Iraq will be the only Constitutional Democracy in the middle east?

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So in Bush's speech today he said that if Iraq goes well, it'll be the only Constitutional Democracy in the middle east.
:confused:
What about Turkey, Lebanon and the UAE? I mean, am I just missing something? These countries are all Democratic, right? Do they somehow not have constitutions?
 
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  • #2
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wasteofo2 said:
So in Bush's speech today he said that if Iraq goes well, it'll be the only Constitutional Democracy in the middle east.
:confused:
What about Turkey, Lebanon and the UAE? I mean, am I just missing something? These countries are all Democratic, right? Do they somehow not have constitutions?
they are all under control of the "evil doers" so according to Bush, tehy do not count.
 
  • #3
loseyourname
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I was under the impression that Israel was democratic, as well. Maybe Bush considers Turkey a part of Europe now; the others I cannot explain.
 
  • #4
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It sounds better the way Bush said it, regardless of "reality".
 
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loseyourname said:
I was under the impression that Israel was democratic, as well. Maybe Bush considers Turkey a part of Europe now; the others I cannot explain.
To be fair to Bush, I was wrong in the wording of the first post of the thread. What he actually said was "When the new Iraqi government takes office next year, Iraqis will have the only constitutional democracy in the Arab world."

But then, that necessarily includes Turkey...

AND, to be fair to Bush, the CIA World Factbook says that the UAE isn't a democracy.

But I could'a sworn they were. Is it the case that the individual Emirates are democratic, and that the Federal Government is just run by the elected representatives from each Emirate?
 
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  • #6
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wasteofo2 said:
To be fair to Bush, I was wrong in the wording of the first post of the thread. What he actually said was "When the new Iraqi government takes office next year, Iraqis will have the only constitutional democracy in the Arab world."

But then, that necessarily includes Turkey...
Bush doesn't like to get bogged down in details. Like Stephen Colbert, he's more concerned with the truth, not the facts. :uhh:
 
  • #7
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Manchot said:
Bush doesn't like to get bogged down in details. Like Stephen Colbert, he's more concerned with the truth, not the facts. :uhh:
If only he could truly be like Stephen Colbert. Then maybe we wouldn't have this bear problem in America.
 
  • #8
loseyourname
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wasteofo2 said:
To be fair to Bush, I was wrong in the wording of the first post of the thread. What he actually said was "When the new Iraqi government takes office next year, Iraqis will have the only constitutional democracy in the Arab world."

But then, that necessarily includes Turkey...
Turks are not Arabs, but I guess you've got him on Lebanon.
 
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  • #9
Informal Logic
I agree with posts above that Bush is using marketing tactics, such as "the largest natural bridge in the world." And as stated above, the biggest question is whether Iraq is a democracy at all. But then the Bush regime is notorious for premature claims...for example, the war is not over.
 
  • #10
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wasteofo2 said:
To be fair to Bush, I was wrong in the wording of the first post of the thread. What he actually said was "When the new Iraqi government takes office next year, Iraqis will have the only constitutional democracy in the Arab world."

But then, that necessarily includes Turkey...

AND, to be fair to Bush, the CIA World Factbook says that the UAE isn't a democracy.

But I could'a sworn they were. Is it the case that the individual Emirates are democratic, and that the Federal Government is just run by the elected representatives from each Emirate?
actually, Turkey is full of Terkman, not arabs.
 
  • #11
kat
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Heh..if Bush is a moron for his statement ..then what does your statement about turkey being an arab country make you?
Bush seems to have the capability of surrounding himself with intelligent and capable people. Even if you don't agree with their policies, anyone who's ever had to manage a company or organization realizes that is one of the most important components of leadership and management.
 
  • #12
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kat said:
Heh..if Bush is a moron for his statement ..then what does your statement about turkey being an arab country make you?
A 17 year old kid who didn't know that Turkey wasn't arab. I tend to think that Presidents of the United States should be held to a higher standard than High School Seniors, but maybe I'm hoping for too much...
kat said:
Bush seems to have the capability of surrounding himself with intelligent and capable people. Even if you don't agree with their policies, anyone who's ever had to manage a company or organization realizes that is one of the most important components of leadership and management.
Exactly what criteria do you use to judge that he's surrounded himself with intelligent/capable people? Rumsfeld, Cheney, Rice and Wolfowitz were all dead wrong in their predictions about the Iraq war, and they all used false intelligence to back it up. Are these the smart people you're talking about? The people who said they doubted the war in Iraq would take 6 months? The people who said Iraq's oil revenue would more than pay for the war and the reconstruction? The people who said we'd be greeted as liberators? The people who promised the insurgency was in it's last throes? The people who rejected the notion of a substantial international coalition, and decided doing it alone would be the best idea? The people who've been doing such a brilliant job of training the Iraqi military/police forces during the nearly 3 years we've been there?

Either these guys are great at being dead wrong, or great at lying.
 
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  • #13
turbo
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wasteofo2, you are not a fool. You are a person who is capable of critical thinking. Even if you are not of voting age, you can be a force for political change, if you will volunteer to help get the word out, or perhaps take older people or disabled people to the polls so they can vote. If you live in a state that that has a caucus system PLEASE attend the caucus meetings in your town, exert your rights as a voter, and you may very well become a delegate that helps elect the next presidential candidate from the party that you align with. Our electoral system has been diluted over the years to ensure that the two-party system will dominate and that huge special-interest contributors can trump the desires of the common citizen. If you care to reverse this, you can (or at least you can help to do so!).

My local paper refused to run this as-is and insisted that I edit it very severly, then finally ran it as a "letter to the editor". It is quite telling that the US print media was afraid to run comments like this in 2002. We are not so far removed from totalianairism as the Bush-Cheney "democracy team" would have us believe.

turbo-1's letter to the editor 8/29/2002 said:
A View From an Independent

The Bush administration is anxious to rush into a war against Saddam Hussein, and is using Dick Cheney and others to spread the word that Saddam is evil and intends to use weapons of mass destruction, and that war is inevitable and necessary for the protection of American security. The Bush team has not supplied a single shred of evidence that Saddam is about to unleash chemical or biological weapons, nor have they tendered any proof that he even possesses such weapons. Since we are "at war with terrorism," a simple assertion by the President is evidently sufficient cause for action and no debate is required. Lots of reasonable people, including some very senior Republicans, are asking for corroboration, but that's now a moot point, because just yesterday Bush's own lawyers asserted that he has the right to declare war against Saddam without consulting with Congress or anyone else. Isn't that handy?

What will Bush and his friends gain if he declares war on Saddam this fall?

1) A strong spike in oil prices heading into the winter heating season - a huge plus for his biggest backers. The big oil companies and the companies that supply them, including Halliburton (from whence Cheney crept back into public office) will suck billions of dollars out of the American people in windfall profits if war is declared. Just the threat of war is already driving up prices, which of course result in immediate consumer oil and gas price hikes, even though the crude oil was bought months ago. Don't worry, investors! - gouging and price-fixing in the gasoline and heating oil markets is widely accepted and even expected, so buy some oil company stocks now - they'll just go up.

2) Bush will enjoy the temporary but sadly inevitable boost in opinion polls that occurs when a large sector of the electorate chooses to wave flags instead of engaging in productive debate about foreign policy. This same herd mentality allowed the Reagan/Bush administration to wage an unauthorized and illegal war in Nicaragua and to finance it by committing treason (the theft of weapons from the US arsenal, and the sale of those weapons to Iran - a terrorist country that was an avowed enemy of the US). Until I did some research, I did not know this, but apparently the penalty for treason is hanging ONLY if you are a regular citizen. If you are the President, the penalty for treason is having a national airport named after you. Of course, adultery by a sitting President carries the risk of impeachment, at least if the perp is a Democrat.

3) If the timing is right, an invasion of Iraq could lead to the strengthening of Republican candidates on Election Day, and a possible swing to Republican control of the Senate. This would inevitably pack the Judicial Branch with even more conservative judges, since there is a very large backlog of judicial appointments. This backlog was created by the Republicans who controlled the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Clinton administration and who refused to schedule hearings to consider his appointees to the bench. Today, the Republican minority loudly proclaims that this eight-year backlog was created by the Democrats, who only recently gained control of the Senate. That's pathetic, and it's insulting to the intelligence of any voter who was not in a coma during the Clinton administration, even if you happened to agree with the ideology and tactics used by either side.

4) The American public's attention will be diverted away from corporate scandals and the Department of Justice's prosecution of (or failure to prosecute) the case against Enron's top executives. Kenneth Lay has not yet even been publicly mentioned by the DOJ, which seems to be selectively focused on only the financial division of Enron. Why is that? Surely, Lay's lavish donations to George W. Bush cannot have bought him immunity from prosecution...this isn't a country where bribing public officials is condoned, is it?

What do the American people stand to gain if Bush orders our armed forces to invade Iraq?

1) We will lose the already-tenuous support of our few Middle East allies. We will also lose the support of the UN and our NATO allies. Publicly, only Tony Blair has made positive noises about the invasion, and recent polls find that the majority of the British do not share his views. Other NATO countries are adamantly opposed to a new war in Iraq.

2) We Americans will be called upon to sacrifice to support the war effort. The war will cost us many billions in taxes and in higher fuel prices, and it will cost us any hope of a timely economic recovery. W’s war will place the lives of thousands of our young people in jeopardy and the loss of life will certainly be higher than during the incursion of Bush the Elder. Saddam will not fight in the desert this time, but will hunker down in cities, hoping that a large number of civilian casualties will gain him sympathy in the court of world opinion. He also hopes that a large volume of returning body bags will dim America's enthusiasm for adventure in Iraq.

3) Saddam's missiles are not capable of reaching US soil, so if he truly has weapons of mass destruction, and if he becomes desperate, he will lash out at Israel, which he regards as the US's surrogate. Israel has already stated that it will not forgo retaliation in the face of an attack. Iraq may not have nuclear weapons, but Israel does, and Sharon is just the man to employ them in a "just cause". The Muslim/Arab backlash from such a strike may not totally destroy Israel, but it will likely lead to a widespread and brutal conflict in the entire region, including Northern Africa, the Middle East, and perhaps Indo-China. When you factor in Iran's close relationship with China and Iraq's close relationships with Russia and France, you easily have the makings of a complex and unpredictable situation that could quickly turn into a world-wide conflagration. Targets of opportunity will likely be struck during such uncertain times, perhaps including Taiwan, Kashmir, Tibet, Sri Lanka, and North and South Korea, to name a few. Russia may also choose to reassert itself in Eastern Europe or the oil-rich Southern provinces. Bush's people must have advised him of these, and similar scenarios, but you'd never know it to hear him talk about his Iraq war.

W, you should come back to Maine and have a long talk with your father. You are about to screw up "big-time" to quote your VP, and you need to listen to somebody other than your handlers. This is no simple zero-sum "payback" situation, by which you can enrich your friends at the expense of the poor, the elderly, or the environment with no personal repercussions. This is the real deal, and many millions of people may die or suffer because of your lack of understanding of world affairs. It's too late to cram for this test - get some expert advice or we will all pay for your ignorance.

Some advice for the savvy investor: if you believe that King George will invade Iraq, you should call your broker right now, and invest in oil companies, defense companies, and producers of American flags and yellow ribbons. You'll make a killing - really.
 
  • #14
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Dead on with the investment tips.

Halliburton went from like 30 to 70 throughout the course of the war.
 
  • #15
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wasteofo2 said:
Dead on with the investment tips.
Halliburton went from like 30 to 70 throughout the course of the war.
I think the biggest mistake that Bush did was hire Dick cheny vice president.
 
  • #16
EnumaElish
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wasteofo2 said:
What [Bush] actually said was "When the new Iraqi government takes office next year, Iraqis will have the only constitutional democracy in the Arab world."

But then, that necessarily includes Turkey...
That does not include Turkey. It necessarily excludes Turkey. Turks (like Iranians, Afghans, etc.) are Muslim but not Arab.
 
  • #17
BobG
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wasteofo2 said:
AND, to be fair to Bush, the CIA World Factbook says that the UAE isn't a democracy.

But I could'a sworn they were. Is it the case that the individual Emirates are democratic, and that the Federal Government is just run by the elected representatives from each Emirate?
No, the UAE is not a democracy. The representatives from each emirate are appointed by the ruler of each emirate.

Yemen and Lebanon would both seem like democracies to me, though. Although you could say Syria's occupation of Lebanon has made Lebanon's own government irrelevant in the past. The effectiveness of Yemen's government as a democracy has been hampered by the difficulty in uniting the North and South into one country after a long struggle. Kuwait is pretty close to a democracy, even though it's technically a constitutional monarchy.

In general, the smaller states had moved faster towards democratic governments than the bigger states, such as Egypt, etc. The form of government isn't always as cut and dried as its seems, since rulers of smaller states have generally felt pressure to answer to their populace. Qatar isn't a democracy at all, but it approved a new constitution in June and it's ruler is very responsive to the 'advisory' powers of the legislature (anything the legislature does can technically be overruled by the monarchial ruler).

The small states tend to fly under the radar, but I would imagine you would hear a lot more about them if Iraq succeeds as a democracy. The timing would be very good for claiming Iraq has been the spark that spread democracy even if at least half of those democratic movements were well under way before Iraq was invaded.
 
  • #18
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That does not include Turkey. It necessarily excludes Turkey. Turks (like Iranians, Afghans, etc.) are Muslim but not Arab.
Parts of Iran speak arabic, are are thought of as Arabic, Afgahanistain certainly isnt arabic...
 
  • #19
BobG
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I think the results of Iraq's election will be very interesting, regardless of whether or not they're the first democracy in the Arab world. They really have a challenge ahead, regardless of how things turn out.

Sunni Arabs will continue their insurgency against Americans, Kurds, and Shi'ites unless Allawi wins power - in which case they'll limit their insurgency to attacking just Americans. Muqtada Al-Sadr will continue his insurgency unless devout Shi'ites win and implement a theocratic government. Al-Zarqawi will continue to kill Shi'ites and Americans regardless of what happens in the election and continue to claim he leads al-Qaida, in spite of the fact that bin Laden and other al-Qaida leaders are fundamentalists that want theocratic governments (who says we aren't winning the war against bin Laden - you know he's weak when he has to embrace al-Zarqawi and hope begging will bring him more in line with bin Laden's fundamentalist goals).

I'm not even sure what the best result to come out of the elections would be. I guess an Allawi led government would at least be tolerated by most Iraqis, which would mean we'd be dealing with two specific problems - Al-Zarqawi and Al-Sadr - instead of a general civil war between Sunnis and Shi'ites.

Maybe the best outcome would be several small minorities with no dominant group in power. The only way any group could get anything through government would be through deals with an opposing group. Then again, gridlock might make things so inefficient that the entire population would defect to the first 'leader' that promised to get the lights turned back on. We'll wind up with another dictator in power.
 
  • #20
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wasteofo2 said:
A 17 year old kid who didn't know that Turkey wasn't arab. I tend to think that Presidents of the United States should be held to a higher standard than High School Seniors, but maybe I'm hoping for too much...
You're only 17? No way, you're way to conservative to be that young.
 

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