Thursday, October 06, 2005

Bush and the War on Iraq

In today's San Francisco Chronicle, there is an article titled
Bush warns of 'radical Islamic empire' He ties Iraq to 9/11, says 10 terrorist attacks have been stymied.

The article starts with:
President Bush delivered a vigorous defense of the war in Iraq on Thursday, framing it as part of an expansive effort to prevent terrorists from establishing a "radical Islamic empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia."

I firmly disagree with this stance that the war in Iraq is helping us beat terrosism.

To start with, the war has taken our focus off of catching the people who attached the World Trade Center. I heard we have reduced the number of soldiers in Afganistan, whre we know Al Quaeda are at. And I don't hear much about efforts to capture Osama Bin Ladin, who we know was involved. Instead we focus on taking out a leader who didn't have WMDs and wasn't invovled with 9/11.

But by going to war against Iraq, we have galvanized the Muslims in other countries. The world views I have heard is that Muslims view the war as us against their religion, not us finding WMDs (well, they ave a point, we didn't find any), us retaliating against someone who attacked us (well, another partial point, as Hussein did try to assasinate Bush SR., but wasn't part of the 9/11 attack which Bush Jr. said he was), or someone who was bad (which I agree he was, but he did most of his bad stuff to non-Muslims and Muslim minorities, so other Muslims may not look at him as bad).

I am in a quandry about what to do with Iraq. We messed it up by attacking, so I don't think we can just cut and run. But I dont see any way to make it better (at least with Bush's leadership - maybe another country or the UN could take leadership and make it work).

ps - sorry I haven't written much here. I am currently in Japan in an intensive Japanese language program. I have written some on that, but am using a different Blog for it -

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Loyalty Oath

I am listening to American radio (over the web, given that I am in Japan right now) and they are talking about a movie on the loyalty oaths of McCarthyism era of the 1950's. Here are some details on the times from Wikipedia.

Hearing this reminded me of the last Presidential election. I seem to remember hearing that Bush required people who wanted to attend his campaign events to sign a loyalty oath. A quick Google and I found lots of articles on this, such as this Washington Post article.

One of the things I have not liked about the Bush Administration is that people do seem to loosing their rights in the name of protecting us from terrorism. I do hope that the similarities in the loyalty oaths isn't a sign that we are headed more towards McCarthyism...