Tag Archives: Saddam Hussein

Stop The Presses! Bush Vindicated By Uranium Discovery!! Or Maybe Not…

21 Aug
This past Sunday, I saw my best friend and his bride for dinner with me and my wife.  My best friend tends to be more on the conservative or at least Republican side of things, while I started our friendship over twenty years ago as a raging liberal and have gradually moved more to the center.  Aging, 9/11 and the realization that both parties have done precious little over the past twenty years to address our biggest problems will do that to a guy.
Anyway, I think it’s safe to say that politics tends to be my more bag than my best friend’s.  But, I do respect his opinion and value getting his POV as it often differs from mine and helps me check my own beliefs.
 
Over dinner, he rocked my world.  He busted out that he met some guy at a barbecue earlier in the day that told him all about 500 tons of Iraqi yellow cake uranium that had been discovered and was being moved out of Iraq.  According to my friend’s new friend and the blog (this will be important in a few moments) that he showed him on his laptop, this was all a shocking case of the often referenced “liberal media bias” in action.  The original story, according to the barbecue laptop guy, was reported in July, yet the media (who ever they are these days) hadn’t made a big deal about it.  My best pal asked me if I’d heard about it.  I had not.
  
Hmmmmm…. Here was the smoking gun.  They found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and no one was reporting it.  Bush was vindicated.  The  Iraq War was justified.  Wow, maybe I owe our President a big apology I thought.
After drafting an apology letter to the president, I thought better of it and did some digging.  After a quick web search, I think the guy who told my pal about the 500 tons of uranium was off base on a few things.  The reason the media didn’t make this the top story of the year was twofold:
 
1 – it’s an old story.  The yellow cake uranium in question has been known to be in Saddam’s possession since the 1980s.  And none of it dates from after the First Gulf War.  So, it’s not the smoking gun that proves that Bush was right to invade Iraq.  Saddam had the stuff in his possession & we knew about it for over 20 years.  If it wasn’t dangerous enough for us to oust Saddam in the 80s or under the first and wiser President Bush, than what would make it a justification for the second Iraq War?
 
2 – The US wanted to keep the movement of the material as secret as possible.  Apparently, we were concerned that if it was widely known that we were moving it out of Iraq that extremists might target it.  The US Government didn’t want this to be a big story.
 
By searching the net, I found reporting on the material over the years.  So, the media has in fact been reporting it.  It just isn’t a big story cause of the two reasons listed above.  I know many people believe there’s a liberal media bias (despite the dominance of conservative talk radio & Fox News) but this just is not a case of liberal media bias.
 
In fact, the Bush Administration was trying to build the case that Saddam was trying to buy more uranium as a justification for the war.  That has to date not been proven.
 
Below is a link to a good article on the uranium in question from MSNBC and I also pasted the most relevant excerpt if you are pressed for time.
 
Totally cop to the charge that MSNBC is (as a business decision for their cable channel) featuring more and more liberal commentary (Keith Obermann, Rachel Maddow, etc).  But, I still take them to be credible for general reporting when it’s not commentary.  Keep in mind MSNBC is owned by GE & Microsoft not exactly bleeding heart liberal hippies…
 
THE EXCERPT:
Tuwaitha and an adjacent research facility were well known for decades as the centerpiece of Saddam’s nuclear efforts.Israeli warplanes bombed a reactor project at the site in 1981. Later, U.N. inspectors documented and safeguarded the yellowcake, which had been stored in aging drums and containers since before the 1991 Gulf War. There was no evidence of any yellowcake dating from after 1991, the official said.

THE LINK

 
 
If none of this convinces you that the guy at the barbecue was off base, then ask yourself this.  If this was such a big story & vindicated Bush for this war, than why isn’t he out there saying so?
I would have attached a link to the blog my friend saw at the barbecue, but I don’t know what it was.
On a related note, seems to me this blogosphere (if that’s what we blogging nerds are calling) is at once one of the greatest aids to democracy in the world and at the same time one of the greatest threats.  Fact is any yahoo can start a blog (like I did).  I make no claim to be an expert and try hard to let readers know when I’m guessing at or assuming something.  I am by no means perfect.  So, if you read this blog, PLEASE fact check me and let me know when I’m off base.  It’s the least we can do as modern day Americans.
It’s tough to know these days what’s fact and what’s some guy or gal’s wacked out opinion.  At least that’s my take…

Eli Manning Vs. Joe Namath

6 Feb

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First, we had all the ’72 Dolphins versus the Perfect Patriots debate.  Of course, that’s gone pretty much silent now in the stunning aftermath of the Giants’ upset of New England’s finest.

Go to fullsize imageSo, let’s talk about the next great debate.  Manning Vs. Namath.  It wouldn’t be fare to compare the younger Manning one on one to the legendary Broadway Joe at this point in Eli’s career.  But we can compare which signature upset was bigger.

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I think this will be the great debate that divides generations.  If you are like me and 40ish, then you either saw or grew up in the aftermath of the AFL Jets’ shocking victory over the heavily favored Baltimore Colts.  For us, I think that game will always be (as Saddam Hussein might have said) “the mother of all upsets.”

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Go to fullsize imageIf on the other hand, you are say 30 or younger, then I bet your closest memory or association with that game is Joe Namath embarrassing himself on Monday Night Football’s sidelines a few years back.  For you, this past Sunday brought you the biggest shocker of all time.

So where does the truth lie?  Were the Giants or Jets the bigger underdog?  Here’s my reasoning and I’m trying to be objective despite being 40ish:

Point Spread

Jets were something like 19 point underdogs.

Giants started out being about 12 point dogs.

Edge: Jets – They were dogs by a full touchdown more than the Giants.

Recent Past

Jets had never played Colts.  AFL and NFL didn’t meet up until Super Bowl in those days.

Giants took on New England in the final week of the regular season and more than held their own.  That game jump-started their belief in themselves and their season.

Edge: Jets – Giants knew they could compete against New England.

Deeper Meaning

Go to fullsize imageJets – Upstart Jets prove that the AFL brand of football is on par with the established NFL.  Joe Willie becomes a star, giving us the pantyhose commercial, the movie CC Ryder and of course the MNF incident.  Getting back to football, it leads to the merger of the two leagues and results in the mega-success of today’s NFL.

Giants – Giants prove that “on any given Sunday…”, which we kind of knew already.  What we don’t know yet, is whether this game will prove that Bill Belichick is simply mortal without the help of his videomen.  What we do know now, is that Tom Brady looks awfully ordinary if you pound him over and over.

Edge: Jets – Giants win was shocking but no one doubted they belong in the same league as the Pats.

Three strikes and you’re out.  In some sports anyway…

Verdict:  Biggest Super Bowl Upset is clearly the Jets in Super Bowl III.  It was and will remain the perfect upset.