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Going to Iraq and Ruin? - This is Rich
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What's To Be Done in Iraq?
Expand NATO, a la Friedman
5%
 5%  [ 1 ]
Get Out As Soon As Possible
33%
 33%  [ 6 ]
Install A " Puppet Government "?
5%
 5%  [ 1 ]
Have Elections Quickly
5%
 5%  [ 1 ]
Heck, I Don't Know
38%
 38%  [ 7 ]
None of the Above - Here's My Solution
11%
 11%  [ 2 ]
Total Votes : 18

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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2003 12:53 pm    Post subject: Looked here yet? Reply with quote

Dear Nomad Dan,
Have you checked out the "avatar instructions" (entitled, I believe, "Avaters, Avatars, Avatars") on the General Discussion Forum?
Regards,
John
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2003 1:27 pm    Post subject: Winning hearts and minds Reply with quote

Just when you thought that "military intelligence" couldn't sink any lower:

"With a heavy dose of fear and violence, and a lot of money for projects, I think we can convince people that we are here to help them."
LT. COL. NATHAN SASSAMAN, whose unit oversees the Iraqi village of Abu Hishma.


http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/07/international/middleeast/07TACT.html?th

Ah yes - that's the ticket. Fear, violence and money. Why, with this strategy, how could the Iraqis fail to appreciate our good intentions?
Mama mia, what a bunch of morons.
Regards,
John
P.S. And, in Afghanistan, we're winning hearts and minds as well:

"Coalition Strike in Afghanistan Kills 9 Children"

"Coalition forces regret the loss of any innocent life," the statement said. It said the troops remaining in the area "will make every effort to assist the families of the innocent casualties and determine the cause of the civilian deaths."
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guest of Japan



Joined: 28 Feb 2003
Posts: 1601
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It seems they got him. This is terrible news for America. This will get Bush re-elected.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 2:28 pm    Post subject: Through a glass darkly Reply with quote

Dear guest of Japan,
Yes, they captured Saddam, it seems. But I woudn't leap to any hasty conclusions as to what that might mean for the Nov. 04 elections. What looks like a "triumph" for the administration at first, may turn out to be not quite so beneficial. Who knows what a "captured alive" Saddam might be able to say - and even to prove - provided he ever gets to trial? Saddam's a homicidal maniac, but no one's ever accused him of being less than very shrewd and wily. It could prove to be very interesting.
Regards,
John
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guest of Japan



Joined: 28 Feb 2003
Posts: 1601
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

johnslat, I pray your right, but this will put Bush's approval rating over 80% as of tomorrow. This coupled with the Dow finally rising over 10,000 and Arnie's big republican budget win in California can't be good for anyone with a conscience.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 2:42 pm    Post subject: Premature e . . .lation Reply with quote

Dear guest of Japan,
Ah, but timing is everything. In sports, there's the phenomenon called: peaking too soon. And it holds true in politics, as well. With almost a year left before the voting takes place, I'd say it's far too early for the Republicans to be popping champagne bottle corks. Many things can happen, much could be revealed, before the USA heads into the polling places to choose the next president. The fat lady isn't close to singing her final aria yet. Be just frightened enough to work even harder to make sure Dubya and Company go down in '04.
Regards,
John
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guest of Japan



Joined: 28 Feb 2003
Posts: 1601
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear johnslat,

You didn't lie. You certainly are an optimist. I'll agree that your theory held true for the elder Bush, but this Bush is still milking 9/11. He's going tp be the most popular President since FDR and it's going to take an awful string of idiocy to bring him down. Granted, I believe Bush is capable of being that stupid. Hopefully the Halliburton thing blows up in his face, Ken Lay finally faces open criminal proceedings, his wife divorces him and exposes continued cocaine usage, and an intern admits to doing body shots of tequilla with Bush wearing nothing but some rubber boots, a thong and a sombrerro. Of course other things could happen like the economy tanking again or the violence escalating in Iraq or other parts of the world, but I don't wish that on America no matter how much I despise Bush.
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Truth Hurts



Joined: 05 Jul 2003
Posts: 115
Location: Truthville

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 3:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can't understand what the fuss is all about.

The question I want ask Bremmer is if by any chance they also found any of those elusive WMDs in the mud hut where Saddam has been hiding. Smile

Yeah, "we got him" but we sure as hell didn't get them.

And John, let's wait and see how Dubya spins this. Call me a conspiracy theorist but I guess the WMD's are suddenly soon gonna' appear somewhere 'coz Saddam's now gonna spill the beans. And, yeah, Dubya gets a second term.... Crying or Very sad

TH
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 3:25 pm    Post subject: Scared optimism Reply with quote

Dear guest of Japan,
Maybe I spent too long in Saudi Arabia because I seem to have internalized, to some degree, the inshallah mentality. However, I haven't done so to the extent that it makes me "fatalistic"; I still hold to the notion that what we do does matter, that passivity is wrong, that we have to act in order to make things better. Moreover, I also appear to have a deep-rooted belief that, as history unfolds, humanity will ever so gradually become more humane, tolerant and wise. OK - it's a two steps forward, one and a half steps back kind of "progress", but I truly do believe in it.
The coming election may well be the most important one for the USA (and the rest of the world) since 1938. It would be all too easy just to wash one's hands of it all, to sit on the sidelines and not take part. But if we do, then we have to bear the responsibility for an outcome that could, in my opinion, set back that "progress" Lord knows how many years - or decades. So I guess I'm a "scared optimist", and I'm not going to allow myself to get discouraged no matter what happens between now and next November.
Regards,
John
P.S. Just to forestall any possible misinterpretation, I'm very happy (for the people of Iraq) that Saddam has finally been captured. But then, that optimistic outlook makes me fel that, ultimately, all things work towards the good.
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2003 3:34 pm    Post subject: Revelations forestalled? Reply with quote

Dear Truth Hurts,
You could well be right about the "suddenly appearing WMDs". However, I suspect that Saddam also knows where (literally and figuratively) a lot of the "bodies are buried". And, if he does get the chance to speak out, there might be a lot of people in Washington (and other places) who are going to wish he'd been captured dead, rather than alive. In fact, if you want a good conspiracy theory - how about this one? How many powerful people today are sweating bullets about what Saddam may reveal. And how many "contracts" are going out to make sure that Saddam's stories don't get told?
Regards,
John
P.S. As for Dubya's getting a second term, well, I wouldn't be too sure.
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Cleopatra



Joined: 28 Jun 2003
Posts: 3657
Location: Tuamago Archipelago

PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2003 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgive me - a non American - from intruding, but I fear your optimism is misplaced.

Isn't the 2004 "Election" already a foregone conclusion?

After all, if you can steal one "election", you can surely steal two "elections"?
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Mon Dec 15, 2003 2:52 pm    Post subject: Polyanna, I'm not Reply with quote

Dear Cleopatra,
Perhaps my optimism is misplaced - it certainly has been before. However, I think the "once bitten, twice shy" rule may apply here. After so much turmoil, dispute and rancor caused by the first steal, it just might be that:

1. there will be increased vigilance and more "safeguards" will be put into place.
2. the stealers may be a little more "cautious" the next time around.
3. the media will be much more "focused" on the possibility of such a miscarriage happening again.
4. the Democrats will be more alert to chicanery.
Regards,
John
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Cleopatra



Joined: 28 Jun 2003
Posts: 3657
Location: Tuamago Archipelago

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2003 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe I'm just a cynic, but can I be the only one who's getting an ever so slight whiff of Jessica Lynch from the story of Saddam's capture?

It was just a little too picture perfect (literally). Cowardly man in a hole, unshaven (despite his previous attention to appearance), perfect, Hollywood style quotes "Mr. Bush sends his regards" in reply to Saddam's plea to negotiate (funny, I didn't think he spoke English), the drugged appearance of Saddam on TV... And they didn't even have to pay the reward money!

Of course, it's just a suspicion, and there's is no proof to contradict the official story. Not yet, anyway. I suppose the truth will come out - maybe.
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Truth Hurts



Joined: 05 Jul 2003
Posts: 115
Location: Truthville

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2003 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cleo

I share in your cynicism. Before the footage was released I was picturing what a gray haired Saddam would look like so I was immediately struck by his dark hair. Could he really have been taking all this trouble all this time to dye his hair while living in such squalor?

I suspect he was gassed in a sort of repeat of the Chechnyan siege of the Moscow cinema earlier this year.

TH
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12296
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2003 2:46 pm    Post subject: A coward dyes a thousand times Reply with quote

Dear Cleopatra and Truth Hurts,
What surprises me most about it all is that he was captured alive, rather than dead. When (and if) he gets his "day in court", how can he not be expected to wash a lot of international "dirty linen" in public? In a truly "conspiratorial world", shouldn't orders have gone out to make sure that a "dead man would tell no tales"?
Regards,
John
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