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Kerry on Iraq

Today I watched the Kerry on Iraq "documentary." My dad says "believe none of what you read and half of what you see," and since this is a documentary and not "real life," I'm placing it a little further towards "what I read" and not "what I see."

I think that changing your mind is fine - you're bound to get new information. I think, however, that trying to pretend that you haven't makes you look a bit silly. I also think that changing your mind because people don't like your position is weak as well.

Said Giuliani:

Now, contrast that with Kerry and Edwards. John Kerry voted against the Persian Gulf War when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. How you could do that, only he can explain - usually five or six different ways - but only he can explain. But he voted against the Persian Gulf War. Then he voted for the Iraq War, and then shortly after, when the question of an 87 billion supplemental appropriation came up - to support our troops, support our people who are on the firing lines, as many of you have been - Senator Kerry voted against it, as did Senator Edwards, among only four senators who voted for the war and against the appropriation. Don't tell me they aren't on the far liberal wing of their party if they did that. That's pretty obvious, although they want to run away from it.

For what it's worth, Giuliani isn't exactly a shining example of what I want a public leader to be, what with his whole mistress thing, but from what I've read of him he did a great job in New York (before and after 9/11) and he sticks to his guns.

16 Responses to "Kerry on Iraq"

  1. Why is so much weight attached to "sticking to your guns"? Granted, I don't want a leader who's waving in the wind, but the United States is a representative democracy. We put people into office who are supposed to reflect the will of the people. If the people change their mind, then isn't it the responsibility of the leader to take that into consideration.

    The biggest flip-flop accusation is the for the war/against the war quote. The explanation of this is so simple, that I'm amazed it gets this much press. When he was told by the administration that there were WMDs and Iraq was an "imminent threat", he was for it. When he learned that none of this was true, he was against it.

    I have no doubt that Bush is doing what he believes is right. That's great and all, and it definitely makes for more a much more efficient operation. There's not doubt in my mind that Bush can do more (quantity-wise) things in one term than Kerry can, but I also don't believe that is the purpose of our political system. The bureaucracy is there for a reason, and all of the current administration's efforts to circumvent it are threats to the vision of our founding fathers and the political process that's made America the country it is today.

  2. We put people into office who are supposed to reflect the will of the people. If the people change their mind, then isn't it the responsibility of the leader to take that into consideration.

    No, it's not. The American people cannot be trusted to make an informed decision. We don't have access to the necessary security briefings, intelligence reports, etc. If the people got their way, we'd have 0% taxes. Y'know?

    I have always liked people that stick to what they believe, even if I disagree with them (on matters of opinion, that is - not verifiable fact of course). I don't like "yes" men, and Kerry strikes me as a "yes" man. He's sucking up to the American people - or trying to - and the President of the United States should not be a kiss-ass.

  3. We put people into office who are supposed to reflect the will of the people.

    We put people in Congress who are supposed to reflect the will of the people. We put people in the White House who are strong leaders who have a clear vision for American and who will do the right thing regardless of how it polls in Dubuque.

    The biggest flip-flop accusation is the for the war/against the war quote.

    That's just one of many, and I don't think you can really call it the "biggest." His abortion stance is a huge flip-flop. Life begins at conception, he says, but he voted against the partial-birth abortion ban. And the SUV debacle: he told environmentalists that he didn't own an SUV, but told Detroit auto workers that he owned several including a Suburban. His explanation after the fact? I don't own them, he said; the family does.

    There's a great list of Kerry contradictions here.

    When he was told by the administration that there were WMDs and Iraq was an "imminent threat", he was for it. When he learned that none of this was true, he was against it.

    Sigh. Yet again: nobody from the administration ever said "imminent threat." In fact, on many occasions they specifically disavowed any intimation that the threat was imminent. The President had a whole section in his 2003 State of the Union in which he addressed calls not to act until the threat was imminent and made it clear that waiting for imminence was a dumb idea.

    Secondly: there were WMD in Iraq. We've found them. Read a newspaper much?

    Thirdly: Senator Kerry voted for the authorization and against the funding appropriation. He didn't vote for the authorization and then vote against the authorization on another vote. He voted for the authorization and then he voted against the funding. In other words, he voted to send our troops overseas without the resources they needed to do their job. I don't care what his position on the war was; that was just low.

  4. Who's the flip-flopper?

    Erik, I know you don't believe anything you read, but you should check out this...

  5. Re: Jeff Harrell

    Actually, Kerry voted to give the President the authority to go to war, based on the (now known to be "sexed up") evidence he was shown. Later on, he voted against the funding based on the principle that the "president" had abused the authority that he was given and acted in an irresponsible manner. I think there is a Kerry quote somewhere in which he said something like "I voted to give Bush the authority to go to war. I had no idea he was going to fuck everything up so badly."

    If I give you the authority to drive my car, and you bring the car back a bit later with all 4 fenders smashed in and 47 parking tickets, and ask me for my credit card to use for gas money, I'm gonna tell you to fuck right off.

  6. Later on, he voted against the funding based on the principle that the "president" had abused the authority that he was given and acted in an irresponsible manner.

    I don't think anybody really cares what his rationale is. The point is that he voted to send our boys overseas without the funding they needed to do their job.

    Oh, and as for the "sexed up" accusation, please try to keep up with the news. The 9/11 Commission report, the Butler Report, Joe Wilson's confessions, and so on.

    If I give you the authority to drive my car, and you bring the car back a bit later with all 4 fenders smashed in and 47 parking tickets, and ask me for my credit card to use for gas money, I'm gonna tell you to fuck right off.

    Worst analogy ever. It's a good thing you're not running for President, Matt.

  7. Yeah. I've been meaning to write a treatise on the subject. But I've had a tough time getting around to it.

  8. I know no one wants to hear this… nor is this really the place to state this… but if Clinton sent troops into Iraq under the same trumped up charges he would have been run out of town. The 9-11 report nor the Butler Report were given narrow areas where they where allowed report on. That is a fact, look at the mandate each was give I would preferred if we had one investigation that was able to investigate the whole mess instead of breaking the everything down into small little chunks… this chunk investigation mode ensure the survival of the status quo. But Clinton isn't the point… nor the narrow scope of the various inquires into the lead-up to the Iraq Occupation. What's at issue is why John F. Kerry now objects to this occupation.

    And since I haven't seen the "documentary" I'm not qualified to comment directly to its source material. But I have to ask… can you trust a "documentary" that links directly to the GOP's website? Neocons thought Fahrenheit 9/11 was bad… just imagine the out cry if Moore placed a DNC link on the movies official home page. Still its all partisan politics.

    However I would like to respond to a few of Jeff well written comments.

    Secondly: there were WMD in Iraq. We've found them. Read a newspaper much?

    Baghdad, Iraq - A roadside bomb containing sarin nerve agent exploded near a US military convoy in Baghdad, the US military said on Monday. It was the first confirmed finding of any of the banned weapons upon which the United States based its case for the Iraq war.

    Can you really say we really found WMD's when they where used against you? How can we be sure they where in Iraq pre-occupation? I do find it strange that the only new-sites that carry this are the card carrying right wing extremist news sites… [Interesting Read on Iraq's WMD Programs]

    But wait… Media Matters debunks the entire story

    On May 18, the Associated Press reported that American experts were not interpreting the discovery of an artillery shell with traces of sarin -- which exploded in Baghdad the previous weekend -- as evidence that deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had been hording stockpiles of banned weapons prior to the war in Iraq:

    But officials stopped short of claiming the munition was definite evidence of a large weapons stockpile in prewar Iraq or evidence of recent production by Saddam's regime -- the Bush administration's chief stated reason for invasion.

    So I don't think you can say WMD's where found. Just read the full Media Matters posting… then let me know. (It walks you thru the Polish "find")

    Sigh. Yet again: nobody from the administration ever said "imminent threat."

    Oh really?

    "There's no question that Iraq was a threat to the people of the United States." -- White House spokeswoman Claire Buchan, 8/26/03"We ended the threat from Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction." -- President Bush, 7/17/03Iraq was "the most dangerous threat of our time." White House spokesman Scott McClellan, 7/17/03"Saddam Hussein is no longer a threat to the United States because we removed him, but he was a threat…He was a threat. He's not a threat now." -- President Bush, 7/2/03"Absolutely." -- White House spokesman Ari Fleischer answering whether Iraq was an "imminent threat" 5/7/03"We gave our word that the threat from Iraq would be ended." -- President Bush 4/24/03"The threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction will be removed." -- Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 3/25/03"It is only a matter of time before the Iraqi regime is destroyed and its threat to the region and the world is ended." -- Pentagon spokeswoman Victoria Clarke, 3/22/03"The people of the United States and our friends and allies will not live at the mercy of an outlaw regime that threatens the peace with weapons of mass murder." -- President Bush, 3/19/03"The dictator of Iraq and his weapons of mass destruction are a threat to the security of free nations." -- President Bush, 3/16/03"This is about imminent threat." -- White House spokesman Scott McClellan, 2/10/03Iraq is "a serious threat to our country, to our friends and to our allies." -- Vice President Dick Cheney, 1/31/03Iraq poses "terrible threats to the civilized world." -- Vice President Dick Cheney, 1/30/03Iraq "threatens the United States of America." -- Vice President Cheney, 1/30/03

    Retracting military funding is a way Congress can and should exert its Constitutional powers. I'm so sick of these neoconservatives… and granted they are sick of me.

    * Kerry Slander Full Alert *

    Revision history always makes your side come out lemon-fresh. "Unfit to Command" is a fine example one of the slander. [Read about the Co-Arthur at Media Matters]Can you really trust these slanders? These are the same people who dragged McCain thru the mud on '00 then Max Cleland in `02. Makes you wonder about the puppet master. You have two former service men running of President of the United States. One was a genuine war hero. The other was an excelled multi-tasker not only did he defended the Gulf of Mexico from Ho Chi Minh but he also helped organize a failed congressional run. In the past who got slandered, then lost? McCain a POW, Cleland left parts of his body in Vietnam and now Kerry in their scope. Yes this is about Iraq but reveals more of the slander machine.

    Erik you really need to turn on MT's preview…. I would probably cut half the stuff I write that way… πŸ™‚

  9. 1. You ignored the ballistic missiles, the biological weapons components, the 500 tons of unprocessed uranium, the 1.7 tons of processed uranium, the UAV's and their manufacturing facility, and the chemical mortar rounds, artillery shells, and rockets. All of these things, and more, have been found in Iraq. The fact that you're ignorant of these facts and that you persist in badmouthing the war effort should embarrass you.

    2. Your cut-and-paste of that list of quotes is shameful. Look at them. None of them said "imminent threat." They said "threat," which Iraq most certainly was. And some of them are just plain lies.

    Let's look at this one, for instance:

    "This is about imminent threat." -- White House spokesman Scott McClellan, 2/10/03

    Go pull the transcript. They're all available on the White House web site, right out there in the open. Read the transcript and what do you find? That Scott wasn't even talking about Iraq. He was talking about Turkey and NATO.

    QUESTION: What about NATO's role? Belgium now says it will veto any attempt to provide help to Turkey to defend itself. Is this something the administration can live with, or is it a major obstacle?MR. McCLELLAN: Two points. We support the request under Article IV of Turkey. And I think it's important to note that the request from a country under Article IV that faces an imminent threat goes to the very core of the NATO alliance and its purpose.QUESTION: What can you do about this veto threat?MR. McCLELLAN: Well, again, I think what's important to remind NATO members, remind the international community is that this type of request under Article IV goes to the core of the NATO alliance.QUESTION: Is this some kind of ultimate test of the alliance?MR. McCLELLAN: This is about an imminent threat.

    Seriously, man. Try harder. Cutting-and-pasting without even bothering to check if what you're cutting-and-pasting is correct? Shameful.

    Can you really trust these slanders? These are the same people who dragged McCain thru the mud on '00 then Max Cleland in '02. Makes you wonder about the puppet master.

    It's neat the way you're more interested in spreading FUD than you are in discussing issues. Are you actually a member of the Democratic National Committee, or did you just take a page from their play-book?

    Look, I say this with all respect, okay? If you're gonna be an armchair pundit in an election year, if you're gonna play in the big leagues, you're going to have to bring a better game than this. Seriously: being woefully ignorant of the work of the ISG, cutting-and-pasting without even reading your source material, and trying to dispose of a serious and damning character issue by throwing around words like "puppet master?" Lame, dude. Very lame.

  10. QUESTION: Well, we went to war, didn't we, to find these -- because we said that these weapons were a direct and imminent threat to the United States? Isn't that true?MR. FLEISCHER: Absolutely. One of the reasons that we went to war was because of their possession of weapons of mass destruction. And nothing has changed on that front at all. We said what we said because we meant it. We had the intelligence to report it. Secretary Powell said it. Press Briefing by Ari Fleischer, May 7, 2003They're all available on the White House web site, right out there in the open. Read the transcript and what do you find? That Scott wasn't even talking about Iraq. He was talking about Turkey and NATO.

    Yes, from the limtied scope of the snipped your provided. However if you go back, to get the full context this discussion is directly related to Iraq.

    MR. McCLELLAN: Well, what we're focused on -- and, remember, it goes back to what the President said over the weekend. And this is about disarmament. This is about 12 years of deceiving and denying and cheating and retreating and playing hide-and-seek. And those games are over. And the President has made that very clear. And now this is an opportunity for the United Nations Security Council and the United Nations to show its relevance; 1441 is very clear in what it says. And Saddam Hussein has continued his defiance of the international community. And this is a moment for the Security Council to come together and show its relevance. And we will not put up with any more games of deception and any more games of hide-and-seek, as the President has made very clear.QUESTION: What about NATO's role? Belgium now says it will veto any attempt to provide help to Turkey to defend itself. Is this something the administration can live with, or is it a major obstacle?

    See now the quote is in the context of Iraq. Now the question directly before Scott McClellan imminent threat assertion.

    QUESTION: Is this some kind of ultimate test of the alliance?MR. McCLELLAN: This is about an imminent threat.

    I read that as [no] this isn't about Belgium not meeting it's NATO responsabilitis if Turkey is attacked… but this is about Iraq being a threat, an imminent threat.

    The issue about the documentary is centers around possiable slander.

    Slander -- Oral communication of false statements injurious to a person's reputation.

    I'm just pointing out that in '00 the Bush team took pot shots at McCain military service record. In '02 the GOP made attack ads making it look like Cleland voted against Homeland Security… and went as far a morphing his head into Sadam Hussein's. Ann Coulter went on to imply that during a routine non-combat mission Cleland lost his limbs. In '04, I could only assume, the same GOP operative, or puppet masters, are directing a similar attacks on Kerry. As I pointed out before the documentary links directly to GOP.com, one really needs to keep those slander and smear campaigns in mind when they view such a partisan documentary.

    The fact that you're ignorant of these facts and that you persist in badmouthing the war effort should embarrass you.

    Where are these facts you speak of? Show me the light oh enlighten one.

    I am embarrassed, at our Presidents actions. I am embarrassed that the occupation turned into such a quagmire. I am embarrassed that expressing anti-war views becomes unpatriotic. I am embarrassed that we are even considering reelecting our current President. I'm sure he means well, I'm sure he had good intentions at heart but come on.

    What ever happened to "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door". What happened to that America? That America was beloved by the world… each fading day we are straying off course. We no longer the "good guys", face it Iraq dirtied are hands. Yes, we still are good at heart; we just need to rinse our hands. I support our troops and I'm not I'm advocating pull out of Iraq we made our hornets nest now we have to deal with it. I don't support the pretense nor the rational of the occupation or "war effort" as you put it. I no longer believe the "war effort" had anything to do with terrorism and even less to do with liberating the Iraqis. This was the wrong war at the wrong time for the wrong reasons.

    Look, I say this with all respect, okay? If you're gonna be an armchair pundit in an election year, if you're gonna play in the big leagues, you're going to have to bring a better game than this. … reading your source material, and trying to dispose of a serious and damning character issue by throwing around words like "puppet master?" Lame, dude. Very lame.

    I don't want to be an armchair pundit, I'm just offering up my feelings on the issues at hand. My feelings. Pundits play towards an audience, an audience that supports their underlying beliefs. What I'm doing is more like spitting into the wind… I believe that the same person or group was responsible for the slander attacks on McCain and Cleland. Now the same group appears to be set on destroying Kerry in the same manner in an all too similar, all to eerie, all to puppet master-ish way. I don't know who it is, and I doubt Bush or Karl Rove has any control or communication with the ones involved, but someone is pulling the strings.

  11. Jeff no offense taken. You and I do disagree on the facts... and even what the facts are at times. I can only disagree and respect that.

  12. I was about to watch the film, but then something at the bottom of the page caught my eye:

    "Paid for by the Republican National Committee Not Authorized By Any Candidate Or Candidate Committee - http://www.gop.com"

    I don't think I'm going to get a 'fair and balanced' view of John Kerry from them the same way I'd get a 'fair and balanced' view of George Bush from a 'Paid for by the DNC' site.

  13. Maybe you should watch because, well, nearly the whole thing is John Kerry speaking. Heaven forbid you begin to inform yourself, Gabe. πŸ˜›

  14. I just watched the video. Of course I'm already a Bush supporter, so you don't have to believe anything I say. But I thought the video seemed pretty honest. Ignore the on-screen quotes if you must. Just watch what Kerry says. It doesn't look heavily edited (unlike F. 9/11 from what I hear). These are all just real news clips.

    Every time Kerry votes to go to war, he then says it was a bad idea. It happened with the Gulf War, it's happened now with the Iraq takeover. Why vote to go to war and then become anti-war? TWICE?

    It's ridiculous. The guy flip-flops (about many things, not just Iraq) and nothing anyone says excuses his behavior.

    Jared

  15. Correction: I'm sorry, he didn't vote originally for the Gulf War, I was mistaken. But that No War vote came after interviews with him saying he WAS for the war and kicking Saddam out. So figure that out...

  16. 1) Changing your verbiage like a weathervane for the polls and his political agenda is what Kerry did. Nothing more and nothing less. 11 minutes of Kerry speaking is what it is, showing the timeline, so "I don't think I'm going to get a 'fair and balanced' view of John Kerry " not the whole story, but it is a very truthful ad in that it is Kerry's own words, and reflecting what he meant to say (if you follow political campaigns closely you *KNOW* exactly how Kerry changed his positions to align with Dean, then shifted again later) .... Kerry's words really are not worth much, since he changes so much.

    2) Kerry lied about being in Cambodia in Christmas 1968, told the tall tale many a time (50 times), even on the senate floor.

    Now the truth comes out in "unfit for command" and we get treated to slanders about it being a slander. Rather than address facts, we get smears against them. "Media Matters" is a political partisan organization that George Soros, who is funding many left-liberals and groups, like moveon.org, is funding. They 'debunk' nothing but their own impeached credibility.

    3) Iraq was worth fighting for, the liberation of Iraq was and is a good thing, and we will (if Bush is re-elected) succeed there. (No guarantees with weathervane Kerry).

    see:

    http://freedomstruth.blogspot.com

    4) Kerry has now down an olympic gold-medal flip-flop ... on troop redeployment:

    January 2004 - "I intend to be a president who ... reduces the overall need for deployment of American forces in the globe - and I mean North Korea, Germany and the rest of the world.."

    August 1 - SENATOR JOHN F. KERRY: "I will have significant, enormous reduction in the level of troops. We will probably have a continued presence of some kind, certainly in the region. If the diplomacy that I believe can be put in place can work, I think we can significantly change the deployment of troops, not just there but elsewhere in the world.

    In the Korean peninsula perhaps, in Europe perhaps. There are great possibilities open to us."

    August 18 - "Finally, I want to say something about the plan that the President announced on Monday to withdraw 70,000 troops from Asia and Europe. ... But it needs to be done at the right time and in a sensible way. This is not that time or that way. Let's be clear. The President's vaguely stated plan does not strengthen our hand in the war on terror."

    NOTE WELL: The President's plan *is* specific, ie 2 armored divisions go from germany to US and a stryker brigade takes it s place. Note also, it is a gradual plan that our allies have been notified about, and which has been in the works for a few years, announced now so it can fit in the BRAC 2005 round (which Kerry weirdly wants to delay).

    Clearly, Kerry is taking a position just to be anti-Bush, and in the process is making himself out to look quite foolish.


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