John Ashcroft and Saddam Hussein have something in common. I know what you are thinking, no it is not a love for repressive government, this commonality is more subtle than that, much less in the light.
Officials say the MKO--which originally fought to overthrow the Shah of Iran--was linked to the murder of several U.S. military officers and civilians in Iran in the 1970s. "They have an extremely bloody history," says one U.S. counterterrorism official.
John Ashcroft and Ol' Saddam both supported a terrorist group called the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO). You'd be surprised to find that this Iranian Terrorist group with 30,000 members in its army which is based in Iraq has been supported by over 200 members of Congress.
John Ashcroft and Chris Bond, Republican Senators from Missouri crafted a joint solidarity statement in support of the group, Mr Ashcroft's smiling face graced a briefing book the MKO used to garner support on Capital Hill.
Read the article. Some complex interesting stuff.
Our Man in Iraq, Ahmed Chalabi
We are regularly told that the insurgents fighting US occupation are Hussein loyalists, minus Hussein it would seem that resistance should fall away. Mr Bush has said time and again that the fighters are members of Al Qaida, a claim that Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez, the top US military commander in Iraq recently said is untrue. I suppose time will tell just who these fighters are in fact, and also give us some of the "why's" of their struggle against Occupation forces.
Too many people on both sides of the equation are dying.
A simple and apparent "why" is because the people of Iraq want Democracy. And just as in the US, even with its Constitutional seperations between church and state we for better or worse have a Christian government ( the use of the word "Christian" for the morally bankrupt militaristic present administration would make Jesus weep, I'm sorry)
or at least one that speaks in that manner
"God told me to strike at al Qaida and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did..." -- George W. Bush
And that is roundly considered OK. Were Mr Bush of any other religion our populace would think he was nuts. But speaking as a fundamentalist Christian is alright to our people and our press, obviously. We have Israel, a nation seemingly founded on the Jewish conception of G*D, we have the Hindu BJP ruling India and those governments are all well and good. The population of Iraq may very well want an Islamic government reflective of their populations majority and "whoa, put on the brakes". A self determining nation that is told it is time to strive for Democracy needs the inherent right to make the decision itself concerning just what its' governing body will be like. Or what people are dying for is not Democracy.
The Iraqi people want to get their government on its' feet
The head of the Iraqi Governing Council renewed his demand yesterday that a proposed transitional legislature should be elected by Iraqi voters, a move opposed by occupation officials who prefer that the new body be picked by regional caucuses.
"The assembly will be elected by the Iraqi people. This is what we are trying to achieve and that’s what, God willing, will happen," said Abdel-Aziz al-Hakim, a Shiite Muslim politician who heads the council’s rotating presidency for December.
It seems the Iraqi's want a government for the people, by the people
The leader of Iraq's Shiite Muslim majority, Grand Ayatollah Ali Hussein al-Sistani, joined the ranks of skeptics last week, saying the American plan for Iraq has been fundamentally flawed by the appointment of an elite political class that doesn't represent most Iraqis.
Enter the INC.
The Iraqi National Congress is partly a creation of the CIA, which provided it with its name and more than $12 million in covert funding between 1992 and 1996.
(The INC recieved 97 million dollars in 1998 from the US government. 25 million in 2002)
Ahmed Chalabi is one of these "elites". He left Iraq in the 1950's and returned with the war. (Read CIA Secret War link for more on him in Iraq in the 90's) Mr Chalabi is a neocon darling who may have fed Dick Cheney and his PNAC buddies inaccurate intelligence. Inaccurate intelligence that help get the attack on Iraq underway. Remember the Saddam statue getting pulled down? Chalabi was there. How did he get all the way to Iraq during wartime?
"...Bush had ordered Cabinet officials not to give any preferential treatment to Ahmed Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress (INC) when U.S. forces moved into Iraq last spring. But soon after, in flagrant violation of his directive, the Pentagon flew Chalabi and 600 of his armed followers into southern Iraq in early April, "with the approval of the vice president."
Oddly enough throughout the news about the capture of Saddam Hussein Chalabi's name comes up. The ex-exile of Iraq was among a small group of four leaders of the Iraqi governing council that went to see Hussein. They wanted to talk to him.
Aides to the men differed slightly about what happened next: One said that Mr. Hussein, who they said had just awakened, did not recognize any of his visitors. Another said he recognized Dr. Chalabi and asked him to introduce the others.
"Saddam turned to Pachachi and said: `You were the foreign minister of Iraq. What are you doing with these people?' " one aide said.
I'm guessing Hussein would recognize the foreign minister of his country. Does it seem sensible he would only recognize Chalabi? Call me a cynic, but one of the accounts sounds like spin. The Times writer calls him Dr Chalabi, further reinforcing a sense of legitimacy about the man. His history shows a clear lack of legitimacy.
The article Tinker, Banker, Neocon, Spy will round out your knowledge of the man, and the political backing this convicted embezzler has from the political machine that subverted US democracy to get their war in Iraq.
Our troops are dying in Iraq for an ideal called Democracy. Our tax monies are being spent there to secure this greatest of political values for the Iraqi people. Is putting Cheney and companies boy on the Iraqi thrown fulfilling this?
Read "The CIA’s Secret War in Iraq" for a greater understanding of what is now occuring in Iraq. Democracy without a strong puppet in place is not what the US government wants, it never has been. And a strong puppet government is not a Democracy.
Saddam Hussein, now in the custody of Coalition Forces can no longer cast his shadow on the unfolding process occuring in Occupied Iraq.
Although it took a war that one it's architects, Richard Perle admitted was illegal to depose him, it is what it is and we should be happy for the Iraqi people. And although the reason for the war, Weapons of Mass Destruction have not been located and Saddam Hussein says there were none, time will tell. Iraqi scientist say there was no recent nuclear program, that even before the first Iraq war they fluffed their research figures touting Iraqi nuclear capability to make Saddam happy with them. After Gulf War1, nothing. The CIA also admits that it had no specific knowledge about the weapons that were given as the reason for the attack on Iraq, and that it shared these doubts in its' October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate with the present administration and Mr Bush. Steve Perry has collected evidence of Mr Bush's Top 40 lies about Iraq and Terrorism.
Robert Dreyfuss tells us that people in government are trying innovative ways to get the truth into the light.
By creating a “tip line” on his official Web site, Democratic congressman from California Henry Waxman is encouraging current and former U.S. national security officials to come forward and disclose how the administration played with intelligence on Iraq’s alleged weapons of mass destruction and ties to Al Qaeda. A ranking member on the House Committee on Government Reform, Rep. Waxman is making it possible for officials to go on the record or remain anonymous, according to one of his aides.
Although the Bush administration insinuates it often, Mr Bush has admitted that there is no Iraq-9/11 link. Tell that to your friends that get their information from Fox news. Or believe Dick Cheney.