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Thread: President Obama Orders Release of Report Justifying Air Strike in Syria

  1. #16
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    ^^^
    tv news, sure. But there are credible american news sources, for international news and politcs i highly recommend Foreign Policy. more credible news sources will only post something if they can back it up. you can check the New York Times, the guardian, the economist, bbc, etc, if you want to see if something that is being reported is a credible report. You can dislike their bias, but they have to check their sources so they're not just going to make shit up, like some 'secret memo' that Putin is going to attack Saudi Arabia. Why hasn't any credible news source outside the US reported this either? Are they also bought and sold by 'the feds'?
    The EU times is not credible and from what I can tell appears to be a far-right, paranoid, tea-partyish rag. and I haven't heard anything about Russia threatening to attack Saudi Arabia. So far Russia's position has been to block action in the security council and now that Obama has pretty much confirmed they're going to intervene, they've said they oppose it and that they think any intervention that isn't sanctioned by the the security council is illegal in terms of international law. Militarily, they have said they will send a few warships to the Mediterranean but that none will actually engage in any kind of military action.


    From rationalwiki:


    The European Union Times claims to be a news site. Its articles on Barack Obama have been linked from a few Libertarian teabag blogs, presumably pleased to find what is apparently a news site that supports some of their views. It even has lots of mainstream advertising served by ContextWeb! Eminently respectable to all appearances.Upon closer inspection, however, it is little more than a compiler and regurgitator of various news stories and a particularly unpleasant far-right-leaning blog. The reporting is, without exception, shockingly unprofessional. Do not be fooled by the nice WordPress theme - this is utter neo-Nazi bollocks.








    Examples of xenophobic, anti-Semitic and even racist bias abound. Note, for example, how many article titles unnecessarily point out the ethnicity of people accused of carrying out crimes. Note also the sheer amount of articles relating to Israel or Jewish people in general.

    check the rationalwiki page for a list of articles published by the EU times. They've claimed that the Christchurch earthquake was the result of a US earthquake weapon gone wrong.


    also, interesting: Racist Skinhead’s Wife Behind European ‘News’ Website | Hatewatch | Southern Poverty Law Center
    Last edited by sputnik; September 1st, 2013 at 04:27 AM.
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  2. #17
    Elite Member effie2's Avatar
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    Peace loving President is well on his way for a second Nobel ,i see..International Police Force killing thousands for Peace..
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  3. #18
    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    I'm so stressed by his decision that I can't make myself read articles on his reasoning. I don't see how dropping bombs is going to change, let alone help, anything over there. It's a spanking for being a bad boy that won't likely end the civil war nor eliminate the chemical threat. It will probably net us another generation of enemies.

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  5. #20
    Gold Member Froogy's Avatar
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    This is a scary situation.

    I'm an American, and I have very mixed feelings on getting involved in other country's problems, now and in the past. I'm also a republican (which I know you all love ) and supported the Iraq and Afghanistan wars in the beginning. Looking back, what did we gain? We've lost so many lives, both Civilian and Military, and with what positive result? Are they any better off? Are we? I would say no and no.

    I see no gain in this. Yes, I would love to find a diplomatic way to step in and stop the chemical warfare on innocent civilians, but how and at what cost to us? I am no Obama fan, but I appreciate him waiting for congressional approval, which I do not think he will get.

    I am no politico, so this is just my opinion. I'm bored on my day off, that is all.

  6. #21
    Elite Member Quazar's Avatar
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    I am American and Independent. I am against war unless we are directly attacked. I think the last time this actually happened was Pearl Harbor. I do not consider 9/11 in this category as we were not attacked by a country but by a terrorist organization that spanned across many places. I think we screwed up big time in Iraq and Afghanistan and Syria seems like version 3.0 of the same. No one is better off in these places now than before and too many people lost their lives for the cause.

    Sometimes you have to let countries sort out their own issues. How would we have felt if Britain stepped in during our Civil War 150 years ago? Would we have appreciated another country with an agenda getting involved? And if getting involved in Syria is truly for humanitarian reasons, why are we not in other places where there are horrible atrocities being done? We get involved because WE have interests in that particular country and this is obvious to much of the rest of the world which is why most other countries are not standing with the US on this one. They see through our agendas.
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  7. #22
    Elite Member Flygirl's Avatar
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    Now, now, look at all we have done for the people of Sudan. Oh, wait.....

  8. #23
    Elite Member WhateverLolaWants's Avatar
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  9. #24
    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Froogy View Post

    I appreciate him waiting for congressional approval, which I do not think he will get.
    It's a very shrewd political move on his part (asking Congress). Although I think that is how it should work, there is plenty of precedent that shows he doesn't have to ask. But Congress provides political cover, either way they vote.
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  10. #25
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Obama Is Only Making His War Powers Mightier

    The credit the president is getting for asking Congress to authorize bombing Syria? He deserves none of it.

    President Obama’s surprise announcement that he will ask Congress for approval of a military attack on Syria is being hailed as a vindication of the rule of law and a revival of the central role of Congress in war-making, even by critics. But all of this is wrong. Far from breaking new legal ground, President Obama has reaffirmed the primacy of the executive in matters of war and peace. The war powers of the presidency remain as mighty as ever.

    It would have been different if the president had announced that only Congress can authorize the use of military force, as dictated by the Constitution, which gives Congress alone the power to declare war. That would have been worthy of notice, a reversal of the ascendance of executive power over Congress. But the president said no such thing. He said: “I believe I have the authority to carry out this military action without specific congressional authorization.” Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed that the president “has the right to do that”—launch a military strike—“no matter what Congress does.”

    Thus, the president believes that the law gives him the option to seek a congressional yes or to act on his own. He does not believe that he is bound to do the first. He has merely stated the law as countless other presidents and their lawyers have described it before him.

    The president’s announcement should be understood as a political move, not a legal one. His motive is both self-serving and easy to understand, and it has been all but acknowledged by the administration. If Congress now approves the war, it must share blame with the president if what happens next in Syria goes badly. If Congress rejects the war, it must share blame with the president if Bashar al-Assad gases more Syrian children. The big problem for Obama arises if Congress says no and he decides he must go ahead anyway, and then the war goes badly. He won’t have broken the law as he understands it, but he will look bad. He would be the first president ever to ask Congress for the power to make war and then to go to war after Congress said no. (In the past, presidents who expected dissent did not ask Congress for permission.)

    People who celebrate the president for humbly begging Congress for approval also apparently don’t realize that his understanding of the law—that it gives him the option to go to Congress—maximizes executive power vis-à-vis Congress. If the president were required to act alone, without Congress, then he would have to take the blame for failing to use force when he should and using force when he shouldn’t. If he were required to obtain congressional authorization, then Congress would be able to block him. But if he can have it either way, he can force Congress to share responsibility when he wants to and avoid it when he knows that it will stand in his way.


    This approach also empowers the president relative to Congress by giving him the ability to embarrass members of Congress when he wants to. Just ask Hillary Clinton, whose vote in favor of the 2003 Iraq War damaged her chances against Barack Obama in 2008, and the Democratic senators who could not enter the 1992 campaign for the presidency because their votes against the 1991 Iraq War rendered them unelectable. The best thing for individual members of Congress is to be able to carp on the sidelines—to complain about not being consulted and to blame the president if the war goes badly. That is why David Axelrod said, “Congress is now the dog that caught the car.” This is hardball politics, not a rediscovery of legal values.

    If Obama gains by spreading blame among Congress, why didn’t the president ask Congress for military authorization earlier, before he threatened Syria with a missile strike? The answer appears to be that the president expected international support for the invasion and believed that if other countries supported him, he would not need support in Congress. Only when the British poodle rediscovered its inner lion did he shift gears. Again, this has nothing to do with the law; it’s a matter of political prudence.

    And it is not hard to see why foreign countries refused to provide support. The legal rationale for the Syria intervention that the president fashioned—deterring the use of chemical weapons—has satisfied no other country. While no one likes chemical weapons, there is no reason to believe that the U.S. must deter their use by striking Syria. Iraq used chemical weapons 30 years ago, but no country followed its lead—even though no one bombed Iraq to punish it. Countries refrain from using chemical weapons because they inspire revulsion among people that governments usually need for support, not because there is a “norm” against them. And no matter how often Obama and Kerry say that they must intervene to enforce this norm, everyone understands that the real reason for U.S. intervention is to maintain the administration’s credibility, or to ensure that the U.S. retains influence over events, or to give a psychological boost to moderate Syrian rebel groups—not to vindicate international law (which the U.S. is violating in any event by disregarding the United Nations charter).

    Some countries want to bombard Syria in order to stop the atrocities or counter Iran or lift favored rebel groups to power. Other countries want Syria left alone. But no country (except perhaps France) sees any sense in a limited strike to punish Syria for using chemical weapons—and, moreover, in such a way as to sting but not topple Assad’s government, a view shared by Sen. John McCain as well. You either kill the rattlesnake or leave it alone; you don’t poke it with a stick. So Obama’s international law theory failed not just because of its legal defects, but because it did not mesh with political realities. When Obama charged ahead nonetheless, he found himself naked and alone, and he turned to Congress for cover.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_a...ar_powers.html
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  11. #26
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    John Kerry's Lie: 'The President Is Not Asking You to Go to War'

    The secretary of state is dissembling in a most unconvincing manner.

    Sources familiar with U.S. planning for a strike on Syria have told CNN that "strikes on command bunkers, airfields or the artillery batteries and rocket launchers used to fire chemical projectiles are among the possibilities being considered."

    In other words, acts of war.

    War is the word for when one military gets powerful explosives, fires them at adversaries in another country, and destroys their military hardware and weapons. If any country on earth struck American bunkers, airfields, or artillery batteries, virtually every last American would understand that as an act of war.

    Yet Secretary of State John Kerry has gone before Congress and said this:

    When people are asked, do you want to go to war in Syria? Of course not.

    Everybody, 100 percent of Americans would say no. We say no. We don’t want to go to war in Syria either. That’s not what we’re here to ask. The president is not asking you to go to war, he’s not asking you to declare war, he’s not asking you to send one American troop to war. He is simply saying we need to take an action that can degrade the capacity of a man who’s been willing to kill his own people by breaking a nearly 100-year-old prohibition, and will we stand up and be counted to say we won’t do that. That’s not -- you know, I just don’t consider that going to war in the classic sense of coming to Congress and asking for a declaration of war and training troops and sending people abroad and putting young Americans in harm’s way. That’s not what the president is asking for here.

    That's really something. One wonders who will select the targets in Syria and fire the explosives into its territory if not trained U.S. troops operating abroad.

    See here: "The USS Nimitz aircraft carrier is moving westward toward the Red Sea, although it has not yet received orders to support a potential US strike on Syria." Perhaps the warship is secretly staffed by next-generation robot seamen. Otherwise, when I read that "the nuclear-powered carrier was set to head back to its home port in Everett, Wash., after a months-long deployment to the Arabian Sea when it reportedly received orders to stay in the area," I can only presume that American military personnel are both being kept away from home and put in more harm's way than they'd be in Washington State because of the Obama Administration's decision to keep open the possibility of waging war on Syria.

    As Peter Beinart explains, a strike on Syria wouldn't even come directly from the Nimitz:

    “War,” wrote Carl von Clausewitz, “is nothing but a duel on an extensive scale.” It is “an act of violence intended to compel our opponent to fulfill our will.” By that classic, and noncontroversial, definition, what the Obama administration is contemplating in Syria is absolutely war. If it wins congressional authorization (and perhaps even if it doesn’t), the United States will reportedly strike Syria with Tomahawk missiles launched from destroyers and submarines in the Mediterranean Sea. Each Tomahawk carries a single 1,000-pound bomb or 166 smaller cluster bombs.

    Who will operate these destroyers and submarines? Hessian mercenaries? Is Kerry able to summon the Dead Men of Dunharrow? Or will Americans be there?

    Beinart goes on:
    The United States is reportedly considering launching several hundred Tomahawk missiles against various Syrian military units and installations. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has acknowledged that “there is a probability for collateral damage.” The Obama administration, in other words, is planning to kill and maim an unspecified number of Syrians in order to deter Bashir al-Assad from again using chemical weapons or to uphold the credibility of a potential American military strike against Iran. That’s war.

    So how can Kerry say it’s not? Because the ships launching the Tomahawks will be far from Syria, and thus apparently impervious to Syrian retaliation. War, in other words, is what happens when other nations kill Americans, not the other way around.


    Adding to the absurdity of Kerry's position is his previous statement that the United States faces a "Munich moment" in Syria. That analogy that never made much sense, but that makes even less sense when the person who is making it then insists that he isn't calling for war. I guess Neville Chamberlain's Britain needn't have declared classical war against the Nazis, just "degraded their capacities," like the Japanese did to us at Pearl Harbor, where they didn't put "boots on the ground."

    Trying to fool Americans into thinking you're not trying to take the country to war when you plainly are is among the more disgraceful things a secretary of state can do, and Kerry is discrediting himself by doing so. And it's telling that he initially declined to commit the Obama Administration to never putting any boots on the ground, saying it could conceivably come to that if Syria descended into chaos and the U.S. had to secure its stocks of chemical weapons.

    Make no mistake: What's being decided is whether America will be at war in Syria. Whatever you think ought to be done, that is the question now before Congress. And the fact that the Obama Administration won't acknowledge the truth is telling.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/...to-war/279362/
    Last edited by witchcurlgirl; September 5th, 2013 at 10:57 AM.
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  12. #27
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    yup.


    speaking of, this was what i was trying to post yesterday but the board wouldn't let me:


    Bait and Switch

    Obama’s “limited” strikes are just the prelude to massive intervention in the Middle East. And Congress shouldn’t fall for it.


    BY BRUCE ACKERMAN | SEPTEMBER 3, 2013


    President Barack Obama's turnaround on Syria comes as a surprise, given his recent shows of disdain for Congress. Only a couple of months ago, Edward Snowden's revelations forced Director of National Intelligence James Clapper to admit that he lied to the Senate Intelligence Committee -- a felony punishable by five years in prison. But the confession of a crime didn't prompt the president to replace Clapper with a fresh face who might credibly join with Congress in cleaning up the NSA scandal.


    Obama's next unilateralist display came in response to the military takeover in Egypt. The Foreign Assistance Act bars aid to "any country whose duly elected head of government is deposed by military coup." But even after Egyptian soldiers mowed down protesters, the White House insisted that it "is not in the best interests of the United States" to determine "whether or not a coup occurred." Despite protests from Capitol Hill, there is no sign that the president will heed the plain meaning of the statutory command.


    As the drama shifted to Syria, presidential policy shifted in the opposite direction. This time, the United States would not be financing Gen. Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as he killed protesters in the street, but would be bombing Bashar al-Assad for gassing civilians. With Secretary of State John Kerry leading the charge, the world was bracing itself for news of the first airstrikes when Obama made his remarkable turn to Congress.


    In a moment full of historical irony, Prime Minister David Cameron's defeat in the House of Commons was a precipitating cause of the president's agonizing reappraisal. For almost a thousand years, the British constitution excluded Parliament from declarations of war -- the king claiming this power as his "royal prerogative." Given George III's war against his rebellious colonists, this made it imperative for America's Founding Fathers to establish that their new president would play a very different role -- and that it would be up to Congress to make the ultimate decisions on war and peace.


    Yet two centuries onward, it was the British Parliament that taught the imperial presidency a lesson. It was only in 2003 that Tony Blair decided that his adventure with George W. Bush required something more than a royal decree. To enhance his democratic legitimacy, he requested the formal approval of Parliament -- which was readily forthcoming since his party was in firm control of the House. But this time around, Cameron was at the head of a shaky Tory-Liberal coalition, which proved incapable of delivering the votes.


    This put President Obama's push for a military response in Syria in the unlikely situation of falling far short of Bush-era benchmarks. Whatever the Iraq War's deficiencies under international law, Bush and Blair did manage to organize a formidable "coalition of the willing." Whatever lies Bush told the public about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction, he did at least gain the consent of Congress. But once Britain dropped out, it was clear that Obama's international coalition was going to be far less substantial than the one that rallied behind Bush. And if Obama refused to gain congressional consent, he would have faced withering attack from both the left and right if his unilateral intervention misfired.


    Obama showed a healthy instinct for political self-preservation in making his last-minute turnaround. But his act will have larger consequences than he intended. Perhaps he might have gained a quick-if-narrow victory if he had proposed a resolution to Congress that strictly limited his use of force to the narrow surgical strike that is his purported objective.


    But in fact, his formal proposal is a massive bait-and-switch operation. It authorizes the president to use "the Armed Forces of the United States," including boots on the ground, and to employ military force "within, to or from Syria." What is more, the president can act to deter the "use or proliferation" of "chemical or other weapons of mass destruction" and intervene to "protect the United States and its allies and partners against the threat posed by such weapons." This is nothing less than an open-ended endorsement of military intervention in the Middle East and beyond.


    Such a remarkable initiative can't help but provoke a fundamental reexamination of basic premises -- something sorely needed at a time when administration policy veers wildly from crude realpolitik in Egypt to high moralism in Syria. What is more, there is no chance that a congressional majority will join John McCain and Lindsey Graham in endorsing Obama's astonishing carte blanche. Indeed, Reps. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Gerald Connolly (D-VA) are already drafting a revised resolution that would only authorize the limited mission Obama has described in his public announcements.


    Most importantly, they are insisting on a strict time limit on all uses of force, as was done in authorizing President Ronald Reagan's invasion of Lebanon in 1983. Given the large gap between their restrictive approach and Obama's open-ended authorization, however, last-minute bargaining may fail to generate a compromise that will carry a majority in both houses.


    In either event, the upcoming debate will signal the beginning of the end of the 9/11 era. Future presidents will be put on notice that the American people will no longer support wide-ranging military interventions in the Islamic world.


    And a good thing too. Although some may worry about Obama's short-term loss of stature, the larger concern should be America's long-term loss of credibility -- both morally, as a result of its brutal conduct of the war on terror, and strategically, as its military interventions in Iraq and elsewhere generate an even more vicious struggle for power in the Middle East. Rather than doubling down on this failed policy, the coming congressional debate ought to open up space for a fundamental reassessment.


    Paradoxically, this may liberate Obama to engage in his more constructive diplomatic initiatives. His championship of a European Free Trade Agreement is far more likely to generate lasting results than Secretary Kerry's desperate effort to win an Israeli-Palestinian settlement. Obama's turn to Asia should be complemented by a turn to Latin America, whose fundamental problems are systematically ignored by a White House continually diverted by the latest crisis from the Middle East.


    But all this is for the future. The crucial point to recognize is that something special is happening. A dispute with a minor-league despot is provoking a major turning point in American foreign policy. This is a moment for Congress to confront its responsibilities with high seriousness.




    Bait and Switch - By Bruce Ackerman | Foreign Policy
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  13. #28
    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    I don't think we should do anything militarily. We didn't do anything militarily about the genocide against the Armenians, the genocide against the jews, Pol Pot's genocide against anyone who could read, the genocide against the Tutsi's, the genocide against the Kulaks/Holodomor. I think we should maintain some consistency when civilian populations are being wiped out.
    sputnik and Sylkyn like this.

  14. #29
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Kerry: "Arab Countries" Have Offered To "Bear Costs And Assist" Attack On Syria

    Answering a question about regional support for American intervention in Syria from Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Secretary of State John Kerry said that “Arab countries" have offered to pay for an American invasion of Syria, "the way we have done it previously in other places."

    SECRETARY KERRY: With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and assist, the answer is profoundly yes, they have. That offer is on the table. With respect to boots on the ground, profoundly no. There will be no boots on the ground. The president has said that again and again. And there is nothing in this authorization that should contemplate it. And we reiterate, no boots on the ground.

    REP. ROS-LEHTINEN: Thank you, Mr. Secretary. And, the details of the offer and the proposal on the table, what are the figures we are talking about?

    KERRY: Well, we don’t know what action we are engaged in right now, but they have been quite significant. I mean, very significant. In fact, some of them have said that if the U.S. is prepared to go do the whole thing, the way we’ve done it previously in other places, they’ll carry that cost. That’s how dedicated they are to this. Obviously, that is not in the cards and nobody is talking about it, but they are talking about taking seriously getting this job done.


    Kerry: "Arab Countries" Have Offered To "Bear Costs And Assist" Attack On Syria | RealClearPolitics






    yeah, that sounds like a deal. we send our boys to be the sunni spear in a sectarian war against the shiites and in return saudi and qatari oilbags cut us a check for $100 billion or whatever. wonder how much they’d be willing to pay for a direct attack on iran? or we could give iran the chance to match the offer. if they can come up with a few hundred billion, we’ll drone the syrian salafi nuts of their choice.



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  15. #30
    Elite Member WhateverLolaWants's Avatar
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    I'm not posting this to be funny. The point is made rather well here.


    Our brains can't even really comprehend what is going on over there or in any country we do not share significant empathy with. This will not be a popular war.
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