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Ringo
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0 posted 11-20-2005 02:09 AM       View Profile for Ringo   Email Ringo   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Ringo


While my friend Noah consistently brings in to the Blue Pages, not much is said on behalf of the right side of the isle. Now, it's our turn.

Rep John Murtha (D- Pa) has raised quite the fuss (and not a little stink) this week with his statements about the Iraq War. Well, let's discuss:

The war in Iraq is not going as advertised.

Well, as the liberal media is the ONLY one advertising, I would tend to agree with this statement. What is NOT being talked about in the press that needs the bad stories, is the successes (yes, I said successes) that the American military is having. (before anyone starts screaming, I have a very close personal friend that is in theater, and get my info first hand). Militarily, we ARE winning the war. AS far as rebuilding the infrastructure, and the country in general, we ARE succeeding. So far, in the last 3 years, the country has gone from 35% of the hospitals being operational to 100% operational. Females are going to school. Iraqis are PROTESTING openly. The violence at voting plaves has decreased dramatically. The violence against US troops has decreased DRAMATICALLY. So, I guess Rep. Murtha is right. The Press is NOT advertising the war correctly.

For 2 ˝ years I have been concerned about the U.S. policy and the plan in Iraq.

Well, for the last 2 1/2 years, Rep Murtha has been one of the largest supporters of the troops, and the military action in IRaq. Some members of Congress have used the word "hawkish" towards him. So, what has changed? How is it that members of his OWN party have called him "hawkish" yet he is concerned that entire time???

I have been visiting our wounded troops at Bethesda and Walter Reed hospitals almost every week since the beginning of the War.   And what demoralizes them is going to war with not enough troops and equipment to make the transition to peace
Well, accordinbg to my friend in the area (and, did I mention my former foster child who is there?), what is demoralizing the troops is people saying things like Rep. Murtha. They get the idea that NO ONE in America supports them and they feel like they are being hung out on the line by the American people. It is NOT the fact that they "don't have enough equipment" that is causing them the pain. Then again, who do we believe: The troops in country, or some old man in Congress?

Defense budgets are being cut.
Maybe it's just that I have had two whole Crown and Cokes tonight, however it seems to me that CONGRESS is the opne that approves the budget. Therefore, if the military budget is being cut, then CONGRESS is the none who made it happen.

We can not allow promises we have made to our military families in terms of service benefits, in terms of their health care, to be negotiated away.
Gee... what does the Congressman say about the benefits that my father (who received the Navy Cross) was promised, but denied because of cuts in the budget by the Clinton Administration. He died of brain cancer, and retired from the Marine Corps, yet my mother was sent a bill from the VA because they said that he wasn't entitled to the benefits he was promised upon his retirement?

The burden of this war has not been shared equally; the military and their families are shouldering this burden.  
Gee... I seem to remember a buisnessman I know personally, who was also a vet in the aMarine Corps during Vietnam, telling me that business didn't really didn't get behind the Vietnam conflict. So, obviously, this statement is completely falsr. And as Rep Murtha is a highly respected (on BOTH sides of the isle) vet, he should know.

Deaths and injuries are growing, with over 2,079 confirmed American deaths.   Over 15,500 have been seriously injured
Once again, I have to ask if these deaths include Army Sergeant Andrew Baddock of Jim Thorpe, Pa who died of a drowning accident when a HummVee he was riding in ran out of control and ended up in an irrigation ditch. Sgt Baddock dove in to save the others in his HummVee and drown. It was NOT a combat dreath, and neither were the other three soldiers that died that day.
He also mentions the injuries. I wonder if he is including Air Force Sgt. Robert Lerch, who was injured and flown to Germany for surgery when the HummVee he was riding in hit a major bump and his hand was crushed in the roof hatch. In BOTH of these cases, there were no combat forces in the area, therefore, they were not combat deaths.

Only $9 billion of the $18 billion appropriated for reconstruction has been spent... Only $500 million of the $2.2 billion appropriated for water projects has been spent...
And the question I have is: Are we done with the reconstruction??? If so, then he has a legitimate complaint. If not, then he needs to shut his yap.

As I said before I have visited with the severely wounded of this war.  They are suffering.
Well, no joke, Sherlock. Wounded men suffering. I would never have guessed that.

Because we in Congress are charged with sending our sons and daughters into battle, it is our responsibility, our OBLIGATION to speak out for them.  That’s why I am speaking out.
Gee... I predict that in a couple of year's time, we hear the fateful words "My name is John Murtha, and I am running for the Presidency of the United States" coming from this Congressman's mouth. THAT is why he is speaking out.

BTW... I absolutely do NOT agree with the congresswoman that called Cogressman Murtha a coward. He has proven that he has the courage to face Death and stand tall. Even though she is on MY side of the isle, I feel that she needs to be censured


I'll make my own mistakes and sweet success
I'm not here to recreate your yesterday's best
One by one when it's done half the fun is getting there-

[This message has been edited by Ringo (11-20-2005 12:57 PM).]

Brad
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Jejudo, South Korea


1 posted 11-20-2005 07:34 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

quote:
Well, as the liberal media is the ONLY one advertising,


And Fox news?

Oh, that's right, they don't advertise.
Ringo
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2 posted 11-20-2005 08:31 AM       View Profile for Ringo   Email Ringo   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Ringo

Brad- You are right, I did miss one... however, Fox News actually does report the good things that are happening and the successes that the troops achieve. That is why I didn't mention them.

I'll make my own mistakes and sweet success
I'm not here to recreate your yesterday's best
One by one when it's done half the fun is getting there-

Mistletoe Angel
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3 posted 11-20-2005 05:20 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



Hey Bradly, thank you so very much for starting up this thread here, as indeed this last week has been an important week in terms of debating this war, and I find it absolutely essential we catch up on the debate.

*

With that said, I would like to challenge you as always on some of your points you've made here! LOL!

*

"Well, as the liberal media is the ONLY one advertising, I would tend to agree with this statement. What is NOT being talked about in the press that needs the bad stories, is the successes (yes, I said successes) that the American military is having. (before anyone starts screaming, I have a very close personal friend that is in theater, and get my info first hand). Militarily, we ARE winning the war. AS far as rebuilding the infrastructure, and the country in general, we ARE succeeding. So far, in the last 3 years, the country has gone from 35% of the hospitals being operational to 100% operational. Females are going to school. Iraqis are PROTESTING openly. The violence at voting plaves has decreased dramatically. The violence against US troops has decreased DRAMATICALLY. So, I guess Rep. Murtha is right. The Press is NOT advertising the war correctly."

I believe we can both absolutely agree that our young men and women in uniform themselves are individually doing wonderful things for the people in Iraq. There's no arguing in they have done many individual good things for the people, including trying to get power and water to the areas still in blackout, getting schools and hospitals back in operation, helping get citizens safely to the polls, etc. I absolutely agree when you look at Iraq from a local level in particular beyond the fighting and the war itself, there is much good around.

In terms of the war ITSELF, we are LOSING the war. I repeat.....we are LOSING this war. I believe the sole piece of evidence that we are losing is in the fact that when the war first began, Iraq was NOT a central front on the war on terror, and now it has become one. It has literally become a training ground for al-Qaeda, whose recruitment is also on the rise. Jordan, previously the only generally-stable country in the Middle East from terror, just got attacked by them, showing that the region in general is becoming more unstable. Dozens continue to die seemingly each day from car bomb after car bomb. All of this going on without any exit strategy in sight.

A majority of Americans themselves believe that it was not worth going to war with Iraq, and that we made a mistake going there. Moreover, I believe this administration would be apearing much more credible right now if they would only tell the full truth of what's happening down there and admit to their mistakes rather than just stick with their pre-war intelligence mantras. Instead, they are choosing to further polarize this nation and slime every critic of questioning their pre-war intelligence.

Both in Iraq and here at home, this war is only bringing out the worst in us all. I don't deny that our troops are doing wonderful things down there for the citizens and doing all they can to comfort them among this colossal mess, but looking at the war itself, I find it plainly obvious we're LOSING.

*

"Well, for the last 2 1/2 years, Rep Murtha has been one of the largest supporters of the troops, and the military action in IRaq. Some members of Congress have used the word "hawkish" towards him. So, what has changed? How is it that members of his OWN party have called him "hawkish" yet he is concerned that entire time???"

First of all, the press is treating this as if this is something brand news, a bolt out of the blue, that never before has Murtha spoken out against the war in Iraq.

That's not true. It is absolutely clear Murtha voted for the war resolution, but on September 16, 2003, Murtha came out and said that "someone should be fired over Iraq". On May 13, 2004, he spoke out again, this time saying this:

“The way we’re going, I don’t think it’s winnable,” he said. “We have completely misjudged the opposition and planned for the best case scenario, and we really are talking about the worst case scenario. … We’re bargain hunting. What we’re doing is trying to fight a war with what we have available, rather than what we need.”

Then, on June 28th of this year, he said this:

"Let me tell you something. There’s a big difference between a timetable — General Zinni says I wouldn’t have a — I don’t think there’s any military guy that thinks you should have a timetable withdrawal. But we should have a timetable — something we can measure. The — we get so many different stories, hell, we don’t know! We don’t know when they’re telling us truth or not telling the truth. We need them to say, “Okay, we get this many people trained at this level, we’ll then be able to pull some troops out of there..."

So, yes, he has had a recent history of supporting the troops AND criticizing this war. As for your question of how many Democrats consider him "hawkish", I'm not sure, but I still believe the Democrats, despite some recent strong leadership by Harry Reid, are still lost in the woods, still unsure of their identity as a party.

*

Well, no joke, Sherlock. Wounded men suffering. I would never have guessed that."

I believe he only bothered mentioning that because I seriously can't help but believe that our own administration doesn't take this fact as seriously as they should. It's not cardboard cutouts that are being blown up out there, it's real people. They're literally just sitting back repeating, "We'll do this as long as it needs to take" and nothing more, without any exit strategy, without any plan for victory, and this attitude is basically just leaving our troops vulnerable down there, standing on their two feet vigilant for way too long, hoping they won't be the next to be standing in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Unlike almost everyone in this administration, Murtha served, and so he truly knows what it's like to survive and live within danger. I think it certainly helps to have those like Murtha around to remind those who didn't live in his boots that the danger is real down there, and when there's no plan being mentioned, how else are you going to feel as though they don't understand this reality in the fullest?

*

"Gee... I predict that in a couple of year's time, we hear the fateful words "My name is John Murtha, and I am running for the Presidency of the United States" coming from this Congressman's mouth. THAT is why he is speaking out."

Let's put it this way. If this is truly his intent and he goes for the presidency, I'm not going to vote for him. I respect the man for his service and in speaking out against some of the injustices of this war, but beyond that he doesn't strike me as someone who'd make a great president.

*

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

icebox
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since 05-03-2003
Posts 4246
in the shadows


4 posted 11-20-2005 10:50 PM       View Profile for icebox   Email icebox   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for icebox

Just for grins:

Did you know that 47 countries have reestablished their embassies in Iraq?

Did you know that the Iraqi government currently employs 1.2 million Iraqi people?

Did you know that 3100 schools have been renovated, 364 schools are under rehabilitation, 263 schools are now under construction and 38 new schools have been built in Iraq?

Did you know that Iraq's higher educational structure consists of 20 Universities, 46 Institutes or colleges and 4 research centers, all currently operating?

Did you know that 25 Iraq students departed for the United States in January 2005 for the re-established Fulbright program?

Did you know that the Iraqi Navy is operational?! They have 5- 100-foot patrol craft, 34 smaller vessels and a naval infantry regiment.

Did you know that Iraq's Air Force consists of three operational squadrons, which includes 9 reconnaissance and 3 US C-130 transport aircraft (under Iraqi operational control) which operate day and night, and will soon add 16 UH-1 helicopters and 4 Bell Jet Rangers?

Did you know that Iraq has a counter-terrorist unit and a Commando Battalion?

Did you know that the Iraqi Police Service has over 55,000 fully trained and equipped police officers?

Did you know that there are 5 Police Academies in Iraq that produce over 3500 new officers each 8 weeks?

Did you know there are more than 1100 building projects going on in Iraq? They include 364 schools, 67 public clinics, 15 hospitals, 83 railroad stations, 22 oil facilities, 93 water facilities and 69 electrical facilities.

Did you know that 96% of Iraqi children under the age of 5 have received the first 2 series of polio vaccinations?

Did you know that 4.3 million Iraqi children were enrolled in primary school by mid October?

Did you know that there are 1,192,000 cell phone subscribers in Iraq and phone use has gone up 158%?

Did you know that Iraq has an independent media that consists of 75 radio stations, 180 newspapers and 10 television stations?

Did you know that the Baghdad Stock Exchange opened in June of 2004?

Did you know that 2 candidates in the Iraqi presidential election had a televised debate recently?

As for Joe McCarthy, I am old enough to remember him and his hearings.  The reality that he was a perverse alcoholic queen who drank himself to death in 1957, does not change the reality that he named a number of people who actually were Soviet spies.  One of them was a good friend of media demi-god E.R. Murrow.  Needless to say, the media backed their own.

Aenimal
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since 11-18-2002
Posts 7451
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5 posted 11-23-2005 02:57 PM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

Argh, the mythological 'Did You Know' list revived..
http://www.counterpunch.org/cox10132005.html

Did you know that half of all Iraqi households still don't have access to clean water?

Did you know that only 8% of Iraqi households outside Baghdad are connected to sewage networks?

Did you know that out of 81 water and sewage treatment projects planned as part of the reconstruction effort, 68 have been abandoned?

Did you know that the power in Baghdad is out for 14 hours a day?

Did you know that 330 reconstruction contractors, mostly Iraqis, have been killed?

Did you know that a quarter out of every dollar allocated for reconstruction is being spent on security instead?

Did you know that Iraq's oil production is lower than before the 2003 war, and 46% lower than before the 1991 Gulf War?

Did you know that nearly $100 million in US taxpayer-funded reconstruction money for Iraq is unaccounted for? [This figure is far too low. Other estimates of missing funds range from $1 billion to $8.8 billion .]

Did you know that the unemployment / underemployment rate in Iraq stands at 50% ?

Did you know that all 11 multinational firms working through the Iraqi Project and Contracting Office have "cost-plus" contracts, which guarantee that they will be paid all of their costs, no matter how high they go, plus a profit?

Did you know that expenses for construction of one water treatment plant under a "cost plus" contract have grown from $80 million to $200 million, with taxpayers, not the contractor, making up the difference?
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


6 posted 11-23-2005 04:34 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I read Icebox's list and thought (outside of anything resembling context which is the only way these things maintain any persuasive power), "If everything is so hunky dory why are we still there?"

Aenimal answered the question.

Bizarre, huh?

I don't know, if democracy is working so well in Iraq, why not have a referendum on the American presence?

Should we stay or should we go? (song echo)

Why not let Iraqis decide?

Ringo,

Check out the piece by Kaplan at Slate. It may very well be that people are jumping all over this guy for the wrong reasons.

 
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