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The Iraq War Ends

The Iraq war and America. After almost nine years, the troops are nearly home. We’ll weigh the war.

In this Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011 photo, The Iraqi flag waves while federal Police parade in Baghdad, Iraq. In ways big and small, the signs of American influence on the Iraqi military are unmistakeable after years of training to give them the skills to defend their country and the professionalism to do it differently than Saddam Hussein's forces did. (AP)

In this Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011 photo, The Iraqi flag waves while federal Police parade in Baghdad, Iraq. In ways big and small, the signs of American influence on the Iraqi military are unmistakeable after years of training to give them the skills to defend their country and the professionalism to do it differently than Saddam Hussein's forces did. (AP)

U.S. military ceremonies in Baghdad today formally ending the Iraq War, in a fortified concrete courtyard at the Baghdad airport. A brass band and speeches as the last American troops pour out of the country. The Civil War was four years long.

World War I, four years. American troops in World War II, four years. The Iraq War, almost nine years long. A strange war. Fought by a tiny percentage of Americans. Launched on a premise that proved untrue. And yet, so much invested.

This hour, On Point: as it finally ends, we are weighing the war in Iraq.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Lawrence Wilkerson,  chief of staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell from 2002 to 2005, and a retired U.S. Army Colonel.

Kori Schake, research fellow at the Hoover Institution, and professor of international security studies at the United States Military Academy.

Peter Beinart, senior political writer for The Daily Beast and associate professor of journalism and political science at City University of New York. He’s also a senior fellow at the New America Foundation. He’s the author of “The Icarus Syndrome: A History of American Hubris.”

From Tom’s Reading List

Wall Street Journal “A defiant Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki promised he would firmly confront any meddling by Iran after U.S. forces are gone, in an interview in which he said Iraqi interests were best served when nations stick to their own business.”

Al Jazeera “The comments came as Nouri al-Maliki, the Iraqi prime minister, continued his visit to the US. Maliki met Obama and senior US administration officials to finalise arrangements for the troops’ withdrawal.”

Foreign Policy “The Obama administration is attempting to cast the Iraq war as a triumph of the president’s vision for American foreign policy.  As a candidate, he promised to bring this war to an end, and as president he’s done so.  It also conveniently fits into the Obama campaign’s general narrative that President Obama inherited problems of Herculean magnitude. ”

Playlist

“To The Colors” by 25th Infantry Division Brass Quintet
“The Star Spangled Banner” by 25th Infantry Division Brass Quintet
Iraqi National Anthem by 25th Infantry Division Brass Quintet

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  • Cory

    About time. I would like to know what we have really gained from all of this? Are we safer, happier, or wealthier? Disdain for America has skyrocketed, 1000s of American soldiers and Iraqi civilians are dead, and America’s economy is floundering. Maybe now WE can rebuild. 

    • nj

      Cory demurres, “Maybe now WE can rebuild.”

      Not likely. Watch the Afghanistan meter spin:

      http://costofwar.com/en/

      A day’s spending in Afghanistan is more than it cost to build the Pentagon. 

      More was spent in any five seconds of 2008 in Iraq than the average  amount an American earns in an entire year.

      http://www.businessinsider.com/military-spending-budget-defense-cuts-2011-10#

      When (if?) Afghanistan winds down, they’ll be another “vital security threat” to take care of.

      “War is the health of the state.” (Bourne)

      This can change, but it will take more than camping in public parks.

      • Modavations

        On 12/13/2011 during the Ron Paul story, NJ has this converstaion at 1:34 AM.He said the Defense budget will be 904billion.I replied it is 650Billionish.Yesterday in the Boston Globe,under the story about a bust of stores that were taking Welfare Debit Cards for Cocaine, was this.The 2012 Defense Budget was just released at $650 billion.
                Here’s what he said after I told him the budget was 650Bill.ish as opposed to his quote of 904Bill.”Hoping to be taken seriously,even when presented with data drawn from official govt.sources Modatroll insists -giving no attribution on figures pulled from his butt”.Most of our converstaions are like this.What is the fascination with tjhis word “Troll”

        • Dave

          Give them a break, they are still trying to recover from the spanking of truth and principle that they took that day.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Since ‘W’ admin. placed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan ‘off the budget’ of the Pentagon, and over 1300 ‘Private Security Firms, with over 85,000 ‘contractor employees’, are on the ‘Covert Budget’, it’s probably over 1.5 $TRILLION!

          • Modavations

            I’ll say it again, $800 billion over 10 years.The interest on the debt for this year alone is 457 billion and that’s the last time I’m going to repeat it

  • WelcomeHome

    ‘Tis the season for treason:

    The blackmailed, sold out, and
    corporately owned traitors in the US Congress have been incrementally
    eviscerating the US Constitution in carefully planned stages.

    First,
    the treasonous, unconstitutional Patriot Act was passed in October
    2001, without as much as a word of debate or deliberation. Most members
    of congress said they didn’t even read the Patriot Act before voting it
    into law.

    The second phase of Constitution evisceration came
    with the passage of the Military Commissions Act in October 2006,
    removing the Constitutional requirement for Habeas Corpus (evidence of
    a crime).

    And now, the recently approved S-1867, the National Defense Authorization Act, is the worst assault to date
    upon the Constitution, utterly destroying at least three principles enshrined within the US Constitution.

    We are allowing domestic traitors in Congress to remove the very foundational principles of Due Process, the Presumption of Innocence enshrined in the US Constitution , and the non-interference by US military troops (the Posse Comitatus Act) against American citizens on US soil.

    Lawrence
    Wilkerson, former Army office who at one time held the position of
    Director of Staff under Secretary of State, Colin Powell.

    In
    the course of his 19 minute interview with Ian Masters (“Background
    Briefing”, 12/11/12, KPFK radio from 11AM -12 Noon Pacific time),
    Wilkerson dropped a bomb shell when he revealed that it was the Obama
    White House which insisted that Sens. Levin and McCain re-insert the
    clause identifying American citizens on US soil as being eligible for
    the military “snatch and grab” covert abduction operations –after
    McCain and Levin had initially EXEMPTED American citizens from the
    roundup list.

    Lawrence
    Wilkerson: “It’s my understanding that with regard to the amendment we
    were talking about that allows the armed forces into essentially
    domestic law enforcement, as long as it’s related to terrorism, or
    quote:”associated activities”, unquote, the reason that got applied to domestic situations, to US citizens in other words, is because of the White House!”

    “Carl
    Levin, Chairman of the Senate Arms Services Committee, actually was
    puzzled that when they had pulled the language out that would make it
    apply to US citizens–very purposefully so–the White House insisted on the language going back in!”

    “So,
    this is not only apparently something that the White house won’t veto,
    it’s something that they made as bizarre as anything could be, in my
    view. Putting the armed forces of the United States into a domestic
    role in terms of terrorism or associated activity. This borders on, ah just short of, of declaring Martial Law for things related to terrorism.”

    • Dave

      Can’t fool this board…. the Constitution is so….. 1700′s!

      Cmon, its 2011, we can TRUST centralized technocrats and unaccountable cabals now, times have changed! Nobody is “power hungry”anymore, nobody wants to “enslave” people anymore, cmon!

      The world is complicated now! The elite may have made it that way to avoid transparency and accountability to the Rule of Law, but of course, THAT’S so 1700′s too!

      China is our future. We need to keep consuming, and stop with this silly notion that we should “self-govern”.

      • nj

        This schtick was old four months ago.

  • WelcomeHome

    It turns out what our brave soldiers were fighting for was possible indefinite detention:

    White House backs away from defense bill veto threat:

    ”The White House today announced that it will support passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which contains harmful provisions that some legislators have said could authorize the U.S. military to pick up and imprison without charge or trial civilians, including American citizens, anywhere in the world.

    “If President Obama signs this bill, it will damage both his legacy and American’s reputation for upholding the rule of law. The last time Congress passed indefinite detention legislation was during the McCarthy era and President Truman had the courage to veto that bill. We hope that the president will consider the long view of history before codifying indefinite detention without charge or trial.”

    http://www.aclu.org/national-security/white-house-backs-away-defense-bill-veto-threat

    • Hidan

      Obama wasn’t against it because it violated the constitution, he was against it cause he first claimed it infringed on the Executive branch. Congress tweet it (making it even worst) and now he’s not going to veto it.

    • Modavations

      The party of Big Govt is now complaining about Big Brother

      • nj

        Which president presided over the largest expansion of the federal government since WW2?

        • Modavations

          In the last two years the size of the Fed.govt.has doubled.I say close the govt..Furthermore ,when we allow career politicians this is what we get

          • Modavations

            Should read 10 years

          • Terry Tree Tree

            WHO occupied the White House, durring MOST of that ten years?  WHEN was the largest increase?  AMAZING typo, two is TEN?  Puts the blame FAR different!

          • Modavations

            Does pointing fingers and rampaging  Bush Derangement Syndrome get us anywhere.Go read Greggs post about the hypocrite Dem.War Mongers

          • nj

            Moda-troll logic: Pointing out that Shrub presided over the largest expansion of the federal government since the 40s is “Bush Derangement Syndrome.”

            Calling Democrats the party of “big government” is an accurate depiction.

  • WelcomeHome

    The White House announced Wednesday afternoon that it would not, after all, veto the pending defense bill over its controversial new terror detainee provisions…

    …the tyranny of the majority having just imposed itself upon a minority. The two popularly-elected branches of government this week have collaborated on a new law that likely infringes upon the core constitutional rights of U.S. citizens — the right to due process as determined by a federal civilian court judge.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/12/5-quick-thoughts-on-the-white-house-decision-not-to-veto-detainee-measure/250019

    • Shaman

      The Bush years continue…and it is an outrage.

    • Grady Lee Howard

      The issue in dispute was lessening of the powers of the Unitary Executive and not over restoring the Bill of Rights. The same power bestowed on Bush II by Oligarchs has also made Obama drunk. (see Greenwald @ Salon)

      Like any serial murderer they will kill again.
      If “Call of Duty” is too much for teenaged boys the Presidency is too much for any adult, and it be more real! Too bad the “game” can’t make the operator “bring back nubs” when his drone crashes. Accountability will sober them up.

  • Shaman

    Damn dumbest thing the USA ever did. $4 Trillion dollars and thousands of casualties – George Bush still walks free when he should be jailed!

    • Modavations

      What would the charge be?.The criminals in our country are the Democrats who refuse to afford our poor the school voucher.One out of three black men are inprison,parole,or probation.70% of black children are born out of wedlock(90% in the ghettos).Now that’s criminality

      • nj

        The subject is the Iraq war and military spending. Take your ADD medication.

        • Modavations

          Don’t worry 10:00 is approaching.Prepare your endless inanities,I’m soooooo used to them

          • Grady Lee Howard

            So at 10am are you gonna throw another of the underclass you so worry about on the woodpile?

            Senator Kerry suggested the poor were cannon fodder and lost his election.

            Are you gonna give them chillins’ “war vouchers”?

            Why are our Black citizens of so great concern to you? Do you own them?

          • Modavations

            I’m paying the checks and I was raised by Civil Rights Parents

          • fredlinskip

            What the heck happened since?
            Did they beat you silly or what?

          • Modavations

            The year Kerry ran for president his tax returns said he’d given $400.00  to charities>I do better then that ,ust giving to bums on the street

      • Drew You Too

        “What would the charge be?”

        Should have said charges.

        Misrepresentation, slander, libel, violation of the Geneva Convention, and the list goes on. Take your pick.

        • Modavations

          CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY

          • Modavations

            That’s what I’d charge the Democrat Party withfor the refusal to afford School Vouchers to the poor.Instead of affluence you condemn them to jail and all manner of social pathology

    • Modavations

      800 Billion.Is this some kind of Dem.fuzzy math

  • LinP

    Could someone please explain to me just WHO we were “at war” with ? Really, WHO were we fighting as a direct thread to us? And did we “win”? Win what?

    800 BILLION dollars later, as our infrastructure crumbles, people are without health care or JOBS, the middle class drowns, and real human anguish continues in many parts of the world as we look the other way.

    4,500 American lives, and how man Iraqis died? FOR WHAT?

    • Modavations

      Our interest on the debt this year is 457billion.Cut the spending

      • Terry Tree Tree

        How much of that is on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan?  Getting out of Iraq IS cutting spending!   By the way, Which Republicans are proposing cutting spending on THEIR pet programs FIRST?  The things that line their biggest backers’ pockets?  HYPOCRACY?

        • Modavations

          80 billion per annum.No tantrums today,please

    • JustSayin

      In the board rooms of oil companies that had their oil fields and infrastructure nationalized under Saddam, they are celebrating with a simple message: Mission Accomplished.

      Iraqi oil is now back under corporate control. The point: No nation will assert total ownership of it’s resources.

  • GretchenMo

    Obama wanted to keep thousands of troops there but the Iraqis wouldn’t give them immunity from prosecution.  So it appears that in fact we wanted the war to continue.  How does that fit with Obama’s campaign narrative?

    • Hidan

      Your actually right for once,

      It’s true the Obama administration has been doing everything in there power to keep troops in Iraq and when the Iraqi’s kept saying no. But they did find a way around it(somewhat). The Obama’s State Department will be the largest in the World and will have it’s own private Army.

      • Modavations

        He’s a war criminal.To the Hague with him!!!!

        • Terry Tree Tree

          ‘W’ started the criminal war!  Why do you protect him, and condemn Obama?  Without ‘W’ having started the wars, Obama wouldn’t have a war for you to blame him for!

      • GretchenMo

        I’m always right.

        • Modavations

          I attest to that.Take a bow

          • Terry Tree Tree

            You NEVER lie? 
                If people read ALL of your past comments, would they come to that conclusion?

  • mrc23

    At the very least, our Military Families will get the ultimate Christmas present of their loved ones back home safe…. of course, only until they are sent to into our other continuing conflict :( 

    • Grady Lee Howard

      Some families may get back part of their soldier. None get back the whole person they knew. Quite often they find themselves unable to manage and keep the remnant that has returned. I met a woman who lost her unmarried 19 year old on active deployed duty in 2006. She received cremated remains and more than $600K in insurance and benefits. At 40 she went back to living like a crazy 19 year old. Now she’s broke and wants to tell me her story. I don’t know whether to help her or not, or if I can. People are so fixated on getting  money they forget life is precious. Our government and corporations definitely have, and our media laughs at we who have not forgotten.

      War shore crates alot of jabs! And extraordinarily expensive per unit! The People here were never gonna get cheap oil anyway, just help Exxon and Chevron live beyond their alloted years.

      • Gregg

        Hey aren’t you Beretco guys the ones organized to blog on various sites like the figgers? Not that there’s anything wrong with it, you make good points. Are you Grady Lee Howard’s bunch? Gotta love GLH.

        • Modavations

          To what do you refer?

  • Patrick

    This was a useless waste of time, money and human life.  And yet, somehow, as it’s concluded, President Obama is being blamed for not ending it sooner?

    The Republican brand should be sunk for all time.  Does anyone even remember 2003?  The trauma of the most devastating terrorist attack on American soil was wielded, with expert hands, to bludgeon anyone resisting the march into this shameful war of aggression.

    Maybe once we’re out, the people responsible will do some serious soul-searching, preferably while incarcerated.

    Anyone who believes in the Christian God, and can’t make the case that this was a “just war,” but doesn’t believe that its architects will burn in hell for all time, is incapable of ethical reasoning.

    • Modavations

      Without doubt,Pres.Obama is the worst leader of my lifetime.You’ll notice that no one admits voting for him.All the college kids say Barack who,we’re voting R.Paul.As for warmongerers,you have partisan amnesia.Here’s a list of war mongerers.Hilary Clinton,Bill Clinton,Bob Kerry,John Kerry,Leiberman,Levin,Pelosi and on and on and on.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        President Obama is NOT the one that stood on national tv, and stated that he KNEW Saddam Hussein has nuclear weapons capability,  weapons of mass destruction, and he KNEW where they were!  Do you sell that much jewelry to ‘W’, that you try so hard to re-direct the blame?

        • Modavations

          Terence,you’re Bush Derangement Syndrome is showing.I voted for neither Bush or Obama and I condone neither

          • Patrick

            Nonsense.  If Obama had chosen this war, you would be apoplectic.  You can’t even decide if you’re for the war or not – the only thought rattling around in your head is “Democrats bad, Republicans good.”  No effort at reasoning; just reflexive spouting off.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Getting to know Moda?

        • Modavations

          That was Clintons CIA chief whispering to Bush.It’s a slam dunk Mr President

      • mary elizabeth.

        Ron Paul’s vision while enticing, is naive.  It assumes that all people.  without governance, will act in their own and others best intersts. 
        Humankind is not ready for such an unleashing of greed, cruelty, and  general  man’s inhumanity to man.

        • Dave

          That view of his position is naive. “Without governance”? He is against unconstitutional Federal Power and Unsound monetary actions.

          In the Liberty and Rule of Law model, there is that whole “Rule of Law” part, that addresses our human failings, and need for laws to protect our liberty from others.

          Yes, that is not the same as a “nanny-state”, that thinks there is a money-tree that can fund taking care of everyone cradle to grave, or an authoritarian situation where “well meaning” people have the power to enforce their view on the masses for their own good.

          You are voicing your own fear, and misunderstanding, as opposed to anybody’s position or platform.

        • Modavations

          What do you mean by greed?Are you refering to Crony Capitalists like Corzine

          • mary elizabeth.

            Yes

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Kenny Boy Lay?

          • Modavations

            Protected by none other then Herr Krugman and always gave way more to Democrats

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Close buddy of ‘W’!

          • Modavations

            Right On.Do you realize I’ve posed that question endlessly and you’re the first person to reply

      • Patrick

        By your own admission, Bush was a disaster.  If foreign policy isn’t the reason why, then you must have been claiming that his economic and social policies were ruinous.  In that case, I guess we agree…?

        • Modavations

          Economic policies.Too much spending.Cut the govt in half

          • Patrick

            Spending like pointless war spending?

          • Modavations

            Cut the govt in half.

    • Dave

      Funny how Ron Paul was more anit-Iraq war than the Democrats who played along.

      Sink both brands if you going to go down that road.  We should try principled views that are critical of both unaccountable War and unaccountable Bankers.

    • TFRX

      I remember 2003, and I await everyone who called the likes of me a traitor to admit they were wrong before being allowed back in polite society.

      Yeah, I am just kidding. Nobody who got Iraq wrong got kicked off of TV for it. Ever.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1816544 Dan Trindade

    Whether we have gained anything or not, I have to say that I do not particularly care. After all the blood and treasure spent over almost 9 years in Iraq this Millennial is just happy that it is over. We still have a laundry list of other problems to tackle that could stretch from Baghdad (or should I say Kabul now?) to Washington and I for the life of me cannot foresee what is next. I just want to know where, for better or for worse, do we as a nation go from here?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      ‘W’, Cheney, and their criminal cohorts, get richer, we get poorer, weaker, more controlled, and betrayed by GREEDY rich traitors!

      • Modavations

        Stop already.If it were criminal they’d have been indicted.Read Greggs post.I’ll go for Cheneys trial if Pelosi and Barack are also in the dock

        • Terry Tree Tree

          With 5 corrupt or senile black-robes on the Supreme Court, that cannot tell the difference between a person, and a foreign corporation?   ‘W’ was never brought up on charges for the pre-cursor program to ‘Fast and Furious’!   Was he rewarding his Drug-Cartel buddies for delivering the hispanic vote?

  • Hidan

    I love it when an U.S. Official stands up to say foreign government’s should meddle with Iraqi politics somehow forgetting that the U.S. is a foreign power. One of the reason out of many that the Iraqi government has better relations with Iran is during Saddam U.S. back support against Shia in Iraq,Saddam’s U.S. back War against Iran where many of the current government leadership fled to Iran.

    Also one has to laugh when people call this War a success. 5 million displaced Iraqi’s, close to or move than 1 million Iraqi’s dead,Large spikes in the price of Oil since the war an stronger Iran. But things like this happen when the U.S. starts doing the bidding of a Foreign government and Neo-Con’s are allowed to lie by the media. It’s sad once again the same thing is happening in the U.S. in regards to Iran. Military personal should be aware that these Neo-Con’s don’t give a crap about them and would throw there lives away at a drop of a dime. Even as I write this there trying to come up with reasons to send our men and women to fight against Iran.

  • Hidan

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcZx9S-TJn4

    Hassan Jumaa, President of Iraqi Federation of Oil Union
    2007 July 18th

    Tell what the American first did when they invaded Iraq. Also talks about the Oil Law at the time the U.S. was trying to get the Iraqi’s to pass.

  • Modavations

    So glad to bring the troops homeWarriors!!!.However,because Democrats won’t let us drill our own oil,we are forced into these middle east adventures.

    • Beretco Op

      I wasn’t aware jewel peddlers (us you said) had the capacity to drill for fossil fuel residues. A great percentage of this industry is now fracking. The fuels are mixed in shale layers and are not naturally in a liquid state. Only a fraction of the potential is ever obtained. It may be that such deep drilling and pressure extraction (along with transport and refining)uses more energy than that contained in the material itself. Off Brazil’s coast there have been several recent high pressure accidents because they were drilling 3 miles in the sea floor below five mile deep water. And such is deemed one of the most  promising new finds? So we come to the groundwater (aquifer) issue in which caissons cannot be contained using  the customary concrete and lubricant and rupture their toxic bounty into our faucets. We possess no reliable industrial metals or alloys to accomplish such extraordinary feats consistently. In Wyoming the Pallisades area has certanly been contaminated according to the careful and reticent EPA,
      in addition to all the spring water being  hauled into Dimock, PA.  Now Gulf leases are opened back up after the worst spill in history. Let’s just see how that mess goes for awhile, shall we, before we punch any holes through the floor of your condo. Because of climate change the age of petroleum is over anyway, even if you wear a sleep mask.

      • Modavations

        excuses,excuses,there is $15 trillion under Penn. and NY.The Key stone pipeline was given the go ahead three times by EPA and will yield 20,000 jobs.N.Dakota has 3% unemployment because of oil.I’ve seen better looking craters on the moon then Anwar,China is drilling deep water off Cuba,70 miles from Miami(?).The Venezuelan oil refined in Texas(same plants that Keystone will use)is far dirtier then the stuff from Canada.We lose about 35,000 yearly in car accidents.

        • TFRX

          By “20000 jobs” you mean their PR about “20000 worker-years of employment”.

          I’d love to pour bilge down your throat just to see what else you’ll swallow.

          • Modavations

            You’re sweating again

          • TFRX

            No answer, I see.

            And you’re in possession of some great apps. What’s my LDL, my HDL and my resting pulse?

            Unless you’re just making shite up.

          • Modavations

            You’re really sweating again

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Doesn’t Moda get ‘limp-wristed’ when guys sweat?

      • Modavations

        Canada,after all the falsified data from E.Anglia, walked from the Kyoto accords ,.A bunch of hurricane climate guys quit last week,because they said computer modeling was useless.Notice how they hid the photos of all the private jet the rich envirionmentalists used to fly into Durban.Check last years(?) photos in Cancun.How come they always pick Cannes,or Cancun,or Durban for their conclaves.The hookers and coke dealers do well,though

    • Terry Tree Tree

      How many Millions of acres are leased to oil companies that are NOT drilling on their leases?  Just because they want options on SO MUCH more, they don’t drill where they ALREADY have leases?  Did you, and ALL the proponents of drilling, go clean up the Gulf, after Deepwater Horizon?  FAT CHANCE!!

      • Modavations

        Goggle the story about Shell and the Buford Bay explorations.They spent 5 billion to develop the field and a bunch of Obama lackeys(all lerftist envir.types)skotched the deal.Why you ask.They said fumes from ice breakers,70 miles from a hamlet(200 people ?),would have deliterious health affects.Obama,the worst president ever,is doing everything possible to halt job creation.By the way,glad you’re back

        • Terry Tree Tree

          One of How Many Million acres?  How many leases?
              Since you are so concerned about domestic energy, WHY are you concerned about Royal Dutch Shell?  A FOREIGN company?

          • Modavations

            It’s Alaska.Who do you think will get employed

          • Terry Tree Tree

            As usual, you evaded the question about the other leases!

    • Nutricj

      no, we are forced to find alternatives and to embrace other technologies. we need to use our minds and invent and morph to our global needs- sucking the fossil fuel out of, or fracking the ground base of the earth are not the only answers to our energy needs. really tired of the politicians pretending this is the “only” solution. edison, tesla, etc., inventors…vision, and brains is what we “are forced” to accept.

      • Modavations

        We get 2.5% energy from Windmills,etc.,20% from nukes,the rest oil.We have an easy 200yrs of oil in the US alone and the new diesel cars don’t pollute.

        • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

          We are past peak oil — the tar sands are proof.

          Neil

        • Nutricj

          150 years ago, how many houses had electricity? a telephone? you have a limited view of the possibilities right around the corner in technologies. we will not always need to suck our planet dry to sustain our society. and things like fracking risking our water supply is mind blowingly moronic. do we want a future where we war over clean water the way we do over oil? THINK!!

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Wind and Sun will last FAR longer!
             New diesels DON’T pollute?

          You NEVER lie?

          • Eniwetok

            Clean diesel is as much an untruth as clean coal.

          • Modavations

            I drive them everytime I’m in Italy.They’re sweet.They get 45 miles per gallon

          • Modavations

            You would have to cover two mid west states in windmills to get the energy produced by just one good Deep Water well.I’m for everything

          • Terry Tree Tree

            How many states did one deep water oil well cover?  With what?  How long will the damage REALLY last?  Which Wind Turbine spilled 5 Billion barrels of oil?  

    • Eniwetok

      What of the Republican blocking energy efficiency legislation? All the technology gains during the Bush years went into giving cars more HP, not more MPG.

      • Modavations

        GM had a big profit and so did FORD.It was all trucks and Vans.7 Volts were sold!!!

  • margbi

    Ever since the Soviet Union collapsed into whatever it is today, the R’s have been looking for another enemy. Could this be because they need an external threat to distract the citizens from the problems at home?

    • Dave

      War is the best long term deal for the debt-peddlers.

      Follow the interest payments.

    • TFRX

      To rephrase: If the Cold War weren’t over, would Foxholers be convinced that candidate Obama was born in the Ukraine instead of Kenya?

      It’s always the need to find “the other” with them.

  • Gregg

    Iraq went from a sworn enemy to an ally in the heart of the Middle East. Amazing. It was a war that was going to be fought one way or the other.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Sworn enemy??  Saddam Hussein was in our pocket for how many decades?  Until H.W. Bush pushed for MORE oil money? 
         So, because you want the possessions of someone else, if you make up a threat that someday they may  do something to you, that justifies you killing and taking their possessions you wanted?

      • Dave

        More neocon utopian military gobbledygook. Just like the DNC utopian central management gobbledygook.

        Get back to people power and help Ron Paul. You know you want to T! :)

        • Modavations

          Hey,I trademarked Gooble de Gook: ie. my dictionary of leftist gobble de gook,but I’m magnanamus(?),let it rip

      • Modavations

        Sadaam Hussein murdered zillions

        • Terry Tree Tree

          You NEVER lie?

          • Modavations

            Dude you]re too much.Do you think xzillions is for real.I guess I’ll have to go back to putting up “J”.

      • TFRX

        Hey, let’s all look at that famous picture of Rumstud (sic) shaking hands with our “sworn enemy”.

    • http://www.richardsnotes.org Richard

      I wonder what would have happened with Iran had Iraq not been invaded and Sadam killed? My guess is Iran would have been held in check or they’d have fought it out without our involvement at all.

      Bush and Cheney are war criminals and Obama, Pelosi, and Reid have been too weak to do a thing about it.

      • Gregg

        It’s nice to guess the future. Everything is tidy that way. 

        Speaking of Obama, Reid and Pelosi, here’s what they said:
         “Now let me be clear — I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein.  He
        is a brutal man.  A ruthless man.  A man who butchers his own people to
        secure his own power.  He has repeatedly defied UN resolutions, thwarted
        UN inspection teams, developed chemical and biological weapons, and
        coveted nuclear capacity.  He’s a bad guy.  The world, and the Iraqi
        people, would be better off without him.”

            State Senator Barack Obama (Democrat, Illinois)

            Speech at Federal Plaza, Chicago, Illinois

            October 2, 2002
        “We stopped the fighting [in 1991] on an agreement that Iraq would take
        steps to assure the world that it would not engage in further aggression
        and that it would destroy its weapons of mass destruction.  It has
        refused to take those steps.  That refusal constitutes a breach of the
        armistice which renders it void and justifies resumption of the armed
        conflict.”
            Senator Harry Reid (Democrat, Nevada)

            Addressing the US Senate

            October 9, 2002

            Congressional Record, p. S10145
        “I come to this debate, Mr. Speaker, as one at the end of 10 years in
        office on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, where stopping
        the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction was one of my top
        priorities.  I applaud the President on focusing on this issue and on
        taking the lead to disarm Saddam Hussein.  …  Others have talked about
        this threat that is posed by Saddam Hussein.  Yes, he has chemical
        weapons, he has biological weapons, he is trying to get nuclear
        weapons.”

            Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (Democrat, California)
            Addressing the US House of Representatives
            October 10, 2002
            Congressional Record, p. H7777

        “As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, I am keenly aware that
        the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons is an issue of
        grave importance to all nations.  Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the
        development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat
        to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons
        inspection process.”

            Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (Democrat, California)

            Statement on US Led Military Strike Against Iraq

            December 16, 1998

        • Modavations

          Wow!!!!

        • Eniwetok

          Nice quotes, but Saddam did destroy his WMDs. It was Bush who convinced Congress they still existed so what was Congress to do.

          You’re excusing the liar by quoting those lied to.   

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Nothing like the lies ‘W’ told! 

    • Patrick

      Holy cow, your alternate universe must be stranger than I thought.

      Starting the Iraq war was the single greatest foreign policy mistake since Vietnem.  Worse, in fact, since we should have learned something.

      • Gregg

        If the alternate universe is one where a sworn enemy shooting at our jets, attempting to assassinate our President, swindling the world with “Food for Oil”, gassing her people and invading her neighbors is better than an ally in the heart of the Middle East then I’ll stay put in my universe.

        • Patrick

          Yeah, I’m sure they’ll be a close ally for a long time.  They love our freedoms, and the way we bombed the everloving hell out of them.

          Nothing makes friends like “shock and awe”

          • Gregg

            Worked in Japan.

          • Patrick

            Glib, but nonsensical.  There’s no similarity between the two examples, other than massive acts of violence.

            That approach has never worked for us in the Middle East, and hasn’t in Afghanistan.  And fortunately, smarter people than you were behind the decision not to attempt it with the USSR.

          • Modavations

            Worked In Korea,worked in Germany

      • Modavations

        War and rumor of war is part of the human condition.In Europe they had embroglios called the “50 yr war”

    • Modavations

      General G,commander of the liberated middle states,what up

      • Gregg

        Same ol’ same ol’.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      We supported Saddam Hussein at first.  We sold him arms during the Iran Iraq war — and we sold arms to Iran at the same time.

      Neil

    • Eniwetok

      Why did this way have to be fought? Our war was with Al
      Quida not someone who would not tolerate radical Islam.

      In the world of RealPolitik, Saddam could have become an
      ally, albeit a distasteful one. We could have done what Bush did to Libya;
      rehab someone we used to consider an enemy.

      Instead Bush wasted resources attacking a nation not
      involved in 911, while pretending the Saudis were innocent.

      In my world, this never made any sense and all the after the
      fact rationalizations don’t change that. In fact Bush pushed both N Korea and
      Iran to pursue getting the Bomb lest they be next on the neocon hit list.

  • Dave

    As the panic at Fox News over Paul’s rise continues, last night a Hannity guest raised the point that Paul was right about Iraq, and Hannity almost choked on his football trying to keep such thought down.

    • Modavations

      The panic got so bad at MSNBC last night, that Comrad Chris had to appoligize that they called Mitt Romney a member of the KKK

  • Terry Tree Tree

    WELCOME HOME TROOPS!!
        Will the GREEDY rich, and ALL the others that promoted this war, please, finally do the honorable thing, and pay the U.S. public back ALL the money spent on this travesty on the Iraqi people?   Plus interest?
        NO honorable “compassionate” ‘Conservative’ ‘Christians’?   What a surprise?

    • Modavations

      We were looking for you.I called the fire house and they said you were sleeping behind the hoses.”Greedy Rich”,talk about a one trick pony.Laissez faire self interest has helped more then all your endless govt programs and private charity combined

      • Terry Tree Tree

        You NEVER lie? 
            What is the phone # of the fire-house? 

        • Modavations

          You’re too much.Did you really think I was serious?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Who can ever tell?

    • Bobl1234

      T3… I wonder how long it will be until future analysts tell us retrospectively that all of the things you mentioned drove America–its economy and its soul) into history’s dustbin, and in effect declare bin Laden the victor… at least one drunk Texan.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Nearly two weeks of being blocked from commenting!  Thank you, whoever is responsible?  Would you please be honorable enough to explain why I have been blocked from commenting two times, because I can’t see why! 
        I don’t use inappropriate language, which I see too much of here.  I don’t resort to name-calling.  Others have posted more volume.  I DO point out HYPOCRACY!!  I will continue to do so, so I expect that I will be blocked again.
       Moda, I checked all the posts in my name,  for three episodes back from the ones you indicated were ulTRAX.  ALL of them were mine.  Not sure why you questioned them, as they followed my usual traits.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      I beg for them to unblocked you. you should thank me – kidding-welcome back triple T.

    • Modavations

      They were extremely harsh and I thought they couldn’t be you.Notice how all the endless stalking has ended since he left

      • Terry Tree Tree

        The weird stuff continued for days after I was banned! 
            I am harsh on the HYPOCRICY that I see!  Child-Molesting priests protected by a Catholic church that decries homosexuality that it partially created.  Greedy rich ‘compassionate’ ‘conservative’ ‘Born-again Christians’ that only use that for cover of their crimes!  Low-life like that!

    • Grady Lee Howard

      You was a-Occupying baby, and your hygeine was lacking. You failed to formulate demands we could twist and mock and you wouldn’t play our two-party game. Also, you wuz a Southern boy, and a teacher. You teachers always act so entitled like you deserve to live and comment like normal trolls. Why you like to teech so much, ain’t no money in it?

      Treebark: Now you know how the Sarge felt when he came back from Nam. Welcome Home, Hero!
      Thanks for your service. (You make me nervous.)

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Thank you for your service Sarge!  I served, and volunteered for Vietnam.  Wasn’t sent.  I honor my fellow vets, and thank those that I meet. 
            I resent the disgusting AWOL Deserter, that sent our troops to Iraq, to fill his and others’ pockets!

  • Nutricj

    it wasn’t just 9 years, that was just part 2 of our hussein/oil war. the first gulf war beagn in 1990-1991, although the conflict can be traced back before that certainly, and the additional conflicts remained ongoing throughout the decade between 1991 and 2001. the khobar tower bombing in 1996, the 1993 world trade center bombing, and others, and the many operations emloyed…we cannot ignore the real history and casualties and $$$ spent- it all counts!!! every penny, EVERY LIFE!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      20 years of war is gruesome. Thanks for the knock on my the head. You just wake me up with your comment. I counted only this war but I forgot about the other Iraqi war Gulf 1 and 2.

      • Nutricj

        thanx, i just want TOM to change his text or correct when he speaks today…this has been a long long road- more than 2xs what most media focus on today- it’s a short memory span to forget back when bush 1 was our leader, and those before…

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

          I was a freshmen in college when CNN especially broadcast on prime time channel in Manila. I never saw a tv channel before that broadcast news only shows and I heard a CNN correspondent on a satellite phone said
          “The skies over baghdad has been Illuminated”.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    The American soldiers left but the American government stayed and Iraq has the biggest US Embassy in the world. The Iraqi troops are Americanize means more American military supplies and more American tax payers money or they can use their oil assets to pay for their own military equipment.

    Oh I forgot Iran is right across the boarder so there will be no problems for the US military to bomb the Iranian nuclear reactors with the help of the Israeli air force in the near future.

    Do you actually believe the war is over?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      Almost 20 years of the Iraq war. How many trillions of dollars did you spend?

      • Modavations

        800 billion.The interest on the debt for this year is 457bill.

        • Nutricj

          oh, yay- please send your $$$$ report card to the mothers of our dead soldiers or how about a few of those interest gained dollars being put to take care of the disproportionate number of homeless veterans ignored in our streets? we will spend to fight, but will we spend that much to save our service members?

        • Drew You Too

          Why won’t you cease this 800 Billion nonsense? Are you accounting for the healthcare cost of treating wounded soldiers? No. Are you taking into consideration the prolonged psychological impact and the decrease in productivity returning soldiers and their families encounter? No. The list of things you don’t include in your 800 Billion figure is far longer than than the ones it includes. And what is the value of one Human Life? I’m guessing to you it’s not much. But to some, life is precious. What is the dollar value of the several hundred thousand dead Iraqi civilians? Of the 4000 plus dead soldiers?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            EXCELLENT additional Questions!!

  • Dave

    So you like Ron Paul except on Foreign Policy?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8NhRPo0WAo&feature=youtu.be

  • Nutricj

    20+ YEARS TOM!!!!

  • Anonymous

    I would like to thank George Bush for getting us out of Iraq!  Since Obama didn’t do anything but follow Bush’s established plan, he really doesn’t get any credit for following the leader.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      Modavation has a name for that Bush thing. I think he can tell you what it is. for me, i call it Bushtification.

    • Nutricj

      long as you thank his daddy & friends for getting us into it, i can see your logic

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

        I was going to say that you beat me to it. damn!!!

        • Nutricj

          thank you for making me giggle ;-0~

    • Terry Tree Tree

      ‘W’ started it, for $MONEY$,!! It’s THREE YEARS since ‘W’ was in the White House!  “W” DID NOT get us out!!n  He DID get us in, based on LIES!!

    • Eniwetok

      So should we also “thank” GWB for getting us into an illegal war of aggression?

  • Anonymous

    If Iraq breaks out into civil war or is led by people unfriendly to the US, the war could easily be said to be a waste of US money and lives.

    • Eniwetok

      Stop deluding yourself. We already know the war was a waste of blood and treasure since the Iraq war was not necessary to defend the US. No other issue is relevant or can change that fact.

  • Noel

    I can’t believe we’re STILL lying about this war. It was started on a lie, conducted through lies (Remember Dick Chaney saying the Iraqis would pay for the operation and reconstruction?) , and now it’s ending on lies. The Iraqis don’t even have a functional government. Why are we saying we’ve left the country a stable democracy?

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    Any war is terrible.  A war without reason is worse.

    There are no winners, and we have not solved any of the problems.  We should never have supported Saddam Hussein or the Shah of Iran.  Those policies made it impossible to have any “success” in the Middle East.

    Neil

  • Captain Augustus

    Honor our troops for their service and sacrifices, but I think this whole effort in Iraq was not justified, not paid for, not fully debated by Congress, and will be viewed as another reason for country going bankrupt and losing focus on more important areas. 

  • X-Ray

    The military is a blunt instrument for “nation building”. We should not have halted our efforts after ousting Iraq from Kuwait. Then we wouldn’t have gone back and started a Civil War.

  • Dave

    Wow. Fear to get us in then, Fear to justify now.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    The war is not over these are my reasons:

    1. PTSD clinical help for all US soldiers.
    2. Housing
    3. Jobs
    4. Marriage councelling
    5. College funds for those who enlisted to pay for their college tuition fees.

    and the list goes on.

  • Bobl1234

    If a kid spends large portion of allowance on toy guns, it would be hard not to play gunfighter.  ‘what we need is a reconceiving of treason; to include treason by omission or oversight, in addition to treason by commission.

  • Anonymous

    “Being frightened” because of Sept 11th is the new excuse for George Bush’s unnecessary war? 

  • Gregh106

    While I usually find On Point to be well balanced, I cannot conceive of why you would consider a panel of two former Bush administration officials and a liberal hawk as an appropriate way to sum up this war.  It was illegal from the start, based on lies and killed hundreds of thousands of people.  Why is the no one who opposed this abomination from the run-up not on your panel?
    Greg
    St. Clairsville, Ohio

    • TFRX

      Where is Hans Blix? Scott Ritter?

      Hard to escape the conclusion that they made the mistake of getting the Iraq invasion issue right. All the kewl kidz got it wrong, which made that more important than being right.

  • Peolus

    What difference did VietNam make? All these wars are nothing but the delusions of the US.

    “I want to know who the men in the shadows are, I want to hear somebody asking them why. They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are but they’re never the ones to fight or to die”
             Jackson Browne

  • Anonymous

    The cost benefit analysis wasn’t lacking it was fabricated. 

    • Nutricj

      that is exactly correct. it was made up from day to day right from the start to support the plan: WAR at any cost.

  • Barry

    If there’s anything more morally reprehensible than war it is this pitiful, utterly superficial gesture of soul searching.  There are tens of thousands of people murdered by the actions of the US.  The people who lost sons and daughters and fathers and mothers, who live in a land bombed back to Third World conditions, are the ONLY ones who have the right to speak to the questions you are asking.  These war mongers who belatedly see the light and then make a new career out of their hindsight fill me with disgust.  Millions of people around the world KNEW that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and marched against in the streets in an effort to counter the war machine that is the USA.  These gestures to delude ourselves about our goodness in the wake of the destruction we wrought is disgusting.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    There will be no Civil war in Iraq and don’t wish for it. The Iraqi people are committed for a better future and prosperity of their country just don’t under estimate the Iraqi people.
    Sadir has been quiet and let us leave it that way.

    Transistion is not fun. I know because I experienced 7 Coup de’tat in the Philippines during the Presidency of Corazon C. Aquino. Thank God majority of Filipino soldiers were smart enough not to join the coup and protected Aquino’s administration.

  • Nate

    While we’re discussing ‘why the war started’, I want to remind everyone that the Bush administration was transparently looking for an excuse to start a war with Iraq since January 2002– long before the ‘weapons inspectors’ kabuki dance started.

    See the New York Times of Feb 12, 2002 “Powell Says U.S. Is Weighing Ways to Topple Hussein”, or Congressman Ron Paul’s March 2002 essay “Why Initiate War on Iraq”, or “Iraq War: The Coming Disaster” in LA Times of 14 April, 2002.

    The drums of war were beating before “weapons of mass destruction” were ever mentioned. Everyone knew the Bush administration was looking for an excuse. Don’t forget it.

    • Modavations

      Bull.What’s your proof

  • Anonymous

    We also haven’t passed a Federal Budget since Obama has been in office!

  • Anonymous

    If her answer to everything is that she wasn’t there, why is she here?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Because ANY that were there, would have to LIE, if asked any question of value!  She is their scape-goat for the questions they refuse to face!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    According to Wikileak almost 1.5 million Iraqis are dead. Wikileak counted was on 2009 and it stop.

    • Modavations

      100,000

  • Eniwetok

    I’m struck by the narrow ideological spectrum OP has chosen
    to have represented as guests.

     

    Noam Chomsky once said that in the US there’s a very narrow
    range of acceptable thought. He used the example that during the Vietnam war
    there were the Hawks and Doves. Both believed in the in the implicit US doctrine
    that the US had a right to use force in international affairs, even break
    international law. The difference between them was the Hawks thought we had the
    right to escalate to guarantee victory while the Doves held the price of the
    war was too high. Outside this narrow spectrum of permissible thought was the
    peace movement which held the US had no right to use force in international
    affairs let alone break international law.

    And so where are the guest that believe the Bush led the US
    into an illegal war of aggression and Bush/Cheney and others should be
    prosecuted at war criminals?

     

    Listening to Thom’s questions he, too, seems to
    fall into this narrow spectrum. The question is not whether it was “worth
    the cost”, or how could so badly misestimate the difficulty.

    If we don’t learn the true lessons about this illegal war,
    or the Crash of 2008, we’re doomed to repeat them.

    • Eniwetok

      Where are the guests that raise the simple point that if a
      war was unnecessary for our true national defense, then
      all the blood and treasure were wasted in vain.

      All the flag waving, cost:benefit analysis etc only serve as smokescreens to keep alive a deeper pathology, that of American exceptionalism.

    • Modavations

      Noam Chomsky,Noam Chomsky.That old fossil communist.You can do better theN Noam cHOMSKY.dID HE EVER HAVE A JOB?

  • Dave

    All this fake soul searching.

    Ron Paul has spelled this all out, clear as day.

    If you don’t want it again, listen and support.

    Stop supporting this silly media narrative of “if only we knew”

    Its the same with the wars, as the finance crisis.

    This is almost surreal.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8NhRPo0WAo&feature=youtu.be

  • BHA in Vermont

    Simply – No. Hussein was contained and if necessary could have been contained again. He wasn’t a good leader for the majority of people in his country but he was not the threat to the rest of the region and world GWB made him out to be.

    GWB lied about the WMDs, then when proved wrong decided we needed to get rid of Hussein because he was a threat anyway. Robert Mugabe has been destroying his country and people for over 20 years, how was Hussein different? Yet we had some ‘need’ for regime change in Iraq but not in Zimbabwe.

    Well, you see, Hussein defied UN resolutions to give up the WMDs he didn’t have so we HAD to invade, even though MOST of the rest of the world was against it. Cowboy politics.
    Israel has defied plenty of UN resolutions for many decades yet we stand behind them rather than push them to comply.

    Iraq is no better off now than they were 10 years ago. I will be very surprised if sectarian violence doesn’t erupt. The majority Shia are not going to forget how they were treated under Sunni control.

    Thousands of US soldiers killed and maimed. Tens of thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians killed and maimed. Al Qaeda had no presence in Iraq (contrary to GWB’s claim) until we invaded.
    The war took nearly 2 TRILLION DOLLARS out of the USA for zero gain.

    • Bernardkay43

      Not only was this war based upon manipulated intelligence and resisted by its neighbors; if you asked the then, Secretary General of the United Nations, it was illegal.  This has caused irreparable harm to the US in the eyes of other nations.  The costs are still mounting.

  • TFRX

    Peter Beinart is now trying to rehab the idea of “conservatives”?
     
    I care not that “genuine conservatives in their bones were against it”. The Beinarts of the world were all hepped up about the political power to be wrung out of being behind a “wartime” “leader”.

    “Conservatives expect government to be dumb”, he says. Hey, bub, especially when the likes of you are in charge of it.

  • Beez

    Look at how this country has changed for the worse since 9-11.
    Whomever was behind it….won

  • Irene Moore

    The stability and dynamism of the American economic system?

  • Dave

    Why have active military service members contributed more to Ron Paul than all other candidates combined?

  • Brent from Nashville

    Before the invasion of Iraq, I recall hearing an interview
    on NPR, no less, with the author of “Saddam’s Bombmaker, Khidhir Hamza, I
    believe.  I bought the book and read
    it.  I thought it was credible.  What influence might this work possibly have
    had on the decision to invade Iraq, being so hyped in the pre-invasion
    time-frame?  Also, there is now a
    question of credibility of the author of this work, as well as the sensationilism
    of this work in the media, as well as poor intelligence by the CIA and other governmental
    agencies…what is being done to correct this?

  • Terry Tree Tree

    To the GREEDY rich war PROFITEERS,  Iraq was worth it.  Cheney, Halliburton, KBR, Xe (Blackwater), the oil companies, and their figure-head AWOL, Deserter, GOT plenty from it!  To the rest of the people that actually sacrificed in some way, WHY would it be worth it?  ALL we got, was dead, wounded, broken families, less jobs, worse-paying jobs, a COST in wounded veterans that can NEVER be paid, and so MUCH more!

  • Lee

    One thing that annoys me is that the only thing that people seem to mention now about incorrect info the nation was told when justifying going in, is the WMD argument.  We were also told that it would take something like a month or 2, and would only cost tens of millions or a couple of hundred million (I can’t remember exactly.  We were also told that Americans would be greeted as liberators.  All of that couldn’t have been more wrong.

    The reason why I was against going in was, unlike when Bush Sr. took us to war, we didn’t have the backing of the world, or more importantly, the neighboring countries.  That is why this didn’t work – the utter hubris that the president showed, and the utter disregard shown for the importance of getting other nations to work with us.

    The way we went about going into Iraq hurt the image of the US in the rest of the world, which obviously affects how much influence we now have, and the blame for that falls squarely on the administration that took us into the ill conceived conflict.

    • Modavations

      80 Billion according to Cheney.”The best laid plans of mice and men”

    • BHA in Vermont

      I agree. Hussein needed to be kicked out of Kuwait but after that he was nothing more than a small time dictator.

      As always, our foreign policy “The enemy of our enemy is our friend” fails. Hussein cranked a war against our enemy Iran so he is our BFF. Load him up with weapons. Will we NEVER learn?

  • Dave

    Wow, she puts the lying burden on the soldiers?!

    If it was sold as a remake the middle east war, and congress supported it, that would be different, while still disturbing, but it was false pretense and 9/11 fear mongering all the way.

  • Sheryl Trainor

    The war was begun on a lie and “paid for” with a credit card.  The same party that began this war is now blaming others for the deficit which was inflated by the Iraq war and tax breaks for the rich.  Was it worth it?  Maybe for Iran, but not for the US.

  • Dan

    I believe that a National Draft would have change some of this dialogue,maybe this should be reinstated, Tom can you talk on this.

  • Vernon Lewis

    I recently finished reading Andrew & Leslie Cockburn’s, “One Point Safe”, and I must say that Saddam Hussein’s (and Iran’s) efforts to acquire nuclear/biological weapons scares the hell out of me.  I don’t have access to top level intelligence, I have to rely on open-source intell, but there is enough available to convince anyone that should Iran acquire nukes, They WILL use them. And when they do 9/11 will look like a one-car accident.

  • Anonymous

    Tom, great job with the follow-up questions!  Couldn’t the Bush apologists come up with a better spokesperson than Kori Schake?

  • Nutricj

    great call tyler, thank you for your service and comments

    i wish you didn’t have to grow from boyhood to manhood with this as your atmosphere and i wish you much peace for your future.

  • Dave

    Both parties work for the Military Industrial Complex and the Financiers who make it possible, on our backs, via debt and inflation.

    Can we get over that, and actually make a change?

    Am I the only one that sees this continuing narrative of partisan blame etc as disturbingly surreal?

    You all know better.

  • Nutricj

    20+ years Tom, please recognize that 9 years is really a dramatic underestimation

  • Greg from VT

    Saddam, or any leader of a sovern country, was never a threat to the U.S.They are only concerned about self preservation and attacking the U.S. does not lend itself to that.

  • Anonymous

    I can’t believe she compared the burden the Bush administration has to pay for being wrong with the burden the soldiers are bearing. 

    • BHA in Vermont

      GWB, Cheney et al suffer no burden. They SHOULD be in jail.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      The ‘burden’ of the ‘W’ admin., is to find places to stash all the loot from all the deaths and destruction!

  • ianfromarlington

    I served in Iraq as an Infantryman in 2005. I’m so sick of hearing from talking heads who somehow can determine if “it was worth it” when none of them were kicking in doors and playing kill or be killed. Then there are those who think that we can bring “democracy” to other peoples with the barrel of a gun. The vast majority of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans that I know think that both wars are less than “worth it” and more in line with breaking international law, unconstitutional, and immoral. Look at where our country is economically, internationally, our military is extremely strained on many fronts, and the VA is completely overwhelmed. Who is profiting? The American people? The people of Iraq and Afghanistan? You have to be kidding me. If soldiers were doing here what we were doing when I was in Iraq, I would be the first to take up arms against them. Many of my veteran friends feel the same. Read, “War is a Racket.” by Maj. Gen. USMC Smedley D. Butler (Two time Medal of Honor winner). It is frighteningly pertinent to today.
    How can the commentator make some sort of case for the pre-invasion fear mongering about what Saddam did with the biological and chemical weapons we gave him in the 80′s to kill those pesky Iranians? How hypocritical, give a dictator anything and he’ll use it however he wants. Duh!

    • OneBraveMan

      GretchenMo and Modavations -

      What no glib reply to ianfromarlington?

      No inane assertion from the righty trolls?

      No smarmy, insipid, crass comments of your own?

      No illogical accusations against this brave veteran?

      Thank you ianfromarlington for your service and candor.

      People like you are what make America great.

      People like GretchenMo and Modavations are why we are over there in the first place.

    • Drew You Too

      Thank you for your service, and thank you even more for speaking the voice of reason.

      You said “Then there are those who think that we can bring “democracy” to other peoples with the barrel of a gun.”

      Brilliant statement. I have asked many over the past decade how we can tout spreading Democracy as a goal when we are a Republic. Kind of difficult to spread that which you don’t posses.

      Thanks again for your service and sacrifice.

  • Kim from vermont

    If george Packer is to be believed, and I do, this war was not poorly conceived, it was purposely negligent in its planning (or lack thereof) where in cabinet meetings, the plan beyond the ousting of Saddam Hussein was consciously not to be taken into consideration. Also, if you look up Dick Cheney on YouTube, you can see him in an interview listing all the reasons an invasion into Iraq would be a bad idea years before this war came into play. And all the reasons he listed have come true.This war was beyond wrong and what losses we have sustained. It’s very sad.

  • Scott B, Jamestown NY

    Look at what the Congress has already done with delaying medical aid to first responders at 9/11, and now they have to prove they aren’t terrorists before any process to get them the help they need even started.  There’s also talk about reducing, if not defunding, in part or in whole the GI Bill, the VA, veterans benefits, not paying for certain kinds of care…  Is this how a country repays those that went to war for us, in particular a war that was based on lies?

    There are estimates by some people that know war, that know costs, that the medical bills for the wars are going to add another TRILLION dollars and be with us for decades.

  • Glen

    As an independent voter what I look for from Republican ‘conservative’ Dogma is clear-thinking emphasis on analysis and redirecting our feelings toward productive pursuits.  And they repeatedly fall far short of this expectation - the Iraq War is a paramount example.

  • Dave

    Paul/Nader 2012

    “Libertarians like Ron Paul are on our side on civil liberties. They’re on our side against the military-industrial complex. They’re on our side against Wall Street. They’re on our side for investor rights. That’s a foundational convergence,” he exhorts. “It’s not just itty-bitty stuff.” 

    -Ralph Nader

    Can anyone accept the status quo with a straight face anymore? 

  • Dave

    It’s all right here, with a candidate to carry the message.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8NhRPo0WAo&feature=youtu.be

  • Tina

    An AP story is saying that the census suggests that 1 in 2 people in the US are now living in or heading toward poverty or low income.  THAT is partly due to the cost of this war (and partly due to Wall Street and corporate shenanigans).  I believe that Osama Bin Laden said that he would break America by bankrupting it.  The census figures suggest that he helped to do just that!  

    • BHA in Vermont

      Yep, it doesn’t take much money to seed the economic failure of an arrogant superpower. Just enough to make them nervous.

  • TFRX

    “The next attack which might have happened in 2007″ (hypothetical) was stopped because were on “their soil”, caller claims.

    “Their soil”? Talk about pronoun trouble!

  • Peter Robinson

    The Iraq War is the greatest strategic mistake in the history of the United States. 

  • Steve

    When we go to war as quickly, easily and baselessly as we did in Iraq, we are not a great nation and have little to “protect”.

    • Modavations

      15 UN resolutions

  • Joe1745ny

    OIL is god

    • Dan

      And when it runs out we will find ourselves godless

      • Modavations

        Ya,in two hundred years from now.By then we’ll be teleporting

    • Terry Tree Tree

      A FALSE God, at that.  Wind, Solar, Tidal, and other renewables, are FAR more available, and FAR less contaminating than oil, coal, natural gas, or nuclear!

      • Modavations

        2.5% of our energy is alternative,20% is nukes,the rest is oil

        • Terry Tree Tree

          There is a LOT more power available in the wind, than nuclear and fossil!  Just listen to Moda, for proof of wind power!

  • Newton Whale

    I don’t care if he changed his mind, that’s not enough penance.
    I think that people like Beinart should be disqualified from speaking on public affairs ever again:

    BILL MOYERS: PETER BEINART BECAME EDITOR OF THE NEW REPUBLIC AT AGE 28. DURING THE RUN-UP TO THE INVASION HE WAS ONE OF THE HOTTEST YOUNG PUNDITS IN TOWN, A LIBERAL HAWK, ACCUSING OPPONENTS OF THE WAR OF BEING “INTELLECTUALLY INCOHERENT AND ECHOING THE OFFICIAL LINE THAT HUSSEIN WOULD SOON POSSESS A NUCLEAR WEAPON.
    PETER BEINART: (CNN 4/29/02) We need a little bit of logistical support, but we don’t need the moral support of anyone, because we’re on the side of the angels in this.
    BILL MOYERS: Had you been to Iraq?
    PETER BEINART: No.
    BILL MOYERS: So what made you present yourself, if you did, as a Middle East expert?
    PETER BEINART: I don’t think that I presented myself as a Middle East expert per se. I was a political journalist. I was a columnist writing about all kinds of things. Someone in my position is not a Middle East expert in the way that somebody who studies this at a university is, or even at a think tank. But I consumed that stuff. I was relying on people who did that kind of reporting and people who had been in the government who had access to classified material for their assessment.
    BILL MOYERS: And you would talk to them and they would, in effect, brief you, the background on what they knew?
    PETER BEINART: Sometimes, but–
    BILL MOYERS: I’m trying to help the audience understand. How does– you described yourself as a political– a reporter of political opinion, or a journalist political opinion.
    PETER BEINART: Yeah.
    BILL MOYERS: How do you get the information that enables you to reach the conclusion that you draw as a political journalist?
    PETER BEINART: Well, I was doing mostly, for a large part it was reading, reading the statements and the things that people said. I was not a beat reporter. I was editing a magazine and writing a column. So I was not doing a lot of primary reporting. But what I was doing was a lot of reading of other people’s reporting and reading of what officials were saying.

    http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/btw/transcript1.html 

    • Modavations

      Is that the Bill Moyers who worked for LBJ.His job was to out gays

  • Sophie

    How are the American people supposed to trust the government after so many failures. No WMD, 9 years to capture Osama Bin Laden, a war on an idea”terror” with no clear enemy creating a large social/racial problem here highlighted by yesterday’s discussion on American Muslims, a complete disregard for the american budget. Over and over again. With every tiny “victory” we fell back so many steps.

  • Linda Riyad

    I am a little disgusted that amoung all of the casualties and costs mentioed, there is no mention of the toll on the Iraqi people. the US may have lost 4500 soldiers, but they lost over 10,000 people including civilians and children. And yet many may end up with a better future. Why dont we have Iraqis from the three regions on this panel?

    • Nutricj

      it is stunning that US coverage in the media ignores that most of the time, as well as the rest of the global impact/the other nations involved and impacted

  • Laradcham

    A wonderful program where everyone has spoken very well about a very sensitive issue.  I plan to purchase Beinart’s book and look more thoroughly at his work.  I am most impressed.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Since he was so right about the war, and so concientious about his ‘journalism’?  Making up things, is NOT journalism, it’s FICTION!

  • Ehdoss

    Bush and Cheney have not owned up to and admitted their mistakes, so we will continue to live their glorious lies.

    Those of us that tried to speak up and stop this mess early were quickly branded as unpatriotic commies.  We got it. 

    Long live the liers.

    • BHA in Vermont

      GWB will not admit his mistakes because he believes he made no mistakes. And Cheney will not let GWB admit anything.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      If you have a triple letters on your airline ticket it means you will be search.

      • Modavations

        I didn’t know that.Where would the 3 letters be?

  • Drew from Peace Dale, RI

    One thing that we are forgetting are the huge amounts of money reaped by defense contractors through out the Iraq conflict, many of whom had their fingers in National decision making regarding the war such as Rumsfeld and Cheney.  A deplorable relationship at best.

  • Dave

    Since the DNC is pro-war, and all but one GOP candidate is pro-war, since the DNC is pro-Fed/Wall St. Finance and all but one GOP candidate is pro-Fed/Wall St. finance, if people are true to the passion and indignation with the status quo we are hearing, unless Ralph Nader runs again, it looks like it will be Ron Paul 2012.

  • Mklikunas

    I think it is worth remembering that in the run-up to the war, not only was the Bush administration wrong about WMD but there were hundreds of thousands of people in the street protesting and trying to stop the US from attacking Iraq.

  • Dave

    Learn something:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8NhRPo0WAo&feature=youtu.be

    Your alert citizenry is RIGHT HERE.

  • Tina

    And THANK YOU for trying, Tom and your remarkable staff!!  I know I am not alone in appreciating the incredible journalism you bring to us!  

  • Anonymous

    RE: Was Iraq War worth it ?:
    1. Cost 1 to 3 Trillion dollars,( a major contribution to our debt) and three times the  ten year cost savings that the Super Committee was  unable to agree to.;
    2. 4500 American deaths; 33,000 wounded;
    3. No weapons of mass destruction found;
    4. An Iraq friendly to our arch enemy, Iran, establishing a continuous arch of Shiite dominance from Iran to Hezbollah in Gaza; substituted for a Saddam Iraq, sworn enemy of Iran.
    5. Providing a recruiting tool for Al Qaeda;

    • NrthOfTheBorder

      Missing from your account: 
      Iraqi dead, wounded and displaced.

      • Modavations

        I’ll swap you 20 Obamas for one Martin or Harper

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Delusion of Grandeur?  Or do you really have 20 Obamas to trade?

  • Anonymous

    We should learn to be more sensitive to fantasy based politics. Condi Rice was too exited by the opportunity to use an attack from 19 Saudis and an Egyptian to go to war in Iraq. Paul Wolfowitz had no concept of the cost of war. Not finding anything was treated as evidence of evil intent and admitting inspectors as non-compliance.

    • Nutricj

      ahhhhh, bush was smarmy and “smart” about this one thing- placing himself next to such a seemingly intelligent, educated professional lended validity to his low iq, war drum beating agenda that people that may not have listened/believed him, in fact did. she was like his invisibility cloak.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

        Bush was lucky surrounded by smart people like Rice and Powell.

        • Anonymous

          Rice should have been fired Sept 12th.  Powell disgraced his career by lying to the UN. 

          • Modavations

            Are you telling me Colin Powell lied.What’s the proof.Just leftist invective

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Colin Powell’s own admission!

  • Anonymous

    Why is the Bush stooge bringing up stolen elections?

    • Modavations

      What stolen election?

  • travis

    Am very interested why no one commented on the points I raised today on the show…and a little confused. But it is the same old, same old – the cycle repeats itself, lessons are not learned, and time marches on. Noone wants to address the reality whereby wars are fought for money, with lions being sacrificed for lambs (chicken-hawk neocons like Cheney and Bush). Oh well. We want to protect life? Let’s try by intervening in genocide, and not where there’s money for us.

    Travis, in Quincy

  • Douglas Cazort

    Iraq is one of the few remaining countries cobbled together after WW1, with borders drawn by European countries without regard to the ethnic and religious makeup of the populations.  An example of the failure of those countries can be found in Yugoslavia, which was held together after WW2 by the strong dictatorship of Marshall Tito, but after his death, it descended into civil wars between all the ethnic/religious groups, and now consists of numerous countries based on these groups.

    Before Iraq existed, it was a part of the Ottoman Empire, made up of serveral provincial governments.  Then after WW1, the British created Iraq’s borders without regard to the wishes of the Sunnies, Shias, and Kurds who inhabited the area.  The British faced rebellions in “Iraq” of the very same groups who fought the American Occupation, but they managed to keep the country subdued, and placed a figurehead monarch on the previously non-existent Iraqi throne. 

    In 1958, the Iraqi Army overthrew the Monarchy and murdered the King, and eventually, Saddam Hussain established his dictatorship of the Sunni minority, slaughtering Kurds and Shiite minorities whenever they resisted.

    Now that Saddam is gone, the US has done the British and Saddam’s job of forced unification.  What comes next?  Civil war, and if the people of the region get lucky, a three-country solution.  If not, one group will establish another unification dictatorship. 

  • Joe K Chester, VT

    Iraq War -  We went in guns blazing. When other world
    leaders came in to help with the re-building of the infrastructure we, the USA
    wouldn’t let them.  Years later the poor citizens still don’t have clean
    water, reliable electricity etc.

    Now we’re leaving behind a huge mess.  Also, I can’t
    fathom why, if we have such a well run military, we need to “hire-out” to
    privately held companies to supply “security, catering and transportation” who
    in turn fleece the American tax payers.  The whole thing stinks of greed
    and corruption.  It’s amazing no one touched on this. – Now off to
    Afghanistan…  JoeK

    • Modavations

      Sad news.That’s the state of most mideast countries without wars.I still see kids crapping on the sidewalk in Dehli

      • Anonymous

        Dehli is in India. India is not in the middle east. It is, however, a mere two thousand miles from Baghdad.

        • Modavations

          India is more advanced.Have you ever been outside of Brattleboro?

          • Anonymous

            Is your point that kids are crapping on the sidewalk in Dehli or that India is more advanced? Do you even Know what your point is?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Haven’t you read many of his comments?  Wait for it!

          • Anonymous

            Have you ever been outside of Wonderland?

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Don’t confuse him with facts.  He prefers his delusions!

  • Drew You Too

    Thanks for the show On Point. Lawrence Wilkerson and Peter Beinart I am especially grateful for your commentary and insights, they couldn’t have been more concise or to the point.

  • Eniwetok

     

    The logic of the US neocons has proven to be both self-fulfilling
    and self-defeating.

    In 2002 Bush talked of the Axis of Evil: N Korea, Iran, and
    Iraq. The Neocons believed that taking out the weakest of the three with Shock
    & Awe would get N Korea and Iran to submit to US will. But what it proved
    to them was unless they had nukes, they might be next on the hit list. N
    Korea’s getting the bomb proved it can keep the US a bay and is even useful for
    extortion. Iran must have learned this lesson.

    Even as they are biting at the bit for another war, the
    neocon logic has made the situation worst.

    After two pointless wars in Iran and Afghanistan, US is now
    proving to be a paper tiger that’s spent out its conventional forces.

    So now what?

  • Ed Siefker

    Four thousand American lives.  One Trillion American dollars.  These are the costs of the Iraq War

    Three thousand American lives.   Less than 100 billion American dollars.  These are the costs of 9/11.

    Who are the real terrorists?  Will Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Rice ever get the justice they deserve?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      There are more dead American soldiers than 4,000
      the US government does not provide exact count and 30,000 wounded soldiers

    • nj

      Yes, only the American losses count as “costs” of the war.

      Seriously?

      • Ed Siefker

        Actually, I agree entirely.     But my post was aimed at people who supported the war, who will only be concerned about the costs to America.   Nationalists don’t care much about dead foreigners.

        Clearly the blood of over 100,000 Iraqis is on the hands of the Bush administration.

        • Modavations

          Prove 100,000.I understand the war cost 15,000ish Iraqi lives.Sadaam killed over a million

          • Modavations

            I meant 100,000 by Iraqis and 15,000 collateral deaths by Allied forces

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Keep changing the numbers, maybe some century you’ll get them right!

          • nj

            As if your “understanding” means anything whatsoever.

        • nj

          Okay, then. Seemed like you were deliberately omitting non-U.S. losses there.   My apologies.

    • Modavations

      wILL hILARY,bILL,John Kerry,Bob Kerry Mr.Levin,et al, be aquited because they’re Democrats.

  • Talknationradio

    I was struck by the importance once again of this timely program. First my heartfelt sympathy to all US soldiers and their families where so many have been adversely impacted, or paid the ultimate price. Thanks to Tom Ashbrook, we have now had at least had “mainstream” press analysis about the cost of the Iraq War in lives, security, and US financial resources even as the troops arrive home.. some of them. They are coming home to US and global recession. I see a connection between the Iraq and Afghan wars and the economic collapse here and in Eurozone countries as well as Asia. From war comes corruption, and a lack of transparency, and within that synergy we saw new scales of rip offs and cover ups. Real problems were ignored, as banks and other corporations learned how to perfect their tapping into both public and private money. We are now seeing banks and financial institutions work together on a never before seen scale to siphon off capital from the world’s markets. Using high speed computers they are robbing the globe, and still no jobs in America after bail outs. The ECB bailed out EU banks in Dollars, three times, over the past few months, and there is still a run on European banks that has been going unnoticed. See Seeking Alpha 12-15 for more on 32 of them seeing runs. Thus we are all paying the price in our ability to exercise democratic rights, impact government, and persuade Washington and the Pentagon to protect society from predatory corporations, save the environment, and divert that huge sum that largely goes to corporations, and use it to protect democracy. Guernica http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guernica_%28painting%29 — I’m so glad the caller who is a page 1 artist for the New Yorker called, I remember that sad episode, and the painting is a good metaphor for all wars.

  • Joan

    Re: The Caller John and standing up for what is “right”The fact is Iraq had no connection to Al Quaeda and indeed no Weapons of Mass destruction. Plus, there is nothing right in the America argument to invade asovereign state and overthrow that state’s leader. That can only come from the people themselves -not falsehood in intelligence and fear  mongering propa-ganda about leaders such as Sadam Husssein…..And this wasn’t the first time America leaders misledthe American people and patriotic US armed Forces ..My hope is like the former Howard Zinn’s that Ameri-cans will open their eyes to how their government and war hawks in the corporate world are pushing their ex-pansionist policies on the American people & US Treasury(see the URLs below…) Joan America’s Blinder’s , Howard Zinn (Historian) http://www.commondreams.org/cg…In Afghanistan, A Threat to Plunder , Paul Collier, NYThttp://www.nytimes.com/2010/07…The Great Consolidation of Power, Ross Douthat, NYT http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05…

  • Karoline

    Listening to your show today made me pull over so I could log on. What is abominable to me is your guests and millions of others like her will sit around for the next 10 years in the safety of their lives weighing the various merits of this war.  And no doubt, she and some of her GOP colleagues are born again Christians, even using the Bible to justify killing innocent people in Iraq and using and abusing American soldiers in pursuit of treasure.
    All war is evil. All war is evil. Even WWII, the good war, was evil. They are evil because they cause substantial injuries, both physical and mental, to innocent bystanders. They are evil because nations squander their wealth on them and then spend many decades try to dig themselves out of the hole. They are evil because they violate one of the 10 commandments, “Thou shalt not kill”. 

    There is no such thing as a good war – never has been and never will be. And the most infuriating part of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, from my perspective, is that they have caught up our whole nation, indeed even the whole world, in this false discussion, this lie, that some wars are great, some are only good, and some are difficult mistakes but hey, our leaders have to be forgiven because, after all, they are only human.

    Until we STOP this LIE – that some wars are good even when they have been perpetrated on the world under an umbrella of lies, false motives, distortions and the murder of many thousands of innocent Iraqi children- there is little doubt in my mind that some group of Old Men will sit around in their $3,000 suits once again debating how to play with the lives of Americans and others as if they are action figures sold at ToysRUs.

    It is my sincere, fervent and forever hope as a person of faith that God Almighty will shower them with what they have dished out to the world – pain, death, poverty, sorrow, mourning, and grief that can never be comforted. I wait expectantly for karma to catch up with them.

    Here’s a Bible verse they have yet to learn: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil.” All war is evil. All of it. Oh that our nation could be turned to that truth – but this is not a nation that really wants to look at truth anymore, is it?

  • Dan

    Why does everyone believe the war is over? Despite the troop draw down, we have built the worlds largest embassy in Iraq that will house 17,000 people, approximately half of which are civil defense contractors. These guys will cost twice as much as their non-corporate predecessors. Is that really a draw down.

    Look at the news, the Iraqi Prime Minister said Iraq was open for American business investment on his visit to Washington. As we look into the future, let us be aware that as more corporate interests enter the country it will only entangle us further into the complicated politics of the region. We only have to look at history. Countries like Iran and Cuba rebelled against our manipulation of their governments, and by selfishly placing corporate interests in there, we only endanger our own national security.

    As we look into the next election cycle, I urge you all to look closely at the candidates and see what their true policies are, including the current president. While I was not old enough to vote when we entered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, I for the interest of my daughter and myself and my family will do my best to prevent our entrance into another war.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      That what I said on my earlier comments.

      • Dan

        I didn’t see that. Guess it doesn’t hurt to echo the truth. On the other hand, we’d make a boring dinner date.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

          Actually you said it better than me.

  • Catherine

    I’m too late to put a question to Kori Schake, but when she responded to Tom’s inquiry about lack of WMD with, “Ohhhh Tom,” as if to say his position was somehow silly or mistaken, I was appalled.

    My question to her would have been: “What about all the cherry-picked “intelligence” that supported this contention of WMD? What about the fact that when Cheney called the CIA and the service intelligence agencies (often several times a day) demanding that they supply him with cover, they kept telling him that there was no reliable intelligence supporting his position? How about how he finally set up a boutique intelligence operation out of the VP office that magically came up with the info he needed and wanted (i.e. Curveball)?”

    Cheney had an objective – which I believe was all about oil and hegemony and had nothing to do with 9/11 or saving Iraqis from Saddam. He and the lot of them – Bush, Perle, Rumsfeld, Feith, Wolfowitz – the list goes on – are war criminals, plain and simple.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    Brandstad are you overwhelm sir with anti-Bush rhetoric?

  • Eniwetok

    Remember the Bush/Cheney scare tactics of 2002/2003: we can’t let the smoking gun be a mushroom cloud.

    Do we know yet if this was focus group tested by Frank Luntz?

    • Eniwetok

      The purpose of a lie is to get another to
      believe an untruth and make decisions based on that untruth, often against
      their own self-interests. This was the purpose of the deliberate scare campaign
      Bush started in spring 2002. It was perfectly orchestrated to build up to
      manipulate Congress just before the election, and to go to the UN in late 2002.
      It was all prelude to an invasion that had to be timed to favorable weather in
      Iraq.

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

        Frank Luntz is another Republican criminal who should be tried and hanged.

        • Modavations

          Jason A,you’re the type who spit on the troops when they came back from Vietnam.Bush got his Intel from Clintoons head of the CIA.

          • nj

            Moda-troll smear tactic #132: Accuse others of something with no evidence whatsover.

      • Modavations

        Nonsense.Show me the documentation.How many UN sanctions were we up to…..

  • Joan

    Re: The Caller John and standing up for what is “right”

    The fact is Iraq had no connection to Al Quaeda and indeed no Weapons of Mass destruction. Plus, there is nothing right about invading a sover-
    eign state and overthrow that state’s leader. ….That can only come from the people themselves -not from outside forces….Yet this wasn’t the first time America leaders misled the American people and patriotic US armed Forces into battle with phony intell-
    igence and war mongering….

    Generals like Smedley D. Butler , below wrote about this in 1935 .

    “”I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purifly Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-12. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras “right” for American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested… . Looking back on it, I feel I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three city districts. We Marines operated on three continents.” General Smedley D. Butler 1935.
    http://coat.ncf.ca/our_magazine/links/53/butler01-by_schmidt.html
    And Howard Zinn, the American historian wrote about this in his 
    column in 2007 http://www.commondreams.org/cg…
    MY hope like Howard Zinn is the war on Iraq will open peoples’ eyes
    eto the truth and avoid their government’s aggression instead of 
    diplomacy…..joan 

  • Anonymous

    On March 12, 2002, a full year before the war in Iraq began, Tom did a show in which neo-conservative Richard Perle presented his case for an invasion. On the same show, erstwhile weapons inspector Scott Ritter, who had spent months scouring the country in search of weapons of mass destruction, presented the case for caution and a realistic assessment of actual threat. I would encourage everyone to go to the archives page and listen to this episode. If anyone can find a single accurate statement made by Perle, about the reasons why war was necessary or what the aftermath of the invasion would look like, I’d like to see it posted here. If anyone can find a single inaccurate statement by Scott Ritter in his assertion that war would be folly and its aftermath would be very different than the one Perle predicted, I’d like to see that, also. On todays show Beinart says that hindsight is 20/20. There was no need for hindsight. There were plenty of thoughtful, reasonable people who suggested that some solid evidence would be helpful. We never got that evidence. The majority of the American people abdicated their responsibility to be skeptical of government claims. They bought the Bush administrations assertions without question. The reasonable people were simply ignored.            

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Reasonable people were called ‘Traitors’, or ‘NOT Patriots’, by an AWOL, that was technically a Deserter!

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

      Excellent commentary! Right on target.

    • Fredlinskip

      The War had little to do with who was right and who wrong.
      The facts were irrelevant.
      It had all to do with who was best poised to manipulate the American people to their purpose.
      Obviously corporate media, lobbyists for Military Industrial Complex, and War profiteers were in best position to do so.
      They did a superb job.
      Trillions were made by corporate interests and trillions were added to public debt.
      Quite the profitable enterprise all in all.

      It sort of ties in with the fact that anyone with enough common sense to invest in Oil companies the day W was elected, would have been substantially rewarded.

    • Eric

      Richard Perle was right about at least some things: (1) As of April 2003, there were substantial amounts of WMD related material in Iraq that had been identified in earlier UN inspections but which were not accounted for; (2) It seemed reasonable at the time to doubt that additional weapons inspections could conclusively prove that Saddam had no WMD because as long as he remained in power no Iraqi could cooperate with the inspections without risking death of himself and his family; (3) As was proven by the post-war inspections, while it turned out that Saddam did not have WMD, he clearly was waiting for an opportunity to restart his weapons programs.  And since he was diverting funds from the oil for food program, he would eventually have the means to buy the key components on the black market.

      • Anonymous

        You seem to have missed a great deal of what scott Ridder had to say. He went to great lengths to repeatedly explain the significant success weapons inspectors were having. Your contention that future inspections would have been fruitless flies in the face of everything the expert who spent months on the ground in Iraq had to say, while lending credence to a man who was utterly wrong about everything he thought he knew. As for post war inspections, Richard Perle did not claim that Saddam Hussein was hoping to restart his WMD programs at some future date. He claimed that he absolutely had such programs up and running. Wrong again. As to your first point, the unaccounted for materials, even Ridder admitted that this was the case. As Ridder said, making war on the basis of unsubstantiated assumptions is never a good idea.    Perle believed it was reasonable to make war without a full understanding of the facts. Since all of his fears proved to be unfounded, his claims that war was necessary fall flat. 

        • Eric

          Neither Scott Ritter nor Hans Blix (head of the UN weapons inspection program) could provide a satisfactory explanation for the unaccounted-for WMD materials before the April 2003 invasion.  Furthermore, at the time many observers (not just neocon “war mongers” like Perle) found it hard to believe that further weapons inspections could conclusively prove anything given that the inspectors were effectively prohibited from interviewing Iraqis responsible for the facilities outside of Iraq where they would feel relatively safe telling what they knew.  Finally, my assertion that Saddam planned to restart his WMD programs was conclusively documented by Charles Duelfer, who led the post-war search for WMD in Iraq.  Don’t get me wrong—I am not arguing that Perle was right about everything—he obviously was wrong about some very important things—but he and others of his ilk were right about some things. 

          • Anonymous

            I acknowledge the fact that Ritter could not account for missing material. But, as I said in my last post, Ritter himself admitted as much. What you seem to keep discounting is the fact that the expert who was sent to Iraq expressly to search for weapons stated again and again that inspections were working extremely well. If we’re going to ignore the opinion of those we send to do a job because “many observers” find that opinion hard to believe, what’s the sense of sending them. Scott Ritter stated, unequivocally, that inspections were working.  He was ignored. He was right. Everyone who ignored him was wrong. This is not my opinion. This is historical fact. As to Duelfer’s reports, they did indeed show Saddam’s desire to renew his WMD programs. But Duelfer himself indicated Iraq’s WMD programs were essentially abandoned
            not long after the first Gulf War and that the likelihood of his success at restarting them at some future date was dim, at best.     When Richard Perle was on Tom’s show, he made the Rumsfeldian statement “We don’t know what we don’t know.” If this is to be the standard by which future administrations decide to take this country to war, especially after the lessons of Iraq, then God help us all. 

          • Eric

            Yes, Ritter turned out to be correct but that doesn’t mean that everybody who was skeptical about his assertions circa March 2003 were clinically insane.  Ritter et al. essentially were saying, “We didn’t find any evidence of WMD, therefore Saddam must not have any.”  Given that Saddam had flagrantly refused to cooperate with inspectors for several years leading up to the invasion, it is entirely understandable why Perle and others refused to take Ritter’s assertions at face value.  Furthermore, it wasn’t just neocons like Perle who felt this way—in case you’ve forgotten, Peter Galbraith, Ken Pollock, Sandy Berger, Richard Holbrooke and many other former Clinton officials and leading Democrats arrived at essentially the same conclusion until they changed the minds after the invasion.  You seem to have more faith in government “experts” than I do.  Having grossly underestimated the nuclear capabilities of North Korea, Iran, and Pakistan and having contributed to massive intelligence failures associated with the 9/11 attacks, it is not hard to comprehend why Ritter and certain other naysayers in the intelligence and weapons inspections communities were not considered credible.

          • Anonymous

            At no time did I imply that anyone was insane. Nor did Scott Ritter at any time say that Saddam had no weapons of mass destruction. Putting words in his mouth is of no use at all. What he did say was lack of evidence is not evidence. I assumed you had listened to the interview Tom Ashbrook  had with Ritter and Perle on March 12, 2002, in which Ritter stated, unequivocally, that inspections were working and that access to various Iraqi sites was robust and unfettered. Why you choose to simply ignore the words of the man who turned out to be right while supporting the stance of the many who turned out to be wrong is a mystery to me. You can name however many bureaucrats, politicians, or pundits you like. If they were all wrong, they were all wrong. It was “experts” who told us that Hussein had WMD. It was “experts” who told us of a phony link to 9/11. It was “experts” who told us that Hussein and Bin Laden, two men who despised each other, were allies.   I guess some experts know  what they’re talking about and some don’t. I will always side with anyone who admits that we don’t know everything we need to know and should, therefore, exercise caution. Had that caution been exercised, the Iraq fiasco would have been avoided. But the new paradigm is, to paraphrase your earlier fabricated quote, “We didn’t find any evidence of WMD, therefore Saddam “must” have them. That would get you an F in Philosophy 101.

          • Eric

            I agree that the Bush Administration never should have used WMD as the major justification for the invasion.  It would have made more sense to say that after 17 UN resolutions finding Saddam out of compliance, it is time for regime change, i.e., he has forfeited his right to stay in power.  I think this is the crux of the matter.  Scott Ritter was supremely confident that continued inspections along with the other pillars of the containment policy (e.g., no-fly zones, sanctions) were sufficient to contain Saddam. Many other people, not all of them neocons, felt otherwise (as we now know, the effectiveness of the sanctions were in fact eroding yet they were still killing thousands of Iraqi children).  As for my claims about insanity, I listened to several radio interviews with Ritter in 2002 and early 2003, trust me, he made it clear that anyone who disagreed with him was in his opinion insane.  Not all of his colleagues in the weapons inspections community(e.g.,David Kay) felt the way he did circa 2002. Finally, if the inspections that resumed in late 2002 and early 2003 were in fact unfettered, keep in mind that the only reason Saddam let the inspectors back in Iraq was because 150,000 U.S. troops were preparing to invade his country.  That point seems to get lost on people like Ritter, Hans Blix, and Mohammed El-Baradei, and perhaps you too.

          • Anonymous

             I have much to say in response to your last comment, but the site won’t let me fit it in. So I’ll end with this. It doesn’t matter why the inspectors were in Iraq in 2003. What matters is, they were there. Had they been allowed to continue their job, they would never have found the non-existent WMD and war could have been avoided. We went to war out of fear alone.  I guess the terrorists  won.                  won.onwonerroroGUESSALL.warwar

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

    George Bush should burn in eternal hell, along with the other lying neoCONS, who lied to the American people. They have perpetrated a blunder of HISTORIC proportions and the US will be paying for their criminality and stupidity for the next 100 years.

    • Eniwetok

      If we don’t learn from history, we’re doomed to repeat it. Yet as the guests proved, we’re determined not to learn.

      As Spock might say: fascinating!

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

        Indeed. We learned NOTHING from Vietnam, or any other military blunder we have been involved in. And the corrupt Congress continues to enrich itself at the expense of the middle class.

        • Modavations

          Remember the dominoes.They all became heinous Police States.Remember Pol Pot.He killed one third of the population.Sons and daughters were forced to condemn their parents,who then got a machete between the eyes.

          • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

            And your point is? It is not the responsibility of the US to police the world and send its sons and daughters off to die for nothing. I can tell this does not bother you. It should!

          • Modavations

            I like to intervene when the charnel houses and Gas chambers are in play.This reminds of the lady in New York 20 years ago, who cried and shreiked as they stabbed her to death.And noone lifted a finger.You’re callousness takes my breath

          • Anonymous

            Please name all of these heinous police states. And bear in mind that it was your good friend the United Nations ( all those sanctions !!! ) that gave the U.N. seat for Cambodia to the Khmer Rouge, whose leader was Pol Pot.

          • Modavations

            Vietnam,Cambodia,Laos,commonly known as the dominoes.As for the UN,I’d personally help them pack and move to Belgium.That is after I made them pay all the outstanding traffic tickets.We could probably balance the budget. 

          • Anonymous

            Throughout these comment pages you have been stating that the multiple U.N.    sanctions against Iraq were a good enough reason to go to war. Now you want to ship them off to Belgium. Let me get this straight. You hate the United Nations, except for the times they help you justify going to war. Even John Kerry or Mit Romney would be proud of such elegant flip-flopping.

        • nj

          No, no, Jason, they learned many lessons. Lie bigger, ignore dissent, repeat the “support the troops” mantra as a way of blunting and undermining opposition, fabricate and buy a “coalition of the willing,”…

      • Larrywg

        There must have been German officers who realized that marching off toward Moscow was fool-hardy, just as there must have been American officers who knew that Iraq would be far more difficult than the neo-cons predicted.  But humans are fallible even if they don’t recognize it in themselves.  Germans and Americans suffered from hubris.  I think the Germans have learned their lesson.

    • Modavations

      Just two questions,Before we hang Cheney ,Bush,Hillary,Bill,John Kerry,Bob Kerry,Levin,Leiberman,would you afford them a trial?Second question,if when blind folded and ready for the Firing Squad,would you give them a last cigarrette or is that un PC?

  • Listener

    Heard it all before, Ms Shake.  Don’t find this guest very convincing.  I appreciate her position, but it is quite redundant.  

  • Barry

    What’s the mystery?  Here’s a good summary of the “cost”:  http://usliberals.about.com/od/homelandsecurit1/a/IraqNumbers.htm  The kind of mystification and obsfucation of facts put forward in this show in the name of journalism is part of problem rather than any possible solution to the eternal specter of war.  It’s as if the 156 members of Congress who voted against Joint Resolution 114 and the millions of people who marched in the street to try to stop unilateral war, and who predicted ALL this, didn’t exist.  The war machine marches on, and this discussion is that part of it that follows in the wake, burning incense to cover the stench of rotting corpses.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    How much of the $24 $Billion, or MORE, that was ‘unaccounted for’, in Iraq, is in ‘W’, Cheney, or other criminals’ bank accounts?
        Crime doesn’t PAY?

    • Modavations

      Prove your charge,or is this just immature hyperbole

      • nj

        Ha, ha! That’s rich: Moda-troll—who has never included a single verifiable citation for any piece of fabricated quasi-fact he’s ever posted—is now demanding proof! Can’t make this stuff up! Another step toward full self-parodying.

        http://wemeantwell.com/blog/2011/08/30/us-has-wasted-30-billion-on-iraq-afghanistan-contracts/

        That report is expected to say the federal government wasted more than $30 billion on contracts and grants in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that without “major changes in law and policy” we’ll enjoy such a large degree of waste in future conflicts already now in planning. The waste works out to one in every six dollars spent.

        http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2011/06/23/17b_in_iraq_rebuilding_money_missing/

        $17b in Iraq rebuilding money missinghttp://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=1307649nSince the start of the Iraq war, billions of dollars given to private contractors have gone unaccounted for amid widespread allegations of fraud and war profiteering.

        • Modavations

          Excuse me,the charge was it went into Cheney’s bank account.How old are you and plaese tell me your fascination of Trolls.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    I was for the war. I didn’t care if the WMD was real or not I just wanted that evil man Saddam to be dead or booted out of Iraq. As I wrote before again and again that I wanted the war in Iraq to happen. I am also guilty for the crimes that the Bush administration did to the Iraqi people and the crime that he lied to the American people.

    I am sorry I was for the war in Iraq. I hope the American people can forgive me for supporting the war.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Thank you for this admission!  I, too. wanted Saddam gone, just NOT by a war that I could see was a money, power, and glory grab, by an AWOL, Deserter, a self-important Draft-Dodger, and such!

      • Modavations

        We had 15 sanctions(?) from the UN before we acted.Prove the AWOL,Deserter stuff.Show me proof,or is this just more immature theatrics

    • http://www.facebook.com/chuck.kollars Chuck Kollars

      GOAL: Saddam dead or booted out of Iraq – maybe (but was that _your_goal or the _Iraqi’s_ goal?)

      MEANS: war – nope! (any time troops don’t speak the local language things are likely to end badly  …shouldn’t have been a surprise)

  • Hennorama

    Thank goodness this fiasco is finally coming to an end.

    History will harshly judge the Bush/Chaney unprecedented policy of preemptive war against the invented strategic threat of supposed Iraqi WMD. 

    Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have perished in this war, and millions were displaced both internally and externally.  The memories of this war and the resulting hatred of the U.S. will persist in Iraqi society for decades, and may indeed foster future real enemies.

    Tens of thousands of US and Coalition soldiers and contractors have also been killed and wounded.

    In addition, the U.S. prestige in the world has been so diminished that it will take many years to recover.

    Not to mention the crippling economic, political and societal costs of this illegitimate war.  Not only was this trillion-dollar war unfunded (another precedent set by Bush/Cheney), but we also have thousands of veterans who will require decades of care.  In addition, we now have 15,00 plus personnel remaining at the US Embassy, and so on and so on.

    This war was worthwhile only to those who manufacture weapons or pump oil, and to terrorists who have been given an enormous opportunity to practice and refine their techniques.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    Saddam Hussein was planning to attack Saudi Arabia and Kuwait again if the war didn’t happen. He was losing a lot of options to feed his greed and the only solution was to invade Kuwait and Saudi Arabia for oil.

    I remember Bush senior was crying on the 700 club’s interview. he said “I should have finish the war and invaded Iraq after the liberation of Kuwait but I didn’t and someone else will finish it for me”

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      And we all know who finished it for him.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/3ETFGMQ3B7VD4AAMILBBEVMCWE JasonA

      Where is your proof?

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

        Wikileak.

        • Eniwetok

          Have a link for that?

          Saddam wasn’t in any position to attack anyone in 2002 and he had to know the US would never let him do it.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

            It was also on Israeli Intelligence report that he might attack again or the probability to invade those countries again. He fought the USA invasion to his last men. He had the capability for another invasion if the invasion didn’t occur. Remember the No Fly Zone? it was deeper inside Iraq if that No Fly Zone was not implemented he could have done it again.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

            Anyway the war is over per Feds. I rest my case. You have to watch other news not only American news to know the real facts about the Iraq war.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

            Wikileak is hard to navigate. you have to go there to find it.

          • Modavations

            You’re right!!!

          • Eniwetok

            Sorry, your post is pure nonsense. Saddams military was being starved for spare parts since the end of the Gulf War. That doesn’t mean he wasn’t putting on a show to bluff his neighbors, especially Iran.

          • Modavations

            What about Kuwait,he was headed for Saudi Arabia,I think

  • Modavations

    Jason A,enough of the theatrics.We are endlessly embroiled in the MidEast,because the left refuses to let us drill our own oil,or produce nuclear energy.Your devotion to Gaia has killed millions.2.5% of all US energy is afforded by windmills,etc,.I’ll consign Bush to hell if Hilary,Bill,Levin,Pelosi,J.Kerry,Bob Kerry and all the other leftist hypocrites follow

    • Eniwetok

      Please try to keep your replies attached to the original
      response or you too can be accused of theatrics.

      As for your point, there’s more than one part to the energy
      equation. You’re blinded by fossil fuel supply and are ignoring conservation/alternatives.
      We could have freed ourselves of mideast oil over the past 30 years if not for your kind of thinking.

      And that trillion we wasted on another oil war could have bought
      a lot of energy conservation and alternative supply.

      Instead it bought us
      nothing.

       

      • Modavations

        I am for absolutely everying.We’ve now lowered our MidEast imports to 52%.Again,if we secure our own sources(whatevwr they be)we can turn our backs on the Police States of the Middle East

        • nj

          Fuzzy ModaFact #435: “We’ve now lowered our MidEast imports to 52%.”

          It’s anyone’s guess what that means, since Modatroll is too lazy/inconsiderate/illiterate/incapable (choose one or more) to post coherent thoughts in syntactically complete sentences and provide verifiable references for his ethereal claims.

          The U.S. imports about 50% of all the crude oil it consumes:

          http://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.cfm?page=oil_home#tab2

          About 20% of U.S. oil imports come from the Middle East:

          http://www.appinsys.com/oil/

          http://www.eia.gov/pub/oil_gas/petroleum/data_publications/company_level_imports/current/import.html

          • Modavations

            This is the guy who told me the the defense budget was 902 billion and then went on and on with the innanities.We import 52 % of oil from the Mid east.Please explain the fascination with Troll?

          • nj

            $904 billion. Try to keep up.

            http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/defense_chart_30.htmlAll “defense” related spending, including non-Pentagon departments (FBI, State, etc.), Veterans Affairs, supplementals, etc. Pentagon budget is only a part—the largest part, but not all—of total defense empire maintenance and corporate-enhancement spending.”We import 52 % of oil from the Mid east.”Still a nonsensical statement. Strike two. No citation. Strike three.This kind of forum behavior defines trolling, but the afflicted are often incognizant of their condition.

      • Modavations

        What is your animous to oil.Have you been in the new Diesels that are all over Europe.They’re hot and get 45 miles per gallon.That’s a regular sized Audi.Explain your science

        • Pizzle

          pfff!  -animous-

          “What’s your animous, my manimous?”

        • Eniwetok

           

          I have no problem with fossil fuels. I just want to see them
          used wisely and wasted on spoiled rotten Americans and they 13mpg SUVs.

           

          We’ve become junkies spending hundreds of billions to
          protect our drug dealer, and there are better things we can spend our money on,
          like breaking the habit. And there are far better things American GIs can risk
          their lives on than keeping us spoiled.

           

          We act as if the world owes us its natural resources.

             

      • Modavations

        We pay 457 billion in interest on the debt this year alone.I think you protest to much about money

        • Eniwetok

          What does your post have to do with your post. You’re too damn random.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            That’s Moda, as we know him!!

        • freedlinskip

          Unfunded Wars might have some to d owith it.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          The debt of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the debts of cleaning up after BP, the debt of NOT paying off the debt that ‘W’ promised to do.  The list is LOOOOOOONG!

    • Fredlinskip

      Don’t believe Progressive administration was in power when Iraq War began. And I think it’s safe to say Gorr wouldn’t have gone to War in Iraq, much less manufacture reasons to do so as W & co. did.

      Think it’s more likely that Gorr would have used the occasion to find ways to lower our dependence on foreign oil.
      And you know what- if asked, Americans woukld have lead the way and found a way to do so.

      W administration on other hand encouraged us all to go out and buy Hummers and duct tape.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo send Filipino troops to Iraq but the Philippine Senate objected to it for no bases of proof of the WMD and was unconstitutional sending Filipinos soldiers without the consent of the Senate and at the same time a Filipino truck driver was kidnapped. She seceded and withdraw Filipino marines from Iraq.

    Iraq and Afghanistan war was the only Wars that the Philippines did not send troops to fight shoulder to shoulder with American soldiers.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      If we did the Iraqi war will be a different story.

  • Eniwetok

    There’s an old saying that if all you have is a hammer, all problems look like nails. And so it was with the Bush Neocons. Enthralled as they were with US military might, were absolutely blind to other options after 911.

    All those resources wasted on war could have been used to for a peace/charm/development offensive in the Islamic/Arab world. We could have finally pushed Israel and the Palestinians into a final peace agreement. 

    Those two things alone would have done more to reduce anti-US animosity than starting a war against another Arab/Islamic nation, this time one obviously not involved in 911.
    Doing the right thing is held hostage by the reactionary American Right and the Israeli lobby that reflects the views of the reactionary Israeli Right, and we have paid dearly for our lack of moral courage in confronting them.

    • Modavations

      Bill Clinton had the Isreali President and Arafat in front of the cameras ,about to shake on the deal and Arafat walked.Did anuyone ever find the two billion Arafat was supposedf to have embezzeled

      • Marty Speller

        Maybe the two billion is in the same place as the five billion A YEAR we give to Israel in foreign aid while Israel flaunts international law, colonizes land it captured in war, steals more land, bombs civilians, demolishes Palestinian houses, destroys livestock and olive groves belonging to the native Palestinians, humiliates the Pals on a daily basis at the endless roadblocks, etc.  www.JewishVoiceforPeace.org
        http://www.IfAmericansKnew.org

        • Modavations

          They buy armament with the loans(not foreign aid)they hardly need welfare

          • Eniwetok

            The Settler movement in the occupied territories are heavily subsidized by the government. I call that welfare.

      • Eniwetok

        What the hell does your post have to do with any topic I raised?

  • Patrick

    After all of the words wasted on this subject, what is left to be said?

    How about, “Goodbye, Iraq.  Even though you’ll never hear this from anyone responsible, we’re very sorry.”

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

      Me too, I put my pen down.

  • Bob Johnson

    Having Peter Beinart on is an insult. Here is a know-nothing pundit who cheerleaded this war and berated war opponents at the war’s onset. He has disqualified himself from commenting on this travesty and tragedy of a war.

    • Tecumseh

      Liberal hawks like Beinart should never get the public microphone again for the rest of their lives.  He is either an idiot or totally corrupt.

      • Modavations

        Ah the tolerant left.Again,the whole world finds NPR ridiculous.

        • Anonymous

          That’s funny, I did a poll and the world said they find you ridiculous.

          • Eniwetok

            After just being here for one day and reading his nutty posts, you’re being too kind jeffe68.  

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Wait til you get to know him!!

        • fredlinskip

          The entire world inside Moda’s head, at least.

          The entire world of those that have had the privilege of reading Modas comments realize his world is a bit… delusional.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Evidently he was an opportunist, that didn’t do his job as a journalist, then faked his reporting!  NOW he wants to change sides?   Can ANYONE believe him?

  • Gerhardovic

    All I can say about Iraq is about how it has affected our family, more specifically my cousin’s family.  I have a picture on my PC at work of her husband cuddling on their bed with their kids.  That’s all we have of him anymore.

    He was US Army, a member of a Bradley crew.  He was good at his job based on the unit commendations they got.  He got deployed twice.  He must have have real doubts about whether it was all worth it, because before he could be deployed a 3rd time he committed suicide near Ft. Hood.  What more is there to say?

    • nj

      Clicking “like” for this seems like not the right thing to do, but thanks for sharing that.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      My deepest regrets over your tragic loss!  I know I haven’t the words, and the war-mongers haven’t the money, to make it any better.

  • Ben Millstein

    We should have given them billions and never done anything.  Saddam would have taken a bunch of it, but no-one would have been killed and the country wouldn’t have been torn apart.

  • Dave

    Paul calls out Gingrich’s war mongering/draft dodging today…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJ_9xc2GKog

  • Arlene Malyszek

    Point 1:
    I cannot help but wonder how the many callers from today’s show felt at the beginning of the Iraq war.  Many now say that we should not have been in Iraq.  My question is why we, the American people, who in the beginning felt that this war was not what America should do, did not stand together in a peaceful protest expressing our views against going to war?  What right do we have now to bemoan what we did?  Only the right to realize our mistakes and contemplate the many tragedies of war.  My wish is that we have learned what happens if the majority stays silent; my wish is that we have learned to use our freedom of speech to stand for and speak out for what we believe is the fundamentally right thing to do for America and all of humanity. 
    And so the question lingers.  If we had let government know that the will of the people was a resounding no, then maybe we, blessed as we are with the freedom of speech, would have seen a different outcome.  Let us not just blame this on our government, but let us all take blame for keeping quiet.  We turned our face away and we now need to face the consequences.
    Point 2:After the 9-11 attacks, I remember Osama Bin Laden broadcasting to the world that the attacks were the start of his goal to bring down America.  Contemplate that thought for awhile as you examine what has happened to America and the world in the past 9 years of war.  If we, both the American people and our government, are not careful, he may achieve his goal.
    Thank you for a great show!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/chuck.kollars Chuck Kollars

      I recall 100,00 people demonstrating in New York City [Feb 15, 2003]. That standing together in peaceful protest happened _before_ the war  …but somehow the administration went to war anyway.

      I recall protest campaigns coordinate worldwide (including one in Rome so large it was a World Record according to Guiness). I recall the foreign secretary of another country being so upset he broke diplomatic protocol to accost an unprepared Colin Powell directly without translator assistance. I recall posters on telephone poles in my town quoting Shakespeare and advising us not to be fooled yet again.

      We really did try hard. Why didn’t they listen?

      • Terry Tree Tree

        MONEY!!!

      • Anonymous

        I was in NYC that snowy weekend to protest the war with a couple of my friends and was called all sorts of names and was bullied by the police. My g/f at the time traveled with her friends from her native Florenece to Rome to do the same. Not sure how Arlene missed it. There were massive protests even in a country that’s one of our closest allies and who sent support troops like South Korea. 

    • Fredlinskip

      Point 1: you may not have noticed, but those that had a view contrary point of view to the War were not given a whole lot of media coverage.
      Matter of fact those that spoke out against the War were considered unpatriotic and “with the terrorists.
      Have media outlets apologized for their part in the massive amount of misinformation fed to Americans at the time. Not too many.
      Fox “News” certainly continues to perpetuate the  “War is good” paradigm.

      Point 2: There are still a high percentage of Americans today who STILL believe as W and Cheney claimed, that Iraq had something to do with what happened on 9/11.
      Apparently you are one of them.
      THIS JUST IN- Osama Bin Laden had nothing to do with 9/11.

      • Fredlinskip

        Oops!!! please pardon heck out of me. Meant Sadaam had nothing to do with 9/11. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      ‘W’ and cohorts in crime, ACHIEVED bin Laden’s goal!!  The Banksters got a LOT of it!

  • Modavations

    DON’T FORGET,THE lUDDITES HAVE BANNED THE 100 wATT LIGHT BULB in 15 days.By the way Canada said enough of the Global Warming malarky(?)and pulled out of Kyoto.Gaia,Goddess of the left,you’ll have to pry that lt.bulb from my cold,blue hand

    • Anonymous

      Luddite: One who fears technology( or new technology, as they seem pleased with how things currently are…. why can’t everything just be the same ? ) – Urban Dictionary

      • Modavations

        The leftist says stay out of my bedroom,or don’t mess with my womb,but your 100Watt bulb must go.The whole world finds NPR riduiculous

        • Pizzle

          Preach it!  Oh dude, dude – we need a light bulb party!  I can be the leader, and I’ll be called Hundie Watts.  You can write the platform and I’ll bring the hype and the slogans like You might be brighter but we’re much hotter, like the Earth’s gonna be when your city’s underwater!  Say Watt!!! Say Watt!!!

        • Fredlinskip

          The entire world inside Moda’s head, at least.

          The entire world of those that have had the privilege of reading Modas comments realize his world is a bit… delusional.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Trust me, I’ll STAY out of your bedroom!!  Get ‘limp-wristed’ about someone else!

        • Anonymous

          Yo Yo Mo Mo, that was a verse!

          Sinister Suckas want we out they bed room,
          but my rhymes be implantin’ up up in they womb!
          We the Light Bulb Party, stockin’ up on we bulbs,
          Hundie Watts and Modavations, CFLs be dull!

        • Eniwetok

          Now it’s light bulbs and NPR?

          What do either have to do with Iraq?

    • Pizzle

      Compact fluorescent – more like compact “bore-escent.”  I like my light bulbs like I like my halloween candy, with a white-hot slinky inside

    • nj

      More off-topic, delusional yammering about non-existent light-bulb bans. New 73-watt bulbs will have the light output of the older, 100-watt ones. This is clearly a threat to the progress of Western civilization.

      Moda-troll thinks that repeating the same, bogus nonsense over and over somehow makes it true.

      • Pizzle

        Nah, it’s not the same.  I gots to have three-digit wattage, cuz I’m Hundie Watts and you’re listening to me and Moderbations, the new Light Bulb Party B.I.P.’s on NPR.  The world’s just hating because we make this dumpy network incandescent.

        • nj

          The Incandescent Party will rise!!

    • Terry Tree Tree

      WHEN are you going to break  down and READ the new regulations?   Yes, I know, you couldn’t spew chunks about it, if you READ it!

    • Anonymous

      Yes yes!  That’s why the LBP lettin’ y’all know now – Incandescents is tight, hot, and with a little Macguyverin’ you can smoke y’alls drugs out ‘em.  Now, with skilz, and with some tools and epoxies and shee, you can get ya smokes on with a CFL too, but Hundie Watts withholds his seal of approvin’ from that method, on account of the Mercury.

    • Eniwetok

      I’m at a loss. Someone can come into this forum and post some off topic blubber and the post isn’t deleted?

      Global warming? Canada? Gaia? Light bulbs?

      And your post has what to do with Iraq?

      • Terry Tree Tree

        That’s Modavations!

    • Eniwetok

      You remind me of a friend of mine who had a bi-polar breakdown. He lost his job because of it. But if he were posting here, he’d sound like you before he finally was prescribed the right medication.

  • Anonymous

    Today’s show is emblematic of a frequent On Point failing, namely a dearth of truly divergent viewpoints. The guests more or less share Tom’s misgivings about the war, with Schake at best ambivalent. The result is a feedback loop in which idiotic statements from the likes of Wilkerson — a ridiculous blowhard who’s a laughingstock everywhere except NPR — and the lightweight partisan Beinart go uncontested. And predictably, following the program’s narrative arc, the forum has become a fever swamp of rapid anti-Bush blather.   

    • Patrick

      Yeah, what it needed was someone to tell these Lefties that the war was necessary, correct, and going great, until that muslim Obummer messed it up.  For the life of me, I don’t understand why they don’t invite a Conservative Thought Leader like Rush or Hannity to sit in on every show.

      • Marty Speller

        What branch of the US Armed Services did Rush or Hannity serve in?  Where?  When?  We’re listening to actual veterans.

        • Patrick

          I’m just agreeing with Zenplatypus that more diverse viewpoints are needed.  This show was so lame – who cares what a retired US colonel and Colin Powell’s chief of staff thinks about a war?  Throw in some Republican Party mouthpieces and professional bloviators, Toby Keith, various TV personalities, and Mos Def stoned on reefer; then you’ll have yourself an informative discussion.

          On Point is so polite and intellectual – it’s gross.

          • Anonymous

            Well isn’t that special. Yes, that was precisely my point. Perhaps some day you’ll learn what a straw man argument is. In the meantime, please continue to enlighten us. You’re just so … so worldly.  

          • Pizzle

            You and me, my man.  We GOT this.

      • Easy

        On what planet do you spend the majority of your time?

      • Anonymous

        I’m inclined to think this is sarcasm.
        At least I hope it is.

        • TFRX

          I’m taking Patrick as stone-cold deadpan, edging just a little bit into The Onion territory just to make sure we pick up on it.

    • Anonymous

      This is what those of us who weren’t duped by the Bush administrations foolishness refer to as rabid pro-Bush blather

    • Modavations

      The entire world finds NPR ridiculous

      • Anonymous

        The entire world?

      • Patrick

        It’s true, I took an internet poll, and the whole internet was like, “NPR booooooooooo lolcatz planking fail”

      • Anonymous

        I thought it was the entire universe…

      • Fredlinskip

        The entire world inside Moda’s head, at least.
        But then again the entire world of those that have had the privilege of reading Modas comments realize his world is a bit… delusional.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        MORE Delusions of Grandeur!!   Moda KNOWS ALL!!  Moda NEVER lies!!   Moda knows the attitued of EVERYONE on the planet!!

        • Pizzle

          Brother Mo knows his light bulbs though, you’ve gotta give him that.  He’s the brains of the Light Bulb Party, and I’m the magic.  He’s troll trollin’ while I’m pro rollin’.

          One of these days Tom Cash-Broke is going realize what he’s sittin’ on, drop Jack Beady and give Modo Teabaggins and me a whole show, and we’ll drop knowledge about the LBP.

          • Modavations

            I consulted me dictionary of  “leftist gooble de gook(Ebonics Edition)” and this still makes no sense.The world finds NPR’s left to be ridiculous. 

          • Anonymous

            Hey, don’t get excited my partner!  You’re the idea man, and I’m the hype man/lyricist.  We’re the total package – you’re old school like old school light bulbs, and I’ve got the flavor and charisma to make your message go down with the teens, tweens, post-teens and young professionals.

  • American Man

    It is amazing at how naive some people can be. Did I agree with the prospect of going to war in Iraq? No. But the decision was made regardless of how the reasoning went. Our government made this decision, not just the President. It became clear very soon that the justifications for why were completely wrong, and the length of time that would be necessary to reach a tangible goal of functional new Iraq were grossly underestimated.

    Now we are out, mission complete. Or is it? We shall see in time just how functional the new Iraq is. Just how well they will move forward with a nation like Iran attempting to exert their influence on the situation?

    The honest truth seems to boil down to all these ‘decisions’ have been made with the idea of political expediency. The popular ideas have been pushed forward without the forethought of what these decisions will really mean to our country. Damn how we appear to the rest of the world. We will forever be the evil capitalists, and the ugly Americans to much of the world and so be it.

    History shows us that despite our reflections and studies, we will inevitably make the same mistakes over and over again.

    So what do we have?

    Lessons learned:   Probably none.

    Gains:   A free Iraq. And by extension we could say the Arab Spring.

    Losses:    Human lives.

    Was it worth it? Only you can answer that, it is just that personal.

    • Modavations

      Hear,Hear

      • Fredlinskip

        Salutations, comrade!!!
        Ain’t War grand!!!

      • Patrick

        Yeah, let me pick this up and bust out some keystyle -

        Hear Hear / you fluorescent peasants better Fear Fear / the LBP / Modo Teabaggins and me / Hundie Watts / Y’all be seein’ spots / Light Bulb Par-tay (that’s LBP) / be burnin’ out, y’all be fading away / so kiss LEDs!!!

        Say Watt?!?  Hundie Watts, AKA Pizzle, AKA White-Hot Slinky, gracin’ the place along with Modavations, AKA Modo Teabaggins, now endtroducin’ you to the Light Bulb Party, keeping it old school.  We power hungry.

    • Pizzle

      Totally.  ‘Cause like, who really knows anything, you know?  They say some people got blowed up, but that was the media and they’re all Lefties anyway.

      I don’t know, I think that Iran better give back that drone or we should just go BUK BUK BABOOOM and then be like “what happened, why you crying?”  Cause that’s just life, sometimes you’re the size fourteen waffle stomper and sometimes you’re the Middle East, and we’re just figuring this mess out, or not, as it happens.  I read that ess in the I Ching.

      Oh yeah, RON PAUL 2012!!! RON PAAAAAAWLLL

    • Fredlinskip

      I guess crippling injuries and lost limbs don’t count as losses?
      Psychological damage to countless vets not much of a cost- they probably went a bit nuts if they stayed at home I suppose.
      Apparrently stoking hate against Americans thereby creating more terrorists might be considered in equation?
      Perpetuating militatry industrial complex should be taken into consideration.
      Freedoms lost.
      Missing a golden opportunity to unite the world instead of acting pretty much unilaterally- PREICELESS!
      Not funding War and then failing to even pretend any $ was spent at all until after W administration.
      Encouraging no-bid contracts and endless corruption.
      Distracting America from taking care of host of domestic issues.

      Lessons learned- do Americans wake up?
      Do we do all we can to prevent such a thing ever happening again?
      Or do we all just smile benignly and watch another episode of “Dancing Wih the Stars”

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Such a simplistic, inaccurate, condescending excuse!

  • Modavations

    I just saw Corzine looking under his desk for the 1.2 billion.It reminded me of Bush looking under the desk for the lost WMDs

    • Anonymous

      That’s pretty funny.

      • Eniwetok

        NO it’s not funny. Stop feeding the nutty troll.

    • Zing

      It reminded me of Clinton looking for his Bible when the Lewinsky  story broke.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Which was the bigger, more HURTFUL LIE?

    • Eniwetok

      Let me guess, only the Democrat should go to jail?

  • Tecumseh

    Why was no war critic included in this panel?  I was smart enough to oppose this war before it started.  Why should anyone listen to these dumbshits on the panel?

    • Pizzle

      Why should anyone listen to the panels on YOUR panel?

    • unjustifiablewar

      i heard criticism of the war, the money spent, the loss of life (more than the towers + FL93 + PENT US and 10s of 1000s in Iraq) but it was framed as hindsight — too much “no one could have predicted.” However, there were plenty of people who saw the reality of the situation but the bush jr government didn’t want to listen (or change their path).

      • Terry Tree Tree

        They got too much MONEY from it to listen!

    • Eniwetok

      This seems a good place to repost what I wrote earlier.

      I’m struck by the narrow ideological spectrum OP has chosen to have represented as guests.

      Noam Chomsky once said that in the US there’s a very narrow range of acceptable thought. He used the example that during the Vietnam war there were the Hawks and Doves. Both believed in the in the implicit US doctrinethat the US had a right to use force in international affairs, even break international law. The difference between them was the Hawks thought we had theright to escalate to guarantee victory while the Doves held the price of the war was too high. Outside this narrow spectrum of permissible thought was the peace movement which held the US had no right to use force in international affairs let alone break international law.

      And so where are the guests that believe the Bush led the US into an illegal war of aggression and Bush/Cheney and others should be prosecuted at war criminals?

      Listening to Thom’s questions he, too, seems tofall into this narrow spectrum. The question is not whether it was “worth the cost”, or how could so badly misestimate the difficulty.

      If we don’t learn the true lessons about this illegal war,or the Crash of 2008, we’re doomed to repeat them.

  • Zing

    If Bush 1 has cooked ‘em all when he had the chance the world would be a better place.

    • Hidan

      least you didn’t add oven.

    • CoolerHead

      He was too smart to, because he knew it would lead to a power vacuum and a civil war.

    • Fredlinskip

      It’s apparent Zings’ brain has been cooked for years.

    • nj
    • Eniwetok

      To the moderators: Advocating nuclear genocide should be a reason for being banned from this site.

  • Jtegan0103

    Good Faith is a chicken**** excuse for invading Iraq

  • DGH

    I enjoyed the show today.  Reading over many of the comments below reminds me that any war is confusing.  For me on the one hand I am glad Saddam is no longer in power.  On the other hand, I don’t like how we were fooled into getting into this war, and the eventual costs.  Cost is measured in both lives and money.  Though money may seem like a crass measure for a war, that was money we could have used for other purposes in this country.  I wrote a short story call “The Voices” out of motivation to describe the personal toll and confusion of fighting in a war.  It’s part of a collection I published available at the link below.

     https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/58170

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Those of us that WEREN’T fooled into the Iraq war, were called ‘traitors’, and ‘unpatriotic’, by people that had NOT served as honorably as us!  WE didn’t make $BILLIONS off the suffering, like ‘W’, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, and others that promoted it!!  Want to know who promoted it, with lies?  Follow the MONEY!!

  • Luisella Simpson

    FOR THE MOTHERS ! I shall never forget the « On Point » program in which Tom Ashbrook spoke with a mother who had lost her son in Irak, around the moment of his 20th birthday. She described a phone call which her son had managed to make to her shortly before. The love which flowed from her recalling it, so sensitively accompanied by Tom, was one of the most moving moments I have ever witnessed on radio, and in life. The present moment should be dedicated to all those sons and all those mothers. They must not be, they are not, forgotten.
     
    Luisella

    • Eniwetok

      Yes they must never be forgotten, but we also must never forget that all those killed and mained in a war fought for reasons other true national security were lost in vain. All the flag waving and after the fact rationalizations can’t change that fact.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chuck.kollars Chuck Kollars

    Today the Iraq war seems a very costly mistake. What matters now is not rewriting history, but rather preventing it happening again. Blaming it on a “perfect storm” is just wriggling off the hook. (the “perfect storm” theory: congress didn’t do their job _and_ the media didn’t do their job _and_ the permanent bureacracy didn’t do it’s job _and_ the political opposition didn’t do its job) If it happened once, it can (and probably will) happen again.Let’s change our system so it can’t happen again …specifically _what_ should we change?

  • Mitchell

    The war was sold to the US public based on multiple lies – weapons of mass destruction and Saddam Husein working with El-Qaida being two of the biggest. After thousands of American deaths and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi deaths we leave Iraq in a more unstable position than before the war. George Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice and Powell are nothing more than cold calculating murderers who should be tried for their crimes. We don’t leave Iraq with any kind of honor as Obama suggests. We leave in shame and disgrace.

  • Steveffr

    You have to look at the Iraq/ afghan wars in historical context.

    Start with cost Iraq/ afghan cost 1 % of. GDP per year. Vietnam 10 % Korea 8 %
    WW II 13 %

    Loss of lives Iraq / Afghan 4,600, Vietnam 58,000, Korea 54,000 WW II. 450,000
    World wide est 75 Million.

    I write these figures only for a reality check. We all agree one life is too many to loose.

    If you listened to the program tonite the USA was broken completely by the wars of the last decade. REALLY …… It. Does not sqaure with reality.

    We lost 3,000 innocent people in one day 9/11 , 3,000 or so at pearl harbor, and D Day. On the final day of WW I. Nov 11th 1918. An end to the war was agreed to a 5 Am in the morning , for some reason the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11 th month sounded better. That morning. More than 3200 american soliders would lose

    their lives 3 at 10 55 am five minutes before the war would end.

    Not a bad deal from a historical perspective

    • Fredlinskip

      Therfore America should remain in perpetual War, searching for countries to occupy…

      Because we can.

  • Henry Escobar

    What about the Iraqis?  Their history?  The history of their gift to civilization?  We used our tanks to open their national library, their museums.., burned it all just like the barbarians did ages ago to… make them forget how important they were once.  The first forms of writing come from their.., the domestication of animals.., algebra et cetera.  And what about their oil?  Is the oil of Iraq for the Iraqi people now (the revenue and production is understood)?  Is like Libya, everything we heard from it was from us (the people that kill their “dictator”), but all of the sudden we don’t hear anything from that region of the world.  Is the libyan oil for the Libyans now? This is one of many points on this ridiculous hegemony we won’t be able to keep a hold on for long.

  • Oliver from NYC

    Tom Ashbrook alluded to the difficulty in taking away a concrete, coherent message/moral/lesson from a war that so long.  Perhaps that is a lesson in and of itself: Don’t perpetuate/participate in a war that lasts so long that the government, the military, and indeed the citizens of the country begin to take the war for granted (ie. feeling resigned to the human, economic, emotional costs indefinitely).

  • Anonymous

    For the love of god, Peter Beinert is more unlistenable than Kori Schake and represents all that’s wrong with US liberals and liberalism as its become in this country. You’d expect the usual rubbish from the Bush apologists, but why even bother giving the likes of Beinert a forum at all? Many on the left figured it out before the bombs began to fall over Bagdad, but Beinert gulped down the Kool-Aid like a 5-year-old after playing a game of Cowboys and Indians all afternoon. 

    And why don’t people ever ask any Iraqi’s if it was all worth it? Don’t you think they’re entitled to their own version of their history be it via oral tradition, which though perhaps not book accurate in details is nevertheless poignant, powerful and will be passed down from generation to generation, or via their own scholarly works that are constantly evolving according to their zeitgeist? And you presume to ask “what have we learned?” In posing this very question, we have an answer. It’s why we keep repeating the same mistakes despite temporal rally cries of “we won’t repeat the same mistake of Vietnam.”

    As Camus noted, the absurdity lies in Sisyphus’ scorn for his plight that he is bound to repeat what he so abhors.

    • TFRX

      Why give Beinart a forum? Good question.
      Because that’s what the mainstream press does. Beinart has proved that he’s not going to roil the waters from the left-wing side of things. He’s a “liberal”, see, but the good kind who isn’t too “pacifisty”*.

      Beinart has decided he’d rather keep getting on “respectable” TV and radio and magazines. The moment he comes to, apologizes about being on the wrong side in the runup to Iraq, is the moment he falls off the press’ Rolodex. Then all he’ll have is his “reputation”.

      (*At which point my tongue went through my cheek.)

      • Anonymous

        I barely stomached an interview conducted by Bill Moyers several years ago of Beinert. Moyers took him to task a bit for having supported the “free the people of Iraq” by bombing them day in and day out, and Beinert said he had reached his conclusion by reading as many books on the issue as he could. I felt like jumping into the TV and giving the smug schmuck a flying kick. 

  • Fredlinskip

    A thought to consider:
    There were no terrorists in Iraq before we attacked.

    • Eniwetok

      Technically there may have been, in the Kurdish northern
      no-fly zone protected against Saddam by US airpower. That technicality didn’t
      stop Powell from claiming this was proof Saddam coddled Islamist terrorists and
      was just another example of how Bush was gunning for a war when the evidence
      Iraq posed a threat  just didn’t exist.

       

  • Anonymous

    The War of the Five Lies:
    1.  Saddam has weapons of mass destruction
    2.  Saddam has ties to Al Quaida
    3.  We won’t need to send in ground troops
    4.  It will only take a few weeks
    5.  Revenues from oil sales will pay for it

    Courtesy of Dick Cheney on Fox News (maybe it was Meet the Press–it was so long ago I can’t remember–but I clearly remember him saying those five things in that interview–with a straight face, no less!)

  • Eniwetok

    A key question that has going unanswered the past 9 years is Bush a war criminal? I see two obvious areas of investigation. Did Bush really get authorization from Congress to go to war, and did he operate outside the UN?

    The Authorization to Use Force had two main conditions which I’d argue Bush never met.

    http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/D?c107:5:./temp/~c107naREeI::

    SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES.

    (a) AUTHORIZATION- The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to–(1) defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and(2) enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.

    The first condition: Bush was authorized to take military action to defend the nation against the “continuing threat” posed by Iraq. But Iraq posed no threat. Saddam was a pain in the ass, but to say he was a real threat to the US was a lie Bush and Cheney worked long and hard to fabricate. So is Bush guilty of perjury?
    The second condition was Bush was required to work with the UN.

    SEC. 2. SUPPORT FOR UNITED STATES DIPLOMATIC EFFORTS.

    The Congress of the United States supports the efforts by the President to–(1) strictly enforce through the United Nations Security Council all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq and encourages him in those efforts; and(2) obtain prompt and decisive action by the Security Council to ensure that Iraq abandons its strategy of delay, evasion and noncompliance and promptly and strictly complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.

    Bush put on a show of cooperation but never got from the UN Security Council the OK to invade. He did get the approval to get weapons inspectors back in, but the UN Security Council never OKed actual force. We see in the US draft language that Bush asked for that language and it was rejected. Bush ultimately invaded with a fake coalition that had some UN members, but it wasn’t sanctioned by the UN. So was Bush guilty of violating the UN Charter which according to the Constitution as a ratified treaty is also the supreme law of the land? 

    On either grounds, Bush and Cheney should have been impeached and removed from office. If they violated the UN Treaty, they should have been sent to the Hague for a war crimes.

    If we are to be a nations of laws not men, then the biggest crimes of the last decade, the Iraq War and the crimes of Wall Street MUST finally be investigated. 

  • Thomas Hazard

    We need to bring the draft back and share the sacrifice of going to war. I see no other just way to make sure leaders take us to war on false pretense

    • Heeltap

      Correction :DO not ttake The US  to war on false pretense

    • Eniwetok

      What are you talking about? The draft certainly didn’t stop
      LBJ from escalating the Vietnam war; another war fought for a lie.

      The obvious and less radical and legal solution is to
      impeach the bastards. If we had impeached Bush then we’d probably never have
      that problem again. That sure beats enslaving our children into lives of involuntary
      servitude.

      That we  as a nation
      lacked the moral courage to impeach our War Criminal In Chief makes more such
      wars likely just as Gerry Ford’s forgiveness of Nixon made illegal actions by
      presidents more likely, unless it had to do with getting it on with an intern.

      The real question is why aren’t you thinking along the
      obvious line and instead of pushing a radical “solution” we already
      know does not work?  

  • Tracynecaumartin

    I have to applaud Kori’s candor and stealth in her addressing Mr. Ashbrook’s goating and redundant questioning.  It is profound that the quest in this broadcast reflects the obvious as well as attempting to achieve a definitive notion of “was it worth it”…really?

    • Heeltap

      I found her sexy whispering voice a problem in this context!

      • weese

        That was sexy?

      • robert

        i found her remove bloodless;
         “oh, come on, tom” etc

      • Terry Tree Tree

        War is sexy to those that profit from it!

    • Jacque_hp

      You sound like the idiots that justified the war…to the contrary .. Kori failed miserably at her stubborn Cheny-like attempt to defend the indefensible position and decision SHE made along with the Cheney/Bush WH to start a war based on a flawed ideology. If you notice in her bio she neglected to mention that she was a member of the Natl Security Council during the Bush Admin and she is DIRECTLY responsible for the flawed and exploitation of FEAR for political gain.  The admin Ms. Kori was a part of will go down in history as being the one that BROKE THE WORLD.  And they all became rich as a result! I applaud Mr. Ashbrook for not allowing her to pass on NOT explaining her incomplete response!

  • S.

    Face it. The U.S. was lobbied a bait, and the hyper-masculine hubris-driven don’t-you-dare empire took it… the masterminds of 9/11 achieved the objective of breaking this nation’s back. Not through the original bombing, but the knee-jerk reaction that followed. 

  • Lisaridgway

    In February 2003 many of us talked about “Bombing them with Butter” as a solution to Iraq. At that point, the Taliban was a rag-tag gang of hoodlums who had no education and no prospects. By our destructive invasion, we inspired endless numbers of Iraqis to join the Taliban and fight us.
    Dick Cheney was the individual who profited the most from the war. Thousands of people have lost lives and love ones; the country has lost $$$$$. With Iran, let’s think about “Bombing them with Butter,” which means humanitarian aid to the people, giving them hope for a positive, peaceful future. No one in their right mind wants war. Hear that, Cheney??

    • pete

      How do you think Dick Cheney “profited?”

      • robert

        his stock portfolio grew exponentially. how do you think he didn’t profit?

        • pete

          Cheney and his wife assigned all the profits from his Haliburton stock to charity so that there was no way he could personally profit from any Haliburton activity during and after his time in office.

          There is plenty to criticize about the Iraq war but making up false conspiracy stories about Bush and Cheney going to war to make money is childish and avoids learning any real lessons about what happened.

          http://www.factcheck.org/kerry_ad_falsely_accuses_cheney_on_halliburton.html

      • Lisaridgway

        Since he couldn’t be paid directly for all the Haliburton contracts he manuvered as vice president, it was said that Haliburton put > a million dollars a year in a “trust fund” for him for those 8 years. Meantime, all his cronies at Halliburton made out like bandits during the war. Go back and look it up.

        • pete

          Do you have any actual evidence for this besides “it was said” ?

    • Lisaridgway

      I agree. I marched in SF February 2003 with >100,000 people who were against the impending war.
      Napoleon said that all we ever learn from history is that we never learn from history. The following words are perhaps a case in point:
      “The common people don’t want war. That is clear enough. But the leaders of a country determine its policy, and it is not difficult for the leaders to persuade the people to accept their policy. All that is necessary is to convince the people that they are in danger of attack, to denounce political adversaries as unpatriotic, and to urge war. It works every time.”
                      —Nazi leader Hermann Goering,
                   at the Nuremberg Trials, April 18, 1946

      • TFRX

        One hundred thousand marched against the invasion? I was glued to CNN and I didn’t see it!

        (Kidding, of course. There’s a special right-wing media math in which the optics of 1 Tea partier at a rally gets the same coverage as about 500 left-wingers.)

  • Dayton Loyd

    GREAT discussion that had me glued to the radio for more than 40 minutes after arriving home from work. Your guest were the most articulate and well informed speakers on the subject that I have heard in a long time.
    My take on Iraq is that we went in for the right reasons but only found out they were flawed reasons after the fact. The biggest problem with both wars is that we have failed to define success to a level that would allow our troops to come home.
    Thank you! US Army 30 years with several deployments to both Iraq and Afghanistan.

    • nj

      [[ My take on Iraq is that we went in for the right reasons but only found out they were flawed reasons after the fact. ]]
      This is clearly not true. It is well documented from multiple sources that the “reasons” were lies from the outset. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Thank you for your service to your country!  Fellow Vet.
          I have to disagree with you about the U.S. going to war for the right reasons!  The LIES sounded right to a lot of people.  Those of us that saw through them, and questioned them, were called ‘unpatriotic’, for seeking and seeing the truth.

    • Eniwetok

      The biggest problem with both wars is that we have failed to define success to a level that would allow our troops to come home.

      You mean the biggest problem wasn’t going to war in Iraq based on lies? I know those who serve respect the Commander in Chief and need to trust him (or her). But should our GIs should be fighting and dying for lies or political advantage in an election or because Shrub thought Saddam wanted to kill his daddy?

    • heaviest cat

      Actually , Dayton, The CIA had doubts about the stated reasons for invading Iraq. Also because it was expedient for US elite interests, having nothing to do with national security, the US gave logistical material and financial support to Saddam even as he was gassing the Kurds. it’s when he acted on his own that Bush and Cheney lied about his connections to al Qeada and WMDs.
           Now I certainly don’t blame the troops for this. (my landlady’s grandson served in Iraq) I blame our country’s leadership who serve power interests rather than we, the people. The might and dedication of our military, to me was grossly misused. Glad ,you’re back. Be well.

  • JRH

    K. Schake was disgusting in her faint, seductive voice, a continuing, disguised exponent in “gently tampered tones” of the right-wing lies that led to the Iraq War, not wanting to admit the schemes that she was a part of, typically disguised in defense of political shortsightedness, and as usual, acting and sounding as if challenging questions do not deserve answers from her. 

    • weese

      She sounded like a zombie.

    • Eniwetok

      She was the velvet voice of fascism.

  • freedlinskip

    Am I the only one on this comments page that believe “collateral damage” of innocent Iraqi lives is relevant to discussion.
    Thought experiment:
    Can you imagine your spouse and children killed as part of collateral damage?
    How would you feel about that? Would you say- Oh well the American occupiers meant well.  
    Do we ever concern ourselves about what Iraqi opinion is of our conquest “in their behalf”?

    • JRH

      Well said, freedlinskip

    • robert

      hardly. they are my only consideration as they asked for none of it, suffered all of it. i thought ms. shockey’s attitude smug, reprehensible.

    • Eniwetok

      It’s a blind spot in American Exceptionalism. The world revolves around us, don’t you know! Come to think of it, that’s not just ethnocentric or nationalistic. It’s closer to being sociopathic. We don’t need principles. We are a principle unto ourselves.

    • heaviest cat

      Naom Chomsky makes that good point in much of his writing, skip. That’s why he only makes an appearance on “public” radio maybe once every five years.

  • Markpoehner

    The President’s remark “history will judge” is a political statement, not a genuine evaluation. He is simply trying not to is to step on the toes of hawks in “undecided” camp in elections next year. The war was a huge error, a terrible failure in judgment of our country. Besides costing us the lives and health of thousands of service members, it cost us our moral credibility as a nation, our economic stability and the mental health of a generation of Americans.

    • nj

      Typical of Obummer’s congenital inability to take a definitive, strong, principled stance on anything.

      • Modavations

        Is the word Troll fashionable with all the kids,or is it only a term used by Leftist kids?How old are you?.I’m 60 and I’ve heard Troll used more in 3 months, then my whole life.To me a Troll is a Viking Legend.Either a dwarf or giant.Illumine me.How old are you?

        • Eniwetok

          Ever hear of looking something up? Think fishing. A forum
          troll is one “trolling” for reactions sometimes by being outrageous,
          sometimes a jerk. Either way, it’s a game. That’s not to say all who are outrageous
          or jerks are trolls. Some are genuine. Which are you?

        • nj

          Illumine yourself. None of your f-ing business how old i am.

          Look in the mirror for the definition of an Internet troll.

          • heaviest cat

            well put nj. For the record I am 61

        • Eniwetok

          If you’re really 60 then please act your age. This is a public forum not your sandbox.

  • AF_Retired

    Tom – when the costs of the Iraq war were discussed, I didn’t hear any mention of the international good will we lost by invading Iraq. From 2001 until we invaded Iraq, we had practically the whole free world on our side, supporting our anti-terror position. It was an unprecedented opportunity to lead and unite the civilized world against radicalism. Instead, we squandered the opportunity by invading Iraq. This lost opportunity cost is difficult to quantify, but it would be hard to overvalue what we carelessly and selfishly through away.

    Have you considered a show devoted to this topic?

    • Lisaridgway

      Excellent point. That was a huge loss to our country as well as the free world. I suggest a show devoted to this subject and to the elephant in the room: Should/can Bush and Cheney be tried as was criminals? I know neither one dares to step outside the borders of the USA. Is anyone interested in a scholarly, legal discussion of this?

      • sharon anzalone

        omg, i have thought the same thing and wonder why bush is in texas playing golf as the families of the deceased suffer while missing their loved ones.    bush and his friends need to pay for their actions, it could not be any more obvious than it is right now!

      • Heaviest Cat

        don’t seek it out on “National pentagon Radio”

    • heaviest cat

      Don’t count on it AF. No NPR program would dare offend or challenge the corporate henchmen that our government has become . THis war was a gift to bin Laden for the very reasons you listed

  • Cristian

    Excellent show. Please continue. So much to cover. Halliburton profits. Judith Miller at Times. Vets requiring health care. The list is unending. Net net: BUSH LIED; A PARENT’S CHILD DIED.

  • Frauel

    Tom, I was disappointed in your obvious bias during this show.  Maybe I was hoping you would facillitate the discussion rather than be attacking to the viewpoint you didn’t hold.  As you asked for people to call and weigh in on the discussion–I listened to see who would dare call with a viewpoint contrary to yours–After the rudeness you showed the guest who differed.   

  • Modavations

    The endless war(as in Iraq) of the mideast is because the left refuses to drill in the US.Energy wise we get 2.5 % from alternative energies,20% from nukes and the rest oil.The EPA signed off three times on the Keystone Pipeline(20,000 high paying jobs),but Pres.Obama bowed to the San Francisco,radical environmentalists.You guys are a cult of Gaia.The world finds NPR’s left to be ridiculous.Far more efficencies would come from perfecting Nukes.Harry Reid,again bowing to radical environmentalists, closed Yucca MT.This place is perfect for about 800,000 years.GM and Ford made money this year.All trucks,all vans.They sold 7 Volt Electric Cars

    • Eniwetok

      Obama bowed to the wishes of some Republican governor who wanted the pipeline moved away from some vital aquifir. Yes, sometimes even Republicans can do the right thing.

    • Eniwetok

      So since you’re bringing oil into a forum about the Iraq war, you’re saying it was about oil and not national security against WMDs? Then you’re admitting Bush did lie. Unless you just like to post off topic.

      And why do you keep reposting the same stuff over and over? Do you believe your ramblings deserve to constantly be in the spotlight?

      • Anonymous

        In the past 24 hours, many people, including me, have posted comments about Modavations disconnect from reality. Yours is the best. He’ll probably respond with talk of light bulbs. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      ALL trucks, ALL vans?  Moda NEVER lies?

    • Eniwetok

      “They sold 7 Volt Electric Cars”

      Is everything you write this wacky and untrue? The Volt is a new breed of car and over 6000 have been sold, mostly to early adopters. It’s like those who paid to buy LED light bulbs when they were $50-60 apiece. These electric/gas cars are a fantastic idea and the price will drop.         

    • Eniwetok

      GM’s target was only 10,000 Volts to be sold in 2011… at $42k apiece. And you’re saying that if they only sold 6100 so far the effort should be scraped?

      If not, then what the hell are you even blubbering about?

      You did say you were for all sorts of energy yet if we’re to get ourselves off mideast oil, then we have to change our transportation sector which is where we waste too much energy. These plugin cars will be able to take advantage of alternative electric supplies like wind and solar which you said you were for.  

    • heaviest cat

      Lack of drlling has nothing to do with it Moda. We don’t necessarily want to put Iraqi oil in our SUVs. I think , we just want to control access to it.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      They only sold 7 Volt Electric Cars?   Moda NEVER lies?

  • Modavations

    I heard the term “Bush and Cheney lied”, to get us to war.Please look at Gregg,s quotes of Dem.solons and their opinions on war.It was posted early in the show.Clintons CIA guy showed everyone the intelligence and everyone thought it credible.This was worldwide.We got something like 15 UN resolutions.Terence Tree Tree said Colin Powell admitted he’d lied.Terence said Cheney put stolen funds in his bank account.The world finds NPR’s left,ridiculous..WallSt.donates 4 to 1 Democrats to Republicans

    • Anonymous

      Wall Street has historically contributed more to the party with the greatest perceived power at any given time.
      Currently, with Republican control of the House, Democrats technical yet feeble control of the senate, and president Obama’s falling numbers, that perception of power is up for grabs. Today, the Republican party, Mitt Romney in particular, are receiving more from Wall Street than Democrats. When you make ridiculous claims, such as a Wall Street bias towards Democrats, it would be helpful if you could provide the kind of proof you demand from all those who take issue with your various delusions.

    • Eniwetok

      Who gives a damn what people said in
      1998!

       
      Bush had 4 more years after 1998 to get to truth and when
      there was no evidence Saddam was a real threat to anyone but his own people,
      Bush/Cheney fabricated a case. Yes, Congress was foolish for trusting Bush when
      it was clear from the spring of 2002 that he was gunning for a war. If
      there was real evidence, no one in the Bush administration would have had to
      lie.
      And given that Saddam was an anti-radical Islamist secular
      nation, how did diverting resources from the real war against Bin Laden help
      defeat Bin Laden? Bush stripped the Afghanistan war of resources and let the
      situation there fester until it was out of control. Then there’s bigger issue of
      how Bush broke the military, bankrupted the nation, and pushed N Korea and Iran
      to get nukes just to protect themselves.   

      Only die-hard right wingers can reinvent history to turn
      this disaster as some shining success.

    • Eniwetok

      What’s your proof Wall Street donates 4:1 more to Democrats than the GOP? It’s pure nonsense.

    • Eniwetok

      So there could be 100 resolutions. You’re making it sound as
      if each one represented some effort to punish Saddam for another violation of
      international law or an UN resolution. Many were not. Many had to do with
      setting up Oil For Food.

      But if you’re so in favor of enforcing all UN
      resolutions
      shall we count up how many there are against Israel that the
      US has vetoed or refused to enforce?

      Suddenly we see the hypocrisy of the Right wing.

      • nj

        The right wingers hate the UN except when they can use it to apologize for for liars like Shrub.

    • Eniwetok

      As I responded to Gregg’s post of quotes, you’re both using the gullibility of some in Congress to excuse the liars. That your offering as some sort of proof that Bush was telling the truth? You truly live in a bizarre looking glass world Modavations.

      • Eniwetok

        If we take quotes of kids writing to Santa, does that prove Santa exists? Or that that only proof they had no other information and believed what their parents told them?

    • nj

      Typical Moda-troll melange of quasi-facts, unfounded assertions, and irrelevancies.

      Congress was not privy to the classified intelligence that the Shrub administration did.

      Hussein did have a WMD program, but it was dismantled and sanctions were working.

      “We have been able to keep weapons from going into Iraq. We have been able to keep the sanctions in place to the extent that items that might support weapons of mass destruction development have had some controls on them…it’s been quite a success for ten years.”

      - Secretary of State Colin Powell, interview with “Face the Nation,” 2/11/01

      “[The U.S. and its allies] have succeeded in containing  Saddam Hussein and his ambitions. [Saddam's] forces are about one-third their original size.…They don’t really possess the capability to attack their neighbors the way they did ten years ago.…Containment has been a successful policy, and I think we should make sure that we continue it until such time as Saddam Hussein comes into compliance with the agreements he made at the end of the (Gulf) War.…[Iraq is] not threatening America…”

      - Secretary of State Colin Powell, during a meeting with German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer, 2/22/01

      http://www.usembassy-israel.org.il/publish/peace/archives/2001/february/me0222a.html

      • Eniwetok

        I hate to be blunt, but is this guy a troll or just someone with “problems”, wink wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean! I can’t think of any forum that would let him keep posting. Did he make some big donation to WBUR to keep posting rights here? Enquiring minds want to know.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Modavations has repeatedly posted that he taught Indiana Jones Archaeology, gets ‘limp-wristed’ at the mention, thought, or listing of some guys’ names, confuses stated genders, and calls those that don’t live in his delusions, ‘children’!  Your analysis?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      I ASKED if that is where the ‘unaccounted for’ $24 BILLION plus, went! Miss the (?)?
          Actually, I believe that the $24 BILLION AND the 197,000 weapons that ‘W’ ‘unaccounted for’, went to Al-Quieda, to be able to continue the war!  That way Cheney, ‘W’, and cronies could grab MORE!
          Remember that Al-Quieda got STRONGER, and had MORE MONEY,  after EACH ‘unaccounted for’, that the ‘W’ admin., admitted!

      • Terry Tree Tree

        I apologize.  I did NOT put a question mark where I thought I had.  I am very convinced that ‘W’, Cheney, Rice, and others that pushed the war with lies, profited from it, and $BILLIONS were ‘unaccounted for’, by the televised and radioed admissions of ‘W’!  197,000 weapons were announced as ‘unaccounted for’, about the time that Al Quieda ramped up attacks seriously!   Others, with better resources, are in positions to prove it!   They will be declared a ‘terrorist’, and ‘disappeared’, probably!

    • heaviest cat

      Moda the lies have been documneted. It’s also been documneted that the CIA had doubts about Saddam having WMDs long before the invasion. Colin did admit to lying though I believe he was used as a dupe by W and Cheney. Party politics are beside the point. Yes Hillary supported this war ,too and Obama seems to be pursuing militaristic policies. But if you’ve been listening to NPR for the last 10 years or so including today’s “on Point” how can you talk about “NPR’s Left”? NPR’s has been shilling ofr the Pentagon all those years. Scott Simon has always had a case of war fever which just about everyone else there caught.

      • Anonymous

        What “lies” have been documented, pray tell? According to the New York Times and Time magazine, among others, Saddam’s own generals believed such weapons existed and were battle ready. What about the governments of England, Australia, Spain, Italy, and the other coalition partners? I suppose they were all in on the “lies” as well, despite having their own extensive intelligence networks. 

        • Eniwetok

          Saddam admitted before he died he felt he needed to bluff his enemies about WMDs to keep them from taking advantage of a weakened Iraq. This deception may have extended to his generals.

          In the end there were no WMDs, just as the weapons inspectors reported. So if there were none, yet Bush/Cheney are saying they knew where they were… it wasn’t just Saddam who was lying. And if Bush had a good case, Powell would not have presented such a pathetic case before the UN.

          So if Bush was determined to invade without real evidence, the conclusion must be he didn’t care about evidence but needed to lie to the public to gain support for a war he knew the public would never otherwise support if he told the truth.

          Sorry, Zen. Try as you may, there’s just too many holes in any attempt to justify this pointless and illegal war.  

          • Anonymous

            I have no interest in picking a fight, but the responses to my post above are incoherent and risible. The salient point is this: The conventional view among western intelligence agencies, to say nothing of Iraq’s senior military leadership, prior to hostilities was that Iraq possessed WMDs. Given this, the Bush-lied narrative collapses. Surely your recognize this…     

          • Heaviest Cat

            Oh I don’t think so Zen. Einwetok makes some very reasonable points. DOn’t foregt W and Cheney also lied about wanting to “bring democracy to iraq after their previos arguments were discredites(even before the invasion)

          • Terry Tree Tree

            ‘W’ said he KNEW where the WMD was!  He didn’t prove it!  Therefore he lied!   The Semtex and RDX were allowed to be stolen AFTER the invasion!

          • nj

            Well, i’ll pick a fight. That’s nonsense.

            “We have been able to keep weapons from going into Iraq. We have been able to keep the sanctions in place to the extent that items that might support weapons of mass destruction development have had some controls on them…it’s been quite a success for ten years.”

            —Secretary of State Colin Powell, interview with “Face the Nation,” 2/11/01

            “[The U.S. and its allies] have succeeded in containing  Saddam Hussein and his ambitions. [Saddam's] forces are about one-third their original size.…They don’t really possess the capability to attack their neighbors the way they did ten years ago.…Containment has been a successful policy, and I think we should make sure that we continue it until such time as Saddam Hussein comes into compliance with the agreements he made at the end of the (Gulf) War.…[Iraq is] not threatening America…”

            —Secretary of State Colin Powell, during a meeting with German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer, 2/22/01

          • Anonymous

            Presumably you believe these comments constitute some kind of devastating rejoinder. I have news for you: They mean nothing in and of themselves.

            If you’ll recall, I began by pointing out that Iraq’s military leadership believed said weapons existed in the run-up to the war, as did intelligence agencies the world over. I also pointed out that every coalition partner shared the same view of Iraq’s weapons capabilities. The latter point has gone unaddressed entirely, while the former has met with only feeble sophistry.

            Was Australian Prime Minister John Howard also a liar? Tony Blair? What about Spain’s Aznar? Berlusconi? The aforementioned Iraqi generals? Either they were all complicit in the deception, or as is infinitely more plausible, they were themselves deceived. This vitiates the “Bush-lied” meme. I continue to be astounded that such a basic train of logic should prove so elusive.

            The hard truth is the asinine “Bush-lied” trope doesn’t survive even a passing encounter with the relevant facts. Not that that will give anyone here the slightest pause. Clearly numerous posters in this forum have a considerable emotional investment in the idea of Bush and Cheney as super villains. It’s really quite pathetic. 

              

        • Terry Tree Tree

          ‘W’ said, when announcing we (NOT him, his daughters, or ANYONE close to him) were going to war with Iraq, that ‘W’ KNEW WHERE the WMD were!  Yet the ammo depot with Semtex and RDX, the Ultra-High Explosives needed to trigger a nuclear weapon, wasn’t secured until several weeks into the war!  Plenty of time to move it, or sell it!

        • Heaviest Cat

          the lies about WMDs and Saddam’s “collaboration” with al qeada. he and bin laden hated each other. According to Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber in their book”The Best War Ever”many in the CIA had doubts about reports of WMDs. The Vile Cheney cherry picked intelligence to make and direct the commercials ofr the war. I also don’t consider the NYT or Time independent sources given their systematic ignoring of anti-war voices.the same applies to National Pentagon Radio

  • sharon anzalone

    hi tom, i love your show. ive only been an npr listener for a couple years now and have loved the good company.  i heard your show yesterday,12-15-11 and wondered if or how i could get a transcript of the show. i have tried to do this online but is impossible. if this is doable i would appreciate it very much.  thank you,sharon a.

  • PF

    I guess anyone who thought they would get unbiased assessment of the Iraq War from NPR, one of the biggest supporters of the war, would be sadly mistaken. Especially from an news program that won’t even use the T-word (torture): http://www.salon.com/2009/06/22/npr/

  • heaviest cat

    spot on, PF. From the lead up to the invasion right through to Dec. 15th, 2011, J have heard maybe two voices on all of “public” radio who questioned the stated rationales for our invasion and occupation of Iraq.I’m sure, you noticed how lop-sided infavor of the war ,today’s guest list was. Even the token liberal on the show was on this hour 10 years ago supporting the invasion. Did he change his mind because he felt that US citizens were lied to about why we invaded? or did he just feel that the US couldn’t “win” there?

  • Cristian

    Our infrastructure crumbles, schools decline, post offices vanish, Social Security and Medicare under attack, yet the military industrial complex thrives! Billions more just voted for it. The huge embassy in Iraq to require thousands of contractors. What’s wrong with this picture?

  • heaviest cat

    With the vast number of posts here voicing anti-war sentiments and cynicim towards the the vile W’s rationales for invading and Cheney’s profiteering ,why did not “public” radio featurea t least ONE voice opposed to the invasion on principal, and who was questioning such rationales? Is this ‘BUR’s idea of “independent journalism”?

  • Pingback: Lessons Not Learned

  • Eniwetok

    A show on the end of the Iraq war that neglects to delve into the bigger questions runs the risk of perpetuating political spin. As the Bush/Cheney/neocon apologists try to rewrite history, we need to revisit issues long neglected. Sadly, Thom’s choice of guests for this show were no help.

    Could the money wasted on this war been better spent on a peace/charm offensive in the Arab/Islamic world that could have isolated Al Qaida?

    Did this illegal war create more anti-American hostility and ultimately more anti-American jihadists?

    Did Bush’s threats against the “axis of evil” push N Korea and Iran to develop the atomic bomb as self defense? Will they become more of a “threat” in the future than if they didn’t have the bomb?

    Could we have held our nose and rehabbed Saddam into an alley against radical Islamists? Some thought it was a great idea with Kaddafi.

    Did Bush’s stripping the Afghanistan war of resources for Iraq allow the situation to fester and get out of control?

    What about the Saudi connection to 911 and Al Qaida? Did we go after a nation not involved in 911 while sparing another just because we want their oil?

    What does it say about our future if we allow a President to lie to the nation and lead us into an illegal war of aggression against a nation that posed no threat to us… and never raise the issue of impeachment or prosecution?

    If our fight against Al Qaida has been so successful why are we fighting now in more nations than we were in 2002? 

    • Eric

      For the record, Iran and North Korea’s nuclear programs were well underway before George W. Bush was elected president.  Also, if Saddam was still in power, it is absurd to believe that he would sit still while Iran acquired nuclear weapons—it would have given him all the more reason to restart his WMD programs.

  • Bkmur

    War isn’t over until they stop googling your daugther’s panties at the airport.  Let usall  come all the way home.

  • gslouch

    Let’s first set up an important backdrop to the war,i.e., there were many,many of uswho knew this was not the way to go right up to the actual “shock and awe” bombing.   Not all Americans were sucked into the lie.   I remember interviews with several war veterans who said “don’t do this.”   The absolute worst and deadliest decision of all time.   I truly hope George W faith is as deep as he contends because i dont know how he could live with himself otherwise.   On the other hand we must welcome our troops home with open arms, hearts and any necessary support needed.    Welcome home!!

    • Heaviest Cat

      right on gslouch, but I would add that NPR’s coverage was atrociously one-sided in favor of the W administration and the Pentagon. Discussion was always limited to military tactics and strategies,i.e. “how can America win in Iraq?” or “hero’ stories.No critical inquiry into te stated rationales for invading permitted. And you know the US will invade again some years down the road with the sycophantic media in tow. NPR= “National Pentagon Radio”.

  • Modavations

    Okay,okay I’ll go back to the system of “J”.

  • nj

    Nice timeline of the lead-up to the fiasco:

    http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/12/leadup-iraq-war-timeline

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Jul 29, 2014
This April 28, 2010 file photo, shows the Colstrip Steam Electric Station, a coal-fired power plant in Colstrip, Mont. Colstrip figures to be a target in recently released draft rules from the Environmental Protection Agency that call for reducing Montana emissions 21 percent from recent levels by 2030. (AP)

A new sci-fi history looks back on climate change from the year 2393.

 
Jul 29, 2014
The U.S. Senate is seen on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (AP)

The “Do-Nothing” Congress just days before August recess. We’ll look at the causes and costs to the country of D.C. paralysis.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
This 15-Year-Old Caller Is Really Disappointed With Congress
Tuesday, Jul 29, 2014

In which a 15-year-old caller from Nashville expertly and elegantly analyzes our bickering, mostly ineffective 113th Congress.

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Our Week In The Web: July 25, 2014
Friday, Jul 25, 2014

Why the key to web victory is often taking a break and looking around, and more pie for your viewing (not eating) pleasure.

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The Art Of The American Pie: Recipes
Friday, Jul 25, 2014

In the odd chance that our pie hour this week made you hungry — how could it not, right? — we asked our piemaking guests for some of their favorite pie recipes. Enjoy!

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