July 01, 2004


The Guardian’s Seumas Milne, writing in December 2001, mourns civilians killed during a coward’s war:

Champions of the war insist that such casualties are an unfortunate, but necessary, byproduct of a just campaign to root out global terror networks. They are a world apart, they argue, from the civilian victims of the attacks on the World Trade Centre because, in the case of the Afghan civilians, the US did not intend to kill them ... what has been cruelly demonstrated is that the US and its camp followers are prepared to sacrifice thousands of innocents in a coward's war.

The Guardian’s Seumas Milne, writing today, rationalises civilian deaths during a real war of liberation:

The resistance war can of course be cruel, but the innocent deaths it has been responsible for pale next to the toll inflicted by the occupiers. Its political strength lies precisely in the fact that it has no programme except the expulsion of the occupying forces. Jack Straw said this week that the resistance was "opposed to a free Iraq" - but its campaign is in fact Iraq's real war of liberation.

UPDATE. Here’s another anti-war Brit, Yasmin Alibhai-Brown:

I am ashamed to admit that there have been times when I wanted more chaos, more shocks, more disorder to teach our side a lesson. On Monday I found myself again hoping that this handover proves a failure because it has been orchestrated by the Americans.

Posted by Tim Blair at July 1, 2004 08:36 PM

I have a question. After the infidels have been expelled from Iraq, when Seumas' resistance pals set up their open democracy, guaranteeing religious freedom and women's rights, will they ratify the Kyoto protocol?

Posted by: PNN at July 1, 2004 at 09:07 PM

They are the enemy. Unlike the quietly plotting muslim population they are just stupid enough to put their head above the parapet and be seen and counted.

When the time comes, they will be working for "sirius cybernetics corporation"...

Posted by: Rob Read at July 1, 2004 at 09:11 PM

Well, as long as it's only proponents of democracy who die. That's ok, then.

Posted by: ushie at July 1, 2004 at 10:21 PM

Just watched the Helen's war doco - part "this is spinal tap", part family embarassment, part insight into a disturbed individual. That pope thing was beyond belief. When your niece realises you are a fraud while doing a doco you really are in trouble. Someone driven by an australian d grade nuclear holocaust movie from the 1960s is dangerous.

Posted by: lenny at July 1, 2004 at 10:42 PM

In the mind of today's left:



Posted by: CurrencyLad at July 1, 2004 at 10:59 PM

Very nice catch. Says it all.

Posted by: Moby at July 2, 2004 at 12:14 AM

That's it in one.

Posted by: Andrew at July 2, 2004 at 12:39 AM

The rationale that drives Helen Caldicott's argument seems to be 'we shouldn't kill anyone, for any reason'. While it is naive, I can relate to it on some level.

The same cannot be said for Seumas Milne. This guy isn't some dumb ignoramus. As Rob said, he is the enemy. He openly supports terrorists; their methods and their cause.

And he's a columnist in a popular western newspaper.

Dear God.

Posted by: Dan at July 2, 2004 at 12:43 AM

[The post has been deleted by the Management. Copying of entire posts or articles without attribution is FORBIDDEN, and will result in the comment being removed and the poster being banned, as this one has been.]

Posted by: Cloned Poster at July 2, 2004 at 01:36 AM

You could have just provided a hyperlink to Tim Dunlop's post, Cloned Poster.

Posted by: Andjam at July 2, 2004 at 01:42 AM

Cloned Poster,

As opposed to Tim Dunlop, the articulate embarrassment.

Posted by: S Whiplash at July 2, 2004 at 01:47 AM

Tim Dunlop really wrote the above? And some of his stuff I sampled last month (when I dragged myself back to reading his blog) actually seemed sensible...guess he's back to wholesale parroting of every lefty talking point available, just like when I first found him linked through Tim Blair's a while ago. Oh well. Another promising mind wasted to the leftoid malaise.

Posted by: PW at July 2, 2004 at 01:54 AM

Amusing how many of cloned posters' statements are in fact false.

Posted by: Robin Roberts at July 2, 2004 at 01:54 AM

Sociopathy is defined as a state where you don't really see the other person as a real person like yourself-- just as a play-actor in your drama.

When the Left wishes suffering on the Iraqi people because it will prove them right, they have crossed the line into being sociopaths.

Posted by: Mike G at July 2, 2004 at 01:57 AM

Cloned Poster, May you please do some solid investigation of what is happening in Iraq from a source other than Green Left Weekly.

Also WMD's have been found because Sarin still counts! Where there is one there are bound to be more, you just gotta know where to look (asin the many shells and stockpiles they are mixed up in).

Posted by: JBB at July 2, 2004 at 02:42 AM

Yasmin zez:

"...to teach our side a lesson"

What's this "our side" nonsense, b!tch ?

*Your* side can't learn a lesson about any of what is going on short of a complete brain transplant.

Posted by: Carl in N.H. at July 2, 2004 at 02:44 AM

Jesus. Could the Clone have posted more lies?

Wait. No, don't answer that. Of course he could.

Posted by: Robert Crawford at July 2, 2004 at 02:50 AM

Heres some more Guardian nonsense, reprinted in the SMH


It's so insulting and wrong on so many levels that it's a work of art.

Posted by: max power at July 2, 2004 at 02:51 AM

Just to pick off the top handful of CP's statements for a light pre-lunch fisking:

that the incoming Bush administration underrated the threat of terrorism

Perhaps more accurately, that the incoming Bush administration inherited an inaccurate threat assessment from the Clinton administration.

that the president failed to adequately respond to the August 6 PDB

By doing what? That document was a summary of a couple of old newspaper articles. What could he have done in response to it that would have been (a) justifiable in light of the document and (b) effective in preventing 9/11? Nothing, that's what.

that the reasons for invasion of Iraq have shifted more times than the sands in Iraq

Intelligent people can comprehend more than one reason at a time for a given course of action. There were always any number of good reasons for invading.

that the decision to invade was made well in advance of the announcement to invade

I believe this confuses "decision" with "planning", and overlooks the fact that any military invastion is generally announced by an artillery barrage and airstrikes, not press releases.

There. Time for lunch.

Posted by: R C Dean at July 2, 2004 at 03:19 AM

Did someone mention "lunch"?

Posted by: tim at July 2, 2004 at 03:48 AM

--that a CIA operative was outed by someone in the administration--


the question is which administration?

Bush or Clinton, considering

convicted spies Hanssen or Ames could have spilled the beans in the 90s....and that's why she was moved around.

Posted by: Sandy P at July 2, 2004 at 04:04 AM

Alibhai-Brown: Well, you know, it's really difficult; I was thinking this morning - I mean the kind of moral trauma. I've been against the war and part of you begins to... you know, it's horrible how your mind works. You think 'Good!', you wake up thinking 'Good, there's all this mess'. And then you have to question your own self, saying what kind of a human being are you, that you want this mess? So, I think I'm terrified of what's happening. I don't think we can pull out now.

This is a quote from a live radio interview Yasmin Alibhai-Brown did (excerpted from Normblog at http://normblog.typepad.com/normblog/2004/04/moral_trauma.html). If she's still asking herself what kind of human being she is, I wish she'd ask me. I can certainly tell her.

Posted by: Rebecca at July 2, 2004 at 04:20 AM

According to Richard Clarke (in Against All Enemies), the Bush administration, when their term was starting, was told that the biggest thing that they will be concentrating on is Osama bin Laden. The Bush administration also said that the previous administration spent too much time on Osama bin Laden. In addition, John Ashcroft trimmed a terrorism related budget request from the FBI by 1 billion dollars.

Even Paul Bremer was frustrated that this administration "The new administration seems to be paying no attention to the problem of terrorism. What they will do is stagger along until there's a major incident and then suddenly say, 'Oh my God, shouldn't we be organized to deal with this?' They've been given a window of opportunity with very little terrorism now, and they're not taking advantage of it."

On May 8, Bush announced a new Office of National Preparedness for terrorism at the Federal Emergency Management Agency. At the same time, he proposed to cut FEMA's budget by $200 million. Bush said that day that Cheney would direct a government-wide review on managing the consequences of a domestic attack, and "I will periodically chair a meeting of the National Security Council to review these efforts." Neither Cheney's review nor Bush's took place.

This doesn't sound to me like an administration that was worried about terrorism, or that "inherited an inaccurate threat assessment from the Clinton administration.".

Posted by: thx-1138 at July 2, 2004 at 04:37 AM

"According to Richard Clarke..."

Well there's your problem right there.


Posted by: Rick at July 2, 2004 at 04:48 AM

Besides which, thx-1138, there's more to FEMA than terrorism. See, the acronym stands for "Federal Emergency Management Agency". They deal with other contingencies. Plus, under the new DHS, some functions are being pulled around into other agencies; the funding generally follows the function. The article doesn't go into that sort of detail.

Plus, from my professional experience, FEMA does have some redundant and/or outdated functions. Part of standing up DHS requires a shakedown of FEMA.

So pulling $200 million away from FEMA may not mean this terrorism office is not being funded. It just means FEMA's budget is being cut by $200 million....which is happening to other Federal agencies as well. There are no details as to where the budget cuts are from. Of course, it is a Washington Post article.

The Washington Post is writing out of context, and you are jumping to conclusions.

Please run along home, I'm sure your mommy is calling for you.

Posted by: The Real JeffS at July 2, 2004 at 04:59 AM

to The Real Jeffs

You had a pretty good argument going on there until the last line.

Posted by: thx-1138 at July 2, 2004 at 05:11 AM

Well, then, thx-1138, don't end your arguments with a conclusion unrelated to the facts presented, and more along the lines of your personal opinions and bias.

Like what I did to you. Get the point?

Posted by: The Real JeffS at July 2, 2004 at 07:12 AM

Oh my, sorry I've come so late to the party -

Gee, don't these sound like Jimmy Carter!?

Posted by: roz at July 2, 2004 at 08:09 AM

Well, I see that the odd idea that FEMA is some sort of dastardly Shadow Government Organization Bent on Controlling the Lives of All Humanity in the Case of Alien Invasion (culled from the X-Files) is still popular. Sad.

Personally, I will always remember FEMA as the agency that came down to South Florida after it was devastated by Hurricane Andrew and helped people rebuild their lives with low-interest mortgages and the like. But hey, no doubt that was part of the Sinister Plot to Corrupt Us All.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at July 2, 2004 at 08:11 AM

Oh by the way, "Cloned Poster" has been banned. All such clever attempts to get Tim in trouble for copyright violations will be deleted and banned. Oh, that's not what you were trying to do? Well that's what you did.

By the way, some of you have said that the removed post was one of Tim Dunlop's. If you'd like to know what "Cloned" dumped here, feel free to provide a link to Mr. Dunlop's post.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at July 2, 2004 at 08:17 AM

I am ashamed to admit...

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown actually admitting to shame? Perhaps there's hope for her after all.

Posted by: David Morgan at July 2, 2004 at 11:14 AM

RC Dean:

" 'that the president failed to adequately respond to the August 6 PDB'

"By doing what? That document was a summary of a couple of old newspaper articles. What could he have done in response to it that would have been (a) justifiable in light of the document and (b) effective in preventing 9/11? Nothing, that's what."

Let me humbly add: (c) that wouldn't have set the liberals off screaming bloody murder, unjustified pre-emption, etc.

Posted by: Tommy Shanks at July 2, 2004 at 11:27 AM