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Old 08-03-2010, 07:52 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
Joe Klein lays it all out:
Joe Klein is one of the most unobjective liberals in the media.

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And appropriately so, after a war that should never have been fought
Has Joe EVER considered the consequences of leaving Saddam in power back in 2003, for Iraq, the region and the world?

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a war that by some estimates will cost $3 trillion before it's done (including the health care services rendered to those represented by the DAV),
The cost of the war to date is a little over 800 Billion. Roughly 115 Billion dollars per year which amounts to less than 1% of USA annual GDP making it one of the least costly wars the United States has ever fought.

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a war whose casualties number in the 100s of thousands
The best estimates show that Iraqi deaths to include civilians, insurgents, Iraqi military under Saddam, and Iraqi military post Saddam number below 200,000. This is HALF of the number of Iraqi's that were killed in the winter and Spring of 1991, just a few months. Over 100,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed in the first Gulf War, and over 300,000 Iraqi civilians were murdered by Saddam after the war was over, primarily Shia's as well as some Kurds.

Lets not forget that Saddam's invasions, attacks on other nations and slaughter of his own people led to the deaths of well over 1 million Iraqi's and foreigners. Saddam used WMD on a scale not seen since World War I, threatened the vital energy supply of the Persian Gulf with siezure or sabotoge, annexed and destroyed much of the nation of Kuwait, caused massive environmental damage through his destruction of all the Kuwaiti oil wells as well as releasing oil into the Persian Gulf, launched ballistic missiles against Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Israel, starved his people denying certain parts of the Iraqi population UN humanitarian aid during the sanctions period after the first Gulf War, resold the humanitarian aid on the black market, murdered thousands of Iraqi's on annual basis, as well as being in violation of 17 UN Security Council Resolutions passed under Chapter VII rules of the United Nations including resolutions calling for the complete verifiable disarmament of all WMD.



But none of that matters to Joe Klein. He would prefer that the United States had not removed Saddam in 2003. What would that have cost the Iraqi people? What would that have cost the region? What would that have cost the United States especially considering the fact that the sanctions and weapons embargo needed to have any hope of containing Saddam had fallen apart by 2003? Has Joe ever thought about this? It certainly does not come up in anything he has written.

Quote:
There is no "victory" in Iraq, nor will there be.
Well Joe, what is your criteria for "victory" in Iraq, and how is it that United States, its allies, and the Iraqi people have failed and will never succeed?

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There is something resembling stability, but that might not last, either.
There have been months when the murder rate in Iraq was lower than the murder rate in the United States. While on average that is not the case, to be even close is incredible and shows that Bush and his team did the right thing in launching the surge which Obama opposed.

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There is a semblance of democracy, but that may dissolve over time, or in the next few months, into a Shi'ite dictatorship--which, if not well-run, will yield to the near-inevitable military coup.
Iraq is going through a difficult political transition at the moment. But all of the four major parties in the election are talking about ways of forming a government. The Party that actually won the most votes is a Sunni majority party.


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But Iran has been aggrandized. Its Iraqi allies, especially Muqtada Sadr's populist movement, remain a force that will play a major role--arguably one more central than ours--in shaping the future of the country.
Iran, like all the other countries in the middle east, benefited from the removal of Saddam. But Iran, which put much of its support around Sadr got its teeth kicked in especially in 2008 when Maliki with US help crushed most of Sadr's Iran backed forces all over southern Iraq. The Party Iran supports came in last in the election.

While the Iranian people may share a religion with 60% of Iraq's population, they have a different language, culture, history and ethnicity. Most of Saddam's military was actually Shia, and fought a brutal 8 year war with Iran. While there are Shia in Iraq that are pro-Iranian, they are a fraction of the Shia Arab population, and there is virtually no pro-Iranian support among the Sunni Arab and Kurdish populations.

The Iraqi military and police force today which is gaining in capability and is successfully handling security task around the country after the withdrawal of US forces, is logistically dependent on the United States. It is a US trained and equipped force, and that ties it to the United States and provides influence for the United States that Iran cannot match.

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This attempt by western neo-colonialists--that is, the Bush Administration--to construct an amenable Iraq will most likely end no better than previous western attempts have.
Rebuilding a country destroyed by Saddam is not neo-colonialism. Obama since becoming President has adopted the Bush Administrations plans and strategies for Iraq. Iraq is succeeding in its development with standard of living already equal to Morocco based on United Nations statistics on education, life expectancy and CIA and other estimates on national GDP. Iraq has one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Provided the international community does not abandon Iraq and continues to give it the support it needs, Iraq will develop into a prosperous country with enormous opportunities for its people, especially relative to what they had under Saddam. But its the Obama administrations job now to help insure that happens.

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Certainly, even if something resembling democracy prevails, the U.S. invasion and occupation--the carnage and tragedy it wrought--will not be remembered fondly by Iraqis anytime soon. We will own the destruction in perpetuity; if the Iraqis manage to cobble themselves a decent society, they will see it, correctly, as an achievement of their own.
What Joe does not understand, is that the bright future that Iraqi's can have would be IMPOSSIBLE if SADDAM were still in power. Joe Klein thinks the United States should not have invaded Iraq and removed SADDAM's regime. But that was the only realistic way Saddam's regime/family could have been removed. What about the carnage and tragedy caused by Saddam's regime, not only to his people, but to the rest of the region and the world? If Joe Klein had is way, that would have continued.

There are millions of Iraqi's who understand and appreciate the sacrifice and help they were given by the US military. Joe Klein, unfortunately does not seem to be aware or appreciate this, but millions of Iraqi's do.

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There are other consequences of this profound misadventure. The return of the Taliban in Afghanistan is certainly one; if U.S. attention, and special forces, hadn't been diverted from that primary conflict, the story in the Pashtun borderlands might be very different now.
1. There was not any significant diversion of US military units from Afghanistan in order to invade Iraq!

2. The number of US forces in Afghanistan INCREASED as the United States invaded Iraq.

3. The majority of US and british forces used to invade Iraq were heavy armored units and would NEVER BE USED in the mountainous borderland area between Afghanistan and Pakistan.


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The credibility of the United States--slowly recovering due to the efforts of Barack Obama--is another, after a war promulgated by a gale of ignorance at best and chicanery at worst. The sense of the United States as a nation of tempered, honorable actions may never recover from the images of the past decade, especially the photographs from Abu Ghraib prison.
If the credibility of the United States were as damaged as Joe Klein claims, would it be able to lead one of the largest multi-national operations since World War II in Afghanistan. NATO's first operations outside of Europe were launched and led by the Bush administration and those operations continue to this day.

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The replacement notion that it was our right and responsibility to rid Iraq of a terrible dictator--after the original casus belli of weapons of mass destruction evaporated--is a neo-colonialist obscenity. The fact that Bush apologists still trot out his "Forward Freedom Agenda" as an example of American idealism is a delusional farce. The "Freedom Agenda" brought us a Hamas government in Gaza, after a Palestinian election that no one but the Bush Administration wanted. It brought the empowerment of Hizballah in Lebanon. It raised the hopes of reformers across the region, soon dashed when the Bush Administration retreated, realizing that the probable outcome of democracy in places like Egypt and Saudi Arabia would be the installation of Islamist parties that might prove more repressive than the dictatorships they replaced.
The security reasons for which Saddam was removed never evaporated because US teams did not find certain types of WMD. Saddam's behavior, history, size of armed forces and willingness to cooperate with the international community had not changed. There are still thousands of stocks of WMD and WMD related weapons that remain unaccounted for and Saddam was found hiding programs related to the production of WMD that were banned under the 1991 Gulf War Ceacefire agreement. Finally the collapse of the international sanctions and the weapons embargo meant containment was impossible which meant the only option was regime change.

Regime change meant building a new government, and it would have been unwise for the United States to have installed a dictator, so naturally the United States helped to develop a democratic government.

Hizbollah was NEVER empowered by anything that happened in Iraq. Anyone that believes that is ignorant of the history of Lebanon. Syria is no longer in Lebanon, and it would be difficult to argue that people in Egypt and Saudi Arabia have less freedom than they did in 2003. All signs point to the fact that they have more. In addition, the Iranian people opposed its government in a way they never had in the past 30 years in the summer of 2009. I think these events have primarily happened despite events in Iraq. I think any impact that democracy and development in Iraq have on the rest of the region is something that won't be seen for many years. But, the benefits to the region from the removal of Saddam in the security realm have already been felt.


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The essential principle is immutable: We should never go to war unless we have been attacked or are under direct, immediate threat of attack. Never. And never again.
Based on that idea, you could block US military intervention in World War I, US military intervention against Germany in World War II, US military intervention in the Korean War, US military intervention in the Vietnam war, US military intervention in Panama, US miltary intervention in the 1991 Gulf War, US military intervention in Somalia, US military intervention in Haiti, US military intervention in the Bosnian civil war, US military intervention in the Kosovo war, US military intervention in Iraq during the 1990s, US military intervention to remove Saddam in 2003, potential future US military intervention in Iran, North Korea, or any number of places around the world vital to US and global security or where there is humanitarian disasters or genocide.

Even Candidate Barack Obama would not agree with Joe Klein on this idea.
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Old 08-03-2010, 08:23 PM   #47
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^Called it.
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Old 08-03-2010, 11:01 PM   #48
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Well, to be fair, the odds were overwhelmingly in your favor.
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Old 08-03-2010, 11:06 PM   #49
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i get a kick out of typing a one sentence statement and then getting a 12 paragraph reply.

it makes me feel good, wasting someone's time on something i'm never going to read.
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Old 08-03-2010, 11:50 PM   #50
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i dunno. i'm still not convinced that invading Iraq was the right thing to do.
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Old 08-04-2010, 12:12 AM   #51
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Well, here is a little something for all you Joe Klein lovers and defenders of letting Saddam remain in power in Iraq:

Its the actual text of Barack Obama's speech that Joe Klein refered to in his article:

Obama Disabled Veterans of America speech on Iraq troop drawdown. Transcript - Lynn Sweet

You will notice that unlike Joe Klein, at no time in the speech does Obama refer to the Iraq war as"a war that should have never been fought". At no time does he describe it as a national tragedy like Joe Klein does. Obama NEVER says "There is no "victory" in Iraq, nor will there be." Obama does not ignore and dismiss the efforts of the men and women of the US military in rebuilding Iraq, as Joe Klein did in his article.

Now for some things Obama did say that Joe Klein chose not to mention:

Today -- even as terrorists try to derail Iraq's progress -- because of the sacrifices of our troops and their Iraqi partners, violence in Iraq continues to be near the lowest it's been in years. And next month, we will change our military mission from combat to supporting and training Iraqi security forces. (Applause.) In fact, in many parts of the country, Iraqis have already taken the lead for security. As agreed to with the Iraqi government, we will maintain a transitional force until we remove all our troops from Iraq by the end of next year. And during this period, our forces will have a focused mission -- supporting and training Iraqi forces, partnering with Iraqis in counterterrorism missions, and protecting our civilian and military efforts.
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Old 08-04-2010, 12:33 AM   #52
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If you post a source, you love that person.

And if you oppose the war, you defend Saddam.

And here lies why you rub people the wrong way.
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:59 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strongbow View Post
Obama NEVER says "There is no "victory" in Iraq, nor will there be."
Because Obama, unlike Klein, would be committing career (or at least political) suicide if he were to say it.

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Obama does not ignore and dismiss the efforts of the men and women of the US military in rebuilding Iraq, as Joe Klein did in his article.
Quote:
Joe Klein said:
What is appropriate is what the President did: promise that amends will be made to those whose lives were shattered and that their service in an unnecessary cause will be honored.
News flash: That's not dismissing the efforts of the troops.
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Old 08-04-2010, 11:23 AM   #54
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yeah, even after all that, i guess i have to admit that i still don't find the argument for invading Iraq to be particularly compelling or accurate.

guess we did the wrong thing.
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Old 08-04-2010, 04:46 PM   #55
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By the way, today marks 20 years since Saddam's invasion of Kuwait on August 2, 1990.
My goodness I am old. I do remember packing my bags and getting ready to go.
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:53 PM   #56
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Hey, old man!
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:39 PM   #57
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If you post a source, you love that person.

And if you oppose the war, you defend Saddam.

And here lies why you rub people the wrong way.
1. Its not the first time Joe Klein has been posted as a source in here and praised by others.

2. If you oppose the only way that Saddam could be removed from power, then you are for letting him remain in power. If the opposition to the war had succeeded in preventing the US from invading, it certainly would have been beneficial to Saddam given what happened.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:59 PM   #58
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Because Obama, unlike Klein, would be committing career (or at least political) suicide if he were to say it.
Candidate Obama often said something similar along those lines during the campaign, although never in front of a room filled with only Iraq veterans.

President Obama comments and actions have been notably different. He has access to more information and talent now as well as his own experience on the job, plus he does not have to pander to the San Francisco side of the Democratic party now.

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News flash: That's not dismissing the efforts of the troops.
Well, then why didn't Obama use those words?

More importantly, the article Joe Klein wrote mentions nothing about what the US military did for the Iraqi people, police force, military, and government. It dismisses the critical role that the US military has played in bringing about a new Iraq by stating that any success that Iraq has in the future will be do only to its people. This ignores the fact that NONE of this would be possible if Saddam were still in power in Iraq, nor would it be possible without the years of nation building and counterinsurgency and counterterrorism efforts by the US military which saved millions of lives and set Iraq on the road to success.
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Old 08-04-2010, 10:07 PM   #59
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2. If you oppose the only way that Saddam could be removed from power, then you are for letting him remain in power. If the opposition to the war had succeeded in preventing the US from invading, it certainly would have been beneficial to Saddam given what happened.
You do realize you didn't truly address my post.

No one is defending Saddam.

Does Ron Paul defend Saddam by having a libertarian view about pre-emtive war?
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Old 08-04-2010, 10:12 PM   #60
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You do realize you didn't truly address my post.

No one is defending Saddam.

Does Ron Paul defend Saddam by having a libertarian view about pre-emtive war?
He defends letting him remain in power in Iraq. What I originally said which I think prompted your post was the following: defenders of letting Saddam remain in power in Iraq.
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