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BurtWorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:33 AM
Original message
Military historian says Iraq is "most foolish war since Emperor Augustus in 9 BC"
http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1653454,00....


After what has been described as the most foolish war in over 2,000 years, is there a way out of Iraq for President Bush, asks Brian Whitaker

Tuesday November 29, 2005
Guardian Unlimited

There is a remarkable article in the latest issue of the American Jewish weekly, Forward. It calls for President Bush to be impeached and put on trial "for misleading the American people, and launching the most foolish war since Emperor Augustus in 9 BC sent his legions into Germany and lost them".

To describe Iraq as the most foolish war of the last 2,014 years is a sweeping statement, but the writer is well qualified to know.

He is Martin van Creveld, a professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and one of the world's foremost military historians. Several of his books have influenced modern military theory and he is the only non-American author on the US Army's list of required reading for officers.

Professor van Creveld has previously drawn parallels between Iraq and Vietnam, and pointed out that almost all countries that have tried to fight similar wars during the last 60 years or so have ended up losing. Why President Bush "nevertheless decided to go to war escapes me and will no doubt preoccupy historians to come," he told one interviewer.

The professor's puzzlement is understandable. More than two years after the war began, and despite the huge financial and human cost, it is difficult to see any real benefits.

The weapons of mass destruction that provided the excuse for the invasion turned out not to exist and the idea that Iraq could become a beacon of democracy for the Middle East has proved equally far-fetched.
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mzteris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:35 AM
Response to Original message
1. so GWB isn't just the worst "pResident" in history
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 11:35 AM by mzteris
he's the worst "military leader" in over 2000 years!

I'd :rofl: but I'm too busy :cry: for our Country.

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Warren DeMontague Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:36 AM
Response to Original message
2. Holy shit. That means he's even WORSE than Caligula!
Who knew? :shrug:
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #2
20. The worst in the recorded history of the planet
Hope he can live with that.
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endarkenment Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:15 PM
Response to Reply #20
30. Caligula defeated the god of the sea!
He was a great military leader. His victory over Neptune was the highwater mark of the Roman Empire.
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civildisoBDence Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #30
37. And the sea defeated DUHbya...
Katrina was the beginning of the end of Bush's credibility and stature.

Newsprism
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:54 PM
Response to Reply #37
48. Terry Shiavo, Cindy
and Katrina. You go girls!!!
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bahrbearian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 07:57 PM
Response to Reply #30
72. LOL ..he did it on a lake.
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Lisa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #2
42. Caligula, Nero, Domitian, Commodus, Elagabalus, and all the rest of them!
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 02:29 PM by Lisa
He's in a league by himself, is Dubya.
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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:36 AM
Response to Original message
3. Yeesh, You Gotta Go Back Over 2 Centuries To Find Someone As Stupid
As Chimpy?
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BurtWorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:39 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. Two millennia, actually!
:wow:
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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:26 PM
Response to Reply #5
13. Oops, Yeah, I Meant Millennia!
D'oh!
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TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #3
31. From Emperor Augustus to Chimperor Disgustsus - mendacity and mediocrity.
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 01:19 PM by TahitiNut
Somebody shit in the gene pool.
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Jawja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #31
46. "Chimperor Disgustus"
I love it!! :bounce:
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Sequoia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 05:28 PM
Response to Reply #31
62. Chimperor Disgustusus....love it!
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dbt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:38 AM
Response to Original message
4. Launched by a WARTIME DESERTER, no less.
I have no tears left to shed for my country.

:freak:
dbt
Remember New Orleans

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Yukari Yakumo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:53 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. Launched by a Fourtunate Son, no less.
Regardless of he deserted or not, no way in Hell he was ever going to Vietnam, he's a son of a Congressman.
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BonnieJW Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #7
24. Gore was the son of a senator and he went.
Chuck Robb was the president's son-in-law and he went.
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Gregorian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:42 AM
Response to Original message
6. George is just their sock puppet.
I just read this, and the first thing that came to mind was film footage I saw of George traipsing along with his dad on the campaign trail. It must have been 1984, because George was looking like a completely drug addled braindead adolescent fool. It's embarrassing just to see it. But I can't find the footage. I will continue looking.

It isn't George. And that's the fallacy of this whole mess. We will impeach him. And Cheney too. Oh hell, nobody said we were going to eliminate evil altogether.


It's nice to see articles like the one you posted. A little perspective is finding it's way into this nation.
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jeff30997 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:53 PM
Response to Reply #6
23. "George was looking like a completely drug addled braindead adolescent fool."
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 12:55 PM by jeff30997
How things have changed . :)
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dad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #23
83. right
He's no longer adolescent
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Bucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 11:54 AM
Response to Original message
8. Oh, surely the crushing repulse of the Byzantines at Myriokephalon in 1176 rates just as bad
I mean, it's 105 years after the decisive destruction of Byzantine power at Manzikert, and Emperor Manuel Komnenos tries to muscle in on Konya, which was only the Seljuk Turks's friggin' capital, of all places of! Once they knocked out his siege equipment, you gotta wonder what the hell Manuel Komnenos was thinking. You're gonna tell me the invasion of Iraq was dumber than that?
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kestrel91316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Wasn't * a HISTORY major? Looks to me like he decided
to one-up those Byzantines!
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lutefisk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #9
19. Yet another example of Junior's "reverse Midas touch" in action
He actually managed to taint "history" with his magic touch.

If we really wanted to destroy a particular terrorist organization, we would simply make Junior its leader.
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BurtWorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:02 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. Good point.
:crazy:
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FlaGranny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:27 PM
Response to Reply #8
14. Off topic, but may I ask
whose face that is with Lincoln? Looks like a combination of Clint Eastwood and Lincoln, but someone else too? Anyway, really caught my eye.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:36 PM
Response to Reply #14
18. Stephen Colbert.
He's Lincolnish.

:P
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SydneyBristow Donating Member (143 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
11. Bigfoot
GWB reminds me of bigfoot in "a goofy movie"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ghlnKhhwSw

heehee
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formercia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:23 PM
Response to Original message
12. and now a word from our sponsor
Bread and Circus GMBH
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truedelphi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:27 PM
Response to Original message
15. Right F&*$ing On!
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 12:27 PM by truedelphi
I get so steamed about the war.

And then I think beck to a moment in Oh maybe early April 2003. I am sitting in the San Francisco Bay area - and I am listening to KPFA.

KPFA is one of the most leftist leaning radio stations in the world. But the station has given a moment to one of their Baghdad reporters, an independent journalist who was NOT embedded with the troops.

He is excited. Apparently in the neighborhood that he is in, the Iraqi people are so relieved that Saddam is gone.They are so pleased with the idea that their country has a chance.

I'll paraphrase what I remember, he goes on to say "The citizens here are ecstatic about the situation. They feel as long as the American GI's stationed here remain a presence, and prevent the sectarian animosity from flaring up, everything will be good for their future."

Hearing the guy say this, I was initially happy but then sad. I already knew that Bush had not committed the 300,000 troops that the Five Star Generals had demanded he deploy. I knew the troops maintaining peace and quiet in the streets of that neighborhood would be rotated out.

We could have done it - done the war with its nasty 30,000 civilian casualties. Wrapped the war up and installed a LOT of American service people and succeeded. And put something decent into place. Probably with minimal casualties to our troops, and to the civilians.

But George W was either too arrogant and too stupid, or too stupid and too arrogant to listen to the Generals. So we have approaching 3,000 dead service people, and over 650,000 Iraqi and now we have a civil war called Chaos.
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 07:56 PM
Response to Reply #15
71. I'm not nearly so optimistic
What you are saying is that we really can use a hammer and a sack of clay as our only tool to make a set of dishes. It's entirely possible that if we had actually butted out militarily after getting rid of Saddam, and left rebuilding and everything else to Iraqis (partly on our dime), maybe they could have done it. But we didn't invade so that Iraqis could run their own country--the entire purpose of the invasion was to plant a permanent military boot in their faces, seeing as how Bush removed our military presence from Saudi Arabia and wanted someplace else to put them.
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magellan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #71
81. Bush** removed our military presence from Saudi Arabia ++ at bin Laden's bidding! ++
Lest anyone forget. Every step of the way BushCo has played right into terrorists' hands and done exactly what they want -- right down to exchanging our liberties for the illusion of security.
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truedelphi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #71
89. Well at times this country does use a hammer
Edited on Fri Dec-01-06 12:27 PM by truedelphi
And before I ramble on,because of what my father said he witnessed the Germans do in WWII, and because he would conclude his remarks by saying "Another six months on battlefields and I would have been a animal myself" I oppose all wars.

BUt in a militaristically opportunistic country like ours, when the government is set on war, our officials must do a decent job of pre-invasion planning so that the following are met:
one) succeed with minimal casualties to all - our troops, their troops, the civilians
two) have the diplomatic warriors (that is the experienced people in the State Department) on hand to usher in the occupation
three) eventually turn the country back over to its own people

On June 1944, we accomplished number one - at the Normandy Beachhead FDR listened to Eisenhower, and he committed the required number of troops. ALong with the French, English and our troops, we had 326,000 service people attempt to and in many places succeed in landing (At a great cost - one third of this number was killed or wounded)

Two: After our victory there, diplomatic experts advised the military on how to transition the German people back into nationhood (remember, many large German cities were rubble by the end of the war)

Three: eventually turn the government back to its peoople

Now imagine if Bush had run that war. He would have ignored Eisenhower. Probably he would have decided to parachute in 50,000 American troops into Berlin.

Many would have died, and those who would have survived (if any did) would have been given this as a strategy - capture some German Jeeps and drive up and down the AutoBahn until the local military shoots missiles at the Jeep and the occupants die.

If Bush had directed that war, we might still be fighting it.
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 08:43 PM
Response to Reply #89
96. Planning for it three years in advance was a key factor, of course
But de-Nazification only involved the topmost layers. And Germany just had get back its formerly existing democratic system--the Allies didn't have to build it from scratch from three very different ethic/religious groups.
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:35 PM
Response to Original message
16. Media: Once again we rely on analysis by someone outside
the country and brought to us by two newspapers outside the country and by Burtworm of DU.

Who have you heard analyze the situation like this writer did?

In our country, we had a right wing corporate network take the plunge to say there is a civil war going on in Iraq. Big deal compared to this comprehensive analysis and accompanying how-to's (or call them shoulds).

Perhaps there are others. Perhaps this is an opportunity to promote those who have written equal to this.
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:00 PM
Response to Reply #16
28. Focus: Once again we witness writers naming Bush. I think we
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 01:01 PM by higher class
all know in our heads that George is a front man. He is not capable of or interested enough in learning enough to plan something like this himself. We know who did. But writers always have to say Bush should be impeached. I gues we have to go along with it. But why leave Cheney and Rumsfeld and PNAC and the barons plus boards of directors and stockholders out of this? We still don't have enough people laying the blame where it belongs.

George is an invalid. An intellectually deficient psychological (sociopathic?) egomaniacal invalid with a heavy reliance on revenge (and probably physical properties), but a good fund raiser. That's why he is only a front man. Exactly what are they going to hang on him when it's all put in legalaties that will stick?. Are they going to get him because his signature or voice is on a crucial piece of evidence and they can prove that he totally understood what they were trying to get him to formalize and he fully agreed? His dependencies require support and outside support. He was perfect for the role because the true culprits seem to be getting away with it all - so far.

I'm writing because I think they can slither him out of the blame and the truly guilty will get away. Slithering him out of the blame may have been an initial criteria in his selection - they knew that they could save themselves an impeachment because he wasn't a decision originator or authorizer, therefore the Republican Party is safeguarded. They didn't get Nixon (formally impeached), they did get Clinton, but they're not going to get Bush, the Jr. because of his lack of depth and understanding? Have you imagined what the lawyers can come up with?

But a writer like this knowledgable person has no choice.
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Kashka-Kat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:36 PM
Response to Original message
17. Inexplicably MISSING from his analysis= whole PNAC doctrine
the Iraq war makes sense ONLY if you consider full context of PNAC plans for regional control as remaining superpower... incl. economic advantage and military footholds in strategic places (Iraq, Syria, Iran, N. Korea were named).

Given that we have now the 14 permanent military bases in Iraq (installation of which was begun soon after invasion) and that these are unlikely to be abandoned even if there is a socalled "withdrawal" or "re deployment", the war has indeed achieved a good part of its objectives... even if it is a huge mess and NOT QUITE the rosy happy democracy that the PNAC-ers envisioned.
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catmandu57 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:06 PM
Response to Reply #17
29. He had the pnac whispering in his ear
and an Oedipal complex on his shoulder, that's no excuse for being a fucking moran though.
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Kashka-Kat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 03:18 PM
Response to Reply #29
50. thats fer damn sure
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:39 PM
Response to Original message
21. The potential for future disaster is high..
in the Middle East. Bush has opened a Pandora's Box of unknown consequence.
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hvn_nbr_2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:52 PM
Response to Original message
22. Foolish as it is, I think Napoleon's and Hitler's invasions of Russia...
are probably more foolish.
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Strelnikov_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #22
25. Agree. Rome Lived On, While The Invasion By These Two Empires
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 12:57 PM by loindelrio
resulted in their downfall.

Then again, the book is not yet closed on the Iraq debacle. There are a lot of ways for a Empire to collapse. Sudden loss of a vital resource (Persian Gulf energy resources) is one.

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Bucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 05:16 PM
Response to Reply #25
59. The point is, Rome was essentially unmatched in terms of world power then.
They assumed that because no one could destroy them, there was no way they could lose. Stalin and Hitler had sever on-level power rivals. 2003's US (and ancient Rome) did not have any rivals and still managed to blow it all
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Sequoia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #59
65. Well, let me just jump in here Mr. Spock/Lincoln....
(You seem to know your history)

Can't say I knew much about this part of history expect that this guy was the one who murdered Cleopatra's son (?). I found this book:


The Battle That Stopped Rome: Emperor Augustus, Arminius, and the Slaughter of the Legions in the Teutoburg Forest (Paperback)
by Peter S. Wells

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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:56 PM
Response to Reply #22
27. Perhaps for their nations...
but not for the possible consequences that might come about becasue of this invasion. We may see a conflagration over the entire Middle East. We could see millions killed in the process. From that perspective, this would have the potential to be the worst in history.
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 01:44 AM
Response to Reply #22
75. i was about to mention that
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Zynx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 11:21 AM
Response to Reply #22
87. Don't forget WWII Japan.
That didn't end so well for them, nor was it even really that competitive.
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IWantAChange Donating Member (974 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 12:56 PM
Response to Original message
26. Let's not forget about Dubyha's dubious skills as a statesman
who chooses not to TALK to the perceived enemies of America because somehow that is a sign of weakness - this from a cheerleader.
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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:19 PM
Response to Original message
32. But in the category of foolish names for a war
"The War of Jenkin's Ear" still wins!
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demo_not_full Donating Member (23 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:24 PM
Response to Original message
33. We need to withdraw ...
It's wars like this that breed new wars down the road. Yes, there will be consequences when we leave but nobody knows what. But i'm sure as long as our presence is there certain groups are going to remain pissed. The Iraqi's aren't babies. They need to fight their own battle and even if they lose at least THEY lost. Oil isn't a good reason to stay. We don't need oil anyway. Better technology has been just sitting there waiting for us.
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T Town Jake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:30 PM
Response to Original message
34. I'd say worse than Augustus's little adventure for two reasons:
1. At least Augustus had a semi-valid reason to launch his invasion, i.e., to put an end to threats to Rome's trade routes and secure it's far northern flanks.

2. Augustus served his country in combat before he led it, as opposed to Bush who hid out in Texas and spent his time getting tanked up while many of his contemporaries fought and died in Southeast Asia.

So, in all historical fairness to Augustus: Bush and his Iraq debacle are actually worse, and I think will be judged so in the future.
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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #34
36. I Agree
Good points.
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warrens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:38 PM
Response to Original message
35. I believe we owe the Christmas tree to Augustus
After the German tribes slaughtered his troops, they arranged their intestines on trees marking their lands and daring the Romans to return. Somehow, that morphed into the Christmas tree.
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Sequoia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 05:26 PM
Response to Reply #35
61. Well, I'm going to have to look into that.
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 05:42 PM by Sequoia
The Germans and their trees let me tell you. To them the oak was so sacred that if you were caught tearing off the bark they'd nail your belly button to the tree and wind you around it. Something like that.
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Norrin Radd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 03:05 AM
Response to Reply #35
77. Go back further.
The Christmas tree is probably a later representation of Yggdrasil.
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Ignacio Upton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 01:52 PM
Response to Original message
38. Well, I guess Napoleon invading Russia was a sweeping sucess
n/t.
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w4rma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:04 PM
Response to Original message
39. " he is the only non-American author on the US Army's list of required reading for officers." (nt)
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htuttle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:10 PM
Response to Original message
40. "Varus, Varus, give me back my legions!!"
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Lisa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #40
41. somehow, I can't imagine Bush weeping over his lost troops
I suspect that instead of wandering the White House and moaning, like Emperor Augustus -- he would take cheap shots at the grieving parents.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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T Town Jake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #41
43. Yep - and cut off veterans benefits to their families to boot...
...sad that the day has come that one can honestly say about a Roman emperor (basically a dictator by the time of Augustus) that he was more trustworthy and honorable than a President of the United States - but, in the person of Chimpy McGigglenuts, that day has arrived.
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Kelly Rupert Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
44. Clearly a false statement.
Edited on Thu Nov-30-06 02:36 PM by Kelly Rupert
Hitler lost his empire and saw Germany split in two because he invaded Russia. Napoleon's invasion of Russia lost him his empire as well. Russian involvement in World War I led to mass uprisings that led to the toppling of the state. The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, rather than ensuring American noninvolvement in their war with China as they had hoped, led to their defeat in the Pacific theater.

And if you mean "most disastrous for mankind," then either the Japanese invasion of China or Hiter's invasion of Poland would easily top that list.
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #44
57. i thought of this also
those invasions of russia against the good generals december, january, and february have always been held out as the worst decisions in military history

the japanese attack on pearl harbor, though it proved unwise in the end, i'm not so sure that was the worst decision, as in they could have foreseen it would have worked out so badly, since knocking out a good part of your enemy's navy in a surprise attack is usually considered to be fairly good outcome -- i think we have the advantage of hindsight on that one

but certainly while hitler had the excuse of being batshit crazy, napoleon really should have known better

i'm assuming not "most disastrous for mankind" but rather just "most butt-ass stupid" is what he's shooting for...

so i'll stick w. the classics and give hitler and napoleon the nod here
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:10 PM
Response to Reply #44
64. And yet...
But, then again, Germany and Russia have both as of 2006 achieved their 1914 war aims: Europe is a single trading union with Germany as its leader, and Russia dominates the Balkans and Baltic with access to warm water ports through the Bosporus. So in that sense, the wars were "successes", if costly ones.
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The Magistrate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:21 PM
Response to Reply #44
66. Not Really, Sir, Since The Word Was 'Foolish'
The two invasions of Russia you cite, though they ended disasterously, need not have. Victory was possible, and there was much to be gained by it for the aggressor.

In Czarist Russia's participation in the Great War, there were factors of alliance obligations that made the thing more tragic than foolish, though certainly the conduct of the Czar's staff was in many instances foolish to the point of criminality.

The Japanese strike at Pearl Harbor certainly comes close as a rival, though there is the factor that it was necessary for Japan, from its own point of view, to do something to prevent complete paralysis of its military power through oil starvation: thus, though a poor calculation indeed, the act was not gratuitous, which both the Iraq venture and the expedition over the Rhine were.
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pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #66
82. the magistrate and dmesg make very good points
hmmmm
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:43 PM
Response to Original message
45. He's obviously not looking at the corporate profits of Halliburton, Bechtel,
Chevron, Exxon etc etc:
"More than two years after the war began, and despite the huge financial and human cost, it is difficult to see any real benefits."

Ignores the very nice return on "investment" for the war profiteers. The massive transfer of wealth has been a huge success.

No wonder he's the only non-American author in the US Army's list of required reading for officers, which I am going to guess doesn't include Smedley Butler.
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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 11:01 AM
Response to Reply #45
85. He's obviously not looking at how the issue gave bush* an election and Roberts and Alito...eom
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 04:43 PM
Response to Reply #85
93. He's missing quite a lot isn't he? nt
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TheMadMonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
47. My first thought was The Children's Crusade,
But there was a kind of misguided morality to that one.
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Bucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #47
60. Plus a lot of urban legends that exaggerate its importance and size
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JudyM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
49. Now we just need to wait for the MSM to pick this up and interview him.
:sarcasm:
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cemaphonic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 03:21 PM
Response to Original message
51. He has got to be exaggerating for effect.
Off the top of my head:

Franco-Prussian War (French army handily defeated, capitol occupied, unified Germany undoes a primary foreign policy goal that has existed for centuries)

Napolean & Hitler vs. Russia & England (Continental European Empire destroyed by overreaching)

1st and 2nd Afghan War (Total destruction of occupying army, loss of diplomatic leverage in the Great Game)

Boer War (Independent Dutch states are annexed by the British Empire)

Iran-Iraq War (Grinding stalemate with casulties in the millions)

4th Crusade (From the standpoint of the Crusaders anyway - Huge success for Venice)

And that's just mostly modern, and mostly Eurocentric. I doubt if our current war is in the top 50 of wars that went badly for the initiator over the last 2000 years.

It's bad enough, of course. I just don't like to see bad history perpatrated by history experts to make political points, even ones I agree with.
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nolabels Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #51
52. Probably not by much though
Course then again, lots of guys and gals think ALL wars are stupid
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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #51
67. Or for that matter
The American Civil War. Radical Southern politicians, worried that the election of Lincoln threatens the existence of slavery, opt out of the Constitution and launch their bid for independence. The result: a quarter-million southern soldiers dead from battle or disease, bankruptcy and the physical destruction of most of the industrial assets of the South, and the abolition of slavery without compensation.
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Art_from_Ark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #51
68. The Franco-Prussian War was a huge success for Germany
Nothing stupid about that invasion, from the German point of view, since it helped to unify the German states and secured important coal and iron areas for Germany.

But if you want to talk about really, really stupid wars, there's always the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648), which eventually wiped out 1/3 of the population of the Germans states, all because the Catholics and Protestants had a little disagreement
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cemaphonic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 12:15 AM
Response to Reply #68
73. Sure, but the DOW came from Nap. III
So did the initial territorial violation, IIRC. Bismark did all he could to precipitate the situation, and was very prepared to counterattack, and as you say, Germany won bigtime. My point was that France started the war and lost.

I considered the Thirty Years War too, but decided it was too complicated for a parenthetical explanation. Sure was destructive though.
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Art_from_Ark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 01:27 AM
Response to Reply #73
74. I see your point
Bismarck wanted to unite the disparate German states (under his control, of course), and did all he could to taunt the French. And Napoleon III, imagining himself as the New Napoleon, was only more than happy to oblige with an ill-advised pre-emptive declaration of war. But while the French were the first to declare war, I believe the Germans were the first to launch an invasion.
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cemaphonic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 03:45 AM
Response to Reply #74
78. Hmm. now I'm curious
This is interesting. Some chronologies I've looked up begin with the German invasion on Aug. 4, but on Aug 2, the French seized Saarbrucken and held it for two days. So it looks like France initiated hostilities, however minor and inconclusive.
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Major Hogwash Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
53. And yet they re-elected Bush!
Incredible.

When people figure out how he was able to fool half of the people in this country into voting for him again, that is when the fan will start to smell really bad.
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drone Donating Member (55 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #53
54. Let them pay
Let us hope the ones who voted for the chimp pay for it.
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ToolTex Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 04:46 PM
Response to Reply #53
56. My question: How culpable are those that repeatedly voted for him?
They had the same information available to determine his lack of character and intelligence as we had. How guilty are they in the deaths in Iraq?
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nolabels Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 11:34 AM
Response to Reply #56
88. Wouldn't we first have to figure out who voted for him as compared to..........
those who innocently had their vote switched from no fault of their own :shrug:
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SquireJons Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 04:39 PM
Response to Original message
55. What a great article
It all seems like common sense to most folks now, but it was treason (in some peoples minds) to say such things a couple of years ago.
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Hatalles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 05:10 PM
Response to Original message
58. Brian Whitaker is great...
His five-part series on "Democracy & the Middle East" is a must-read.

Part one: http://www.guardian.co.uk/elsewhere/journalist/story/0,...

He's made a lot of enemies because he doesn't buy into the usual "blame Islam" rhetoric and focuses on examining political, social, and economic factors in the ME, as well as the effects of colonialist legacy.

His site is www.al-bab.com
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:08 PM
Response to Original message
63. Van Creveld?!!?!??
As the freepers would say, this is hugh!

Van Creveld has two books, Command in War and Supplying War that are on all 4 branches' required reading lists and read at the War College. I had to read Supplying War to pick up Sergeant in a supply billet (they're both really good books, btw). I never would have thought he would make such a bold claim about Iraq before it's over, because he's very cautious in his judgments. Remember: this is the guy whose thinking and writing shaped the current intellectual climate in the senior officer corps.
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RedEarth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 06:41 PM
Response to Original message
69. We don't call him a dumb shit for nothing, do we....
he earned that description... and sadly, that's just one example.
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-30-06 07:11 PM
Response to Original message
70. Hopefully this group of neonasinastycons is only a once in two-millennium or so occurrence
inde :patriot:
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Johnny Appleseed Donating Member (120 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 02:56 AM
Response to Original message
76. hmmm
Edited on Fri Dec-01-06 02:57 AM by Johnny Appleseed
He is Martin van Creveld, a professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and one of the world's foremost military historians. Several of his books have influenced modern military theory and he is the only non-American author on the US Army's list of required reading for officers.

Surprising that John Keegan isn't on that list. He's my favorite in that particular genre.
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ChairmanAgnostic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 05:33 AM
Response to Original message
79. allow me to be the 30th to recommend this thread.
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dmoded Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 08:50 AM
Response to Original message
80. Bush woulda accomplished more invading fn Canada.. Bacon and not that many insurgents. n/t
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DemReadingDU Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 10:18 AM
Response to Original message
84. Bush is the worst evildoer of all times
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dbrusiee Donating Member (1 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #84
90. Lincoln was worse than Bush...
Although I don't agree with many of the actions that Bush is supporting including using our troops in IRAQ I have a much BIGGER problem with all of the problems he is ignoring.

Unemployment, Outsourcing, Global Warming, Terrorism, Nuclear Weapons etc. just to name a few.

However I still think that Abraham Lincoln was one of the worst presidents we ever had, He was
the cause of the Civil War which had only one outcome. It made most of the African Americans
unemployed, a problem that they are still fighting today.

Please don't respond to this topic until you have read some the Douglas/Lincoln speacheds that
are well documented on the Internet.
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ProfessorGAC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #90
91. You Do Realize That The World Works In Three, Not Two, Dimensions
An idiotic analogy.
The Professor
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Zynx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
86. Eh, I'll put fascist WWII Japan up ahead of this one.
That one was just dumb. And Yamamoto told them it was dumb.
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gaijinlaw Donating Member (140 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 01:56 PM
Response to Original message
92. Reading this,
I couldn't think of anything but Brian Blessed bellowing, "Quintilius Varus! Where are my Eagles?"
:)
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trackfan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 04:49 PM
Response to Original message
94. It was 9 A.D.
what the article says to the contrary notwithstanding.
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NickB79 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-01-06 05:54 PM
Response to Original message
95. USA! USA! USA!
We're #1! We're #1! Yeaaaaaaa!!!

Now excuse me while I go listen to Rush Limbaugh and put my head in the oven....
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