Axis of Error

Remember the “Axis of evil“? That was what this administration called Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. Then it invaded one of them — the one without atomic weapons. The other two, who while they may be crazed in other ways reacted quite rationally to the obvious implicit threat of invasion, put their nuclear programs into higher gear.

Now it seems as if the North Koreans have exploded a nuclear weapon. While this may lead to some strict sanctions, it seems fairly clear that possession of a nuclear weapon also reduces to nearly zero the chance of foreign invasion. The chance of that was already quite small in the case of the North Koreans, but one can understand why they may not have wished to risk being wrong about that.

The North Korean government is one of the less rational ones on earth, so one can’t say with confidence that a sensible policy on the US side would have guaranteed success at keeping them from going nuclear. One can say, however, that the current administration’s abandonment of the Clinton policy of multilateralism and engagement ensured this dire outcome.

Chalk up one more disaster for this administration’s failures to focus on what matters, and its general incompetence.

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7 Responses to Axis of Error

  1. DW Mckinney says:

    Monday, October 9, 2006

    Good morning America,

    I have not been up long, but I have been up long enough to hear bush, cheney, rumsfeld, rice, rove, tony snow, and even hastart are out there in the TV making the news. I know not all of this news is good for this criminal administration, or his criminal congress. To them there is nothing more important in life that hanging on to their precious majority and hold on absolute power. You know the old sayings, power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Anyway, as for the criminals being on TV, that makes me think, I have not seen or heard a peep from ANY Democrat. This leads me to ask once AGAIN, where the Hell is OUR Leaders? Does the Democratic party have any leaders anymore? Today I finally got me Mother interested in the up coming elections. Most of the time she would not be caught dead reading, listening, or watching anything political on TV. The only way she knows what is going on is to hear me bitching about something, and that is very Very often!

    I started off over three years ago as a life long republican. Being a 57 year old retired Deputy Sheriff, I had only voted two times in my life for a Democrat. Once for President Bill Clinton, the second being , the second was for Vice President Al Gore. I still hope and Pray he runs for the 2008 Presidential election. The only other person I like and would trust is Senator Byron Dorgan. He is a conservative Democrat, that has enough smarts, and political unknown to actually win the big election. Trust me, he would be the best President we have had in over eight years. Going backwards, of course this all started with me hating bush/cheney.

    They are the instigators in my total disillusionment of my old party. They now make me sick, they are not physical conservatives, they are not social conservatives, they are not conservatives at all. These guys are nothing but college educated criminal thieves. I have never in my life seen, heard, or witnessed such unabashedly either criminal behavior, unfair behavior, power grabbing, cutting out of any other political party, corruption at every level, abuse of power, major abuse of power, refusal to be held accountable for breaking any law, or even refusing to enforce several laws, denying the other party in power to have any say so in any kind of policy either here or over seas, and outright balls to do some of the things they have. Outright lying to everyone, but especially the American People. If this President does not deserve to be impeached, no administration, or president in past history, or any future history would deserved to be impeached.

    I strongly feel this way, I want this President and his entire administration, not just impeached, but prosecuted and placed into Jail. There is a ton of evidence out there, it is the congress’s job, and even more important their Number One Constitutionally MANDATED Duty, to check the power of the executive or president for short. The republican leadership has failed us in their duty. In fact, it is more than just excusing bad behavior, it is even more than the ABSOLUTE REFUSAL to do their constitutionally mandated duty, they are in fact, in collusion with the bush/cheney administration. What they are getting out of it, besides a major headache, is beyond me. This congress is by far, as far as one could get and still be called a representative body, the Laziest, do nothingness, worst, stupidest, most horrible, I am sure there are a bunch more verbs to describe the madness that goes on in the halls of congress. Everything I can imagine points to this November election as thee most important election in our history, my history! I am talking about people born in the twenty first century.

    Our currant president apparently has never thought of, or imagined the people who have already been born in the twenty first century. If bush/cheney, and their bobble heads in congress get reelected this November, our kids, our grand kids, and their kids will be burdened with such a high debt, they will either be forced to sell off most of the United States, or are never going to be able to retire. Something I hope and pray each and everyone of us get to enjoy. I do not want to miss one minute with our grand kids

    I feel I must add this in, I just happened to trip over the Fox news channel and heard neil cavuto talking nice to a democrat who said us Democrats would not raise taxes that help the average person. Not sure of his last name but cavuato, said I am going to hold you to that promise. This goes to show you how politically savvy these Fox news channel guys are. They already know a big BIG change is coming soon, and they do not want to piss off the party in power. To late now guys, this change is four years to late, the damage bush has done is not reversible. There is NO Way, Absolutely NO WAY, we can bring back, (as of the time of this letter) 2,741 young American soldiers who have been Murdered in Iraq.

    They were Murdered, and bush/cheney are responsible for the families losing their Fathers, Mothers, Son’s, Daughter’s, Brothers, Sisters, Aunts, Uncles, Cousin’s, Best Friends, the list goes on and on and on, in short for the Family, friends, and loved ones. Under the currant American law bush/cheney are responsible, under what is known as the Felony Murder Rule. Now I was just a Regular State Peace Officer, so I am not sure if there is a comparable Federal Law. I strongly believe if there was a true independent prosecutor, and a truly bipartisan congressional investigation into weather bush and cheney actually took us into Iraq knowing the information they all spued out week after week after week was not correct. It would show they lied, inflated, cheery picked as I have heard it said. If they did that, it is lying to congress, and that is a Felony! And in the course of committing a Felony if someone dies as a result of something you did, or said during the course of that Felony, it is Murder. This places the ball right back in congress’s field. They are the ones who have failed to investigate, to truly not get to the bottom of why 9-11 hijackers were so successful, failed to hold over sight hearings on the bush administration. We have to rely on the newspapers around the country to find out what Illegal Stuff bush is doing, why? Because this congress would much, Much rather be good little republicans than be Good Congress people. At every level this congress has let the American People down.

    I do not care if you are republican, Democrat, Or an Independent, we were, and are being totally let down. Now if you are one of those die hard republicans who think bush & cheney have done a wonderful job based on nothing but faith, And failure, I will say to you what the HELL are you thinking? Oh, of course, of course you vote based on nothing but faith, facts do not matter to you, you are right, and everyone else is wrong. There is no room for compromise, there is no reason to talk with people who disagree with you, there is no reason to listen to people who are mad, no matter the subject you have the answer no other person has, and we are right and you are wrong. End of story, now go home and cry in your pillow. If you are one of these republicans, I have no reason to talk with you, to you, but I have a reason to talk about you. My hope is I will get other republicans to see the errors of their ways, and for once, say enough is enough! It is time to elect someone else, swing this country back towards center, and more important what is fair, and see how the other side does.

    I have tried for the last eight months to get one republican to debate me on the bush/cheney record, no one, not a single person has taken me up on that offer. I did this about the time I considered the bush/cheney record and came up with 43 major decisions they have made, all of them being a disaster for the country as a whole. We know bush/cheney have two more years in office, this election is not about them as much as it is about fixing the congress who is mandated by law, by the constitution to be in direct opposition to the white house, no matter what party is in power in the white house. We have had a congress who has done nothing of the sort. All they have done is give up power, had no over sight, NONE! No investigations that could have prevented such things as contractor fraud in Iraq, the torture in prisons around the world, and many other things congress is suppose to do. What we have is a president who issues signing statements and considers them law, not the laws passed by congress. So why should it matter if the congress is controlled by Democrats? I mean if bush/cheney are going to do what they want anyway, why are republicans, mostly at the white house so scared?

    I am always hearing from the white house, stay the course, finish the mission, spread democracy as a way to stop the violence. As I have said from the very very beginning of the Iraqi war, all bush and cheney want to do is stay in Iraq. They care about nothing else. I also know the closer we get to November and the elections the more republicans seem to be changing job titles. From politicians to fortune tellers, and mind readers. They keep telling us the Democrats will do this, do that, raise taxes, start investigations, impeach president bush, get out of Iraq. I say ya, it sounds like they are going to be responsible, good for them! However, the fact is they have no clue as to what the Democrats will do. If they are so good at reading minds, and fortune telling, why in hell didn’t they stop congressman foley a long time ago? They keep saying Democrats will tax and spend, tax and spend, to me this is better than borrow and spend! Besides, they have no CLUE what we will do if we win control. I guess that is what scars them so much. Another republican goodie, FEAR! The republicans are doing what they do best, blaming. It is not our fault! Clinton did it, or Clinton was worse, what about their gay Dem. In the mid 80’s. I mean it is nuts and I am sick of it and them!

    The one area I condemn my new party on is not taking advantage of so many good targets. To me the halliburton/KBR, bectel, black water, and many many other contractors in Iraq have hurt our chances to ever win in Iraq. They all have been given cover, NO hell, License to steal, de-fraud, rip off, waist, and abuse the American tax payer, and to my knowledge we have not taken advantage of these targets. I worry the Democrats are as tied in this as the republicans, it is the only reason I can think of as to why they do not get on TV, bring the whistle blowers on TV, and blast the republican leadership in congress for doing nothing about it. I mean bring up the obvious, congress is broken. Totally broken, they would much rather be good little republicans than good congress people. That is what made me change parties to begin with, to see that congress would do nothing about this criminal president. Plus I am still mad at Pelosi, and Reid, they seem to just lay and take everything. Never getting on TV and saying, actually yelling at a republican that saying cut & run is a dam big INSULT, besides a lie. It is bush who cut and run in Afghanistan, not Democrats. It is bush cutting funding at home for better border security and port security. We Democrats MUSt remind people this will be their LAST CHANCE to say how they feel about bush & cheney, to cast a confidence vote, or a NO Confidence vote is the question to that. As well as displeasure with congress, this vote is critical. The republicans have turned their heads, asked NO Questions, and always given away power and Rights. This is not what I look for in a congress. To call Democrats as cut and run is an insult to all Americans who do not believe in bush, plus it is wrong. It is bush and his rubber stamp congress that have screwed up things, and have screwed up in Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea, and other countries. To blame others is just a cop out. But I am still mad that our side will not take up for themselves. If we win control back I strongly believe we need new leadership. Even if we do not win, in which case that would say it all. If Democrats can not win control back now, they never will, WE never will. Now go out and fight! Raise money, door knock, sign up people to vote, donate, do what ever you can do, because it will take ALL of us to beat the sneaky, lying, cheating, thieving republicans…. Now get mad, GO out and get busy!!!

    Oh, and yes, I already am…….

    Remember, this is THEE Last Time, the last election you, me everyone will have to voice our displeasure with bush/cheney & Company. As someone said, so do the next right thing!

    DW McKinney
    Phoenix, Arizona

  2. Based on reports of the “test” in North Korea, rather than say they are the most recent member of the nuke club, I will say they have submitted their application. If Bush is to blame for NK testing a nuke, then who gets the blame for India and Pakistan joining the club?

  3. Thomas says:

    The Bush policy *is* one of multilateral engagement. North Korea’s policy is to boycott the multilateral talks because of US sanctions. Is the US supposed to remove sanctions on North Korea for the sake of engaging in talks?

  4. Michael says:

    Bush undermined the Agreed Framework (read about it at the Carnegie Endowment site or the Wikipedia on the Agreed_Framework).

    The Administration also ignored Pakistan’s proliferation, which was partly responsible for N. Korea’s nukes, in favor of a trumped up war against phantom WMDs in Iraq.

    When President Bush took office in 2000, Pyongyang had enough fissile material to manufacture 1-2 nuclear weapons. Today, experts believe that North Korea possesses material sufficient to build between 4 and 13 nuclear weapons and, unless an agreement is reached to stop the country’s program, it is estimated that Pyongyang will have enough material to manufacture between 8 and 17 nuclear weapons by 2008. [Institute for Science and International Security, 6/26/06]

    The amount of plutonium produced by North Korea under the last three presidents to have been:

    o Bush I: one to two bombs’ worth of plutonium

    o Clinton: zero plutonium

    o Bush II: 4-6 nuclear weapons’ worth of plutonium and counting

    [source: National Security Advisory Group based upon the analysis of the Group’s chairman, former Defense Secretary Bill Perry, and more than a dozen national security experts including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, and former Assistant Secretaries of Defense Ash Carter, Graham Allison, Michele Flournoy]

    “The Bush administration has tried to ignore North Korea, then, reluctantly, to engage it, and then to squeeze its bankers in a manner intended to make the country’s leader, Kim Jong Il, personally feel the pinch. Yet none of these steps in the past six years has worked. So now, after a barrage of missile launchings by North Korea, President Bush and his national security advisers found themselves on Wednesday facing what one close aide described as an array of ‘familiar bad choices.'” [New York Times, 7/6/06]

  5. Thomas says:

    Michael, don’t be such an ass. I mean, it’s one thing to dislike Bush, another thing to tendentiously mistate the case to make North Korea’s murderous leader look better.

    North Korea from the beginning didn’t live up to the Agreed Framework. It didn’t live up to its obligations in the Clinton years and it didn’t live up to them during the Bush years. North Korea has pursued a uranium enrichment program for nearly a decade, in violation of the Agreed Framework. And you say that Bush undermined it. Shame on you.

    I can’t help but wonder whether your scholarship is as dishonest as this.

    Hasn’t anyone told you you don’t work for a newspaper?

  6. Michael says:

    Have a look at this article — do you dispute any of the facts in it?

    Given those facts (and in particular what was known at the time the decision was made), was it responsible to drop the Agreed Framework, flaws and all, and replace it with nothing but saber-rattling? I don’t think so. I didn’t think so then. And that judgment is well confirmed by hindsight now.

    N. Korea is one of the two or three most dangerous regimes on the planet (Pakistan may be up there too). It was at all relevant times far more dangerous than Iraq. Or Iran. The policy of big empty threats and general neglect was worse than a crime — it was a major blunder.

    And, please try to be more civil.

  7. Michael says:

    And how about this column by former Secretary of Defense William Perry, which says,

    While this test is the culmination of North Korea’s long-held aspiration to become a nuclear power, it also demonstrates the total failure of the Bush administration’s policy toward that country. For almost six years this policy has been a strange combination of harsh rhetoric and inaction.

    … Our government’s inattention has allowed North Korea to establish a new and dangerous threat to the Asia-Pacific region.

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