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The Iraqi Elections


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Wrong. The media drew attention to the lies of our governments. Hardly the same as 'hyping it up' now is it?

 

We were lied to by our elected leaders and they were caught out. Now they and their apologists are passing the blame and changing the story.....remarkable.

 

 

It does not read that way if you look at the original pertinent documents including the presentation to the UN.
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It always was. It was the media that hyped it up.

Regardless of what Dubya's cadres may have told the UN, what they told the American people was that Iraq was being invaded because Saddam had an active program to develop WMDs and had a stockpile of such weapons that presented an imminent threat to the security of the United States of America. On that basis and that basis alone, the peoples' representatives in Congress authorised the funding and deployment of an invasionary military force. That justification has now been roundly disproven and shown to be knowingly false at the time it was presented to Congress.

 

Congress isn't off the hook, though. They have the responsibility to demand that the administration justify its military adventure within 60 days of the deployment of troops. If they agree, they must then declare a state of war. If they don't, they must withdraw support for the administration's behaviour, including a withdrawal of funding. Obviously, that hasn't happened.

 

Let's call a spade a spade here: America is not at war with Iraq (or anyone else, for that matter). It is engaged in a police action operating outside of the rule of law: An action, in my opinion, antithetical to the values of the founding fathers of the republic.

 

I

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every report and investigation has cleared the administration of telling an outright lie

Even as I typed that line, I knew someone would zero-in on that peripheral point first. Just the same, it's a pretty weak defence to trumpet a politician's skill at prevarication.

 

I

Edited by Iain
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I actually had to look up that five $ word ;)

 

pre·var·i·cate Audio pronunciation of "prevarication" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (pr-vr-kt)

intr.v. pre·var·i·cat·ed, pre·var·i·cat·ing, pre·var·i·cates

 

To stray from or evade the truth; equivocate. See Synonyms at lie2

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I feel that those who are willing to accept the results of this election, for whatever reasons, are overlooking the potential damage to 'democracy' in general.

I don't know if there is a minimum percentage turnout below which an election is automatically declared void. If there were I guess that it should be set at 51%. ( I know it isn't but it should be. If half the population, or less, do not support the democratic process then 'democracy' becomes rule by minority ) Suppose only 25% of eligible Iraqis vote. Is that a mandate for any political system ?

If the result is fudged through, despite there being a low turnout, violence in the streets, no candidate canvassing, no polling booth information, no election observers, etc., how will we define 'fair' elections in future ? Would you accept the result under such circumstances in your own country or state ?

Maybe not now, but the Iraqi elections may well set a precedent and you won't have any choice.

Edited by moon
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You would think that those who love democracy so much, like our friends in Europe, would be rooting for the Iraqis to have a good election.

 

This is not the case.

What is a good election? One that favors the United States? One that is completely free? A "good" election is not the same for you as it is for an Iraqi. They never asked for this election, they had one thing that they don't have since Saddam was removed and that is stability, a great deal of Iraqi's would probably vote for Saddam if they had the chance. I cannot see that being a good election when the people can't even vote for the person they want to because he is being held by a foreign country.
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You know my position on the American adventure in Iraq moon, so don't think I'm an apologist for that mess. But the mess is on and the clock can't be turned back and so the best must be made of it.

 

I believe you're being a bit naive and short-sighted. Of course the looming election won't be democratic. No election in the forseeable future will be. But it does have the potential to create infrastructures and expectations that will support a future Iraqi democracy. And what's the alternative? A continued American occupation which could only amount to a benevolent dictatorship at best, with no mechanism for the transfer of power back into Iraqi hands.

 

I do believe an election, no matter how shallow, corrupt and flawed, is necessary, and the sooner the better. We're talking about decades of work here and the sooner it gets started the better.

 

I

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I feel that those who are willing to accept the results of this election, for whatever reasons, are overlooking the potential damage to 'democracy' in general.

I don't know if there is a minimum percentage turnout below which an election is automatically declared void. If there were I guess that it should be set at 51%. ( I know it isn't but it should be. If half the population, or less, do not support the democratic process then 'democracy' becomes rule by minority ) Suppose only 25% of eligible Iraqis vote. Is that a mandate for any political system ?

If the result is fudged through, despite there being a low turnout, violence in the streets, no candidate canvassing, no polling booth information, no election observers, etc., how will we define 'fair' elections in future ? Would you accept the result under such circumstances in your own country or state ?

Maybe not now, but the Iraqi elections may well set a precedent and you won't have any choice.

that would mean many of the elections in the US should be null and void....advocating making voting a legal requirement?
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that would mean many of the elections in the US should be null and void....advocating making voting a legal requirement?

No, I don't believe that people should be forced to participate in the process. It doesn't improve the candidature, as the two dumb-:filtered: Australians recently indicated. However, a 'None of the Above' box to tick might force improvement in that area.

 

OK, Iain, so we are witnessing a hollow process in the hope that it will facilitate our withdrawal. I just wanted to see who would endorse this election as 'fair', accept the results as being democratic and their reasons for that stance.

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how would that make the US elections void? I thought more then 50% of Americans voted and the president was elected with more then 50% of the vote, so it is legit.

there is roughly 220 million eligible voters in the US and somewhere between 50 and 60% of them actually turn out to vote, so figure 110-120 million people. Theres over 290 million people in the US.

 

Certain local and state elections total turnout will be 33-50% of eligible voters, hence less than half the population.

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Voting should be manditory, so people will stop their :filtered:ing when they couldn't even get off their :filtered: for 5 minutes. People as a whole are stupid and they cannot figure out that voting is needed for a sucessful democracy.

 

As for your stats 12G it is ludicris to include minors and immigrants in the stats you provided, it has to be for eligable voters and not the entire population.

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Regardless of what Dubya's cadres may have told the UN, what they told the American people was that Iraq was being invaded because Saddam had an active program to develop WMDs and had a stockpile of such weapons that presented an imminent threat to the security of the United States of America. On that basis and that basis alone, the peoples' representatives in Congress authorised the funding and deployment of an invasionary military force. That justification has now been roundly disproven and shown to be knowingly false at the time it was presented to Congress.

 

Congress isn't off the hook, though. They have the responsibility to demand that the administration justify its military adventure within 60 days of the deployment of troops. If they agree, they must then declare a state of war. If they don't, they must withdraw support for the administration's behaviour, including a withdrawal of funding. Obviously, that hasn't happened.

 

Let's call a spade a spade here: America is not at war with Iraq (or anyone else, for that matter). It is engaged in a police action operating outside of the rule of law: An action, in my opinion, antithetical to the values of the founding fathers of the republic.

 

I

Where?

 

When?

 

 

I have been through all of the speeches and pertinent documents.

 

It isn't what the government presented, it is HOW the MEDIA presented it.

 

The funny thing is that all of the srguments you folks are presenting are based on the media presentation. You have been duped, but not by the government.

 

 

Bush?

 

OK yeah, right.

 

See this!

http://www.iraqwatch.org/government/US/Let...in-10-9-98.html

 

That is from 1998. There are MANY more like it. Why is everybody fixated on Bush?

 

 

EDIT:

 

Here is a repeat of one I posted earlier from Clinton:

http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/1998/02/17/...s/clinton.iraq/

 

 

This language, this position, has been long standing in the US government.

 

Read both of them, please. If you want more from before 2001 there are many I can post.

Edited by Chopdoc
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I have to add that the UK House of Commons endorsed attacking Iraq on Blair's assurances that not only did Saddam possess wmd but that he had the capability to deploy them within 45 mins. Without those assurances the UK would not have invaded.

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Mr. President, by invading Kuwait, Iraq threatened international peace and security in the Persian Gulf region. By its failure to comply with the conditions it accepted as the international community's requirements for a cease-fire, Iraq continues to threaten international peace and security. By its refusal to abandon its quest for weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them, Iraq is directly defying and challenging the international community and directly violating the terms of the cease fire between itself and the United States-led coalition.

 

 

bold added

 

Carl Levin, Joe Lieberman, Frank R. Lautenberg, Dick Lugar, Kit Bond, Jon Kyl, Chris Dodd, John McCain, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Alfonse D'Amato, Bob Kerrey, Pete V. Domenici, Dianne Feinstein, Barbara A. Mikulski.

 

Thomas Daschle, John Breaux, Tim Johnson, Daniel K. Inouye, Arlen Specter, James Inhofe, Strom Thurmond, Mary L. Landrieu, Wendell Ford, John F. Kerry, Chuck Grassley, Jesse Helms, Rick Santorum.

 

1998

Edited by Chopdoc
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I have to add that the UK House of Commons endorsed attacking Iraq on Blair's assurances that not only did Saddam possess wmd but that he had the capability to deploy them within 45 mins. Without those assurances the UK would not have invaded.

Well that would seem to be incorrect information, wouldn't it?

 

The fact remains that the stockpiles that we knew existed and that Iraq admitted to are still unaccounted for. Iraq never explained that and the inspections never revealed anything....that is...the inspections that Iraq would allow. Why does that not bother anybody?

 

Here is the kicker; I am not speaking about anything that flawed intelligence told us, I am speaking of what Iraq admitted to.

 

Without those assurances the UK would not have invaded.

Really?

 

I hope that isn't true.

 

 

You see, back in 98 (among other times) the UN promised "severest of consequenses" if Iraq did not meet its agreements regarding the cease fire. What does severest consequences mean?

 

It is undeniable that Iraq did not meet its agreements and was actively seeking to squirm out of them. This is a fact regardless of whether or not there was any WMD. In the face of that fact what are "severest of consequences"?

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I hope that isn't true.

Oh it's true alright. The UK, up to now, doesn't leap off to war because the P.M.says so. First it was necessary to have the Attorney General affirm that it was legal. Apparently, he gave Blair this assurance in private. Armed with that assurance Blair then persuaded the Commons to endorse war.
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You say "apparently". That is a sad shame if it is true.

 

By virtue of the weapons that are still missing (that Iraq admitted to) Iraq did have the ability to strike with WMD beyond what was stipulated in the agreements, but that should hardly be the threshold for war in my view.

 

 

 

I would hope that the UK does not leap off to war on the work of the PM. But in fact it looks as though that is what happened according to what you are telling me.

 

Regarding the "legality" I don't buy the whole concept. What is considered in reality is "should" we go to war...not "is it legal" or "is it justified". I just think that is the reality and the rest is just lip service.

 

I have read and re-read the pertinent documents for the US. It is quite clear for me that Congress was determined to go to war if certain qualifications were met....and they were met. They have tried to weasle out of that one, but I am not buying it. Their words at the time are well recorded.

 

As far as how it went down in the UK I have not reviewed it much, in fact hardly at all.

 

If it went down the way you say then there is something wrong in the UK, and you as much as imply that. I have overtly stated such before to great opposition.

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Regarding the "legality" I don't buy the whole concept. What is considered in reality is "should" we go to war...not "is it legal" or "is it justified". I just think that is the reality and the rest is just lip service.

I felt that we should go to war,'doc, and I was pleased that the UK Attorney General , apparently, said it was legal. His actual advice to Blair has not been released and Blair has, so far, beaten off attempts for its disclosure.

There is little doubt in my mind that the intelligence services dossier on Iraq was 'sexed up' by the Blair government. The ensuing enquiry was a whitewash, imo, yet it did find that the '45min' passage was a Blair addition. ( Perhaps not Blair personally but he was mighty pleased it was included )

The U.K. is signatory to international agreements on warfare and subject to international law if such agreements are broken. Thus the British Army cannot illegally engage in warfare. In fact, British Generals would not have gone to war if the Attorney General had said that the war would be illegal under international law, no matter what Blair instructed them to do. The opinion of the Attorney General is the safeguard in that respect.

 

As things have turned out I am very sorry that we did go to war. It is not abundantly clear that international law views what we did as legal. Kofi Annan has given his personal opinion that it was not, the Attorney General's actual advice remains secret and Blair, at the very least, has unintentionally misinformed the House as to the existence of Iraqi wmd and their state of readiness ( the latter is of course irrelevant as the former did not exist)

As wmd were most certainly the reason given for invading I can only say in summary that, from the UK perspective, there are upwards of 100,000 poor sods dead for nothing. That's 100,000 bodies to add to the 50,000 thought to have been in mass graves in Iraq. That isn't the mathematics of sanity.

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the existence of Iraqi wmd and their state of readiness ( the latter is of course irrelevant as the former did not exist)

 

Um...Iraq admitted they existed. They are missing. They admitted it. How many times does that have to be said?

 

I am not even speaking of intelliugence reports, I am talking about what Iraq admitted to which disappeared without explanation in violation of the agreements with the UN.

 

 

 

 

I don't care what people say now. I don't care how Kofi Annan chooses to spin it now. Look at the records. Look at what actually transpired. You don't even need to consider any of the reports that are in doubt now but just the known solid facts.

 

As wmd were most certainly the reason given for invading

Yes, it was a reason....not the reason though. At least not the way the US presented the case.

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Um...Iraq admitted they existed. They are missing. They admitted it. How many times does that have to be said?

You want to believe Saddam now ? :lol:

Saddam was threatening to use them right up to the time that the coalition advance halted outside of Baghdad, but the fact is that there weren't any.

There weren't any 'doc. Iraq was unloaded. Our respective governments were very, very wrong.

 

Yes, it was a reason....not the reason though. At least not the way the US presented the case.

It was the reason over here. The other stuff only got brought up to give Blair some clothes. Edited by moon
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You want to believe Saddam now ? :lol:

Saddam was threatening to use them right up to the time that the coalition advance halted outside of Baghdad, but the fact is that there weren't any.

There weren't any 'doc. Iraq was unloaded. Our respective governments were very, very wrong.

 

 

It was the reason over here. The other stuff only got brought up to give Blair some clothes.

Nope, you are missing it.

 

 

I am speaking of those that were there in the early ninelties, not those that are in doubt.

 

It is a fact. They were "unloaded" as you say in direct violation of agreements with the UN. The UN knew where they were and what they were. They were chemical agents and it is simply well known. It was not a matter of misguided intelligence. The fact is that we don't know where they went. The UN chose to overlook this but the US did not. It was a major point throughout the nineties that was continuously and strenuously discussed in the US government. It did not arise as something suddenly new, it was a major problem all along and still is.

 

I am speaking of that which has been known for more than ten years. The UN knew about it, and Iraq admitted it. It was a major point of contention for years and was never resolved.

 

My government was right, very right.

 

What Saddam was saying before the war has little bearing except that it was very unwise.

 

There is a great deal of missing chemical warfare material. Where is it? Even if Iraq gave it away, destroyed it, or sold it, any of that was done in direct violation of the UN. Violations for which the UN promised the "severest consequenses", but failed.

 

 

Tell me what "severest consequences" means? Then tell me where the chemical agents are. The UN lost track of them. They were absolutely there. It isn't that they didn't find them. They lost them, years ago.

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