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'Niceguy' Eddie

Political Talk Show Host and Internet Radio Personality. My show, In My Humble Opinion, aired on RainbowRadio from 2015-2017.

Feel free to contact me at niceguy9418@usa.com. You can also friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and Tumblr, and support my Patreon. Also, if you don't mind the stench, you can find my unofficial "fan club" over HERE. ;)


Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Case for Obama, part 2: Foreign Policy

Yeah, I had planned to go after "these high gas prices" next, but the hot-button issue in the Romney campaign right now (besides spell-checking their campaign materials) seems to Foreign Policy. So I'll do that instead.

OK… First? The easy stuff:

Iraq War: Over. Mission Accomplished. Finally.

Bin Laden. Gone. Dead. Characterize it however you want, but Obama succeeded where Bush failed.

Gaddaffi. Gone. Dead. Characterize it however you want, but Obama succeeded where Reagan failed.

And as frustrating as Libya was, our involvement was precisely what it needed to be. Any MORE and the rebels would risk being seen as pro-West, and nothing would evaporate their support faster than that. And while everybody can Monday-morning quarterback it to death, the bottom line is: We had regime change their WITHOUT having to destroy the entire country, wreck their infrastructure, kill 100,000 people and then spend a trillion dollars to rebuild it. The rebels may have wanted more, in the immediate sense art various times, but they given exactly what they needed to succeed, and not a bit more. Libya serves as a SHINING EXAMPLE of how a popular rebellion should be supported, and how regime change should be brought about, absent a Liberal Democracy with free and open elections.

(For examples of how it SHOULD NOT be done, see Vietnam, Iraq.)

Now… The Romney campaign is hitting Obama hard for not being “tough enough” or showing “real leadership” with Syria. They’ve characterized his policies as “hiding” behind the Kofa Anan plan, and playing “mother may i?” with the Russian and the Chinese, who continue to support the Asad regime.

OK. First off, when it comes to invading Syria, I was making the case for that YEARS ago. So I’m certainly no dove when it comes to this horrible, oppressive regime. But What EXACTLY would a President Romney do differently? What is their BRILLIANT IDEA to solve this problem – namely to stop the bloodshed and slaughter of Syrian Protesters and Rebels.

Well… I heard the Romney campaign claim that Obama has shown “no leadership.” But absent any real ideas, coming from a Republican “real leadership” just means “arrogant swagger.” Basically they apparently want Obama to struck around like a Cowboy, reminding the world that America can do whatever the hell it wants, because we can kick more ass than anyone else. Because you know… that worked out pretty well for Bush, right?

And then... He really didn't seem to offer anything! Nothing! Nada. Zilch. Zero.  Just that Obama should "lead more" with nary a though as to WHERE he should be leading people!

  But let's humor the nay-sayers, and look at some of the "obvious solutions" Obama should be pursuing.

Maybe we should push for SANCTIONS. I’m not a huge fan of this. First of all, they basically NEVER WORK. (see Cuba.) Second, it is always the PEOPLE who end up suffering the most from this. And finally, since most of these Governments control the Media in their countries, the story that gets told always ends up being “look at what the West is doing to us!” And after eight years of George W. Bush, I’m tired of writing their propaganda for them. But perhaps most importantly, sanctions would depend entirely on the cooperation of… duh-da-daaaaaa: RUSSIA and CHINA! So without playing “mother may i?” with the Russian and the Chinese…” OK. You get the point.

Well, then… SCREW THE U.N.! Let’s get NATO to enforce a no-fly zone unilaterally then! Sure. Great. That actually DID work in both Iraq for many years and in Libya. But what would it accomplish in Syria? Syria is a TINY COUNTRY. You don’t need PLANES to cross it! And most of the killing has been by soldiers who WALKED there and TANKS that DROVE there. Syria has no NEED for planes within their borders. So a no-fly zone would be little more than a very expensive symbolic gesture.

Perhaps AIR STRIKES then! Yeah… Except that Syria is 1/10 the size of Libya, with three times the population. And the rebels hold exactly DICK in the form of territory. So what would you HIT? The rebels are all in the CITIES! There is not a single target in Syria that you could hit and NOT kill dozens of the very people who we’re trying to HELP! Who’s LIVES we want to SAVE!

INVADE! Um… No. (see, Iraq.) And to be fair, nobody on either side is really suggesting this.

OK, OK. What about the very simple measure of Arming the Rebels? Arm the populace, so that they have the tools to stand up to this oppressive regime.

Now… I could resort to satire and simply say, “Yeah – typical Republican answer: Try to solve the problem of violence by adding more guns to the equation.” But in my HEART? I would do this. I really would. My spirit? My sense of righteousness? My wrath? All tell me that this is a good idea, and what’s more: That it’s RIGHT.

But my HEAD? (You know… The part of the body that we SHOULD be using to make decisions with?) Tell me a different story. It tells me that the only possible outcome of doing this would be to increase the death toll by an order of magnitude, AT LEAST. Any last vestige of restraint being shown by the Syrian Army would be swept away and what is currently a huge travesty of human rights violations would be transformed into a wholesale slaughter the moment the first shot was fired. Dozens, even hundreds being killed in peaceful protests would become thousands, if not tens of thousands being killed in full scale battles.

If you are motivated to action by the LOSS of human life, you should not be so quick to take actions that would result in the FAR GREATER loss of human life, no matter how angry you are.

So if Obama is proceeding cautiously? Even tentatively perhaps?

I say that there is simply no better way to proceed.

Because Syria is, as I once heard North Korea described, “The Land of Lousy Options.”

As for Iran...?

This is actually fairly easy, because it's simply a question (once again) of the Right going apeshit over a non-existent threat without getting their facts strait. (See: Iraq.)

It comes down to this:

Iran has no nuclear weapons. The CIA, M-I5 and Mossad all agree on this point.

Iran has no actual nuclear weapons program. The CIA, M-I5 and Mossad all agree on this point.

Iran has no delivery system for a nuclear warhead: Their longest range missile with the potential to carry a nuclear warhead is the Shehab-3b with a range of only 2000 km.  And the Zelzal and the Fateh missiles are only short range, 300km or less.  And as small a threat as that represents, even THAT relies on the assumption that Iran would use a nuclear missile for ANYTHING other than a deterrent.  (Kind of like EVERY SINGLE OTHER NUCLEAR ARMED COUNTRY IN THE WORLD.)

On every front? I just don't see the problem.


  1. "Bin Laden. Gone. Dead. Characterize it however you want, but Obama succeeded where Bush failed."

    You are dishonestly forgetting another person. Clinton failed too.

    "OK. First off, when it comes to invading Syria, I was making the case for that YEARS ago."

    Why? Is the leader being extremely violent towards the inhabitants of that country? Does internal strife make invasion of a sovereign nation OK with you? It seems to me that you are one of those who called the invasion of Iraq illegal and wrong. Now, you are here calling for the invasion of Syria. What reasons do you have that would make an invasion of Syria legal as directly compared to the invasion of Iraq?

    BTW, the "mission" os the Iraq war was achieved months after it began. But your political hatred of President Bush blinds you to that truth. But, if you're talking about terrorists still killing innocent people in Iraq then there is still NO mission accomplished. The "mission" was not to leave Iraq to the terrorists to indiscriminately kill as they want.

  2. "You are dishonestly forgetting another person. Clinton failed too."

    1) Clinton isn't runing for President, nor is he of the party that is running against the man I'm making the case for.
    2) Clinton never stood on the top of wreckage and declared that we'd get the "people responsible for this."
    3) ...And then spent half of the next seven years waging war on the wrong country.
    4) ...And THEN had the gall and/or stupidity to stand under a "mission accomplished" banner, with one war (the one related to Bin Ladern) still being waged, and now in a quagmire when it should have been an easy victory, due to the boondoggle in Iraq.
    5) And if we're going to start going back in history, let's not forget that it was RONALD W. REAGAN and DICK CHENEY who bascially created Bin Laden and his mujahadeen in the first place.

    [Your 2nd paragraph]

    First of all... Did you have a brain tumor for breakfast? WHERE do I "call for the invasion of Syria?" I was making the case for that YEARS AGO, in TACTICAL CONTRAST to the decision to invade Iraq, and I did to satisfy those who were simply hell-bent on invading SOMEONE, to show even then just how moronic it was to invadse Iraq. I am NOT in favor of invading Syria now (which would be clear, if you'd read the god-damned post next time) and I was not in favor of doing so then. Nor have I ever been in favor of the W's War in Irag. I was fine getting Saddam out of Kuwait in '91 (W should have paid more attention to his father) and I have always supported the War in Afganistan, bother under the previous administration, and under ths one.

    The POINT (which you always seem to miss) is that I'm not one of those folks on the Left who simply oppose ALL war and ALL military action as a matter of course. (And really, there aren't many of those, but you lot seem to think that's all we have.) In anycase, it was meant to establish CONTEXT, not to call for an invasion. I don't understand how anyone cah read what I wrote and come to that conclusion. Completely Absurd.

    Secondly... Unless you ALSO think that the Iraq was illegal, and/or immoral, you can save your sanctimoniuos tone. I'm guessing it's just another failed attampt on your part to call out hypocrisy, but unless you were also aginst that war, you're hardly in any position to be calling me out - especially since there isn't ANYWHERE here where I'm saying we should invade anyone!

    [3rd Paragraph]

    What's you're point?

    BTW... Do you know what's so politically inconvenient for the Right about the whole "mission accomplished" thing? (What you wrote.) Their propaganda toadies in the media kept talking about achieving "victory" for MANY YEARS after that, and implied that the policies of the Democrats would lead to "defeat." But... It's kind of hard to be "defeated" after you've already knocked out the government and installed a puppet one. And it's also kind of stupid to declare "mission acomplished" if you're still chasing that elusive 'victory.'

    (Of course, if we'd stop declaring war on common nouns, wars would be lot shorter.)

    Nice try though. Methinks your own "political hatred" of anyone who dares question Conservatism blinds YOU to simple logic.

    1. 1) Neither is Bush
      2) No, he had to stand in the basement of the WTC to witness the wreckage brought by OBL
      3) You can make a case for an invasion of Syria without explanation of that case
      4) You still do not know what the mission in Iraq was.
      5) No, they armed and taught them to fight better. They did NOT give them their ideology.

      What is the difference between 'calling for' and 'making the case for' that invasion? You either support that invasion or you don't. Obviously you do, or you wouldn't have said you can make a case for an invasion of a sovereign nation. I DID read your "god-damned post". You clearly said you made a case for the invasion of Syria long ago ("OK. First off, when it comes to invading Syria, I was making the case for that YEARS ago."). Where did you stop whining about Romney's options and actually state your own, other than you made a case for the invasion of Syria years ago?

      As far as my "sanctimonious tone" ... quit your whining. I supported the invasion of Iraq and I'll support an invasion of Syria. I do NOT approve of national leaders murdering their own people simply to stay in control or create fear in order to remain in power. I do not think the Iraq invasion was illegal or immoral for just those reasons. You pick and choose which US president gets your approval for removing murderous leaders based solely on the letters D or R.
      When you said you were 'making a case for the invasion of Syria years ago' what did you mean? Since you offered no other explanation of that statement. You only went on an weird rant about Romney and your hatred of the republican party. I'm not being the hypocritical one on the invasions of sovereign nations ... you are. You say you can make a case FOR the invasion of Syria, while denouncing the invasion of Iraq as illegal. And, you only visible reasoning is that one may be done by a democrat and the other was done by a republican. Both would be done for the same reasoning: murderous leaders killing their own people to stop uprisings that may unseat their power.

      "Methinks your own "political hatred" of anyone who dares question Conservatism blinds YOU to simple logic."

      I wonder if you would denounce Bush if he had a list of terrorists that he would use to determine who to kill with using drones. I wonder if you would denounce Bush if that list included children. I wonder if you even know what the hell you are talking about concerning foreign policy when the current leader is doing more illegal activity than Bush, yet you support Obama invading sovereign nations and killing American citizens and using drones wherever he chooses with or without the approval of that nation's leader (there's some of your simple logic). Yeah ... you're a hypocrite all right. You support Obama killing whoever he wants whenever he wants but denounce Bush doing it and Romney for possibly doing it. Based solely on what letter they have after/before their name (D / R)

      "Of course, if we'd stop declaring war on common nouns, wars would be lot shorter."

      ??? If the organization you seem to support would find a way to separate themselves from the masses it would be easier to kill them. However, they hide behind and kill innocent men/women/children using men/women/children to kill based on an ideology. You have the gall to blame Reagan and Cheney ONLY because they are republicans. Who gave those murderers that ideology of hatred? From what I read they've been killing like that for thousands of years. So, again, quit your whining based only on political party affiliation. It really makes you a hypocrite of the worst kind.
      Maybe you'll bring more your of fake facts then run away without explanation, like you usually do. That suits you better and your friends are much more likely to follow your lead.

  3. Eddie? Are you going to answer the question about your "making a case" for an invasion of Syria? What is the reasoning behind your case for an invasion? Is that case an effort to stop a murderous leader from further harming his own inhabitants? What differences would there be in that case and the invasion of Iraq? Does that case include being able to predict what terrorists will do in response to that invasion?

    If these questions are too tough for you, just say so and I'll ask more simple ones.

    " Libya serves as a SHINING EXAMPLE of how a popular rebellion should be supported, and how regime change should be brought about, absent a Liberal Democracy with free and open elections."

    "In the months after Colonel Qaddafi’s death, Libyans were counting on the ballot box to end four decades of rule by brute force. But the militias formed to fight Colonel Qaddafi, and many others that sprang up after the fact, have thwarted the consolidation of a new central authority and become a menace to security, trading deadly gunfire in the streets of the capital, detaining and torturing suspected Qaddafi loyalists, and even kidnapping two members of the ruling Transitional National Council for two days."

    I take it you don't actually pay attention to what really happens in the world? Maybe you just read what you're told to read and report what you're told to report? Is that the "shining example" you expect in your 'case for invasion' of Syria?

  4. "Iran has no delivery system for a nuclear warhead: Their longest range missile with the potential to carry a nuclear warhead is the Shehab-3b with a range of only 2000 km. And the Zelzal and the Fateh missiles are only short range, 300km or less."

    Eddie, I hate to ask you to do simple math. But, how many people (civilians) live within those 2000 km / 300 km ranges? Does the missile really have to have a nuclear warhead to kill thousands? And, have you read anything about the success or failure of their development of this missile: http://www.smh.com.au/world/new-fears-over-irans-missile-capability-20120203-1qxn5.html

  5. Will -

    1) If you want to know what "my case for invading Syria was" go and read it. (My blog has Google, it won't be too hard for you to find.) It really amazes my what a propensity for twisting words you have. I write a piece defending Paterno and you said I was attacking him. I write a piece defending Obama's relative NON-involvement in Syria and you say I'm saying we should attack Syria. Do you have any idea how stupid this makes you look? Really. (Also - I notice that you have yet to actually DISAGREE with anything I've said, or Obama's done, RE Syria.)

    2) Libya: The chaos that comes after a despot falls is PRECISELY why we shouldn't go around being the world's police force. And YES, Libya remains an example of how to handle thigs, precisely becuase our troops stayed the fuck out. Otherwise those militias? Would all be shooting at US right now.(Remember Iraq?) Or are you suggesting we should have supported Kadafi for the sake of 'maintaining order?'

    3) Iran: (I was kind of wondering why you gave me a pass on this the first time around.) [And strait up, I'll admit my comments on Iran were rather slipshod. I kind of finished the whole piece, mosty thinking about Syria, and got to the end and realized that I'd completely ignored the elephant in the room. So while I stand by what I wrote, it was done hastily and was pretty much just tacked o at the end. Not my best work.] To answer your question... Obviously it depends on where you put the missile. ;) Could be millions, but most of them might also be Iranians. Doesn't really matter though - no country would ever have any incentive to use a Nuclear weapon in a preemptive strike. What will ultimately stay Iran's hand is exactly what has stayed Israel's hand all trhese year. (And Indias & Pakistan's; not ot mention the U.S.'s & Russia's & China'a.)

    Finally... You spoke very pationatley about human rigths, and this is an area where I figure you and I agree a lot in principle and differ greatly in practice. You justify the invasion of Iraq on the basis that (PP) "Saddam was a bad dude." So... Why didn't we invade Libya, Iran, North Korea, Syria, Egypt, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Myanmar, and countless other places that also have lousy human rights records and are also run by "bad dudes?" Hey: How about Russia and China? And why, if the Right feels this is adequate justification, were they so vehemently against taking action against Slobodan Milosovic in Serbia, under Clinton?

    As for MY beliefs here? "Self Determination" is a keystone principle of Democracy. It is not up to us to violate another country's soverienty, unilaterally, and force regime change just because we don't like their Gov't. Doing so makes US the BAD GUY. And don't even TRY to couch the NeoCon foreign policy in any idealistic human-rights terms, because the Right (Reagan, Cheney, Rumsfeld) had no problem ARMING Saddam in the 80's when he could be useful, and they've (Reagan, Bush'41, Bush'43) supported dictaors like Musharif in Pakistan or Mubarak in Egypt all those years. (Or Noriega in Panama, until he bit the hand that fed him.)

    Your "principles" regarding foreign policy would make for a very dangerous leader, and a very easily led populace.

    1. "1) If you want to know what "my case for invading Syria was" go and read it."

      You mean like how I want to know about your "EIGHTY PERCENT" statement and about that rant you had about abstinence? I think you talk out of both sides of your mouth so that you can please the most people. I've asked you to explain those statements because both are lies or misinformation. Yet, you refuse. How am I to believe anything you write about Syria? I don't think I'm going to google any two-faced statements you've made about a situation (that is eerily similar to the one in Iraq) that you support simply because a democrat is our leader now and not a republican. I'd hate to imagine what kind of misinformation you would be offering there.

      "And YES, Libya remains an example of how to handle thigs, precisely becuase our troops stayed the fuck out."

      I hardly think that the situation that Libya has eroded into is any kind of shining example of handling violent/dangerous leaders. Sure we could have left Iraq in the same condition, after we eliminated Saddam, having all the different groups fighting for control of the minds/health/safety of the inhabitants of Iraq. But, for some reason, the president (at that time) really didn't want Iraq to erode into a bloody mess. He was planning and hoping that those people wanted freedom and safety in order to live their lives out in peace. But, half of America started whining about "illegal war" when things didn't go according to plan. God forbid that at least he tried to produce a viable country where the masses could live in peace (I'm glad you don't hold that against him). And the thanks he gets from people like you is he is called a war criminal. Then you have the gall to say the result in Libya is a "shining example" of how it should have been done. Where's all your whining about civilian deaths and bloody chaos like you have for Iraq? Oh, wait, all you're worried about is that US troops aren't involved. You may not like it that the US is the worlds policeman, but unless you want every country to end up like Libya (a dangerous, chaotic, bloody mess) then someone has to step up to the plate and produce law and order. It is obvious your ideals of a "shining example" isn't any more helpful for the actual people who those uprisings affect. It would have been better just to let Kadafy and Saddam to stay in control and continue killing their own people. At least there was some sort of leadership and order with them at the helm. What I take from your statements is that if a republican president wants to interfere with other nation's concerns, then he is considered a war criminal. But if a democratic president lets thousands (millions?) of violent/murderous groups take over a country (in place of the leader you supported removing) then he provides a shining example for the world to use. So much for your "self determination" theory of democracy. The only thing you care about is what letter our president has before his name. If it is a "D" then all the bloodshed produced is acceptable. If he has an "R" then all that bloodshed is reprehensible.

      "Your "principles" regarding foreign policy would make for a very dangerous leader, and a very easily led populace."

      And your "principle" regarding foreign policy is an improvement in WHAT way for the people living in Libya ?!?