How the US left politically hampered conservatives…

IRSSo the political left in the US is fair-minded and the only reasonable, intelligent group worth listening to?

Well, of course, if you consider yourself to be the liberal intellectual heart-beat of America, you would have to think this and, thus, feel justified as you stealthily eliminate, in your imagination, any potential opposition. The problem with this is that some Conservatives do actually have brains, can think and do come up with great political ideas and solutions.

But if you can control one or two of the main social and fiscal agencies surely you will be able to nobble or hamper those you seek to subtract from the equation which results in electoral victory. After all, all’s fair in love, war and politics, isn’t it?

Here’s a report from the Washington Examiner, which should shock people from all sides, but one wonders if anything could surprise the left about its own actions.

Claims that the Internal Revenue Service’s intentional targeting of conservative and Tea Party groups was not politically motivated are truly outrageous and should concern all Americans.

Unbelievably, in his congressional testimony on Friday, the acting commissioner of the IRS, Steve Miller, repeatedly refused to admit that his agency “targeted” conservative groups.

Yet “targeted” was precisely the term used by the Treasury Department inspector general for tax administration in both his congressional testimony and his report released this past Tuesday.

The IRS itself admitted to intentionally targeting conservative groups and said it targeted them because they “criticize how the country is being run” — because they are conservative.

The IG report on the burgeoning IRS scandal confirms that “all cases with Tea Party, Patriots, or 9/12 in their names were” targeted by the IRS for “unnecessary, burdensome” inquiry through at least “May 2012.”

The IG testified that he found this intentional targeting was “based on policy positions” held by these groups. You can’t intentionally target conservative groups for being conservative and call it anything but politically motivated.

As more details emerge that liberal and progressive groups applying for tax-exempt status during the same time period were quickly approved when compared with the nearly two years or more of wait time for conservative groups with similar structures, the political nature of this scandal is all too apparent.

While issuing its so-called apology for intentionally targeting conservative groups for onerous and unconstitutional inquiries, the IRS also claimed that the scrutiny has stopped and that the targeting was limited to “low-level” IRS agents in a single Cincinnati office.

And now the most recent assertion from the IRS is that this scheme was concocted by a couple of rogue employees out of that office. However, these claims simply do not square with the facts.

At the American Center for Law and Justice, or ACLJ, we have represented 27 of these targeted conservative groups, and not only have our clients received inquiry demand letters from IRS offices coast to coast demanding answers to unconstitutional questions, we also have proof that these inquiries continued as recently as last week.

Going back to 2010, our clients received these admittedly targeted letters from IRS offices in Washington, El Monte, Calif., and Laguna Niguel, Calif., as well as the now infamous Cincinnati office.

These onerous demand letters continued to be received in 2012 at the height of a contentious presidential election, well after senior IRS officials were aware of the illegal targeting.

Many of these letters demanded unconstitutionally intrusive information from conservative groups, including donor lists, member resumes and more, as the IG report confirms.

It is also now clear that the IRS targeting went well beyond just organizations with “Tea Party” or “patriot” in the name, but extended to a whole range of conservative groups.

Even pro-Israel Jewish groups were singled out. This was a systematic targeting of conservative groups, spanning at least two contentious election cycles — and should be alarming to citizens of all political persuasions.

The IRS now claims it has stopped this unlawful activity and promises it “will not recur.” Yet the IG report emphatically states, “We disagree.” The inspector general is exactly right. The abuse is ongoing.

The IRS has refused to respond to a letter sent this past week from the ACLJ demanding that it immediately cease this abuse of power and grant the tax-exempt status of 10 of our clients whose applications are still being held up in this admittedly inappropriate targeted inquiry process.

The ACLJ is preparing to file a federal lawsuit this coming week against the IRS, the Department of the Treasury and other government officials on behalf of numerous conservative groups.

The IRS is supposed to be a safeguard against partisan politics, but instead, it has succeeded in stifling freedom of speech under the color of law.

In the face of bipartisan outrage, acting Commissioner Miller’s assertion to Congress that the IRS targeting was merely “horrible customer service” is atrocious.

The IRS’ actions are a Draconian abuse of government power and smack of McCarthyism. This was a direct and targeted assault on the constitutional rights of conservative citizen-led groups — American citizens.

Further to this, we have the amazing promotion of a CEO of the FEC, and the emerging record of how she allegedly manipulated politics in the US. From political blogger Gateway Pundit

Under the direction of Lois Lerner, the Federal Election Commission sued the Christian Coalition in the 1990s. She harassed the Christian Coalition for three election cycles. She lost her case. Lerner even asked one conservative during the case if Pat Robertson prayed over him. (Sound familiar?)

These actions landed her at the IRS where she used the same tactics against conservatives and Christians – only on a much larger scale. 500 conservative and Christian groups were illegally targeted by the Obama IRS during her tenure. For twenty-seven months the Obama IRS refused to approve any Tea Party applications for tax-exempt status. At the same time the Obama IRS approved dozens of progressive applications.

So, she is called to testify before a House Hearing, but, whilst it is apparent that Lerner was vague about the First Amendment, she now pleads the Fifth. Nothing like a political decision making body which makes a mockery of its own Constitution.

Watch this space…

Obama Cartoon

89 thoughts on “How the US left politically hampered conservatives…

  1. @Steve The way the media portrayed and covered the Occupy Wall Street vs Tea Party movements and demonstrations is another example. It’s endless.

  2. It’s a shame the Australian government doesn’t revoke Hillsong’s tax exempt status.

    It provides nothing to the country.

    I gather some of those poor persecuted right wingers are the Joyce Meyer’s and Benny Hinn’s et al who are wallowing in their millions whilst enjoying tax exempt status.

  3. i>Lerner even asked one conservative during the case if Pat Robertson prayed over him

    Actually it is illegal in the US for religious groups to endorse candidates.

    The 1954 law they are challenging prohibits charitable groups, including most churches, from making candidate endorsements, but doesn’t bar ministers, priests, rabbis and imams from speaking out on other ballot issues, like voter initiatives, or organizing get-out-the-vote drives and education efforts around elections themselves.

    The Internal Revenue Code specifies that all section 501(c)(3) organizations are “absolutely prohibited” from taking part in, contributing to or making any statement “in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.”

    But enforcement appears to have halted completely in early 2009 after Living Word Christian Center of Brooklyn Park, Minn., successfully appealed an audit that the IRS launched after its pastor endorsed Republican Rep. Michelle Bachmann for re-election. The judge ruled (.pdf) that the IRS was technically violating its own regulations in deciding whether to audit churches for banned political activities — because the official making that decision wasn’t high enough on the Treasury Department’s organization chart.
    The IRS, however, isn’t acknowledging that it has stopped enforcing the ban on candidate endorsements by officials of 501(c)3 charitable organizations.

    In response to queries from NBC News, the IRS disavowed comments by a regional official of its division overseeing tax-exempt organizations, who said last month that the agency was “holding any potential church audits in abeyance” while it revises its regulations in light of the 2009 ruling.
    Dean Patterson, a spokesman for the IRS, said the official “misspoke,” adding: “The IRS continues to run a balanced program that follows up on potential non-compliance, while ensuring the appropriate oversight and review to determine that compliance activities are necessary and appropriate.”

    Didn’t stop many pastors endorsing a Mormon over a Christian.

  4. If a religious group endorses political candidates in the US it loses it’s tax exemption status.

    That is the law which the Christian Right refuses to abide by.

    The Rev. Barry Lynn, a minister in President Barack Obama’s United Church of Christ and executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, said the Alliance Defending Freedom was hiding behind “a fiction that there’s a war against Christianity.” The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., he said, managed to preach about politics almost every day of his adult life without ever endorsing a political candidate.

    “It’s time to get serious about this, because we could end up with a corruption not only of the political process but of the integrity of the genuine prophetic message of churches,” Lynn said in a recent interview on State of Belief Radio.

  5. Bones,
    If a religious group endorses political candidates in the US it loses it’s tax exemption status

    Yes, and in a stirring piece of Christian Activism, churches all over the nation are sending transcripts of the messages they preached endorsing this or that candidate in the last election to the IRS to dare them to do something about what is essentially an unconstitutional act inserted by Democrat Lyndon B Johnson to stave off the threat of charitable status groups who were endorsing candidates who opposed him in elections.

    Yes, the Democrats, the hairy chested left, bring about yet another prohibition to liberty and freedom of speech to help themselves to another election.

    So now the IRS is being challenged to uphold this draconian law which denies liberties written into the Constitution in 1819 which encourage freedom of speech, whereby any individual can declare for or against a candidate in an election in a public assembly without fear of sanction, as it should be.

    As of Friday, none of the hundreds of pastors who took part in the protest reported hearing back from the government. In fact, the Alliance Defending Freedom says, only one of the churches that have taken part in Pulpit Freedom Sundays over the last five years has been the target of IRS action, and that case was dropped shortly after the IRS lost a separate legal ruling almost four years ago.

    The Internal Revenue Code specifies that all section 501(c)(3) organizations are “absolutely prohibited” from taking part in, contributing to or making any statement “in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.”

    But enforcement appears to have halted completely in early 2009 after Living Word Christian Center of Brooklyn Park, Minn., successfully appealed an audit that the IRS launched after its pastor endorsed Republican Rep. Michelle Bachmann for re-election. The judge ruled (.pdf) that the IRS was technically violating its own regulations in deciding whether to audit churches for banned political activities — because the official making that decision wasn’t high enough on the Treasury Department’s organization chart.

    The IRS, however, isn’t acknowledging that it has stopped enforcing the ban on candidate endorsements by officials of 501(c)3 charitable organizations…

    …While the issue is often cast in terms of separation of church and state, the prohibition on candidate endorsements is a political one, not a constitutional one. If anything, “from a constitutional perspective … American churches have had every right to endorse or oppose political candidates” since 1819, James Davidson, a prominent religion scholar, wrote in a landmark 1998 paper (.pdf) in the Review of Religious Research.

  6. It may come as a shock to your left wing sensibility, Bones, but the IRS wasn’t elected to run the country. It was appointed to serve the people, as was the President, by the people for the people.

    Laws are not for suppressing people, or controlling people, or their freedoms or their speech, they are for supporting the people, upholding their liberty and serving them.

    Liberal governments, seeing the glass half empty, tend to fear the people, disrespect the people by looking down on them, consider themselves intellectually and socially above the people, and want to smother them like a mother goddess, creating dependency and hunger.

    So when laws are unjust it is reasonable for the people to show their disregard through the ballot box, through civil disobedience and through lobbying for justice.

    Contrary to your limited consideration, social justice is not the emphatic right of left wing activists, but of all Americans.

  7. “Yes, the Democrats, the hairy chested left,”


    Actually, I just read an article the other day that stated that conservatives tend to have greater upper body strength than liberal males. Interesting. I wonder how a bench press comp would go here

    It’s also been noted that within a day after the Oklahoma tornado people were clearing up and rebuilding with person after person thanking God for their safety, as opposed to places outside the Bible Belt which saw continual bleating about what the govt wasn’t doing and how everyone was helpless.

    The IRS has been going after the very people who make the US great.

  8. It is not suppressing freedom of speech, churches can endorse any candidate i- its just that if they become part of the machinery of any one party they may be denied tax-exempt status.

    Its not our fault that the churches who have been co-opted into campaigning for one political party have somehow been convinced that God is a Republican. The left side of politics would love to do the same with their churches, but they tend to be much harder to convince and more difficult to lead with a single charismatic leader.

    Similarly the occupy movement is much less focused than the tea party. If you ever found a leader in the occupy movement and asked them who they endorse, they would be immediately disavowed by the others.

    The evangelical churches have been turned into branches fthe Republican party, rallying around issues such as abortion. The republicans use this to get elected but never change anything – they have never wound back abortion – because they know they have the conservative christian vote. They were even convinced to back a Mormon against a mainline Christian last time.

    Any church which becomes a mouthpiece of a political party should not be prevented from speaking out, but neither should it be funded by the taxpayer.

  9. Yes, hairy chested but lacking definition, all fluff and bluster, stand-over and intimidate with threats of litigation.

    Here’s a typical ‘investigation’ by IRS officials and the rest when a citizen tries to do the right thing by other citizens and the hairy ones get involved.

    ‘But the most important IRS story came not from the hearings but from Mike Huckabee’s program on Fox News Channel. He interviewed and told the story of Catherine Engelbrecht—a nice woman, a citizen, an American. She and her husband live in Richmond, Texas. They have a small manufacturing business. In the past few years she became interested in public policy and founded two groups, King Street Patriots and True the Vote.

    In July 2010 she sent applications to the IRS for tax-exempt status. What followed was not the harassment, intrusiveness and delay we’re now used to hearing of. The U.S. government came down on her with full force.

    In December 2010 the FBI came to ask about a person who’d attended a King Street Patriots function. In January 2011 the FBI had more questions. The same month the IRS audited her business tax returns. In May 2011 the FBI called again for a general inquiry about King Street Patriots. In June 2011 Engelbrecht’s personal tax returns were audited and the FBI called again. In October 2011 a round of questions on True the Vote. In November 2011 another call from the FBI. The next month, more questions from the FBI. In February 2012 a third round of IRS questions on True the Vote. In February 2012 a first round of questions on King Street Patriots. The same month the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms did an unscheduled audit of her business. (It had a license to make firearms but didn’t make them.) In July 2012 the Occupational Safety and Health Administration did an unscheduled audit. In November 2012 more IRS questions on True the Vote. In March 2013, more questions. In April 2013 a second ATF audit.

    All this because she requested tax-exempt status for a local conservative group and for one that registers voters and tries to get dead people off the rolls. Her attorney, Cleta Mitchell, who provided the timeline above, told me: “These people, they are just regular Americans. They try to get dead people off the voter rolls, you would think that they are serial killers.”

    This week Ms. Engelbrecht, who still hasn’t received her exemptions, sued the IRS.’

  10. Since I will be deleted on the other post (which doesn’t bother me in the slightest, rather makes me laugh :)). I’ll say it here. I have the same dream as you Steve about Christians in Europe. But not only there but everywhere. Muslims, Buddhists etc believing the gospel, becoming disciples and observing all things that Christ taught. Let’s pray to that end.

    There will always be some who follow Jesus for a while but then fall away, and even become enemies of the cross. But there are multitudes who have never heard the gospel even once. If young people like the Boston bombers and the wicked ones who beheaded a man in England had become passionate about Jesus instead, there would be joy in heaven and on earth instead of tears today.

    Jesus is the answer.

  11. wazza,
    the occupy movement is much less focused than the tea party

    The most useless adaptation of the democratic process in the history of folly.

    The evangelical churches have been turned into branches fthe Republican party

    Not really, although it seems that way. The demographics don’t support this. If the Democrats were able to produce policy which came closer to Biblical ideology they might get more of a look in with many Christians. On the other hand, African American churches tend to flow with Democrat candidates, so the notion doesn’t actually have traction.

    What George Bush was able to do was mobilise more of the Christians to vote. He saw that a potentially large voting block was apathetic to politicians. Gore alienated them because he was so self absorbed. Bush carried then to his second term, but it seems that Obama managed to pick up enough African American Christian to get him over the line twice. And it looks as if he got away with alienating those groups who were more likely to vote Republican.

    But this is not going away, now that the cat is out of the bag, it seems.

    The claim that people think ‘God is a Republican’ is just the kind crass humour found in Christmas crackers.

  12. The Right-Wing Christian Dictionary

    Jesus Christ A conservative Republican leader to whom some erroneously attribute the phrases “love thy neighbor” and “turn the other cheek.” If he were alive today, he would drive an SUV (remember: conservative doesn’t mean conservationist!) and support both preemptive warfare and the massive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich.

    Republican party A political party that welcomes all conservatives, as long as they are pro-life, pro-gun, pro-Big Business, pro-oil, pro-war, and anti-everything else. Democratic party: Communist.

  13. The Bonesian Dictionary of Arguing Techniques

    Discussion Making up as many things in your own commentary about the person you are arguing with which illustrate and contrast you own perspective rather than theirs, ensuring that you place an extreme emphasis on each point, then arguing the false point you have made from your own perspective, always totally ignoring the actual points your combatant makes.

    Truth Never tell the actual truth in full. Use extracts of truth laced with deception so you have something to fall back on if you are exposed. Never admit to being caught out in a lie.

    RelevanceIf you are successfully refuted by your opponent there are evasive devices which will serve you well: 1. go to another thread and start an argument there; 2. immediately change the subject; 3. make an angry statement using extreme examples ending with a vile curse; 4. add a series of very long, tedious and boring cut and paste quotes which no one will bother to read and which will eventually change the subject or wear down the opponents from sheer exasperation.

  14. I think #4 is his usual weapon of choice.

    And remember 5. Accusing the brethren day and night. No wait, that’s already the basis of 1 through 4….

  15. Steve and his disciples favourite arguing techniques

    Repeat your original answer/argument using different language. Example: “If you don’t agree with me, you’re going to Hell.” “Please explain why you say that.” “People who don’t believe in literal Biblical inerrancy are destined for eternal damnation.”

    Resort to ad-hominem attacks. If someone questions your logic, he is a godless liberal atheist who is destined for eternal damnation.

    Eg bible scholars

    If the facts are against you, quote Scripture. If Scripture is against you, it is being misinterpreted by your opponent, who is deceived (q.v.). If both facts and Scripture are against you, shout and pound on the table. (This technique was invented by lawyers.)

    eg or use another technique.

    Become incredulous and indignant (the “how dare you?” gambit). Example: “How dare you suggest that innocent civilians incarcerated at abu Ghraib were tortured! You are dishonoring our fine military. You should be ashamed of yourself.” This tactic worked so well on Congressman Dick Durban (who suggested that the many verified reports of torture and abuse in Iraq, Afghanistan, and abu Ghraib sounded like something out of Nazi Germany rather than the United States) that he actually ended up apologizing for offending our fine military.

    Eg as well any mention that right wing Christians do evil. Only Muslims, Catholics, atheists and liberals do that. Definitely don’t mention right wing Christian support for dictators or wars.

    Denounce any fact that contradicts your position as a scurrilous rumor or a wild accusation. Eg anything negative re a certain Christian movement and leader.

    Use a straw man. Find or create a piece of your opponent’s argument that you can easily knock down to make yourself look good and the opponent to look bad. Example: “People who believe in the theory of evolution believe that God does not exist, and therefore did not create the Universe, natural selection, or anything else.”

    Eg if you don’t support Israeli settlements, you support Hamas. Also called a false dichotomy.

    Question the other person’s motives. Twist or amplify any fact to make it appear that your opponent is biased, out only to fulfill his/her personal agenda. Force your opponent onto the defensive. “I guess you just hate Jesus, don’t you?”

    Happens all the time.

    Create a persecution complex If someone disagrees with your line of thinking or a government passes a law you don’t like it is a conspiracy and persecution against Christians and God, like when Nero slaughtered the Christians.

  16. What George Bush was able to do was mobilise more of the Christians to vote.

    So we can lay the blame for the war in Iraq and Bush’s lies fairly and squarely with Christians who voted for him.


  17. Bush (or his puppeteers) mobilised the Christians to vote for him. Then he did nothing for them at all. Instead of banning abortion he made it retrospective by sending a generation of American youth to their deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The evangelicals are hopping mad, and that’s the problem the Republicans have now. They have alienated one of their largest supporter groups and now they have to rely on the real far-right loonies – the tea-party, gun-lobby and fox news.

  18. Go and meet people in the tea party. They aren’t loonies. Neither is Fox News.
    Watch CNN then MSNBC then Fox and compare. Or are Fox loonies because they don’t believe that 9/11 was an inside job? Now that’s loony.

    Hillary Clinton voted to send troops overseas as did many. and I haven’t seen any proof that Bush lied.

    Two Nigerian Catholics convert to Islam, change completely from being “nice guys” and behead and disembowel and man while he is alive on a London street in broad daylight, and you guys want to talk about Fox News and SUVS?

    Pathetic. Really pathetic and disgusting/

    On the flipside, a devout Christian woman prays with Rigby until he dies. Now that’s tough. That’s gutsy and heroic. Not swearing your head off like the ultimate fake Greg who although has a gay son, thinks gay sex is wonderful, and wonders what men look like naked calls people Nancy girls??

    And yes I’m angry. If you are real Christians, stop attacking the church, and go preach the gospel to Muslims.

  19. and I haven’t seen any proof that Bush lied

    Then you are blind

    Ten Appalling Lies We Were Told About Iraq

    It was a systematic campaign to frighten the hell out of us about the threat of Hussein, and almost none of it was true.
    June 26, 2003 |

    “The Iraqi dictator must not be permitted to threaten America and the world with horrible poisons and diseases and gases and atomic weapons.”
    — George Bush, Oct. 7, 2002, in a speech in Cincinnati.

    There is a small somber box that appears in the New York Times every day. Titled simply “Killed in Iraq,” it lists the names and military affiliations of those who most recently died on tour of duty. Wednesday’s edition listed just one name: Orenthial J. Smith, age 21, of Allendale, South Carolina.

    The young, late O.J. Smith was almost certainly named after the legendary running back, Orenthal J. Simpson, before that dashing American hero was charged for a double-murder. Now his namesake has died in far-off Mesopotamia in a noble mission to, as our president put it on March 19, “disarm Iraq, to free its people and to defend the world from grave danger.”

    Today, more than three months after Bush’s stirring declaration of war and nearly two months since he declared victory, no chemical, biological or nuclear weapons have been found, nor any documentation of their existence, nor any sign they were deployed in the field.

    The mainstream press, after an astonishing two years of cowardice, is belatedly drawing attention to the unconscionable level of administrative deception. They seem surprised to find that when it comes to Iraq, the Bush administration isn’t prone to the occasional lie of expediency but, in fact, almost never told the truth.

    What follows are just the most outrageous and significant of the dozens of outright lies uttered by Bush and his top officials over the past year in what amounts to a systematic campaign to scare the bejeezus out of everybody:

    LIE #1: “The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program … Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons.” — President Bush, Oct. 7, 2002, in Cincinnati.

    FACT: This story, leaked to and breathlessly reported by Judith Miller in the New York Times, has turned out to be complete baloney. Department of Energy officials, who monitor nuclear plants, say the tubes could not be used for enriching uranium. One intelligence analyst, who was part of the tubes investigation, angrily told The New Republic: “You had senior American officials like Condoleezza Rice saying the only use of this aluminum really is uranium centrifuges. She said that on television. And that’s just a lie.”

    LIE #2: “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.” — President Bush, Jan.28, 2003, in the State of the Union address.

    FACT: This whopper was based on a document that the White House already knew to be a forgery thanks to the CIA. Sold to Italian intelligence by some hustler, the document carried the signature of an official who had been out of office for 10 years and referenced a constitution that was no longer in effect. The ex-ambassador who the CIA sent to check out the story is pissed: “They knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie,” he told the New Republic, anonymously. “They [the White House] were unpersuasive about aluminum tubes and added this to make their case more strongly.”

    LIE #3: “We believe [Saddam] has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.” — Vice President Cheney on March 16, 2003 on “Meet the Press.”

    FACT: There was and is absolutely zero basis for this statement. CIA reports up through 2002 showed no evidence of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program.

    LIE #4: “[The CIA possesses] solid reporting of senior-level contacts between Iraq and al-Qaeda going back a decade.” — CIA Director George Tenet in a written statement released Oct. 7, 2002 and echoed in that evening’s speech by President Bush.

    FACT: Intelligence agencies knew of tentative contacts between Saddam and al-Qaeda in the early ’90s, but found no proof of a continuing relationship. In other words, by tweaking language, Tenet and Bush spun the intelligence180 degrees to say exactly the opposite of what it suggested.

    LIE #5: “We’ve learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases … Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints.” — President Bush, Oct. 7 .

    FACT: No evidence of this has ever been leaked or produced. Colin Powell told the U.N. this alleged training took place in a camp in northern Iraq. To his great embarrassment, the area he indicated was later revealed to be outside Iraq’s control and patrolled by Allied war planes.

    LIE #6: “We have also discovered through intelligence that Iraq has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. We are concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles] for missions targeting the United States.” — President Bush, Oct. 7.

    FACT: Said drones can’t fly more than 300 miles, and Iraq is 6,000 miles from the U.S. coastline. Furthermore, Iraq’s drone-building program wasn’t much more advanced than your average model plane enthusiast. And isn’t a “manned aerial vehicle” just a scary way to say “plane”?

    LIE #7: “We have seen intelligence over many months that they have chemical and biological weapons, and that they have dispersed them and that they’re weaponized and that, in one case at least, the command and control arrangements have been established.” — President Bush, Feb. 8, 2003, in a national radio address.

    FACT: Despite a massive nationwide search by U.S. and British forces, there are no signs, traces or examples of chemical weapons being deployed in the field, or anywhere else during the war.

    LIE #8: “Our conservative estimate is that Iraq today has a stockpile of between 100 and 500 tons of chemical weapons agent. That is enough to fill 16,000 battlefield rockets.” — Secretary of State Colin Powell, Feb. 5 2003, in remarks to the UN Security Council.

    FACT: Putting aside the glaring fact that not one drop of this massive stockpile has been found, as previously reported on AlterNet the United States’ own intelligence reports show that these stocks — if they existed — were well past their use-by date and therefore useless as weapon fodder.

    LIE #9: “We know where [Iraq’s WMD] are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south, and north somewhat.” — Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, March 30, 2003, in statements to the press.

    FACT: Needless to say, no such weapons were found, not to the east, west, south or north, somewhat or otherwise.

    LIE #10: “Yes, we found a biological laboratory in Iraq which the UN prohibited.” — President Bush in remarks in Poland, published internationally June 1, 2003.

    FACT: This was reference to the discovery of two modified truck trailers that the CIA claimed were potential mobile biological weapons lab. But British and American experts — including the State Department’s intelligence wing in a report released this week — have since declared this to be untrue. According to the British, and much to Prime Minister Tony Blair’s embarrassment, the trailers are actually exactly what Iraq said they were; facilities to fill weather balloons, sold to them by the British themselves.

    So, months after the war, we are once again where we started — with plenty of rhetoric and absolutely no proof of this “grave danger” for which O.J. Smith died. The Bush administration is now scrambling to place the blame for its lies on faulty intelligence, when in fact the intelligence was fine; it was their abuse of it that was “faulty.”

    Rather than apologize for leading us to a preemptive war based on impossibly faulty or shamelessly distorted “intelligence” or offering his resignation, our sly madman in the White House is starting to sound more like that other O.J. Like the man who cheerfully played golf while promising to pursue “the real killers,” Bush is now vowing to search for “the true extent of Saddam Hussein’s weapons programs, no matter how long it takes.”

    On the terrible day of the 9/11 attacks, five hours after a hijacked plane slammed into the Pentagon, retired Gen. Wesley Clark received a strange call from someone (he didn’t name names) representing the White House position: “I was on CNN, and I got a call at my home saying, ‘You got to say this is connected. This is state-sponsored terrorism. This has to be connected to Saddam Hussein,'” Clark told Meet the Press anchor Tim Russert. “I said, ‘But — I’m willing to say it, but what’s your evidence?’ And I never got any evidence.'”

    And neither did we.

    No apologies for the destuction of thousands of US soldiers lives and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis on the basis of a lie.

    You don’t have to apologise when you’re doing the Lord’s work.

    Of course there is a reason why George W Bush was never seen with Romney in the presidential election. The guy is seen as a total and utter failure and basketcase.

  20. What helped them to become radicalised – gave them a reason to be militant, murderous and terrorising? Could it have been the sight of large, rich western armies attacking smaller poorer nations – for reasons that were later found to be erroneous? Could it be the cowardly use of drones to conduct executions – with collateral damage?

    The war on terror has made the world more unsafe. It is the leading cause of terrorism. Don’t take my word for it (as if…) This is the assessment of the global intelligence community :

    University of Chicago professor and political scientist, Robert Pape has written extensive work on suicide terrorism and states that it is triggered by military occupations, not extremist ideologies. In works such as Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism and Cutting the Fuse, he uses data from an extensive terrorism database and argues that by increasing military occupations, the US government is increasing terrorism. Pape is also the director and founder of the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism (CPOST), a database of every known suicide terrorist attack from 1980 to 2008.

    In 2006, a National Intelligence Estimate stated that the war in Iraq has increased the threat of terrorism. The estimate was put together by 16 intelligence agencies and was the first assessment of global terrorism since the start of the Iraq war.[29]

    And whats really going to boil your noodle later on is that it was the assessment of the CIA before the invasion of Iraq. That’s right, the war on terror that was sold to us as making the world a safer place – was predicted from the beginning to actually increase terrorism.

  21. First Bones list includes Rumsfield, Cheney, Rice and Obama supporter Colin Powell. And you still haven’t shown that Bush knowingly lied. You need to learn English.
    And why say Bush was doing the “Lord’s work”

    Instead of copying and pasting, YOU go and do the Lord’s work and preach the gospel to the Muslims and tell them about Jesus Christ who died on the cross for them. Stop polluting the internet with all your hatred towards the Body of Christ. Preach the gospel.

    “What helped them to become radicalised – gave them a reason to be militant, murderous and terrorising? Could it have been the sight of large, rich western armies attacking smaller poorer nations – for reasons that were later found to be erroneous? Could it be the cowardly use of drones to conduct executions – with collateral damage?Pathetic. Go and and preach the gospel.”

    This is just sickening to me. A Muslim thug beheads someone in broad daylight and says it’s because of western armies in “muslim lands” – and Wazza says, yes, yes that’s right.

    Pathetic. But he thinks 9/11 was an inside job. So, there you go.

    I am praying that the victims family will be comforted, and that God will get glory out of this.
    At least people saw a huge difference. A Muslim man beheading an innocent man, but a devout Christian woman bravely going up to comfort and pray for a dying man. God bless her.

    So, let’s pray that God’s kingdom comes, and Muslims and deceived Christians repent and make the Prince of Peace their Lord and Savior.

    God bless England. Shine Jesus Shine!

  22. Got to go and pray for Christians to be united and pray and preach the gospel.
    From the massacre at the 72 Olympics to 9/11 to bombings, and now a beheading in broad daylight, it’s just so sickening. I could probably go back to the beginning of the rise of Muhammed, but if you know any history it’s unnecessary.

    No time for this nonsense tonight. Just repent guys.

  23. Im not justifying what the thug did, I’m just saying it was predictable and was predicted.

    And it only cost $4 Trillion . Cheap at half the price.

  24. Do Racism, Conservatism, and Low I.Q. Go Hand in Hand?
    Lower cognitive abilities predict greater prejudice through right-wing ideology.

    Hodson and Busseri (2012) found in a correlational study that lower intelligence in childhood is predictive of greater racism in adulthood, with this effect being mediated (partially explained) through conservative ideology. They also found poor abstract reasoning skills were related to homophobic attitudes which was mediated through authoritarianism and low levels of intergroup contact.

  25. Bones, your pants are on fire.

    Wazza reveals passion and shows himself to be in the same camp as Bones.

    The militants were raising up hard core murderous fanatics long before 9/11.

    But you are going into your pet hate discourse.

    Is this your reaction to the current exposure of a manipulative IRS?

  26. Is this your reaction to the current exposure of a manipulative IRS?

    What’s your reaction to this?

    When the IRS targeted liberals

    Under George W. Bush, it went after the NAACP, Greenpeace and even a liberal church

    While few are defending the Internal Revenue Service for targeting dozens of conservative groups, there are two critical pieces of context missing from the conventional wisdom on the “scandal.” First, at least from what we know so far, the groups were not targeted in a political vendetta — but rather were executing a makeshift enforcement test (an ugly one, mind you) for IRS employees tasked with separating political groups not allowed to claim tax-exempt status, from bona fide social welfare organizations. Employees are given almost zero official guidance on how to do that, so they went after Tea Party groups because those seemed like they might be political. Keep in mind, the commissioner of the IRS at the time was a Bush appointee.

    The second is that while this is the first time this kind of thing has become a national scandal, it’s not the first time such activity has occurred.

    “I wish there was more GOP interest when I raised the same issue during the Bush administration, where they audited a progressive church in my district in what look liked a very selective way,” California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff said on MSNBC Monday. “I found only one Republican, [North Carolina Rep. Walter Jones], that would join me in calling for an investigation during the Bush administration. I’m glad now that the GOP has found interest in this issue and it ought to be a bipartisan concern.”

    The well-known church, All Saints Episcopal in Pasadena, became a bit of a cause célèbre on the left after the IRS threatened to revoke the church’s tax-exempt status over an anti-Iraq War sermon the Sunday before the 2004 election. “Jesus [would say], ‘Mr. President, your doctrine of preemptive war is a failed doctrine,’” rector George Regas said from the dais.

    The church, which said progressive activism was in its “DNA,” hired a powerful Washington lawyer and enlisted the help of Schiff, who met with the commissioner of the IRS twice and called for a Government Accountability Office investigation, saying the IRS audit violated the First Amendment and was unduly targeting a political opponent of the Bush administration. “My client is very concerned that the close coordination undertaken by the IRS allowed partisan political concerns to direct the course of the All Saints examination,” church attorney Marcus Owens, who is widely considered one of the country’s leading experts on this area of the law, said at the time. In 2007, the IRS closed the case, decreeing that the church violated rules preventing political intervention, but it did not revoke its nonprofit status.

    And while All Saints came under the gun, conservative churches across the country were helping to mobilize voters for Bush with little oversight. In 2006, citing the precedent of All Saints, “a group of religious leaders accused the Internal Revenue Service yesterday of playing politics by ignoring its complaint that two large churches in Ohio are engaging in what it says are political activities, in violation of the tax code,” the New York Times reported at the time. The churches essentially campaigned for a Republican gubernatorial candidate, they alleged, and even flew him on one of their planes.

    Meanwhile, Citizens for Ethics in Washington filed two ethics complaints against a church in Minnesota. “You know we can’t publicly endorse as a church and would not for any candidate, but I can tell you personally that I’m going to vote for Michele Bachmann,” pastor Mac Hammond of the Living Word Christian Center in Minnesota said in 2006 before welcoming her to the church. The IRS opened an audit into the church, but it went nowhere after the church appealed the audit on a technicality.

    And it wasn’t just churches. In 2004, the IRS went after the NAACP, auditing the nation’s oldest civil rights group after its chairman criticized President Bush for being the first sitting president since Herbert Hoover not to address the organization. “They are saying if you criticize the president we are going to take your tax exemption away from you,” then-chairman Julian Bond said. “It’s pretty obvious that the complainant was someone who doesn’t believe George Bush should be criticized, and it’s obvious of their response that the IRS believes this, too.”

    In a letter to the IRS, Democratic Reps. Charles Rangel, Pete Stark and John Conyers wrote: “It is obvious that the timing of this IRS examination is nothing more than an effort to intimidate the members of the NAACP, and the communities the organization represents, in their get-out-the-vote effort nationwide.”

    Then, in 2006, the Wall Street Journal broke the story of a how a little-known pressure group called Public Interest Watch — which received 97 percent of its funds from Exxon Mobile one year — managed to get the IRS to open an investigation into Greenpeace. Greenpeace had labeled Exxon Mobil the “No. 1 climate criminal.” The IRS acknowledged its audit was initiated by Public Interest Watch and threatened to revoke Greenpeace’s tax-exempt status, but closed the investigation three months later.

    As the Journal reporter, Steve Stecklow, later said in an interview, “This comes against a backdrop where a number of conservative groups have been attacking nonprofits and NGOs over their tax-exempt status. There have been hearings on Capitol Hill. There have been a number of conservative groups in Washington who have been quite critical.”

    Indeed, the year before that, the Senate held a hearing on nonprofits’ political activity. Republican Sen. Charles Grassley, the then-chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, said the IRS needed better enforcement, but also “legislative changes” to better define the lines between politics and social welfare, since they had not been updated in “a generation.” Unfortunately, neither Congress nor the IRS has defined 501(c)4′s sufficiently to this day, leaving the door open for IRS auditors to make up their own, discriminatory rules.

    Those cases mostly involved 501(c)3 organizations, which live in a different section of the tax code for real charities like hospitals and schools. The rules are much stronger and better developed for (c)3′s, in part because they’ve been around longer. But with “social welfare” (c)4 groups, the kind of political activity we saw in 2010 and 2012 is so unprecedented that you get cases like Emerge America, a progressive nonprofit that trains Democratic female candidates for public office. The group has chapters across the country, but in 2011, chapters in Massachusetts, Maine and Nevada were denied 501(c)4 tax-exempt status. Leaders called the situation “bizarre” because in the five years Nevada had waited for approval, the Kentucky chapter was approved, only for the other three to be denied.

    A former IRS official told the New York Times that probably meant the applications were sent to different offices, which use slightly different standards. Different offices within the same organization that are supposed to impose the exact same rules in a consistent manner have such uneven conceptions of where to draw the line at a political group, that they can approve one organization and then deny its twin in a different state.

    All of these stories suggest that while concern with the IRS posture toward conservative groups now may be merited, to fully understand the situation requires a bit of context and history.

    I look forward to your disgust at such persecution against leftist groups by right wing bureacrats.

  27. The militants were raising up hard core murderous fanatics long before 9/11.

    Did I say they weren’t? I’m just saying there are many more now (up to 8 times as many) and the cause has been identified as the “Iraq effect” by greater minds than mine and certainly yours.

  28. The point is, Bones, that it was introduced by a Democrat way back and never dealt with. Clearly Obama has been caught out overfishing the pond and the blame will be laid at his feet despite his claims of ignorance.

    But why are you being so bad emerged with everyone, Bones? All US politics has its good and bad aspects. What you have been attempting for some months now is lay blame Christians for every terrible thing on the planet, especially those who would tend to vote for a conservative.

    But not only this, you have been trying to associate every Christian globally who is not a liberal with the les savoury aspects of US politics, and with every evil thing which takes place on earth, including the acts of Islamic militants.

  29. $4 Trillion bucks for something that was known would increase terrorism. Why spend that money? For an invasion not sanctioned by the UN or any other authority and with trumped-up evidence.

    That’s $4,000,000,000,000 . To put that in perspective lets say a Pastor with a $400,000 income tithes and gets a 100-fold return – that’s $4 million a year. It would take him a million years to pay the financial cost of the Iraq war.

    Its not like they had the money to spare, the US debt is $11 Trillion. So why do it?

    You go on about a cowardly murder of one soldier (which is of course a despicable act) and then support the invasion of a third-world country by the world’s foremost super-power, because they said they thought they were under threat. The civilian death-toll is over 100,000.

  30. So wazza thinks it’s better to leave the bully in the school to carry on terrorising the other students in case dealing with him leads to him being able to recruit other bullies to his cause.

    Of course, the bully would never, being unchecked, gain courage to raise an even larger gang to not only terrorise more students, but even become powerful enough to overpower the teachers and take over the whole school.

    So, in the real world, the evil wicked terror master sends terrorists in aircraft to demolish buildings in New York City, killing thousands, striking American soil, and the wazza plan would be to do nothing. Let the bully roam free, boast on his victory, set up new enthused cells in every major city on the planet, take out new targets and create a fearful non-Islamic community. Or the US can focus the now declared war on the original region and let them fight it out there. Take it away from US soil in the main.

    The wazza plan for dealing with bullies. Let them be. Maybe they’ll go away. Where’s my favourite patch of sont sand?

  31. A church having it’s tax exempt status threatened because it criticised the president’s policy of pre-emptive strike while conservative churches were openly flaunting conservative candidates including providing them with staff and transport and all this blows out now.

    I smell HYPOCRISY. A bloody big dose of it and typical whinging by the conservatives.

    The US believe in the separation of church and state.

    It’s their problem, they can deal with it like they do their guns.

    Personally I’d revoke all their tax exempt status.

  32. Steve thinks if there’s a bully at school we should go and blow up his next door neighbours house.

    Which is basically what Bush did.

  33. Wazza, I should ‘go on about’ the cold blooded murder of a man in the streets if a peaceful nation. I want my government to extract these militants and put them away. It should be shouted from the hill tops. There is no place for these wicked cells of cowardly killers.

    In the Middle East, even in nations untouched by the West, Sunni fights Shia. Look at Syria. There is a civil war in Islam. The Taliban or the Kazi government, wazza? Which do you prefer? Saddam or the current government? The Taliban and Saddam were not of the same ilk, but they were both engaged in genocidal wars and despotic control of citizens. Saddam is known to have used chemical warfare. They both advocated terror as a means to and end. They both threatened not only Israel but the entire region.

    You want no action when action is demanded. There is an aggressor, wazza, and the more it is left to itself the more the world will see unrest on a scale never witnessed before.

  34. Bones, you’re so foul tempered you’re not worth talking to. The way you treated Q earlier is the work of a true bully. Your recourse was to attack Q in an abrasive way because it worked before to remove him from the debate, so you revert to it almost immediately he returns. Shame on you.

  35. Or the US can focus the now declared war on the original region and let them fight it out there. Take it away from US soil in the main.

    Yeah, the Terrorists were mainly Saudi with a couple of Lebanese, UAE and an Egyptian. But Iraq is in that general region so we’ll attack it. Yeah, and it will draw the conflict to that shit-hole of a place and leave America and the West to be at peace. Because terrorists always follow the rule of law and never attack enemies at home. They will try to attack a platoon of heavily armed soldiers rather than bomb an underground train.

    The Taliban or the Kazi government, wazza? Which do you prefer? Saddam or the current government?
    Well of course the US initially preferred the Taliban and Saddam to any alternative governments. That’s why they supported them, but now they prefer the other side. It dosent really matter which side I prefer, its what the people of those countries prefer and whether they were prepared to pay the price in blood-shed to switch governments. Did anyone ask them?

  36. So, now, Bones, would you prefer that the Taliban was still in control in Afghanistan and Saddam still ran Iraq? Do you think that would solve your problem, now that you know the scale of unrest which has subsequently occurred in the Middle East in Egypt, Lybia, Somalia, and now Syria, where it is likely that more Sharia aligned governments will evolve from the present crisis in these lands?

    Given the increased and more volatile movements of Islam in Europe, should the West remain separate from any militant actions, allow them to take place, and not respond to events such as the London and Madrid bombings, the Bali bombings, the attacks on New York and the Pentagon, etc.?

    What is your solution?

  37. Yes, wazza, the fog of war is always easier to see through when it lifts after the event, and we, the worldly wise, can make better decisions than our forefathers in hindsight.

    And those of us who oppose this or that can say we told them so when the whole thing goes pear shaped.

    But there’s something not yet considered in any of these discussions so far. What has been and is the role of militant imams in the radicalisation of young militants? Is everything G W Bush’s fault, or did they and do they have a part in the actions of the militants?

  38. The unrest has occurred post the Iraq war due to the war unsettling the power balances between Shia and Sunni in Iraq and then extending to Iran and the rest of the region.

    Some of the worst Shia–Sunni sectarian strife ever has occurred after the start of the Iraq War, steadily building up to present.[12] Deaths from American and allied military collateral damage[69] have become overshadowed by the cycle of Sunni–Shia revenge killing—Sunni often using car bombs,with Shia favoring death squads.[70]

  39. One of the problems for the West is the way in which militants use places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, North African Islamic crisis points, and now Syria as a training ground for their mujaheddin. It seems they are on a serious war footing and driven to exploit conflict and spread it globally.

    Iraq was an obvious target for the allies after 9/11 because Saddam was a bigger threat than anyone at the time, and likely to get involved in Afghanistan, which was the real target for coalition troops, because they had intel that Bin Laden was based there. If it hadn’t been for leftist fear of Islamic reprisals Bush could have launched his offensive without a dodgy pretext. The left has always been more successfully terrorised than the rest.

    The allies knew that hesitation, as with Chamberlain over Nazi Germany, and, recently, Obama over Benghazi, was not an option and that he must act. I’m not saying he was right or wrong, but the UN, you remember, was so weedy and unrelentingly cowardly over the whole deal they took months and months to reach no decision at all in a Mexican standoff with itself.

    I think it was a difficult decision and Bush, as President, and Commander in Chief, had to fight his own side in the US in the form of leftist protesters and liberals, as hard as he had to fight the militants. It’s striking to observe how liberals still stand as spokespersons for Islam and for no response to 9/11. Some even claim Bush took down the twin towers. That is how ridiculous this has become. It is so convenient to blame Bush for everything, and lump everyone into this pot of curry stirred up by the left to accuse, blame and ostracise Christians, which is loathsome politics.

  40. Yes the radical imams do bear a huge amount of responsibility for these acts. Many of them are based in the US-ally Saudi Arabia, but we shouldn’t discriminate against that country.

    “There’s a lot of really good people here,” Bush said. “Look, you can’t deny the fact that some, a majority, of the terrorists came from Saudi, but you should not condemn an entire society based upon the actions of a handful of killers.”

    No don’t condemn the society, invade another society instead.

  41. If it hadn’t been for leftist fear of Islamic reprisals Bush could have launched his offensive without a dodgy pretext. The left has always been more successfully terrorised than the rest.

    What the hell is that about?

    Powell lied to the Security Council which it sought to gain support for an invasion on Iraq.

    Dodgy pretext. Pfft.

    It was a lie.

    The implications are there that other countries can use dodgy pretexts to invade another country eg Germany or Japan WWII.

    “Naturally the common people don’t want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.” — Hermann Goering

  42. It is so convenient to blame Bush for everything, and lump everyone into this pot of curry stirred up by the left to accuse, blame and ostracise Christians, which is loathsome politics.

    If Christians choose to engage in politics and support loathsome policies then they leave themselves open to accusations, blame and ostracising.

    You know, like you do to pro-gay Christians.

  43. So, now, Bones, would you prefer that the Taliban was still in control in Afghanistan and Saddam still ran Iraq?

    Given that my nephew was over there shooting it out with the Taliban and losing mates from his unit, I have to try to think that we are doing some good over there.

    Truth is though, Karzai is so corrupt and has alliances with the Taliban anyway that when we leave not much will have changed.

    I mean what the hell is Karzai on about here:

    Karzai urges Taliban to fight Afghan enemies after Pakistan clash

    Who are we fighting again.

    The problem is in Pakistan which is too big for the US to invade.

    What is your solution?

    Take away the reasons for an “us” v “them”.

    Show these countries and their people we are not out to destroy their culture and their religion.

    Romans 12:20
    On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

    Send aid. Provide education and infrastructure.

    Make it easy for people to escape totalitarian regimes.

    Stop meddling in countries.

    Stop propping up totalitarian regimes eg Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya.

    Get away from oil and the need for control of oil in the Middle East.

    Stop sending military aid to Israel.

    Provide a just solution to the Palestinian crisis beginning with Peacekeeping forces.

    Maybe apologise like we teach our kids to do when we do the wrong thing.

  44. What did Bin Laden learn from Hitler? That you can manipulate appeasement addicts into hesitation long enough to gain the high ground, and frighten the centre left into opposing its own leadership. Stall action, take ground, raise the stakes.

    Well the Iraqis and Afghanis have been able have free and democratic elections. hey chose who they did and have to live with it, as the rest of us do in democracies. You shouldn’t blame Bush for that. Maybe thank him for making such an anomaly possible even in a previously fear controlled land.

  45. Banes,
    ‘People turned on Christians’

    Which people? What was their religion and why? Was it the religion of peace by any chance? Was it religious persecution by any chance?

    Goodness, you’re slow on the uptake!

  46. What did Bin Laden learn from Hitler? That you can manipulate appeasement addicts into hesitation long enough to gain the high ground, and frighten the centre left into opposing its own leadership. Stall action, take ground, raise the stakes.

    See your appeasement theory is on extremely shaky ground.

    I see your Hitler analogy and give you Hitler’s lie of taking the Sudetenland. Why? Because he said ethnic Germans who made up 3.5 million of the Sudetenland were being persecuted by the Czechs.

    As for poor old Chamberlain, he didn’t have a leg to stand on. Britain had a shell of an army which was driven back to the sea in the Battle of France. It was still decimated from WWI. Chamberlain knew that. There was no way Britain could do anything to Hitler. It wasn’t that Chamberlain was a coward or a fool or a leftist. Britain was not ready for war. Britain’s only strength, her navy, was useless as Czechoslovakia was landlocked.

    Why did the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbour?

    It’s called a pre-emptive strike.

    Eg the invasion of Iraq.

    We can play whose side is Hitler on all night.

    So you think the invasion of Iraq was an appropriate response to 9/11?

  47. Which people? Extremist Muslims
    What was their religion and why? Muslim because they hate anyone different.

    Who supported the genocidal Rios Montt?
    Which People? Christians
    What was their religion and why? Pentecostal and Evangelical. Because he hated Communists.

    Now for the storm of indignation.

  48. Britain disarmed dangerously after WW1, thinking it was the war to end all wars, much to conservatives dismay as liberals made unwitting plans to lose the Empire. Meanwhile Nazi Germany saw the opportunity for revenge and stealthily built enough armoury to be able to resist the rest of Europe until the US came into the war.

    I agree with you about Chamberlain. He was the product of his own party and genuine goodness of heart. But naivety on a leader has its drawbacks when others are prepared to launch a vicious and unkind attack on normal peace loving people. You have to be prepared for that eventuality whether you like war or not.

    I hate violence, but I have enough of a defence set up in my home to protect my loved ones in the event of an intrusion. I have thought about what I would or could do. I do not welcome violent intruders by leaving the doors open at night, or saying nothing will ever happen because everyone else in the world is as nice and loving and caring as I am. I live half a mile from where the Tottenham riots took place, by the way, in a fairly rugged area. I know the possibilities. I make provision.

    Australia has largely disarmed over the last seven years and is in a dangerously precarious position. Why? Because socialists have spent the budget on folly and ignored defence. Now we’re at least 20 years behind where we should be and totally reliant on the US, who are equally appalled at our lack of interest in at least having enough firepower to resist an invasion until they can come to our aid. Besides which the current Labour party is quite comfortable with the notion of becoming a Province of China. Time to learn Mandarin, as Rudd was saying a few years ago.

    Appeasement didn’t work with Saddam, by the way, nor did sanctions. They tried it for over ten years. With the man who committed genocide against the Kurds. Sanctions only hurt the people. Saddam remained a violent and ruthless dictator.

  49. Britain disarmed dangerously after WW1, thinking it was the war to end all wars, much to conservatives dismay as liberals made unwitting plans to lose the Empire.

    Wars have a significant cost. And there had been no war like WWI before. After the First World War, Britain was gripped by enormous debts and a growing sense of panic that the Government was hugely wasteful.

    The national debt had risen dramatically from £677 million, about a quarter of the GDP, in 1910. By 1920 it was £7.81 billion, larger even than the country’s GDP. A vast civil service, that had come together to administer the war effort, was still operating at full capacity, while spending on education had increased substantially. Many of the middle classes complained how their tax bills had shot up.

    The Government was under pressure to do something. The Times newspaper noted in 1922: “There are signs of an astonished realisation of the alarming bill for civil pensions that in a few years will be a millstone on the taxpayer’s neck.”

    The Anti-Waste League, formed by Lord Rothermere, had put up candidates and won three by-elections during 1921.

    David Lloyd George, the prime minister, acted by appointing a businessman Sir Eric Geddes to head a the new Committee on National Expenditure, which was soon dubbed “The Great Axe”.

    This was coupled with a dreadful human toll from the war of 1 million dead and 1.5 million casualties and an unemployment rate of 1.5 million.

    Due to the cuts in defence spending by Geddes’s Axe, the British army in the 1930s showed little technological advancement from the Army in 1914. In fact it was smaller. They were still flying biplanes as well.

    And the Brits couldn’t prop up their ailing Empire which is a good thing.

  50. James Lewis, a national security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, argues for a more traditional approach to battling terrorism, largely through law enforcement and the intelligence community.

    Lewis said that ending the fight against terrorism will help reinforce the administration’s message that America is not at war with Islam.

    “It helps, because it delegitimizes the terrorists,” said Lewis. “They want to think of themselves as warriors. We want the world to think of them as crooks. We want everyone in every country not to think of them as terrorists defending Islam, but as people who are psychos. They are criminals, and that’s what we want to paint them as.”

  51. Swear all you like Bones. It’s you who will need to replent more.

    We need to preach the gospel to the Muslims and everyone else who doesn’t know Christ. And you and Wazza and Greg etc aren’t helping. You continuously attack the evangelical and pentecostal churches which are basically the only hope for the world.

    Young men who want to believe in a cause and are willing to die for it need to be saved and became warriors for Jesus like Paul.

    Tought normal red-blooded males see Islam as attractive. They won’t go to a weak sissified Bones/Greg style ichabod Christianity where the Pastor is a lesbian or the assistant pastor is a gay and complaining about mysogony.

    These young men need to meet Jesus. Anti-christ websites and bloggers aren’t helping.

    @Steve. Bullying doesn’t bother me. Bones and Greg are pussies.
    Really. Intellectually and physically.

    I left because I didn’t see the point in hanging around people who were so full of blaspehy and hate.

    If a person claims to be a Christian but loves and enjoys swearing and making sex jokes about Jesus, then it seemed pointless to argue.

    So, I won’t engage in argument anymore. BUt there’s value in just speaking the word of God.

    So, once again. Go preach the gospel guys and make disciples and baptize. But first repent and call upon the name of The Lord and confess your sins. Remember, the precious blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sins. But for Bones and Greg, I’d recommend at least three days of complete fasting.

    Praise be to Jesus.

  52. PS The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and in China, Singapore and the atrocites they commited were disgusting and indefensible.

    Christians in Japan both on the left and the right understand that and have repented.
    The Koreans and Chinese know it too. There are still are few die-hard insane liberal westerners who like to blame their own own countries for everything….but they are basically almost insane.

    But it’s not something that can’t be fixed by prayer, repentance and the mercy of Jesus.

    It’s spiritual. Christians need to get back to prayer and the believing and speaking the Word of God – and to preaching the gospel. There’s too much sitting around attacking churches and ministries by fat western barely-Christians.

  53. Christians in Japan both on the left and the right understand that and have repented.

    That’s nice.

    Now when are western Christians going to repent of supporting a war which was based on a lie?

  54. There is an aggressor, wazza, and the more it is left to itself the more the world will see unrest on a scale never witnessed before.

    I agree with you there Steve. I don’t believe the aggressor is Islam and Muslims, I do believe that Islam is being used as a cover and an anchor for people to latch on to. I agree something must be done.

  55. The aggressor is young men in general, particularly from poor backgrounds that become radicalised by Islam. It hasnt always been Islam, in the past it has been Communism, Fascism or Nationalism.

    What do you think should be done Greg?

  56. “Are you too stupid to read or you only read the bits you like.”

    Bones. You are embarassing yourself. I don’t like saying this. But you are a moron and it’s amazing you have a teachers license.

    Okay, here we go.

    First, you go back and reread the article that you copied and pasted…….(let’s call it CP1546) from Alternet.

    Okay, read it again and you will see that there is nothing in that proving that Bush lied.
    I know you probably didn’t read it. But use logic and English and read it again.

    If your brain isn’t up to it, I’ll explain it as simply as I can.
    Now slow down.
    First, even if you accept the plain reading of this article from….. all you can say is that Bush said things that later were not found to be true. If Bush honestly knew that there were no WMDs in Iraq or a programs to develop them, but said the opposite, then you can say that he lied.

    But this article doesn’t say it. And nobody is taking Bush to court alleging that either.

    Read it again, but slower. Just because the article uses the word “lies” and has a few points doesn’t make it true.

    But anyway, here’s something for you to think about.

    Do some googling about comments made re WMDs in Iraq made by Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Madeleine Albright. There’s your homework. If you can’t do it, I’ll help you out later.

    Okay, it’s probably all too hard for you. I’ll put it to you like this. I think Bush thought Iraq had WMD’s. I think many people thought that. You think you have high intelligence. You don’t. And you’ve proven it many times. But maybe you think you do? That doesn’t make you a liar, so I won’t call you one.

    And before you and Wazza bleat on about nasty right wing Presidents who just lie and attack for the fun of it, think about how many Iraq children died because of sanctions during the Clinton administration.
    And also look at the timing of his bombing of Iraq. Okay hint. Do you remember a lady called Monica?

    So, stop with the raving about lies. You are a slanderer.

    Go pray and fast and during that time read the bible instead of the internet.
    And no, I won’t be signing up to be pro-choice on that website.

    PS Please remember to rage against Clinton and the children who died in Iraq as a result of sanctions and direct bombing hits.

  57. The young Muslim convert who murdered Lee Rigby at Woolwich was not from a poor family. He was a nominal Christian converted and radicalised by Chaudhry and others. Many radicals are from middle class or wealthy backgrounds. The problem we are facing today is not the same as the political and social ideologies of the turn of the century. This is a religious war, a jihad, and it is the radicalisation of the adherents which is the issue. Stop the militant imams and part of the problem is solved. But how?

  58. If Bush honestly knew that there were no WMDs in Iraq or a programs to develop them, but said the opposite, then you can say that he lied.

    So did Bush lie? Or was he just wrong? Well let’s see.

    CIA confirms Bush lied about WMDs

    On Sept. 18, 2002, CIA director George Tenet briefed President Bush in the Oval Office on top-secret intelligence that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction, according to two former senior IA officers. Bush dismissed as worthless this information from the Iraqi foreign minister, a member of Saddam’s inner circle, although it turned out to be accurate in every detail. Tenet never brought it up again. Nor was the intelligence included in the National Intelligence Estimate of October 2002, which stated categorically that Iraq possessed WMD.

    In fact Bush addressed the nation 8 days after Tenet’s briefing in which he said

    “The Iraqi regime possesses biological and chemical weapons, is rebuilding the facilities to make more, and, according to the British government, could launch a biological or chemical attack in as little as 45 minutes after the order is given.”

    No one in Congress was aware of the secret intelligence that Saddam had no WMD as the House of Representatives and the Senate voted, a week after the submission of the NIE, on the Authorization for Use of Military Force in Iraq. The information, moreover, was not circulated within the CIA among those agents involved in operations to prove whether Saddam had WMD.

    On April 23, 2006, CBS’s “60 Minutes” interviewed Tyler Drumheller, the former CIA chief of clandestine operations for Europe, who disclosed that the agency had received documentary intelligence from Naji Sabri, Saddam’s foreign minister, that Saddam did not have WMD. “We continued to validate him the whole way through,” said Drumheller. “The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming, and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy.”

    It wasn’t faulty intel. The president wasn’t just ‘wrong’.

    The president had made up his mind to go to war and was looking for any pretext to do so.

    Only a retard couldn’t say that or someone with their head up their sanctimonious skinny arse.

  59. OH,bones,you trust in worldly government.
    You believe everything that they want you to here .!

  60. Stop the militant imams and part of the problem is solved. But how?

    Tighten hate speech laws and harder punishments. If you’re going to be a part of a secular society then bloody well behave like it. That’s how. And don’t send these psychos back to their own country. Educate them. Don’t let them out till they are reformed.

  61. Yet Bones,you are still relying on laws and rules ,but not faith in Jesus Christ.
    How is it then, that you will be granted obedience to the Royal law ,if you continue on in your human effort

  62. “Christians in Japan both on the left and the right understand that and have repented.
    That’s nice.
    Now when are western Christians going to repent of supporting a war which was based on a lie?”

    If you don’t know the difference between Japan’s aggression and atrocities in WW2 throughout Asia, and the attempt to depose , then it’s not worth arguing.

    Maybe you can go and chain yourself to a tree outside the Clinton’s house and call on them to repent?

    No, maybe just repent, and go preach the gospel. Or give money for those who are.
    The truth will set men free.

  63. left out
    “attempt to depose a ruthless dictator who murdered thousands -go look up the figures…”

  64. No more time tonight for arguments.
    time to pray.

    Pray for laborers, and think about going and preaching the gospel yourselves. And maybe invite nominal Nigerian Catholics to your local C3 or Hillsong so they find Jesus and not convert to Islam and become radicalized. Jesus is the answer.

  65. The claim here is that the ‘war on terror’ actually created an environment for jihadists to be recruited and radicalised, and, of course, this has to have some serious merit. But what is behind this radicalisation, and why do the imams and jihad generals use it a s pretext for recruitment?

    Is it simply a matter of revenge for US attacks on Mid East soil, or is it taking advantage of the fact that the US has seen fit to take the war to the enemy, albeit in a disputed manner in regard to where and when the counter offensive should have taken place and why?

    Are the opponents of the response to the 9/11 atrocities (for there was more than one on the day the twin towers were brought down) saying that there was no Islamic militance before this momentous series of events? Are they claiming that the US was responsible for subsequent recruitment of jihadists and mujahideen?

    The fact is that militants were engaged in an ongoing jihad long before 9/11. This event was really the last straw for the US in a series of terrorist attacks on a variety of targets in a number of different locations. In fact the militants were carrying out jihad and terrorist attacks in so many places it has been almost impossible to document all of the events.

    Even if you limit the terror to the time of the creation of the modern State of Israel in 1948, you would need pages and pages of a website to document the number of small and large scale atrocities attributed and claimed by Islamic terror squads.

    For some journalists and left wing commentators 9/11 and G W Bush’s response marks the beginning of the counter-intefida as he announced the ‘war on terror’.

    Of course, terrorists had already declared war, a warfare, not against men of war, that is the regular military of any given state, but against those who are not engaged in war, the innocent bystander, the student in the café, the housewife on the bus with her two children, the people in the market place buying their fruit and vegetables, the workers in hotels going about their daily jobs.

    Their warfare was one of fear for all the population, as they ripped apart trains and tubes, buses, market stalls, shop fronts, anywhere where civilians gathered and with maximum impact, and often a second device primed to explode as survivors panicked and ran towards its deadly inevitability.

    This was a the warfare of cowards who hid in schools and hospitals using the weak and vulnerable as human shields.

    But this warfare did not begin with G W Bush. In many ways he is one of the victims of a large scale offensive which has been in motion for decades, and which has claimed the lives of countless non-combatants, Muslim and infidel alike, in almost every continent.

    G W Bush is not responsible for the increase of recruitment amongst young men, or the radicalisation. His response to the 9/11 attacks and others that led to that day was anticipated. It was played for. Had he not responded, the militants would have done something else to press his button and create the environment they desired for retaliation or affirmative response. Bush may have made mistakes as he tried to solve a difficult and complex problem in as short a time as possible, but it is evident that, in terms of overall conflict since the mid-twentieth century, he was a pawn in the hands of the jihadists.

    I could point you to a site which has documented almost all terror events by Islam since 1960. I won’t because it is a useful tool and I don’t want it to fall into the wrong hands here and be belittled by people who deny that a real and present threat exists, nor to make myself seem hysterical about it. I am not. I’m sure you could research it and locate it for yourselves, anyway.

    But there are some things which are being said which are not facing the reality of the history of jihad, and which have made the violence of 9/11 a political football, making it the focus and central point of the war, to the extent of rewriting history, playing right into the hands of the jihadists, and failing to see that there is a trail of destruction which predates 9/11 considerably.

  66. Bush Adminstration Convicted of War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity

    Former U.S. President George W. Bush recently dedicated his Presidential Library in Dallas. The ceremony included speeches by President Obama, ex-President Bush, and every other living ex-president. But none of the speeches so much as mentioned to Iraq war — the undertaking that dominated George W. Bush’s presidency, and will define his historic legacy.

    This omission might be due, at least in part, to the fact that Mr. Bush is now a convicted war criminal who dares not travel abroad out of fear of being arrested.

    In February 2011, Bush was forced to cancel a scheduled appearance in Geneva, Switzerland after human rights groups filed a criminal complaint charging him with violating international treaties against torture.

    His trouble increased dramatically a year ago when Bush — along with former Vice President Dick Cheney, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, and several other top Bush administration officials — were convicted of war crimes in absentia by a special war crimes tribunal in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

  67. BOnes, what are you smoking? Really. I think for this one, you should have to kick your own backside all the way on the way to turn in your teacher’s license. I sure hope you don’t teach history or social studies. What a scary thought!!!!

    First, I don’t know who here is really impressed by the “special war crimes tribunal in Kuala Lumpur.
    Do you know what that was? Come on, before you you google it -ask yourself……do you know what it was?

    Okay, I’ll tell the others. This special war crimes tribunal…(ooh sounds big time doesn’t it) was actually the
    “Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission”. hmmm Sounds even more impressive. Did uh…anyone wonder why they held it there? Perhaps you thought it was some fancy UN tribunal that meets in different countries..?

    nah. Just, a trial not recognized by anyone, anywhere except prolific left-wing copy and pasters….

    (Okay, don’t cry – keep reading guys…!)

    So the esteemed Chairman of the KLWCCC was of course none other than….Dr. Mahathir BIn Mohamad.

    No, Doesn’t ring any bells? No Malaysians here? No angry Malaysians upset about the years of curruption and what he did to their country…? No, oh well. Maybe Bones is a fan. I’m not. And no, I don’t place any credence on anything the man says.

    Except this….

    OH this will make you weep. Remember, the following wasn’t said by Rush Limbaugh or a white guy…so don’t get angry. This is part of the brilliant reasoning by the man whose legal mind got Bones slaivating…

    It’s why Muslims couldn’t have been responsible for 9/11/ . Sigh….yeah, no surprises?
    OF course 9/11 was an inside job.

    But listen to why?





    So ahem…Muslims? Arabs” aren’t smart enough? Well, there you go. Do you agree with him Bones?

    Anyway, this tear-jerking speech was given by Mahathir at the Perdana Global Peace Foundation.
    ANd you know anything with “global” must be legit right?

    Just like the original article that Bones pasted so eloquently – from (begun in September 2001) …hmmm just co-incidence? Well, after looking at that place, I can understand why Bones is so confused, but I can’t understand why he insults Ian Williams.…..accepting donations now!

    At least they aren’t just after Bush – they don’t believe Obama either.

    “There was little forensic evidence to prove Bin Laden was killed. In any case, most of the members of US Navy SEAL Team 6, which carried out the attack on Bin Laden, were killed recently in an attack on their helicopter in Afghanistan.”


    So, Steve. Do you laugh, cry, pray, spiritual warfare? Or just, leave them to post nonsense from every last cesspot on the leftwing web and just realize that it’s pointless arguing with these people?

    Just repent guys, Jesus is the Truth and He can set you free.

    Wow…..Mahathir Mohamad and the special war crimes Tribunal!! Mahathir …..go google him for lovely quotes about jews and the solidarity of worldwide Muslim brotherhood….

    I wonder if he’ll hold another one later for Obma killing the navy seals so nobody gets to know that they never killed Bin Laden and it’s all just been a CIA hoax.

    “Playing some twilight zone music for Bones and others to slow dance to”

  68. The Billionaires’ Tea Party (Full Length Documentary)

    The Tea Party movement has taken American politics by storm. But is this truly a populist uprising or one of the greatest feats of propaganda ever seen?

    Seeking to find out, Australian filmmaker Taki Oldham embeds himself in the Tea Party uprising. From men sporting tri-corner hats in Louisville Kentucky (the movement takes name from a key event in the American revolution) to 100,000 placard waving patriots in Washington D.C. ‘taking our country back’ from Obama’s ‘communist’ regime. But who are generals of this army?

    Enter brothers Charles and David Koch. Oilmen, billionaires 20 times over and on a mission to create a privatized America. For three decades they’ve unwritten a propaganda war, funding fake grassroots groups (branded ‘astroturf’ by opponents) to dupe citizens into protesting on behalf of some of Americas most powerful people and corporations. As Taki infiltrates one such group, Americans For Prosperity, he captures David Koch beaming as operatives report running Tea Party events all over the country.

    Weaving together commentary from propaganda experts and political insiders with unprecedented footage, The Billionaires’ Tea Party follows astroturf groups Americans For Prosperity and Freedomworks coopting the movement from day one. As the Koch’s extreme vision of free market capitalism is woven into that cherished American spirit of individual freedom, the patriotic Tea Partiers are guided to oppose key elements of the Obama agenda. Witness hysterical scenes as a proposed Health Care bill is reframed as Soviet style ‘socialised medicine’. Follow industry-funded spin doctors and scientists dismissing Obama’s climate bill a liberal conspiracy to control peoples lives and destroy the economy. See the cosy relationship between Koch operatives and Fox News. Come undercover as Tea Partiers are indoctrinated into equating their own interests with those of corporate America. Finally, see the stunning culmination at the 2010 elections as fully 1/3 of those elected are Tea Party endorsed candidates out to make Koch’s dream a reality.

    With America now facing a new era of budget-slashing union-busting politics, The Billionaires’ Tea Party is both a journey through a unique moment in American history and chilling portent of the corporate takeover of democracy.


    Arabs are not a homogeneous group.

    They are tribal.

    When the Middle East was partitioned by the Allies after the fall of the Ottoman Empire (and with the support of Arabs against Islamic Turkey but they didn’t get a say), no thought was given to religious, tribal or clan boundaries.

    The Arab tribes were never one unified tribe.

    The fruit of this can be seen today.

  70. What We Need to Learn From T.E. Lawrence

    Much of what we face today in the Middle East (and even in Afghanistan) has its roots in Lawrence’s doomed struggle to get the Arabs what he (and they) thought they had been promised and deserved for rising in revolt against the Ottoman Empire, and in the betrayal of their hopes and his at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. Therein lies the birth of the many grievances and bitterly disputed frontiers that still divide the region fatally, and which in the last 90 years have caused enough bloodshed to stain the sands of the desert red, with no sign that it will stop any time soon. But neither have we turned back to Lawrence to see where the Western world went wrong, or to learn from him how to understand and deal with the roots of Muslim anger at the West, or with the wars of terrorism and insurgency of which Lawrence was to some degree the inventor. It was not for nothing that he was known to the Arabs he rode with as “Emir Dynamit” (Prince Dynamite), the man who more than any other introduced them to novelty of high explosives, and to their use as a weapon and a political statement.

    Nothing in the Middle East is ever forgotten or forgiven. Hebron is a bone of contention between Israeli settlers and the Palestinians in part because Abraham is buried there, in the Tomb of the Patriarchs. Gaza, now a seething slum and the red-hot center of Palestinian resistance toward Israel, is where Samson, blinded, chained and in captivity, pulled down the temple on the heads and idols of his Philistine captors. It is not therefore surprising that one of Osama bin Laden’s chief complaints against the West—one which often mystifies Westerners—is “ the Sykes-Picot Agreement ,” the 1916 secret treaty between Britain and France (and Imperial Russia before it collapsed) to divide up the Arab lands of the Middle East between them once the Ottoman Empire was defeated. This conflicted with “the McMahon/Hussein correspondence” between Britain and the Sharif of Mecca in 1915-1916, in which the British agreed, reluctantly and with some significant exceptions, to a single, unitary Arab state, and also, after November 1917, with the famous “Balfour Declaration ,” establishing a Jewish homeland in Palestine. In short, the British promised both the Arabs and the Jews more than they could deliver—or that they and the French were prepared to deliver, once the war was won.

    On this subject, at least, Osama bin Laden and T. E. Lawrence would have stood as one. Lawrence fought against the Sykes-Picot Agreement, attempted to undermine it, drove the Arabs on in a desperate race to capture Damascus and declare an independent Arab state before the British Army could get there, argued against the Sykes-Picot Agreement vehemently with Wilson, Lloyd George, and Clemenceau after the war in Paris at the peace conference, as well as face to face with King George V at Buckingham Palace, and with the Marquess of Curzon at the War Cabinet. Even at the most courageous and daring moments of his service in the desert, Lawrence was gnawed by these doubts. When he rode off to enter Damascus in 1917, alone and with a price on his head, he wrote an agonized note to his chief in Cairo: “Clayton, I’ve decided to go off alone to Damascus, hoping to get killed on the way… We are calling them to fight for us on a lie, and I can’t stand it.”
    It was his view then and later that the Allies had persuaded the Arabs to take up arms against the Turks with a false promise, and that even as the Arabs were fighting, the British and the French were secretly laying claim to the spoils of war in advance, and sharing between themselves the areas that the Arabs had been promised: Lebanon and Syria for France, Palestine, what is now Jordan, and what is now Iraq (with its rich oil reserves) for Great Britain, leaving for the Arabs only a few worthless strips of desert, without major ports or sensible frontiers, like throwing them the carcass of a chicken once the meat had been carved away.
    It was his view then and later that the Allies had persuaded the Arabs to take up arms against the Turks with a false promise.
    It was not shame at having been beaten and gang-raped by the Turks when he was briefly captured at Deraa (fortunately for Lawrence, they did not recognize him) that caused him to refuse the Distinguished Service Order and the insignia of a Companion of the Bath from the hands of King George V, and also the king’s offer of a knighthood or the Order of Merit. Rather it was Lawrence’s guilt over the fact that the Allies had broken their promises to the Arabs that led him to reject all honors, give up his rank, and join the Royal Air Force in 1922 as an aircraftman second class, the equivalent of a private, under an assumed name, “solitary in the ranks.”
    It is not necessary to agree with the Arab point of view about their own history, but it is foolish to ignore it. In the eyes of Arabs, the West (including the United States, which acquiesced to the brutal and cynical British and French partition of the Middle East) is responsible for the fragmented reality of the area today, and for its artificial frontiers. This is the unforgivable “original sin” to Arabs, and the subsequent partition of Palestine is merely a further extension of it, exacerbating wounds that were already there.
    Many of the problems that exist in the area—including, but by no means limited to Syrian-armed interference in Lebanon, the failure to create a viable “Kurdistan” for the Kurd people, the hostility between Arabs and Jews in Palestine, the future of the West Bank—were addressed by Lawrence in the map he prepared for the British War Cabinet and the Paris Peace Conference, but brushed under the table by the great powers. Indeed, it is typical of Lawrence that he managed to get Prince Feisal, the leader of the Arab Revolt, and Chaim Weizmann, the Zionist leader, to sit down together in January 1919 and sign an extraordinary agreement (largely drafted by Lawrence himself) that would have created a joint Arab-Jewish government in Palestine, with unlimited Jewish immigration. Feisal conceded that Palestine could contain 4 million to 5 million Jewish immigrants without harm to the rights or property of the Arab population, a number not greatly different from the number of Jews living in Israel today. Had Wilson, Clemenceau, and Lloyd George been willing to agree to Arab demands, an Arab-Jewish state might have existed that could have absorbed the bulk of the European Jews whom the Germans would slaughter between 1933 and 1945, as well as producing a state with advanced agriculture, industry, and education, in which Jews and Arabs might have proved that they could live together peacefully and productively

    Lawrence’s advanced and radical ideas about the future of the Middle East were matched by his understanding, based on practical experience, both of how to fight an insurgent war, and how to defeat one. One of the most respected books about counterinsurgency in military circles is Colonel John Nagl’sLearning to Eat Soup With Knife —a play on Lawrence’s famous comment about guerrilla warfare, “To make war upon rebellion is messy and slow, like eating soup with a knife.” Nobody understood better than Lawrence how a small, highly mobile group of insurgents could immobilize, exhaust, and eventually defeat a much larger and better equipped modern army by an endless series of “pinpricks,” small raids in which high explosives—the equivalent of today’s IED, or “improvised explosive device” in Iraq and Afghanistan—were used to destroy key objectives, bridges, roads, railway lines, water towers, and telegraph posts, keeping the larger force constantly on the alert, never knowing where the next strike would occur, and tying up thousands of enemy soldiers in useless guard duties.
    The Turkish Fourth Army was well-equipped and well-trained, its officers were professionals, they were supported by German and Austrian advisers and specialists, they had airplanes, heavy artillery, German machine guns, all the paraphernalia of modern warfare, but again and again Lawrence and the Arab army swept out of the desert, wrecked havoc on an isolated outpost, and vanished back into the desert again, to reappear and blow up something else hundreds of miles away a few days later. Nor did the Turks have any way to distinguish Lawrence’s Bedouins from other Bedouins peacefully tending their flocks, so that they were obliged to resort to cruel punishments, bombardments, and massacres, all of which angered the tribesmen and merely produced more recruits for Lawrence. If this sounds familiar, it should be. There is no book that tells the reader more about the nuts and bolts of insurgency than Lawrence’s classic account of the Arab Revolt, Seven Pillars of Wisdom , copies of which might usefully be spread around the White House and the Pentagon.
    Lawrence also took the trouble to think about how to defeat an insurgency as well as waging a successful one himself. He advised strongly against bombing insurgent villages (drones did not yet exist, but he imagined them), since that would inevitably involve killing innocent women and children, and would make revenge for their death a duty for every surviving family member, as well as for their clan and tribe. He recommended dropping leaflets warning the villagers that something of value and importance to them would be bombed and allowing them time enough to remove their families and flocks before doing so. He also took the view, as he had in the Arab Revolt, that it was easier and cheaper to buy the tribes off than to fight them: gold was as important weapon to him as explosives. He was in favor of the use of fast armored cars operating far behind the enemy lines, and supplied by aircraft, roving at will and attacking by surprise.
    Lying on his cot in a barracks at an RAF station in what is now Pakistan, Lawrence wrote to his old friend Air Chief Marshal Sir Hugh Trenchard, the Chief of the Air Staff (this was the equivalent of a private writing to a four-star general and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), of a troublesome insurgent leader in Iraq (Sunni insurgency against a Western occupier in Iraq is not a new phenomenon): “The fellow you need to influence is Feisal el Dueish… If I were at Ur, my instinct would be to walk without notice into his headquarters. He’s not likely to kill an unarmed, solitary man. . . Such performances require a manner to carry them off. I’ve done it four times, or is it five? A windy business. . .”
    Note that the suggestion of fearlessly walking unarmed into the headquarters of an insurgent leader implies an understanding of the Muslim tradition and obligation of hospitality toward a guest, even an enemy guest, and also a willingness to listen to the other person’s grievances, an important point. Bombing people will seldom change their mind, and certainly not about their own government, whether done by the Turks against the Arabs in 1918, or by the British against the Iraqis in the 1920s, or with drones in Afghanistan today.

  71. There’s no doubt that there are both billionaires and Joe the plumber types who share the same philosophy.
    I don’t see the tea party as insidious at all. But, there are certain issues that don’t see the same way as conservative Americans. I think that’s a beat up. Will the same team be examing the people who are leading the gay rights/ abortion rights debate and some of the super radical people involved in Occupy Wall St.

    But I’m not american. Health insurance, gun rights and increases for taxation for households earning over 200k are not things that really get me going.

    Found the post about Lawrence interesting though. Fascinating character.

  72. There’s no doubt that there are both billionaires and Joe the plumber types who share the same philosophy.

    Except of cause it’s the billionaires who are baiting the Joe the plumber types.

    The Koch’s have started grassroots movements against climate change (hurts their profits from oil), and have campaigned on the total removal of government institutions including taxation, schools, welfare, social security, Federal Reserve, CIA, FBI, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OHSA). ie basically all government services and regulations to create a total free market.

    I often wondered why Medicare was seen as evil in the US. Now we know why.

  73. Study Confirms Tea Party Was Created by Big Tobacco and Billionaires

    A new academic study confirms that front groups with longstanding ties to the tobacco industry and the billionaire Koch brothers planned the formation of the Tea Party movement more than a decade before it exploded onto the U.S. political scene.

    Far from a genuine grassroots uprising, this astroturf effort was curated by wealthy industrialists years in advance. Many of the anti-science operatives who defended cigarettes are currently deploying their tobacco-inspired playbook internationally to evade accountability for the fossil fuel industry’s role in driving climate disruption.

    The study, funded by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institute of Health , traces the roots of the Tea Party’s anti-tax movement back to the early 1980s when tobacco companies began to invest in third party groups to fight excise taxes on cigarettes, as well as health studies finding a link between cancer and secondhand cigarette smoke.

    Published in the peer-reviewed academic journal, Tobacco Control , the study titled, ‘To quarterback behind the scenes, third party efforts’: the tobacco industry and the Tea Party, is not just an historical account of activities in a bygone era. As senior author, Stanton Glantz , a University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) professor of medicine, writes:

    “Nonprofit organizations associated with the Tea Party have longstanding ties to tobacco companies, and continue to advocate on behalf of the tobacco industry’s anti-tax, anti-regulation agenda.”

    The two main organizations identified in the UCSF Quarterback study are Americans for Prosperity and Freedomworks. Both groups are now “supporting the tobacco companies’ political agenda by mobilizing local Tea Party opposition to tobacco taxes and smoke-free laws.” Freedomworks and Americans for Prosperity were once a single organization called Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) . CSE was founded in 1984 by the infamous Koch Brothers, David and Charles Koch, and received over $5.3 million from tobacco companies, mainly Philip Morris, between 1991 and 2004.

    In 1990, Tim Hyde, RJR Tobacco’s head of national field operations, in an eerily similar description of the Tea Party today, explained why groups like CSE were important to the tobacco industry’s fight against government regulation. Hyde wrote:

    “… coalition building should proceed along two tracks: a) a grassroots organizational and largely local track,; b) and a national, intellectual track within the DC-New York corridor. Ultimately, we are talking about a “movement,” a national effort to change the way people think about government’s (and big business) role in our lives. Any such effort requires an intellectual foundation – a set of theoretical and ideological arguments on its behalf.”

  74. “If you love Jesus, send me a donation.”

    Exactly Q. If you love Jesus, vote Republican. If you love Jesus, support Israel. If you love Jesus, send me money.

    WHat, you havent done any of these things? You must not love Jesus!

  75. Bones, you don’t think there are people with extremely radical ideas planning to and trying to get grass roots support on the left?

    I’d suggest that whether it’s abortion or gay rights it’s the same.

    @Wazza. On the other hand, some think if you love Jesus you’ll be anti-Bush.

    Everyone thinks they know how Jesus thinks.

  76. Someone’s using the Bush Doctrine as defense in court. If he wins you can take out anyone you see as a threat.

    Lawyers for a Florida man this week cited President George W. Bush’s pre-emptive war in Iraq and the “Bush Doctrine” as a defense after their client killed two neighbors and attempted to kill a third on Labor Day.

    Florida Today reported on Wednesday that attorney’s for William T. Woodward had filed a motion asking for charges against him to be dismissed under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law, which says that gun owners do not have a duty to retreat in the face of an “imminent” threat.

    According to officials in Titusville, Woodward had snuck up on his neighbors while they were having a Labor Day barbecue. Police responding to the scene found that Gary Lee Hembree, Roger Picior and Bruce Timothy had all been shot.

    Hembree and Picior were later pronounced dead. Blake survived, even though he had been hit 11 times.

    In their motion, Woodward’s attorneys claimed that the victims had called him names and threatened to “get him.”

    The motion referenced Enoch V. State, which suggests that an “imminent” threat can include something that is likely to occur at sometime in the future.

    “I think legally that term has sort of been evolving especially given changes of our government’s definition of ‘imminent,’” attorney Robert Berry, who is representing Woodward, told Florida Today. “It’s become more expansive than someone putting a gun right to your head. It’s things that could become, you know, an immediate threat.”

    The court document filed by the defense also cited “The Bush Doctrine,” a foreign policy principle used by President George W. Bush to justify the invasion of Iraq. “The Bush Doctrine” embraces “preventive” or pre-emptive war.…r-day-cookout/

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