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Bush kept terrorist Zarqawi free; needed as Iraq war excuse

 
 
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 09:49 am
The second story is the most important. ---BBBSo much for Rumsfeld's protective claim, at last week's hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, that he had failed to bring the matter to the president's attention. No wonder Bush, in turn, rode out to the Pentagon and praised his servant-secretary for doing a "superb" job.

It's amazing, by the way, how Colin Powell seems to have scuttled his good-soldier routine altogether, criticizing his president at first quasi-anonymously (through Bob Woodward's new book), then through close aides (Wil Hylton's GQ article), and now straight up in the Baltimore Sun. One wonders when he'll go all the way and start making campaign appearances for John Kerry.

The second news story that heaves more burdens on the president comes from an NBC News broadcast by Jim Miklaszewski on March 2. Apparently, Bush had three opportunities, long before the war, to destroy a terrorist camp in northern Iraq run by Abu Musab Zarqawi, the al-Qaida associate who recently cut off the head of Nicholas Berg. But the White House decided not to carry out the attack because, as the story puts it:

[T]he administration feared [that] destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam.

The implications of this are more shocking, in their way, than the news from Abu Ghraib. Bush promoted the invasion of Iraq as a vital battle in the war on terrorism, a continuation of our response to 9/11. Here was a chance to wipe out a high-ranking terrorist. And Bush didn't take advantage of it because doing so might also wipe out a rationale for invasion.


In the two years since the Pentagon's first attack plan, Zarqawi has been linked not just to Berg's execution but, according to NBC, 700 other killings in Iraq. If Bush had carried out that attack back in June 2002, the killings might not have happened. More: The case for war (as the White House feared) might not have seemed so compelling. Indeed, the war itself might not have happened.



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Fred Kaplan writes the "War Stories" column for Slate.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 1,240 • Replies: 14
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 10:09 am
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 11:03 am
Well, there's your Iraq - Al Qaeda link and WMD's all wrapped into one nice package.
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joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 11:33 am
McGentrix wrote:
Well, there's your Iraq - Al Qaeda link and WMD's all wrapped into one nice package.

Ah, McG, always looking for the silver lining.
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OCCOM BILL
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 11:35 am
McGentrix wrote:
Well, there's your Iraq - Al Qaeda link and WMD's all wrapped into one nice package.

Precisely. How could this story be true if Iraq wasn't harboring Al Qaeda terrorists? (producing CWMD'S, no less).
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pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 03:25 pm
!
Now the Pres. capitalizes on the decapitation. The CIA announces that it was "probably" Zarqawi but the Pres. goes beyond that and says that it was Zarqawi and that the Govt. will now pursue him and his group. He now uses this as the reason that the US must root out terrorism in Iraq. The hypocrisy of this Pres. is vast. He is shameless.
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OCCOM BILL
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 03:45 pm
Right Pistoff. How dare he use the beheading of an innocent American as an excuse to defend America against the monster who did it? Rolling Eyes What is he thinking?
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infowarrior
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 03:56 pm
The article states: The administration feared [that] destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam.

Bush has lied about everything concerning the Iraq war.

1.) Saddam had something to do with the 9/11 attacks -- lie.

2.) Saddam had a nuclear weapons program -- lie.

3.) Saddam posed a threat to the USA -- lie.

4.) Saddam possessed WMD -- lie.

Is there any doubt, more than a year on and nearly 800 American deaths later that this ridiculous war was all about settling an old family score and of course, oil?

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney are war criminals and should be charged with treason.

If the GOP could try and impeach and remove President Clinton over lying about oral sex, then lying the country into war is certainly far more serious.
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pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 04:22 pm
No proof!
There is no proof, zero as the who executed Berg. None!

In fact, it is highly questionable as to who executed Berg and why. Anyone that automaticaly believes the Buschco Regime &/or the CIA is in my view a non-thinking person.
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pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Sat 15 May, 2004 05:25 pm
!
Bush Says Zarqawi Killed Berg, Cites Saddam 'Ties'

President Bush on Friday blamed al Qaeda supporter Abu Musab al-Zarqawi for beheading American Nicholas Berg and cited him as an example of Saddam Hussein's "terrorist ties" before the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

Bush's revival of accusations linking Saddam to terrorism comes as the president faces growing doubts among Americans over his Iraq policy.


At a fund-raising lunch in Bridgeton, Missouri, Bush said Zarqawi was an example of the threat posed by the ousted Iraqi leader. "We knew he (Saddam) had terrorist ties. The person responsible for the Berg death, Zarqawi, was in and out of Baghdad prior to our arrival, for example," Bush said.


http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&ncid=578&e=2&u=/nm/2004051...


* GW Bush is a disgrace to Amerika and the World. He is a stain on the honor of Amerika.
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squinney
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2004 11:14 am
Re: !
pistoff wrote:
Bush Says Zarqawi Killed Berg, Cites Saddam 'Ties'

At a fund-raising lunch in Bridgeton, Missouri, Bush said Zarqawi was an example of the threat posed by the ousted Iraqi leader. "We knew he (Saddam) had terrorist ties. The person responsible for the Berg death, Zarqawi, was in and out of Baghdad prior to our arrival, for example," Bush said.



I read that the other day and the Bush logic made me wonder...

There were terrorists in and out of America prior to 9/11. Bush was President. Does that mean he has terrorist ties?
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pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2004 01:54 pm
Yes
Yes, he has direct ties with the CIA, the Mosad and Saudi Arabia.
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infowarrior
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2004 02:23 pm
Don't forget Chibali.
0 Replies
 
revel
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2004 02:37 pm
Quote:
Well, there's your Iraq - Al Qaeda link and WMD's all wrapped into one nice package


Quote:
The camp was in an area of Iraq that Saddam didn't control. But never mind, it was something


Everyone has known about this Al Qauda link for a long time, nevertheless it is the general opinion that this is not evidence that Saddam was supporting terrorist because it was located in an area not in control of Saddam as the quote above says.

However, the main point of the article is about the administration (might of) using another low down tactic to further their ends.
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pistoff
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2004 04:13 pm
!
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi

Quote:
The first time most Americans heard the name of terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was when Colin Powell stood before the United Nations to make his case for invading Iraq.
While much of Powell's statement turned out to be fictional, Zarqawi is unfortunately quite real.

As is often the case with the terrorist underground, we know a lot about Zarqawi and yet not nearly enough. For instance, such basic details as his real name and the country of his birth remain obscure. He is believed to have been born in Jordan, possibly of Palestinian descent. His aliases include Fadel Nazzal al-Khalayleh, Fadil al-Khalaylah, Ahmad Fadil Al-Khalailah and just Habib. One of the Fad'l variations is probably in the neighborhood of his birth name. He may or may not be missing a leg, which is a much more important issue than you might think.

Zarqawi hails from the town of Zarqa, Jordan, from whence his best-known alias is derived. He's thought to be a high school dropout. Zarqawi went to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets in the late 1980s, which has been the ruin of many a poor boy. In Afghanistan, Zarqawi plugged into the al Qaeda terrorist network, at the time fighting the Soviet Union with the support of the CIA. In Afghanistan and Pakistan, Qaeda ran training camps where angry young men met other angry young men and formed lifelong friendships.

One of the people Zarqawi is known to have met in the training camps was a young Pakistani explosives expert named Abdel Basit, who would later be known to the world as Ramzi Yousef. Other major terrorists were working in the camps at that time, including Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and the big cheese, Osama bin Laden, who was more or less running the operation.

Jordan, like other Middle Eastern states, recognized the threat posed by Afghan mujahideen much earlier than the West. Jordan and Egypt, among other countries, responded to that perceived threat by arbitrarily imprisoning the mujahideen, usually without charge and often under brutal conditions. Not surprisingly, this treatment only increased their anger and radicalism.

Right or wrong, when Zarqawi returned to Jordan in the early 1990s, he was jailed and spent seven years in jail. When he emerged, he was a full-blown radical who (according to Jordanian authorities) immediately began plotting attacks on U.S. and Israeli tourists in Jordan. He fled to Pakistan soon after leaving prison.

From the start, intelligence officials believe, Zarqawi only worked with bin Laden to further his goal of setting up his own terrorist shop.

Zarqawi's original plan was to overthrow the government of Jordan, but when he was smoked out of the country and sentenced to death in absentia, he went traveling, first to Europe then back to the Middle East and South Asia. Zarqawi allegedly ran a semi-independent shop on the border between Afghanistan and Iran, teaching his students how to use poisons and chemical weapons in terrorist attacks. After the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, Zarqawi had to make tracks. According to Colin Powell, that's when the trouble really began.

The Z-man found shelter in Iran for a while, but Colin Powell didn't care. According to U.S. intelligence, Zarqawi traveled to Iraq in early 2002, and allegedly began associating with Ansar al-Islam, an impoverished group of 600 to 800 Iraqi Kurds whose stated goal was to secede from Saddam's Iraq so that its tiny, ethnically exclusive clan could go hide out in the mountains.

Of course, there's room for a different interpretation of Ansar's role. For instance, if you're Colin Powell and you're desperate to sell an Iraq invasion to the international community, you could argue that Ansar was a "sinister nexus between Iraq and the al Qaeda terrorist network, a nexus that combines classic terrorist organizations and modern methods of murder."

The American Heritage Dictionary defines a nexus as "A means of connection; a link or tie." Whatever else Ansar was, it certainly wasn't a nexus.

Geographically stuck between Iran, Iraq and the mainstream Kurds, Ansar was not an effective force in the region. al Qaeda briefly cultivated a relationship with the group, because of its strategic location relative to Afghanistan. When bin Laden and his crew were forced to retreat to the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, al Qaeda's interest in Asnar faded.

According to the U.S. pre-Iraq party line, Zarqawi used his "base" in Iraq to stage bombings and terrorist attacks in Turkey and Morocco. Powell told the U.N. that Zarqawi received medical treatment during a stay in Baghdad in May 2002. This was supposed to illustrate Saddam's alliance with al Qaeda. (No one ever talks about the fact that Ramzi Yousef received medical treatment from a hospital in New Jersey after a minor car accident in 1993. Did Bill Clinton personally fluff his pillow?)

As it turns out, the report of medical treatment wasn't even credible to begin with. According to U.S. intelligence, Zarqawi had a leg amputated in Baghdad. Except that most sources now believe Zarqawi is equipped with two working legs. As Newsweek colorfully put in in early 2004, "The stark fact is that we don't even know for sure how many legs Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi has, let alone whether the Jordanian terrorist, purportedly tied to al Qaeda, is really behind the latest outrages in Iraq."

The remainder of Powell's claims about Iraq were less than airtight, as we all know by now. There is virtually no evidence to support claims that al Qaeda and Iraq were working together. bin Laden openly advocated the overthrow of Hussein before the U.S. decided to invade. There may well have been al Qaeda operatives in Baghdad, but there were also al Qaeda operatives in New York, Madrid, Cairo, Fort Lauderdale and Norman, Oklahoma.

Although they've stopped repeating the above claims, the U.S. government has not formally retracted its claims about Zarqawi, despite extensive media reports casting doubt on most of Powell's speech. But that doesn't mean the Z-Man's usefulness as a propaganda tool has ended. Far from it. The U.S. government has significantly upped the ante on Zarqawi's status since toppling Saddam Hussein. According to the Pentagon, Zarqawi has been a lightning rod for Iraq's resistance to the U.S. occupation force. U.S. intelligence sources speaking on and off the record now blame Zarqawi for virtually every terrorist attack seen in the last year, including the 3/11 Madrid train bombing and bomb attacks on Shi'ite Muslims in Iraq.

In February 2004, the U.S. claimed it had intercepted a letter from Zarqawi to al Qaeda, outlining his strategy in Iraq and asking for reinforcements. In addition to "proving" once and for all that Zarqawi was an al Qaeda evildoer, the letter further explained that Zarqawi was responsible for bombing the Shi'ites (most al Qaeda terrorists are Sunni Muslims):


We are striving urgently and racing against time to create companies of mujahidin that will repair to secure places and strive to reconnoiter the country, hunting the enemy -- Americans, police, and soldiers -- on the roads and lanes. We are continuing to train and multiply them. As for the Shi`a, we will hurt them, God willing, through martyrdom operations and car bombs.

Even MORE convenient than the al Qaeda link was the fact that the letter seemed like a sure bet to drive a wedge between the Shi'ites and Sunnis. If Sunni extremists were deliberately targeting Shi'ites, then obviously the two groups couldn't possibly join forces against the U.S. occupation and its hand-picked provisional government.

The letter didn't stop Sunnis and Shi'ites from doing just that, however. Unfortunately for our intrepid protagonists, the letter was quickly judged to be a forgery by just about anyone whose opinion mattered. Even Western journalists openly scoffed at the letter's authenticity, let alone the conspiracy-obsessed Arab world, which went to town over the incident. The U.S. didn't help matters by flatly refusing to discuss how it got its hands on the letter. "The important thing is that we have this document in our hands," explained Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt in February. "How it was found is not as important as the fact that we have it." Given the U.S. intelligence record to date, that's a pretty iffy proposition.

By now, you may be wondering what a reasonable person can actually claim to know about Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and it's a good question. The piles of misinformation are so deep that it's nearly impossible to divine the truth. Shortly after the 3/11 bombing of a Madrid commuter train, pundits began speculating on a Zarqawi link, based on comments by French terrorism investigator Jean-Charles Brisard. The most compelling reason to think this might be true is that it didn't come from the U.S. government.

Despite all the laborious U.S. efforts to prove a link, most independent experts believe Zarqawi is not operating on behalf of al Qaeda, a conclusion which the U.S. military reluctantly conceded in early 2004.

In recent media interviews with captured Ansar al-Islam operatives, the terrorists said they never laid eyes on Zarqawi (the interviewees provided other verifiable information on Ansar activities). Ansar itself has been more or less made obsolete by the U.S. invasion, which spurred an influx of thousands of foreign fighters into Iraq (some al Qaeda-linked, but others not). In early 2004, some Iraqi insurgents claimed in a leaflet that Zarqawi had been killed. Not too many people believe this to be true.

A tape released in April appeared to be from the Z-Man himself. According to the tape, Zarqawi took credit for several bomb attacks against U.S. and coalition forces. He pointedly did not take credit for the attacks on Shi'ites, but he did castigate the Shi'ites as "idolators." He called on Iraqis to "burn the earth under the occupiers' feet." After the tape was released, the U.S. increased its reward for his capture to $25 million -- on a par with bin Laden and Ayman Al-Zawahiri before their recent increases to $50 million.

About the only evil act missing from the long list of charges against Zarqawi had been any use of the chemical weapons which are his alleged specialty. It was especially odd since (from what we hear) Iraq was just chock-full of evil chemicals waiting for such attacks.

However, that oversight was rectified in late April 2004, when Jordanian officials named Zarqawi the mastermind of a foiled plot to kill 80,000 people with a chemical attack. (Bear in mind that this estimate may be a trifle high. Ramzi Yousef planned to kill 250,000 people in his 1993 attack on the World Trade Center. The actual death count was six.)

And just how many legs does Zarqawi have anyway? We're going to have to get back to you on that, but we can definitively state the answer is no more than three and no less than zero. Probably.



http://www.able2know.com/forums/posting.php?mode=reply&t=24839


*Zarqawi's photo has been shown on numerous occassions in the American Media, so why did he hide himself in this Video of Berg's execution?
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