Broken Iraq? Do we fix it or leave it? - Page 4 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #31 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by FeelTheLove
I am saying we have put into play certain inevitabilities that we will be powerless over. The arabs have been attempting to re-unite for the last one hundred years. Our oil greed has led us to oppose that for all of that time. The Iraq War has never been much more than a continuation of that failing strategy. Saddam was one path to Arab unity, and as difficult it is for us to accept, it was the path we should have backed. Instead, Bush sought to replace Saddam with his puppet state, in order to continue the US-British strategy of keeping Arabia a mishmash of divided states.

In 2003, the US made a crucial, little noticed and utterly stupid mistake. It allowed the ratification of an Iraqi constitution that recognized the supremacy of Islam, totally ignoring the fact the only successful democracy in the Muslim world, Turkey, was successful because of its total constitutional separation of church and state. It is at the heart of all our problems there, the rise of the militias, the inability of an Iraq government to govern, our inability to form an Iraqi army, and has thrown the Middle East into chaos whose only outcome is the rise of a radical state in Arabia and the strengthening of the one in Iran.

Islam, like it or not, is probably the most powerful social force on the planet. We have unleashed its worse elements deep into the fabric of all Muslim society with our incredibly brutal treatment of Iraq. By destroying and outlawing the counter-balancing force of Baathism, we have unleashed Radical Islam on people who under Saddam were beginning to get away from it for the first time in history. That is over, thanks to us. There will be no suppressing it, especially now that the people of the Middle East now see democracy as something to be feared. The only choices are to stay there and bleed while we attempt to prop up one unstable government after another as resented Nazi-style occupiers, or step out and start to accept the new world of madness we have created. Instead of bringing the world to a new progressive place, we have sent the planet into a centuries long battle with Medievalism.

Staying is the worst option. If we stay, we will eventually be nuked by rogue elements in Iran or Pakistan outraged by our violation of the Dar-al-Islami, suiciders who will care less about the consequences. It will be an attack on a major coastal city, using a submarine or oil tanker the same way they used planes but this time with suiciders carrying a nuclear payload. Our best option it to get out, and hope they stay in civil war long enough for us to strenghten ourselves against them by getting off oil, and strengthening our defenses against suicide attack, and by preparing for nuclear combat.
I am liking your brain more and more every day! There is SOMEONE who understand the situation and there is SOMEONE that uses his head, unlike many who have constipation of the brain and diarrhea of the tongue. WELL SAID FTL!
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post #32 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:03 AM
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Post The choice is made by the Iraqi people

Originally Posted by drewprof
I can't believe that you are still pushing for a Hashemite king to take up an Iraqi throne. Right or wrong for the Iraqis it is still not your call especially from a military Captain that can be very influential. Did he promise you a post like head of his future royal guard?


I have served for 12 month in Iraq as a military advisor and with my daily actions it has been mentioned to me from Iraqi Officers, Iraqi Interpreters that mention an alternative to their government that resembles Jordan and Britain under a Constitutional Monarchy. They have stated that members of their families and communities hold the royal family of Iraq in high regards and would support him.

While sitting with them after work eating dinner we would watch television a news interview would appear on occasion and it was about Sharif Ali bin al-Hussein and they would proclaim to me that this is a good man with high morals and his family has done great work for Iraq and his family is respected in the Muslim community. At one sitting I have spoken to Iraqis, military and civilian that are Shia, Sunni, Kurd and also interpreters, and 1 Christian Officer that have suggested to me that they would support a "King" that can unite the country.

I am only relaying what they had told me and as a history major I have studied the history in Iraq as a student.

Also these are articles that were written about Sharif Ali bin al-Hussein by news agencies.


Sharif Ali urges quick transition

United Jerusalem - - Week in Review

The New York Times > International > Middle East > The King Is Dead (Has Been for 46 Years) but Two Iraqis Hope: Long Live the King!

I have been serving here in Iraq as a volunteer since April 2006, and was wounded in February 28, 2007, and chose to remain here in Iraq to complete my tour. I look forward to completing my service and return back to the United States in April 2008.


James Van Thach
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U.S. Army
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"That currently peace can only be accomplished with an honest broker not with Terroristic attacks. For our nation young people need to become more involved in our governmental process because they need direction in their life and the U.S. Army is the place to grow. The military is a great extended family that will only benefit our future."
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post #33 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by M44
Don't forget Syria, Iran, and Jordan. Unfortunately we aren't realizing something needs to be done about these countries. I think within the next 10 years we will go to war with Iran, simply because they are a Islamofascist state hurling out of control. Then again Iran could just collapse on its own.
Nothing NEEDS to be done to these counties, rather we NEED to get the hell out out of there and stop sticking our nose where it does not belong or we will get a severely broken nose. Everywhere we find oil or other natural resources, we start running to that region with our tongues hanging and our tails waggling. WE NEED TO CHANGE. WE ARE WRONG. None of those countries are at fault.
If you camped out in my back yard, i would politely ask you to leave.
If you didn't then I would get my Beretta 9mm and unload it in your ass.
Our asses are about to become loaded with 9mm if we don't straighten up.
post #34 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by drewprof
Withdraw and give them money in proportion to what we give to Israel and let's see if they are people worthy of a nation. Is that hard?
Great idea
post #35 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:17 AM
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I respect your service and dedication but no matter what you hear from some Iraqis it is still a small sample of the population that shares ideals that happen to fester in your environment. You are still more qualified than anyone here in OT to give an opinion that's for sure but you have to take into account the statistical factor of what you sample versus overall realities all around Iraq.
I have visited Jordan many times and yes in large the Jordanians respect their king but that country is in no way a Democracy as we know it but that's their country and they can choose whatever they want to be governed with. The problem Captain is that it all hinges on us the United States of America; if we don't like someone then it does not matter if the people choose him because he is not going to get any support. Just look at our policies in Palestine.
Captain, we have proven to the world and most importantly to the Arabs that we are not a real partner because our primary interest is the safeguard of Israel regardless of what happens around it. We proven this over and over and I hope you see it or do you doubt this too? Don't you think that Arabs know that? Where do you think their bitterness is spawning from?
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post #36 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JimSmith

If you are going to start something you hope leads to a serious debate, how about offering something with substance to back up your cliche'-based "we broke it, we need to fix it" philosophy?

What do you mean by the statement "We should maintain heavily guarded posts and set up a timeline of withdrawal based on achieved goals" above?

Do we add troops or take them away or rearrange the ones we already have there? What is the timeline based on? What if the timeline, like the Bush time line to date, expires and the goals are not achieved? More importantly, what are the goals that are to be achieved that you are proposing?

Without some definition of what you are proposing it is just a bunch of soft goo that can be used to justify whatever you might like it to justify. While Bot seems hung up on "fuckity fuck fuck fuck" the target of his tirade is the only one who has offered any detail in what is to be done, in his opinion, and why. All the rest of the one liners, or repetitive one liners, are old and incomplete thoughts. Can't start a serious debate with little more than clauses and phrases. Whole thoughts.

The easiest whole thought to express accurately and completely is "cut and run." Which is what I would recommend. We, hopefully, didn't intend to break Iraq (although an argument that "we are fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them over here" reveals breaking and ruining Iraq was part of the original plan) so it seems our best intentions for going on five years has done nothing but make the situation worse. More and better trained terrorists, new tactics, new weapons, and a pan-Arab, pan-Middle East and pan-Islam hatred of America has resulted. We obviously have not got a clue how to "fix" this and, therefore, we should get the hell out as soon as possible. Once the Iraqis figure out what they want to do, we should offer financial and other humanitarian and rebuilding aid to make reparations. But get out military the hell out of there, entirely. Now.

Dear Jim,

Despite your ongoing clich'e criticism with no original meat, other than the standing in the shade of FTL's umbrella, I urge you speak out and give us your independent plans for Iraq. I for one want to hear them, I think you are a very smart man and would like to add your view, and not just FTL's to the list. FTL and Cap'n Van Thach have given very compelling views, it would be nice if you and Botnst could do the same.

Thank You,


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post #37 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Shane
Dear Jim,

Despite your ongoing clich'e criticism with no original meat, other than the standing in the shade of FTL's umbrella, I urge you speak out and give us your independent plans for Iraq. I for one want to hear them, I think you are a very smart man and would like to add your view, and not FTL's to the list.

Thank You,


Seeing how this is your thread, I will give you the first opportunity to make your point. Mine, as you have so accurately summarized, is much like FTL's. I thought I made it very clear with as few words as possible. "Cut and Run." Sounds good to me. In acknowledgment of our responsibility, I would call for a commitment, once the Iraqis figure out what they want to be in the future and end their civil war, to provide reparations in the form of food, medicine and building materials and other resources. No money though and no Brownies running the job. Very simple proposal, cut and run, followed by a good measure of meaningful reparations to the form of government in the region when the civil war ends.

But you are advocating something else that calls for our military to continue to carry out some kind of mission in Iraq. You have not defined it, or justified why the US military should be tasked with whatever the job is, or identified the achievable goals you want. I am sorry Shane, without those blocks filled in, and debated, there is no way I could support your proposal, no matter how noble or important you tell me it is. Because that is the problem. You say it is all those things, but don't tell us what it is, which is exactly what Bush has been doing for the last five years.

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post #38 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 03:05 PM
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Thumbs down Capn, Capn......heh, heh...

Capn J,

Your commentary reeks of absolute bias for another Saudi "Dictator" type regime to take over Iraq! A typical response expected of a conditioned mindset - more commonly referred to as a "stooge!". I reckon the sooner "You & Co" pack your bags and get out of Iraq, the better! Most disappointing, as one would have expected a more sensible and practical proposal from a man of your "academic" attainment!

Any PROGRESS REPORT on pushing for DEMOCRACY in Saudi Arabia? heh, won't find the answers in WIKIPEDIA! heh, heh.....
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post #39 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 03:13 PM
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the BEST solution is to vacate their land and get our stinky American asses back onto our own soil dredging for our own oil in our own land...Alaska...its already happening anyway.
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post #40 of 241 (permalink) Old 07-06-2007, 07:02 PM
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Published on Friday, July 6, 2007 by the Nieman Watchdog

‘Supporting the Troops’ Means Withdrawing Them

by Gen. William Odom

Every step the Democrats in Congress have taken to force the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq has failed. Time and again, President Bush beats them into submission with charges of failing to “support the troops.”

Why do the Democrats allow this to happen? Because they let the president define what “supporting the troops” means. His definition is brutally misleading. Consider what his policies are doing to the troops.

No U.S. forces have ever been compelled to stay in sustained combat conditions for as long as the Army units have in Iraq. In World War II, soldiers were considered combat-exhausted after about 180 days in the line. They were withdrawn for rest periods. Moreover, for weeks at a time, large sectors of the front were quiet, giving them time for both physical and psychological rehabilitation. During some periods of the Korean War, units had to fight steadily for fairly long periods but not for a year at a time. In Vietnam, tours were one year in length, and combat was intermittent with significant break periods.

In Iraq, combat units take over an area of operations and patrol it daily, making soldiers face the prospect of death from an IED or small arms fire or mortar fire several hours each day. Day in and day out for a full year, with only a single two-week break, they confront the prospect of death, losing limbs or eyes, or suffering other serious wounds. Although total losses in Iraq have been relatively small compared to most previous conflicts, the individual soldier is risking death or serious injury day after day for a year. The impact on the psyche accumulates, eventually producing what is now called “post-traumatic stress disorders.” In other words, they are combat-exhausted to the point of losing effectiveness. The occasional willful killing of civilians in a few cases is probably indicative of such loss of effectiveness. These incidents don’t seem to occur during the first half of a unit’s deployment in Iraq.

After the first year, following a few months back home, these same soldiers are sent back for a second year, then a third year, and now, many are facing a fourth deployment! Little wonder more and more soldiers and veterans are psychologically disabled.

And the damage is not just to enlisted soldiers. Many officers are suffering serious post-traumatic stress disorders but are hesitant to report it - with good reason. An officer who needs psychiatric care and lets it appear on his medical records has most probably ended his career. He will be considered not sufficiently stable to lead troops. Thus officers are strongly inclined to avoid treatment and to hide their problems.

There are only two ways to fix this problem, both of which the president stubbornly rejects. Instead, his recent “surge” tactic has compelled the secretary of defense to extend Army tours to 15 months! (The Marines have been allowed to retain their six-month deployment policy and, not surprisingly, have fewer cases of post-traumatic stress syndrome.)

The first solution would be to expand the size of the Army to two or three times its present level, allowing shorter combat tours and much longer breaks between deployments. That cannot be done rapidly enough today, even if military conscription were restored and new recruits made abundant. It would take more than a year to organize and train a dozen new brigade combat teams. The Clinton administration cut the Army end strength by about 40 percent - from about 770,000 to 470,000 during the 1990s. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld looked for ways to make the cuts even deeper. Thus this administration and its predecessor aggressively gave up ground forces and tactical air forces while maintaining large maritime forces that cannot be used in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Sadly, the lack of wisdom in that change in force structure is being paid for not by President Bush or President Clinton but by the ordinary soldier and his family. They have no lobby group to seek relief for them.

The second way to alleviate the problem is to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq as soon as possible and as securely as possible. The electorate understands this. That is why a majority of voters favor withdrawing from Iraq.

If the Democrats truly want to succeed in forcing President Bush to begin withdrawing from Iraq, the first step is to redefine “supporting the troops” as withdrawing them, citing the mass of accumulating evidence of the psychological as well as the physical damage that the president is forcing them to endure because he did not raise adequate forces. Both Democrats and Republicans in Congress could confirm this evidence and lay the blame for “not supporting the troops” where it really belongs - on the president. And they could rightly claim to the public that they are supporting the troops by cutting off the funds that he uses to keep U.S. forces in Iraq.

The public is ahead of the both branches of government in grasping this reality, but political leaders and opinion makers in the media must give them greater voice.

Congress clearly and indisputably has two powers over the executive: the power of the purse and the power to impeach. Instead of using either, members of congress are wasting their time discussing feckless measures like a bill that “de-authorizes the war in Iraq.” That is toothless unless it is matched by a cut-off of funds.

The president is strongly motivated to string out the war until he leaves office, in order to avoid taking responsibility for the defeat he has caused and persisted in making greater each year for more than three years.

To force him to begin a withdrawal before then, the first step should be to rally the public by providing an honest and candid definition of what “supporting the troops” really means and pointing out who is and who is not supporting our troops at war. The next step should be a flat refusal to appropriate money for to be used in Iraq for anything but withdrawal operations with a clear deadline for completion.

The final step should be to put that president on notice that if ignores this legislative action and tries to extort Congress into providing funds by keeping U.S. forces in peril, impeachment proceeding will proceed in the House of Representatives. Such presidential behavior surely would constitute the “high crime” of squandering the lives of soldiers and Marines for his own personal interest.

Lieutenant General William E. Odom, U.S. Army (Ret.), is a Senior Fellow with Hudson Institute and a professor at Yale University. He was Director of the National Security Agency from 1985 to 1988. From 1981 to 1985, he served as Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, the Army’s senior intelligence officer. From 1977 to 1981, he was Military Assistant to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs, Zbigniew Brzezinski.

© 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College
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