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Masterful capture of the ambience or lack thereof the the mind of Bush and the total lack of care on his part of the chaos he has unleashed and will leave in the wretched wake of his Presidency. It would of only been "harsh" if you had morphed Bush into the "Anti-Christ" he is as per W. B. Yeats' "The Second Coming".
Iraq was never a 'unified' country to begin with. Iraq from it's birth post WWI was never an amalgamation of the ethnicities that lived in within the boarders. There is no Iraq national interest; there is a Kurdish interest (which is doing quite well, post-invasion), and diverse and rival Shiite and Sunni interests (as Mr. Fiore quite adeptly points out in the animation.) On top of all of this, the anyone with the means (middle class) has left the country, joining an increasingly impoverished refugee population. I personally don't think the people currently trapped can 'pull themselves together' after 5 years of quasi-anarchy. The US presence provides at least some structure for a centralized government, although it is clear that the government will be weak once or if it can reach maturity. Our citizens will die; Iraqi people will die, and we will continue to spend billions per week. Without the US presence, the people are left to choose sides and fight and die until some equilibrium of Sunni/Shiite/Kurd boundaries is reached. Many, many more Kurdish, Sunni and Shia people will die for many, many years. Now that's a Texas-sized legacy!
Do you know how long it would take for any American, young or old, male of female,to organize and take our country back once it has been occupied? About 15 minutes.
Five years and they still can't come up with enough people who give a -------.
On the news, I see so many young Iraqis walking the streets. Why aren't they in the army defending their country.
Enough already...Let's go home.
Stop comparing our relatively homogeneous culture to the Iraqi population that has been factionalized and repressed for the better part of thirty years. Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld-Powell illegally started this war, and they should be tried for perjury and war crimes, but that doesn't change the reality of what we did to Iraq, the state of the almost non-existent Iraq middle class (the segment of the population that will do the most work in rebuilding their country) and the potential of Iraq when it can achieve stability. Iraq still contains the world's 2nd or 3rd largest oil and natural gas deposits.
After more than 5 years, it's no longer a question of whether we should "stay the course" or not? The question should be framed as to "How do we extract our forces from a war that should have never happened?" Bush, Chaney, Rumfeld, and the rest should go down in American History as "War Zealots," even equal to the Taliban and Islamic Radicals.
Love, what I call the *Prozac voice*. It's all so damned true
"Withdrawing is an admission that, despite the U.S.'s best intentions, Iraqis are too violent, too hateful, and ultimately too backward to maintain a functioning democracy." I find this comment very disturbing. I don't know where to begin with the phrase "the U.S.'s best intentions," but it appalls me that someone would blame what has happened to Iraq on the Iraqi national character. If someone invaded our country, toppled our leader, whether we liked him or not, moved in with troops, and destroyed our economy and cultural life, unleashing the divisiveness that had been simmering under our surface for years (think Red and Blue States), I'd like to see how well we Americans would do at not seeming hateful and backward (we're already too violent).
So... you're either saying that after all of that, if foreign occupiers caused all-out civil war by deposing the U.S. president, then either:
1. You believe that Americans would be able to pull themselves together and overcome their enmity within a few years with the common goal of rebuilding the country.
2. You believe that after such a coup, despite the occupiers' presence, Americans would be too violent, too hateful, and ultimately too backward to maintain a functioning democracy.
I'm not saying one is right and one is wrong, but these are your only two choices. If your stance is 1, then you either believe that Americans could accomplish something that Iraqis couldn't (*gasp* bigotry!), or, you believe that since Americans could overcome, so could the Iraqis, and they just need more time (*choke* pro war!)
Otherwise, your stance is 2, and you agree with me that if the foreign occupiers pulled out of America after half a decade of strike/counter-strike red-state/blue-state slaughter, they might be doing so because they felt Americans were too violent, too hateful, and ultimately too backward to maintain a functioning democracy.
Pray tell what exactly disturbs you about the argument?
(I suppose I should admit that I'm currently more 1 than 2...) ;)
One of the best so far. That calm, sacchrine voice is too much. I have another suggestion for Bush/Chaney retirement, a cruise to the war crimes tribunal in the Haag, Holland.
Nice work Mark!
An editor found it harsh protraying the President in a pool during "wartime" is my guess.
Not only the graphics, but also the voices, music and sound are well-done, IMHO!
The animation does not strike me as overly harsh ... given that the realities are harsh in the first place.
But ... for the sake of playing along, I'd guess that the editors raised concerns about the air transport with flag-covered caskets.
I do not think that if you asked any of the families of the 4000 KIA, they would say it is to harsh.
"White House Life" has now been posted. Let me know what you think, and see if you can guess which section one of my editors thought was a bit too harsh. Heh-heh.
Wonderful and witty satire (and unfortunately not far from the truth). Not to harsh at all!
Too harsh? I dunno.
The "they'll fight and die while you can enjoy your retirement" has a bit of an edge, although I'll not deny there's truth to it.
It seems unfair to criticize Bush for the factious nature of the Iraqi government. He spearheaded the effort to get into Iraq, so rightfully condemn him for that (along with a huge chunk of the rest of America, I might add). But any way you look at it, pulling out of Iraq is admitting that stability in Iraq isn't realistic. Withdrawing is an admission that, despite the U.S.'s best intentions, Iraqis are too violent, too hateful, and ultimately too backward to maintain a functioning democracy.
And even though people have many opinions about why Bush is staying in Iraq, perhaps we should give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that he truly believes that democracy is possible for all people. Like having faith that a drug-addicted family member will eventually get their act together, even though they're destroying themselves and taking you down with them.
The war is destroying America, and I wholly agree that pulling out is for the best. But doing so will surely plunge the Iraqis into all-out civil war. Given this, isn't the argument to stay the course not one of compassion, hope, and faith in the Iraqis?
P.S. Not to nag, but after the Dems got voted into congress all the cartoonists were chiding Bush about being a lame duck. You later criticized him about not being a lame duck with his vetoes and actually doing something, and now it seems as though you're criticizing him for not doing anything again. Perhaps we should just stick with praising his early retirement, lest he go back into the 'doing' mode. ;)
Thanks, as always, for the animation.
So your assuming that if the people of a nation cannot form a functioning democracy that they are too violent, too hateful and ultimatly too backward?
That's what I find a bit harsh and blunt actually.
Each faction on its own, be it sunite, shiite, pro-american or Al'Quada (forgive any spelling mistakes) probably believes itself to be the solution for future Iraq. In that right and observed without bias, they are all progressive people who want nothing more and are trying very hard to establish their own idea of peace and tranquillity, to form some kind of system of goverment.
You are quite correct, when geographically looking within the borders of the country, to say that the country in itself is violent, spitefull and backwards. However, you cannot apply the same conclusion to the people itself. That would be biased.
During the American civil war, America was violent, spitefull and backwaterly.
During world war two, all of Europe was violent, spitefull and backwaterly. Heck, all of the world was.
However, you cannot draw the conclusion that American and European people are all retarded, even during those times. In hindsight their combined actions may have seem retarded and could have oh so easily been avoided back then, but I'm sure the Allies and the United states all had perfect reasons to continue their mass stupidity for reasons that justified the means.
To say that one side in any conflict is stupid and backwaterly, betrays a partiality.
It all is a matter of opinion when it boils down to it.
The Iraqi people are not stupid, or full of hatred, or even backwater.
They simply are not doing what you wanted them to do: build a democracy. This makes them stubborn.
American forces are retreating because, let's face it, the American idioligy has not been accepted by poeple with a philosphy unlike your own. To say that they are stupid, hatefull and backwater because is completely your own opinion.
No to accept Democracy does not equall stupidity persay, but I guess that's American thinking.
~ A big European Mark Fiore fan.
((Each faction on its own, ... system of goverment.))
R: Um... yeah. By tranquilly blowing each other up. I'm not denying that there's a power struggle going on.
((You are quite correct... That would be biased.))
R: The country is violent, etc. but the people inhabiting the country... aren't...?
((During the American... of the world was.))
R: Yeah. It was war. It lasted for four years.
((However, you cannot draw... justified the means.))
R: I didn't call the Iraqis 'retarded' or 'backwaterly'. I said that if the U.S. pulls out, it will be because Americans have given up all hope that the separate Iraqi interests can coalesce to form a functioning democracy. My personal opinion is that when this happens, the Sunnis, Kurds, and Shiites will suicide-bomb eachother into oblivion. If you believe otherwise, I'd be more than happy to hear why.
((To say that one side in any conflict is stupid and backwaterly, betrays a partiality.))
R: If you mean to say that my calling one side of a conflict stupid and primitive betrays my pretence of impartiality:
1. In the general case, it is quite possible for a person to remain impartial and still conclude that one side is stupid and primitive.
2. Given that Iraqis have been killing each other for 30 times as long as it took to fight and resolve the American independence war, the U.S. civil war, World War I and World War II combined, I'm not too sure that the conclusion is unwarranted.
3. None of this matters anyway, since I neither claimed that I was impartial, nor did I call the Iraqis 'stupid' or 'backwaterly'.
((The Iraqi people are not stupid... them stubborn.))
R: They're not stupid. They're too violent, too hateful, and ultimately, too backward (this means 'marked by a retiring nature') to form a functioning democracy. (Maybe. Who knows; they might still pull it off.) You can summarize all this as 'stubborn' if it makes you feel any better.
((American forces are... completely your own opinion.))
R: As opposed to what... my citing factual evidence that the Iraqis are hateful? I'd love to be a fly on the wall for the ethics approval of that research paper. "On Why the Iraqis are So Darn Violent: A Case Study". Of course it's my opinion! ^.^
((...but I guess that's American thinking.))
R: I'm not an American. ;)
killing each other because you come from a different faction of the same religion equals stupidity. hell, BELIEVING in a religion equals stupidity.
"hell, BELIEVING in a religion equals stupidity."
that's pretty harsh and untrue my friend. I'm ATHEIST and I don't agree that being religious makes you stupid.
I don't think that it's unfair to criticize Bush for the problems the Iraqi government is having. Back when Dick Cheney was working for Bush Sr., he went on record many times stating that there was no upside to removing Saddam from power during the first Gulf War due to the fact that Saddam was the only thing keeping things stabilized with the different sects and factions. How did they suddenly forget that in the decade between? Or was it just that they knew that they were setting up their retirements because they planned to fill Halliburton and oil companies coffers and then get some nice fees for consulting, sitting on the boards, or some other service? They have to know that the present military course isn't working and they need to try something else. Say what you want about them, but I don't think that Bush/ Cheney et.al. are that stupid. I just think that they're unwise and evil. Staying the course in this manner is in no way being compassionate...it's just killing and maiming more troops and Iraqis. A wise man will not continue to perform the same action in the same situation and expect different result.
And Bush is being a lame duck on things that he shouldn't be, but not being a lame duck on thinks he should be. At this point, I agree that he should just call it a day now.
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