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Old 07-11-2007, 10:18 AM   #196
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i can't seem to find it right now, but i thought i read somewhere that the number of civilian casualties was greater than the number of insurgent casualties. does anybody know if this is true?


taht wouldn't surprise me, but that proves my point -- it is not American troops who drive car bombs into marketplaces nor are American troops blowing up mosques.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:18 AM   #197
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do Americans lust for Iraqi blood? no.
perhaps a number of those directly involved in this combat don't. but i've seen enough civilian propaganda to indicate otherwise. and they think it's funny.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:20 AM   #198
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perhaps a number of those directly involved in this combat don't. but i've seen enough civilian propaganda to indicate otherwise. and they think it's funny.


can you explain? not sure what you mean.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:20 AM   #199
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Originally posted by Irvine511




taht wouldn't surprise me, but that proves my point -- it is not American troops who drive car bombs into marketplaces nor are American troops blowing up mosques.
americans aren't directly responsible for at least some of these civilian casualties?
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:22 AM   #200
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americans aren't directly responsible for at least some of these civilian casualties?


i'm sure at least some. yes.

but the vast, vast majority of Iraqi civilian deaths are caused by other Iraqis.

we're policing a Civil War.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:23 AM   #201
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can you explain? not sure what you mean.
in a number of public places (i.e. gas stations, small shops) i'll see store owners with this one particular political cartoon (i guess that's what it is) that shows elmer fudd saying "be vewy qwiet, i'm huntin iwaqis!"

and then ive also seen this obnoxious e-mail that showed an automatic gun with a label under it saying "iraqi passport photo booth"

...those were the most recent. there have been others throughout the years, i just don't recall them right now.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:26 AM   #202
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Originally posted by Irvine511
^ we broadly agree, actually. though i think it's a little more complex than that, and i don't think it's fair to ignore the fact that Saddam was "kiling the fuck" out of a lot of Iraqis under his rule as well.

are things worse? unquestionably. is this the biggest failure in US foreign policy history? probably. was it a bad idea to begin with? absolutely.

do Americans lust for Iraqi blood? no.
Well i wasn't deliberately ignoring Saddam's rule but i don't actually believe it was a valid reason to get rid of him. The US had the chance 15 years ago and didn't do it, and besides, there are plenty of dictators that are committing atrocious crimes in the world right now (Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Laos etc) that the us is not doing anything about.

Also, while I believe that most americans arn't bloodthirsty barbarians, I was just pointing out the fact that the poster i was quoting was completely ignoring all the cold hard facts, and was complaining that the us didn't have the balls etc, when they've already done enough damage, in fact a lot more damage then i think we can ever realise.

I know that we're sorta on the same page, but sometimes you gotta look outwards a lot more then you do. There is no good from this war, Saddam's removal is a moot point really, because nothing has gotten better from his removal, and also a lot of my disgust comes from the attitude that the us had when marching in over all the objections other countries in the world did. I mean could you imagine the shitstorm if a country tried to do that to the us? IT just wouldn't happen and thats the real point - the us is no better then any other country out there, and this whole war smacks of their arrogance and bullish attitude. (i also include the UK and Australia in that, but i believe our role was we were too gutless to stand up and tell the us to piss off when they asked us to join em)
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:30 AM   #203
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Originally posted by dazzlingamy

I know that we're sorta on the same page, but sometimes you gotta look outwards a lot more then you do.


do you think i haven't been critical enough of this war?

simply because i find nuances and try to add what might be viewed as an American "perspective" doesn't mean that i'm looking inwards. rather, i'm trying to help people in other countries -- and i've lived in other countries, really lived and worked, and there's a huge tendency for people to think they understand the US when, in reality, they haven't a clue as to how complex this country of 300m people is and how it functions and that the reasons why the country does what it does can never, ever be summed up with a singular rationale -- to look more outwards.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:40 AM   #204
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i agree with you, and i know the us isn't just one uniforming place, but you do realise you send out one message to the world? Not everyone listens to Air America, reads all the liberal newspapers, hears what the person on the street is saying, but instead sees what your president is doing, watches Fox NEws and gets one VERY STRONG message. and when yourethrowing out the old chestnuts of 'lookit at them iraqis; they're a lot worse then us us soldiers are' you're basically saying what they do. Just because they're blowing each other up, doesn't mean you didn't have a great big dirty hand in it. I'm not sitting here pointing a finger at you, or mia, or yolland or lila and saying 'you all wanted this you bloodthirsty basatards!' because i don't believe that, I don't believe even the people who voted for the war would have wanted what its denegrated into, but sometimes i think you take on the argument when really you don't need to based on a thought that im bashing ALL of america when im not. I'm not so blind to think you're all the same i read enough posts and listen to enough american media to understand your position a little bit more then most non americans who as i said, see one very big, very stupid message being broadcasted.
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Old 07-11-2007, 10:52 AM   #205
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just because a newspaper is conservative doesn't mean it's wrong. it's true, and i'm not going to apologize if it looks bad, but Iraqis are murdering Iraqis. that's the reality of the situation. does the US have a big dirty hand in it? yes, we uncorked a flood of ethnic hatred which has been there for centuries, and if our stupid fucking president had ever cracked a history book he would have realized exactly why a country like Iraq had a dictator like Hussein in the first place.

that's called nuance. and i'm not going to flatten out my opinion because i'm afraid of what the rest of the world is going to think. and i know you don't think that all Americans think the same, but i think there are many things happening in Iraq, and looking at it as just one big pit of despair isn't wrong, but it also isn't helpful. is it a pit of despair? yes. but there's more to it than just that.

i'm a little confused, though, because you say that there's "one very big, very stupid message," but then you say that you know that this isn't the case. can't we assume that most people see more nuance than "Bush dumb, America bad"?

i was in the American South last week and got a bit of a lecture on the Civil War. obviously, there are two viewpoints, the Northern and the Southern, and it's not that either viewpoint is right or wrong, but that a Southerner feels the need to round out, to flesh out, to complicate whatever the Northern viewpoint might be. where a Northerner might point to abolition as perhaps the biggest cause of the American Civil War, a Southerner might point out that it was Northern factories that were demanding cotton at cheaper and cheaper prices (cotton picked by African-American slaves), and that was as big a cause.

so it's less that there's one right way of looking at things, and more that the "right" way to look at something is by acknowledging its complexities.

and that's what i try to do. you know i'm fervently anti-war. but i also don't think that the US Army is lining Iraqis up and shooting them into a ditch like it's Poland 1941 or Srebrenica 1995. and much of this comes from the fact that i know US soldiers. and they are simply trying to do their job and not get killed. and it's nearly impossible for me to not react to a (para)phrase like "US soldiers killing a fuckload of civilans" and not imagine that you think that my friend isn't doing the absolute best he can in a nearly impossible situation.
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:09 AM   #206
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Originally posted by Irvine511
and it's nearly impossible for me to not react to a (para)phrase like "US soldiers killing a fuckload of civilans" and not imagine that you think that my friend isn't doing the absolute best he can in a nearly impossible situation.
I recently attended a talk by Jeremy Scahill, Democracy Now investigative reporter and author of "Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army" http://www.blackwaterbook.com/ and he said that on his book tour he'd had so many US soldiers come up to him and say that one of the most discouraging things for them is that the troops typically enter a village and do everything possible to let the Iraqi civilians know that they're there to help and they earn the people's trust, then the Blackwater mercenaries (ahem, "contractors") roll into town in their fancy armored vehicles and wrap-around sunglasses looking like something out of a Tom Cruise movie, and start shooting at anything that moves. So unfortunately when I hear that "US troops" are shooting fuckloads of Iraqi civilians, I tend to lean towards thinking there's some truth there.
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:11 AM   #207
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Originally posted by Irvine511
just because a newspaper is conservative doesn't mean it's wrong. it's true, and i'm not going to apologize if it looks bad, but Iraqis are murdering Iraqis. that's the reality of the situation. does the US have a big dirty hand in it? yes, we uncorked a flood of ethnic hatred which has been there for centuries, and if our stupid fucking president had ever cracked a history book he would have realized exactly why a country like Iraq had a dictator like Hussein in the first place.
I agree with this! That what i said



that's called nuance. and i'm not going to flatten out my opinion because i'm afraid of what the rest of the world is going to think. and i know you don't think that all Americans think the same, but i think there are many things happening in Iraq, and looking at it as just one big pit of despair isn't wrong, but it also isn't helpful. is it a pit of despair? yes. but there's more to it than just that.

i'm a little confused, though, because you say that there's "one very big, very stupid message," but then you say that you know that this isn't the case. can't we assume that most people see more nuance than "Bush dumb, America bad"?


sadly for the case i do believe a lot people look at america and think 'what the hell are you doing?!' We're powerless to stop you and its a scary thought to think that someone like Bush is in charge of a country that wields so much power that is unchallenged, and when it is its suddenly 'good vs evil' and all that Most epople see one message coming out from your admin, only the people who dig a bit further can see more thenone opinion, but thats what its like for most countries.



and that's what i try to do. you know i'm fervently anti-war. but i also don't think that the US Army is lining Iraqis up and shooting them into a ditch like it's Poland 1941 or Srebrenica 1995. and much of this comes from the fact that i know US soldiers. and they are simply trying to do their job and not get killed. and it's nearly impossible for me to not react to a (para)phrase like "US soldiers killing a fuckload of civilans" and not imagine that you think that my friend isn't doing the absolute best he can in a nearly impossible situation.


See here's where we differ. There has been many reports about the atrocious reports of us soldiers in Iraq against Iraqi people.. While im sure there are some really great guys just doing their service and helping out, I just think they were really sloppy when they blasted into the country, and people died, innocent people being blown up by rockets, homes demolished, workplaces and mosques bombed up by "accurate missiles" and that was the US doing. While i don't think there are many gun toting apocaplypse soldiers running around shooting down people (though there are some for sure) I don't see the us soliders as beacons of chilvery and morals, just doing this job cause they got too. Don't go, don't enlist, stand up and say its wrong as it is.
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:39 AM   #208
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See here's where we differ. There has been many reports about the atrocious reports of us soldiers in Iraq against Iraqi people.. While im sure there are some really great guys just doing their service and helping out, I just think they were really sloppy when they blasted into the country, and people died, innocent people being blown up by rockets, homes demolished, workplaces and mosques bombed up by "accurate missiles" and that was the US doing. While i don't think there are many gun toting apocaplypse soldiers running around shooting down people (though there are some for sure) I don't see the us soliders as beacons of chilvery and morals, just doing this job cause they got too. Don't go, don't enlist, stand up and say its wrong as it is.


i'm actually more concerned about the use of torture (ahem, "coercive interrogation techniques") and the abuses of Abu Ghraib than i am about collateral damage. and i don't agree that US forces were sloppy at all. i think war is by nature sloppy, and technology has dramatically reduced collateral damage. that said, it doesn't mean that collateral damage is ever justified, or the war is justified, or anything. but it is to say that as wars go, this one was about as precise as they get (especially compared to, say, WW2 where people were happy if they hit the right city).

i think there are some psychopaths in the US military, as there are in any population. i think some in the US military -- as has been echoed on this board -- think they are doing God's work, as there are in any population. in fact, military culture is certainly overall more conservative than American culture as a whole. but most soldiers get up in the morning and do their job, and most soldiers were enlisted well before the neocons farted out the idea of invading Iraq. and many, many soldiers have returned and protested the war at home, some running for Congress. i know STING and AEON would like us to believe that soldiers march forward with a Bible and a gun, convinced that Jesus is shooting the machine gun with them, but that's as far from the reality as the image of bloodthirsty savages raping women.

i've contended, since the beginning, that the soldiers should never have been put in such an impossible situation to begin with.
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:40 AM   #209
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I recently attended a talk by Jeremy Scahill, Democracy Now investigative reporter and author of "Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army" http://www.blackwaterbook.com/ and he said that on his book tour he'd had so many US soldiers come up to him and say that one of the most discouraging things for them is that the troops typically enter a village and do everything possible to let the Iraqi civilians know that they're there to help and they earn the people's trust, then the Blackwater mercenaries (ahem, "contractors") roll into town in their fancy armored vehicles and wrap-around sunglasses looking like something out of a Tom Cruise movie, and start shooting at anything that moves. So unfortunately when I hear that "US troops" are shooting fuckloads of Iraqi civilians, I tend to lean towards thinking there's some truth there.


this is very interesting, and an underreported issue.
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Old 07-11-2007, 11:46 AM   #210
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Check out the book. It's chilling.
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