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The Army's highest-ranking officer said Friday that he was unsure whether the U.S. military would capture or kill Osama bin Laden, adding, "I don't know that it's all that important, frankly."

"So we get him, and then what?" asked Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker, the outgoing Army chief of staff, at a Rotary Club of Fort Worth luncheon. "There's a temporary feeling of goodness, but in the long run, we may make him bigger than he is today.

Anyone want to hazard a guess as to why it "emboldens the enemy" in Iraq to say we're going to require that troops we send there have adequate armor and training, but it's "bold leadership" to say we just don't really care all that much about eliminating bin Laden?

Remind me, which one of these enemies "followed us home" again?

Now, has he got a point? Sure he does. Al Qaeda is bigger than just Osama bin Laden. And, as the article notes:

Schoomaker pointed to the capture of Saddam Hussein, the killings of his sons, Uday and Qusay, and the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi as evidence that the capture or death of al-Qaeda's leader would have little effect on threats to the United States.

You have to admit, there's an element of truth to that. Of course, it's an element of truth that someone we know was ridiculed for making... three years ago:

Anti-war candidate Howard Dean said Monday "the capture of Saddam has not made America safer," directly contradicting President Bush and drawing the wrath of two Democratic presidential rivals.

And let's just be clear about what that says up there. It says two Democratic presidential rivals joined in bashing Dean on that point. And they were?

A forceful proponent of the war, Sen. Joe Lieberman, said Dean is in a "spider hole of denial," a reference to Saddam's ignominious hideout and Dean's assessment of the capture's impact.

[Sen. John] Kerry said the front-runner's speech "is still more proof that all the advisers in the world can't give Howard Dean the military and foreign policy experience, leadership skills, or diplomatic temperament necessary to lead this country through dangerous times."

Only one of the above Democratic rivals has come to see the error of his ways since then.

The other, of course, is no longer Democratic.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 11:48 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Why Do Retired and Retiring Generals... (7+ / 0-)

    ...hate America?

    The revolution will not be televised, but we'll analyze it to death at The Next Hurrah.

    by Dana Houle on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 11:49:21 AM PST

  •  My personally favorite irony- (5+ / 0-)

    Toppling Saddam was supposed to be a big step.  Kill Zarqawi was supposed to be huge!  Each one was a single person over a network; decapitating the network was supposed to be teh Death Knell!

    Yet- somehow- finding and killing the mastermind of the terrorist event that led us into this mess?  Neh- not important at all.  Jackasses.

    •  Cheney is delusional still (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      averybird, potownman

      "During Cheney's visit to Australia one of the United States' staunchest allies in Iraq he said history would ultimately judge the war a success, pointing to the end of Saddam Hussein's dictatorship and Iraq's democratic elections. The U.S., he said, has put Iraq "well on the road to establishing a viable democracy."" Huffington Post.

      •  The people of Iraq will make it a democracy (0+ / 0-)

        if they really want one.  The notion that we can make them want a democracy is a silly excuse for imperialism.  It's also an old excuse that's been used for generations.  What we've done is humiliate them by occupying their country, throwing money around, and forcing them to privatize their oil and turn the administration of oil over to an oil panel that includes U.S. and British oil companies.  This was reported this week by Link TV while the U.S. media was busy with celebrities and gossip.  It's interesting that the Brits started moving out  after the oil deal was finalized.

    •  the surge man (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ...and another surge..and another...

      or something. (I am sure they will come up with more "turning the corner" excuse to stay in Iraq)

    •  Hey, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Didn't we just get another Al-Qaeda No. 2?

      Those guys are everywhere...

      To announce...that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.

      by potownman on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:42:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Well, what evidence do we have that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      there's actually an organization behind that Al Qaeda name?  How do we even know that Osama bin Laden is anything more than some electronic pixels on a screen?

      Was the Iraqi National Congress real?  Was it even set up on paper and legally incorporated anywhere?  We know that the CIA dubbed a group of disaffected Iraqis who were led to believe that they were next in line to be the country's rulers the INC.  But did that make them a functioning organization that undertook projects and actually accomplished anything other than putting out propaganda?

      How do we know that Al Qaeda is any different?  Because some people claim on TV and in press releases that they are members?  We know for certain that whenever there's an event in the U.S. that attracts a lot of publicity, there are hundreds of individuals who claim a connection or some responsibility.  Why should people in Asia and the Middle East be any different?

      If you'd read my diary on 'Anahin western Al Anbar province, you'd know that the Marines spent month chasing a phantom, a supposed Al Qaeda leader who just happened to have the same name as someone whom the Brits had just sent to prison.  Any objective observer would have to conclude that the Marines were either sent on one wild goose chase after another or chasing their own shadows.  Yes, the local admitted that there were foreign fighters in the area.  But, the marines never inquired if they were referring to them because, of course, the Marines didn't see themselves as foreign fighters.

      When the American command now says that the extremists (no longer insurgents, but not yet resistance) are using new tactics in coordinaing an assault with a suicide truck on a police facility with small-arms fire, and you know that the same tactics were used almost a year ago in 'Anah, then it's hard not to conclude that either the military command is not telling the truth or it doesn't know what's been going on in Iraq.

      Yes, there are people who attack civilians in order to make a political point.  And yes, "al Qaeda" is an interesting word because it has a 'Q' without a 'u'  But, that doesn't mean there's organization that can be disassembled by removing its and interdicting the flow of funds.  Which, considering the resurgence of the opium trade, we aren't even doing.

  •  It's almost like they don't want to catch him (3+ / 0-)

    As if the government has deep ties with the Bin Laden family. As if we've promised we won't touch him in return for...

    Well, I hope we got something.

    Every day's another chance to stick it to The Man. - dls.

    by The Raven on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 11:52:50 AM PST

  •  you are conflating two separate issues (0+ / 0-)

    Dean did make his statement that capturing Saddam will not America safer. He didn't elaborate in that quote, but the subtext is that Saddam never was a threat to America.

    Dean never said there is no point in capturing Osama -- to the contrary, if anything.

    I think the General is wrong, and I bet Dean would say so too. If we can capture Osama and bring him to a trial, that would be very significant. Osama is a threat to America and needs to be held accountable for his crimes against us.

    •  No I'm not. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vivacia, vcmvo2

      I don't say Dean said anything about capturing Osama.

      That'd be your own conflation.

      Schoomaker tries to support his assertion about Osama by making an assertion about Saddam that Dean also made.

      I'm not confused by that. Are you?

      •  you are saying that Dean is vindicated (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        in his remarks about Saddam because a General made similar remarks about Osama. That's conflating separate issues.

        "Army's Top General: Dean was right"

        If the General said capturing Saddam makes no difference to our safety then your statement would be appropriate. Dean would agree that getting Saddam wouldn't impact America's safety.

        But the General thinks that there's no point in going after Osama. Dean never said that, nor, I doubt would he agree. There is a big difference between Osama and Saddam.

      •  Your both conflated Kagro. (0+ / 0-)

        Howard Dean would have sent 100,000 of our troops into Tora Bora and killed Bin Laden. Other than beefed up homeland security and a sane middle-east policy the war on terror would be over.

        The US would be spending a hundred billion dollars a year on more noble causes like balancing the federal checkbook and healthcare.

  •  We capture him and then... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    We put him on trial for the deaths on 9/11.  

    Or is it okay that he just gets away with it?

    •  A trail like Saddam's? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Not much honor in that one.

        •  had to kill saddam (0+ / 0-)

          before he set out the trail:

          A report prepared by the top CIA official handling the matter says Saddam Hussein was not responsible for the massacre, and indicates that it was the work of Iranians. Further, the Scott inquiry on the role of the British government has gathered evidence that following the massacre the United States in fact armed Saddam Hussein to counter the Iranians chemicals for chemicals.

          Few believe that a CIA man would attend a court hearing in Baghdad in defense of Saddam. But in this case the CIA boss has gone public with his evidence, and this evidence has been in the public domain for more than a year.

          The CIA officer Stephen C. Pelletiere was the agency's senior political analyst on Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war. As professor at the Army War College from 1988 to 2000, he says he was privy to much of the classified material that flowed through Washington having to do with the Persian Gulf.

          In addition, he says he headed a 1991 Army investigation into how the Iraqis would fight a war against the United States, and the classified version of the report went into great detail on the Halabja affair.

          Pelletiere went public with his information on no less a platform than The New York Times in an article on January 31 last year titled 'A War Crime or an Act of War?' The article which challenged the case for war quoted U.S. President George W. Bush as saying: "The dictator who is assembling the world's most dangerous weapons has already used them on whole villages, leaving thousands of his own citizens dead, blind or disfigured."

          Pelletiere says the United States Defense Intelligence Agency investigated and produced a classified report following the Halabja gassing, which it circulated within the intelligence community on a need- to-know basis. "That study asserted that it was Iranian gas that killed the Kurds, not Iraqi gas," he wrote in The New York Times.

          The agency did find that each side used gas against the other in the battle around Halabja, he said. "The condition of the dead Kurds' bodies, however, indicated they had been killed with a blood agent -- that is, a cyanide-based gas -- which Iran was known to use. "The Iraqis, who are thought to have used mustard gas in the battle, are not known to have possessed blood agents at the time."

          Pelletiere writes that these facts have "long been in the public domain but, extraordinarily, as often as the Halabja affair is cited, they are rarely mentioned."

          Pelletiere wrote that Saddam Hussein has much to answer for in the area of human rights abuses. "But accusing him of gassing his own people at Halabja as an act of genocide is not correct, because as far as the information we have goes, all of the cases where gas was used involved battles. These were tragedies of war. There may be justifications for invading Iraq, but Halabja is not one of them."

          Pelletiere has maintained his position. All Saddam would have to do in court now is to cite The New York Times article even if the court would not summon Pelletiere. The issues raised in the article would themselves be sufficient to raise serious questions about the charges filed against Saddam - and in turn the justifications offered last year for invading Iraq.

          the cia had a hand in saddam coming to power in the first place.

    •  One Poll One Might Like to See; (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vivacia, SadTexan

      Whether the American people think capturing Bin Laden is "all that important, frankly."


      To announce...that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.

      by potownman on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:26:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  We (0+ / 0-)

      destroy his network and kill enough of his associates at all levels to make sure he can't act again.

      We try to make his ideology unattractive.

      We kill him if we can.  If we can't, he's just reduced to living in a cave with no communications and no following.

      Much though I would like to see OBL's head on a platter, I could live with that.

  •  Nothing new (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a dumb dreamer

    Let's say we lived in an alternative universe where Howard Dean was running in the primary, and Saddam was just captured. Dean says that we're still no less safe.

    Do you think Hillary would say a single word that Lieberman and Kerry didn't say?

    Yeah. That's reason #49 as why she doesn't deserve our support.

  •  Thank you (0+ / 0-)

    We need to keep reminding everyone that we remember what they and hold them accountable.

    •  I'm reminded that Kerry demagogued the issue... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vivacia, potownman

      He said that about Dean and his comments, knowing full well that Dean was right, in order to score cheap political points. What a scumbag.

      Shorter GOP economic theory: Deregulate. Promote corruption. Concentrate wealth. Slash the safety net. This will promote economic growth and prosperity for all.

      by expatjourno on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:17:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Disingenousness as a Paradigm. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Hmmm, sounds somewhat familiar.

        To announce...that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.

        by potownman on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:28:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Kerry's comments are not demogogy. (0+ / 0-)

        While it would have been better not going to war at all. Dean's comment was NOT that capturing Saddam was not worth going to war, but that capturing Saddam did not make us safer. Given that we did go to war, and Saddam was free in the country; it was better to capture him than to not capture him.

        The fact is that Dean put the other Democrats in a bad position by saying when Saddam was captured that it didn't help in Iraq. There was reason to dispute this on military grounds and political grounds.

        It made sense to accept that capturing Saddam was a minor victory for the US. On the war level, capturing Saddam deprived the Sunnis of a leader to rally around and was clearly a morale lifter for our troops. Had Bush moved to help with the diplomacy at that point (that he still hasn't done), he could have avoided the mess we are in now.

        Politically, it was a disaster of a statement - if all the Democrats followed, it would have been a political disaster. It would be seen as not giving credit when credit was due or not fully admitting how bad Saddam was.

        •  Fucking Kerry supporters. They'll NEVER learn. (0+ / 0-)

          Nothing that happened in Iraq was going to make the American people safer, because the Iraq war was irrelevant to the safety of the American people.

          There was reason to dispute this on military grounds and political grounds.

          Bullshit. It is quite obvious that the capture and execution of Saddam Hussein did nothing to stabilize Iraq, which has only gotten more chaotic month after month.

          Kerry, however, being a political coward, was still trying to say that the war was OK, he'd have just fought it more intelligently. Look at the quote:

          Dean's comment "is still more proof that all the advisers in the world can't give Howard Dean the military and foreign policy experience, leadership skills, or diplomatic temperament necessary to lead this country through dangerous times."

          The jury is in on who was right. And the jury is in on whether Kerry has what it takes to lead the country through dangerous times. What fucking assholes. Both of you.

          Your guy was wrong. Wrong on the merits, wrong morally, wrong politically. He was shit-scared of looking "soft on terrorism" so he gave lukewarm support to a war that he knew, from his own personal experience was a disaster. And, on top of that, he smeared they guy who was telling the truth.

          He could have just disagreed and said what he believed. But no. He decided to paint THE GUY HE KNEW WAS RIGHT as some sort of looney. What an asshole.

          Shorter GOP economic theory: Deregulate. Promote corruption. Concentrate wealth. Slash the safety net. This will promote economic growth and prosperity for all.

          by expatjourno on Mon Feb 26, 2007 at 08:55:54 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Kerry spoke against invading before the war (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            started. One notable speech was a speech at Georgetown University on January 23, 2003. It ended with "DO NOT RUSH TO WAR". Throughout the fall, Kerry was cautiously optimistic that diplomacy and inspections could overt the war. Kerry was also one of the few people to criticize the invasion after it happened - when the war was supported by 70+% of the country.

            The fact is that there was very little difference between the small number of Dean statements in September/October 2002 and the Kerry statements. Neither were cheerleaders of the war. Kerry was very adament that Bush should not go to war except as a last resort and with the other nations.

            The comment in December 2003 was specifically that capturing Saddam did not help. The issue of whether we would have been better not attacking in the first place is irrelevant. Dean did NOT contrast capturing Saddam and not having invaded - and if that was what he meant I never heard him say that.
            What he said was that capturing Saddam made us no safer. This was at minimum a very impolitic statement. To me, it was denying the troops a small victory that was likely a morale booster.

            •  I agree that it was a politically imprudent... (0+ / 0-)

              ...thing for Dean to say. It was nevertheless accurate. First, the situation in Iraq has done nothing but deteriorate since Sadam's capture. So it's hard to argue that his capture made a difference in the war. I mean, how much worse could he have made things for us?

              Moreover, the Iraq war has not made America safer (quite the opposite, obviously) and if the entire war didn't make America safer, then it can't be argued that Saddam's capture -- a single incident in that war -- made us safer.

              Finally, Kerry must have known all that at the time. What he chose to do, though, was to score cheap political points. And, if Kerry really is stupid enough to think that Saddam's capture made us safer, there were a lot of other ways he could have disagreed with Dean besides smearing him.

              And sorry about my language in my first comment.

              Shorter GOP economic theory: Deregulate. Promote corruption. Concentrate wealth. Slash the safety net. This will promote economic growth and prosperity for all.

              by expatjourno on Wed Feb 28, 2007 at 04:03:57 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  I remember when Saddam was captured (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            It was one of the rare pieces of good news coming out of Iraq during that time.  I remember exactly where I was when I learned the news, and I called my husband to tell him the good news -- we didn't know at the time whether Saddam was heading the insurgency or not, so I felt real hope that things could turn around . . . for the Iraqi people.  By then we had already invaded the country and what was done was done, so making the new Iraq a good place to live for the people there was what needed to happen.  Some very brave soldiers took part in that capture, and many more in getting the mission together and the intelligence right.  Howard Dean's remark was highly offensive and ill timed.  He completely dismissed what those brave men and women did, and told the American people (including me) that we were idiots.  Sometimes "being right" is less important than showing grace, and Dean really blew it there.  His remark continued the meme that those of us opposed to the war were going to sneer at any good thing that happened there (and, yes, during that time period, some good things did happen).  That does not represent my viewpoint -- I was opposed to the war, but once there, thought we should make it right for the Iraqi people.  It was only the Samarra shrine bombing on 2/22/06 that caused me to realize we couldn't do it -- too many long histories of the peoples there stood in our way, and it was time to make plans to leave the country (coupled with massive diplomacy).

            I do not understand your vitriol against Kerry or his supporters.  Kerry was right to rebuke Dean at that time, not just for the primaries, but to show that Democrats weren't so callous as to dismiss a success by our armed forces.  

          •  With bin Laden on the loose, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            the world is probably safer. It isn't important to bring him to justice.

            Does anyone really believe this is Howard Dean's thinking on the subject?

            Despite your obvious venom, Kerry was right about a lot of things, and is still, IMO, the best qualified to lead this nation at this time. Too bad more people are putting their full efforts behind ending the carnage in Iraq.

  •  Lieberman (0+ / 0-)

    How do you think all those Ct. Democrats who voted for Lieberman are going to feel when he changes parties?What were those people thinking?

  •  Reminder of why it was hard to support Kerry (6+ / 0-)

    I was 100% immersed in the Dean campaign and I took criticism of him personally.  This brings back so many (painful) memories, and reminds me why it took me so very long to campaign with any enthusiasm for Kerry.  I did it, I'm a good soldier.  Kerry should thank Howard Dean for being the terrific soldier and encouraging all of his supporters to fight for the ticket.  

    I hope to God I don't get stuck campaigning for someone I really dislike again for 2008.  

    •  And why it will be hard to support Mrs.Clinton (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      And don't get me wrong. I would love to have a lady president.

      Geena Davis is awesome!

      But, yes, I feel your pain. I knocked on doors for Kerry. I didn't like it. But I did it.

      Don't get me started!

      •  Barbara Lee speaks for me (0+ / 0-)

        i moved to berkeley to be in her district

        the war in afghanistan gets people to hate us:

        February 23, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- The Afghan National Assembly's passage of a resolution granting blanket amnesty for human rights violations to all sides in more than two decades of fighting in Afghanistan has presented President Hamid Karzai with a dilemma.

        The explosive debate over the bill could lead to a constitutional confrontation.

        Tens of thousands of Afghans rallied at a Kabul stadium today to show support for the measure -- many of them carrying placards of prominent warlords and former mujahedin -- indicating the highly charged nature of the topic.

        The Meshrano Jirga (Council of Elders) passed the controversial "National Stability And Reconciliation" resolution by a 50-16 majority on February 20. That vote came three weeks after the lower house -- the Wolesi Jirga (People's Council) -- approved it on January 31, sparking calls at home and abroad for Afghan President Hamid Karzai to reject it.

  •  it's just the general's way of saying, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "we haven't caught him."

    "step on the gas & wipe that tear away..." - the beatles

    by rasbobbo on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 11:57:18 AM PST

  •  The "threat" will always be there (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    panicbean, potownman

    Which is why this 'war' needs be to be fought with good old fashion police work not militarily.

    Of course, then the corporations would stop making their obscene profits off the backs of our soldiers and that just wouldn't do...

    Even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny. -Jefferson

    by CTLiberal on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 11:59:05 AM PST

    •  Although, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Ignoring French Special Forces was not a particularly good idea, either.

      To announce...that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.

      by potownman on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:30:55 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's just a contest now (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to see whom amongst them can be the most hypocritical. Their side loves it and they can't enrage us any more than we already are.

    It rubs the loofah on its skin or else it gets the falafel again.

    by Fishgrease on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:01:14 PM PST

  •  Faux news (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The news we read:

    The Army's highest-ranking officer said Friday that he was unsure whether the U.S. military would capture or kill Osama bin Laden, adding, "I don't know that it's all that important, frankly."

    The news we are wishing for:

    The Army's highest-ranking officer said Friday that he was unsure whether the U.S. military would ask for Cheney's resignation, adding, "Impeach him would be more important, frankly."

    Be a Cheneyhilist if you wish! Your choice.

    by galliano on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:03:15 PM PST

  •  Wow! So the whole issue of obtaining (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vivacia, potownman

    just ordinary, simple justice--the kind every person of every religion and politics understands (and forget the WoT), is something our political and military leadership considers so unimportant as to not even be considered.

    The Big hidden headline:
    America's Leadership Renounces Law and Order!

    The Bush crimes will continue every single day for the 746 between 1/04/07 and 1/20/09. Every single day. Our plan to stop him is...?

    by Jim P on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:03:30 PM PST

  •  thanks... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    potownman, blueoasis

    "spider hole of denial,"

    Senator, your whole life has become a spider hole of denial. heh.

    The time is out of joint: O cursed spite,
    That ever I was born to set it right!

    Scene 1, Act 5

  •  Ol Joe... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The other, of course, is no longer Democratic...

    ...I hear, may turn Republican.  That's actually good in a way.   That means he'd be moving to the left.

    It's good for your enemies to think you're a little crazy. As long as you can back it up.

    by dov12348 on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:06:50 PM PST

  •  The failure to catch Osama has only been used by (0+ / 0-)

    lefties to bash BushCo. But prosecuting the World Trade Center bombers sent a clear message to the world the strength of our system. Hussein's trial was a sham.

    Osama or Zawahri need to be paraded before our judges and our juries and shown how to behave. While were at it we can show them how to use forks and toilet paper.

    Jimmy Carter is right.

    by LandSurveyor on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:08:23 PM PST

    •  umm (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      lots of people on earth dont use forks or toilet paper.

      are you saying they are all lesser human beings?

      half the worlds people have never made a phone call.

      •  No (0+ / 0-)

        you are the one saying they are all lesser human beings. I consider forks and toilet paper metaphors for peaceful protest, which is what Muslims and Palestinians should be doing. Or they will never get what they want.


        Palestinians have phones. They should be using them.

        Jimmy Carter is right.

        by LandSurveyor on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 04:12:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  violent means can only be used by USA and Israel? (0+ / 0-)

          occupation is a violent crime

          •  The only thing Muslims and Palestinians have left (0+ / 0-)

            is peaceful resistance and trying to become more likeable, shallow as that sounds. Clearly the world doe not care that Palestine is occupied. So does it make a lick of strategic sense to be terrorists? Do you think Israelis are terrified? No.
            Terrorism is bad strategy. It's ineffective and it makes it impossible for people to support you. Period. It kind of makes one think they just like blowing up civilians.

            Jimmy Carter is right.

            by LandSurveyor on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 07:12:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  the world does care (0+ / 0-)

              its only in the USA where where media lies so much on this issue. elsewhere people are for palestinian rights and against the imprisonment wall.

              •  Again, where does terrorism fit in? (0+ / 0-)

                The American media lies about things it can get away with. They covered for Bush and they are paying for it now. The American media has no credibility and everyone knows it. Real news comes from blogs, now. And DKos by far is the most popular prog blog. DKos ain't crying for Palestine sweetheart.
                Americans are Christians and they do not give a shit about this issue. I bet they could though. But the imagery of people affected by walls and occupation will never be as moving as images of blown up malls and cafes where Israeli civilians die.

                David Lee Roth said it best:

                You better find yourself a friend, my friend

                Shit man, Palestine has a freakin ex-President on their side. Yeah it's Jimmy Carter, but at the very least it has allowed me to talk about this issue without sounding like a goddamn terrorist supporter, which is how the debate gets shaped by Israel.

                Jimmy Carter is right.

                by LandSurveyor on Sun Feb 25, 2007 at 06:19:24 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  not much of a story here (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The general blurts out a logical fallacy. That's normal for this administration.

    Dean's statement stands on its own.

  •  Look where another General has a speaking gig (0+ / 0-)

    The Home and Housewares Show.

    Reserve Your Seat at the IHA Industry Breakfast
    Don't miss Gen. Colin Powell speak at the upcoming Industry Breakfast/IHA Annual Meeting during the 2007 International Home & Housewares Show, Tuesday, March 13, 2007, from 7:15 a.m.–8:25 a.m. Drawing on examples garnered from experience as both a leader on the world stage and as eyewitness to leadership in action, Powell will demonstrate how to remain focused, take responsibility, and work toward improving processes, organizations and people. Tickets are $50 per person or $500 for a priority seating table of 10.

    I'm not going anywhere. I'm standing up, which is how one speaks in opposition in a civilized world. - Ainsley Hayes

    by jillian on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:11:17 PM PST

  •  Devistatingly Dead-On/Brief...Thanks! n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "We're right in the middle of a fucking reptile zoo! And someone's giving booze to these goddamn things"-H.S.T.

    by rogerdaddy on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:11:46 PM PST

  •  It takes a special (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    kind of brain to come up with the formulation that Hmm, Gee, is it all that important to kill OBL?  Shrug shoulders; time for lunch.


    Bush issues that "dead or alive" statement, then because we can't get bin Laden, we just drop making any effort?

    It's sickening to think how ridiculous that makes us look to the rest of the world.

    The plural of anecdote is not data.

    by vernonlee on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:12:02 PM PST

  •  Individuals Always Make Better Targets (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    majcmb1, potownman
    Than objectives; their value decreases immediately upon capture/death.

    Saddam, to all appearances, had little command and control of anything after the fall of Baghdad.

    Osama has a lot more to command now than he did when he snuck out of Tora Bora because the United States has run a four-year recruiting campaign for him.

    Our problem is not the genius of Osama bin Laden, it's the incompetence and mendacity of those we allow to "lead" us.

    What we really expect out of the Democrats is for them to treat us as they would liked to have been treated.

    by The Baculum King on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:12:34 PM PST

  •  What if Clinton had failed to capture bin Laden? (0+ / 0-)

    Think of the ways in which the GOP and their mindless followers would use that as a weapon to denounce the Democrats as weak, unpatriotic, and incapable of protecting America.

    Yet look at the GOP now, letting bin Laden walk away from 9/11.

    •  Oh, but they do. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      They blame Clinton even to this day for 9/11. You can't watch a Republican "pundit" on TV talk about terrorism without counting how many "chances" Clinton "passed on" to kill or capture bin Laden. Among which, by the way, they count the cruise missile attack that Republicans at the time dismissed as "wagging the dog" to distract from the Lewinsky travesty.

    •  Clinton did fail to capture/kill OBL. (0+ / 0-)

      He failed to recognize the threat of radical Islamicists to the US even after the first World Trade Center bombing.

      I love Bill Clinton. He and our intelligence community failed us on 9/11 as did Bush.

      •  He most (0+ / 0-)

        certainly did not "fail[] to recognize the threat of radical Islamicists to the US". He was very active in targeting al-Q and OBL, even in the face of exceedingly hostile congressional republicans who did not give a shit about terrorism, and who accused him of "wagging the dog".

        And the way, what was your previous username?:

        I was wrong and apologize teacherken. (1+ / 0-)

        I have no excuse for my vile posts questioning your integrity.

        If Markos Moulitsas wants to ban me again...that's fine. I'm a proud Democrat with too big a mouth.

        by dishrag on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 02:40:34 PM PST

        [ Parent | Reply to This |Recommend Troll  ]

  •  Why is Colin Powell... (0+ / 0-)

    a "strategic limited partner" in Kleiner,Perkins Caufield & Byers?

    As the KPCB Pandemic and Bio Defense Fund marks its first anniversary Friday, this much is clear: Investing in pandemic prevention is enormously risky, with the promise of mega-returns offset by the highly uncertain odds that a pandemic, despite the predictions, will sweep the world.

    Kleiner Perkins won't disclose all of the companies that its fund has bankrolled, but at least two of them are publicly traded and offer a good look into just how stomach-churning pandemic investing can be.- CNN Money

    I'm not going anywhere. I'm standing up, which is how one speaks in opposition in a civilized world. - Ainsley Hayes

    by jillian on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 12:19:15 PM PST

  •  Let's kill with assault rifles, in America, say . (0+ / 0-)

    Any prominent member of the NRA who opposes use of assault rifles gets excommunicated.

    Here's the first 2 grafs from a WaPo article:

    >Modern hunters rarely become more famous than Jim Zumbo. A mustachioed, barrel-chested outdoors entrepreneur who lives in a log cabin near Yellowstone National Park, he has spent much of his life writing for prominent outdoors magazines, delivering lectures across the country and starring in cable TV shows about big-game hunting in the West.

    >Zumbo's fame, however, has turned to black-bordered infamy within America's gun culture -- and his multimedia success has come undone. It all happened in the past week, after he publicly criticized the use of military-style assault rifles by hunters, especially those gunning for prairie dogs.

    And these gun crazies are an important constituency of the Repub party!

    We have come to be ruled by evil.

    Anyone want to start a petition in support of a complete ban on assault rifles, except for police and military use, in the US of A?

    On a personal note, someone close to me has just been convicted, rightfully I think, of involuntary manslaughter for accidentally shooting his friend.  The child was 15 and the person who died was 19, both male.

    The insanity of the US towards guns kills people. If we had fewer guns and glorified them less, we would be better off as a society in many ways, including the prevention of some killings. Period.

  •  Being Right On The Issues Is Detrimental To (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    majcmb1, potownman

    to career advancement. The best way to advance your career in politics, journalism and punditry in the U.S. is by being 100% wrong on everything.

  •  The Hussein's weren't Al Queda either (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    So much for Al Queda, who was never really in Iraq.  Even Zarqawi wasn't a true follower.  He was an anti-West rogue bent on stirring up trouble for the US in Iraq.  The rest of the stuff we heard  about him as a disciple of Bin Laden was Rumsfeld propaganda.

  •  Here they go again! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Schoomaker pointed to the capture of Saddam Hussein, the killings of his sons, Uday and Qusay, and the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi as evidence that the capture or death of al-Qaeda's leader would have little effect on threats to the United States.

    Notice the shrouded association between Saddam and Al-Qaeda?

    Let's see, General...why did the death of Saddam and his sons "have little effect on threats to the United States"?


    Why does the so-called LIBRUL media let these guys get away with this CRAP?!!!

  •  I think that everyone's comment is valid. (0+ / 0-)

    I think that if bin Laden was taken out, someone would step in to fill the power vacuum. Al Qaeda would go on.

    Instead of indiscriminantly targeting Al Qaeda sympathizers and followers, I would like to see our government focus more on trying to capture the critical leaders of the movement, the brains behind the operation.

    While the arrests of low level operatives and sympathizers make it appear as if our government is doing something, it isn't really doing anything to cripple the network.

    Instead of using torture to get information, how about infiltrating Al Qaeda with some operatives to find out who the power players are? You obviously can't infiltrate Al Qaeda with someone who looks WASP-like, and it seems to me the only way that you are going to get someone with the right ethnic background to work as a mole for the U.S. is to appeal to their greed, get them to believe in the rightness of the cause, or give them something that they value in exchange (i.e., the safety of their family).

    •  Disagree on strategy (0+ / 0-)

      The real, and IMHO only, way to get rid of Al-Qaeda in the long run is via cultural/societal methods.

      Military / police actions are band-aids.

      I am not suggesting "Westernization" of Islamic nations; rather, I'm suggesting that an as-yet-unknown process of reconciliation, a reduction in the aggressiveness of American foreign policy, and a realization that Al-Qaeda is flourishes where ignorance and despair run rampant are the only types of things that will ultimately eliminate the threat.

      We are not "responsible" for their actions, but we have to realize that we can impact the circumstances in which Al-Qaeda fighters of tomorrow grow up and are indoctrinated.

  •  But that general has a point. (0+ / 0-)

    Killing Osama bin Laden would be counterproductive, because many would regard him as a martyr and follow his footsteps. Anyone claiming to be his successor would have hordes of recruits.
    Bringing him to trial is equally out of the question. A fair trial that might dismantle his fame and reveal how he does not care much about civilian muslim dead (which might dry out his support), such a trial would also reveal how US and Pakistani intelligence supported him for a long time, practically building his movement up. Besides, I could imagine quite the outrage in the US public if OBL were brought to trial and the process would go on and on for years, the man being alive all the while.
    All which could perhaps be given to him would be a very short process without background digging, very little media coverage, and essentially without defence, as Saddam Hussein had. This would, again, give the Arab world a bad impression of US justice, and boost Al-Qaida's popularity.

    Therefore, the best course for the current US government seems to be: shift the focus away from OBL and hope he sits somewhere quietly in a mountain cave, not getting into the news anytime soon.

    Freedom is not just a word. 'Freedom' is a noun.

    by intruder from Old Europe on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 01:33:37 PM PST

  •  Thank you for posting this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    diary, but it makes my heart ache big-time. The only presidential candidate for whom I emptied my pocketbook, for whom I worked as hard as I could and was vilified and taken down by the stupid MSM was HoHo. Think for a moment how different our lives would be were he now our president. It just breaks my heart.

  •  And Bin Laden hasn't been found because....Why? (0+ / 0-)

    Never mind just why we let Bin Laden escape at Tora Bora. It has been 5+years and the most advanced, multi-billion $ funded intellegence operation in the history of the world can't find him? The man wasn't well before 911 and needed periodic visits to medical care. This is not Rambo.  

    Bin Laden hasn't been found because he isn't wanted found. Why?

    Possible answers:

    1. Boogy man for the GWOT strategy. His persona is needed alive to fuel the WH power grab and real reasons we are in ME.
    1. Connections to rulers in Saudia Arabia. Bush made a "hands off" deal with his friends.
    1. Bin Laden on trial for 911 would bring to light either a. that he had little or nothing to do with 911 and/or b. the  WH complicity in 911, and/or c. WH colluded with Bin Laden.

    OK, go ahead and think whatever, but to this day, there is no coherent explaination of much of the physical phenomena of that day. e.g.- Why WTC7 fell.

    They "shot the moon" and got away with it (so far so good). Bin Laden on trial would bring up lots of uncomfortable questions.

    Nope, Bin Laden couldn't TURN himself in now if he wanted to IMHO.  

  •  Iraq oil deal and democracy. (0+ / 0-)

    I started a diary explaining and commenting on the Iraqi oil deal as reported this week by Link TV.  Unfortunately, after I wrote it, I couldn't figure out how to get it posted, so I'm summarizing it here.  The oil contract is a 35 year longterm deal.  It also privatizes Iraq's nationalized oil industry and gives no preference to Iraqi oil companies in the granting of contracts.  All oil policy will be made by an oil board and not by Iraq's central government.  U.S. and British oil representatives will sit on the oil board and have a voice in the granting of contracts.  This is clearly a conflict of interest, but obviously U.S. and British oil giants like it that way.  Iraq will not be allowed to control the production of oil.  This means that they will be unable to follow the production guidelines established by OPEC.  One has to wonder how democracy entered into the creation of this policy.  I venture to say not much if at all.  I saw no mention of this deal anywhere else.  I guess our media and press were too busy with celebrity gossip, and the mere mention of oil is verboten when discussing Iraq.  Maybe oil was not the only motivation for going into Iraq, but I would guess it to be the most important reason.  Would the Bush crowd and its AEI sponsors have been interested in the Iraqi desert with no oil under it?  How happy did this deal make U.S. oil companies who were on C-Span last week complaining about how almost all oil reserves around the world are nationalized?  This very much looks like a dream deal for the proponents of PNAC and its end of history utopian dreams.  Now we'll  have to see how this paper deal plays out in real time.

  •  I thought we were going to screw in the ass! (0+ / 0-)

    Now it's not even important catch him?  Will these guys ever make up their minds.  It's so difficult being a patriot these days, what with never knowing the correct position to have relative to UBL.

  •  Bin Laden's three reasons. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Last week, Chalmers Johnson was on C-Span's Book TV.  He summarized Bin Laden's explanation of why he went after the U.S.  They reasons were: l.  U.S. bases in Saudi Arabia  2.  U.S. alliance with radical Zionists vs. Palestinians  3.  The death of over 500,000 Iraqi citizens that resulted from sanctions imposed on Iraq.    I'm not saying that I agree with any or all of these reasons, but it is interesting that he didn't mention that he hates our democracy or that he wants to turn us all into Muslims.  

  •  Bid Laden not important? (0+ / 0-)

    Of course Saddam was a criminal, but he never attacked the U.S. so getting him had nothing to do with our safety.  Wasn't Ossama the mastermind of 9/11?  Isn't he a murderer of U.S. citizens?  I don't get the logic here.

  •  Osama and Pakistan. (0+ / 0-)

    Maybe we're protecting Pakistan and our relationship with them by not going after Osama.  He might be hiding out there.  We should have gone after him right after 9/11.  Now it's complicated by Iraq and other issues.

  •  Cheney strongly supports sending unarmored troops (0+ / 0-)

    He criticizes Pelosis and Murthas efforts to make sure TROOPS HAVE ALL THE ARMOR AND THE EQUIPMENT TO FIGHT!

    Now, if that's not treasonous and unpartiotic by the VP I JUST DUNNO WHAT THE MEANING OF TREASON AND UNPATRIOTIC IS.

  •  I was mad at Kerry that day (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I was working my precinct hard as a volunteer for Kerry, but I assumed that Dean would get the nomination. I remember telling my field organizer that I was NOT happy about Kerry's comments regarding Dean.

    There are no perfect candidates or perfect campaigns. That was definitely one of Kerry's big mistakes.

  •  I still want Osama to die. (0+ / 0-)


    Children are just lobbyists who get political favors in return for being adorable-Stephen Colbert

    by djtyg on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 04:48:35 PM PST

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