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Old 04-09-2008, 12:57 PM   #31
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Originally posted by Irvine511




i got news for you. what you have done is destroy a totalitarian government and a phony country and created a permanently unstable, fractious, chaotic, failed state where the mere avoidance of genocide -- through walled in ghettos and 160,000 American troops -- is cause for celebration.

this is vital?

what you have also done is solidified the idea in the Arab mind that democracy means chaos, anarchy, mass-murder, and sectarian warfare. and you've empowered Iran and made a wider Sunni-Shiite regional war more likely than it ever was with Saddam in power.

it doesn't make any sense to continue to spend billions to prop up and enable a dystopic, ethnically and religiously irraitonal region. it isn't in anyone's interests to do so, certainly not in American interests. there is something else called the GWOT, and blood and treasure spilled and spent and the exhaustion of the military have made the removal of Saddam Hussein far from vital.

it isn't 1998 anymore.

What is important to the United States and the world in this region? Oil. The planet depends on it for its economic survival. Saddam was a threat to that resource and alternatives to invasion and regime removal were tried and failed to fix the problem. That is why Saddam had to be removed.

But in removing Saddam, the country must be rebuilt in order to prevent similar conditions from developing again. In addition, Iraq is now providing 3% of global oil production and could potentially provide more helping to keep the price of oil from rising faster. The United States has had vital national security interest in the Persian Gulf region for 60 years now and those interest did not suddenly disappear.

The only people who stand to gain from a premature US withdrawal from Iraq are Iran and Al Quada. Allowing Al Quada to gain base in Iraq because of a pre-mature withdrawal is the last thing that would help the GWOT. Iran's influence would only grow stronger in Iraq if the United States were to leave prematurely. Then what are the consequences for Iraq's people if the United States leaves pre-maturely?

You can't make an accurate assessment of what needs to be done when you ignore long standing vital US interest and don't consider the consequences of pre-mature withdrawal.
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Old 04-09-2008, 12:59 PM   #32
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Originally posted by Strongbow



What is important to the United States and the world in this region? Oil. The planet depends on it for its economic survival. Saddam was a threat to that resource and alternatives to invasion and regime removal were tried and failed to fix the problem. That is why Saddam had to be removed.
At last!
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Old 04-09-2008, 01:09 PM   #33
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Originally posted by Strongbow

Then what are the consequences for Iraq's people if the United States leaves pre-maturely?


the only thing that's clear from Petraeus and Crocker's testimony is that they have no idea what's going to happen. that nobody has any idea what's going to happen. and anybody who says they know what will happen as a result of "x" or "y" policy has an agenda. Iraq is a black box. we put one thing in, and we get something quite different out.

what is clear is that the goals of the surge have not been met. and you have failed to provide an endpoint. where does it end? you don't even have a definition for what "pre-maturely" might mean. what's happened is that you're just like Bush. you've argued a flawed policy from the beginning and you've been backed into a corner, and it's arrogance that won't let you deal with reality, and the reality is that the current situation not only isn't working and producing the desired results, but that it isn't sustainable. Bush is going to ride this out because he's giving himself a historical out, but what about the people who are not just dying over there, but paying for all the dying over there?

something is going to have to give, STING.
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Old 04-09-2008, 03:45 PM   #34
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Originally posted by Irvine511
you've argued a flawed policy from the beginning and you've been backed into a corner, and it's arrogance that won't let you deal with reality, and the reality is that the current situation not only isn't working and producing the desired results, but that it isn't sustainable.
Well said.

I'd like to see someone on the administration's side give a good explanation of how we can feasibly maintain this operation at this level until results come. Especially since, with so many hands in the cookie jar now (Iran, Sunni, Shia, etc) , we have no reasonable way of predicting if and/or when those results will come. But hey, if it takes 100 years, then think of how satisfying the payoff will surely be!
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Old 04-09-2008, 04:07 PM   #35
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Originally posted by Strongbow


Yeah, they are also the type of people who equate Saddam with George Bush.

When was the last time you really spent some time outside the US? I don't talk your short trip to Ireland, but really some time you spent with people from other countries, and from different parts of the society?
Only a very small percentage of people disgusted by what Bush has been doing over the past few years are sincerely equating him to Saddam. Out of millions that just cannot believe what has been happening to the country many of those admired for so long. And still do.
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Old 04-09-2008, 04:20 PM   #36
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
Do you suppose that it is possible that Saddam wasn't personally running the rape rooms and executing dissidents and their families? Weak old man perhaps but ruler of a police state nonetheless; your post doesn't even go with "he may have been an brutal dictator, but" - it just goes "he may have been a brutal dictator one upon a time".
i certainly don't disagree with this. others have made their points a bit more eloquently than me, perhaps. but the fact remains that i think we should've had a better strategy as a whole. enter, exit, you name it.

call me selfish, but when i hear of how many people on all sides have died and continue to be killed to this day, i really don't see how this war needed to happen in the first place.
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Old 04-09-2008, 04:35 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow



What is important to the United States and the world in this region? Oil. The planet depends on it for its economic survival. Saddam was a threat to that resource and alternatives to invasion and regime removal were tried and failed to fix the problem. That is why Saddam had to be removed.

But in removing Saddam, the country must be rebuilt in order to prevent similar conditions from developing again. In addition, Iraq is now providing 3% of global oil production and could potentially provide more helping to keep the price of oil from rising faster. The United States has had vital national security interest in the Persian Gulf region for 60 years now and those interest did not suddenly disappear.

The only people who stand to gain from a premature US withdrawal from Iraq are Iran and Al Quada. Allowing Al Quada to gain base in Iraq because of a pre-mature withdrawal is the last thing that would help the GWOT. Iran's influence would only grow stronger in Iraq if the United States were to leave prematurely. Then what are the consequences for Iraq's people if the United States leaves pre-maturely?

You can't make an accurate assessment of what needs to be done when you ignore long standing vital US interest and don't consider the consequences of pre-mature withdrawal.
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Old 04-09-2008, 04:36 PM   #38
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Do you have anything to add?
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Old 04-09-2008, 05:27 PM   #39
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Originally posted by BonosSaint

Thank you, I'm glad someone liked it

I'll tell you what it was like to be there
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Old 04-09-2008, 05:41 PM   #40
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Originally posted by Vincent Vega

Only a very small percentage of people disgusted by what Bush has been doing over the past few years are sincerely equating him to Saddam. Out of millions that just cannot believe what has been happening to the country many of those admired for so long. And still do.



but some people need the lie in order to live with the grand self-delusion.
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Old 04-09-2008, 06:23 PM   #41
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Originally posted by Irvine511




the only thing that's clear from Petraeus and Crocker's testimony is that they have no idea what's going to happen. that nobody has any idea what's going to happen. and anybody who says they know what will happen as a result of "x" or "y" policy has an agenda. Iraq is a black box. we put one thing in, and we get something quite different out.

That is not exactly what they said. Both Petraeus and Crocker have said that they see serious consequences with any large scale withdrawal within the next year.

Its obvious that no one has a crystal ball. The same could be said for any war the United States have been involved in at some point. The same holds true with the war in Afghanistan.

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what is clear is that the goals of the surge have not been met.
Many of the goals of the surge have been met, certainly not all of them, but nation building and counter insurgency operations take years if not decades to succeed. Your certainly not being objective when you never aknowledge what has gone right.

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and you have failed to provide an endpoint. where does it end?
It ends in one sense when the Iraqi military and government can handle the internal security situation on their own, are able to provide some measure of their own defense against foreign attack But in the sense that the United States no longer has to worry about the Persian Gulf region or deploy military forces there to respond to a crises, that will only end when the planets dependence on the resources in the region ends.

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you don't even have a definition for what "pre-maturely" might mean.
Pre-mature is leaving before the Iraqi military and government can handle the internal security situation on their own, which would create the the potential for a massive internal conflict, a new base for Al Quada, or a regional war. In my opinion, the Iraqi military is at least 3 years away from being able to handle things on their own, if not more.


Quote:
you've argued a flawed policy from the beginning and you've been backed into a corner
Iraq needs outside military intervention and aid to help rebuild the country and defeat the insurgencies. Nation Building and Counter insurgency strategies are the only ones that will work, but they are expensive and do take a considerable amount of time.

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and it's arrogance that won't let you deal with reality
Understanding basic US security needs in the region and what will help secure those needs or endanger them is the reality you need to start to come to terms with.


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and the reality is that the current situation not only isn't working and producing the desired results, but that it isn't sustainable.
The current situation, the surge, has produced more results in a shorter amount of time than I would have thought possible prior to its start.

The overall US committment to Iraq (non surge levels) is sustainable from a economic and military standpoint, but you are right in that it may not be politically sustainable for much longer. We won't know until November whether that is the case or not.

Quote:
but what about the people who are not just dying over there, but paying for all the dying over there?
Once again, you naively believe that those cost will forever disappear if the United States rapidly withdraws from Iraq. Again, the rapid withdrawal and abandonment of Iraq has consequences you should consider.




But hey, your all for keeping troops in Afghanistan right? Whats your endpoint for the US military deployment there? What about the people who are not just dying over there, but paying for all the dying over there? Which country in the long run is more important to the United States and the World in terms of its proximity to other important countries, vital resources etc. ?

At what point does the United States simply abandon protecting its vital national security interest?
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Old 04-09-2008, 06:36 PM   #42
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it seems to me that continuing an empire-like presence in the middle of the most volatile region in the world that sucks blood and treasure -- treasure that's been borrowed, btw -- out of the US and gives us absolutely nothing in return but a generation of Muslim youth who hate the US, who see democracy as chaos, who are given hundreds of reasons to rally around sectarianism, that emboldens Iran, that enables the election of theocratic governments like the Supreme Islamic Council of Iraq, that has destroyed the US's standing in the world, that has seen the adoption of torture by the US, that has severed necessary alliances, that has made something of a hero out of al-Sadr, that has plunged Iraq into a civil war, that has worsened the quality of life for women in Iraq, that has given Turkey reason to bomb northern Iraq, that "stability" means at least 600 dead civilians a month (not including soldiers and police) ... all this, STING, is a threat to the "vital national security interest" and poses a greater long-term threat to oil and to the future of potential terrorist attacks on the West than Saddam Hussein or, indeed, Osama Bin Laden could have ever dreamed.

the present and future of Iraq presents far greater peril to the "national security interest" of the United States than Saddam Hussein ever did.
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Old 04-09-2008, 06:37 PM   #43
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Originally posted by Diemen


Well said.

I'd like to see someone on the administration's side give a good explanation of how we can feasibly maintain this operation at this level until results come. Especially since, with so many hands in the cookie jar now (Iran, Sunni, Shia, etc) , we have no reasonable way of predicting if and/or when those results will come. But hey, if it takes 100 years, then think of how satisfying the payoff will surely be!
From a military standpoint, the United States can maintain a 2 to 1 ratio of Brigades at home to brigades deployed indefinitly. That has been out of wack for several years with it being 1 to 1 at some points because of the inability to use National Guard Combat Brigades more than once in a 5 year period. But the Army and Marine Corp are expanding the number of combat brigades they have, and the United States is getting closer to a level that it could sustain indefinitely.

From an Economic standpoint, the United States is still spending less than 5% of its annual GDP on the US military, Afghanistan, and Iraq combined, less than what it spent during the peacetime of the 1980s and considerably less than what it spent on average for the entire Cold War.

The only real question is if its politically sustainable, and we won't no that until the election.

Again, nation building and counter insurgency operations take a considerable amount of time to produce results. Afghanistan is not anymore predictable than Iraq. But thats certainly not an arguement for pulling the plug in Afghanistan.
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Old 04-09-2008, 06:41 PM   #44
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Sometimes I'm wondering to what extent you are taking into account that you are not talking about some machines, or roboters, you could deploy indefinitely, but actual people.
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Old 04-09-2008, 06:43 PM   #45
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The personal toll on soldiers and their families is irrelevant, donchya know.
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