wpe50.jpg (1913 bytes)   Bush and Israel Threaten America with Another Unnecessary War
   TigerSoft News Service   4/21/2008     www.tigersoft.com   Updated 6/23/2008         

What A New Bush War with Iran Will Mean 

                Tongue-Tied Bush Dislikes Diplomacy.  Prefers Threats of War.

                The US Should Discourage, not Encourage An Israeil Attack on Iran.

                Peerless DJI Charts in the War Years.  Superb Buys and Sell Signals.
                     See below: 1916, 1940-1942, 1950-1952, 1965-1974, 1990, 2002

The Costs and Consequences of A War with Iran.
                      "It's a nightmare scenario for any contingency planner, and I think you really enter
                               the twilight zone if you strike Iran."


                                                 The decline in US-Iranian relations started with the
                                           CIA-backed coup of the democratically elected premier of
                                           Iran in 1953 to stop his plans for nationalizing British
                                          Petroleum.   This company not only controlled Iran's main
                                          source of income, oil, it dominated the economic and politcal
                                          life everywhere there.  Oil field wages were low.  The British
                                         government received 30% of the royalties.  The Iranian
                                         government got but 10% to 12%.
                                           (Source: http://www.lobster-magazine.co.uk/articles/l30iran.htm )

Operation Ajax
"The 1953 Iranian coup d'état saw the overthrow
                                        of the democratically-elected administration of Iranian Prime
                                        Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq and his cabinet from power by
                                        British and American intelligence operatives working together
                                        with Iranian agents and elements of the Iranian army. Bribing
                                        Iranian officials, news media and others with British and
                                        American funds,... the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA),
                                                  organized the covert operation"  which put in power
                                        a retired Iranian General Fazlollah Zahedi, the Imperial
                                        Guard Colonel Nematollah Nassiri and set up the dictatorship
                                        of Iran
.   (See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1953_Iranian_coup_d'%C3%A9tat )

US Backed Terror in Iran, 1953-1978
                                  The US backed Shah of Iran ruled Iran from 1953 to 1978.  His
                                  dictatorhip was notoriously brutal and corrupt.  The Shah's
                                  Secret Police were the SAVAK.   They were widely feared. 
                                  They tracked down, imprisoned, tortured and killed those
                                  who dissented and spoke ill of the Shah. 
                                  (See http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/maraas/wanek96.htm )

                                  Americans are mostly oblivious to their government's role
                                  in the terrorism against Iranians in this period.  Jimmy Carter
                                  bears a good part of that responsibility, though it was
                                  a Republican President, Eisenhower, who approved the
                                  1953 coup in Iran.  But it was Carter who lavised praise
                                  on the Shah in 1977, a year before he would be removed
                                  by Iranian nationalists.  The CIA warned Carter that hatred
                                  for the Shah was widespread.  But he toasted the Shah:
"Iran, because of the great leadership of the Shah, is an island of
                                                stability in one of the more troubled areas of the world. This is a great
                                                tribute to you, Your Majesty, and to your leadership, and to the respect
                                                and admiration and love which your people give to you."
  (Source: )
                                 The Iranian distrust and dislike for the US now goes back
                                 thse events.  I highly recommend "Blowback: The
                                 Costs and Consequences of American Empire", by
                                 Chalmers Johnson. 

  How is Iran a threat to the US now?  

                                           Iranian intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan? 
                                 Wow!   It is the height of arrogance for the US, which went
                                 half way around the world, to attack Iraq, to complain
                                 that Iran, which borders Afghanistan and Iraq, is trying
                                 to influence its neighbors when they are is sate of high flux.

Israel and Iran

                                 Israel is not the US.  America cannot back it automatically
                                 and unconditionally, if it chooses to start a war with Iran.
                                 Our interests and Israel's interests are better served
                                 by diplomacy, mutual respect and demanding withdrawl by
                                 Israeli settlers of the occupied territories.  These should
                                 be left unocupied and kept as key parcels in the peace process.
                                 Israel has between 150-200 nuclear weapons.  Iran is not
                                 suicidal.   Iran will not attack Israel.  Why should Israel
                                 attack Iran?   The US should discourage Israel from such
                                 an attack on Iran.
  "The Iranians cannot effectively retaliate against
                                       Israel, so they'll retaliate against us. `And then we will be
                                       tempted to retaliate against Iran, and we'll be drawn into
                                       a very destructive conflict from which we will not extricate
                                        ourselves for many years to come.''

(Source: Z.Brzezinski, former Presidential National Security Advisor.)

                                           "increasingly military analysts are warning of severe
                                         consequences if the US begins a shooting war with Iran...

Iranian networks in Iraq and Afghanistan could imperil US interests there; American
                                                   forces throughout the Gulf region could be targeted by asymmetric methods and
                                                   lethal rocket barrages; and Iranian partners across the region – such as Hezbollah
                                                   in Lebanon – could be mobilized to engage in an anti-US fight.  Iran's response
                                                   could also be global, analysts say, but the scale would depend on the scale of the
                                                   US attack. "One very important issue from a US intelligence perspective, [the Iranian
                                                   reaction] is probably more unpredictable than the Al Qaeda threat," says Magnus
                                                   Ranstorp at the Center for Asymmetric Threat Studies at the Swedish National Defense
                                                   College in Stockholm.  "I doubt very much our ability to manage some of the
                                                   consequences," says Mr. Ranstorp, noting that Iranian revenge attacks in the past
                                                   have been marked by "plausible deniability" and have had global reach.
                                                   "If you attack Iran you are unleashing a firestorm of reaction internally that will only
                                                   strengthen revolutionary forces, and externally in the region," says Ranstorp.
It's a nightmare scenario for any contingency planner, and I think you really enter
                                                     the twilight zone if you strike Iran

                                                              (Source: http://www.csmonitor.com/2008/0620/p07s04-wome.html )

                                 The American mass media did not report that Iran has
                                 offered to lay a wreat at "gound zero" in NYC.  This was
                                 rejected.   Similarly, Bush and the American corporate
                                 media leave out the compelling fact that Iran was often
                                 violently opposed to Al-Qaeda's presence in Afghanistan.

                                 Is not the Bush insistence that Iran give up nuclear power
                                 as a pre-condition for talks, a tactic to avoid them?

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Mid-East Conflagration.
"An attack by the United States on Iran would be a catastrophe
                                                     for both countries and would have a devastating effect on the
                                                     entire Middle East region.  Bombing nuclear sites would only delay,
                                                    not eliminate, Iran's nuclear program and would virtually guarantee
                                                    accelerated efforts to build a weapon for self-defense... Iran would
                                                    certainly retaliate, closing the Straits of Hormuz and leading to a
                                         surge in oil prices. It would unleash a wave of attacks against US
                                                   forces in neighboring Iraq and would exploit its relationship with
                                                   Hezbollah to stage terrorist attacks against Israel and also possibly
                                                   within the United States. It could destabilize neighboring Afghanistan.
                                                   US response to Iranian resistance would likely result in huge civilian
                                                   casualty levels.” 

                                         Phil Giraldi, a former CIA Counter-terrorism specialist

Expect Oil to jump to $200/bar.  $10/gallon gas.
                                         At its narrowest point the Straits of Hormuz between
                                         Iran and Saudi Arabia are 21 miles apart.  17 million
                                         bar. of oil go trough it each day.  That's about 20%
                                         of the world's total oil supply.  Sea mines and terrorist
                                         actions against oil tankers are a distinct possibility.

                                         Iranian oil production is nearly 4 million bar. a day.
                                         If this were taken off the market, oil prices would
                                         go sky-high.  Many experts say that Iran would certainly
                                         retaliate, close the Straits of Hormuz and stop its oil
                                         to countries it considers not its enemy.

                                         We forget that the Arab boycott called in 1973 to protest
                                         against Western backing for Israel tripled oil prices.  There
                                         are more sources now.  But Arab countries produce the
                                         preponderance of oil, still.

The Fragmentation of America.
Americans will be fighting for what oil there is.   And
                                        Republicans will be more divided than ever.  Riots and
                                        protests beyond anything seen in the 1960's will be seen again.

The Impoverization of Americans.
                                        Businesses will be forced to close.  Unemployment will
                                        soar.   A severe recession is almost certain based on
                                        what happened in 1973-1974.  Real incomes then fell 2.7%.
                                        The stock market plunged from a high of 1040 to 580.

Bear Market ahead. 
A 20% Decline down from 13,000 is the minimum we
                                              should expect if Bush involves the US in a new war for oil with

                                              Iran.   This estimate is based on how the DJI behaved before
                                              the start of US involvement in World War I, World War II,
                                              and the LBJ bear market in 1966 as US troops reached
                                              nearly 500,000 in Viet Nam.  The NIXON 1969-1974
                                              bear market of nearly 40% coincided with his expansion
                                              of the war and then the US defeat in Viet Nam.  Bush's
                                              launching of the Iraq War and the obtaining of Congressional
                                              authorization of the war in September 2002, saw the DJI
                                              fall more than 20% in the preceeding 7 months.

           Shame on Our Clueless Political Leaders
           and Our Chearleading Media      

                                            by William Schmidt, Ph.D. (Columbia University)
                                            (C) 2008 All rights reserved.  Reproducing any part of this page without
                                                            giving full acknowledgement is a copyright infringement.

                      Research on Individual Stocks upon Request:  
                      Composite Seasonality Graph of Any Stock for $125.
                      Example of historical research NEM - Newmont Mining.   Order Here.


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                   What A New Bush War with Iran Will Mean

by William Schmidt, Ph.D

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                                       One if forty Iraqi is now dead because of George Bush's messianic meglomania.
                            How can that win the hearts and minds of anyone, but a certifiable sadist or serial killer?

                            The British Medical Journal "Lancet"  estimates that more than a million Iraqis have been
                            killed in Bush's war on Iraq. 10% of the population has had their homes destroyed and
                            have fed the country.  Another four million have been either internally-displaced or have
                            fled the country.  Living standards have declined steeply by every measure - infant mortality,
                            clean water, food-security, medical supplies, education, electrical power, employment etc.
                            How many of our bravest youth must still die for the sake of the pride of those who caused
                            this calamity?  America will be $3 trillion dollars or more poorer because Bush's blunder.

                              wpeF7.jpg (7083 bytes)      Violence begets more
                               violence.   The occupation begets violence.   "Miles of concrete blast-walls snake through
                               Baghdad to separate the warring  parties; the country is fragmented into a hundred smaller
                               pieces each ruled by local militia commanders."  (Source of quote
                                             Come and see our overflowing morgues and find our little ones for us...
                                             You may find them in this corner or the other, a little hand poking out, pointing
                                             out at you... Come and search for them in the rubble of your "surgical" air raids,
                                             you may find a little leg or a little head...pleading for your attention.
                                            Come and see them amassed in the garbage dumps, scavenging morsels of food...
                                            Come and see, come..."
"Flying Kites” Layla Anwar

                                  Retired Lt. General William Odom commented on this point in an interview on the
                             Jim Lerher News Hour: "The surge has sustained military instability and achieved
                             nothing in political consolidation....Things are much worse now. And I don't see them
                             getting any better. This was foreseeable a year and a half ago. And to continue to put
                             the cozy veneer of comfortable half-truths on this is to deceive the American public
                             and to make them think it is not the charade it is....
                             (Source: http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/Article4341.html   )   

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A reasonable person would learn from this mistake. 
                             Not Bush and not McCain.  They would expand the war to Iran.   Not Nancy Pelosi or
                             Democratic Whip   They continue to fostor these horrors. to continue.  They provide the
                             funding so that the war and occupation continue, despite their mandate in 2006 to end the war!.

                                        The American people are not as dumb as the politicians that run the country.
                            Sure, they were rushed and mislead into war.   The Press Secretary to Bush has just
                            testified to Congress that the President, Vice President, Karl Rove, Scooter Libby and
                            others in the White House "purposefully conspired to mislead Americans into war
                            for political gain and at the cost of the lives of our soldiers, the security of our nation,
                           and the sanctity of our Constitution."
                                       60% of Americans wanted out of Iraq two years ago, in March 2006.  Only
                            39% now believe the US should stay in Iraq "as long as needed".  Reasonable people might
                            think that Bush would not be allowed to start another war.  But he is planning a new war
                            with Iran right now.   See the latest issue of the New Yorker and the lengthy article
                            by Seymour Hirsch. http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2006/04/17/060417fa_fact

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                                                    STARTING A WAR AND STOCK PRICES

                                      Starting a war has always been bad for the stock market.  Look at 1917, 1940, 1941, 1950,
                            1969 and 1970 when Nixon intensified the bombing of North Viet Nam and spread the war
                             in Viet Nam to Laos and Cambodia. Look at 1990.  And look at the 2002 chart.
                             A decline of 20% is the rule in the months leading up to the war.

                                     The stock market (DJIA)  plunged 20% in the four months leading up to the US declaration
                             of war on Germany in 1917.
                                  1.) The DJI fell 30% in several weeks following the NAZI invasion of Western Europe in
                                 2.)    It  fell 20% in the 4 months prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.
                                 3.)   It fell 25% in 1966, after LBJ sent nearly 500,000 US soldiers to Viet Nam.
                                 4.)   It lept up nearly 20% in the months after he said he would not run for President again in 1968.
                                 5.)   It fell nearly 40% from Janaury 1969 when Nixon took office to October 1974,
                                       soon after he resigned in disgrace, having succeeded only in expanding and intensifying
                                       the killing and in the end losing the war. 
                                 6)   The lead-up to the Allied war to liberate Kuwait in 1990 saw the DJI fell 20%.
                                 7)   The DJI fell 25% in the year six months before Bush got Congress to authorize a
                                       war in Iraq.

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                                 Lusitania in May 1915.                                                 Woodrow Wilson
                          (http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com/snpwwi2.htm )  The sinking of the Lusitania
                          outraged American public opinion.  Bu Wilson campaigned in 1916 on the slogan,
                          "He kept us out of war". 
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                                                              1939-1941   wpe126.jpg (5794 bytes)

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                                                  1940  War in Western Euope
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GERMAN INVASION OF WESTERN EUROPE, MAY 1940  In 1939, as the prospects of World War II grew closer
for the English and the French following the German attack on Poland, there was a period of quiet on
the Western front.  The British and French war planners focused on World War1 and the long period
of stalemated trench warfare.  The "Maginot Line" would be their defense.   Offensive assaults had been
found to be too costly in French lives in WWI.    Hitler had actually wanted to attack France soon after
the successful German campaign against Poland.  But bad weather and the inadvertent disclosure of the
original German attack plans caused a delay and a change in strategy.  The Germans would attack through
the less defensed low lands of Holland and Belgium and then assault France in the less defended
Ardennes Forest. The German attack began on May 10th, 1940.  Three weeks later, on June 5th, the
German Army began attacking across the River Somme and into France.  By June 14th, the German
Army reached Paris and on June 22nd, France signed a "document of capitulation".  
See - http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/fall_france_05.shtml
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Arrogance led Hitler to decide to attack the Soviet Union.  The attack began on June 22, 1941. 
Arrogance led Japan believe they could defeat the US in a surpsie attack on Pearl Harbor
on December 7, 1941.  As the war clouds gathered for the US, the stock market fell steadily in the
second half of 1941.  Pearl Harbor was anticipated by the stock market decline before and afterwards.

On the Eastern Front, the Germans captured Minsk on June 28, 1941 and crossed the River Dnieper in
the Ukraine on July 19, 1941.  FDR froze Japanese assets in the US and suspended diplomatic
relations on July 26, 1941.  On August 1, 1941 the US announced an oil embargo on Japan. 
In August
the Germans lay seige to Leningrad.  On September 9th, they take Kiev, in October, Odessa and Kharkov.
But on December 6, 1941 the German assault on Moscow is abandoned the Red Army begins a counter-
On December 7th, the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor.

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                     1942   Tide Changed after Battle of Midway.
On January 13, the German U-boat offensive begins along the East coast of the US.    Rommel
is on the attack in North Africa.  German air raids begin against cathedral cities in the UK.
The Germans start a new offensive in the Crimea in May.  But on May 27, SS Leader Heydrich
is shot by a resistance ambush in Prague.  On May 30th, there is a British air raid on Koln.

For more of a time-line see

The Battle of Midway took place between June 4, 1942 and June 7th.  The Americans sunk 4 Japanese
carriers and a heavy cruiser.  It was a decisive turning point.  And it was viewed as such at the time.
The weakness of aircraft carriers to air attack was revealed.  The Imperial Japanese Navy was weakened
considerably.  And the battle enabled America's greater industrial capacity to turn out superior numbers of
ships and aircraft.
See - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Midway
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                                North Korean Attack on South Korea, 1950
        Skirmishes between North Korean and South Korean troops turned into a full scale assault
after Communist losses in open elections in South Korea in the beginning of 1950.   South Korean
forces fell back steadily towards the port of Pusan.  Truman ordered  US ground troops to Korea
on June 30, 1950.  On September 25th  US marines staged a surprise amphibious attack on September
25th.  With superior air and naval power, soon the marines had liberated Seoul and the North Koreans
retreated in disorder back up the penninsula.  The UN forces march north to the Yalu River encountered
bitter cold condition, -88 degrees at one point.  US General MacArthur dismiissed warnings from China
that they would not allow the North Korean buffer state to lose this war.  On December 9th, the
Chinese Army lauched a massive counter-attack on UN forces far up the Korean Penninsula.    The
Chinese Army quickly drove the UN forces back to the 38th parallel.  They briefly took Seoul, but
were forced out  By February 1951, a stalemate ensued, like in World War I. 

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MacArthur was removed from command on April 11 when he openly challenged President Truman's
decision not to attack the Chinese north of the Yalu River.  This served to ratify the military stalemate
that last until the Armistice of 1953. The military importance of Air Power was made clear in this period
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1952   Miltary Stalemate in Korea.  Eisenhower's famous pronouncement in the 1952
political campaign
"One of the dramatic points of the 1952 presidential campaign came on October 24 in Detroit when Eisenhower announced that,
immediately after his election, he would "forgo the diversions of politics and concentrate on the job of ending the Korean war....
That job requires a personal trip to Korea.  I shall make that trip.  Only in that way could I learn how best to serve the American
people in the cause of peace.  I shall go to Korea.
"  (Source:
http://www.eisenhower.utexas.edu/Korea/html/Koreanphotographs.html )

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wpe12F.jpg (4230 bytes)             War in Viet Nam

July 27th -5,000 more American military advisers are sent to South Vietnam bringing the total number of United States forces in Vietnam to 21,000.

August 2nd and 4th - The Gulf of Tonkin Incident prompted the first large-scale involvement of U.S. armed forces in Vietnam.   It is claimed by the Defense Separtment that US destroyers USS Maddox and USS C. Turner Joy are attacked in the Gulf of Tonkin. Air support from the carrier USS Ticonderoga sinks two, possibly three North Vietnamese gunboats.  (In 2005, it was revealed in an official NSA declassified report[2] that the USS Maddox fired warning shots on the August 2 incident before any actions were taken by Northv Vietnamese patrol boats.  And that there was attack by North Vietnamese boats at the August 4 incident.
Just a few days after the incident, Lyndon Johnson commented privately: "For all I know, our Navy was shooting at whales out there." [12]
                                          2005 NSA declassified report[2] which stated on page 17:
                                         (See - http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=2261

"At 1500G, Captain Herrick ordered Ogier's gun crews to open fire if the boats approached within ten thousand yards. At about 1505G, the Maddox fired three rounds to warn off the communist boats. This initial action was never reported by the Johnson administration, which insisted that the Vietnamese boats fired first."[2]

August 5th - American aircraft from carriers USS Ticonderoga and USS Constellation bomb North Vietnam in retaliation for strikes attacked US destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin.
August 7th - The U.S. Congress passes the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution giving US President Lyndon B. Johnson broad war powers to deal with North Vietnamese attacks on American forces.  The resolution served as Johnson's legal justification for escalating American involvement in the Vietnam War, which lasted until 1975.
August 16th - With US approval (Pentagon Papers), a coup d'état replaces Duong Van Minh with General Nguyen Khanh as President of South Vietnam. A new constitution is established with aid from the U.S. Embassy.
December 3rd - Berkeley Free Speech Movement: Police arrest over 800 students at the University of California, Berkeley, following their takeover and massive sit-in at the administration building protesting the UC Regents' decision to forbid Vietnam War protests on UC property.

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February 9th - The first United States combat troops are sent to South Vietnam.
March 30th - A car bomb explodes in front of the U.S. Embassy in Saigon, killing 22 and wounding 183 others.
April 28th -
United States troops land in the Dominican Republic to "forestall establishment of a Communist dictatorship" and to evacuate U.S. citizens.
May 27th - United States warships begin bombardments of National Liberation Front targets within South Vietnam
for the first time.
June 10th - Battle of Dong Xoai begins.
June 18th - The United States uses B-52 bombers to attack National Liberation Front guerrilla fighters
in South Vietnam,
July 24th - Four F-4C Phantoms escorting a bombing raid at Kang Chi are the targets of antiaircraft missiles in the first such attack against American planes in the war. One is shot down and the other three sustain damage.
July 28th - US President Lyndon B. Johnson announces his order to increase the number of United States troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000.
August 18th - United States Marines destroy a Viet Cong stronghold on the Van Tuong peninsula in the first major American ground battle of the war.
October 30th -  Just miles from Da Nang, United States Marines repel an intense attack by wave after wave of Viet Cong forces, killing 56 guerrillas. Among the dead, a sketch of Marine positions was found on the body of a 13-year-old Vietnamese boy who sold drinks to the Marines the day before.
November 27th - The Pentagon tells US President Lyndon B. Johnson that if planned operations were to succeed, the number of American troops in Vietnam has to be increased from 120,000 to 400,000.

May 16 Attack on biggest US Air Force base in South Viet Nam.  Video.
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January 8th - U.S. forces launch Operation Crimp. Deploying nearly 8,000 troops, it is the largest American operation of the war. The goal of the campaign is to capture the Vietcong's headquarters for the Saigon area, which is believed to be located in the district of Chu Chi. Though the area in Chu Chi is razed and repeatedly patrolled, American forces fail to locate any significant Vietcong base.

February - Hoping for head-on clashes with the enemy, U.S. forces launch four search and destroy missions in the month of February. Although there are two minor clashes with Vietcong regiments, there are no major conflicts.

March - The 272nd Regiment of the Vietcong 9th Division attack a battalion of the American 3rd Brigade at Lo Ke. U.S. air support succeeds in bombing the attackers into retreat. Two days later, the American 1st Brigade and a battalion of the 173rd Airborne are attacked by a Vietcong regiment, which is driven away by artillery fire.

April - May --- In Operation Birmingham, more than 5,000 U.S. troops, backed by huge numbers of helicopters and armored vehicles, sweep the area around north of Saigon. There are small scale actions between both armies, but over a three week period, only 100 Vietcong are killed. Most battles are dictated by the Vietcong, who prove elusive.

June - North Vietnamese 324B Division crosses the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and encounters a Marine battalion. The NVA holds their ground and the largest battle of the war to date breaks out near Dong Ha. Most of the 3rd Marine Division, some 5,000 men in five battalions, heads north. In Operation Hastings, the Marines backed by South Vietnamese Army troops, the heavy guns of U.S. warships and their artillery and air power drive the NVA back over the DMZ in three weeks.

July - Heavy fighting near Con Thien kills nearly 1,300 North Vietnamese troops.

End of 1966 - By the end of 1966, American forces in Vietnam reach 385,000 men, plus an additional 60,000 sailors stationed offshore. More than 6,000 Americans have been killed in this year, and 30,000 have been wounded. In comparison, an estimated 61,000 Vietcong have been killed. However, their troops now numbered over 280,000.
                                                                                January 1966 
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1969   Instead of bringing peace to the US war on Viet Nam, he intensified the war.  From the time
           he took office to soon after he resigned in 1974, without having brought peace, the DJI fell
           from 950 to 580, almost 40%..   
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Barack Obama's
War Speech
Delivered in Chicago on Wednesday, October 2, 2002.  
On this day, the President Bush and Congress announced their agreement on the joint resolution authorizing the Iraq War


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Oil was $30/bar. when Bush took office in 2001.
        It is now $130/bar.

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Obama' Speech against Bush's War on Iraq - September 2002.
Good afternoon. Let me begin by saying that although this has been billed as an anti-war rally, I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances.

The Civil War was one of the bloodiest in history, and yet it was only through the crucible of the sword, the sacrifice of multitudes, that we could begin to perfect this union, and drive the scourge of slavery from our soil. I don’t oppose all wars.

My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton’s army. He saw the dead and dying across the fields of Europe; he heard the stories of fellow troops who first entered Auschwitz and Treblinka. He fought in the name of a larger freedom, part of that arsenal of democracy that triumphed over evil, and he did not fight in vain.

I don’t oppose all wars.

After September 11th, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this Administration’s pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such a tragedy from happening again.

I don’t oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.

What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income – to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.

That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.

Now let me be clear – I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power. He has repeatedly defied UN resolutions, thwarted UN inspection teams, developed chemical and biological weapons, and coveted nuclear capacity.

He’s a bad guy. The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him.

But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors, that the Iraqi economy is in shambles, that the Iraqi military a fraction of its former strength, and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.

I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a US occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda.

I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars.

So for those of us who seek a more just and secure world for our children, let us send a clear message to the president today. You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda, through effective, coordinated intelligence, and a shutting down of the financial networks that support terrorism, and a homeland security program that involves more than color-coded warnings.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to make sure that the UN inspectors can do their work, and that we vigorously enforce a non-proliferation treaty, and that former enemies and current allies like Russia safeguard and ultimately eliminate their stores of nuclear material, and that nations like Pakistan and India never use the terrible weapons already in their possession, and that the arms merchants in our own country stop feeding the countless wars that rage across the globe.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to make sure our so-called allies in the Middle East, the Saudis and the Egyptians, stop oppressing their own people, and suppressing dissent, and tolerating corruption and inequality, and mismanaging their economies so that their youth grow up without education, without prospects, without hope, the ready recruits of terrorist cells.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to wean ourselves off Middle East oil, through an energy policy that doesn’t simply serve the interests of Exxon and Mobil.

Those are the battles that we need to fight. Those are the battles that we willingly join. The battles against ignorance and intolerance, corruption and greed, poverty and despair.

The consequences of war are dire, the sacrifices immeasurable. We may have occasion in our lifetime to once again rise up in defense of our freedom, and pay the wages of war. But we ought not – we will not – travel down that hellish path blindly. Nor should we allow those who would march off and pay the ultimate sacrifice, who would prove the full measure of devotion with their blood, to make such an awful sacrifice in vain.

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