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Old 10-02-2006, 01:49 PM   #151
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Old 10-02-2006, 02:06 PM   #152
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FDR knew the oil embargo on Japan would leave them no choice but to fight or die. He knew the consequences (how much he may or may not have known about the specifics leading up to the attack is almost irrelevant) and knew that it served a higher purpose.

No one wanted the day that would live in infamy but it turned out to be a necessary sacrifice in the bigger picture.

No one wanted the 2nd day that will live in infamy, but could it be that it was a necessary sacrifice in the bigger picture?

Would anyone even have the balls to say 'yes' to that question as a possibility and explore why?

To the point of the thread, knocking out Saddam and occupying Iraq has made America and Americans less safe from jihadist terrorism yet that was a known risk worth taking in March 2003....despite no WMD or Saddam posing any materially imminent threat to the Kuwait and Saudi borders.
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Old 10-02-2006, 02:38 PM   #153
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Thats real fascinating, and I know how much you love to talk about me, but I think it would be a good idea to get back to the topic of your thread since this is obviously not it.


i don't talk about you, STING, i talk about your posts. big difference.

anyway, back to your posts and the discussion at hand ...

[q]The real and longterm solution is not more US troops on the ground, although I agree at the current stage it would defintely help, but building the Iraqi military and police force in size and capability. What will ultimately end and defeat the insurgency is the Iraqi military/police force and the political process now in place since June. The Iraqi police and military forces once they are trained and increased in size, will be more effective at counterinsurgency operations just as the Police in Northern Ireland were more effective than the British Army in ultimately defeating the IRA. Both have important roles to play, but intelligence is best gathered by locals in their communities, and good intelligence is usually the more important factor than large numbers of police or troops when it comes to cracking down on insurgencies. The political and economic aspects are just as important as the security aspect. Running from the political and economic accomplishments of the past 3 years instead of strengthening them is an excellant way to make the security situation worse.[/q]

this is the mantra amongst the Kissingers of the world. it will happen. just keep funding, and fighting, and don't pull out, and all will work out because we say it will, but this isn't the case. in 2003, there were, essentially, 0 members of the Iraqi army and police force. the mantra has been, "as they stand up, we stand down." but this hasn't been the case. today, there are over 300,000 and violence is far, far worse:

[q]U.S. Military Is Still Waiting For Iraqi Forces to 'Stand Up'
Security Personnel Increase, but Insurgency Is Unabated


By Thomas E. Ricks
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, October 1, 2006; Page A21

The strategy in Iraq, President Bush has said often over the past year, is to stand down the U.S. military as Iraq's security forces stand up.

By strict numbers, the Iraqi side of that equation is almost complete. Training programs have developed more than 300,000 members of the Iraqi army and national police, close to the desired number of homegrown forces. Yet as that number has grown, so, too, has violence in Iraq. The summer was worse than ever, with July the deadliest month in three years, according to U.S. military data.

With the insurgency undiminished and Iraqi forces seemingly unable to counter it, U.S. commanders say they expect to stay at the current level of U.S. troops -- about 140,000 -- until at least next spring. That requirement is placing new strains on service members who leave Iraq and then must prepare to return a few months later. Tours of duty have been extended for two brigades in Iraq to boost troop levels.

So is the "stand down as they stand up" policy defunct? Not according to the Bush administration. But the meaning of the phrase appears to have changed, as leaders have begun shifting the blame for Iraq's problems away from the U.S. military and onto the country's own social and governmental institutions.

When Bush began invoking "stand up, stand down" in 2005, he repeatedly indicated that he was talking about getting Iraqi defense forces trained and on the job. For example, on Nov. 15, he said, "The plan [is] that we will train Iraqis, Iraqi troops, to be able to take the fight to the enemy. And as I have consistently said, as the Iraqis stand up, we will stand down."

More recently, Bush has insisted that "the 'stand up, stand down' still holds." But he added more conditions, saying the troops can come home "when our commanders say . . . the Iraqi government is capable of defending itself and sustaining itself and governing itself."

[/q]
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Old 10-02-2006, 02:52 PM   #154
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Originally posted by Irvine511




i don't talk about you, STING, i talk about your posts. big difference.

anyway, back to your posts and the discussion at hand ...

[q]The real and longterm solution is not more US troops on the ground, although I agree at the current stage it would defintely help, but building the Iraqi military and police force in size and capability. What will ultimately end and defeat the insurgency is the Iraqi military/police force and the political process now in place since June. The Iraqi police and military forces once they are trained and increased in size, will be more effective at counterinsurgency operations just as the Police in Northern Ireland were more effective than the British Army in ultimately defeating the IRA. Both have important roles to play, but intelligence is best gathered by locals in their communities, and good intelligence is usually the more important factor than large numbers of police or troops when it comes to cracking down on insurgencies. The political and economic aspects are just as important as the security aspect. Running from the political and economic accomplishments of the past 3 years instead of strengthening them is an excellant way to make the security situation worse.[/q]

this is the mantra amongst the Kissingers of the world. it will happen. just keep funding, and fighting, and don't pull out, and all will work out because we say it will, but this isn't the case. in 2003, there were, essentially, 0 members of the Iraqi army and police force. the mantra has been, "as they stand up, we stand down." but this hasn't been the case. today, there are over 300,000 and violence is far, far worse:

[q]U.S. Military Is Still Waiting For Iraqi Forces to 'Stand Up'
Security Personnel Increase, but Insurgency Is Unabated


By Thomas E. Ricks
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, October 1, 2006; Page A21

The strategy in Iraq, President Bush has said often over the past year, is to stand down the U.S. military as Iraq's security forces stand up.

By strict numbers, the Iraqi side of that equation is almost complete. Training programs have developed more than 300,000 members of the Iraqi army and national police, close to the desired number of homegrown forces. Yet as that number has grown, so, too, has violence in Iraq. The summer was worse than ever, with July the deadliest month in three years, according to U.S. military data.

With the insurgency undiminished and Iraqi forces seemingly unable to counter it, U.S. commanders say they expect to stay at the current level of U.S. troops -- about 140,000 -- until at least next spring. That requirement is placing new strains on service members who leave Iraq and then must prepare to return a few months later. Tours of duty have been extended for two brigades in Iraq to boost troop levels.

So is the "stand down as they stand up" policy defunct? Not according to the Bush administration. But the meaning of the phrase appears to have changed, as leaders have begun shifting the blame for Iraq's problems away from the U.S. military and onto the country's own social and governmental institutions.

When Bush began invoking "stand up, stand down" in 2005, he repeatedly indicated that he was talking about getting Iraqi defense forces trained and on the job. For example, on Nov. 15, he said, "The plan [is] that we will train Iraqis, Iraqi troops, to be able to take the fight to the enemy. And as I have consistently said, as the Iraqis stand up, we will stand down."

More recently, Bush has insisted that "the 'stand up, stand down' still holds." But he added more conditions, saying the troops can come home "when our commanders say . . . the Iraqi government is capable of defending itself and sustaining itself and governing itself."

[/q]
Quoting a Washington Post staffer is like quoting a writer from the old Soviet Pravda. To half of this country - this paper and the NY Times has ZERO credibility.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:00 PM   #155
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Originally posted by AEON


Quoting a Washington Post staffer is like quoting a writer from the old Soviet Pravda. To half of this country - this paper and the NY Times has ZERO credibility.
Another polished Moore?
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:00 PM   #156
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Originally posted by STING2


7,000 dead, mainly from a single province of over 5 million people does not make it crystal clear that the process has failed. If the situation was not working, the elections and passing of the constitution would have been impossible. There would be no Iraqi government in place out all. In a country the size of Iraq, a disasterous Civil War as you so often describe it would have involved 80,000 dead through out Iraq in July and August.

You can't site single casualty figures from one or two provinces in a country with 18 provinces and claim that it is representive of what is going on everywhere.


7,000 dead over two months. has the process failed? by what measure? is the process working? most assuredly not.

i also find it ironic that you'd point to Bosnia as a comparable situation, at least as the death toll is concerned, when it was because of such a death toll (among other factors) that foreign intervention was widely supported, not least by the members of U2, as a way of stopping the bloodshed, so it's ironic that you'd point to Bosnia when it is the presence of American troops and the toppling of Saddam without any semblance of a postwar plan that has created a Civil War in Iraq (remember, even Colin Powell thinks it's a civil war) that is giving us numbers comparable to Bosnia. so ... perhaps you'd support the deployment of NATO troops to Iraq to stop the violence created by the invasion of American troops?

anyway ... back to the topic at hand, which is the NIE statement that Iraq has given the jihadist a "cause celebre." this seems quite undeniable, and just as ironic as the above point since the invasion of Iraq was presented to the American public as a way to prevent a psychopath like Saddam from giving WMDs to jihadists so that a nuke might never float it's way up the East River and flatten part of Manhattan.

but why has this happened? manifest incompetence. so what amazes me is why people who supported the war in the first place -- perhaps for reasons independent from the reasons given to the American public over the course of 2002 and early 2003 and exemplified with Colin Powell's hugely embarassing presentation to the UN -- aren't asking for the heads of people like Rumsfeld and Cheney. the absence of a call for accountability and competence, and blind assertions that things will get better if we just continue doing the same thing, speaks to me of an unwillingness to look back, take responsiblity, address what went wrong, fire the guilty, and try to make it work. continually defending what is clearly a failing policy doesn't seem to be doing anyone much good, not least of which the Iraqi people:

[q]A curfew slapped on Baghdad on Saturday in the wake of the arrest of al-Dulaimi's bodyguard brought a day of calm.

But as soon as it was lifted, violence exploded again. More than 50 bodies — most bound and many of them showing signs of torture — were found in Baghdad alone on Sunday, apparent victims of sectarian killings, police said.

The bodies of two more people were found later Monday in eastern Baghdad, police said. They had been shot, their arms and legs bound, and showed signs of torture.

The headless bodies of seven people, found Sunday in Suwayrah, 25 miles south of Baghdad, also were turned in to the Kut morgue, morgue spokesman Hadi al-Itabi said.

[/q]



so why? why did this happen? did it have to happen? or does the fault for this lie with the men we elected in 2000:

[q]The administration was not just unlucky. It was almost willfully blind to the risks entailed in invading and occupying a large, traumatized and deeply riven Arab country. Rumsfeld, who pushed aside Rice and Secretary of State Colin Powell to take over even the planning for postwar Iraq, wanted a lean and mean force to get in and get out quickly. This was all well and good as long as American forces could turn over the job of running the country to an effective group of local Iraqis. But the planning for this was hamstrung by disputes over the postwar role of Iraqi exiles. When Iraq began to unravel, the administration—with little debate—lurched in the other direction. The White House installed Paul Bremer as a kind of grand pooh-bah over all of Iraq, but Rumsfeld refused to give him the forces he needed for a long occupation.
[/q]
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:01 PM   #157
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Quote:
Originally posted by AEON


Quoting a Washington Post staffer is like quoting a writer from the old Soviet Pravda. To half of this country - this paper and the NY Times has ZERO credibility.


if that's the best argument you can muster than you really are out of arguments. don't forget -- Ahmed Chalabi led Judy Miller of the NYT around by the nose, filling her head with false reports of WMDs in Iraq that lent a great deal of credibility to the administration's now bogus case for war. the NYT, if anything, is implicated in the selling of the war and the furthering of Bush propaganda.

the comparison between the WP and a SOVIET (!?!?!!?) paper is laughable.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:10 PM   #158
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Originally posted by AEON


Quoting a Washington Post staffer is like quoting a writer from the old Soviet Pravda. To half of this country - this paper and the NY Times has ZERO credibility.
Then half of your country needs to get educated.

Some of us here actually lived in Communist countries and read communist papers. When you make a statement like you just did, we find it hysterical.

Thanks for the laugh.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:25 PM   #159
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Quote:
Originally posted by AliEnvy
FDR knew the oil embargo on Japan would leave them no choice but to fight or die. He knew the consequences (how much he may or may not have known about the specifics leading up to the attack is almost irrelevant) and knew that it served a higher purpose.

No one wanted the day that would live in infamy but it turned out to be a necessary sacrifice in the bigger picture.
We now know that, because WWII is a done deal.

Quote:
Originally posted by AliEnvy
No one wanted the 2nd day that will live in infamy, but could it be that it was a necessary sacrifice in the bigger picture?

Would anyone even have the balls to say 'yes' to that question as a possibility and explore why?
I don't think Bush was serious on Al Qaida up until 9/11. That's the difference between him and FDR - FDR took the threat of Nazi Germany ahead of time, but had to sell it to the American public, who detested the post-WWI reconstruction policies. They were to some degree, correct. The policies were so strict on Germany that the Germans ignored them naturally. But Bush, unless you can prove otherwise, had no information on the exact date, times, and locations that the 9/11 attacks were to take place. Just as I pointed out earlier, there was little communication on pre-9/11 intel between the FBI, CIA, NYPD, and the Air Force, which would have been vital in foiling the attacks.

Quote:
Originally posted by AliEnvy
To the point of the thread, knocking out Saddam and occupying Iraq has made America and Americans less safe from jihadist terrorism yet that was a known risk worth taking in March 2003....despite no WMD or Saddam posing any materially imminent threat to the Kuwait and Saudi borders.
It hasn't made us "less safe" - there haven't been any terror attacks on US soil since 9/11. Much of Europe has unfortunately become a target of terrorism because they are less likely to strike back with an offensive strategy.

The WMD argument depends heavily on your definition on what a WMD is - for your information, we found 500 hidden sarin, nerve and VX weapons in Iraq.

Needless to say, at the 2006 Intelligence Summit, UN weapons inspector Bill Tierney presented the first-time translation of captured tapes featuring Saddam Hussein and his lieutenants discussing WMDs. In one of the tapes, Saddam and Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz discussed the option of carrying out a biological attack against America.

ABC News Obtains 12 Hours of Recordings of Saddam Hussein Meeting With Top Aides

Take a look at the video.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:34 PM   #160
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Originally posted by anitram


Then half of your country needs to get educated.

Some of us here actually lived in Communist countries and read communist papers. When you make a statement like you just did, we find it hysterical.

Thanks for the laugh.
NYT is funny however - they had attempted to challenge for the "innocence" of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt by the Venona cables.

Quote:
http://www.nsa.gov/venona/ The VENONA files are most famous for exposing Julius (code named LIBERAL) and Ethel Rosenberg and help give indisputable evidence of their involvement with the Soviet spy ring.
Quote:
Remembering the Rosenbergs

June 19, 2003, Thursday
Editorial Desk

Late Edition - Final, Section A, Page 24, Column 1, 326 words

DISPLAYING ABSTRACT - Editorial says espionage case of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg still haunts American history 50 years after they were put to death; says they were neither as innocent as they claimed nor as guilty as government alleged
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:40 PM   #161
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Originally posted by Irvine511
the NYT, if anything, is implicated in the selling of the war and the furthering of Bush propaganda.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:47 PM   #162
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do you even know who Judy Miller is?
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:53 PM   #163
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do you even know who Judy Miller is?
My emoticon was directed at your comment - "the NYT, if anything, is implicated in the selling of the war and the furthering of Bush propaganda."

But that doesn't mean they deserve criticism for THIRTY TWO days in a row of ABU GHRAIB cover stories.

April 29: TREATMENT OF PRISONERS; G.I.'s Are Accused of Abusing Iraqi Captives
May 1: CAPTIVES; Bush Voices 'Disgust' at Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners
May 2: DETAINEES; OFFICER SUGGESTS IRAQI JAIL ABUSE WAS ENCOURAGED
May 3: PRISONERS; COMMAND ERRORS AIDED IRAQ ABUSE, ARMY HAS FOUND
May 4: PUNISHMENT; ARMY PUNISHES 7 WITH REPRIMANDS FOR PRISON ABUSE
May 5: INMATE; Iraqi Recounts Hours of Abuse By U.S. Troops
May 6: THE PRISON GUARDS; Abuse Charges Bring Anguish In Unit's Home
May 7: THE SOLDIER; From Picture of Pride to Symbol of Abuse
May 8: COMBAT; G.I.'S KILL SCORES OF MILITIA FORCES IN 3 IRAQI CITIES
[NOTE: Abu Ghraib mentioned in first paragraph ]
May 9: THE MILITARY; In Abuse, a Portrayal of Ill-Prepared, Overwhelmed G.I.'s
May 10: PROSECUTION; FIRST TRIAL SET TO BEGIN MAY 19 IN ABUSE IN IRAQ
May 11: THE REPORT; Head of Inquiry On Iraq Abuses Now in Spotlight
May 12: Afghan Gives Own Account Of U.S. Abuse
May 13: PRISON POLICIES; General Took Guantánamo Rules To Iraq for Handling of Prisoners
May 14: THE WHISTLE-BLOWER; Accused Soldier Paints Scene of Eager Mayhem
May 15: MISTREATMENT; Earlier Jail Seen as Incubator for Abuses in Iraq
May 16: THE COURTS-MARTIAL; ACCUSED G.I.'S TRY TO SHIFT BLAME IN PRISON ABUSE
May 17: PRISONERS; SOME IRAQIS HELD OUTSIDE CONTROL OF TOP GENERAL
May 18: INTERROGATIONS; M.P.'s Received Orders to Strip Iraqi Detainees
May 19: ABU GHRAIB; Officer Says Army Tried to Curb Red Cross Visits to Prison in Iraq
May 20: THE COURT-MARTIAL; G.I. PLEADS GUILTY IN COURT-MARTIAL FOR IRAQIS' ABUSE
May 21: THE INTERROGATORS; Afghan Policies On Questioning Landed in Iraq
May 22: THE WITNESSES; Only a Few Spoke Up on Abuse As Many Soldiers Stayed Silent
May 23: SUSPECT; Translator Questioned By Army In Iraq Abuse [Page 12]
May 24: ABUSE; Afghan Deaths Linked to Unit At Iraq Prison
May 25: ARMY SHIFTS; No. 2 Army General to Move In As Top U.S. Commander in Iraq
May 26: INVESTIGATION; ABUSE OF CAPTIVES MORE WIDESPREAD, SAYS ARMY SURVEY
May 27: Three Accused Soldiers Had Records of Unruliness That Went Unpunished
May 28: U.S. Releases More Prisoners From Abu Ghraib
May 29: Cuba Base Sent Its Interrogators to Iraqi Prison
May 30:Scant Evidence Cited in Long Detention of Iraqis
May 31: Army Is Investigating Reports of Assaults and Thefts by G.I.'s Against Iraqi Civilians
[NYT Memorial Day Special]
June 1: Searing Uncertainty for Iraqis Missing Loved Ones
June 2: Afghan Prison Review
[Not on Front Page!]

Nah, all that means is that they're in bed with the War in Iraq.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:59 PM   #164
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Quote:
Originally posted by Macfistowannabe
My emoticon was directed at your comment - "the NYT, if anything, is implicated in the selling of the war and the furthering of Bush propaganda."

But that doesn't mean they deserve criticism for THIRTY TWO days in a row of ABU GHRAIB cover stories.

April 29: TREATMENT OF PRISONERS; G.I.'s Are Accused of Abusing Iraqi Captives
May 1: CAPTIVES; Bush Voices 'Disgust' at Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners
May 2: DETAINEES; OFFICER SUGGESTS IRAQI JAIL ABUSE WAS ENCOURAGED
May 3: PRISONERS; COMMAND ERRORS AIDED IRAQ ABUSE, ARMY HAS FOUND
May 4: PUNISHMENT; ARMY PUNISHES 7 WITH REPRIMANDS FOR PRISON ABUSE
May 5: INMATE; Iraqi Recounts Hours of Abuse By U.S. Troops
May 6: THE PRISON GUARDS; Abuse Charges Bring Anguish In Unit's Home
May 7: THE SOLDIER; From Picture of Pride to Symbol of Abuse
May 8: COMBAT; G.I.'S KILL SCORES OF MILITIA FORCES IN 3 IRAQI CITIES
[NOTE: Abu Ghraib mentioned in first paragraph ]
May 9: THE MILITARY; In Abuse, a Portrayal of Ill-Prepared, Overwhelmed G.I.'s
May 10: PROSECUTION; FIRST TRIAL SET TO BEGIN MAY 19 IN ABUSE IN IRAQ
May 11: THE REPORT; Head of Inquiry On Iraq Abuses Now in Spotlight
May 12: Afghan Gives Own Account Of U.S. Abuse
May 13: PRISON POLICIES; General Took Guantánamo Rules To Iraq for Handling of Prisoners
May 14: THE WHISTLE-BLOWER; Accused Soldier Paints Scene of Eager Mayhem
May 15: MISTREATMENT; Earlier Jail Seen as Incubator for Abuses in Iraq
May 16: THE COURTS-MARTIAL; ACCUSED G.I.'S TRY TO SHIFT BLAME IN PRISON ABUSE
May 17: PRISONERS; SOME IRAQIS HELD OUTSIDE CONTROL OF TOP GENERAL
May 18: INTERROGATIONS; M.P.'s Received Orders to Strip Iraqi Detainees
May 19: ABU GHRAIB; Officer Says Army Tried to Curb Red Cross Visits to Prison in Iraq
May 20: THE COURT-MARTIAL; G.I. PLEADS GUILTY IN COURT-MARTIAL FOR IRAQIS' ABUSE
May 21: THE INTERROGATORS; Afghan Policies On Questioning Landed in Iraq
May 22: THE WITNESSES; Only a Few Spoke Up on Abuse As Many Soldiers Stayed Silent
May 23: SUSPECT; Translator Questioned By Army In Iraq Abuse [Page 12]
May 24: ABUSE; Afghan Deaths Linked to Unit At Iraq Prison
May 25: ARMY SHIFTS; No. 2 Army General to Move In As Top U.S. Commander in Iraq
May 26: INVESTIGATION; ABUSE OF CAPTIVES MORE WIDESPREAD, SAYS ARMY SURVEY
May 27: Three Accused Soldiers Had Records of Unruliness That Went Unpunished
May 28: U.S. Releases More Prisoners From Abu Ghraib
May 29: Cuba Base Sent Its Interrogators to Iraqi Prison
May 30:Scant Evidence Cited in Long Detention of Iraqis
May 31: Army Is Investigating Reports of Assaults and Thefts by G.I.'s Against Iraqi Civilians
[NYT Memorial Day Special]
June 1: Searing Uncertainty for Iraqis Missing Loved Ones
June 2: Afghan Prison Review
[Not on Front Page!]

Nah, all that means is that they're in bed with the War in Iraq.

you know, i typed a response, but i don't think this posts even deserves one.
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Old 10-02-2006, 06:02 PM   #165
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Originally posted by Irvine511






this is the mantra amongst the Kissingers of the world. it will happen. just keep funding, and fighting, and don't pull out, and all will work out because we say it will, but this isn't the case. in 2003, there were, essentially, 0 members of the Iraqi army and police force. the mantra has been, "as they stand up, we stand down." but this hasn't been the case. today, there are over 300,000 and violence is far, far worse:


[/q]

For sure there were many failures and mistakes in the first year in getting an Iraqi Army together. In fact, but the summer of 2004, there was only one Iraqi Army Battalion of 700 men. But getting the numbers of people into the Army and Police Force is only a small part of the task. Training them into a compentent and capable military and police force is the biggest part of the task. Its something that is going to take years. So its not a case of, we have arrived at the numbers we need and the violence and need for US troops will now automatically decrease. Its going to require years of training and weeding out many who are not there for the right reasons before a force is developed that is of the size and capability needed to protect the Iraq government, society and economy from those inside and outside the country that seek to destroy it.

It took Saddam years back in the 1980s to develop the Republican Guard into an effective professional fighting force. But with the help of several thousand Soviet Advisors on the ground in Iraq, it eventually did happen and the Iraqi military went from risking near total defeat, year after year during that war, to crushing the Iranian military over the course of 1988 and finally ending the war on their terms.

So its not just a matter of raw numbers as some mistakenly assume. Years of training, mistakes, more training, weeding out the wrong people and finding the best talent for the top level positions and people down to the lowest level committed to operating in a way any normal profesional military would operate is what it is going to take.

I think it will take until at least 2011 for the Iraqi military to achieve this level of capability, and until then, it would be unwise for the Coalition to drop troop levels because of somones politically motivated timeline of "just getting out". Just getting out is not a strategy or a plan. Leaving prematurely will simply ruin the progress that has been made, and set up the process by which the whole place will descend into chaos. Then you might actually have the chance to see what a Civil War really looks like when 10% of the population gets slaughtered. Then, the situation is ripe for another strongman to come in and take over brutally imposing their order on the whole country and becoming a threat to the entire region.


Defeating insurgencies and building nations are projects that are not accomplished in 3 years. They normally take 10 to 20 years provided that the commitment to them never wavers. You can't claim that the process is a total failure when its impossible for such a process to work in the time span since everything started.

The insurgency itself is going to continue for a long time and will only end when a combination of political, economic, and security elements are in place. US forces should start to leave when the Iraqi government is capable of dealing with the insurgency on its own. Insurgencies are not invincible, there are specific ways to combat them and defeat them, but they take a lot more time to work than your average conventional war. Time during which the insurgent hopes that the foreigners will lose their will and give up the fight. But once an Iraqi security force is created that can do the job of the coalition, the insurgents days are numbered, for while it was certainly possible to force the coalition to give up the enterprise and leave the country, a large well trained Iraqi military force has no where else to go.

Pulling US forces back to where they were prior to the March 2003 invasion won't stop the Sunni insurgency. Nor will dividing up the country stop the Sunni's from fighting. The one group most against the looser confederation and certainly against dividing the country up into three states is the Sunni's, from which most of the violence in the country is coming from. The Shia and Kurds live physically on top of nearly all of the country's oil wealth. Splitting the country up along sectarian lines is a sure way to create a Civil War.

If there is a better plan for Iraq out there than the current one, it must be a plan that is actually for Iraq, and not a plan to simply withdraw ones military and satisfy the domestic political situation at home.
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