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News It is an irony they were told this would happen.

  1. Oct 20, 2006 #1
    Our soldiers must follow orders. They really haven’t any choice in the matter and even objectionable, misguided even scandalous policies have been known to place them in the path of deadly hostile force. If they are not killed out right then they may be wounded and permanently disabled physically, more subtle is the psychological trauma many soldiers are experiencing which also may debilitate them for life. :frown:

    So it is ironic, even tragically amusing in hindsight; that the lead up to the war with Iraq had so many people talking about not getting the US into another Vietnam and these same people were blasted as being alarmist or unpatriotic for their concerns and vision. And now in mainstream news papers such as the ‘Washington Post’, ‘AM NY ‘, Metro, and others there is an admission by BUSH that comparisons to Vietnam are valid, in this context the TET offensive. :bugeye:

    The government needs a change. We the people need true representatives of the needs and requirements of the 300 million plus population. I can only be hopeful that a majority of the voting public has finally awakened to the self-defeating policies of this current body of officials. :grumpy: :cool:



    http://www.commondreams.org/headlines04/0213-06.htm [Broken]




    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/wounded/la-na-wounded-series,0,936394.special [Broken]
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  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 20, 2006 #2


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    "Tet?" Cronkite of all people should have been able to recognize a "last gasp" offensive, having covered WW II, Ardennes, Okinawa.

    "Iraq another 'Nam' ?" Sure, if the gutless wonders make it into office to "Cooper-Church" and "Carter" the troops' efforts in SW Asia the same way they did me in SE Asia.

    Wars don't run on timetables, never have, never will (barring use of nukes). The people screaming the loudest about "getting the boys home by Xmas" know that.

    'Nother Nam? Yeah --- it's smoked all the gutless, backstabbing, instant gratification, second-guessing libs out of the woodwork. It's going to frustrate allies when the country does another political flip-flop, leaving them holding the bag. It'll be another twenty years before anyone trusts us enough to align with us on the big problems.
  4. Oct 20, 2006 #3
    big problems like... fighting international boogeymen in a bid to secure imperialistic footholds and restrict domestic individual rights?
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  5. Oct 20, 2006 #4


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    "Big problems like" WTC, Moscow theater, Russian grade school, Madrid, and a couple dozen other incidents "courtesy" of the adherents of one of the world's major religions. Welcome to the 10th century, son --- you're in a major war, and it's going to last through most of this century --- well into the next if people don't get with the program.
  6. Oct 20, 2006 #5
    all results of imperialism ... (blowback ... if you follow)
  7. Oct 20, 2006 #6


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    Yup, those Russian grade school kids are real imperialists. International politics is all about "pushing" people around, always has been, and always will be; "manipulation" is NOT "imperialism," it's business as usual. Zimmerman telegrams, pursuit of Pancho Villa, fighting famine in Somalia, George Clooney's pleas to save Darfur, disaster relief in Sumatra and Pakistan, bushels of "carrots" for the Palestinians, Marines to the Dominican Republic, troops on the 38th parallel, no troops in Iceland, ISS, snubbing Fidel's offer of aid post-Katrina, being snubbed by the Russians on the Kursk rescue, letting the UK go it alone during the Malay Emergency, under the table aid to the UK during the Falklands War --- it's all politics as usual, not "imperialism."
  8. Oct 20, 2006 #7
    right, there are no plans to build permanent military bases in iraq, just look the other way and its as if they don't exist

    the us didn't train the taliban to fight against the russians, nor did it support hussein so long as he was hostile towards iran

    there is no school of the americas
  9. Oct 20, 2006 #8


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    Think they might be useful?

    Part of the Cold War, "business as usual."

    Nor are there terrorist training camps scattered all over the Islamic world.

    You've wandered a bit from the point of the OP, "Iraq's another Nam." Only if we let the libs turn it into one.
  10. Oct 21, 2006 #9
    Just like the expanse of radical Islam a thousand years ago was our fault too. I suppose we should all apologize to the terrorists who blow up children, murdered three thousand innocent people on 9/11, bombed Madrid and London, who cut the heads off "infidels and Jews", and who lined up school children and shot them in the head. Yeah, all that was justified.
    Is it really that hard to see the reason why they fight? They chant it in the streets every day, they cry it out every time one of them cuts the throats of an innocent prisoner. They hold it proudly above their heads, and yet some poeple still refuse to see what is shoved into their faces. Don't be guilt tripped into thinking this is conflict is our fault. Just take a look at the world with an honest gaze. Look at history, and you will see that this is nothing more than the latest front in a nearly fifteen hundred year world war.
  11. Oct 25, 2006 #10
    There's a nugget of truth to what both of you are saying.

    With vietnam, our defeat came from political pussy footing. Had we stomped the north into submission, ie actually dropped some bombs on Hanoi the way we did Dresden in WW2 we could've, in my opinion, enjoyed victory in fairly short order.

    The fundamentalists, on the other hand, don't hate us because "we're good and they're evil". If you recall, Bin Laden originally took a beef with the US over its military bases in the Saudi Kingdom. Of course we have a huge oil interest in the area, so no president in their right mind would even think of withdrawing our presence from the area.

    In general, their hatred of us comes from our involvement in world affairs. Like any other collective group of human beings, Americans tend to look out for their best interests. This means stationing troops in countries that are rich in oil, in order to ensure the smooth operation of our economy. This means exercising whatever power you may have to shore up your power base. This is the reason Kim Jong Il wants the bomb so badly. Without it, he has no leverage - with it he is all but assured that we will not invade.

    Do not think, for one moment, that George Bush's rhetoric about a commitment to democracy and freedom has any sort of real meaning. The US is not, has never been, a democracy. We do not support democracy. We are committed to and support whatever is in our perceived best interest at the time (to wit, the kennedy administration's complicity in the assassination of Ngo Dinh Dien - a democratically elected leader - or our rejection of pleas from Nguyen Ai Quoc (later Ho Chi Minh) to assist him and his people in their struggle against the french imperialists).

    That being said, I would have to agree that the liberal attitude will ensure our defeat in this war. The enemy, though small in number, has proven they will do whatever it takes to achieve victory against a larger and more powerful foe. You do not win wars by being humanitarian - you only prolong them. Victory in war is achieved by either killing all of your enemies or breaking their will to fight. Neither of these two conditions will be met by waging a gentle war.

    To win this particular war, we have to cut the financial legs out from underneath our enemies. Countries that have provided material and financial support to "the terrorists" must be made to answer. As a great portion of the funding comes from the Saudi Kingdom (at least in the case with the 9/11 hijackers) as well as Iran and other nations (many of which produce oil), we will have to pay a terrible toll - sacrificing oil.

    We won WW2, in part, because every family was called upon to make sacrifices for the good of the nation - and they did. I'd be willing to bet only a handful of families would give up their precious explorer or their 16 year old's benz. We lack the will to do what it takes to win this war. It was a mistake to ever enter into it in the first place. We should've treated it as a domestic affair - shoring up our defenses at home rather than abroad. At least then we would've spared ourselves the humiliation when our coffers run dry and we can't fight anymore because we've spent too much time ( and money ) bickering about it.
  12. Oct 25, 2006 #11
    Actually we did bomb the hell out of Hanoi. They also shot down a number of the B 52's which had to fly all the way from Guam.


    Bear in mind this was just in operation linebacker. In total we dropped more bombs on Indochina than we did in all of WWII.

    Last edited: Oct 25, 2006
  13. Oct 25, 2006 #12


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    How does one know? What if the Sunni insurgency is about 200,000 and the Shii insurgency is about 200,000 - 400,000? What if the insurgency has popular support - as in support of several million Iraqis who want the US out of their country?

    There is something like 138,000 US personnel in Iraq (http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/iraq_orbat.htm) with about 7200 UK personnel (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4094818.stm) [Broken], and several thousand others from other countries (aka coalition forces).

    Maybe the US, UK and coalition are outnumbered.

    It is not the liberal thinking, but the poor planning and sloppy 'post-war' operations. Rumsfeld interferred and never allowed the generals to deploy adequate forces, and neither did the president who didn't command, at least not effectively.

    Many in the military and intelligence communities concede that Bremer should not have summarily dismissed the Baath party members or original Iraqi army. A few million might have bought them off. Instead they were shutout and their only recourse was to go underground and the insurgency began - 72 hrs after Bremer executed CPA-2.

    So, much of the current situation could have been avoided (maybe).
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  14. Oct 25, 2006 #13


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    A couple problems with your post.

    I think Bush is more committed to democracy than his predecessors, even if one might argue that it's less than a total commitment. Past Presidents have been more pragmatic and depended less on ideology in establishing US foreign relations. There's plusses and minuses to both approaches. Past relationships have been embarrassing even if they met short term US interests. The push for democracy has had its own embarrassments when we suddenly realize that people in other countries can have goals and visions a lot different than ours. Democracy is good, especially if they fight for their own freedom, but do we really like fighting for the right of people in other countries to hate us?

    The problem with this particular war is that we did completely break our enemy when we knew who we should be fighting. Now we can't figure out who we should be fighting. It's hard to figure out which 'insurgents' are al-qaeda groups and even if we just fight those groups, it doesn't address the Sunni militias, and the two major Shiite militia groups. We can't even tell for sure which members of the Iraqi government security forces really support the government and which are really just attending the training so they'll be better fighters within their local militia group. The only reason to get into a war like this is because you're sure the country poses a real threat - one great enough that eliminating it is worth the mess you're going to wind up leaving behind. This was the case with al-qaeda camps in Afghanistan - invading Afghanistan was guaranteed to leave a mess, but the goals were worth it and we should be more accepting of the fact that we'll leave a mess. With Iraq, the end conditions just raise uncomfortable questions about why we did this in the first place - and the shifting justifications just emphasize how mistaken we were.

    But I do agree with the last part. We're fighting a war that no one has to pay for - except for the military. In that sense, this war is very much like Viet Nam. We went into Viet Nam to save the world. We left Viet Nam to save the Army. The same situation exists now, especially with the National Guard - they'll be broken for years.
  15. Oct 25, 2006 #14


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    Nice post, p-tab! There's at least couple points I disagree with but there were some nice chunks of clearly written truths in there.
  16. Oct 25, 2006 #15
    I agree it was a good post. I jumped on one small point that hit on a sensitive area for me. Sorry about that p-tab.
  17. Oct 26, 2006 #16

    I was speaking more to the broader war on terrorism in general, from which I consider Iraq a distraction. I would expect there to be many more people willing to fight in iraq, than there are willing to get on a plane or a boat to come to our soil and murder our civilians. Protecting our citizens is the only reason for which our government should exist... certainly not to give democracy to others.

    I will never argue against the point that the war in iraq has been poorly managed to the nth degree. It is entirely possible we could've been in and out by now had we had some sort of competent management... but that is neither here nor there.

    I say iraq is, or rather was, a distraction because nobody has made a convincing argument that Iraq was involved with the attacks on 9/11. From what little I know, any connection that may have been implied by Bush was purely fictitious. Our invasion was a mistake, in so far as it has set us back in the war at large and gouged our pocketbooks.

    That being said, due to the mismanagement issues, the war in iraq has become a propaganda piece for both sides. As such, it has, at least in some sense, turned into a battleground in the broader war on terror. If we leave, the enemy sees this as a victory and will be emboldened. If we stay, we only continue to enflame the situation and foster more resentment. There is no easy or simple resolution to this, and it is my belief there will be a permanent US military presence in iraq as I doubt the iraqis will be able to secure their own nation.

    Also, I'm a little embarassed by my mistake on bombing Hanoi. I took a history class on the vietnam war and evidently I don't remember jack. sorry bout that.
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  18. Oct 26, 2006 #17


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    Thanks for the clarification. I thought the other comment was focused primarily on Iraq, which the administration sees as the central focus of the 'war on terror'. You are correct in stating "that Iraq was involved with the attacks on 9/11." Al Qaida was not strong in Iraq before the downfall of Saddam Hussein, and if fact, bin Laden apparently labeled Saddam Hussein an 'infidel'. http://www.commondreams.org/headlines03/0211-11.htm [Broken]

    Bombing Hanoi and N Vietnam would have had little effect except for decimating a population. Ho Chi Minh apparently had broad support among the population in the south, according to some of my sources from S. Vietnam. One guy who escape Vietnam after the fall of Saigon stated that the majority of Vietnamese in the south wanted the US out, as much as they wanted the French out. That's not something the US government would readily concede, even today.

    Similarly, Islamic terrorists were few and far between two decades ago, but it has been US policy, particularly as regards the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, and the overthrow of democratically elected leaders (e.g. Mohammed Mossadegh - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mohammed_Mossadegh) and support for dictators (more or less) or other leaders who establish repressive governments (including Saddam Hussein, who was supported by Reagan and Bush), that has angered many Muslims, some of whom feel compelled to strike back in retaliation or revenge.
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