Don't bother comparing Germany to Iraq. Japan attacked us, we then rightly declared war on the axis powers.
We justified the war on Germany because they formally declared war on the US, not because they happened to be allied with Japan.
Nor was Germany ever in a position to assist Japan militarily; their main contribution to the Japanese war effort was to distract critical industries with promises of jet and tank power that Japan never was able to effectively develop. The fact is that FDR had been agitating for years for the US to invade Germany on behalf of our ally, Britain.
We invaded Iraq in 1991 --- an attack you have claimed was an illegal imposition on the territory of a nation with no capacity to attack the US --- because they invaded our ally, Kuwait. The war with Germany did not end with the liberation of France and the Low Countries; neither did the war with Iraq end with the liberation of Kuwait.
The sole difference is we gave Iraq, and not Germany, over a decade to abide by a cease-fire agreement after which we would leave them alone. Iraq, after a decade, refused to abide by that agreement. So we ended the war by toppling of the Hussein regime. That was the "Mission", and it was thoroughly "Accomplished" in record time with a record low number of deaths on both sides. The post-war insurgency does not change that fact.
When Bin Laden attacked us i had no problem with invading Afghanistan to ferret him out. Of course that job had to be set aside to trump up a case for commiting to a nearly unilateral invasion of Iraq.
1) There was less legal reason to invade Afghanistan. We had never given the Taliban recognition as a legitimate government and had no extradition treaty with them. They were within their legal rights to refuse to hand over bin Laden.
2) The first major UN-sanctioned war, in Korea in 1950, had a total of 16 member nations. The current Coalition has 23 members. Then, as now, and also as with the 1991 invasion, the US provided the vast bulk of actual combat capability. So,evidently, the Korean War was even more of a "nearly unilateral" invasion.
Also the reason we stayed in Germany afterwards was because there was a real bilateral threat with another superpower.
That was one reason. There was also an ongoing insurgency that did not die out until the 1950s, as well as a need to stabilize the country during reconstruction and post-war de-Nazification.
But my problem is getting involved in the first gulfwar in the first place. It was regional struggle with two countries who were both our allies.
1) After the use of gas on the Kurds, the US broke relations with Iraq. That was in September 1988.
2) Iraq was an ally of necessity, with the alternative being an Iranian superstate bordering on Saudi Arabia. You might also recall the Soviets were our allies from 1941 - 1945, which then turned immediately into the Cold War.
3) It wasn't a "regional struggle", it was the literal sacking of Kuwait, with nothing behind it but an Iraqi desire to absorb a valuable and militarily-weak neighbor. They even came right out and claimed Kuwait as an existing "19th Province".
the vilification of Hussein was just a useful conceit
The vilification of Hussein was made possible by the fact that, by all accounts and available evidence, he was an absolutely vile man.
He was a ruthless dictator, but so are the Saudis
Wow, comparing the Pit Bull to the Chihuahua, much? You'll get no sympathy for the Saudis from me. You'll also find no comparison between gassing 30,000 Kurds and any given thing you'd like to lay at the feet of the House of Saud. I also haven't heard much about the sons of Saud feeding dissidents to their wild-animal menageries, though I may have missed that tidbit. Shall we get to rattling off the laundry list of things that made the US Army's illegal and unconscionable acts at Abu Gharib look like fratboy pranks by direct comparison?
Hussein fought a proxy war for us against a percieved threat of Iranian expansion
Said "perceived threat" actually having been on the outskirts of Baghdad not once, but several times. In fact, it's likely that if Hussein had NOT used gas on the Iranians, they would have overrun his troops. Of course, that's largely because the man fancied himself a modern-day general and micromanaged his forces (which HAD been winning) to repeated defeats.
he was on the CIA payroll
Calling myth on that one. Hussein was in fact out of the Ba'ath Party and considered a wanted man during the coup that brought the Ba'athists to power.
The CIA was also the bit player in that little scheme; Iraq's king had illegally seized all the assets of British Petroleum, and it was the Brits who launched and carried out the coup. The CIA was involved as support for our British ally.
It was not until well after the coup was over that he returned to Iraq, was arrested, did time, got free, was re-accepted into the party, and clawed his way up the ranks. All without CIA influence or assistance.
and as such was never a threat to us until we doublecrossed him on the Kuwait matter.
Ah yes, the other myth of the US "greenlighting" the invasion, the evidence for which consists entirely of an Iraqi question as to whether or not the US would involve itself with an ongoing dispute over oil drilling
, a query which contained no hint of any actual invasion over the matter, and the "misinterpreted" US response that we did not concern ourselves with that issue.
unfortunately the neocons who have hijacked your movement
You say they have, I say they haven't. For that matter, "neocon" is little more than a cobbled term that has no intrinsic meaning. I've yet to hear a definition that doesn't amount to "people who support things we're generally angry about at the moment". Its membership also seems to change; McCain was
a neocon, then he wasn't
because he was running against Bush in 2000, and now that he's the Repub choice for President and concerned with securing Iraq before leaving it, I hear he's become one again.
ARE for rolling back Roe V. Wade, and floating things like defense of marriage, Anti flag burning amendments, prayer in schools, unreasonable deregulation of gun ownership, etc.
Congratulations: you've just defined the Religious Right. Then again that last bit, including the largely subjective view of what is and is not "unreasonable" may extend that single issue to the conservative mainstream.
I didn't make up the neocon agenda
I'm largely of the opinion that someone did, actually. I don't much cotton to modern-day versions of "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion", regardless of who they're aimed at.
and it's disingenuous at best to imply that these things are mere straw men in my argument.
Imply, nothing. You're sitting there presenting the extreme wing of a given movement as claim to representing the whole. Limbaugh makes the same sort of sweeping generalizations about liberalism in reverse. It's all tripe; most people are centrist.
It's not my imagination when creationism gets forced into public schools and sex education gets forced out or drowned out with abstinence only nonsense.
No, it's not. But it is imagination not to realize that those people aren't getting much of anywhere. One school in the boonies teaching ID, and both the public and the courts are out in force. Bush's Marriage Defense thing was down in flames from Day One. Flag-burning amendments have been proposed, and similarly shot down, since the '60s.
The minute Bush got into office he started handing out federal money to religious organizations under the guise of charity and social programs and began cutting funding to places he didn't appreciate, like Planned Parenthood.
Did I not mention that I've never considered Bush presidential?