We are not at war

This is one that all bloggers, be they peace, war, anti-war, green, blue, techno, porno, whatever, should get angry about.

First up: Camps for Citizens. Ashcroft wants to create camps for US citizens that are determined to be “enemy combatants”. There, people will be held indefinitely, as ‘guests’ of the US government without any recourse to their constitutional rights. As the LA Times writes:

We are only now getting a full vision of Ashcroft’s America. Some of his predecessors dreamed of creating a great society or a nation unfettered by racism. Ashcroft seems to dream of a country secured from itself, neatly contained and controlled by his judgment of loyalty.

Who would be detained? People like Jose Padilla, who has now been determined not to be associated with al Qaeda. Lately, information is leaking out that Padilla wasn’t associated with any plot to create a dirty bomb, either. However, he’s still being held as an enemy combatant, without access to the rights supposedly guaranteed to all Americans.

(Can’t let him go–that would be admitting we made a mistake, wouldn’t it?)

Why all of this? It’s the War, you know. What war? Why, the war on terror.

News for you folks — no war has ever been declared. There is no war. The president did not go to Congress and inform Congress that we’re now in a state of war. What we have here is two stupid, paranoid, out of control men in office: one President, the other Attorney General. Hey warbloggers: these are the men you trust to lead an invasion of Iraq?

Time to return to discussions about the Dishmatique and soap–I suddenly feel dirty.

(Thanks to b!x for pointing out both of these pieces of Americana crap.)

Insects Political Weblogging

Golden Arches

Loren from In a Dark Time is off to my favorite place in the entire world, Cannon Beach:


There is something both inspirational and moving about the ocean. As it turns out, I spent my first honeymoon at the beach, but I also drove down to the beach to clear my mind the night I decided to leave my first wife. Perhaps it is the sense of timelessness you sense at the beach that makes it such a good backdrop to make important decisions.

He also leaves a gentle admonishment to me:

…I really don’t need to get dragged into someone else’s battle now do, I Bb?”

Loren is referring to my posting yesterday where I used both his weblog and a posting by Glenn Reynolds as examples of intelligence and intelligentsia, respectively. The interesting thing about this post is that I wasn’t thinking of Glenn Reynolds or the warbloggers when I wrote it; it was actually directed elsewhere. However, in the midst of my war debates, and using Professor Reynolds’ quote, I could see why the assumption was made that I was pointing it at the the warbloggers and Professor Reynolds.

Regardless, good point and well taken Loren, but no worries–I’ve realized how wrong it is to drag another into my battles.

Speaking of Professor Reynolds, he did write something yesterday that I felt was both honest and sincere:

I don’t pretend to offer guarantees that American intervention in the region will make life better for the people who live there. I think it will, I hope it will, and I think we should do our best to make that so. But those are secondary objectives. The primary objective is to make clear to leaders that if their country threatens America, they, the rulers, will be out of power at best, and dead along with all their family and friends at worst. Is that “nice?” No. I don’t care.


There is no pretense in this statement, and I can respect that, as I can respect Andrew Sullivan’s statement (pointed to by Doc) along similar lines:

The far-left notion that this is a cynical war for “protecting American interests in the Middle East” is absurd. Such a war might indeed make the Middle East a safer place, but the war is about protecting America and the West, as well as liberating the Iraqi people from one of the most evil tyrants in history.

I imagine that Sullivan would concur with Reynolds in that freeing the Iraqi people is secondary to ensuring the safety of the West. If I disagree with both on the direction the US should take, I can respect their honesty.

One can talk, really talk, when all sides strip away rhetoric and side issues and focus on true opinions, concerns, and realities.

Speaking of battles and discussions, Jonathon suggests that I focus on debating Steven Den Beste rather than Eric Olsen and Glenn Reynolds. After reading the posts he references I agree with Jonathon. ( Though I think the link to the legal post is inaccurate; should it be this one instead?).

In particular, I appreciate Den Beste’s multi-part Ground war in Iraq as a point of beginning discussions. With such a careful and detailed analysis, there is much to respond to.

However, for a discussion on the legality of a unilaterial US invasion of Iraq, I would prefer to focus more on John Chipman’s America’s Right to Fight Iraq in the Financial Times (through Glenn Reynolds).

I’ll work on both posts as I wash all my clothes and vacuum in a vain attempt to rid myself of the Missouri buglife that has decided that I look like MacDonald’s Golden Arches. However, from readings on the subject of chiggers that Ben was kind enough to provide, it would seem it was my last foray into the wild that’s responsible for my current suffering and that only time will provide me a cure. Unfortunate as there are so many bites on my legs I look like I have the measles.

I have found Dante’s missing hell: it’s full of chiggers.

(And I’m still trying to figure out what caused the huge bite that’s so inflamed–a mosquito couldn’t have caused this, could it? What kind of mosquitos live in Missouri–reincarnated fighter pilots?)


Stay tuned…

Grant me a modicum of patience on a continuing dialog about an Iraqi invasion. I’ve had a headache for the last few days that is becoming more and more demanding of my attention, so I’m giving it its way.

My way of saying that I’m just not up for this tonight.