Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Bush Administration’s Legacy

The last polls taken before Obama became President gave him a favorability rating of 83 percent.  Bush’s favorability rating was 22 percent and Cheney’s was 13 percent.  That is their legacy, as determined by those Americans, who endured the last 8 years of Bush's presidency.

Marine General Anthony Zinni established his impeccable credentials during nearly forty years of military service.  After retirement, he served as Colin Powell's special envoy to the Middle East, before disagreements over the Iraq war caused him to resign.  General Zinni explained: "In the lead-up to the Iraq war and its later conduct, I saw at minimum, true dereliction, negligence and irresponsibility; at worst, lying, incompetence, and corruption.  False rationales presented as justification; a flawed strategy; lack of planning; the unnecessary alienation of our allies; the underestimation of the task; the unnecessary distraction from real threats, and the unbearable strain dumped on our overstretched military, all of these caused me to speak out."

Counterterrorism expert Richard Clarke served under four presidents beginning as an analyst on nuclear weapons under Reagan.  He reported that within hours of the 9/11 attack, Donald Rumsfeld suggested Iraq as a battlefield.  Not because al Qaeda was there, but because it offered "better targets" than the elusive bin Laden in Afghanistan.

Clark wrote: "We invaded and occupied an oil rich Arab country that posed no threat to us...We delivered to al Qaeda the greatest recruitment propaganda imaginable."

In "See No Evil." Robert Baer explained: "I knew enough about the way Washington worked to know that when it didn't like some piece of information it did everything in its power to discredit the messenger."  Baer was a CIA on-the-ground field officers in the Middle East.  Bush's surrogates sought to discredit the integrity of any professional with the courage to disagree with his decision to invade Iraq.

Michael Scheuer's "Imperial Hubris" noted: "The reality is that many of the worlds 1.3 Billion Muslims hate us for our actions not our values.  Bin Laden has been precise in telling Americans the reason he is waging war on us.  He could not enjoy his increasing level of success if Muslims did not believe their faith; brethren; resources and land were under attack by the U.S."  Scheuer was published under the pseudonym Anonymous, because he was a senior member of the intelligence community with two decades of experience in national security issues.


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