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applegrove Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 03:12 PM
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Victory At Hand by Jane Smiley for Huffington Post
Victory At Hand
by Jane Smiley
for Huffington Post
Jan 06, 2007

"I understand that some right wing idiot is going around again, propounding the idea that the US could have achieved "victory" in Vietnam if we had just stuck it out a little longer. (I also understand that this right wing idiot is actually Fred Barnes). Victory victory victory. If you're a certain kind of person, that word sounds sane, even sensible--on the football field.

But as a description of something possible in Iraq, or in Vietnam, it does not sound sane. It does not even rise to the level of "deluded", and resides more in the category of cynical-disinformation- employed-to-plunder-the-American-people-of- their-hard-earned-cash (whatever they have left once their jobs have been outsourced and their health benefits cut off). Little George and Big Dick love the word "victory", and they use it all the time, but it makes no difference. "Victory" doesn't apply when you've never revealed what a "victory" is.

Let's look at victory in terms of the liberation of Paris. Allied troops marched into Paris, after the Axis troops retreated, and they were, indeed, greeted as liberators. Except the Germans had never been French--they were the invaders, and so in Baghdad, we're actually more analogous to the Germans--occupiers. Who will drive us out? The Sunni-linked Saudis or the Shiite-linked Iranians? It is taking a civil war to decide.

Or let's look at victory in terms of the surrender of the Japanese. Nuclear weapons. A hundred thousand or more deaths, the unleashing of a new form of terror and dread into the world. At the end of a long and expensive war, the Japanese looked reality in the face, saw that the Americans were capable of anything, and laid down their arms. Maybe this model applies to Iran, and, because of contiguity, their neighbors to the east and the west (you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows), and the north and the south. What do you say, Fred, want to achieve "victory" by nuking Iran into submission? By the way, Fred, the bunker busters don't work--they don't go deep enough, and the Pentagon knows it. So any nuclear attack would just be a show of force.

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Warren Stupidity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 03:45 PM
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1. K&R
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brazos121200 Donating Member (626 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 04:18 PM
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2. I wouldn't ask Fred barnes or Pres. Bush if they would use nuclear
weapons in Iran, the answer might very well be Yes. Many countries in the world today have nuclear weapons, including North Korea and Israel. Even Kim Il Sung knows that to use his nukes would be insane,and Israel knows better than to use nukes on some Arab capitals as much as they might like to. Only one country has ever used nuclear weapons against human beings and that country is the United States, to our eternal shame in my opinion. I believe this crowd in power now would be willing to use nukes to achieve their precious 'victory', whatever that means to them. Bush never can define what would constitute victory in Iraq in any meaningful sense, I don't think thay really know, or care.
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 04:28 PM
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3. No, I don't think it's much worth it to bash the stupid warmongers, they are
such a small minority. SEVENTY-FOUR PERCENT of the American people are impervious to this propaganda about "victory" and want the Iraq War ended, and a whopping EIGHTY-FOUR PERCENT said, last summer, that they oppose any US participation in a widened Mideast War.

So, the nutballs, even though they are given a BIG TRUMPET by the war profiteering corporate news monopolies to create an illusion of support for unjust war and other fascist policy, are not the problem, really.

The problem is, how to empower the overwhelming majority who oppose them?

I think articles like this play into the fascists' game--as if their war profiteering corporate news monopoly narrative matters. It doesn't. It is just slimy goo covering up reality. What matters is WHO has the power to determine policy. What matters is WHY the American people are being ignored, even by a Congress that they tried so hard--against huge handicaps like 'trade secret' code in the voting system, owned and controlled by Bushite corporations--to change.

I suppose it's a worthy endeavor to try to hammer these corporate news monopolies with the truth, not that there is any chance that they will change the essence of their pro-war, pro-rich, pro-corporate gloss on national and world events. But perhaps just for the exercise of the public's sovereignty, and to put them on notice that we may well end up busting up their monopolies, pulling their licenses to use the public airwaves, and seizing their assets for the public good.

But what I think we REALLY need to do is to help the majority realize that they are not in the minority (as the corporate war profiteers would have them believe, in spite of all the evidence to the contrary), and finding the way to hearten, empower, and most critical of all, RE-ENFRANCHISE the majority, which doesn't want unjust war and never did. (56% of the American people opposed this war from the beginning--Feb. '03).


The solution:

Throw Diebold/ES&S and all election theft machines into 'Boston Harbor' NOW!

Count 100% of the votes of the American people NOW!

Still doable at the state/local level. Forget Congress doing it. They're going to give these Bushite corporations, Diebold/ES&S, MORE billions to "fix the system." And the cost of the feds requiring a paper ballot and a meager 2% audit may turn out to be very great, indeed--centralized federal power over the election system (all under the President), combined with a highly insider hackable electronic system, with woefully inadequate audit/recount controls.

At the state/local level, we might have to tolerate continued use of Diebold/ES&S machines--due to the vast corruption among local election officials and legislators, part of the design of the "Help America Vote For Bush Act" of 2002--however, since ordinary people have more influence at the state/local level, we might succeed at getting a 100% handcount as a check on machine fraud, and as a transition away from the machines. They can keep their boondoggle machines, for the time being, and use them to store data, and to double-check the handcount, but not to secretly tabulate the votes. We can start with demanding a handcount of the Absentee Ballot votes--the big AB vote in '06 signaled a voter revolt against the machines; it's a big voter constituency--and let it snowball from there. Everyone will want a handcounted paper ballot.

Here are the lessons I've gathered from study of the great democracy movement that is sweeping Latin America:

1. TRANSPARENT vote counting.
2. Grass roots organization.
3. Think big.
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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-11-07 04:30 PM
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4. Fred Barnes need to go to Iraq and take a hike-- outside the green zone!
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