Sunday, May 15, 2005



Plus ca change

December 1983: Donald Rumsfeld shakes hands with Iraq's Saddam Hussein, during a visit to Baghdad. At the time, Iraq was fighting America's enemies in Iran. The US government ignored Saddam's human-rights abuses, including the gassing of Kurds, until Saddam turned against them in 1991 (when he suddenly became "the next Hitler")

October 2001: Donald Rumsfeld shakes hands with Uzbekistan's President Karimov during a visit to Tashkent. The visit successfully secured Uzbekistan's assistance in the "war on terror". The US not only ignores Karimov's human rights abuses, but actively exploits them - notably by rendering suspected terrorists to Uzbekistan to be tortured.

(More photos of US officials cozying up to this regime of torturers can be found here).

13 comments:

the relationship between the US and iraq is an interesting one. particularly interesting in the vast amount of selective facts and misinformation circulated by the left.

Also of interest is how the left thinks we should hate criminals BEFORE they commit their crimes

and when bad fights worse (for example china vs japan in WWII or the USA (pre civil rights movement) vs Japan for that matter - we should remain neutral.

Anyway the simple facts are that the US gave some support to iraq (strangly the vast majority of their weapons came from russia china and france so it looks like they were not alone there) - then when word started coming out about gasing of kurds (saddam's major crime) the US - basically alone, turned against them. while iraq complained (probably with the support of the usual suspects) that the US was just picking on them.
Relations with saddam got very tense very soon afterwards. particularly iraq - kuwait relations.
So iraq attacked kuwait and the US attacked iraq a country they didn't like anymore anyway.

Of course had hte US used its psycic powers to tel lthat iraq would use chemical weapons on its own people none of this would have been nessercary - they could have just supported iran....

Anyway one day we can show photos of EU leaders who are so eager to sell weapons to china in the same context.

Posted by Genius : 5/15/2005 05:55:00 PM

Genius, you're flat wrong. The famous image of Rumsfeld shaking Saddam's hand casme after Saddam's most famous atrocity, the gassing of the Kurds.

And you can't seriously be suggesting that the Uzbekistani regime hasn't committed any crimes yet, can you?

Posted by Ranald : 5/15/2005 07:52:00 PM

ranald,

"Iraqi President Saddam Hussein greets Donald Rumsfeld, then special envoy of President Ronald Reagan, in Baghdad on December 20, 1983."

In case you have no idea at all about history - the gassing of the kurds occured in 1988-89 and it might also have occured in 1987. I also note that reports tricked out so they did not know immediatly nor could htey be sure the informatio nwas correct. There were no cameras in there so it took a while for the world to know and even now some, far lefties probably, dispute it.
(By the way thanks for proving my point.)

---
ranald,
They have not used chemical weapons yet as far as i know but in terms of the lesser definition yes I'm sure they are commiting lots of crimes and they should be opposed for them.
If it would help we can plant a misile on them - but i doubt it would help at this stage now it would seem is a time for careful behind the scenes diplomacy.

Posted by Genius : 5/15/2005 09:09:00 PM

World Vision gives alot of money and support to nations all around the world, some of these nations supported might in the future be responsible for atrocities similar to that of Saddams! I hope you will hold World Vision responsible then........

Posted by Anonymous : 5/15/2005 09:12:00 PM

Genius: Saddam was a brutal torturing dictator in 1983 - but it was only twenty years later that the US decided to care about that.

As for gassing Kurds, while the most famous of Saddam's chemical atrocities, the Halabja massacre, didn't occur until 1988, they were using chemical weapons "almost daily" in 1983, not just on Iranian troops, but also on "Kurdish insurgents". The US knew this, yet sent Rumsfeld to Baghdad. Later, they undermined a UN Security Council resolution condemning Iraq's use of chemical weapons. And post-Halabja, they tried to blame the Iranians for the deaths. It's not a pretty story any way you look at it, and one of the more shameful moments in US foreign policy.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 5/16/2005 12:27:00 AM

He seems to look more and more like Henrich Himmler as he ages.

Posted by t selwyn : 5/16/2005 12:29:00 AM

> Genius: Saddam was a brutal torturing dictator in 1983

as the previous poster notes - yes and there are many other nasty dictators, I expect including iran and just about every other leader in the area. The US has to make pragmatic conclusions on who to support in the iran vs iraq conflict - they chose stability to prevent the bad effects of iran having to annex iraq.

> they were using chemical weapons "almost daily" in 1983 (against hte kurds)

was that not riot control gas? So sayith the dossier of crimes site I was looking at. Besides that started in 1983 as well apparently so this "knowing" may well be the "should have used their psycic powers" thing again, not sure.

> The US knew this, yet sent Rumsfeld to Baghdad.

> resolution condemning Iraq's use of chemical weapons.

It is prety obvious that US policy turned against iraq both by the fact that there was a war at all and by the fact that Congress put sanctions on iraq (even if blocked by regan - the counter argument was that engagement is required to encourage change - like the engage not engage china argument).

Where wre the sanctions coming from other countries? And obviously iraq saw the US as the one sputting on pressure from their comments before the war far from "budy budy"

> And post-Halabja, they tried to blame the Iranians for the deaths.

so thats where the ranting sadam supporting lefties come from eh?

Posted by Genius : 5/16/2005 06:40:00 AM

the main irony is in the use of the phrase 'rendering' suspected terrorists.

aren't the uzbeks famous for boiling prisoners to death?

but as far as dodgy regimes go, karimov has has a pretty bad reputation since the republic splintered during the collapse of the soviets. he was always the worse of the bad guys in the region.

Posted by the other 'Che' : 5/16/2005 08:04:00 AM

What IS that object on the right of the Karimov photo? A corpulent torturer perhaps? Jabba the Hutt wearing a suit made of towelling?

Posted by Anonymous : 5/16/2005 05:02:00 PM

Anon: I think its a blue-polarfleece-clad elbow.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 5/16/2005 05:12:00 PM

>In case you have no idea at all about history - the gassing of the kurds occured in 1988-89 and it might also have occured in 1987.

Whoops, I meant the chemical warfare vs Iran, sorry.

Posted by Ranald : 5/16/2005 05:30:00 PM

When do we get to see the pictures of Phil Goff shaking the hands of murderers and torturers?

In case you don't have them, I'm happy to provide them.

Note also that 1983 is before Iraq started gassing the Kurds and was at war with an enemy of the US. But I'm glad Bush has denounced the doctrine of "he might be a bad guy, but he's our bad guy".

Posted by Berend de Boer : 5/17/2005 08:46:00 AM

>But I'm glad Bush has denounced the doctrine of "he might be a bad guy, but he's our bad guy".

He's denounced it without renouncing it, which is the whole point of Idiot's original post. The US continue to prop up huge numbers our "our bad guys" despite the ways it has rebounded back on them in the past, not to mention the immorality.

Posted by Ranald : 5/17/2005 06:24:00 PM