talk about your foot in your mouth

Discussion in 'Politics' started by DKSuddeth, Jan 14, 2004.

  1. DKSuddeth
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    DKSuddeth Senior Member

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    http://www.news-leader.com/today/0114-95Deanlett-268288.html

    '95 Dean letter urged unilateral U.S. attack
    Candidate attacks Bush's Iraq decision, but had sought action from Clinton in Bosnia.

    By Steve Komarow
    USA Today

    Democratic presidential contender Howard Dean, a strong critic of what he calls President Bush's unilateral approach to foreign policy, urged President Clinton to act unilaterally and enter the war in Bosnia in 1995.
    "I have reluctantly concluded that the efforts of the United States and NATO in Bosnia are a complete failure," he wrote, citing reports of genocide during the Bosnian civil war. "If we ignore these behaviors ... our moral fiber as a people becomes weakened. ... We must take unilateral action."

    The July 19, 1995, letter, obtained by USA Today, was written on Dean's official stationery as Vermont governor. The language appears to contradict Dean's core complaint that President Bush has followed a unilateral foreign policy, instead of a multilateral approach that relies on consultation and joint action with allies. He has repeatedly attacked Bush's decision to invade Iraq.

    "I think getting rid of Saddam Hussein is a wonderful thing," he said last month. "But the question is, is it a good idea to send 135,000 troops unilaterally to do it?"

    In the 1995 letter, Dean argued for unilateral action in Bosnia on moral grounds. "As the Catholic Church and others lost credibility during the Holocaust for not speaking out, so will the United States lose credibility," he wrote.

    The civil war in the former Yugoslavia gave rise to war crimes and mass murders not seen in the West since World War II. U.N. peacekeeping had failed, but the Clinton administration was undecided on whether to take military action.

    Dean told Clinton that America had to intervene alone because the United Nations and NATO were unable to act effectively. He called for Clinton to bomb the Bosnian Serbs and supply arms to the Bosnian Muslims. He opposed using American ground troops.

    Clinton eventually won approval from NATO but not the United Nations for a limited bombing campaign that led to peace talks and a NATO peacekeeping force at the end of 1995. About 3,000 U.S. troops are in Bosnia today.
     
  2. acludem
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    acludem VIP Member

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    How does this compare with launching a unilateral war of aggression in Iraq? What Dean argued for is a unilateral bombing of serbian targets and arming Bosnian Muslims to defend themselves. This hardly compares with the invasion of a sovereign nation by air, sea and ground. Unilateral action in Bosnia didn't occur, and neither should unilateral action in Iraq have happened. But that's essentially what happened. Notice the language, "reluctantly come to the conclusion" also this was a very different situation. This area had just become fractious, Iraq was a wholly sovereign nation.

    acludem
     
  3. Bern80
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    Bern80 Gold Member

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    Maybe i'm wrong but you may want to look of the deifinition of sovereign. I'm pretty sure it doesn't mean rule by a tyranical dictator.

    I also recomend you read the book "Heart Grown Brutal" by Roger Cohen about the monumental debacle that Clinton put us in that country. My uncle was a former acting ambassador during this time and is quoted in the book. He essentially lost his job because he spoke against the way Clinton handled the situation.
     

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