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Old 01-02-2008, 05:00 PM   #76
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Originally posted by Strongbow
the success this year in 2007 has been dramatic, and any time casualty levels drop by this magnitude and at this rate, it is a great accomplishment
It has been dramatic.

Because of the surge.

And thus, by not finding a solution that is sustainable, it's not an accomplishment.
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Old 01-02-2008, 05:23 PM   #77
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Originally posted by Strongbow
Nation building is a long and difficult task.
Nation building is a mistake.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:29 PM   #78
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So for the ones that do return - they will simply starve:

http://www.unobserver.com/layout5.php?id=4220&blz=1



The goal apparently is the depopulation of civilians.
Do you know of a single Iraqi refugee that has returned to Iraq in December 2007 that has starved to death?
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:37 PM   #79
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For the entire 12 months of 2007, it is true that US deaths have been the highest this year by a slight margin, but when you look at how much the death rate has been reduced from where it was in the Spring to December 2007, the results are impressive. 120 US troops were killed by hostile fire in May 2007 in Iraq. In December 2007, only 14 US troops were killed by hostile fire. That is an enormous turn around.

Plus, if we include both US troops killed and wounded, 2004 remains the year of the highest casualties for US forces. In addition, 2007 was the year of the lowest killed and wounded since 2003 for the USA.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:46 PM   #80
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Originally posted by phillyfan26


It has been dramatic.

Because of the surge.

And thus, by not finding a solution that is sustainable, it's not an accomplishment.
Most Democrats said the surge would accomplish nothing and that all US combat troops should be withdrawn by March 31, 2008. The surge can technically last longer than what has been planned provided the President mobilized National Guard Brigades that have already been to Iraq over the past 5 years or extended troops in the field even longer. Few want to do that, but those are options the President has if he feels conditions on the ground warrent it. Another thing you seem to be forgetting is that the increase in troops has actually only raised the total level of troops on the ground temporarily by 30%, and most of it in Baghdad. Just as important has been the success politically at the local level, economic progress, the change in military tactics, as well as improvements in intelligence and vehicle design. Even when surge troops leave, these factors will still be there, plus the Iraqi military is more capable now than it has ever been and provides the security for half of Iraq's provinces.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:47 PM   #81
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow


Do you know of a single Iraqi refugee that has returned to Iraq in December 2007 that has starved to death?
You don't starve within one month when you receive some food daily.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:48 PM   #82
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Originally posted by Canadiens1160
Nation building is a mistake.
It is if you believe Chaos and Anarchy serve your interest.
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:50 PM   #83
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You don't starve within one month when you receive some food daily.
Duh, do you know of any significant number of returning Iraqi Refugees in 2007 that have starved to death?
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:53 PM   #84
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Originally posted by Strongbow
Most Democrats said the surge would accomplish nothing and that all US combat troops should be withdrawn by March 31, 2008. The surge can technically last longer than what has been planned provided the President mobilized National Guard Brigades that have already been to Iraq over the past 5 years or extended troops in the field even longer. Few want to do that, but those are options the President has if he feels conditions on the ground warrent it. Another thing you seem to be forgetting is that the increase in troops has actually only raised the total level of troops on the ground temporarily by 30%, and most of it in Baghdad. Just as important has been the success politically at the local level, economic progress, the change in military tactics, as well as improvements in intelligence and vehicle design. Even when surge troops leave, these factors will still be there, plus the Iraqi military is more capable now than it has ever been and provides the security for half of Iraq's provinces.
I'm sorry, but what success politically? What accomplishments?
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:54 PM   #85
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Originally posted by Strongbow
It is if you believe Chaos and Anarchy serve your interest.
When did he say he wanted chaos and anarchy?
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:02 PM   #86
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What's the number of people that have returned home?
What does the food ratios look like?
For how many people are the food ratios calculated and for how long?

The article indicates that the normal ratio hardly was enough to live on, and now they have to survive on half that amount. How long until food supply is sufficient to feed the nation?
How long will th people living there accept the status quo, and why should those who have already fled return to Iraq?
Still so many open tasks, but all you're talking about the whole time is how the numbers of people killed fluctuate from month to month.
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:10 PM   #87
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I'm sorry, but what success politically? What accomplishments?
The relationships the coalition has developed with various Sunni tribes have significantly contributed to the security and development of violence plagued provinces such as Anbar. The US military has been working to drag away elements of the insurgency for years now, and has been very successful in doing so in 2007 leading to new intelligence that has helped to combat other insurgents refusing to give up as well as Al Quada. They have worked with the local authorities in communities all over Iraq to help bring services and security that the national government has not been able to deliver at the current time. Economically, the amount of electricity and water that is available to most communities is significantly higher than it was at the start of the year. Markets and businesses that had been closed for years have opened up again. The Iraqi military is now providing all the security for 9 provinces, half of Iraq essentially. The refugee flow out of Iraq has stopped and has started to reverse itself. But more important than all the above is the sharp reduction in violence and civilian and military casualties. The number of lives saved has been enormous.
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:22 PM   #88
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Quote:
Originally posted by Vincent Vega
What's the number of people that have returned home?
What does the food ratios look like?
For how many people are the food ratios calculated and for how long?

The article indicates that the normal ratio hardly was enough to live on, and now they have to survive on half that amount. How long until food supply is sufficient to feed the nation?
How long will th people living there accept the status quo, and why should those who have already fled return to Iraq?
Still so many open tasks, but all you're talking about the whole time is how the numbers of people killed fluctuate from month to month.
Tens of thousands have returned home recently. The food ratios are apparently equal are better than where they fled too. The article uses a number of statistics with questionable accuracy. Most of the people living there agree the situation has improved and as long as that continues, they will more than just accept, but actively support it. The US military is getting a large increase in help from civilians in locating and capturing insurgence and Al Quada members. Its for the civilians who have fled Iraq to judge whether or not they would be better off where they are or in Iraq. At the current time, some would be better off returning, some would not.

There are plenty of open tasks as their always is in any operation of such magnitude and there will be for many years to come.

You may think that the numbers of people killed from month to month is irrelevant, but it is not. It is in fact the single most important statistic. Nothing trumps security. Without security, progress in the area's is not really possible.

But despite the fact that your country has abandoned Iraq for the past 5 years, significant progress is being made on the ground economically, politically at the local level, and especially in the security situation.
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:36 PM   #89
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strongbow


Do you know of a single Iraqi refugee that has returned to Iraq in December 2007 that has starved to death?
Do you know for a fact that people are not starving?

Quote:
IRAQ: Saddam Provided More Food Than the U.S.

BAQUBA, Dec 27 (IPS) - The Iraqi government announcement that monthly food rations will be cut by half has left many Iraqis asking how they can survive.

The government also wants to reduce the number of people depending on the rationing system by five million by June 2008.

...

According to an Oxfam International report released in July this year, "60 percent (of Iraqis) currently have access to rations through the government-run Public Distribution System (PDS), down from 96 percent in 2004."

The report said that "43 percent of Iraqis suffer from absolute poverty," and that according to some estimates over half the population are now without work. "Children are hit the hardest by the decline in living standards. Child malnutrition rates have risen from 19 percent before the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 to 28 percent now."

While salaries have increased since the invasion of March 2003, they have not kept pace with the dramatic increase in the prices of food and fuel.

"My salary is 280 dollars, and I have six children," 49-year-old secondary school teacher Ali Kadhim told IPS. "The increase in my salary was neutralised by an increase in the price of food. I cannot afford to buy the foodstuffs in addition to the other necessary expenses of life."

...

"No security, no food, no electricity, no trade, no services. So life is good," said one resident, who would not give his name.

Many fear the food ration cuts can spark unrest. "The government will commit a big mistake, because providing enough food ration could compensate the government's mistakes in other fields like security," a local physician told IPS. "The Iraq will now feel that he, or she, is of no value to the government."
http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=40613
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:48 PM   #90
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Oh, now we've abandoned Iraq? No, we just didn't see any sense in starting war after war before the first is solved and stable enough. We didn't see sense in going to war on a very questionable base, with no real backing by the UN and no plan by the government that was pushing for this war.
Yes, we supported the US in Afghanistan, and I think we did so with good reason (although sometimes with bad execution), but we didn't support going to war with Iraq just while we are at it.

How are you going to keep violence low after the surge has ended?
For half a year violence seemed to have significantly lowered, but we don't see how the government in Baghdad is exploiting this security.
Tens of thousands is not much compared with 1.5 million refugees, and from what I've read the food regios where they have fled to is rather equally bad as equally good, so no wonder why they don't stay there.
The question also is, how much security is behind the numbers of people killed, and how sustainable is this security.
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