candid thoughts on the issues of the day.
Even Though Rocket Attacks Continue to Terrorize the People
Published on March 9, 2004 By Robert Guinness In Current Events
Anyone who opposed the Iraq war should go online now and read the interim Iraqi constitution. For a summary of it, go to BBC's website, or read the whole thing here.

Compare this document, for instance, against this brief description of Saddam Hussein's "constitution":

"This is a regime that will gouge out the eyes of children to force confessions from their parents and grandparents. This is a regime that will crush all of the bones in the feet of a 2-year-old girl to force her mother to divulge her father's whereabouts. This is a regime that will hold a nursing baby at arm's length from its mother and allow the child to starve to death to force the mother to confess. This is a regime that will burn a person's limbs off to force him to confess or comply. This is a regime that will slowly lower its victims into huge vats of acid, either to break their will or simply as a means of execution. This is a regime that applies electric shocks to the bodies of its victims, particularly their genitals, with great creativity. This is a regime that in 2000 decreed that the crime of criticizing the regime, which can be as harmless as suggesting that Saddam's clothing does not match, will be punished by cutting out the offender's tongue. This is a regime that practices systematic rape against its female victims. This is a regime that will drag in a man's wife, daughter or other female relative and repeatedly rape her in front of him. This is a regime that will force a white-hot metal rod into a person's anus or other orifices. This is a regime that employs thalium poisoning, widely considered one of the most excruciating ways to die. This is a regime that will behead a young mother in the street in front of her house and children because her husband was suspected of opposing the regime. This is a regime that used chemical warfare on its own Kurdish citizens, not just on the 15,000 killed and maimed at Halabja but on scores of other villages all across Kurdistan. This is a regime that tested chemical and biological warfare agents on Iranian prisoners of war, using the POWs in controlled experiments to determine the best ways to disperse the agents to inflict the greatest damages. (Pollack, The Threatening Storm, 2002)."

Notice in the new Iraqi consitution, Article 15(J): (J)

"Torture in all its forms, physical or mental, shall be prohibited under all circumstances, as shall be cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment. No confession made under compulsion, torture, or threat thereof shall be relied upon or admitted into evidence for any reason in any proceeding, whether criminal or otherwise."

This is a great day for Iraq. THIS is what the hundreds of Coalition soldiers and thousands of Iraqis gave their lives for: Rule by written law, derived directly from an open public debate, and protecting the basic human dignity of all.

This is the same cause that 4435 young American soldiers died for over 200 years ago in the United States Revolutionary War. A year ago, a place where the very code of law originated, the people of Iraq did not have the freedoms that United Statesians enjoy. We should be proud to see that we still have a hand in this cause of independence and freedom today in the very place where modern civilization began. Today truly was historic.

Comments (Page 1)
on Mar 09, 2004
A lot of countries have good constitutions and lousy governments. Law doesn't always means the same things to everyone.
on Mar 09, 2004
This is true, but at least they have a document to place there hopes in--and not just a corrupt leader. The US too has had lousy governments, but all governments (meaning political parties or individuals) come to pass. A document is what can be preserved for all time.
on Mar 09, 2004
Just because someone opposed the war in Iraq doesn't mean that they supported Saddam's government. I'm all for the fall of Saddam, and the realization of human rights and basic freedoms among Iraqi civilians. Yet, I'm still idealistic enough to believe that we have the United Nations for a reason and that the United States (with the help of the UK) does not have the authority to "remove" Saddam. If the war was truly fought because we were disgusted by the human right's violations in Iraq, it would have been fought years ago. The new constitution and the increasing rights experienced by Iraqis are a wonderful outcome of a not so wonderful action. At the expense of disagreeing with Machiavelli, I do not believe that the ends justify the means.
on Mar 09, 2004
I agree it was a not so wonderful action, but I do believe it was required to remove Saddam Hussein from power. The UN proved for many years incapable of taking any progressive action against him.

By the way, I'm sick of people saying it was just the United States with the help of the UK. There were thirty countries participating in the liberation of Iraq, and to discount their participation, no matter how small, is insulting. I believe we have the moral authority to protect other people's rights, where we see them being abused. We can never delegate that responsibility. Yes, we can work through the United Nations, but there lack of action does not suspend our responsibility. To say we don't have the authority I think is an empty statement. Name me a war you think was fought on authority and think about where that authority came from.

Here is a list of the countries that participated in liberating Iraq: Afghanistan, Albania, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and Uzbekistan.

Let's remember them, too.
on Mar 09, 2004
Here is a list of the countries that participated in liberating Iraq


That's all well and good, but this "list of countries" is frequently used by the Administration to further their hypocrisy. While one side of their mouths is telling us that France-and-Germany-can-go-to-hell-because-who-cares-what-they-think-we're-the-USA-damn-it, the other side is boasting about how special the coalition is. We're supposed to dismiss Old Europe as being silly and out of touch while praising the bold stances taken by Uzbekistan and Nicaragua?
on Mar 09, 2004
First, let's not delude ourselves into thinking that this was by any means a war of liberation...the Iraqi people may be better off now then they were a year ago, but they are still not wholly free as the term liberation implies--there is the minor detail of the current occupation by an outside army.

Second, I refer to it as the US with the help of the UK because those are the two countries that gave it their all when it came to spinning the story to get international support. Without the bold-faced WMD lies and the fact few countries can afford to be viewed upon unfavorably by the US, I would wage a bet that there wouldn't have been so many in the coaliltion.

"I believe we have the moral authority to protect other people's rights"

And I would agree with you except that this war was not about rights. That was never the spin coming out of the White House, Bush and Blair weren't telling people that we were sending our troops over to protect the freedoms and fundamental rights of little Rula who is an orphan because parents were killed by the Hussein regime. We weren't running in there because Uday had been torturing and killing Iraqi olympic soccer players who didn't fulfill his expectations. No. We were going to protect our interests under the guise of the threat from WMDs. It is still hard to say that moral authority should be the ruler by which we determine whether or not we go to war with another country because it is subject. But to argue moral authority in the case of Iraq is to turn a deaf ear towards Bush's rhetoric for the past 18 months.
on Mar 09, 2004
We're supposed to dismiss Old Europe as being silly and out of touch while praising the bold stances taken by Uzbekistan and Nicaragua?


No, we're not supposed to dismiss them as silly, but we also shouldn't be paralyzed just because the whole world isn't in agreement.
on Mar 09, 2004
First, let's not delude ourselves into thinking that this was by any means a war of liberation...the Iraqi people may be better off now then they were a year ago, but they are still not wholly free as the term liberation implies--there is the minor detail of the current occupation by an outside army.


Read the Iraqi constitution. They have a well-structured plan leading towards complete sovereignty. Did you expect it to happen overnight?

Listen to the name of the military campaign: Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Yes, we always go to war in our own interest. That's what governements do. Serve the interests of there people. And Bush was right in determining that a free Iraq was in all of our best interests.

In the end, the rhetoric won't matter. It will be the result. And Iraq is well on the way to achieving the result that we all want.
on Mar 09, 2004
No, we're not supposed to dismiss them as silly


Aw, c'mon, Bobby. Freedom Fries? The Administration wanted us thinking that France and Germany were completely irrelevant. In light of this, the coalition doesn't impress me.


Listen to the name of the military campaign: Operation Iraqi Freedom.


Meaningless. You can name a military campaign anything you want. If al-Qaeda had called the September 11 attacks "Operation: Lollipops and Rainbows," would that have made its purpose any more noble?


And Bush was right in determining that a free Iraq was in all of our best interests.


He determined this after the WMD accusations and 9/11 rationalizations fell through. It was never foremost on his mind or his agenda. The US does not have and should not have a policy of invading dictatorships just because they're nasty and mean. Are you in favor of a US takeover of Cuba? China abuses its citizens, when's the war with them?
on Mar 09, 2004
Are you in favor of a US takeover of Cuba? China abuses its citizens, when's the war with them?


Yes, I think we should take a harder line with Fidel Castro. But we can't change the whole world at once. We have to finish Iraq first.

on Mar 09, 2004
No, we're not supposed to dismiss them as silly


Steve- How are you getting the quotes to work correctly?
on Mar 10, 2004
Steve- How are you getting the quotes to work correctly?


Omnipotence!

I don't put any HTML in; I just type like in a word processor. That seems to allow the site to "sense" the quotefulness.
on Mar 10, 2004
I just type like in a word processor.


Yes, but what code do you use to mark what is in quotes?
on Mar 10, 2004
History will judge whether the government we install will stand the test of time. It seems to me - there have been a few successes and many failures. Granted nation building is difficult and I think we are woefully uneducated in regards to the politics of the region.
on Mar 10, 2004
I just highlight the quotation in the original poster's reply, and then I click the 'Q' button.

Yes, but what code do


to mark what is in


Reply #13 By: Robert Guinness - 3/10/2


56:49


Yay!
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