Puggs at Random Nuclear Strikes puts his sanity in jeopardy by delving into the putrid fever swamps of the Democratic Underground. This is a place where there is no effort to control the urge of the left to denigrate members of the military as “babykillers” and stupid brutes.
The right also has its swamps, but the ones on the left are far closer to the “mainstream” values of their candidates that anything on the right.
Tommy Franks, CINC of Centcom and the architect of both the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, has some criticism for a couple of the foundations of the present anti-war critics in an interview with Parade Magazine.
He eviscerates the “Bush Lied” wing that maintains that Bush knew that Saddam had no WMD and lied in order to invade Iraq.
The biggest surprise for him was that they’ve found no weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the “reason we went to war.” He says multiple Middle Eastern leaders, including Jordan’s King Abdullah and Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak, told Franks that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. In January 2003, Mubarak said point blank to Franks, “Saddam has WMD-biologicals, actually-and he will use them on your troops.”
Evidently Arab leaders also lied, just to help out of course.
He also takes on Bush critic, former Clinton and Bush administration counter-terrorism chief Richard Clarke. Who maintains that if his advice were followed, Sept 11 might have been averted.
Franks singles out White House Counter-terrorism Czar Richard Clarke as never providing him with “a single page of actionable intelligence” and of engaging in mostly wishful thinking. Franks also believes the U.S. invested too much in electronic spy surveillance and not enough in spies. “We can’t send a Princeton-educated New York lawyer to infiltrate al-Qaeda. To get information, we have to marry the devil or at least employ him. You have to deal.”
Evidently, Mr. Clarke was not the insightful, master of intrigue that he has tried to portray himself as.
I also detect a slap at Joe Wilson and the CIA in there.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Senators promised swift consideration of proposals to revamp the nation’s intelligence structure after leaders of the Sept. 11 commission warned that bureaucratic wrangling leaves America dangerously vulnerable to another terrorist attack.
At a rare hearing Friday during the Senate’s typically quiet August recess, Senate Governmental Affairs Committee Chairwoman Susan Collins, R-Maine, urged fellow lawmakers to “be bold but not reckless” in considering a reorganization that would amount to a “fundamental overhaul of our intelligence structure and a sea change in our thinking.”
So, we’re going to have a bunch of Senators, scrambling around in an election year, trying to cobble something together as quickly as possible with one eye on the news coverage and the other on the polls.
How is that going to result in anything but an self-serving mishmash of confusing and contradictory mandates that sound good on TV but can never be carried out in the real world.
He moans endlessly about the “outsourcing” of American jobs but, when it comes to his own job, he’s willing to outsource American foreign policy to the mushy transnational talk-shops and to outsource homeland security to some dubious intelligence tsar. There’s no sense of any strategic vision, no sense that he’s thought about Iran or North Korea or any of the other powder kegs about to blow. I tried to ask him about some of these matters during the New Hampshire primary and he intoned in response, “Sometimes truly courageous leadership means having the courage not to show any leadership.” (I quote from memory.)
In another perilous time – 1918 – Lord Haig wrote of Lord Derby: “D is a very weak-minded fellow I am afraid and, like the feather pillow, bears the marks of the last person who has sat on him.” It’s subtler than that with Kerry: you don’t have to sit on him; just the slightest political breeze, and his pillow billows in the appropriate direction. His default position is the conventional wisdom of the Massachusetts Left: on foreign policy, foreigners know best; on trade, the labour unions know best; on government, bureaucrats know best; on defence, graying ponytailed nuclear-freeze reflex anti-militarists know best; on the wine list, he knows best.
Because in the end he’s running for President because he feels he ought to be President. That’s his message to George W Bush: “The Senator needs you to move.” And even then everyone else says it better.
Brilliant, as always.
The real question is not whether this new avatar of the War Party is a “no first strike” or “launch on warning” kind of candidate: but whether he is at minimum someone who will retaliate after a first strike. In framing his policy in terms of how he would respond to a hypothetical attack on America, John Kerry glosses over how he intends to respond to the actual attack of September 11. That event is curiously undefined in his tale of events. If the attack on Manhattan was an act of war how would John Kerry win it? Is it already won and if so, did George Bush win it? If September 11 is not a first strike in John Kerry’s eyes, then what is his theoretical threshold for decisive action?
Voters need more than an index of a Kerry administration retaliatory threshold to judge him as a potential Commander in Chief. Kerry should clarify how he plans to win, if not the present war, then at least a future one, if it comes according to his standard.
he also has some other points that I would like explored further.
From the same posting:
Bill Clinton was prepared to retaliate against Osama Bin Laden for the USS Cole attack by firing hundreds of cruise missiles at his training camps.
He was? Why didn’t he follow through? That sounds like an action that might have affected the Sept 11 attacks. Would Osama allowed the attacks to go forward if he knew there would be retaliation? From his statements he seemed to be relying on his evaluation of the American government not responding in any meaningful way. Might a massive attack on his training camps changed his mind?
Customs and Excise is investigating a British link to the multi-million pound corruption scandal surrounding the oil-for-food programme which operated under Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq.
Money was allegedly siphoned off from the scheme to fund pressure groups which campaigned against international sanctions against Saddam’s regime.
The campaigns were backed by MPs including George Galloway, the independent MP for Glasgow Kelvin, who was expelled by the Labour Party. There is no suggestion that any British MPs profited personally or knew about the alleged corruption.
Why do we only hear about this from foreign newspapers? The only U.S. newspaper taking more than a cursory look at this is the Wall Street Journal. Do the rest of the U.S. news media think that it is unimportant that the august and fawned over saviors of the human race in the UN siphoned billions of dollars into their own pockets and provided funds for Saddam to continue his depredations? Is that what we are to expect from the UN? Is that what we are to expect from the news media?
Link from Instapundit
Edwards and his wife had hearty meals of burgers and fries and shared a chocolate Frosty. Teresa Heinz Kerry pointed at a picture of chili on the menu and asked the cashier what it was before ordering a bowl. Her husband had the same, along with a Frosty.
John explained it was something that the servants said was very tasty….and he used to eat it in Vietnam.
July 31, 2004 — SCRANTON, Pa. — John Kerry’s heavily hyped cross-country bus tour stumbled out of the blocks yesterday, as a group of Marines publicly dissed the Vietnam War hero in the middle of a crowded restaurant.
Kerry was treating running mate Sen. John Edwards and his wife, Elizabeth, to a Wendy’s lunch in Newburgh, N.Y., for their 27th wedding anniversary — an Edwards family tradition — when the candidate approached four Marines and asked them questions.
The Marines — two in uniform and two off-duty — were polite but curt while chatting with Kerry, answering most of his questions with a “yes, sir” or “no, sir.”
But they turned downright nasty after the Massachusetts senator thanked them “for their service” and left.
“He imposed on us and I disagree with him coming over here shaking our hands,” one Marine said, adding, “I’m 100 percent against [him].”
A sergeant with 10 years of service under his belt said, “I speak for all of us. We think that we are doing the right thing in Iraq,” before saying he is to be deployed there in a few weeks and is “eager” to go and serve.
I’m sure Kerry staffers will insure that the Marines are properly punished. A word from a Senator’s office is usually more than enough.