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Old 04-23-2007, 05:08 AM   #181
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Originally posted by Irvine511



you could not have possibly imagined just how well you've proved my point about decontextualizing facts from their historic circumstance.

that was *amazing.*

thank you. we can all learn from this.
You made a generalization that was simply false.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:09 AM   #182
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Well im sure in some school GWB will go down as a great man - but then there the ones that teach that we were made not that long ago and dinosaur bones and all that science mumbo jumbo is just witch craft meddling with young minds!

Most people on the outside looking in see a man who was a puppet, make mistakes all over the place, apologise for nothing, cover up things by doing even worse things and so on.

Let me tell you, no one, not one person I know, thinks that GWB is a competant president, let alone a GOOD one. It is quite worrisome how patriotic and blind you are to him, but each to their own. I mean you've only got just over 18 months left and then your agenda is GONE. FOREVER.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:12 AM   #183
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
But thats all relative isn''t it, an organisation that refuses to actively stop death squards from it's ethnic faction is a step apart from an organisation that is actively involved in said death squads.

What held Iraq together under Saddam wasn't the military (it was in shambles), it was the secret police. Without the monstrosity of the Mukhabarat the fear that kept the society in opressive order is gone. What can fill that void without being a tool for the Shiite factions?
The Secret Police were important, but it was the military that put down major uprisings in the south and the north. Again, the military is probably the most ethnically mixed part of the government and that and that is a starting point for helping to unite the country.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:30 AM   #184
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Originally posted by dazzlingamy
Well im sure in some school GWB will go down as a great man - but then there the ones that teach that we were made not that long ago and dinosaur bones and all that science mumbo jumbo is just witch craft meddling with young minds!

Most people on the outside looking in see a man who was a puppet, make mistakes all over the place, apologise for nothing, cover up things by doing even worse things and so on.

Let me tell you, no one, not one person I know, thinks that GWB is a competant president, let alone a GOOD one. It is quite worrisome how patriotic and blind you are to him, but each to their own. I mean you've only got just over 18 months left and then your agenda is GONE. FOREVER.
Again, many said the same thing about Harry Truman in the early 1950s. But once some time has passed, a more reasonable and objective assesment about the Presidency will be made without all the heated political climate that currently taints any discussion of the subject matter. Most people who are Democrats share your opinions above and said much the same thing about his father in different ways, although now his father actually gets a great deal of respect even from Democrats.

Remember, most people in the 2004 election voted for Bush, and Bush still gets high approval ratings among Republicans. The Bush agenda won't be gone in 21 months, thats right, Bush does not leave office until January 20, 2009. The Bush agenda which is the agenda of the country will be picked up by the next President who will likely be John McCain or Hillary Clinton. What is fundamentally important to US security in the Persian Gulf will not have changed at that time and the United States will likely still be engaged in both Iraq and Afghanistan. While with a Democratic President there is the possiblity of a dramatic shift in policy, any such shift would be risky, and there is always the chance that given better than expected improvements in Iraq over the next 18 months, even a Democratic President may not abandon the mission there.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:46 AM   #185
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I wasn't just talking about Iraq. I'm sure the person who gets into office will spend a hell of a lot of their first couple of years cleaning up the mess, perhaps its just too broken to fix?

And to me, really its quite frightening to know that 50+ million people voted for Bush in 2004, but then it just proves what the rest of the world thinks about the majority of americans.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:55 AM   #186
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2


The Secret Police were important, but it was the military that put down major uprisings in the south and the north. Again, the military is probably the most ethnically mixed part of the government and that and that is a starting point for helping to unite the country.
It's four years in, we are well beyond starting point; I supported the removal of Saddam but the weakness of this admistration on Islamic terrorism (read: Islam is a religion of peace, MoToons were wrong, Saudies are a-ok etc.) and the apparent inability to deal with any fluid situation is staggering.

The case for removing Saddam is defensible to this day, the decisions of this administration less and less.
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Old 04-23-2007, 06:06 PM   #187
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I guess this has become the default Iraq thread

Quote:
Withdrawal from Iraq would prompt new challenges

By James Kitfield and Brian Friel, National Journal


The Frenchman had it right. Fractious at the best of times, democracies become polarized and paralyzed when mired in unpopular wars. Bombarded with daily images of bloodshed and spent treasure, nations see emotions rise and positions harden. The essential middle ground of political compromise narrows and then disappears altogether.

For the first time in a generation, the American body politic has stumbled into this predicament, lacking the consensus either to sustain a costly war or to plausibly end it.

Consider the increasing isolation of President Bush, who is buying time to stave off congressional Democrats but is most afraid of rising defections in his own party and of the faltering loyalty of the nation's military elite.

When the administration recently floated the new job of "war czar," not only did at least five retired four-star generals turn down a wartime president -- an almost unheard-of vote of no confidence -- but one general dramatically shattered civil-military protocol by publicly excoriating the commander-in-chief's leadership.

"The very fundamental issue is, they don't know where the hell they are going," retired Marine Corps Gen. John (Jack) Sheehan told The Washington Post.

For their part, congressional Democrats are torn between a desire to politically punish the Bush administration and to force a timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq, and a fear of overreaching and owning the ugly endgame of a lost war. The party went down that road with Vietnam in the early 1970s and bore the brand of "weak on defense" for decades.

Today, tensions are flaring between the party's liberal base that wants out of Iraq now and Democratic presidential candidates who worry about inheriting the blowback of a precipitous exit.

In the meantime, U.S. military leaders have one eye trained on a determined enemy in Iraq and the other on faltering political support back home, even as the war dangerously saps their forces' strength. Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, talks about a conflict waged almost in parallel dimensions, one that runs on Washington time and the other dictated by events in Baghdad.

"The Washington clock is moving more rapidly than the Baghdad clock," Petraeus said in a televised interview. "So we're obviously trying to speed up the Baghdad clock a bit to produce some progress on the ground that can, perhaps ... put a little more time on the Washington clock."

This, then, is a story about when and how -- not if -- the Washington clock runs down. If Bush is successful, the time on that clock will expire after the November 2008 election, when he passes the Iraq problem to the next president and surrenders his legacy to history. Democrats are determined to make the sands run out on Bush's "surge" strategy much sooner -- the better to begin the long homeward march of U.S. troops on the watch of the president who sent them to Iraq in the first place.

What U.S. military experts know about those discordant timelines, but what many of their fellow Americans seem to hardly grasp, is that regardless of when it occurs, the expiration of the political clock will not be the end. Rather, it will mark the beginning of the most challenging and potentially calamitous phase of the Iraq war.

"There's an old military adage that the most dangerous and hazardous of all military maneuvers is a withdrawal of forces while in contact with the enemy. That's the operation all of us soldiers fear the most," retired Maj. Gen. Robert Scales, a former commandant of the Army War College, told National Journal.

Some experts argue that the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq will remove a major irritant and thus facilitate a resolution to the conflict, Scales noted, and others believe that a U.S. pullout could prompt chaos, massive bloodletting, and even genocide.

"And if anyone insists that they know which it will be," he said, "they are lying. The truth is, we don't have enough understanding or insight into the thousands of intangibles to know what forces will drive the dynamic inside Iraq once we begin pulling out."





Running Out the Clock

This is a long article, I think it pretty much nails the problems, I don't think they are pushing one side or the other
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Old 04-23-2007, 08:23 PM   #188
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Quote:
Originally posted by dazzlingamy
And to me, really its quite frightening to know that 50+ million people voted for Bush in 2004, but then it just proves what the rest of the world thinks about the majority of americans.


and 50+ million voted against him.

but as the facts are presented without any context -- see the above LBJ hilarity -- one might think that the US in 2004 was positively North Korean in their re-coronation of Dear Leader Bush.

but that's not the case.
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Old 04-23-2007, 11:20 PM   #189
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U.S. military: Suicide bomb kills 9 U.S. soldiers in Iraq


BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Nine U.S. soldiers were killed Monday when a suicide car bomb struck near their patrol base in Diyala province, the U.S. military said in a statement.

Twenty other U.S. soldiers and one Iraqi civilian were wounded in the attack, the statement said.

In a separate incident, the military reported a U.S. soldier was killed in Muqtadya, northeast of Baghdad, by a roadside bomb.

Muqtadya is a city in Diyala province located about 25 miles (40 kilometers) northeast of the provincial capital of Baquba.

Also Monday, a suicide car bomber targeted a gathering of police vehicles in Baquba, killing six police officers, including a police general, a Diyala province police official said.
Dozens killed in insurgent attacks

Insurgents targeted Iraqis eating at restaurants, police patrolling the cities, a Kurdish political office and a Sunni mosque in a string of attacks in Iraq on Monday that left at least 51 people dead and 96 wounded, according to Iraqi officials. (Watch scenes of destruction from Baghdad bombsVideo)

The deadliest attack happened when a suicide car bomber struck a restaurant in Ramadi, west of Baghdad, killing 20 civilians and wounding 35, an Interior Ministry official said.

A suicide car bomber struck a police checkpoint just outside Ramadi, killing four and wounding six civilians and police, a police official said.

In Baghdad, seven people were killed and 16 wounded when a suicide bomber detonated an explosive vest inside a restaurant near the Green Zone, Baghdad police said.

The restaurant was frequented by Baghdad police officers.

About a half-mile away from the restaurant, two parked car bombs exploded near Iran's embassy within hours of each other, police said.

Insurgents also bombed a Sunni mosque in the southwestern Baghdad neighborhood of Baya'a. They killed the mosque's guard to gain entry then rigged the mosque with explosives. No one was injured but the al-Kawthar mosque was damaged, an Interior Ministry official said.

A suicide car bomb detonated outside the Kurdish Democratic Party office in Tal Uskuf, killing at least 10 people and wounding 20, according to KDP official Abdul Ghani Yahya.
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Old 04-24-2007, 04:19 PM   #190
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The chief spokesman for Iraqi security forces in Baghdad insisted that construction would proceed and pledged to build walls around other Baghdad neighborhoods, including the vast Shiite enclave of Sadr City.

"We will continue to construct these barriers in all areas of Baghdad without exception," said Brig. Gen. Qassem al-Musawi. He said al-Maliki's objections to the wall, voiced while on a visit to Cairo on Sunday, were based on exaggerated news reports.


Making comparisons

In fact, critics appear to have a different wall in mind -- the one being built to separate Israel from the West Bank.

"People of Adhamiyah, rise up and destroy this wall ... produced by Israeli factories in Tel Aviv!" said a commentary in the Iraqi daily Al-Zaman. "These are the same barriers that isolated Palestinian villages and cities from each other ... under the pretext of defending Israel security."

The parallel was drawn by Arab newspapers across the region, which has leapt upon the wall project as evidence of what the influential Al-Hayat described as "Israel's infiltration of our homelands."

"The separation barrier is an Israeli product imported by Americans to the heart of Baghdad," the London-based Arab daily said.

U.S. officials appear to have been caught off-guard by the intensity of the emotions stirred by the project.
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Old 04-24-2007, 04:45 PM   #191
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Originally posted by deep
U.S. officials appear to have been caught off-guard by the intensity of the emotions stirred by the project.
That just about sums up the approach to this entire invasion. Lack of planning, lack of insight into the culture, lack of forethought, all leading to things spinning out of control beyond what was expected.
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Old 04-24-2007, 08:55 PM   #192
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Check out what the taxpayer is paying for the war, and what they could have paid for instead:

http://nationalpriorities.org/index....per&Itemid=182
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Old 04-24-2007, 09:26 PM   #193
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Check out what the taxpayer is paying for the war, and what they could have paid for instead:

http://nationalpriorities.org/index....per&Itemid=182
First, the amount that has been spent on the war as well as the entire military is far less than what the United States spent on the military in the peace time of the 1980s as a percentage of GDP.

Second, there are often cost and consequences when one does not take military action which can vastly exceed the cost of the war.
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Old 04-24-2007, 09:35 PM   #194
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First, the amount that has been spent on the war as well as the entire military is far less than what the United States spent on the military in the peace time of the 1980s as a percentage of GDP.


And your point is? It's still a helluva lot of money that (arguably) could've been spent far more effectively.

Quote:
Second, there are often cost and consequences when one does not take military action which can vastly exceed the cost of the war.
I highly, HIGHLY doubt not invading Iraq the way we did would prove more expensive, even in the long run, than the bungled, mismanaged "they don't keep paper trails, we don't know where the money went" war in Iraq has.
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Old 04-24-2007, 10:33 PM   #195
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Originally posted by Diemen


And your point is? It's still a helluva lot of money that (arguably) could've been spent far more effectively.



I highly, HIGHLY doubt not invading Iraq the way we did would prove more expensive, even in the long run, than the bungled, mismanaged "they don't keep paper trails, we don't know where the money went" war in Iraq has.
Its very easy to throw up some multi-billion dollar figures that will shock the uninformed, but once you put those figures into a proper context and compare it to past spending, it loses its shock value.

The cost of a worldwide economic depression worse than the 1930s as a result of the seizure or sabotage of Persian Gulf oil supply would easily dwarf the cost of the current Iraq war and military spending, combined.

The yearly cost of military spending, the Iraq war, and the Afghanistan war, combined is only about 4% of GDP. The cost of defense spending in the peacetime of the 1980s was 6% of GDP.
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