History is that series of events which have led to the ever fleeing present. This present moves forward, ever forward, no matter how much we may wish for it to stop and take a break for a moment or three. The present is built on history and the future is built from that history and the ever changing present. The future is unknowable, although it becomes firmer and firmer and firmer until the present overtakes it.
"The future is not set." - message carried by Reese from John Connor to Sarah Conner, The TerminatorBut we can be haunted by the possible futures, even high probability ones:
Reese stated to Sarah that he came from "one possible future." - The TerminatorWhich lets us choose from our actions to make a better future, thus ensuring that there is no predestination paradox from the future to the past and that only the present guides events. That said predestination beliefs are put forth by many in strange ways, some by politicians:
"Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives concerning the Iraqi Governments campaign against the Marsh Arabs of Southern Iraq.
Whereas the government of Saddam Hussein has a long and well documented history of brutal repression of the population of Iraq;
Whereas Saddam Hussein carried out a methodical campaign of genocide against Iraqi Kurds, including extensive efforts to render large areas of Iraqi Kurdistan uninhabitable and the use of poison gas in violation of international law;
Whereas Saddam Hussein is now conducting a massive campaign of repression against the population of Shi'ite Arabs in southern Iraq known as the Marsh Arabs or the Maadan;
Whereas this campaign includes an enormous effort to drain the wetlands at the confluence of the Tigris and the Euphrates which have sustained the distinct Marsh Arab civilization for thousands of years;
Whereas, in addition to draining the wetlands, Iraqi troops have extensively shelled villages in the marshes;
Whereas the campaign against the Marsh Arabs appears to constitute an effort to drive the entire civilian population out of the marshes and to destroy the way of life of a distinct community within Iraq;
Whereas there are recent reports that Iraqi troops have employed chemical weapons against the Marsh Arabs in violation of international law and United Nations Security Council resolutions concerning Iraq; and
Whereas prior to the Persian Gulf War the world community did not stop Saddam Hussein from employing similar tactics against the Kurds:" - House Resolution 583, October 7, 1994
First, let me join with others in expressing support for the American men and women in our armed forces who executed the strike against Iraq. Saddam Hussein continues to viciously persecute his own people and deserves the civilized world's scorn and condemnation. It is clear from our experience in the Gulf War that Saddam Hussein only responds to direct, unambiguous and decisive action. I hope today's strikes in the South of Iraq compel Hussein to withdraw his troops from the North. If not, today's strikes may mark the beginning of escalation in the use of force, with or without strong allied support. - STATEMENT BY CHAIRMAN FLOYD D. SPENCE (R-SC) ON THE U.S. ATTACK ON IRAQ, September 3, 1996
"In light of these recent events, it is certainly appropriate to begin the committee's end-of-session review by discussing our strategy and policy toward Iraq. Coming on the heels of the collapse of the Soviet empire, the coalition victory over Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War seemed to hold the promise of a new era. Our crushing defeat of the Iraqi army seemed to codify America's standing as the world's "sole superpower."
Eight years later, the promise of those heady days has not been fulfilled, and our troubles with Saddam Hussein seem to reflect our troubles elsewhere in the world. The past eight years have seen Saddam increasingly able to claw his way out of his diplomatic, economic, military and strategic isolation. Despite the devastation it suffered during Desert Storm, the Iraqi military still maintains significant capabilities. And if Saddam finally succeeds in creating and fielding an arsenal of chemical or biological weapons "in perhaps as little as six months" he will pose an even larger threat to the region and to American interests." - OPENING STATEMENT OF CHAIRMAN FLOYD D. SPENCE HEARING ON U.S. IRAQ POLICY September 16, 1998
"[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S. Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs." -- From a letter signed by Joe Lieberman, Dianne Feinsteing, Barbara Milkuski, Tom Daschle, & John Kerry among others on October 9, 1998
"Finally, the Administration has repeatedly failed to answer the "what's next" question. As long as Saddam Hussein remains in power he will continue to threaten our interests and our friends in the vital Persian Gulf region. In fact, allowing Saddam to acquire weapons of mass destruction combined with his determined efforts to field a ballistic missile capability, poses a serious regional and global threat. Yet, by the President's admission, these strikes are unlikely to oust Saddam from power. Until we craft a credible strategy that achieves that goal, we will likely be conducting such strikes again and again, and reaping diminishing returns." - CHAIRMAN SPENCE STATEMENT ON MILITARY ACTION AGAINST IRAQ, December 17,1998
And then summarizing of Senate Joint Resolution 54 detailing dates and number of times Saddam's regime stopped UNSCOM Weapons inspectors from doing their jobs:
June 1991 - Iraqi forces opening fire on IAEA inspectors,All of that from S. J. Res. 54, July 31, 1998.
January & February 1992 - Iraq refusing to install monitoring equipment and found in "material breach" of its cease fire agreement, and in "continuing material breach" and "further material breach" on failure to allow destruction of ballistic missile equipment,
July 5, 1992 - Iraq denies UNSCOM inspectors access to Agriculture Ministry sites and is found in "material and unacceptable breach" of UN obligations,
December 1992 & January 1993 - Iraq violates southern no-fly zone, moves SAMs into zone, raids depot in Kuwaiti territory, denies landing rights to UN weapons inspectors and is found in "unacceptable and material breach" of its UN obligations,
June 10, 1993 - Iraq prevents UNSCOM installation of sensors and is found in "material and unacceptable breach" of UN obligations,
October 6, 1994 - Iraq threatens to end cooperation with weapons inspectors and masses 10,000 soldiers on the Kuwaiti border,
April 10, 1995 - UNSCOM reports Iraqi concealement of biological weapons program and fails to account for 17 tons of bio weapons to the UNSC,
July 1, 1995 - Iraq admits to full scale bio weapons program, but denies weaponization and threatens to end cooperation with UNSCOM,
March 8, 11,14 & 15, 1996 - Iraq bars UNSCOM from inspecting sites conaining documents and weapons and has "clear violations by Iraq of previous Resolutions 687, 707 and 715",
June 11-15, 1996 - Iraq bars weapons inspectors repeatedly from military sites and is again found in "clear violation" of multiple UN obligations,
August 1996 - Iraqi troops overrun Irbil in Iraqi Kurdistan, using 30,000 troops,
December 1996 - Iraq prevents UNSCOM inspectors from removing 130 Scud missile engines for analysis,
April 9, 1997 - Iraq violates southern no-fly zone,
June 4 and 5, 1997 - Iraqi officials on UNSCOM aircraft interfering with controls and inspections and endangering the lives of inspectors along with obstructing the mission,
September 13, 1997 - Iraqi official attacks UNSCOM inspectors engaged in photographing Iraqi illegal activities,
October 29, 1997 - Iraq announces it would no longer allow American inspectors working with UNSCOM in Iraq, in contravention to its UN obligations,
November 13, 1997 - Iraq expelled US Inspectors leading to UNSCOM withdrawing from Iraq,
January 16, 1998 - UNSCOM team barred for three days from entering Iraq in clear violation of all its UN commitments,
June 24, 1998 - UNSCOM Director Richard Butler presents information to UNSC indicating Iraq had weaponized VX nerve gas.
And gets you to the Iraqi Liberation Act of 1998. Which has this lovely little piece in it:
"SEC. 7. ASSISTANCE FOR IRAQ UPON REPLACEMENT OF SADDAM HUSSEIN REGIME.So the Congress supports Iraq's transition to democracy. In 1998.
It is the sense of the Congress that once the Saddam Hussein regime is removed from power in Iraq, the United States should support Iraq's transition to democracy by providing immediate and substantial humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people, by providing democracy transition assistance to Iraqi parties and movements with democratic goals, and by convening Iraq's foreign creditors to develop a multilateral response to Iraq's foreign debt incurred by Saddam Hussein's regime."
Now a person could just go *wild* at the Thomas site for multi-congress research! Just search for "Iraq" and the hits are lengthy! Clearly Congress knew *something* about Iraq under Saddam... why support the overthrow of the regime if you had no evidence or at least continued demonstration of circumstantial evidence that eliminates all other reasons?
And a predestination sort of person would have seen the following coming: AUTHORIZATION FOR USE OF MILITARY FORCE AGAINST IRAQ RESOLUTION OF 2002
Luckily for us, someone has realized that the past is all a pack of lies! None other than Senator John F. Kerry is now saying that he and all of Congress was being lied to all during the 1990's and the lead up to the 2002 Congressional Authorization for the Use of Force against Iraq! I mean, what else can he be saying when he says this:
U.S. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts on Tuesday told an audience at the liberal Take Back America conference that he was sorry for voting to authorize the war in Iraq, calling the entire mission "a mistake.""We were misled, we were given evidence that was not true," Kerry said. "It was wrong, and I was wrong to vote [for it]." - Senator John F. Kerry, June 13, 2006, CNSNewsAnd then hits us with this:
Kerry, who led an unsuccessful bid for the presidency in 2004, said it was necessary to admit mistakes because "you cannot change the future if you''re not honest about the past." - Senator John F. Kerry, June 13, 2006, CNSNewsSo, I expect the Good Senator will now start telling us each and every Agency, each and every individual, each and every staff member on both the House and Senate Armed Services and Intelligence Committee, each and every individual who testified about Iraq under Saddam before the Senate to include all heads of Agencies, Cabinet members and Executives, all UN inspectors and agency heads, and, indeed, all the people who misled him all the way from, say, 1994 to 2002.
All of them, Senator Kerry. Democratic and Republican and Independent and unaligned and casual observer and your personal waterboy if he was fibbing to you, too.
Otherwise you will be seen in a light better known by George Orwell:
Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past. - George Orwell, 1984You are entitled to your own opinions, Senator Kerry.
You are NOT entitled to your own historical facts.
Unless you are trying to control the future.