Saturday, August 21, 2004

Vietnam redux

Setting all the swift-boat-purple-heart kerfuffle aside, I continue to wonder-- why is John Kerry still fighting the Vietnam War? We all know he served in Vietnam, however honorably. We also know perfectly well what he did after he returned. There is a museum in Ho Chi Minh City with a photo of John Kerry, in appreciation of his assistance of the communist cause, to remind us.

So why, after thirty or more years, would Kerry insist on making his Vietnam years the very centerpiece of his campaign? Really, the American voters aren't particularly anxious to relive that dark episode in our nation's history. But after months of incessantly telling us that 4 months in a war zone 35 years ago somehow qualifies him to be Commander-in-Chief, it was inevitable that resentful Vietnam veterans would strike back, hard.

And Kerry says, once more, "Bring it on".

What is behind his obsession with Vietnam? Did he not do enough, personally, to bring about his nation's first war defeat? Is he really trying to tell us that he will, indeed, conduct his foreign policy along the lines of his Vietnam-era anti-American utterings? That the United States should never go to war without the guidance and supervision of the United Nations? That we can never strike an enemy unless we are first attacked? That being liked by the international community is more important than the security of his nation's people?

We have been told by Kerry that his anti-war activities were the product of his youth. While he does not exactly disavow his actions and words, he certainly won't publicly embrace them. He wants us to judge him on his record, however.

Not his Senate record, mind you. Nor his post-Vietnam anti-war record. Just the 4 months he spent, serving ever so honorably in Vietnam.

So we are to suppose he was 1) an officer and a gentleman, a patriot through-and-through for 4 months, then 2) a forgivably irresponsible youth for a few years, then 3) suddenly responsible and patriotic once again as a United States Senator.

Never mind the voting record, please. He was too busy negotiating with foreign leaders, crafting alliances and treaties. From his description, essentially conducting foreign policy from a Senate seat. Of course, the United States Constitution (see Article II, Section 2) makes foreign policy the exclusive domain of the President. Ignore that detail, please.

So I ask again, why Vietnam? What he sees as his main strength could well be his biggest weakness. Even if he could convince us that 4 months in a combat zone qualifies him as Command-in-Chief, George Bush's nearly 4 years as the actual Commander-in-Chief is certainly a more obvious qualification. He can't win that horse race.

So why, then, is he fighting the Vietnam War all over again?



16 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

what qualifications did bush have to be commander in chief before he took over 4 years ago?
dont you know that it is actually quite important for america to be liked by the rest of the world,especially if the rest of the world are annoyed for good reason?
dont you think that an attack on another country should have at least some kind of provocation,rather than labelling a country as "evildoers",that you god fearin' americans shouldnt have to deal with?no,we dont need backing, we'll just not listen to the un and toss it aside just like the league of nations and let the world become a warzone that isnt necessary?
dont you think a man should at least justify attacking another country?
you sir,are an utter tit.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Roger Snowden said...

I'm a tit? As in "breast"? Your wit... and accent... are you related to Latka Gravas, per chance?

Okay, let's deal with this mess.

1) The only real qualification to be CinC is, of course, to be elected. George Bush hit that mark nearly four years ago. Voters naturally look for leadership qualities, perhaps in some executive position. George Bush had that first as a businessman and then as Governor of Texas. John Kerry had 4 months in Vietnam, then some time as a part owner of an ice cream stand, or some such. Okay. So the obvious qualification George Bush has now is tenure in office. He's the actual deal.

2) Sure, it's nice to be liked. But our President's job is to ensure the security of the people of the United States, first and foremost. Far more important than kowtowing to the likes of Jacques Chirac. And guys like Muammar Khaddafi may not like us, but you can be sure he respects us. As does the rest of the world, regardless of what you may read in the left-wing press. I would much rather be respected than liked.

3) Annoyed for good reason? We annoyed someone? Oh my! As though the 9/11 attacks were a mere inconvenience. We annoyed Chirac by cutting off his paycheck from Saddam Hussein! How rude of us!

4) Need provocation? Well, 3,000 dead on 9/11/2001. Saddam shooting at our planes almost daily for a decade. His financial support of the original WTC bombing planner. His open financial support of Palestinian suicide bombers. His links to and support of al Qaeda. His openly expressed intent to build nuclear weapons. His confirmed attempts to buy uranium from Niger (the famous "sixteen words" in Bush's 2003 State of the Union address). The sarin gas and other chemical weapons David Kay's team found in Iraq last year. The unaccounted-for stockpiles of WMD and /or materiele that France and Hans Blix of the United Nations said he had... well, I could go on, but surely you get the picture. Notice I did not even mention his use of chemical weapons on his own people, torture, mass murder, etc. Just the stuff that made him a strategic threat to the United States, directly.

5) Not listen to the UN? George Bush got resolution 1441 in a unanimous vote-- including France's-- before Chirac double-crossed us in January 2003. Look man, the UN doesn't even listen to the UN. Get real. The UN is a wasted effort, organized by an American State Department official who was a paid agent for the Soviet Union (yes, indeed!), organized in such a way as to give a disproportionate voice to ruthless dictators around the world. Nobody should take it too seriously.

6) We lack backing? We have Britain, Australia, Italy, some crack Polish special ops guys, many other countries. What, 32 in all? Something in that neighborhood. The only big name missing was France, and they turned out to be on Saddam's payroll. They have their priorities, and fighting terrorism clearly is not one of them. Sure, we pull most of the weight among the allies, but we always have, haven't we? The only military issue we have is not the support of allies, but the extreme drawdown of US troops during the Clinton years. We just need a bigger military.

7) World become a war zone that isn't necessary? al Qaeda delared war on us about 6 years ago. If you mean that their attack was not necessary, I would agree.

But they did attack.

We just now got around to fighting back, since the Democrats would have no part of a fight for our national security. Yes, it is a world war, but we did not start it. Necessary? I guess it is, if survival is important.

8) Justify attacking another country? Sure, we did that the summer of 2002. "You disarm him or we will" Bush said to the UN. Followed by UN Resolution 1441. The only thing was, we backed our words with actions, unlike the spineless French. If countries were people, France would be a whore.

9) I think you want the word "twit", not "tit". ;-)

Now go suck a nipple. (meant in the nicest possible way, of course)

11:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ahem,the world respects america? i can assure you they don't.
I have an unbiased view as i am not american,nor french for that matter.
Sure,9/11,find the people who did it,get al qaeda,track them down,put them away for a long time.
But Iraq? Claim they have weapons of mass destruction? Then when you wipe out 100's more people,say you were really in iraq to free the good iraqi people.
Why doesnt Mr. Bush go after North Korea,if he's so keen on wiping out the "terror"? Oh,because,they actually do have nuclear weapons and might use them,now that would be a terrible shame don't ya think?
Why do this,when instead,you can defeat another country,settle your daddy's scores,and gain oil all at the same time?00000 It's a lot more fun that way...
and no,i meant tit,but twit wouldve worked alright too,thanks for that.

9:06 AM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

"Need provocation? Well, 3,000 dead on 9/11/2001."

And as we all know, Saddam was involved in that, because he lives in a country east of Europe and west of Korea. Those damn wogs'll get you every time, huh? Damn, lets just nuke them niggers on outta there, Rodge! Heck, by killing the 3 billion+ inhabitants of Asia, we might just avoid having 3,000 innocent lives taken again! What's that? Most of the people in the Middle East are innocent too? Don't make me laugh! They aren't Christian! Heck, we didn't have to justify ourselves in the Crusades, why bother now?

(btw, I'm not the dude who called you a tit, although I agree wholeheartedly with that sentiment

9:07 AM  
Blogger Roger Snowden said...

Fiachra-

Well, nobody has claimed Saddam caused the 9/11 attacks. That canard comes from the Left, and misses the point entirely. Saddam was, however, a major threat to a region that is strategically vital to the entire world, including the United States. And Ireland, of course, but I'll not hold my breath waiting for you to thank us.

Ultimately, that threat had to eliminated, and the best time to fight a war is your timetable, not the enemy's. Waiting for Saddam to become more powerful was not a good option for us. And he was actively seeking uranium from Niger, don't forget.

But Saddam did have a long, sordid relationship to terrorist organizations of all sort. Plus, there has been a more recent revelation that a fairly high level Iraqi official did indeed attend a 9/11 planning meeting in Maylaysia. So maybe knowledge, aquiescence, possibly cooperation and support, but nothing definitive yet.

Regarding "oil money", the main difference between ourselves and France is that they were on Saddam's payroll and stood to make money either with the food-for-oil status quo, or in the event UN Sanctions ended. The only threat to their oil money came with the deposition of Saddam.

Our interest is certainly based on oil. Take away oil from the Middle East and Islam becomes a meaningless, obscure religion. The free flow of oil in general is what matters to us and the world, not Iraq's oil per se.

Since we ousted Saddam, note we have not "taken" any oil. All oil revenues are held in trust for the Iraqi people, once they have a permanent government. The US has funded the Iraqi reconstruction out of its own pocket. ("I voted for the $87 billion before I voted against it") That's my tax money over there, not the Irish's.

And the war on terrorism is hardly the West's effort to refight the Crusades. Study history, you will find the Crusades were a Christendom attempt to regain land invaded by Muslims. That was a long time ago, yet Muslims today keep wanting to fight it again. They are still pissed, stuck in the Middle Ages. Pathetic.

And your racial epithets do not exactly project the objectivity you claim to possess. Simply being European does not make you objective in any sense of the word. Why is it leftist cannot focus on fact-based discussions. All arguments become emotional and personal, not based on intellectual discussion.

If you can't say something meaningful and factually pertinent, why do you bother to speak at all? Do you really think the words "wog" and "nigger" convey an intelligent argument? If you want to introduce new information to the debate, please do so, but resorting to racial epithets only makes you sound ignorant and, well, biased.

And by the way, for the record, I am not a Christian.

Now go sit in the corner with Latka and grab the next nipple.

10:13 AM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

You said in your first response that provocation for war on Iraq was "3,000 dead on 9/11/2001." Now how is it that you can say that, and then tell us that "nobody has claimed Saddam caused the 9/11 attacks. That canard comes from the Left, and misses the point entirely."

You, sir appear to be the one who has missed the point entirely, in that you don't differentiate between different Arab states.

11:06 AM  
Blogger Roger Snowden said...

Ah! I see your point. Finally, an attempt at logic. I guess that effort deserves an answer.

While 9/11 was not necessarily directly linked to Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq, the ensuing War on Terrorism gave rise to the necessity of stabilizing the Middle East and removing this long-standing strategic threat.

While there was no imminent threat of Saddam attacking the United States directly, his connections with, and open support of Islamic terrorists, including al Qaeda, made him an obvious target. Sort of, "Let's take care of this unfinished matter before it becomes more serious."

It made perfect sense to attack Iraq when we did. Well, actually it would have been better to attack them a month or so earlier, but France's treachery in the United Nations presented some problems for us. Us wanting to cooperate with the United Nations and all that.

Not differentiating between Arab states? Not hardly. Bush himself made it quite clear when he declared the War on Terrorism to the world: either you are with us, or you are against us. His declaration forced an immediate differentiation, as subsequent events have shown.

Where Pakistan was once the sole supporter of the Taliban, they became our ally. Where Libya was once a major sponsor of international terror and a developer of nuclear weapons, they confessed their sins, ratted out the nuclear flea-market, renounced terrorism and WMD and are now calm as kittens. Where Saudi Arabia's princes were covertly funding al Qaeda, they are now engaged in an internal war on Islamic terrorism, specifically targeting al Qaeda itself.

Amazing what a few well-placed missiles will do to gain respect in the world.

By the way, I notice I attributed a claim of objectivity to you, when it was actually from the anonymous Latka's post. My apologies. I guess you never claimed to be objective, did you? ;-)

1:02 PM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

But what if someone else feels that a "few well-placed missiles" are necessary to keep the good ol' U S of A in order? Surely they have as much right to bomb a country as the United States do? As a non-US citizen, and a citizen of a neutral country, I fail to see the difference between Americans killing Iraqis and Iraqis killing Americans. Are American lives more valuable because they speak English, have an enormous economy and live under a democracy? (I will not go down the wailing liberal path of calling Bush a dictator)You may say you are in the right because you don't kill your own people. Fair enough, but the way to stop people dying is not to kill more. Surely they could have had Saddam assassinated, rather than bombing seven shades of shit out of his country and then finding a weak old man hiding in a hole?

1:54 PM  
Blogger Roger Snowden said...

Fiachra, I'm afraid your are getting plain silly now. Or course it is possible some rogue nation might decide to attack the United States. In some sense, that is what Afghanistan did on 9/11. In any case, it's a pretty good argument for a stronger, more aggressive national defense.

Don't forget, we did have resolution 1441 behind us. And 12 years of unceasing hostility from Iraq, under cover of a cease fire, so this was hardly arbitrary aggression.

Most important, it is historically rare for a democracy to attack another country. Our safest best is the ensure other countries are 1) democratic, in some manner and 2) as well off as possible, economically. The Iraq war, though precarious, is a step in the right direction.

You fail to see the difference between Americans killing Iraqis and Iraqis killing Americans? Don't pretend to be neutral, Fiachra. C'mon now. I seem to recall something from history involving the Black and Tans killing the Irish. Was there any difference between those two groups? The Irish seemed to think so at the time.

Who said we are right because we don't kill our own people? Where did that come from? We are right, and we don't kill our own people, but it isn't the cause-effect relationship you suggest.

The way to stop people dying is not to kill more? I guess that might have been an argument for not fighting World War II, right? No possible thing as a "just" war? Simply acquiesce to enslavement.

You can express as much self-righteousness as you want, but when... not if, but when Islamic terrorists start attacking your country, your supposed neutrality may suddenly end.

4:29 PM  
Blogger Rumblefish YWK said...

Nice Blog and good retaliations on mr I am too afraid to post my name so I can hide behind my comments. It's easier for cowards from canada to shout in the dark Then to stand in the light and be seen.

Kerry had hoped that his video would have helped him as a war cheif never counting on those who were there to stand up. I guess he didnt send out enough checks after the war so others would colaborate.

Kerry has shown weakness as a Senator and as a political figure. If you look into Kerrys' life you would assume it was intentional. After alittle investigation I am styarting to believe it is.

Starting with the time Kerry chose to stand with the communist, it seems Kerry was led down the road he was on. Now looking at his wifes life, they Kinda meet in the middle but Teresa has a much larger history. To find our who Kerry is, Look into his wifes life.

8:08 PM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

what does his wife have to do with anything? will she be president?

6:28 AM  
Blogger Rumblefish YWK said...

maybe you should look into it, but here is alittle tidbit for ya.

She is an international communist (who speaks 5 languages). She, like George Soros, is going after a classless police state here in America. That means she's going after destroying what America stands for and replacing it--with a Godless society where hard work is punished and low or no achievement is rewarded. She believes that she and John will be at the top of the oligarchy when the smoke clears. Thanks Cao

7:01 AM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

well if youre scared of teresa being president then don't vote for her. But wait! She's not running! problem solved!

9:43 AM  
Blogger Rumblefish YWK said...

are you absolutely sure? I bet you didnt do that research did you?

7:12 PM  
Blogger Fiachra Davison said...

yes I did: http://www.presidentialelection.com/candidates/index-default.htm

6:21 AM  
Blogger Rumblefish YWK said...

ok, you win I loose. Happy? maybe later you will see what I mean.

3:38 PM  

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