Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Back Obama, Not the War

The following is a plea to try to stop a downward spiral. Somehow many who want things to be better have cornered Obama into being less able to make the changes that are needed.

News flash the bottom half of the NY Times article on the arrest of Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar notes he is the Taliban leader most interested in negotiating peace, and may have been arrested by Pakistan while trying to arrange for peace talks with the US. If clicking on US doesn't work Google NY Times and Pakistan Arrest may be Critical For Pakistanis.

Both US doves and hawks putting everyone the US is up against in the same mold is a disaster that can only get worse unless we stop doing this. If any American is capable of not doing this, I dream it would be Obama.

History can repeat itself. Before the "Blame President Johnson for not Ending the Vietnam War Movement" was a "Negotiate Now" Movement that I was part of. Back in 1965, WILF, Woman's International League for Peace and Freedom, asked people to send a newspaper clipping of a well-reasoned argument to negotiate an end to Vietnam War to President Johnson.

The following is a 1965 patition letter to Johnson urging him to end the war that has a similar spirit to those urging Obama to accept Vice President Biden's suggestions before his surge speach that gives a sense of idential history which could end identically with a new Richard Nixon and a new Secret Plan remember Nixon's ended up including esculating to Laos and Cambodia.,2477653

I wonder if there continued to be peace movement efforts to persuade for negotiations, rather than condemn and resist the war, or if there were a two-track antiwar movement that the war might have actually ended before Nixon and this time before the next Republican President's secret plan includes war in Iran and essewhere in the Muslim World.

Today the frustrated peace movement is forgetting the good things Obama has done just like earlier it forgot the good things about Johnson's civil rights and great society improvements.

Obama stopped an economic meltdown. A touch of a libertarian policy as Europe bandaged at saving jobs and the banks, would have led Europe to think Bush caused the meltdown and now Obama wanted Europe to pay for it, which would have caused them to want to retaliate not work with the US. People are mad that Obama is not cracking down on the corporations. It would have been almost impossible for the US to crack down hard on the corporations, by itself. However it might work if there could be a joint effort on the part of Western nations, that Obama could be part of, to put corporations back under control of nations again. But undercutting Obama's integrity in no way is a step in that direction. When it came to Iran, Bush saw two choices: bomb Iran or else allow nuclear arms race in the middle east where countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia would seek nukes. Today Iran slowly inches in the direction of being able to make nukes in a moment's notice if they so wish, as Obama got Russia to participate in sanctions against Iran. Meaning the rapid spread of nuclear weapons has been curtailed, but no one is cheering Obama's more than partial success. There have been no plans by anyone to actually stop all spread of nuclear weapons from now on forth. It would be almost a miracle if this, actually were to happen.

When it comes to foreign wars the US has an obligation toward those who sided with the US not to be imprisoned or slaughtered, but the US is not as it was with Vietnam willing to let them pour into the US, bringing their relatives interested in a better life with them. Obama actually got the Shiites to refrain from tit-for-tat violence and for the time being the US could actually leave Iraq without a bloodbath. I have my fingers crossed that this opportunity will continue.

When it comes to al Qaeda, if the US actually tried to avoid conflict, it wouldn't soon lead to peace. As long as al Qaeda believes that war is a natural state in a religiously divided world they will be fighting with someone. If the US managed to get out of the way, peace wouldn't result. Google, "Al Qaeda declares war", then Google again, and add in separate goggles "Al Qaeda declares war" "on Iran", "Hezbollah", "Hamas", "China", "Russia" etc., and sites concerning tension, threats and bloodshed will result. Nevertheless, the US facing bankruptcy and the American people having to try to barter in a US dollar-less world is a danger of the policy of any US President. I wish Obama would do something different but Vice President Biden's suggestion to hunker down into secure areas of Afghanistan would have enticed al Qaeda to lose their confidence that they will bankrupt us, thus encourage an attack. And if the "underpants bombing" was attempted anyway, Cheney and Co. would be organizing condemnation of the administration for supposedly inviting an attack.

Many protesters somehow think the more you condemn Obama the better world you will have. Some sites like"Blacks for Obama" see him never doing wrong and never making a mistake. There seems to be no organized niche for "critical support". Let all of us like-minded people get together, and offer our critical, and somewhat conditional support.

A Greek Tragedy horror, is something that I want insight on how to avoid. What can I or anyone else do to avoid the Greek Tragedy syndrome?

A group of Democrats and Republicans are planning to finally push to end the travel ban to Cuba, which would give many thousands of visiting Americans a more picturesque image of communism, and thus straighten up to a certain extent US policies as well, whether or not Obama gets any blame or credit for this happening.

Maybe there can be third party effort to try to make it Green or Libertarians against Democrats instead of the only choice when you are mad at Democrats is to vote Republican, but in Massachusetts, the Libertarian, Joe Kennedy, refused to be as critical of Scott Brown the Republican as he was of the Democrat, throwing away his potentially double digit vote. And the Tea Party movement is busy betraying Ron Paul who first reenacted the dumping of tea into Boston Harbor that got the tea party its name. Sadly Ron Paul who could never in the past be compromised doesn't want to condemn too hard the tea party members who are supporting his son running for office.

The Greens seem to want to condemn Obama as much as they condemn Republicans. I wish they would campaign the way Mike Huckabee campaigned as the Libertarian Candidate for President spending all his time condemning the Republicans.

The best possibility for a sane US future would be the end to the Afghan War. One problem is the US peace movement is not paying enough attention to what is happening on the ground. In February 2009 there was a cease-fire in the Swat Valley but the US peace movement condemned the fact that it included modified Shiria Law. There was in January 2010 a UN peace conference in Prague, (that the US peace movement ignored) that asked that the Taliban be taken off the terror list. The four retired Taliban leaders who were taken of the terror list are now trying to negotiate peace lately working on the benchmark approach. Pakistan tried recently to organize peace with the entire Taliban but the western peace movement has a habit of not praising Pakistan. Likewise the US peace movement has an aversion to praising Afghan President Karzai who several times tried to negotiate peace with the entire Taliban. He begged Saudi Arabia to mediate but they said they wouldn't until Mullah Omar denounced the al Qaeda. Related Links in Pakistan wants to end the war

The US under General McChrystal has a strict policy of avoiding collateral damage to try to repeat events in Iraq where almost all Iraqis got disgusted with al Qaeda's bloodthirsty mayhem. But in Afghanistan, Mullah Omar announced a strict code of conduct for the Taliban, and actually managed to insist that any al Qaeda members assigned to Afghanistan abide by it. When five suicide vested bombers failed to gain entry to the Bank of Afghanistan in Kabul to blow it up the four remaining attackers didn't blow themselves up in front of the bank, instead retreated to the shopping mall next door and ordered everyone out holed up for hours two being shot and two shot themselves never blowing up the shopping center up. Then came other incidents where more attackers died then any victims attacked. In the February 2010 US attack south central Afghanistan to try to take and hold a strip almost permanently instead of a few days as in the past, the many more numerous less-protected Afghan government troops took few casualties as if the Taliban are planning to brow-beat and strong-arm the Afghan administrators sent to take charge instead of killing them. All this means less mayhem in Afghanistan as compared to Iraq. But one thing remains the same, the US keeps increasing costs on ever more incredibly expensive smart weapons and ever heavier more expensive armor.

Anyway, I believe that if the peace movement paid attention to events on the ground and stopped calling Obama hopelessly subservient to the generals, or a trick to fool Americans with, we will have a chance to end the war before the next Republican spreads it into Iran and beyond. Just as not every historic change is an improvement on what has gone before, not every change in tactic by the peace movement because the old methods don't seem to be accomplishing much is an improvement.

I hope the above is spread all around the Internet and even into print. If it's a little too convoluted which it probably is, I hope a like-minded person will write a more punchy version of the above.

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