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  1.    #1  
    Here’s a short assessment of the situation in Iraq. It looks like a quite undisputed description to me, feel free to disagree if you have information to the contrary:

    • Prevent Saddam from using his WMD – No WMD around
    • Punish Saddam for his involvement into 9/11 – No involvement whatsoever
    • Cut Saddam’s support for Al Qaida – No support, no collaboration
    • Remove Saddam from power – Done. Good thing.
    • Rebuild Iraq - E.g. oil production and availability of electricity still at or below pre-war level. Billions of US$ lost due to corruption and insurgent attacks.
    • Ensure safety and civilised life for Iraqis – Terror rules, situation getting worse, not better over the past years.
    • Ensure safe operation of US and coalition troops – Situation not getting better. 50 or even more killed each month.
    • Increase safety of US from terror attacks – Iraq has become ideal training ground for urban warfare, much better than Afghanistan ever could have been. Situation in Iraq provides ideal background for recruiting of new terrorists and causes radicalisation of Muslims worldwide.
    • Build up Iraqi army – No results visible. Handing over of power not in view, no control of situation even with US troops, let alone without them.
    • Establish democracy – Not working. Government is elected, but without power and influence. Corruption widespread.


    This is what the Bush administration has achieved (and it certainly is not the fault of the troops). Since the famous “mission accomplished” on May 1. 2003,the situation did not get any better in Iraq. I do not see what could cause a change for the better the way things are now. In my view, Bush has manoeuvred the US into a situation from which there is no good way out.

    Some here may disagree. I would like to know what their suggestions are. Business as usual, more of the same? Something else? How can the situation in Iraq be made better?
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  2. #2  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Here’s a short assessment of the situation in Iraq. It looks like a quite undisputed description to me, feel free to disagree if you have information to the contrary:
    [*]Prevent Saddam from using his WMD – No WMD around
    Yes.
    [*]Punish Saddam for his involvement into 9/11 – No involvement whatsoever
    No.
    [*]Cut Saddam’s support for Al Qaida – No support, no collaboration
    Prevent Saddam from ever being a source of WMD to al Qaeda and other terrorists - No WMD found. Dormant WMD programs confirmed. Repeated meetings with al Qaeda confirmed. Support of other terrorists confirmed.

    [*]Remove Saddam from power – Done. Good thing.
    [*]Rebuild Iraq - E.g. oil production and availability of electricity still at or below pre-war level. Billions of US$ lost due to corruption and insurgent attacks.
    Electricity above pre-war level. Oil production hampered by insurgent attacks.

    You imply that $Billions were stolen. As I understand it, the problem was that many disbursements, amounting to $Billions, were not properly monitored. The implication was that a lot of money could have been diverted into people's pockets, but not necessarily billions of dollars.

    It's probably worth knowing the rebuilding successes. I don't know the complete list, but it includes schools, roads, hospitals, vaccinations, and other infrastructure.

    [*]Ensure safety and civilised life for Iraqis – Terror rules, situation getting worse, not better over the past years.
    Life in certain regions of Iraq, including Baghdad, is hellish. Other regions are peaceful. Perhaps 1911 can comment on that.

    [*]Ensure safe operation of US and coalition troops – Situation not getting better. 50 or even more killed each month.
    [*]Increase safety of US from terror attacks – Iraq has become ideal training ground for urban warfare, much better than Afghanistan ever could have been. Situation in Iraq provides ideal background for recruiting of new terrorists and causes radicalisation of Muslims worldwide.
    Terrorists in Iraq are certainly taking a toll on American troops and interests. The situation in Iraq aids recruiting of terrorists, and rising hatred of the US in parts of the world may motivate some terrorist attacks againts the US in the future.

    The upside is that we neutralized two state sponsors of terror - Saddam and Qaddafi.

    [*]Build up Iraqi army – No results visible. Handing over of power not in view, no control of situation even with US troops, let alone without them.
    I'm not certain about this one, but I thought Iraqi troops had taken full control of security in certain areas of Iraq - some with success, some without.

    [*]Establish democracy – Not working. Government is elected, but without power and influence. Corruption widespread.[/LIST]
    The point of an elected government is that it has legitimacy among the people. Most Iraqis want this government to succeed. I think it's an exaggeration to say that it is without power and influence. There's corruption. There are people with conflicting interests. They don't have control over the militias, and some refuse to stop them. There are people within the government fueling the sectarian violence. Those are major problems without easy answers.


    To your list, I would add:
    [*]Enforced UN Security Council Resolutions, setting precedent to ensure that the UN Resolutions have meaning. Followed through after we gave Saddam a Comply Or Else ultimatum and he failed to comply.


    This is what the Bush administration has achieved (and it certainly is not the fault of the troops).
    The administration is to blame, but a handful of troops at Abu Ghraib played a major role in blowing up Iraq.

    Since the famous “mission accomplished” on May 1. 2003,the situation did not get any better in Iraq. I do not see what could cause a change for the better the way things are now. In my view, Bush has manoeuvred the US into a situation from which there is no good way out.

    Some here may disagree. I would like to know what their suggestions are. Business as usual, more of the same? Something else? How can the situation in Iraq be made better?
    There are at least three sources of violence in Iraq - the Baathist-led insurgency, the Sunni-Shiite feud, and the al Qaeda bombings. With calls for peace from Saddam and other Baathists, and the partial reversal of deBaathification, there's some hope that the Baathists will choose peace. We'll see.

    The sectarian violence is related, but much more complicated. It's not going to be solved by the military defeating the militias. Some people on both sides have had an interest in keeping the violence going (e.g., Baathists and Iranians). And no militia is going to disarm if they know the US is going to pull out quickly. I don't have the easy solution, but it's got to involve the leaders of the various parties coming together and deciding they want peace. That means the Shiites in power have to make concessions. That could take weeks, months, or years.

    Some suggest talking with Iran and Syria; I have no idea whether that would lead to anything constructive, but it's worth a try.

    There's no political solution to the al Qaeda problem. Many argue that our presence only stirs the hatred, but I think pulling out would only embolden them. They would declare victory and bring the war to our land. al Qaeda is at war with the United States, and unless a civil war gets in the way, I think we need to stay and defeat them.


    Do you have a solution?
  3. #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Here’s a short assessment of the situation in Iraq. It looks like a quite undisputed description to me, feel free to disagree if you have information to the contrary:
    Sam provided a good rebuttal. i will answer what i feel i need to add. what i dont is because sam said it very well already

    • Prevent Saddam from using his WMD – No WMD around[/QUOTE]

      Not true; while the tons and tons of WMD munitions were not found as most Western (including France and Germany) and Russian intelligence agencies were led to believe pre-invasion (you do acknowledge that fact, right?), there is undisputable evidence of dual use programs/factories that the Saddam regime tried to hide from the UN inspectors for 10 years. Moreover, the sons of Saddam and military commanders openly talked about using WMDs (chemical shells) in military communications and in government communiques prior and during the military campaign. Perhaps it was all talk, perhaps (as many still believe), that the bulk of the remaining WMDs are now in Syria with milliions of US dollars spirited out by the truckloads pre invasion. Our great liberal media was very good and not reporting these conversations and written communications which were all translated and used in the tribal trial against Saddam. Finally, in as much as you may think poorly of the Bush administration for waging this war and finding nothing, at the same time, you should at least acknowledge and thank the administration that because of his efforts, the world knows that Saddam was all talk. 10 years of UN inspector time could not answer that simple question because as we know, the UN is nothing but a paper force with no power to enforce any of its resolutions.
    • Punish Saddam for his involvement into 9/11 – No involvement whatsoever
    • Cut Saddam’s support for Al Qaida – No support, no collaboration
    • Remove Saddam from power – Done. Good thing.
    • Rebuild Iraq - E.g. oil production and availability of electricity still at or below pre-war level. Billions of US$ lost due to corruption and insurgent attacks.

    • Ensure safety and civilised life for Iraqis – Terror rules, situation getting worse, not better over the past years.
    • Ensure safe operation of US and coalition troops – Situation not getting better. 50 or even more killed each month.
    Terror rules your TV. While it is too naive to say that there is not a problem in Iraq w/ daily car bombings and loss of American lives, do the terrorists control the country? No. Do the terrorists have the power to indiscriminately kill? Yes. Does that constitute control of the country? Absolutely not.

    In relative terms, the casualty count in Iraq is incredibly low in the context of modern urban combat. That is not to say that the death of our brave soldiers is not tragic, but i have heard my liberal coworkers say that this is our generartion's Vietnam. Hardly the case. While there are elements that might appear like a civil war, it is sectarian violence with long standing religious roots. There is a difference between the two. Only Saddam's brutality and his favoritism of the Sunnis kept the country from tearing at each other back in his days. That is why i disagree with the current administration that there should be one united Iraq. I dont think it would be a bad idea to consider a Balkan-ized approach with three separated, but linked states. The Kurds already have in their minds that that is what they want and i strongly believe that sunni and shiite states will help bring peace in Iraq.

  4. Increase safety of US from terror attacks – Iraq has become ideal training ground for urban warfare, much better than Afghanistan ever could have been. Situation in Iraq provides ideal background for recruiting of new terrorists and causes radicalisation of Muslims worldwide.
  5. Are you sure about that? What evidence do you have to compare the two? Moreover, is what the Iraqi and Al queda insurgents IED attacks (their primary weapon of killing/terror) constitute true urban warfare? I dont think so. I see it this way: to carry out a terrorist attack is very simple. it relies on you blending into an environment and using crude tools and a limited amount of explosives to cause terror. Timothy McVeigh is a good example. Similarly, palestinian bus bombers is another example. That is not urban warfare. That is terrorism. And that type of punkarse terrorism does not bring down nations like the United States down, it only makes us stronger (or at least i'd like to believe that).

    In addition, we eliminated three principle state sponsored terrorist training ground: afghanistan, iraq and libya. state sponsored terrorism is always more dangerous than 3rd party sponsored (ie. religious school funded, privately funded, etc) terrorism, though with minimal funding and the time and patience to do so, we saw that 3rd party sponsored terrorism (9/11 attacks) can be just as deadly. and that is why we need to keep on these guys and kill them instead of passively doing nothing to pursue them. we let bin laden grow into a monster unchecked. and mind you, the bush administration's efforts have taken out the majority of the senior al queda leadership throughout the world. a fact that again, media likes to report one day (but still stick in the obligatory "but 2 troops died in a car bombing in iraq" to minimize the good news) and not the next.

    true, as you pointed out, iraq is becoming a training ground to kill off our guys a few at a time, but does not represent a true threat to our nation, as we have not experienced a major attack against our country since 9/11.
  6. Build up Iraqi army – No results visible. Handing over of power not in view, no control of situation even with US troops, let alone without them.
  7. Establish democracy – Not working. Government is elected, but without power and influence. Corruption widespread.


  8. This is what the Bush administration has achieved (and it certainly is not the fault of the troops). Since the famous “mission accomplished” on May 1. 2003,the situation did not get any better in Iraq. I do not see what could cause a change for the better the way things are now. In my view, Bush has manoeuvred the US into a situation from which there is no good way out.

    Some here may disagree. I would like to know what their suggestions are. Business as usual, more of the same? Something else? How can the situation in Iraq be made better?
    it is true that the situation is not good, but there are good things happening there. my neighbor works for parson and if you talk with a guy whose been on the ground building these projects (some going well, some not because of some of the reasons you mentioned), you get a different view. it is easy for a terrorist to blow a hole in a gas pipe, but does that mean that the entire country is without oil? no, it is just a hole in the pipe.

    i guess it depends on which side of the story you believe. i tend to believe that the terrorists/baathist, whatever you want ot label them are losing the fight. when they start killing americans and other coalitions by the thousands and completely wiping out the infrastructure of the country and that the population demonstrats by the hundreds of thousands against their elected officials, then i will truly beleieve that its time to pull out.

    but for now, yes, we need to reexamine the "stay the course" strategy. it is obviously not working 100% to our satisfaction. while i do not believe regional talks with syria and iran will acheive anything, it is still worth examining. in addition, the democratic plan to redeploy troops (as awkwardly articulated by sen. murtha) is worth examining...if only he and the democratic party could articulate a strategy vs generalizations about what their plan is (i cannot stand this "we will make it better" plattitude talk more than anything else!)

    personally, i would like to see us becoming more offensive rather than defensive in the coming months. i think it is worht it to commit our ground troops to do what they are trained to do, rather than convoy duty to resupply those green zone reporters who do nothing more than report the bad than the good.

    in addition, i would like to see us back at the table of the UN and get their committment to investing in iraq with money and troops. let's call out the UN for what they should be doing and allow them to become the peace keeping force that they promised to do. the infamous "mission accomplished" speech has its roots in the promise by the UN that once major ground operations and the vanquishing of the iraqi governmetn was finished, that UN forces would be committed as peacekeeping units. of course, koffi annan had other ideas

    well i am sure that what i wrote will stir the hornet's nest, but i hope that those with contrary views will keep the typical bush hating vitriole and uninformed one liners (no blood for oil) to a minimum. id really like to see read some very good debate and solutions (not just criticisms) because we are (imho) still in a war against people who would love to plant a dirty nuke or cut off our heads without a second thought. this is serious business

    thanks,
    bob
  9.    #4  
    Just to make it clear once again: The US senate, controlled by the Republican party, has clearly stated that Saddam had NO ties to Al Qaida: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14728447/

    The top US arms inspector in Iraq has clearly stated that Iraq had no WMD prior to the invasion. All reports to the contrary were totally exaggerated: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6190720/
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    Do you have a solution?
    Do I have a solution? No I don't. The solution would have been not to rush into this war in the naive Bush way, as I have always said, and not to handle things the way they did. Too late now.

    The fact that you now even have to consider asking SYRIA and IRAN for help shows where Bush has led you (Hello? Syria and Iran? Weren't those rogue states under control thanks to the great war in Iraq?).

    The results of the US led invasion of Iraq seem to be chaos in the Middle East, Muslim radicalisation, and a big terrorist training center. The US leaving Iraq would certainly cause more chaos and violence in Iraq, with a highly uncertain outcome - Iran taking control of the Shiite parts, the Kurds taking control of the north, the Sunni parts left without oil?

    OTOH, I don't see the US staying as a way leading to a solution... it's a serious problem.

    Whenever the war comes to an end in one way or another, there will be plenty of fully trained "enemy combatants" around, looking for a new job outside of Iraq, reminiscent of the situation after the war in Afghanistan, when Al Qaida started fighting Western influence.
    Last edited by clulup; 11/15/2006 at 01:30 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  10. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Just to make it clear once again: The US senate, controlled by the Republican party, has clearly stated that Saddam had NO ties to Al Qaida: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14728447/
    No. Not if by "ties" you mean connection.

    They said that there was no evidence of collaboration or support. But there were repeated meetings, in Iraq and Afghanistan, and friendly relations. And Saddam broadcast religious tapes on the radio at bin Laden's request.


    The top US arms inspector in Iraq has clearly stated that Iraq had no WMD prior to the invasion. All reports to the contrary were totally exaggerated: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6190720/
    I'm not a proponent of the weapons-to-Syria theory, mainly because there's no solid proof.

    But I don't believe that Duelfer ever directly contradicted that theory. He said that there was no evidence found of active WMD programs (Absence of proof is not proof of absence.) and that there were no WMD caches in Iraq at the start of the war.

    The results of the US led invasion of Iraq seem to be chaos in the Middle East...
    Uncertainty in the Middle East; chaos in regions of Iraq.

    OTOH, I don't see the US staying as a way leading to a solution... it's a serious problem.
    When our military experts say that our staying can't lead to a solution, I'll believe it.

    Whenever the war comes to an end in one way or another, there will be plenty of fully trained "enemy combatants" around, looking for a new job outside of Iraq, reminiscent of the situation after the war in Afghanistan, when Al Qaida started fighting Western influence.
    Unless they're all dead.
  11. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    The fact that you now even have to consider asking SYRIA and IRAN for help shows where Bush has led you (Hello? Syria and Iran? Weren't those rogue states under control thanks to the great war in Iraq?).
    It's not that we need their help in cleaning up our mess. It's that they're actively working aganst our interests, and we need to make them stop.


    And btw, I figure people will make assumptions, but I actually don't know Bob. He's not a friend, relative, or alter ego; though he's obviously wise.
  12.    #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    It's not that we need their help in cleaning up our mess. It's that they're actively working aganst our interests, and we need to make them stop.
    As if you had any means to make them (Iran, Syria) stop. What are you going to tell them, that you will invade their country and establish a democracy? Bring them on? They will have a good laugh.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  13.    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    Unless they're all dead.
    Only there's no way all the trained terrorists in Iraq will be dead once the US have left Iraq. Tell me again, how does the war in Iraq make the US safer?
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  14. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    As if you had any means to make them (Iran, Syria) stop. What are you going to tell them, that you will invade their country and establish a democracy? Bring them on? They will have a good laugh.
    I'm not at all optimistic about engaging Iran or Syria in dialogue. But if Blair and Baker think it's worth trying, then I can't argue with that.

    As for leverage, in addition to the obvious sticks, we have lots of carrots. Whether we're willing to offer them is another matter.

    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Only there's no way all the trained terrorists in Iraq will be dead once the US have left Iraq.
    That's if we pull out before we're done, which seems very likely at this point. One alternative is to stick around for a decade as the government stabilizes and hunt down and exterminate every last al Qaeda member. No, I don't think that's realistic.

    Tell me again, how does the war in Iraq make the US safer?
    The invasion of Iraq eliminated two state sponsors of terror.

    The fumble of Iraq created thousands of jihadists.

    It's debatable whether we're safer now. A hundred airline bombers would kill fewer people than one WMD.

    State sponsors of terror with WMD are a very bad thing, and preventing that is worth just about any cost. The problem is, we can only see the cost. We can't recognize the benefit of avoiding a doomsday that didn't happen.
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    #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by samkim View Post
    I'm not at all optimistic about engaging Iran or Syria in dialogue. But if Blair and Baker think it's worth trying, then I can't argue with that.



    It's debatable whether we're safer now. A hundred airline bombers would kill fewer people than one WMD.

    State sponsors of terror with WMD are a very bad thing, and preventing that is worth just about any cost. The problem is, we can only see the cost. We can't recognize the benefit of avoiding a doomsday that didn't happen.
    Why are you so worried about Iran? Their own president says their nuke program is for peacefull purposes. He seems like a stable guy that wouldnt lie to us. If it good enough for the U.N., its good enough for me.
  16. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    The top US arms inspector in Iraq has clearly stated that Iraq had no WMD prior to the invasion. All reports to the contrary were totally exaggerated: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6190720/
    Not as clearly as one may think when even as late as Feb 2003 Blitx reports "Iraq still isn't fully cooperating or providing evidence to answer outstanding questions about its nuclear, chemical, biological and long-range missile programs..........Blix will present the commissioners with a list of more than 35 outstanding questions about Iraq's weapons programs."

    http://discussion.treocentral.com/tc...5&postcount=49
  17. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    Just to make it clear once again: The US senate, controlled by the Republican party, has clearly stated that Saddam had NO ties to Al Qaida: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14728447/

    The top US arms inspector in Iraq has clearly stated that Iraq had no WMD prior to the invasion. All reports to the contrary were totally exaggerated: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6190720/Do I have a solution? No I don't. The solution would have been not to rush into this war in the naive Bush way, as I have always said, and not to handle things the way they did. Too late now.

    The fact that you now even have to consider asking SYRIA and IRAN for help shows where Bush has led you (Hello? Syria and Iran? Weren't those rogue states under control thanks to the great war in Iraq?).

    The results of the US led invasion of Iraq seem to be chaos in the Middle East, Muslim radicalisation, and a big terrorist training center. The US leaving Iraq would certainly cause more chaos and violence in Iraq, with a highly uncertain outcome - Iran taking control of the Shiite parts, the Kurds taking control of the north, the Sunni parts left without oil?

    OTOH, I don't see the US staying as a way leading to a solution... it's a serious problem.

    Whenever the war comes to an end in one way or another, there will be plenty of fully trained "enemy combatants" around, looking for a new job outside of Iraq, reminiscent of the situation after the war in Afghanistan, when Al Qaida started fighting Western influence.
    chulup,

    i think you should use better links to support your positions.

    the famous conclusion of the 9/11 commission was that "it was a failure of imagination". i dont need to reiterate that before 9/11, both the bush sr and clinton administration took an almost (in retrospect) lax approach to fighting and killing terrorists. as most political commentators described our pre-9/11 approach, it was a "law enforcement issue". and it was also a mentality of "take care of the problem after the bomb goes off". we could not stomach then the possiblity of our government actively seeking and killing terrorists. in fact, the sudanese actually asked president clinton if we wanted bin laden, but clinton turned down the request because 'we had nothing to prosecute him for'. as much as we can see now that was a catastrophic mistake, it made sense before 9/11 because we did not know anyone or any organization was capable of such destruction

    my point in bringing this up is your point about "al queda not having ties to iraq". is it possible, in the context of the "failure of imagination" quote that, after being routed from afghanistan, that possibly al queda operatives and saddam could have formed an alliance to destroy the USA? given that saddam plotted to assassinate bush sr, supported palestinian suicide bombers, used chemical weapons against iran and its own people, etc (state sponsored terrorism again), that saddam could have formed an uneasy but mutually beneficial alliance against us by providing chemical weapons to them? as your article quite clearly stated, there were remnants of a nuclear and biological warfare program. i dont really need to explain to you that a single drop of sarin would wreak havoc in any subway or shopping mall in any country. would you as the president of the united states, take that risk after watching thousands of your citizens die needlessly in two crumbling towers?

    in fact, the article you quoted provided exactly the reasoning why bush decided to invade iraq:

    “There was a risk, a real risk, that Saddam Hussein would pass weapons or materials or information to terrorist networks,” Bush said Wednesday in a campaign speech in Wilkes Barre, Pa. “In the world after September the 11th, that was a risk we could not afford to take.”

    so what if bush did not invade iraq? and what if operational and financial ties were solidified and allowed to grow unchecked as it did in afghanistan?

    see, i have many friends and colleague who think like this: "well, we dont and didnt have the smoking gun, so we shouldnt've invaded iraq!" but i side with the mentality that if there's an ominous risk and that other nations say it is ominous too, we better not take any risk and solve the problem asap because these terrorists dont posture, provide ultimatums, etc. as much as you may want to posture it as "it was our mistake for exaggerating the intelligence and going in under false pretenses", how many resolutions were enacted against the saddam regime? and what about UNR 1441? it was signed by all UN security council members that provided a clear and unambiguous "if you dont open up, the use of force is a real possibility". it was a real threat that became a political issue (unfortunately)

    regarding your link about the US exaggerated WMD claims, i think your statement "exaggerated" is your conclusion, not what the article stated. the iraq study group concluded ***after the invasion*** that it did not find the WMDs in the quantity that most western and russian intelligence agencies believed. that a finding and a conclusion. and again back to my point in my first post, you should be thanking president bush instead of berating him because in one short year, a team was allowed unfettered access to conduct a complete survey that the UN teams were not allowed to do in 10 years.

    re regional meeting w/ syria and iran: we are not crawling on our hands and knees to negotiate anything with them. james baker suggested that as a strategy to engage these nations into the process. while you may not believe it, we are more than capable of leveraging our power to cut off many sources of revenue and international aid to their countries. look at north korea, for example: we literally cut off all banking ties to north korea by pressuring both china, macao, and hong kong into closing/freezing north korean accounts. in addition, threats of international sanctions after their nuclear bomb explosion brought even more pressure on them and they came back to the table w/ their tails between their legs. while we will not (i hope) invade either iran or syria, we have more sticks than you might want to believe.

    i am glad that we agree on one thing: leaving now would send a bad message and would result in more chaos. the plan, despite the left wing rhetoric, is that we are buidling up the political, economic, and social infrastructure of the country after decades of ineffective UN sanctions. at the same time, we have been building up its police force. was rome built in a day? absolutely not. and its easy for terrorists to disrupt this. i wish, i WISH, that the american people would have the stomach to weather this storm and give this some time...albeit with some modifications to the strategy. we did it for germany. we did it for japan. and we did it for south korea too (where i was born).

    re your statement about al queda fighting western influence in afghanistan, no, it was the taliban who was fighting western influence under the strict waahabi (sp?) sect of islam. al queda and bin laden just happened to find a welcoming suitor after getting kicked out of its traditional home in saudi arabia and the sudan. lets not get these facts mixed up.

    and for the record, i am not related to sam kim. we just share the same last name as most koreans do

    thanks for reading,
    bob
  18. #13  
    I personally believe that the only way to win this war is not with the current strategy but by increasing our forces there. Its just too out of hand to consider anything else, if you have a goal of quelling the civil war there. The trouble is our Natl guard and Reserves are being pushed to the limit and even sustaining the present level of committment let along increasing it, in my opinion, could not be done without reinstating the draft. I do not think this would entail further support but rather further detract from support of the war especially from security moms and dads suddenly tested with the conviction of sending their children to an already unpopular war. Thus I hate to be pessimistic, nor to dwell on mistakes that were made in the past, but the current situation, politically and strategically for the war seems bleak.
  19. #14  
    Cell, I would be interested in the source of this fact showing the numbers as a threat of an impending draft would be pretty big news.

    EDIT: You deleted your original post stating that at our present strategy that we will have to start to draft just after I posted my question above and posted an explanation of your statement.
    Last edited by HobbesIsReal; 11/16/2006 at 10:35 AM.
  20. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup View Post
    As if you had any means to make them (Iran, Syria) stop. What are you going to tell them, that you will invade their country and establish a democracy? Bring them on? They will have a good laugh.
    More rubble, less trouble.

    Iran in particular is overdue for a JDAM smackdown. I think what is preventing it are:

    1) They will unleash Lebanese Hezbollah on a global scale. LH makes AQ look like girl scouts.
    2) Oil prices will shoot through the stratosphere.
    3) It would alienate our best chance at stabilizing Iran, and that is its young populace.

    But make no mistake, a sustained bombing campaign on Iranian infrastructure, (they import most of their gasoline) would hurt them bad.
  21. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by cellmatrix View Post
    I personally believe that the only way to win this war is not with the current strategy but by increasing our forces there. Its just too out of hand to consider anything else, if you have a goal of quelling the civil war there. The trouble is our Natl guard and Reserves are being pushed to the limit and even sustaining the present level of committment let along increasing it, in my opinion, could not be done without reinstating the draft. I do not think this would entail further support but rather further detract from support of the war especially from security moms and dads suddenly tested with the conviction of sending their children to an already unpopular war. Thus I hate to be pessimistic, nor to dwell on mistakes that were made in the past, but the current situation, politically and strategically for the war seems bleak.
    I think the pros and cons of an increase in forces is a viable option to talk about. If we had the same levels of military strength prior to the huge reductions in the 90s, we would have a lot more options available to us right now as well without even the mention of a threat of a draft. But again, this is dwelling on mistakes of the past as well.........
  22. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal View Post
    I think the pros and cons of an increase in forces is a viable option to talk about. If we had the same levels of military strength prior to the huge reductions in the 90s, we would have a lot more options available to us right now as well without even the mention of a threat of a draft. But again, this is dwelling on mistakes of the past as well.........
    I guess we were forced to go to war with the army we have, not the army we would want to have. Perhaps that should have been taken into account better in the prewar planning. But Hobbes you are lulling me into a conversation about the past too, darn you!
  23. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal View Post
    Cell, I would be interested in the source of this fact showing the numbers as a threat of an impending draft would be pretty big news.

    EDIT: You deleted your original post stating that at our present strategy that we will have to start to draft just after I posted my question above and posted an explanation of your statement.
    sorry I do that sometimes - just delete and start over. Anyway, my statement is my opinion not initiated through official announcement of any new policies.

    It seems to me that the need for a draft should be at least discussed in the current Iraq strategy, but it is a political hot potato and no one wants to touch it. Most liberals do not like it because it is seen as facilitating a misguided war although Rangle mentioned it at one point, no one ever discussed it much again. Conservatives do not like it because it has the potential to erode public support to a war which they strongly are in favor of promoting.

    So it is just left undiscussed, which is why I brought it up here.
  24. #19  
    "Better pre-war planning" is a euphemism for monday morning quarterbacking.

    People that haven't organized anything more complicated than a dinner party for 20 will talk for hours about how to run a war. The same people that ran out of napkins will screech about inadequate numbers of armored vehicles. Bellyachers about the cost of providing logistics will drop $100 on an overnight delivery of 4 extra sets of china. They understand how difficult it is to plan for a party of 20, but have no concept or sympathy for planning a party of 150,000, with the added factor of univited guests trying to commit lethal violence.
  25.    #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by 1911sforever View Post
    "Better pre-war planning" is a euphemism for monday morning quarterbacking.

    People that haven't organized anything more complicated than a dinner party for 20 will talk for hours about how to run a war. The same people that ran out of napkins will screech about inadequate numbers of armored vehicles. Bellyachers about the cost of providing logistics will drop $100 on an overnight delivery of 4 extra sets of china. They understand how difficult it is to plan for a party of 20, but have no concept or sympathy for planning a party of 150,000, with the added factor of univited guests trying to commit lethal violence.
    The plan for Iraq after Saddam was based on pure optimism (if at all). That is simply no basis for going to war. A prime example of the Bush administration's mix of arrogance and ignorance. I mean, who would have thought that the Sunni and the Shiites don't get along well, or that Iran would support the Shiite militia, or that Syria would not do all they could to prevent infiltration of terrorists into Iraq, etc.?

    I wonder what you would be saying if the Iraq war had been started and conducted this way by a liberal president.
    Last edited by clulup; 11/17/2006 at 02:52 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
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