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First up in today's roundup: Iraq. We begin with The New York Times:
What’s happening in Iraq is a disaster and it is astonishing that the Iraqis and the Americans, who have been sharing intelligence, seem to have been caught flat-footed by the speed of the insurgent victories and the army defections.

 [...] The United States simply cannot be sucked into another round of war in Iraq. In any case, airstrikes and new weapons would be pointless if the Iraqi Army is incapable of defending the country.

Why would the United States want to bail out a dangerous leader like Mr. Maliki, who is attempting to remain in power for a third term as prime minister? It is up to Iraq’s leaders to show leadership and name a new prime minister who will share power, make needed reforms and include all sectarian and ethnic groups, especially disenfranchised Sunnis, in the country’s political and economic life — if, indeed, it is not too late.

Jay Bookman at The Atlanta Journal Constitution:
The tragic sequence of events now playing out in Iraq was set in motion by the decision of President Bush, Vice President Cheney and others to use the attacks of Sept. 11 as cover to carry out the invasion that they had long coveted.  We ignited this inferno, even if others have since added fuel to it, and the claim that we did so out of humanitarian concern for the Iraqis is just as empty as those depots of WMD turned out to be.
Fareed Zakaria:
...Who lost Iraq?

Whenever the United States has asked this question — as it did with China in the 1950s or Vietnam in the 1970s — the most important point to remember is: The local rulers did. The Chinese nationalists and the South Vietnamese government were corrupt, inefficient and weak, unable to be inclusive and unwilling to fight with the dedication of their opponents. The same story is true of Iraq, only much more so. The first answer to the question is: Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki lost Iraq. [...]But how did Maliki come to be prime minister of Iraq? He was the product of a series of momentous decisions made by the Bush administration. Having invaded Iraq with a small force — what the expert Tom Ricks called “the worst war plan in American history” — the administration needed to find local allies. It quickly decided to destroy Iraq’s Sunni ruling establishment and empower the hard-line Shiite religious parties that had opposed Saddam Hussein. This meant that a structure of Sunni power that had been in the area for centuries collapsed. These moves — to disband the army, dismantle the bureaucracy and purge Sunnis in general — might have been more consequential than the invasion itself.

More on this and the day's other top stories below the fold.

Daniel Benjamin, former ambassador-at-large and coordinator for counterterrorism at the State Department from 2009 to 2012, writing in The Boston Globe:

THE NEWS from Iraq has been so bad for so long, it has become difficult to distinguish the merely depressing from the genuinely disastrous. But the fall of Mosul, the country’s second largest city, to jihadist forces this week provided a shock well above and beyond the quotidian misery — one that looks like a turning point, or even an end point, for post-Saddam Iraq. [...] What can be done? After 13 years of war, no one in Washington — rightly — will contemplate putting US boots back on the ground. The Obama administration will continue to provide Maliki with arms, now that his forces are again accepting help from the United States. For the future, it will require real imagination and effort to contain the demons now proliferating in the eastern reaches of the Fertile Crescent — at a moment when Americans would most like to look away.
Fred Kaplan at Slate:
The collapse of Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, has little to do with the withdrawal of American troops and everything to do with the political failure of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. [...] Depending on what happens in the next few weeks, or maybe even days, we may be witnessing the beginning of either a new political order in the region or a drastic surge in the geostrategic swamp and humanitarian disaster that have all too palpably come to define it.
Switching topics, the analysis is still pouring in on Eric Cantor's historic defeat this week, and despite the original spin, no, immigration reform wasn't the driving cause. From The Boston Globe:
If Speaker John Boehner and the remaining House GOP leadership accept the idea that Cantor’s defeat means they must abandon immigration reform, they’ll be misdiagnosing his demise. Cantor’s defeat isn’t a warning to Republicans to avoid immigration; it’s a warning to all politicians, of all parties, that getting too cozy in office and ignoring the basic duties of a lawmaker can lead to consequences that are sudden, swift, and brutal.
The Los Angeles Times:
From all the hand-wringing over soon-to-be-former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's astonishing defeat in a GOP primary Tuesday in Virginia, you might think he had been a conciliatory figure determined to keep the federal government on track even when it meant compromising on his conservative principles. That, he was not. So it strains credulity that some pundits and pols are predicting that Republicans will now be even less willing to strike deals with Democrats, and that conservatives will be more influential in the House. It's hard to imagine how Republicans in the House could have been less willing to strike deals, or how conservatives could be more influential there.
Eugene Robinson:
The Republican Party’s reliance on tea party support is like an addict’s dependence on a dangerous drug: It may feel good at first, but eventually it eats you alive.
Paul Krugman provides the final takeaway:
How big a deal is the surprise primary defeat of Representative Eric Cantor, the House majority leader? Very. Movement conservatism, which dominated American politics from the election of Ronald Reagan to the election of Barack Obama — and which many pundits thought could make a comeback this year — is unraveling before our eyes. [...]

So whither movement conservatism? Before the Virginia upset, there was a widespread media narrative to the effect that the Republican establishment was regaining control from the Tea Party, which was really a claim that good old-fashioned movement conservatism was on its way back. In reality, however, establishment figures who won primaries did so only by reinventing themselves as extremists. And Mr. Cantor’s defeat shows that lip service to extremism isn’t enough; the base needs to believe that you really mean it.

On voter ID, Bill Minor says that it's all myth and no fact:
Why must Mississippi voters show an approved photo ID at the polls to vote?

Is there a crime wave of voters falsely identifying themselves? If that has been going on, why hasn’t anybody heard about it? Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann must be the only one who has.

So he has appointed himself protector-in-chief to stop the nonexistent scourge of voter impersonation.


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Comment Preferences

  •  The Southern Strategy (36+ / 0-)

    As usual, Krugman’s article is excellent. He encapsulates how the corporate Republicans get people to vote against their own economic interests. But there may be some recognition developing of the "con".

    Krugman’s closing statement about the Republicans is quite interesting:

    In the long run — which probably begins in 2016 — this will be bad news for the G.O.P., because the party is moving right on social issues at a time when the country at large is moving left. (Think about how quickly the ground has shifted on gay marriage.) Meanwhile, however, what we’re looking at is a party that will be even more extreme, even less interested in participating in normal governance, than it has been since 2008. An ugly political scene is about to get even uglier.

    "Inequality is the root of social evil." ― Pope Francis

    by GoodGod on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 04:45:36 AM PDT

    •  If the economy doesn't improve, (5+ / 0-)

      social issues will not have much of an effect on the elections this year, or more importantly, in 2016.

      People need jobs.

      •  But if GOP continues to (10+ / 0-)

        move right on these issues, as it quite obviously is doing, less people will be inclined to vote for the party of "old, white men".

        If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

        by skohayes on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:12:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Perhaps.. (3+ / 0-)

          But what issues are we talking about here?

          There are people like Rand Paul who want social issues to be removed from their platform.

          Some issues like immigration are more economic in nature than social.  And I believe that is how they will frame it going forward.

          Tell a 25 yr old American citizen who is out of work that voting for a Democrat in 2016 means allowing 12-20 million people to legally compete with her for the few jobs available.  Does it become an economic or social issue?

        •  Embracing Populism (6+ / 0-)

          The Southern Strategy is a policy that is pushing nice suburban and rural white folks towards fervent religiosity (albeit sans “Christian” values). Their anti-science views only benefit industry’s polluters keeping us on course for disaster via climate change. And their xenophobia only harms America’s rational participation on the world stage.

          However, if Krugman is correct that Cantor's loss signals some cracks in that strategy, populism will prevail. An astute Democrat could more easily harness that shift among white suburbanites than a Republican, while reestablishing empathy for those less well off, elevating concern for the environment and reducing the role of corporate influence.

          No, I'm not wearing rose colored glasses. There is some room for hope. Clinton is good on the environment and protections for the poor. She needs to be pushed to embrace populism and to step away from her Wall St. ties. She could be the vehicle for major positive change in America.

          "Inequality is the root of social evil." ― Pope Francis

          by GoodGod on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:04:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not unless we give her a majority (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            in Congress.

            If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

            by skohayes on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:08:57 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's a given (0+ / 0-)

              But if she truly embraces populism she can swing many of those gerrymandered districts. A significant number of Republican women will come out to vote her, and they'll help her with electing a Dem congress if Hillary makes the (populous) case.

              "Inequality is the root of social evil." ― Pope Francis

              by GoodGod on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 07:18:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  And people with college loans (15+ / 0-)

        who pay 40% of their income to that debt can't buy other shit, s jobs aren't coming.  Mitch McConnell made VERY clear how much the GOP cares about jobs.

        Use it in your GOTV.  Even with repubs.  Remind them that they are not millionaires, even those who own a business and employ people, and those are the only people the GOP cares about.  

        "Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.: Maya Angelou

        by PsychoSavannah on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:19:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  But I might done be a millionaire somebody! (6+ / 0-)

          If those Dems  just didn't keep 'pressing me with them thar taxes 'n' regulations!

          "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

          by Stude Dude on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:22:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You'd be surprised how many millionaires speak (5+ / 0-)

            exactly as your remarks imply.

            I'm reminded of my days as a teenage busboy in the finest restaurant in town. Money talked louder than even the most rudimentary of dress codes and we had these regular customers, a millionaire rancher and his hands, who would come in reeking with sweat and with cow patty putty still sticking to their boots.  I can still remember the boss eating spare ribs, poking an entire rib lengthwise down his throat and pulling out nothing but a bone, the disgusting operation accompanied by the grunts and groans one would expect when an air passage is temporarily disabled,and followed by loud belching, or as I've heard it described, "compliments of a good meal."

            It was then and there that any ill-advised "respect" I might have afforded the moneyed on the naive assumption that money equals class was forever quashed.

            Ted Cruz president? Pardon my Vietnamese, but Ngo Pho King Way.

            by ZedMont on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:51:47 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  They are trumpeting the social issues precisely (10+ / 0-)

        as a distraction from their efforts to stall the economy so they can "blame Obama" with the media's complicity and win again.

        You can't make this stuff up.

        by David54 on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:31:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's the economy: long game (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Nautical Knots

          If, at the midterms, the extremists continue to elect more extremists or force more corporate republicans to hitch onto their agenda, we will see in the next two years the very public inability of the republicans to implement any of their policies.  

          Which will lead to:

          Many of the republicans will get tired of always losing . . .

          Others will find out that Obama's agenda is not the end of the world, just as people have found out that republicans lied about gay marriage.  

          The extremists will find it even harder to fund their campaigns.

          As we approach 2016:

          There will be a republican panic to repudiate the extremists. The republicans may pull together to defang the teaparty in time to put up a viable candidate in 2016, but it will be ugly: hard core extremists will be even more susceptible to the violence promoted by the wingnut media.  

          However, this is all contingent on the economy holding up or even getting better.  If the economy plunges it will give the wingnuts an incredible surge in support.

      •  The GOP has very effectively (4+ / 0-)

        made sure that the economy doesn't improve, while hiding their fingerprints.

        The easiest fastest way to help the economy, especially in red states, would be to approve the unemployment extension and expand Medicaid. That money would quickly be spent, helping the overall economy and preventing hospital closures (with resulting job loss). But no, they're determined not to do either one.

        They obviously believe that a sluggish economy will be blamed more on Obama than on them. So far, they appear to be right.

        •  Democrats are complicit (5+ / 0-)

            The Democrats' chronic, pathetic unwillingness to stand up for themselves is the Republicans' most effective weapon in hiding their fingerprints.

            If we had the Democratic Party of the Truman era, or even the Kennedy/Johnson era, the GOP wouldn't be able to get away with their obfuscation for five minutes.


          "Le ciel est bleu, l'enfer est rouge."

          by Buzzer on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:53:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  All we have to do is get out the vote (12+ / 0-)

      and the gop is toast.

      You can't make this stuff up.

      by David54 on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:29:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't see the country as a whole moving (7+ / 0-)

      to the left on any social issues other than marriage equality. A woman's right to control her own body is being eroded into oblivion in state after state. Voting rights are under attack, etc.  Perhaps a slight leftward shift on immigration, but that is an economic issue, not a social one.  

      Even with shifts in popular opinion, the reality is that hard right ideologues control the majority of state legislatures, even in some blue states. They have redistricted themselves into a permanent majority in state after state. The Hispanic 'demographic tidal wave' will not save us.  Young Hispanics generally live in the same area as their parents; they are not going to move to rural Nebraska, or even central Pennsylvania, in numbers sufficient to change anything at the legislative level.  A little gerrymandering will be sufficient to keep the Democratic leaning populace bottled up in a few districts for the foreseeable future.

      You fell victim to one of the classic blunders, the most famous of which is "Never get involved in a land war in Asia".

      by yellowdog on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:55:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We need to stop framing issues (0+ / 0-)

        In term of right or left, instead it ought to be right (liberal and or progressive) and wrong (conservative, libertarian, and/or religious extremists)

        I was a liberal when liberal was cool, I was a liberal when liberal wasn't cool, but I always was and always will be a liberal.

        by LemmyCaution on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 02:39:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The LA Times piece drives the nail (29+ / 0-)
    It's hard to imagine how Republicans in the House could have been less willing to strike deals, or how conservatives could be more influential there.
    but it is Eugene Robinson who hammers it home:
    The Republican Party’s reliance on tea party support is like an addict’s dependence on a dangerous drug: It may feel good at first, but eventually it eats you alive.
    Great roundup today, Georgia.  Thank you.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 04:50:54 AM PDT

    •  Eugene Robinson nails it (5+ / 0-)

      I've never heard it put more succinctly.

      If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

      by skohayes on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:13:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Republican Party IS the Tea Party (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nautical Knots

        I wish these pundits would stop pretending that there's any Tea Party "faction" in the GOP. The Tea Party is the heart and soul of the GOP -- it's the rare remaining "moderates" that are the aberration.

        Eric Cantor was the wingnuttiest of the wingnuts. He lost to a candidate who was his ideological clone. He lost because he was too full of himself -- NOT because he was ideologically out of step with the teabaggers.

         Every time a Republican claims to not approve of the Tea Party, I simply ask them what, in particular, about the Tea Party they disapprove of. Never gotten a straight answer...

      "Le ciel est bleu, l'enfer est rouge."

      by Buzzer on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:57:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We broke Iraq; we can't fix it; we need to stay (17+ / 0-)


    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 04:54:32 AM PDT

    •  Warmonger McCain on Morning Joe: (15+ / 0-)

      Iraq was "won". Now Obama has lost it.

      "Inequality is the root of social evil." ― Pope Francis

      by GoodGod on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:07:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The only morally correct thing to do (29+ / 0-)

      is to put George W. Bush and Dick Cheney on a plane direct to Baghdad and tell them not to come back until they fix the situation. Colin Powell was right; the Pottery Barn rule does apply.

      You will not be punished for your anger. You will be punished by your anger.

      by mstep on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:11:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  What can be done to help Iraqis? (0+ / 0-)

      Stating and re-stating that America won't fight does nothing.

      So what? We all understand Obama won't commit troops.

      Meanwhile a group of psychotic jihadis that Al Qaeda itself disavowed for being too extreme control broad sections of eastern Syria and now, northwestern and central Iraq.

      ISIS just looted $425 million from the banks of Mosul to become the "world's richest terrorist organization".

      In the regions ISIS controls, women must never leave their houses on pain of immediate execution. They cut the hands off "thieves". Perceived enemies (Muslims who don't share their psychotic ideology) are tortured, forced to dig their own graves at gunpoint, then beheaded. Published reports claim the streets of Mosul are lined with the decapitated heads of ISIS "foes".

      This is real, like it or not. Ignoring the ISIS invasion will not help Iraqis. It won't reduce the danger ISIS poses.

      What can be done to turn back ISIS and help Iraqis?

      •  Why don't you go to help? (0+ / 0-)

        I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

        by a2nite on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:36:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Me going to help won't save Iraqis. (0+ / 0-)

          International powers are the only ones with the ability to help.

          Either we consider what they can do, or we just thumbing our nose at Iraqi suffering.

          Telling me to go help is just thumbing your nose at Iraqis.

          •  No, they need to fix it themselves; outsiders (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            US have made everything worse. Everything we touch turns to garbage.

            I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

            by a2nite on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:56:45 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  correct (0+ / 0-)

              Only they can fix this.  It will be bloody and violent but only they can help themselves.  They need to have the will to do it.

              •  There is no law that "only they can fix it". (0+ / 0-)

                You just don't want to commit American troops.

                That's fine. No one in America wants that.

                But we want to stay out for our own reasons, not because we've done some refined analysis that determined that the only good course of action for Iraqis is to avoid any foreign aid or intervention on principle.

                •  huh? (0+ / 0-)

                  Didn't say that.  Let someone else go in.  My bet is that one side or the other will resent them regardless of who they are and it will still eventually come back to a slug fest between the opposing parties.  It may not be today or tomorrow but it could be hundreds of years from now. Religious and ethnic hatred is really hard to overcome.  

          •  Unlikely we could really help (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            portlandzoo, tb mare

            "International powers" have limited options. Bombing? drone strikes, against whom? giving more money or weapon systems to the Iraqi government, which I gather refuses to include Sunni in its governance thus fanning the flames? Send in blue-helmet UN "peacekeepers" who will likely get mowed down?

            I have just visited the Balkans, and saw the results of the NATO bombing in Serbia and Montenegro during the Kosovo war in 1999 -- buildings in the center of Belgrade (and elsewhere) still crumbling shells, and people remember well who did the damage. Was it worth it? Who knows? Wait 500 years and ask the question again.

            In Iraq, the US removed the dictator who had managed to keep the Sunni-Shia conflict under tight control. Maybe, just maybe, he knew his country better than we do.

            I wish I had some solutions, but frankly I don't see any. Our government unleashed a firestorm, and it rages.

            •  International powers have plenty of options. (0+ / 0-)

              Some of them are already engaged over there, in negative ways mostly. The NATO action against the Balkans was definitely worth it. It stopped an unfolding genocide and punished its perpetrators.

              Saddam didn't know his country better than others. He just slaughtered all dissenters (as well as allies), looted its treasury, and ruled through fear and an iron fist.

              Any poor-ish countries emerging from such dictatorships face years and years of struggle, anguish and instability.

              International action is possible to help Iraqis avoid slipping under the dictatorship of psychotic jihadi invaders. It's not just going to stay as it is today. What powers do next will help shape its uncertain and evolving future. It's worth analyzing.

            •  This is the reality there. (0+ / 0-)
              In Iraq, the US removed the dictator who had managed to keep the Sunni-Shia conflict under tight control. Maybe, just maybe, he knew his country better than we do.
              This is what Saddam knew that few people are willing to admit:

              There are multiple factions in Iraq and a substantial number of them want to exterminate each other. The genocidal desires there are not restricted to some tiny percentage of the population there, like the 1-in-5,000 tea-party nutters here. It's vastly more common. (Not a majority ... probably ... but way way too common.)

              Saddam handled this by brutal authoritarian methods.

              The occupation handled it with a perpetual state of war, and in areas it controlled, by building walls between neighborhoods. Literally. You couldn't walk from one neighborhood to another in Baghdad anymore, you had to go through a maze with checkpoints. As soon as the occupation withdrew, the checkpoints were gone and the walls started getting knocked down and the violence started spiraling up again.

              There will be no solution and no peace until the factions in Iraq decide they are tired of killing each other.

              Saddam's rule and the American occupation were both only temporary sandbags that held back this deadly flood.

              And if you want to know what I propose as a solution ... I don't have one. Maybe there isn't one.

              "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

              by nosleep4u on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 08:16:25 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  No. There was no Iraqi genocide until Saddam. (0+ / 0-)

                Sunnis and Shi'ites live together peacefully in many countries.

                They had lived together in Iraq for centuries without committing genocide on each other. In fact, they had mingled and inter-married.

                Then the colonial British empire muddied the waters by elevating and ruling through a client elite of minority Sunnis.

                That set the table for many future recriminations.

                Saddam was a brutal and murderous authoritarian fascist.

                He wasn't a sociological genius.

                He simply continued the British Empire tradition of favoring a minority Sunni elite. To it he added his personal touch of slaughtering centrists, opponents, and allies by the tens of thousands.

                His genocidal actions caused and created today's Iraq.

                To the extent there are groups in Iraq that wish mass violence on one another, that is the direct and intentional legacy of Saddam Hussein. Saddam had not mastered a deeper, more essential Iraqi reality. He simply bludgeoned and tortured his desired sectarian bloodbath into existence, in his own ultra-violent image.

                Vicious sectarian strife is not a profound and never-changing Iraqi reality, but instead another lasting scar of Saddam's rule.

      •  "Published Reports"-- Links? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        NPR reported yesterday some residents of Mosul that had fled were returning to their homes-- because ISIS forces were not acting violently toward them.

        "We are beyond law, which is not unusual for an empire; unfortunately, we are also beyond common sense." Gore Vidal

        by Superpole on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:37:20 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Lets invade. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        a2nite, portlandzoo

        Then we can get those bad guys.

        It's not our fucking job to be the world police.  All we can do is provide support so the locals can defend themselves and fight back.  

        This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

        by DisNoir36 on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:38:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  There are other options than a US invasion. (0+ / 0-)

          If we refuse to discuss them and state over and over "We won't invade, we won't invade!" as our only response to the crisis, then we're doing nothing at all to resolve it.

          Our "fucking job" is whatever we decide it is.

          •  How do you know there's no discussion? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            In these situations, what is said publicly and what is going on behind closed doors in the White House, the State Department, and the Pentagon are often quite different. I'd be very surprised if "We won't put boots on the ground" is the only response happening. It's just the public face, for now.

    •  Oil. (3+ / 0-)

      The pressure to "do something" will be great.
      We can't let the neocons regain their grip, in any case.
      We need to push back very hard.

      I personally don't see what's so bad about creating a stalemate and letting a de facto partition take place. Kurds in the North, Sunnis in the midwest, and Shia in the south.

      Seems like this would also weaken Iran and hopefully change Assad's calculus.

      If we do anything over there, it should be humanitarian relief focused.

      You can't make this stuff up.

      by David54 on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:39:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  So, cede Sunni Iraq to foreign jihadi psychos? (0+ / 0-)

        That's bad. The fervor for partition is misplaced.

        I'm happy for the USA to stay on the sideline, but it would be nice if other powers did act in humanitarian manner to push back against the ISIS invaders.

        It probably won't unfold so well. But it is denying reality to say that an ISIS takeover benefits Iraqis in any way. No.

        •  What is the Arab World doing about this? (10+ / 0-)

          Anything at all? They all have jets and armies too.
          Think they'd just rather dial 911USA.

          Happy just to be alive

          by exlrrp on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:03:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Which countries should act and how? (0+ / 0-)

            My comment didn't call for American invasion, it asked what international powers can or should act, and how.

            •  You tell me (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Superpole, a2nite

              Once again we're running around trying to figure out what America should do.
              It would be nice to see some leadership and action from some of the regimes we've been propping up over the many years who seem all too ready to sit and wonder what the Americans are going to do about it. Looking at you, Saudi Arabia, and others
              I'm not real optimistic about this

              Happy just to be alive

              by exlrrp on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 07:00:02 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Iran is already engaged, not sure about others. (0+ / 0-)

                Iran is co-ordinating with their crony Maliki's army and may get for involved (they want to keep Iraq Shi'a-dominated).

                Turkey threatened to retaliate if its hostages were harmed.

                Saudi Arabia doesn't have a military designed for such war.

                Personally, I'd love to see local states, the EU, NATO, or the UN co-ordinate some sort of peace-keeping response.

                They all seem to be looking the other way.

                I'm not optimistic either and expect a brutal outcome.

                •  Saudi Arabia is Sunni (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  as are the ISIS. They have influence there, including giving financial support.
                  they could be helping they could be negotiating---but its so much more fun to just count the oil money, which they know the US will protect.
                  Hell, look at the BIG Miracle---what if SA actually sat down and talked to the Iranians, tried to work something out, try and get some peace and tolerance between Sunni and Shiite in their own region---its SUPPOSED to be a religion of peace. No, I'm not kidding.
                  hahahahahahaha we all know that will never happen
                  this is a time for a great Arab leader to show up, not a great USA leader. Are there any out there?

                  Happy just to be alive

                  by exlrrp on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 07:19:55 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I don't see any great world leaders at present. (0+ / 0-)

                    That includes both inside and outside the West.

                    They're all transparently engaged in a zero-sum game to carve out the biggest piece of the economy for their rich.

                    As you note, a peace conference between Saudi and Iranian leaders won't happen. Both are very undemocratic regimes whose grip on power stems from playing footsie with their resident extremists.

                    The only way to lessen sectarian conflict is to build more tolerant and democratic societies. But that's a long way off.

                    As for Iraq, the question was who can intervene militarily. Those Muslim leaders who may (Iran, mostly) probably won't have the best interests of Iraqis much at heart.

                •  Turkey could make peace with its own Kurds (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  and encourage the peaceful development of a Kurdish homeland in Iraq.
                  Saudi Arabia could rein in its support for extreme radicalism and that might force its proxy groups to moderate.
                  Maliki could bolster the defense of Bagdad so there isn't a bloodbath there.
                  Everybody just chill.

                  You can't make this stuff up.

                  by David54 on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 08:37:33 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  I Thought Iraq Has an Air Force (0+ / 0-)

        and U.S. fighter jets?

        "We are beyond law, which is not unusual for an empire; unfortunately, we are also beyond common sense." Gore Vidal

        by Superpole on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:50:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree with partitioning. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        The only way to reduce the inter-faction killing is to get them separated.

        And that means a partition.

        Will that mean ceding some areas to people "we" don't like? Of course. But there is no other alternative that doesn't involve prolonged bloodshed.

        "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

        by nosleep4u on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 08:23:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Fareed today is saying what Le Monde did yesterday (22+ / 0-)

    and it sounds about right.
    Americans always think that democracy is magical, and just holding an election solves all the problems, like pixie dust. Even in a country coming out of a very long fascist nightmare, where youve also effectively burnt all the sustaining institutional infrastructure to the ground.

  •  Just like dead people don't know they're dead, (6+ / 0-)

    the same applies to stupid people.

    Many times I’ve returned. Never was I the same in any of my guises. I feel inside, my times before, with no memories of each journey. My soul’s shadows haunt all the paths it has traveled.

    by Wendys Wink on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 04:57:14 AM PDT

  •  To GOP....Mis-diagnosing a decapitation could be (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, a2nite, Egalitare

    hazardous to your health.

  •  I note the Western pundits have already (12+ / 0-)

    conceded that Iraq will split into 3 countries, the Sunni North, Kurdistan and then the Shia' South.  For some reason, the West seems convinced without their intervention, it is inevitable that foreign countries will Balkanize.  Such assumptions carry with it the whiff of Orientalism, IMHO.

    It appears that, once again, the West and its proxies, have managed to empower yet another nativist insurrection with an inherent hostility to Western values (why do we keep backing these people?)  The West, Israelis, Saudis and Kuwaitis saw an opportunity to overthrow Assad and jumped at the chance to discomfit Hizbullah in Lebanon and Iran.  The Saudis, even better in their eyes, could see some sort of Wahhabist Caliphate encompassing Nineveh, other bits of Iraq and parts of Syria as a counterweight to Iran's regional power (which was partially due to our meddling in Iraq with Saudi enthusiasm).  However, ISIS thinks very little of the Gulf monarchies and would like to see them, along with Western influences on the dustheap of history so it is on their to-do list to do something with the Gulf Royals at some point.

    Iran will not allow Iraq to fall into chaos.  The same as Hizbullah "volunteers" propped up and improved the fortunes of Assad, expect the Badr Corp volunteers to come pouring over the border at the first hint of Baghdad falling.  I would also expect Turkey to do what it could to prevent the establishment of a new Kurdistan since the Kurds also lay claim to Turkish and Iranian territory so the Turks and Iranians have a commonality of purpose at least in the short term.

    Just MHO but then I learned my lesson when I believed that Big Minh would fall back behind the Mekong, make a stand, concede the highlands to the North and then continue business as usual, as Western pundits predicted.  Two weeks later, NVA tanks were battering our embassy gates and choppers were evacuating embassy staff and personnel, so what do I know?    

    •  This is Vietnam all over again (10+ / 0-)

      Except that we won't have people hanging off helicopters when Baghdad falls, because we might just be smart enough to get the hell out of dodge first, and there are few Iraqis who want to leave with us.

      This is bush's legacy. All his and his band of idiots.

    •  Nice analysis. So many players in Iraq. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The "partition is inevitable" line is just as lazy magical thinking as the Bush "USA will be greeted as liberators" junk.

      No one has any authority to impose partition in Iraq. The outcome will be fought out on the ground by the powers (local and foreign) that choose to do so. Partition is possible, but not necessarily advisable and certainly not inevitable.

      Almost all nation-states are multi-ethnic constructs. There is nothing "natural" about mini single-ethnic states.

      Whatever future is in store for Iraq, it will be fragile and bloody. The best immediate goal for anyone who cares about Iraqis at all would be to hope and urge responsible parties to work to reduce the power and territory of ISIS in the region.

      •  Juan Cole says WSJ reports Badr Corp (5+ / 0-)

        and Afghan fighters are already on the ground and coordinating with Shia' militias (who are more potent than the US trained Iraqi army anyway).  You can probably expect some sort of support from Turkey.

        I still suspect the Saudis, Kuwaitis, and Israelis, concerned by the Arab Spring, but still seeing a chance to topple the Alawites in Syria and to weaken Hizbullah, decided to go for it, without realizing the war would spill over into a regional war.  Iran will not allow ISIS to establish a Sunni caliphate, esp. since several Shia' shrines lie in the contested territory.

        The West has forgotten the Iran/Iraq War (though Reagan directly contributed to thousands of casualties by propping up Saddam).  If Bibi and our geniuses in Congress do not stay out of this current mess and let Turkey and Iran sort things out, we will have a mess with a very real Islamic state that is very hostile to the West, sort of like Boko Haram or Al Shabaab getting their own country with a fairly modern military (reports are the Iraqi regulars are abandoning all the shiny heavy weapons we sold to them)    

        •  Yes, the situation is very, very fluid. (0+ / 0-)

          Clearly, ISIS got way bigger for its britches than any of its sponsors conceived of in their wildest caliphate dreams.

          Now the psychotic jihadis are a terrorist proto-state spilling across Iraq and Syria.

          What happens next is anyone's guess, but it won't be easy to put that toothpaste back in the tube. Heaven help people who live under ISIS control, because it's unclear anyone else will.

          •  It appears that Sunni militias joined ISIS (0+ / 0-)

            while Shia' militias appear to be joining with outside fighters.  Problem for ISIS is that they continue to have vulnerable flanks.  The Kurds appear to have blocked off their territory to ISIS and to have seized Kurkirk to wait out the conflict.  ITMT, ISIS' rear in Syria remains very vulnerable as Hizbullah is behind them in Lebanon and if Iranian and Afghan (Northern Alliance) fighters are on the ground in Iraq, then Hizbullah will not remain on the sidelines.

            Presently it appears, from my armchair, that ISIS is vulnerable from many sides and has a resupply/reinforcement problem.  Unless ISIS can be supplied/reinforced long term by Sunni militias, they will inevitably have to fall back, unless their patrons decide to leave the background and supply them directly (I don't expect this to happen as, if is it the Saudis and Kuwaitis, they know they could also be drawn into the war and they are military pipsqueaks whose military largely faces inward)  

            •  Fits with what many are saying. (0+ / 0-)

              The scary part is if the reports are true that ISIS has the thorough support of local Sunni militias and former Saddam elites. If so, even if the advance bogs down short of Baghdad, they can hunker down and wreak madness on locals. Sucks.

              Then they could negotiate for some sort of new Iraqi state(s).

              Maybe their invasion will galvanize local and international powers and eventually lead to an endgame for Syria/Iraq. The result, sadly, seems unlikely to grant peace and stability to each without dictators or jihadis. Sigh.

              •  I don't think ISIS can match up to Badr Corp (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                or to the Turkish military.  Both have very solid reputations.  Now ISIS can go underground like MEK and be a thorn in the side of the governing bodies for decades but as far as being able to continue conventional battleground tactics, I don't think they have the manpower, the resources or the ability to resupply/reinforce w/o massive outside assistance

                •  Report: ISIS looted $450Mn from Mosul banks. (0+ / 0-)

                  If true, that would fund jihad for a good long time. And make ISIS richer than some nation-states.

                  I'm not so sure they won't march on Baghdad with Sunni militia support. But even if they just settle down on the territory they now have, they can do a lot of damage before they finally get expelled at some point.

                  The Turkish military isn't involved yet. It's unclear that any force other than Iraqi Shi'ite militias and the "army" will resist.

      •  I think partition is inevitable (0+ / 0-)

        but it'll be them who do it, not us. They will decide where the borders lie.

  •  Steele on the GOP Sunni / Shia situation.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Egalitare
    •  I said the other day here (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skillet, Stude Dude

      that the leadership of the House would never put a Tea Party member in Cantor's place.  
      You need someone that knows the ins and outs of House procedure, has the the support of the majority of the caucus, and can raise a lot of money.

      If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

      by skohayes on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:23:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Great laughs when Saddam was found in the hole, (24+ / 0-)

    grisly theater when his execution was put on the tube and when his statue was brought down. Who is laughing now that Bush is making child like paintings of himself in the shower and Cheney stalks interstate hwy pile ups in search of a replacement for the heart he never had?

  •  McCain. Holy Morning Joe. nt (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skillet, skohayes, I love OCD, Egalitare, askew
  •  There may come a day when people finally admit (16+ / 0-)

    Joe Biden was right: Iraq is 3 countries and Churchill's fantasy could only be maintained under a regime like Saddam's.

    The Kurds at least have been getting their shit together since the days of the no-fly zones and may stand a chance. As for the rest, I don't see good things. The Shia are the majority but don't seem to have a knack for ruling. The Sunni are both resentful of the new order and have the backing of out-of-state forces.

    Lord knows what's next.

    I live under the bridge to the 21st Century.

    by Crashing Vor on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:14:58 AM PDT

    •  I thought he was right back in the early days (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      on the cusp, Crashing Vor, DRo, exlrrp

      Getting the media to admit it is a whole 'nother level...
      But dividing the oil fields is why they're fighting. The Kurds are pretty much staying out of it at this point.
      I haven't read the whole thing at this point, but Juan Cole has a great article here:
      The Fall of Mosul and the False Promises of Modern History

      If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

      by skohayes on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:29:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't buy it. (3+ / 0-)

      It's an excuse and takes a lot of responsibility off of us, leaving only the choice of "brutal dictator" or "ethnic cleansing and civil war". We may well be at that state now. Or even since the first civil war broke out. Once things went to hell, there may well have been no way to put them back together again.

      But if we hadn't tried to nation build in Iraq while ideologically opposed to nation building and thus not actually done any of the real work of nation building. If we hadn't been focused on turning Iraq into a libertarian fantasy and selling it off to the highest bidder while ignoring the needs of Iraqi people. If we hadn't disbanded the army and kicked trained soldiers to the curb with nothing better to do. If we hadn't barred Baathists from working in any government positions. If we'd focused from the start on providing services and building institutions.
      In short, if we hadn't totally failed and done a worse job of running the coutntry in those critical first months and years than Saddam had, maybe there would have been a chance. I'm not saying it would have been easy. I'm not saying things couldn't have fallen apart in ethnic and religious tension anyway, but we sure set the stage for it.

      For all the talk of ethnic rivalries and tension, most people don't want any part of it. Most people want to get on with their lives. Go to work. Fall in love. Have kids. All the normal stuff. That applies in Iraq as well as anywhere else. Give them stability and prosperity and they won't be looking around for someone to blame for how horrible their lives are. Keep the power on. Let them know things are getting better and they'll be even better for their kids and whatever the ethnic history, they're not likely to explode into violence.

      I refuse to accept the notion that the best we can hope for is to divide the world up into little tribal countries. We can actually live together.

      The Empire never ended.

      by thejeff on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:36:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Had the Administration made any (8+ / 0-)

    attempt whatsoever to investigate prosecute the Bush Administration for its war crimes, the media wouldn't even raise the question of "who lost Iraq."  That narrative would already be settled.

    As it stands we're all in the same position as we were during the BP oil spill--helpless to do anything whatsoever while the disaster unfolds with the politicians pointing fingers at each other.  

    That's what happens when you take a pass on accountability for political expedience.

    I feel terrible for the families of those soldiers maimed and killed for this pointless fiasco, because everything they were clinging to as a justification for their loss is going to be swept away. The loss to millions of innocent Iraqi citizens, of course, is incalculable.

    And it just looks like more and more killings and death are coming.

    Just stunning that one American President could cause so much destruction.

    •  And that same quivering ball of petulant, (5+ / 0-)

      vindictive Oedipal rage is a hero and a fine Christian fellow in the eyes of millions.

    •  Had (0+ / 0-)
      Had the Administration made any attempt whatsoever to investigate prosecute the Bush Administration for its war crimes, the media wouldn't even raise the question of "who lost Iraq."
      Had the administration made any attempt whatsoever to investigate prosecute the Bush Administration for its war crimes, Romney would be president because the media would have burned Obama on a stake.

      Let's live in the real world here. Bush could be in Gitmo and the media would still be questioning whether or not Obama sent him there to cover his mistakes.

  •  photo ID (10+ / 0-)

    I am a notary.  I have to ask for photo ID to verify signatures.  The poor, uneducated, young, elderly, and recently immigrated citizens are the ones who never carry identification with them.  It is horribly common for this to be the case.  These people are largely Democrats.  There is only one reason that Tom Tillis and other Republicans have beat on the drum of identification at the polls.  They do not want to count these people's votes.  And I am terrified of how many votes that will cost the left.

    •  Depends on what counts as valid ID (0+ / 0-)

      I am an election clerk in a demographically diverse precinct, and RI now has a voter ID law. But it's a relatively liberal one. We can accept any government-issued ID that has a photo -- including VA cards, community college IDs, and the passes that elderly people get for riding the buses at half price -- as well as employer IDs (fast-food joints, hotel housekeeping staff, etc. etc. seem to have those), union IDs, and all types of college IDs. And the state sends a mobile van around to community centers during the year to make free IDs for people. We've had more people who have ID but refuse to show it on principle, than people who couldn't come up with any ID at all.

      I've also had a lot of people tell me that voter impersonation fraud is indeed a problem here, though never prosecuted -- in a small state, people recognize each other but there's a code of silence, so no prosecutions. I don't know if it's true. There is also a lot of suspicion that immigrants are managing to vote illegally. So having to show ID seems to make a lot of people feel more secure in the voting system, and that seems like a good thing.

      I understand all the objections to the voter ID laws, especially as many red states have implemented them. But I'm beginning to think they can be useful, if done well.  

      •  There are anecdotes about how (0+ / 0-)

        "I went to the polls but was not allowed to vote because someone had already signed in as me" but whether these are politically motivated lies, results of clerical errors, or actually true is impossible to determine. Even in RI, not everyone recognizes everyone else (perhaps especially if that someone else is an immigrant attempting to vote illegally), and the suggestion that there is some code of silence regarding having one's identity ripped off seems like a convenient way for those who allege voter fraud to avoid having to come up with any actual proof.

  •  America goes into a country and meddles in its (9+ / 0-)

    affairs and then "withdraws" with what it thought it wanted and had intended, only to have replaced that which was the status quo with a nice large a vacume in its place and political upheaval ruling the day.

    Thank you Bush, Cheney, Rice, and Rummy, and the rest of  the WMD,  "Yellow Cake" crowd.  You are all a bunch of war criminals and profiteers that got away literally, with murder.

    “My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that, and I intend to end up there." - Rumi

    by LamontCranston on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:19:58 AM PDT

  •  Yes. we did lose Iraq (24+ / 0-)

    Remember the 22 year old Liberty U grad put in charge of reconstruction, whose first priority was to ban smoking?

    The ridicule of the Sec of Defense when ancient relics were looted?

    The graft? The corruption? A billion in cash gone missing?

    The way we tried to prop up totally inept leaders?

    On, and on...There was no attempt at nation building, just at graft and profit.

  •  Iraq mantra should be 'not our problem.' (9+ / 0-)

    Whatever happens over there in their civil war is an internal matter, I dont care what the Washington Establishment says. Our proper role is to stay out of it and let the local folks and thosr that share borders with Iraq settle their disputes among themselves.

    Turkey is a NATO ally so our sole concern should be Turkey's security. Other than that...none of our business.

  •  I have said since Bush invaded Iraq, that (7+ / 0-)

    "Iraq will be what Iraq will be", regardless of US intervention.

    The stupidity of the Bush administration is still mind boggling.

  •  Invasion was probably the dumbest move in history (13+ / 0-)

    There was no reason for invading Iraq. It was done to pander to the vengeful instincts of a public still freshly outraged from 9-11--that is all.

    It empowered Iran, which is now on the verge of becoming a nuclear superpower, to our great danger and detriment, and to the world's.

    It left a gaping power hole with nothing to fill it but American military might, incompetent and corrupt locals, and Al Qaeda and its successor, ISIS.

    Bush refused to pay for it, leaving the USA a trillion short when the economy collapsed.

    It sapped our military strength and our will to fight in causes that could be just.

    It compromised us morally in the eyes of the world, and the photos from Abu Ghraib and our insistence on the rightness of torture give strength and comfort to our enemies to this day and will continue to do so for decades.

    Not to mention the dead, the maimed, and the insane, who returned to a medical system that the same people also refused to pay for, and who proved the system evil by the fact that they wouldn't pay for it.

    It was, all in all, a morally degrading exercise in cruelty, stupidity, and political cynicism, wrapped in notions of machismo and piety.

    It was, in short, Republicanism first to last, and if we are partly to blame (from Hillary's vote to Obama's surveillance), it is to the extent we have gone along.

    •  rec x 1000 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Heart of the Rockies

      Happy just to be alive

      by exlrrp on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:20:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It didn't "pander to the instincts" (5+ / 0-)

      It actively created them -- created the fictional narrative that Saddam had something to do with 9/11 and was about to inflict chemical, biological, and/or nuclear weapons on the entire world -- and pushed it hard, in Congress, in the media and even in the UN.

      There was ample citizen push-back all over the world, including the US, with millions of people out in the streets demonstrating.

      This was not the popular will forcing the government to act. It was the government lying and manipulating public opinion to justify something they had on the drawing boards long before 9/11.

      •  Catastrophic failure of leadership (0+ / 0-)

        I think it is more accurate to say that the instinct for revenge was cultivated while the instinct to sacrifice for others was allowed to wither.

        I vividly remember sitting alone that afternoon, trying to understand what the motivation for the "bombings" could have been and what might be appropriate  response(s).  It seemed clear to me that the intention was terror and that the actual people who died were considered collateral damage. I think that the goals that I imagined were correct:

        * Show western culture to be morally bankrupt by contrasting the willingness of Muslims to die for God with Christians' willingness to do anything to save their individual lives

        * Damage the US economy by suckering us into spending disproportionately to avoid having this happen again. I was very much aware that economic damage kills far more people than wars with guns and bombs do.

        * Provoke an inappropriate revenge attack on innocent Muslims to recruit more people for the holy war.

        It was lack of imagination in the administration that caused them to encourage exactly the hoped for responses. The alternative that I prayed for that afternoon was to hold up the example of the passengers of the fourth plane. They courted almost certain death to remove the possibility of many more deaths.

        The possible alternative to revenge that was on my mind that afternoon was a huge increase in development aid to the third world. This, as an attempt to reduce motivation for people to join the holy war, combined with a "police action" approach seemed to me to be more likely to be successful.

        At the time I had no idea how much cheaper it would have been compared to what has now happened.

  •  Amazing how the pundits (0+ / 0-)

    arrive at the "conclusion"....

    Too extreme


    Not extreme enough

    Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. Frank Zappa

    by Da Rock on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:42:23 AM PDT

  •  You want to save Iraq? Split it into three parts (0+ / 0-)
  •  As for the Republican "demise," never forget the (4+ / 0-)

    brevity of the electorate's memory span, and its knee-jerk propensity to vote against its own interest while distracted by the real-time nonsensical political ad popping up on its collective silly screen.

    Ted Cruz president? Pardon my Vietnamese, but Ngo Pho King Way.

    by ZedMont on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 05:55:38 AM PDT

  •  Is the mission finally accomplished ? (0+ / 0-)

       Are their any other countries that need our help now that we are freed up from Iraq?

    If you can't fix stupid does that mean the Republican party will always be broken?........... Gypsyrose

    by gypsyrose on Fri Jun 13, 2014 at 06:06:15 AM PDT

  •  Who lost Iraq? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    Was Iraq lost before we went in there and blew the shit out of everything and disbanded their army?


    George W. Bush and Dick (the "Dick") Cheney and Donald (the "dick") Rumsfeld lost Iraq.

    Wow, we go in there and fucked up the place, open the door for al queda.

    Obama staunches the wound, a thankless job considering the fact that we fucked the place up and this was more likely to happen than not - and infinitely more likely to happen after we fucked up the place.

    Sheez.  Obama's fault?  As if.

  •  Perhaps we're just garbage at occupying places (0+ / 0-)

    And looking at history, perhaps EVERYONE is.

    I learned about America's occupation of Haiti while the Iraq War was going on, and I thought: is there any other way it can end? We'll get distracted and leave, and the place will be a shambles.

    People will now lie and say "oh, it would have ended great if only political figure A hadn't gotten involved," but the only way it could have ended great was by leaving Iran and Iraq both in power, to be each other's counterpoints.

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