Wednesday, September 27, 2006

In Other Words. . . .

The National Intelligence Estimate, Translated:

The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) report is a collection of the view of all 16 US intelligence agencies. Even as a partially declassified document, we can consider it as authoritative.

The findings should not surprise an increasing number of Americans who are paying attention:
  • Militants, although a small percentage of Muslims, are increasing in both number and geographic dispersion
  • If this trend continues, threats to US interests globally will become more diverse leading to increased attacks worldwide over the next five years “the confluence of shared purpose and dispersed actors will make it harder to find and undermine jihadist groups.’’
  • Militants consider Europe an important venue for attacking Western interests
Its conclusion about Bush's un-provoked, unnecessary, largely unilateral invasion and unplanned occupation of Iraq (UULUIUOI)?
. . . the Iraq conflict has become a cause célèbre for jihadists, breeding a deep resentment of U.S. involvement in the Muslim world, and cultivating supporters for the global jihadist movement.
In other words, as David Sanger (NYT) states, this NIE
raises the implicit question . . . whether postponing the confrontation with Saddam Hussein and focusing instead on securing Afghanistan, or dealing with issues like Iran’s nascent nuclear capability or the Middle East peace process, might have created a different playing field, one in which jihadists were deprived of daily images of carnage in Iraq to rally their sympathizers.
In other words, Check out the Pew Global Attitudes Poll released in the middle of last June, which concludes,
. . . The war in Iraq is a continuing drag on opinions of the United States, not only in predominantly Muslim countries but in Europe and Asia as well . . . . favorable opinions of the United States have fallen in most of the 15 countries surveyed.
In other words, as Athenae writes in First Draft:
Turn it around, look outward: that national security, true national security, doesn't mean a world in which no one can hurt us. It means a world in which no one wants to.
In other words, this NIE answers the question I have asked so many times before: Who has hurt America more, OBL or GWB?

8 Moderated Comments:

Blogger jake said...

Although bin Laden, so far, has killed more Americans than Bush, Dumbyah has maimed more and destroyed more American families. They are both terrorists, but at least bin Laden is honest about who he is.

9/27/2006 08:32:00 AM  
Blogger skip sievert said...

Why trust either political side to sort this out.?
Both have proven to be liars and care for money and trickery more than anything.
Do we need a political system now.?

So much corporate control of ours, how can any one not say that both sides only represent corporate entities.

9/27/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Beach Bum said...

An excellent and straight forward review of the relevant facts of a subject that the Republicans will be trying to spin right up to election day.

9/27/2006 05:27:00 PM  
Blogger Big Daddy Jeff said...

Good points. Olbermann had a similarly excellent review of the failures of the incoming Bush administration in 2001 that supports what Clinton said on Faux News Sunday. I also heard tonight that there is another NIE report in the works that is even more scathing of the Iraq war. Not surprisingly it has been classified as a draft and won't see the light of day till Jan 07 - after the elections.

9/27/2006 09:55:00 PM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9/28/2006 09:21:00 AM  
Blogger MadMike said...

As a former military intelligence officer I understand the need to classify certain information. I am concerned that we have lost sight of what should be protected and what should not be protected. The reason for this is the divisiveness of this administration. Although government is rarely trusted this one can never be trusted. This is a conundrum...

9/28/2006 06:28:00 PM  
Blogger Stella said...

Must disagree with jake. Dumbyah clearly killed more Americans than bin Laden: add the deaths 2,700 of American soldiers (and almost 20,000 wounded) to the 1,000 deaths of Katrina, then figure in the thousands of people dying in poverty due to Bush's policies.

Now, let's compare that death toll figure with the number of Americans who died in 9/11. When we add the number of deaths in three years cited by Iraq Civilian Death Count, we have an administration that exceeds bin Laden. If we took a yearly count of innocent Iraqi deaths, I have to ask myself who killed more innocent Iraqi citizens per year. Unfortunately, I don't have the answer.

Terrorism, add thyself to the names of Bush & Co.

9/29/2006 11:50:00 AM  
Blogger HILLBLOGGER & Hillblogger Jr said...

Hi Vigilante,

Thanks for dropping by my blog.

Well, I've always been opposed to the invasion of Iraq. To me, Tony Blair had no business sacrificing British lives, spending British funds, putting British civilian lives at risk, for a war he knew was morally wrong from the start; the worst part is he sent the troops to a war knowing that there was an enormous risk they wouldn't win and why.

Tony Blair just about bungled everything he touched since he went war wongering with Pres George Bush; he had no business saving Bush's butt in a conflict that was entirely of Bush's making; he then refused to back off even when number of casualties was increasing and after he was told that manpower was overstretched and that the British military couldn't sustain troop support for the US. And for what? For a little pat by Bush on the back or perhaps, for a US Congressional Medal of Honor eventually?

So, after wreaking havoc on Iraq, we leave them to self-destruct?

At the same time, Sir Richard is right. His view is a sensible one. A loss or win in Iraq is irrelevant now. We gotta re-group for Afghanistan. It is one of the most ambitious nation-building exercises that NATO has on its plate and we need our troops over there.

The British support in Iraq -whatever the rest of the world thinks - is that it is unthinkable for our way of life to let the US sink. Five years ago, the US was the undisputed super power in the world - this is no longer the case. Iraq, Sudan, Mogadishu, Afghanistan, Bali, E Timor and a major attack in the USA (9/11) have proved the US cannot do it alone. They are a super power, but they need help.

But this leaves a residual question - what about the USA in Iraq? We do not want the USA to lose too much face or they lose credibility and weaken our position in Afghanistan.

We do not want Iraq to descend officially into civil war. We want to see Iraq governed by Iraqis. We want a political solution that does not disturb the balance of power too much in the region but really, I do not know enough to see what this is.

But don't worry Yanks, the Brits will lead you out of Iraq but in order for that to happen, you gotta convince Bush to be sensible for once.

10/13/2006 07:59:00 AM  

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