News The USA's invasion of Iraq, March 2003

  • Thread starter Adam
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I've posted a little essay about this invasion on my website. I couldn't paste it into here due to the length, so feel free to read it at: http://bad-sports.com/~archive/revolution/index.html [Broken]

Any rational feedback would be most welcome.
 
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US army will die of toxic gases!!!!
 
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krieg ist nicht gut und Bush ist ein schwachsinnige!
 

Njorl

Science Advisor
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The ABM treaty, like all treaties with the former Soviet Union required re-ratification upon the conversion of the USSR to Russia. This was never done, so the US did not violate it. Even if it were in force, it contained provisions for its deactivation, unilaterally, by either party. Those provisions were followed. It is a minor part of your essay, you might want to leave out refernce to the ABM treaty.

There are many provisions in the chem warfare convention that provide loopholes for the manufacture of chemicals with genuine dual use. Many insecticides are precursor chemicals that can be manufactured and stockpiled legally under the treaty. Also, the provisions for the destruction of existing stockpiles are not clearly rigorous. I haven't checked to see if any of this impacts your essay, but you might want to.

"In over ten years, nobody found ANY evidence that Iraq was still producing chemical or biological weapons."

On the contrary, following the testimony of Saddam Hussein's son-in-law, beneath false floors in labs thought to be rendered harmless after the initial Gulf War, inspections revealed at least two fully functional laboratories.

Agent Orange was used as a defoliant, not an antipersonnel weapon.

The US use of nuclear weapons was before the terrible nature of those weapons was well understood, and before the philosophy of weapons like these could become mature. It was also almost 60 years ago.

You make a case that interference in Iraq is justified, then say the US is not the one to do it. In all the world, there is no other entity that can do it. The UN is certainly not capable of ever conducting any military operation. They could not protect the Muslims in Bosnia from a poorly trained militia drawn from less than the third of the population of a small country. Of all the nations that wage war, only the US has shown the morality to rebuild its past enemies after the conflict.

You bring up the illegal testing of chemical and biological weapons done on US citizens (you left out the radiological testing). The perpetrators of these tests have been condemned, and the victims have been compensated, for what it's worth. There is no system for the redress of grievences against the government in Iraq.

You seemed to start your essay relying upon solid definitions, logic and facts. You then descend into namecalling and groundless supposition about American motives.

Njorl
 

russ_watters

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Any rational feedback would be most welcome.
US army will die of toxic gases!!!!
krieg ist nicht gut und Bush ist ein schwachsinnige!
Hmm... Tough luck Adam.

Anyway, Adam, I'll try to be rational:

I take exception to your take on the US and NBC weapons. A few points I think you missed/got wrong:

1. Agent Orange is not a chemical weapon. It is not a weapon. Its a herbicide.

2. I have seen no proof that the US has tested biological weapons on its own civilians.

3. Poverty levels and capital punishment are not relevant to that essay. Why include them? You're trying to paint the US in the worst possible way you can.

4. Your list of countries we have attacked is misleading and erroneous.

5. Several of the examples of negatives about the US also apply to Iraq but you don't list them for Iraq. Bias.

6. You miss the two key component of judging past actions: timeframe and change. Something that happened 12 years ago is far more relevant than something that happened 55. And whether or not a countries attitudes/states of mind have changed is extremely important.

7. The rest of the essay is focused entirely on your hatred for the US and has nothing relevant to the current conflict in it.
 

N_Quire

Russ, There was the Tuskeegee Experiment which was an awful episode in American history. Whether it qualifies as biological or chemical warfare on its own population is open to discussion (it wasn't a warfare or weapons experiment) but it was bad enough to prompt president Clinton to state: "The United States government did something that was wrong—deeply, profoundly, morally wrong. It was an outrage to our commitment to integrity and equality for all our citizens. . . . clearly racist. " (President Clinton's apology for the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment to the eight remaining survivors,
May 16, 1997)


Read about the Tuskegee Experiment
 
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Njorl

The ABM treaty, like all treaties with the former Soviet Union required re-ratification upon the conversion of the USSR to Russia.
I was under the impression that the treaties transfered without re-ratification to the Russian government due to the fact that the Russian government was still the same body.

There are many provisions in the chem warfare convention that provide loopholes for the manufacture of chemicals with genuine dual use.
If a country creates, stockpiles, and uses these weapons because a loophole allows for it, does that make it okay?

On the contrary, following the testimony of Saddam Hussein's son-in-law, beneath false floors in labs thought to be rendered harmless after the initial Gulf War, inspections revealed at least two fully functional laboratories.
Can you give me evidence of this please? If so, I will certainly include it in my essay.

Agent Orange was used as a defoliant, not an antipersonnel weapon.
Because it destroyed the terrain instead of meat, does that make it any less a weapon? The Daisycutter bomb was designed to knock over trees and create helicopter landing fields; is it not a weapon?

The US use of nuclear weapons was before the terrible nature of those weapons was well understood, and before the philosophy of weapons like these could become mature. It was also almost 60 years ago.
The excuse "we didn't realise the full effects" does not cut it for me. As for time, well, what Iraq did along the border with Iran was a good 15 years ago. How many years back do we remember or forget these things? Just long enough for the USA to forget its actions, and for them to remember Iraq's? That would be awfully convenient.

You make a case that interference in Iraq is justified, then say the US is not the one to do it. In all the world, there is no other entity that can do it. The UN is certainly not capable of ever conducting any military operation. They could not protect the Muslims in Bosnia from a poorly trained militia drawn from less than the third of the population of a small country. Of all the nations that wage war, only the US has shown the morality to rebuild its past enemies after the conflict.
http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6162319%255E25777,00.html [Broken]
If the USA has dropped a MOAB on Basra, would that qualify as absolute proof of my assertion that the USA is not the one to do it? As per my wife-beating analogy?

And yes, the UN is capable of performing such actions. As we saw in East Timor.

You bring up the illegal testing of chemical and biological weapons done on US citizens (you left out the radiological testing). The perpetrators of these tests have been condemned, and the victims have been compensated, for what it's worth. There is no system for the redress of grievences against the government in Iraq.
Does that change the fact that the USA does such things?

You seemed to start your essay relying upon solid definitions, logic and facts. You then descend into namecalling and groundless supposition about American motives.
It was not intended to be name-calling, but analogy.
 
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russ

1. Agent Orange is not a chemical weapon. It is not a weapon. Its a herbicide.
Again: Is the Daisycutter a weapon?

2. I have seen no proof that the US has tested biological weapons on its own civilians.
http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Oct2002/t10092002_t1009ha.html
Or a FAS page about it?

3. Poverty levels and capital punishment are not relevant to that essay. Why include them? You're trying to paint the US in the worst possible way you can.
No, I was showing the facts. Either you accept the facts of both states or neither.

4. Your list of countries we have attacked is misleading and erroneous.
You mean the USA did NOT attack those places?

5. Several of the examples of negatives about the US also apply to Iraq but you don't list them for Iraq. Bias.
Feel free to provide another list of such.

6. You miss the two key component of judging past actions: timeframe and change. Something that happened 12 years ago is far more relevant than something that happened 55. And whether or not a countries attitudes/states of mind have changed is extremely important.
And Iraq's use of chemical weapons against areas along the border with Iran was more than 15 years ago. So what you're saying is, if it's past a certain arbitrary point in time, we can ignore it. And that point is conveniently around the time that allows us to forget what the USA has done, yet remember what their target has done. Correct?

7. The rest of the essay is focused entirely on your hatred for the US and has nothing relevant to the current conflict in it.
I don't hate the USA. In fact I like it, in general. I find it is very common for those who dislike being presented with facts about the USA, however, to rant "you're anti-American!" rather than actually address the issues raised.
 
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russ_watters

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Again: Is the Daisycutter a weapon?
Certainly. The daisy cutter is a bomb, not a herbicide.

re: tests of biological weapons (tuskegee exp). Terrible thing. Not a biological or chemical weapon. Close but not the same thing.
No, I was showing the facts. Either you accept the facts of both states or neither.
Certainly I will accept the facts from both states - most of yours were for the US though. Why show poverty stats for the US but not Iraq? BIAS. Your goal was to paint the US in as negative of a light as possible.
You mean the USA did NOT attack those places?
Misleading and erroneous. Neither Korea nor Vietnam for example were started by the US. You insinuate that they were.
Feel free to provide another list of such.
YOU wrote the essay, not me. It is up to YOU to show both lists if you desire objectivity.
And Iraq's use of chemical weapons against areas along the border with Iran was more than 15 years ago. So what you're saying is, if it's past a certain arbitrary point in time, we can ignore it. And that point is conveniently around the time that allows us to forget what the USA has done, yet remember what their target has done. Correct?
I made no such arbitrary judgement - YOU just did. All I said was the older something is, the less relevant it is.

Also, my other point was on CHANGE. Very few of the leaders of the US from WWII are even ALIVE today and none are still in power. Certainly US policy is different today than it was in WWII. Iraq has the same leadership it had in the Iran/Iraq war and in the first Gulf War. And all evidence we have shows that Hussein has NOT changed.
I don't hate the USA. In fact I like it, in general. I find it is very common for those who dislike being presented with facts about the USA, however, to rant "you're anti-American!" rather than actually address the issues raised.
Now why would you put in quotes something I didn't say? Your essay is HEAVILY slanted against the US. Also, I was very specific in the issues I addressed. In fact it almost looks like you are trying to make the US look WORSE than Iraq. Hussein is almost universally regarded as a criminal dictator. The UN resolution demanding his disarnament passed easily. Maybe hatred is too strong of a word. How about "strongly dislike"? Clearly you have strong negative feelings for the US.
If the USA has dropped a MOAB on Basra, would that qualify as absolute proof of my assertion that the USA is not the one to do it? As per my wife-beating analogy?
So an off the wall hypothetical constitutes proof? Jeez, if I won the lottery, I'd be rich. Does that prove I'm rich? Your logic is heavily flawed


N_Quire: Your point is well taken and its something I know about. I'd like to think the US gov't has changed, but I don't know. In any case, the fact that it has come out and is openly discussed in govt is by far morally above Iraq's actions. We are capable of admitting and correcting wrongs in our past. And certainly it is not on the same level as active bombing of your own people as Iraq often does.
 
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Massive blasts near Basra
By staff reporters and AFP
March 21, 2003

A SERIES of big explosions have been reported near the southern Iraqi city of Basra.

"We can see huge explosions and fireballs on the horizon towards Basra," Reuters correspondent David Fox said from a vantage point overlooking the frontier about 50km south of Basra.

The scale of the explosion suggests a Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb may have been deployed.

The 9450kg MOAB has supplanted the Daisy Cutter in the US arsenal as the world's largest conventional bomb.

Explosions were also heard in or around the main northern Iraqi city of Mosul early Friday, Al-Jazeera television reported from the scene.

The blasts occurred around half an hour after raid sirens sounded over the the city for the fourth time since the US-led war on Iraq began early Thursday.

http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6162319%255E25777,00.html [Broken]
I haven't seen anything on this on the USA news channels yet. Still waiting for more info.
 
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