All Articles Tagged "Iraq War"
Many widely regard President Bush’s handling of Hurricane Katrina as one of the biggest failures of his presidency. And during the dedication of his new library, it seems that President Bush probably wished things could have gone a little bit differently as well.
During his dedication speech Bush started off light and easy, joking: “There was a time in my life when I wasn’t likely to be found at a library, much less found one.” He honored the President Obama, President Jimmy Carter, his father, President George Bush Sr and President Clinton.
He got emotional toward the conclusion of his speech when he spoke about how, even during the darkest moments of his presidency, he was still inspired by the spirit and resolve of the American people.
“As president I had the privilege to see that character up close. I saw it in the first responders who charged up the stairs, into the flames to save people’s lives from the burning towers. I saw it in the Virginia Tech professor who barricaded his classroom door with his body until his students escaped to safety.
I saw it in the people of New Orleans who made homemade boats to rescue their neighbors during the floods. I saw it in the service members who laid down their lives to keep our country safe. I dedicate this library with an unshakable faith in the future of our country. It was the honor of a lifetime to lead a country as brave and as noble as the United States. Whatever challenges come before us, I will always believe our nation’s best days lie ahead. God bless.”
Though I can say that George Bush probably wasn’t the best man to run the country, there’s at least a level of sincerity in his speech and subsequent emotion that I can’t help but empathize with. I don’t think he’s that great of an actor, that he’d be able to produce tears on command. But don’t take my word for it, check out the 12 minute speech and let us know whether you think he’s sincere or not.
Check out Bush’s entire speech on the next page. And let us know what you think about Bush’s speech and his reaction to discussing Katrina and the Iraq war.
Not only did Condoleeza Rice recently land a TV deal — to appear on CBS News as we reported — but now President Bush’s former Secretary of State has inked a book deal.
Rice will write “an examination of democracy at home and abroad,” reports the GalleyCat blog. Henry Holt and Company will publish the book in 2015.
The deal was sealed on March 19th, the 10th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, a political and military situation Rice negotiated throughout her time in public office. Many news outlets have been using the anniversary as an opportunity to look back at the last decade in words and pictures.
According to a press release, in the book Rice will talk about democracy-building overseas. “Rice will draw upon stories from her career and personal life to shed light on the essential questions of contemporary democracy, including the centrality of education, immigration, free enterprise and civic responsibility,” said the release.
This is not the first book deal for Rice. In 2009, Rice inked a three-book deal with Crown Publishers. That the deal was “worth at least $2.5 million,” according to the AP.
A number of names have popped up recently as possible rumor mill choices of people that Mitt Romney have considered to run with him for the November election as VP. There’s been Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, crazy a** New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, and now, news reports say that Romney is very much vouching for Condoleezza Rice (Dr. Rice as someone said we should point out on Facebook) to possibly run with him this year. If you were unaware, Rice was the secretary of state under the Bush administration and was the first African American female to do so. She is allegedly a frontrunner for the position according to The Drudge Report. According to ABC News, Matt Drudge, the founder of the popular news aggregation site, has connections amongst people in the Romney campaign’s circle, so he’s got the low-down.
But last time we heard, Rice was saying Oh Hell No to the concept of being Romney’s running mate, even though she is helping him raise money and supports his campaign:
“There is no way that I will do this, because it’s really not me. I know my strengths, and Gov. Romney needs to find someone who wants to run with him. I didn’t run for student council president. I don’t see myself in any way in elective office.”
But then again, that’s what everybody says before they inevitably say yes. But I’ll try and give Rice, or “Condi” as some like to call her, the benefit of the doubt.
It’s an interesting move, as Rice would be the diversity that you could say Romney’s team needs–she’s black, and she’s a woman, that could help him pull in votes with both of those demographics. However, ABC News says that a few of her political views don’t fall in line with social conservative Republicans, which could count against Romney. She wants to keep abortion legal and she is of course forever connected to the Bush era and the war, and that would be something that both Rice and Romney would have to speak on/explain to the public when the election heats up.
On top of all that, she could also come off looking like a “gimmick” according The Washington Times, something like what Sarah Palin’s crazy behind was when John McCain made the #FAIL decision to have her run on his ticket back in ’08. Either way, it would definitely make the campaign all the more interesting, especially since President Obama wants to keep Vice President Biden in place. But as Rice said, Romney truly needs to pick someone who wants the job, because if he reaches for someone just because of their name and experience and not because they want to take on the responsibility, it could backfire against him with the public, and make him an easy target for President Obama. One can only hope that Rice wouldn’t join the ticket as a VP candidate, but these days, expect the unexpected folks.
More on Madame Noire!
- You Stole My Steez: 8 Musicians Who People Say Got Famous Copying Other Singers
- What Are We Playing For? Why Competition In a Relationship Makes Both Partners Lose
- Good Sex, Are You Having It? The Importance of Communication In The Bedroom
- The Time I was Sexually Assaulted…by a Woman
- True Life: I’ve Done Crazy Things to Impress People…
- Wayne Brady, Bill Maher and The Problem With What Black Manhood Means to NON-Black People
- 8 Things We Want To Tell Our Potential Suitors: The First Date No No’s For Men
Are They Both Victims? Veteran Suffering Traumatic Brain Injury Beats Girlfriend To Death, Later Kills Himself
On Tuesday night, 5.6 million people tuned in to watch “Private Needham’s War” on 48 Hours. The special told the story of 26-year-old Iraq War Veteran John Needham who was arrested in 2008 after he was found naked and covered with blood next to his girlfriend, Jacqwelyn Villagomez, 19, who he had beaten to death. On the surface, that fact easily makes John the perpetrator or murderer and Jacqwelyn the victim, but as the CBS special showed, both young adults may actually be victims in this case.
What you wouldn’t know just by looking at John that day in 2008 was he had recently come home from the war in Iraq and had been diagnosed with post-traumatic disorder (PTSD). He also “had severe back pain from combat injuries. He was prescribed a fistful of drugs and often downed them with alcohol,” though he had never been a drinker, according to CBS. Though John has never been able to describe why he killed Jacqwelyn, he told investigators that he tried to restrain her during an altercation and something inside of him just “snapped.” This is the account from CBS:
According to Homicide Det. Joe Gaul of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, “There was blood spatter on the doorjamb, the wall, the bathroom door — what we call impact patterns, somebody being struck and the blood spraying off of being struck.”
Det. Gaul learned the bloodshed was sparked by a jealous rage – Villagomez’s. Earlier that evening, Jacque had finally agreed to move out. But just as she was leaving, an old girlfriend — Renee Stoner — showed up to visit John. Soon after, Jacque stormed back in.
“And Jacqwelyn was very upset that Renee was there at the house with John,” Det. Gaul continued. “They got into a physical confrontation over that fact. John had separated both of them. And John was restraining Jacqwelyn while Renee escaped to the bathroom. Eventually John told her to get out of there.”
Once outside, Stoner called 911, where she described Jacque Villagomez as the aggressor, not John Needham.
“At that time [Stoner] didn’t see any blood. She didn’t witness any – beating or assault of any kind. She just left the scene,” said Det. Gaul.
But something happened in the few minutes it took deputies to respond. When they found Jacque Villagomez, she was battered — near death — and would not survive. John Needham was naked, crying and smeared in blood. Deputies say Needham charged them and they had to use a Taser to subdue him.
“There was no evidence to indicate anything other than John’s fists were used to beat Jacqwelyn,” the detective said.
While the facts do suggest John did in fact “snap” that day, additional evidence from his background shows he had been unraveling for quite some time. In addition to the standard mental toll of the war, in June of 2007, his unit was ordered to shoot a man suspected of trying to detonate an improvised explosive device (IED), later than summer an IED killed five of his comrades, and just when he thought he was returning home, his tour in Iraq was extended. To make matters worse, John started engaging in reckless behavior which often landed him in trouble with his superiors, but when it came to treatment for his psychological issues, CBS reports it’s unclear what—if any—help he received.
Hope appeared to be on the horizon when in July 2008, nine months after being medevaced from Iraq, John Needham was given a medical discharge. However days after his paperwork came through, he met Jacque Villagomez, two months after that he was accused of murder, and two years later he would overdose on painkillers, overcome by the threat of 25 years-to-life in prison for murder, a confirmed traumatic brain injury as a result of the war, and excruciating pain from combat injuries. All of which make John a victim too in many people’s eyes.
Check out the full 48 Hours special below. What do you think about this case?
More on Madame Noire!
- That’s That Ish I Don’t Like: Why I Can’t Stand When Parents Talk to Kids Like Adults
- “Ho*s Be Winning!” 8 People Who Became Overnight Celebrities For Being Scandalous
- Call Me Prejudiced, But I Only Let Black Women Do My Hair
- Noire Naturals, Episode 2: Maintaining Your Twist-Out Style
- “The Decision,” Fake Marriages & Crispy Chicken: 9 Moments Celebs Can’t Seem to Live Down
- Bet You Didn’t Know: Secrets Behind The Making of School Daze
- Ask a Very Smart Brotha: Why Did He Just Disappear?
by Anthony Jerrod
The late President John F. Kennedy once stated that “domestic policy can only defeat us; foreign policy can kill us.” Indeed, the ability of a country to promote peace, prosperity and democracy among its global neighbors is essential as this world becomes smaller and more interconnected on a daily basis. The United States has arguably been the bastion of leadership that other nations have looked to as a beacon of light with its promises of basic rights and freedom.
Similar to other political topics, there is certainly a dichotomy of beliefs on how foreign policy should be implemented. For some individuals, international relations should be centered on multilateral engagement with allies, diplomatic discussions with rogue nations and prudent restraint of military power until it is time to act. Conversely, there are a plethora of individuals who believe that our country should practice unilateralism, refrain from talks with enemy countries and exercise preemptive military strikes in accordance with the Bush doctrine.
Critics of President Obama have expressed strong dissatisfaction relative to Guantanamo Bay and purported lack of leadership during recent protests in Iran, Syria, Egypt and Libya. Certainly, mistakes have been made and there is room for continual improvement, especially when considering the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict and concrete threats of nuclear-armed, miscreant states. But, from a nonpartisan and unbiased perspective, President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and administration envoys have achieved the following foreign policy accomplishments that were unparalleled and/or very significant in nature:
1. The death of Osama bin Laden. Defense Secretary Robert Gates stated that President Obama’s authorization to raid bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan was “one of the most courageous” decisions he had ever seen a president make. The founder of al-Qaeda and reported mastermind behind the September 11 and other mass-casualty attacks was definitely one of the world’s most feared men. The valiant actions of central intelligence and the elite Navy SEAL fighters who captured and killed bin Laden brought a certain degree of relief to the families of 9/11 victims and jubilation worldwide.
2. The death of al-Qaeda’s No. 2 leader. U.S. and Pakistani officials recently confirmed that Atiyah abd al-Rahman was killed during a missile strike in the tribal region of Wazinstan, Pakistan. al-Rahman’s death further weakens the terrorist group and brings “the strategic dismantling of al-Qaeda a step closer,” as expressed by CIA director David Petraeus.
package Cheney is setting political tongues wagging in eager anticipation of his memoir “In My Time,” an autobiography full of raw critiques of Washington insiders due out on Aug. 30. The former vice president under George W. Bush is already promoting his tome using sensationalist language, saying “There are gonna be heads exploding all over Washington” in response to some of his revelations. Former secretary of state Colin Powell has responded by blasting Cheney for taking “cheap shots” at him in the book, and conducting himself in a way that is not befitting a former vice president. Think Progress reports:
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell slammed former Vice President package Cheney today on CBS’s Face the Nation, accusing Cheney of taking “cheap shots” at Bush administration officials in his new memoir and promoting it by using language inappropriate for a former vice president. While they worked for the same president, Cheney allegedly criticizes Powell in his much-anticipated autobiography, In My Time, which he predicted will have “heads exploding all over Washington.” That’s “the kind of headline you might see [on] one of the supermarket tabloids,” Powell said of Cheney’s exploding heads comment, “It’s not the kind of headline I would have expected to come from a former Vice President of the United States of America” [...]
In a withering criticism of the former vice president, Powell goes on at length and in detail to explain how the “cheap shots” Cheney aims at Powell and “other administration officials” are false, and how Cheney is himself to blame for much of it. “I’m the one who said to President Bush, [about Iraq] that if you break it, you own it,” Powell said, but “Mr. Cheney and many of his colleagues did not prepare for what happened after the fall of Baghdad.”
Cheney also attacks Condoleezza Rice in this book, and even former President Bush himself among other high-ranking officials. And that is apparently only the beginning of the trash talking. According to The Week, Cheney admits that he tried to get Powell fired in 2004 after publicly making statements against the war in Iraq.
Another Obama address, another failed attempt at messaging by the White House communications team. Instead of using his address from the Oval Office to remind us that he displayed true leadership by going against the tide and opposing the Iraq war when everyone else was for it, Obama proudly asserted that he’d made a call to George W. Bush to inform him that the war was over. Obama had the opportunity to be nostalgic, and remind his base that the candidate of 2008 is still alive in the President of 2010, but he didn’t. To the contrary, Obama listened to Republicans who’d been chiding him all week to give at least a modicum of credit to the one man who deserves all the blame – George W. Bush. And since Obama was ill-prepared for a skirmish with the Right, he gave in once more.
The issue is not just that President Obama is unprepared for the present fight that he’s engaged in, but that he’s unprepared for all fights – period. Obama doesn’t use the bully pulpit because he’s not a bully. This is a hard pill for most African Americans to swallow.
White liberals want Obama to fight because it’s the right thing to do. While African-American liberals agree with that premise, we are also goading President Obama to do battle with Republicans because we’ve collectively adopted clashing with despotic regimes as our solemn oath. The spirit of David and Goliath is alive in the African-American experience.
When Obama declared himself African-American, and not mixed race or biracial as some had hoped, the African American community celebrated with jubilee. To us, Obama’s bold assertion meant that he identified with the African-American experience. It was proof that he’d accepted the chivalrous invitation of the African-American community and would soon glide into our open arms to meet our soft far embrace. So far, much to our dismay, he’s proven to be a bit of a playboy.
In classic Obama style, he’s adorned the costume which we’ve come to associate with all rebellious agitators. Unlike some who’ve compared his speaking style to MLK, I see more of Malcolm than Martin in Obama’s mettle performance. Short, decisive, snappy comments, which linger with the listener by virtue of their verbosity and in your face intellectualism. This was Malcolm’s marker. In 21st century America, Obama is Malcolm’s emulator, but not his heir apparent.
While African-Americans were busily working for change during Obama’s 2008 campaign, we absentmindedly forget that history often foretells future events.
Born to a white mother and a Kenyan father, young Obama’s world view was fashioned in Indonesia and Hawaii through the prism of his mother. There is nothing unseemly about Obama’s upbringing, but it does belie the difficulty inherent in labeling President Obama as African-American.
Even if President Obama’s Kenyan father had been in his life, that wouldn’t have been enough to link Obama to an African-American experience which is uniquely different from that of Africans in the great vastness of the Diaspora. And to say that Obama is connected to the African-American experience by virtue of his Kenyan father is alarmingly simplistic.
The African-American experience is unique in the level of insight which it imprinted upon its members as well as the relative level of equality bestowed upon a previously enslaved minority group. We view life through a dual lens whereas for Obama, the lens is singular.
Truth be told, our collective defiance has negatively impacted us in a variety of scenarios. The mythology of the African American attitude heralds a people unafraid to speak truth to power. Even in our day to day individual dealings, we are more apt than most groups to betray our own self interest by confronting our employer, government, or whomever else we feel may be engaged in double dealing. History has made us rebels.
Our expectation was that Obama would display some of the steeliness so overtly recognizable in the African American persona. But President Obama’s perspective is international, not African American. It is time that the African-American community stops looking for its reflection in President Obama. He may be the first black President, but he’s certainly not the first African-American President.
Yvette Carnell is a former Capitol Hill Staffer turned political blogger. She currently publishes two blogs, Spatterblog.com and GoGirlGuide.com.
(The Nation) — If you’ve been paying attention this past decade, it won’t surprise you to learn that the country’s policy elites are in the midst of a destructive, well-nigh unhinged discussion about the future of the nation. But even by the degraded standards of the Washington establishment, the growing panic over government debt is shocking.