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The War Against the War

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by KingBall, May 28, 2007.

  1. KingBall

    KingBall New Member

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    The intense misinformation campaign launched by business interests against Americans who don't want to invest their money in companies that do business with terror-supporting governments serves to illustrate an unfortunate truism: that anyone who advocates standing up to rogue states or jihadists, whether through use of military force, covert action, or economic sanctions, must expect to encounter opposition from powerful forces with a vested interest in appeasement. Some of these forces, particularly in the Democrat Party, are modern-era McGovernites, late-1960s and early 1970s-style leftists with a reflexive hostility toward any effort to project American strength in the world. In many instances, their efforts are complemented by business interests that cannot abide any meaningful restrictions on the flow of capital abroad.

    In the latter category is William Reinsch, head of two powerful Washington lobbying groups, the National Foreign Trade Council and USA*Engage. These organizations oppose virtually any effort to hit terror-supporting states like Iran, Syria, North Korea, Sudan and Cuba with meaningful economic penalties for their malevolent behavior -- whether those penalties take the form of government-instituted sanctions or the decisions of individual investors and pension-fund managers who decide they want to pull their funds out of companies that help these regimes.

    Right now, Mr. Reinsch has set his sights on killing off efforts spearheaded by the Center for Security Policy and state officials like Missouri State Treasurer Sarah Steelman to invest terror-free. Reinsch's campaign is aimed not only at stopping Missouri's efforts to divest from Iran and other terror- supporting countries, but also at halting similar efforts underway in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Ohio and Louisiana and the New York City public employee retirement system.. The stakes could hardly be any greater: If the divestment campaign succeeds, it could do to Iran, which is already an economic basket- case, the same thing that sanctions helped do to the apartheid regime in South Africa two decades ago: set the stage for its demise. And few sane people would shed tears if it helped do the same to other terror-supporting regimes in Damascus, Pyongyang, Khartoum and Havana -- that is, except for Reinsch and the private business interests that benefit in the short term from what V.I. Lenin described as capitalists "selling the rope" for their own hanging. And right now that means doing whatever it takes, operating in public and in legislative backrooms across the country, to stop Steelman's extraordinary campaign to defund rogue states that sponsor terror.

    The good news is that Steelman is more determined than ever. "Whether you're for or against the war, there are Americans sacrificing their lives on a daily basis for the protection and security of the U.S. And yet we don't move our most powerful weapon -- our financial markets -- to help and make sure that we are not funding terrorists. I'm not going to wait for the federal government. It's my job as state treasurer to do what I can here in Missouri," Steelman said in a recent interview with Stateline.org. Shortly after taking office in January 2005, Steelman, a former college economics professor who had also been a broker for A.G. Edwards, moved to sever Missouri's business relationship with firms like BNP Paribas because of financial ties with Iran.

    Two years ago, she persuaded members of her state's employee retirement system to adopt a process to divest from companies associated with foreign governments, which are subject to U.S. sanctions. Last year, she created the Missouri Investment Trust's "international fund" -- the first public fund in the United States to become terror-free. That fund screens out companies that do business with Iran, Syria, North Korea and Sudan. Five months ago, she helped make Missouri the first state to approve a plan to offer a terror-free 529 college-savings plan that will be offered to all Missouri residents later this year. She has lobbied the 49 other U.S. state treasurers to do the same.

    As Steelman and other advocates make the case for terror-free investing, Reinsch works hard to stop them. In advance of a legislative hearing in Columbus on Ohio's effort to invest terror-free, he reportedly circulated a letter warning that the bill would "broadly and indiscriminately harm" U.S. companies and individual pensioners in Ohio and would do little to help the Iranian people. Steelman counters that in fact the Missouri Investment Trust has actually performed better since it went terror-free, and that the international fund had a non-annualized return of 19.2 percent through February -- almost four percentage points above that of a comparable Morgan Stanley index. At a minimum, this raises a legitimate question about the economic judgment used by Reinsch in making the case that terror-free investment is economically harmful to American investors.

    But as Sarah Steelman works to give Americans an alternative to selling our enemies the rope with which to hang us, Reinsch, NFTC and USA*Engage are doing their level best to pave the way for additional trade and "normal" relations with the rogue states .For close to a decade, they have been attempting to repeal the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act. Today they are vigorously working to gut sanctions against Fidel Castro's Cuban dictatorship, to prevent "unilateral" sanctions against Iran (which effectively means that, so long as the European Union continues to aid and abet that regime, we will too), and to encourage implementation of the Baker/Hamilton commission's report calling for negotiations with the Iran and Syrian regimes.

    What makes these ideas so dangerous and perverse is that they are part of a larger pattern. Since September 11, virtually every action that the Bush Administration and others have proposed to take against terrorists and their rogue-state supporters (save perhaps the overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan) has come under sustained attack. We are told that invading Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein against the wishes of the Europeans and the United Nations cost us the "moral high ground." President Bush is routinely vilified for refusing to negotiate with Iran, Syria and North Korea (never mind the long history of failure such overtures have had.) Can we pursue the people sending terrorists, IEDs and EFP weapons that are killing and maiming American troops in Iraq across the borders into Iran and Syria? Of course not -- who wants to grant such powers to protect our troops to a warmonger like Bush?

    Of course, arresting unlawful combatants captured on the battlefields of Afghanistan and retaining them at Guantanamo Bay is wrong (they should either be given the rights of POWs or tried as criminal defendants in American courts). And if that means that terrorists gain invaluable intelligence that enables them to commit the next attack on our country, that's too bad, because denying them these "rights" would cost us the ability to influence "world public opinion." Warrantless wiretaps of al Qaeda terror suspects' phone calls to the United States are wrong, as are delayed-notification searches of suspected al Qaeda operatives' homes. So too is the monitoring of computers in public libraries in accordance with the Patriot Act to prevent the next Mohammed Atta from using them to communicate with jihadists abroad. And God forbid anyone even think of "waterboarding" a monster like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed -- even if it is the only chance we have of preventing a nuclear or chemical attack on our country.

    I could go on with hundreds of additional examples, but you get the point. Taken together, all of the sanctimony, the political preening for the television cameras and focus-group-oriented gibberish create a national state of paralysis -- making it impossible to do anything useful against the people who want to kill us and their rogue-state enablers. And it makes future terrorist attacks against our country much more likely.

    Patriotic Americans like Sarah Steelman are working to end this national paralysis. Unfortunately, by opposing any serious efforts to put economic pressure on our enemies, William Reinsch and his allies are doing their best to perpetuate it.
    http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/homeland.php?id=1008637
     
  2. Justinian

    Justinian New Member

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    Hmmm

    Well in this bleak, unsure day and age, there are many different campaigns going on that affect America and this is one of them. This is mainly from the desire for political gain and a chance to create America into Europe.
     
  3. TheWaffle

    TheWaffle New Member

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    Wow that website familysecuritymatters.org looks remarkably familiar. Let's see..........

    1. Blonde and blue eyed mother and son in picture, hmmmmm, one might say almost Aryan.

    2. Organization pushing for a one party system.

    3. Utilizes distinct fear-mongering tactics.

    Heh, you know if you kinda tilt your head a little bit it looks a lot like German WW2 propoganda.
     
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