The group was Noraid, and it certainly is not "liberal propaganda" that they bankrolled the Provisional
IRA (in other words, the paramilitary, terrorist group which has been guilty of the murders of hundreds of innocent Northern Irish and other British civilians and which attempted the murder of our Prime Minister in 1984). Of course, this money was not provided by the US government, it was individual American citizens who were duped into supporting this support group. >snip< But the IRA disgust me to the pit of my being, and when I saw Americans being misled into supporting this vile organisation, with most of their money coming from a country whose government in 1977 under the guise of the U.S. Department of Justice made Noraid register officially as an agent of the Provisional IRA (http://www.megastories.com/ireland/glossary2/noraid.htm
) and yet continued to turn a blind eye to what was going on, yes it made me angry. Very angry.
Now that you have identified the specifics, and I had a chance to read about these items, I can support your viewpoint, with some caveats.
Your strongly held views are based upon the assertion that direct funding of Noraid was provided by US citizens, and indirectly sanctioned by the US Dept. of Justice, and that both parties knew it was clearly being used for terrorist IRA activities. If both are true, then I also consider these actions criminal, and should be prosecuted. I would likewise be as angry as you if I was in your shoes. It is just not 100% clear from the websites I briefly viewed, that the NORAID organization has contributed US monies in the way it is alledged, and it is even less likely that most US contributors would know about these allegations from what I read.
I said earlier that our main anti-terrorism activities did not get into high gear until after 9/11, so it is not relevant to me to be discussing 30 year old events. It is always the case that a country, organization, or group will not have the same acute awareness or appreciation of a problem until they become directly involved in terrorism...such as your mess in N. Ireland, or the middle east Israel/Palestine conflict.
I hope you are not saying that the USA should be heavily involved in every single conflict, government, and organization everywhere in the world. I also hope you are not trying to blame the N. Ireland conflict on the USA, when it is clearly an outcome of yet another British geopolitical domination.
What puzzles most Americans today is why should we even bother getting involved in any more world conflicts? Why should we be paying the lion's share of the U.N. funding, and supply of its military troops? Most nations don't appreciate our actions anyway. I could make the same accusations of arrogance against the French, Germans, and Russians. There is little evidence that any of these countries have done anything useful to improve the world in the last 30 years. You perceive us acting in our own self-interest as arrogance when you don't like our decisions.
The reverse is true. Most Americans consider Euro-liberals, Russia, and China as their own special breed of arrogance. They expect and demand that the USA agrees to the Kyoto accords, which completely exempts all developing countries, including China, India, Pakistan, etc....despite their comprising 75% of the world's population. Canada and Australia also vehemently oppose Kyoto accords...why not go after them?
Certainly Europe no longer appreciates the fact that we saved them from Hitler, nor that we spent our blood, time, and money rebuilding countries that could give two shits about us now. These "Euro-Liberals" ignore the facts that our forces peacefully ended the Soviet Union domination, and more recently, the Balkans disaster.
Apparently, we are appreciated by the Kuwait, Afgan, and Iraq peoples for our intervention over the last 10 years, which is wonderful to hear. But the average American basically feels that other than Tony Blair's UK supporters, the rest of Europe can go to hell...and we will do what we see fit to secure our own country this time.
I guess You can blame President Clinton, and all the presidents before him for our delayed reaction to world terrorism, but it just had not directly impacted us enough until 9/11/01. My comments in this thread have mainly been directed at supporting Bush regarding the recent Afgan & Iraq invasions, not to discuss geo-policitical events from 30 years ago.
jase wrote:And yes, this was in the past -- but not the particularly distant past. The USA, in common with many other countries, my own included, has been guilty of the most appalling hypocrises, and I really don't think we or you have any right to dictate terms to the rest of the world when our recent history is so checkered in itself.
I consider 30 years ago the distant past, relative to the current Bush & Iraq discussion. In addition, I have yet to meet any person, organization, corporation, country, religion, or any other entity involving human beings that is free from hypocrisy. Whether a particular hypocrisy is appalling or minor is largely in the eye of the beholder. As far as dictating terms to the rest of the world, I'm not sure what that refers to, but assuming it may be about the USA invading Iraq, that is not what happened.The UN passed Resolution 1441, which I doubt most people have even read (take a minute and read it)
. When it was obvious that Hussein was again violating this 17th resolution, the USA again conferred with UN Members, and had some disagree with plans to invade, while others supported the action.
The US leadership viewed this action to be in our own security interest based on current intelligence, and acted in partnership with those countries willing to support the action. Those other countries who opposed the action, were not dictated to
. They exercised their right to dissent and stay out of the war. In other words, they had a choice, and were not dominated or "dictated to" by the USA to join in.
jase wrote:It certainly is not "naive Euro-Liberal" tendancies which lead me to believe that terrorism cannot be defeated by force; it is painful experience. Yes, these Islamist terrorists are a different breed and yes, I think you are right that we cannot and must not negotiate with them, but where my opinion differs from yours is that I believe that the best way forward is to pull the rug from under the terrorist; get our own house in order in the Middle East; stop interfering in their politics for own selfish interests and change the perception in Arab eyes that the West is evil and must be stopped. For it is not only the terrorist that thinks this; there are far too many sympathisers who have been pushed down that road, partially by our actions, that need to be won around. And you don't win the debate by installing puppet regimes, something that's been going on for far too long.
That is exactly what we are doing in Iraq. Once the rest of the middle east sees how happy, free, productive, and peaceful a democratic Iraq will be, there will be a change in their prejudices towards the US. When they see that the USA did not rape their oil fields, but instead rebuilt their country at our own expense of blood and money
, it will accomplish this better than us sitting on our side of the ocean, trying to become perfect, while holding hands singing "Kumbaya."
jase wrote:And calling other people's views "feeble" perhaps epitomises the attitude I'm talking about.
When I used the term feeble, it was to accurately describe your initial vague, unnamed, and derogatory anti-American comments. You lacked any specific facts that would allow one to verify the veracity of your self-agrandised amusements. In other words, you were blowing steam out of your ass, and I called you on it.
Too bad you didn't like it, because it was accurate...but you did the right thing by presenting your compelling evidence regarding NORAID.
jase wrote:Think about this finally; I am a paid-up member of the British Labour Party, the party which is running the government of your chief ally in the War against terror, who supported the war against Afghanistan (though not Iraq, for two reasons; one I don't think we exhausted all other options anywhere near enough, and two I simply think we should have concentrated on the country Bin Laden is thought to still be living in and operating from, rather than overstretching our resources on a far lesser threat in Saddam Hussein). So if I have these views, imagine the ill-feeling Bush and co are drumming up elsewhere.
The parallel between the IRA and GB/N. Ireland is not the same as the USA and Afganistan, or Iraq, or Al Quaida. To apply the lessons of N. Ireland to every world conflict is naive, and not well thought out. Islamic fundamentalists hate all western governments, societies, and institutions. These terrorists are not undergoing suicidal bombings in order to achieve independence from an abusive imperial power (GB) that has a long, sordid history of having conquered and dominated a large portion of the entire world.
The Islamic terrorists are not interested in waiting until the USA and all western democracies start acting perfectly, and free themselves from any hint of hypocrisy. Rather this brand of fanatics seek only to entirely destroy western civilization, without anything to negotiate over. Thus the comparison to your GB/NI brand of terrorism, and how to resolve it is not a relevant comparison.
Most Americans really don't care what "ill feelings" are being drummed up elsewhere, since it is obvious to us that these other countries have their own selfish and corrupt motivations and maintenance of their bribery income at heart. There are however, some very relevant facts that all the Euro-Liberals insist on ignoring when it comes to the USA invading Iraq to eliminate the Hussein/Bathist regime:
- The entire world (via U.N. inspections) knew that there were WMD's that had not been accounted for, and that can be easily hidden. The last "Chief Inspector Hans-Clusoe-Blix" comments never did explain what happened to the previously known stockpiles. To this day, they are still missing. There is no question that they could still have been hidden like the fighter jet hidden in the sand, or that they could have been sent to Syria as the US invation drew close.
- Hussein was dedicated to acquiring WMD's, continuing to abuse his own citizens, and spreading hatred and violence throughout the Middle East. His stated intention was to be viewed as the "Supreme Arab Leader" for the entire Middle East region. Invading and taking Kuwait's oil fields was a first step in accomplishing that. Iraq is the historical home of Islam, and he had a diabolical plan of ultimately destroying Israel, and interrupting world oil supply with WMD's in order to achieve his goals.
- Hussein definitely had Al Quaida leaders working and meeting in Iraq. One of them recently performed the Nick Berg beheading.
- Iraq had bought the corrupt UN Inspection teams, which is now being documented and investigated. Continuing to play the cat and mouse game which Hussein had rigged was pointless.
- Hussein sidestepped the embargo, and used the Oil for Food program to again bribe UN Officials, and officials in most of the countries who opposed the USA invading Iraq. He used the money to build his palaces, and continue supplying his illegal weapons program.
- Hussein actively sponsored and financed terrorism, especially with his support of Palestine suicidal bombers in Israel. This was being done to improve his standing among all Arabs, and to divert the world's attention from his own illegal activities.
- Most importantly, Iraq has HUGE oil revenues and therefore, a huge supply of income with which to finance horrible violence. He therefore had the means (unlike a country like N. Korea) to pay a huge sum of money to acquire nuclear or any other WMD that he wanted. Hussein's wealth made him a much more dangerous regime to leave in power.
- Invading Iraq has sent a very powerful and sucessful message to other countries that sponsor terrorism. We have seen the impact with Libya, and Iran suddenly allowed UN nuclear inspectors. There are many other countries that are now shitting in their pants because they fear they may be next. That is EXACTLY what was needed at this time. We can all sit around and sing Kumbaya once the suicidal fanatics are destroyed.