Whacking the Pinata - A Citizen's Response to Bush's War Escalation Speech

I was sitting and watching Bush's speech (1/10/07) when I decided I had to respond and break it down point by point to show people exactly how wrong I think he is.

Not just wrong as in, "in error", wrong as in "morally disgusting", "sickeningly cruel", and "deliberately deceptive".

And he used the mythic events of 9/11 as the central compelling justification for all the resulting mayhem.

So I did my best to correct the record as I see it.


Kinda like whacking a pinata with a baseball bat.


David Caputo
Totally Fixed and Rigged Magazine

I include the entire article below...

Whacking the Piñata
President George Swings Blindly at his Elusive Target

Commentary by David Caputo - Totally Fixed and Rigged Magazine

Well well well... George the Second went on TV Wednesday night (1/10/07) to announce his "new plan" to "win" the Iraq war.

I've really got to meet his dealer. That stuff he's smoking must be killer...

I'll now attempt to respond to this strident re-call-to-arms in a systematic, line by line way. Every sentence of his speech was carefully crafted (not by him, I presume) to "mean something" and impart a sense of world view and unstated assumptions. I'll do a bit of research and analysis as I go along, and explain what I think they're "really" trying to say, and what I think about what they actually and by implication did say.

This is an exercise in "whacking the pinata" in several ways.

For one, George Bush has announced that MORE, not fewer, US citizens will have to leave their homes, jobs, and families to go get shot up again with god-knows-what vaccine set and sit in the scorching desert getting bitten by sand fleas. All the while hopefully NOT getting their brains blown out by a sniper while they light a cigarette or losing a leg when their humvee drives over one of those new-fangled "shape charge" IEDs. This is clearly "whacking the pinata" of the American Soldiers, who bravely risk their lives while serving (as volunteers no less), yet somehow only get kicked squarely in the teeth by this administration time and time again. From inciting sniper fire with "bring 'em on" bravado to managing the occupation as essentially one big looting operation, the Bush administration has had nothing but contempt for the people who serve them, and us all, so selflessly.

Secondly, the American people must feel a bit like the aforementioned candy-stuffed baseball bat target, because we overwhelmingly voted AGAINST the war! We repudiated the Republican leadership's agenda by returning control of Congress to the Democrats and voting for strong anti-war candidates in districts across the country. But Bush Jr. pays no mind. He could care less what anyone else thinks except his wife and his dog. He said so himself. If he thinks he's right, then goddammit he's gonna do whatever the hell he wants. And who's gonna stop him, eh?

Ouch. That hurts. Stop sir. Please... Ouch.

Poor American citizens. Battered and bruised by relentless propaganda and threat of disappearance and torture. Few dare challenge intake chute of the meat grinder that our youth are being airlifted to. We're too busy covering our heads from the incoming blows of an obviously blindfolded President.

And the third way (at least that I can think of now) that this situation resembles "whacking the piñata" is that with each line of the speech below, I'm going to grip my rhetorical bat firmly, will myself to see through both my own blinders and the blindfolds others seek to saddle me with, and swing hard.


President Bush Addresses Nation on Iraq War

Source: CQ Transcripts Wire - Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 9:10 PM


Good evening.

Tonight in Iraq, the armed forces of the United States are engaged in a struggle that will determine the direction of the global war on terror and our safety here at home.

OK... now this is the fundamental assumption that underlies all this other BS. It contains one obvious truism, which tries to suggest the other statement is true. Since the Administration has declared that Iraq is the "central front of the war on terror", then anything that affects the Iraq war would affect the "war on terror", by definition.

The other statement, though, is much more dubious, especially taken as they intend to mean it, which is, "we have to fight them over there so we don't have to fight them over here". This notion is absolute nonsense. Iraq has and had neither the will or the ability for such activities. Clearly the conflicting parties will fall upon each other once we leave, and we will be quickly forgotten as a target once more local concerns take hold. Before we invaded they had even less reason to attack us, as there were not thousands of bitter, mourning Iraqis with hatred of us because we killed their son / daughter / sister / brother / mother /father /grandparent / cousin / uncle /aunt / friend / lover / wife / child / pastor. They were bitter about the sanctions, sure, but not enough to pose a realistic threat. We maintained constant air superiority over their territory, fer crissake...

He also misses the irony that our "safety here at home" (and when visiting foreign countries on business or vacation) would be greatly enhanced by an abrupt change of policy that included rapid troop withdrawals and payment of reparations to an international consortium of sponsoring countries that did NOT include the United States, so that we might admit our tragic error / brutal crime and show humility to the world and ask for forgiveness for our many sins.

Yea... no real chance of that happening though, it seems...

The new strategy I outline tonight will change America's course in Iraq and help us succeed in the fight against terror.

Well... not really "change", more "expand upon". "Change", is a word that implies difference. It suggests a turning of the wheel of policy rather than just a drunken stomp on the accelerator.

And how does one "succeed" in the "fight against terror" anyway?

Repeat the "I shall fear no evil" psalm over and over?

Steel yourself to extensive retail therapy in potentially-targeted shopping malls because the American economy needs your help?

Say, "No", when your 14 year old son asks you to take him to "Texas Cheerleader Chainsaw Massacre XVII"?

What will help?

I think he really wanted to say "terrorism", but like I said, every word of his speech was carefully chosen, and using "terror" instead of "terrorism" or, more accurately, "terrorist groups", is part of the whole effort to dumb-down and newspeak and vague-ize the debate/discussion about what they're doing.

This must clearly be the case, because I don't understand how sending young men and women to situations where they regularly face (and indeed suffer) grievous injury and often death, can be said to reduce the amount of "terror" in the world. Especially the amount of "terror" suffered by Americans. Indeed, it would seem to me that looking down at one's viciously shattered leg, bleeding profusely, stunned with overwhelming pain, contemplating death or a life as an amputee, would be a moment of "terror" so profound as to shake every one of us to our very core. Doesn't sound to me like "success" against "terror" very much at all.

When I addressed you just over a year ago, nearly 12 million Iraqis had cast their ballots for a unified and democratic nation. The elections of 2005 were a stunning achievement.

Well, I did think the whole "purple thumb" thing was a nice touch. Kind of a "we're not Sunni/Shia/Kurd, we're PURPLE", public relations campaign that provided internet-ready full color pictures of "democracy on the march." There must have been some internal conflict in the Bush Administration because "The Color Purple" is also a book and movie that contains lesbian scenes, and I'm sure someone down the Moral Majority end of the West Wing pointed this out. Despite this, they seem to have been overruled. Maybe there really is a "Gay Mafia" inside Republican circles who wanted to make a stand for Purple and saw this as their best shot.

Never mind that the campaign was marked by secrecy about who the candidates actually were, due to security concerns, because many of the candidates who had been identified were quickly assassinated. Or that the election took place under the violent and suspiciously-watchful control of an invading power, with no attempts to back off or return to bases or anything that would even have given the Iraqis a semblance of independent action. His assertion that the elections were a "stunning" achievement is instructive, because "stunning" means either "beautiful", which they were clearly not, or "disabling and disorienting", which seems to hit the nail right on the head.

We thought that these elections would bring the Iraqis together and, that as we trained Iraqi security forces, we could accomplish our mission with fewer American troops.

Who's "we". Nobody outside of 1600 PA Avenue thought that the elections were going to bring the the Iraqis into a big Kum-Bay-Yah group hug. I'd submit that they didn't think this would happen either, and that the whole thing was a big PR stunt trying to put nice red glossy lipstick on this 800-pound-sow of a policy disaster.

"Training" Iraqi security forces has been a big problem too. Problem is that we don't really need to teach the Iraqis how to fight, or shoot guns, or set off bombs, or organize themselves into military units. We claim that this is what we're doing, but clearly it isn't what we're trying to do, or having difficulty doing. The problem is that we're trying to train the Iraqi forces to do what we tell them to do, which they naturally resist. Oh yea, and they slip off with weapons. Or take advantage of things they know to supply information to the resistance. Or just abandon their posts. This is if they don't just get killed in one of those signature car bombs against groups of Iraqi soldiers lined up outside a check-dispensing window to get paid their pitiful salaries. Interesting how they make the hapless Iraqi soldiers queue up into large, vulnerable masses just to get paid.

That's another reason why Iraqis seem reluctant to sacrifice all for the greater glory of a US-run Iraq. The US military has shown absolutely no regard for the health and safety even of those Iraqis who nominally accept them as their masters. For all the fuss about lightly-armored humvees for US troops, we send these guys around in cloth-covered flatbed trucks.

Talk about a juicy target. Couple of RPGs in the back of one of those and the "Iraqi Army" recruiting numbers take a steep dive yet again.

But in 2006, the opposite happened. The violence in Iraq, particularly in Baghdad, overwhelmed the political gains the Iraqis had made. Al Qaida terrorists and Sunni insurgents recognized the mortal danger that Iraq's elections posed for their cause. And they responded with outrageous acts of murder aimed at innocent Iraqis.

Now here's another clever bit of word hocus-pocus. The opposite of what happened? The elections tore the Iraqis apart (the opposite of "bring them together")? Or that as we trained Iraqi forces, we could only accomplish our mission with MORE American troops.

It didn't seem like the elections themselves tore the Iraqis asunder. There was squabbling and arm twisting and deal making and bluffs and counterbluffs but the "election" process didn't really provoke any systematic violence by itself, that I can remember.

It should be pointed out for the record that Al Qaida has been a CIA front organization for many many years. It was founded by the CIA with the help of an employee named Osama Bin Laden back in the days when he was our friend and the bad Soviets needed to be expelled from Afghanistan. Things are no different today. The Al Qaida group was always attributed to the most gruesome and appalling acts of demonstrative violence. It was frequently reported that the Sunni insurgent groups hated the ostensibly Sunni A.Q. and saw them as provocateurs and outsiders clearly hostile to their interests. They obviously know who "Al Qaeda" is really working for.

Which brings us to an important point. The US government has and had no intention that Iraq would ever become a truly functioning independent country with control over its own affairs, foreign policy, and military, ever again. There is no need to build a comprehensive fleet of staggeringly expensive permanent military bases if we're planning on pulling out and letting the Iraqis take control of our improvements. You'd think we'd be more modest with our embassy compound construction project if we weren't really planning on maintaining viceroy-like imperial control from this massive new seat of our in-country power.

All this means we're not planning on leaving. Ever.

When Bush suggests that the US ever intended or desired anything short of the dismantling of Iraq as a country and the permanent subjugation of its peoples for the purposes of massive profit and power through the control of its oil, he's lying. No other way to put it. If he really believes he has an immortal soul that exposes it's falsehoods to an all-seeing God, then he's simply delusional. But I don't think that's the case. I think he knows he's lying, and is even proud of it.

"They think I'm stupid," he says to himself, "well I'll show them who's stupid."

"They'll believe anything I say, as long as I can keep from cracking up long enough... uhhuh huhh... (shaddup Beavis)"

They blew up one of the holiest shrines in Shia Islam -- the Golden Mosque of Samarra -- in a calculated effort to provoke Iraq's Shia population to retaliate.

Again we have here the ever-present question of who "they" is. Reports from eyewitnesses suggest US covert operatives, unafraid of potential intervention from nearby US Apache Helicopter squadrons, took their time in broad daylight setting the bombs and showed no fear or haste during the entire process.

Calculated effort indeed...

Their strategy worked. Radical Shia elements, some supported by Iran, formed death squads. And the result was a vicious cycle of sectarian violence that continues today.

OK OK... Radical Shia elements had already formed death squads, often with the support of the US advisers who were sent there to impose a "Salvador" solution to the restive Iraqi "problem". For those who are too young or don't remember recent history, a "Salvador" (as in El Salvador) solution is one that consists of summary execution, kidnappings and disappearances, extensive torture, brutal class divisions, ideological extremism and behind-the-scenes puppetmaster control by the US designee, whomever that might be.

The bombing's effect on the already accelerating vicious cycle of violence did have the desired effect (for the Americans, I assert) because it immediately spiked sky-high and ushered in a whole new universe of the grotesque and macabre.

The situation in Iraq is unacceptable to the American people, and it is unacceptable to me. Our troops in Iraq have fought bravely. They have done everything we have asked them to do. Where mistakes have been made, the responsibility rests with me.

How about naming one of these mistakes, George? I notice you pointedly do not. You don't even imply that you accept or understand that anything real or tangible has actually gone wrong under your watch. "Where" mistakes have been made, without examples, means you're really saying "if" mistakes have been made, which you're unsure of...

By using the term "unacceptable" to define both yours' and the American peoples' dissatisfaction with the Iraq war you're lying by analogy. You think it's unacceptable because things aren't going the way you and your cronies want them to. The American people think the war's unacceptable because it's wrong, it's stupid, it's grossly destructive, it's brutal, it's sadistic, it's heartbreaking, and ultimately, because it's a crime against humanity on a spectacular scale.

You don't seem to get this...

It is clear that we need to change our strategy in Iraq. So my national security team, military commanders and diplomats conducted a comprehensive review.

"Because we didn't like what the Iraq Survey Group (Baker Commission) had to say in their list of recommendations.

Talk to Syria?!? What are you HIGH?!?

Talk to Iran?!? Does anyone here look like they speak Farsi?!?

Get the hell out??? No way!!!

We got a better plan... More of the same, but different!!"

We consulted members of Congress from both parties, allies abroad, and distinguished outside experts.

OK... Joe Lieberman, Democrat, Check - Insert generic Republican - England, Israel, ??? - Henry Kissinger and Bill Kristol.

We benefited from the thoughtful recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, a bipartisan panel led by former Secretary of State James Baker and former Congressman Lee Hamilton. In our discussions, we all agreed that there is no magic formula for success in Iraq. And one message came through loud and clear: Failure in Iraq would be a disaster for the United States.

Bush winced when he read the first sentence like he was benefiting from a barium enema. The Iraq Study Group put out page after page of recommendations, but only one came through the static. Perhaps it was the only one he was briefed on. Hold your hands up if you think he read the whole thing himself... No hands??? Thought so. I would also suggest that there could never be a magic formula for "success" in Iraq because there is no agreement as to what that would actually mean and most statements including that phrase are patently disingenuous when analyzed in context.

The consequences of failure are clear: Radical Islamic extremists would grow in strength and gain new recruits. They would be in a better position to topple moderate governments, create chaos in the region and use oil revenues to fund their ambitions. Iran would be emboldened in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. Our enemies would have a safe haven from which to plan and launch attacks on the American people.

Number one, the "consequences" of "failure" are anything but clear. Especially since "failure to do what" is nowhere here exactly defined. How can the consequences of failing to do something, that you don't even know what it is, be knowable in advance? And is he talking about radical Islamist "extremists" just in Iraq? Or elsewhere too? How can US Troops being in or out of Iraq substantially effect the numbers of extremist recruits in other countries? Other than of course, encouraging people to sign up because we are still occupying Iraq. Which moderate governments is he talking about anyway?? Please define "moderate". In the Bush context, "moderate" usually means, "willing and able to take our orders and control their population."

How exactly does one operate and maintain an oil industry in an environment of "chaos"? Those seem like the contradictory goals of an ineffective insurgency. I doubt that's really the plan. One or the other, maybe, but not both.

Iran's "emboldenment" vis a vis the subject of nuclear weapons should be taken with a bit of skepticism. Iran has vigorously disavowed ambitions to build and/or possess nuclear weapons, and the IAEA has pretty much backed them up on this. The whole underexplored subtext of the Valerie Plame affair was the destruction of the Brewster-Jennings undercover intelligence operation that was keeping tabs on what exactly the Iranians WERE up to, lest they be able to contradict the assertions of the Neo-Cons who were making yellowcake-style claims about Iran's intentions and activities.

This, I dare say, is clearly Treason. I invite rebuttals as to why it is not, but I don't see how you can call blinding US policymakers by destroying both an ongoing intelligence operation and a seasoned operative could be described as anything but. Not to mention that many of the contacts and allies that Valerie Plame and other Brewster-Jennings associates had carefully cultivated and promised to protect were exposed as CIA sources and promptly liquidated by their respective regimes.

Nice, eh?

On September the 11th, 2001, we saw what a refuge for extremists on the other side of the world could bring to the streets of our own cities. For the safety of our people, America must succeed in Iraq.

Ahhh... now we get to the "real" point. Back to September 11th. The central justification for this entire clusterf*ck we now find ourselves immersed in. But was that event really what they say it was? He says "we saw" a certain thing, but I for one "saw" something much different than what he suggests happened. I see it as the lynchpin of their entire theory of retaliatory conquest, but one that even they know to be absolutely false. They make a good show of it to scare the masses, but among people who pay attention and dig beneath the surface, the problems with the "official story" add up to an official coverup.

Why would they most urgently endeavor to cover up the most spectacular crime in American history if they wanted the "whole truth" to get out? Why did they not even address the majority of questions posed by the widows of the victims in the official 9/11 Commission Report. Why indeed...

No matter what can be proven about what did or didn't happen on 9/11, it's clearly provable that a massive cover-up took place in the months and years after 9/11. This is what the administration doesn't want you to understand. Lefties who don't realize that this is the smoking gun we need to end this madness are missing the central point. Common citizens from all walks of life feel in their hearts a dread that things are not actually as they've been portrayed. Their dread is well founded. That the "official" story is a bizzaro-world hall of mirrors is plain to anyone who looks at the evidence in any detail at all.

The widespread knowledge that 9/11 was a scam is one thing, in my opinion, that reinforces and solidifies the public's revulsion against this war. Most Americans are not actually as stupid as their leaders would like to believe, but they are sometimes a little slow on the uptake. That time has past though, and there's gonna be hell to pay soon. Just watch.

The most urgent priority for success in Iraq is security, especially in Baghdad. Eighty percent of Iraq's sectarian violence occurs within 30 miles of the capital. This violence is splitting Baghdad into sectarian enclaves and shaking the confidence of all Iraqis. Only the Iraqis can end the sectarian violence and secure their people. And their government has put forward an aggressive plan to do it.

Yea... "their government" has a plan. Right. I wonder who translated it from Arabic for the Americans. Or was it the other way around? And if "only the Iraqis" can end the violence and bring security, then why exactly are we "helping" so much?

Our past efforts to secure Baghdad failed for two principal reasons: There were not enough Iraqi and American troops to secure neighborhoods that had been cleared of terrorists and insurgents, and there were too many restrictions on the troops we did have.

OK, this is big news. Bush admits that his efforts have actually "failed". But then he goes on to completely get wrong why that's the case. He forgets a really big point about urban warfare, namely that it's very very hard to subdue an entire city, especially when they don't want you there and every household is actually allowed to have one AK-47 Kalashnikov rifle on premises. Sounds like everyone is a potential threat, no? Is that what's meant by "cleared". How do you "clear" an apartment block? Where do you put the people you've "cleared"? What due process methods are utilized to weed out the combatants from the non? I highly doubt that you or I would want to be subjected to them, whatever they are.

The second point though, is much more sinister.

What exactly does he mean by "too many restrictions" were placed on troops that participated in these operations before? Does he think that encouraging more acts of brutality and reckless discharges of automatic weapons fire in residential neighborhoods will actually help "secure" Baghdad. I don't follow the logic...

What he seems to be calling for would be encouraging exactly that. The US troops in Baghdad have not exactly displayed a massuse's touch when it comes to the luckless city residents who encounter them. Removing whatever tenuous restrictions, often observed mostly in the breach anyway, that might mitigate the troops more rapacious behaviors, is a certain recipe for sickening war crimes that will shame this nation and the world.

Our military commanders reviewed the new Iraqi plan to ensure that it addressed these mistakes. They report that it does. They also report that this plan can work.

Which military commanders are these? The new Navy guy you picked to run your two desert land wars? I'm glad he's on the job, that's for sure. Since he just got there, almost, he's also probably the best guy to evaluate your plan, right?

Let me explain the main elements of this effort.

The Iraqi government will appoint a military commander and two deputy commanders for their capital. The Iraqi government will deploy Iraqi Army and National Police brigades across Baghdad's nine districts.

When these forces are fully deployed, there will be 18 Iraqi Army and National Police brigades committed to this effort, along with local police. These Iraqi forces will operate from local police stations; conducting patrols, setting up checkpoints, and going door- to-door to gain the trust of Baghdad residents.

"Going door-to-door to gain the trust of Baghdad residents"?!? You've got to be kidding. Somehow I think that when the troops come knocking door-to-door that everyone will scatter and run, not open up for a trust-bonding experience with Iraqi-partnered Americans. Maybe I'm wrong on this, but I don't think so.

This is a strong commitment. But for it to succeed, our commanders say the Iraqis will need our help. So America will change our strategy to help the Iraqis carry out their campaign to put down sectarian violence and bring security to the people of Baghdad.

Change our strategy, eh? Does that mean we're admitting failure (like he just did) and leaving??

Well... no, not exactly.

This will require increasing American force levels. So I have committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq. The vast majority of them -- five brigades -- will be deployed to Baghdad. These troops will work alongside Iraqi units and be embedded in their formations.

Hmm... embedded. Like ticks. Or chiggers. Or major media reporters. Twenty thousand you say? That should help. Sure.

Just one question... Where are you going to get these guys?

The proud US fighting forces have been systematically ground down into dust by way of this war. IPS reports that:

The number of injured has far outstripped the dead, with the Veterans Administration reporting that more than 150,000 veterans of the Iraq war are receiving disability benefits.

Wow... bet you hadn't heard that... One hundred and fifty thousand young men and women already on disability because they've fought in this war. I sure would call this dust-grinding. It's an absolute unmitigated disaster for force levels and a setup for a manditory military draft that everyone says is impossible but is only one actual or invented crisis away from becoming a reality. The math just doesn't add up any other way. They're running out of volunteer soldiers. It's gonna get ugly. Not that it's not revulsive already.

Our troops will have a well-defined mission: to help Iraqis clear and secure neighborhoods, to help them protect the local population, and to help ensure that the Iraqi forces left behind are capable of providing the security that Baghdad needs.

How can a mission that fundamentally contradicts itself be "well-defined"? "Clearing" neighborhoods means invading them with massive trigger-happy displays of force that proceed to kick down everyone's door and drag the menfolk out into the streets to kneel in submission at gunpoint in front of everyone, selecting some or all for detention and consignment to god-knows-what horrors. How this might unfold in an environment of "fewer restrictions" on the troops leaves me in a cold sweat.

How, pray tell, could this ever be contrued as "protecting" the "local population"? Seems the real problem is that the "population" is overwhelmingly hostile to the Americans and any Iraqis who want to play patty-cake with them. Their society's longstanding traditons of blood revenge and extended clan affiliations mean that almost everyone in Baghdad has some reason to be hostile to the forces who have killed or maimed a relative or destroyed a relative's home or business.

I guess "draining the sea to get the fish" doesn't really work in the desert.

Many listening tonight will ask why this effort will succeed when previous operations to secure Baghdad did not.

Really George? You think so?

Here are the differences.

In earlier operations, Iraqi and American forces cleared many neighborhoods of terrorists and insurgents but, when our forces moved on to other targets, the killers returned.

Note the easy confluence of the terms "neighborhoods" and "targets". Maybe the problem is that they just cleared "many" neighborhoods and not "all" of them. Or maybe the problem is that they left people alive in the neighborhoods they moved on from? Where did the killers "return" from anyway? Did we "clear" neighborhoods by just chasing the insurgents away? Did we arrest them and then let them go?

This time, we will have the force levels we need to hold the areas that have been cleared.

Oh... I see. So now we're going to permanently occupy each residential neighborhood of Baghdad with the 20,000 extra troops. We're rousting people from their jobs as firemen and accountants to drag them over there so they can stand guard at the Abdul Bodega on the corner of Tikrit Avenue and 47th St. That'll be good. I'm sure the wives/husbands/bosses/children/parents of the afflicted National Guard troops can all really understand the urgency of our national mission here.

In earlier operations, political and sectarian interference prevented Iraqi and American forces from going into neighborhoods that are home to those fueling the sectarian violence. This time, Iraqi and American forces will have a green light to enter these neighborhoods. And Prime Minister Maliki has pledged that political or sectarian interference will not be tolerated.

Or he's gonna do what? Yell at people? Complain to Condolezza Rice? Certainly not strap-on a flak jacket and wade into the battle himself. No way that's gonna happen. So what's he going to do? He has no more power to stop armed militias doing whatever the hell they want to than the Americans do. The same forces that "prevented" Amer-Iraqi forces from imposing their will before will conspire to thwart it again. No "green light" or lack of "tolerance" is going to help that situation.

I have made it clear to the prime minister and Iraq's other leaders that America's commitment is not open-ended. If the Iraqi government does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of the American people. And it will lose the support of the Iraqi people.

Well... judging from the latest poll numbers, the Iraqi government has about as much popular support in the United States as former Rep. Mark Foley. Maybe less. I can't really comment on the public opinion of the Iraqi people, but it seems hard to believe that the systematic mayhem overflowing the streets each day indicates wholehearted support of the Iraqi government by its subjects.

Now is the time to act. The prime minister understands this. Here is what he told his people just last week: The Baghdad security plan will not provide a safe haven for any outlaws, regardless of sectarian or political affiliation.

Outlaws you say... Like Halliburton? KBR? Custer Battles? the list goes on and on. Bunnatine Greenhouse was cashiered from her prominent position as the Army's chief auditor because she dared speak out about such wholesale thefts. These folks don't like their cash cows gored. Bush wouldn't think of reaching for the spear. So he's lying, plain and simple, because outlaws with the correct political affiliations seem to have a very safe haven indeed.

This new strategy will not yield an immediate end to suicide bombings, assassinations or IED attacks. Our enemies in Iraq will make every effort to ensure that our television screens are filled with images of death and suffering.

Oh... so it's NOT going to actually work after all... OK... Those sycophants of the Iraqi terror-squad leaders themselves, the TV broadcasting networks of America, are going to make sure that those who "hate us because we are free" have an unfettered channel to the hapless citizen's horror and cowardice reflex, as they grind away relentlessly at our will to fight.

So, is there any good news?

Yet, over time, we can expect to see Iraqi troops chasing down murderers, fewer brazen acts of terror, and growing trust and cooperation from Baghdad's residents.

"Chasing down murderers", now that sounds exciting! Maybe they could do it live-action like COPS, only the guy gets filled with machine gun fire instead of read his rights once they've hunted him down. They could syndicate the rights worldwide to help raise some money to offset the awful costs of this whole enterprise, no?

Fewer "brazen" acts of terror doesn't actually mean fewer acts of terror, just fewer "brazen" ones. That should be an improvement... yea...

And then there's the bit again about trust and cooperation with people whose houses you bust your way into and drag people screaming from. I'm pretty much an amateur at this "win friends and influence people" thing but I dunno... Doesn't sound like a promising strategy to me...

When this happens, daily life will improve, Iraqis will gain confidence in their leaders, and the government will have the breathing space it needs to make progress in other critical areas.

Just like MAGIC! Wow... it's true!! It can happen!! Pigs CAN fly!!

Oh yea... not really... that's just what it said on the teleprompter.

Most of Iraq's Sunni and Shia want to live together in peace. And reducing the violence in Baghdad will help make reconciliation possible.

Yes, here George you're actually saying something that is abstractly true. Most people of all religions want to live in peace and enjoy their lives and raise their children in safety. The main problem is that this will likely not happen until we GTFO. Your forced lack of understanding of this small point makes sure that reconciliation im-possible.

A successful strategy for Iraq goes beyond military operations. Ordinary Iraqi citizens must see that military operations are accompanied by visible improvements in their neighborhoods and communities. So America will hold the Iraqi government to the benchmarks it has announced.

Benchmarks? That the Iraqi government has announced? How on earth is America going to hold the Iraqi government to its benchmarks? What will we do if they go unmet? Execute the governing officials? Withdraw all of our troops suddenly? Complain bitterly on Faux News in mock disgust?

To establish its authority, the Iraqi government plans to take responsibility for security in all of Iraq's provinces by November.

Note "plans to take responsibility for" not "has taken responsibility for". You know what they say about the best laid plans...

To give every Iraqi citizen a stake in the country's economy, Iraq will pass legislation to share oil revenues among all Iraqis.

This I'd like to see. Sounds like Socialism to me. Is that what the US has stooped to? Ressurecting state socialism to rescue/support this disintegrating mega-capitalist project? Talk about ideological chaos! Sheesh...

To show that it is committed to delivering a better life, the Iraqi government will spend 10 billion dollars of its own money on reconstruction and infrastructure projects that will create new jobs.

Wow... their "own money" huh. Gonna let the kids spend their own money? Where did they get the lead-in? "To show that it is committed to delivering a better life," sounds like a General Electric ad. Maybe it is. Maybe GE's getting all the new washing machine contracts in the community laundromats that the project will build? Maybe it's less civilian-oriented than that. That'd be what I'd wager.

To empower local leaders, Iraqis plan to hold provincial elections later this year.

So are the candidates going to be announced publicy before the elections this time? That might help. Good to know who at least your choices ARE, even if you can't quite figure out what they stand for.

And to allow more Iraqis to re-enter their nation's political life, the government will reform de-Baathification laws and establish a fair process for considering amendments to Iraq's constitution.

You'd think the Iraqi Muslims liked pork considering all the baloney he's trying to feed them. Or maybe it's all-beef Kosher baloney. Nah, that wouldn't work either. I'm confused...

America will change our approach to help the Iraqi government as it works to meet these benchmarks. In keeping with the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, we will increase the embedding of American advisers in Iraqi Army units and partner a coalition brigade with every Iraqi Army division.

In other words, "We will establish direct oversight and control of your every move. You will go nowhere without our watchful presence, and our ability to call in air power to violently enforce our will on a massive scale."

We will help the Iraqis build a larger and better-equipped Army, and we will accelerate the training of Iraqi forces, which remains the essential U.S. security mission in Iraq.

I'm starting to think that the physics of acceleration surrounding the Iraqi army's training process has many similar features to the suspension of the laws of physics in lower Manhattan some five plus years ago. Neither theory stands up to rigorous testing. Take two examples.

1) All three World Trade Center Towers (1, 2 and 7) collapsed at free-fall speed after suffering damage that (by itself) never could have caused the observed phenomenon we all witnessed that day.

2) Every time we "accelerate" the "training" of Iraqi troops, it seems like fewer and fewer get "trained". It's the classic "the hurrieder I go, the behinder I get" scenario.

It's so hard to train people to take orders though. Especially if they hate your guts.

We will give our commanders and civilians greater flexibility to spend funds for economic assistance.

And ask them to please please please not spend it ALL on Hookers and Black Jack again this time.

We will double the number of Provincial Reconstruction Teams. These teams bring together military and civilian experts to help local Iraqi communities pursue reconciliation, strengthen moderates and speed the transition to Iraqi self-reliance.

All praise the strong local moderate self-reliant Iraqi!!! Wait... isn't that almost a sure sign that they're up to something no good?!?! Thank goodness we've got fewer restrictions now so we can keep our eye on him and rough him up a little if he starts getting too uppity.

And Secretary Rice will soon appoint a reconstruction coordinator in Baghdad to ensure better results for economic assistance being spent in Iraq.

That should help. Sounds like they'll have a lot of real power to knock heads together. You think?

As we make these changes, we will continue to pursue Al Qaida and foreign fighters.

...since they make the most effective chimeras to pursue. Since there are hardly any of them out there, we can spend most of our time pretending we're trying to capture them and not be too disappointed when we come up empty handed. They make good false enemies, though, because the only other people there are to shoot at are Iraqi citizens. Are they the Enemy? Is the entire country now a free-fire zone where all who tread without US escorts are potential targets of the Americans, and those who travel with US escorts are targets of the resistance forces, who consider any cooperation with the invading forces tantamount to treason.

Al Qaida is still active in Iraq. Its home base is Anbar province. Al Qaida has helped make Anbar the most violent area of Iraq outside the capital.

Which brings us back to the point that the Al Qaida network was founded, organized, nurtured, given weapons and training, and kept OFF the "real" list of US military targets. Remember how Osama Bin Laden escaped from Tora Bora? Everything the US government says about Al Qaida is a cover story drenched in a myth. It's instructive how he says that A.Q. has only "helped" make Anbar the most violent area in Iraq. The US military is by far the worst culprit, and he knows this.

A captured Al Qaida document describes the terrorists' plan to infiltrate and seize control of the province. This would bring Al Qaida closer to its goals of taking down Iraq's democracy, building a radical Islamic empire, and launching new attacks on the United States at home and abroad.

I guess we must thank our lucky stars that the bumbling terrorists lay out their entire plan in an easy-to-capture-and-decipher document that laid bare their entire set of devious designs. Sort of like the luggage Mohammed Atta "left behind accidentally" at the airport in Portland, ME in his rush to make sure he caught his connecting flight with destiny. How providential that the FBI didn't have to look very hard at all before "all the answers" conveniently tumbled out of Atta's rental-car trunk.

The trunk contained the "real names" of all 19 "terrorists", a Koran, a "terrorist training manual", and his last will and testament. Never mind that a terrorist who was planning on dive-bombing major commercial properties in a concerted effort to meet his maker in a fiery explosion would probably never bring their final wishes for the disposition of their estates onto the very plane that they were planning on immolating. Don't you think that all the charring would interfere with clearly determining Mr. Atta's wishes once he was no longer able to speak for himself? Don't you think a "brilliant" terrorist leader able to fearlessly thwart the best defensive efforts of the North American air-defense system would figure out this one little iron-clad rule of organic chemistry -- documents made of paper generally burst into flames when exposed to tens of thousands of gallons of exploding jet fuel.

I have my doubts about kerosene's ability to melt or soften industrial-grade construction girders made of hardened steel, but I'm sure that little piece of paper would have been toast, making his relatives' already burdensome task of resolving his probate issues even harder. What a thoughtless bastard, eh?

Good thing he spaced out on the Samsonite. Otherwise we might never have "learned" what "really" happened. Seems like even on one of it's worst days ever, America the beautiful caught a break when, in a moment of confusion or weakness, Atta fatefully "left" his satchel of incriminating evidence behind for the diligent "investigators" of the FBI to "find" in that abandoned rental car.

Our military forces in Anbar are killing and capturing Al Qaida leaders and protecting the local population. Recently, local tribal leaders have begun to show their willingness to take on Al Qaida. As a result, our commanders believe we have an opportunity to deal a serious blow to the terrorists.

So who are these "leaders" that we keep killing and capturing? I don't remember any of them ever being named in the media. Ever since the phantasmic Abu Musab al Zarqawi was allegedly killed many months ago, the forces of Al-Kayda-in-Irack have barely caused a ripple of newsworthy trouble. But that doesn't really seem to matter. They've been juiced up at the designated boogeyman, and they represent the only even theoretically justifiable idea why we have so many of our young citizens tromping around the country getting contantly shot at and explosively ambushed.

Bush has to somehow create a plausible scenario where they still constitute a credible threat. Otherwise he has absolutely nowhere to go. He knows this, and the justifications get weaker and weaker as the canard gets more and more obvious and the justification attempts chase their tails into dizziness.

Time to sit down. The room is spinning...

So I have given orders to increase American forces in Anbar province by 4,000 troops. These troops will work with Iraqi and tribal forces to step up the pressure on the terrorists. America's men and women in uniform took away Al Qaida's safe haven in Afghanistan, and we will not allow them to re-establish it in Iraq.

Anbar province is 30,000 square miles in size. That amounts to one more US soldier for every eight or so square miles. So this isn't just for show, eh? Yah... Right. I'm sure the bad guys will just scamper back to Syria at the first sign of the reinforced calvary coming over the hill. All will be right in the world again, and peace and tranquility can safely return to this arid yet beautiful landscape.

Maybe this IS a good idea after all. Since it's surely going to work... right?

Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity and stabilizing the region in the face of the extremist challenge.

Well Iraqi territorial "integrity" is a matter of imposed colonial mandate, and not quite a "thing" in and of itself. One reason that Sunnis, Shia, and Kurds all fight bitterly amongst themselves is that they were all forced into a live-together arrangement by their former colonial masters, the British. So it's a good thing to spend someone's finance's life to "defend". Surely it's worth a brother or two (or 2700). Maybe a couple of fathers. How about a former kindergarten teacher just back for his second tour? Or a twenty year old medical student ready to ship back home in a week.

Amazing how war authors so many bitter personal tragedies.

My opinion is that Iraqi "territorial integrity" is really the opposite goal of what they're trying to achieve. They're suggesting that they are committed to making sure Iraq remains one country, but their actions speak otherwise. It's the opinion of many observers that the US seeks ultimately break Iraq up into smaller pseudo-states, where they can have more control through corruption and intimidation than they are able to achieve now.

The "Extremist Challenge"? Sounds like a new reality TV Show. Like "Batchelors in Baghdad". How does one "sabilize" a region in the face of such a challenge? What exactly are the "extremist" positions that challenge us so much? U.S. out of Iraq? Justice for the Palestinians? A return to Sunni dominance in Iraqi affairs? A cultural and political alliance with neighboring Shia Iran? Supression of women's rights? Opposition to international finance agencies?

The fantasy of Iraqis somehow organizing an Islam-wide Caliphate is pretty ridiculous on its face, considering how difficult it is for them to agree even with each other.

This begins with addressing Iran and Syria. These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq. Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops. We will disrupt the attacks on our forces. We will interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria. And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.

First of all, Syria and Iran are "countries", not "regimes". "Addressing" in this context doesn't mean "speaking to", as in, "I addressed the assembly". Instead it means "attack and initiate covert operations against". The Neo-Cons are still chomping at the bit for a middle-east-wide expanded conflict, despite the miserable disasters their existing projects have turned out to be. "Interrupting the flow of support" apparently also includes illegally arresting ambassadors in their embassies, clearly an act of war provocation. If any other country did that to the US, there would be hell to pay, and rightly so. Who the bleep do we think we are to blatantly disregard all previous norms of international diplomacy and behavior and proceed with this kind of operation?

And where is the proof for all this? Have we actually observed people moving across the border at officially sanctioned crossings with the apparent complicity of the local authorities? Hell no. If we had, the footage would have been all over the news already.

All this has echoes of another country nearby to the territory that we have chosen to invade. That one is called Cambodia. As many as five million people died as a result of our expanding the war to include it. Read Chomsky in Manufacturing Consent for the full brutal details.

We are also taking other steps to bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests in the Middle East. I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region.

Oh good. Another carrier strike group. Slick way to add more troops to the region without actually announcing it like that's what you're doing. I've never heard the personnel from this group included in the totals of any estimates of the troop increase, but it's about another 6500 souls. Sounds like a major escalation to me, and perhaps (especially when combined with the last couple lines of the speech) a harbringer of a major series of air strikes against Iran.

We will expand intelligence sharing, and deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies. We will work with the governments of Turkey and Iraq to help them resolve problems along their border. And we will work with others to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons and dominating the region.

Well the work that the Americans have done to help Iran take a more dominant role in the Persian Gulf region could hardly have been done by anyone else, so it's hard to believe that the US really is seeking to diminish Iranian influence. Removing Iran's arch-enemy Saddam Hussein was a gift to the mullahs akin to Bob McFarlane's frosted cake. That symbolic pastry was the harbringer of many shipments of sophisticated American weapons and spare parts to the Iranians. The Israelis, believe it or not, were the conduit, happily shipping (fronting even) boatloads of ordinance to Teheran on the promise that the US would resupply them, plus a little "cooperation bonus".

But the Bush 41 October Surprise treason is another story, although connected and still highly relevant to the situation today. Funny how the hostages were released the very hour Reagan was inaugurated. Funny how everyone alleged to be involved in that plot denies it but can't actually place there whereabouts on the day they were reported to be meeting with the Iranians in Paris. You'd think it was an outrageous claim, except that it comes from the former Iranian President at that time, who would actually be in a position to have known.

Notice also how Bush says the US will deploy Patriot air defense systems to "reassure", rather than "defend" our friends and allies. Who exactly are these people anyway. He doesn't name any specific countries that Patriot batteries will be deployed to, but that's OK, because IEDs and snipers are not effectively deterred by Anti-Missile Missiles, and they seem to be the most deadly threat on the ground right now.

Turkey and Iraq have a very complicated political problem on their border, called the Kurds. Too bad for the Turks that the Kurds are the only US ally in Iraq and so as such receive special favors from the Americans. Too bad for the Kurds that whenever they have ever trusted or relied upon the US in the past, they have been royally screwed for their foolishness.

We will use America's full diplomatic resources to rally support for Iraq from nations throughout the Middle East. Countries like Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and the Gulf States need to understand that an American defeat in Iraq would create a new sanctuary for extremists and a strategic threat to their survival.

Sounds like a not-so-subtle threat to cause some kind of an "accident" for the aforementioned countries should they balk at providing the US sufficient cover and support for their attack on whatever it is we're fighting in Iraq. Notice how the political entities on this US friendly list are referred to as "countries", instead of "regimes", although most are autocracies with little individual freedom or respect for human rights.

These nations have a stake in a successful Iraq that is at peace with its neighbors, and they must step up their support for Iraq's unity government.

"That's MUST. Did you hear me. Don't make me get all Shock-and-Awe on your ass. I will. You know it."

We endorse the Iraqi government's call to finalize an international compact that will bring new economic assistance in exchange for greater economic reform.

How does he exactly propose to "reform" the shredded meltdown that is the current Iraqi economy? How can "reform" in such a context be offered as an exchange for anything? Does he really mean "reforms" that strengthen the ever expanding US business dominance of the Iraqi economy. I think the reforms he has in mind are pretty specific and deal with the rights for who will control the extraction, refinement, and sale of the vast pool of petroleum that lies innocently beneath the Iraqi desert sands, mere fathoms from the light of day.

So I think the strategy is: "Starve and deprive them to death until they agree to hand every last one of the country's assets over to US control in a way that we can say that they asked us to do it."

And, on Friday, Secretary Rice will leave for the region to build support for Iraq and continue the urgent diplomacy required to help bring peace to the Middle East.

Given the rest of the current reality, I'd be shocked if this wasn't a complete waste of time, given that she will be advancing no new proposals or interesting ideas. The debate is over. The US needs to get its soldiers out of Iraq now, or continue to hack away at the body politic and the countries armed forces. Some of the most strident voices calling for immediate withdrawal are right up in the mid to high levels of the on-the-sand military command structure. The know the game is over. No amount of "diplomacy" is going to save the US vision of its victory dance now.

The challenge playing out across the broader Middle East is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive ideological struggle of our time. On one side are those who believe in freedom and moderation. On the other side are extremists who kill the innocent, and have declared their intention to destroy our way of life.

Whoa, whoa, whoa... Are you saying, George, that you'all believe in "moderation"?!? Since when???

Do only "extremists" "kill the innocent"? How about American or other coalition country's G.I.s? Are all the folks killed by them "guilty" of something? Other than just being in the way?

Seems to me that I remember many employees of your administration described as "extremists" themselves. Who are the "moderates" in your crowd? Your adoring public would love to know. At least I would. Must be people I've never heard of that you've kept securely under wraps until now. Are you planning a big coming out party?

Somehow I doubt it. I've always thought you preferred extremists to moderates. Cheney, Wolfowitz, Pearle, Krystol, Haggard, Robertson. Sounds like a frickin' Extremists Hall of Fame if you ask me. Are these the "moderates" you suggest love freedom so much? Or are they the "extremists" who are trying to "destroy our way of life"?

They seem pretty extreme according to my world view. Their agenda actively seeks to create a world that I'm not eager to sign up to live in. It's like psychosis meets venality writ large. Almost everything they stand for is anathema to my innermost political and spiritual beliefs.

Decisive ideological struggle, yea. But once again George, you've got the sides and the stakes and the desired outcomes totally, totally, wrong.

In the long run, the most realistic way to protect the American people is to provide a hopeful alternative to the hateful ideology of the enemy, by advancing liberty across a troubled region. It is in the interests of the United States to stand with the brave men and women who are risking their lives to claim their freedom, and help them as they work to raise up just and hopeful societies across the Middle East.

Yea... kinda like a... crusade, eh?

Again I ask: Who exactly is the "enemy"? What exactly is this "hateful ideology" and where is it written down? What groups that are not in the direct or indirect employ of the United States covert services have claimed it to be their own? Exactly what military capabilities and territorial resources do these individuals or groups have? Who are the brave men and women who are risking their lives to claim their freedom who are on our side in this conflict? Can you name ten?

And I think you mangled your words again. When you said "just and hopeful societies", I think you meant, "just hopeful", as in, no real progress, just "hope" pumped in via ideological transfusion a la Voice of America, etc.

From Afghanistan to Lebanon to the Palestinian Territories, millions of ordinary people are sick of the violence and want a future of peace and opportunity for their children. And they are looking at Iraq.

Add to that, the United States of America. We are sick of the violence, Mr. President. We told you that in November. What are you, deaf??? Or just stupid?? Or both?

We also want a future of peace and opportunity for our children. You know, the ones being sent to Dover via special night cargo plane? Or shipped off discreetly to Walter Reed to languish in pain -- silent testimony to the consequences of your decisions.

Yes, we are looking at Iraq, and we are looking at you. We are wondering what demon or psychoses or syphilitic insanity has taken hold of your mind and our nation. I don't know what you see there, but I see the very gates of Hell.

This is reality. We know this. Your lies are no longer working.

You must know that too. Why do you persist?

They want to know: Will America withdraw and yield the future of that country to the extremists, or will we stand with the Iraqis who have made the choice for freedom?

We can't stand up with the Iraqis who have made a choice for freedom, cause their choice inevitably involves freedom from us. The future of the country has already been yielded to extremists, in the Bush Administration.

The changes I have outlined tonight are aimed at ensuring the survival of a young democracy that is fighting for its life in a part of the world of enormous importance to American security.

No they are not. They are designed to salvage the American attempt to secure a permanent beachhead (including permanent force-projecting military bases) in the most oil-rich region in the world.

Any other attempt to explain our rationale for being there and continuing to do what we are doing is a bald faced lie.

Let me be clear: The terrorists and insurgents in Iraq are without conscience, and they will make the year ahead bloody and violent. Even if our new strategy works exactly as planned, deadly acts of violence will continue. And we must expect more Iraqi and American casualties.

Soooo.... even if this works exactly, more Americans are going to die. I suppose if it doesn't work quite exactly (and the track record for things-Iraqi working "exactly as planned" is fairly dismal), that just means that LOTS more Americans are going to die.

You imply that you have a conscience, since the "terrorists and insurgents" (I thought they were one and the same, are they different?) are without one, and you seem to suggest that you are the opposite of what ever they are. Yet by accepting the inevitability of more US and Iraqi casualties, you ensure that more mothers, fathers, wives, children, and friends of servicemembers will hear the heart-stopping, devastating, mind-numbing news that another hero has fallen, a hero that they knew personally, and has now been sacrificed on the altar of the PNAC Church of Omnipotent Hegemony. That you repeatedly march blithely into this abyss of your own making would imply that you see in others that which is in your own heart. Without true feelings for the human beings you order destroyed and empathy for the heartbroken loved ones they leave behind, your claims to conscience are as laughable as your claims that 20,000 (or 26,500, if you count the Aircraft Carrier) more troops will ultimately lead to the pacification of Baghdad and the flourishing of Jeffersonian Democracy in Iraq.

It's just not gonna happen, and your pretenses to the contrary are making you and our country a laughing stock the world over.

But you're kinda like the bully in the room with a live hand grenade.

To get everyone's attention, he pulls the pin and holds it aloft and declares that if everybody doesn't do exactly as he says and everything doesn't work out exactly like he wants he's going to throw it into the middle of the room and kill everyone.

Yikes! He's PROMISING everyone more death and destruction. What the hell is going on here?

The question is whether our new strategy will bring us closer to success. I believe that it will.

Yea... and we should ascribe to your beliefs because you've always been right before about Iraq?

It doesn't seem like you are analyzing the question, just giving your stock answer. I think you've got a big credibility problem, Mr. President. You can "believe" something now yourself, but it has little effect on our opinion of what that thing means, unless you count all those who automatically believe the opposite, just because you take a particular position. Many folks the world over think that whatever you want, they're against it, for their own survival and the survival of us all.

Victory will not look like the ones our fathers and grandfathers achieved. There will be no surrender ceremony on the deck of a battleship.

You're right. This time the surrender ceremony will be on the helipad on the roof of the embassy, just like the last one was.

But victory in Iraq will bring something new in the Arab world: a functioning democracy that polices its territory, upholds the rule of law, respects fundamental human liberties, and answers to its people. A democratic Iraq will not be perfect. But it will be a country that fights terrorists instead of harboring them, and it will help bring a future of peace and security for our children and grandchildren.

Like I said in the beginning, I have just GOT to meet his dealer. Dude's trippin...

Our new approach comes after consultations with Congress about the different courses we could take in Iraq.

As in, we emailed them the text of this speech over a half hour ago.

Many are concerned that the Iraqis are becoming too dependent on the United States and, therefore, our policy should focus on protecting Iraq's borders and hunting down Al Qaida. Their solution is to scale back America's efforts in Baghdad or announce the phased withdrawal of our combat forces.

You scrambled it again, so let me make it clear. I'm calling for the immediate commencement of full withdrawal of US forces. Nothing else is justified morally, politically, or economically.

We carefully considered these proposals. And we concluded that to step back now would force a collapse of the Iraqi government, tear that country apart, and result in mass killings on an unimaginable scale.

"I don't know lady, I've got a hell of an imagination," said Han Solo to Princess Leia, as she offered him "more money than he could possibly imagine" to participate in the rebellion.

Wouldn't stepping back "potentially cause" a collapse of the government instead of "force" one. Are the US commanders and troops the only ones who can defend the government compounds from Iraqis who feel underrepresented? I guess the situation must be pretty damn bad...

Such a scenario would result in our troops being forced to stay in Iraq even longer, and confront an enemy that is even more lethal. If we increase our support at this crucial moment, and help the Iraqis break the current cycle of violence, we can hasten the day our troops begin coming home.

We've got "ignorance is strength" writ large here. What you're saying is that if we "withdraw" our troops, they'll actually have to "stay" longer??? I don't think they would be "forced" to stay. The US has easily the best heavy airlift capability in the world, and I dare say the Iraqis would hold off on attacking us for a few days if we were really clearly on our way out.

More violence will not "break the cycle" of violence in any way. It will just cause more death, destruction, dispair, dismemberment and social disintegration. You know this. Why do you lie to us so.

Ignorance is strength, indeed.

In the days ahead, my national security team will fully brief Congress on our new strategy. If members have improvements that can be made, we will make them. If circumstances change, we will adjust.

In other words, read the email and shut up. Notice I didn't say improvements that "should" be made, only "can". Since you alone decide which improvements "can" be made, then it's easy to reject them out of hand. "If circumstances change" is a curious way to posit your willingness to adjust, because circumstances have already changed, and that is the subject of tonight's speech, no?

Honorable people have different views, and they will voice their criticisms. It is fair to hold our views up to scrutiny. And all involved have a responsibility to explain how the path they propose would be more likely to succeed.

Well I'm glad you won't be sending up a van to kidnap me and whisk me to one of those new Halliburton Homeland Security Detention Camps. Or will you be? I don't know if you consider me a "honorable" person. Is there a list? Like the "do not fly" list? Is it online? Maybe www.HonorableCitizens.com?? Get your name on that list or you can be subjected to some very nasty government abuse.

But you allege that you think it's fair to hold your views up to scrutiny, although that doesn't mean I can necessarily hold your policy prescriptions up to scrutiny. That might still be a felony, I guess. But I do think I've explained myself more clearly than you have, sir. I've certainly used more words...

Acting on the good advice of Senator Joe Lieberman and other key members of Congress, we will form a new, bipartisan working group that will help us come together across party lines to win the war on terror. This group will meet regularly with me and my Administration, and it will help strengthen our relationship with Congress.

The only problem here is that, judging from the fact that it was Lieberman's idea (and the fact that you usually brook no dissent) is that "bipartisan" does not mean "multi-opinioned". Instead it seems like you want cover for your ideas and an illusion of consensus, not real debate that could lead to consensus.

We can begin by working together to increase the size of the active Army and Marine Corps, so that America has the armed forces we need for the 21st century. We also need to examine ways to mobilize talented American civilians to deploy overseas, where they can help build democratic institutions in communities and nations recovering from war and tyranny.

We need a bigger military so that we can be the world's policeman, eh? That's the plan for the 21st century? And it sounds like he's talking about a civillian draft for more experiments in "nation building." Didn't you ridicule Al Gore for the Clinton Administration's attempts to do the same thing for the same reasons? You raise hypocracy to a fine art. Seems like a Republican specialty nowadays.

In these dangerous times, the United States is blessed to have extraordinary and selfless men and women willing to step forward and defend us. These young Americans understand that our cause in Iraq is noble and necessary, and that the advance of freedom is the calling of our time.

These are indeed dangerous times. No more so than if you live in Iraq right now. The young Americans who volunteer for service in our armed forces are indeed extraordinary and selfless, but they're also smart. So they don't "understand" how this "cause" is noble or even necessary. Even if the "advance of freedom" is the calling of our time(s), nobody thinks that your agenda will actually promote "freedom" in the sense that US citizens have come to understand it. Nobody. At least nobody who's a "young American" that I've encountered in the last year. Every single person under the age of thirty that I've met or discussed the matter with has expressed vehement opposition to this war. Every single one, and I've spoken to dozens. I'm not sure which young people he's talking to, but I'd submit he hasn't had a meaningful conversation with anyone who would actually qualify. He doesn't even allow people who oppose his policies to be present at his public addresses, let alone debate with some rambunctious teenagers who aren't really hip on going to Iraq and shooting the place up.

They serve far from their families, who make the quiet sacrifices of lonely holidays and empty chairs at the dinner table. They have watched their comrades give their lives to ensure our liberty.

You forgot the not-quite-as-quiet sacrifices of carrying flag-draped coffins to waiting holes in the ground and visiting shattered loved ones as they languish, under-served and under-appreciated, in military hospitals and convalescent facilities across the country. The sobbing and wailing breaks the quiet you imagine, although I can see how you wouldn't think about this because you've never attended a soldier's funeral and have paid almost no attention to the grievously injured from this war.

Notice how you didn't mention the words "injured", "disabled", "paralyzed", "maimed", "dismembered", "blinded", or "brain damaged" when referring to any of the citizen-soldiers you cite as being supportive of your cause and worthy of our prayers. Are you unaware of these people? Or is this just part of the spin machine, where if you don't mention something it just kinda fades into the background.

It would be nice if it worked that way, but their pain, and their family's pain, lingers ever onward. Good thing that the folks in Afghanistan have ramped up their opium poppy production. We need the morphine.

We mourn the loss of every fallen American, and we owe it to them to build a future worthy of their sacrifice.

Note to linguistic purists: does "fallen" include "blown to bits"? Shouldn't "loss" be properly described as "blood sacrifice". Isn't this what we're doing? They didn't get lost, they're dead. They didn't "fall", they were shot, or blown up, or died in a helicopter crash (I guess you could call that "falling"), or sickened and died from some mysterious ailment that nobody can figure out yet. Many also committed suicide. Many more are psychologically damaged for life. The repercussions of that one fact alone will spiderweb out to cause ongoing tragedy for the next fifty years, no matter what else happens here or in Iraq from now on.

Fellow citizens: The year ahead will demand more patience, sacrifice and resolve. It can be tempting to think that America can put aside the burdens of freedom.

Patience as you resolve to sacrifice more of our sons and daughters. Patience as you resolve to sacrifice more of our mothers and fathers. Patience as you resolve to sacrifice more of our husbands and wives, girlfriends and boyfriends, lifelong friends, neighbors, and co-workers. You sit atop your Aztec temple, the very high priest yourself, cutting out the heart of the captured American spirit, holding it aloft to please your war god, and kicking it's now-limp body down the steps of the pyramid to show the masses who's really in charge.

Putting aside the burdens of freedom would be us allowing you to continue to act in this way. I for one have no intention of putting aside this responsibility.

Yet times of testing reveal the character of a nation.

The character of a nation is the net sum of the good and bad will of its people. Sadly, we must focus with all our collective might to undo the damage you and your minions hath wrought.

And, throughout our history, Americans have always defied the pessimists and seen our faith in freedom redeemed. Now America is engaged in a new struggle that will set the course for a new century. We can and we will prevail.

So true, Mr. President, but not the struggle you imagine. The struggle is against you and your team and your glorification of death and destruction for motives clearly the opposite of what you claim them to be.

The Project for a New American Century envisions a world where America is the sole ruler, dishing out brutal discipline to any who dare oppose, even rhetorically, America's designs on the world and its resources.

Their "New Pearl Harbor" was the 9/11 psy-op. Their "Enabling Law" (Patriot Act) was already prepared and photocopied for distribution, long enough so that no one who mattered would ever bother to read the whole thing.

The march to active war in Iraq started (at least officially) the very next day.

We see it's all a scam, sir. We'd better prevail, against you, and your agenda, or a life of brutality, despair, and global destruction is all we realistically have a chance of looking forward to.

We go forward with trust that the author of liberty will guide us through these trying hours. Thank you and good night.

I've said my piece. I look forward to peoples' comments.


Commentary by David Caputo - Totally Fixed and Rigged Magazine

Excellent Analysis

"The campaign being played out in the Middle East is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive struggle of our time. GWB "

This is his secret messaging to the New World Order elites - signaling their intent to create a one world death and slavery system, a plan and goal of the secret society folk for a couple of mellenia..

Thank you for this excellent analysis. I analyzed Bush's comments on "60 Minutes" a few days ago and arrived at similar observations.

First of all, this person is only able to read crafted rehearsed sophisticated propaganda, which all amounts to total LIE speech all the time.
Nothing he says is true.

Secondly, this man and the gang of thugs in his administration and our useless congress are treasonous, lying mass murderers who have a cancerous kind of greed and avarice to take over the world. These individuals not only do not respect human life, they hate it and intend to kill off about 90 percent of the world's population.

All I can think to do at this point is make my signs and get out on the streets every week in every "Bring the Troops Home Now" venue I can find. If we get the millions on the streets now, maybe there is a slim chance we can stop the treasonous mass murdering and carnage in the Middle East. I do not know. I only know that I sin if I do not do what I can to expose the evil of these people, and make no mistake about it, we are dealing with organized evil.

The decider is a lost soul and anyone and everyone who supports him and his handlers are just as lost.

Where are patriotic American statesmen and citizens to seize the thugs who have taken over the ship of state. Where are courageous righteous people to take America back?

Each person, get out on the streets now to stop this nauseating evil. Troops home NOW.

Blessings from Dachsie in Austin.

Millions on the streets

Let me first say that the blog article is an excellent controlled demolition of the official neo-con newspeak, which gets so much airtime on CNN and all the other 'news' traitors.

I don't think we are ever going to get millions on the street in the US. At least not in the state the US is in at the moment.

The reasons for this assertion are many:
- An almost completely controlled media infrastructure (from researcher/investigator/journalist, to news agency, to broadcast/printing company, to the individual presenter/writer)
- The mentally ingrained political duopoly
- Poor quality food/water supply and nutritional awareness
- Capitalistic consumer existence and anxiety (which takes away our time - which is all we really have, and disturbs our ability to focus on the things which are important in life)
- Our indoctrinated beliefs in the current social system and its institutions
- Uneven healthcare
- Propaganda schooling for the commoners to prevent independent thought and the sense of individual sovereignty
- The empty belief in national patriotism and other "slide" (stop critical thinking) labels.

Even if we had millions in the street, most of them would not know what to really do when they could change things. People are raised with social beliefs that are very hard to break down. Even many 9/11 people don't look beyond that event, to really start seeing what it is that is causing the rise of authoritarianism (and their willing victims) around the world.

If people are going to wake up, they will realize and see its because most of us have been living in a false mindset, consisting of false beliefs and a weak knowledge of our own great potential to be a factor of change in our own community (the divide and conquer governance strategy). This is such a shock to most people, that they won't even want to discuss the facts which may supply substance to such a claim.

The question is then, how many people can truly challenge their own beliefs to such an extend, and still be a force of positive change? How many are needed to truly start changing local, state, and national policies? How to respond when the fascists continuously threaten and kill the good people?

9/11 forms a great catalyst for this mental evolution, which so many, including myself, are/have gone through.

One of the most important things to help this process along, is the be open to new ideas about almost everything in life, but outspoken to clear false messages and actions (such as 9/11), and keep that open mind as one explores the universe of false history and false intentions by our community 'leaders' and their gatekeeping messengers.

Simply talking with people, however slow and painful that process is (as we all know), is the only way forward, and we have neglected it by just listening to mainstream media for much too long. This is why the Internet poses the greatest risk to the New World Order fanboys, and why it isn't achievable anymore! Once people see the synthetic structure of individual devaluation, social separation, and fear injection, the system starts to fall apart from the core.

America is changing, many people are seeing that their mindset was false, and that that mindset was deliberately synthesized by a minority in their own community (school, media, etc.) and beyond, and that there are millions who are starting to see those same things. Lets talk to each other, learn to respect each other (and all other life that surrounds us) no matter what the topic is, and see the true beauty which is in each and everyone of us. Lets give each other the education we paid for, but never received by the public school system.

9/11 was their biggest mistake, and is now our starting point for a New World View. A world view in which people care to rule themselves. A world in which we live by and respect the freedom and needs of other people. A world in which we don't take more than we need and share if we can. A world where each person can be him or herself, and tell others how rare that social miracle has been in the history of our species.

If we can get just a million of these New World View people on the streets/Internet/wherever talking to others about the real issues, I have legitimate hope for a less dark outcome.