# The Murtha death blow

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Eyes wide shut! Closed minds and parochial myopia.

Actually I spent time with some Nam Vets back in the 70's. They new Vietnam was a lost cause, despite what the politicians in Washington said.

I also had a Vietnamese colleauge who was pretty conservative. He mentioned that, while people in the South were not thrilled with Ho Chi Minh, the majority of the South Vietnamese wanted the US out.

But paranoia about communism and desire to impose one nation's aberrant (or otherwise erroneous) ideas (delusions) on another seemed to be the order of the day.

Skyhunter
Ivan Seeking said:
Yep, that was hard to see coming, huh.
We were only in Nam for what...nearly twenty years? What irony that two men who dodged service to avoid going would start another Nam.
And smear those that did serve.

What gets me is the people here with military backgrounds agree with these chickenhawks.

I guess it is a blind loyalty to the military. Sorta like religion.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
Pengwuino said:
A "hawkish" democrat senator denounced hte Bush administration for not surrendering to the terrorists and handing over Iraq to murderers.
Did you happen to catch what he really said?

This is case #58 where democrats have claimed "this will be the downfall of Bush!".
I didn't predict his downfall, I said he's already dead.

You're 0 for 2.

Edit: The thing that many people obviously don't understand is that he was speaking for many at the Pentagon. When they attacked Murtha, they attacked those for whom he was speaking - the Army and Marine brass at the Pentagon. Note also that he said the security of the United States is at stake. Our military is crippled by Bush's abuse of power.

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BobG
Homework Helper
russ_watters said:
A Republican clone of Murtha's proposal was brought to a vote and was voted-down nearly unanamously. So all that says to me is that Democrats talk, but aren't willing to stand-by their convictions: If Murtha is right, why didn't the Democrats vote for the proposal? The Republicans called their bluff and the Democrats didn't have the stones to stand by their beliefs.
Hypocrites and weaklings, the lot of them.
Bush says we'll stay in Iraq until the insurgency is defeated. If the Democrats proposed a non-binding bill stating the US was generally of the opinion that every city in Iraq should nuked, would the Republicans vote for it?

While I don't agree with Murtha's proposal, it was not the same as the bill the Republicans introduced.

Murtha's proposal was a phased withdrawal of troops beginning immediately with a strike force held in Kuwait to respond to any crisis that might arise from the troops' departure. I think the need for the strike force to respond would be almost assured.

The Republican's bill wasn't to withdraw the troops or to initiate any other action. It was a bill stating that Congress was generally of the opinion that every military unit in Iraq should be removed immediately. Since it was a bill to state Congress's opinion rather than to initiate action, no plan was necessary and no plan was included (the Republicans weren't irresponsible enough to propose a bill that would initiate any action - what would they do if it somehow were approved?)

What it does do is take pressure off Congressmen headed home for the holidays. Having Murtha's proposal getting air time and being pressured to state their opinion wouldn't have been easy - especially if question two was the alternate plan to Murtha's. Even if Murtha's bill was eventually defeated (which almost certainly would have happened), it would be a victory for those wanting a plan for the Iraq problem to be spelled out - at this point, the debate was more important than the outcome. This is why the debate over procedures was just as heated as the debate over the bill. If Democrats could extend the allotted time for debate past the amount of time left in the last day of Congress, the bill would have served no purpose for Republicans and would have been withdrawn.

The way things went down, the average person reads an oversimplified headline of Murtha's proposal, then sees a bill for immediate withdrawal almost unanimously defeated. All settled, no major issue for Congressmen to struggle with over the holidays. It may seem just like politics as usual, but that's because it is.

The important thing is that the issue is becoming unavoidable for Congress - you can only buy so much time with the usual political games before having to deal with the problem head on.

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Some perspective on the the Iraq situation.

Iraq
John Crawford: The Accidental Soldier
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4783583
Fresh Air from WHYY, November 11, 2005 · With two credits to go before college graduation, John Crawford was called to active duty and sent to the front lines in Iraq. Crawford had joined the Florida National Guard in order to pay his tuition -- and didn't expect to go to war.

His new memoir is The Last True Story I'll Ever Tell: An Accidental Soldier's Account of the War in Iraq. It was written partly while on active duty and partly back in the United States after he returned.
'Just Another Soldier' Revives a Banned Blog
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4953949
Fresh Air from WHYY, October 11, 2005 · The war in Iraq has been one of the most-documented conflicts in history, with reports and photos reaching a worldwide audience from embedded reporters, satellite imaging, Web video feeds -- and often, e-mails and blogs set up by soldiers themselves.

While serving in Iraq, Army National Guardsman Jason Christopher Hartley kept a blog of his experiences -- until his commanders forced him to shut it down. Now back from Iraq, Hartley has incorporated his blog into a new memoir: Just Another Soldier: A Year on the Ground in Iraq.

The book combines Hartley's impressions formed while his Guard unit served in Iraq with his approach to the war and the military today. His perspective is a unique one: In September of 2001, Hartley was called to duty to help secure the perimeter of the World Trade Center after the terrorist attacks brought down the buildings.

A Utah native, Jason Christopher Hartley now lives in New Paltz, N.Y., where he remains a member of the New York Army National Guard.
Kayla Williams: 'Love My Rifle More Than You'
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4814647
Fresh Air from WHYY, August 25, 2005 · Kayla Williams is a former U.S. Army soldier who served in the Middle East as an Arabic interpreter. She recounts her decision to enlist and her experiences during the Iraq war in a new memoir, Love My Rifle More Than You: Young and Female in the U.S. Army. Williams was a sergeant in a military intelligence company of the 101st Airborne Division.

Skyhunter
BobG said:
While I don't agree with Murtha's proposal, it was not the same as the bill the Republicans introduced.
Murtha's proposal was a phased withdrawal of troops beginning immediately with a strike force held in Kuwait to respond to any crisis that might arise from the troops' departure. I think the need for the strike force to respond would be almost assured.
The Republican's bill wasn't to withdraw the troops or to initiate any other action. It was a bill stating that Congress was generally of the opinion that every military unit in Iraq should be removed immediately. Since it was a bill to state Congress's opinion rather than to initiate action, no plan was necessary and no plan was included (the Republicans weren't irresponsible enough to propose a bill that would initiate any action - what would they do if it somehow were approved?)
What it does do is take pressure off Congressmen headed home for the holidays. Having Murtha's proposal getting air time and being pressured to state their opinion wouldn't have been easy - especially if question two was the alternate plan to Murtha's. Even if Murtha's bill was eventually defeated (which almost certainly would have happened), it would be a victory for those wanting a plan for the Iraq problem to be spelled out - at this point, the debate was more important than the outcome. This is why the debate over procedures was just as heated as the debate over the bill. If Democrats could extend the allotted time for debate past the amount of time left in the last day of Congress, the bill would have served no purpose for Republicans and would have been withdrawn.
The way things went down, the average person reads an oversimplified headline of Murtha's proposal, then sees a bill for immediate withdrawal almost unanimously defeated. All settled, no major issue for Congressmen to struggle with over the holidays. It may seem just like politics as usual, but that's because it is.
The important thing is that the issue is becoming unavoidable for Congress - you can only buy so much time with the usual political games before having to deal with the problem head on.
And people will do just like russ did and say it was Murtha's proposal that was defeated. I would like to think russ just made a mistake, but there are many in the media who will spin it this way.

I agree that this little stunt won't get them very far before they have to confront reality. I have already contacted my rep's and let them know that I am aware of what happened.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
This was just a stunt and it means nothing beyond one day of press. The fact is that we will now get an exit strategy. .

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
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Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Halliburton announces 284 percent increase in war profits
25 July 2005
I wonder how much went to executive bonuses. There will probably be a tidy sum of money tucked away for Cheney when he leaves office.

And the families of the dead get what? And the wounded vets get what departing gifts from Iraq? :grumpy:

Skyhunter
Ivan Seeking said:
This was just a stunt and it means nothing beyond one day of press. The fact is that we will now get an exit strategy. .
I hope it is something better than the last Republican proposal. :yuck:

Murtha has proposed his own resolution that would force the president to withdraw the nearly 160,000 troops in Iraq “at the earliest practicable date.” It would establish a quick-reaction force and a nearby presence of Marines in the region. It also said the U.S. must pursue stability in Iraq through diplomacy.
Not at all unreasonable.

As opposed to;
The Republican alternative: “It is the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.”
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10097801/

SOS2008
Gold Member
Skyhunter said:
And people will do just like russ did and say it was Murtha's proposal that was defeated. I would like to think russ just made a mistake, but there are many in the media who will spin it this way.

I agree that this little stunt won't get them very far before they have to confront reality. I have already contacted my rep's and let them know that I am aware of what happened.
With exception of the likes of Bill O'Reilly, the media is no longer presstituting for BushCo.

The American people are tired of congressional stunts and waste of time and tax dollars (i.e., Republican behavior). The American people now know they were deceived, and do not want to devote our military and tax dollars to a 20-year long neocon dream that has no basis for success. When Murtha said "Our military is suffering. The future of our country is at risk. We cannot continue on our present course," he is referring to this, and how it diminishes U.S. ability to address any other problems, including natural disasters like Katrina (i.e., real national security issues).

Those in Congress who voted against the straw man proposal should be thankful Murtha voted against it too, thus revealing the bogus nature of it. The American people no longer support the war, so if a realistic proposal for withdrawal is presented (and it will be) and these reps in Congress vote against it, they should prepare for new jobs after 2006. These con artists can go home for the holidays proud of themselves and enjoy their turkey, because if they keep this up they’re next for the chopping block.

SOS2008 said:
With exception of the likes of Bill O'Reilly, the media is no longer presstituting for BushCo.
I'm not particularly any happier with their press-tituting for doom and gloom on every front from "Bring the troops home!" to Bird Flu.

The press seems fickle. I can only guess they play to the market. When the market drives the press, how can one say that it is an unbiased source of news? Add to that that they stoke the market with their reports ('press-tituting' to please their customers) and it just really isn't a good scene at all.

We all lose.

I'm leaning more towards the idea of getting your news from as many varied sources as possible, from overseas, from blogs, and from diverse opinions on global communities like this MB.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
Astronuc said:
I wonder how much went to executive bonuses.
I'm not sure about bonuses...

Halliburton CEO's stock rises by $78 million since Iraq invasion 15 Sept. 2005 WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 (HalliburtonWatch.org) -- War and skyrocketing oil prices have been good to Halliburton's CEO David Lesar, whose stock in the company increased by an estimated$78 million since the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, a HalliburtonWatch analysis reveals.

In March 2003, the first month of the Iraq invasion, corporate disclosure records show Lesar owned 1.476 million common shares and share options in Halliburton worth $30 million. At the end of stock trading yesterday, those shares were worth$93 million, for a $63 million gain. Subsequent to the Iraq invasion, Lesar boosted his total holdings in the company from$93 million to $108 million by acquiring a net 243,000 additional shares, thereby increasing his stock holdings by$78 million since March 2003.

Halliburton's stock price tripled since the Iraq invasion from $20 to$63.

Lesar owns an additional 644,575 shares of "restricted stock," or stock that may be sold only if he satisfies certain goals and requirements of the corporation. If Lesar is authorized by Halliburton to sell those shares, they would be worth an additional $40.8 million as of yesterday's closing stock price. In the last 24 months, Lesar sold$18.8 million worth of Halliburton stock, with \$16.3 million sold this year alone. [continued]
http://www.halliburtonwatch.org/news/lesar_stock.html

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Schmidt causes ruckus in House debate on Iraq
WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep. Jean Schmidt drew boos and angry shouting from Democrats as she brought the U.S. House to a standstill Friday by implying that a Democratic congressman who wants to pull troops out of Iraq is a coward.

Lawmakers were in the midst of a blistering debate on a resolution that called for the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., a decorated former Marine colonel, had pushed the measure to a vote.

Dressed in a red, white and blue suit, Schmidt, a Clermont County Republican and the most junior member of the House, took to the floor to protest the resolution.

She told her new colleagues of a phone call she had just received from freshman Ohio state Rep. Danny R. Bubp of West Union, a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserve.

"He asked me to send Congress a message: Stay the course. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message - that cowards cut and run, Marines never do," said Schmidt, of Miami Township. "Danny and the rest of America and the world want the assurance from this body that we will see this through."

Democrats booed and shouted at Schmidt as Rep. Harold Ford, D-Tenn., charged across the chamber's center aisle screaming that her comments were an uncalled-for personal attack.
Apparently some Republicans were not pleased. Schmidt may not have known that Murtha is a decorated Marine himself.

I don't think Murtha or any other Democrat has proposed to cut and run. Instead, they have called for a withdrawal plan soon.

The proposal the other day, against which most Democrats voted, was a GOP-written resolution for immediate withdrawal.

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Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
The key point made that has caused me to question what may be the best course of action is this: By being there we are fueling the fire; that as long as we're there, there can be no peace. If this is true then we must find a way out.

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Ivan Seeking said:
The key point made that has caused me to question what may be the best course of action is this: By being there we are fueling the fire; that as long as we're there, there can be no peace. If this is true then we must find a way out.
Exactly. The number of 'terrorist' insurgents is some fraction of insurgents, most of whom just want the occupying forces to leave. Can the US get rid of all al-Qaida elements? Probably not. The US and coalition are precisely the reason al-Qaida was able to enter Iraq in the first place. The longer the US stays, the more angry others will become and this will make easier for al-Qaida to recruit.

As for stability, that will be difficult unless the Sunnis can come to terms with Shi'i and Kurdish communities. I would hope that is the case, but history may be hard to overcome.

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Skyhunter
Astronuc said:
Exactly. The number of 'terrorist' insurgents is some fraction of insurgents, most of whom just want the occuping forces to leave. Can the US get rid of all al-Qaida elements? Probably not. The US and coalition are precisely the reason al-Qaida was able to enter Iraq in the first place. The longer the US stays, the more angry others will become and this will make easier for al-Qaida to recruit.
As for stability, that will be difficult unless the Sunnis can come to terms with Shi'i and Kurdish communities. I would hope that is the case, but history may be hard to overcome.
There are no good solutions to the Iraqi crisis. The best we could hope for is the UN and the world community to make a deep commitment to help rebuild the destroyed infrastructure and help out with the security situation.

Perhaps with input from neighboring Arab nations an agreement can be reached that is amenable to the Shi'i, Kurds, and Sunnis. They will never accept an American proposal, no matter how sensible. The only hope is for third party, hopefully a regional third party(s).

I am sickened when I think of all the lives and resources poured into Bush's war. Think of the progress that could have been made if 10% of the resources spent on Iraq had been focused on hunting down Al Qaeda. Not only would we be rolling up cells everywhere, we would have the cooperation and goodwill of most of the world by now.

After 9/11 there was a unique opportunity to advance the world community. America could have led the world into a new century of peace and cooperation. Instead Bush chose belligerence, arrogance, and war!

For this I will never forgive him.

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
A local congressperson was pointing out that forces were withdrawn from Afghanistan at a time when Osama bin Laden was perhaps still within the borders, particularly around Tora Bora. The Bush administration pulled resources and sent them to Iraq/Kuwait.

Al Qaida and bin Laden directed the attack on WTC, not Hussein.

BobG
Homework Helper
Astronuc said:
Schmidt causes ruckus in House debate on Iraq
Apparently some Republicans were not pleased. Schmidt many not have known that Murtha is a decorated Marine himself.
I don't think Murtha or any other Democrat has proposed to cut and run. Instead, they have called for a withdrawal plan soon.
The proposal the other day, against which most Democrats voted, was a GOP-written resolution for immediate withdrawal.
Suggesting she may not have known Murtha's background is being very generous. Her statement and attitude were consistent with the attitude she displayed during her campaign against Paul Hackett in Ohio's Second District. That campaign recieved some national attention since Hackett was a veteran of the current Iraq war.

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Skyhunter
BobG said:
Suggesting she may not have known Murtha's background is being very generous. Her statement and attitude were consistent with the attitude she displayed during her campaign against Paul Hackett in Ohio's Second District. That campaign recieved some national attention since Hackett was a veteran of the current Iraq war.
She barely eked out a win in a heavily Republican district.

BTW Paul Hackett is running for the Senate in 2006.

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
BobG said:
Suggesting she may not have known Murtha's background is being very generous. Her statement and attitude were consistent with the attitude she displayed during her campaign against Paul Hackett in Ohio's Second District. That campaign recieved some national attention since Hackett was a veteran of the current Iraq war.
Well, I don't know much about her, so I gave her the benefit of doubt. Truly sad, that representatives who supposedly are elected to represent the people, seek to demean those with whom they disagree. The point of Congress is to have debates about issues - their job is to deliberate on political matters.

Schmidt mentioned that a Marine Col. had called with a message for Murtha. I thought she was just using some else's words without thinking.

Bush and Cheney are now whistling a different tune about Murtha.

He used the top of his speech -- televised live by CNN and other news networks -- to praise U.S. Rep. John Murtha, "my friend and former colleague." The 17-term Pennsylvania Democrat made news last week when he called for U.S. forces to leave Iraq over a six-month period.

"I disagree with Jack and believe his proposal would not serve the best interest of this nation. But he's a good man, a Marine, a patriot, and he's taking a clear stand in an entirely legitimate discussion," Cheney said.

President Bush similarly praised Murtha on Sunday while on his trip to Asia.
http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/11/21/cheney/

Astronuc
Staff Emeritus
Can you say - ABOUT FACE! :rofl:

Astronuc said:
Can you say - ABOUT FACE! :rofl:
f-f-f-f-l-l-i-i-i-i-i-p

f-f-f-l-l-o-o-p

Nope. I can't say it.

Staff Emeritus