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Old 07-21-2008, 09:18 PM   #751
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The New York Times should have published Senator McCain's op-ed piece on Iraq, following the Obama piece that was printed by the paper.

(Or maybe the NYT is the authority on what Iraq needs)
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Old 07-21-2008, 09:24 PM   #752
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and everyone else are just poseurs.
Not only poseurs but we're all mourning Saddam's removal.
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Old 07-22-2008, 12:12 AM   #753
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Originally Posted by Bluer White View Post
The New York Times should have published Senator McCain's op-ed piece on Iraq, following the Obama piece that was printed by the paper.

(Or maybe the NYT is the authority on what Iraq needs)


they've published 7 or so of McCain's op-ed's in the past, and they endorsed him as the Republican nominee (and HRC as the Democrat).

here's what the op-ed editor David Shipley had to say:

Quote:
"The Obama piece worked for me because it offered new information (it appeared before his speech); while Senator Obama discussed Senator McCain, he also went into detail about his own plans... It would be terrific to have an article from Senator McCain that mirrors Senator Obama's piece. To that end, the article would have to articulate, in concrete terms, how Senator McCain defines victory in Iraq."
i do agree. Obama's piece was about Iraq. McCain's piece was about Obama. however, had i been the editor, i would have published it.

ultimately, this isn't good politics for Obama, since it gives something for McCain to whine about for a few days (ironically from a man who refers to the media as "my base"). but i understand with the decision. the NYT isn't a place for tit-for-tat political spats.

still, the two pieces, taken in tandem, aptly demonstrate how Obama is setting the agenda and calling the shots and taking the lead even on the only subject that McCain is slightly favored on.
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Old 07-22-2008, 12:46 AM   #754
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is this really your position? are you really saying this? because you know that you're saying it and not Obama?

Oh really? So tell me, where has Obama claimed that he would only start withdrawing any US combat brigades if FIRST, the Iraqi military had developed the sufficient capability to replace that combat brigade, and the security situation warrented the withdrawal. Show us where Obama has always stood for "as they stand up, we'll stand down"? If Obama is really in support of a conditions based withdrawal as opposed to one that is just time based, show it.

The position that the Bush administration has advocated and the one that I have always supported is that a withdrawal will eventually come when conditions on the ground warrent it, just as was done in both Bosnia and Kosovo.

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because it's the only way that you can fabricate the position that *Obama* is in disagreement with the Iraqi government, after they've endorsed Obama's plan?
They like the idea of the United States being able to withdraw in 16 months as anyone would, but they have always insisted that any withdrawal must be based on conditions and Obama has never had any prerequisites for starting a withdrawal or had a set of conditions that first had to be met for security on the ground. Why would the Iraqi government support any withdrawal plan that withdrew US combat Brigades before the Iraqi military was ready to assume the responsibilties and missions that those US combat brigades are currently providing? The Iraqi's are not against withdrawal, they are against a withdrawal that is not based on the facts on the ground and the capability and strength of the ground forces. Obama does not have any prerequisites as to the level of capability that Iraqi forces need to achieve before a US combat brigade is withdrawn. Obama has no requirements for conditions like the level of violence or economic improvement of any province before he would start withdrawing US combat Brigades.

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are you really going to continue to pretend that Obama is as inflexible as Bush?
Bush has changed force levels and tactics on the ground in both Iraq and Afghanistan over the past 7 years when the situation required it. No inflexibility there at all. Obama by contrast supports a policy that is not based on the facts on the ground, is inconsistent with the recomendations of the lates NIE on IRAQ, and those of General Patraeus and Admiral Mike Mullen.


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going to deny that this isn't a timetable? that a "time horizon" isn't just a fancy name for a timetable?
Its as much of a timetable as the "Surge" was a timetable.


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ah yes, the surge. i do owe a long post on this.
Well I wonder how it will compare with what military commanders from General Patraues down to platoon commanders on the ground have had to say about Iraq and the Surge over the past 18 months. There are plenty of casualty statistics to look at as well, economic figures and political changes and progress to look at. Multiple past opponents of the Surge are claiming that it is a success.

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we had a Civil War in Iraq.
Really? So there is not a "Civil War" in Iraq now? When did this so called "Civil War" start and when did it end?


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we had the ethnic cleansing of the Sunnis from Baghdad
Really? This will certainly be news to the Sunnis who continue to live there as well as the Iraqi military and US military patroling the streets.


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we've had unimaginable bloodshed.
Far more Iraqi's died in the 1980s during the Iran/Iraq war as well as during the 1990s under Saddam. Saddam murdered more Shia's in the months after the 1991 Gulf War than the number of Iraqi's who have died in the past 5 years combined. This is the guy who's removal you and Obama continue to claim has made the world "less safe". The unimaginable bloodshed you talk of would involve 10% of the population being slaughtered like it was in Bosnia. The level of bloodshed in Iraq is not even remotely close to being what it was in Bosnia on a per capita basis.



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we've had the introduction of Al Qaeda, religious extremism, and suicide bombing into Iraq when it never existed before.
Of course, your idea for preventing that was leaving Saddam in power. Nevermind all the consequences that would entail.



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Iraq is more violent today than it was when Obama last visited in early 2006.
Really? Lets take a look at that claim.

Obama was last in Iraq in January 2006.

Iraqi civilians killed in January 2006: 590
Iraqi Security Forces killed in January 2006: 189
Coalition troops who died in Iraq in January 2006: 64

Figures for July 2008

Iraqi civilians killed in July 2008: 182
Iraqi Security Forces killed in July 2008: 55
Coalition troops who died in Iraq in July 2006: 12

The above figures come from iCasualties: Iraq Coalition Casualty Count .



Quote:
however, if you're going to run on the small successes of The Surge and not admit that the entire operation has been a mistake and a catastrophe, then you might as well just give Obama the White House keys.
Can you name any military commanders on the ground in Iraq who would describe the success they have seen as being "small"?

If you want to claim that removing Saddam from power was a mistake and that the world is "less safe" because Saddam is no longer the leader of Iraq, go ahead.


Quote:
and McCain's been forced to concede on the Obama/Maliki timetable. after all, "when they stand up, we'll stand down." but not until we say so?
Obama has a timetable which calls for starting to withdraw US troops immediately, without any prerequisites for the capability of Iraqi forces and the security situation on the ground, with all combat brigades to be out in 16 months.

Maliki wants to see US combat forces leave as soon as possible, but not before the Iraqi military is capable of taking their place.

McCain does not want US combat brigades to remain in Iraq any longer than is necessary, but will only withdraw them when the Iraqi military has achieved the capability to replace them and the country is relatively stable.


Thats their positions, and its obvious that McCain and Maliki are closer on the issue than Obama and Maliki who have opposite views when it comes to whether any withdrawal should be based on conditions on the ground.


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so what's left for you Sting? are you going to endorse a timetable for withdrawal (which you say will bring the apocalypse upon the the Surge-made-Shangri-La) and admit that Obama was right (and admit that his judgment is sound) or are you going to deliberately ignore the explicit, expressed wish of the Iraqi government in order to prolong a war that most Americans and their government admits was a colossal mistake?
The only withdrawal plan that I have ever supported for either Afghanistan or Iraq is one that is conditions based, just as US withdrawals from Bosnia and Kosovo have been. A withdrawal that is FIRST conditions based instead of simply being time based will not bring on the "apocalypse".

I can't support someone who believes that the world, especially the Persian Gulf and Kuwait, would be safer with Saddam in power in Iraq in 2008. The idea that Kuwait is "less safe" today because Saddam is out of power is laughably absurd. Not only has Obama's judgement proven to be poor in 2002, but its proven to be poor over the past 18 months with his prediction that the Surge would INCREASE violence in Iraq. Instead the opposite has occured. The strategy he opposed and said would make things worse has succeeded and vastly improved conditions faster than most thought possible.


Its everyones wish that the US forces not stay in Iraq longer than is necessary, but the Iraqi government, Bush, and McCain do not want a withdrawal prior to the Iraqi military being able to handle the situation on their own. In contrast, Obama wants to start withdrawing troops immediately without regard to conditions on the ground or the capability of Iraqi forces that would replace them.


Quote:
it all depends on what happens on the Iraq/Pakistani border.
But, for Iraq, Obama's plan does not depend on conditions on the ground. Why not have a time based approach in Afghanistan as well?
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:00 AM   #755
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desperation is tender trap...
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:02 AM   #756
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Y'know, it doesn't do you any good to hold onto this prerequisities/conditions on the ground line when it's not even true. But I know how much you like message consistency, so it doesn't surprise me.
Y'know, if Barack Obama has always supported "as they stand up, we'll stand down", please provide some qoutes. I'd love to see where Obama stated that he would only start withdrawing US combat brigades from Iraq when the Iraqi military had reached the sufficient level of capability needed to take over the tasks that were previously performed by the US combat brigades.

I'd loved to see where Obama repeatedly advocated that the only withdrawal that he would support is one that is conditions based and meets prerequisites for Iraqi security, stability, and Iraqi military performance as I have always supported.

If Barack Obama has always had a policy on any withdrawal similar to mine or the Bush administrations, show us.
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:08 AM   #757
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Any chance Sting could post an article that ISN'T an obviuosly biased anti-Democrat diatribe? All we get are these over-the-top op-ed pieces that we're supposed to take as reliable sources of news.
Whats wrong, are opinion pieces from the Washington Post upsetting the lefty diet here in FYM?
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:10 AM   #758
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Wow. Bold move! Let's just say that Obama and the Iraqi government are in disagreement in the face of dozens of news reports to the contrary. . .I mean why not. Perhaps the Iraqi government THINKS they agree with Obama but in fact really doesn't. Yeah, that's the ticket. . .

Well, just show one article where the Iraqi government prefers for the US led coalition to leave prior to the Iraqi forces being ready to handle both internal and external security for the country? They support a conditions based withdrawal plan, Obama does not.
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:21 AM   #759
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I'd loved to see where Obama repeatedly advocated that the only withdrawal that he would support is one that is conditions based and meets prerequisites for Iraqi security, stability, and Iraqi military performance as I have always supported.


Ah yes, the old "if he hasn't completely aligned with what I support, then he must be for the complete and sudden withdrawal of troops regardless of facts or common sense or anything else." Message consistency!

Quote:
If Barack Obama has always had a policy on any withdrawal similar to mine or the Bush administrations, show us.
Are you really so absolutely blinded by partisanship that the policy of the Bush administration is the only one you deem acceptable? It's funny how the relative success of the surge has completely erased the utter debacle that was the previous 4 years of this war. One bright note against a sea of duds does not make a successful policy in my eyes, or the eyes of quite a few others.

Now, hit me with some more message consistency, please!
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:29 AM   #760
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Ah yes, the old "if he hasn't completely aligned with what I support, then he must be for the complete and sudden withdrawal of troops regardless of facts or common sense or anything else." Message consistency!



Are you really so absolutely blinded by partisanship that the policy of the Bush administration is the only one you deem acceptable? It's funny how the relative success of the surge has completely erased the utter debacle that was the previous 4 years of this war. One bright note against a sea of duds does not make a successful policy in my eyes, or the eyes of quite a few others.

Now, hit me with some more message consistency, please!
I'm waiting for you to show me where Barack Obama stated that he would NOT start withdrawing any US combat brigades until the Iraqi military was ready to sufficiently perform the task of any US combat brigade that is withdrawn.
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:22 AM   #761
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I just watched Obama on Nightline ABC.

Not very impressive at all.
I do expect him to be elected.

It is hard to predict what kind of President, he will be.

But, if I had to predict today. I will say I expect him to be a mediocre President. That will make him 2-3 times better than Bush. But, not even 1/2 as good as Bill Clinton.

This will be enough for his supporters, but it may not be enough to get him reelected in 2012.

I believe McCain would be a better President.
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Old 07-22-2008, 03:31 AM   #762
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SPIEGEL: Would you hazard a prediction as to when most of the US troops will finally leave Iraq?

Maliki: As soon as possible, as far as we're concerned. U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama talks about 16 months. That, we think, would be the right timeframe for a withdrawal, with the possibility of slight changes.
Quote:
They like the idea of the United States being able to withdraw in 16 months as anyone would, but they have always insisted that any withdrawal must be based on conditions and Obama has never had any prerequisites for starting a withdrawal or had a set of conditions that first had to be met for security on the ground.
This is absurd. If Maliki wanted Bush's or McCain's plan, he would have said that. Instead, he directly referenced Obama's plan. Very clear. Non-binding, but very clear. Strongbow's built a little box for himself so that Maliki could explicitly announce tomorrow "The Iraqi Government wants US troops to immediately leave Iraq right now within 24 hours" and it be interpreted as "Of course the government wants troops to leave Iraq right now! But they insisted before that any withdrawal must be based on conditions so what Maliki really meant is that he actually agrees with Bush and McCain."
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:27 AM   #763
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Whats wrong, are opinion pieces from the Washington Post upsetting the lefty diet here in FYM?
What items from my "lefty diet" have I applauded as opposed to your opinion pieces?
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:31 AM   #764
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Well, just show one article where the Iraqi government prefers for the US led coalition to leave prior to the Iraqi forces being ready to handle both internal and external security for the country? They support a conditions based withdrawal plan, Obama does not.

What's the point, Sting? I mean really? No matter what evidence is presented you will simply deny it, reinterpret it, or dismiss it.

If you can produce any proof that you've ever admitted you're wrong about anything then I'll consider doing the research.

I don't have any "message" I have to stay on. If I'm wrong I'll say so--in fact, I think I recall saying I hoped I was wrong about the Surge not being a success back when it began and now, it appears that has been successful, and so I'm happy to admitt that I was wrong on that.

What about you? No. . .I guess you're batting a thousand like always.
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Old 07-22-2008, 04:55 AM   #765
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What's the point,

If I'm wrong I'll say so--in fact, I think I recall saying I hoped I was wrong about the Surge not being a success back when it began and now, it appears that has been successful, and so I'm happy to admit that I was wrong on that.

. .
Very true
you are to be credited for that

I like to think
I admit when my opinions, turn out wrong, too.

I was against the surge, I believed it would serve no purpose, buy no time.

I was for writing off Iraq, and letting or making the Iraqis solve it for themselves, I even started a thread, somewhat to that effect

Awhile back, I had to contradict myself and admit that the surge had produced results

no big deal

I also just posted that I expect Obama to be a mediocre President, 2-3 years from now, I will not try and color or spin this statement. I hope to be surprised and say he has done an outstanding job.


Well, watching him on TV tonight,
Obama is not big enough to do what you and I have done, Sean.

He has not said the surge was a success.


Very disappointing. Reminds me of W.
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