US Senate report: Grass is green

Dondrei

Diabloii.Net Member
US Senate report: Grass is green

I'm lousy at finding news articles on the net, can someone find a link to a decent paper?

my ISP news service said:
Saddam Hussein had no ties with Al Qaeda or key operative Abu Musab al-Zarqawi before the Iraq war, a US Senate report has found.

The report was released yesterday (local time), and has undercut pre-invasion claims by the administration of President George W Bush and ignites a new political row.

"Saddam Hussein was distrustful of Al Qaeda and viewed Islamic extremists as a threat to his regime, refusing all requests from Al Qaeda to provide material or operational support," the report said.

The assessment, by the Senate Intelligence Committee, also dismissed claims that Al Qaeda's leader in Iraq, Zarqawi who was killed in a US raid on June 7, was harboured by Saddam Hussein before the war.

Though supporting information that Zarqawi was in Baghdad in 2002, the report said Saddam Hussein actually tried to seize the Al Qaeda kingpin.

"Postwar information indicates that Saddam Hussein attempted, unsuccessfully to locate and capture Zarqawi, and that the regime did not have a relationship with, harbour, or turn a blind eye toward Zarqawi," the report said.
Meetings rebuffed

The report also said Saddam had repeatedly rebuffed requests for meetings from Al Qaeda operatives.

In the run-up to the 2003 invasion and for long afterward, senior members of the Bush administration claimed links existed between Iraq and terrorist groups including Al Qaeda, using such alleged ties as a major justification for the war.

On June 14, 2004, for example, Vice President Dick Cheney alluded to the alleged links, which were also debunked by the official independent commission on the September 11 attacks.

"In Iraq, Saddam Hussein was in power, overseeing one of the bloodiest regimes of the 20th century, he had long established ties with Al Qaeda," Mr Cheney said.

The report was one of two released Friday (local time) by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, both part of a large study of the US rationale for the Iraq war which has been held up by fierce partisan battles.

The other report centred on the role of the exiled Iraqi National Congress (INC) in providing intelligence on Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction programs which was later discredited.
Debate

The reports immediately stoked a new outburst of fierce debate over the Bush administration's drive to war with Iraq, ahead of November's crucial congressional elections.

"Today's reports show that the administrations repeated allegations of a past, present and future relationship between Al Qaeda and Iraq were wrong and intended to exploit the deep sense of insecurity among Americans in the immediate aftermath of the September 11th attacks," said Democratic Senator John Rockefeller in a statement.

"The administration sought and succeeded in creating the false impression that Al Qaeda and Iraq presented a single unified threat to the United States," he said.

But White House spokesman Tony Snow, speaking before the report was released, said it contained "nothing new".

"It's, again, kind of re-litigating things that happened three years ago," he said.

"The president's stated concern this week, as you've seen, is to think, 'okay, we'll let people quibble over three years ago.

"The important thing to do is to figure out what you're doing tomorrow and the day after and the month after and the year after to make sure that this war on terror is won.'"
Didn't we do this already? Although one thing I hadn't heard before is that not only did Saddam not have explicit dealings with Al Qaeda, he also didn't turn a blind eye: he tried to capture Zarqawi in 2002 when he was in Iraq.

I like the way the only rebuttal the White House has is that this is old news...
 

maccool

Diabloii.Net Member
Well, the problem is that the OTF 'Republicans' are busy in the circle jerk of the ABC 9/11 drama thread. Ha ha, Clin-Ton! etc. That was Thursday's talking point.

I watched Hannity on Friday just for the hilarity. It's neat watching the goalposts move. Strangely, the Senate finding was downplayed on the show. It was also absent from talk radio today. Must be more important things going on in the U.S. than lies at the upper levels of government.
 

Dondrei

Diabloii.Net Member
Well don't you know? We were never in Iraq for Al Qaeda and WMDs, it was all about toppling Saddam (because that's a valid casus belli) and bringing happy thoughts to the Middle East. Love that retconning.

Actually, it's a good thing for the Republicans that Iraq turned into a breeding ground for terrorists or else people would start saying "So... remind me what this has to do with Al Qaeda and the War on Terror?".
 

Stevinator

Diabloii.Net Member
I thought we were there to drag in all the terrorists in (so they wouldn't attack america) and establish a muslim friend (some say puppet regime) in a very strategic place. I thought establishing a strong presence in Iraq was a way to ensure we wouldn't be up poo creek with no paddle when the saudis are eventually overthrown and the Iranians go Dr. strangelove on Isreal. I thought this was only one small battle in a greater war against islamofasicsts, in hopes of bringing democracy to the region so the muslims wouldn't hate us so much. I thought we were there to show moderate muslims that they could be doing better things than supporting these crazies and please don't join them. I thought we knew from the beginning we'd be there a long time, we just didn't anticipate the amount of fighting we'd have to do. I also thought the Iraqis would bounce back faster and at least be helping restore the peace, sooner than they have been.

I DID think there were WMDs, and I even wonder if something got snuck out, but I never really thought that was the focus of going there. the anti-war folk sure made it seem like WMDs were the big reason though. I guess there wasn't as much as i anticipated. I'm surprised that saddam had not at least managed the chemical agents we gave him and I'm surprised what little chemical agents he had were used so poorly. Also, I expected more than one vial of biological weapons.

i still think going to iraq was a good move, that all the real reasons for going are still valid, though the emphasis has changed significantly. I'd like the place to get put together faster, because I really only wanted a presence there to be able to execute force in the region if necessary, not really actively engaged.

True this old news, but I think your average joe doesn't really "get it", and the complexity of the situation is really lost on the masses. that's just like anything else i imagine.
 

TonoTheHero

Diabloii.Net Member
I like your post Stevinator. Though I'm bothered by the conduct of this war from the very beginning I'm way more bothered about what would happen if the US were to cut and run. Which isn't an unheard of sentiment.
 

Stevinator

Diabloii.Net Member
TonoTheHero said:
I like your post Stevinator. Though I'm bothered by the conduct of this war from the very beginning I'm way more bothered about what would happen if the US were to cut and run. Which isn't an unheard of sentiment.
well i do my best to cut through the rhetoric and whatnot. if we can't be honest with ourselves and truely want to work towards a solution, we'll never get anywhere as a country or a species. Going to iraq solved a lot of problems, and honestly, as much as i supported it, I admit it caused some too. it's certainly not going as well as I'd have hoped, but nor it it going to lead to the downfall of America.
 

Dondrei

Diabloii.Net Member
You mean like the way it cut and run from Afghanistan to pursue a completely unrelated war?

The reason people made it out to be all about WMDs is because that was the casus belli. That's what they spent all that time trying to convince the U.N. for. It doesn't matter what the domestic justification was, the Hawk's agenda of starting a core democracy in the Middle East (not to mention the even more ludicrous idea that it would actually be U.S.-friendly) is not a valid reason to start a war. Of course, no-one can stop you attacking whoever you feel like, but without a casus belli you have no justification (or at least an ostensible one) - that's why governments try so hard to get one. Image is important.

Iraq is going nowhere. It was never even a problem until we invaded - Saddam had no WMDs and no ties to Al Qaeda, so how in hell does attacking him help the War on Terror? We should have:

1. Finished the job in Afghanistan. I remind you that that forgotten country is currently experience the worst violence since the overthrow of the Taliban, thanks to resurgent Al Qaeda and Taliban forces.

2. Remained ready to attack states that REALLY support terror networks and are REALLY intent on and able to produce WMDs. Like Iran for one. But since we pissed away all our money, manpower and legitimacy in Iraq we don't have to resources to do more than scowl at them.

As far as the War on Terror goes, Iraq was a massive strategic blunder.
 

Drosselmeier

Diabloii.Net Member
Wasn't the point toet them to "bring it on!" Why would they care wwhether Zarqawi was there before or not? Or am I losing track of the alibi or something?
 

Dondrei

Diabloii.Net Member
The logic went:

1. Iraq has WMDs.
2. They like terrorists so they're going to give them to them.
3. Thus toppling Saddam is part of the War on Terror.
 

maccool

Diabloii.Net Member
So, we're not focusing on the lies of this administration anymore? Cool, let's ***** about semantics and grammar.

Flim Springfield.


dondrei said:
I remind you that that forgotten country is currently experience the worst violence since the overthrow of the Taliban, thanks to resurgent Al Qaeda and Taliban forces.
Your verb tense is for ****. You might want to lay off the grammatical nit-picking for a day or two, lest you be seen as more of an asshat (in my eyes at least).

Just sayin'.
Kind regards.
 

Dondrei

Diabloii.Net Member
maccool said:
Your verb tense is for ****. You might want to lay off the grammatical nit-picking for a day or two, lest you be seen as more of an asshat (in my eyes at least).

Just sayin'.
Kind regards.
Editing mistake.

P.S. I'm a spelling nazi, not a grammar nazi. Do I have to explain my mandate again?
 

Star Dust

Diabloii.Net Member
Stevinator said:
I thought we were there to drag in all the terrorists in (so they wouldn't attack america) and establish a muslim friend (some say puppet regime) in a very strategic place. I thought establishing a strong presence in Iraq was a way to ensure we wouldn't be up poo creek with no paddle when the saudis are eventually overthrown and the Iranians go Dr. strangelove on Isreal. I thought this was only one small battle in a greater war against islamofasicsts, in hopes of bringing democracy to the region so the muslims wouldn't hate us so much. I thought we were there to show moderate muslims that they could be doing better things than supporting these crazies and please don't join them. I thought we knew from the beginning we'd be there a long time, we just didn't anticipate the amount of fighting we'd have to do. I also thought the Iraqis would bounce back faster and at least be helping restore the peace, sooner than they have been.
Therefore, we have a right to invade a sovereign nation.

Here, I'll just make it easier....

"I thought we were there to strategically remove our enemies. Therefore, we have a right to nuke that whole section of the globe."
 

llad12

Diabloii.Net Member
Stevinator said:
I thought we were there to drag in all the terrorists in (so they wouldn't attack america) and establish a muslim friend (some say puppet regime) in a very strategic place. I thought establishing a strong presence in Iraq was a way to ensure we wouldn't be up poo creek with no paddle when the saudis are eventually overthrown and the Iranians go Dr. strangelove on Isreal.
Up dry-crude creek without a paddle maybe ...

Stevinator said:
I thought this was only one small battle in a greater war against islamofasicsts, in hopes of bringing democracy to the region so the muslims wouldn't hate us so much. I thought we were there to show moderate muslims that they could be doing better things than supporting these crazies and please don't join them.
Islamofascists ... ya gotta luv that term coined by the right wing bloggers :grin:

Since the fall of the Soviets, we had to find somebody in order to justify our zeal for militarism and continued outrageous defense spending. Instead of a peace dividend for the end of the cold war, the crazy religious nuts hiding in caves were selected as our latest excuse.

Stevinator said:
I thought we knew from the beginning we'd be there a long time, we just didn't anticipate the amount of fighting we'd have to do. I also thought the Iraqis would bounce back faster and at least be helping restore the peace, sooner than they have been.
Nah ... the Bush administration stated that we would be hailed as liberators and given flowers by the Iraqis. It was going to be a real cake-walk.

In fact, do you remember this one ...

In April 2003, after American troops had taken Baghdad, General Tommy Franks met with his commanders and said that combat forces should begin to pull out within 60 days, and that only 30,000 troops would still be in Iraq by September.
McSweeney

It's good to see that the United States of Amnesia is alive and well.

Stevinator said:
I DID think there were WMDs, and I even wonder if something got snuck out, but I never really thought that was the focus of going there. the anti-war folk sure made it seem like WMDs were the big reason though. I guess there wasn't as much as i anticipated. I'm surprised that saddam had not at least managed the chemical agents we gave him and I'm surprised what little chemical agents he had were used so poorly. Also, I expected more than one vial of biological weapons.
The WMD's were just an excuse for war Steve. An excuse for war that everybody could agree on ...

The Bush administration knew all about Saddam's son-in-law's UN testimony The even used portions of his testimony to strengthen their own case.

They just left that that one damning piece out of their propaganda ... that "all the weapons were destroyed".

In addition, the UN inspectors in 2003 had found nothing ... nada ... zip. But the administration couldn't wait a few more months for them to complete their inspections. Summer was drawing near; we had the troops massed at the border, and the long awaited plan for the invasion of Iraq was in place.

The war was imminent ... because they wanted it to be.

Stevinator said:
i still think going to iraq was a good move, that all the real reasons for going are still valid, though the emphasis has changed significantly. I'd like the place to get put together faster, because I really only wanted a presence there to be able to execute force in the region if necessary, not really actively engaged.
Valid only if you believe that the reason for invading Iraq was command and control of the area and its petroleum resources.

"the United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein...."
Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategy, Forces, and Resources for a New Century

Is it more clear now?

How about this:

Senior Officials Say United States Plans to Keep Military Bases in Iraq

Bush administration officials said there are plans to keep perhaps four military bases in Iraq as part of a "long-term military relationship with the emerging government of Iraq" after the withdrawal of the U.S. invasion force. According to these officials, a long-term U.S. military presence in Iraq, as part of a campaign to deepen U.S. influence in the region, does not fly in the face of Bush's promise to withdraw from Iraq as soon as possible. In its report, the New York Times also stated that "there will probably never be an announcement of permanent stationing of troops" in Iraq.
reprinted from the NYT


Stevinator said:
True this old news, but I think your average joe doesn't really "get it", and the complexity of the situation is really lost on the masses. that's just like anything else i imagine.
Seems so ...


 

bladesyz

Diabloii.Net Member
Stevinator said:
I thought we were there to drag in all the terrorists in (so they wouldn't attack america) and establish a muslim friend (some say puppet regime) in a very strategic place.
You do realize that Iraq is just a training ground for Al-Qaeda and other arab terrorist cells? Even if they get driven out of Iraq, you'll end up with hundreds of veteran terrorist cells who have had combat experience against American military tactics.

I thought establishing a strong presence in Iraq was a way to ensure we wouldn't be up poo creek with no paddle when the saudis are eventually overthrown and the Iranians go Dr. strangelove on Isreal.
I'm sure the Russians would love to have a strong presence in the Middle East as well. Does that mean they can go invade Kuwait now?

I thought this was only one small battle in a greater war against islamofasicsts, in hopes of bringing democracy to the region so the muslims wouldn't hate us so much.
That kind of failed... miserably.

I thought we were there to show moderate muslims that they could be doing better things than supporting these crazies and please don't join them.
Oh yeah, Iraq is such a role model right now.

I thought we knew from the beginning we'd be there a long time, we just didn't anticipate the amount of fighting we'd have to do.
That's kind of a crucial detail there. Going there on a vacation for a long time is "being there for a long time" too.
 

SaroDarksbane

Diabloii.Net Site Pal
dondrei said:
You mean like the way it cut and run from Afghanistan to pursue a completely unrelated war?

The reason people made it out to be all about WMDs is because that was the casus belli. That's what they spent all that time trying to convince the U.N. for. It doesn't matter what the domestic justification was, the Hawk's agenda of starting a core democracy in the Middle East (not to mention the even more ludicrous idea that it would actually be U.S.-friendly) is not a valid reason to start a war. Of course, no-one can stop you attacking whoever you feel like, but without a casus belli you have no justification (or at least an ostensible one) - that's why governments try so hard to get one. Image is important.

Iraq is going nowhere. It was never even a problem until we invaded - Saddam had no WMDs and no ties to Al Qaeda, so how in hell does attacking him help the War on Terror? We should have:

1. Finished the job in Afghanistan. I remind you that that forgotten country is currently experience the worst violence since the overthrow of the Taliban, thanks to resurgent Al Qaeda and Taliban forces.

2. Remained ready to attack states that REALLY support terror networks and are REALLY intent on and able to produce WMDs. Like Iran for one. But since we pissed away all our money, manpower and legitimacy in Iraq we don't have to resources to do more than scowl at them.

As far as the War on Terror goes, Iraq was a massive strategic blunder.
What he said.
dondrei said:
The logic went:

1. Iraq has WMDs.
2. They like terrorists so they're going to give them to them.
3. Thus toppling Saddam is part of the War on Terror.
Now we're left with something like:

1. Topple Saddam.
2. ???
3. Profit!
 
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