Petraeus Back To Betray Us Again

Well, his words yesterday seemed like whole big repeats of late LAST summer (when the surge was supposed to be nearly over) and the Bush Administration lines on the Iraq war for more than four years.

I could barely contain myself when the Three Putzketeers (McCain, Lieberman, Lindsey Graham) helped to use the “update” on Bush’s escalation of war – while the deaths and bombings the last few weeks have been off the chart – to spin more misinformation to assure them the White House.

Polls in various media have been showing a minimum of 60% of respondents saying the war has gotten no better or brought us any closer to an end since the escalation began when more troops were sent in ahead of approval starting in December 2006 and January 2007.

Your take?

Mad As Hell About McCain’s Treacherous Take On New G.I. Bill

The more I think about the failure of GOP presidential candidate by default, John McCain, to embrace a new G.I. “rewards” bill to better aid vets with post war education, etc, the more pissed I become.

Not that McCain, with his privilege – not quite a Bush dynasty, mind you, but privileged nonetheless – had to rely on vets’ hospitals and the GI bill for a college education. He’s always been a big too special, as far too many of the Republicans are (it’s how they manage to capture the poor that scares the bejesus from me since poor folks usually vote AGAINST their best interests with a GOP vote).

We call McCain a war hero because he survived internment in a Vietnamese prison camp. I know something about POWs from stories told by my father whose major occupation as a very young sergeant was to infiltrate POW camps, make a terrible fuss, and try to let as many GIs get away as possible. So I won’t ask you to view McCain as I have come to do so; a man who claims the hero mantle for himself when he so readily embraces a continued presence in Iraq that will kill so many more.

And yet – my God – how can we continue to refer to McCain as “the best America has” when he is willing to sacrifice so many more lives for the Republican military industrial complex?

No, friends. Our enemy isn’t “the other Democratic candidate left in the race“. It’s John McCain and the way the right wants eight more years to destroy the country and the world unchecked.

Unlike John McCain, Don’t Turn Your Back On New G.I. Bill

Like filmmaker Robert Greenwald in his email alerting us to this, I wonder why Republican John McCain, the man we’re constantly reminded was a war heo despite his willingness to sacrifice others’ lives, isn’t supporting the new G.I. bill.

Sign the petition; learn about the bill and then, if you agree, sign the petition to demand McCain and others step up for those we encouraged to step up for Washington.

The Iraq Bloodbath Has Already Begun

The battle between the forces of Moqtada al-Sadr and those of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki signals a new stage in the war: the feared bloodbath has begun. Over the years “bloodbath” has become synonymous with an Iraqi civil war in which various factions fight it out for control of the country. That is exactly what happened last week. Continue reading

And While On The Subject Of Truth Re: Iraq…

What the hell is with the Bush Administration’s big-smiled constant assurance that everything there is going peachy-keen, which McCain just rubberstamped with his campaign video where he revisits Iraq (except it’s too dangerous for him to return to many of the same spots he went to before; a little fact not disclosed in said video releases)?

Granted, Reality and the Bush Administration have rarely been in the same time zone with one another. But to watch the deaths mount – and KNOWING much of what goes on either goes unreported because there is no reporter still alive there to go near the place OR because the government has sensored them as they still do – and hear, “See! We told you we were right about winning in Iraq” is really making me reel. I can’t begin what it must seem like for our soldiers and their families.

You?

Why Are Iraqis To Blame For Effects Of Our Occupation?

I won’t necessarily win myself lots of new friends by saying this, but I’d love to see Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama toss away the Bush-McCain mantra of “Those damned ungrateful Iraqis need to fix things themselves; anything else is to spit on the freedom we blessed ‘em with.”

Wow. Can you REALLY keep spinning a war that was failing perhaps EVEN before we entered Iraq in March 2003, that has torn a nation once nearly united under/against the tyrant Saddam Hussein, into something the Iraqi people have flunked?

Yes, many Iraqis are making what to us seem like very bad choices. But I can’t see or hear about one of these cases and wonder, “OK, what would we do IF someone was invading and occupying OUR towns, states, country?” Even as a pacifist, I find a hell of a lot of perspective once I run the “how could the Iraqis DO this?” question against the “what people do when attacked” filter. And who the hell really believes that many Iraqis continue to feel a great love for what has been done to them?

Blame the Bushies for the war and keep anyone (read: McCain) from office who wants to continue to support the Bush occupation of Iraq; don’t blame the people who LONG since stopped asking us to come in and take out Saddam when Bush rode in on Bush-generated lies of WMD and Iraqi scuba terrorists about to attack San Diego or Kennebunkport, Maine.

Democrat: Put The Energy Into Opposing McCain, Not One Another

Stuck with a non-functioning net connection these last few days, I’ve had to depend more (oh, pitiful truth) on TV and NPR for my news and… well, according to the mainstream media, “the Democrats were all but choosing curtains for the Oval Office last summer but are now prepared to fracture into so many pools that John McCain may have it easy.”

Yes, by God, the arguments out here have gotten extreme. And not all of them happen in cyberspace, such as when that group of leading Dem contributors sent a “bad Nancy” note to House Majority Nancy Pelosi regarding superdelegates. And yes, the whole real voter-superdelegate one, while just a single argument, is such a brouhaha all its own.

However, folks, we have to remember: the evil, such as it exists en masse, is John McCain and what some are calling a “de facto third term” for Bush and Company, because McCain may sign on to allowing many of the Bushies stay in power once he “assumes the throne” (as Republicans always view the Oval Office). Even if McCain had completely denounced the Bushies – and note, he hasn’t by any degree of description – he is still the exact wrong choice for us moving ahead.

And it’s PAST TIME to move ahead. We’ve been living in the hell the Bushies used and abused of our horror over the attacks on 9-11 to destroy us. They’ve done a finer job than Osama bin Laden, al Qaeda, and every other terror network combined could have accomplished against us.

Fight terrorism at home; get the Republicans OUT of the White House. It’s a start.

This is our common mission. We can’t let individual cat fights on specifc candidates obliterate the success of this mission.

While McCain Implodes, Media Just Focuses on Obama-Clinton

Even if I were a Republican (oops… hands started to shake at that thought, sorry), I would be asking two HUGE questions after watching the media the last few months:

– How is it John McCain can spew the most ridiculous, bombastic, often hateful and WRONG claptrap while the media spends all its time discussing blacks, women, and Hispanics like each is a single separate personality and mindset?
– How is it that the media can spend so little time on anything of real value re: Clinton and Barack Obama while hitting us endlessly with questions about race, religion, lies-turned-into-truth and other issues that aren’t paramount to voters who want help with ending the war, restarting the economy, keeping their homes, and finding a way to afford groceries, fuel, and medical care?

Oh wait, here’s a third question:

Why should we believe a mainstream media on any of this WHEN they told us for months that Hillary Clinton couldn’t lose and McCain couldn’t win when they now flip it to suggest Hillary can’t get nominated and McCain can’t lose?

Not Exactly A Ratings Hiker: Iraq War News Accounts For Just 3% of Media Stories”

While the Iraq war has never, since it’s been going so miserably bad, had anywhere near the attention it got in the first days of “Shock & Awe” when we invaded in March 2003, NEVER has it dominated so little of the news cycle.

Even with the conflicting reports of “great surge” vs. “it’s all gonna blow up anytime now”, etc., only about 3% of all media stories here in the U.S. discuss the war at all. Much of that is rah-rah-rah reporting, too, with no perspective.

This isn’t just sad. It’s damn right depraved.

While Cheney Grins and Gladhands, McCain Embarasses – All On The Global Stage

Apparently VP Dick Cheney and GOP presidential nominee-apparent, Sen. John McCain, aren’t content with making people here at home miserably uncomfortable. No, they’ve taken their act on the road (dear God, pray for the world…).

After President Bush went on a goodwill tour a few weeks ago (one that went soooo successfully, too: he went to OPEC to beg them to lower oil prices – we’re told – and now, gas prices have not just climbed but hit lifetime record highs), now it’s Cheney’s turn. His grin isn’t any too good but he’s definitely got the evil Machiavellian “I could rip and gut my mother without batting an eye” glaring sneer down pat as he suggests Dems are endangering the world and are all but underwriting al Qaeda.

Simultaneously, McCain has been proving that time spent with Bush DOES measurably lower your IQ. He’s not just confusing Iran with Iraq (a great Bush/Cheney trick) on a regular basis and depending upon Joe Lieberman not just for help answering questions but on distinguishing a matzo ball from a yarmulke, but getting Joe to take heat for him when the audiences don’t like the answers.

McCain’s stupid globetrotting is almost understandable, if still inexcusable. But to have Bush and now Cheney trying to scare up supporters overseas, I’m afraid, may give us more of a hint that action against Iran is getting ever closer.

Show Dem Party By Voting McCain In Michigan?

When this poster offered a comment on my piece from yesterday about a decision made not to have a “do over” in either Michigan or Florida after both states insisted on running primaries ahead of “legally deadline”, his suggestion – one I’ve heard more and more lately – is for “Democrats to show Democrats they’re wrong by voting for McCain in November.”

Uh, what kind of sick puppy must you be to decide that the way to deal with a personal disappointment is to force 4-8 more years of self-righteous (while absent any kind of social consciousness) Christian crusades and empire building on not just the rest of the U.S. but on the entire world?

At best, this sounds like an extremely poorly conceived – and done by people who have even LESS respect for the people of Michigan than people outside the state – idea put forth by the closest thing Michigan has to Karl Rove.

Some body please explain what I’m not seeing. How in hell would voting for a dangerous two-faced political felon like McCain who would do even worse things to this nation and to the world will do anything but further EVERYONE’S suffering?

Dan Froomkin: 5 Year War Anniversary Brings Bush’s Triumphalist Amnesia

Dan Froomkin got it right in yesterday’s WaPo column:

On the fifth anniversary of the war in Iraq, President Bush today attempted to recast it as a great success for the United States and a major blow to Osama bin Laden. But for the American people to go along with his construction will require a pretty severe case of amnesia.

The security situation in Iraq is undeniably somewhat better than it was a year ago, before Bush increased the number of American troops there to more than 160,000. But the violence nevertheless continues at an appalling level. And the political reconciliation the “surge” was intended to bring about remains a distant fantasy.

The supposed victory against bin Laden that Bush is celebrating is belied by the fact that al-Qaeda wasn’t in Iraq before the invasion, that its Iraqi namesake is a mostly home-grown version with limited ties to bin Laden’s organization, that the administration’s own intelligence has concluded that the war has helped rather than hurt al-Qaeda — and that bin Laden himself likely remains safely ensconced in Pakistan.

Looking at Iraq and seeing progress requires not looking back beyond the past 12 months or so. And even on that basis, it’s hard to argue that the events of the past year have put us any closer to getting out. Furthermore, Bush’s decision to arm anti-government Sunni militias may lead to even greater chaos when we do leave.

The only way the surge has been an unqualified success is one that Bush didn’t mention today: It has bought him time.

Bush Hits Yet Another New Poll Low

CNN is reporting – in the wake of much talk that Bush’s popularity had finally bottomed out as people stopped paying attention to him – that President Bush has hit a new all-time low in both presidential polling as a whole and his own numbers specifically. The 31% approval for Bush CNN just reported is the lowest in Bush history for the cable news network’s polling.

Gee, I’m sure these new lows have nothing to do with the reminder of the lies he took us to war in Iraq with five years ago, Bush’s “let the mortgage CEOs eat cake while starving homeowners heat their houses with burned default delinquency notes”, or his latest claims that all in Iraq is hunky-dory.

Though The Blogswarm’s Near Done, Our Mission Is Not

Today’s blogging of the fifth anniversary of our invasion and occupation of Iraq is nearly over but our mission – to LEARN from history and get out rather than expand this horrific failure – is not.

So tomorrow, get up and do what you did today. Make your thoughts heard.

Bush’s Iraq Anniversary Message: We Need To Stay To Keep Winning

And with the military falling apart from being treated by Bush’s private corporate army, with suicide rates among GIs up exponentially at the same time they try to fight reporting of “other” casualties (like PTSD diagnoses, etc.), and the Iraqi citizens scared to death, who IS winning this war anyway?

On This Fifth Anniversary Of War With Iraq

Think very carefully about who you want to represent you in the White House come January.

Can we afford a John McCain who made that silly gaffe subsituting Iran with Iraq (something Bush Washington has made very easy to do) until latter-day-neocon-nutcase Joe Lieberman corrected him?

I say no. A yes for McCain is a vote for more bloodshed.

Note, too, that no less than seven out of every 10 Americans feels the Iraq War is directly hurting our economy (the other three, I suppose, believe that the war IS what remains of our economy ::sigh::) and that even if the war ended now, we will continue paying costs for it for many, MANY years into the future.

Just 3 Trillion Little Lies Later: Iraq

Not just three trillion dollars spent – in fact, I suspect the figure is more than four times that – but three trillion lies!

Today, as we mark that dark mid-March day in 2003 when President Bush, complete with a raised fist pumping air like he was about to go into the final playoffs to give “‘em one more for the Gipper…” gesture and dispatched the first soldiers off to war, the cold, harsh light of day makes it a heluva lot easier to see all the lies.

After all, it was not just one single lie that Bush used to get us into Iraq but a multitude of them, including:

  • weapons of mass destruction everywhere>
  • doctored intelligence reports that led to the outing of CIA covert operative, Valerie Plame Wilson, because Bushies did not like that Wilson’s husband, former ambassador Joe Wilson, would not pretend Niger “yellow cake” uranium story was true
  • Saddam was about to launch a campaign to make kittens and puppies in perfect little American suburbia all sick
  • the war would take a few days to a few weeks, completely pay for itself, and there is “absolutely no way” to lose it
  • the entire world sees the war as right which is why we had to pay them and bully them into joining the “coalition of the willing”
  • actions in Iraq certainly won’t distract us from catching Osama bin Laden, regroup al Qaeda, or exhaust our resources for the global war on terror

Need I list more?

The Power Glitch: Democracy Good, Politics… Uh… Not Always So Fun

Ricky noted the situation with Barack Obama’s senior foreign policy advisor, Samantha Power (a Harvard prof and author of some good material), her decision to leave the Obama team, and comments about/from Hillary Clinton that seemed to lead to the divide.

I was sad to hear Power was leaving. She’s been profiled on Democracy Now recently for her latest book (on one of the most important men at the U.N. lost in the Iraq UN assault early in the war) and the lady strikes me as way smart.

But I couldn’t help but wonder exactly she felt she had to quit at the same time I found myself wondering (yet again) about both whether:

  • an intelligent, passionate, wants-to-make-a-real-change-but person like a Power can survive in a world where politics interferes with a true democracy in every bit as lethal a way as most religions as practiced and promoted (IMHO) get very much in the way of a person’s spirituality and relationship with whatever He/She sees as his/her creator
  • why what happened had to result in Power leaving and Obama accepting her resignation; it seems like overkill for the situation
  • But I’ll say as I have before: we don’t need nasty. We need truth and honesty, something we KNOW we won’t get from McCain yet WANT to demand from Obama and Clinton.

    And we sure as hell don’t need any Democratic operatives trying to channel the rat bastard AND American traitor as well as world war criminal, Karl Rove. Period.
    .