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Ear to the Ground

Canadian Mag Calls Bush ‘The New Saddam’

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Posted on Sep 20, 2007
Maclean's cover
Macleans.ca

Chances are pretty darn slim that this will be President Bush’s favorite cover model moment: Canadian magazine Maclean’s whipped up quite a provocative picture for its latest top story, which makes the claim that “a desperate Washington is reaching out to the late dictator’s henchmen.”


Maclean’s:

America’s other main enemy is al-Qaeda in Iraq, which is to Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda what a cheap watch is to a Swiss timepiece—effective, easily reproduced, and disposable. Al-Qaeda did not exist in Iraq before the invasion, but today it, along with Iran, are the two strongest arguments the U.S. makes for “staying the course.” Al-Qaeda in Iraq is essentially a religious criminal gang that kills anyone who threatens its power or differs from its Salafist views on establishing a perverse form of an Islamic state. Its death squads and enormously destructive truck bombs have killed thousands of Shias, but Sunnis, too, have suffered al-Qaeda’s violent nihilism. Car bombs, assassinations and “religious punishments,” including decapitations and cutting off the fingers of smokers, have put Sunni Iraq under a Mordor-like shadow of terror and justified collective punishment from the Shias. In his testimony to Congress, Gen. Petraeus pointed out the lethal threat of al-Qaeda. But this should come as no surprise to an American general—because the U.S. Army helped create al-Qaeda in Iraq.

The American role in the promotion of the terrorist organization is not some mad conspiracy theory, but a well-documented attempt by the U.S. government to demonize the insurgency and make it appear to be the central front in the war on terror. This was as great a mistake as disbanding the Iraqi army, which the U.S. did in May 2003, or perhaps even greater, since it led to the sectarian downward spiral that has destroyed the country.

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farmertx's avatar

By farmertx, September 21, 2007 at 5:24 pm Link to this comment

Re:Goldstar Father

First, your initial reaction was a human one. Anyone in your position would object to Iraq as humor. Even though it wasn’t directed at the troops for serving.

The fact that we have young people in this day and age that are willing to do their duty in serving and protecting this country is admirable.
It is not their fault that they have been placed in an untenable position by one who refused to do his duty.
We know of some who are there that feel that the mission is wrong or a failure or both. And some disagree.
Your loss can never be compensated by mere words.
But know that the majority of us, including Mr Billis, have nothing against the soldier who is doing his sworn duty to obey the lawful orders of those above their rank.
(And yes, we know the initial order was illegal, but that is not up for debate in the military. Congress has failed to override the Shrub and by our laws, he is in charge. Blame Congress, not the soldier)
Your subsequent response to Mr Billis was one of courage and grace.
Your son and all the others are never far from our thoughts.

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By Gold Star father, September 21, 2007 at 2:24 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thomas Billis; In my grief—I lost my only son in Iraq in 2005—I look for ways to pull myself out of some of the most deepest mental ditches that you can only possibly imagine. I appreciate humor to make me stop thinking about my loss, which after nearly 2 years I still constantly do.  I thank you for writing back; I thank you for your humor. Anything to help me not go absolutely apeshit.
  Iraq is a direct tragedy to 3700+ American families and probably hundreds of thousands of Iraqi ones too. My previous quick come back to you, which I regret my tone, comes from the simple fact that this war has also destroyed the moral fabric of my beloved America. An America that I taught my son to love too. I find no laughing matter in anything about the Iraq War. My America is gone, its replaced by an unrecognizable tyrancy “lead” by two men that I consider worthy of indictment for murder.
I’m sorry to you and I’m sorry to anyone who reads this. But, I just can’t understand through my pain and frustration why anybody in this grand country of ours puts up with this shit. Why do the majority of the American people either ignore what’s going on or fail to act by at least telling their representaives in Washington, even minimally, that the war in Iraq is “just not right”? Screw the polls, go on enjoying prosperity. But isn’t the moral caliber of America worth preserving?

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By LT, September 21, 2007 at 10:46 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gold Star Father

I am an Infantry Lieutenant, and I worked my way up from being an Infantry Private.

Funny things happen all the time and they serve to keep us sane.  You may not be able to find any
humor in life if you are are insane. Not the other way around.

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By Jonas South, September 21, 2007 at 8:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Provocative pieces like this, especially in the foreign press, serve to rally many Americans behind their president, even if they themselves judge him to be immmoral, callous and dogmatic.

Forest rangers set back-fires to fight the main conflagration; this is a back-fire that any Carl Rove would love to use, to quell the fire-storm around this administration. Look for more pieces like it to appear, some of which, unfortunately, may be picked up by our progressive press, thus unwittingly and unnecessarily drawing ire upon itself.

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By thomas billis, September 20, 2007 at 10:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If my comment upset Gold Star Father I sincerely apologize.

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By Ga, September 20, 2007 at 7:52 pm Link to this comment

waxman, Bush did not really say that Nelson Mandela was killed by Saddam Hussein. Bush, surprisingly, was speaking metaphorically, that “Mandela is dead, because Saddam Hussein killed all the Mandelas.” I.e. there is no Iraqi Mandela.

The blogoshere will, by now, be all over this as Bush being so stupid as to say that Hussein killed Mandela—Bush did not say that when you examine his meaning. The Left gets things wrong too.

This is similar to the Ahmadinejad “wipe Israel off the map” comment.

http://www.crooksandliars.com/2007/09/20/gwb-saddam-killed-mandelas/
http://thinkprogress.org/2007/09/20/bush-mandela/

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farmertx's avatar

By farmertx, September 20, 2007 at 7:35 pm Link to this comment

Waxman
It is no surprise, really.
I mean, this is the same yo-yo that went to Austrailia for the APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Conference) and said he was happy to be in Austria for the OPEC meeting.
Slip of the tongue, or is he really that dumb? Tough Call, although my money is on the later.
It has been rumored that he wakes up in a different world each morning and these remarks lend credence to that rumor.

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By waxman, September 20, 2007 at 7:27 pm Link to this comment

SOMEBODY OUT THERE HELP ME…...IN BUSH’S SPEECH TODAY, WHAT THE HELL WAS HE TALKING ABOUT WHEN HE SAID THAT SADDAM HAD KILLED MANDELA ???  REALLY, HE SAID THAT..HELP ME’‘’‘’

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By weather, September 20, 2007 at 5:45 pm Link to this comment

Please free us from the bondage of Oil & Israel and a Media Machine that’s a centrifuge of Lies.

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By d.alon, September 20, 2007 at 5:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

That was the most comprehensive article I have yet to read on the situation in Iraq.  It shows first, thankfully, that everything Bush is saying isn’t utterly false, and second, just what an incompetent, arrogant, and ignorant decision it was to invade as our government did.  It really makes you wonder when you listen to Cheney descibe back in the ‘90’s what would happen if we invade, just what rationale presided this go-round.  He was right then.  Did he just become drunk with power?  Or is there some catestrophic economic issue that they are afraid to tell us about that made the risks worth sacrifice. We all know that the WMD excuse was a hoax, as well as the 9/11 connection.  So I guess in the end it really is just power hungry impearialism, and greed-based capitalism rearing its ugly head.

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By Gold Star Father, September 20, 2007 at 4:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thomas Billis: Sir, there’s not one goddamn funny thing about Iraq.

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By thomas billis, September 20, 2007 at 2:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I was struck by one sentence in the article that they are cutting off the fingers of people who smoke.I wonder if it works to stop people from smoking or are they discovering Iraqi’s with nicotine on their toes.A little humor hurts nothing.

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