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Old 12-14-2007, 08:18 PM   #151
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I'll third that. I'm on my toes about those two, look forward to seeing how it all turns out for them.

Angela
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Old 12-14-2007, 10:59 PM   #152
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Originally posted by Irvine511
i won't touch the "surge" -- since an already ethnically cleansed and now nearly all walled in Baghdad is bound to have fewer casualties, especially when the books are totally cooked and it's nothing more than a pretense to provide an exit strategy and there's been *no* political progress to speak of --

i had just heard on Hardball that Obama and HRC were now in a virtual tie in New Hampshire. and he's pulled ahead in SS. this is the race to watch, and in many ways it's inspiring -- a woman versus an African-American.

Walls went up in Baghdad back in 2006, but Iraqi casualties according to multiple independent sources did not start to fall until substantial numbers of US surge troops began to arrive in the city in the spring, so the impact is without any doubt do to progress made by the US military. Despite the sectarian violence in Baghdad, it is not anywhere near as ethnically cleansed as Sarajevo and much of the rest of Bosnia as early as 1993. While such a large degree of ethnic cleansing suggest that violence should be reduced, in Bosnia, it continued without any let up until military intervention.

Not only has the US military succeeded in bringing down civilian casualties in Iraq, but it has also had great success, finally, at winning over Sunni tribes and communities that had at one time supported the insurgency. All of these area's, improving political situation at the local level, the improving security situation, and some signs of economic progress, have all contributed to huge reduction in US casualties which for the month of November were the lowest they had been since February 2004, nearly four years ago, in terms of both killed and wounded. US casualties for October and November 2007 are the lowest two month total for US casualties since the summer of 2003.

While Democrats are all hot and bothered about the latest NIE on Iran, they should remember what the last NIE on Iraq said about withdrawing from Iraq by March 2008 as many Democrats want, or some vague idea of some type of redeployment. Here are the final two paragraphs of the last NIE on Iraq from August 2007 that address those points specifically:

Quote:
We assess that changing the mission of Coalition forces from a primarily counterinsurgency and stabilization role to a primary combat support role for Iraqi forces and counterterrorist operations to prevent AQI from establishing a safehaven would erode security gains achieved thus far. The impact of a change in mission on Iraq's political and security environment and thourghout the region probably would vary in intensity and suddenness of onset in relation to the rate and scale of a Coalition redeployment. Developments within the Iraqi communities themselves will be decisive in determining political and security trajectories.
Quote:
Recent security improvements in Iraq, including success against AQI, have depended significantly on the close synchronization of conventional counterinsurgency and counterterrorism operations. A change of mission that interrupts that synchronization would place security improvements at risk.
No book cooking there as that is the latest Estimate of 16 intelligence agencies in regards to Iraq, and the results since August only provide more support for that estimate. Even the ultra anti-war website Iraqbodycount has noted the decrease in civilian casualties during 2007.

There has been political progress at the local level. There are currently though no plans for any sort of a withdrawal, and the reduction in troops in early 2008 simply reflects the end point of the surge which will not be complete until August 2008. Even then, there will still be slightly more US troops on the ground in Iraq in August 2008 than in January 2007, just prior to the start of the surge. No real withdrawal, below pre-surge levels, will happen until conditions on the ground warrent it. That will be the case at least until the next administration takes office and the next administration, even if its a Democratic one, is unlikely to advocate a pre-mature withdrawal because they certainly do not want to be the ones to drop the ball on Iraq given the risk and consequences of doing so.

If there is going to be a Democrat in the White House in January 2009, hopefully it will be Clinton as there is likely to be more continuity between the Bush administration and a Hillary Clinton administration on Iraq policy specifically as well as other foreign policy issues, than with any of the other Democratic candidates.
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:20 PM   #153
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If we leave in 2009, civil war will break out.

If we leave in 2013, civil war will break out.

Frankly, the four extra years of deaths of our soldiers just to delay the inevitable is a tough argument to make.
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:36 PM   #154
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If we leave in 2009, civil war will break out.

If we leave in 2013, civil war will break out.

Frankly, the four extra years of deaths of our soldiers just to delay the inevitable is a tough argument to make.
Civil War won't break out provided the United States continues the current counterinsurgency, counter terrorist, and nation building operations. Eventually, political, military and economic progress will happen to a degree which will allow coalition forces to leave or greatly reduce their presence without there being any resumption of heavy violence. The goal of the 52,000 NATO force in Afghanistan is the same for that country which has just as many if not more ethnic fault lines than Iraq. A pre-mature withdrawal from Iraq is simply too risky, given the potential consequences for Iraq, the region, and the United States.
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:57 PM   #155
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Originally posted by Strongbow


Civil War won't break out provided the United States continues the current counterinsurgency, counter terrorist, and nation building operations. Eventually, political, military and economic progress will happen to a degree which will allow coalition forces to leave or greatly reduce their presence without there being any resumption of heavy violence. The goal of the 52,000 NATO force in Afghanistan is the same for that country which has just as many if not more ethnic fault lines than Iraq. A pre-mature withdrawal from Iraq is simply too risky, given the potential consequences for Iraq, the region, and the United States.


It is NOT the job of the American taxpayer or the American soldier to play referee in between two groups of people who hate each other and are willing to suicide bomb each other. It is not our problem.

Secondly, whether we leave or not people are going to hate us for starting the whole war. So it is bullshit to say that if we leave it is too risky for us. BULLSHIT. Our soldiers are dying over there every fuckin day. It is a risk if we stay there.

I'm a traditional Republican, I believe in lowest possible taxation and lowest possible spending. But all these neo-cons are such hypocrites. They want to trillions of dollars in this war to "protect" the lives of Americans. But they don't care about protecting the health of Americans.

Such hypocrites.
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Old 12-15-2007, 12:36 AM   #156
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You know, I used to have a lot of respect for McCain, but in the last few years since the last election, he's just said some bonehead things on issues such as AIDS in Africa that have made me question him.

He used to seem like the sane Republican alternative, and now I'm not sure of that.
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Old 12-15-2007, 12:57 AM   #157
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Originally posted by Infinitum98




It is NOT the job of the American taxpayer or the American soldier to play referee in between two groups of people who hate each other and are willing to suicide bomb each other. It is not our problem.

Secondly, whether we leave or not people are going to hate us for starting the whole war. So it is bullshit to say that if we leave it is too risky for us. BULLSHIT. Our soldiers are dying over there every fuckin day. It is a risk if we stay there.

I'm a traditional Republican, I believe in lowest possible taxation and lowest possible spending. But all these neo-cons are such hypocrites. They want to trillions of dollars in this war to "protect" the lives of Americans. But they don't care about protecting the health of Americans.

Such hypocrites.
It would be a mistake to leave Iraq pre-maturely for four reasons 1. the potential for Al Quada to take advantage of the chaos it could create and finally replace the base they lost in Afghanistan from which they could launch new operations against Europe and the United States. 2. the regional instability it would create among countries that border Iraq, and the dangers of a regional war among these countries in area vital to global security because of the large oil reserves. 3. the humanitarian disaster it could create in Iraq for the people. 4. the potential for the return of another dictator out of such chaos many years later who may threaten Kuwaiti and Saudi Arabian oil reserves vital to the planets economy.

The American tax payer values security, safety, and the economic well being of the country which is tied to Persian Gulf security. That is why the American tax payer overwhelmingly supported the 1991 Gulf War, the efforts after that to disarm Saddam peacefully, as well as the military intervention to overthrow him once those efforts had obviously failed. Abandoning Iraq and the Persian Gulf region is not the way to insure a safe and prosperous United States or World.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:02 AM   #158
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow

A pre-mature withdrawal from Iraq is simply too risky, given the potential consequences for Iraq, the region, and the United States.
The fact is, that a "premature withdrawal" is undefinable. It just is. The definition of this war is very gray to begin with, so the result is even hazier. We can withdrawl tomorrow and have "peace", or we can withdrawl 3 years from now and have "peace", but it might not fix the overall problem.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:04 AM   #159
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow

the potential for the return of another dictator out of such chaos many years later who may threaten Kuwaiti and Saudi Arabian oil reserves vital to the planets economy.
How does a war guarantee this? Please tell me this, for I've been asking you for years.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:13 AM   #160
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


The fact is, that a "premature withdrawal" is undefinable. It just is. The definition of this war is very gray to begin with, so the result is even hazier. We can withdrawl tomorrow and have "peace", or we can withdrawl 3 years from now and have "peace", but it might not fix the overall problem.
Not according to the August 2007 NIE on Iraq which said the following:

Quote:
We assess that changing the mission of Coalition forces from a primarily counterinsurgency and stabilization role to a primary combat support role for Iraqi forces and counterterrorist operations to prevent AQI from establishing a safehaven would erode security gains achieved thus far. The impact of a change in mission on Iraq's political and security environment and thourghout the region probably would vary in intensity and suddenness of onset in relation to the rate and scale of a Coalition redeployment. Developments within the Iraqi communities themselves will be decisive in determining political and security trajectories.
Quote:
Recent security improvements in Iraq, including success against AQI, have depended significantly on the close synchronization of conventional counterinsurgency and counterterrorism operations. A change of mission that interrupts that synchronization would place security improvements at risk.
The fact that the leading Democratic candidates recently would NOT promise to have all US troops out of Iraq by 2013 shows that they might be gradually coming around to Bush's and McCains idea's for future US policy on Iraq.

Leaving before Iraq has a military that can provide for its own internal and external security, an economy that is moving forward, and a political situation that has reached a point of stability that will not evaporate as or once the United States leave, is the definition of a pre-mature withdrawal. Such a withdrawal only serves the interest of Al Quada and those wanting to harm Iraq and the region.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:18 AM   #161
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


How does a war guarantee this? Please tell me this, for I've been asking you for years.
Well, any sufficiently strong entity within Iraq is in close proximity to oil reserves that are the planets economic life line in Saudi Arabia. There is no guarantee that such an entity will emerge from the chaos that will follow a pre-mature withdrawal by the United States, but it does create a significant possibility to be concerned about when looking 10 years down the road. Far better to stabilize Iraq now, then to have to return years later to fight another war under potentially worse circumstances.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:20 AM   #162
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow
Far better to stabilize Iraq now, then to have to return years later to fight another war under potentially worse circumstances.
Since the war we started destabilized it in the first place.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:20 AM   #163
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Of course, but you are clouding issues.

There is a difference between supporting this war and realizing what we have to do now.

But once again, you missed my point.

The definition of "premature withdrawal" is up in the air. Your definition of a ready army is different from many.

And don't even get me started, the Republicans have served the interest of Al Quada for years, their numbers are quite fine due to Bush...
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:24 AM   #164
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Originally posted by martha


Since the war we started destabilized it in the first place.
Since the necessary war to remove Saddam meant that Iraq would need to be rebuilt after 24 years of Saddam's rule, just as the United States is doing in Bosnia, Kosovo, and Afghanistan.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:24 AM   #165
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow


Well, any sufficiently strong entity within Iraq is in close proximity to oil reserves that are the planets economic life line in Saudi Arabia. There is no guarantee that such an entity will emerge from the chaos that will follow a pre-mature withdrawal by the United States, but it does create a significant possibility to be concerned about when looking 10 years down the road. Far better to stabilize Iraq now, then to have to return years later to fight another war under potentially worse circumstances.
I'm glad you admit it's about oil.

But once again you don't answer my question. Try just answering my question and not dealing with the "pre mature withdrawal". Just tell me how your scenario guanatees us something.
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