isn’t that even more remote. Chemical weapons may be emotionally devastating but they are not particularly useful as weapons.

    The logistics of chemical weapons are formidable. Even nerve poisons, the most potent of all the chemical weapons, require large quantities for effective coverage of any significant area.

    The effects of chemical weapons are variable and dependent on factors like wind direction and velocity, and other weather factors.

    Chemical weapons are not very useful against well equipped and trained military units. Chemical weapons can be as much a threat to the forces that deploy them as their targets.

    Most any adversary would much rather have air dominance and smart munitions than chemical weapons.

    It is hard to imagine a situation in which chemical weapons would change the strategic balance in global security.

    What we have is a bunch of high blown rhetoric to defend propositions that devoid of reason when you actually get down to the real claim.

    Some spokespeople tell us that the President made a commitment, his red line, and now we have to act – no matter what.

    Others tell us that this is a terrible situation that demands action, so lets do something, anything, just do something.

    Take away the inflated rhetoric and the actual reasons to take action right now seem pretty inadequate.

    Maybe we should talk this over.

  25. Hmm. Let’s see. Assad gassed his own people, and so WE have the right to tell Syria what it will do? Really? Oh, but they have chemical weapons. Really? Just what in the hell do they think WE keep at Ft. Detrick? How many people have WE killed with our chemical weapons like Agent Orange? Oh, I see. It’s ok when WE do it because we’re only killing other people not our own citizens……yet.

  26. ” how many people can Assad gas to death before there is an outcry to stop it?”

    If you have not noticed there is plenty of outcry.

    The question what do we do about it.

    And if no one has raised the question, let me be the first.

    The President has specified that the action he proposed would be carefully calibrated to avoid tipping the balance in the civil war and would not involve us further in Syria’s civil war. The President has assured us there will not be US boots on the ground.

    Doesn’t that formulation, that our action will not change the dynamics of the civil war and we will not become involved in the civil war, give lie to the claim that the use of gas is a grave threat to US national and Global security?

    If this event is really so important wouldn’t the President be telling us that we must bear any burden, pay any price?

    The use of poison gas is shocking an criminal. We must work with other nations to put a stop to it.

    But the President himself has, perhaps unintentionally, given us the answer. There is nothing in this that justifies war. In any case, not right now.

  27. There has been a democrat president at the onset of WW1, WW2, the Korean war , and the Viet Nam war, not Iraq 1 and 2

  28. “It is a test that England appears to have failed and now there is a concern that the White House views England with suspicion and distrust for balking at war”

    Prof, the above needs editing – it reads as though the WH views England with suspicion. The Guardian article is quoting English government officials who voice THEIR worry that the US may now view them with suspicion and that France may now be our BFF. It’s a concern expressed by men who hoped that Cameron would win the vote and it’s just political spin. You know….like what you just did.

    No one from the WH is viewing England with suspicion. Kerry mentioned France because you don’t usually mention the guys who just turned you down, right?

  29. personally i believe its a lie. the corporation is well known for their set ups and lies to drag us into war. they have been paying assad all this time millions of dollars and now suddenly out of no where he just starts gassing his own people? BULLCRAP!!!!! syria has been fighting the usa thats something the lame stream wont report but syria has refused to give into the the billionaire thieves. syria has refused to allow the taliban or al qaeda ( did yall know al qeada translated means the toilet bowl?) yep it does but anyway they have been fighting tooth and nail to stop the corporation from taking over their country and resources. much like the rockefellers killed off the bolsheviks when they refused to go along with them. now its syrias turn.

  30. What is really going on here is that the al-Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood backed Syrian Rebels have created an incident using chemical weapons with the full intent to bring in the US Military into their civil war to act as air power to rebel forces……The ‘clear line’ was in essence a mission statement to the rebels to do so….Let me say that again, the ultimate irony is that we will now be using US air assets to provide strategic and tactical air support to jihadists forces. That is what is going on and what we are about to do.

    From a military standpoint from the rebels perspective, it is a brilliant ploy. We will do as we did in Libya and pound Assads forces from the air, giving the jihadists rebels what they need to overwhelm government forces…….And the result will be another Jihadist state.

  31. I see that those who are opposed to any military action by Obama have neither the courage or wit to say what they propose to do about Assad using chemical weapons. All of you who are opposed simply ignore or duck the questions I posed. How many dead people will it take before you are for some military response? If you are against any military action, then what will you propose when the pile of dead bodies smell so badly you cannot ignore it any more? What will your solution be when the Syrians use chemical weapons on the border areas and the gas drifts or worse is used on the territory of Turkey, Jordan, Iraq? You need to have answers to these questions because doing nothing will simply assure that Assad will increase his use of them.

    That this is similar to Bush’s war of choice, is simply a lie as any cursory examination will prove. Bush falsified evidence, went around the CIA and other analysts and refused to believe the reports of the UN inspectors who said that Hussein had no WMDs. The biggest difference is that there are going to be no US or other troops on the ground. Then there is the obvious difference that NOBODY has disputed the UN inspectors reports so far. We know for a fact that Assad did in fact use chemical weapons. If you cannot answer simple questions, it indicates a lack of seriousness and intellect.

  32. ” If you cannot answer simple questions, it indicates a lack of seriousness and intellect.”

    Isn’t that a bit grand. Isn’t it enough to answer whether this particular situation justifies an attack or is worth the risk of war.

    The president himself has acknowledged this particular situation is not worth war – note his clear attempt to tell us no US boots on the ground in Syria, no involvement in the civil war.

    The question is then, in this particular situation, is there anything to be gained by a limited, one time attack.

    That answer that the situation in Syria does not justify war seems pretty serious to me. And if you have a problem with the intellect it reveals, perhaps you should start with the President and ask him why he so clearly want to avoid US involvement in war in Syria.

    Your question “How many dead people will it take before you are for some military response? ” might be interesting to people who like to answer that type of hypothetical.

    But I would urge all readers to pay attention to the real question before us, to the hear and now, to the reality of this particular situation and what actions might lead us through to a better situation and a reasonable resolution.

    I think those considerations would serve us all better than the calculation of how many dead bodies equal one cruse missile.

  33. bfm, I would hope that y’all would get your stories straight among those who are against any military action. You say that Obama does not want the US involved in this war, but most of the others think that he DOES. Which is it? The reason that he obviously does not want US involvement is that there are no good options from a military point of view. The best he can do is to degrade Assad’s chemical warfare assets and show that the cost of their continued use will be more costly than any possible advantage he might gain from continuing to use them.

    As for the question as to how many dead will stir the world to action, it is not hypothetical since the weapons are being used. Now if they had not been used, THEN such a question would be hypothetical. By refusing to think beyond today, it shows a lack of serious thought and is more like Bush II. I think we all agree we do not want to follow his example. I don’t take seriously your equation of how many dead bodies equals one cruise missile since it a rhetorical one.

    As for solutions apart from military action, Sec.Kerry tried to set up a meeting to get a political settlement, but the opposition would have none of it. The only option is to let the war go on within certain limits until both sides decide that they can get more out of negotiation than fighting. There are obvious advantages for Assad to use such weapons and can tilt the battle decisively in his favor. That is why he used them. The rebels do not have the capability to use such weapons which is the only constraint upon them. I have no doubt that they would use them if they could. At least if the US can keep the fighting within certain limits, we can reduce the number of casualties in this war since conventional weapons are less encompassing and less lethal than chemical ones. The ban on the use of chemical weapons is meaningless unless there is some force used to deter them. In this case, the US has the capability to enforce such a rule and we should use it to hopefully deter other times and places from following Assad’s example. If we do not do so, then we are in effect countenancing their use in other times and places. That alone would be sufficient justification in my view for Obama to go for this limited military action.

  34. “bfm, I would hope that y’all would get your stories straight among those who are against any military action. You say that Obama does not want the US involved in this war, but most of the others think that he DOES. Which is it? ”

    I will stand with the Presidents own statements which I think have been very clear. I am not aware of anyone else who can speak for the President outside his administration.

    If you choose to understand the Presidents pronouncements from the statements of others not in the administration that is your privilege. But please do not try to hold me accountable for their remarks.

    ” By refusing to think beyond today, it shows a lack of serious thought and is more like Bush II.”

    But there is an immediate problem right now. If you have not been reading the latest news, MSM suggest an attack is immanent, within days or even hours. That is the problem we must deal with right now. Surely you can understand that there is no need to answer your very hypothetical question right now. Once we are past this crisis I would argue there will be much time perhaps years to figure out how to deal with the problem you pose.

    There are very serious problems with the presidents proposal in regard to its likelihood to achieve the stated goal and the very serious consequences that will likely follow.

    But rather than deal with the very serious problems of the here and now you would rather wrap yourself in a hypothetical flag of high blown rhetoric. That is fine if that is what you want to do. But lets be clear regarding who is serious and who is on a flight of fancy.

    “US has the capability to enforce such a rule”

    Isn’t that exactly the question under discussion? The president himself does not seem so certain that the US has the capability to enforce such a rule.

    You seem to think that a shot across the bow of Assad’s administration is all it takes to enforce this rule. And why is that? Because our heart or pure, because it is the right thing, because god is on our side. Exactly why is that.

    I would argue that the uncritical statement “US has the capability to enforce such a rule” is the epitome of unserious thought.

    Suppose we take the shot and any number of potential adversaries decide to enforce their own rule that empires should not meddle in the affairs of other countries and other regions. Suppose an adversary decides this is a wonderful opportunity to bleed a meddlesome imperial power.

    Really, have you really given this serious consideration or are you entranced by your own rhetoric?

    OK, for a moment lest just stipulate we can enforce the rule.

    Are you really ready to commit 150,000 men and women, and the last or our combat brigades to be chewed up in an endless sand war?

    Do you have any idea how many tons a day it takes to support a combat brigade in the desert? Do you have any idea how many gallons an Abrams tank burns in 24 hours? How many 30 round magazines of 5.56mm ammunition does a fire team expend in typical engagement. Do you know how many magazines a fire team deploys with before they engage Have you give the actual logistic of ‘enforcing the rule’ any serious though – any thought at all?

    Exactly how many trillions in tax dollars and how many combat casualties are you ready to commit to enforcing the rule. And even if you are prepared to take, say, 5,000 killed in action are you prepared to fund health care for the, likely, 50,000 combat wounded that will return broken to the US? And what about their families. Are you ready to fund support for families of veterans that encounter social problems, including domestic violence, alcohol and drug abuse, and many others, when they return home? Maybe it is just me, but these seem like serious question that require serious though.

    And what about the adversaries possible return action. Or do you think the adversary will just take the blow and beg forgiveness?

    What do we do if they continue to use chemical weapons. Won’t you and the president look a bit incompetent and make things even worse. What if they attack commercial and civilian targets well out of the war zone? What if they use chemical weapons against US military units or against allies? What if they attack Israel? What if they attack Saudi. Have you give any of this any serious though, any though at all, has it even crossed your mind.

    Are you old enough to have seen a military literally begin to disintegrate because it was ordered to do too much? Does it occur to you that disasters occur when resources are to little to achieve the goal.

    And don’t you think you ought to have a little discussion with those who will actually pay that price. Before you take this country to the brink of war don’t you think you need check and be sure others are willing to follow. If you don’t have buy-in at a fundamental level, you may very well find that the rules being enforced are not the ones that you make up.

    I am no pacifist and no alarmist. But there are serious question here that have been given little or no consideration. Why the rush to engage?

    Before you talk the talk of war, before you launch the supposedly limited strike, you better be sure you can walk the walk over IED strewn ground.

    And that thoughtful readers is as serious as it gets.

  35. @ ay since you seem to know so much.. please explain the below articles

    Syrian Kurdish Opposition Leader Saleh Muslim Agrees Assad Is Being Framed by West for Sarin Gas Attacks (August 29, 2013)

    (SAleh MuslimSaleh Muslim, [right] head of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), is pictured during a Reuters interview in Berlin in this April 18, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/Files)

    BERLIN: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad would not be “so stupid” as to use chemical weapons close to Damascus, the leader of the country’s largest Kurdish group said.

    Saleh Muslim, head of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), said he doubted the Syrian president would resort to using such weapons when he felt he had the upper hand in the country’s civil war.

    He suggested last Wednesday’s attack, which the opposition says was carried out by government forces and killed hundreds of people, was aimed at framing Assad and provoking an international reaction. Assad has denied his forces used chemical weapons.

    “The regime in Syria … has chemical weapons, but they wouldn’t use them around Damascus, 5 km from the (U.N.) committee which is investigating chemical weapons. Of course they are not so stupid as to do so,” Muslim told Reuters.

    At the time of the incident, U.N. experts were already in Syria to investigate three previous alleged chemical attacks dating from months ago.

    Muslim’s PYD, which has well-armed and effective militias, has clashed with Assad’s forces as well as rebels, but has allowed both to move through its territories during the war.

    Some rebels and rival Kurdish groups accuse it of having been close to the state, a position Muslim disputes. He said Kurdish areas the PYD controlled were under attack from al Qaeda-linked rebels.

    Muslim suggested “some other sides who want to blame the Syrian regime, who want to show them as guilty and then see action” lay behind the chemical attack, which has led to speculation that Western countries will order a military response.

    He said that if the U.N. inspectors found evidence Assad was not behind the gassing and the rebels were, “everybody would forget it”.

    “Who is the side who would be punished? Are they are going to punish the Emir of Qatar or the King of Saudi Arabia, or Mr Erdogan of Turkey?” Qatar, Turkey and Saudi Arabia have all strongly condemned Assad and backed the rebels.

    Kurdish militias have sought to consolidate their grip in northern Syria after exploiting the chaos of the civil war over the past year by seizing control of districts as Assad’s forces focused elsewhere.

    The PYD said in July it aimed to set up a transitional council and their emerging self-rule is starting to echo the autonomy of Kurds in neighbouring northern Iraq.

    Muslim said he reassured officials during talks last month with Turkey’s intelligence agency that the council was not a move to divide Syria – which would alarm Ankara, which is wary of deepening sectarian violence on its border.

    Nonetheless, it highlights Syria’s slow fragmentation into a Kurdish northeast, mainly government-held areas around Damascus, Homs and the Mediterranean, and a rebel swathe leading from Aleppo along the Euphrates Valley to Iraq.

  36. Arthur Randolph Erb,

    Lets discuss a lack of serious intellect……..It seems rather amusing to me that you would simply join into lockstep agreement with the notion that Assad conveniently cooperated with the US ‘clear line’ by using chemical weapons, and at just the right and opportune time…….And to what end?

    Certainly he had been winning the conventional fight……Even if one disagrees with that, it’s quite clear he also surely knew that such an action would bring about a US military action against his conventional forces which he could not survive…….The question, one needs ask, is who has the most to gain from a chemical weapons attack at this moment in time……Surely not Assad……The Rebels, taking the lead from Obama’s ‘Clear Line’ surely have everything to gain……..They are quite aware of what a chemical attack buys them, it buys them US air support, and a victory in their civil war.

    No……Anyone who simply jumps on board the presidents bandwagon oblivious to the obvious weaknesses in the plot are just brain-dead stupid…..Now if you’re just a cynical partisan hack, at least you’re just wrong, and not stupid.

    Now take your pom poms and your short skirt and sell this cheer down the hallway, because nobody is stupid enough to buy it here.

  37. The reason there is such a hurry is they want to get this over with before anyone starts asking too many questions about the details…….Pretext like this doesn’t always last forever…..If you wait too long, it can evaporate. Don’t let a crisis go to waste.

  38. A reminder for commenters whose comment disappeared into the memory hole. If you put links into a comment, the max is two (2) links. Three or more links will be rejected by the filter.

    Also, be careful of language. There are four expletives the filter will block.

  39. The people of the United States have no obligation whatsoever to do anything at all in response to the ongoing civil war in Syria, no matter what weapons the combatants use on each other. The civil war in Syria simply does not constitute a national interest for the United States. Furthermore, any attack by the United States upon a country that has not attacked the United States violates the U.N. charter, which — since the United States has ratified it — forms part of American law. Therefore, those who advocate an attack upon the Syrian regime by the United States advocate the violation of both American and international law. I believe that the United States even has laws — and anti-terrorism ones at that — which consider it a crime for anyone to incite others to break the law. What a nasty little conundrum for those arguing in favor of wanton American lawlessness in the name of sacred American virtues. So now we have an American president sworn to uphold the law openly promising to violate it at his pleasure because it suits him to do so. What a colossal farce!

    The United States has in fact become an outlaw nation and the President of the United States has become an absolute monarch in his own estimation, one who claims that no law on earth may restrain him. Those arguing in favor of such lawlessness as the guiding principle of American government do so most often by citing examples of previous violations of the law as if the violation of a law nullifies it and sanctifies further violations of the law in the future. James Madison answered this absurd proposition by saying:

    “Instances, it is true, may be discovered among ourselves, where this maxim [the Legislature’s exclusive power to declare war or say no to war] has not been faithfully pursued; but being generally acknowledged to be errors, they confirm, rather than impeach the truth and value of the maxim.”

    So citing as precedents egregious violations of the law, like President Johnson’s infamous Gulf of Tonkin affair and President G.W. Bush’s WMD hoax in Iraq — to name only two acknowledged disasters — justifies nothing and in fact argues that no U.S. government should never repeat such crimes and errors, as President Obama clearly intends to do.

    President Obama’s insistence upon his unique right to violate the Constitution and international law at his personal whim reeks of arrogance and duplicity. As Madison warned:

    A wrongful act can neither prove nor illustrate a rightful power.”

  40. President Obama’s proposal to attack Syria fails to adequately plan for risks like a surge in anti-Americanism and a wider regional conflict.

  41. @ Michael Murry,

    “What a nasty little conundrum for those arguing in favor of wanton American lawlessness in the name of sacred American virtues.”

    Well stated no.. VERY well stated.

    Pelosi seems to have no ethical problem with conundrums.

  42. It’s rather incongruous for the administration to be positive that Assad gassed his own people when earlier in the spring a UN diplomat declared that the rebels were likely responsible for a sarin gas attack on civilians (tp:// Hmmm…who gave them the sarin???? And, was it the original Syrian rebels or the mixed-up with Al-Qaeda Syrian ‘rebels’.

    Back in January the Daily Mail reported that some leaked emails indicated the “U.S. ‘backed plan to launch chemical weapon attack on Syria and blame it on Assad’s regime'”. The source of the reportedly leaked emails came from Infowars and before them Cyber War News. All the stories are available on the Way Back Machine. The stories have been taken down from all three sites. Does the fact they’ve been removed indicate a lack of authenticity, and consequently libel of the US (consider the original sources), or something more nefarious?


    The UN report of the gas attack investigation will take two weeks. For a president who was all about diplomacy and coalition building just one year ago, perhaps he ought to be patient and find out ‘who done it’ before spending billions of dollars we don’t have and possibly igniting a broader regional war.

  43. DC. launches a conundrum into the air.
    bejeweled with promised virtued wear.
    soaring high shining flight.
    C’mon USA fight fight fight.

    blowhards blow continue to fuel
    shiny shine for the american mule.
    breads circuses carnival delights.
    C’mon USA fight fight fight.

  44. A.R.E. claims ” If we do not do so, then we are in effect countenancing their use in other times and places.”

    Who is the U.S. to “countenance” anything? Who is the U.S. to dictate what is moral and what is not? Do you not realize the U.S. reputation abroad is filth and getting filthier? The U.S. should ignore this why? Because the U.S. has a lot of guns and crazy people who are spittle-flecked at the thought of getting to fire them?

    A.R.E. then extols failure with “That alone would be sufficient justification in my view for Obama to go for this limited military action.”

    So we have to do something. So it had better fail right from the planning stages. There isn’t going to be “limited” anything. You think one strike and done? Think again. Air strikes alone will not achieve any constructive result. They will harden the lines already brittle with hate for the U.S.

    To top it off, you seem not to recognize that lies are the order of the day. You have no way to verify what you are being fed, but your response is ATTACK! regardless.

    War-mongering twaddle, indeed. There isn’t support among the American people for this, America’s closest ally has said “no.”

    Who has ears to hear it?

  45. Bfm, For your info I am a Vietnam era veteran, and I even volunteered for Vietnam, but the Air Force had other ideas and thought I should spy on the Soviets from Turkey instead. So I am fully aware of what the cost of any military action is, and I was almost caught up by the Six Day War which we thought might come our way since we were right next to Syria. Back then we did not have any air defenses as we do now, so I had a nice ditch picked out to jump into if they did pay an unfriendly visit.

    There is no question that a US air strike cannot eliminate Syrian chemical warfare capabilities. What CAN be done is to destroy valuable military assets that will hurt Syria more than any gain they can get from using chemical warfare against the rebels. I would not want to totally wipe out their air force, just half, so that we would have some assets left to eliminate if Assad decides to try chemicals again. The scenario does not mean that we will or even can eliminate chemical weapons, just that they will have to calculate just how badly do they want other assets as opposed to any gains they might get from chemical warfare. So there is no need or reason for using troops on the ground.

    Then there is the problem of Turkey and Jordan and maybe Iraq. There have already been shells and bombings into Turkey, so what will the US and NATOs response be when if nothing is done,Assad decides to use chemical warfare on the border with Turkey? Indeed, if the US does not act, Assad may well conclude that using such weapons pays and that he can get away with even more aggressive moves because the US and the UK are too afraid of military action to do anything about it. So we will then just leave Turkey to fight it alone.

    There is no question that a limited strike will work to raise the cost of using chemical weapons, THAT is the point. NOT that it will totally eliminate them since the only possible way to do that is to invade and put boots on the ground. Something which is not even needed to accomplish the purpose which is to dissuade Assad from further use of such weapons. That is very easily accomplished and can be successful. As for any military response from Syria, I just remind people that Israel made a rather massive strike in Syria against weapons going to Hezbollah and Syria could do nothing at all about that. So the so called danger of a wider war is overblown to say the least, unless one wants the US to escalate the military action which is rather doubtful. If Assad has his hands full simply trying to fight poorly armed rebels, I am not too worried about any threat he might pose to the US and our assets.

  46. This is one liberal who is disgusted with the Democratic party. I see no difference between party anymore. The Democrats are as corrupt as the GOP.

  47. We get it. We definitely get your point. You think that with a limited strike we can intimidate people so they will not use chemical weapons. And that would accomplish two very worthwhile goals. An important international standard would be preserved. And lives, perhaps many lives would be saved.

    But the belief that a limited strike can accomplish all that is exactly the question under discussion.

    Will the strike actually curtail use of chemical weapons. We don’t know.

    Even if chemical weapons are no longer used will there be wider war? We don’t know.

    If there is wider war, How much can the US do. I really have to question whether the US can fund and has the will to put 10 combat brigades into battle and incur another 5,000 killed in action and the corresponding 50,000 combat wounded. It is not just funding trillions of dollars for years at a time. It is not just recruiting the enlisted grades to fight and die in the sand. Will the enlisted and commissioned officer corp hold together? I do realize it is a career. But some have been fighting for their entire career. Why not just get a civilian job?

    There are real questions regarding a so called limited strike. And from my point of view there seems to be a real reluctance to engage and discuss the many questions in a thoughtful manner.

    What I see is faith that a limited strike will work. And real reluctance to entertain the question ‘what if it does not.’

    No matter how you come down on the many questions that should be answered, the most immediate question right now is: why the rush.

    Why do we need to strike right now, this weekend.

    Shouldn’t we think this through before we put ourselves in the position that we may have to back down or we may have to go to a war that, so far as I can tell, no one wants.

  48. Are these the representatives of the New Democratic Party….. Soundly vaguely familiar to the 1860s democratics…. Just saying…..

  49. Assuming the democrats haven’t already lost the 2014 election, if they get us bogged down in Syria or even just put egg on our face surely will guarantee their loss. Many democrats are already disheartened with their leadership over NSA surveillance. I for one am tired of Obama yelling at the electorate for not trusting him/them in the face of clear evidence of trampling our constitutional rights.

  50. Ezra Klein in the WAPO poses the question ‘Could bombing Syria kill more civilians than it saves?’.

    He cites an academic paper that found “when outside governments intervene on behalf of rebel forces, the government’s killing of civilians increased by 40 percent.”

    “The United States has been very clear that this is not a mission to save civilian lives. It’s a mission to enforce international norms against the use of chemical weapons. Rather than protecting civilians from being killed, we are attempting to alter Assad’s choice of weaponry when he kills them. It’s entirely plausible that Assad could heed our message to stop killing civilians with chemical weapons even as he heeds his incentives to retain control of the conflict by stepping up his slaughter of civilians through more conventional means. ”

    I would argue that were ever you are on the issue of intervention, it is just not simple. There are no easy answers.

    We need to take the time to work though not what we ought to do according to some ideal, but what we can actually accomplish in the inhospitable region that is Syria.

  51. Arthur Randolph Erb,

    As a Vietnam Veteran, I have more than enough personal experience with destroying a foreign country in order to save Americans from minding their own business — which ought to entail taxing ultra-wealthy corporate stockholders and speculators while producing good jobs, education and health care systems for the general population.

    That aside, I ask you: What will attacking the Syrian government do to destroy the stocks of chemical weapons that the United States has stored at various locations around America? And why does the United States possess such weapons if it swears that their use violates “International norms” which the U.S. now wishes to enforce by violating them. “Peace thru War,” “Happiness is a High Body Count,” the career military lifers used to exult some forty-five years ago in Southeast Asia, before things went to bloody hell in a handbasket.

    Again, “International norms” forbid the United States from attacking another nation that has not attacked the United States. Yet the President of the United States arrogates to himself the right to disregard such international norms at his personal whim. I seriously doubt that you realize the depth of deserved scorn the United States has accrued around the world because of such brazen and bloody hypocrisy. The notorious official lying certainly hasn’t made the United States the least bit credible either. Chronic mendacity and wanton lawlessness will do that.

    When the U.S. destroys its own stocks of obscene chemical weapons, then perhaps Americans may have the moral authority to demand the same of other nations. Until then, the U.S. government needs to STFU and mind its own business. America had its own civil war and other nations will have theirs. We didn’t want any outside powers butting into our internal bloodletting and so we ought to have the good sense to understand how other nations feel the same. In any event, only the usual war profiteers have anything to gain from more Messianic Military Adventurism. The United States and the American people can only win by refusing to play.

  52. Thank you for the kind comments, Gene.

    This just in from Ralph Nader today on Common Dreams:

    “Chronically violating the Constitution overturns the rule of law and can produce costly blowbacks.”

    What a talent for succinct synthesis Ralph Nader and James Madison share.

  53. “Government by night and cloud after awhile eroded its own basis of consent. Government by lies, especially by clumsy little lies, was particularly self-defeating.” — Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., The Imperial Presidency (1973)

    The clumsy little lies, whispered (i.e., “leaked”) in the dark of night and cloud to corporate press sycophants by the Obama administration, coming so soon on the heels of the refined monstrous lies of the Deputy Dubya Bush administration, have indeed eroded the national basis of consent. Now President Obama proposes to win back that lost consent by telling more clumsy little lies while offering the Congress an opportunity to join him in shamelessly propagating them.

    Notice if you will, fellow Crimestoppers, how President Obama proposes to graciously accept approval by the U.S. Congress for his proposed war crime while simultaneously avoiding any promise to abide by a Congressional decision forbidding him the crime he covets. In other words: he doesn’t need permission, but he will take forgiveness in advance. Under those demeaning conditions, what collection of self-respecting legislators would agree to meet only to discuss the shape and size of the rubber stamp — and perhaps the color of the ink — used to proclaim their utter irrelevancy?

    As a matter of fact and recent history, President Obama has already waged an illegal war on a foreign regime — Libya — in clear and disdainful violation of the War Powers Act. Congress specifically forbade him his Excellent Adventure and refused to appropriate funds for it. Yet President Obama went ahead anyway, taking funds from other accounts and, in so doing, daring Congress to defend its Constitutional prerogatives by impeaching him, the only constitutional recourse left. But Congress quailed; and now, as a consequence of its own pusillanimous behavior, will get more of what it has already subsidized: abuse by the Imperial Presidency.

    President Obama apparently presumes an approval he will accept and not a refusal he will ignore. Very dangerous for the Republic and fairly begging for a Constitutional crisis. Yet as the village Sheriff said to the angry mob in the movie Young Frankenstein: “A riot is an ugly thing. And I think it is about time that we had one.”

    My sentiments exactly.

  54. Glenn Greenwald weighs in with pretty much what I just said above:

    “It’s certainly preferable to have the president seek Congressional approval than not seek it before involving the US in yet another Middle East war of choice, but that’s only true if the vote is deemed to be something more than an empty, symbolic ritual. To declare ahead of time that the debate the President has invited and the Congressional vote he sought are nothing more than non-binding gestures – they will matter only if the outcome is what the President wants it to be – is to display a fairly strong contempt for both democracy and the Constitution.”


    “There are few things more bizarre than watching people advocate that another country be bombed even while acknowledging that it will achieve no good outcomes other than safeguarding the “credibility” of those doing the bombing. Relatedly, it’s hard to imagine a more potent sign of a weak, declining empire than having one’s national “credibility” depend upon periodically bombing other countries.”

    No one has any respect for a rubber stamp. And if the Congress of the United States acts like one, it will deserve all the contempt it will receive.

  55. And in the “it-gets-even-worse department,” former Representative Dennis Kucinich reportedly said recently that “bombing Assad makes the U.S. into the Al Qaeda Air Force.”

    Well, wouldn’t that de facto “alliance” with Al Qaeda constitute “giving aid and comfort” to the enemies who “have levied war against the United States”? And would that not in turn rather starkly define President Obama as a traitor? I mean, literally, in the exact words of the U.S. Constitution. How can the United States wage war for ten years against Al Qaeda only to have the highest officials in the American government commit treason by aiding and abetting that same enemy? I mean, I know that

    “At this moment, for example, in 1984 (if it was 1984), Oceania was at war with Eurasia and in alliance with Eastasia. In no public or private utterance was it ever admitted that the three powers had at any time been grouped along different lines. Actually, as Winston knew, it was only four years since Oceania had been at war with Eastasia and in alliance with Eurasia. But that was merely a piece of furtive knowledge which he happened to possess because his memory was not satisfactorily under control. Officially the change of partners had never happened. Oceania was at war with Eurasia. Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia. The enemy of the moment always represented absolute evil, and it followed that any past or future agreement with him was impossible.” — 1984

    The United States has never been in alliance with Al Qaeda. The United States has always been in alliance with Al Qaeda. Do these inbred morons who run the American government have any idea what they’ve done and, even worse, propose to continue doing? Sure glad that they haven’t got my memory satisfactorily under their control. I’ve read the book many, many times.

  56. “Do these inbred morons who run the American government have any idea what they’ve done and, even worse, propose to continue doing?”

    Michael M.,

    Your analysis in all the comments to date has been on the money. On this question above my psychotherapist’s background leads me to go back and forth on this question. On one hand there is the powerful psychological defense mechanism of denial and with it the compartmentalization of ones actions, so as to justify that which they innately know is wrong at some psychological level. On the other hand they merely might be sociopathic SOB’s and not give a damn about the crap they spew. Since it’s anyone’s guess, my answer is that it doesn’t matter and they should be held to full account for their crimes.

  57. Your analysis in all the comments to date has been on the money

    I guess that you are wearing the same tin foil hat with antenna as well then. You cannot seriously believe that the US is the same as Oceania or that we have the same kind of control as the regimes as depicted in 1984. So far all I have seen is a lack of memory, facts, and simple common sense on the side which is against US military action.

    I see also that the same idiots were saying that Obama using military force in Libya would result in our invading that country too. Where is your memory? Then I get a laugh out of the same cast of characters who were fighting against US involvement in WWII. They were for the most part right wingers with a later commitment of the CPUSA. All of these arguments were used back then too. Then I love the fact that such people who use Orwell have no idea of what his politics were and his history. They forget that he was a leftwing communist to the end of his life who was totally supportive of the UK in WWII. He made many broadcasts against the Congress Party of India during that conflict and in support of the British jailing of their leaders.

    Another silly comparison is to say that since Obama did not prosecute the people who authorized and did war crimes in approving torture, that he has no standing to enforce or penalize the use of chemical weapons. In that case, there is NO court that can be found on Earth that would have clean hands to do anything. Then it requires saying that torturing a small number of people is the SAME as killing thousands of people with banned chemical weapons. I think that most rational people do not buy that. In fact, the International Criminal Court in The Hague would have to shut down because the largest contingent of unprosecuted war criminals are Dutch citizens for their horrendous actions in Indonesia and for their service in the SS during WWII.

    While I rather like a lot of Kucinich’s positions on many areas, his absolute pacifism is way too extreme for me, and as it turns out for the voters too. Just because Bush lied and did not have any real justification for the invasion of Iraq, hardly means that Obama and Kerry are one and the same. In fact, the only way you can arrive at such a conclusion is to make wild accusations backed up by a loss of memory, and facts. Bush lied and set up his own intelligence agency apart from the CIA under Cheney to cook the intel. Are you accusing Obama of doing the SAME? At the time there were plenty of other reports contesting and available to all to show the opposite of what Bush was saying. Are you saying now that unlike the UN inspectors in Iraq who found NOTHING at all to sustain Bush’s charges, that the inspectors will conclude NO chemical attack took place? THAT is what you will have to have to sustain any similarity with Bush/Cheney lies. Then you have the problem that the resolution authorizing US military action in Iraq, did NOT authorize explicitly a US invasion either. Bush simply lied about his intent. Are you accusing Obama of lying and wanting to send in US troops now? That is what you will have to say to make a valid comparison with Bush. Once again, I unlike most who are opposed to any military action under most circumstances, demand proof of YOUR contentions that using air power to degrade Assad’s forces in retaliation for his violation of international norms on these weapons will result in more and wider war for our forces.

    Given the fact that Israel suffered nothing for their massive air attack recently on Syria soil, I think that is a remote possibility that we would be involved in a wider war as a result. It is even less likely since Assad has his hands full trying to defeat his opponents near at hand.

  58. When the U.S. destroys its own stocks of obscene chemical weapons, then perhaps Americans may have the moral authority to demand the same of other nations

    I see that you are way behind the times since the US IS doing that by the way. You also seem to think that ANY military action by the US is wrong and unjustified under most circumstances. Just because the US was wrong in Vietnam and Iraq and other places, hardly means that ALL US military action is wrong under any and all circumstances. I have to admit that when I got out of the Air Force, I would never have believed that there could be any military action the US could take that I would support, but there have been a few. This and Libya along with the First Gulf War are among those military actions.

    If the US cannot enforce the laws against the use of chemical weapons,then such a ban is meaningless. It is a dead letter. I would have supported Clinton if he had used US forces in Rwanda too, but as he later admitted he made a horrible mistake. That one I could understand since the UN charter forbid such a thing at the time, but later has rethought its position in the light of Rwanda.

    I supported Vietnam’s invasion of Cambodia to depose Pol Pot, which was also a violation of international law, but one which I think was justified under the circumstances. The US of course was on the other side in supporting the Kmer Rouge while Reagan was in charge.

  59. “When the U.S. destroys its own stocks of obscene chemical weapons, then perhaps Americans may have the moral authority to demand the same of other nations

    I see that you are way behind the times since the US IS doing that by the way.”

    You give me too much credit. I did not say that.

    I also do not believe as a general principle that one has to be fully in compliance with a principle in order to call attention to a difficult or dangerous situation. Lack of compliance does raise the possibility of hypocrisy.

  60. @randyjet “You also seem to think that ANY military action by the US is wrong and unjustified under most circumstances.”

    If I have left you with the impression that I believe that ” ANY military action by the US is wrong and unjustified under most circumstances” then let me apologize for being imprecise and inarticulate.

    I believe that military action by the US must have reasonable chance of achieving clearly defined objectives and proceed only after full and thoughtful evaluation of the risk including greater involvement. Obviously it would be impossible to meet those criteria if it were necessary to respond to a surprise attack.

    I do not believe the current rush to military action meets those minimal criteria. And I do not believe that there is any thing in the current situation that is remotely analogous to a surprise attack.

    I have called for thoughtful analysis and debate on the current situation.

  61. bigfatmike,

    As you know, criticism of America’s imperial militarism often draws the response that one “never” approves “any” military actions by the U.S. government, as if war in and of itself has some sort of transcendental validity that ought to place it above criticism. That rejoinder fails, of course, since most Americans would at least justify the Revolutionary War for American independence, the War of 1812 to repulse a British invasion of the United States, the Civil War to preserve the union and end human slavery, and the Second World War to defend the United States from German and Japanese fascist aggression. Other than those four military conflicts, however, the United States has rarely employed its military for other than deplorable and indefensible reasons which, because of their intellectual and moral illegitimacy, have necessitated a chronic government mendacity that rots the very soul of democratic consent. So the scorecard of four perhaps unavoidable conflicts out of many more instances of deliberate and deceptive armed theft and sheer bungling — over more than two centuries — leads the skeptical person statistically to conclude that, on the merits, war does not usually serve the interests of either American democracy nor genuine national self-interest. If such a conclusion makes one a “pacifist,” then so what? And informed pacifism seems entirely in order given America’s history.

    Since the Second World War, especially, the behemoth military establishment in the United States has become, for all intents and purposes, a state within a state and, as Arthur Schlesinger has written, “the most powerful pressure for military intervention and escalation.” Mere military activity for nothing more than the perpetuation and advancement of military careers and weapons procurement fed by a death grip on the resources of the country actually weakens the United States. Therefore, demands for the severe reduction of this self-aggrandizing institution have a deep and abiding salience for those who see America’s purpose and future elsewhere than the interminable pounding away at third-world countries who — despite their poverty and technological backwardness — usually wind up driving the bloated and inept U.S. military out of their countries to lick its wounds and sulk before setting off to repeat the same bloody bungling again and again. So in the great majority of instances, war doesn’t work for the United States. Therefore, we ought not to appeal to it except in the most rare, dire, and unusual of circumstances. And Congress always has more than enough unoccupied time to debate and decide what best to do in those rare and dire circumstances that actually do arise every so many generations apart.

    As you point out, Syria does not qualify as one of those rare, dire, or unusual circumstances. Not in the slightest. Not in any way, whatsoever. And the typical U.S. government tactic of trying to emotionally convulse the citizenry into mass stupidity and supine acquiescence over some trumped-up Orwellian “evil” somewhere over the horizon has worn so thin that even the normally somnolent and misinformed citizens of the United States can see through the tawdry dodge. It simply doesn’t sell any more.

    As for George Orwell’s dead-on description of a totalitarian state at perpetual war with its ally-enemy-ally-enemy of the moment, the United States helped to create Al Qaeda to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, but then found itself at war with Al Qaeda after the blowback of 9/11/2001, only to find itself once again allied with Al Qaeda in trying to overthrow the regimes of Libya and and Syria. Technically, of course, the U.S. remains “at war” with its ally Al Qaeda, but this symbiotic, mutually parasitic relationship has begun to bewilder the American populace past the point of wanting to hear another lying word about it. People just don’t care for war with Syria or see the slightest need for it. Therefore, if the Obama administration persists in putting the fetid interests of Saudi Arabia and Apartheid Zionism ahead of American’s own interests, then President Obama and his right-wing supporters in both political factions, have got a rude awakening coming to them. If this critique makes me a “pacifist,” then hooray for pacifism. It seems perfectly justifiable under the circumstances. So I’ll happily stipulate to membership in the count-me-out club.

  62. @Michael Murry

    Thank you for your response. I don’t always agree with you but it is always a pleasure to read your remarks.

    ” Therefore, we ought not to appeal to it [ war ] except in the most rare, dire, and unusual of circumstances.”

    I could not agree more. I am no pacifist. But the idea of a limited military response almost seems a contradiction.

    I think there is an argument to be made that the only legitimate acts of war are those that require total commitment. If the situation is of so little importance that we are not completely involved then why are we at war at all. I am not sure I have completely convinced myself of that proposition.

    But I do emphatically believe that the bar for war has been set much to low. We now seem to be heading for war for little more reason than personal insult to our national leader.

    Yet the very serious people give lists of reasons why it all makes sense; why we have to go along. The reasons for war keep coming despite the fact that what we will gain from war seems imprecise at best.

    I think there is a pretty good argument to be made that war, or a limited strike, in Syria will only make the situation worse not better. And none of what I have said has anything to do with morality or legality, only the practical mater of what might make things better.

    Perhaps you have noticed that sometimes people criticize what we did not say, or what they imagine we said. I think that is, in part, because that is easier than contending with our actual words.

    In any case, people like you and me know that no name or label can capture the essence and complexity of our beliefs.

    But there is one sense in which I bear proudly the label they give me.

    When they call me a name or give me a label, that means they cannot correct my data, they cannot refute my argument, they cannot dispute the position I hold.

    If they could, why would they waste time calling me a name. Wouldn’t they just present their argument for all to see.

    So, don’t worry to much about the names and labels. When they call you names it means you are winning.

    I mention this because I suspect you are one who has been called many names many times in the past.

    BTW, a bit of a tangent, didn’t someone once say that insanity is repeating the same course of action, again and again, expecting a different result. I say this as I try to count up successful military interventions since the end of WWII.

  63. the Obama administration provided Sarin gas to the Syrian rebels knowing the gas would be “discovered.” Setting up the MSM to bang the drum of “evidence that Assad used Sarin on the rebels” to justify more US crimes against humanity, and keeping the military industrial complex humming along. Who made us police of the world?

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