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July 09, 2007



You believe that Syria has been trying to foment violence and unrest inside of Lebanon since the beginning of the Bush administration and not since 1918? Syria claims Lebanon as part of Syria because of Bush? And you believe that Turkey has not massed troops on its western border since it was pushed there by the British? They are there because of recent American foreign policy? Astounding. Our enemies no longer need bother to write their own propaganda.


Are you arguing that the current level of turmoil in the the Mid-East is unchanged over the last 90 years? Please let me know when Turkey last had 150,000 troops on its border with Iraq.


This level of turmoil is not any different than it has been for the last 90 years or the last 900. That is the entire point. You have chosen a peculiar time to take an Iraqi official’s word on matters. I do not recall you trusting them as a source on anything in the past. Has Turkey had 140,000 thousand troops on its eastern border before? That’s probably not knowable. It would not, however, be difficult to believe they had twice or three times that number at times when they perceived Sadam as the local menace. No?

You will no doubt recall that Egypt massed more than a million troops in the Sinai on Israel’s border in May 1967? Johnson’s fault? Hardly.

We have hundreds of western reporters in the region for the first time in history. They have a tendency to report violence before school building. It creates a perception.

I will give you this Bustard; if you have been against this war from day one, you have infinitely more credibility and moral authority than the dastardly lot who favored it when the prospect was politically viable, but now are vehemently anti war when public sentiment has predictably shifted. To be pro or anti war based on polls is despicable beyond description. Go back and listen to the rhetoric spewed from the Senate floor when the ‘nobles’ were standing for reelection. I could not hate them any more. I do not dislike those who are anti war. It is a reasonable position. My college roommate was a conscientious objector. He was drafted in late 1967. He reported and was made a medic. He spent May 1969 (I believe that was the time) on Hamburger Hill, tending to the wounded and dying completely unarmed. It’s difficult to imagine such heroism.


Thank you. I am not anywhere near as brave as your former roommate, but I have been against this war long before March of 2003. I've got some Quaker tendencies. I am not a complete pacifist, but close. There are very, very few wars that I see whose outcome was a net positive.


An interesting study Bustard is to look at the time period between the end of hostilities in the spring of 1991 and the elections of November 1992. Bush’s popularity was near 90%, some polls even higher. There was a large crowd of chest thumpers claiming that “we had not gone far enough and that we should have gone to Bagdad and taken out Sadam when we had our forces there and had the opportunity and that we would regret not doing so and will pay a price in the future”. I know very well that you remember what I am describing here. Many ran on the matter in the fall of 92. Then you can fast forward to late summer and fall of 02 and watch this same nobility in the Senate well beating the ‘drums of war’ when they were standing for reelection and they perceived an anti war position would be bad for their political future. Now look to the present and you can see that many of these characters who are calling for withdrawal or surrender or whatever it is that they are calling for are one in the same. How can that be? It is not possible to fault someone who is against war but that which I describe above is unforgivable and I never will forget what it feels (lefty term) like to be in the field and wonder why those on the other side of the planet are disparaging the good work we believed to be doing. It stings and it never goes away.


I imagine that it hurts like hell.
Honesty and Politics are not exactly synonyms.

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