Monday, November 14, 2005

Irresponsible mixed signals 101: A partial chronology of Bushovick achievement.

President Bush, in his new campaign style speech in response to his falling approval and trust worthiness numbers has repeatedly made the following assertion.
[Some Democrats] "are playing politics with this issue and sending mixed signals to our troops and the enemy. That is irresponsible..."
A couple of posts ago I addressed the Bush administrations penchant to rewrite history with a few examples that demonstrated how they do so. Let us consider the administrations penchant to send mixed signals shall we?

Here is a shining example straight from the presidents mouth as posted on the BBC Sept. 18, 2003:
We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the 11 September attacks:
But wait! Here is the text of the resolution passed by congress as approved by president Bush in October of 2002:
Whereas members of al Qaida, an organization bearing responsibility for attacks on the United States, its citizens, and interests, including the attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, are known to be in Iraq;
And later in the same resolution as presented to congress after consultation with the president:
Whereas Congress has taken steps to pursue vigorously the war on terrorism through the provision of authorities and funding requested by the President to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001 or harbored such persons or organizations;
So there you have it. The president knowing Saddam was not involved with Al-queda justifies going to war in Iraq because of that non-connection. Talk about damaging mixed signals!

Check out this answer given in a news conference with George Bush and Tony Blair after the resolution was passed but before the Iraqi debacle had commenced:
Q One question for you both. Do you believe that there is a link between Saddam Hussein, a direct link, and the men who attacked on September the 11th?

THE PRESIDENT: I can't make that claim.
But it appears that the president made PRECISELY that claim in his letter to congress dated March 18, 2003 giving them notice that he was about to embark on the Iraqi debacle:
acting pursuant to the Constitution and Public Law 107-243 is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.
Hold on here Captain Mixed Signal... my poor lil haid is spinning from all the confusion you've caused on this issue. I could easily cite 10 more examples of this type of Saddam/Al queda linkage, denial of linkage, but I believe the point is sufficiently proven.

I don't want to make a book of this post so lets just consider one more mixed signal given by the administration regarding the Iraq war. The administrations oft stated claims about the strength of the insurgency in Iraq. The very first blunder in this case was the presidents famous landing on the air craft carrier Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003. Standing under a banner proclaiming Mission Accomplished, the president declared major combat operations in Iraq to be over. The number of American killed in combat operations to that point had been 239.

Great! Here's a signal that the fighting is over, and now we are going to swing into action making Iraq into our image. However we are well aware that combat operations were indeed not over... and this led to an interesting exchange between the president and a white house correspondent on Wednesday July 2, 2003.
President Bush: There are some who feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is bring them on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation.
Great! Here's a signal that the fighting is not over and the president welcomes further bloodshed. Of course the insurgents failed to pick up on the presidents air craft speech but were all to willing to oblige him with the bring it on bufoonery. But this does not end the administrations horrible track record at gauging the insurgency. Check out these irresponsible mixed signals given to the American people.

Vice president Dick Cheney: , Monday May 31, 2005.
"The level of activity that we see today from a military standpoint, I think, will clearly decline. I think they're in the last throes, if you will, of the insurgency."
Vice president Dick Cheney: , June 24, 2005 on why the insurgency was still so violent:
"If you look at what the dictionary says about throes, it can still be a violent period,...The point would be that the conflict will be intense, but it's intense because the terrorists understand if we're successful at accomplishing our objective, standing up a democracy in Iraq, that that's a huge defeat for them."
If you try to decipher what signal the veep is sending here and wind up with the number 42, congrats... I did to. I mean he clearly prefaces his last throes comment with a qualifier having to do with the level of military activity declining, then justifies it with a definition that includes further intense conflict.

I AM turning this post into a book. Let me finish with this statement. When it comes to irresponsibly sending mixed signals, to take a lecture from this administration about the dangers of this practice is simply laughable on it's face.

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