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December 18, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Cheney’s icy reaction to Iraq

When former Vice President Dick Cheney did an interview earlier this year about the Iraq War and other topics, he said that if he had to do it all over again, he would, because he did nothing wrong.

With more than 4,400 Americans dead and more than 40,000 wounded in the Iraq War, plus more than $1 trillion spent, how can anyone say they would do it all over again? No regrets, no mistakes, no miscalculations? How cold is that?

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  1. The U.S. won the Iraq war and after lost the peace. The same will happen in Afghanistan if U.S. soldiers are withdrawn based on an arbitrary due date, just to pull them out, rather than the field commanders' advice.

    Carmine D

  2. Dick Cheney is not the only government official or elected representative from both sides of the asile to approve the invasion of Iraq . Hussein was an evil and brutal dictator who subjugated and murdered his own people--gasing the Kurds with his chemical weapons, and using these weapons on the Iranians during that bloody war. Hussein the madman earlier had invaded Kuwait,burning, pillaging and raping in the path of devastation that he had created. He was on the doorstep of Saudi Arabia ready to invade when the civilized world rose up to rout his military forces, and drive them back into Iraq. For years after the first Gulf War Hussein defied numerous United Nations resolutions demanding that UN inspectors be allowed to ispect what was generally thought to be his program of WMD development. He consistently defied the UN. Eventually,most everyone believed that the world would be a safer place without Hussein and backed the invasion of Iraq to unseat him. When Cheney retrojudges the decision to invade Iraq in a positive light he is taking all these factors into his conclusions. On the other hand most dreamy minded liberals and traditional leftist peace lovers will forever be opposed to any war no matter what evil the world has or might suffer. Years after the Iraq invasion, and the explosion of the Middle East into the Arab Spring that has ensued, and the widely held beliefs that evil despots like Kadaffi in Libya and Assad in Syria are better eliminated,we now have the benefit of history and realize the political reality of the Middle East where no matter what is done to stop these madmen that bad things are bound to happen in the aftermath. In retrospect we should have exited Iraq right after the fall of Hussein, and exited Afghanistan right afer the initial assault that ousted the Taliban, and scattered al Qaeda. These were the initial military objectives and should have sufficed to result in the exiting of the U.S. from both campaigns. Not leaving earlier were mistakes,the legacy of America's stubborn belief that after such wars that the people left behind deserve the humane assurance that their lives should be better off than the dismal existence they suffered under such regimes. For example the return of the Taliban to reinstate their evil and oppressive rule in the nation was enough to convince the U.S. that it should stay on to prevent any vestiges of Taliban rule, and the liklihood the Taliban would resurge to retake the nation. We now know how futile our efforts have been in that regard even though our intentions were right.

  3. Future: "there are 50 million people freed"...Really? Far from it unless you consider a return to the sectarian violence that was controlled by the Hussein regime. Freed?...the country is now a satellite branch of Iran. The folks in Iraq are not "free" now and they weren't free under Hussein.

    The proposed status of forces agreement was never put in place because the legitimately elected Government in Iraq DID NOT WANT an agreement.

    Assuming that a SOFA would have prevented the situation in Syria is ludicrous.

    Carmine: "The U.S. "won" (italics mine) the Iraq war and after lost the peace". Define "won" for me, please. The war was begun with lies, and LOST by our final withdrawal from the country...Just like Viet Nam.

    Victor: Cheney is well known for his numerous "deferments" during the Viet Nam war. He once stated that he "had better things to do". He sure did, like his statement "deficits don't matter" was a step towards the recession. Like the Iraq war whose entire premise was based on lies. Like his ties to Haliburton that resulted in "no bid" contracts to a company that he was still a part of, and is to this day. Politicians and one percenters are happy to start wars, as long as they have no skin in the game. Same as it ever was.

  4. "Carmine: "The U.S. "won" (italics mine) the Iraq war and after lost the peace". Define "won" for me, please."

    Removed and eliminated an evil dictator called Saddam Hussein and his strong arm thuggish rule on the people in his country and the region.

    Carmine D

  5. I actually don't understand how you can defend the indefensible.

    Cheney is a stubborn, vile, evil, ornery and downright mean politician who has no care in the world for human life; only party politics. He used us (I'm a retired U.S. Navy Veteran) as tools for political purposes only. Cannon fodder. He could care less if we lived or died. Don't believe me? Has he ever praised our military? The answer is emphatically no. And if he has praised the American military for what they have done, it's only reluctantly. Because he simply does not care.

    If anyone doubts what I'm saying, answer this question: Why is it that Cheney can never ever leave the United States and visit a foreign country? And if he does visit another foreign country, he carefully picks and chooses how the people in that country feel about him.

    Because he knows if he steps foot in another country, there is a very strong likelihood they will arrest him and put him before a world court and prosecute him for crimes against humanity.

    The same goes for Bush, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Rove, et al. They are very worried about stepping foot outside of America.

    In short, Cheney should be languishing in a Federal prison cell somewhere. Out of sight out of mind. Because he helped get us involved in a war under false pretenses. And his incompetence caused countless people to die. That's the long and short of it.

  6. "Carmine I believe there are no winners in a war."

    A U.S. president and commander in chief should not send U.S. troops to fight in foreign lands unless and until he [she] has walked the battle field of the U.S. dead and wounded.

    There are only losers when war is avoided at all costs even when it is the only way to deter murderous dictators like Basher al-Assad in Syria. Neville Chamberlain's "peace in our time" comes to mind.

    Carmine D

  7. Carmine, Future, Bob, et.al., like Dick Cheney they are prime specimens of the genus '"chickenhawk". Quick to support military action but slow to pay for it; front row at the parade for veterans, but back seat when care is needed for those vets; generous with other folks lives but tight with their own miserly purses.

  8. Pat: I served in the military, as did many of my family. In fact, I joined. Did you?

    Carmine D

  9. "Here's one for you,

    "In war, whichever side may call itself the victor, there are no winners, but all are losers."
    Neville Chamberlain"

    WW2 proved Chamberlain wrong. Hitler could have been stopped along the way with force and there were many opportunities to do so. Appeasement didn't stop him in fact just the opposite. It emboldened him. WW2 and the Jewish holocaust proved that the desire for peace with the unwilling and neutrality at all costs inevitably led to war. Not peace as Chamberlain thought and said.

    Carmine D

  10. "Franklin writes of peace: "I hope it will be lasting, and that Mankind will at length, as they call themselves reasonable Creatures, have Reason and Sense enough to settle their Differences without cutting Throats; for, in my opinion, there was never a good War, or a bad Peace."

    And there it is, that famous line, penned by the one man, out of an entire nation, who had done so much to assist in purchasing, procuring, and perpetuating a revolution and war in North America, not to mention negotiating the peace that brought the war to an end. "

    Carmine D

  11. "Despite the fact that he served far from the perils of war, Carmine believes that his service time makes him better than others who did serve...."

    I joined and volunteered twice for combat duty. Did you?

    Carmine D

  12. There are many ways to serve. It's an individual choice how, when and what you do as service.

    Carmine D

  13. "Your gaps in historical knowledge makes you look like a fool....like a fool?? Like a fool???

    Better to look the fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt.

    Carmine D

  14. "Chamberlain was British prime minister between 1937 and 1940, and is closely associated with the policy of appeasement towards Nazi Germany.

    Arthur Neville Chamberlain was born on 18 March 1869 in Birmingham into a political family. His father, Joseph, was an influential politician of the late 19th century and Neville's older half-brother Austen held many Conservative cabinet positions in the early 20th century and won the Nobel Peace Prize.

    Chamberlain was educated in Birmingham. After a successful career in business, in 1915 he was appointed lord mayor of Birmingham. In 1916, Lloyd George appointed him director-general of the department of national service, but disagreements between them led Chamberlain to resign. In 1918, Chamberlain was elected Conservative member of parliament for Ladywood in Birmingham and was rapidly promoted. He served as both chancellor of the exchequer (1923 - 1924) and minister of health (1923, 1924 -1929, 1931). In 1937, he succeeded Stanley Baldwin as prime minister.

    Like many in Britain who had lived through World War One, Chamberlain was determined to avert another war. His policy of appeasement towards Adolf Hitler culminated in the Munich Agreement in which Britain and France accepted that the Czech region of the Sudetenland should be ceded to Germany. Chamberlain left Munich believing that by appeasing Hitler he had assured 'peace for our time'. However, in March 1939 Hitler annexed the rest of the Czech lands of Bohemia and Moravia, with Slovakia becoming a puppet state of Germany. Five months later in September 1939 Hitler's forces invaded Poland. Chamberlain responded with a British declaration of war on Germany.

    In May 1940, after the disastrous Norwegian campaign, Chamberlain resigned and Winston Churchill became prime minister. Chamberlain served in Churchill's cabinet as lord president of the council. He died a few weeks after he left office, on 9 November 1940."

    Carmine D

  15. "Appeasement was not without its critics. Churchill believed in a firm stand against Germany, and Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden resigned in February 1938 over Britain's continued acquiescence to fascist demands. The left-wing also attacked Chamberlain's blindness. In March 1939, when Germany seized the remainder of Czechoslovakia, it was clear that appeasement had failed. Chamberlain now promised British support to Poland in the case of German aggression. A misguided belief in 'peace in our time' was replaced by a reluctant acceptance of the inevitability of war."

    Carmine D

  16. My opinions on history are factually intact. Work on your own [opinions] before criticizing others for theirs.

    Carmine D

  17. Another liberal playing the democratic blame game and trying desperately to divert attention away from the Obama administration scandals. The Iraq resolution was passed by 215 republicans and 92 democrats in the house. The senate passed it with 48 republicans and 29 democrats.

    Do we need to list the military deaths and wounded for Vietnam(LBJ), Korean(Truman) and WW II(FDR) as a comparison Sam? That total is 1,416,349 dead and wounded soldiers.

    Sam, your effort to divert attention away from the Obama admin is obvious.

  18. By Tick,

    "Sam,you need to get the information correct.It wasn't an interview ,it was a documentary about his life."

    He Cheney, was asked questions and answered them.You can call it what you like,he still claims (Iraq war) that if he had to do it all over again he would,and did nothing wrong.

  19. BoliBlingBling,

    "Sam,your effort to divert attention away from the Obama administration is obvious."

    BoliBlingBling, your effort to divert attention away from the previous Bush/Cheney administration and their war crimes is more then obvious.

  20. Sam states "your effort to divert attention away from the previous Bush/Cheney administration and their war crimes is more then obvious."

    What war crimes Sam?

    Also, then or than? "is more then obvious" or "is more than obvious"?

  21. Carmine - you are grasping wildly at flying Cockroaches. Try a bit of focus instead of fockus.

  22. "Wow, Carmine ran a business for 40 years, then worked for the government for 30 years and fought is some war which he does not care to name.

    Which war did you find time for?"

    Helps to have the family business [my lifelong passion] and your job [DC] in close proximity. With excellent family employees. Also married for 45 years with grandchildren.

    The war that was the defining event of my generation.

    FUTURE: Thank you. Sadly, jealousy and stupidity run deep, wide and long.

    Carmine D

  23. "Hey Carmine!

    Is it asking too much for you to post a link or two?"

    Book learning is fine. Age, wisdom and knowledge are better. While there are many links for the former [book learning], there are none for the latter [age, wisdom and knowledge].
    Carmine D

  24. "Cheney has publicly criticized President Obama since the 2008 presidential election. On December 29, 2009, four days after the attempted bombing of an international passenger flight from Netherlands to United States, Cheney criticized Obama: "[We] are at war and when President Obama pretends we aren't, it makes us less safe. [...] Why doesn't he want to admit we're at war? It doesn't fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn't fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency--social transformation--the restructuring of American society."[143] In response, White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer wrote on the official White House blog the following day, "[I]t is telling that Vice President Cheney and others seem to be more focused on criticizing the Administration than condemning the attackers. Unfortunately too many are engaged in the typical Washington game of pointing fingers and making political hay, instead of working together to find solutions to make our country safer."[144][145]

    During a February 14, 2010 appearance on ABC's This Week, Cheney reiterated his criticism of the Obama administration's policies for handling suspected terrorists, criticizing the "mindset" of treating "terror attacks against the United States as criminal acts as opposed to acts of war".[126]

    In a May 2, 2011, interview with ABC News, Cheney praised the Obama administration for the operation that resulted in the killing of Osama bin Laden.[146]."

    Early on, Cheney tagged Obama with an assessment that has dogged Obama all during his presidency and still. Obama lives in a fairy tale world that has no basis in reality. Obama's challenge as president and leader of the free world is to reconcile his fantasies with reality. But hey, when you've broken the color barrier what else matters.

    Carmine D

  25. President Obama did get Osama Bin Laden,where the Bush/Cheney Administration gave up on trying to capture or kill the world's worst terrorist. President Obama also ended the Iraq war after 9 years of death and destruction brought on by the Bush/Cheney administration's failed efforts.President Obama is also ending the war in Afghanistan after nearly 13 years of war also brought on by the Bush/Cheney administration's again failed efforts in trying to find a exit stragedy.What were they Thinking (Bush/Cheney) ?

  26. "President Obama did get Osama Bin Laden..."

    Really? I thought it was Seal Team 6!!

    Carmine D

  27. "The families of three fallen Navy SEAL Team Six members say President Obama and Vice President Biden are culpable for the deaths of their sons for publicly identifying the unit that killed Osama bin Laden and pursuing policies that coddle Muslims and put our own troops at a tactical disadvantage.

    SEAL Team Six carried out the daring raid in Pakistan in early May 2011. Three months later, three members of the unit were among 38 killed in a Chinook helicopter crash in Afghanistan. Twenty-five of the dead were special operations forces. Larry Klayman is founder of Freedom Watch, a WND columnist and the attorney representing three of the families who lost their sons. He said the Obama administration carelessly and illegally revealed the role of SEAL Team Six shortly after announcing the successful mission to kill bin Laden.

    "Shortly after that successful raid on bin Laden, the president -- through the vice president for political purposes -- released the name of SEAL Team Six. That's classified information, and even (then) Defense Secretary Robert Gates was critical of that. So that was like putting a target on the backs of the sons of my clients," said Klayman, who revealed the helicopter may have been infiltrated by the Taliban before the crash because the Afghans on board were last-minute changes from the names on the original flight manifest.

    Klayman said Vice President Joe Biden deserves special blame for these deaths.

    "Biden did something, which was more than irresponsible. He served on foreign relations committees, intelligence committees. He knew, or should have known, what he was doing. He should be held accountable. Frankly, he should even be held criminally accountable for doing that," Klayman said."

    Carmine D

  28. President Obama's actions have spoken louder then some of the nonsense we have heard from a few of our commenters lately on this forum.Anyone who thinks Pres.Obama as commander and chief didn't give the final order to seal team 6 to get Osama bin Laden is a fool.

  29. The Iraq Government and most of the people want the US Government out of their country. The Afghan Government wants the US military out of their country.

    How does Cheney explain that? By doing nothing wrong? Cheney views the entire world from his point of view and there are no people that count except those that agree with him.

  30. "for making up history as you go along...."

    Time determines history.

    Carmine D

  31. I wonder every day: What will be more nonsensical... what Obama says or what he does and/or both? And who here will defend it and him no matter what he says and does. You know who you are....the koolaid crowd.

    Carmine D

  32. There is no bigger fool than he who is and doesn't know it.

    Carmine D

  33. When one keeps spitting in the wind , it always comes back and hits them smack in the kisser.Now that's a complete fool !!!

  34. On a hot day there's nothing like a cool spit.

    Carmine D

  35. If that was meant to be funny,it was.

  36. See... you can laugh at others when you try. Now try it [laughing] at yourself.

    Carmine D

  37. Always a serious side to you,try it yourself.

  38. I lost my serious side when Nixon resigned.

    Carmine D

  39. It does not show.

  40. Sam:

    I told you: Men socialize by insulting each other and not meaning it. Women socialize by complementing each other and not meaning it. When you have time, watch "Gran Torino" with Clint Eastwood.

    Carmine D

  41. I told you: It does not show.

  42. Maybe the movie will.

    Carmine D

  43. It won't.