SPORK: About 'peace' people being supporters of SH.

JS Kelly JS Kelly <jskelly@jskelly.com>
Sun, 23 Mar 2003 14:51:21 -0800 (PST)

On Sun, 23 Mar 2003, johnhall wrote:
> > From: JS Kelly [mailto:jskelly@jskelly.com]

> > that isn't much of an analysis.
> I didn't have time to write a book, only mention the conclusions.

that's not an analysis at all, then.

> > so you admit that we are fighting on a profit motive?
> No, only that costs were a relevant factor.

i beg to differ.  the only 'risk' you mentioned specifically was a
financial one. and you turned it into a 'net' benefit by saying that we'd
be paid back -- with interest! -- by oil money. clearly, you see this as
"a" (if not "the") motivator.

> > > And the benefit of deterrence after smashing Saddam?  Priceless.
> > 
> > i see. so a second goal is to say to all the region, "look out: you
> could
> > be next to feel our wrath." that'll win the peace for sure.
> Historically, it is amazingly effective.  There are reasons to believe
> it will be more effective than usual here.

so given that you admit that a stated goal is to threaten the region with
more violence, what is to prevent the people who live there from
pre-emptively striking against us? we do, after all, represent a threat.
you said so yourself. and there seems to be some recent historical
precedent where some people have justified a pre-emptive first strike
under those conditions... 
> > so from what you say, we have these two goals: make money from their
> oil,
> ==> didn't say that.

but you did!

> > and show the region that we're going to bomb the living daylights out
> of
> > whomever we please. does that about sum it up?
> You seem to have missed the fact that this was a side benefit, not a
> reason.

you said it was "priceless" -- hardly sounds like an unintentional fringe
> > what about selling the rapist the crowbar that got him in the door
> (and
> > training him to use it); 
> That isn't exactly a serious argument for your side.

why not? 
> If we did this, then it means we have a duty to take care of the
> problem.  That is a PRO war argument.

not at all. it is not necessarily a pro-war argument, it is an anti-saddam
argument.  and an anti-US/CIA-dealing-with-puppet-tyrants argument. ends
justify means? nope, gosh darn it -- they *still* don't! 
> The other point is that the future can't be predicted with precision.

and yet you predict the likelihood of our success at 100%. interesting!

given that iraq is the size of california and we are the size of... well,
the size of the us -- it would certainly appear that the odds are in our
favor. as they were in our favor in the vietnam war. as they were in the
ussr's favor in the afghanistan war. as they were in britain's favor
during the revolutionary war. etc etc etc.

> > That is what our aid to iraq in the 20-some years leading up the gulf
> war
> > i did: enable saddam. and THEN we look the other way for nigh on to 12
> > years (which is not to mention the years before) until gulf war ii:
> the
> > vengeance. of course that wouldn't in any way make us morally
> culpable,
> > would it? naaaaaaah.
> You really ought to check your facts better.  Saddam achieved power in
> 1979 concurrent with the fall of the Shah.  From 1979 to 1990 is 11
> years.

sorry -- you're right. it was 30-odd years:

              1958 - Britain's Iraqi puppets, King
              Faisal and Nuri as-Said, overthrown by
              the bloodthirsty Col.Kassim. US uses
              Kassim to attack Nasser. Kassim murdered
              by Col. Aref in CIA-mounted coup. Aref's
              helicopter blown up. A few more murders
              later, CIA helps engineer into power a
              promising, young, Baath Party enforcer,
              Saddam Hussein. 

but iirc, the first ten years -- brutal though they were -- weren't as
brutal as the 20 which were to follow (and the 12 more after that). 
> As for looking the other way for 12 years, that is a PRO war indictment
> of the UN.

your words from a previous post which started this bit of this thread (you
really should be more careful about what you trim!): 

> Mr. Bone was making the point that non-intervention did not make one 
> morally liable.  I heavily sympathize with the point in the abstract.  
> Such a person isn't morally liable, _for the crime_.  In concrete 
> personal terms I'd consider non-intervention to be an act of moral 
> cowardice at the very least. 

you see, we didn't just not intervene. we aided, abetted and profited
from beforehand and *then* we didn't intervene. 

> > how about our abandoning afghanistan after the end of the ussr-afghani
> > war?  
> Helping them keep out the USSR wasn't, morally, sufficient?  

clearly not. 

> Why not?

the deplorable living conditions of the afghani people were thrown into
the limelight after september 11, 2001.  and everyone bemoaned the
country's poverty and fate at the hands of the taliban. we could have
prevented that in post-1990 afghanistan. we chose not to. it was clear
even before the ussr withdrew that without aid and reconstruction, the
tribes of afghanistan would continue to fight among themselves. and they
did. and that brought the taliban to power. we chose to take part in the
fighting-arming-destroying part, and to abdicate the
peacemaking-democracy-building-reconstruction part. but you know, they
don't have any oil. just people. and foreign people, at that.
> > THAT surely didn't give rise to any extremism, say, on the part of
> > one mr osama bin laden, well-known as the CIA's most problematic
> blowback?
> Consider the destruction of the Taliban and the current Iraqi war
> 'blowback' from 9/11.

not sure what you mean by that.
> > it's a given that the majority of nations and individuals in the world
> > detest hussein and what he stands for, what he has done. 
> Not operationally.  France and Russia made it clear over most of those
> 12 years that they could care less as long as they could profit from
> Iraq.

and so have we, over an even longer period of time.