Buying the war. How did mainstream media get it so wrong. PBS

In the run-up to war, skepticism was a rarity among journalists inside the Beltway. Journalist Bob Simon of 60 MINUTES, who was based in the Middle East, questioned the reporting he was seeing and reading. "I mean we knew things or suspected things that perhaps the Washington press corps could not suspect. For example, the absurdity of putting up a connection between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda," he tells Moyers. "Saddam...was a total control freak. To introduce a wild card like Al Qaeda in any sense was just something he would not do. So I just didn't believe it for an instant."

Here in Canada, and I presume the United States we see a call to patriotic love, aimed at a common enemy, call it terrorism,call it Al Quida, call it them, call it half-truths, because ultimately 'the enemy' is found there, and here and within us...it is 'the devil.'

In a PBS special report, "Buying the War" it was suggested (i don't know how much truths, half-truths and lies are involved) that the media in North America got it wrong....
pbs.org/moyers/journal/btw/watch.html

In viewing a documentary on the Prime Minister Blair and President Bush connection to invade Iraq the documentary blamed it on their common faith Christianity.

Are they right (or left) are they correct ?

Why blame Christianity ?

Seems Christianity has lost its 'salt.'

What did Jesus Christ carry to battle 'the devil'....he carried his cross!

Not really the 'weapon' of choice in North America....but a choice that suggests that Christianity has lost its direction....

If the three leading world religions cannot agree on a Messiah....they can agree on a common enemy, 'the devil'.....a devil that has corrupted Christianity, and has and will corrupt anything if we do not seek The Truth...

I watched “No End In Sight” on the Sundance channel this weekend and it implied or I inferred that the war was totally mismanaged to a degree I felt was intentional. I have read that Eric Prince is a big fan of CA and he managed to to get most of the private contracter work in Iraq; here I refer to " Iraq for Sale" This is terrifying to me. I don’t know what it means.

In the lead-up to the resumption of hostilities in Iraq, the impression I had was not that Saddam Hussein was in league with Al-Quaeda but that AQ had (had?) a training base in Iraq, which SH may or may not have known about. The main thing I heard about SH’s links with terrorism was that he was funding terror, overtly in the case of offering a check for $25,000 to the families of suicide bombers (I forget if this was only for suicide bombers in Israel or in general).

One of the more interesting facts which the Bush Administration neglected to mention was that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was a wanted man by Saddam’s regime for conducting a series of car bombings in Baghdad prior to the Iraq War. In fact, Saddam had tried unsuccessfully on numerous occassions to locate and capture him. Of even more interest is that Saddam viewed Ansar al-Islam and Al Qaeda as threats to his regime and his only real connections to them were attempts to plant spies within those groups.

In regards to that alleged Al Qaeda training base; The CIA and DIA concluded that it was actually an Iraqi counter-terrorism training facility specializing in anti-hijacking techniques. The truth is slightly more shocking; the so-called defector, who identified himself as Lt. General Ghurairy, who made the claim that this was a terrorist training facility, was discovered to be an imposter living in Turkey. The real Lt. General Churairy was tracked down in Iraq and emphasized that he had never even set foot at that facility let alone talked to US intelligence agents or the media about it.

The Joint Resolution on Iraq mentions al Qaeda only once, and is about 10th down on the list of about 25 reasons that the resolution was formed.

pbs.org/newshour/bb/middle_east/july-dec02/joint_resolution_10-11-02.html

Our Iraq polices pre-date GWB, see the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998, “Operation Desert Fox”.

[quote="scipio337, post:5, topic:201757"]
The Joint Resolution on Iraq mentions al Qaeda only once, and is about 10th down on the list of about 25 reasons that the resolution was formed.".

[/quote]

I wonder how many of our Congressmen and Senators would have voted for that Resolution if they had known that the majority of the Administration's claims of WMD came from the ramblings of an alcoholic and psychotic taxi driver.

[quote="scipio337, post:5, topic:201757"]
Our Iraq polices pre-date GWB, see the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998, "Operation Desert Fox".

[/quote]

"Nothing in this Act shall be construed to authorize or otherwise speak to the use of United States Armed Forces (except as provided in section 4(a)(2)) in carrying out this Act."

Understandable. It might have resulted in a smaller military action, like the previous admin had done.

[quote=EmperorNapoleon]“Nothing in this Act shall be construed to authorize or otherwise speak to the use of United States Armed Forces (except as provided in section 4(a)(2)) in carrying out this Act.”
[/quote]

I didn’t say it authorized an invation, but did set a precedent for US policy of armed intervention to enforce the UN sanctions.

I’ve never heard that BBC described as such.

The fact is, we know that SH had WMD’s…because he used them.

He used mustard gas and sarin nerve gas on the Iranians, and sarin nerve gas on the Kurds.

The BBC has reported on such
news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/spl/hi/middle_east/02/iraq_events/html/chemical_warfare.stm

Why would the BBC lie about such things? Is it because you feel they are all drunk taxi drivers?

Now Al Gore, Nancy Pelois and Carl Levin. I’ll agree they are psychotic, possibly even drunk; but I don’t think any have ever been taxi drivers

"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them."
Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002.

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."
Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002.

"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process."
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998.

So the question is not IF Saddam had WMD’s, but what did he do with them.

I’m not so certain. I think Bush would have used the War Powers Act to launch an invasion anyway. There would have been a heck of a racket in Congress but everyone knows that they wouldn’t dare pull the purse strings.

Not in the sense that I think you’re interpreting it. It was an authorization to support an Iraqi uprising against the regime not support for direct US military intervention.

The primary source of the claims of WMD was a man reffered to in the intelligence community as “Curveball.” Here’s a short BBC article about him:

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7075501.stm

He used them decades ago which isn’t evidence that he had them in 2003.

According to all of the investigations after the war; they had all been destroyed in compliance with UN Resolutions. It really is a shame that no one bothered to engage in fact checking until we had already gone to war.

But the War Powers Resolution still requires Congressional approval unless under attack or “serious threat”. I doubt that would have happened. I think the Joint Resolution was to fulfill the War Powers Act requirement.

[quote=EmperorNapoleon]Not in the sense that I think you’re interpreting it. It was an authorization to support an Iraqi uprising against the regime not support for direct US military intervention.
[/quote]

I was more speaking about Operation Desert Fox, but you had President Clinton target Iraq throughout 1998, The Iraq Liberation Act in October of 1998, and Operation Desert Fox in December of 1998. Here was his national address during Operation Desert Fox.

cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/stories/1998/12/16/transcripts/clinton.html

Under the War Powers Act, the President can order the military to engage in hostilities for up to 60 days without Congressional approval. All the President hast to do is notify Congress that he’s doing it within 48 hours and provide regular updates.

I have no qualms pointing out that the Clinton Administration was mistaken but this is a far cry from invasion.

What were they mistaken about? That UN inspectors really weren’t kicked out, and Saddam was in full compliance?

As I previously said, it set a precedent for US policy of armed intervention to enforce the UN sanctions, but I think it provides a counter argument to the OP’s

In viewing a documentary on the Prime Minister Blair and President Bush connection to invade Iraq the documentary blamed it on their common faith Christianity…

I spent a total of 3 years in Afghanistan and Iraq. I know hindsight is 20/20, but it will be years before history will show what the results in Iraq were. I don’t have a problem with people questioning the decision to go to war, and I certainly think less of the decision now than I did then, but don’t find any credence in conspiracies that surround it.

As far as WMD go; Saddam was in compliance and the unfortunate thing is that no one seems to want to talk about the fact that it was the United States which provided him the means of producing WMD in the first place. I also don’t believe that the United States should be in the business of enforcing UN Resolutions via our military without the express and specific consent of the Security Council.

I agree that the nonsense about the desire for a Crusade is just that; nonsense. Subsequent investigations have revealed however that forces within the Administration were pushing a war by manipulating and fabricating, presenting lies and uncertainties as facts, and seeking out claims of WMD by any means necessary (including paying indivuals to make such claims) while ignoring claims to the contrary. If this corruption went all the way to the top is pure speculation at this point.

[quote="EmperorNapoleon, post:14, topic:201757"]
As far as WMD go; Saddam was in compliance and the unfortunate thing is that no one seems to want to talk about the fact that it was the United States which provided him the means of producing WMD in the first place. I also don't believe that the United States should be in the business of enforcing UN Resolutions via our military without the express and specific consent of the Security Council.

[/quote]

He might have been bluffing about his capabilities, he may have lost or destroyed a majority of his stockpiles, but he certainly wasn't in compliance because he had kicked out UNSCOM inspectors. Some "dual use" material was given to Hussein, but I've never seen anything that suggests the US gave him nuclear capabilities.

And I agree about the UN enforcing its own resolutions.

Can't disagree.

There are two reasons why Saddam kicked out the inspectors. The first, and most important, would have been a concern that his compliance would have been broadcast all over the world. I doubt he would have wanted Iran to know that he didn’t have chemical and biological weapons. The second reason was a rocket program which was a violation of the Resolutions.

That “dual use” material consisted of dozens of varieties of chemical and biological agents; some of which were shipped directly to Iraqi military facilities. Nuclear facilities and materials were provided by France, Italy, Germany, Portugal, Niger, and Brazil.

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