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  #1  
Old 11-11-2006, 09:04 PM
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Change of strategy needed

BAGHDAD, Iraq - The spiraling violence coincides with increasingly strident demands from the Shiite-dominated government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki for American forces to pull back into bases and leave Iraq's cities and towns under the control of his military and police forces. But the highly partisan troops and police are believed to be involved in sectarian killings themselves or to look the other way, allowing Shiite death squads and militias to operate unmolested.

I agree with the Prime Minister, let the Iraqi Military and police take up the fight. Our efforts to quell the violence has failed. I don't believe any strategy change on the part of the US is going to be effective, with the exception of carpet bombing cities and towns controlled by the insurgency. Start in Sadr city and Takrit and take it from there. Time to take the gloves off to win this war or get the hell out.

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Old 11-11-2006, 09:34 PM
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When I worked in Dubai in the oilfield supply boat business we had a saying that as long as the boat was tied up to the dock it will require repair. This meaning that the longer you take care of something the longer it will require you to take care of it.

As long as we are in Iraq the less likely the Iraqis are to take the lead. People like the Iraqis, who are basically working with a 16th century mentality in spite of the 21st. century trappings around them, are never going to 'come up to speed'. They are mired in centuries old traditions, family feuds, religious and class differences, political animosities, land disputes, etc. The US, by getting involved in Iraq for self serving reasons, has created a nest of vipers from which we will never extricate ourselves. We have now created a terrorist training ground like none other ever seen and we nor the next 5 generations of Americans will ever put it right, exactly the way we did not and could not ever put right Viet Nam.
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Old 11-11-2006, 09:43 PM
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Whatever its there country, if they want to kill eachother let them. I am beginning to think that country needs a brutal government in order to function.
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  #4  
Old 11-11-2006, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by kip Foss View Post
When I worked in Dubai in the oilfield supply boat business we had a saying that as long as the boat was tied up to the dock it will require repair. This meaning that the longer you take care of something the longer it will require you to take care of it.

As long as we are in Iraq the less likely the Iraqis are to take the lead. People like the Iraqis, who are basically working with a 16th century mentality in spite of the 21st. century trappings around them, are never going to 'come up to speed'. They are mired in centuries old traditions, family feuds, religious and class differences, political animosities, land disputes, etc. The US, by getting involved in Iraq for self serving reasons, has created a nest of vipers from which we will never extricate ourselves. We have now created a terrorist training ground like none other ever seen and we nor the next 5 generations of Americans will ever put it right, exactly the way we did not and could not ever put right Viet Nam.
Exactly correct, except it's more like an 8th century mentality. Nothing the US can do will end this insurgency. There are no solutions or change of strategies that will beat the insurgency. Just like Vietnam, we can win all the battles but the war will never end.
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Old 11-11-2006, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 450slcguy View Post
Exactly correct, except it's more like an 8th century mentality. Nothing the US can do will end this insurgency. There are no solutions or change of strategies that will beat the insurgency. Just like Vietnam, we can win all the battles but the war will never end.
I don't think we really want to make the Vietnam analogy concerning withdrawal, do we? We told the world the date by which we would leave RVN. The VC and NVA regulars massed troops in advance of our departure and attacked as we were leaving. By then no American could stomach the idea of going back in, though we did sign a treaty to that effect with the North Vietnamese in Paris. They recognized that we were war-weary and do nothing. I reckon the same back-stabbing will take place if we set a time-table for withdrawal. Only a complete boneheaded f**king idiot, like Richard Nixon, would do something that stupid.

We lost Vietnam, not because the US military was unwilling or unable to fight. We lost because (as Bin Laden accurately opined) Americans have no stomach for war. That is the only major point in common between Iraq and Vietnam.

This is a transitional period for Iraq and I'm willing to guess that the chances of success in Iraq are worse than 50%. This is essentially what I have said since 2002. The iraqi factions were brought together under a common government through murder and intimidation. This is very much like Yugoslavia and completely different from Vietnam.

In S Vietnam we treated the ARVN and the civilian Vietnamese rather poorly because we were contemptuous of their lack of resolve and the completely corrupt system that the Vietnamese inherited from their colonial masters the French!

I have seen no indication that our civilian leadership treats Iraqi leadership other than with the deference afforded a sovereign nation. I know it's just for public show. But in Vietnam we didn't even bother to do that.

In Vietnam we never told our client state that we wanted them to take-over until a year or so before the collapse of the gov. In Iraq we have told Iraqis since GHWB and into the 1990's that we wanted Saddam out but don't want our people to stay.

In Vietnam we were unwilling to chase-down supply lines through adjacent countries. In Iraq we have had SF and CIA folks lurking and skulking and killing bad guys who smuggle stuff. It is a largely unreported war because part of what keeps CIA & SF safe is secrecy. Those men (I believe they are all men at this juncture) go waaaay out on a limb and removed from logistical support for many days or weeks at a time.

Perhaps the worst thing we could do from a PR perspective would be to seize their oil and sell it to our benefit. We certainly could do it. But doing so would simply confirm in people's minds that we deposed Saddam to get his oil. IMO we deposed Saddam to prevent him (Saddam) from fulfilling his oft-stated policy of bringing middleastern oil under pan-arab control. He conveniently self-proclaimed as leader of the pan arabists.
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Old 11-11-2006, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
Whatever its there country, if they want to kill eachother let them. I am beginning to think that country needs a brutal government in order to function.
And that is basically the point the Iraqi Prime Minister is making, without admitting it. Brutality works when no other options are possible. Saddom understood what was needed to keep order and I believe that realization by the current Iraqi goverment is taking hold. The US needs to fall back and let the new Iraqi regime assert itself without the constraints of US intervention.
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Old 11-11-2006, 10:32 PM
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Long as they can assert themselves I'm all for it. I have a feeling they are a paper tiger, I hope they prove me wrong.
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Old 11-11-2006, 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
Whatever its there country, if they want to kill eachother let them. I am beginning to think that country needs a brutal government in order to function.
They had one.
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  #9  
Old 11-11-2006, 11:00 PM
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The assumption that there is a magic timetable of some sort to democracy is a superstition. It i predicated on the supposition that people cannot learn and change their minds.

B
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Old 11-12-2006, 12:58 AM
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We lost Viet Nam because we were trying to fight an army of dedicated men who were fighting for their country and had the fire of patriotism in their bellies. While our allies were as corrupt and as spineless as they come. I was in the US embassy on May 1, 1975 when Saigon fell. To see the 'brave' government solders deserting their posts, stealing helicopters to fly their families out to the ships while leaving others to fend for themselves is a little disheartening to say the least.

In 1954 after the fall of Dien Pien Pho the French warned the US against getting involved in Viet Nam, but the US felt that they could show those 'frogs' how to fight a war. Boy, we really showed the world how the US could fight a war. The same way we showed those Somalians who was boss.

We lost nearly 69k men and women, wounded nearly a million, killed over a million Viet Namese, wounded about 3 million, absolutely destroyed Viet Nam, divided the US, sent back to the States hundreds of thousands of vets that never recovered and never became productive members of society, and for what?? We made Brown and Root, Halliburton, Bechtal, Kellogg, Trammel Crow, Boing, Lockeed, Bell, etc., etc. billions of dollers richer and for what?? What in God's good name did this country get out of Viet Nam?? The only thing we have ever gotten out of Viet Nam is cheap tennis shoes.

All the above is pretty much what we are going to get out of Iraq. Perhaps not to the scale of Viet Nam but certainly the defeat will be just as humiliating and just as costly. Bush has created a national debt that will take generations to pay off. Say what you want to about Clinton's morals but at least he had the balls and brains to pay off the 4 billion dollar debt that Reagan and Bush I ran up and then had the courtesy to leave this country with a half a billion dollar surplus.


Bush went into Iraq for political and economic reasons only. How many Iraqis were involved in 911? The answer comes back, "None". How many WMD's did we find-None. So if there were no Iraqis in 911, no WMD's and Iraq was not a terrorist training ground (remember, Saddam ran Bin Laden out of Iraq in 1993 when he tried to set up training camps there) why did Bush declare war on Iraq? Mostly because no wartime president has ever failed to be reelected. And maybe, just maybe it could be for the oil.

If we were so anxious to bring democracy to Iraq why didn't we help out in Dafar where 2.4 million have been killed in the last 10 years, or in Ruwanda where a million were killed, or in the Congo there they lost over 800k? The answer is OIL. We need it and they don't have it.

This administration and the right wing can use terms like, "freedom, democracy, liberty, anti-terrorism, blah, blah, and wave the flag all they want but it is not going to change the fact that the US is in Iraq for no other reason than the whims of a deluded egotist. He tries to make 'staying the course' sound like some sort of high idealism, but, when in fact, is it is just the failed policy of a cabal of men who never had a very good plan to start out with. And now they want you, me and all out children to pay the price. Thanks, but no thanks.
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  #11  
Old 11-12-2006, 05:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip Foss View Post
... Bush went into Iraq for political and economic reasons only.

If we were so anxious to bring democracy to Iraq why didn't we...

The answer is OIL. We need it...
Cheney took us there in an attempt to secure the ME for the continued flow of the lifeblood of the developed world's economy... the Devil's Tea.

Without it the lights go out, we get real hungry, and people die from the weather extremes. Our systems are totally dependent on it's uninterrupted flow at a reasonable cost. Without it the system collapses. Period.

Cheney may be an arrogant ass, but he ain't no dummy.
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Old 11-12-2006, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Botnst View Post
... Perhaps the worst thing we could do from a PR perspective would be to seize their oil and sell it to our benefit. We certainly could do it. But doing so would simply confirm in people's minds that we deposed Saddam to get his oil. IMO we deposed Saddam to prevent him (Saddam) from fulfilling his oft-stated policy of bringing middleastern oil under pan-arab control. He conveniently self-proclaimed as leader of the pan arabists.
It is my humble belief that is the eventuality, except not for profit but for survival. It will prove to be a very difficult exercise getting it here safely though. Given the options, of which there are none, we've got little choice.
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Old 11-12-2006, 06:22 AM
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werent we doing pretty well with sadaam in power...oil wise?

tom w
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Old 11-12-2006, 06:39 AM
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Seems like it to me. But Dick was afraid that was only a temporary affair, of which it was I guess.
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Old 11-12-2006, 01:35 PM
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No one said that the members of the 'cabal of crap' were stupid. They are all, save their illiterate leader, very smart; misguided, egocentric, greedy, scheming, morally corrupt, but smart.

The same, "What is best for America is best for the world", attitude that got us into Iraq is what caused the US if not to install at least to keep in power about 90% of all the dictators in the world in the last 100 years. The list of US puppet nations around the world reads like the index of the National Geographic atlas. Iran, Iraq, Viet Nam, Korea, Nicaragua, Panama, Chile, Guatemala, Honduras, the Philippines, Afghanistan, stop me when we get to the zees.

The problem is that when the puppets turn on their master, as they did in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Panama, and Viet Nam, we feel obligated to remove them. Then cometh the war. The US government has yet to figure out that about 95% of the people of this world do not think like Americans do. Then when we go into their country and try to spread the word of democracy they bow up and now we are in the middle of a cdivil war. When will we ever learn.

All the above might be an interesting study in international relations if it were not for the fact that in the end the American people are going to have to pay for all these blunders.

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