clinton vs. Sadam - Food for thought

Stephen A. Frye safrye at CONCENTRIC.NET
Tue Nov 18 14:17:48 MST 1997


>
>1. clinton campaigned against Bush claiming he spent too much time on
>foreign affairs. Rush predicted clinton's presidency would be defined by
>foreign affairs. Sadly the soccer moms bought clinton's line and could not
>see the implications of Rush's prediction.

I'm still not clear what a soccer mom is.

>
>2. Does clinton have the international respect to hold the Arab colition
>together or even reassemble it?

Probably not.

>
>3. Does Israel trust clinton like it did Bush enough to refrain from
>retaliation should Sadam launch SCUDs at them again. If Israel attacks Iraq
>the colition will fall apart for sure. That was the biggest fear during
>Desert Storm.

I don't believe it had anything to do with trust of our administration.  It
had to do with the fact that they knew the risk.  My guess is regardless of
who is sitting in the Whitehouse, they will never sit by and be attacked
again - without retaliation.

>
>4. Will Sadam, knowing what a jerk clinton is in the foreign affairs area,
>test the theory of 3?

Who ever can predict the actions of an idiot?

>
>5. Has the fact that the US elected a traitor, war protestor and one that
>has written that he "loathes the military" to the presidency influenced
>Sadam to test clinton?

Same as answer to #4.

>
>6. Had Bush been re-elected in '92 and/or Dole in '96, would Sadam have even
>tried what he is attempting?

Any guess would be just that - a complete guess.

>
>7. Is the social engineered military, that clinton has gutted since in
>office, capable of launching a successful precision strike against Iraq like
>it did in Desert Storm? Is the morale, training and respect for its
>commander-in-chief sufficient for the troops to be successful without
>excessive casualties?

The gutting started before Clinton.  Look at the history of base closures
and reductions.

You seem to question the ability of today's military.  I think they would
rightfully take issue with that question.  How much first hand knowledge do
you have of the training and expertise of today's soldiers?  I was just at
Fort Benning and plan to visit Fort Drum.  According to Drill Sergeants at
Fort Benning, the training is better now than it ever has been.  A glance
at the number of casualties in Desert Storm would seem to re-inforce that
idea.

I am a Vietnam Veteran.  Respect for my commander-in-chief was NEVER an
issue or reason for my enlistment or conduct.  Nixon was president at the
time - and I had no respect for him at all.  There are certain things you
just cannot pawn off on Clinton.  If the military fails - put the blame
where it belongs - on politicians in general.  Talk to senior officers and
enlisted - personally - and see the frustrations they experience when
politicians step in and try to run what should be run by soldiers.  When
pork replaces common sense.  When re-election is the basis for decisions
affecting the military - not military strength and solid leadership.  Goes
on and on.  And it most definitely precedes the present administration.

The success of Desert Storm to which you referred lies with General Powell
and General Schwartzkopf.  It was General Powell's insistence to use
"overwhelming force" that allowed our highly trained military to be so
victorious in such a short time with so few casualties.  Bush wanted to use
"sufficient force" - words very similar to our involvement in Vietnam.

>
>8. What if the troops say they believe a strike against Iraq is morally
>wrong and refuse? What can clinton say?

What should anyone do if they believe their conduct is morally wrong?  Is
the oath at enlistment an oath to compromise our personal morals?

I consider this a pretty difficult question.  When one enlists, one knows
the risks.  Specifically - war.  But most soldiers - at least all the
sailors and soldiers that I know, still have a point they won't go beyond.
It is their moral limit - an individual choice.  Doesn't matter one iota
what Mr. Clinton would say. We freely criticize liberals for immoral
conduct.  Tell me Dennis, which actions of war are moral, and which aren't.
 What should a soldier do when confronted with the immoral?  Will the
military code support a soldier who refuses to obey an immoral order?

I don't know the answer.  I don't know how I would react in a similar
situation.

You have posed a series of interesting questions.  My guess is that most of
the folks in this group are civilians.  Why not ask soldiers?

Stephen Frye



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