Are You SAFER? Norm Home
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Norm's Soapbox- My corner of Hyde Park

Are you safer now? We keep hearing claims that we are, but is that true? How many Americans have died in the middle east? How many as a result of terrorist acts here? How many soldiers have died? How many became soldiers joined motivated by 9/11? How much has been spent for Homeland Security?

More Americans have been killed in the Iraq War than by 9/11. The reports suggest we have killed about seven people for every American killed in the middle east, including 149 at a wedding where our "target" did not attend, accumulating at least as many potential suicide bombers. We followed this up by supporting Israel in using 100,000 cluster bombs on Lebanon after a cease fire date was established, convincing many Muslims we are waging a war against Islam. A New York Times report (8/28/2006 p1) on the UK group arrested for planning to blow up planes headed to the US reported "'As you bomb, you will be bombed; as you kill, you will be killed,' said one of the men on a 'martyrdom' videotape" and "One of the suspects said on his martyrdom video that the 'war against Muslims' in Iraq and Afghanistan had motivated him to act." ... "The man said he was seeking revenge for the foreign policy of the United States, and 'their accomplices, the U.K. and the Jews'." While Bush says "they hate freedom", the polls say they still like our freedom, and are so-so on the American people (though less now), but throughout the middle east, including where America is liked, approval of U.S. policies is in the single digits.

The President wants to use techniques deemed torture and inhumane, risking our soldiers to treatment by whatever others may choose to claim is within the Geneva Convention. The pretext for attacking Iraq was false (the French were right), and we created a recruiting and training venue for terrorists where what we opposed was rigid secular control opposed by the fundamentalist Muslims. The fundamentalists complain of the developed western world trying to control them, so we exert more effort to control them. The CIA admits there are more potential suicide bombers now than in 2000. The planning missed the mark. Rumsfeld told congress and the world that the Iraqi had violated the Geneva Accord by their interrogation, intimidating, and photographing U.S. prisoners of war, yet wanted proceed with interogation techniques others deem to be torture and opposed explicitly making them illegal for U.S. forces, even after our excesses at Abu Graib, and did not look at the pictures for eight days after they were public and six months after the military justice knew of them. Bush sanctioned ignoring the Geneva Conventions standards for prisoners, saying the U.S. was 'not bound by torture laws', leading to abuse, and failed to maintain accountability. 

In trying to sell an invasion, Bush said their oil would pay for it. Either it was bad planning, or a lie to the American people like his claim he KNEW Saddam had weapons of mass destruction.

The International Atomic Energy Commission and European Union officials warned Bush before the war that Al Qaqaa (guarded by U.N. since 1990) explosives needed to be safeguarded (377 tons of super-powerful explosives, HMX and RDX, which can be used to detonate atomic bombs and were cited by the Bush administration as dual-use materials reasons to invade), but Bush allowed them to disappear from an unguarded al-Qaqaa to be a resource for IEDs.

Bush said Saddam was a threat to world peace. He started the war. Bush had just eliminated the government in Afganistan, and had not established a stable government there, leave alone a democracy, to replace it, and failed in the primary objective. So he starts another war, claiming the oil would pay for it (remember?), and Saddam had weapons of mass destruction (wrong), eliminates government in Iraq, the limit on Iran, creates a focus on American aggression with a recruiting and training ground, and the people he claimed to help wish we had not "freed" them of jobs, safety (rampant kidnapping for ransom), electricity, plumbing, poor hospitals (sanctions), and the chance to drive to work without the fear of Sunni / Shi'ite / American soldiers shooting them.

The Homeland Security effort has been expensive, and has cost much disruption and inconvenience. While funding for the war has been funded by selling National Debt abroad (much to China), where has the money for Homeland Security come from? We know that money for Homeland Security was reallocated from repairing the levies in New Orleans ($10 billion) before Katrina. We know in 2005 $30 million (leaving $6M) was reallocated from the Southern California National Forests removal of bark beetle killed trees for fire safety. We know towns and cities are not reimbursed for the huge overtime bills from DHS mandates, especially during Orange alerts. If your taxes have not gone up by enough to pay for that, where did that come from? Is that why the murder rate is up, with cops looking for terrorists instead of thugs and murderers? Are you in greater danger from flooding, fire, theft, robbery, murder, and corporate greed (oil, Enron, Adelphia) than from a terrorist? I am.

Copyright © 2006   Norman Montgomery; All rights reserved.