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Out of Iraq

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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby atron67 » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:32 pm

that's my point... Immunity for soldiers is not a 'negotiable' issue, like some (you?) are suggesting. Despite Obama's best efforts, he could not get the Iraqi gov't to agree to give immunity to US soldiers. Obama tried to convince them to give immunity, they wouldn't back down. there appears to be no evidence that Obama wanted to leave.

It appears that we are leaving, despite Obama's best efforts to convince Iraqi's to let us stay.

If Obama was trying to stay, why should I support him, given that I'm happy we got the opposite result. If he wants my support, he must state that his goal was to leave. I don't believe in 'shadow-plan' politics, where he says he wanted to do this, but is 'forced' to do Y.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Henry Vilas » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:37 pm

Immunity (i.e., status of forces agreements) has always been granted by allied foreign powers during wartime. Sometimes even in peacetime.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Huckleby » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:44 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:As I said years ago, these wars will end the same way the Vietnam War ended. After dragging on your years, Americans will tire of these fruitless endeavors, the president will declare victory and bring our troops home. Then all hell will break loose.

No matter how long we prolong those wars, the results will be the same.


The facts don't support your theory. Iraq is not on a path to disaster; there is much reason to believe that democracy and stability will take take root. The glass is half full.

All that can be said for sure is that anybody who is sure about what is going to happen in Iraq is an idealogue or fool or both.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Huckleby » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:48 pm

atron67 wrote: It appears that we are leaving, despite Obama's best efforts to convince Iraqi's to let us stay.

If Obama was trying to stay, why should I support him, given that I'm happy we got the opposite result. If he wants my support, he must state that his goal was to leave.


What I admire about Obama is that he is flexable and pragmatic, willing to change his position to adapt to changing conditions.

The success of U.S. policy in Iraq in 2007-2009 should give any reasonable person pause. It made sense to keep helping Iraq succeed, Obama was wise to change position on Iraq.

Part of me is glad that all the troops are coming home. I hope it works out.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Henry Vilas » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:58 pm

Huckleby wrote:
Henry Vilas wrote:As I said years ago, these wars will end the same way the Vietnam War ended. After dragging on your years, Americans will tire of these fruitless endeavors, the president will declare victory and bring our troops home. Then all hell will break loose.

No matter how long we prolong those wars, the results will be the same.


The facts don't support your theory. Iraq is not on a path to disaster; there is much reason to believe that democracy and stability will take take root.

That's what the Brits said when they cobbled together that country and gave them independence. Only a powerful strongman (Saddam) and later a foreign power occupation could keep them together. The Sunni hate the Shiites (and vice versa) and the Kurds want to be independent of both.

Look at the former Yugoslavia as an example. Tito used his dictatorial power to keep the disparate nationalities/religions together, but after he died they all split off. Some left peacefully, while a horrible civil war followed for the rest.

And as far as Afghanistan, just look up The Great Game.

How's them for facts?
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Huckleby » Mon Oct 24, 2011 4:11 pm

Afghanistan is a lost cause.

India is far more fragmented than Iraq, democracy's success there was far more unlikely than what we see in Iraq.

I'd say Iraq has a 50-50 shot of evolving towards pluralistic democracy.

Henry Vilas wrote: The Sunni hate the Shiites (and vice versa) and the Kurds want to be independent of both.

I don't see it this way. Kurds are sastisfied with autonomy. The ethnic hatred is stoked by extremists, who are a small minority. Will they share oil wealth? Maybe.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby wack wack » Mon Oct 24, 2011 4:21 pm

atron67 wrote:that's my point... Immunity for soldiers is not a 'negotiable' issue, like some (you?) are suggesting. Despite Obama's best efforts, he could not get the Iraqi gov't to agree to give immunity to US soldiers. Obama tried to convince them to give immunity, they wouldn't back down. there appears to be no evidence that Obama wanted to leave.

It appears that we are leaving, despite Obama's best efforts to convince Iraqi's to let us stay.

If Obama was trying to stay, why should I support him, given that I'm happy we got the opposite result. If he wants my support, he must state that his goal was to leave. I don't believe in 'shadow-plan' politics, where he says he wanted to do this, but is 'forced' to do Y.


Why was Obama trying to stay in Iraq?
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Henry Vilas » Mon Oct 24, 2011 4:33 pm

Huckleby wrote: Kurds are sastisfied with autonomy.

You have never heard of the quest for Kurdistan? It's not only a few extremist who have that desire of an independent state. And the Kurds in neighboring countries share that desire.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby snoqueen » Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:23 pm

Why was Obama trying to stay in Iraq? I have no idea. It was a losing proposition from the beginning, with ill-defined and shifting goals one being a worse excuse than the next.

Withdrawing all our support services for Iraqi army (transport, intelligence, etc.) puts that country in highly vulnerable position. IF that place blows up in civil war, it is very bad for our country, and disasterous for Dems politically.


I don't agree at all.

The war has become extremely unpopular in the US and not only among Democrats. It's costly at a time we are trying to cut expenditures, so even some (not all) fiscal conservatives will be pleased. I think this move will be seen as an Obama success by pretty much everyone except that sizeable group wanting Obama to succeed at nothing. They'll hurl insults as usual, but they would no matter what he did.

If Iraq blows up in civil war, few at home will blame the US. It's clear we gave it years of money and effort, and progress was extremely slow. The public's focus on international events has a short attention span, and as long as what's going on in Iraq affects few of us personally I bet it'll get minimal ratings on the people's importance scale. I'm not saying this is good, I'm saying this is how it is.

I think Iraq will split into at least three parts, which will of course be messy. But now that there's hardly any central government to hold it together, it'll be every man/faction/sect/ethnicity for itself.

We have seen that the international community can act effectively in Libya. Now they'll get their chance in Iraq, for better or worse. We aren't 9-11 for the planet any more simply because we cannot afford it either financially or in terms of internal politics.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby atron67 » Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:36 pm

snoqueen wrote:
. I think this move will be seen as an Obama success by pretty much everyone except that sizeable group wanting Obama to succeed at nothing.


Doesn't it seem strange that the majority of american's will view this as a success for Obama, despite that it occurred against Obama's desires?
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby snoqueen » Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:12 pm

You know, I don't care. We're getting out of there. I don't care how it came about. It happened on Obama's watch, and that's good enough for me. He's been setting withdrawal dates for most of his term, and mostly those deadlines have been received favorably. If this one time we're leaving a little earlier than planned, I can only be pleased.

I am not sure WHAT Obama wanted, frankly. He's a negotiator. He's flexible (which is good). As reported, he put the safety of military personnel (immunity from prosecution) above whatever military goals you can name. And that's good too -- the US military deserves that much protection in return for their service.

The accounting comes down in his favor.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Huckleby » Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:02 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:
Huckleby wrote: Kurds are sastisfied with autonomy.

You have never heard of the quest for Kurdistan? It's not only a few extremist who have that desire of an independent state. And the Kurds in neighboring countries share that desire.


The Kurds have actually reached a very happy sweet spot with their autonomous status. It is better than formal independence because it keeps those neighbors (Turkey, Iran, Syria) from threatening. The Kurds have struck a favorable arrangement with Baghdad, they don't allow troops from the main Iraqi army on their turf, they get to independently manage the considerable oil reserves in Kurdistan, they have their own flag, yet they readily identify themselves as Iraqis too.

The Kurdish bloc is important in the central government politics, they have plenty of power there.

If the Kurds ever declared outright independence, the Kurds would instantly be at war with Turkey. Turks are sensitive to desires of Turkaman population in Kurdistan, among other concerns. Despite the border flare-up you see now, the Turks and Kurds have mostly developed very warm relations. Sort of a paradox. The Turks have made huge business investments in Kurdistan. The Turks see Kurdistan as a release-valve for their own Kurdish problem, Kurds in Turkey who want to be in Kurdish "state" can move there.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby Huckleby » Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:14 pm

snoqueen wrote:Why was Obama trying to stay in Iraq? I have no idea. It was a losing proposition from the beginning, with ill-defined and shifting goals one being a worse excuse than the next.

The hail mary pass that Bush-Petraeus tossed actually worked. The goal of achieving a stable, proto-democracy has become realizable.

snoqueen wrote:The war has become extremely unpopular in the US and not only among Democrats. It's costly at a time we are trying to cut expenditures, so even some (not all) fiscal conservatives will be pleased.

Sure, any foreign involvement is likely to be unpopular. That's why we have representative government.

The "war" for Americans is largely over, whether we withdraw all troops or not. The intent was to draw-down to perhaps as few as 5000 military personnel, I won't even say "troops". They mainly would been concerned with building-up Iraq's air force, and providing logistical support to Iraqis.

snoqueen wrote: I think Iraq will split into at least three parts, which will of course be messy. But now that there's hardly any central government to hold it together, it'll be every man/faction/sect/ethnicity for itself.


That's really not how things are trending there politically. The party receiving largest plurality of vote in last election ran on non-sectarian message. In first round of elections 5 years ago, they got 11% of vote, last year they got 38%. The public is fed-up with religous parties.

the biggest fissures are within the Shitte, not between shitte-sunni.

Unfortunately, the government in power now is in unholy alliance with creepy Moqtada Sadir, rather than the afore-mentioned 38% group that preaches national unity.

Starting a democracy is ugly and messy. There is hope that it is gonna work. Needs time for religous parties to be trumped by new alliance.

Its a new world, I believe in the Arab Spring.
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby ilikebeans » Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:14 am

Huckleby wrote:Its a new world, I believe in the Arab Spring.

Hypothetical: Assuming we had never invaded, what are the chances Iraq would have been caught up in Arab Spring anyway, without us spending a trillion buckaroos on the place?
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Re: Out of Iraq

Postby wack wack » Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:28 am

wack wack wrote:
atron67 wrote:that's my point... Immunity for soldiers is not a 'negotiable' issue, like some (you?) are suggesting. Despite Obama's best efforts, he could not get the Iraqi gov't to agree to give immunity to US soldiers. Obama tried to convince them to give immunity, they wouldn't back down. there appears to be no evidence that Obama wanted to leave.

It appears that we are leaving, despite Obama's best efforts to convince Iraqi's to let us stay.

If Obama was trying to stay, why should I support him, given that I'm happy we got the opposite result. If he wants my support, he must state that his goal was to leave. I don't believe in 'shadow-plan' politics, where he says he wanted to do this, but is 'forced' to do Y.


Why was Obama trying to stay in Iraq?


Hey atron67, why haven't you answered my question?

Why was Obama trying to stay in Iraq?

I appreciate that everyone else has comments, but I'd like to hear your explanation for why Obama wants to stay in Iraq.
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