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Ted Rall for October 19, 2009

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    kreole  about 12 years ago

    Ted Rall—-Great cartoon…from a vet gets the irony.

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    MiepR  about 12 years ago

    This is a play on Pete Seeger’s song “Waist Deep in the Big Muddy.” See wikipedia for details.

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    cdward  about 12 years ago

    Ha ha, scott! I’m sure you just made a typo, but Norway? Tell me that was a typo.

    Now, sometimes I like Rall and sometimes I don’t, but this time I disagree with him. First, this war has zero similarities with World War II. In World War II we fought against nations that had declared war against us. It was simple, cut and dried. Also, we lost troops on an order of magnitude that would outrage Americans today. In contrast, we invaded a tiny country that had harbored a band of terrorists because it’s such an isolated place. We kicked out their government but then went campaigning somewhere else instead of doing what we came for and what was within our grasp. Now we are mired in Afghanistan as occupiers, not an invading force against another army in head on combat.

    It seems to me that this is exactly the time to sit down and really think about why we’re there and how we should proceed. There is no rush because we are simply in status-maintaining mode.

    And Ted, any day scott starts agreeing with you, you really got to take a step back and think.

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    Lavocat  about 12 years ago

    Or, to paraphrase:

    “I knew FDR. FDR was a friend of mine. Barack Obama: you’re no FDR.”

    America wants leadership, not poll-tested, feel-good buzzwords of hope.

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    Kosher71  about 12 years ago

    FTW !

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    Dtroutma  about 12 years ago

    Afghanistan certainly is not a war against a “nation state”. It doesn’t even have the “legitimacy” of Viet Nam where we supposedly supported an inviting government.

    THAT is why, though aggravating that it hasn’t ended, the slower and more cautious behaviors we’re now seeing make far more sense than a “fat man” attack. Pulling our combat troops out of field locations, letting Afghans to it out in the hinterlands, and focusing more troops on civil affairs, and letting SCW teams to their jobs, instead of random bombings, does represent progress.

    The new situation IS far more complicated. It actually takes intelligence to understand, and implement. That is exactly why Bushco was a total loss leader.

    It is very difficult to punch a multiple hoard of mosquitoes, blowflies, horseflles, butterflies, and fleas in the nose, let alone swat them all with only one “weapon”.

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    edmondd  about 12 years ago

    Scott, ironically, you are unwittingly advocating for terrorism, even of the inbred kind when you claim that “…[c]ivilians stop being innocent when they allow maniacs and insane governments to both hide among them, and represent them.”

    That’s exactly the wicked, aberrant mindset of terrorists, extrapolating onto the general population, the authority in policy making that only belongs to a small number of people.

    I’m sure Timothy McVeigh’s victims would disagree with your comment if they were alive today.

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    Arghhgarrr Premium Member about 12 years ago

    I’m sorry, but does Rall really think D-Day occurred without any planning, or meetings by the President to determine where to land, how many soldiers to send in, and ideas about how to win WWII? Better to have such meetings before sending troops in as we have learned in Iraq where the Bush’s idea for the endgame was to send in 20 year old MBAs to set up a new stock exchange. And we all know how that worked out.

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    audieholland  about 12 years ago

    “Civilians stop being innocent when they allow maniacs and insane governments to both hide among them, and represent them.”

    Couldn’t have said it better, Scott.

    So stop hiding, aiding and abetting terrorist scum like Cheney, Rumsfeld, Brezhinski, Bush and Bush.

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    believecommonsense  about 12 years ago

    yet another attempt to justify the invasion of Iraq because 19 terrorist jihadists from Saudi Arabia attacked us. C’mon Scott, iraq had nothing to do with 9/11; Sadaam Hussein was our ally and we furnished him weapons and big time moolah.

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    cdward  about 12 years ago

    Howie, what did I read into it. Norway? Scott did right Norway at first (he hints that he did) but edited it to the correct way. As I said, I figured it was a typo.

    Or did I read into the cartoon that Rall thinks Obama needs to make a decision right now? Please explain.

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    Ted Rall creator about 12 years ago

    The point I’m trying to make is: the troops have been fighting for eight years. NOW they’re getting around to coming up with war aims?

    Yes, FDR waited two-three years to invade France during World War II. But by the time we went in, the war aims were clear.

    I can’t imagine how it must feel to be a soldier in Afghanistan listening to the commander-in-chief try to figure out what a war is for AFTER we’ve been fighting and dying in it for years.

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    believecommonsense  about 12 years ago

    Ted, I guess I would ask if you are faulting this President for not doing this sooner, or for taking time to try to get it right this time? I agree with your premise, the mission in Afghanistan has been drifting with no one steering a course for a very long time.

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    kennethcwarren64  about 12 years ago

    Too true. We sent the troops in without any idea of what we wanted, no plan, no idea of how much was needed, and what victory was and how to achieve it. A very dumb thing done by very dumb people - President Cheney and his puppet Bush.

    Obama should get out while he can, or else he will be as dumb as they were.

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    cdward  about 12 years ago

    Ted, I agree that there should have been a specific objective if we were going to go in there. I agree that it’s late in the game to be coming up with one. But all but nine months of those eight years were under the previous administration. There was no mission - or we got away from it very quickly - and now somehow Obama is to blame. I know people don’t like deliberation, but if he’s going to keep us there, I want to know exactly what is to be achieved. I agree with Ken Warren, however, that the best thing for us to do is get out. Or hold a Loya Jirga to let Afghan leaders decide.

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    Ripit  about 12 years ago

    Nice one, Ted.

    7/10

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    Metzengerstein  about 12 years ago

    Excellent cartoon, Ted. I saw the D-Day reference right away, but maybe you have to be a certain age …

    And it doesn’t make any difference if that war was against a nation-state and this one isn’t, or any other supposed differences. The point is, whatever the nature of the conflict, you need to know something about it and have a plan before you go in.

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    Palestino  about 12 years ago

    Brilliant..

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    audieholland  about 12 years ago

    It doesn’t matter if whatever president is clueless about US foreign policy. He does not make it anyway.

    Any US president is just a strawman, a high-level manager at best while TPTB have long decided on long-term strategic decisions.

    Get into Iraq, built lots of big military bases and never ever leave. To make it clearer to the general public: keep contracting the building firm that also excells at demolishing things (Bin Ladin Deconstruction Corp.)

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    d_legendary1  about 12 years ago

    The bottom line with war in this day and age is that it is a good business for the guys who are supplying the weapons.

    There’s also a good reason why the media outlets aren’t clamoring for the war’s end. Only that the Jihadist want to kill us all and we need to do something about it.

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    Tatanka60  about 12 years ago

    I can just imagine the look on Tom Hanks’ face (Saving Private Ryan) if he heard that…

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    believecommonsense  about 12 years ago

    War IS very good for business. That’s what President Eisenhower warned us about.

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    killbillvs007  about 12 years ago

    As a time traveller from October 20 2001, This comic is bewildering and hilarious. Is GWB still president? I thought his term would be up by now? But he STILL doesn’t have a plan for the war? That George, what a scamp!! What mischief will he get into next?

    Oh wait you are just punching Obama in the face because GWB admin ignored Afghanistan. Sweet. I understood the comic before you explained it, and thought it was misguided then too.

    ReasonsVentriloquist - your OP is a HILARIOUSLY ironical critique that Obama should have been implementing a victory solution in Afghanistan while being a state senator in IL when the war started. [While GWB was the most vacationing presdient EVER] HOLY bleeep is that hilarious. oh you’re serious? oh…

    Piling on: in 2007/08 when the GWB admin announced a change in Afghanistan policy, the McLatchey News correspondent for the Pentagon knocked on as many doors as he/she could and asked what the old strategy was. Everyone said, we’ll get back to you… This pane just needs the GWB in Napoleon garb to punch in [what I think is your original] point.

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    killbillvs007  about 12 years ago

    Dr Canuck to share your irony:

    we also rejected GWB’s re election ad with the wolves, the play on fear of large amorphous enemy states which recalls Reagan’s bear ad which was a play on fear of large enemy states, ALL as mere fear mongering which we rise above…

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    4uk4ata  about 12 years ago

    Considering that he was reelected in 2004, I am not sure if the ad was actually rejected by the people. Some of them, sure.

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    treered  about 12 years ago

    the radio signal must have gone around the solar system a few times, the story about casablanca arriving at d-day…

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    shanedamit  about 12 years ago

    I appreciate the actual artists opinion. Sometimes I cant tell which side of the fence he is on, nothing wrong with being a fence straddler either. unless you are an elected leader, Obama needs to pick a side and then mend that fence from his side.

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    cdward  about 12 years ago

    shanedamit, I also appreciate the actual artist’s opinions as well as most of the opinions here, yours included.

    I will disagree with one point, however. I suspect I may be alone here, but am perfectly comfortable with the president being a fence straddler on many issues. I am one of those who thinks we make far too many knee-jerk decisions because we have to come down on one side or another. Sometimes we need the gray area – or at least some patience while all the angles are considered. Given that we’ve been in Afghanistan for a very long time and have done NOTHING there but kill and get killed, I’d say we have time to think it through a little more carefully.

    Now, as to my opinion, I think the right answer is to hold a loya jirga, get the war lords and the leaders opinions, and then in all likelihood, get out of Dodge. We don’t belong, and we’re not achieving anything good there.

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    edmondd  about 12 years ago

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/view/

    Regarding the war in Afghanistan.

    And once you are done watch “the Warning”…quite eye opening…uhmm…more like cataract removal surgery.

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    killbillvs007  about 12 years ago

    My Dearest RV,

    The original argument of the art is People who lead soldiers to war need to have a plan. I don’t have to assume this because the artist said

    “the troops have been fighting for eight years. NOW they’re getting around to coming up with war aims?”

    Since you don’t seem to know a lot about The U.S. during the 2000 decade, I’d like to remind you US troops have been in Afghanistan since 2001, when Barack Hussein Obama was a State Senator in IL. In case you are unfamiliar with him, here is his wiki page:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barack_Obama

    The original argument claims “leaders should have a plan when leading troops into battle where they could die” which means the previous administration needed a plan. Refer back to the piling on section of my OP, which McClatchey News Corp couldn’t find one.

    The only evidence you have presented of a plan prior to 1-20-09 is that Karl Rove presented a bill in Congress (through channels) in 2004. If my math skills are better than my reading skills, this means soldiers were dying in AF/PAK for 2 years before GWB admin put thought to it. furthermore this plan was (according to you not me) “was brilliant politicing [sic] by Karl Rove”

    That means your plan is NOT ANY of these things

    A way to win the war A way to make troops safer A way to make The U.S safer.

    EW Gross. Your comments reinforce the idea the “war aims” of the former admin was the reelection of the admin and not US interests. Such as having leaders who have a plan when they lead troops to war. Which gets us back to the artists intent, and along the way you are elbow deep in blood.

    BACKUP PLAN: Get Osama bin Laden… Maybe we could try that?

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    killbillvs007  about 12 years ago

    MY Dear and Beloved RV:

    The “other way” I could take this argument.

    Read Fennec and dismiss yourself, like you do in front of the JCP Bra Catalog.

    Accomplishments

    We have benchmarks/timetable for getting out of Iraq.

    Russia looks more like our ally than enemy since we scrapped the red herring missile defense that was only meant to piss them off. Don’t BS anyone with strategic placement against Iran because,

    Now that Russia is back, Iran is coming to the table because they are trading partners. Increased sanctions were only entrenching the Iranians against us.

    I cant use the economic crisis as evidence because you can’t show what didn’t happen, which was financial sector collapse. that according to a consensus of economists liberal and conservative. With that I’d like to suspend my campaign until the crisis is over, remember that gem? [In fairness it was an indefinite suspension, not explicitly to the end of the crisis.]

    Can I use the quick bankruptcy and move to restructure GM and Chrysler?

    Can I use not pushing don’t ask don’t tell? Because while that is a civil rights violation I disagree with, its death will be better eulogized from the mouth of a general in 5 years than from the President now. (That sounds dirty)

    What I would push back on is changing Gitmo Detainees zip codes without changing their legal status. That doesn’t solve the problem, its a distraction. Granted it was a headache that could have been avoided if someone would have followed the rule of law, but its our problem now.

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    killbillvs007  about 12 years ago

    @ Ahab

    I’m not sure you want to bring Christ into this. In the temporal sense, he only worked against religious hard liners in his OWN religion. Obama has the Christians and Jews too.

    [this is sarcasm, or irony, actually , I might be being facetious, anyway it’s a joke, layered under another joke.]

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    comYics  about 12 years ago

    Maybe that is Sergent Dangles’ brother from Reno 911.

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