2009-06-03

Iraq was invaded because of 9/11

While Bush and Cheney may have prevaricated in saying outright that Iraq should be invaded because they were involved in 9/11, the text of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 makes it very, very clear:

*Whereas members of al Qaida, an organization bearing responsibility for attacks on the United States, its citizens, and interests, including the attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, are known to be in Iraq;

*Whereas Iraq continues to aid and harbor other international terrorist organizations, including organizations that threaten the lives and safety of United States citizens;

*Whereas the attacks on the United States of September 11, 2001, underscored the gravity of the threat posed by the acquisition of weapons of mass destruction by international terrorist organizations;

*Whereas Congress has taken steps to pursue vigorously the war on terrorism through the provision of authorities and funding requested by the President to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such persons or organizations;

*(2) acting pursuant to this joint resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.


Of course, this resolution was passed by a Republican congress and signed off by George Bush. Could it be any clearer?

10 comments:

Coffee Bean said...

This is new news??? Don't forget that not just Republicans voted in favor of it.

How is your family doing? Y'all have been in my prayers.

One Salient Oversight said...

It's news considering a) Iraq never did have any ties to 9/11, and b) Iraq never had WMDs to supply yo these phantom terrorists anyway.

In short, America had no basis for military action against Iraq.

----

Things going slowly here. Mother in law slowly getting worse but we are all coping relatively well living together.

The Flomblog said...

Ok, a couple of points:
1. Sadam Hussein USED wmd's against his own people and Iran - this has been thoroughly documents
2. Sadam was giving the families if suicide morons - err bombers $10,000 each time the setoff a device
3. Sadam DID have a nuclear program until the Israeli's took care of them.

Wake up. Taliban, hamas and all of the other islamofascist groups share one thing. a hatred for democracy - The US, Israel and yes Australia.

Sadam was the banker!

So, tomorrow morning when you go to your car and go to work, please realize what American Lives have bought you.

H. Flomberg
Formerly SGT, USAF

BLBeamer said...

I don't believe your excerpted quote from the Authorization fully proves your point. Your excerpt says that al Qaida was responsible for the attacks and were known to be in Iraq and that Iraq was aiding and harboring al Qaida.

Your excerpt does not say that Iraq was responsible for or even had ties to the 9/11 attacks.

I'm writing this as someone who opposed the invasion of Iraq.

Eclipse Now said...

My question as always is "Did the war save kids lives?"

I know I was sucked in by all our governments lying to us. Everyone involved in that debacle needs to be horsewhipped.

I'd also just seen a documentary on Saddam's mechanisms for obfuscating with the previous head of the UN's weapons inspector Richard Butler, and that doco was so fresh in my mind I just did not trust the UN inspection process to actually work because of the regime. So who was I to believe, Saddam's *impeccable* history of co-operating with inspectors ;-) or my own parliament reading out lists of thousands of tons of miscellaneous *bad things*.

How sucked-in was I?

But there was another, less B&W reason I was sympathetic to the war. In my mind it just had to be better than the peace!

An estimated 500 thousand kids died under "Saddam and Sanctions". We busted up their country the first time round, and then imposed terrible sanctions that crippled their rebuilding efforts. If only they'd gone in all the way the first time we might have a functional, established, secure and prosperous democracy by now, and maybe even know a bit more about their peak oil situation?

But they didn't. They left the country in ruins, punished by sanctions, and an estimated 500 thousand kids died from a failed health and immunisation sector. Apparently if one adds the increases in stillbirths (above the pre-war norms) and the dramatic increase in miscarriages, that figure could be closer to a million. (Too tired to track down the medical stats).

Now I know the war was terrible, but the "peace" still killed a million kids and babies?

What were we to do, leave Iraq under another 12 years of "Saddam and Sanctions"? **Something** had to change, and I haven't got the degree in political science to figure out what.

PS: World government.

You know I'm an idealist and hate being lied to by my government, but also hate the world situation.

I agree with you that we could do a lot worse than a "World Federal government" along the lines of the Lisbon treaty (which to my mind is a step in the right direction for Europe, and creates a more open and accountable democratic system for international relations than the UN's "dirty deals done behind closed doors by unelected diplomats").

A WF (World Federation) would have had the power to march into Iraq and restore law and order and democracy. (Sighs, wishing I'd been born in my utopian Year 2150 after peak oil and global warming and international relations and economic systems have all been FIXED!)

Tired, rambling, bed.

One Salient Oversight said...

UN Oil for food programme.

And here (where you even discuss it!)

Eclipse Now said...

Hi OSO,
OK, things were starting to improve. As I admitted a few years ago, the concerns I had about leaving Iraq under "Saddam and Sanctions" were being *partly* addressed by the Oil For Food program.

Partly.

In your own post:

In addition, malnutrition rates in 2002 in the central and southern part of the country were half those in 1996 among children under the age of five; in the three northern governorates, chronic malnutrition decreased 56 percent.

and

Preliminary findings indicate that between 1996 and 2002 there was a reduction in the number of underweight children from 23% to 10%; chronic malnutrition decreased from 32% to 24%; and acute malnutrition dropped from 11% to 5.4%. There were also significant improvements made to transportation, water and sanitation treatment facilities, agriculture, telecommunications and education among other infrastructure benefits.

I guess we'll never know how good the program might have become, but 1 in 4 Iraqi kids were chronically malnourished and 5.4% were acute!

Also, from the wiki,

Critics claimed that the Oil-for-Food Programme was responsible, under the blockage of dual-use equipment, for preventing Iraq from repairing the water purification and medical systems destroyed by the initial sanctions and during 1991 Gulf War, and others challenged the programme on the grounds that it would not permit Iraq to import the food and medicine necessary to prevent millions of easily preventable deaths. Former programme heads such as Hans von Sponeck questioned whether the sanctions should exist at all. Von Sponeck, speaking in University of California, Berkeley in late 2001, decried the proposed "Smart Sanctions", stating, "What is proposed at this point in fact amounts to a tightening of the rope around the neck of the average Iraqi citizen"; claimed that the sanctions were causing the death of 150 Iraqi children per day; and accused the US and Britain of arrogance toward Iraq, such as refusing to let it pay its UN and OPEC dues and blocking Iraqi attempts at negotiation.

Supporters viewed the programme as a way to keep Saddam Hussein in check without resorting to war.

The Clinton Administration opposed further liberalization of the proposal, which was pursued by both Iraq and France.


It seems like 150 kids per day were still dying from sanctions, and that the ONLY reason to keep these sanctions going was to prevent war? Yep, the war was unjustified on the pretext given, not disagreeing there.

But according to the wiki, the Lancet says 650 k died as a result of the war? (How the Iraq Family Health Survey came up with 151 k and Lancet came up with half a million more we'll leave alone for now.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casualties_of_the_Iraq_War

So even at that upper estimate, another 12 years of sanctions would have equalled the same fatalities, and that's just the kids we are talking about. (Not failed health care in other sectors).

The choice appears to be between sanctions to keep a check on Saddam, war to remove Saddam, or just removing Sanctions and letting Saddam do whatever the heck he wants in a very volatile area of the world. Take your pick, they all bite.

One Salient Oversight said...

Quiz time:

Q1: The deaths of children (and adults) after 1991 were due to:

a) The result of the 1991 war and the US bombing of Iraqi infrastructure.
b) Saddam Hussein.

Q2: In order to save the children and help Iraq rebuild after the war, the best choice was:

a) To keep the oil for food programme running.
b) Invade Iraq and depose Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Q3 The 2003 invasion of Iraq:

a) resulted in more people dying than if the situation had remained the same.
b) resulted in less people dying than if the situation had remained the same.

----

In short, I can't escape the fact that the worst possible decision was made. I honestly believe that Iraq would be better off today living under Saddam Hussein than being under US control after the 2003 invasion.

After all, even dangerous dictators can sometimes turn into wise old men.

Eclipse Now said...

Q2: In order to save the children and help Iraq rebuild after the war, the best choice was:

a) To keep the oil for food programme running.
b) Invade Iraq and depose Saddam Hussein in 2003.


That treats the 150 kids per day figure as a trite irrelevance.

If we take the Iraq Family and Health survey figure of 151 k dead from the war, the oil and food program would have reached that in 2.7 years, and that is the estimated childhood fatalities only.

Question: In order to justify a single minded stance on a complex issue, one must:
a) Carefully investigate ALL the statics and facts and all possible outcomes of a number of scenarios, and respond to all data put by opposing views, while admitting areas of uncertainty and probability.
b) Caricature opposing views with trite one liners and cover up complex issues with simplistic options, at all costs avoiding uncomfortable data.

I honestly believe we CAN'T know what Iraq "would have been like" under Saddam & Sanctions, but that trends at the time suggest we would have killed just as many kids by now as the war killed people (using the Iraq & Family Health data), AND Saddam would have still been there. I like to think that you are right and that Saddam had the potential to reform. But, as with all hypotheticals of this nature, it is a 'grey' area and all I'm asking for is admitting to the 'grey'.

Cheers.

Eclipse Now said...

Thinking about it overnight, I just wanted to clarify that this is something I've felt for years, and yelled at the TV about (it's not just you. ;-)

Whenever a journalist would interview anti-war activists RIGHTLY outraged about manufactured WMD evidence, I had a counter-rant. "What about the thousands of people we are killing each year with our sanctions? What about the abject failure of the oil-for-food program to eradicate death-by-sanctions in Iraq? What about the GENOCIDE we are currently committing against Iraq? Aren't we basically committing a genocide as serious as in Rwanda.... millions died under our sanctions!"


We denied "Jus Post Bellum" to the people of Iraq after failing to finish 1991 properly, and were left in a very morally ambiguous situation.

It seems 150 kids dying per day under OUR sanctions is just not newsworthy! But if one suicide bomber takes out that many people in a marketplace, it is all over the news and we are asking ourselves "Why!? How did it come to this? Is this our fault for invading?"

A MILLION kids die under our sanctions, and we install the "oil for food program" to cut that down to a "manageable" 150 per day.

If we had not invaded in 2003 here's a news report we would NOT be hearing today: "150 children died because of our sanctions today, and world leaders condemn the action." They are just the voiceless masses, and die unnoticed. Only blood and screaming draws the media, and it seems our consciences with it. Anonymous death by starvation and disease are... well.... we've all seen enough Worldvision adds hey?

Compare that to Germany and Japan's situation now after WW2. Back then we knew how to deal with the problem once and for all, and install a new and prosperous democracy. We lost all credibility when we backed out of 1991, and left the rebellion in Basra to fail and the Kurds to be slaughtered.

The whole thing is a mess because of this, and discussing Iraq is not just a matter of repeating "I told you so" to anyone who originally supported the war — to get rid of Saddam, WMD's or no WMD's.

A credible alternative must be proposed, and as far as I can tell "Oil for food" doesn't cut it.