Toppling Saddam

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Iraqis are about to tear down a statue of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad.

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  1. Sven,

    Reflexsive largely means unthinking, or thought dependent on cast in steel prejudices, memes, etc.

    For example: Student 1 says, “I think affirmative action is wrong.” Student 2 replies, “Only a racist would think that.” ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Student 2 is supposed to be an example of reflexsive thinking, just to make things clear. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Gary: What a lame semantic agrument. State and government are synonomyous if we are speaking of the overall authority of a specific geographic territory. Clearly the Iraq as a State has ceased to exist. The overarching authority within its borders is the US/UK.

  4. Reflexsive largely means unthinking, or thought dependent on cast in steel prejudices, memes, etc.

    Oh, that’s good to know. I thought he was accusing me of being gay or something. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  5. “Imposing Democracy” has the same feel to it as “mandatory volunteerism”. Perhaps our new motto should be “Live Free or Die: choose one”

  6. Madog, that’s pretty much what “Live Free or Die” means. No need for the “choose one.”

  7. Well maybe it isn’t “imposing democracy” as much as it is removing obstacles in front of democracy.

  8. Lazatus Long,

    If Iraq has ceased to exist, then why does the US government keeping on referring to a Ba’ath free Iraq as Iraq? Its not a semantical argument at all. Its a recognition that states and governments are not the same thing.

  9. Sven,

    I dunno, Oliver Wendel Holmes was largely a reflexsive thinker, and he was pretty bright. Acting on your gut isn’t always bad, though it can be lead to embarressment.

  10. Gary: You continue semantic arguments and have proven nothing. Where is the Iraq State’s ambassadors? Army? Tax revenues? Where are all the trappings then of what we call a State?

    No doubt “Iraq” still exists as a geographic territory. No doubt “Iraqi” is still a nationality (for some, but not all e.g. Kurds). But until the US recognizes an interim authority, the Iraq State ceased to exist as of this morning – we have destroyed it. Any future Iraq State will be installed under our authority.

  11. Lazarus Long,

    You have yet to explain how these terms are synonymous.

    The Iraqi government has ceased to exist. Governments and states are not the same things. I’ll show you the difference. A government is a body which exercises authority over a political unit (sometimes these units are states). A state is a sovereign organized body of people occupying a defined bit of territory. The terms are not synonymous.

  12. Holy christ I’ll end it here. The ‘ship of state’ is destroyed in Iraq, awaiting replacement.

    Go have a drink.

  13. yeah, that’s a long way from “Do what thou whilst shall be the whole of the Law.” it’s magick!

  14. What’s the Garofalo/broken glass comment at the beginning about? I know Janeane Garofalo spoke out against the war, but I don’t get the reference.

  15. >> A state is a sovereign organized body of people occupying a defined bit of territory.

  16. SOME writers have so confounded society with government, as to leave
    little or no distinction between them; whereas they are not only
    different, but have different origins. Society is produced by our
    wants, and government by wickedness; the former promotes our
    happiness POSITIVELY by uniting our affections, the latter
    NEGATIVELY by restraining our vices. The one encourages
    intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron,
    the last a punisher.

    Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its
    best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable
    one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries BY A
    GOVERNMENT, which we might expect in a country WITHOUT GOVERNMENT,
    our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by
    which we suffer. Government, like dress, is the badge of lost
    innocence; the palaces of kings are built on the ruins of the bowers
    of paradise. For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform, and
    irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not
    being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his
    property to furnish means for the protection of the rest; and this he
    is induced to do by the same prudence which in every other case
    advises him out of two evils to choose the least. WHEREFORE,
    security being the true design and end of government, it unanswerably
    follows that whatever FORM thereof appears most likely to ensure it
    to us, with the least expence and greatest benefit, is preferable to
    all others.

    In order to gain a clear and just idea of the design and end of
    government, let us suppose a small number of persons settled in some
    sequestered part of the earth, unconnected with the rest, they will
    then represent the first peopling of any country, or of the world. In
    this state of natural liberty, society will be their first thought. A
    thousand motives will excite them thereto, the strength of one man is
    so unequal to his wants, and his mind so unfitted for perpetual
    solitude, that he is soon obliged to seek assistance and relief of
    another, who in his turn requires the same. Four or five united would
    be able to raise a tolerable dwelling in the midst of a wilderness,
    but ONE man might labour out the common period of life without
    accomplishing any thing; when he had felled his timber he could not
    remove it, nor erect it after it was removed; hunger in the mean time
    would urge him from his work, and every different want call him a
    different way. Disease, nay even misfortune would be death, for
    though neither might be mortal, yet either would disable him from
    living, and reduce him to a state in which he might rather be said to
    perish than to die.

    This necessity, like a gravitating power, would soon form our newly
    arrived emigrants into society, the reciprocal blessing of which,
    would supersede, and render the obligations of law and government
    unnecessary while they remained perfectly just to each other; but as
    nothing but heaven is impregnable to vice, it will unavoidably
    happen, that in proportion as they surmount the first difficulties of
    emigration, which bound them together in a common cause, they will
    begin to relax in their duty and attachment to each other; and this
    remissness, will point out the necessity, of establishing some form
    of government to supply the defect of moral virtue.

    Some convenient tree will afford them a State-House, under the
    branches of which, the whole colony may assemble to deliberate on
    public matters. It is more than probable that their first laws will
    have the title only of REGULATIONS, and be enforced by no other
    penalty than public disesteem. In this first parliament every man, by
    natural right, will have a seat.

    But as the colony increases, the public concerns will increase
    likewise, and the distance at which the members may be separated,
    will render it too inconvenient for all of them to meet on every
    occasion as at first, when their number was small, their habitations
    near, and the public concerns few and trifling. This will point out
    the convenience of their consenting to leave the legislative part to
    be managed by a select number chosen from the whole body, who are
    supposed to have the same concerns at stake which those have who
    appointed them, and who will act in the same manner as the whole body
    would act were they present. If the colony continues increasing, it
    will become necessary to augment the number of the representatives,
    and that the interest of every part of the colony may be attended to,
    it will be found best to divide the whole into convenient parts, each
    part sending its proper number; and that the ELECTED might never
    form to themselves an interest separate from the ELECTORS, prudence
    will point out the propriety of having elections often; because as
    the ELECTED might by that means return and mix again with the
    general body of the ELECTORS in a few months, their fidelity to the
    public will be secured by the prudent reflexion of not making a rod
    for themselves. And as this frequent interchange will establish a
    common interest with every part of the community, they will mutually
    and naturally support each other, and on this (not on the unmeaning
    name of king) depends the STRENGTH OF GOVERNMENT, AND THE HAPPINESS
    OF THE GOVERNED.

    Here then is the origin and rise of government; namely, a mode
    rendered necessary by the inability of moral virtue to govern the
    world; here too is the design and end of government, viz. freedom and
    security. And however our eyes may be dazzled with snow, or our ears
    deceived by sound; however prejudice may warp our wills, or interest
    darken our understanding, the simple voice of nature and of reason
    will say, it is right.

    I draw my idea of the form of government from a principle in
    nature, which no art can overturn, viz. that the more simple any
    thing is, the less liable it is to be disordered, and the easier
    repaired when disordered.

  17. I don’t need to show you this. You probably saw it on TV like I did. If you didn’t you missed something electrifying.

    According to a translator working for MSNBC, one of the al Jazeera announcers said, as the statue toppled: “The Iraqis tried to break down the statue themselves and the Americans came to help them, just like they tried to get rid of Saddam themselves and the Americans came to help them.” (Mind you, this doesn’t match with their reputation in the blogworld, but then I think they’re clearly in favor of Iraqi self-determination; it’s just the American involvement that they’re conflicted over. Give them a year of living and broadcasting from a transforming Iraq and they’ll be seduced.) I do think this captures the relationship in a nutshell, and is, one hopes, the way it will come to be seen by most Arabs. But we do have to deliver.

    I’m so shocked that places I frequent — the places that have that safe NPR-liberal bent — are deathly quiet about this. Someone on Metafilter actually expressed hope he wouldn’t have to see postings about the dancing, happy Iraqis. I can’t understand this impulse at all: and I still consider myself a strong liberal. I just made the decision a long time ago that tyranny was a worse evil than war; and that even if you distrust a superpower’s motives, it’s capable, like a stopped clock, of being right twice a day. There are some liberals who have spit vituperatively about alleged non-liberals who allegedly cared not one whit about suffering Iraqis all these years (of course, I’m not so sure those liberals making this point have lifted much more than their own typing fingers). Again, this is a position I long ago eschewed: I believe there are idealistic non-liberals who share at least some of my interests. I’m willing to ally with them on this, and I wish the liberals who wish to demonstrate their patronizing levels of caring for the Iraqi people would realize this is the only realistic opportunity to end the dictatorship, so one may as well grasp the brass ring as it passes by. The interests of liberals — both Jeffersonian, spread-of-democracy types, as well as Wilsonian, international-institution types — will almost certainly be advanced in the process, and the difficult times of rebuilding a major nation (and make no mistake, they will be challenging) will probably teach a number of neocons about the value of those things supposedly eschewed along the way such as coalition politics and institutionalized multilateralism.

    I never took the opportunity to lay out my ideal Iraq Plan here, though I’ve alluded to parts of it elsewhere. Let’s take a moment now to look back. The administration was clumsy and inconsistent in its message from the beginning, leading to charges that the story changed. It really didn’t: all the arguments are still valid. The WMD issue is real and scary, and the human rights issue is real and should be chilling. All those years we had Geiger-counter-toting scientists running around the country, the UN should have had the cojones to have video-camera-toting Human Rights Inspectors with the same mandate. The pressure should never have been let up. The Kurdish zone should have been given a legal status other than limbo. (Kosovo is in the same boat. The UN used to have such arrangements; or perhaps I have the League of Nations in mind. UN provisional autonomy, call it. Another place that deserves it is Puntland, the part of Somalia that’s pulled itself up by its bootstraps.) When push came to shove, the opponents of a US invasion should have been creative and solution-oriented rather than playing a loser’s blocking game: something like the imaginative and Solomonic Plan C. Not only would it have forced the “peace camp” to declare whether they were actually in favor of human rights and all, it would also have put the US hawks on the spot as to whether they really wanted a war. It’s a damn shame nobody pursued anything like this; but then solutions of this ilk only appear valuable in the moment of crisis, when it’s too late.

    But now the tipping point has passed — Gladwell, paging Malcolm Gladwell — and we’re in this new world we’ve made for ourselves. What’s it like?

    Some worried precipitously about the loss of what soldiers call blood and treasure. I was confident that these would be costs well worth bearing for just the chance at the world we want to have. My idea of acceptable US/allied body count was in the 500- 1500 range: so the fact we’re barely topping 100 and mopping up is commencing amazes me.

    I didn’t expect a free ride by any means (flowers in every city, native army units turning their guns toward Baghdad on our behalf); certainly the Fedayeen guerrilla war was better planned and more tenacious (and remains so) than expected, but it isn’t strategically a dealbreaker. In the end, the dreaded MOUT (military operations in urban terrain), which our troops have trained tirelessly for in the wake of Mogadishu, became a minor issue, both because of savvy tactical moves and, apparently, a ceasefire of sorts.

    I hoped for, but did not expect, that the military transformation would be so complete. Regardless of party or affiliation, I wanted this war to demonstrate new, 21st-century thinking about warfare, and it has, in spaces. Tommy Franks may not have faced as severe an enemy as did Patton, but his strategy is no less brilliant. Fourth-generation warfare demands flexibility and improvisation, not Powell-doctrine era methodical, overwhelming force. From the very first night of the war, moved up because of an intelligence coup, we saw this: the bombing of the Saddam bunker represented a combined-arms operation writ large, with intelligence passing to political desks to the President to the military with assignment going to ad-hoc elements in the field with a response time in hours. It missed: but it succeeded in demonstrating not only the technological capability to blow the hell out of a bolthole, but in our capability to obtain and act on intelligence information. That’s a remarkable transformation and a critical skill for this coming century. Finally, the taking of the city showed that the entire war was in many ways less of a strict force war than an effects-based operation, seeking to achieve major non-military ends — such as the political surrender of the regime — with subtle pokes and prods, rather than brutal attrition warfare. Effects-based operations is a new theory, one which seeks to throw aerial bombardment doctrine from WWII in the dustbin and achieve the maximum political result with a minimum of casualties. Shock-and-awe is technically a vignette of EBO, and in this case I think we can say that the awe part is hard to achieve, so that opening move was a bit of a dud. But the EBO aspects of the campaign were never more clear than when we sent a column into the center of Baghdad to seize a palace. As a military objective it was all right: but as a political objective it excelled. Nothing tells a dictator his days are numbered like having an enemy soldier sit in his chair. Militarily it then served as a foothold for further securing attacks, but also as a savvily chosen strongpoint that would draw Iraqi counterattacks: let them come to us.

    These are military learning processes I was hoping for, but didn’t necessarily expect. To see the commanders and the administration committed to them gives me great hope for the future.

    Another worry bandied about was of the commitment. Certainly this is a standard Jeffersonian suspicion of foreign entanglement (and on the right as well: Bush’s own foreign policy had strong Jeffersonian overtones until 9/11). But I have always been an internationalist, thinking of myself in the JFK mold of a liberal hawk, and I think the commitment will be good for us. We need to know, to be confident, that we can do good in the world. We need to know that if the world changes, we can find our way. We need to know that our system of democracy, capitalism, and self- determination is the best: not China’s incipient fascism, not Russia’s kleptocommunism, not Europe’s quasi-left statism, and certainly not bin Laden’s benevolent caliphate. We need to know that it’s different from the others for good reason and that we have an interest in advancing it over the others.

    Americans have suffered from self-esteem problems, from self- flagellation, for far too long. What we need are liberals who can carry this flag proudly. What we have are liberals who are afraid, at times, to carry any flag at all. But if liberals don’t, not only do we cede the building of the army to the dark illiberal domestic forces that are so feared, we cede the territory of the fight to the illiberal systems that seek to supplant our own. I don’t want to lose that larger fight, so I want to stay in the smaller fight.

    That’s why I hope this will be a learning experience, one that will give us maturity and wisdom. The 20th century was a bloody mess with fascism and communism piling bodies at the door. The 21st century doesn’t have to be, and we have the power to keep it from being so. If we have the confidence.

  18. Man, my head hurts. It’s hard being on the wrong side of history.

    We all knew we would win this war. We all knew Iraqis would be happy to be free of Saddam. And we all knew supporters of this war would say “See, we told you so. Now don’t you feel guility for being such a sourpuss anti-American all these months? How can you look these people in the face and say it all wasn’t worth it.”

    The pictures from Baghdad were indeed heartwarming and historic. But the ends still don’t justify the means. This war was based on a pack of lies and fearmongering instead of an honest, open debate. Principles we hold dear were cynically subverted in pursuit of the adminstration’s agenda, which still hasn’t been fully disclosed.

    We haven’t shown the world how democracy works. We ? more aptly they ? demonstrated that might makes right, that anything goes as long as it’s cloaked in righteousness and backed by military might.

    Sure, everything comes out in the wash. At least the part we can see. We’ve done it before, and we’ll do it again (sooner rather than later, now that we’ve kicked open the door to preventative war wide open).

    It’s just sad that we’ve deluded ourselves into believing that this was about principle all along, when it’s the exact opposite.

    Anybody got a pair of rose-colored glasses I can borrow?

  19. What the fuzz is up with these essay length post…

    Use a g*#d@$ link…

    Gary:

    By your definition Student 1 & 2 are both,
    Reflexsive thinkers!!!

  20. Gary,

    I’ve not seen Lenin, but I have seen Ho [who looked quite shriveled] and Mao [who looked pretty good]. Perhaps the more pounds you’ve got when you croak [Mao truly was the “great” helmsman] the better you can be preserved.

    Assuming Saddam isn’t in little pieces, he’d probably fall somewhere in the middle.

    BTW, my understanding is that the only folks who know how to do it are in Moscow where Mao and Ho visit annually for a little spiffing up.

  21. Lazarus Long,

    Actually, I am not using semantics (whatever the hell you mean by that). I have defined these terms accurately. So far all you’ve claimed is that I am “using semantics,” and you have as yet to offer any principled counter-argument, aside from repeating your “you are using semantics” mantra. Now I have a very blunt question for you.

    Do you even know what semantics are? You use the term like it is a bad word, which it is in fact not. Semantics is the study of the relationship between signs and symbols, that is the study of the meaning of language. I would suggest that in the future when you use a word, you know what the hell it means.

  22. dan hatung,

    Washington warned against foreign entanglements (in his Farewell Address). You might recall that in 1793-1794 or so there was much discussion of aiding France in its war against Britain. Jefferson was gung-ho to help out France, but Washington decided to keep the US neutral.

    If the man can’t even get this fact straight, then why should I bother to care about the rest of his screed?

  23. Sven,

    Sic Semper Tyrannis? ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Gary: I have continued to dispute your definitions, you simply continue to repeat your orginal agruments. You are a fool and if continue I will simply ignore you in the future. This isn’t really even relevent to my orignal point — the government, soverign state, monopoly of force, authority, etc in the borders of Iraq, formerlly in control of Saddam, has ceased to exist. I continue to make agruments, you continue to make dull, semantic points that have nothing to do with the content of my said arguments. This is incredibly dull to me and most likely tedious to those here who don’t seem to harbor the hatred for me that you seem to have. It is nearly trolling and I suggest you spare the good people at Reason this waste in bandwith.

  25. Lazarus Long,

    You haven’t even tried to address my definitions, aside from labelling them as efforts at “semantics,” a term that you so far haphazardly used to your argument’s deteriment.

    You don’t contine to make arguments. You continue to make the same old tired accusation that I am “using semantics.”

    What I want from you is a reasoned analysis of why these definitions are incorrect, not just an attempt to label them with some word. You act like your arguments are self-evident, when in fact they are not.

    So please, demonstrate where you have “disputed” my definitions with anything other than a juvenile attempt to attach a label to them.

  26. Ms. Garofolo, your broken glass is ready!

  27. Now it looks like they are getting some help from a coalition tank.

  28. Lazarus Long,

    I’m about to demonstrate to you how stupid your responses have been so far.

    Your first response was the following:

    >The Iraqi State has ceased to exist. The only >monopoly of force within in its borders (with a >few exceptions) is the Coalition. Until an >interim authority is declared anyway.

    Here are you referring to the “interim government,” not the state. As I said earlier, a government is a body which exercises authority over a political unit (sometimes these units are states). A state is a sovereign organized body of people occupying a defined bit of territory. The exercising of authority, which what you are talking about here (the government), is not the same thing as sovereingty (the state). Iraq remains sovereign no matter who runs the government.

    Here’s your next claim:

    >What a lame semantic agrument. State and >government are synonomyous if we are speaking of >the overall authority of a specific geographic >territory. Clearly the Iraq as a State has >ceased to exist. The overarching authority >within its borders is the US/UK.

    Exercising authority over a geographic region is not the same as sovereignty. Again, you are talking about the government here, not the state. Sovereingty and the exercise of government authority are two very different concepts philosophically and in practical terms as well. In the US, the people are the sovereign, and the government exercises authority on behalf of the sovereign. Yet execersing authority does not make the government the sovereign.

    Here’s your next “argument”:

    >You continue semantic arguments and have proven >nothing. Where is the Iraq State’s ambassadors? >Army? Tax revenues? Where are all the trappings >then of what we call a State?

    These are all parts of the government, they are not the sovereign.

    >No doubt “Iraq” still exists as a geographic >territory. No doubt “Iraqi” is still a >nationality (for some, but not all e.g. Kurds). >But until the US recognizes an interim >authority, the Iraq State ceased to exist as of >this morning – we have destroyed it. Any future >Iraq State will be installed under our authority.

    No, the Iraqi government has ceased to exist. The Iraqi state, that is, the sovereign organized body of people occupying the borders that define Iraq, is still there.

    Here’s your next response:

    >The only sovereign in Iraq is the US military. >Their Leviathan has been destroyed and replaced >with the Coalition’s. Your semantic sideshow is >getting old fast.

    All you are doing right here is repeating your tired line that I “using semantics.” Of course the very fact that you’ve not even defined what that means undermines your argument entirely.

    And your final comment:

    >I have continued to dispute your definitions, >you simply continue to repeat your orginal >
    >agruments.

    Actually, you haven’t. All you’ve done is to parrot your first comment. You haven’t addressed my definitions at all, in fact, about all that you’ve made are a few declatory statements.

    >You are a fool and if continue I will simply >ignore you in the future.

    Hmm, a fallacious ad hominem, how pleasant.

    >This isn’t really even relevent to my orignal >point — the government, soverign state, >monopoly of force, authority, etc in the borders >of Iraq, formerlly in control of Saddam, has >ceased to exist. I continue to make agruments, >you continue to make dull, semantic points that >have nothing to do with the content of my said >arguments.

    No, you continue to parrot back to me your original post. You have made no effort to address my definitions.

    >This is incredibly dull to me and most likely >tedious to those here who don’t seem to harbor >the hatred for me that you seem to have. It is >nearly trolling and I suggest you spare the good >people at Reason this waste in bandwith.

    That’s right, go for the big lie. ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. Alrighty, then. Who’s next on the list? Let’s Roll!?

  30. This is so historic! It’s like the tearing down of the Berlin WALL!!! HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    That statue kind of looks like Stalin though, doesn’t it?

  31. Pack yer shit up, boys & girls, time to get your asses to Damascas. Then Tehran, then Cairo, then Tripoli, then Riyadh. Then Pyongyang! Then Caracas.

  32. I can understand the need for a public military, especially if it’s based on voluntary conscription, but I can’t help thinking we’re subsidizing the oil industry on this one. I would have much preferred the use of private mercenary armies ? la Halliburton’s security forces to take out Saddam and protect Iraqi oil fields. [http://www.fortune.com/fortune/articles/0,15114,427948,00.html]

  33. France is going DOWN!

  34. Apparently, given the comments here, the falling of a tyrant is the worst thing to happen to anti-war types. Read into that what you will…

  35. Ok, neolib, you got me. I was rootin’ for Saddam all along ’cause, you know, he was against our troops. I’m kinda feelin’ bitter now, like I did after the Raiders lost the Superbowl. But hey, there’s always next season.

    But the real reason I’m pissed is because Saddam was the most valuable piece in my Super Thugs: Dictators of the World action figure collection. If this Democracy Dominoe Effect continues, I’m gonna be out some serious moolah.

  36. France is not going down.

    Sven,

    We’ll see how things shake out over time. The Western track record for creating democracies by force is pretty lousy as far as I can tell. And whether you believe it or not, the ingredients to create democratic market economies were already there in Japan and Germany.

  37. “The Western track record for creating democracies by force is pretty lousy…”

    A compared to the track record of other regions?

  38. I’m just praising Allah that the statue didn’t crush 20 indigenous-type folks when we helped pull it down.

    That woulda killed my liberation buzz big time.

  39. Todd,

    Nice. I like the way the reflexive anti-Americanism (anti-westernism, whatever) shows up almost subconciously in some of these lunatics posts.

  40. Todd F,

    If you would like me to more inclusive, I will wholly admit the human track record on these issues sucks. ๐Ÿ™‚

    JDM,

    Keep your psycho-babble to yourself. Also, its funny that you mis-typed anti-American, then corrected yourself. I think the one with issues of the subconscious here are you.

  41. I like watching JDM act like Deanna Troi.

  42. This should be a especially joyous day for libertarians. We have witnessed the death of one of the most oppressive States on the planet, with as minimum loss in life or liberty. I am smiling ear to ear today! ๐Ÿ™‚

  43. Actually, we haven’t watched the death of a state (that would mean that Iraq no longer existed as a nation, which would raise some suspicions I would suspect), but we are watching the death of a regime (the Ba’athists still control Tikrit as I recall) and possibly its leader (no word on if Saddam is KIA or not).

    I’m personally happy for the Iraqis at this point, but will wait to see how this shakes out.

  44. The Iraqis should take care of those statues. In a park outside Budapest are all the old Stalin/Lenin/etc statues the Hungarians could gather along with piped in martial music. It’s a pretty cool tourist attraction.

  45. Gary: The Iraqi State has ceased to exist. The only monopoly of force within in its borders (with a few exceptions) is the Coalition. Until an interim authority is declared anyway.

  46. Lazarus Long,

    No, the Iraqi state has not ceased to exist, though its government has been toppled. The state transcends governments. The only way to get rid of a state is to do what the Germans, Austrians, and Russians did to Poland – literally occupy it and erase it from the map. Iraq as a state still exists – it just doesn’t have a functioning government at this time.

  47. Lazarus Long,

    On and before you say something really stupid, just admit that you are wrong and get it over with.

  48. I personally wouldn’t have sent troops into Iraq, but it’s a beautiful thing to see people shake loose from the bonds of their oppressors and for the first time in their lives get a real taste of liberty. I hope things work out in the long run.

  49. …subconciously in some of these lunatics posts.

    Subconsciously? Hey bud, I’m consciously anti-Americanismist, anti-Western, anti-Country & Western and pro-Taliban, and proud of it. Except when I’m asleep, of course, and wet dreaming about the inevitable triumph of radical Islam and/or Marxist campus subversives .

    I don’t know what reflexive means, but I’m sure I’m not that. At least not consciously.

  50. Bill G.,

    Lenin still sits in his glass viewing area (whatever it is called) right, and attracts many visitors? I wonder if they could do the same sort of tourist attraction with Saddam (assuming he isn’t in pieces right now)?

  51. Hey, Laz. Don’t look now but everybody here hates you.

  52. >> Iraq remains sovereign no matter who runs the government.

  53. >>Hey, Laz. Don’t look now but everybody here hates you.

  54. Whereas a guy who calls himself Lefty is Mr. Popularity here at the Ayn Rand Memorial Website.

  55. I’m in the middle of “Why People Believe Wierd Things”. Rand gets a section all to herself. I hear one’s being prepared for Laz.

  56. Lefty: I don’t fall into one of your neat politically correct catagories. It is called independent thinking, you should try it sometime.

  57. EMAIL: pamela_woodlake@yahoo.com
    IP: 62.213.67.122
    URL: http://psybnc-account.1st-host.org
    DATE: 01/20/2004 11:36:08
    Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it..

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