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June 24, 2005

How Did Liberals React to 9/11?

By now most of MP's readers have presumably heard the flap over White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove's speech on Wednesday that attacked the alleged reaction by "liberals" to the September 11 attacks.  For those who have been avoiding all media for the last 48 hours, here is the "money quote:"

Perhaps the most important difference between conservatives and liberals can be found in the area of national security. Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war. Liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers. In the wake of 9/11, conservatives believed it was time to unleash the might and power of the United States military against the Taliban.

The debate over Rove's remarks has focused mostly on the 9/11 reaction from liberal political leaders and pundits.  Democrats remind us that the Senate authorized military action against Afghanistan by a vote of 98 to 0 and the House approved 420 to 1.   White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett Republicans argued this morning that when Rove said "liberals" he "cited" only the liberal group, MoveOn.org. But MP is intrigued by a different issue.  How did ordinary, rank-and-file liberals react to the 9/11 attacks? That -- as a pollster I once worked for liked to say -- is an empirical question.

Virtually all of the public pollsters went into the field immediately after the attacks and asked Americans whether the US should take military action or go to war.  While I can find no tabulations by ideology, two polls did provide results at the time by party identification.   Here is a sampling: 

CBS/New York Times, 9/13-14/2001, n=959 adults (source: National Journal's Hotline).

Should the U.S. take military action against those responsible?  Yes: 93% of Republicans, 86% of Democrats, 76% of independents

Should the U.S. take military action against those responsible for attacks, even if it means innocent people are killed? Yes: 74% of Republicans, 64% of Democrats, 67% of independents

What if that meant going to war with a nation harboring those responsible for the attacks, then should the U.S. take military action against those responsible for the attacks?  Yes: 74% of Republicans, 61% of Democrats, 65% of independents

What if that meant thousands of innocent civilians may be killed, then should the U.S. take military action against whoever is responsible for the attacks? Yes vs. No: Republicans 66% to 16%, Democrats 55% to 28%, independents 60% to 19%.

Los Angeles Times9/13-14/2001, n=1,561 adults:

In your opinion, is the United States now in a state of war?  Yes: 74% of Republicans, 70% of Democrats, 66% of independents (Q11)

If it is also determined that the Taliban ruling party in Afghanistan is harboring Osama bin Laden, would you support the United States and its allies retaliating with military action against Afghanistan, even if it could result in civilian casualties, or would you oppose that?   Support: 91% of Republicans, 80% of Democrats, 78% of independents (Q37)

What about Osama bin Laden's organization itself? Do you think the United States should retaliate against Bin Laden's group through military action, or should the United States pursue justice by bringing him to trial in the United States?  Retaliate vs. bring to trial: Republicans 80% to 17%, Democrats 66% to 28%, independents 64% to 27% (Q38)

Thus, in the days after 9/11 overwhelming majorities of both Democrats and Republicans believed America was "at war" and favored some sort of "military action."  Americans of all persuasions were less enthusiastic about military action if it meant all out war or killings "thousands of innocent civilians," but even with these stipulations rank and file Democrats still favored war by a two-to-one margin.  Yes, Democrats were a bit less supportive of waging war than Republicans, but compared to the partisan polarization we see today, the unity on these issues in the aftermath of 9/11 was far more striking than the differences.   

Yes, "some" Democrats expressed reluctance to wage all-out war, but so did "some" Republicans (though not as many).  The bigger point:  The  majority of both Democrats and Republicans believed, as Karl Rove might put it, "it was time to unleash the might and power of the United States military against the Taliban."

Of course, Rove spoke of "liberals" and "conservatives" not Democrats and Republicans, and the results above involve partisanship rather than self-reported ideology.  Not all Democrats are liberals, not all liberals are Democrats.  So it is at least theoretically possible that we might reach different conclusions from tabulation by ideology.  This leads to a suggestion from...

MP's Assignment Desk: The major news media pollsters all have data in their archives from 2001 that they could easily tabulate by self-reported ideology.  Do the results for ideology look like the results above for party?  MP assumes others might like to know.  Sunday morning news show producers (if you're reading), this means you!


UPDATE:  MP Gets (Survey) Results!

The pollsters at CBS News were kind enough to pass along cross-tabulations of their post-9/11 questions by self-reported ideology.  Because of limited time, they did not ask an ideology question on the survey conducted on 9/13-14/2001, but did field a longer survey a week later that included ideology and repeated the questions above. 

I've summarized the findings below, and posted a PDF with the complete results, but they are consistent with the results for party.  The bottom line:  Two weeks after the attacks, 84% of self-described liberals supported "military action" against the terrorists and 75% supported "going to war with a nation that is harboring those responsible."

CBS/New York Times, 9/20-23/2001, n=1216 adults.   Note that the question text below is verbatim from CBS; the wording above came from a Hotline summary. 

Do you think the U.S. SHOULD take military action against whoever is responsible for the attacks?  Yes: 84% of liberals, 93% of moderates, 95% of conservatives.

Do you think the U.S. SHOULD take military action against whoever is responsible for the attacks, even if it means that innocent people are killed? Yes vs. No: liberals 60% to 19%, moderates 64% to 21%, conservatives 76% to 14%.

What if that meant going to war with a nation that is harboring those responsible for the attacks, then do you think the United States should take military action against whoever is responsible for the attacks?  Yes vs. No: liberals 75% to 6%, moderates 83% to 6%, conservatives 89% to 3%

What if that meant that many thousands of innocent civilians may be killed, then do you think the United States should take military action against whoever is responsible for the attacks? Yes vs. No: liberals 62% to 17%, moderates 69% to 18%, conservatives 73% to 15%.

Related Entries - Polls in the News

Posted by Mark Blumenthal on June 24, 2005 at 03:30 PM in Polls in the News | Permalink

Comments

Come now. If you read Rove's comments in context, it's clear that he's not talking about Republicans and Democrats generally, but people who have a specific and coherent ideological POV. Indeed, he specifically mentions MoveOn.org: unless you believe that MoveOn.org is synonymous with the Democratic Party, the polls you cite are not on point.

The reality is, it wasn't more than a few days before we started hearing the usual hand-wringing litany of "Why do they hate us?" and "What can we do to make them like us?" from folks on the Left: to say nothing of incidents like the Katha Pollitt flap, where Mrs. Pollitt wouldn't let her own daughter fly *an American flag* out her window because she thought it too chauvinistic.

I also remember the harrumphing on the left that occurred when we smoked a carload of bad guys with a Hellfire missile: and later, in Afghanistan, we notoriously missed our shot at one of the Al-Qaeda biggies (I forget which one), because some *lawyer* at CENTCOM wouldn't let them take the shot.

As a Republican, I have no quarrel with the vast majority of Democrats: indeed, I welcome their votes, which many of them cast in favor of George W. Bush and the Republican ticket. As a conservative, however--indeed as an American--I do have a serious problem with the idea that we can somehow deal with issues like 9/11 by rolling over to people who want us dead.

So please...let's not rewrite history, shall we?

Posted by: David Hecht | Jun 24, 2005 4:57:06 PM

You state: So please...let's not rewrite history, shall we?

It seems to me that you are the one attempting to rewrite history with a few extreme anecdotal examples rather than the empirical results noted above.

Cognitive dissonance at work here.

Posted by: Cognitive Dissonance | Jun 25, 2005 11:53:58 AM

I remember a couple weekends after 9/11, a group of people marching "against the war"--a war which, incidently, hadn't started yet. It was on CSPAN and MSNBC at the time, and I remember turning in for a few minutes just to see what they had to say. I remember one rather firey speech ending with the crowd chanting, "Stop this racist war! Stop this rascist war!" I remember thinking: we just got attacked and the bodies are still smouldering in teh ground--and we haven't even done anything yet--and we're rascists? For just wanting to fight back?

I think those are the people Rove likely had in mind.

And, incidently, even though Rove didn't say it, those are the people who have a greater voice and more power in the Democratic Party of today than they have ever had before.

Posted by: Keith | Jun 25, 2005 11:58:30 AM

I would direct your attention to this poll from Pew Research. http://www.cfr.org/pdf/CFRPEW.pdf
In late september of 2001, it shows 40% of Democrats (which as you point out is not monolithically liberal) as answering 'yes' to the question, "Might US wrongdoing have motivated 9/11 attacks". This was compared to 48% of democrats who answered no (the remaining 12% said the didn't know). Repupblicans answered the same question as 27% yes, 65% no and 8% don't know. Independants reported 34% yes, 59% no and 11% don't know.
Contrast this to July 2004 when 51% of Democrats answer yes to the same question, 37% no. Republicans at the same time came in at 17% yes, 76% no. Independants split at 45% yes and 44% no.

But if you read way down in the report, you do find a breakdown on conservative vs liberal for this question of "US wrongdoing might have motivated 9/11 attack".
In 2001, 28% of conservative republicans said yes compared to 54% of liberal democrats. By 2004, this had changed to 13% of conservative republicans to 67% of conservative democrats.

So in September of 2001, we see 2 liberal democrats to every 1 conservative republican who this US wrongdoing might have motivated changing to a ratio of 5 to 1.

On the question of "Bush viewed as to quick to deploy military" we find consistant overall measures from october 2002 to 2004 (with a spike saying Bush had done enough for 2003). But while the over all percentage says to quick, there is a huge divide between democrats and republicans. Democrats say Bush is to quick to use military force by 84% to 10% that he tries hard enough on diplomacy. Contrast that to 24% of republicans saying to quick while 70% say tries hard enough.

At most Karl is guilty of not qualifying his catagories with "many liberals" and saying "over time".

Posted by: yetanotherjohn | Jun 25, 2005 3:27:16 PM

Yetanotherjohn: I don't understand your logic in bringing up the "too quick" question. Here's the wording (from http://people-press.org/reports/print.php3?PageID=871):

"In its dealings with foreign countries and its handling of international problems, do you think the Bush administration tries hard enough to reach diplomatic solutions, or is it too quick to get American military forces involved?"

Note that the question doesn't mention 9/11 or terrorism. I would imagine that most of those who responded "too quick" in 2004 were thinking about the war in Iraq, not Afghanistan.

Another relevant set of Pew findings, from http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?PageID=635:

"By comparison, fewer people say that the United States has been unfair in its dealings with other countries in a way that may have led to the attacks. Just 23% of the respondents who were asked this form of the question agreed that unfair dealings by the U.S. may have motivated the attacks, while 64% disagreed. That is virtually unchanged from last September (21%). Twice as many liberals as conservatives say that unfair actions by the United States may have led to the attacks (37% vs. 18%)." But the table also shows that 54% of liberals disagreed with that statement.

Here are wordings for the Pew questions about what motivated 9/11:

"Do you think there is anything that the U.S. did wrong in its dealings with other countries that might have motivated the 9/11 terrorist attacks, or not?"

"Do you think there is anything that the U.S. did wrong in its dealings with other countries that might have motivated the terrorist attacks, or not?”

Note that a "yes" answer does not imply an opinion that any U.S. wrongdoing provided a justifiable motive. I would also point out that there's a big difference between "offer[ing] understanding" to one's enemies and seeking to understand the motives of one's enemies.

Posted by: Paul Brewer | Jun 25, 2005 6:21:55 PM

Two corrections.

Here's the "unfair" question (I accidently pasted the "did wrong" question twice):

"Do you think there is any way that the U.S. was unfair in its dealings with other countries that might have motivated the 9/11 terrorist attacks, or not?"

Second, the findings for the "unfair" question that I mentioned are from 2002, not 2004. Pew did ask the "unfair" question in 2004, as well, though (see the first link in my original comment).

Posted by: Paul Brewer | Jun 25, 2005 6:58:10 PM

Cognitive Dissonance: fine, let's engage the polls on their own ground. I find it...shall we say, revelatory?...that *two to three times as many* liberals as conservatives or moderates (16% versus 5%/7%) are unwilling to commit to military action against "...whoever is responsible for the attacks", ten days after the bad guys turned the WTC into a smokin' hole.

Anyhow, anecdotal data is at least as valid a measure of the validity of Rove's comments in this context as public surveys: other than Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson--who were immediately denounced by pretty much everyone else on the right--can you name *any* conservative who said the equivalent of "We deserved it"? Yet the list of leftists who made such comments goes on and on, and--with honorable exceptions such as Christopher Hitchens--*no one* on the Left denounced such sentiments, when they came from the Left.

Posted by: David Hecht | Jun 26, 2005 12:07:01 PM

Let's pull out the two most offensive things Rove said:

"Liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers."

"Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Sen. Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals."

Both of these are lies: No one has been able to point to liberals who wanted to offer therapy to the terrorists, and Al Jazeera is not broadcasting Durbin's remarks to the Middle East.

As to context in the speech, Rove's defenders can certainly say he meant only MoveOn.org or liberal extremists when he said "liberals", but he hasn't seen fit to release such a "clarification". Are his defenders calling for a clarification? Does anyone really expect that he will clarify his statements? Please.

On the issue of 15% of Democrats being against a military response, so what? Are you accusing the comparable 5/7% of Republicans of having the same motives as the Democrats? There are more alternatives than therapy and understanding, except to those with a completely black-and-white, for-us-or-against-us view of the world. And on the numbers themselves, keep in mind that if there were 3% of Democrats versus 1% of Republicans against military action, or 0.03% versus 0.01%, you could make exactly the same observation: three times as many Democrats against military action. . .

Posted by: RSA | Jun 26, 2005 8:47:51 PM

So if I understand Mr. Hecht correctly, the Liberals Rove is refering to is probably just a small handful of extreem leftist activists.

OK...

Then let's extrapolate the rest of the thought... Rove also said...

Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war.

Obviously, Rove must be refering to an equally small sampling of extreemist right wingers then right David?

You know, trying to justify and rationalize Roves derisive and insulting comments is ridiculous.

His intent and his motives are clear. He referenced Liberals vs. Conservitives - not MoveOn.org vs. Conservatives.

To try to explain this away is almost as insulting as what Rove said.

Posted by: Dan | Jun 26, 2005 10:57:44 PM

an, RSA:

"In the wake of 9/11, conservatives believed it was time to unleash the might and power of the United States military against the Taliban; in the wake of 9/11, liberals believed it was time to… submit a petition. I am not joking. Submitting a petition is precisely what Moveon.org did. It was a petition imploring the powers that be" to "use moderation and restraint in responding to the… terrorist attacks against the United States."

Quote. Unquote. As someone once said, you could look it up.

Next time you intend to criticize, at least get your facts straight.

Posted by: David Hecht | Jun 27, 2005 12:15:09 AM

David Hecht's bit of misdirection is very telling in the context of recent history.
Had the Bush administration actually acted against those who perpetrated 9/11, we would have invaded and pacified Saudi Arabia, not Afghanistan and certainly not Iraq. The hijackers (if we accept the popular theory of the attacks) were primarily Saudi nationals funded by Saudis and aligned with an organization facilitated by the Saudis and the CIA (during the Afghan-Soviet conflict).
These were people who have been long-time family associates of the current president and his father, also the president. Iraq was the unfinished hobby horse war of Bush 41 (per the Glaspie memo), and Saddam's alleged assassination attempt was stopped by (horrors....) Clinton period bureaucrats.
In point of fact, Clinton is the most successful anti-terror president of the last 30 years. Under Clinton and using a law and order structure rather than executive fiat, the millenium bombing was stopped, Rahman and his cohorts were imprisoned (in an aboveboard manner, not in a Soviet Chekist manner), and cooperation with foreign powers was begun and blossomed. Under Bush we have the creation of chaos for chaos' sake, with a subtext of creating opportunities for big businesses allied with the GOP; funded by these businesses and offering a revolving door into government, with ethics investigations mooted and regulations eviscerated, it is truly a return to the 19th century, the "Good Old Days" for laissez faire and robber barony.
The upshot is that if Bush had ever been honest or forthright, there would have been little opposition; but the false pretenses and self serving opportunism of the GOP makes it impossible to support this administration and its ongoing squander and pillage operation. America is at risk from corruption, not terrorism, and the latter serves the former too well.

Posted by: boing!!! | Jun 27, 2005 12:24:35 AM

"Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for
war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare
indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers."
- Karl Rove


You have heard that it was said, "You shall love your neighbor and hate your
enemy." But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute
you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes
his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on
the unjust.
- Jesus of Nazareth


He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me!" In those who harbor
such thoughts hatred is not appeased.

"He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me!" In those who do
not harbor such thoughts hatred is appeased.

Hatreds never cease through hatred in this world; through love alone they
cease. This is an eternal law.
- Buddhism. Dhammapada 3-5


My Lord! Others have fallen back in showing compassion to their benefactors
as you have shown compassion even to your malefactors. All this is
unparalleled.
- Jainism. Vitaragastava 14.5


Of the adage, Only a good man knows how to like people, knows how to dislike
them, Confucius said, "He whose heart is in the smallest degree set upon
Goodness will dislike no one."
- Confucianism. Analects 4.3-4


I should be like the sun, shining universally on all without seeking thanks
or reward, able to take care of all sentient beings even if they are bad,
never giving up on my vows on this account, not abandoning all sentient
beings because one sentient being is evil.
- Buddhism. Garland Sutra 23


What kind of love is this that to another can shift? Says Nanak, True lovers
are those who are forever absorbed in the Beloved. Whoever discriminates
between treatment held good or bad, Is not a true lover--he rather is caught
in calculations.
- Sikhism. Adi Granth, Asa-ki-Var, M.2, p. 474


The sage has no fixed [personal] ideas.
He regards the people's ideas as his own.
I treat those who are good with goodness,
And I also treat those who are not good with goodness.
Thus goodness is attained.

I am honest with those who are honest,
And I am also honest with those who are dishonest.
Thus honesty is attained.
- Taoism. Tao Te Ching 49


It may be that God will ordain love between you and those whom you hold as
enemies. For God has power over all things; and God is Oft-forgiving, Most
Merciful.
- Islam. Qur'an 60.7


Aid an enemy before you aid a friend, to subdue hatred.
- Judaism. Tosefta, Baba Metzia 2.26


Do good to him who has done you an injury.
- Taoism. Tao Te Ching 63


Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
- Christianity. Romans 12.21


God said, "Resemble Me; just as I repay good for evil so do you also repay
good for evil."
- Judaism. Exodus Rabbah 26.2


Conquer anger by love. Conquer evil by good. Conquer the stingy by giving.
Conquer the liar by truth.
- Buddhism. Dhammapada 223


Man should subvert anger by forgiveness, subdue pride by modesty, overcome
hypocrisy with simplicity, and greed by contentment.
- Jainism. Samanasuttam 136


Posted by: KevinK | Jun 27, 2005 6:55:57 AM

Sorry for the rotten formatting, but I think you get the idea. Rove and the Conservitive agenda seems out of step not only with Christ's teachings but just about every major religion.

The odd thing about the Conservative Christian movement is that they expunge all the teachings of Christ. It's really more a Old Testament movement, not based on Christian teachings or Christ at all.


Posted by: KevinK | Jun 27, 2005 7:07:39 AM

Rove and his radical neocons don't know or care about religion. They are godless, worshipping only power and money, and have used their amoral underpinnings to convince poor Christians that they are on god's side. They can do this because in their world their is no punishment for lying and mass murder, since they believe in no god. Bush's religious rebirth is purely pragmatic. He doesn't go to church, and he only prays when others are around to report back to the troops. These people are, with rare exception, the products of very bad or nonexistent parenting, especially Bush and Rove. Whether they are sociopaths or psychopaths I will leave to the experts, but certainly they are strengthened by the willful ignorance and violent tendencies of the Unevolved savages like David Hecht, whose "smoking the bad guys" image is straight out of Hollywood fantasy. As if he knows who the bad guys are. And why isn't he, and many of the other pro-war bigmouths posting from Iraq? What we do know, polls or not, is that right-wing blowhards are, to a man (or woman), cowards who are happy for others to die while they rant and rave about bad guys. That is a proven fact.

Posted by: ronjazz | Jun 27, 2005 9:52:16 AM

David Hecht writes: "Anyhow, anecdotal data is at least as valid a measure of the validity of Rove's comments in this context as public surveys:"

Really? Karl Rove, of all people, would steadfasly disagree with this, if the subject were anything but his most recent slander. Even taking for granted that the terms "liberal" and "conservative" are a convenient shorthand for a much more complex range of beliefs, Karl Rove is still a liar, and you know it, David, as amply demonstrated by your retreat into anecdotal evidence.

A final word of advice: The world is complex. A Sergeant Rock comic book is not. However appealing the childish dialog comprising the latter may be, it's fiction, and is ultimately escapist, which kinda of makes you look foolish when you employ it outside of a comic book.

Posted by: Chris Vosburg | Jun 27, 2005 12:04:45 PM

David Hecht wrote, "Next time you intend to criticize, at least get your facts straight."

I give two excerpts from Rove's speech and identify them as lies; David gives a different quote and says I should get my facts straight. Well, I don't get it, but perhaps I need to buy some rose-colored glasses.

Posted by: RSA | Jun 27, 2005 12:50:59 PM

It would be interesting to compare these post-9-11 numbers with numbers from current polls detailing waning support for the Iraq war.
How did we get from a time when 4 in 5 Americans of all stripes demanded action against our enemy Osama bin Laden to now when 3 of 5 Americans (must include a good number independents and Republicans) want to get out of the war we started against Saddam? Despite leaving the bin Laden problem unsolved, the Bush team started their Iraq adventure with pretty strong support from Americans.
In my opinion, it's that the American people don't tolerate lies or incompetence well, even in the name of patriotism. Though he wants to make it about liberals, Karl Rove and the Bush team have no one to blame but themselves for the sad state of things in Iraq and America.

Posted by: j-hook | Jun 27, 2005 1:36:01 PM

For David Hecht - this is not a polling question, and certainly not a question of the comments being "taken out of context" (is there any defense more tired than that one?).

Instead, this is a question of Rove's character. He got carried away, and clearly misspoke. Now, he refuses to apologize.

He meant to say that some on “the Left” and specifically MoveOn.org (who he mentioned elsewhere in the speech) “saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers.” Instead, he used the word “liberal”, thus attacking liberals, who – as Mystery Pollster has shown - overwhelmingly supported bombing the Taliban and sending troops to destroy Al Quaeda.

Rove got it wrong. Said the wrong thing. Gave the wrong impression. So, Mr. Rove, take some personal responsibility for your actions and apologize. Then, we can consider the matter closed.

Posted by: Richard Ford | Jun 27, 2005 1:42:45 PM

Mr. Hecht and his allies in the Bush administration are currently very happy people. The commentators on this thread have been passionately parsing the words of a known propagandist, and re-plowed old ground while extrapolating statements and ascribing meaning to phraseology and nuance.

This tedious debate about Karl Rove, in fact, could go on indefinitely.

Meanwhile, no one's discussing the Downing Street Memos. Which, by the way, document that the Bushies premeditatedly lied us into war.

Karl wins again.

You know, it's almost as if we on the side of the angels, after all this time and evidence, still don't understand how this slimebag works. Or maybe, like atheists and agnostics, we just can't bring ourselves to believe that the Devil really exists.

Posted by: Barry Champlain | Jun 27, 2005 10:11:23 PM

I think there are percentage of conservatives who happen to be Republicans who believe that military force is the way to go to solve any international problem. Similarly, there are liberals/democrats who think war should be avoided at all costs. How would pro war conservative/Republicans answer if asked, "Our enemy is Al Qaeda and we must retaliate, if two wars will not destroy them, would you want to wage those two wars?" With the amount of our national resources committed to the task in almost three years, are we not failing in our objective?

Posted by: Neal | Jun 28, 2005 3:59:42 AM

I think there are a percentage of conservatives who happen to be Republicans who believe that military force is the way to go to solve any international problem. Similarly, there are liberals/democrats who think war should be avoided at all costs. These numbers are reflected in the polling. How would pro war conservative/Republicans answer if asked, "Our enemy is Al Qaeda and we must retaliate, if two wars will not destroy them, would you want to wage those two wars?" With the amount of our national resources committed to the task in almost three years, are we not failing in our objective?

Posted by: Neal | Jun 28, 2005 4:01:09 AM

As a European who is married to an American and who admires Americans' patriotism I feel a deep sense of sadness as to where the Bush administration has led the world. I've been reading the vitriole bandied back and forth in this noticeboard and ask myself where did Mr Bush's pledges to unite Americans of all political persuasions go? Where is his promise to reach out to the world? Following 9/11 there was an unprecedented wave of support for the USA and anguish for its loss. Karl Rove's remarks epitomise the Bush Administrations prime reaction to any dissenting view have wasted this legacy; it seeks to lash out and demean - as was done to France. The world in general now views the Bush government with suspicion; the good will has seeped away. There is still a huge well of sympathy for the USA over but we're all a little tired of Mr Bush saying 'trust me...and if you don't we're going to get you too'. The fact remains that Bush and my Prime Minister, Blair, lied about the threat of terrorism in Iran. It is a fact that there were no WMD and it is a fact that terrorism was not supported by Sadam.It is a fact that both Bush and Blair said these were the prime reasons for going into Iran. Sadam is an evil man but this is a world of many evil dictators.

Posted by: J Hudson | Nov 5, 2005 4:12:06 PM

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