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Bush's speech

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Disagreeable

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From FactCheck.org: (my emphasis added)

"Standing before a crowd of uniformed soldiers, President Bush addressed the nation on June 27 to reaffirm America's commitment to the global war on terrorism. But throughout the speech Bush continually stated his opinions and conclusions as though they were facts, and he offered little specific evidence to support his assertions.
Here we provide some additional context, both facts that support Bush's case that "we have made significant progress" in Iraq, as well as some of the negative evidence he omitted.

Analysis

Bush's prime-time speech at Fort Bragg, NC coincided with the one-year anniversary of the handover of soverignty to Iraqi authorities. It was designed to lay out America's role in Iraq amid sinking public support for the war and calls by some lawmakers to withdraw troops.

The Bloodshed

Bush acknowledged the high level of violence in Iraq as he sought to reassure the public.

Bush: The work in Iraq is difficult and dangerous. Like most Americans, I see the images of violence and bloodshed. Every picture is horrifying and the suffering is real. Amid all this violence, I know Americans ask the question: Is the sacrifice worth it?

What Bush did not mention is that by most measures the violence is getting worse. Both April and May were record months in Iraq for car bombings, for example, with more than 135 of them being set off each month. And the bombings are getting more deadly. May was a record month for deaths from bombings, with 381 persons killed in "multiple casualty" bombings that took two or more lives, according to figures collected by the Brookings Institution in its "Iraq Index." The Brookings index is compiled from a variety of sources including official government statistics, where those are available, and other public sources such as news accounts and statements of Iraqi government officials.

The number of Iraqi police and military who have been killed is also rising, reaching 296 so far in June, nearly triple the 109 recorded in January and 103 in Febrary, according to a tally of public information by the website Iraq Coalition Casualty Count, a private group that documents each fatality from public statements and news reports. Estimates of the total number of Iraqi civilians killed each month as a result of "acts of war" have been rising as well, according to the Brookings index.

The trend is also evident in year-to-year figures. In the past twelve months, there have been 25% more U.S. troop fatalities and nearly double the average number of insurgent attacks per day as there were in the preceeding 12 months.
Reconstruction Progress

In talking about Iraqi reconstruction, Bush highlighted the positive and omitted the negative:

Bush: We continued our efforts to help them rebuild their country. . . . Our progress has been uneven but progress is being made. We are improving roads and schools and health clinics and working to improve basic services like sanitation, electricity and water. And together with our allies, we will help the new Iraqi government deliver a better life for its citizens.

Indeed, the State Department's most recent Iraq Weekly Status Report shows progress is uneven. Education is a positive; official figures show 3,056 schools have been rehabilitated and millions of "student kits" have been distributed to primary and secondary schools. School enrollments are increasing. And there are also 145 new primary healthcare centers currently under construction. The official figures show 78 water treatment projects underway, nearly half of them completed, and water utility operators are regularly trained in two-week courses.

On the negative side, however, State Department figures show overall electricity production is barely above pre-war levels. Iraqis still have power only 12 hours daily on average.

Iraqis are almost universally unhappy about that. Fully 96 percent of urban Iraqis said they were dissatisfied when asked about "the availability of electricity in your neighborhood." That poll was conducted in February for the U.S. military, and results are reported in Brookings' "Iraq Index." The same poll also showed that 20 percent of Iraqi city-dwellers still report being without water to their homes.

Conclusions or Facts?

The President repeatedly stated his upbeat conclusions as though they were facts. For example, he said of "the terrorists:"

Bush: They failed to break our coalition and force a mass withdrawal by our allies. They failed to incite an Iraqi civil war.

In fact, there have been withdrawals by allies. Spain pulled out its 1,300 soldiers in April, and Honduras brought home its 370 troops at the same time. The Philippines withdrew its 51 troops last summer to save the life of a Filipino hostage held captive for eight months in Iraq. Ukraine has already begun a phased pullout of its 1,650-person contingent, which the Defense Ministry intends to complete by the end of the year. Both the Netherlands and Italy have announced plans to withdraw their troops, and the Bulgarian parliament recently granted approval to bring home its 450 soldiers. Poland, supplying the third-largest contingent in the coalition after Italy's departure, has backed off a plan for full withdrawal of troops due to the success of Iraqi elections and talks with Condoleezza Rice, but the Polish Press Agency announced in June that the next troop rotation will have 200 fewer soldiers.

Bush is of course entitled to argue that these withdrawals don't constitute a "mass" withdrawal, but an argument isn't equivalent to a fact.

The same goes for Bush's statement there's no "civil war" going on. In fact, some believe that what's commonly called the "insurgency" already is a "civil war" or something very close to it. For example, in an April 30 piece, the Times of London quotes Colonel Salem Zajay, a police commander in Southern Baghdad, as saying, "The war is not between the Iraqis and the Americans. It is between the Shia and the Sunni." Again, Bush is entitled to state his opinion to the contrary, but stating a thing doesn't make it so.
Terrorism

Similarly, Bush equated Iraqi insurgents with terrorists who would attack the US if they could.

Bush: There is only one course of action against them: to defeat them abroad before they attack us at home. . . . Our mission in Iraq is clear. We are hunting down the terrorists .

Despite a few public claims to the contrary, however, no solid evidence has surfaced linking Iraq to attacks on the United States, and Bush offered none in his speech. The 9/11 Commission issued a staff report more than a year ago saying "so far we have no credible evidence that Iraq and al Qaeda cooperated on attacks against the United States." It said Osama bin Laden made a request in 1994 to establish training camps in Iraq, but "but Iraq apparently never responded." That was before bin Laden was ejected from Sudan and moved his operation to Afghanistan.

Bush laid stress on the "foreign" or non-Iraqi elements in the insurgency as evidence that fighting in Iraq might prevent future attacks on the US:

Bush: I know Americans ask the question: Is the sacrifice worth it? It is worth it, and it is vital to the future security of our country . And tonight I will explain the reasons why.
Some of the violence you see in Iraq is being carried out by ruthless killers who are converging on Iraq to fight the advance of peace and freedom. Our military reports that we have killed or captured hundreds of foreign fighters in Iraq who have come from Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iran, Egypt, Sudan, Yemen, Libya and other nations.

But Bush didn't mention that the large majority of insurgents are Iraqis, not foreigners. The overall strength of the insurgency has been estimated at about 16,000 persons. The number of foreign fighters in Iraq is only about 1,000, according to estimates reported by the Brookings Institution. The exact number is of course impossible to know. However, over the course of one week during the major battle for Fallujah in November of 2004, a Marine official said that only about 2% of those detained were foreigners. To be sure, Brookings notes that "U.S. military believe foreign fighters are responsible for the majority of suicide bombings in Iraq," with perhaps as many as 70 percent of bombers coming from Saudi Arabia alone. It is anyone's guess how many of those Saudi suicide bombers might have attempted attacks on US soil, but a look at the map shows that a Saudi jihadist can drive across the border to Baghdad much more easily than getting nearly halfway around the world to to the US.

Osama bin Laden

Bush quoted a recent tape-recorded message by bin Laden as evidence that the Iraq conflict is "a central front in the war on terror":

Bush: Hear the words of Osama bin Laden: "This Third World War is raging" in Iraq..."The whole world is watching this war." He says it will end in "victory and glory or misery and humiliation."

However, Bush passed over the fact that the relationship between bin Laden and the Iraqi insurgents – to the extent one existed at all before – grew much closer after the US invaded Iraq. Insurgent leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi did not announce his formal allegiance with bin Laden until October, 2004. It was only then that Zarqawi changed the name of his group from "Unification and Holy War Group" to "al Qaeda in Iraq."

In summary, we found nothing false in what Bush said, only that his facts were few and selective."

http://www.factcheck.org/article334.html
 

passin thru

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Congratulations on being another convert to the terrorists of the world. I'm sure they are proud to have won you over and have you walking arm in arm with the terrorists of the world.
 

Steve

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Well it's good to see your "facts are few and selective" Disagreeable, by omitting any good news, and highlighting bad news it seems that you have jioned the radical islamic terrorists propoganda group, maybe you can disregard the Fact that since 9 - 11 there has not been one attact against Americans on our soil since, ,,,

and that many radical islamic terrorists will never again be able to plot against US because they are either dead or held in our little camp in Cuba,

but then again if you had your way Saddam would still be in power....torture and killing more of his fellow country men every day. what was the last total 300,000, or was it many more?



":Along with other human rights organizations, The Documental Centre for Human Rights in Iraq has compiled documentation on over 600,000 civilian executions in Iraq. Human Rights Watch reports that in one operation alone, the Anfal, Saddam killed 100,000 Kurdish Iraqis,,Coldly taken as a daily average for the 24 years of Saddam's reign, these numbers give us a horrifying picture of between 70 and 125 civilian deaths per day for every one of Saddam's 8,000-odd days in power"
 

Disagreeable

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FactCheck.org is probably the most respected, unbiased site on the internet. They'll respond to anyone who requests them to provide the truth about claims. Sometimes I like their response; sometimes I don't. So you can beat me up, but the facts are there. FactCheck didn't say Bush lied, so I think they went pretty easy on the speech. But they pointed out that what Bush wants to happen is not what's really happening. Get ready, guys, I'm back.
 

Disagreeable

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Sierraman said:
Dear disagreeable,

I missed that speech, I was out of town. I'm sure it was a terrible experience for you, and I hope you didn't feel that Bush hates the terrorists too much. I must forgive for being ungrateful to the new security we have in the USA, thanks to our soldiers and their work. War always has a bad side. Have you ever cleaned a room? While you're in the middle of the process, the room is a disaster area, maybe it even looks worse than it did before you started, but if you keep persisting till the end, the room will be perfect. People die in war. We knew soldiers would die, and innocent Iraqi civilians. I'm grateful for all the sacrifice, even if I am not happy about it.

If Bush had taken us to war in Iraq because of terrorism, I'd have no complaint. But he didn't. Bold for empthasis: he took us to war in Iraq because he had proof Saddam had WMDs. That was a lie.

What new security? Our southern borders are just as open as they have ever been. Every day people come across illegally and can bring dirty bombs (for example) with them. Just this year, finally, Bush gave more funding to our Border Patrol.

Yes, soldiers die in wars. That's why a commander in chief should never send our military into an unnecessary war. And Iraq was unnecessary. If Bush had stood up in front of the American people and said, Saddam is a bad man, we need to take him out, he would not have got Senate approval. If he had stood up and claimed Saddam was part of the 9-11 attack, he would have been asked for proof and there is none. So he lied. He claimed to have proof that Saddam had WMDs. In spite of the scrambling and spinning being done by the Right, that's the basis of this war and it's a lie.
 

Disagreeable

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Steve said:
Well it's good to see your "facts are few and selective" Disagreeable, by omitting any good news, and highlighting bad news it seems that you have jioned the radical islamic terrorists propoganda group, maybe you can disregard the Fact that since 9 - 11 there has not been one attact against Americans on our soil since, ,,,

and that many radical islamic terrorists will never again be able to plot against US because they are either dead or held in our little camp in Cuba,

but then again if you had your way Saddam would still be in power....torture and killing more of his fellow country men every day. what was the last total 300,000, or was it many more?



":Along with other human rights organizations, The Documental Centre for Human Rights in Iraq has compiled documentation on over 600,000 civilian executions in Iraq. Human Rights Watch reports that in one operation alone, the Anfal, Saddam killed 100,000 Kurdish Iraqis,,Coldly taken as a daily average for the 24 years of Saddam's reign, these numbers give us a horrifying picture of between 70 and 125 civilian deaths per day for every one of Saddam's 8,000-odd days in power"

They're not my facts. They are the facts, compiled by FactCheck.org. Yeah, yeah, keep on Steve. Show me a link to the Documental Centre of Human Rights in Iraq or Human Rights Watch with this information.

But it doesn't matter if Saddam killed 500 people a day or more. Bush invaded Iraq because he said Saddam had WMDs. The American people would never have approved a war because Saddam was a bad man. There are bad men in power around the world. Why hasn't Bush attacked them? You know the answer as well as I do, they don't have any oil.
 

Disagreeable

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Honestly I don't know what Bush's proof of WMDs was that were in Iraq, but proof does not represent fact, but it makes a search very worthwhile. His reason may have been wrong, but we all know that Saddam needed to be rooted out anytime by then anyway. His father tried to do the same thing. He fought terror in his own way. It was Clinton's 8 little yrs. that he let and even set up a perfect environment for terrorist growth that put bush into such a dilemma. If Bush would ignore the terrorist problem and left it for the next pres. ,it would be the next pres who would receive your criticism.

As for Southern Border patrol, I know alot about that living so near it here in TX. Where you from by the way? I seea lot of Mexicans, and they aren't serious problems safetywise, its economically that the problem comes from them. They come here make money illegally and send it back to Mexico, and Fox only helps them. Anyway, you said they could bring in dirty bombs. Well, I could bring a dirty bomb into the capitol if I wanted to. Securing the South border 100 percent is imposssible, at least bush is doing what is posssible. --

So tell me why "Saddam had to be rooted out"? What was Saddam doing to the United States of American that required us to go in and knock him from power? What was it that has cost us billions of dollars (much of it unaccounted for) and 1700 American lives?

When you answer that one, I'll get to the rest of your post.
 

Disagreeable

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Sierraman said:
Disagreeable-

I posted this on the other topic titled, Disagrereable isn't here so .... , but I wanted to post it here because its imoportant you read it. This is concerning your offer for us to beat you up and threatening us with the I'm back... bit.

I just want you to know that I ( and I believe I speak for almost all of us) do not want to beat you up. You write a lot of posts in short periods of time though with very interesting subjects, very controversial and with a viewpoint that the the majority of us do not hold. So, speaking with you about these things represents a challenge to us and a very different kind of conversation.

You're new, obviously. Yes, others would be glad to "beat me up", on the internet, of course. IMO, you don't speak for almost everyone on this board. You might actually have an open mind. Most others on this board have established their position and will ignore the facts and the truth to protect that position.
 

Disagreeable

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Sierraman said:
Facts? I haven't really heard any facts from you. Just ideas, opinions and mm hmm, I haven't used a curse word on here yet, so i won't begin now, but.../ :wink:-

I've posted facts and references for those facts. What have you posted?
As for language, not a surprise if you curse; bad language is the refuge of a small mind.

As for Saddam's threat, anyone who takes away anyone's freedom is a threat to humankind. Freedom is a necessity as much as we may consider it a luxury, life isn't life if we have no control over it. Even when the tyranny of Saddam doesn't effect us directly he has threatened the freedom which we have. He had people ready to kill us if we did anything to help the people he hurt, that's why 1700 soldiers have died there.

Bologna. If you believed that you'd be demanding we go into North Korea, Saudia Arabia and dozens of other countries where "freedom" is nonexistent and people are actually starving. But, no, Bush only wants to go to a country with oil. A country he thought could easily be taken and controlled. Was he ever wrong!! And you support his unjust war.

Where are ya from? It may seem insignificant to you, but it means all the world to me about what you experience and how it plays on your ideas. If you don't want to answer, please feel free not to. :)


Where I'm from isn't relavent to this discussion. If you can't make a point based on facts, then don't take up board space.
 

Sierraman

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Reader, Many people in Iraq, including almost all the government was terrorists. We are in a war with what again? Terrorists, I think. I don't see what we haven't been fighting for that we haven't already been.
 

DOC HARRIS

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Disagreeable said:
Honestly I don't know what Bush's proof of WMDs was that were in Iraq, but proof does not represent fact, but it makes a search very worthwhile. His reason may have been wrong, but we all know that Saddam needed to be rooted out anytime by then anyway. His father tried to do the same thing. He fought terror in his own way. It was Clinton's 8 little yrs. that he let and even set up a perfect environment for terrorist growth that put bush into such a dilemma. If Bush would ignore the terrorist problem and left it for the next pres. ,it would be the next pres who would receive your criticism.

As for Southern Border patrol, I know alot about that living so near it here in TX. Where you from by the way? I seea lot of Mexicans, and they aren't serious problems safetywise, its economically that the problem comes from them. They come here make money illegally and send it back to Mexico, and Fox only helps them. Anyway, you said they could bring in dirty bombs. Well, I could bring a dirty bomb into the capitol if I wanted to. Securing the South border 100 percent is imposssible, at least bush is doing what is posssible. --

So tell me why "Saddam had to be rooted out"? What was Saddam doing to the United States of American that required us to go in and knock him from power? What was it that has cost us billions of dollars (much of it unaccounted for) and 1700 American lives?

When you answer that one, I'll get to the rest of your post.
:p HELLO OUT THERE! - - - - Here is ANOTHER - - - :twisted: disagreeable :twisted: RICOCHET alert :!: - -replying to an "answerable" statement or comment with another 'question' to change the subject! :???: In reading all the Liberal slime that this :twisted: guy :twisted: sprays about you have to really pay attention to :twisted: his :twisted: motives. :shock: KEEP AWARE :wink:
 

Disagreeable

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reader (the Second) said:
Not to mention the deaths of Iraqi and U.S. soldiers. I read about a young Marine just killed on his THIRD tour of duty. He spent his 20th, 21th, and 22nd birthday in Iraq and died at 22. That is because we have an "all volunteer army" although we sure have stretched the meaning of the word volunteer.

So sad about this young man, Reader.

Just wanted to say that I've enjoyed reading several of your posts on both boards. Keep it up....
 

mp.freelance

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Although the loss of American lives in this war has been terrible, we have to keep in mind that during WWII and WWI we sometimes lost more people in a single day. Nonetheless, that did not discourage this country from doing the right thing. It's disconcerting to think what would have happened if people back then would lose heart as easily as they seem to today.
 

mp.freelance

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I've read in both Time and Newsweek that the majority of insurgents, and the most brutal ones, are foreign radicals (terrorists) who travel to Iraq specifically to engage in war with infidels (us). There is a segment of the insurgent population that is composed of native Iraqis, but they are thought to be fighting primarily for nationalistic and political reasons, which may be resolved through the political process and Iraq's eventual autonomy.

The jihadis, however, have no goal except the annihilation of the U.S., Israel, and ultimately all non-Islamic infidels, and they see Iraq as a good place to start.

If fighting in Iraq isn't "taking the war to the terrorists" then I don't know what is.
 

mp.freelance

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The Iraq war is certainly messy - I don't think anyone can disagree there. But the question at this point is, do we have any choice but to make it work?

It seems that a lot of the arguments I hear against the Iraq war may have been valid a few years ago, but have no current practical application. Even if everything were true: we did it for oil, Bush deceived the U.S., Saddam was no threat - we're still there right now, and we have to win. Simply complaining about the president, the war, and the U.S. in general is just an exercise in futility, since an immediate withdrawal of troops is unfeasible and unlikely to help anything.
 

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