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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 08:29 AM
Original message
October 11th, 2002
Just 13 months after a devastating attack left over 3000 Americans dead, the nation wanted those responsible to pay and we were told by our President that Iraq possessed the means to harm us and that Al Qaeda and those like Al Qaeda were in Iraq. A well respected Secretary of State went before the UN and the world and told us we were in danger. He showed us satellite images of things we could not dispute. He showed us technical drawings of mobile weapons labs. The first ever African American National Security Advisor told us the proof would come in the form a mushroom cloud if we did not act decisively. The man we all watched lead General Schwarzkopf to victory in the first Gulf War, also told us many times, that we were in danger of further attacks. Even our greatest post WWII ally was there beside us. Although many did not particularly like the President, they at least believed in the word and leadership of the British Prime Minister. After allwhat did the British have to gain by attacking Iraq for political reasons?

So with what we knew then and with what the majority of the American population wanted, the Congress set out to assist the President in making sure that America was safe. After allwho would believe that a God-fearing, upstanding Christian would lie to the world for political/economic gain?

The IWR as it is commonly referred to passed the House of Representatives on October 10, 2002, by a vote of 296-133. It then was ratified by the Senate on October 11, 2002, by a vote of 77-23.
For those that may not have ever read the text of the Law (as it pertaines to the use of force) here it is:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES.
(a) AUTHORIZATION.The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in order to

(1) defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and

(2) enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.

(b) PRESIDENTIAL DETERMINATION.In connection with the exercise of the authority granted in subsection (a) to use force the President shall, prior to such exercise or as soon thereafter as may be feasible, but no later than 48 hours after exercising such authority, make available to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate his determination that

(1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and

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

(c) WAR POWERS RESOLUTION REQUIREMENTS.

(1) SPECIFIC STATUTORY AUTHORIZATION.Consistent with section 8(a)(1) of the War Powers Resolution, the Congress declares that this section is intended to constitute specific statutory authorization within the meaning of section 5(b) of the War Powers Resolution.
(2) APPLICABILITY OF OTHER REQUIREMENTS.Nothing in this joint resolution supersedes any requirement of the War Powers Resolution.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

So here we are now at July 16th, 2007 and it has become clear, beyond the shadow of a doubt that we were lied to and mislead. Enter the Monday morning quarterbacks

There are those among us that want to praise the sainthood of their candidates (even those that were not even in a position to make a decision at all) for not voting in favor of this authorization and damn those candidates whom acted in what they believed to be the in the best interest of their country. But what they fail to mention in their damnation is that the President violated this authorization that the Congress had given him. According to section (b), (1) the President was to demonstrate that further diplomatic measures would no longer work. The Presidents idea of diplomacy turned out to be giving Saddam Hussein 72 hours to step down as President and leave Iraq. The fact of the matter is this: The Congress as a body acted in good faiththe President liedand far too many have died.

Yes I am a John Edwards supporter. What I can not for the life of me understand is why so many are so eager to damn not only this man, but Hillary Clinton as well due to their vote on one law. In hindsight it is clear that this one law was a watershed moment in the current scheme of things; but who could possibly have fathomed that the President would use his power the way he has? Signing statements, torture, secret renditions, illegal wire-tapping, cronyism, outing a covert agentthe list goes on.

Yes John Edwards voted in favor of the IWR and yes he has apologized for it. Some will say (and have said) that he did for political gain. The same can be said about our last nominee for President, since he too voted in favor of it. At the time, the vast majority of people in the country were behind the use of force for a host of reasons, not the least of which was revenge. Anyone who took a principled stand in politics at this time was labeled Weak on Terror and Not supporting the troops or worse yeta Traitor.

Do I fault John Edwards for voting in favor of the IWRno. He made a mistake in his trust of the President and has admitted as much; just as John Kerry has done. I believe that John Edwards has learned much from this issue and has grown politically because of it. Who better to lead than one who can be so humble as to admit when they are wrongand then make amends and try to right that wrong.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 09:15 AM
Response to Original message
1. Kinda slow this AM
self kick
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 09:48 AM
Response to Original message
2. "who could possibly have fathomed that the President would use his power the way he has?"
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 09:48 AM by welshTerrier2
I won't waste anyone's time getting into blaming Edwards or Clinton. I'll keep the focus on the question you asked.

Many of us on DU foresaw that bush was 100% intent on invading Iraq. We believed he was lying about much of the evidence. We believed he did NOT want to give the weapons inspectors more time. I met and talked to Scott Ritter at some length. Every statement he made was that based on professional weapons inspections that had been ongoing for years, the administration had NOT made its case.

Here's the bottom line and it's exactly what's wrong with most of the candidates: they don't seem to understand, and failed to take into account, the very disturbing reality that the US is an imperialist nation. We invade countries, militarily, economically, and otherwise, to procure their treasures for the sole benefit of multi-national companies. If you don't start any decision process with that knowledge, or at least that belief, you are easily conned into "trusting the President" or believing evidence that suggests some critical national objective is at stake.

And one last word about Iraq. EVEN IF Saddam had had WMD, invading Iraq still would not have met the required standard which was one of "imminent threat." Even if one accepted bush's manufactured evidence about WMD, by what madness could anyone have honestly arrived at a belief that Saddam would have actually attacked the US? This was the most absurd argument of all. Saddam, and Iraq, had been crushed under more than 10 years of US sanctions. His military was destroyed in the Gulf War. He had no airforce at all and was under daily monitoring by the US. Look at how little time it took US forces to arrive in Baghdad. Saddam had nothing. Zilch. Nada.

The whole IWR propaganda was a sham to get support for an invasion so that the US could manipulate the oil markets and eventually obtain control, for Big Oil's benefit, of Iraqi oil. The flaw in many of the candidates is that they just don't see the world correctly. They trust when trust is so clearly ill advised. The good news? Unlike most of the presidential candidates, most elected Democrats in the Congress voted against the IWR.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. If as you suggest:
"The whole IWR propaganda was a sham ", then why does the vote on the IWR even matter to you...

This is the point of my entire argument...the IWR does not really matter in the big scheme of things...Bush was hell bent on doing what wanted with the help of Cheney and the rest on the PNAC folks...
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. it matters plenty
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 10:31 AM by welshTerrier2
Here's what matters to me: We are in desperate trouble in this country. Massive corporate funding is destroying the last vestiges of our democracy. We see it right now with the millions and millions of dollars K Street is pouring into the campaigns of both parties. We see it in a war and occupation that many have rightfully called the worst foreign policy blunder in the nation's history - it's a war for oil. We see it right now with energy and environmental policies that fail to even remotely address global warming that threatens life itself all over the planet.

The big boys and their puppets are blocking the kinds of changes we really need if this country is to survive. We should look at the IWR vote as an indication of who understands the world and the realities of the US government and who does not. Those that point the blame only at bush and fail to understand the larger problems of corporatism and imperialism should not receive our support. Because if they win, the US will certainly continue to decline. Even if they don't win, there are still no guarantees. We truly stand on the brink.

Why does the IWR matter? Because it clearly lets you know that most of those running for office still trust the system. They are part of the problem. They have never questioned, even to this day, bush's MOTIVES for invading Iraq. They don't question his motives; only his tactics. It is that blindness that makes them poor choices to lead this country.

And, as to your specific argument that "Bush was hell bent on doing what (he) wanted with the help of Cheney and the rest on the PNAC folks...", that hardly is an argument to justify handing him Congressional authority to do so.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:35 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. So what were Edwards, Clinton and Dodd
supposed to do to stop him?
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:22 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. Is that a serious question?
how about not vote for the resolution to start off with?

If that was bound to fail how about filibuster the resolution?

This would have stopped the attack dead in its tracks.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:40 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. You mean the way they
filibustered Alito...

And if you think that this congress (or any for that matter) can stop this president...your are sorley mistaken.
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. but it wasn't "this" Congress
your Alito example is not valid because when Alito was nominated, the Dems were in the minority in the Senate. this was NOT the case during the IWR vote.

the Dems were the majority party in the Senate in October, 2002. The IWR should never have even been brought to the floor for a vote. Daschle didn't understand the situation either.
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. What about Alito?
I dont get your point. Dems backed down with alito just like they backed down on everything else.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:34 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Exactly...
That IS my point...they have not had the political capital for some years now. It takes a change at the top to change the results at the bottom...
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:56 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. "Political capital" is a bullshit excuse
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 12:58 PM by Pawel K
especially in the case of Alito. There was not going to be any real outrage over the filibustering of Alito, the only outrage came from republicans. Whoop-dee-fucking-doo, they threatened "the nuclear option". So fucking what?
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 02:10 PM
Response to Reply #19
23. Bullshit, horeshit, turtleshit...
It's all the same...But my point still stands...NO ONE will or has stood up to BUSHCO...
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. What about Kucinich? Wes Clark? Al Gore? nt
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 02:30 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. And what about them?
Yes Kucinich voted no...

But Clark and Gore like Obama...never had to make that choice...
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. Thats not my point
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 03:41 PM by Pawel K
You said nobody was willing to stand up to Bush, I am simply trying to point out to you that thats not true. And if you really are concerned about that you should support the guy(s) that did stand up to Bush & co. Kucinich is currently running, he's stood up to this administration since the start, long before most of the others. Wes Clark is probably one of the smartest of all when it comes to foreign policy, hopefully he runs. And Al Gore, well, Al Gore is just swell and he still hasn't ruled out running. Clark and Gore might not have been able to vote but that doesnt rule out the fact they were right, Edwards and Clinton and many others were wrong. While John Edwards by all means is a great guy but he seems to only take positions that are popular at the time, as you already stated. We don't need 4 (possibly 8) more years of just doing what happens to be popular at the time.

Maybe I'm simple minded, but thats my humble opinion.
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:24 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. there are a few answers to this
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 11:25 AM by welshTerrier2
first, we should not measure the correctness of what they did do solely on whether other courses they might have taken would have "stopped him." We shouldn't evaluate actions only based on "the ends."

secondly, the problem we faced with the IWR and still face every bit as much today is that our "leadership class" is either a. complicit with the controlling corporations or b. so damned blind that they fail to see them as an enemy.

the only way to "stop him", both then and now is to understand that 1. bush is transitory and that the enemy we face is not 2. we are engaged in a life and death struggle for the very survival of the republic 3. the US is being sucked try by multi-national corporations and will soon be discarded on the great empire scrapheap.

until more of us awaken to the crisis we face, there is no way to "stop him" or anybody else. and then, it will likely be too late ...

here are the two closing paragraphs from "The Sorrows of Empire" by Chalmers Johnson:

There is plenty in the world to occupy our military radicals and empire enthusiasts for the time being. But there can be no doubt that the course on which we are launched will lead us into new versions of the Bay of Pigs and updated, speeded-up replays of Vietnam War scenarios. When such disasters occur, as they - or as-yet-unknown versions of them - certainly will, a world disgusted by the betrayal of the idealism associated with the United States will welcome them, just as most people did when the former USSR came apart. Like other empires of the past century, the United States has chosen to live not prudently, in peace and prosperity, but as a massive military power athwart an angry, resistant globe.

There is one development that could conceivably stop this process of overreaching: the people could retake control of the Congress, reform it along with the corrupted elections laws that have made it into a forum for special interests, turn it into a genuine assembly of democratic representatives, and cut off the supply of money to the Pentagon and the secret intelligence agencies. We have a strong civil society that could, in theory, overcome the entrenched interests of the armed forces and the military-industrial complex. At this late date, however, it is difficult to imagine how Congress, much like the Roman senate in the last days of the republic, could be brought back to life and cleansed of its endemic corruption. Failing such a reform, Nemesis, the goddess of retribution and vengeance, the punisher of pride and hubris, waits impatiently for her meeting with us."
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:58 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. You make some well thought out points...thank you!
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 11:59 AM by edwardsguy
-first, we should not measure the correctness of what they did do solely on whether other courses they might have taken would have "stopped him." We shouldn't evaluate actions only based on "the ends."

I agree...then we need to let go of the IWR issue and realize that it was not the cause of the war to begin with.

-secondly, the problem we faced with the IWR and still face every bit as much today is that our "leadership class" is either a. complicit with the controlling corporations or b. so damned blind that they fail to see them as an enemy.

I do not see any of our candidates as being complicit or blind, but rather as calculating politicians. A large group of the American populace was blinded by fear at the time and there is nothing that the Congress could have done to stop this juggernaut. That I believe should have been apparent to anyone after two supreme court decisions early on: One: Awarding the election to Bush and second: Siding with Cheney on the Energy Task Force meetings. That our candidates at the time were forced to "play the game" and wait things out while letting this administration collapse under it's own weight, is quite frankly the only thing that could have been done.

the only way to "stop him", both then and now is to understand that 1. bush is transitory and that the enemy we face is not 2. we are engaged in a life and death struggle for the very survival of the republic 3. the US is being sucked try by multi-national corporations and will soon be discarded on the great empire scrapheap.

You'll get no argument from me here! I believe that it was Truman who upon leaving office warned us of the MIC and the dangers that it imposed. In John Edwards, I see someone who can salvage what is left of our country and return us to an age of serving others, rather than ourselves (read:materialism) and standing up to the Multi-Nationals. I would love to see NAFTA repealed as DK would do (or so he claims he would as one of his first acts as POTUS), but these things take time and consensus.

We have been a constitutional republic for over two-hundred years...and I believe that we will continue for a long time to come. Years from now, historians will judge Bush for what he truly is. But for now, it is our duty as citizens to look beyond one insignificant vote and seek out the candidates that can truly move the nation forward with a purpose.

edit for sp

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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:03 PM
Response to Reply #11
13. just for the record ...
the famous warning you referred to was made by Eisenhower.

here's a link if you want to read it: http://coursesa.matrix.msu.edu/~hst306/documents/indust...
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:06 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. Crap!
Thanks! :blush:
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Pawel K Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 01:01 PM
Response to Reply #9
20. I can't argue with you in regards to the control corporations have
You make great points.

There is absolutely no excuse for voting for that war resolution, especially when you knew it was all bullshit (and they did know it).
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Carolina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 04:10 PM
Response to Reply #5
27. So well put, and it does matter plenty
It was willful blindness on the part of ALL those who voted for IWR because there was enough information available to question and indeed challenge *. Senator Robert Byrd urgently warned his colleagues to debate the IWR since the timing was conveniently just before the 2002 midterms. And most importantly, Byrd also begged his colleagues not to cede power to the executive that the Founders had rightfully given to the Congress. So much for constitutional law to such legal eagles Edwards and HRC.

Anyone with a functioning neuron knew what the White House would do with or without IWR. BUT, what IWR did was give the White House cover. So all those who voted for IWR have blood on their hands because they aided and abetted a crime.
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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 06:35 PM
Response to Reply #2
30. Shit I was 16 at the time, didn't know about DU, and I knew he was hell bent on invading Iraq
I wasn't even really an opponent of Bush at the time, either, but I didn't know nearly as much as I did about politics. I did believe that there were WMDs and I had mixed feelings on the war. On one hand, I believed the bullshit that I was being told by the media, on the other hand I wasn't entirely comfortable with sending soldiers to die in a preemptive war. When I found out that he had lied about WMDs in 2003, that was when I realized the true character of the Bush Administration and the Republican Party.

Still, throughout that entire process I knew with absolute certainty that Bush would not sit on his authority to go to war and not use it. I knew that his letting the UN Weapons Inspectors give it a try first was just a show and his 2003 State of the Union Address could not have possibly contained more warmongering.
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Adelante Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 09:51 AM
Response to Original message
3. The time to show leadership
was then:

Anyone who took a principled stand in politics at this time was labeled Weak on Terror and Not supporting the troops or worse yeta Traitor.


Too much lost blood. Too much spent treasure. Too much cost to our freedoms. Being sorry is too little, too late.
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gasperc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 10:51 AM
Response to Original message
7. Edwards voted NO on subsequent support of the Iraq war
as I understand from MyDD.com, Edwards did vote for IWR but later voted against the appropriations for the war. I don't know how this will play out this year and next, but clearly it was avoided during 2004 to stay out of the so called support the troops crap.
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:10 PM
Response to Original message
15. Everyone Voting for the Iraq War Resolution Knew - Here's Evidence = Time for Truth
Edited on Mon Jul-16-07 12:15 PM by autorank


(This is a link form a summary post done by Lynn the Dem. It is the best outline of prior knowledge by anyone in Congress interested in foreign affairs. It was well known that the Bush intel claims were bogus, well known that Powell was full of shit. Who stood up and spoke out?

If they didn't, sorry, I can't really accept their credentials as presidential candidates.

If they want to apoloigize, they should apologize for failing to speak up when they KNEW it was a bogus intel case. No more hiding. Btw, I like Edwards on poverty and class issues, this is no attack on him. Just plain reality, about all supporters of that resolution.)

===========




Neglecting Intelligence, Ignoring Warnings


A chronology of how the Bush Administration repeatedly and deliberately refused to listen to intelligence agencies that said its case for war was weak

Word doc of article with links(Every summary here has a link to public media or government sources. Just get the word doc at this link.) Also see Lynn the Dems excellent summary

Former weapons inspector David Kay now says Iraq probably did not have WMD before the war, a major blow to the Bush Administration which used the WMD argument as the rationale for war. Unfortunately, Kay and the Administration are now attempting to shift the blame for misleading America onto the intelligence community. But a review of the facts shows the intelligence community repeatedly warned the Bush Administration about the weakness of its case, but was circumvented, overruled, and ignored. The following is year-by-year timeline of those warnings.

2001: WH Admits Iraq Contained; Creates Agency to Circumvent Intel Agencies
In 2001 and before, intelligence agencies noted that Saddam Hussein was effectively contained after the Gulf War. In fact, former weapons inspector David Kay now admits that the previous policy of containment including the 1998 bombing of Iraq destroyed any remaining infrastructure of potential WMD programs.

2001: WH Admits Iraq Contained; Creates Agency to Circumvent Intel Agencies
In 2001 and before, intelligence agencies noted that Saddam Hussein was effectively contained after the Gulf War. In fact, former weapons inspector David Kay now admits that the previous policy of containment including the 1998 bombing of Iraq destroyed any remaining infrastructure of potential WMD programs.

OCTOBER 8, 1997 IAEA SAYS IRAQ FREE OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS:As reported in detail in the progress report dated 8 October 1997and based on all credible information available to date, the IAEA's verification activities in Iraq, have resulted in the evolution of a technically coherent picture of Iraq's clandestine nuclear programme. These verification activities have revealed no indications that Iraq had achieved its programme objective of producing nuclear weapons or that Iraq had produced more than a few grams of weapon-usable nuclear material or had clandestinely acquired such material. Furthermore, there are no indications that there remains in Iraq any physical capability for t he production of weapon-usable nuclear material of any practical significance.

FEBRUARY 23 & 24, 2001 COLIN POWELL SAYS IRAQ IS CONTAINED: I think we ought to declare a success. We have kept him contained, kept him in his box. He added Saddam is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors and that he threatens not the United States.

SEPTEMBER 16, 2001 CHENEY ACKNOWLEDGES IRAQ IS CONTAINED:Vice President Dick Cheney said that Saddam Hussein is bottled up a confirmation of the intelligence he had received.

SEPTEMBER 2001 WHITE HOUSE CREATES OFFICE TO CIRCUMVENT INTEL AGENCIES: The Pentagon creates the Office of Special Plans in order to find evidence of what Wolfowitz and his boss, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, believed to be true-that Saddam Hussein had close ties to Al Qaeda, and that Iraq had an enormous arsenal of chemical, biological, and possibly even nuclear weapons that threatened the region and, potentially, the United StatesThe rising influence of the Office of Special Plans was accompanied by a decline in the influence of the C.I.A. and the D.I.A. bringing about a crucial change of direction in the American intelligence community. The office, hand-picked by the Administration, specifically "cherry-picked intelligence that supported its pre-existing position and ignoring all the rest while officials deliberately "bypassed the government's customary procedures for vetting intelligence."

2002: Intel Agencies Repeatedly Warn White House of Its Weak WMD Case ]
Throughout 2002, the CIA, DIA, Department of Energy and United Nations all warned the Bush Administration that its selective use of intelligence was painting a weak WMD case. Those warnings were repeatedly ignored.

JANUARY, 2002 TENET DOES NOT MENTION IRAQ IN NUCLEAR THREAT REPORT: In CIA Director George Tenet's January 2002 review of global weapons-technology proliferation, he did not even mention a nuclear threat from Iraq, though he did warn of one from North Korea.

FEBRUARY 6, 2002 CIA SAYS IRAQ HAS NOT PROVIDED WMD TO TERRORISTS: The Central Intelligence Agency has no evidence that Iraq has engaged in terrorist operations against the United States in nearly a decade, and the agency is also convinced that President Saddam Hussein has not provided chemical or biological weapons to Al Qaeda or related terrorist groups, according to several American intelligence officials.

APRIL 15, 2002 WOLFOWITZ ANGERED AT CIA FOR NOT UNDERMINING U.N. REPORT: After receiving a CIA report that concluded that Hans Blix had conducted inspections of Iraq's declared nuclear power plants "fully within the parameters he could operate when Blix was head of the international agency responsible for these inspections prior to the Gulf War, a report indicated that Wolfowitz hit the ceiling because the CIA failed to provide sufficient ammunition to undermine Blix and, by association, the new U.N. weapons inspection program.

SUMMER, 2002 CIA WARNINGS TO WHITE HOUSE EXPOSED: In the late summer of 2002, Sen. Graham had requested from Tenet an analysis of the Iraqi threat. According to knowledgeable sources, he received a 25-page classified response reflecting the balanced view that had prevailed earlier among the intelligence agencies--noting, for example, that evidence of an Iraqi nuclear program or a link to Al Qaeda was inconclusive. Early that September, the committee also received the DIA's classified analysis, which reflected the same cautious assessments. But committee members became worried when, midway through the month, they received a new CIA analysis of the threat that highlighted the Bush administration's claims and consigned skepticism to footnotes.

SEPTEMBER, 2002 DIA TELLS WHITE HOUSE NO EVIDENCE OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS: An unclassified excerpt of a 2002 Defense Intelligence Agency study on Iraq's chemical warfare program in which it stated that there is no reliable information on whether Iraq is producing and stockpiling chemical weapons, or where Iraq has - or will - establish its chemical warfare agent production facilities. The report also said, A substantial amount of Iraq's chemical warfare agents, precursors, munitions, and production equipment were destroyed between 1991 and 1998 as a result of Operation Desert Storm and UNSCOM (United Nations Special Commission) actions.

SEPTEMBER 20, 2002 DEPT. OF ENERGY TELLS WHITE HOUSE OF NUKE DOUBTS: Doubts about the quality of some of the evidence that the United States is using to make its case that Iraq is trying to build a nuclear bomb emerged Thursday. While National Security Adviser Condi Rice stated on 9/8 that imported aluminum tubes are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs a growing number of experts say that the administration has not presented convincing evidence that the tubes were intended for use in uranium enrichment rather than for artillery rocket tubes or other uses. Former U.N. weapons inspector David Albright said he found significant disagreement among scientists within the Department of Energy and other agencies about the certainty of the evidence.

OCTOBER 2002 CIA DIRECTLY WARNS WHITE HOUSE: The CIA sent two memos to the White House in October voicing strong doubts about a claim President Bush made three months later in the State of the Union address that Iraq was trying to buy nuclear materials in Africa.

OCTOBER 2002 STATE DEPT. WARNS WHITE HOUSE ON NUKE CHARGES: The State Departments Intelligence and Research Department dissented from the conclusion in the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraqs WMD capabilities that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program. The activities we have detected do not add up to a compelling case that Iraq is currently pursuing what INR would consider to be an integrated and comprehensive approach to acquiring nuclear weapons. INR accepted the judgment by Energy Department technical experts that aluminum tubes Iraq was seeking to acquire, which was the central basis for the conclusion that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program, were ill-suited to build centrifuges for enriching uranium.

OCTOBER 2002 AIR FORCE WARNS WHITE HOUSE: The government organization most knowledgeable about the United States' UAV program -- the Air Force's National Air and Space Intelligence Center -- had sharply disputed the notion that Iraq's UAVs were being designed as attack weapons a WMD claim President Bush used in his October 7 speech on Iraqi WMD, just three days before the congressional vote authorizing the president to use force.
2003: WH Pressures Intel Agencies to Conform; Ignores More Warnings
Instead of listening to the repeated warnings from the intelligence community, intelligence officials say the White House instead pressured them to conform their reports to fit a pre-determined policy. Meanwhile, more evidence from international institutions poured in that the White Houses claims were not well-grounded.

LATE 2002-EARLY 2003 CHENEY PRESSURES CIA TO CHANGE INTELLIGENCE: Vice President Dick Cheney's repeated trips to CIA headquarters in the run-up to the war for unusual, face-to-face sessions with intelligence analysts poring over Iraqi data. The pressure on the intelligence community to document the administration's claims that the Iraqi regime had ties to al-Qaida and was pursuing a nuclear weapons capacity was unremitting, said former CIA counterterrorism chief Vince Cannistraro, echoing several other intelligence veterans interviewed. Additionally, CIA officials charged that the hard-liners in the Defense Department and vice president's office had 'pressured' agency analysts to paint a dire picture of Saddam's capabilities and intentions.

JANUARY, 2003 STATE DEPT. INTEL BUREAU REITERATE WARNING TO POWELL: The Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), the State Department's in-house analysis unit, and nuclear experts at the Department of Energy are understood to have explicitly warned Secretary of State Colin Powell during the preparation of his speech that the evidence was questionable. The Bureau reiterated to Mr. Powell during the preparation of his February speech that its analysts were not persuaded that the aluminum tubes the Administration was citing could be used in centrifuges to enrich uranium.

FEBRUARY 14, 2003 UN WARNS WHITE HOUSE THAT NO WMD HAVE BEEN FOUND:In their third progress report since U.N. Security Council Resolution 1441 was passed in November, inspectors told the council they had not found any weapons of mass destruction. Weapons inspector Hans Blix told the U.N. Security Council they had been unable to find any WMD in Iraq and that more time was needed for inspections.

FEBRUARY 15, 2003 IAEA WARNS WHITE HOUSE NO NUCLEAR EVIDENCE: The head of the IAEA told the U.N. in February that "We have to date found no evidence of ongoing prohibited nuclear or nuclear-related activities in Iraq." The IAEA examined 2,000 pages of documents seized Jan. 16 from an Iraqi scientist's home -- evidence, the Americans said, that the Iraqi regime was hiding government documents in private homes. The documents, including some marked classified, appear to be the scientist's personal files. However, the documents, which contained information about the use of laser technology to enrich uranium, refer to activities and sites known to the IAEA and do not change the agency's conclusions about Iraq's laser enrichment program.

FEBURARY 24, 2003 CIA WARNS WHITE HOUSE NO DIRECT EVIDENCE OF WMD: A CIA report on proliferation released this week says the intelligence community has no direct evidence that Iraq has succeeded in reconstituting its biological, chemical, nuclear or long-range missile programs in the two years since U.N. weapons inspectors left and U.S. planes bombed Iraqi facilities. We do not have any direct evidence that Iraq has used the period since Desert Fox to reconstitute its Weapons of Mass Destruction programs, said the agency in its semi-annual report on proliferation activities.

MARCH 7, 2003 IAEA REITERATES TO WHITE HOUSE NO EVIDENCE OF NUKES: IAEA Director Mohamed ElBaradei said nuclear experts have found "no indication" that Iraq has tried to import high-strength aluminum tubes or specialized ring magnets for centrifuge enrichment of uranium. For months, American officials had cited Iraq's importation of these tubes as evidence that Mr. Hussein's scientists have been seeking to develop a nuclear capability. ElBaradei also noted said the IAEA has concluded, with the concurrence of outside experts, that documents which formed the basis for the of recent uranium transactions between Iraq and Niger are in fact not authentic." When questioned about this on Meet the Press, Vice President Dick Cheney simply said Mr. ElBaradei is, frankly, wrong.

MAY 30, 2003 INTEL PROFESSIONALS ADMIT THEY WERE PRESSURED: A growing number of U.S. national security professionals are accusing the Bush administration of slanting the facts and hijacking the $30 billion intelligence apparatus to justify its rush to war in Iraq. A key target is a four-person Pentagon team that reviewed material gathered by other intelligence outfits for any missed bits that might have tied Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to banned weapons or terrorist groups. This team, self-mockingly called the Cabal, cherry-picked the intelligence stream in a bid to portray Iraq as an imminent threat, said Patrick Lang, a official at the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). The DIA was "exploited and abused and bypassed in the process of making the case for war in Iraq based on the presence of WMD," or weapons of mass destruction, he said. Greg Thielmann, an intelligence official in the State Department, said it appeared to him that intelligence had been shaped from the top down.

JUNE 6, 2003 INTELLIGENCE HISTORIAN SAYS INTEL WAS HYPED: The CIA bowed to Bush administration pressure to hype the threat of Saddam Hussein's weapons programs ahead of the U.S.-led war in Iraq, a leading national security historian concluded in a detailed study of the spy agency's public pronouncements.


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Me. Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. Of Course They Knew
Now they know that we know. Will it make any difference?
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 01:57 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. Probably not. It's the same old same old, without the "ageist";) implication...
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Scriptor Ignotus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 02:07 PM
Response to Original message
22. for me this is a crucial issue
"Who better to lead than one who can be so humble as to admit when they are wrongand then make amends and try to right that wrong."

Barack Obama got it right the first time and had no need to apologize. I respect Edwards for correcting himself, but Obama nailed it on the single most critical issue of my generation.

There are many other reasons I support Obama, but this is one of the biggest.
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Pastiche423 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #22
28. The ONLY reason johnnyboy "corrected" himself
was because when he decided to make another run, the polls showed the majority of Americans were against the genocide.

If Americans were still for the genocide, johnnyboy would be the biggest cheerleader.
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Ethelk2044 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 06:18 PM
Response to Reply #28
29. I agree. Also, He knew the media spin was not true.
He was on the committee and knew what was accurate. He should have voted no like others on the committee.
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illinoisprogressive Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 12:00 AM
Response to Reply #29
33. I forgot about the committee. I wonder how many voted out of fear...
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:47 PM
Response to Reply #28
31. :)
Here's my initial comment on your message...

Adding buddy error
You cannot add this user to your buddy list because this user is already in your list.

Sweet!
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Pastiche423 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 12:22 AM
Response to Reply #31
34. Too cool!
Thanks, autorank.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 05:27 AM
Response to Reply #28
40. Is this your opinion...
or do you have a window into John's heart that the rest of us are not privy to?
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illinoisprogressive Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-16-07 11:59 PM
Response to Original message
32. I have not faulted the candidates for the vote. I have no malice to Edwards
I have faulted Edwards for during this season is maybe some shortsightedness. I have stuck up for your guy and do not have a beef with him. I critique him when he does something boneheaded but, not in malice.
I really don't have my objections to Hillary over the vote except in highlighting a lack of judgement. I fault her on other things.
I do not know how many voted yes out of fear and I remember the climate during then.
But, I do highlight Obama for showing judgement and thinking things over in a judicious manner.
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 12:46 AM
Response to Original message
35. John Edwards didn't merily vote for the IWR, he co-sponsored the
Edited on Tue Jul-17-07 12:51 AM by FrenchieCat
Lieberman Bill....meaning he supported THE BLANK CHECK...and voted AGAINST the two amendments that would have slowed Bush's resolve on an Iraq war down. John Edwards voted AGAINST the Levin Amendment, and the Durbin Amendment....yet he co-sponsored the Lieberman Bill....all the while he sat on the Intelligence Committee and was aware that the Classified and the Declassified NIE did not argue the evidence against Iraq in the same way (the Declassified version left out the doubts raised by the classified version available to Sen. Edwards and the rest on the Intelligence Committe); that's a real problem for me.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Information on the Levin Amendment:
http://www.rapidfire-silverbullets.com/2007/03/the_levi...

Senator Chaffe, the lone Republican to vote against the Lieberman bill recently asked the question no one wants to ask; why those running for President who voted FOR the Lieberman Bill bothered to vote AGAINST the amendments that would have slowed everything down--

"The situation facing the candidates who cast war votes has, to my surprise, often been presented as a binary one they could either vote for the war, or not. There was no middle ground.

On the contrary. There was indeed a third way, which Senator James Jeffords, independent of Vermont, hailed at the time as one of the most important votes we will cast in this process. And it was opposed by every single senator at the time who now seeks higher office.
<>
Senator Levins amendment called for United Nations approval before force could be authorized. It was unambiguous and compatible with international law. Acutely cognizant of the dangers of the time, and the reality that diplomatic options could at some point be exhausted, Senator Levin wrote an amendment that was nimble: it affirmed that Congress would stand at the ready to reconsider the use of force if, in the judgment of the president, a United Nations resolution was not promptly adopted or enforced. Ceding no rights or sovereignty to an international body, the amendment explicitly avowed Americas right to defend itself if threatened.

Those of us who supported the Levin amendment argued against a rush to war. We asserted that the Iraqi regime, though undeniably heinous, did not constitute an imminent threat to United States security, and that our campaign to renew weapons inspections in Iraq whether by force or diplomacy would succeed only if we enlisted a broad coalition that included Arab states.

Unfortunately, these arguments fell on deaf ears in that emotionally charged, hawkish, post-9/11 moment, less than four weeks before a midterm election. The Levin amendment was defeated by a 75 to 24 vote. Later that night, the Iraq War Resolution was approved, 77 to 23. It was clear that most senators were immune to persuasion because the two votes were almost mirror images of each other no to the Levin amendment, aye to war. Their minds were made up."

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/01/opinion/01chafee.html...

More on Edwards and the others and the Levin Amendment:
http://journals.democraticunderground.com/FrenchieCat/9...
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 01:34 AM
Response to Reply #35
37. Mais Oui! Frenchie

Sweet!
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avrdream Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 05:20 AM
Response to Reply #35
39. I'm confused.
The senate.gov site says HRC voted FOR the Levin amendment but your journal says otherwise.

http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/r...

Maybe I need to search further but the senate site shows her voting the same as Feingold on this amendment. Correct me please if I am wrong.
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #39
48. Your list is NOT in reference to October 2002, mine is.......
Edited on Tue Jul-17-07 02:31 PM by FrenchieCat
Yours is in reference to a bill circa 2006 (see "date of vote")

Hillary voted against the Levin and the Durbing Amendments....as did John Edwards.

They both voted for the IWR.....

but Edwards was a co-sponsor of the IWR who sat on the Intelligence COmmittee and had access to the classified NIE (which listed many more doubts)....and he actively advocated for the passage of the IWR via OP-Eds and such.

Hillary did not co-sponsor the IWR....nor was she on the Intelligence committee.....

Which is why Edwards' position is less excusable...which may be why he felt compeled to apologize 3 full years after his vote....and blame the Clintons for leading him astray (which is horse manure, IMO).

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draft_mario_cuomo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 01:21 AM
Response to Original message
36. The irony is if HRC and JE voted against the IWR not a single thing in Iraq would be different
As you noted, the vote was 77-23. If the vote was 75-25 not a single thing in Iraq or in the prosecution of the war would have changed.
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #36
49. So you are saying that if something doesn't pass, how folks voted doesn't matter?
How convenient for the politicians and how sad for their constituents! :eyes:
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draft_mario_cuomo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 02:40 PM
Response to Reply #49
50. Of course not, but votes need to be put into context
Edited on Tue Jul-17-07 02:41 PM by draft_mario_cuomo
The hyperventilating over HRC and/or JE being responsible for the war is absurd. Regardless of how they voted the war would have occurred. Heck, the truth is that without the IWR there would not have been inspections and the war would have occurred easier--since the other ballyhooed amendments lacked the votes to pass. With no IWR * would have gotten an even more favorable war resolution... If you listened to some you would think the IWR vote was a cliffhanger and HRC walked in at the last minute and cast the deciding vote.
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #50
51. I disagree with you, and don't believe anyone is actually stating that
HRC or/and JE were solely responsible for the war....but certainly they were accessories to the event, as their votes legitimized Bush's rethoric about war with Iraq...and which their vote enabled. You see they only had a vote and a voice one way or the other.....and they chose the route they chose.......

In other words, neither of those two were responsible for participating in the attempts to slow the march to war....and in fact, John Edwards' Op-Eds supporting the IWR and his co-sponsorship of the Lieberman bill gave Bush perfect bipartisan cover and provided credibility to a Blank Check. Why else would JE be apologizing every other day since November of 2005 if this was not the case? :shrug:
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #51
54. Because people like you will not let go of this ONE issue
eom
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #54
55. Why should I "let go" of this issue? What do we gain from not holding
accountable the politicians running for the highest office of the land and the decisions that they made in the very recent past?

It only appears that they gain personally by flushing the facts down the memory hole. :shrug:

Guess I'm just "spoiling" things, hey? Spoiling the beauty of John Edwards et al, by reminding folks as to how we ended up spending trillions (by the time we are through) and watching 3,600+ Americans die, and who knows how many Iraqis?

Yep.....I'm just such an ingrate! :eyes:
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dogman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #54
56. It isn't just this ONE issue.
Although this ONE issue involves HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of dead. It also involves future issues, Iran for instance. Some of us feel this man does not have the competence or intellect to deal with such issues. He seems to be learning faster than the GOPers, but we cannot afford to find out if he has really learned or if he is reacting to polling and political advisers. He did not just vote for the Iraq War, he was an avid, ardent supporter. Has he apologized for the Patriot Act yet?
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Milo_Bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 01:59 AM
Response to Original message
38. Can we stop telling these lies?
Let's try to get the timeline correct, shall we?

September 16, 2002: Iraq agrees to the UNCONDITIONAL return of the weapons inspectors.

September of 2002 Scott Ritter comes forward and states that there are no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

October 11th, 2002: The IWR passes

February 5th 2003: Powell Goes before the UN (http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/02/2003020... )

Powell going before the UN had NOTHING to do with Edwards' vote. Weapons inspectors had NOTHING to do with Edwards' vote.

Just following the simple timeline PROVES beyond any doubt that it was a politically motivated vote, one for which he should not be forgiven and disqualifies him for the office of president.

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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 05:31 AM
Response to Reply #38
41. What lie are you accusing me of?
that is a pretty serious accusation.

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Milo_Bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 01:16 PM
Response to Reply #41
46. The Timeline, What the polls said, pick the lie...
In your original post you insinuate that Colin Powell had gone before the UN BEFORE the IWR vote.
You have a set up paragraph that spends most of its time talking about Colin Powell going before the UN.. then make this statement.

"So with what we knew then and with what the majority of the American population wanted, the Congress set out to assist the President in making sure that America was safe. After allwho would believe that a God-fearing, upstanding Christian would lie to the world for political/economic gain? "

These are the LIES told to try and explain away Edwards', Clinton's, Biden's Kerry's and others' vote on this war resolution.

You hear things like, "they only voted that way to get Iraq to allow the inspectors in" (But they conveniently never state that Iraq agreed to allow the inspectors in UNCONDITIONALLY 3 weeks PRIOR to the IWR vote).

Or, "After all, Colin Powell went before the UN and presented all this evidence... how could they think otherwise." (Cept for the fact that this didn't happen until 4 months AFTER the IWR vote)

or, "Well, we all KNEW Iraq had WMD, no one was saying otherwise" (Cept for the fact that Scott Ritter, an actual weapons inspector, had stated clearly in September of 2002 that Iraq had no WMD's anymore).

So, we didn't KNOW anything, Colin Powell hadn't presented ANYTHING and the Iraq had already agreed to the inspectors.

Also, you might want to correct this one as well, "At the time, the vast majority of people in the country were behind the use of force for a host of reasons, not the least of which was revenge"

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2002/oct2002/poll-o08.shtm...



From the same article... In answer to your question, "After allwho would believe that a God-fearing, upstanding Christian would lie to the world for political/economic gain? "

How about a majority of the American People in October 2002 BEFORE the IWR vote?

More than half, 53 percent, questioned Bushs motives, saying they believed he was more interested in removing Saddam Hussein than in removing weapons of mass destruction from Iraq.<\b>

Well, it seems more than half of the country were more astute than Edwards on this subject.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #46
47. NIce Cherry Picking...
From the poll you cited...

"The broad mass of the American people are deprived of any objective information regarding US-Iraqi relations and the pre-history of the present confrontation. Instead they are bombarded by propaganda depicting Saddam Hussein as a modern-day Hitler. This makes all the more notable the reservoir of suspicion and unease over the Bush administrations aims and intentions in the Persian Gulf."

How about some more:

"While 67 percent of respondents in the Times/CBS poll said they supported the use of military force to remove Saddam Hussein, this figure represents no increase over previous polls, and indicates that the Bush administrations concentrated campaign since early September to whip up a war fever has failed to shift popular sentiment. Moreover, the support for military action drops precipitously when the issue is posed more concretely. For example, only 54 percent of respondents said they would back military action if it involved substantial US losses. Significantly, that figure dropped to 49 percent if the war involved substantial Iraqi civilian casualties, and again fell to 49 percent if an attack were to evolve into a prolonged war.

Like I wrote above...what choice did Edwards, Clinton and the rest have?

BTW...do you still think I need to make corrections?

"Also, you might want to correct this one as well, "At the time, the vast majority of people in the country were behind the use of force for a host of reasons, not the least of which was revenge""





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Milo_Bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 03:56 PM
Response to Reply #47
52. Yes, you need to make corrections
You failed to address the BULK of the issues and instead focused on one stat taken out of context with the rest of the poll.

"Like I wrote above...what choice did Edwards, Clinton and the rest have?"

Are you kidding? Are you really trying to say that it is okay that Edwards and Clinton and the other enablers are susceptable to the same propoganda that the American people were being bombarded with? That their inability to see through propoganda somehow excuses their vote? In reality, it calls their judgment into question even more.

""Also, you might want to correct this one as well, "At the time, the vast majority of people in the country were behind the use of force for a host of reasons, not the least of which was revenge"""

Yes, you still need to correct that, along with the other cited lies.
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CTLawGuy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 06:13 AM
Response to Original message
42. several reasons why "that one law" is so important and so bad.
1. Congress passed it intentionally during an election season, in an attempt to "take the issue off the table" for the upcoming election. This had two bad side effects: (1) there wasn't enough time for debate or investigation, (2) people were much more motivated by politics than if Daschle had waited to consider the bill after the new Congress began.

2. The law put no meaningful limits on the President's power. There was an earlier version, Biden-Lugar, that limited the scope of authority to eliminating WMD, but that was rejected after Bush complained it tied his hands. The IWR was pushed forth by Bush and he happily signed it.

3. The Constitution provides that Congress shall declare war--meaning that Congress decides when we go to war, NOT the president. The IWR essentially delegated this constitutional power to the president, to give him authority that the Founders did not intend he have.

4. Because so many Dems voted for IWR, it looks like they are complicit in the war, and thus it is not just a Repub war. This is why Kerry could not effectively talk about the war. He couldn't attack Bush for it, because Kerry voted for it, which provided Bush a snappy comeback line.

5. Once Bush is allowed to START the war, especially with no conditions, it becomes difficult to get him to STOP the war. Just as the Founders intended that Congress decide when we go to war, they intended that the President be the Commander in Chief. Once Congress approves the war, there is little it can do against a President who is hell bent on continuing the war.

It could defund the war, as people have suggested. However, defeunding is not the same as bringing troops home. A President determined to continue a war could start rationing out funds if he knew no more would be coming, at the expense of the soldiers in the field. Then they would suffer while the war would not be ending. He could also divert money destined for other things. Eventually money would run out, but it would not be soon, and would be at great cost, and who knows the limits of Bush's stubbornness thereafter?

The bottom line is CONGRESS CANNOT PULL THE TROOPS OUT. Even if Congress were to successfully repeal IWR or impose a timeline on Bush, there is little they can do to force him to follow the law if he doesn't want to. They could (1) file a lawsuit and try to get a judgment from the Supreme Court ordering Bush to follow the law, but the Supreme Court has been ignored before, (2) impeach--which cannot be done without bipartisan support and would only result in president Cheney.

The point is: stopping a war is 100000000000000000000000000000000000000000X easier if it is not allowed to be started. Once Bush had the legality, and had the legitimacy, he gained the upper hand. This is the prinicipal reason the IWR was so important a vote.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 06:17 AM
Response to Reply #42
43. Thankjs for the response...
I agree in part, but I am still convinced that Bush missused his authority and the 3 votes by our curent candidates would not have made a difference anyway...
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CTLawGuy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 06:23 AM
Response to Reply #43
44. well
no ONE senator's vote would have made a difference, does that mean everyone gets a pass?

Let me know how Bush misused IWR, with links to the statutory language, please. I am convinced the thing is impossible to violate or misuse, becuase it is Bush's bill and there are no meaningful limits.
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JANdad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 07:06 AM
Response to Reply #44
45. My opinion on the abuse is in the OP
He was to prove that Diplomatic efforts were not going to work...he did not even try diplomacy...
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dogman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-17-07 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
53. The difference between Kerry and Edwards? Jan 29 '04
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A61340-20...

Snip>
BROKAW: We're back on stage at the Peace Center for Performing Arts in Greenville, South Carolina, with the seven presidential candidates contesting for the Democratic presidential nomination. South Carolina's primary is next Tuesday.

Senator Kerry, let me ask you a question. Robert Kagan, who writes about these issues a great deal from the Carnegie Institute for Peace, has written recently that Europeans believe that the Bush administration has exaggerated the threat of terrorism, and the Bush administration believes that the Europeans simply don't get it.

Who is right?

KERRY: I think it's somewhere in between. I think that there has been an exaggeration and there has been a refocusing...

BROKAW: Where has the exaggeration been in the threat on terrorism?

KERRY: Well, 45 minutes deployment of weapons of mass destruction, number one.

Aerial vehicles to be able to deliver materials of mass destruction, number two.

I mean, I -- nuclear weapons, number three.

I could run a long list of clear misleading, clear exaggeration. The linkage to Al Qaida, number four.

That said, they are really misleading all of America, Tom, in a profound way. The war on terror is less -- it is occasionally military, and it will be, and it will continue to be for a long time. And we will need the best-trained and the most well-equipped and the most capable military, such as we have today.

But it's primarily an intelligence and law enforcement operation that requires cooperation around the world -- the very thing this administration is worst at. And most importantly, the war on terror is also an engagement in the Middle East economically, socially, culturally, in a way that we haven't embraced, because otherwise we're inviting a clash of civilizations.

And I think this administration's arrogant and ideological policy is taking America down a more dangerous path. I will make America safer than they are.<snip

Snip>
EDWARDS: ... Can I just go back a moment ago -- to a question you asked just a moment ago? You asked, I believe, Senator Kerry earlier whether there's an exaggeration of the threat of the war on terrorism.

It's just hard for me to see how you can say there's an exaggeration when thousands of people lost their lives on September the 11th. ...<snip


That is the moment that Edwards lost me. At this point in time, it was well known that the only people making a connection between the Iraq War and 9-11 were apologists for this administration. The fact that Edwards felt it necessary to correct Kerry left me cold.
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