United States Republican candidates and wars

This video from the USA says about itself:

Jeb Bush Promises He’ll Be As Stupid About Iraq As His Brother

11 May 2015

“At some point in recent months, members of Jeb Bush’s campaign staff probably sent him a strategy memo, encouraging him not to embrace his brother too closely. Given recent events perhaps the former governor missed the word “not.”

The Washington Post reported yesterday on the Florida Republican’s latest effort to connect his unannounced candidacy to some of his brother’s most striking failures.

Former Florida governor Jeb Bush would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, as his brother and then-president George W. Bush did, he told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly in an interview to be aired Monday.

“I would have [authorized the invasion], and so would have Hillary Clinton, just to remind everybody. And so would almost everybody that was confronted with the intelligence they got,” the likely 2016 presidential contender said.

To top this off, the unannounced presidential candidate added, “[S]o just for the news flash to the world, if they’re trying to find places where there’s big space between me and my brother, this might not be one of those.””

Read more here.

GOP ESTABLISHMENT TARGETS EACH OTHER As Jeb Bush trades barbs with Marco Rubio and Chris Christie, the race looks to New Hampshire independent voters as the potential key to the whole primary race. [WaPo]

From the Bernie Sanders election campaign in the USA today:

If you’re watching tonight’s Republican presidential debate, then you’ve heard a lot of talk about “carpet bombing” cities, sending our men and women into another endless war, and completely closing our borders to women and children who have lost everything but the shirts on their backs.

In short, it was a debate designed to scare you into voting for candidates who want you to forget what this election should be about.

It’s about keeping our families safe, it’s about fixing an immigration system to unite families, restoring our broken economy, and taking back our democracy from the billionaire class.

From the Huffington Post report on the debate:

Republican presidential candidates spent a fair bit of time at Tuesday night’s debate arguing about whether it was smart or moral to kill innocent family members of terrorists.

Naturally, Donald Trump was in favor of the carnage.

“We have to be much tougher, we have to be much stronger than we’ve been,” said the Republican front-runner. “We have people that know what is going on … I would be very, very firm with families. And frankly, that will make people think, because they may not care much about their lives. But they do care, believe it or not, about their families’ lives.”

And also in favor, it appeared, was Dr. Ben Carson, who compared civilian casualties to the pain inflicted on brain cancer patients as they undergo surgery to have a tumor removed.

“You have to be able to look at the big picture and understand that it’s actually merciful if you go ahead and finish the job rather than death by a thousand pricks,” he said.

It was a surreal moment: The candidates took it for granted that collateral damage was to be expected, international norms and treaties be damned. And, for a brief few seconds, the crowd seemed to rise in appreciation. When co-moderator Hugh Hewitt, no shrinking violet when it comes to conservatism, asked Carson if he was “OK with the deaths of thousands of innocents children and civilians,” the crowd mercilessly booed.

Donald Trump Rally Turns Ugly: ‘Light The Motherf**ker On Fire!’: here.

Scotland: Donald Trump loses wind farm legal challenge: here.

GEORGE PATAKI DROPPED OUT OF THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE If you didn’t know the former New York governor was in the Republican primary, then you probably understand why he had to drop out. [Amber Ferguson, HuffPost]

By Patrick Martin in the USA:

Republican “debate” in Las Vegas

A two-hour commercial for militarism and fear-mongering

16 December 2015

The fifth televised debate among the candidates for the Republican presidential nomination amounted to a two-hour infomercial for war and dictatorship, featuring ten spokespersons touting their noxious wares—the nine candidates and CNN itself.

CNN moderator Wolf Blitzer framed the event from the start as a debate focused on “how to keep America safe” from the allegedly omnipresent threat of terrorism. The various reactionary proposals from the Republican candidates—from increased spying on the American people to saturation bombing of much of Syria and Iraq—were discussed exclusively from that standpoint.

The program was premised on the notion that the killing of 14 people in San Bernardino, California on December 3 by alleged ISIS followers was the central issue confronting the American people. According this paranoid, even demented, outlook, every American is now in imminent danger of similar terrorist violence,

The ‘logical’ equivalent of extrapolating from the San Bernardino murders to a general ‘war’ in which supposedly there are Islamic terrorists under all beds in the USA would be extrapolating from the racist murder of nine African American people in a church in South Carolina. White supremacist Dylann Roof did that. He has a white complexion. Extrapolating from Charleston, South Carolina, like Republican candidates do from San Bernardino, would lead to the conclusion that all people with Dylann Roof’s complexion are potentially murderous terrorists. What a ‘logic’ [sarcasm off]

San Bernardino shooting: Attackers did not express support for Isis on social media and were not part of terror cell. Reports wrongly claimed Tashfeen Malik, who killed 14 people with her husband, pledged allegiance to Isis on Facebook: here.

and therefore the supreme—indeed the only—political issue is how to prevent future attacks and destroy ISIS and its supposed sympathizers within the United States.

Leading up to the debate, there had been suggestions in the media that some of the Republican candidates would challenge the current frontrunner, billionaire Donald Trump, over his call for a complete ban on Muslims entering the United States, as well as other fascist-style statements calling for the abrogation of constitutional rights.

Instead, there was near-unanimity in support of the general direction of Trump’s comments, putting the United States on a wartime footing and treating immigrants and Muslims as a potential fifth column. At least five of the other candidates were asked directly about objections they had expressed over the past week to Trump’s “no Muslims” demand. They either evaded the issue entirely or, like Jeb Bush, limited their criticism to quibbling over the practicality of an outright ban on Muslims entering the United States, particularly the stooges of imperialism in the Middle East like the monarchs of Jordan, Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf oil states.

The candidates vied with each other to present more aggressive military options—a no-fly zone over Syria, carpet-bombing of ISIS-controlled territory, including major cities like Raqqa and Mosul, the dispatch of American ground troops, even (from Ohio Governor John Kasich) a military mobilization on the scale of the first Persian Gulf War, in which more than half a million US troops were deployed. All agreed on dramatic increases in US military spending, already by far the largest in the world. Several declared they would authorize the shooting down of Russian warplanes if they violated a no-fly zone, regardless of the danger of triggering a war with a nuclear-armed power.

Domestically, there was unanimous agreement on barring all Syrian war refugees from entering the United States, as well as a consensus on removing what few restrictions remain on spying by the FBI, NSA and other intelligence agencies, the recruitment of IT and Internet companies to serve the military-intelligence apparatus, and the arrest and jailing of anyone expressing sympathy for ISIS on social media (a category defined so broadly that the expression of opposition to a wider US war in Syria and Iraq could be criminalized).

9 thoughts on “United States Republican candidates and wars

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