Why the violent opposition to this *particular* war?

I’ve come down on the side of being against this looming war in Iraq. Which should be no surprise to me, since I was also against the war in Yugoslavia and intervention in Haiti. To me, these are all the same in principle, and I oppose them all equally in principle as an isolationist and noninterventionist. I wonder what it is about Iraq that brings out the violent protesters that wasn’t there with previous American conflicts abroad?

Is it the possibility that rich oil barons will get richer? I got news for you, what do you think happened after WW2? It brought us out of the Depression, making the remaining rich industrialists richer as a result. The cost? Oh, just about 300,000 American lives (not to mention the people killed by American soldiers), mostly from the lower classes. Yet WW2 is the darling of all those who favor military interventionism, the one everyone points to and says “now there was a justified war.” The potential war against Iraq isn’t a patch on WW2 in terms of potential loss of life and potential acquisition of wealth by the ultra rich.

At least some of the radical socialists held the same opinion of the war in Yugoslavia as they do of the war in Iraq. The opinion of this socialist organization…

…was that the war was being waged over – you guessed it – oil. Apparently that region has large untouched deposits of oil and natural gas. Think the boys over at Exxon Mobil would like to get their hands on some contracts to extract that oil and gas? I bet they would. But where was the public outrage and violent protest over that war, where were the the “No War for Oil” sign-toters, the mass organized protests?

As with just about every war ever fought, certain people are going to benefit (mostly the rich) and certain others are going to suffer (mostly lower classes dying on the battlefield.) So why only now do we get the radicals coming out of the woodwork? Why do we have right now, before a single shot has been fired or the first casualty hits the tally board, the level of protest that wasn’t around even in Vietnam until the death toll there had already hit tens of thousands?? If it’s just a matter of trying to stop it before it gets rolling, where was the similiar outraged protest against the NATO action in Yugoslavia, which was much more analogous to Vietnam, as both involved intervention in a messy civil war?

Perhaps this latest wave of protest isn’t all idealism and ideology. Perhaps in part it’s just a seething hatred for President Bush. See the signs those protesters were holding? See how many of them were specifically Bush-oriented? Plenty.

This isn’t to say that there aren’t some protesters who have a consistent approach in opposing war, and I’m sure they might have been the silent few who opposed Yugoslavia and all our prior wars of imperialist intervention. But a big portion of this new group of radical protesters aren’t being honest with themselves. This potential war in Iraq isn’t a lick different than all the other wars in our history that occured on foreign soil. Questionable motives are part of every war. The death of innocent civillians is part of every war. The rich getting richer is part of every war. Iraq is nothing new, nothing we haven’t seen before. So why is this war getting people so agitated, when it’s just more of the same?

As with just about every war ever fought, certain people are going to benefit (mostly the rich) and certain others are going to suffer (mostly lower classes dying on the battlefield.)

Let me remind you, and others whom may have forgotten… Elvis Presly Joind themilitary during WW2, and everyone knows who he is. He was not only rich, but famous too. Yet he did not ask for any special treatment. He wanted everyone to recognize him as an equal to all of those “poor” fellers that died on the battlefield.

Yes WW2 brought us out of the depression, and not only the rich benefitted from it, if that was the case then we would have still been in a depression after the war, because only the rich would be holding the cards. The war stimulated the economy, the militray needed great amounts of metal, and fuel, and the companies that possesed such materials needed more workers to help fulfill their quota.

My grandmother and her family suffered from the depression just like everyone else, yet when the war started she landed her a sweet job at building battle ships. (a little sarcasm thrown in there).

And the deal with this lates group of protesters coming out and shouting this is a war for oil. The ones who started this rant looked at a few "key points (in the same minds yurning for a chance at the head of the United States) Iraq is a middle eastern country with oil (although it does not have nearly as much as kuwait), Pres. Bush is an oil man (noturally, he’s from Texas (Yeehaw)), those who started this rant saw these key points as a chance to start a protest to undermind the people, and try and cause the President’s PR (public rating) to decline. Did it work? Yes, but once he spoke again, it went back up. He is a straight forward guy, with a powerful voice, even if it lacks a certain umph to get your attention right off the bat, but if you listen, you just may stay hooked until he’s finished (sorry rambling again).

And the Vietnam war was definately a political war. The politicians dealt their hands with soldiers’ lives, instead of cards. Bush isn’t trying to make this a plitical war, if that was his intention, then he would have stopped what he was doing when his pr began to drop.

Well, as I’ve said before, one of the key arguments seems to be that that the proposed war would not only be counterproductive to the intended goal of decreasing terrorism, but would actually increase the chance of WMDs getting used on the U.S. and their allies far more than if another, non-martial action were taken. We’ve never really fought an enemy with that particular threat before, in my memory (yes, the Gulf, but this was pre-9/11 and with more overt support than now). While counteraction has always been a feared result of war, it’s gained a new prominence these days what with Osama and all. Heck, if the CIA is afraid of something, and says so publicly, do you blame others for being afraid of the same thing?

There’s also the image of Bush (fair or not), though not necessarily a “seething hatred” as you put it, plus the international community’s reaction, which I think is pretty rare as wars go.

Elvis Presly? I trust this brave man survived the rigours of battle and was able to relax in the years following the war and listen to the music of Elvis Aaron Presley who I am sure WOULD have volunteered for WW2 if the army had been taking 6-year-olds following Pearl Harbour.

And thats Pearl Harbour (the place) just in case you had it confused with Pearl Bailey (the singer).

Because George W Bush represents everything that every smelly, liberal, berkinstock wearing hippy with a clever placard stands for. He’s a white, Republican, conservative, rich take-no-shit Texan. He comes from a big oil family. He represents big business.

So what you basically have is all these people who are against Bush and his policies. These also happen to be the same people who like to spend their time making placards and standing around protesting stuff in general. Add in all the other cause-heads who want to feel important and you have a very loud, very vocal minority protesting the war.
That, and I don’t recall too many other wars that took this long to get going.

Well, the government apparently took the threat of Communist sabotage within our country pretty seriously. They spent a great deal of time trying to root it out. I imagine some of them must have considered that our continuing wars in East Asia just might have been motivating increasingly hostile response from would-be Communist terrorists. Now those Communist terrorists maybe existed, maybe didn’t, but the threat was perceived just as it is now. We imagined Communists poisoning water supplies decades before we ever had our first nightmares of Osama’s boys doing similiar things. So I’m not so sure that’s as much of a distinction as you suggest.

And fear of retaliation doesn’t seem to be the primary motivation behind these protesters, at least it isn’t the dominant message they’re sending.

Blast from the past: How about the Gulf War in 1991? I don’t recall anywhere near as much protesting about that. Even with no Sept. 11 to rally patriotism around, it seemed like in general America was much more behind that war. Can anyone else provide more insight into that?

The opposition to the invasion of Iraq is not particularly violent or hysterical. Indeed, the opposition is pretty soft and seems to consist of people saying that the reasonable alternatives have not yet been exhausted and/or a UN sanction is a necessary prerequisite to actual shooting. So far as I know we haven’t closed down any colleges yet or turned the National Guard lose on campuses with live ammunition. We do have a fair number of people trying to shout down dissent with the old claims of lack of support for war is support for Saddam and that anybody not wholly and unequivocally in favor of this adventure hates the United States–but that sort of hyperbole is to be expected on both sides of the question. Anybody who thinks this is extreme resistance doesn’t remember Vietnam.

I think the reference may have been to the scale of the protests rather than the tactics. I don’t recall 1,3 million people protesting in Barcelona and another 1 million in Rome over Vietnam.

Ehm - because Iraq had just friggin’ invaded another country ? That placed them pretty firmly in the role of aggressor in most people’s minds. Even a lot of those who had qualms about some of the specifics would agree that it was a useful object lesson for other potential aggressors - that expansionism by conquest is a bad, bad idea.

The current situation is nowhere near as clear-cut.

Yeah, that’s exactly it. Because no one but a Republican can possibly form an educated opinion because, hey, if you had a double-digit IQ, you’d BE a Republican, right?

Or maybe it’s because this is the culmination of decades of this sort of crap. It’s not this war in particular, but a lot of anxiety and ill sentiment pouring out exactly when the US wants it the least. It’s a much-needed kick in the shin to any American that thinks they can get away with whatever they want, whenever they want, unchecked by the rest of civilization. I’d wager that at LEAST 50% of the reason everyone is in the streets is because they’re tired of generic, stereotypical American rhetoric: “You’re with us, or you’re a terrorist,” “You embrace our lifestyle, or you’re a dirty commie” and so on. Bloodying the bully’s nose, David taking a swing at Goliath, take it how you like, if it wasn’t this war, it would be something else, and it was inevitable.

I think one of the main reasons why the war is so protested is because this time we are the invaders. If Bush had never made an issue of Iraq no one would have cared about it. Up untill now we mostly defended.

This war comes with some particularly heavy baggage.

We’ve got things like the Patriot Act, the “axis of evil” and the fact that a lot of the world strongly opposes it. For better or for worse, our past few conflicts have slipped under the radar without major implications for American and International life. But this time around things are changeing. We’re setting up “enemy combatant” camps, we’re making immigrants register, we’re mumbling about the draft and we’re calling lots of people Un-American. Things are 'a changing around here. Some of these things are making Americans a little shaky about where their country is headed.

Internationally, a lot of countries just plain don’t agree with us. In their eyes, the kind of action we are planning isn’t justified. Taking down a country is a major major action. In our previous conflicts, our goal wasn’t “regime change” (which is a euphemism for toppling a government and setting up something we like better). But we’ve stated that in this war we hope to destroy Iraq’s government. That is a huge action, maybe one of the hugest actions one country can take against another, and you can bet theres going to be a lot more debate than if we were just wanting to drag someone to the Hague or something.

So this war is getting an extreme response because it is an extreme action that will affect domestic and International life for Americans in big ways.

I think there’s an element of ‘thin end of the wedge’ in this war - it will be the only war that I can think of this century in which the ‘Western Democracies’ (US/UK/Oz etc) will actually be the agressors.

Thinking back over a few wars waged by various of the above countries…

Afghanistan - response to attacks on US
Iraq 1991 - response to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait
Falklands - response to Argentine invasion
Vietnam - response to a request from the Vietnamese government
Korea - response to a request from the Korean government
WWII - original aggression by Germany and Japan

and so on and so forth

In the case of the coming war there is no initial aggression on the part of Iraq to point to - the arguments are just:

a) Saddam’s a bastard (no agrument there!) and
b) He might do something bad in the future.

The actual invasion of Iraq doesn’t bother me so much (given the reasonable possibility that things might end up being better for the Iraqi people) but the precedent that this sets bothers me a whole lot. And the suspicion that - since this war won’t actually do anything about the problem of terrorism - as soon as it’s all over * another* nation will be ‘discovered’ to be a threat, and moved up into the firing line.

I don’t remember being able to discuss any other war on the internet. Even in the case of the Gulf War, there wasn’t the same kind of coverage on TV. Back then there was only CNN giving 24 hour news and it was not what it is today. An example of this is that there was only one phone set up in Baghdad that could send back pictures. That was how CNN made its name in news. This time they say there will be somewhere around 500 setups in Baghdad to send us the news. Another fact is that demonstrators have honed their skills in places like Seattle. Groups that aren’t always in agreement have learned how to come together on a single issue with the purpose of demonstrating just about that one issue.

Times have changed pretty much sums it up.

The opposition to this war is based on a perceived opportunism on the part of a deeply stupid president who has attempted to justify his aggressive stance by appealing to arguments which he didn’t appear to care about a couple of years ago, when there are other far more justifiable targets. In this way, I suppose it is because of Bush, but only because this is yet another example of what the rest of the world dislikes about his policies.

The question in the minds of those who oppose this war in particular is why now?

If it is a humanitarian effort, as in Kosovo, what has changed? Why didn’t Bush declare his intentions in his pre-election manifesto? Surely there are other, more pressing, humanitarian crises which could benefit from a large miltary presence, such as the famines in East Africa (where there are proven Al Qaeda links)?

If it about non-compliance with UN resolutions, then why the rush to ignore the UN altogether? Surely it is up to the UN to decide how to deal with states who break its resolutions?

If I believed that the invasion was based solely on these principles, I would support it. I do not believe it is, and so I do not.

I believe it is based on the desire for a “victory” to be presented to the American people after the failure to find or kill Bin Laden (who is most likely hiding in an undemocratic state run by a military regime who has acquired WMD: Pakistan).

For Bush to go into next year’s elections without such a “victory” would likely see him being accused of weakness and thus not being re-elected.

Despite the current WMD/UN/disarmament route that the US is pursuing, with which the rhetoric emanating from Washington from at least a year ago pointed to pre-emption.

I think a lot of people are extremely disturbed by the precedent set by pre-emptive strikes on countries the US feels threatened by.

I have no idea what caused this syntax error. Please remove the words “with which” from this sentence.

Because you could practically see Bush morph in mid-sentence something like this…

“We must find Osama bin Laden and bring him and Al Queda to justice…yep, that’s right, Saddam Hussein is evil and must be toppled immediately.”

Anybody who’s not brick-wall obtuse did a double-take, as in “where the hell did THAT come from!”. Next thing you know, it’s like 1984…“We have always been at war with Eastasia”

Anybody who’s not got their head straight up the Republican Party’s ass sees this as some kind of dirty trick the Bush regime is trying to pull. Added to that is the fact that Bush was elected by the Republican-dominated Supreme Court, with some help from his brother and the Republican Party in Florida, and what you’ve basically got is a whole lot of people saying “Something about this smells funny, and I’m not going to play along”.

This war does not have even a modicum of legitimacy. It’s something the Bush regime made up for god knows what reason. WMD? Give me a break. I know teenagers capable of more destruction than Iraq. On the other hand, we’ve got the certifiably crazy Kim Jong-il in possession of real nuclear weapons pointed straight at us and we’re “negotiating” with him.
Pffffft. The whole world will hate the US because we’re two-faced, violent, overbearing, idiots. Nice position to be in.

You can watch a program from the biblical point of view on this subject of a nation at war at this site. Charles Stanley gave an excellent sermon on this subject Sunday morning. The title is A Nation at War.. It’s an hour long. If anyone happens to be interested.