War Quotes War Quotes

Quotations are selected from this pool (and other quotation pools) in a pseudorandom way every hour and inserted at the top and bottom of some of the major pages on this website. Feel free to copy any of these quotes and paste them for whatever purpose you please.

Preparing for War

Our modern states are preparing for war without even knowing the future enemy.
~ Alfred Adler (born: 1870-02-07 died: 1937-05-28 at age: 67)

Three Armies

A great war leaves a country with three armies: an army of cripples, an army of mourners, and an army of thieves.
~ Anonymous

War Determines

War does not determine who is right — only who is left.
~ Anonymous

Motive For The Iraq War

When we approach the question of Iraq, we realize here is a country which has a resource. And it’s obvious, it’s oil. And it can bring in and does bring in a certain amount of revenue each year… $10, $15, even $18 billion… this is not a broke country.
~ Richard Armitage (born: 1945-04-26 age: 68) Deputy Secretary of State 2003-03, all but admitting the Republicans invaded Iraq as an in investment in oil, As of 2008-07 the cost of the Iraq war is about $3000 billion and climbing. It is a debt so large it can never be paid off. In that sense America is already bankrupt. Future generations will pay interest in perpetuity.

Surprise that Soldiers Kill

What has been reported is completely out of character for the man I know and love.
~ Carolyn Bales , wife of Robert Bales, the US soldier who confessed to murdering 16 civilians, 9 of them children, as they slept in Afghanistan.

If the wife of any soldier in Afghanistan or Iraq truly knew what they had been up to, I am sure they too would claim it was out of character. Nobody in their right mind would knowingly marry a sadistic sociopath.

Bush Longed For War

President George W. Bush’s speech on Iraq is significant mostly because it reveals that he long ago made a decision for war and has always viewed the inspection process as an impediment to war to be overcome rather than a means to avoid war.
~ Doug Bandow (born: 1957-04-15 age: 57) senior fellow with the Cato Institute, a conservative think tank.

Innocent Iraqis

Probably 99 percent of those people [Iraqi detainees] were guilty of absolutely nothing but the way we treated them, the way we abused them, turned them against the effort in Iraq forever.
~ Major General John Batiste (born: 1953 age: 60) 2006-09-26 in click to watch senate hearing testimony. Reported in Collateral Damage: America’s War Against Iraqi Civilians

Causes of War

Is it possible that a few rich men — a small class of men — have persuaded a million poor men to attack and attempt to destroy another million men as poor as they, so that the rich may be richer still?

They told them that this brutal war was the destiny of the race. It was for the glory of the emperor; it was for the honour of the state; it was for their king and country. False — false as hell! They make war to capture markets by murder, raw materials by rape. They find it cheaper to steal than to exchange, easier to butcher than to buy. This is the secret of war. It is the secret of all wars: profit.

Business. Profit. Blood money.

Threaten a reduction on the profit of their money, and the beast in them awakens with a snarl. They become as ruthless as savages, brutal as madmen, remorseless as executioners.

~ Dr. Norman Bethune (born: 1890-03-04 died: 1939-11-12 at age: 49) 1939, from his essay Wounds

Motive For Wars

Is it possible that a few rich men — a small class of men — have persuaded a million poor men to attack and attempt to destroy another million men as poor as they, so that the rich may be richer still?

They told them that this brutal war was the destiny of the race. It was for the glory of the emperor; it was for the honour of the state; it was for their king and country. False — false as hell! They make war to capture markets by murder, raw materials by rape. They find it cheaper to steal than to exchange, easier to butcher than to buy. This is the secret of war. It is the secret of all wars: profit.

Business. Profit. Blood money.

Threaten a reduction on the profit of their money, and the beast in them awakens with a snarl. They become as ruthless as savages, brutal as madmen, remorseless as executioners.

~ Dr. Norman Bethune (born: 1890-03-04 died: 1939-11-12 at age: 49) 1939, from his essay Wounds

Iraq was Innocent

As we now know, Iraq had no tie to Osama, no rôle in 9/11, no nuclear program, no weapons of mass destruction, no plans to attack us. Its people did not threaten us and did not want war with us.
~ Pat Buchanan (born: 1938-11-02 age: 75) 2004-02-11

Definition of War

War, n: A time-tested political tactic guaranteed to raise a president’s popularity rating by at least 30 points. It is especially useful during election years and economic downturns.
~ Chaz Bufe

Dichotomous Thinking

You’re either with us or against us in the fight against terror.
~ George W. Bush (born: 1946-07-06 age: 67) 2001-11-06 source

This statement does not describe the state of the world, but rather it is threat to treat as a terrorist anyone who does go along 100% with whatever illegal or immoral thing Bush proposes under the cover of fighting terror, e.g. plundering Iraq’s oil.

Hawk Sprouting Dove Feathers

A hundred generations have searched for this elusive path to peace while a thousand wars raged across the span of human endeavour. And today, that new world is struggling to be born. A world quite different from the one we’ve known. A world where the rule of law supplants the rule of the jungle. A world in which the nations recognise the shared responsibility for freedom and justice. A world where the strong respect the rights of the weak.
~ George Herbert Walker Bush (born: 1924-06-12 age: 89)

In his flowery language, Bush Sr. was calling for just one more war, yet another war to end all wars.

Predator Claims He is Prey

We’ll be deliberate; yet, time is not on our side. I will not wait on events while dangers gather. I will not stand by as peril draws closer and closer. The United States of America will not permit the world’s most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world’s most destructive weapons.
~ George W. Bush (born: 1946-07-06 age: 67) in his 2002-01-19 SOTU (State Of The Union) speech transcript

Imagine being the leader of Iraq, Iran or North Korea hearing this speech. You have just been falsely accused of having nukes. You would take his words to mean the USA intended to invade, and perhaps use nukes. What could your nation do to deter that? I can’t think of anything short of nukes. So I think the US has to take some responsibility for the mess we are now in with its sabre rattling. It never occurred to Bush that he was irresponsibly waving a giant nuclear club himself.

Purpose of War

The best way to improve the economy is war.
~ George W. Bush (born: 1946-07-06 age: 67)

Why War is Hell

I found out why war is hell — army authority is absolute. You are defended and judged by the same kind of people who accuse and prosecute you.
~ Michael Caine (born: 1933-03-14 age: 81), Playboy, 1996

Lasting War

When a war breaks out, people say: It’s too stupid, it can’t last long. But though a war may be too stupid, that doesn’t prevent its lasting.
~ Albert Camus (born: 1913-11-07 died: 1960-01-04 at age: 46)

Definition of Terrorism

Terrorism : killing civilians with the intent of changing their political affiliation.
~ Caleb Carr (born: 1955-08-02 age: 58), military historian

By that definition, who are the terrorists?

Those who perpetrated 9/11.
Pro-lifers who bomb abortion clinics.
Palestinians killing Israeli civilians occupying their lands.
The Israeli soldiers killing Palestinians.
American soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq killing civilians.
American soldiers in the Gulf War killing Iraqi soldiers.
P.O.W.s in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Those killing occupying American soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Palestinians killing Israeli soldiers occupying their lands.

War is Always Evil

War may sometimes be a necessary evil. But no matter how necessary, it is always an evil, never a good. We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other’s children.
~ President Jimmy Carter (born: 1924-10-01 age: 89) 39th president of the USA.

Hushing Opposition

The cry has been that when war is declared, all opposition should be hushed. A sentiment more unworthy of a free country could hardly be propagated.
~ William Ellery Channing (born: 1780-04-07 died: 1842-10-02 at age: 62)

Defeat In Iraq

As the scale of the U.S. defeat in Iraq was becoming difficult to suppress, the government quietly conceded what had been clear all along. In 2007-2008, the administration officially announced that a final settlement must grant the U.S. military bases and the right of combat operations, and must privilege U.S. investors in the rich energy system — demands later reluctantly abandoned in the face of Iraqi resistance.
~ Noam Chomsky (born: 1928-12-07 age: 85) Hegemony and its Dilemmas 2012-02-14

Hanged Presidents

If the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-war American president would have been hanged.
~ Noam Chomsky (born: 1928-12-07 age: 85)

The Purpose of the Military

The military is a device for compelling the American public to subsidise high technology industry.
~ Noam Chomsky (born: 1928-12-07 age: 85) Necessary Illusions

World Without War

We can, for example, be fairly confident that either there will be a world without war or there won’t be a world — at least, a world inhabited by creatures other than bacteria and beetles, with some scattering of others.
~ Noam Chomsky (born: 1928-12-07 age: 85)

Winning War is Disastrous

One is left with the horrible feeling now that war settles nothing; that to win a war is as disastrous as to lose one.
~ Agatha Christie (born: 1890-09-05 died: 1976-01-12 at age: 85)

War is Never Smooth and Easy

Never believe any war will be smooth and easy, or that anyone who embarks on the strange voyage can measure the tides and hurricanes he will encounter.
~ Winston Churchill (born: 1874-11-30 died: 1965-01-24 at age: 90)

The Greatest Crime

The greatest crime since World War II has been US foreign policy.
~ William Ramsey Clark (born: 1927-12-18 age: 86), former attorney general of the USA.

Media Power

CNN (Cable News Network)is one of the participants in the war. I have a fantasy where Ted Turner is elected president but refuses because he doesn’t want to give up power.
~ Arthur C. Clarke (born: 1917-12-16 died: 2008-03-19 at age: 90) First on the Moon 1970

AEC (Atomic Energy Commission) Blindness

The AEC scientists were so narrowly focused on arming the United States for nuclear war that they failed to perceive facts — even widely known ones — that were outside their limited field of vision.
~ Barry Commoner (born: 1917-05-28 died: 2012-09-30 at age: 95)

Soldier Nerds

These doomsday warriors look no more like soldiers than the soldiers of the Second World War looked like conquistadors. The more expert they become the more they look like lab assistants in small colleges.
~ Alistair Cooke (born: 1908-11-20 died: 2004-03-30 at age: 95)

No Army Big Enough

No nation ever had an army large enough to guarantee it against attack in time of peace, or ensure it of victory in time of war.
~ Calvin Coolidge (born: 1872-07-04 died: 1933-01-05 at age: 60)

Defending Drones

Drones result in fewer civilians being killed than boots on the ground. After all, we have to defend ourselves [from the Taliban].
~ Howard Dean (born: 1948-11-17 age: 65), chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 2005 to 2009. 2012-10-31

This was his response in an interview on the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) , when asked why the Democratic leaders were so keen on drones when their supporters were not. This is biggest lie Dean told in his life. America attacked Afghanistan unprovoked and illegally, not the reverse as Dean is claiming. When Hitler invaded Poland, you would hardly say Germany was defending itself from the Polish. That is an Orwellian abuse of language. Americans are in Afghanistan by choice. They have already planned to leave, no matter what the Taliban do. Nobody serious believes the Taliban are a military threat or that they would invade the USA. They spend a decade getting rid of the Russians. They did not chase them home. They just want the Americans off their backs. Americans are the aggressors. This is so whether you think the invasion is justified or not. Even George W. Bush did not allege the Taliban had anything to do with 9/11. Obviously drones kill more civilians than boots on the ground. Drones drop bombs blindly. They can’t aim or even see their victims. Dean is effectively claiming you can hit targets more accurately with your eyes closed. How stupid does he think his audience is?

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

We have to wonder why the kings and nobles [of the Mayan civilisation] failed to recognize and solve those these seemingly obvious problems undermining their society [water shortage, deforestation, erosion, overpopulation]. Their attention was evidently focused on their short-term concerns of enriching themselves, waging wars, erecting monuments, competing with each other, and extracting enough food from the peasants to support all those activities. Like most leaders throughout human history, the Maya kings and nobles did not heed long-term problems.
~ Jared Diamond (born: 1937-09-10 age: 76)  Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed: Revised Edition page 177

We are seeing this same reluctance today of politicians to pay any attention to long term problems like global warming, dwindling supplies of fossil fuels, overpopulation, clean water, farmland soil erosion, conservation of fish stocks…

Chant Used To Teach US Young Military to March

I went down to the market
Where all the people shop
I pulled out my machete
And I began to chop
I went down to the park
Where all the children play
I took out my machine gun
And I began to spray
~ DoD (born: 1947-07-26 age: 66)

Statue

You don’t get a statue in the park for anything but going to war.
~ Phil Donahue (born: 1935-12-21 age: 78)

Respect Peace

The world will never have lasting peace so long as men reserve for war the finest human qualities. Peace, no less than war, requires idealism and self-sacrifice and a righteous and dynamic faith.
~ John Foster Dulles (born: 1888-02-25 died: 1959-05-24 at age: 71)

Abolish War

We must abolish war, or sooner or later it will abolish us.
~ Gwynne Dyer (born: 1943-04-17 age: 71)

Greenhouse Gas Wars

There is a probability of wars, including even nuclear wars, if temperatures rise  2.0°C (3.6°F) to 3.0°C (5.4°F) . Once that happens are hope of international co-operation to curb emissions and stop the warming goes out the window.
~ Gwynne Dyer (born: 1943-04-17 age: 71)  Climate Wars: The Fight for Survival as the World Overheats

Terror Weapon

There will one day spring from the brain of science a machine or force so fearful in its potentialities, so absolutely terrifying, that even man, the fighter, who will dare torture and death in order to inflict torture and death, will be appalled, and so abandon war forever.
~ Thomas Alva Edison (born: 1847-02-11 died: 1931-10-18 at age: 84)

This claim was made for flame throwers, machine guns, poison gas, nuclear weapons, engineered plagues…. It looks like we are determined to escalate our weapons to the point of extinction.

Preventing War

You cannot prevent and prepare for war at the same time.
~ Albert Einstein (born: 1879-03-14 died: 1955-04-18 at age: 76)

Rather be Hacked To Pieces

How vile and despicable war seems to me! I would rather be hacked to pieces than take part in such an abominable business.
~ Albert Einstein (born: 1879-03-14 died: 1955-04-18 at age: 76)

Refuse War

Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war.
~ Albert Einstein (born: 1879-03-14 died: 1955-04-18 at age: 76)

War = Murder

It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.
~ Albert Einstein (born: 1879-03-14 died: 1955-04-18 at age: 76)

Weapons

I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.
~ Albert Einstein (born: 1879-03-14 died: 1955-04-18 at age: 76)

Theft From Those Who Hunger

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
~ Dwight D. Eisenhower (born: 1890-10-14 died: 1969-03-28 at age: 78)

War Accomplishes Nothing

There is nothing that war has ever achieved we could not better achieve without it.
~ Havelock Ellis (born: 1859-02-02 died: 1939-07-08 at age: 80)

Aggressive War

The IMT (International Military Tribunal) at Nuremberg held that aggression was the supreme international crime for which leading planners and perpetrators could be held accountable in an international court of law. The legal recognition in 1946 that war-making was not a national right, but an international crime, was the greatest achievement of the trial and the proudest accomplishment of Robert M. Jackson, the highly esteemed United States Supreme Court judge who served as Chief Prosecutor for the United States.
~ Benjamin Ferencz (born: 1920-03-11 age: 94) Chief Prosecutor for the United States in The Einsatzgruppen Case at the Nazi Nuremberg War Crimes Trials.

US Guilty of the Supreme Crime

A prima facie case can be made that the United States is guilty of the supreme crime against humanity, that being an illegal war of aggression against a sovereign nation.
~ Benjamin Ferencz (born: 1920-03-11 age: 94) Chief Prosecutor for the United States in The Einsatzgruppen Case at the Nazi Nuremberg War Crimes Trials.

Civilian Casualties

Estimates of civilians killed in the Iraq war reach as high as 600,000.
~ Charles Ferguson (born: 1955-03-24 age: 59), director of the documentary No End In Sight: Iraq’s Descent Into Chaos.

And that does not include the 1 to 2 million killed in the 12 years of sanction bombings leading up to the Iraq war or those killed in the Gulf War.

Weak Regimes

Regimes that feel weak are the ones that start conflicts.
~ Niall Ferguson (born: 1964-04-18 age: 50), 2009-02-23, author of The War of the World

Government Funding

War is the only horseman of the apocalypse that gets government funding.
~ Winnipeg Comedy Festival 2008

Preparing for the Last War

It is proverbial that generals always prepare for the last war.
~ James A. Field, Jr. (born: 1916 died: 1996-06-27 at age: 79) History of United States Naval Operations:Korea

Failed Attacks

During the early days of the Iraq war the USA made 50 precision attacks on the leadership of Iraq. Not one hit its target.
~ Why We Fight Why We Fight

Child View

Mother do you think they’ll drop the bomb?
~ Pink Floyd The Wall, Mother

Disguising Attack as Retaliation

Pay the English back.
~ Joseph Goebbels (born: 1897-10-29 died: 1945-05-01 at age: 47) , Nazi propaganda minister,

Americans do this exact same thing, talking about getting revenge on nations they attacked such as Viet Nam, Nicaragua, Panama, Afghanistan, Iraq…

Extreme Anti-Semitism

I mentioned the Jewish matter to the Führer . He said: let the demonstrations continue, and withdraw the police. The Jews need to experience the people’s fury at first hand, just this once. It’s only right and proper. I passed the requisite instructions to the police and Party. Everyone rushed to fulfill their orders. Now it’s time for the people to act.
~ Joseph Goebbels (born: 1897-10-29 died: 1945-05-01 at age: 47) diary 1938-11-10, Nazi propaganda minister,

Jewish extermination was not just Hitler’s crazy obsession. The German people were right behind him. It was much like a fruitcake like Glenn Beck with the Tea Party goons standing behind him to do the dirty work.

Selling Attack as Retaliation

Those divisions that have already launched minor offensives, and will be launching major offensives in the weeks and months ahead, will enter into this battle as they enter a church service. And when they pick up their guns and climb into their armoured vehicles, they will only think of their dead children and violated womenfolk, and a cry of revenge will rise from their throats that makes their enemy turn pale.
~ Joseph Goebbels (born: 1897-10-29 died: 1945-05-01 at age: 47) , Nazi propaganda minister,

The German people behaved in such an American way, completely forgetting that they were ones who attacked Poland, Britain, France, and the Soviet Union. They blinded themselves to what they did that triggered the counter attack. It is idiotic as a mugger complaining one of his victims attacked his pit bull.

Stay the Course

Now we just stay the course.
~ Joseph Goebbels (born: 1897-10-29 died: 1945-05-01 at age: 47) , Nazi propaganda minister

Does Peace Need A reason

Does peace need a reason
To show its face
Or can it be unearned?
~ Cynthia Green (born: 1955-05-31 age: 58) Reality Check from A Book of Birds

About Oil

I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.
~ Alan Greenspan (born: 1926-03-06 age: 88) click to watch2007-09-16

Pointless War

Nobody in the USA in one bit safer because of the war in Afghanistan.
~ Robert Greenwald (born: 1945-08-28 age: 68) director of Rethinking Afghanistanclick to watch

Steenking Badges

Badges? We ain’t got no badges. We don’t need no badges. I don’t have to show you any steenking badges.
~ Gold Hat played by Alfonso Bedoya (born: 1904-04-16 died: 1956-12-15 at age: 52) in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.

The United States has signed onto treaties committing it to the Geneva Conventions, the Nuremberg principles that aggressive (first strike war) is illegal, that all countries are obligated to arrest war criminals, the UN (United Nations) Charter etc. However, whenever it finds those treaties chafing, it pulls a Gold Hat and tells the world to go fuck itself. The American attitude is law does not apply to America because no one is both powerful enough and willing to prosecute the USA with is massive nuclear arsenal and history of illegal and capricious military actions. Oddly, nearly all Americans cheer this piratical, wild west outlaw, scofflaw attitude. If I were American, I would deeply ashamed that my country so rarely kept its word.

Wars are Necessary

Wars are terrible, but necessary, for the save the State from social petrifaction and stagnation.
~ Georg Wilhelm Friedrich (barking mad) Hegel (born: 1770-08-27 died: 1831-11-14 at age: 61)

Excuses for War

The US had, it appeared, manufactured new enemies to replace the Soviet Union. And it was using these new enemies to justify the invasion and occupation of nations in the Middle East and Central Asia and the building of large permanent military bases in those regions.
~ Richard Heinberg (born: 1950-10-21 age: 63)  Party’s Over: Oil, War, and the Fate of Industrial Societies page 91.

Book Burning

Das war ein Vorspiel nur, dort wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man auch am Ende Menschen.
That was but a prelude; where they burn books, they will ultimately burn people also.
~ Heinrich Heine (born: 1797-12-13 died: 1856-02-17 at age: 58)

To commemorate the Nazi book burnings, those words were engraved in the ground at the site.

Die Like a Dog

In modern war… you will die like a dog for no good reason.
~ Ernest Hemingway (born: 1899-07-21 died: 1961-07-02 at age: 61)

Inflation, then War

The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists.
~ Ernest Hemingway (born: 1899-07-21 died: 1961-07-02 at age: 61)

War is Always A Crime

Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime.
~ Ernest Hemingway (born: 1899-07-21 died: 1961-07-02 at age: 61)

Who Buries Whom?

In peace, sons bury their fathers. In war, fathers bury their sons.
~ Herodotus (born: 484 BC died: 425 BC at age: 59)

Cuban Missile Crisis

Like everyone else of my generation, I can remember exactly where I was and what I was doing on the day the President John Fitzgerald Kennedy nearly killed me.
~ Christopher Hitchens (born: 1949-04-13 died: 2011-12-15 at age: 62)

Peaceloving Adolf

Who wants to get bogged down in a world war over Danzig?
~ Adolf Hitler (born: 1889-04-20 died: 1945-04-30 at age: 56)

It turns out Hitler himself did. The west did not back down again. The USA may be making the a similar mistake by provoking the entire Muslim world with resource wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Older Men Declare War

Older men declare war. But it is the youth that must fight and die.
~ Herbert Hoover (born: 1874-08-10 died: 1964-10-20 at age: 90)

War Should be a Crime

War should be made a crime, and those who instigate it should be punished as criminals, against attack in time of peace, or ensure it of victory in time of war.
~ Charles Evans Hughes (born: 1862-04-11 died: 1948-08-27 at age: 86)

Impersonal Killing

What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men who have no personal quarrel should be trained to murder one another in cold blood.
~ Aldous Huxley (born: 1894-07-26 died: 1963-11-22 at age: 69)

Bombing For Democracy

Since the Second World War, the US has bombed China, Korea, Guatemala, Indonesia, Cuba, Guatemala (again), Peru, Laos, Viet Nam, Cambodia, Guatemala (third time lucky), Grenada, Lebanon, Libya, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Iran, Panama, Iraq, Kuwait, Somalia, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Yugoslavia — in that order — and in not a single case did the bombing produce a democratic government as a direct result.
~ Terry Jones (born: 1942-02-01 age: 72) (of Monty Python)

Bush Lied

150,000 American troops are bogged down in a quagmire in Iraq because the Bush administration misrepresented and distorted the intelligence to justify a war that America never should have fought.
~ Edward (Ted) Kennedy (born: 1932-02-22 died: 2009-08-25 at age: 77) 1994

Iraq Planned Long Before 9/11

Despite protestations to the contrary, the President and his senior aides began the march to war in Iraq in the earliest days of the Administration, long before the terrorists struck this nation on 9/11.
~ Edward (Ted) Kennedy (born: 1932-02-22 died: 2009-08-25 at age: 77) 2001-04-14

But Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. While this is true, it is misleading.

The Bush Administration Lied

This administration manipulated and misused intelligence information that rushed us to war.
~ Edward (Ted) Kennedy (born: 1932-02-22 died: 2009-08-25 at age: 77) 2001-04-14

Hitler Followed the Law

Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.
~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (born: 1929-01-15 died: 1968-04-04 at age: 39)

This is particularly important to remember when Cheney argues the torture he ordered was legal, or Obama argues that suspensions of the constitution are valid in the name of fighting terrorism, or that Americans in general argue that roasting children alive is perfectly legal so long as Americans do it.

The Day The Earth Stood Still

Helen: I need to know what is happening.
Klaatu: This planet is dying. The human race is killing it.
Helen: So you have come here to help us.
Klaatu: No, I didn’t.
Helen: You said you came to save us.
Klaatu: I said I came to save the Earth.
Helen: You came to save the Earth from us.
Klaatu:We can’t risk the survival of this planet for the sake of one species.
Helen: What are you saying?
Klaatu: If the Earth dies, you die. If you die, the Earth survives. There are only a handful of planets in the cosmos that are capable of supporting complex life.
Helen: You can’t do this.
Klaatu: This one can’t be allowed to perish.
Helen: We can change. We can still turn things around.
Klaatu: We have watched. We have waited and hoped that you would change.
Helen: Please.
Klaatu: It has reached the tipping point. We have to act.
Helen: Please.
Klaatu: We will undo the damage you have done and give the Earth a chance to begin again.
Helen: Don’t do this. Please, we can change. We can change.
Klaatu: The decision is made. The process has begun.
~ Klaatu played by Keanu Reeves (born: 1964-09-02 age: 49) in The Day The Earth Stood Still 2008

The Day The Earth Stood Still

I am leaving soon, and you will forgive me if I speak bluntly. The universe grows smaller every day, and the threat of aggression by any group, anywhere, can no longer be tolerated. There must be security for all, or no one is secure. Now, this does not mean giving up any freedom, except the freedom to act irresponsibly. Your ancestors knew this when they made laws to govern themselves and hired policemen to enforce them. We, of the other planets, have long accepted this principle. We have an organization for the mutual protection of all planets and for the complete elimination of aggression. The test of any such higher authority is, of course, the police force that supports it. For our policemen, we created a race of robots. Their function is to patrol the planets in spaceships like this one and preserve the peace. In matters of aggression, we have given them absolute power over us. This power cannot be revoked. At the first sign of violence, they act automatically against the aggressor. The penalty for provoking their action is too terrible to risk. The result is, we live in peace, without arms or armies, secure in the knowledge that we are free from aggression and war. Free to pursue more… profitable enterprises. Now, we do not pretend to have achieved perfection, but we do have a system, and it works. I came here to give you these facts. It is no concern of ours how you run your own planet, but if you threaten to extend your violence, this Earth of yours will be reduced to a burned-out cinder. Your choice is simple: join us and live in peace, or pursue your present course and face obliteration. We shall be waiting for your answer. The decision rests with you.
~ Klaatu played by Michael Rennie (born: 1909-08-25 died: 1971-06-10 at age: 61) in The Day The Earth Stood Still 1951

The robots are a metaphor for renouncing private armies and handing over the power of coercion by violence to a central authority. It then can be quite small, just a police force, that has to deal with rogue individuals, not entire countries.

Osama is a Republican

We are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy.
~ Osama bin Laden (born: 1957-03-10 died: 2011-05-02 at age: 54) 2004-11-01 source

Oddly, Americans have co-operated with bin Laden in his goal to bankrupt America with extravagant spending on the military, mercenaries, homeland security and massive tax cuts for billionaires.

Osama the Avenger

Allah, the almighty, legislated the permission and the option to take revenge. Thus, if we are attacked, we have the right to attack back. Whoever has destroyed our villages and towns, then we have the right to destroy their villages and towns. Whoever has stolen our wealth, then we have the right to destroy their economy. And whoever has killed our civilians, then we have the right to kill theirs.
~ Osama bin Laden (born: 1957-03-10 died: 2011-05-02 at age: 54)

This cult of revenge is not unique to Al Qaeda operatives. It is integral to the plot of almost every movie ever made. The finale is when the bully/bad guy gets his comeuppance. Every American subscribes to the cult of vengeance. For example on 9/11, Americans were so furious, they had to destroy someone, so they attacked Afghanistan and Iraq, neither of which had anything to do with 9/11 according to George W. Bush. The problem with vengeance is it usually creates a revenge spiral where each side takes turns escalating revenge on the other until one or both are destroyed, like a Mafia gang war. In ancient times, when people took vengeance, they made sure they killed every living relative of those they took vengeance on, so there would be no one to take revenge. Hammurabi’s code of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth was intended to limit revenge, not encourage it.

Peace Propaganda

Loud peace propaganda makes war seem imminent.
~ David Herbert Lawrence (born: 1885-09-11 died: 1930-03-02 at age: 44)

War Hypocrisy

People always make war when they say they love peace.
~ David Herbert Lawrence (born: 1885-09-11 died: 1930-03-02 at age: 44)

Cost of the Iraq War

The cost of the Iraq war will be a maximum of 1-2% of GNP (Gross National Product) (about $100-$200 billion US dollars).
~ Lawrence Lindsay (born: 1954-07-18 age: 59) White House economic advisor, 2002-09. MD Director Mitch Daniels subsequently discounted this estimate as very, very high and stated that the costs would be $50-$60 billion. As of 2008-08 is it about $3000 billion and climbing. It is a debt so large it can never be paid off. Future generations will pay interest in perpetuity.

Iraq is about Stealing Oil

If they turn on the radars we’re going to blow up their goddamn SAM (Senvice Atingebla Memoro) s (surface-to-air missiles). They know we own their country. We own their airspace… We dictate the way they live and talk. And that’s what’s great about America right now. It’s a Good Thing™, especially when there’s a lot of oil out there we need.
~ General William R. Looney III U.S. Brigadier General, Washington Post, 1999-08-30; referring, in reality, to the mass-murder of hundreds of civilian Iraqi men, women and children during 10,000 sanction bombing sorties in the first eight months of 1999.

Machiavelli on Military Contractors

Mercenaries and auxiliaries are useless and dangerous; and if one holds his state base on these arms, he will stand neither firm nor safe; for they are disunited, ambitious, and without discipline, unfaithful, valiant before friends, cowardly before enemies, they have neither the fear of God nor fidelity to me, and destruction is deferred only so long as the attack is, for in peace one is robbed by them, and in war by the enemy.

~ Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli (born: 1469-05-03 died: 1527-06-21 at age: 58) The Prince

Military Suicide

In the past decade, the US Army lost more soldiers to suicide than to enemy fire in Afghanistan.
~ Rachel Maddow (born: 1957-04-01 age: 57) Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power

Since the soldiers know better than anyone exactly what is going on in Afghanistan and Iraq, and they are killing themselves in record numbers, presumably what the soldiers are doing is quite a bit more shameful than the administration lets on.

Why Continue?

When we invaded Iraq in 2003, the first official justification from the White House was that we had to secure Saddam’s dangerous piles of weapons of mass destruction. (We don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud, was the Bush administration line.) There was plenty of evidence at the time that this threat was bullpucky, and that was proven as soon as we got there. So then we decided we were really there to get rid of Saddam. It took three weeks for Baghdad to fall, and he was caught in his hidey-hole by December.

So why stay after that, for a whole second year? For a third, fourth, fifth, sixth… eighth? Our official stated reasons for staying in Iraq after Saddam was in his grave were a moving target: we were restoring order, we were protecting Iraqi women, we were keeping the Shiites and the Sunnis and the Kurds from killing one another…
~ Rachel Maddow (born: 1957-04-01 age: 57) Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power

Obviously theses reasons were not the real reasons. Bush has not an altruistic bone in his body. The USA is the stingiest developed country on the planet in foreign aid. So what were the real reasons?

Constitution Works to Discourage War

The constitution supposes, what the History of all Governments demonstrates, that the executive is the branch of power most interested in war, and most prone to it. It has accordingly, with studied care, vested the question of war in the Legislature.
~ James Madison (born: 1751-03-16 died: 1836-06-28 at age: 85)

Freedom and War are Incompatible

No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.
~ James Madison (born: 1751-03-16 died: 1836-06-28 at age: 85)

War is the Main Enemy of Freedom

Of all the enemies to the public liberty war is, perhaps, the most me be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes. And armies, and debt, and taxes are known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few.
~ James Madison (born: 1751-03-16 died: 1836-06-28 at age: 85) 1795-04-20

Peace

Peace is not just an absence of armed conflict.
~ Mairead Maguire (born: 1944-01-27 age: 70), Playboy, 1996

The Iraq War is About Oil

This [the Iraq war] is just an excuse to get Iraq’s oil.
~ Nelson Mandela (born: 1918-07-18 died: 2013-12-05 at age: 95)

Cowardly Escape

War is only a cowardly escape from the problems of peace.
~ Thomas Mann (born: 1875-06-06 died: 1955-08-12 at age: 80)

Discharge for Loving

When I was in the military, they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one.
~ Leonard P. Matlovich (born: 1943-07-06 died: 1988-06-22 at age: 44) Technical Sergeant in the Viet Nam War. Inscription on his tombstone.

Just because he is gay I do not forgive him for killing two people (perhaps more) who were no threat to the USA. He killed people because he enjoyed killing. He was not drafted. He enlisted.

Duty to Avoid War

Every government has as much of a duty to avoid war as a ship’s captain has to avoid a shipwreck.
~ Guy de Maupassant (born: 1850-08-05 died: 1893-07-06 at age: 42)

Sunday Pacifists

Everyone’s a pacifist between wars. It’s like being a vegetarian between meals.
~ Colman McCarthy (born: 1938 age: 75)

Dreaming Up Wars

I am sick and tired of old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.
~ George McGovern (born: 1922-07-19 died: 2012-10-21 at age: 90)

Intentional Mass Murder = Mistake

We all make mistakes.
~ Robert S. McNamara (born: 1916-06-09 died: 2009-07-06 at age: 93) Secretary of War from 1961 to 1968, during the Viet Nam War, on the pointless Viet Nam war that killed 58,000 Americans and 1,500,000 Viet Namese.

Killing Civilians Becomes Routine

In that single night, we burned to death 100,000 Japanese civilians in Tokyo: men, women, and children.
~ Robert S. McNamara (born: 1916-06-09 died: 2009-07-06 at age: 93) Secretary of War from 1961 to 1968, during the Viet Nam War.

Luck Prevented Nuclear War

I want to say, and this is very important: at the end we lucked out. It was luck that prevented nuclear war.
~ Robert S. McNamara (born: 1916-06-09 died: 2009-07-06 at age: 93) Secretary of War from 1961 to 1968, during the Viet Nam War, speaking about the Cuban missile crisis.

The world escaped nuclear war only because a Soviet submarine captain refused orders to fire his nuclear weapons. That was a heroic deed.

Viet Nam Brutality

The USA dropped two to three times as many bombs on Viet Nam than were dropped by both sides on all of Europe.
~ Robert S. McNamara (born: 1916-06-09 died: 2009-07-06 at age: 93) Secretary of War from 1961 to 1968, during the Viet Nam War

Escalating the Viet Nam War

[The factors calling for escalation of the Viet Nam war in order are:] 70% to avoid a humiliating defeat, 20% to keep the territory out of Chinese hands, 10% to permit the people to enjoy a better, freer way of life.
~ John McNauton(born: 1921-11-21 died: 1967-07-19 at age: 45) Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs source

In other words the main reason the Viet Nam war dragged on and on was the ego of presidents Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon. None wanted the defeat on their watch.

Hero to Soldier Ratio

In war the heroes always outnumber the soldiers ten to one.
~ Henry Louis Mencken (born: 1880-09-12 died: 1956-01-29 at age: 75)

Worst Peace

General, the worst peace is better than the best war.
~ Thomas Mifflin (born: 1744-01-10 died: 1800-01-20 at age: 56) spoken to George Washington

Attrition

Kill ten of our men and we will kill one of yours. In the end it is you who will tire.
~ Ho Chi Minh (born: 1890-05-19 died: 1969-09-02 at age: 79)

Tiny countries like Viet Nam and Afghanistan were able to defeat the USA because they were fighting for survival whereas the USA was fighting merely for pleasure or to profit arms companies.

Rational Army

A rational army would run away.
~ Charles de Secondat, baron de Montesquieu (born: 1689-01-19 died: 1755-02-10 at age: 66)

Killing and Sexual Energy

What humans do when they don’t put their energies into sex is kill each other. But, the healthy sexual drive that is seizing most young men when they are in their teens is perverted by older men, who perhaps have lost some of their sexual drive, and all their sexual energy gets shipped over to somewhere like Flanders and is perverted into killing other young men — energy that should be going into something honest like fucking is instead diverted into something appalling like killing.
~ Alan Moore (born: 1953-11-18 age: 60)

Profit Motive for War

The motivation for war is simple. The U.S. government started the war with Iraq in order to make it easy for U.S. corporations to do business in other countries. They intend to use cheap labor in those countries, which will make Americans rich.
~ Michael Moore (born: 1954-04-23 age: 59)

War Is Meant to be Continuous

It’s not a matter of whether the war is not real, or if it is, Victory is not possible. The war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous. Hierarchical society is only possible on the basis of poverty and ignorance. This new version is the past and no different past can ever have existed. In principle the war effort is always planned to keep society on the brink of starvation. The war is waged by the ruling group against its own subjects and its object is not the victory over either Eurasia or Eastasia but to keep the very structure of society intact.
~ Michael Moore (born: 1954-04-23 age: 59) paraphrasing George Orwell’s George Orwell’ 1984 chapter 9.

Employer of Last Resort

I’m done. I’m dropping out. Army, Marines, Coast Guard. Go to Eyeraq or something like that. I don’t have a clue.
~ Kevin Muncy on getting a failing report card of all E (the lowest grade).

The military is the employer of last resort for life’s losers.

Why Israel is the Most Dangerous Nation

I will continue the tradition established by Menachem Begin, who did not allow Iraq to develop such a nuclear threat against Israel, and by a daring and courageous act gave us two decades of tranquility, I believe that this is what Israel has to do in the face of the growing Iranian threat.
~ Binyamin Netanyahu (born: 1949-10-21 age: 64) former Prime Minister of Israel, reported in Maariv Daily 2005-12-05

Israel is threatening a preemptive nuclear war against Iran. That makes them the most dangerous nation on earth. They likely could get away with it since Iran has no nuclear retaliation. Why are we encouraging them to start a nuclear war?

Culprit?

Al Qaeda killed nearly 3,000 people on that day.
~ Barack Obama (born: 1961-08-04 age: 52) speech in Egypt, 2009-06-04

The head of German intelligence announced that Al Qaeda had nowhere near the capability to perpetrate 9-11. There is plenty of evidence it was a least partially an inside job. But those reservations aside, how does 9-11 justify attacking the Afghanistan and Iraq? They are not Al-Qaeda. The Americans I have debated with justify the wars on the ground all three are Muslims. This is like kicking the dog because the cat peed on the sofa, justifying the punishment because the both have fur. This is bald racism, justifying hanging one nigger for another’s crime.

Imposing Democracy

Democracy cannot be imposed on any nation from the outside. Each society must search for its own path, and no path is perfect. Each country will pursue a path rooted in the culture of its people, and — in the past — America has too often been selective in its promotion of democracy.
~ Barack Obama (born: 1961-08-04 age: 52) speech to the UN General Assembly, 2009-09-23

Obama claims he wants a US-friendly democracy in Afghanistan, yet he is using the same failed technique the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) used, namely a brutal decade-long occupation. Obama’s so-called democracy excludes the most popular and powerful political group in the Afghanistan — the Taliban. Obama’s choice for Afghanistan’s leader is the American puppet (and traitor to his country), Hamid Karzai. Karzai is the planet’s biggest heroin lord controlling the flow of $1 trillion dollars a year of heroin, dwarfing all other countries combined. Obama is forcing this utterly corrupt heroin and war lord down the unwilling throats of the Afghans. The election in Afghanistan was so crooked that it made Chicago politicians look like Boy Scouts. Talk about giving democracy a bad name! And finally the US allowed its contractors and soldiers run amok, with drinking shots from each others butts, homosexual orgies, raping, pillaging… The pious Muslim Afghans understandably believe they under siege by the Great Satan. In their view, surrender would guarantee eternal torture in the afterlife.

Disguising War as Defence

Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac.
~ George Orwell (born: 1903-06-25 died: 1950-01-21 at age: 46)

Disinformation

War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.
~ George Orwell (born: 1903-06-25 died: 1950-01-21 at age: 46) (Ari Fleischer’s mentor)

Source of War Propaganda

All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting.
~ George Orwell (born: 1903-06-25 died: 1950-01-21 at age: 46)

Duration of the Iraq War

Military action will not last more than a week.
~ Bill O’Reilly (born: 1949-10-10 age: 64) The O’Reilly Factor, 2003-01-23, on the Iraq war

Simplistic Sarah

Let’s return to the George Bush policy of we win they lose.
~ Sarah Palin (born: 1964-02-11 age: 50)

Sarah Palin is an American celebro-politician with a voice like a squeaky fuel pump. There are a few problems with this attitude:

Excusing the Afghan War

We were attacked. They attacked out values, our freedom.
~ Bill Palmer Canadian soldier in Afghanistan on 2014-03-23 speaking on CBC ’s Sunday Edition

He was justifying his tours killing Afghans. That is a monstrous lie:

Palmer is such a turd. As a racist he conflates all Muslims. He killed kids for a single reason. He likes killing kids. Then he makes up a ridiculous lie to cover for his war crimes. What is really disgusting is so many soldiers have talked themselves into believing that same lie.

Object of War

The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.
~ George S. Patton (born: 1885-11-11 died: 1945-12-21 at age: 60) , General

Excuse of a Scofflaw

I think in this case international law stood in the way of doing the right thing.
~ Richard Perle (born: 1941-09-16 age: 72), 2003-11-20, Pentagon hawk, cat-stroking, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, James Bond villain pasty lookalike, admitting the Iraq war is illegal.

An Audience Encourages Fighting

Men are twice as likely to get into a fight when they have an audience.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Creating Nuclear Nations

On 2002-01-19 [in the SOTU ] George W. Bush identified Iraq, North Korea and Iran as the axis of evil and proceeded to invade Iraq and depose its leadership. North Korea’s leaders saw the writing on the wall and promptly developed a nuclear capability, which (as they no doubt anticipated) has put an end to any musings about the United States invading them too. Shortly afterward Iran put its nuclear program into high gear, aiming to create enough ambiguity as to whether it possesses nuclear weapons, or could assemble them quickly, to squelch any thoughts of an invasion in the mind of the Great Satan.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Definition of Terrorism

Definition of terrorism according to Steven Pinker: Premeditated violence perpetrated by a non-state actor, against non-combatants (civilians or off-duty soldiers) in pursuit of a political, religious, or social goal, designed to coerce a government or to intimidate or convey a message to a larger audience.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

I disagree with this definition because occupying or invading troops still rate as combatants whether they are on patrol, having lunch, sleeping or taking a pee. To count as non-combatants they should not be killing people. Pinker’s definition conflicts with Caleb Carr’s definition in that it precludes the possibility of a state actor’s deeds being described as terrorism. I prefer Carr’s definition because the infamy comes from the deed, not who does it.

Importance of Female Politicians

Tsutomu Yamaguchi survived the atomic blast at Hiroshima, but then made an unfortunate choice as to where to go to flee the devastation: Nagasaki. He survived that blast as well and lived another sixty-five years, passing away in 2010 at the age of ninety-three. A man who survived the only two nuclear strikes in history deserves our respectful attention, and before he died he offered a prescription for peace in the nuclear age: The only people who should be allowed to govern countries with nuclear weapons are mothers, those who are still breast-feeding their babies.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Yamaguchi makes a very good point. Violence, wars, torture, rape and genocide are primarily male pastimes. The more power women have in political decisions, the less of this nonsense we will have to put up with.

Intelligent Leaders

For every presidential IQ (Intelligence Quotient) point, 13,440 fewer people die in battle.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

That should be reason enough to re-elect Obama over Romney.

Knights = Warlords

The knights of feudal Europe were what we would call today warlords.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

Lancelot’s Code of Honour

Lancelot had the custom of never killing a knight who begged for mercy, unless he had sworn beforehand to do so, or unless he could not avoid it.
~ Steven Pinker (born: 1954-09-18 age: 59) The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

The medieval knights have been whitewashed. They were bloodthirsty, cruel, rapists and warlords. The ones that went to the Crusades killed every person living in Jerusalem, Christian, Jew or Muslim, man, woman or child.

War Kills Truth

When war is declared, truth is the first casualty.
~ Arthur Ponsonby (born: 1871-02-16 died: 1946-03-23 at age: 75)

War In the Name of Peace

O peace! how many wars were waged in thy name.
~ Alexander Pope (born: 1688-05-21 died: 1744-05-30 at age: 56)

Who Suffers in a Fight?

When elephants fight it is the grass that suffers.
~ Kikuyu Proverb

Take Out the Profit

Make wars unprofitable and you make them impossible.
~ A. Philip Randolph (born: 1889-04-15 died: 1979-05-16 at age: 90)

We’re #1, Ugh

[The Taliban] can’t undermine our strategy.
~ Anders Fogh Rasmussen (born: 1953-01-26 age: 61), Secretary General of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) 2012-07-02

What a silly, pompous thing to say! NATO + Karzai could not defeat the Taliban in 12 years . How the heck does Rasmussen expect Karzai working alone to do better? I think Karzai will last all of 15 minutes. Why?

So why is Rasmussen making this idiotic statement? He is preparing to save face when Karzai crumbles. He will be able to pretend it was a big surprise, completely unpredictable. He is too embarrassed to admit NATO gave up because they could not prevail, any more than the Russians could with their invasion on 1979-12-24.

A Moment of Reagan Sanity

Nuclear weapons are totally irrational, totally inhumane, good for nothing but killing, possibly destructive of life on earth and civilisation. For the eight years I was president, I never let my dream of a nuclear-free world fade from my mind.
~ Ronald Reagan (born: 1911-02-06 died: 2004-06-05 at age: 93)

Oddly, the way he expressed this belief was by intensifying the nuclear arms race, especially with his Star Wars program.

Reagan Just Risks Nuclear War Even Though He Would Not Enjoy It

I believe there can be only one policy for preserving our precious civilisation in this modern age: a nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought. The only value in possessing nuclear weapons is to make sure they can’t be used — ever. I know I speak for people everywhere when I say our dream is to see the day when nuclear weapons will be banished from the faith of the earth.
~ Ronald Reagan (born: 1911-02-06 died: 2004-06-05 at age: 93) 1983-11-11 to the Japanese Diet (parliament)

Reagan refused to acknowledge other nations stockpile nukes primarily as a deterrent against the American nuclear arsenal. They will never give them up until the USA does. Afghanistan did not have them and the USA invaded. Iraq did not have them and the USA invaded. Iran and North Korea might have had crude ones and the USA backed off even after Bush vowed the USA would annihilate (using nukes) these two countries as part of the axis of evil.

Killing and Destroying

War consists of killing people and destroying property. That’s all there is to war.

That’s all there is to war. Any honest soldier will tell you the same thing: His job is to kill people and destroy property. That’s true of all branches of the service.

~ Charley Reese (born: 1937-01-29 age: 77) Consequences of a War State

Women in the Congo

It is more dangerous to be a woman than a soldier in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
~ CARE staff report 2008-11-24, speaking about public gang rapes being used an a weapon of war in the DRC.

Blowing Smoke

War bestows upon the front-line journalist the chance to wear its badges, suffer its extremes of feeling and be able to tell the stories and write the book afterwards. Dangerous as it occasionally is, it offers the opportunity to have had the fun. It is work that influential columnist Christie Blatchford, writing for the National Post in 2006, declared to be infinitely preferable to the beat in Ottawa, where politicians blow smoke up one another’s bums for a tedious time.
~ Noah Richler What We Talk About When We Talk About War

Recruitment

War does not feature [in Canadian military recruitment ads]. The recruitment ads show Canadian soldiers herding citizens toward a Red Cross truck that could but as easily not be in Afghanistan, rescuing the survivors of a winter plane crash, forest fires and flooding. They show them saving boat people from the Pacific and fishers off the coast of Nova Scotia and clearing a building seemingly demolished by an earthquake.
~ Noah Richler What We Talk About When We Talk About War

Kid Killer Konfession

so wat i joined [the Iraq war] to kill kids.
~ Private Tyler Rogers United States Army Signal corps, in  in email

Bin Laden

But who is Osama bin Laden really? Let me rephrase that. What is Osama bin Laden? He’s America’s family secret. He is the American president’s dark doppelgänger. The savage twin of all that purports to be beautiful and civilised. He has been sculpted from the spare rib of a world laid to waste by America’s foreign policy: its gunboat diplomacy, its nuclear arsenal, its vulgarly stated policy of full-spectrum dominance, its chilling disregard for non-American lives, its barbarous military interventions, its support for despotic and dictatorial regimes, its merciless economic agenda that has munched through the economies of poor countries like a cloud of locusts. Its marauding multinationals who are taking over the air we breathe, the ground we stand on, the water we drink, the thoughts we think. Now that the family secret has been spilled, the twins are blurring into one another and gradually becoming interchangeable. Their guns, bombs, money and drugs have been going around in the loop for a while. (The Stinger missiles that will greet US helicopters were supplied by the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) . The heroin used by America’s drug addicts comes from Afghanistan. The Bush administration recently gave Afghanistan a $43m subsidy for a war on drugs…)
~ Arundhati Roy (born: 1961-11-21 age: 52), 2001-09-29, Booker prize winner

Cost of the Iraq War

Well, the Office of Management and Budget, has come up come up with a number [for the cost of the Iraq war] that’s something under $50 billion for the cost.
~ Donald Rumsfeld (born: 1932-07-09 age: 81), secretary of War, 2003-01. As of 2008-08 it is about $3000 billion and climbing. It is a debt so large it can never be paid off. Future generations will pay interest in perpetuity.

Duration of the Iraq War

The [Iraq] war could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months.
~ Donald Rumsfeld (born: 1932-07-09 age: 81), secretary of War, 2003-02-07, apparently not.

War on Bureaucracy

The topic today is an adversary that poses a threat, a serious threat, to the security of the United States of America. This adversary is one of the world’s last bastions of central planning. It governs by dictating five-year plans. From a single capital, it attempts to impose its demands across time zones, continents, oceans and beyond. With brutal consistency, it stifles free thought and crushes new ideas. It disrupts the defense of the United States and places the lives of men and women in uniform at risk.

Perhaps this adversary sounds like the former Soviet Union, but that enemy is gone: our foes are more subtle and implacable today. You may think I’m describing one of the last decrepit dictators of the world. But their day, too, is almost past, and they cannot match the strength and size of this adversary.

The adversary’s closer to home. It’s the Pentagon bureaucracy.…

Today, we declare war on bureaucracy.

~ Donald Rumsfeld (born: 1932-07-09 age: 81) 2001-09-10 source

Note the date. The following day, some sort of aircraft or missile struck the Pentagon killing 125 Pentagon bureaucrats.

Patriot Act

On October 26th, a date which will live in infamy, the President signed the USA/PATRIOT act, officially known as HR 3162. And you should well note that, according to Representative Ron Paul (R) of Texas as reported on November 9th by Kelly O’Meara of the Washington Times Insight Magazine, the bill had not even been printed and members of the House could not read it before they were compelled to vote on it. O’Meara wrote, Meanwhile, efforts to obtain copies of the new bill were stonewalled even by the committee that wrote it. Most of its provisions have nothing to do with fighting terrorism.
~ Michael C. Ruppert (born: 1951 age: 62)

War = Waste

War is the greatest waste of energy and resources there is.
~ Michael C. Ruppert (born: 1951 age: 62)   Confronting Collapse: The Crisis of Energy and Money in a Post Peak Oil World

Who is Right?

War does not determine who is right — only who is left.
~ Bertrand Russell (born: 1872-05-18 died: 1970-02-02 at age: 97)

War = Disease

War is not an adventure. It is a disease. It is like typhus.
~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (born: 1900-06-29 died: 1944-07-31 at age: 44)

Rich Wage War

When the rich wage war, it’s the poor who die.
~ Jean-Paul Sartre (born: 1905-06-21 died: 1980-04-15 at age: 74)

Cost of Iraq War

Current estimates suggest the cost of the war in Iraq could exceed $700 billion.
~ Representative Jan Schakowsky (born: 1944-05-22 age: 69) (D-IL),

As of 2008-08 is it about $3000 billion and climbing. It is a debt so large it can never be paid off. Future generations will pay interest in perpetuity.

Deterrence

Deterrence is only a stay of execution, not a reprieve.
~ Jonathan Schell (born: 1943-08-21 died: 2014-03-25 at age: 70) The Unconquerable World: Power, Nonviolence, and the Will of the People

Dragging Viet Nam On and On

It has been said that the United States was deceived into entering and expanding the Viet Nam War by its own overoptimistic propaganda. The record suggests, however, that the policy-makers stayed in Viet Nam not so much because of overly optimistic hopes of winning… as because of overly pessimistic assessments of the consequences of losing.
~ Jonathan Schell (born: 1943-08-21 died: 2014-03-25 at age: 70) The Real World

Both Sides Lose

War is the only game in which both sides lose.
~ Sir Walter Scott (born: 1771-08-05 died: 1832-09-21 at age: 61)

Accelerate Your Life

Accelerate your life!
~ Navy recruiting slogan . This is refreshingly honest — effectively, Get your life over with faster.

Ratio of Civilian to Soldier Deaths

During WWI (World War I), 10% of all casualties were civilians. During WWII (World War II) , the number of civilian deaths rose to 50%. During the Viet Nam War 70% of all casualties were civilians. In the war in Iraq, civilians account for 90% of all deaths.
~ Norman Solomon (born: 1951 age: 62) War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death

Everyone saw Secretary of War Donald Rumsfeld bragging about the spectacular precision of American munitions, claiming civilian casualties would be a thing of the past. The catch is Americans fight wars from ever greater and safer distances. They may be able to choose which pane of which window on a house to hit, but they have no idea which house is full of combatants and which is full of kids.

Excuse for Enlisting

I joined the service because I could not take care of myself in the civilian world.
~ William Solomon (born: 1982 age: 31) in the documentary Why We Fight .

He joined the army after his mother died. He wanted someone to look after him. He was willing to kill innocent people for the false comfort of a surrogate mommy telling him what to do. What a pathetic loser!

Mixed Evil

If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human-being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?
~ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (born: 1918-12-11 died: 2008-08-03 at age: 89)

War Excuses Domestic Tyranny

A state of war only serves as an excuse for domestic tyranny.
~ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (born: 1918-12-11 died: 2008-08-03 at age: 89)

Bombing Jesus

I wondered to myself during Shock and Awe, I wondered which of the megaton bombs Jesus, our President’s personal savior, would have personally dropped on the sleeping families of Baghdad?
~ Meryl Streep (born: 1949-06-22 age: 64), 2003-07-09

Exciting War

When you’ve spent half your political life dealing with humdrum issues like the environment, it’s exciting to have a real crisis on your hands.
~ Margaret Thatcher (born: 1925-10-13 died: 2013-04-08 at age: 87) 1982, commenting on the Falkland Islands war which she started just for ego satisfaction.

Happiness is a Warm Nuke

A world without nuclear weapons would be less stable and more dangerous for all of us.
~ Margaret Thatcher (born: 1925-10-13 died: 2013-04-08 at age: 87)

How To Destroy Freedom

All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it.
~ Alexis de Tocqueville (born: 1805-07-29 died: 1859-04-16 at age: 53)

War Itself Endangers Freedom

No protracted war can fail to endanger the freedom of a democratic country.
~ Alexis de Tocqueville (born: 1805-07-29 died: 1859-04-16 at age: 53)

Honest Trump

I’m only interested in Libya if we get the oil.
~ Donald Trump (born: 1946-06-14 age: 67) 2011-04-07 in an interview with Meredith Viera.

At least he is honest. US leaders agree with him, but pretend their interest is freedom, oddly though, only of people who live in countries with oil.

War = Deception

All war is deception.
~ Sun Tsu (born: 544 BC died: 496 BC at age: 48)   The Art Of War

Not Peace

If an unjust and rapacious conqueror subdues a nation and forces her to accept hard, ignominious and insupportable conditions, necessity obliges her to submit, but this apparent tranquility is not a peace, it is an oppression she endures only so long she lacks the means of shaking it off and against which men of spirit arise on the first favourable opportunity.
~ Emerich de Vattel (born: 1714-03-25 died: 1767-12-28 at age: 53) , The Law of Nations

Afghan Pipeline

Currently, the [Afghanistan] pipeline is a go-project thanks to the junta’s [Bush/Cheney’s] installation of a Unocal employee (John J. Maresca) as US envoy to the newly born democracy whose president, Hamid Karzai, is also, according to Le Monde, a former employee of a Unocal subsidiary. Conspiracy? Coincidence!
~ Gore Vidal (born: 1925-10-03 died: 2012-07-30 at age: 86) not to mention Zalmai Khalilzad, the Unocal point man in the Bush cabinet.

Can’t Win

I don’t see us winning the war. We have made enemies of one billion Muslims.
~ Gore Vidal (born: 1925-10-03 died: 2012-07-30 at age: 86)

Japan Tried to Surrender

They [the Japanese] were trying to surrender all that summer, but Truman wouldn’t listen, because Truman wanted to drop the bombs. When the interviewer asked why, Vidal replied, To show off. To frighten Stalin. To change the balance of power in the world. To declare war on Communism. Perhaps we were starting a pre-emptive world war.
~ Gore Vidal (born: 1925-10-03 died: 2012-07-30 at age: 86) Why We Fight

Supporting Our Enemies

In almost every case (where the United States has fought wars) our overwhelming commitment to freedom, democracy and human rights has required us to support those regimes that would deny freedom, democracy and human rights to their own people.
~ Gore Vidal (born: 1925-10-03 died: 2012-07-30 at age: 86)

Thou Shalt Not Kill

It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.
~ Voltaire (born: 1694-11-21 died: 1778-05-30 at age: 83) [François Marie d’Arouet Voltaire]

1492

1492. As children we were taught to memorize this year with pride and joy as the year people began living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North America. Actually, people had been living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North America for hundreds of years before that. 1492 was simply the year sea pirates began to rob, cheat, and kill them.
~ Kurt Vonnegut (born: 1922-11-11 died: 2007-04-11 at age: 84)

Fighting vs Hating

There are plenty of good reasons for fighting, but no good reason ever to hate without reservation, to imagine that God Almighty Himself hates with you, too.
~ Kurt Vonnegut (born: 1922-11-11 died: 2007-04-11 at age: 84)

Gambling With Other’s Lives

It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men’s lives should not pay with their own.
~ H. G. Wells (born: 1866-09-21 died: 1946-08-13 at age: 79)

Necessity of Ending War

If we don’t end war, war will end us.
~ H. G. Wells (born: 1866-09-21 died: 1946-08-13 at age: 79)

Preparing for War

States organized for war will make war as surely as hens will lay eggs.
~ H. G. Wells (born: 1866-09-21 died: 1946-08-13 at age: 79)

Inconsistent Claims

The Afghan people detest the Taliban.

The United States is the greatest fighting force in the history of the world.

~ Roger Wicker (born: 1951-07-05 age: 62) Republican senator from Mississippi.

This makes no sense. How could a tiny group of Taliban defeat the entire Afghan people, backed by the USA (with its high tech warfare and unlimited budget), Britain, Canada and other NATO nations? The answer is, the Taliban beat them the same way they expelled the Russian invaders. They have the hearts and minds of the people the way a drug/war lord collaborator like Hamid Karzai never could. The Taliban are fighting for independence, to oust the infidel invaders. They are fighting for their religion which the Americans despise. We might find Islam odious, but they are convinced it represents the will of God. The USA, Britain an Canada have realised that they cannot win (and plunder the oil and mineral resources), and are trying to save face without admitting defeat.

Faulty Intelligence

I have little choice but to conclude that some of the intelligence related to Iraq’s nuclear weapons programme was twisted.
~ Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson (born: 1949-11-06 age: 64)

GE Wants Endless War

The revulsion against war… will be an almost insuperable obstacle for us to overcome. For that reason, I am convinced that we must begin now to set the machinery in motion for a permanent wartime economy.
~ Charles Erwin Wilson (born: 1890-07-18 died: 1961-09-26 at age: 71) President of General Electric (1940-42, 1945-50), head of the Office of Defense Mobilisation in 1951, US Secretary of Defense (1953-57)

How Many Al Qaeda Are There?

There are only about 100 Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, so…
~ Charles (Charlie) Nesbitt Wilson (born: 1933-06-01 died: 2010-02-10 at age: 76) Texas congressman inspiration for the movie Charlie Wilson’s War 2009-10-07

Brutality

To fight, you must be brutal and ruthless, and the spirit of ruthless brutality will enter into the very fibre of national life…
~ Woodrow Wilson (born: 1856-12-28 died: 1924-02-03 at age: 67)

Difference Between North Korea and Iraq

Let’s look at it simply. The most important difference between North Korea and Iraq is that economically we just had no choice but Iraq — the country was swimming on a seal of oil.
~ Paul Wolfowitz (born: 1943-12-22 age: 70) Publicly answering a question in Singapore why the USA went after Iraq rather than the more dangerous North Korea.

Selling the Iraq War

For reason that have a lot to do with US Government bureaucracy, we settled on the one issue everyone could agree on, which was weapons of mass destruction.
~ Paul Wolfowitz (born: 1943-12-22 age: 70) 2003-06, explaining how the Bush administration sold the Iraq war to a gullible public.

War is a Shame

It seems like such a terrible shame that innocent civilians have to get hurt in wars, otherwise combat would be such a wonderfully healthy way to rid the human race of unneeded trash.
~ Fred Woodworth

Power Without Oversight

If you give people power without oversight, it is a prescription for abuse.
~ Philip Zimbardo (born: 1933-03-23 age: 81)

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