Thursday, March 15, 2007

Key 9/11 suspect "confesses" his guilt

If any American seriously concerned about his country's security wants to know how damaged that security has become since Bush opened Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, they need only read this story.

The alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks has confessed to his role in them, and 30 other terror plots around the world, the Pentagon says.

"I was responsible for the 9/11 operation, from A to Z," said Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a transcript of a US hearing at Guantanamo Bay prison camp.


He also said he had planned attacks on Big Ben and Heathrow airport in London.

I laughed when I read this. Not because I don't take the matters being discussed here seriously, but because - having held Khalid Sheikh Mohammed under the conditions he has been held for the past number of years - it wouldn't surprise me if they got him to confess to being Humpty bloody Dumpty.

We have witnessed what they have done to Jose Padilla, so all other "confessions" will be viewed in a similar light.

The conviction of these men is meaningless. No-one can feel any less or any more safe, because no-one can possibly have any faith in confessions that were extracted from men held under the conditions of Mohammed's confinement.

This is the perfect example of why torture is wrong and counterproductive. A man who the US government tell us was the mastermind of 9-11 has just confessed to a series of abominable crimes... and I don't believe him. I have no more faith in what he has said than I would if he had confessed that the moon was made of green cheese.

Bush and his cohorts have totally undermined their own credibility by the methods they have used and the conditions under which these men have been held.

He also claimed to be behind plots to assassinate the late Pope John Paul II and former US President Bill Clinton.

Many of the operations, including plans to attack Heathrow Airport and Big Ben in London, never happened.

There is also a rumour that he planned to kill Little Red Riding Hood, although this has not been confirmed.

This is the final proof that, once you start torturing prisoners, sensible people stop listening to what you get them to say.

That's why the very hint of torture is counterproductive.

What Mohammed told the tribunal:

· I was member of al-Qaida council

· I was director for planning and execution of 9/11, fr om A to Z

· I was commander for foreign ops

· I was directly in charge ... of cell for biological weapons, and follow-up on dirty bomb ops on American soil

· I was responsible for shoe bomber operation to down two US planes

· I was responsible for Bali bombing

· I was responsible for second wave attacks after 9/11: California; Chicago; Washington; Empire State, NY

· I was responsible for operations to destroy American vessels in the Hormuz, Gibraltar, and Singapore

· I was responsible for planning operation to destroy Panama canal

· I was responsible for planning assassination of ex-US presidents, including Carter and Clinton

· I was responsible for planning operation to destroy Heathrow, Canary Wharf and Big Ben

· I shared responsibility for assassination attempt on John Paul II in Philippines

· I was responsible for operation to assassinate President Musharraf

Click title for full article.

12 comments:

Dr. Strangelove said...

Bush has turned what should have been justice into he said/she said between the US government and al Qaeda. Its quite sad.

Ironically, the Bush admin's attempt to pin the tail on the donkey backfired here. KSM did quite well to get his tirade out at the end and will do a lot to gain some sympathy and support for his cause. That's yet another symptom of the Bush admin's failure in the "war on terror".

The al Qaeda guy has about the same credibility as the government that is holding him - sad.

Kel said...

I read your article on this after I had written mine. It is bizarre how he got his message out and yet his confession is ultimately meaningless.

As you rightly argued, this proves nothing other than the need for due process. Without it, confessions and convictions mean nothing. They certainly can't help to make anyone feel safer.

Anonymous said...

His confession was not coerced because we didn't need a confession. We knew he did it and the evidence was incontrovertible.

Still, you're right. We shouldn't have given him a tribunal where he could have a public voice. We should have treated him like the jackal he says he is: Torture him to learn where his lair and the rest of his pack are and then take him out and shoot him. There is no need for a public catharsis by rehashing all of his crimes in court.

What we tortured him for was information that helped us to stop his organization. Information we KNEW he had because of his position in al Qaida. Information we KNEW would stop further terrorist attacks against innocent civilians. It may have been a distasteful act, but it was necessary. No amount of hyperbole and theoretical musing will change the necessity of placing him on a waterboard. It was either torture him or allow al Qaida to continue operating unmolested. There was no third option.

Giving him a voice was a mistake, but it was less of a mistake than for you to run around defending the "civil rights" of an animal. You have placed your ideals above the lives of innocent people and you need to reprioritize. First come the rights of the victims and the innocent (even at the expense of the rights of the guilty). Then come the rights of the guilty.

Kel said...

You have placed your ideals above the lives of innocent people and you need to reprioritize.

They are not only my ideals, they are the ideals that your nation was founded under. Are you saying that you never really meant all that? That the US is actually a fraud? That the constitution means nothing?

What a strange American you are. And save me the "difficult times call for difficult actions" baloney, it is when under attack that you define yourself. It's easy to believe all that stuff when you are at peace. America is attacked for the very first time in her history and assholes like you throw in the towel instantly.

You should be ashamed.

Anonymous said...

Your ignorance of American law is only surpassed by your anemic knowledge of history. Look up Pearl Harbor, Battle of Lexington, and Ramzi Yousef.

As for the ideals of our nation, the rights declared in the Declaration of Independence (life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness) were never intended to be absolute rights. Nor are the rights defined in the Bill of Rights in the Constitution. The founding fathers recognized the necessity of imprisonment, forfeiture of property, and even execution for the safety of society and the dispensation of justice.

You have bought into the mindset of Neville Chamberlain - a mindset of appeasement rather than confrontation. Mohammad was not tortured for a confession, none was needed, he was tortured for information that would stop his compatriots and save innocent lives. Should we not stop a crime from happening if we have the power to do so? Should we not save innocent lives if it is within our strength to do so? There is no shame in doing what must be done to protect the weak and the innocent.

"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last." You have failed to recognize the reality of the war we are in while you sleep soundly within your ivory tower unaware that jackals stalk the halls. You hope to placate them by throwing them the innocent in Iraq, the innocent in Israel, and the innocent in Afghanistan in the hopes that they will not return to stalk the subways of London.

As for us, we have not thrown in the towel - we have not yet begun to fight.

Kel said...

Your ignorance of American law is only surpassed by your anemic knowledge of history. Look up Pearl Harbor, Battle of Lexington, and Ramzi Yousef.

I, of course, meant the first time the American mainland was attacked. Pearl Harbour is not on the mainland and a battle against the British for independence is also nowhere near what took place on 9-11.

The founding fathers recognized the necessity of imprisonment, forfeiture of property, and even execution for the safety of society and the dispensation of justice.

Of course they did. No-one ever said that those things were not neccessary, but they are protected under habeas corpus. I have the right to know why I am being held and I have the right to have my imprisonment questioned in front of a jury of my peers.

You have bought into the mindset of Neville Chamberlain - a mindset of appeasement rather than confrontation.

Love how you insane fuckers always imagine yourselves as Churchill. And it is not appeasement to say that torture is wrong. Indeed, it is barbarism to argue the opposite. Almost as barbaric as those savages you are supposed to be fighting.

Tell me, if this is a war to save our civilisation - as we are constantly being told - why do we have to give up our values in order to save them?

Should we not stop a crime from happening if we have the power to do so? Should we not save innocent lives if it is within our strength to do so?

You don't have any proof that a single life has been saved by torture.

You have failed to recognize the reality of the war we are in while you sleep soundly within your ivory tower unaware that jackals stalk the halls.

You are a certified grade A nutcase. You have totally bought into the bogus War on Terror.

You hope to placate them by throwing them the innocent in Iraq, the innocent in Israel, and the innocent in Afghanistan in the hopes that they will not return to stalk the subways of London.

No, it's the actions of lunatics like you who support Bush's bogus war that have helped to kill all those people. How many died needlessly in Iraq based on a pack of lies? Lies that you no doubt repeated like a fucking parrot at every person you could prior to the Iraq war.

As for us, we have not thrown in the towel - we have not yet begun to fight.

Really? Have you signed up then? Or are you waging this war bravely from behind your computer screen? And have you even glanced at an opinion poll recently? Do you realise that most Americans, thanks to the lies Bush told to enable the Iraq war - and the complete balls up he's made of it since invading - that most Americans do not share your outlook? Indeed, your outloook is so far from what most Americans now think that you could be labelled an extremist. So you carry on dreaming of your endless wars to come. You and your cronies heard from the American people at the last election. They don't want your endless wars. And Bush can whine all he wants but Congress isn't going to let him march into Iran. No matter what your Israeli friends would like you to do.

Anonymous said...

I, of course, meant the first time the American mainland was attacked.

Ah, of course you meant the mainland. You would never make a hair-brained stupid remark without thinking about whether or not it was true. Your argument that an attack on Pearl Harbor is not a valid example because it was not on the mainland is a pointless distinction to cover your poor critical thinking skills.

I never said that 9/11 was the same as the war of Independence. I was simply pointing out your fallacious argument that America had never been attacked.

I did notice that you didn't have the nerve to answer the one example that is directly comparable to 9/11 - Ramzi Yousef. I wonder why that is. Could it be that you're avoiding admitting that you're accusation has no validity? How dishonest...

I have the right to know why I am being held

He knew why he was being held. Only a fool would think differently.

and I have the right to have my imprisonment questioned in front of a jury of my peers.

Why is this a problem for KSM? He's a terrorist. His crimes are not civil crimes and he has publicly and repeatedly admitted to them before and after his capture. It is no longer a question of guilt, it's a question of punishment. The United States (as well as many other countries) recognizes that sentencing does not require a trial by peers after a confession.

you insane fuckers always imagine yourselves as Churchill

I never said I was Churchill. I simply agree with him and I pointed out the relationship between Chamberlain's mentality and your own. Clearly your emotional response and ad hominem attack to my arguments shows a lack of logical thinking - like Chamberlain.

And it is not appeasement to say that torture is wrong.

It is appeasement to argue for coddling the enemy at the expense of the defense of your own nation and the innocent lives there. You have avoided the key question. Should we not save innocent lives if it is within our strength to do so?

I argue that we should. You argue that the ideal is more important than the lives of the innocent and so the lives of the innocent are less important than the ideal. Your ideal then results in the deaths of innocent men, women, and children. How can you justify this?

By granting the terrorists more rights than the victims you are appeasing the terrorists. Appeasement is defined as satisfying the demand of another - you are granting the terrorists more regard and rights than the innocent. You are satisfying their demands and furthering their cause. Your complaints in their favor divides our unified front and grants them the belief that we will eventually crack because you do not have the force of will to do what it takes to win.

Tell me, if this is a war to save our civilisation - as we are constantly being told - why do we have to give up our values in order to save them?

I never said this is a war to save civilisation. It is simply a war. Once the battle has been engaged the reasons behind it no longer matter. It must be fought with conviction and force equal to or greater than that used by the enemy or we cannot become victorious.

And I am not giving up my values. I am, in fact, keeping them. The highest value is to protect the lives of the innocents - not to protect the imagined rights of an admitted terrorist.

You don't have any proof that a single life has been saved by torture.

You haven't read the confession have you? A number of those planned attacks were stopped after he was captured. Where do you think that information came from?

In addition, there are numerous cases in history where military commanders were able to extract from enemy combatants essential information through torture to gain the upper-hand in battle.

Torture is not useful in gaining a confession, however it is extremely effective in gaining verifiable military intelligence. Every military intelligence agency in the world knows this.

You are a certified grade A nutcase. You have totally bought into the bogus War on Terror.

And yet, you still have not proven the case that torture is always wrong and never justifiable. You have accepted a position without logical reasons for doing so. Essentially you have made an emotional argument, not a reasoned one. Why should I accept your emotions as a governance of the actions of my country or myself?

You claim that I have bought into a "bogus War on Terror". How is it bogus? I take KSM and Ossama bin Laden at their word. They say that they have declared war on the United States and Israel. Why should I believe any differently?

Have you signed up then?

I have not. I am not physically able to fight in the war due to disabilities. However, if I could I would. Instead I fight with my money. I also fight on the battlefield of ideas. As the wise man once said, "The pen is mightier than the sword." However, I have no compunction against taking up arms and fighting terrorists should the need arise.

Still, this is a red herring. My personal actions do not validate or invalidate my arguments. At the most they would display that I am possibly a hypocrite, however even a hypocrite can be right in what he asserts.

For you to win this argument you must prove that torture is never right and, specifically, in the case of KSM he was tortured unjustly. Simply asserting that torture is wrong and so the torture of KSM is immoral is circular reasoning. Don't you have any reasons for your beliefs?

Do you realise that most Americans, thanks to the lies Bush told to enable the Iraq war - and the complete balls up he's made of it since invading - that most Americans do not share your outlook?

Truth is not defined by vote. It is debatable that Bush lied to begin the war. However, I will not take issue with your statement that he screwed-up the occupation. He was too soft on them and that is always a mistake when dealing with the Arab culture. They understand force - not compassion.

Indeed, your outloook is so far from what most Americans now think that you could be labelled an extremist.

Labels are arbitrary distinctions and have nothing to do with the truth.

So you carry on dreaming of your endless wars to come.

I dream of victory. I dream of a day when Ossama bin Laden lays in the dust. I dream of a day when people like you value the lives of the innocents more than they value the forfeited rights of terrorists.

You and your cronies heard from the American people at the last election.

And they heard from us. Again, right and wrong are not defined by vote.

They don't want your endless wars.

Prove that the war is endless. And even if it is that does not mean that it is wrong. I would rather fight for the innocent people of my nation than to bow to Sharia law under Islamic extremists or to watch the radical Islamic leaders take control of Iraq and enact that same Sharia law.

And Bush can whine all he wants but Congress isn't going to let him march into Iran.

This is a non-issue. Bush has not declared that he is going to "march into Iran". And Congress has already given tacit approval to Bush to attack Iran should Iran launch an attack on our ally Israel by removing just such a prohibition from pending legislation for troop funding.

No matter what your Israeli friends would like you to do.

Ah....now we get to it. You believe that the real problem is that we have brought all of this upon ourselves by being friendly with Israel. You believe that the Arabs are an oppressed people by the capitalistic west and their Jewish minions.

How sad. In the end you are not so much the idealist you claimed to be - you are simply an unthinking bigot.

Kel said...

and I have the right to have my imprisonment questioned in front of a jury of my peers.

Why is this a problem for KSM? He's a terrorist.

Because the same rules must apply to all of us. We are all equal under law. No matter what crime we suspect someone to have committed they have the right to be regarded as innocent until found guilty. And, the fact that KSM is a "terrorist" as you say, should have been very easy to prove in front of a jury. However, the fact that your government tortured him, made a jury trial impossible, as no jury will accept evidence obtained under torture.

The United States (as well as many other countries) recognizes that sentencing does not require a trial by peers after a confession.

You have already rejected the opinions of the international community be embracing torture, you can't now claim legitimacy by quoting other country's opinions at me. You appear to want to have your cake and eat it. Do you believe in international law? I suspect not.

you insane fuckers always imagine yourselves as Churchill

I never said I was Churchill. I simply agree with him and I pointed out the relationship between Chamberlain's mentality and your own. Clearly your emotional response and ad hominem attack to my arguments shows a lack of logical thinking - like Chamberlain.

Ergo, you put yourself on the side of Churchill and anyone who opposes you on the side of Chamberlain.

Should we not save innocent lives if it is within our strength to do so?

I argue that we should. You argue that the ideal is more important than the lives of the innocent and so the lives of the innocent are less important than the ideal. Your ideal then results in the deaths of innocent men, women, and children. How can you justify this?


If I were to threaten to take your daughters eyes out in front of you, could I get you to tell me that black was white? What if you refused and I removed one of her eyes? Would you tell me black was white then?

My point is that you can get people to admit to anything under torture, but the information gathered by such a process is almost always worthless.

So your basic premise is fatally flawed.

And yet, you still have not proven the case that torture is always wrong and never justifiable. You have accepted a position without logical reasons for doing so. Essentially you have made an emotional argument, not a reasoned one. Why should I accept your emotions as a governance of the actions of my country or myself?

I don't think I have made an emotional argument, I have made a logical one. If I can get you to say anything I want simply based on the amount of pain I inflict on you, how can I trust anything you say? You will say anything to stop the pain. Therefore the technique you are proposing - if it's aim is to gather accurate information - is seriously flawed. You cannot rely on any information gathered by such a process.

Have you signed up then?

I have not. I am not physically able to fight in the war due to disabilities.

What disabilities?

Do you realise that most Americans, thanks to the lies Bush told to enable the Iraq war - and the complete balls up he's made of it since invading - that most Americans do not share your outlook?

Truth is not defined by vote.

No, but democracy is. And in any democracy the wish of the majority of the people holds sway. Whether you agree with it or not. That's the whole idea of democracy.

I dream of a day when people like you value the lives of the innocents more than they value the forfeited rights of terrorists.

Ah, now you employ Tony Blair's flawed argument. If innocents are to have more rights than suspects, then we have essentially given up the belief that all men are innocent until proven guilty. This was Blair's argument for "victim's rights", which was essentially simply a way to increase the conviction rate. I prefer to have courts run in a way that reflects how I would like them to run were I, or even you, ever to be wrongly accused of a crime. If you were falsely accused of rape, would you like "the victim" to have more rights than you? Or would you like both to be equal under the law?

Prove that the war is endless.

Dick Cheney refers to it as "perpetual war".

I would rather fight for the innocent people of my nation than to bow to Sharia law under Islamic extremists or to watch the radical Islamic leaders take control of Iraq and enact that same Sharia law.

Do you seriously believe that bin Laden and others want to take over the States and have you live under Sharia law? Can you provide any quote where bin Laden has stated that as an aim?

No matter what your Israeli friends would like you to do.

Ah....now we get to it. You believe that the real problem is that we have brought all of this upon ourselves by being friendly with Israel. You believe that the Arabs are an oppressed people by the capitalistic west and their Jewish minions.

How sad. In the end you are not so much the idealist you claimed to be - you are simply an unthinking bigot.


The anger caused in the Arab world by the US choosing to arm an occupying force is undeniable. And one does not have to be a bigot to acknowledge this fundamental truth.

Indeed, this sentiment was recently expressed in your own Congress by King Abdullah of Jordan who referred to it as "the core issue".

http://what-i-see.blogspot.com/2007/03/king-abdullah-of-jordan-to-us-congress.html

And you are surely engaging in a euphamism when you claim that the US is "friendly" towards Israel. You are way beyond "friendly". You are arming an occupying force who brutalise the occupied people and have done so for the best part of forty years. Your country is also going against the vast majority of world opinion by vetoing almost every attempt by the international community to force Israel to stop the occupation. Your "bigot" remark was a cheap one, as I presume you are assuming that all criticism of Israel must come from some anti-Semitic viewpoint. I can assure you that I am not anti-Semitic, it is in Israel's best interests that she follow international law.

However, the linkage between 9-11 and your country's support of Israel has already been well documented by Mearsheimer and Walt amongst others. Indeed, bin laden himself has explicitly pointed it out, though I notice that your President gives other reasons for why you were attacked, including the ludicrous, "They hate our freedoms" baloney.

There are some, and you appear to be amongst them, who would like to discuss what is happening and why through a very narrow prism, a prism that forbids us to discuss bin Laden's actual reasons for attacking you. His reasons are already stated. I know it suits your preconcieved notions for Israel and Palestine to be excluded from any discussion of the war on terror, but even Tony Blair has acknowledged the link, so one would have to be wilfully ignorant to call anyone who brought up such a link "a bigot".

Anonymous said...

they have the right to be regarded as innocent until found guilty

Or until he has made a confession or public statements making it clear that he is guilty. In which case their is no need for a trial.

You have already rejected the opinions of the international community be embracing torture, you can't now claim legitimacy by quoting other country's opinions at me. You appear to want to have your cake and eat it. Do you believe in international law? I suspect not.

Not a problem. The United States recognizes that sentencing does not require a trial by peers after a confession. Since KSM made public announcements before he was captured that he was responsible for the attacks that is a confession. Since he is in the custody of the United States Government there is no need for a trial by his peers.

I never said I was Churchill. I simply agree with him and I pointed out the relationship between Chamberlain's mentality and your own. Clearly your emotional response and ad hominem attack to my arguments shows a lack of logical thinking - like Chamberlain.

Ergo, you put yourself on the side of Churchill and anyone who opposes you on the side of Chamberlain.

This is a false alternative. There are other options than to say I am on the side of Churchill.

If I were to threaten to take your daughters eyes out in front of you, could I get you to tell me that black was white? What if you refused and I removed one of her eyes? Would you tell me black was white then?

My point is that you can get people to admit to anything under torture, but the information gathered by such a process is almost always worthless.


You are correct that you can make someone say anything under torture. However, that is not the goal of torture/interrogation in the case of gaining military intelligence. The goal is to gain verifiable information for strategic and tactical use. Such extreme examples are not applicable in the current discussion since the purpose of the interrogation was not to gain a confession but to gain military intelligence - a point which continually seems to elude you.

Have you signed up then?

I have not. I am not physically able to fight in the war due to disabilities.

What disabilities?

This is immaterial. As I said, "My personal actions do not validate or invalidate my arguments. At the most they would display that I am possibly a hypocrite, however even a hypocrite can be right in what he asserts."

No, but democracy is. And in any democracy the wish of the majority of the people holds sway. Whether you agree with it or not. That's the whole idea of democracy.

But your argument was that I am wrong because the majority say I am wrong. That is a fallacious argument by your own admission.

Ah, now you employ Tony Blair's flawed argument. If innocents are to have more rights than suspects, then we have essentially given up the belief that all men are innocent until proven guilty.

Your generalization fails to address the specific case in our discussion. KSM's public statements before capture clearly indicate that he is not innocent.

Prove that the war is endless.

Dick Cheney refers to it as "perpetual war"
You've already said he is a liar. Now you're citing Dick Cheney? Besides, even if he says it is perpetual (and was not using hyperbole) that does not prove that it truly is perpetual.

Do you seriously believe that bin Laden and others want to take over the States and have you live under Sharia law? Can you provide any quote where bin Laden has stated that as an aim?

Yes.

""We should fully understand our religion. Fighting is a part of our religion and our Sharia [an Islamic legal code]. Those who love God and his Prophet and this religion cannot deny that. Whoever denies even a minor tenet of our religion commits the gravest sin in Islam."

"Hostility toward America is a religious duty, and we hope to be rewarded for it by God . . . . I am confident that Muslims will be able to end the legend of the so-called superpower that is America."

"Every American man is an enemy to us."

The anger caused in the Arab world by the US choosing to arm an occupying force is undeniable.

Uninformed anger spurred by Arabic propaganda is not a valid argument and is not the responsibility of the United States or Israel.

Indeed, this sentiment was recently expressed in your own Congress by King Abdullah of Jordan who referred to it as "the core issue".

Arab racism against Israel goes beyond the occupied territories. The call throughout the Arab world is not to have Israel removed from the occupied territories, but to have Jewish forces destroyed. For them, all of Israel is occupied and the Jew has no right to live on Arab land.

King Jordan's statements are only an indicator of this continued hostility and racism.

And you are surely engaging in a euphamism when you claim that the US is "friendly" towards Israel. You are way beyond "friendly".

Yep, we are. We stand by those who stand by us. There is nothing here to be ashamed of. In the past we have clearly used our position to stop Israeli action when it was appropriate (such as during the Suez crisis), however we see no such need at this point.

You are arming an occupying force who brutalise the occupied people and have done so for the best part of forty years.

We are arming a nation that was unjustly attacked on June 5, 1967 - June 10, 1967 by Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Algeria. Those nations have never repented for their actions and have never made reparations. In addition, they continue their rhetorical attacks refusing to recognize Israel despite the international law you are so fond of citing.

Israel has been forced to defend itself against Arab sponsored terrorist attacks by occupying Palestinian land where the rule of law does not exist. Continued Arab funding of terrorism has further forced Israel to maintain control over the Palestinian regions to ensure the safety of its own citizens.

Your country is also going against the vast majority of world opinion by vetoing almost every attempt by the international community to force Israel to stop the occupation.

So? Once again, your appeals to majority are not valid arguments in determining truth.

Your "bigot" remark was a cheap one, as I presume you are assuming that all criticism of Israel must come from some anti-Semitic viewpoint.

No, my "bigot" remark was a considered evaluation of your attitude. If you think "bigot" only means "racist" then you do not understand the full definition of the word. Here, let me provide you with the other definition from the Oxford Dictionary to improve your anemic grasp of vocabulary:

"obstinately convinced of the superiority or correctness of one's own opinions and prejudiced against those who hold different opinions"

However, to be bigoted also caries the meaning of being prejudiced against a person or people which you clearly are (against Israel) in favor of the Arab states based on their propaganda and not the evidence provided by the history of Arab aggression against Jews.

it is in Israel's best interests that she follow international law.

Only if that law is just.

However, the linkage between 9-11 and your country's support of Israel has already been well documented by Mearsheimer and Walt amongst others. Indeed, bin laden himself has explicitly pointed it out

Yep. They hate our ally and so they hate us. They also hate our culture, our values, our commerce, and our religion (refer to above quotes by bin Laden).

though I notice that your President gives other reasons for why you were attacked, including the ludicrous, "They hate our freedoms" baloney.

It's not baloney. It's a clear understanding of the radical Islamic mindset against a pluralistic society.

There are some, and you appear to be amongst them, who would like to discuss what is happening and why through a very narrow prism, a prism that forbids us to discuss bin Laden's actual reasons for attacking you.

Once battle is engaged the reasons for the war no longer matter. Bin Laden is not going to stop his attacks against the United States if we simply withdraw support for Israel.

However, if we must get to motives let's begin with the Arab world's refusal to accept Israel's status as a nation. Let's begin with their history of imperialism that stretches back for 1,500 years. Let's begin with the radical Islamic concepts of Jihad. Let's begin with something that happened before the 1970's.

I know it suits your preconcieved notions for Israel and Palestine to be excluded from any discussion of the war on terror

Nope. It's central. Arabs hate Jews and believe in a manifest destiny for not only Arabs, but also for Islam. They display this by inciting the Palestinians to carry out terrorist attacks, funding Osama bin Laden, the PLO, and other terrorist organizations.

even Tony Blair has acknowledged the link,

Of course he acknowledged the link. However, he is not willing to let his thinking stop with the Arab propaganda's key talking point. He's willing to look a bit further into the issues. Something that you do not seem willing to do.

so one would have to be wilfully ignorant to call anyone who brought up such a link "a bigot".

One would have to be biased and prejudicially assured of his own superior view (bigoted) not to recognize that the discussion should go beyond the Palestinian/Israeli conflict as played out in the daily newspapers.

Kel said...

they have the right to be regarded as innocent until found guilty

Or until he has made a confession or public statements making it clear that he is guilty. In which case their is no need for a trial.

There are many high profile cases in which nutters claim responsibility for things they did not do. It is why we rely on a teensy thing called evidence. The sheer scale of things that this man has confessed to is simply not credible. Perhaps it has occured to you that, as he knows he's going to die anyway, he's simply giving it the large one. Or perhaps not, you believe bin Laden wants you to live under Sharia law, there's no end to your gullibility.

Ergo, you put yourself on the side of Churchill and anyone who opposes you on the side of Chamberlain.

This is a false alternative. There are other options than to say I am on the side of Churchill.

Anyone following this thread knows what you implied.

You are correct that you can make someone say anything under torture. However, that is not the goal of torture/interrogation in the case of gaining military intelligence. The goal is to gain verifiable information for strategic and tactical use. Such extreme examples are not applicable in the current discussion since the purpose of the interrogation was not to gain a confession but to gain military intelligence - a point which continually seems to elude you.

You make a distinction that does not exist. Of course, I could just as easily make up anything about military intelligence as I could about anything else. And as he knows more about al Qaeda than the US do, torturing him does not guarantee that you will get anything other than your own halfbaked notions verified. There is no guarantee that he will tell the truth.

I have not. I am not physically able to fight in the war due to disabilities.

What disabilities?

This is immaterial. As I said, "My personal actions do not validate or invalidate my arguments. At the most they would display that I am possibly a hypocrite, however even a hypocrite can be right in what he asserts."

That would rather depend on what the hypoctrite is asserting. You said, "As for us, we have not thrown in the towel - we have not yet begun to fight." The clear implication was that you were the warrior and the rest of us were Chamberlain-like appeasers. You have no intention of fighting at all, choosing instead to hide behind your non-declared "disablity". There are many ways you could assist, people with disablities could do deskwork, or volunteer in a thousand different ways.

You choose to fight bravely from behind your keyboard whilst comparing others to Chamberlain, apparently seeing nothing ironic in this stance.

Do you seriously believe that bin Laden and others want to take over the States and have you live under Sharia law? Can you provide any quote where bin Laden has stated that as an aim?

Yes.

You then list a series of quotes from bin Laden none of which backs your theory that he wants to take over the US and force you all to live under Sharia law. Indeed, he appears to want an end to your empire, not to take it over.

The anger caused in the Arab world by the US choosing to arm an occupying force is undeniable.

Uninformed anger spurred by Arabic propaganda is not a valid argument and is not the responsibility of the United States or Israel.

The anger is not uninformed, and as it is caused by Israel's illegal actions and the US's backing of those illegal actions then it is the responsiblity of both of those country's.

You are arming an occupying force who brutalise the occupied people and have done so for the best part of forty years.

We are arming a nation that was unjustly attacked on June 5, 1967 - June 10, 1967 by Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Algeria.

What you have written is factually false and shows a woeful ignorance of the Middle East. Israel was NOT attacked. Israel did the attacking.

If you can't get basic stuff right then this conversation will soon be over.

it is in Israel's best interests that she follow international law.

Only if that law is just.

You might pause at this point and ask yourself why your nation is hated. You embody all those values that make it so despised. Arrogant, over bearing, ignorant of any Middle Eastern history that you haven't been spoon fed from an Israeli perspective, demanding that Iraq, Iran and Syria follow every letter of international law, yet declaring that Israel should only follow whatever international law she sees fit. Your hypocrisy oozes from you, just as your arrogance blinds you to that same hypocrisy.

What gives your nation the right to say which laws - that the entire international community agreed upon - and which your nation signed up to - you will decree that Israel should or should not obey?

Arabs hate Jews and believe in a manifest destiny for not only Arabs, but also for Islam. They display this by inciting the Palestinians to carry out terrorist attacks, funding Osama bin Laden, the PLO, and other terrorist organizations.

Then why did the Saudi peace plan offer Israel full recognition and trade with ALL Arab states?

One would have to be biased and prejudicially assured of his own superior view (bigoted) not to recognize that the discussion should go beyond the Palestinian/Israeli conflict as played out in the daily newspapers

You don't even know what happened in 1967 my friend, so you can cut the patronisation. Tony Blair has said that solving the Israeli-palestine crisis will do more than any other action we could take to defuse terrorism. And he's right. That's the core issue here. And ignorant people like yourself are being very bad friends to Israel by pretending that she can carry on as she has been doing.

And I know your arrogance tells you that Israel has your protection and will always be able to behave this way, but that presupposes your position at the top of the tree is permanent. Every empire before yours has fallen. Every single one of them. Israel would do well to sort this out whilst she has your backing, because the day you fall she will discover that the rest of the world does not accept her colonial bullshit as easily as you lot have done.

Anonymous said...

Ah...you got me on who did the attacking. If you assume an attack is only with weapons and not economically as was done with the Egyptian nationalization of the Suez Canal Company. In addition, Israel was under attack by the Fedayeen supported by the Egyptians. Israel responded militarily, but they were not the aggressors. However, I will grant that I phrased the statement very poorly.

Still, it is clear that you are avoiding the real issue here. The original thread claimed that KSM's confession was invalid because he was tortured. You have failed to prove the point.

You continue to defend a known terrorist who is at least partially responsible for the deaths of thousands.

You have implicitly argued that Osama bin Laden was justified in attacking the World Trade Center on 9/11 because of the political relationship between the United States and Israel.

You have further failed to provide substantive arguments (rather than emotional arguments) for why torture can never be condoned. It may distasteful, but that does not mean it is never necessary in certain rare circumstances.

You have further resorted to personal attacks rather than reason in your replies when it was clear that you could not formulate a reasonable answer to the questions posed. You might pause at this point and ask yourself why you must answer each of my replies with an ad hominem abusive rather than a reasonable response supported by verifiable propositions.

As you have indicated, the conversation has quickly degraded from these core issues and no longer serves any purpose.

Kel said...

The person who initiated the ad hominem attacks was yourself (very early on in this conversation) when you stated, "Your ignorance of American law is only surpassed by your anemic knowledge of history." From that point on I merely responded in kind.

And I love how you choose to bow out of this conversation portraying yourself as a beacon of reasonableness. In actuality, you are a supporter of torture, a practice that you have sought to defend here. This stance must place you amongst the most reactionary and dangerous individuals that I have ever conversed with. You certainly hold political beliefs that place you at the most extremist point of the political spectrum, which is why your attempts to misrepresent my views on KSM and bin Laden carry so little weight.

I have pointed out why torture does not work, although an extremist like yourself chooses to dismiss such arguments as "emotional".

I am hoping that you post anonymously because there is, deep within you, some residual reservoir of shame at the stance's that you have adopted.

I have never met anyone who is pro-torture before. It is such an appallingly unethical stance that it renders you sociopathic.

And I certainly make no apology for the anger that you have engendered in me.

Given the appalling opinions that you hold, I am sure you must be very used to that response.