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Thread: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

  1. #101
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    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    Well, the Bush family certainly got their vindication, didn't they? It's been pretty well established that Dubya has had a vendetta out for Saddam ever since the despot hatched an assassination plot against Bush 41 and his wife and Laura Bush (Dubya conveniently stayed home on that trip because he was preparing to run for the governorship of TX at the time).



    From Riverbend's blog today, this entry commenting on the final moments of Saddam's life as he stood at the gallows waiting to be hanged:



    And sadly, the American death toll reached 3000 killed today.


    Miulang
    bortaS bIr jablu'DI' reH QaQqu' nay'(Revenge is a Dish, Best Served Cold)- Klingon Proverb

    I guess South Park's vision of HELL is a reality now....
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  2. #102

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    What's most ironic is that there have been MORE people killed (US troops and Iraqi civilians) since Saddam was captured than when he was in power (even including the 100k+ Kurds he massacred)! And we don't have Saddam to use as a scapegoat anymore. Notice how we don't seem to be going after OBL or MaS with quite the same intensity as we did Saddam?

    We've shut him up. The moment Saddam's hooded executioner pulled the lever of the trapdoor in Baghdad yesterday morning, Washington's secrets were safe. The shameless, outrageous, covert military support which the United States - and Britain - gave to Saddam for more than a decade remains the one terrible story which our presidents and prime ministers do not want the world to remember. And now Saddam, who knew the full extent of that Western support - given to him while he was perpetrating some of the worst atrocities since the Second World War - is dead.

    Gone is the man who personally received the CIA's help in destroying the Iraqi communist party. After Saddam seized power, US intelligence gave his minions the home addresses of communists in Baghdad and other cities in an effort to destroy the Soviet Union's influence in Iraq. Saddam's mukhabarat visited every home, arrested the occupants and their families, and butchered the lot. Public hanging was for plotters; the communists, their wives and children, were given special treatment - extreme torture before execution at Abu Ghraib.

    There is growing evidence across the Arab world that Saddam held a series of meetings with senior American officials prior to his invasion of Iran in 1980 - both he and the US administration believed that the Islamic Republic would collapse if Saddam sent his legions across the border - and the Pentagon was instructed to assist Iraq's military machine by providing intelligence on the Iranian order of battle
    "Selective Justice and the Execution of Saddam Hussein"

    "How Washington and London helped to create the monster they went to war to destroy"



    Miulang
    Last edited by Miulang; December 31st, 2006 at 03:10 PM.

  3. #103

    Default Respectfully declining to re-enlist...

    BECAUSE WE'RE DEAD.

    The Army said Friday it would apologize to the families of about 275 officers killed or wounded in action who were mistakenly sent letters urging them to return to active duty.

    The letters were sent a few days after Christmas to more than 5,100 Army officers who had recently left the service. Included were letters to about 75 officers killed in action and about 200 wounded in action.
    Miulang

  4. #104

    Default Not a "surge" but a "bump"...

    Word has already leaked out that the President's change in strategy will require sending additional troops to Iraq to quell the insurgency. However, State Dept. sources say that when the President goes before the nation this Wed. or Thursday night to discuss the new deployments, the numbers will be less than what everyone is expecting and more on the order of around 15,000 additional troops. This is a good thing, because the generals are saying that they can only provide another 9,000 ready troops.

    But almost everyone who knows anything about the conditions in Iraq says that 10-15,000 additional troops will have no effect on the sectarian violence that is occurring in Iraq today. If that's true, then what will the mission of the additional troops be? To knock down every door in Baghdad to roust insurgents? And how do you distinguish between an innocent citizen and a Sunni insurgent or a Shia militiaman?

    I predict that all sending additional troops in will do is add more American names to the list of those killed or injured in the line of duty.

    Even Military.com has posted an editorial implying that the President is delusional if he plans to ask for more troops to be sent to Iraq:

    Those who've sacrificed the most - America's Army and Marine ground forces and their families - will be asked to continue bearing the burden and paying an even higher price in dead and wounded for a president's ego and intransigence.

    The very troops who will make up the temporary bump in U.S. forces in Iraq are those who've already paid that price over and over. They'll be found by a sleight-of-hand maneuver: ordering units already tapped to return to Iraq to go there earlier than scheduled.

    That isn't even robbing Peter to pay Paul. It's robbing Peter to pay Peter.

    George W. Bush believes that he can buy another couple of years of violent stalemate so he can hand off the disaster to whoever succeeds him in the White House on Jan. 20, 2009. How many more Americans and Iraqis must die to ensure that Bush's parting words as he retreats to Crawford, Texas, will be: I never cut and ran. I stood tall. I kept America safe.

    The problem with that scenario is that it, like all the others drawn by George Bush and Dick Cheney, is far too rosy. The way forward in Iraq is a spiral toward an even bloodier future, and the real decisions are the Iraqis', not George Bush's.
    Dan Inouye thinks it's great that Adm Foxy Fallon of the Pacific Command will now replace Gen. Abizaid as chief of overall operations in Iraq. Interesting that a Navy guy will be in charge of ground operations over there. My guess is the main reason why he was chosen is because we are ramping up for our next military engagement: Iran, where our "battle" will be fought on the water in the Strait of Hormuz. Replacing Gen. Casey with Gen. Petraeus does make sense though, since Petraeus has been responsible for the training of the Iraqi forces.

    Miulang
    Last edited by Miulang; January 6th, 2007 at 04:19 PM.

  5. #105
    waioli kai Guest

    Default Do zionUSt$ care whether Sunni or Shia, civilian or militant

    --
    -- And how do you distinguish between an innocent citizen and a Sunni insurgent or a Shia militiaman? --

    In military actions of the recent year, US media reports have ceased making significant distinctions between dead civilians and dead insurgents/militiamen: in other words, for an Iraqi or an Afghan to be rendered dead as a consequence of U.S. (whether or not including Iraqi army) actions is a sure indication that the killed individual(s) was (were) a () terrorist(s) [SIZE="1"](militant anti-terrorUSt($)), since there is no US media attending such killing sessions, the media just reports the numbers of non-U.S. peoples killed as they are told such numbers by their U.S. military counterparts. Taking such reports at face value one could be led to several remarkable conclusions:

    --- with U.S. advisors and forces, the "New Iraqi Army" always "get their man"/men efficiently, never harming civilians; always justly, humanely and correctly killing their opponents. For example: ' Thirty insurgents killed in action... (dah,dah,dah)... ' with no mention of civilian casualities!! Time after time, coalition action after coalition action...the same thing: No mention of civilian casualities!!? Such a claim for "perfect offense" can only mean: The coalition forces are lying or else the "insurgents" enjoy the great military luxury of being able to conduct warfare far away from loved ones in which case they, the "insurgents", are free to choose the battlegrounds on which to fight those who deem them to be a mortal enemy in their own homeland.

    --- the truth is that there are many numbers of non-reported, under-reported and mis-reported Iraqi civilian casualities in this nearing two decade-old USraeli war on Iraq.
    Last edited by waioli kai; January 7th, 2007 at 08:36 AM.

  6. #106

    Default Iraq sliced and diced 11 different ways...

    In the immediate few weeks, the new Democratically-controlled Congress will be holding at least 11 different inquiries into different aspects of our occupation in Iraq. This should get really, really interesting...

    In this new era of divided government, the congressional hearing room is where the executive and legislative branches will clash.

    Over the next few weeks, Senate Democrats plan to hold at least 11 hearings just on Iraq. In the House, one of the Democrats' most dogged investigators is waiting to spring his committee on a different mission - suspected government fraud.

    From the war to environmental policy and secret surveillance, the Democrats who now control both the House and Senate are armed with subpoena power and ready to summon panels of witnesses.

    These newly empowered Democrats plan to put the Bush administration under scrutiny like never before.

    "One of the clearest messages of the last election was that the Republican leadership was just AWOL when it came to holding the Bush administration accountable," said Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
    Miulang

  7. #107

    Default Ramifications of the anticipated "bump"

    If Pres. Bush announces tomorrow night that he will ask for an additional 15-20,000 additional troops to be sent to Iraq, the effect on the National Guard and Reservists is expected to be far-reaching.

    Any boost in combat forces would require some increase in reserve support units, such as engineering or intelligence teams. Because of training requirements, National Guard infantry forces are unlikely to be part of the initial increase. However, they would be needed later in the year to sustain a higher level of forces.

    Defense officials say it would be difficult to build up an extra 20,000 soldiers and Marines quickly. Although there is a reserve brigade in Kuwait, building up to the full expansion might take until late March or April, an Army official said.

    The increase is likely to rely heavily on speeding up the deployments of units that had been scheduled to ship to Iraq in the summer, while extending the tours of Marine Corps and Army units already in Iraq that had been due to return home in the late spring and summer.

    ...Army Chief of Staff Gen. Peter Schoomaker, a member of the Joint Chiefs, has complained publicly that the policy against involuntary second tours has forced the National Guard to cobble together units from dozens of states, rather than sending whole battalions or brigades that have worked and trained together.

    ``Current policies restrict our ability to remobilize reserve component units and, in my view, the current policies are more restrictive than need be under the law and hamper our ability to remobilize the best-trained, best-led and best-equipped units,'' Schoomaker said in December.

    In the internal debates over whether the military should send extra troops into Iraq, the service chiefs have been convinced that sustaining an increase would require sending National Guard combat brigades for return tours as part of what the military is calling ``assured access'' to the reserves.

    ``If you increase'' the force in Iraq, ``part of that requirement will require assured access to the Guard,'' said a second Army official. ``If you look at the brigades that are available, you are going to have to require the assured access.''
    While it might make sense to redeploy active duty troops whose livelihood is the armed services, it makes much less sense to do this with the National Guardsmen, who have lives away from the military. They have jobs which they must leave (and have no assurances that they will have a job when they return), and their families. Since the States have partial responsibility for the National Guard, it's probable that they, too, will register complaints against additional deployments of National Guardsmen who have already gone to Iraq at least once before, because it might leave the states more vulnerable in times of natural disasters or domestic terrorist attacks.

    Miulang

    P.S. Skeptics in DC are saying the only reason the Pres. wants this increase in troops is so that he can prolong the occupation until he leaves office in 2009...so the next President can be the one who has to announce the name of the last soldier killed in Iraq and watch the last US citizen get on the last helicopter out of Dodge.
    Last edited by Miulang; January 9th, 2007 at 01:40 PM.

  8. #108

    Default What the President will say tonight...

    No need to watch the President's speech tonight. Here are the basic items he will impart:

    Americans should prepare for increased violence against our troops and more loss of life.

    An additional 21,500 troops will go to Iraq: 4,000 Marines to Anbar Province (the stronghold of the Sunni insurgency), and 17,500 troops to Baghdad. Total additional cost to the taxpayers: $5.6 BILLION (this is over and above the expected $100 billion the Pres. will request in emergency funding for Iraq next month).

    National Guardsmen will be redeployed (the policy of only being on active duty for 2 years will be eliminated),

    Troops currently scheduled to rotate out of Iraq will be forced to stay there longer.

    Troops that were scheduled to be deployed later this year will be moved up and deployed sooner (possibly without adequate training).

    Troops currently based in Kuwait will be moved into Iraq within the next 2-3 weeks.

    There will be stipulations placed on the Iraqi government for our continued assistance, but no timetable will be issued.

    There will be an additional $1 billion given for reconstruction (what happened to all the money we already sent???!!)

    The rest of his package is here.

    And here is the rationale upon which he is basing his speech. I think it was crafted by the neocon Kagan (of the AEI).

    Beginning tomorrow: expect nationwide protests over the escalation.

    Miulang

  9. #109

    Default Re: What the President will say tonight...

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    No need to watch the President's speech tonight. Here are the basic items he will impart:
    Thanks Miulang, but I think I'd rather listen for myself without the 'M' filter!

  10. #110
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    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    I HATE this WAR with a PASSION!

    My son and daughter were there at the same time.

    My son-in-law is deployed now.

    My son will be deployed again this year his third deployment in the Middle East.

    They gotta do wat dey gotta do.

    No and's, if's or butts about it. They volunteered to serve our country.

    The nightmare continues....

    Auntie Lynn
    Proud MOM of Soldiers
    Be AKAMAI ~ KOKUA Hawai`i!
    Philippians 4:13 --- I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

  11. #111
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    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    God Bless them all and you Aunty.
    Listen to KEITH AND THE GIRL

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  12. #112

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    It was even worse than expected (I watched his speech)...we should all be very very afraid. Now he's talking about starting something with Iran (the main reason why he selected Foxy Fallon, Commander of the Pacific Fleet, to lead the troops in the Middle East) by moving another carrier battle group into the Straits of Hormuz to "prevent the Iranians was sneaking weapons into Iraq".

    As for the President sorta admitting that "mistakes have been made" in the running of the Iraqi occupation, well DUH. And as for his saying the buck stops with him, then why should we let him send ANOTHER 21,500 of our young people into harm's way? Why should we want him to repeat his mistake?

    One of the MSNBC commentators made a very interesting assessment of what those 21,500 troops really mean to our efforts in Iraq: at any given time, only about 5,000 of those troops would be awake and patrolling (or whatever). That's hardly enough to do much of anything except to become more fodder for the war machine. If the President was going to escalate, he should have asked for 100,000 troops to get the job done once and for all. Unfortunately, we don't have 100,000 troops to send to Iraq, so it's another case of "we'll make do with what we have, not what we wish we had."

    Maliki will NOT follow up on his commitments. Hell, he's even indicated he wished he wasn't Prime Minister! At what point will we then say, enough? There was no timetable given; we don't know what the supposed "benchmarks" are supposed to be.

    I like what Sen. Durbin said in the Democratic response to the President's speech: We, the American citizens, have sacrificed our sons and daughters and billions of dollars. We have fulfilled our original commitments to the people of Iraq: we got rid of Saddam, we let them set up their own Constitution, we gave them free elections. Now it's up to them to figure out how to make their country work.

    The President will get his 21,500 additional troops. We will fund the $5.6 billion that will be required. But if this fails, will the President admit defeat? Will the Congress then be willing to put impeachment back on the table?

    We've also got our fingers in Somalia now. Besides killing a reputed al Qaeda leader who masterminded the bombings of the American Embassies in Mombasa and dar Esalaam, our gunships also apparently killed an additional 31 "collaterals". Military experts claim that this kind of precision attack can only be pulled off if there are spotters on the ground guiding the gunships, which means that our Special Forces must have been on the ground (a big no no).

    You know, if the President was the CEO of a company, he would have gotten his butt kicked out of office a long time ago for screwing up so badly.

    Miulang
    Last edited by Miulang; January 10th, 2007 at 04:53 PM.

  13. #113
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    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by alohabear View Post
    God Bless them all and you Aunty.
    Mahalo plenty Alohabear!

    Auntie Lynn
    Be AKAMAI ~ KOKUA Hawai`i!
    Philippians 4:13 --- I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

  14. #114

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    We've also got our fingers in Somalia now. Besides killing a reputed al Qaeda leader who masterminded the bombings of the American Embassies in Mombasa and dar Esalaam, our gunships also apparently killed an additional 31 "collaterals". Military experts claim that this kind of precision attack can only be pulled off if there are spotters on the ground guiding the gunships, which means that our Special Forces must have been on the ground (a big no no).
    Thought we've always had our fingers in Somalia in varying degrees? Remember Clinton and Black Hawk Down? In Somalia's case, we're on the right track, which is hunting down Al Qaeda. Besides, this time the Somali gov't actually gave their blessing on the op. Only those involved in the op will know this, but spotters on the ground may not be our special forces. Australia's SAS has more than one occasion served as forward recon and spotting for the US in Afghanistan and Iraq.

  15. #115

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by joshuatree View Post
    Thought we've always had our fingers in Somalia in varying degrees? Remember Clinton and Black Hawk Down? In Somalia's case, we're on the right track, which is hunting down Al Qaeda. Besides, this time the Somali gov't actually gave their blessing on the op. Only those involved in the op will know this, but spotters on the ground may not be our special forces. Australia's SAS has more than one occasion served as forward recon and spotting for the US in Afghanistan and Iraq.
    Latest update on casualties from that airstrike indicate that none of the people killed turned out to be the al Qaeda operatives, as first expected. So much for accurate intel!

    The US raid on the Iranian Embassy in Irbil, Iraq (in Kurdistan) would be laughable were it not for the fact that it has further agitated the Iranians and now also the Kurds. If al-Maliki expected to get peshmurga troops from Kurdistan to help in Baghdad, I think this little move will help insure that that that won't happen. Nothing like helping to set up al-Maliki to fail...or maybe that's our intent. Get rid of Maliki and install someone who isn't beholden to Moqtada al Sadr and not make it look like that is the intent of the White House? I wouldn't put it past our President and his neocon bunch of bandits.

    P.S. the State Dept is claiming that the building holding the Iranians who are being detained is not an Embassy, but they won't say why they've detained the people or what was confiscated.

    In case you get bored some evening, you might want to peek at this revised manual on counterinsurgency that was written by Gen. David Petraeus, who is now commanding the forces on the ground in Iraq. Know who the enemy is, and what we're doing to combat him.

    Miulang

    P.S. It might take a while to load (.pdf). It's about 228 pages long.

  16. #116

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    The US raid on the Iranian Embassy in Irbil, Iraq (in Kurdistan) would be laughable were it not for the fact that it has further agitated the Iranians and now also the Kurds.
    Maybe we should just occupy the "Embassy" until April 1, 2008. The Iranians would certainly appreciate that strategy. Besides the Iranians are not violent and surely haven't been fomenting violence in Iraq, have they?

    Nothing like helping to set up al-Maliki to fail...or maybe that's our intent. Get rid of Maliki and install someone who isn't beholden to Moqtada al Sadr and not make it look like that is the intent of the White House? I wouldn't put it past our President and his neocon bunch of bandits.
    So getting rid of al Maliki, who is beholden to al Sadr would be a bad thing? Or is it only a bad thing if Bush and Co. create the strategy?

  17. #117
    waioli kai Guest

    Default war criminals of the first order, Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    "... our President and his neocon bunch of bandits."

    Upon invading Iraq and these years since the CheneyBush U.S. initiated aggression on Iraq, they ceased to be mere bandits. They graduated into the realm of being arrogant, unrepentent, vile and ruthlessly self-preserving monsters who have been permitted by the citizens of the United States whom they govern to initiate and commit crimes against humanity. They are not mere bandits, they are war criminals of the first order.

  18. #118

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by glossyp View Post
    Maybe we should just occupy the "Embassy" until April 1, 2008. The Iranians would certainly appreciate that strategy. Besides the Iranians are not violent and surely haven't been fomenting violence in Iraq, have they?

    So getting rid of al Maliki, who is beholden to al Sadr would be a bad thing? Or is it only a bad thing if Bush and Co. create the strategy?
    If we "occupy" the consulate and continue to hold the credentialed diplomats, that will not only increase the ire of the Kurds, who will be an integral part of a unified Iraq, but the rest of the world community as well.

    It's OK for al Maliki not to be the Prime Minister any more, but why do we have to resort to subterfuge and lies again? If the Iraqi people don't like al Maliki, why doesn't the Iraqi Parliament just have a vote of no confidence and get rid of him that way? Why do we have to be the instigators?

    As to the issue of Iran, one thing many of the commentators (who also express lots of concern about Bush's veiled threats against Iran) note is that the majority of the population of Iran is under 30. That generation loves everything western. Why not try to get those people to undermine Ahmadinejad from the inside? You certainly have heard about what's going on in Israel now...the Likud Party (Bibi Netanyahu's hawk party) is gaining strength again, and there has been some indication (although denied) that Israel will bomb Iran if we don't do it.

    Israel and the US are bound and determined to bomb Iran sooner rather than later...I think it's just a question of who can provoke Iran to react first. One thing we do know about Iran is that if we or Israel do attack it, the battle that will ensue will make what's happening in Iraq look like a picnic on a sunny Sunday.

    Miulang

    P.S. In order for us to attack Iran, it would require a reauthorization from Congress. Given the mood of today's Congress, I seriously doubt the President would get his way this time.
    Last edited by Miulang; January 12th, 2007 at 10:32 AM.

  19. #119

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    If we "occupy" the consulate and continue to hold the credentialed diplomats, that will not only increase the ire of the Kurds, who will be an integral part of a unified Iraq, but the rest of the world community as well.
    You obviously missed the joke, which may have been a bit obscure, but if you think about our history with Iran you'll understand. Rhetorical question; but is it even possible for the anti-American ire of the all-mighty "world community" to increase? Their ire never seems to arise when innocent Americans/Iraqis/Israelis/Sudanese are the victims of violence.

    It's OK for al Maliki not to be the Prime Minister any more, but why do we have to resort to subterfuge and lies again? If the Iraqi people don't like al Maliki, why doesn't the Iraqi Parliament just have a vote of no confidence and get rid of him that way? Why do we have to be the instigators?
    Not exactly an answer to the question I asked. Every good strategist understands the importance of subterfuge and lies in the waging of war - if you want to win.

    As to the issue of Iran, one thing many of the commentators (who also express lots of concern about Bush's veiled threats against Iran) note is that the majority of the population of Iran is under 30. That generation loves everything western. Why not try to get those people to undermine Ahmadinejad from the inside?
    This would be an excellent strategy. I doubt we have the necessary assets in place to do it though as the long-range planning of the CIA across the Middle East was sadly underfunded and neglected for many years.
    You certainly have heard about what's going on in Israel now...the Likud Party (Bibi Netanyahu's hawk party) is gaining strength again, and there has been some indication (although denied) that Israel will bomb Iran if we don't do it.
    Ahmadinejad has made it abundantly clear that he fully intends to wipe Israel off the map. You think maybe they should wait until it happens?
    I think it's just a question of who can provoke Iran to react first.
    I seriously doubt that Iran needs any provocation to do exactly what they have said they are going to do time after time. It's conveniently naive to think that we or the Israelis will have to "provoke" them to do what they repeatedly promise to do. If it makes you feel better to blame the U.S. or Israel, go right ahead, but it doesn't change the facts.

  20. #120

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by glossyp View Post
    You obviously missed the joke, which may have been a bit obscure, but if you think about our history with Iran you'll understand. Rhetorical question; but is it even possible for the anti-American ire of the all-mighty "world community" to increase? Their ire never seems to arise when innocent Americans/Iraqis/Israelis/Sudanese are the victims of violence.
    Yes I know the history of Iran and it is ironic that we are now trying to get back into that country since we were the ones who first de-stablized it when we installed the puppet Shah who was then overthrown by the Ayatollah. The main issue with this particular incident is how this is affecting the relationship between the Kurds and the Iraqi government. I'm positive al Maliki and the US generals were counting on getting some battalions of peshmurga fighters (who are ferocious fighters) down into Baghdad. If not handled with some sensitivity, the Kurds could very well end up refusing to help al Maliki which definitely would hasten his downfall.


    Not exactly an answer to the question I asked. Every good strategist understands the importance of subterfuge and lies in the waging of war - if you want to win.
    No, this is not the point. The point is, WE were the ones who insisted that Iraq had to have a democracy. So if they are to have a democracy, then it is up to their Constitutional Parliament to determine whether or not al Maliki is fit to be Prime Minister, not us, who installed him in the first place.


    This would be an excellent strategy. I doubt we have the necessary assets in place to do it though as the long-range planning of the CIA across the Middle East was sadly underfunded and neglected for many years.

    Ahmadinejad has made it abundantly clear that he fully intends to wipe Israel off the map. You think maybe they should wait until it happens?
    Look, the State Dept. has at its disposal millions of dollars to use to "spread democracy". If they really wanted to, they could be sending financial assistance to the Iranian underground. Ahmedinejad lost some of his power base after the last elections that were held in that country. The populace is suffering from economic and environmental problems. He is playing a very dangerous game of chicken with the US and Israel, and I think he is counting on trigger happy George Bush to be the first one who flinches. And if Bibi had his way, the Israeli missiles would already be raining down on Iran.

    Israel has nuclear weapons (thanks to us) and the Likud Party (Bibi's party) seems to be gaining momentum after the debacle in Lebanon and the Palestine. But something else is happening in the Knesset too. Last week, an Arab was nominated to a cabinet post in the Knesset, much to the chagrin and anger of the Zionists. Most of the leaders in charge of the Israeli military have been replaced as have some of the government leaders. So even for Israel, it's a new day.

    I seriously doubt that Iran needs any provocation to do exactly what they have said they are going to do time after time. It's conveniently naive to think that we or the Israelis will have to "provoke" them to do what they repeatedly promise to do. If it makes you feel better to blame the U.S. or Israel, go right ahead, but it doesn't change the facts.
    We and Israel need Iran for its oil and its strategic location; Iran doesn't need us for anything but to be the butt of its jokes.

    Miulang

  21. #121

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    Yes I know the history of Iran and it is ironic that we are now trying to get back into that country since we were the ones who first de-stablized it when we installed the puppet Shah who was then overthrown by the Ayatollah.
    This is debatable as your statement merely reflects a specific point of view, there are others.

    Look, the State Dept. has at its disposal millions of dollars to use to "spread democracy". If they really wanted to, they could be sending financial assistance to the Iranian underground.
    Maybe they are and we don't know about it. My point was about the CIA, not the denizens of Foggy Bottom who think everything can be solved if we just talk about it enough.
    He is playing a very dangerous game of chicken with the US and Israel, and I think he is counting on trigger happy George Bush to be the first one who flinches.
    I disagree that he is playing a game of chicken. He has been crystal clear about the intentions of Iran to destroy Israel.

    Israel has nuclear weapons (thanks to us)
    And it is their responsibility to defend themselves.

    We and Israel need Iran for its oil and its strategic location; Iran doesn't need us for anything but to be the butt of its jokes.
    This is really a quite inane comment. Are you saying that Israel and the U.S. want to take over Iran for territory and oil? If we want oil and territory (strategic or otherwise) there are plenty of other places we could more easily occupy and contain. You still refuse to acknowledge that Iran's goal is to destroy Israel. Why is that?

  22. #122

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by glossyp View Post
    This is really a quite inane comment. Are you saying that Israel and the U.S. want to take over Iran for territory and oil? If we want oil and territory (strategic or otherwise) there are plenty of other places we could more easily occupy and contain. You still refuse to acknowledge that Iran's goal is to destroy Israel. Why is that?
    Yes, that is precisely what I am saying. Look at how we botched Iraq as an example. And I'm not saying Ahmedinejad wouldn't want to destory Israel, but I don't think he's stupid enough to fire the first salvo, either.

    Miulang

  23. #123

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    The Battle for Haifa St. in Baghdad last week could be a portent of things to come when we bring in the additional 17,500 troops to support the Iraqi security forces. Maybe we need to withdraw our troops to the borders to keep the foreign fighters and Iran out and let the Sunni and Shia duke it out in Baghdad by themselves. After all, it's an enmity that's been around for 1,400 years. What makes us think we can eliminate it in 6 months?

    The fight on Haifa Street started over 27 dead bodies. "Twenty male, seven female," says Lt. Col. Steve Duke, an American adviser to the Iraq Army. The bodies were dumped a week ago in a side alley off one of the main thoroughfares in Baghdad; they were apparently family members of an Iraqi police chief. The locals were too afraid to remove them, so Duke ordered his team to pick them up. That's about when the insurgents started to shoot from the high-rises at Duke's men, along with the Iraqi Army soldiers who were in the Haifa Street neighborhood. It was, says Duke gruffly, "a big s—t fight," a Saturday afternoon when the enemy decided not to run away. Says S/Sgt. Dennis Saxton, who was on the mission to retrieve the bodies: "As soon as the sun went down, it was boom, boom, boom, and the fireworks started."
    ...
    If Maliki isn't sincere in his promise to stop militia violence, the problem could get worse once the Americans withdraw to the outskirts of Baghdad—something the Iraqi government is pushing hard to make happen. The tentative U.S. plan is to withdraw from the Iraqi capital by the end of the summer, after it has been stabilized by the additional U.S. troops. Duke wonders what the Iraqi government's motives are, if they just want the U.S. to get out of the city so they can "pull the little red curtain, and say, 'you guys don't need to see this,' and go on about their business." For many Iraqis, the prospect of the United States handing over total control to the Iraqi security forces with little oversight is "very scary," he says. Another U.S. officer, when asked if he believed Maliki would keep his promise to go after the militias, responded bluntly: "No. As my interpreter always says, the militias are the government. Literally, not figuratively. The militias are a wing of this government."

    And their strength is growing. According to Maj. Mark Brady, an adviser to an Iraqi Army battalion, the Mahdi Army has been systematically pushing out across the river from eastern Baghdad and taking over Sunni neighborhoods. "They're slowly moving across the [Tigris] River," he says, using fear, intimidation and murder to get Sunnis to flee. The test, says Brady, will be when the “surge” troops butt heads with the Shiite militias like the Mahdi Army. "If you push, someone is going to push back," says Brady. "We're either going to jump over the hurdle with both feet, or hit the hurdle and be back at square one, with 20,000 more potential targets."
    Miulang

  24. #124

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Quote Originally Posted by Miulang View Post
    We and Israel need Iran for its oil and its strategic location; Iran doesn't need us for anything but to be the butt of its jokes.
    This is where we can do so much to change the balance of power but we're too weak minded to do so. And we don't even have to fire a single shot. Get off the oil addiction folks. If we can send a man to the moon in a time frame of 9 years since Kennedy made his speech and direction, why can't we drastically reduce our oil dependence? Even if our cars still used oil but much more efficiently, if power plants can all be switched to renewable or nuclear, how much do you want to bet the power associated with oil will drop? How much do you want to bet economies like Iran's will tank? Sure, other countries will still buy oil but if the US's consumption is gone, how much excess will there be? I'm sure the price of a barrel will be a joke then. I know, oil companies will fight this. What people need to do is to fight dirty with oil companies. Accuse every single oil company as unpatriotic. I bet you they will change gears and spearhead other forms of energy quickly. There's no reason why Exxon-Mobil needs to represent oil. It can easily represent sun, wind, whatever, if they choose to be.

  25. #125

    Default Re: The Iraq War - Chapter 5

    Is Gen. David Petraeus, the author of the US Army and Marines Manual of Counterinsurgency the best and LAST hope for us in Iraq? If he fails, will we finally declare a "moral victory" and pull out?

    An interesting analysis of the man, and his very formidable task:

    And so it is important to be clear about what Petraeus is about to attempt in Baghdad: the "surge" is marketing spin for a last effort to apply counterinsurgency tactics to the civil war in Iraq. There are several ironies here. This escalation is favored by the Pentagon faction most closely aligned with the Democratic Party's national-security sensibility, the most sophisticated and cerebral officers: generals like Jack Keane and Petraeus; colonels like H.R. McMaster and Pete Mansoor, who served in the semisecret "Colonels Group" advising Joint Chiefs Chairman Peter Pace last autumn. The counterinsurgency doctrine--drafted by a group led by Petraeus and published by the Army in 2006--is a remarkable document. It has a Zen tinge, posing nine paradoxes of counterinsurgency warfare like "the more force used, the less effective it is" and "the more you protect your force, the less secure you are." It proposes radical new tactics, which resemble nothing so much as the community policing that transformed New York and other U.S. cities in the 1990s. This requires a revolution in military training, an emphasis on creative decision making rather than on merely following orders.

    But by the very standards that Petraeus helped develop, it probably won't work in Baghdad. First of all, there aren't enough troops to do it. The counterinsurgency manual suggests a ratio of 20 troops per 1,000 residents, or 120,000 troops to secure Baghdad alone, but the largest "surge" being contemplated would increase the number of troops in the capital by 20,000, to about 35,000. Second, the troops we do have aren't trained to the task: they're tired and overextended, and it will take time to retrain them to knock on doors rather than kick them down. Third, this is no longer an insurgency; it's a civil war. Counterinsurgency tactics are designed to help a credible indigenous government fight a guerrilla opponent. The idea that Nouri al-Maliki's government is responsible is laughable: it's little more than a fig leaf for Shi'ite militias. Finally, as Mosul shows, these tactics require lots of time. I asked a leading active-duty Army counterinsurgency expert how long it would take before we knew if the surge had succeeded. "Ten years," he said. That's not a surge. It's a glacier.

    I hope Petraeus succeeds, for the sake of the terrorized citizens of Baghdad. Most military experts fear that he won't. "If this is Plan B, we'd better start working on Plan C," says Andrew Krepinevich, a leading military thinker. Plan C has to be a smart, detailed withdrawal from Iraq that doesn't leave chaos and regional war in its wake. I wish Petraeus were working on that rather than on Bush's futile pipe dream.
    I seriously doubt the American public and Congress are going to wait 10 more years for a miracle. I'd give the good General about 6 months to accomplish something before "Plan C" kicks in. And if the Pres. has his way, the troops wouldn't be coming home...they'd be headed for our mortal enemy, Iran.

    Miulang
    Last edited by Miulang; January 12th, 2007 at 05:01 PM.

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