Ron Paul: Honest or Nuts?

I ask this because obviously of Represenative Paul’s comments in yesterday’s debate. First of all, I’ve got to say this is the bravest thing someone could have said at a Republican debate-or a Democratic one for that matter. Heck, if he had said he was a homosexual Muslim communist, he couldn’t have been booed more. However the substance of his claims are largely inaccuratate or distorted and comes straight out of Noam Chomsky’s playbook.

Because the Saudi government allowed the US to establish bases in their country. And its not as if the US has an airbase in Mecca or anything.

I’m not sure where Mr. Paul is coming form here, because we did not engage in World War II-style carpet bombing raids in Iraq-perhaps he means the Iraqis starving to death from the US embargo?

The truth is Osama Bin Laden attacked us for both American policies in the Middle East and our culture-the US is the very antithesis of Islamism. We believe in women’s rights, religious tolerance, free market capitalism, and so on all of which are abominable to the Islamists. After all terrorist attacks have been carried out not just in Western countries but in Islamic countries which are considered insufficiently “Islamist”.

He’s a Republican.

End of.

First of all, welcome back.

You do realize what he said would be something you’d heartily approve of. Or do you just hate all Republicans?

Honest. Wrong, but honest. To honest for his own good, really.

Hate is an emotional state. I enjoy emotions when they are pleasurable but they’re not a cause of my behavior.

He could say the Sun will rise tomorrow. That would be true, but the fact that he is a Republican means that he has no problem ordering the killing of hundreds of thousands of innocent people and digging the financial grave of this country just for his personal ego gratification.

That’s what the Republican Party is all about, and he has acknowledged it already.

[Thanks for the welcome back, by the way]

Did you not read the OP? Ron Paul pretty much says that US policy in the Middle East caused 9-11, isn’t that an idea you agree with? :rolleyes:

I did not, nor I ever will. I have no time for Republican fodder.

Your interpretation of his comments is not very useful. No Republican will ever admit to the culpability of US foreign policy in causing 9/11. It’s a political suicide. Your “pretty much” may fly on this forum but it is certainly not the point of his comments for the voting public of the next Pres election.

I don’t think our culture has much, if anything, to do with it. They certainly didn’t object to our culture when we were covertly helping them drive out the atheist Soviets in Afghanistan. Nor are they really attacking places like Japan or the Scandinavian countries, and if those countries aren’t antithetical to radical Islamism, I don’t know what is.

Soviet rule in Afghanistan (if sustained) certainly would have secularized the country a great deal and granted women’s rights, law and order, etc. The USA didn’t care about that stuff; we just wanted to undermine communism. Ironically enough, I think successful Soviet control of Afghanistan would’ve been better for the US.

I think a very large part of why they target us was our support of Israel. A lesser reason being our various meddlings in the region that they took umbrage to. And, in a sense, it was also the result of the situation in Afghanistan, where terrorism and radical Islamism were empowered.

As for Paul? I don’t fully agree with him here, but I wouldn’t call him nuts on this issue. I would certainly call him nuts for other reasons, but not this.

Estimates of Iraqi civilian casualties due to the invasion range from 100,000 to 1,000,000 dead. The one million figure seems pretty suspect to me (as does the Lancet’s figure of 600,000) just because its so far out of range of the other numbers. The military’s own estimate of civilian deaths is over 100,000. So, technically Paul was incorrect by saying “hundreds of thousands,” when he should have said “a hundred thousands.”

That’s still a fucking shitload of blood on our hands, though. Just the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing dropped 500,000 tons of bombs on Iraq. QIN, it is nice you believe all the hype the government feeds you. I guess someone has to.
Bin Laden said he was acting because of the American presence in Saudi Arabia and the other Middle East countries. I guess that does not count.

I don’t think he’s particularly honest. By politician standards I don’t think he’s especially dishonest.

None of that is in dispute, so your comment is nonresponsive. It’s indisputable that Al Qaeda types are outraged by the fact that the U.S. put soldiers in Saudi Arabia. It’s true that the Saudi royals allowed it, but AQ also hates the Saudi royals and thinks they’re decadent Western stooges. So they are consistent on that point.

He said nothing about carpet bombing. It’s true the United States has been at war in Iraq for almost a decade. The fact that it’s not carpet bombing is beside Paul’s point.

No, he meant that the war and the ensuing chaos killed hundreds of thousands of people. It also displaced a couple of million more. This stuff is really beyond dispute.

That’s not the true. It’s also true that the U.S. has been at war with Iraq for nearly a decade, and it’s absolutely true that U.S. soldiers in Saudi Arabia were a major grievance - arguably even the chief grievance - for Al Qaeda. By arguing against these things, which are plainly true and beyond dispute, you’ve compromised your credibility in making this argument. It’s true that Islamic fundamentalists regard the U.S. as decadent and disgusting, but the whole “they hate us for our freedom” thing was always nonsense. I’m not sure this responds to what Paul is saying either, but I can’t tell from the partial quote.

That’d probably be Israel. They do talk about it an awful lot.

It was a factor. The people responsible for the attacks are the ones who hijacked the planes and their supporters, but Middle East foreign policy is a major reason Middle Eastern terrorists have tried to attack the U.S. and other Western nations. Put that way you wonder why everybody would even argue otherwise.

That was just code words for “I hate your freedoms”

Then I’m directing you not to post in this thread again. If you don’t plan to read the OP or say anything about the topic, your participation is not welcome.

Paul is exactly right. Osama didn’t attack us because he “hates our freedom,” but because we had bases in Saudi Arabia. That was the reason he explicitly gave. Our cultural values had nothing to do with it.

And yes, we did bomb thousands of Iraqis for years for no reason. It’s asinine to deny that and it takes a special kind of obtusity to not understand why that would annoy them.

Quoting the OP:

This partial quote came from Rick Perry, not Ron Paul, which is why it’s confusing.

Actually, neither is correct. Bin Laden attacked the U.S. because he wanted to become a leader of the Muslim world, and he believed that attacking the most powerful non-Muslim country would give him instant street cred.

All politics are local.

His stated reasons, and the stated reasons of AQ were that they wanted US bases out of Saudi. Attributing any motives beyond that is just wild speculation.

I find myself agreeing with this notion. You have to take some things at face value. I’m sure there WERE ulterior motives, such as wanting more power, or whatever, but I’m pretty sure his grievances were more than just random shit he made up off the top of his head.

According to an interview I watched (granted translated - sorry no cite), this is true.

Next thing you’ll say is that Bush invaded Iraq because of WMD. After all, that’s what *he *said.

Since when do politicians ever do things for the reasons they say they do things? So he said something; that doesn’t mean it’s the truth. Frankly, *any *theory as to why he did it is wild-ass speculation, including his stated reasons. Or are you saying that terrorist masterminds are inherently honest people?