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The Downing Memo

shuamort

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Is this going to be the Smoking Gun to shoot Bush in the foot?


For the full article, go here.

Note
In its June 9 issue, the New York Review of Books will be the first American print publication to publish the full British "smoking gun" document, the secret memorandum of the minutes of a meeting of British Prime Minister Tony Blair's top advisers in July 2002, eight months before the Iraq war commenced. Leaked to the London Sunday Times, which first published it on May 1, the memo offers irrefutable proof of the way in which the George W Bush administration made its decision to invade Iraq - without significant consultation, reasonable intelligence on Iraq, or any desire to explore ways to avoid war - and well before seeking a congressional or United Nations mandate of any sort.

What would have happened if the UN weapons inspectors had been allowed to prove, before the US went "into battle", what David Kaye and his colleagues finally proved afterward?

Thanks to a formerly secret memorandum published by the London Sunday Times on May 1, during the run-up to the British elections, we now have a partial answer to that question. The memo, which records the minutes of a meeting of Prime Minister Tony Blair's senior foreign policy and security officials, shows that even as President Bush told Americans in October 2002 that he "hope[d] the use of force will not become necessary" - that such a decision depended on whether or not the Iraqis complied with his demands to rid themselves of their weapons of mass destruction - the president had in fact already definitively decided, at least three months before, to choose this "last resort" of going "into battle" with Iraq. Whatever the Iraqis chose to do or not do, the president's decision to go to war had long since been made.

On July 23, 2002, eight months before American and British forces invaded, senior British officials met with Prime Minister Tony Blair to discuss Iraq. The gathering, similar to an American "principals meeting", brought together Geoffrey Hoon, defense secretary; Jack Straw, foreign secretary; Lord Goldsmith, attorney general; John Scarlett, head of the Joint Intelligence Committee, which advises the prime minister; Sir Richard Dearlove, also known as "C", head of MI6 (the British equivalent of the US Central Intelligence Agency, CIA); David Manning, the equivalent of the national security adviser; Admiral Sir Michael Boyce, chief of the Defense Staff (or CDS, equivalent to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff); Jonathan Powell, Blair's chief of staff; Alastair Campbell, director of strategy (Blair's communications and political adviser); and Sally Morgan, director of government relations.

After John Scarlett began the meeting with a summary of intelligence on Iraq - notably, that "the regime was tough and based on extreme fear" and that thus the "only way to overthrow it was likely to be by massive military action", "C" offered a report on his visit to Washington, where he had conducted talks with George Tenet, his counterpart at the CIA, and other high officials. This passage is worth quoting in full:

"C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam [Hussein], through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD [weapons of mass destruction]. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC [National Security Council] had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action."

Seen from today's perspective, this short paragraph is a strikingly clear template for the future, establishing these points:

1) By mid-July 2002, eight months before the war began, President Bush had decided to invade and occupy Iraq.
2) Bush had decided to "justify" the war "by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD".
3) Already "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy".
4) Many at the top of the administration did not want to seek approval from the United Nations (going "the UN route").
5) Few in Washington seemed much interested in the aftermath of the war.

We have long known, thanks to Bob Woodward and others, that military planning for the Iraq war began as early as November 21, 2001, after Bush ordered Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to look at "what it would take to protect America by removing Saddam Hussein if we have to", and that Secretary Rumsfeld and General Tommy Franks, who headed Central Command, were briefing American senior officials on the progress of military planning during the late spring and summer of 2002; indeed, a few days after the meeting in London leaks about specific plans for a possible Iraq war appeared on the front pages of the New York Times and the Washington Post.

What the Downing Street memo confirms for the first time is that President Bush had decided, no later than July 2002, to "remove Saddam, through military action", that war with Iraq was "inevitable" - and that what remained was simply to establish and develop the modalities of justification; that is, to come up with a means of "justifying" the war and "fixing" the "intelligence and facts ... around the policy". The great value of the discussion recounted in the memo, then, is to show, for the governments of both countries, a clear hierarchy of decision-making. By July 2002 at the latest, war had been decided on; the question at issue then was how to justify it - how to "fix", as it were, what Blair will later call "the political context". Specifically, though by this point in July the president had decided to go to war, he had not yet decided to go to the United Nations and demand inspectors; indeed, as "C" points out, those on the National Security Council - the senior security officials of the US government - "had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record". This would later change, largely as a result of the political concerns of these very people gathered together at 10 Downing Street.
 

GarzaUK

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Ah man the memo. I almost feel sorry for Blair now. Man that Iraq war is totally dragging him down. No-one trusts him anymore at all.

During the election he said this about Iraq.

"Look, as Prime Minister I had a decision to make with the evidence I had, and I made the decision I believed was right at the time. And I have to live with that."

Sounds like a man realizing that he made a boo-boo.

Also running against him in the election in his constituency was a man who's son had been killed in Iraq.
Blair appeared almost teary eyes and a million miles away when the man gave his speech. I think Blair really regrets what he has done.
 

Simon W. Moon

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shuamort said:
Is this going to be the Smoking Gun to shoot Bush in the foot?


For the full article, go here.
I don't think smoking gun is the best metaphor. I'd go with the straw that broke the camel's back because there's just so much out there already. Yet, I don't think that the country's quite ready enough to admit what happened to us. We're getting there though.
 

Stinger

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What would have happened if the UN weapons inspectors had been allowed to prove, before the US went "into battle", what David Kaye and his colleagues finally proved afterward?
We would have done exactly what we did.

Do you believe knowing what the Kay and Duelfer reports found we should have left Saddam to his plans? That's absurd.
shows that even as President Bush told Americans in October 2002 that he "hope[d] the use of force will not become necessary" - that such a decision depended on whether or not the Iraqis complied with his demands to rid themselves of their weapons of mass destruction - the president had in fact already definitively decided, at least three months before, to choose this "last resort" of going "into battle" with Iraq.
Yes he was willing to go to war. He was quite clear about that. Without the will to go to war Saddam would still be in power doing all the things both Kay and Duelfer warned that he would have accomplished. If your trying to say Bush wanted to go to war there is nothing to indicate that and again it is an absurd proposition. No one WANTS to go to war, had Saddam given up power perhaps it could have been avoided, but even the Clinton administration was clear that the only way to rid the world of Saddam and the threat he was, was going to be by force. They were quite clear about that.

After John Scarlett began the meeting with a summary of intelligence on Iraq - notably, that "the regime was tough and based on extreme fear" and that thus the "only way to overthrow it was likely to be by massive military action",
Exactly what the Clinton administration said and even had a formal act passed by congress declaring such. The Democrats of course support that when they were in power but when they lost power and saw that becoming the opposition party was thier only hope they hypocritically changed their tune, but of course what they had said before is well documented.

1) By mid-July 2002, eight months before the war began, President Bush had decided to invade and occupy Iraq.
If necessary, and that was the prudent and proper decission to make.

2) Bush had decided to "justify" the war "by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD".
Your painting of it that way is curious but since every commission and report has found that Saddam was indeed working "in conjunction" and wanted to expand his relationships with terrorist organizations, again a very prudent and proper course of action by Bush. Bush didn't have to justify it, Saddam gave us every reason.

4) Many at the top of the administration did not want to seek approval from the United Nations (going "the UN route").
Because it was redundent and not necessary, but they did so anyway and got it.

5) Few in Washington seemed much interested in the aftermath of the war.
A very relative statement but what is the point. When we went to war with Germnay there wasn't much interest in the aftermath because leaving Hitler in power was unthinkable, same with Saddam. But in fact the aftermath was thought about and Bush spoke quite clearly about it and we have made much progress towards it.
We have long known, thanks to Bob Woodward and others, that military planning for the Iraq war began as early as November 21, 2001, after Bush ordered Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to look at "what it would take to protect America by removing Saddam Hussein if we have to",
And? Again a very prudent and proper action to take, of course we had "plans" for years and they were revised and revisited by the military as necessary. It's what the military does. I bet we have a plan on how we would invade lots of places.

What the Downing Street memo confirms for the first time is that President Bush had decided, no later than July 2002, to "remove Saddam, through military action", that war with Iraq was "inevitable" - and that what remained was simply to establish and develop the modalities of justification; that is, to come up with a means of "justifying" the war and "fixing" the "intelligence and facts ... around the policy".
You seem to again confuse willing to go to war with wanting to go to war. Had Saddam given up his dictatorship the war would have been avoided, at least for a time depending on the actions of whatever government took over. But this thinking was no different from previous administrations which said the same thing, the forced removal of Saddam Hussien was ineveitable unless there was internal regime change. And that was no where in the future. Had the Clinton adminsitration been more willing then the whole thing may have been avoided and Saddam overthrown internally, but he remained in power after the first gulf war and consolidated his position and proceed with his new plan to get rid of sanctions and become the dominant force in the middle east once again.
 

Simon W. Moon

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Stinger said:
Do you believe knowing what the Kay and Duelfer reports found we should have left Saddam to his plans?
Plans are harmless.
There's no evidence that Hussein was ikely to attack the US directly or by proxy.

Stinger said:
No one WANTS to go to war...
that may be so, however there are people who want there to be war.


Stinger said:
Your painting of it that way is curious but since every commission and report has found that Saddam was indeed working "in conjunction"...
"in conjunction" with what?

Stinger said:
Because it was redundent and not necessary, but they did so anyway and got it.
When exactly did the invasion of Iraq receive UN approval?

Stinger said:
A very relative statement but what is the point.
Betteer planning for the post war period could have saved the lives of American soldiers. To me, IMHO, that's a point. It sort of pains me that you can't see that as a point.

Stinger said:
When we went to war with Germnay there wasn't much interest in the aftermath
I call Bravo Sierra on this revisionist history.

Stinger said:
Had the Clinton [sic] adminsitration been more willing then the whole thing may have been avoided and Saddam overthrown internally, but he remained in power after the first gulf war and consolidated his position and proceed with his new plan to get rid of sanctions and become the dominant force in the middle east once again.
You mispelled George Herbert Walker Bush.
 

Hoot

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Stinger >but even the Clinton administration was clear that the only way to rid the world of Saddam and the threat he was, was going to be by force. They were quite clear about that.<

Clinton NEVER advocated using force against Saddam.

I'd love to see the quote where you believe Clinton said this?

What some of you on the 'right' will never understand is...there's a big difference between saying an evil dictator should be removed from power...and...marching our young sons and daughters into downtown Baghdad.
 

Stinger

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Me>> Do you believe knowing what the Kay and Duelfer reports found we should have left Saddam to his plans?

Simon W. Moon said:
Plans are harmless.
Not when they are put into action and the best time to stop them is before they are put into action.
But you did not answer the question "Do you believe knowing what the Kay and Duelfer reports found we should have left Saddam to his plans?"

There's no evidence that Hussein was ikely to attack the US directly or by proxy.
So? Although there is ample evidence he had ties with terrorist, was furthering those ties with terrorist and supported thier causes, terrorist who had attack the US directly and would do so again. And there is plenty of evidence that once the sanctions were lifted he would have become even more of a danger in the region than he was before.

that may be so, however there are people who want there to be war.
Who? But the salient point is no one in the Bush administration "wanted" to go war for the sake of going to war. That is an absurd position. The Bush administration was willing to go to war, something the Clinton administration was not willing to do at least not with the conviction to succeed.


"in conjunction" with what?

Originally Posted by Stinger
Your painting of it that way is curious but since every commission and report has found that Saddam was indeed working "in conjunction"...


SM>> "in conjunction" with what?

The answer was quite clear when it was not parsed.

SM>> When exactly did the invasion of Iraq receive UN approval?

Resolution 1441 and all the proceeding resolution.


SH>> A very relative statement but what is the point. When we went to war with Germnay there wasn't much interest in the aftermath because leaving Hitler in power was unthinkable, same with Saddam. But in fact the aftermath was thought about and Bush spoke quite clearly about it and we have made much progress towards it.

SM>> Betteer planning for the post war period could have saved the lives of American soldiers. To me, IMHO, that's a point. It sort of pains me that you can't see that as a point.

Certainly an easy statement to make with the benifit of perfect hindsite but the fact is our casualties have been minimal for an operation of this sort. Yes if Turkey had allowed the 4th division through they might have been less, yes if we had sent in 1,000,000 troops they might have been less, but these are just postulations and have no factual basis.


Originally Posted by Stinger
When we went to war with Germnay there wasn't much interest in the aftermath

SM>>I call Bravo Sierra on this revisionist history.

I call you don't know your history, the plans for the aftermath were made long after we decided to go to war with either Germany of Japan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
Had the Clinton [sic] adminsitration been more willing then the whole thing may have been avoided and Saddam overthrown internally, but he remained in power after the first gulf war and consolidated his position and proceed with his new plan to get rid of sanctions and become the dominant force in the middle east once again.



You mispelled George Herbert Walker Bush.
[/QUOTE]

No had I meant to say Bush I would have said Bush but clearly I meant to say Clinton and my statement stands unrebutted. The sanctions and inspections didn't work the first time and Saddam continually fired on our planes. Clinton bombed him several times killing over 500 Iraqi's, had he been more willing to go to war and had others within Iraq seen that, the whole thing might have been avoided. But the Clinton foreign policy was weak, and our enemies knew it.
 

Stinger

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Hoot said:
Stinger >but even the Clinton administration was clear that the only way to rid the world of Saddam and the threat he was, was going to be by force. They were quite clear about that.<

Clinton NEVER advocated using force against Saddam.

I'd love to see the quote where you believe Clinton said this?

What some of you on the 'right' will never understand is...there's a big difference between saying an evil dictator should be removed from power...and...marching our young sons and daughters into downtown Baghdad.
He used forced, he killed over 500 Iraqi's with his bombing. He just didn't use enough of it nor was he willing to do so with conviction. And as I said the Clinton administration knew that one day force would have to be used to remove him.

As far as what I said the Clinton administration said

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power." Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002.


"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program." President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998.

"Iraq is a long way from [here], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face." Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998.

"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983." Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998.

"Saddam's goal ... is to achieve the lifting of U.N. sanctions while retaining and enhancing Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs. We cannot, we must not and we will not let him succeed." -- Madeline Albright, 1998

"The community of nations may see more and more of the very kind of threat Iraq poses now: a rogue state with weapons of mass destruction, ready to use them or provide them to terrorists. If we fail to respond today, Saddam and all those who would follow in his footsteps will be emboldened tomorrow." -- Bill Clinton in 1998
 

Simon W. Moon

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Stinger said:
Not when they are put into action and the best time to stop them is before they are put into action.
Any evidence that Saddam Hussein was likely to initiate an attack against the US directly or by proxy? The US intel Community said that wasn't gonna do anything of the sort in the foreseeable future.

Stinger said:
But you did not answer the question "Do you believe knowing what the Kay and Duelfer reports found we should have left Saddam to his plans?"
We should have done something- which we were. However, since all that he had were his plans- which were mostly plans to make plans -I can't see how tens of thousands of dead and wounded as well as billions and billions of expenses are justified. The something should have continued to be something other than a full-scale invasion.

Stinger said:
So? Although there is ample evidence he had ties with terrorist, was furthering those ties with terrorist and supported thier causes...
The judgment of America's best and brightest in the professional intelligence community was that Hussein was sufficiently deterred by the threat of what Dr. Rice called "national obliteration" that he was unlikely to initiate an attack on the US directly or by proxy.
Btw, the main terrorist group that Hussein had ties to, the Mojahedin-e-Khalq, is now being mollycoddled by the Bush Admin and is receiving fundraising support from members of Team Bush. So, I guess the terrorists that Hussein was harboring and supporting weren't such bad terrorists after all. They're "good terrorists"- else why would Team Bush be helping raise money and allowing them to have a convention in DC? I was there btw.

Stinger said:
...terrorist who had attack the US directly and would do so again.
I assume you're talking about al Qaeda and not the Mojahedin-e-Khalq, who have also killed Americans.
In the words of GWB, "the best evidence" of a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda was Zarqawi's group. Remember that GWB said that this was "the best evidence" of an aQ Hussein link. This is it. That's the best link that can be made.
This group, Ansar al-Islam worked in the US controlled no-fly zones, outside of Hussein's control. They worked for the overthrow of Hussein's regime. The US had several chances to take out this group w/o launching a full-scale invasion but the Bush administration despite these chances to wipe out this terrorist operation and perhaps kill Zarqawi himself never pulled the trigger because the administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam. We could've eliminated the the best connection between Iraq and al Qaeda w/o an invasion.

So the al Qaeda "affiliates" (note that these were not al Qaeda, but merely "affiliates"] were working in an area outside of Hussein's control, and were working for the overthrow of Hussein and were eminently extinguishable w/o a full-scale invasion.
And remember that GWB said that this was "the best evidence" of an aQ Hussein link. This is it. That's the best link that can be made.

Given these facts there's no way that this can be successfully used to justify a full-scale invasion of Iraq.

I hate to be the one to break this news to you, but politicians lie, play funny with the truth and mislead. Yes, even ones who call themselves conservative. They're politicians too.

Stinger said:
And there is plenty of evidence that once the sanctions were lifted he would have become even more of a danger in the region than he was before.
But still not a threat to the US.

Stinger said:
Who? But the salient point is no one in the Bush administration "wanted" to go war for the sake of going to war. That is an absurd position.
Sure. It is. They had other reasons for wanting a war with Iraq.

Stinger said:
The Bush administration was willing to go to war, something the Clinton administration was not willing to do at least not with the conviction to succeed.
What the **** does Clinton have to do with this? I've been sick of hearing about Clinton for two decades now [I'm from Arkansas]. Give it an effin rest.

Mark Danner said:
2) Bush had decided to "justify" the war "by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD".
Stinger said:
...every commission and report has found that Saddam was indeed working "in conjunction" and wanted to expand his relationships with terrorist organizations...
While it may be very plain to you, I had to go to summer school to graduate w/ a 2.05gpa from the 49th worse school system in the nation [thank God for MS]. So, if you would, please indulge me. I'm just a backwoods hick.
It seems you're implying that Hussein was working "in conjunction" w/ al Qaeda, yet not a single report has said this. Nor has a single report shown that Hussein had WMDs. So, I'm obviously mistaken about what you're actually implying.
Help a hillbilly out here.

Stinger said:
SM>> When exactly did the invasion of Iraq receive UN approval?

Resolution 1441 and all the proceeding resolution.
If you'd like I could link to them, but I’ve read them all several times, and I'll tell you that they in no way authorize the invasion.
Perhaps you could quote the specific language you have interpreted as authorizing an invasion.


Stinger said:
Certainly an easy statement to make with the benifit of perfect hindsite but the fact is our casualties have been minimal for an operation of this sort.
Actually I'm talking about the pre-war planning done by the CIA and the State Dept that was shelved. These were examples of foresight.

Stinger said:
No had I meant to say Bush I would have said Bush but clearly I meant to say Clinton and my statement stands unrebutted.
Well, what you said was "Had the Clinton [sic] adminsitration been more willing then the whole thing may have been avoided and Saddam overthrown internally..."
But there was an internal rebellion that we had pledged to support. It occurred but we backed out of our pledge to support it.
Yet, the internal rebellion that we fostered but pulled out of at the last minute, the Kurdish Rebellion that was repressed in part by our new bed partners-Saddam's sloppy seconds-the Mojahedin-e-Khalq, took place in 1991. AFAICT, 1991 was during GHWB presidency. What's your obsession w/ Clinton?

Stinger said:
The sanctions and inspections didn't work...
[nitpick]Actually, the lack of WMDs kind of shows that they did work to keep Hussein from getting WMDs.[/nitpick]

Stinger said:
Clinton...Clinton ...
What's your obsession w/ Clinton all about anyway?
 

Stinger

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Any evidence that Saddam Hussein was likely to initiate an attack against the US directly or by proxy? The US intel Community said that wasn't gonna do anything of the sort in the foreseeable future.
I don't know why you keep harping on the "direct" attack on the US when that was never an issue. Why do you keep making that statement. That being said, attacking other countries and working with terrorist organizations to attack, yes even the US was an issue that was clearly spelled out.

The US intel Community said that wasn't gonna do anything of the sort in the foreseeable future.
No they did not but what they did say was that given the chance, which was in the foreseeable future, he would first help terrorist organizations and then attack his neighboring countries once again.

We should have done something- which we were.
And the plan you supported was what? What was the something you supported doing?

However, since all that he had were his plans- which were mostly plans to make plans
Oh he had more than just plans and the plan he was working on was well on the way to completion as documented by all the commissions that had looked into it and further evidenced by the now exposed bribery within the UN. The only thing he did not have was a stockpile of ready to go chemical/biological WMD.

I can't see how tens of thousands of dead and wounded as well as billions and billions of expenses are justified.
And thankfully you weren't in charge. We all mourn the loss of a single life but peace and liberty do not come without a cost. Did you not see how the 500 Iraqi's Clinton killed with his bombing was justified?
The judgment of America's best and brightest in the professional intelligence community was that Hussein was sufficiently deterred by the threat of what Dr. Rice called "national obliteration" that he was unlikely to initiate an attack on the US directly or by proxy.
No it wasn't. First the was not a belief that Saddam was going to attack our shores directly so you keep stating that smoke-screen. What the concern was was that he was working with our enimies to attack his neighboring states again and to assist them in attacking not only our shores but our ships, our bases our embassies and all the other things they had previously attacked. Would it have been worth more of those attacks and more of those deaths to leave him in power?

Btw, the main terrorist group that Hussein had ties to
The main groups we were concerned with was Alqaeda and Islamic Jihad, your other point is moot.
In the words of GWB, "the best evidence" of a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda was Zarqawi's group. Remember that GWB said that this was "the best evidence" of an aQ Hussein link. This is it. That's the best link that can be made.
And it was a good one and along with the other links we knew then and have discovered since reinforce the case for his removal.

In the words of GWB, "the best evidence" of a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda was Zarqawi's group.
And meetings between the Iraqi security forces and Alqaeda and evidence of Saddam's desire to futher his relationships with them, all documented in the Kay and Duefler reports.

Given these facts there's no way that this can be successfully used to justify a full-scale invasion of Iraq.
Of course it can.

I hate to be the one to break this news to you, but politicians lie, play funny with the truth and mislead. Yes, even ones who call themselves conservative. They're politicians too.
I hate to break this to you but silly condensenion does not make for a very powerful arguement.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
And there is plenty of evidence that once the sanctions were lifted he would have become even more of a danger in the region than he was before.
But still not a threat to the US.
Hardly, Saddam with sanctions lifted and further his ties with terrorist groups was a threat to the entire world. Even Clinton and the Democrats and fully supported the passage of the Iraqi Liberation Act which called for his removal because he was such a serious threat.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
The Bush administration was willing to go to war, something the Clinton administration was not willing to do at least not with the conviction to succeed.
What the **** does Clinton have to do with this? I've been sick of hearing about Clinton for two decades now [I'm from Arkansas]. Give it an effin rest.
Ahhh he was president while much of this was going on, his policies have a direct bearing on where we are today. That it doesn't help your position doesn't make go away.

It seems you're implying that Hussein was working "in conjunction" w/ al Qaeda, yet not a single report has said this.
No every single report shows that he was in contact with them and was in the process of building quite an aliance with them. All he needed was the sanctions to be lifted and the inspectors finally out of the picture although the latter was not critical since he had pefected the ability to fool them.
I'm just a backwoods hick.
Oh I doubt that but since I grew up in AL and my family is from AK, LA, MS, TN don't think you're fooling anyone around these parts.
If you'd like I could link to them, but I’ve read them all several times, and I'll tell you that they in no way authorize the invasion.
Oh yes they do along with the congressional resolutions and the cease-fire agreements. The arguement that we did not have authorization or that the war was illegal is completely bogus.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
Certainly an easy statement to make with the benifit of perfect hindsite but the fact is our casualties have been minimal for an operation of this sort.
Actually I'm talking about the pre-war planning done by the CIA and the State Dept that was shelved. These were examples of foresight.
Well if you care to try and elaborate on exactly what you are talking about go ahead but the fact is we had a very good plan going it and our casualities have been minimal.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
No had I meant to say Bush I would have said Bush but clearly I meant to say Clinton and my statement stands unrebutted.

Well, what you said was "Had the Clinton [sic] adminsitration been more willing then the whole thing may have been avoided and Saddam overthrown internally..."
Yes and that statement still stands. Had he been willing to enforce the cease-fire agreements, had he been willing to deal with Saddam the first time he kicked out the UN inspectors, had he been willing to go after OBL after the first attack on the WTC, had he been willing to go after him after his subsequent attacks................


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
The sanctions and inspections didn't work...
[nitpick]Actually, the lack of WMDs kind of shows that they did work to keep Hussein from getting WMDs.[/nitpick]

Actually all the may have accomplished, and we don't know for sure, was that he did not stockpile any. Did they rid us of the the threat of Saddam and WMD, not by an stretch of the imagination. And we see that all the sanctions did was allow him to bribe those who opposed his removal.

What's your obsession w/ Clinton all about anyway?
What is you obession with denying that Clinton and his administration ever existed or had anything to do with our policy and history vis-a-vis Saddam Hussien and terrorism? Your attempts to wipe away history is quite telling.
 

Hoot

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>What is you obession with denying that Clinton and his administration ever existed or had anything to do with our policy and history vis-a-vis Saddam Hussien and terrorism? Your attempts to wipe away history is quite telling. <Stinger

The real history is that the republican congress and then FBI director Louis Freeh deliberately undercut Clinton's efforts to combat terrorism.

Seems they were more concerned about whether he got 'some' in the Oval Office.
 

Simon W. Moon

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Stinger said:
I don't know why you keep harping on the "direct" attack on the US when that was never an issue. Why do you keep making that statement. That being said, attacking other countries and working with terrorist organizations to attack, yes even the US was an issue that was clearly spelled out.
Since I repeatedly used the phrase "or by proxy" I guess you're unfamiliar with the definition of 'proxy'. I included a link to some definitions of the word for your edification.
After learning the definition of 'proxy' you should re-read what I've written. If there're any other words that you're not certain of the definition you may copy and paste them into the search bar here : http://dictionary.reference.com/
This practice should heighten the quality of our dialogue tremendously.

Stinger said:
No they did not but what they did say was that given the chance, which was in the foreseeable future, he would first help terrorist organizations and then attack his neighboring countries once again.
I have a citation for my assertion. I can share it you'd like : Congressional Record October 9, 2002Would you please share the source for your counter assertion? Show me where the US intel Community said what you say they said, please.


Stinger said:
And the plan you supported was what? What was the something you supported doing?
There were a number of things going on including sanctions and inspections which successfully prevented Hussein from acquiring WMDs and prevented him from starting WMD programs. There were also a number of proposals on the table for more aggressive inpection regimes.
The point is that things weren't broke as far as US's safety was concerned. Things were pretty horrible as far as Iraq citizenry was concerned. So some things should've been changed.

Stinger said:
Oh he had more than just plans and the plan he was working on was well on the way to completion as documented by all the commissions that had looked into it ...
While I've read several sets of reports, I'm ignorant of this.
Please, share the documentation that you're referring to here. Please quote the relevant language.
Stinger said:
The only thing he did not have was a stockpile of ready to go chemical/biological WMD.
Or nuclear weapons or a production program, or the supplies to produce these items or quite a number of things. All that there was, was the wish. And you know the story about if wishes were fishes.

Stinger said:
And thankfully you weren't in charge. We all mourn the loss of a single life but peace and liberty do not come without a cost.
So, what exactly is the US getting out of this invasion that's worth the cost? As far as I can tell, we already had a healthy share of "peace and liberty."


Stinger said:
No it wasn't. First the was not a belief that Saddam was going to attack our shores directly so you keep stating that smoke-screen. What the concern was was that he was working with our enimies to attack his neighboring states again and to assist them in attacking not only our shores but our ships, our bases our embassies and all the other things they had previously attacked. Would it have been worth more of those attacks and more of those deaths to leave him in power?
Please remember to reread what I wrote after you learn what the words I used mean. See you then.


Stinger said:
And it was a good one...
Except for how unconnected he was as I mentioned previously as thus:
This group, Ansar al-Islam worked in the US controlled no-fly zones, outside of Hussein's control. They worked for the overthrow of Hussein's regime. The US had several chances to take out this group w/o launching a full-scale invasion but the Bush administration despite these chances to wipe out this terrorist operation and perhaps kill Zarqawi himself never pulled the trigger because the administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam. We could've eliminated the the best connection between Iraq and al Qaeda w/o an invasion.

So the al Qaeda "affiliates" (note that these were not al Qaeda, but merely "affiliates"] were working in an area outside of Hussein's control, and were working for the overthrow of Hussein and were eminently extinguishable w/o a full-scale invasion.
Stinger said:
...and along with the other links we knew then and have discovered since...
Do share, please- USG docs if you are able. The CIA et al have quite a set if holdings available online for you to look through.
Stinger said:
And meetings between the Iraqi security forces and Alqaeda and evidence of Saddam's desire to futher his relationships with them, all documented in the Kay and Duefler reports.
Perhaps President Bush did not include those meetings in the category of what he called the "best evidence" because it shows a decade of failed attempts to broker a meaningful deal.
Bush provided the assessment of the Zarqawi stuff as being "the best", not me.

Stinger said:
Of course it can.
Since the best connection bewteen aQ and SH could've been eliminated w/o an invasion how do you justify the necessity of an invasion?


Stinger said:
I hate to break this to you but silly condensenion does not make for a very powerful arguement.
I hope you find solace somehow.


Stinger said:
Ahhh he was president while much of this was going on, his policies have a direct bearing on where we are today. That it doesn't help your position doesn't make go away.
What does Clinton's willlingness/unwillingness to go to war have to do with diddly-squat?
His positions neither help nor hinder my case which is based upon the national intelligence estimates of the US intelligence community.

Stinger said:
No every single report shows that he was in contact with them and was in the process of building quite an aliance with them.
If you would, please indulge me and quote the relevant passages from some of these reports you're talking about.
I lived close to MO and some of their "show me" musta rubbed off.


Stinger said:
...he had pefected the ability to fool them.
He must also have perfectedhis abbility to fool the ISG from his jail cell as they've issued their final report agreeing with the previous inspectors. Of perhaps, these groups all came to the saem conclusions because they were not fooled?
Please explain how you think Hussein has fooled the ISG from his cell?

Stinger said:
Oh I doubt that but since I grew up in AL and my family is from AK, LA, MS, TN don't think you're fooling anyone around these parts.
Doubt as much as you please, don't change the facts none. Care to quiz me?
Alaska, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennesee?


Stinger said:
Oh yes they do...
Perhaps you could quote the specific language you have interpreted as authorizing an invasion.
Stinger said:
Well if you care to try and elaborate on exactly what you are talking about go ahead but the fact is we had a very good plan going it and our casualities have been minimal.
Well, I'm away from my notes and my home computer. But for starters, the State Dept project was called the Future of Iraq Project

Stinger said:
Did they rid us of the the threat of Saddam and WMD...
Since there were no WMDs, whence the threat from things that don't exist?

Stinger said:
...not by an stretch of the imagination.
Oh. So I have to strectch my imagination to find the threat from things that don't exist.

Stinger said:
And we see that all the sanctions did was allow him to bribe those who opposed his removal.
This statement erroneously implies that Hussein could not have bribed people without the sanctions. Certainly you meant something other than this. No one on this board is so dumb that they'd actually believe that w/o sanctions Hussein couldn't've bribed foreigners.

Stinger said:
What is you obession with denying that Clinton and his administration ever existed or had anything to do with our policy and history vis-a-vis Saddam Hussien and terrorism? Your attempts to wipe away history is quite telling.
I don't.
Perhaps if you my age and were from Arkansas, you'd understand why I'm tired of hearing about him.
 

Stinger

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger
I don't know why you keep harping on the "direct" attack on the US when that was never an issue. Why do you keep making that statement. That being said, attacking other countries and working with terrorist organizations to attack, yes even the US was an issue that was clearly spelled out.

Since I repeatedly used the phrase "or by proxy" I guess you're unfamiliar with the definition of 'proxy'. I included a link to some definitions of the word for your edification.
After learning the definition of 'proxy' you should re-read what I've written. If there're any other words that you're not certain of the definition you may copy and paste them into the search bar here : http://dictionary.reference.com/
This practice should heighten the quality of our dialogue tremendously.
Oh I am fully aware of the meaning of proxy, and the Bush administration was not claiming that Alqaeda was acting as a proxy to Saddam, nor did any commission find that to be the case. But let's be clear your did say "or proxy" not "by proxy" leaving up the possibilty of direct attack BY Iraq which was never a claim by this administration either. So again why do you keep harping of the fact that Iraq was not planning a direct attack when that was never an issue?

So I suggest YOU go and look up the meaning or proxy, shouldn't be too hard since you already have a link which will assist you. Then you can come down off your pedestal and we can continue the discussion. This practice should heighten the quality of our dialogue tremendously.
 

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Hoot,

I must say that your remark, "The real history is that the republican congress and then FBI director Louis Freeh deliberately undercut Clinton's efforts to combat terrorism." is a real hoot!

Johnsdad
 

Hoot

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johnsdad said:
Hoot,

I must say that your remark, "The real history is that the republican congress and then FBI director Louis Freeh deliberately undercut Clinton's efforts to combat terrorism." is a real hoot!

Johnsdad
It's just simple history, but with such a snappy comeback as yours, how can I possibly respond?
 

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Stinger said:
I don't know why you keep harping on the "direct" attack on the US when that was never an issue.
What is one to make of this statement from the PotUSA?
"We're concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVS for missions targeting the United States. And, of course, sophisticated delivery systems aren't required for a chemical or biological attack; all that might be required are a small container and one terrorist or Iraqi intelligence operative to deliver it."




Are you suggesting that GWB et al were "concerned" about something "that was never an issue"?





Stinger said:
Why do you keep making that statement.
Mostly because that's how the American Intelligence Community in the NIE and the Congressional testimony discussed the possibilities. They made assessments for these two types of attacks.

Stinger said:
That being said, attacking other countries and working with terrorist organizations to attack, yes even the US was an issue that was clearly spelled out.
I know that you have quite a backlog of citation requests dogging your heels, but I'd like to add another as well as ask for clarification as to what exactly you mean by "clearly spelled out." So could you quote the language and source that led you to this conclusion?

Stinger said:
Oh I am fully aware of the meaning of proxy, and the Bush administration was not claiming that Alqaeda was acting as a proxy to Saddam...
If you're addressing the specific issue of 9-11, then you'll find that various members of the Team Bush were pushing the line that aQ was acting with Iraq. Most notable is the case that **** Cheney was making- especially re the atta/Prague connection that he subsequently had to crawfish away from.
If you're addressing the issue more in general, then you'll find that it was not uncommon for the conjunction of Hussein, WMDs and terrorists "such as al Qaeda" to be given as a motivator for the push to invade Iraq.


Stinger said:
But let's be clear your did say "or proxy" not "by proxy"...
Actually, I said what is a combination of both of these- "or by proxy"

Stinger said:
... direct attack BY Iraq which was never a claim by this administration either.
Except, (as I noted above), when it was, of course.

Stinger said:
So again why do you keep harping of the fact that Iraq was not planning a direct attack when that was never an issue?
In part because it was an issue and because it's the same way that these things were discussed in national intelligence estimates congressional testimony.

Stinger said:
Then you can come down off your pedestal and we can continue the discussion.
The discussion is in somewhat of a holding pattern waiting for you to provide the citation for your various assertions. Whenever you get ready, we can proceed.
If you like, we could share the pedestal you've put me on.
 

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New Book "State of War" by NY Times' James Risen Gives Vital Background to Downing Street Memo
Submitted by jonschwarz on Sun, 2006-01-08 16:25. Evidence
By Jonathan Schwarz


The relevant excerpts from State of War appear at the bottom of this post

After the Downing Street Memo was leaked last May, the U.S. and U.K. governments were eventually forced to admit it was genuine.
However, they never revealed any background to the memo—most importantly, who did Richard Dearlove, head of British intelligence, meet with in Washington just before the July 23, 2002 high-level U.K. government meeting the memo memorialized? This would go a long way to answering why Dearlove believed "Military action was now seen as inevitable" and "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."

State of War, the just-released book by New York Times reporter James Risen, sheds important new light on these issues. (State of War is now best known for its revelations about warrantless spying by the NSA, but it contains a great deal of other significant information.) Regarding the Downing Street Memo, the most important points made by State of War are these:

• Dearlove was in part reporting on a CIA-MI6 summit he attended with other top MI6 officials at CIA headquarters on Saturday, July 20, 2002
• According to "a former senior CIA officer," the meeting was held "at the urgent request of the British"; CIA officials believe "Blair had ordered Dearlove to go to Washington to find out what the Bush administration was really thinking about Iraq"
• During the day-long summit, Dearlove met privately with CIA head George Tenet for an hour and a half

This obviously raises other questions, such as:

• What records of the meeting exist on the American side?
• Will the Senate Intelligence Committee examine the meeting as part of its Phase II Iraq intelligence investigation?
• What specifically did Dearlove and Tenet discuss when alone?
• Why has the New York Times failed to publish Risen's information about the Downing Street Memo background?

Risen's book also makes the scoffing about the Downing Street Memo by various Washington pundits appear even more peculiar. For instance, in a Washington Post column, Michael Kinsley suggested Dearlove might have just been reporting back to Blair about what he'd heard from "the usual freelance chatterboxes." Later, in an exchange with Mark Danner, Kinsley indicated Dearlove may have simply been talking about the "mood and gossip of 'Washington.'"

In any case, there is clearly much more to the story, if anyone besides James Risen cares enough to investigate it
.

http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/6558
DSM was no fake!
 

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GarzaUK said:
Of course it wasn't. The Deputy Prime Minister even said so.
Why isn't it an issue? I don't know about the mainstream media over there, but the mainstream media over here ignores the story.
 

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Orignally posted by GarzaUK:
Of course it wasn't. The Deputy Prime Minister even said so.
That's what I keep trying to tell all these dolts over here. But they keep insisting it's a fake. I tell them them that no one who is associated with DSM has said anything about it being a fake. But the people that reside in Doltville just keep refusing the obvious.
 

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scottyz said:
Why isn't it an issue? I don't know about the mainstream media over there, but the mainstream media over here ignores the story.
The media knows which side their bread is buttered! Investigative journalism is dying :(
 

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Originally posted by Mancunian:
The media knows which side their bread is buttered! Investigative journalism is dying
The fact that the US media has not written more about DSM is prima facia evidence that the media is conservative (not liberal).
 
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