Do We Have The Courage To Stop War With Iran?

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By Ray McGovern
(former CIA Analyst)
Friday 31 August 2007

“Why do I feel like the proverbial skunk at a Labor Day picnic? Sorry; but I thought you might want to know that this time next year there will probably be more skunks than we can handle. I fear our country is likely to be at war with Iran – and with the thousands of real terrorists Iran can field around the globe. President George W. Bush’s speech Tuesday lays out the Bush/Cheney plan to attack Iran and how the intelligence is being “fixed around the policy,” as was the case before the attack on Iraq.
It is going to happen, folks, unless we put our lawn chairs away on Tuesday, take part in some serious grass-roots organizing, and take action to prevent a wider war – while we still can.” (excerpt)

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An Embassy the Size of the Vatican

From the London Times:

“Baghdad is a city
of ruins – of burnt-out homes, of shops wrecked by suicide bombs, of the crumbling shells of Saddam-era palaces and ministries destroyed by smart bombs in the US invasion of 2003.

There is one notable exception. It is probably the only big new building project in the capital in the past four years. It is the new US Embassy on the west bank of the Tigris which the contractors will transfer to the US Government officially today.”

This 104 acre, $600,000,000 fortress makes a statement about American priorities and intentions.

Rove: Bush Will Be Remembered as a “Far-Sighted Leader”

From ThinkProgress:

Karl Rove, in a piece written for National Review:

President Bush will be viewed as a far-sighted leader who confronted the key test of the 21st century.

He will be judged as a man of moral clarity who put America on wartime footing in the dangerous struggle against radical Islamic terrorism. […]

President Bush will be seen as a compassionate leader who used America’s power for good. […]

I have come to understand true leadership leans into the wind. It tackles big challenges with uncertain outcomes rather than taking on simple, sure tasks. It does what is right, regardless of what the latest poll or focus group says. History demands much of America and its leaders and I am confident it will judge the 43rd president as a man more than worthy of the great office the American people twice entrusted to him.

Give me a frickin’ break!

Raw look at Iraq war sobers Venice film fest

A US film laying bare the ugly reality of the Iraq war seared the big screen at the Venice film festival on Friday, with director Brian De Palma saying he hoped it would help end America’s military occupation.
“The pictures are what will stop the war,” De Palma told a news conference after the press screening of the movie, “Redacted”.Centering on the actual March 2006 rape and murder of a 14-year-old Iraqi schoolgirl by US soldiers who also slaughtered three family members, the film is a response to what De Palma sees as sanitised media accounts of the war seen in the United States.

IMDB for Redacted

In the land where up is down

Seems to be a little disconnect between the first two paragraphs and the third:

BAGHDAD — Bombings, sectarian slayings and other violence related to the war killed at least 1,773 Iraqi civilians in August, the second month in a row that civilian deaths have risen, according to government figures obtained Friday.

In July, the civilian death toll was 1,753, and in June it was 1,227. The numbers are based on morgue, hospital and police records and come from officials in the ministries of Health, Defense and the Interior. The statistics appear to indicate that the increase in troops ordered by President Bush this year has done little to curb civilian bloodshed, despite U.S. military statements to the contrary.

Military officials have said the security plan is showing progress because the number of attacks on civilians has decreased and sectarian killings have dropped. The security plan, which began in February, has put an additional 28,500 U.S. troops in Baghdad and other trouble spots.

The World according to Europe

Soon to be Ex-Senator Craig made it into almost all newspapers, tabloids and serious. He’s dubbed the “Men’s Room Casanova”.

The crisis on the housing/financial markets still goes on making headlines. The President’s and Mr Bernanke’s announcements of help plans are being discussed all over Europe. There is no reason to relax, it seems. The Swiss “Tagesanzeiger” claims, the plans are a drop on a hot stone. They quote the Credit Suisse bank as saying: “First of all hedge-funds will reduce their credit-financed investments, The volume is immense: Of the $ 2.6 trillion invested in hedge-funds a total of $ 1.6 trillion is supposedly financed by credits. If funds managers reduced that volume only by standard volumes $ 360 billion would be going out of the shares markets.”(translation by me)

The repercussions of the financial markets crisis are badly felt elsewhere, too. Barclay’s bank has a hard time explaining away their seemingly desperate need for cheap money. The Guardian has more:

http://business.guardian.co.uk/story/0,,2160297,00.html

On top of all that: the focus is again on Iraq:

Peter Richards Saturday September 1, 2007 The Guardian

The former head of the British Army has attacked US postwar policy, calling it “intellectually bankrupt”.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,,2160384,00.html

And the London Times welcomes you to the US embassy in Baghdad: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/iraq/article2364255.ece

Elsewhere in Europe:

The third anniversary of the Beslan massacre is today. Remember? Alleged Chechen rebels had taken the pupils of a school as hostages. In the botched police operation that followed 300 people died, 186 of them children. Until today the real background for the event remains as murky as many things in Putin’s Russia.

So, Good morning friends to a new day! May it bring better news than the last!

Bush War: Longest in US History?

The occupation of Iraq is now in its 5th year, tied for third longest war in the history of the United States. Presently tied with the First Barbary War, the American Civil War, and World War II, the Iraq occupation will be in sole possession of third place by next March, three years shy of the Revolutionary War and half the distance to the Vietnam Conflict.

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Because George W. Bush has vowed that America will stay in Iraq as long as he is president, and it likely will take at least a full year to accomplish the extraction, Dubya’s war has a chance to take second place behind only Vietnam unless Congress terminates funding.

Some have argued that the Iraq occupation does not qualify as a war because war was never formally declared. Some conservatives have countered that position by pointing out that the Persian Gulf War conducted by Bush Sr. was never officially concluded. The enemy regime remained in power with coalition forces enforcing no-fly zones upon Iraq. With this point of view, the current occupation is really part of the same war, and the Iraq war is still going strong at 17 years – far longer than any other American war.

Duration of American Wars (rounded up, in years)

17, Iraq Conflict (to date), beginning with Persian Gulf War
12, Vietnam Conflict
9, American Revolutionary War
7, Global War on Terror (to date), beginning with Sept 11, 2001
5, Iraq Occupation (to date)
5, First Barbary War
5, American Civil War
5, World War II
4, War of 1812
4, Philippine Insurrection
4, Korean Conflict
3, Kosovo Conflict
3, Mexican-American War
3, Somali Civil War
2, World War I
2, Bosnian Conflict
2, Invasion of Panama
1, Second Barbary War
1, Spanish-American War
1, Persian Gulf War
1, Invasion of Grenada