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Archive for Wednesday, June 13, 2007

False justification

June 13, 2007

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To the editor:

President Bush's newest economic policy proposal is to build a ballistic missile shield in East European countries surrounding Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, furious about it, threatened to retarget Europe with nuclear weapons and restart an arms race against the United States. But President Bush assured Putin that this anti-missile system is not aimed at Russia but is to protect these countries from such "rogue nations" as Iran and Syria. How ridiculous can we get?

First of all, Iran and Syria have no long-range missiles that could reach East Europe, and it would take them a good eight to 10 years to build such a system. And secondly, if they ever did have them, would Prague or Warsaw really have to fear that these "rogue nations" would launch an attack against the Czech Republic or against Poland?

How would we feel if Russia started building an anti-ballistic missile system in Cuba or Venezuela, "of course not against the United States but to protect them from such rogue nations as Iran or Syria"?

Give me a break!

Harry G. Shaffer,

Lawrence

Comments

Rightytighty 7 years, 4 months ago

Russia is packing hurdreds of ballistic missiles that a whole 10 interceptors have no chance againist anyway. If Russia wanted to bomb America they could do so with a snap of a finger. I don't understand why they are so worried.

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fed_up 7 years, 4 months ago

I don't really know HOW it came to happen, but in late 1999 President Clinton approached then Gov. of Va, James Gilmore (conservative republican) to head a committee to rank the threats of the U.S. on terrorist attacks and how to best handle taking care of the people it if it occurred. The committee was formed, not only of politicians, but people in first responder fields, poice, fire, health, epidermic, etc. The committee filed 3 reports on how likely we were to have certain kinds of disasters and how to prepare America for them if they happened. None of the recommendations were heeded at that point as far as I know. 1 week after the submission of the final report, 9/11 happened. The commission was extended for 2 more years. Recommendations made by the committee still had not been set in motion when Hurricane Katrina happened. Although it was not a terrorist attack, if we had done what the committee suggested and what WE paid for, it might not have been so hard to save all of those people. As of now I believe 134 out of 164 recommendtions have been approved by the U.S. Government. The commission is known as "The Gilmore Commission" for short, but it's actual name is Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities for Terrorism Involving Weapons of Mass Destruction. You can view all of the reports at www.rand.org and then typing "Gilmore Commission" into the search engine. Clinton must have been afraid of something to ask a repubican for help 3 years before 9/11.

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guardBack 7 years, 4 months ago

Well, for one, by building a missile shield the United States would be violating the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty that we signed in the 70's which was supposed to end the last arms race. Furthermore, Russia's economy is worse off now than it ever was under Stalin, Khrushchev or any of the other Soviet leaders and Putin knows that his country could never afford to get back into an arms race.

Also, 10 interceptors would just be the beginning. They would be a preliminary effort to gauge effectiveness and cost of a larger missile shield system.

And, yes, this is probably nothing more than an attempt to push an ailing American economy to expand into Europe. Everyone in the US and Russia pretty much understands that neither country really wants to use its nuclear arsenal, because of MAD -- Mutually Assured Destruction. If we use ours, so do the Russians, and everyone dies. The people we should be worried about getting nukes are the jihadists and other extremist groups.

MAD applies to Israel, China, India, and Pakistan (The other members of the nuclear club) and would also apply to North Korea and Iran if/when either nation actually succeeds in building a nuclear bomb.

It's not the ballistic missile variety of nuclear attack we should be worried about, it's the ones that could be loading into a truck or a boat by the extremists, Muslim or otherwise.

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

If you are going to ask what actions the current administration might have taken, please refrain from backpedalling to the Clinton years. You asked what bush should might have done. I gave you some suggestions. You go back to Clinton. The increased funding for military resources for the Iraq war, which bush fully intended prior to 911, should have been in place prior to the Iraqi invasion/occupation. Or are you truly incapable of assigning any accountability to the current thugs in control of the White House?

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Oracle_of_Rhode 7 years, 4 months ago

Surely we could rebuild New Orleans and provide health care for every American with the bucks that will instead go to pissing of Russia and enriching the arms dealers. What a deal!

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Mike Blur 7 years, 4 months ago

My thoughts exactly, 'booster. I thought ole Kev swore on Marion's now-extinct internet forum that he would never post on LJW again.

Speaking of extinction, ferdinadlanghoff is on the clock. I'll pick a date--uhh, July 9--as the day "ferdie" will be "disappeardeded" from these boards, Arminius-style.

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Bubbles 7 years, 4 months ago

booster and blur are not interested in facts.

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bearded_gnome 7 years, 4 months ago

once again we see the leftists siding with our enemies and speaking up to weaken us!

the russians are probably pissed off because they seel missile tech and missile hardware to these jihadi countries (i.e. Syria, Iran), and missile defense hits them in the wallet big time.

placement in eastern europe is necessary for the interception to occur en route, for example, from Iran to Germany. some experts think iran does have missiles capable of reaching eastern europe now, and further range is anticipated. the missile defense will actually bring greater stability, just as Reagan's stance against the soviets brought them down.

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Ragingbear 7 years, 4 months ago

This is part of Bush's attempt at a political coup that will allow him to assume a position of dictator in the US. He already got that bill passed that gives him absolute power in a time of emergency. So stirring up a little war with an ally, whether they started it or not, is a perfect launch pad for this. Everyone is keeping too much of an eye on Iraqistan.

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drewdun 7 years, 4 months ago

Shorter Kevin: "CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON CLINTON"

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RKLOG 7 years, 4 months ago

Just a little bit longer and NO MORE BUSH :) Would make a great mantra.

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

And many conservatives can't find any accountability since then.

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

So the Iran contra thing never happened? Somebody photoshopped the pix of various Gop'ers shaking hands/hugging "terrorists"? After all, "All of the past is relevant." Bin Laden determined to strike in the U.S. Mission accomplished. Heckuva job Brownie. I'm the decider.

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Emily Hadley 7 years, 4 months ago

Other countries are not our enemies, nor are the individuals who inhabit them, nor are the religions of those individuals.

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

Well, I wouldn't have gone ahead planning a war in a different country that had nothing to do with Osama. After Osama attacked, I wouldn't have stopped looking for him and attacked a different country with no ties to the guy who attacked us. I might have attacked the country the overwhelming majority of the hijackers were from, or maybe just kept looking for Osama. I am pretty sure I would not have invaded and occupied Iraq under false pretenses for the duration. Especially since there is no way to define the end of the duration. When you are building city-sized embassy compounds and multiple huge military bases, it kind of looks like we don't ever plan to leave.

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

Maybe tried to stop Osama, instead of ignoring the blatant warning and proceeding with plans to invade Iraq?

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

Thus diverting resources from the search for the dude who actually attacked America. What would you have done?

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deec 7 years, 4 months ago

I might also have put airport security on increased alert. Ditto the military, so that if something odd happened like jets veering wildly off course, the military would be prepared to respond timely. I might have stopped falsifying evidence to support a war in Iraq and concentrated on the actual threat. I might have thought about the implications of long-term occupation. I might have requested increased funding for the facilities to treat wounded veterans. I might have invested in adequate equipment for the troops prior to sending them to war.

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Jamesaust 7 years, 4 months ago

"First of all, Iran and Syria have no long-range missiles that could reach East Europe, and it would take them a good eight to 10 years to build such a system."

Uh, no it wouldn't. They telephone 1-800-NKorea and order the Taepo Dong missle - range: 6,000km - that's 100% of Europe, btw.

"And secondly, if they ever did have them, would Prague or Warsaw really have to fear that these "rogue nations" would launch an attack against the Czech Republic or against Poland?"

Uh, (a) yes, and (b) is this supposed to be some snarky comment about the Czechs or the Poles?

Sorry, Russia's been consulted at every step along the way about this. They just don't like former satellites being independent of them and they retain delusions of importance far beyond their "Zaire with permafrost" reality.

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emeier84 7 years, 4 months ago

will you guys grow up please

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Flap Doodle 7 years, 4 months ago

"They telephone 1-800-NKorea..." Funniest phrase I've seen on this board recently.

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guardBack 7 years, 4 months ago

ferdinandlanghoff:

First, let me apologize for not responding, I just moved and I just got my internet set back up.

A few points for your consideration/response:

  1. Just because the USSR is no longer a viable political entity, the treaty is still on the books. Russia was the power broker in the USSR , the satellite states were indirectly controlled by the Soviets during the Post WWII/Cold War Era, and the treaty was not only with the Soviet Union, but had other signatories as well, so the treaty is still a part of international law. International law, as I'm sure you know, is largely unenforceable, because there is no source of power to enforce it. The UN doesn't count, because no one seems to care what the UN says. However, I feel that a superpower should live up to its word, whether written or verbal.

  2. I do understand that millions of Soviets died during Stalin's reign, however, this was NOT due to a flagging economy. Stalin's economy produced the war machine that crushed the Nazi invasion force and won WWII. (We Americans love to talk about D-Day and Normandy, but in truth, the Russian Red Army destroyed the bulk of the German military. It was not until the preparation for the invasion of Germany that US forces faced any of the elite SS divisions or really any stout veterans. I'm not ignoring the valiance of our own veterans, but I feel that we should be honest.) Stalin simply decided that feeding his own people was less important than beating the Wehrmacht, and after the war he decided that beating the US into space and keeping the arms race going was more important than feeding his people. Today, over 90% of Moscovites live in poverty. I studied abroad there and got to see the poverty first hand. Putin knows that the Russian people will not stand for another ruler who does not care about them, and their economy cannot support an arms race and try to keep any semblance of order or control.

  3. If we build interceptors, it will only result in a better missile or a more subtle delivery system. War is this nation's principal manufacture, and the missile shield will keep President Bush's buddies in the defense industry raking in the dough, which is his insurance policy for his life after the Oval Office. This is becoming all the more important with the Republicans abandoning him so they have a chance in 2008 of winning any contestable elections at all.

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Bill Chapman 7 years, 4 months ago

Any idiot that watches the "Future Weapons" show on Discovery channel would know that we already have a missile interceptor system in the final stages of testing. This system is portable and effective against land, sea, and air launched missiles. On the show it was tested against an air launched missile and destroyed it with no difficulty. The system is designed for intercepting cruse missiles but could be used for short range ballistic missiles (scuds, etc.). The system is smaller than a 18 wheel semi- truck and can be air-lifted to any site acceptable for landing a C-130 cargo plane.

For all those against the creation of such a system - humanity started a arms race long before the pharaohs ruled Egypt, and until we can come together AS a race (and not a collection of clans), we will always have an arms race.

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erod0723 7 years, 4 months ago

"Russian President Vladimir Putin, furious about it, threatened to retarget Europe with nuclear weapons and restart an arms race against the United States"

yay. Bring on Cold War: Part Deux. I'm sick of global warming.

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