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LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
4th Jan 2014, 19:59
BBC News - Iraq conflict: Sunni fighters 'control all of Fallujah' (http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-25605459)

I remember the US forces taking Fallujah at great cost and clearing the insurgents out.

What an awful disaster Iraq has been at huge cost.

SpringHeeledJack
4th Jan 2014, 20:52
What an awful disaster Iraq has been at huge cost.

Not for those who incited and encouraged and provided and facilitated. They've done really well out of it.


SHJ

arcniz
4th Jan 2014, 22:04
Quote:
What an awful disaster Iraq has been at huge cost.

Not for those who incited and encouraged and provided and facilitated. They've done really well out of it.



Bears some resemblance to WW2, in that regard.

rh200
4th Jan 2014, 22:47
What an awful disaster Iraq

Hardly, the Sunni areas where always going to be problematic. The majority ie. the Shia could deal with it easily if they where to take the gloves off.

When Sistani croaks it (which will be a sad day) and the mad mulla Sadr gets power you'll see some action.

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
5th Jan 2014, 09:38
It appears that Al Qaeda is controlling large parts of Anbar Province so what has the invasion actually achieved ? In short, nothing, other than deposing a tyrant who kept a lid on sectarian tensions through fear to replace him with another regime that seemingly is unable to unite the country.

Nice work George and Tony :ok:

rh200
5th Jan 2014, 10:14
so what has the invasion actually achieved ? In short, nothing, other than deposing a tyrant who kept a lid on sectarian tensions through fear to replace him with another regime that seemingly is unable to unite the country.

Give 80% of the country (by population) the ability to live free, whilst the 20% that was in charge, are now pissed. You could argue that the Kurds where free anyway, so worst case scenario 60%.

Ronald Reagan
5th Jan 2014, 11:26
Looking back on it the war was not worth it. All the rubbish from the US/UK governments back then basically makes me disbelieve anything else they say now about any other nations ie Libya, Syria, Iran etc!

The cost in lives to Iraq, to our own military forces along with the terrible financial costs as well as the weakening of US/UK image around the world was not worth it. I would call the Iraq war a total disaster.


In many ways the intervention in Libya was kind of Iraq on the cheap, another way to engage in regime change, but that did not go well either, basically Libya is now a disaster zone.


Yet still some idiots want to engage in military action in Syria to remove Assad! I am ashamed to say I supported Iraq as I believed GWB and Blair, but after a few years I realised it was a disaster. I never supported intervention in Libya, I was disgusted by our actions there and predicated the outcome before the intervention was over.


Thank god Assad has held on in Syria. A post Assad Syria would almost certainly be a disaster. The region would be far more stable had Saddam Hussein and Gaddafi been left in place, also if Assad is left alone. I am now firmly of the view it takes a strong man to hold these nations together and to keep groups like Al Qaeda out! I cannot imagine Hussein or Gaddafi sitting back and allowing Al Qaeda to take over chunks of their nations! I would imagine Assad would seek to remove them from his territory to. The west is on the wrong side!

Fox3WheresMyBanana
5th Jan 2014, 11:46
Let us not hear any rubbish about "With the benefit of hindsight...."
Very large numbers of highly respected diplomatic and military leaders (and a goodly number of Ppruners, including me) said that this was exactly what would happen.


.

Rosevidney1
5th Jan 2014, 12:48
Anyone fancy regime change in North Korea? I think not.

John Marsh
5th Jan 2014, 13:12
It's a costly lesson... but have we learned?

Have we learned not to be outraced by rapid political manoevres engaged on the back of a terrorist outrage (which, itself, still raises unanswered questions)?

Have we learned not to be sold feeble excuses when outright lies are uncovered? i.e., regime change as a replacement for removing WMDs.

Have we learned that marches in London and legally toothless enquiries several years after the event don't really get us far?

I'd like to think that the decision wrt involvement in Syria is a sign that our learning has, at least, begun.

rusty sparrow
5th Jan 2014, 13:28
Blair should be prosecuted but appears above the law and criticism of him is rare in the media.

Meanwhile, women's rights in Iraq have gone backward as Iraq progresses to an Islamic state which will increase the risk of terrorism in the West.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/11/12/us-arab-women-iraq-idUSBRE9AB00J20131112\

Fox3WheresMyBanana
5th Jan 2014, 13:32
Blair is barely mentioned in the media because he no longer sells newspapers.

Who can bear to be forgotten?


Womens' Rights in Afghanistan.

Top Afghan female police officer shot dead - Central & South Asia - Al Jazeera English (http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia/2013/09/201391682635895319.html)

Congratulations Western Liberals!
Women can now occupy senior positions in Afghanistan.....in order to give Al Qaeda some target practice!
You must be so proud of setting up an unsustainable regime that is even more corrupt than the previous one ( The Most Corrupt Countries In The World - Business Insider (http://www.businessinsider.com/the-most-corrupt-countries-in-the-world-2013-12) ), except it's now doing it with our money.

vulcanised
5th Jan 2014, 15:03
It is reported today that Blair enriched himself by another £13 million last year.

Wonder how many lives that cost?

Pretendorious
5th Jan 2014, 15:20
Congratulations Western Liberals!What short memory. It was anything but "Western Liberals" that were so eager to remove the then Taliban regime and install their own more corrupt one.

Either you haven't read the article you are linking to, or you are one of the many unable to not conflate Taliban and al Qaeda.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
5th Jan 2014, 15:50
I am referring to the justifications used for remaining in Afghanistan & Iraq.

Pretendorious
5th Jan 2014, 16:03
I wasn't aware that taking responsibility for the mess created makes one liberal. If that really is the case then I'd prefer the liberal approach.

John Hill
5th Jan 2014, 17:19
The big change in A'stan is that the new Taleban are quite different to the old Taleban.

vee-tail-1
5th Jan 2014, 17:42
One of the lessons of Iraq was the ineffectiveness of half hearted protests.

There were more than a million of us marching in London, but we all went home for tea at 17.00 just as Bliar expected us to do. The pathetic lefty NVDA (non violent direct action) protest movement achieves nothing.

However some here may remember the proposed aerial blockade of Fairford to prevent the US B52s taking off to bomb Iraq.

I helped to plan the blockade, faxing the assembly points o/h Cirencester, with turning points o/h Blakehill Farm, and low level o/h Fairford. The RAF ATC at Brize was very helpful giving a discrete frequency for use of participating aircraft, and suggesting an inner circuit for slower aircraft.

However we were pipped by the Greenpeace balloon. Kate their female pilot launched outside the perimeter fence and sailed directly over the B52s. She dropped leaflets calling on the Americans to surrender. The whole exploit was on local radio and TV, but suddenly removed and never repeated since.

My own plan was to make a low level inspection of the Fairford base to look for weapons banned by the Geneva Convention.
After doing orbits in the take-off and approach paths of the runway I intended to land and make a citizen’s arrest of the USAF Commander!

This suicidal plan was well publicised and I sincerely hoped that I did not have to actually do it. But the day of the Iraq invasion came, and I said an emotional goodbye to my family, for honour sometimes requires real action not pathetic B.S.!

In the event both the CAA and the RAF (and myself!) were scared that I might do what I had proposed, so the police arrived at EGFE in two large vans and grounded everyone until they found me dressed in my old RAF battle dress and about to take-off on my mission. Curiously the police had been instructed to arrest my French registered aeroplane, but not me its pilot. My trusty ATL remained arrested until the end of the Iraq war, and I was officially banned from hiring or flying any aircraft throughout the UK.

My family was interviewed by special branch: We sat the two leather clad heavies at our kitchen table and answered their questions over tea & cakes.
Later in that year a very large army helicopter came and hovered over our garden, it was full of soldiers with guns all pointing at us. My son was very impressed.
I was rather more impressed and rather touched by the RAF Tucanoes that regularly buzzed our mill giving friendly wing waggles as they passed.

Truly it is possible to make an effective protest, but there will be unpleasant consequences when ‘the powers that be’ know you mean business.

Andu
5th Jan 2014, 21:09
The big change in A'stan is that the new Taleban are quite different to the old Taleban.In what way, John?

Younger?

More radical?


...WINNING?

John Hill
5th Jan 2014, 21:15
The big difference between the old Taleban and the new Taleban is that the old Taleban were only interested in making changes in Afghanistan and bore no particular ill will towards the west. Of course we did not like the changes they wanted for Afghanistan but that is another matter.

rusty sparrow
5th Jan 2014, 21:42
I'd never heard of that blockade plan vee-tail - very impressive :)

I did join the marchers against blairs planned invasion - the first one I've been on. There were mothers pushing children in push chairs, old servicemen who could barely walk, and all sorts in between. No 'rent a mob' types that I remember.

We achieved nothing from our peaceful protest.

galaxy flyer
5th Jan 2014, 21:56
It is reported today that Blair enriched himself by another £13 million last year.

Wonder how many lives that cost?

vulcanized,

Would you care to show a relationship between any deaths, mil or civil, and Blair receiving £13 million? He is being paid, like former US presidents including most especially Billy Clinton, for speaking as a former leader, like he actually knows something. Not saying that's right, but he was PM before Iraq II started and would have received these emoluments regardless.

Regarding, NK, it bears no resemblance to Iraq, politically, economically or diplomatically.

GF

BenThere
5th Jan 2014, 22:13
My take on Iraq ten years after is that it was right to depose Hussein. The mistake was in the occupation, trying to institute a civil government in a tribal society now unrestrained by Hussein's police state. We should have deposed him as he deserved, then left them to their own devices, reserving the option to re-intervene should Iraq have again become a threat.

Afghanistan is no different. The threat there was Afghanistan's giving sanctuary and training grounds for Jihadis. Once that threat was eliminated, we should have split.

The result would have been what we have today with a lot less cost in lives and money we no longer have to spend.

On the upside, though, today, militant Muslims are directing their energy at each other, with less resources and hatred devoted to exterminating/converting us. I'm happy to sit on the sidelines watching that unfold.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
5th Jan 2014, 22:24
War for the purpose of regime change is specifically prohibited under the UN Charter.

Orion Man
5th Jan 2014, 22:42
Iraq has been an utter disaster and how anyone can defend the invasion all these years later given the sectarian conflict raging there is beyond me. Last year there were more civilian deaths than there have been for years.

Over 20,000 US servicemen killed or maimed. If Sunni/Shia conflict with a flourishing Al Qaeda in Iraq is the price some on here believe was worth paying to stop the homeland being attacked, then I despair. Besides Iraq was no threat to the USA, Al Qaeda wasn't there under Saddam and WMDs didn't exist as has been proved.

Regards

Orion Man

Blacksheep
5th Jan 2014, 22:47
The "Roman" solution to the middle-east problem would be to lay the whole area waste with nuclear weapons. That would be, in the modern context, completely uncivilised and cannot be contemplated. The realistic alternative is to sit it out and deal with any overspill into our own territories with extreme prejudice. Guantanamo and rendition is a softy liberal intervention.

The biblical prophesy is for a nuclear exchange to commence at Megido, currently under Israeli sovereignty. The outcome depends upon one's view as to which side is led by the Anti-Christ (who probably has a beard and wears a turban, as opposed to Christ who has a beard and wears a kippah)

BenThere
5th Jan 2014, 22:51
Does the UN charter show any efficacy regarding the conflicts going on in the world today?

Fox3WheresMyBanana
5th Jan 2014, 23:03
Not since the UN failed to do anything about Dubya invading Iraq to effect regime change. ;)

Or resolving the conflict in the Charter between equality for women and all those countries that prohibit it...


or................... (contd p94)

BenThere
5th Jan 2014, 23:06
You can say that again. The UN endorsed it!

Fact is, though, the UN is largely irrelevant in the strategic world. Only little countries pay any attention to it anymore.

Pretendorious
5th Jan 2014, 23:29
The UN is relevant when it gives legal cover otherwise it's irrelevant. The hypocrisy is obvious.

RatherBeFlying
5th Jan 2014, 23:37
Bush I blew it post GWI when he openly invited the Iraqis to overthrow Saddam, then meekly stood by as Hussein's helicopters machine gunned the rebels:mad:

Bush II's welcome by the Shia was studiously restrained (see Bush I).

The Sunnis had had a good deal running Iraq for themselves and a considerable well armed faction have no compunctions about shooting/bombing however many Shia it takes to get back on top in Iraq or failing that, ruling their own section of Iraq as the Kurds have been doing for quite some time.

The Saudis have been sending arms to the Sunnis in Syria, many visiting from Iraq, and it's not really a surprise that these arms are now being used in Iraq.

Thankfully, the European folks have largely abandoned the predilection towards religious wars -- the former Yugoslavia being a sad exception. And there is an argument that the Holocaust is of a piece with the outrages of previous religious wars.

Maybe our example makes the Sunnis and Shias feel entitled to their kick at the can.

European management in the ME has not worked out well. Would the continuation of Ottoman rule have worked out better? Sadly the Armenians and Kurds would have justifiably strong objections.

While holocaust denial is a crime in Germany, holocaust mention is a crime in Turkey.

svhar
6th Jan 2014, 00:18
My take on Iraq ten years after is that it was right to depose Hussein.

I spent considerable time in Libya in the eighties. It was no worse than Saudi Arabia and in many aspects much better.

We just can't shove democracy down their throats. They are not prepared for it and may not even want it. I strongly believe that they need a strong leader. A dictator be it so. Saddam Hussein was no worse than Gaddafi and Assad is probably better than both of them.

I don't think that anyone can sincerely claim that Libya and Iraq are better off today than in the last century. Just leave them alone and they'll leave us alone.

West Coast
6th Jan 2014, 00:24
Rather be flying

Perhaps on scope you're correct, there's no killing fields like Srebrenica, but I find it hard to agree with you when Lee Rigby was murdered in London by two Muslims.

Orion Man
6th Jan 2014, 01:08
What's Lee Rigby got to do with this West Coast ? 2 Muslims murdered him causing public revulsion throughout the Muslim community in this country.

Pitting Sunni against Shia in Iraq has achieved nothing. Fallujah, 10 years on from the US coalition battle to reclaim it, is again in the hands of Al Qaeda tonight. Bush and Bliar sure knew what they were doing didn't they ? Pair of idiots if you ask me. At least Obama has seen sense in recent years and stayed out of direct involvement in recent conflicts in the Middle East.

Regards

Orion Man

West Coast
6th Jan 2014, 01:36
Wasn't aimed at you orion. Read rather be a flyings post if you're that curious

John Hill
6th Jan 2014, 02:01
Orion Man, :ok:

John Hill
6th Jan 2014, 02:02
Fact is, though, the UN is largely irrelevant in the strategic world. Only little countries pay any attention to it anymore.

The permanent members of the Security Council have learned to control the UN through their veto options.

Orion Man
6th Jan 2014, 02:21
I have West Coast.

I don't see where Lee Rigby comes into this. He didn't mention him. Perhaps you might explain.

Good point John Hill. The USA regarding Israel in particular has used the power of veto to render the UN toothless.

Regards

Orion Man

Robert Cooper
6th Jan 2014, 02:24
The bloodshed that has engulfed Iraq, Lebanon and Syria in the past two weeks exposes something new and destabilizing: the emergence of a post-American Middle East in which no broker has the power, or the will, to contain the region’s sectarian hatreds.

Amid this vacuum, fanatical Islamists have flourished in Iraq and Syria under the banner of Al Qaeda, as the two countries’ conflicts amplify each other and foster ever-deeper radicalism. Behind it all is the bitter rivalry of two great oil powers, Iran and Saudi Arabia, whose rulers — claiming to represent Shi'ite and Sunni Islam respectively — cynically deploy a sectarian agenda that makes almost any sort of accommodation a heresy.

I don’t see how they can reach any entente, any rational solution.

Bob C

West Coast
6th Jan 2014, 02:46
I dispute the assertion that Europe is largely void of religious strife. I think the stage is being set, Rigby being an early victim of coming problems.

500N
6th Jan 2014, 02:59
"The USA regarding Israel in particular has used the power of veto to render the UN toothless."

Pity they can't control more of the UN and some of the sub orgs within it
and the BS they push, sprout and cajole gov'ts to follow.

or better still, remove the UN completely.

Orion Man
6th Jan 2014, 03:10
Bravo 500N,

Let the USA do what they want around the world now, accountable to no-one. Recent history is littered with USA blunders in foreign policy. You are evidently in complete denial.

Thankyou for explaining West Coast. Rigby's killers cited UK involvement in USA led wars as reason for their vile, grisly handiwork. I'm glad the so called 'special relationship' with America has receded. Kudos to Obama for that. The UK wanted no part in getting involved in Syria directly. I guess for once our politicians have listened to the people.

Regards

Orion Man

West Coast
6th Jan 2014, 03:43
I'm sure the UK's overseas forrays are far from over. A lull in the action only I would suggest

Fliegenmong
6th Jan 2014, 09:18
Just an idle musing, a question from years ago actually, and never adequately answered, or answered at all actually........given that all of the 9/11 filth were Saudis, how come Saudi Arabia never came in for attention??

I mean I have heard all the 'Hussein was a tyrant he had to go' etc...Sure! agree, but at least he kept a lid on Al Qaeda, now he's gone Al Qaeda are flourishing! That my friend is not a success! :{

But why not the Saudis put under the spotlight? :ugh:

Andu
6th Jan 2014, 09:27
...given that all of the 9/11 filth were Saudis, how come Saudi Arabia never came in for attention??Not quite true, Fleigs. Some were UAE nationals.

However, putting that aside, the answer to your question can be given in one word.

Money.

Fliegenmong
6th Jan 2014, 10:56
You'll have to excuse my ignorance Andu ........

Can you elaborate on a one word answer...... 'Money'? 'Fraid you'll have to spell it out,...'subtle hints don't work on me'........

So 15 from Saudi., 2 from the UAE, 1 was a Leb.:rolleyes:, and one was Egyptian...Correct? In any case, and in any interpretation a majority were Saudi

Anyway., a few years back in Seattle, watching our Wedgetails being prepped alongside some similar going to Saudi.,....well it sure didn't feel 'right'.........:{

PTT
6th Jan 2014, 11:00
Are the actions of the individual the responsibility of their birth nation?

Fliegenmong
6th Jan 2014, 11:03
Are the actions of the individual the responsibility of their birth nation?:confused:

Is evil just something you are, or something you do? :hmm:

PTT
6th Jan 2014, 11:05
Not sure what your point is. I'm simply asking whether a state has responsibility for all of its citizens at all times. Personally I think not: individuals have responsibility for themselves.

Fliegenmong
6th Jan 2014, 11:23
Just a thought provoker PTT........:)

I think it mostly unreasonable for a state to have responsibility for all it's subjects at all times.............. but 15 out of 19 warrants at least a question :ok:

rh200
6th Jan 2014, 11:28
Are the actions of the individual the responsibility of their birth nation? Nope, unless it can be shown the nation created the problem or was in support of it.

Is evil just something you are, or something you do?Its something you are, usually coming as a result of the actions you carry out or would like to carry out. The basic concept is in regards to actions that are reviled by society so much, that they can only be explained by the fact that the person is somehow corrupted from the mean at a base level of their being.

Fliegenmong
6th Jan 2014, 11:34
Is evil just something you are, or something you do?

It's actually a throw away line from a 1980's pop song, Mrs Fliegs threw it to a bunch of Uni students once to check the response ! :D

vee-tail-1
6th Jan 2014, 16:10
Is evil just something you are, or something you do?

Both, but as a consequence of how you think.

"I think therefore I am"

Programme very young children with the Koran and evil is what you get.

Lonewolf_50
6th Jan 2014, 17:13
Some of you can't see the forest for the trees.
How soon you all forget.

Do you all recall what happened in Yugoslavia when Tito died. It slowly but surely fell apart ... and messily. There was some likelihood that any post "Saddam death" Iraq would be an mess that dwarfed the problems in Yugoslavia, and that it would happen more quickly. He wasn't getting any younger.

By either accident or design, W and his compadres took out Saddam before he died, and thus had a hand in trying (though making hash of it in a lot of ways) to establish what a post Saddam Iraq looks like, since the majority Shia were going to try for a power grab in either case. No altruism involved, as I see it, but hard strategic and economic thinking when regarding the PG region as a whole.

All our involvement did was slow the process of change down, and set the stage for a lot of people to get out (between one and two million) who might have otherwise been caught up in a far bloodier civil war than has been going on since about the end of US invasion, which is either summer/fall 2003, or when Saddam was finally taken out of his spider hole. Pick your start date on that one.

Even though Cheney and Rumsfeld denied this in public, there was a civil war ongoing in Iraq from about the autumn of 2003, of varying intensity, and it still goes on, to this day, at variable intensity. The weekly bombings that barely make news typically kill a few dozen ... see how America swooned over three dead in Boston at the marathon bombing deal. :p

Now, was that the strategic vision W had? Did he believe that the post Saddam transition would be such a mess?

I don't think so.

I think he truly believed that if we (the US, the Coalition, and as much of the international community as could be induced to play along as was practicable) made the transition happen in a more or less orderly fashion, the aftermath of the strong hand that held modern Iraq together (Saddam) being lost would make for a fruitful future for Iraq.

Naive is a kind way to describe that. Foolish another.

There were and are sufficient motivated and interested third parties who had as their one desire the objective of taking best advantage of the removal of that strong hand:

Kurds
Iran
Saudis
Al Q sorts
other Salafist sorts
Etcetera

Some of those parties we are more or less on good terms with, others not so much.

The Hobson's choice was:
"Do you wait until the one man (King, as it were) in the form of Saddam falls, and takes with him structure and then comes a civil war, or do you take him out and try to get the change started on less violent terms?"

I think the latter choice was taken, but "less violent" was still plenty violent in absolute terms.

Was the intervention necessary? Maybe, maybe not, depends on your vision of the world community and how to manage change stands up. Things do change, sometimes violently.

FWIW:
See, at an order of magnitude less or so in overall regional intensity, the matter of how Libya came unstuck.

See also how, with Assad in Syria, the choice is between bad and worse.

As I see it, Egypt is still a work in progress. The last card has yet to be played, but they at least seem to be on the road to "meet the new boss, same as the old boss" for the time being.

So, when Saddam fell, Iraq was going to be in a civil war one way or the other, and with no "backbone" to provide even modest mitigation, something so bloody as to be utterly destabilizing to that entire region. <--- That alone would, to some coldly pragmatic people, would be reason enough to manage change, rather than react to a blood bath.

You will note that international response to the blood bath in Syria has been rather pathetic, eh? Multiply that by about five to ten if you want to see what an impromptu civil war in Iraq would have looked like ...

John Hill
6th Jan 2014, 17:36
I dont believe that W et al had considered the future for Iraq when they invaded but I will be charitable enough to concede they might have thought the new Iraq would be somewhat 'better'.

Regarding Egypt, I presume the generous 'aid' that was being paid to ensure they played nice with their neighbours will be paid no matter who is in power.

SASless
6th Jan 2014, 17:46
Westie....Rigby is just one of the latest happenings. Remember a Subway and Bus thing?

Then there was that small bit of unpleasantness with some of the Irish that had "religious" undercurrents too.

Orion Man
6th Jan 2014, 18:43
Yup,

Incidents that came after the USA led invasion of Iraq. No coincidence there....

Regards

Orion Man

Ronald Reagan
6th Jan 2014, 20:40
I am sure power in Iraq could and would have been passed from Saddam to one of his sons. The same in Libya with Gaddafi. In each of those cases those outcomes would have to be better than the outcomes we have now!

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
7th Jan 2014, 01:07
Well said Ronald,

You only have to look at Egypt where Mubarak was forced from power. An election placed the Muslim Brotherhood in charge. A few months later and those on the wrong side of the vote forced them from office.

Democracy in Islamic countries is an alien concept that they are not ready for yet despite Bush's intervention. Imposing western ways is arrogant and self-defeating. Over 5,000 dead US servicemen in Iraq is testament to that.

rh200
7th Jan 2014, 01:52
I still don't see what you have a problem with in Iraqi. The moderate majority Shia are in charge. Its funny how we like to suggest success on our standards of what we think a society should be like.

I'm fairly confident if you could poll every one in Iraqi if they had preferred the overthrow of Saddam and his cronies what the result would be by a large margin. The Demographics of the country will tell you that.

The only problem with the place is that we decided to go on and entice the rest of the middle east who had benign dictators into overthrowing them. In effect making it harder for the Shia to keep a lid on sectarian issues.

The big problem will come when Sistani kicks the bucket and Sadr takes over, then it'll really hit the fan.

Lonewolf_50
7th Jan 2014, 13:44
Ronald, there is a sound argument to be made that one cannot impose democracy anywhere from the top down, and that it must grow from the bottom up. While that is in a lot of ways true, there is still the problem of obstacles to democracy growing from the ground up, a major one being the "Powers that Be" and the "establishment" of a given country. For example, it took decades to get South Korea to transition toward a democracy and less of a place run by a small clique ... and that was with some help.

The new age Middle East despots, while not kings and royalty in the old senst, were trying to establish their own dynasties: Saddam in Iraq, Assad in Syria, The Mad Colonel in Libya, and I suspect even Mubarak in Egypt would have liked to see his progeny in charge. See North Korea for a classic case of how this plays out ... a royal dynasty in all but name, and all that goes with it.

Breaking that cycle sometimes requires help from outside. Without the help the French in the 1770's and 1780's, would America have tossed out its English king? Most likely not, at least not at that time.

Oddly enough, the French King, who wanted to poke the English foe of his in the eye far more than he wanted to promote a democracy and a kingless regime anywhere, aided and abetted in removing an obstacle to establishing a republican / democratic form of government. The last laugh was on him, I guess, when he lost his head during a revolution that got rid of kings, for a while, in France.

The pretense that "transition to democratic forms will happen in its own time" does not merit respect. A lot of change requires a catalyst. The idea that "it will never happen there, they aren't culturally built for it, adn it doesn't matter if it ever does" is probably valid, but that also belies a cynical world view. The cases like Mugabe, as an example, seem to outnumber the other cases, though there is some hope in Burma these days ... we shall see about that.

LAJ:

The presumption that you make, that Saddam's sons would get a smooth transfer of power, is not necessarily valid. The risk in that transition is some of the other inner circle blokes staging a palace coup, or playing one brother off against the other, and the whole thing getting unstuck, which leads to a local civil war, power vacuum, and who directly benefits? The real regional security problem, from the American / West perspective, who is right there to fill the void and massively benefit: Iran. In that light, a controlled change and a controlled rate of change, may cost less than a chaotic one. Take a look at Rwanda, South Sudan, Bosnia/Former Yugoslavia, and a few other examples and figure out what style of change you prefer to take place. It is that kind of thinking that the Powers of the world engage in, in the Age of Empires and now, when moves like the one into Iraq are made. Was it necessary? Don't know. Will never know. At the time, I thought that by breaking Iraq, all that would happen strategically was Iran would benefit.
I seem to be right about that.
BFD.
As you say, quite a few dead comrades in arms regardless of me being right or wrong.

Geo strategic thinking and strategy isn't for everyone, and it certainly isn't a talent for most people who post in this forum. I'll argue that it wasn't W's strong suit either, in terms of what he thought he could achieve via the means he intended to use, and then used and misused.

obgraham
7th Jan 2014, 16:47
I've asked this before, and there doesn't seem to be an answer:

Where in the world in the last century or so has a country living in an authoritarian regime successfully had democracy imposed on them?

I submit that the list is very short. One entry. Japan.

BenThere
7th Jan 2014, 16:53
Germany, arguably. Though the 3rd Reich was democratically place in power, it usurped and assumed dictatorship (word to the wise?).

rgbrock1
7th Jan 2014, 17:33
Germany, before WWII, was a republic. As exemplified by the Weimar Republic.

Don't know why we're trotting the word Democracy about as the United States is not a democracy either. (Hint: Constitutional Republic)

John Marsh
7th Jan 2014, 18:44
Lonewolf 50:

Geo strategic thinking and strategy isn't for everyone, and it certainly isn't a talent for most people who post in this forum. I'll argue that it wasn't W's strong suit either, in terms of what he thought he could achieve via the means he intended to use, and then used and misused.I'm not seeking to nitpick here... but let's remember that GW Bush would have had the benefit of advisors on foreign policy. As the most powerful world leader, I presume he had the pick of the bunch.

So when, in March 2002, Bush declared to his National Security Advisor and 3 senators: "F**k Saddam. We're taking him out", he was acting on the best advice available.

Fox3WheresMyBanana
7th Jan 2014, 19:58
Remember, however, that it was the bunch he chose himself.

Go read 'Fiasco' by Thomas E Ricks if you want to know more about the bunch he picked.

The question 'Is Dubya a f#cking idiot or wot?' will then not have you thinking 'or wot'

BenThere
7th Jan 2014, 20:23
A republic is a form of Democracy.

I don't think George W. Bush said that in March, 2002, which would make the previous quote a false one.

Bush had good intentions, but his execution was flawed. He didn't and doesn't deserve the hatred directed at him; nor does Tony Blair. They were addressing the challenges of their times.

I think they did a better job than those who succeeded them.

Lonewolf_50
7th Jan 2014, 20:25
John, I agree that each president can improve or undermine his foreign policy and strategy based on whom he hires, and which school of thought has his ear. W isn't alone in that problem, the current resident at 1600 Pennsylvania is also subject to that liability or asset package, depending on how well you think he was doing.

Since the US and part of the international community had been working on slowly breaking Saddam's Iraq since the cease fire 1991, his decision to "finish the job" wasn't made in isolation, though plenty of critics in our own country questioned the need "to do it now" as that was playing out.

I still think he either chose not to understand, or never got, the importance of phase 4 and 5 of a given operation: the cleaning up afterwards. Two of his chief lieutenants, Cheney and Rumsfeld, seem to have also chosen to look away from that harsh reality. In that, neither of them served their President, nor their country, as well as they were capable of doing. What I got to see at the operational end of the policies and plans that were put into place while they had a hand is was damnably frustrating, from a professional view point.

Lonewolf_50
7th Jan 2014, 20:28
Ben, Robert Gates arriving as Sec Def deserves IMO far more credit than W for the various means directed at making less of a mess out of a mess. Further that point, President Obama made a very wise choice to keep Secretary Gates on as he worked his way into his new job. Smart move, and I think one much underappreciated by Obama's many detractors.

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
7th Jan 2014, 21:53
I think they did a better job than those who succeeded them.

Better than Gordon Brown - yes. Better than Obama - no.

Both Bush and Blair presided over the Iraq disaster and both left their economies in recession with messes that will take a long to time to fix.

I shouldn't be too kind to the pair of them BenThere. History won't be. They won't give two hoots of course rolling around in all their money :ok:

SASless
8th Jan 2014, 01:30
Obama sure seems to be on a real losing streak when it comes to foreign policy achievements.

Is there anything he has touched that has not turned to crap?

Bush totally screwed up the Peace in Iraq after the War was won.....but as Lone says....he had plenty of good advice that sent him down the entirely wrong path.

In that aspect Obama is the victim of just the same bad advice but compounded by far worse leadership skills than had Bush.

Lone makes a very good point about "Democracy" being a trickle up process....and it helps if there has been some background along those lines that encourages the process.

Then through in Islam, Tribes, the Kurds, Christians, Iranian influence, and the old Baathist Regime members and who is surprised the road gets a bit bumpy. Compound that by Al Qaeda and other Islamic Terrorist groups vying for power and presence and it is not going to be a pretty thing.

500N
8th Jan 2014, 01:39
"Is there anything he has touched that has not turned to crap?"

Not much.

Fliegenmong
8th Jan 2014, 07:13
"Is there anything he has touched that has not turned to crap?"

He got Osama didn't he? I would have thought that was a good thing? :confused:

US Economy recovering....another good thing??

John Hill
8th Jan 2014, 07:50
I dont think Obama has started a war with anyone which might be viewed as a good thing.

rh200
8th Jan 2014, 08:00
I dont think Obama has started a war with anyone which might be viewed as a good thing.

Didn't have to, was too busy showing the right how to get other countries to destabilize and establish freedom and the democratic systems the lefty way.

Fliegenmong
8th Jan 2014, 08:48
Didn't have to, was too busy showing the right how to get other countries to destabilize and establish freedom and the democratic systems the lefty way.

Huh!? What the hell ! :D .... anyway.. :rolleyes:

How 'bout that Osama, what a bitch Obama got him!.........To be fair Dubya may have been able to get him.....but probably worked in Dubyas political interest not to......

In any case, I think Osama gone is a good thing, sorry if the 'wrong side' was the one able to accomplish it :rolleyes::ugh:

Fliegenmong
8th Jan 2014, 09:50
However, putting that aside, the answer to your question can be given in one word.

Money.


....Still waiting on that clarification.....:bored::bored:

John Marsh
8th Jan 2014, 14:34
OK. Interesting comments.:ok:

Personally, I'm of the opinion that GW Bush was neither a cretin, nor a bumbling fool or the victim of foolish advisors. In the latter case, I see his advisors as following a geostrategic plan which predated any WMD 'evidence' surfacing, and indeed 9/11.

The Project for the New American Century is a strong indicator. Is it bull****?

According to a February 27, 2003, editorial by William Rivers Pitt, PNAC

has been agitating since its inception for a war with Iraq. PNAC was the driving force behind the drafting and passage of the Iraqi Liberation Act, a bill that painted a veneer of legality over the ultimate designs behind such a conflict. The names of every prominent PNAC member were on a letter delivered to President Clinton in 1998 which castigated him for not implementing the Act by driving troops into Baghdad.

PNAC has funneled millions of taxpayer dollars to a Hussein opposition group called the Iraqi National Congress, and to Iraq's heir-apparent, Ahmed Chalabi, despite the fact that Chalabi was sentenced in absentia by a Jordanian court to 22 years in prison on 31 counts of bank fraud. Chalabi and the INC have, over the years, gathered support for their cause by promising oil contracts to anyone that would help to put them in power in Iraq.

Most recently, PNAC created a new group called the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq. Staffed entirely by PNAC members, The Committee has set out to "educate" Americans via cable news connections about the need for war in Iraq. This group met recently with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice regarding the ways and means of this education. ...

The Project for the New American Century seeks to establish what they call 'Pax Americana' across the globe. Essentially, their goal is to transform America, the sole remaining superpower, into a planetary empire by force of arms. A report released by PNAC in September of 2000 entitled 'Rebuilding America's Defenses' codifies this plan, which requires a massive increase in defense spending and the fighting of several major theater wars in order to establish American dominance. The first has been achieved in Bush's new budget plan, which calls for the exact dollar amount to be spent on defense that was requested by PNAC in 2000. Arrangements are underway for the fighting of the wars.

Project for the New American Century - SourceWatch (http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Project_for_the_New_American_Century)

Lonewolf_50
8th Jan 2014, 14:41
John:

Another lobby, another think tank, with some influence and some key folks who knew key folks in the administration.

There are other lobbies who are as vigorous, and who have connections (see various industries, AIPAC, the list is long and distinguished) in various administrations.

I don't discount their influence, but they aren't the only think tank people listen to. CFR is one, and when one begins to peel back the onion, it is staggering how many "think tanks" there are (SPLC being another) which leads me to wonder:

Who funds these think tanks? :confused:

rgbrock1
8th Jan 2014, 15:34
LW50 wrote:

Since the US and part of the international community had been working on slowly breaking Saddam's Iraq since the cease fire 1991, his decision to "finish the job" wasn't made in isolation, though plenty of critics in our own country questioned the need "to do it now" as that was playing out.

The problem with "finishing the job", LW50, is WHEN it was decided to do so i.e., as the Taliban and AQ were on the run in Afghanistan. Taking the eye off that ball has led to the current cluster-f**k in that country. Had we dedicated ALL military resources to Afghanistan the outcome may well have been a hell of a lot better than it is now. Then again, maybe not.

Lonewolf_50
8th Jan 2014, 18:03
RG, I agree that the decision "when" was cynical at best, and I would have preferred that Afgh remain the main objective at the time.

I was not asked, go figure! :p

rh200
9th Jan 2014, 00:00
The Project for the New American Century seeks to establish what they call 'Pax Americana' across the globe. Essentially, their goal is to transform America, the sole remaining superpower, into a planetary empire by force of arms.

Wack job alert. Planetary empire by force of arms FFS. They can barely keep their own country together, us and the poms arn't that far behind.

You need to look at these things on the correct timescale. Any country that you want to stabilize to anything approaching our version of what we think is civilized, needs to be kept stable for some time period that is dependent and proportional on the starting point.

Northern Ireland, that will take several more decades, Turkey only got their by the military and may actually go backwards. Afghanistan if you could stabilize it enough will need the lid kept on things for a couple of centuries at least. Iraqi significantly less so.

What I care about is the long term prognostic. We won't know about what we have done, and how it turns out until well after ur deaths. By that time someone will just write the history to suit themselves anyway.

John Marsh
9th Jan 2014, 11:02
rh200:

'Planetary empire' is exaggeration, I agree. I think it's more a case of pre-emptive action and military dominance in certain regions.

From the PNAC report 'Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces, and Resources For a New Century':

But we cannot safely avoid the responsibilities of global leadership of the costs that are associated with its exercise. America has a vital role in maintaining peace and security in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. If we shirk our responsibilities, we invite challenges to our fundamental interests. The history of the 20th century should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire. The history of the past century should have taught us to embrace the cause of American leadership.

/.../

EXPLOIT THE “REVOLUTION IN MILITARY AFFAIRS” to insure the long-term superiority of U.S. conventional forces.
Project for the New American Century - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century)

Let's remember, Obama's announcement of the withdrawal of US forces from Iraq referred to uniformed troops only. He omitted to mention the continuing presence of thousands of non-uniformed specialists and private security personnel.

I agree with you on the timescale issue. GW Bush's 'Mission Accomplished' proclamation seems premature, despite his qualifier that he was only referring to the end of major combat operations.

rh200
9th Jan 2014, 12:13
GW Bush's 'Mission Accomplished' proclamation seems premature

Poorly done motivational PR101 stuff. PR guys should have been sent to Iraqi

rgbrock1
9th Jan 2014, 17:23
Iraq and the reality thereof? I find it extremely interesting to see the Iraqi Army growing some balls and taking on AQIL (Al Qaeda in Iraq and Levant).

Currently massed just outside the city limits of Fallujah are thousands of Iraqi Army troops accompanied by armor, artillery and helo support. I wish the Iraqi troops well but I also seem to recall two battles fought in that city, not too long ago, the first of which didn't end too well for the U.S. Army and Marines.

Should be interesting to see how this plays out not only in lallujah but elsewhere in Anbar Providence which seems to be a not hot-spot for AQ.

Lonewolf_50
9th Jan 2014, 19:02
rg, carnage is on the menu.
I don't think the Iraqi Army can expect to be as good at reducing/avoiding civilian casualties as our Marines were, but since they are local, one is hopeful that they have a few arrows in the quiver that will allow them to mitigate the worst of it.

If not, expect a pretty high body count.

MOUT: not for the faint of heart.

RatherBeFlying
9th Jan 2014, 19:15
The fine folks who wrote PNAC were mostly employed at JINSA, Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.

Most of those fine folks received high positions in the Bush II administration.

The US Congress has turned to be a wholly owned subsidiary of the settlement movement -- along with US ME policy.

Lonewolf_50
9th Jan 2014, 20:00
I don't doubt that those energetic folks at AIPAC have/had some play as well.

Lobbies: is how somethings get done on the Hill, for better and for worse.

BenThere
9th Jan 2014, 21:32
The fine folks who wrote PNAC were mostly employed at JINSA, Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs

Israel got the best of you, again. Doesn't that just hack you off?

RatherBeFlying
10th Jan 2014, 03:04
Israel got the best of you, again. Doesn't that just hack you off?In the animal kingdom there are a number of parasites that undermine mental functions of the hosts eq. toxoplasma gondii in rodents removes the fear of the presence of cats so they end up being eaten enabling the parasite to complete further stages of its life cycle in the cat.

AIPAC has accomplished the greatest feat of parasitic behavior modification by taking over the direction of US ME policy.

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
12th Jan 2014, 19:37
Iraq: Government Rejects Torture Allegations (http://news.sky.com/story/1193765/iraq-government-rejects-torture-allegations)

Hearts and minds eh ?

No great surprise.....

Lonewolf_50
12th Jan 2014, 20:50
You seem to be making the assumption that accusation equals guilt.

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
12th Jan 2014, 21:02
Not at all Lonewolf.

I hope if there has been misconduct by interrogators, those guilty of unlawful killings and torture are brought to book. Are you ?

Lonewolf_50
12th Jan 2014, 21:07
I believe the British Armed forces / MoD will be able to investigate, as necessary, and if things are found (like with some of our geniuses over there) they'll face the music.

The Brits have been gone for ... how long?

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
12th Jan 2014, 21:24
You didn't answer the question. Are you ?

I don't think the human rights lawyers feel there will be impartial investigations. It's a bit like asking the police to investigate themselves. We all know how that turns out :rolleyes:

But to answer your question - 2008.

Lonewolf_50
14th Jan 2014, 15:41
I answered your question, and wonder why you don't understand the answer. Please try again.

I note your bias, and your choosing to take "we can't get a fair investigation" line. Where have I heard that before? Whenever a lynch mob forms, for one. Check out the LA Riots of 1992 if you fail to understand what I am telling you. Color me skeptical.

Just so we understand what is at hand:
IS this story about an ongoing series of investigations since 2008,
or
is this about charges someone brings in out of the blue?

As long as the Brits were in Iraq, it would not surprise me if in at least one case some soldiers, or some units, fail to handle prisoners properly.
That why services have to keep investigators and Judge Advocates on staff: sometimes, people don't do as they should.

Aside: We had a few of those cases ourselves, numerous of which went to courts martial. There are some people in jail over that. (For my money, nobody high enough in the chain of command got hammered over the prison Abu Ghraib deal ... but that case seems to have been closed.)

So, if this is "new revelations," my bullshit meter is about to swing: where have these folks been for five to ten years?

If this is a matter of ongoing issues that have been looked into, or not, since the troops were in country, I'd be interested to see how many cases have been brought to book already.

Blacksheep
14th Jan 2014, 16:43
We already had Courts Martial for mistreatment of prisoners, both in Iraq and Afghanistan, Lonewolf.

Lonewolf_50
14th Jan 2014, 17:13
control of oil production+supply, which of course was the primary motive anyway
"War to steal their oil" wheeze was old ten years ago. Try a new line, and one that isn't as full of holes as swiss cheese.

Blacksheep: thanks, which leads to the question "what is behind the story that has LAJ all in a lather?"

Is the question of "was the policy being put in place lawful IAW Brit laws" or is it "cases not previously addressed" or is it "usual suspects doing the usual stuff and seeing what they can milk out of the system?"

If the issue is of the first color, that is probably of interest to a lot of the public in the UK, since the pols and policy makers should, one thinks, answer to the people for that.

If the issue is of the second color, vetting and investigation may be required.

If the issue is of the third color, then ... some folks will still jump on the outrage bus.

con-pilot
14th Jan 2014, 17:56
and the wish for control of oil production+supply, which of course was the primary motive anyway

You don't get out much do you. No, that was not a question.

We, the US, didn't need Iraqi oil then and we don't need it now.

Europe did and still does. You might want to look into the French scandal re. the violations of the UN Oil Embargo of Iraq and France.

That would be France, not the US. That was why they were against Gulf War II, as I was*, because it would screw up their little deal with Saddam.

Oh, and the number one supplier of oil to the United States is.....



Wait for it.....




The United States.



* For entirely different reasons of course, I didn't have a private little deal with Saddam.

John Hill
14th Jan 2014, 18:23
The US takes almost as much Iraqi oil as does Europe.

Lonewolf_50
14th Jan 2014, 18:25
Buys, John, not takes.

Please learn what words mean before you use them, if you please.

Thanks in advance.

Oil revenue is a significant contributor to the Iraqi treasury.

rgbrock1
14th Jan 2014, 18:25
"The U.S. takes almost as much Iraqi oil as does Europe"

That, sir, is a bone-fide, class A, naked line of bullshit. Which has no bearing, whatsoever, in reality. How do you make shit like this up?

con-pilot
14th Jan 2014, 18:29
The US takes almost as much Iraqi oil as does Europe.

Almost?

Almost, hell, I almost won the lottery this weekend. I bought a lottery ticket. :p


Buys, John, not takes.

Quite right wolf, John must still be thinking like the Little Un. :E

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
14th Jan 2014, 21:14
Lonewolf

I answered your question

Errm, you didn't actually. I'll ask you it again.

I hope if there has been misconduct by interrogators, those guilty of unlawful killings and torture are brought to book. Are you ?

Lonewolf_50
14th Jan 2014, 21:18
My answer remains the same: first, I'd like an investigation to establish that wrong doing actually occurred, at which point finding the culprits would be appropriate, and throwing the book at them would be "well played indeed!"

You see, LAJ, I don't make the assumption of guilt as you do, as I noted in my original response to you. I also don't let others put words into my mouth, nor do my thinking for me.

I have found that, in dealing with those "outside their own group" that persons from the Levant and the Middle East, and for that matter in Asia, are as likely to lie as tell the truth.
Their assertions are inherently unreliable until one has second and third sources and confirmation. That is what I found, in my dealings with folks from there. Now, consider the source of the claims and understand my "wait and see" attitude.
Might be truth, might be a load of bollocks. Unknown.

Cheers. :ok:

LIMA OR ALPHA JUNK
14th Jan 2014, 21:23
I've made no assumption of guilt Lonewolf. I have however queried whether military investigations will get to the truth.

I asked you if you hoped that interrogators guilty of torture or unlawful killings, if found guilty are brought to book. It's a simple one to answer. Why be so evasive ? :confused:

Lonewolf_50
14th Jan 2014, 21:34
I am not being evasive. I also don't like people putting words into my mouth.

I am telling you how I look at it. Please read again. The comprehension failure is uncharacteristic of you.
:confused:

BenThere
14th Jan 2014, 23:27
Always wondered why water boarding, applied to only a few enemies, and which I concede to be a method of coercion, even though not physiologically damaging, drew universal outrage, while beheadings, castrations and other such medieval coercions practiced by the other side merit not a peep from the same people, supposedly on our side.

Ultimately, though, when push really comes to shove and the gloves are off, our civilized niceties won't matter anymore, and the primal survival instinct will trump our inbred tendency to promote treason.

500N
14th Jan 2014, 23:48
"ltimately, though, when push really comes to shove and the gloves are off, our civilized niceties won't matter anymore, and the primal survival instinct will trump our inbred tendency to promote treason."

And then when we conduct "beheadings, castrations and other such medieval coercion" (or just straight out killings), you will need ear muffs to drown out the BS from the left, that is if they are still alive.

500N
14th Jan 2014, 23:57
It depends on what the other side was doing. or had done.

Not sure I am into beheadings and castrations but using home IED's, Claymores
and home made shaped charges to take out the enemy and the vehicles, not a problem.

Not saying we have to become savages but the way we tie ourselves up
in ROE's way beyond what is normal is crazy. And the enemy exploit it.
Take that away and even up the balance.

BenThere
15th Jan 2014, 00:05
You are no better than the savages we despise...

Yes I am if I don't initiate their tactics but respond in kind. As 500 said, we are exploited by the enemy's assessment that we have humane values. Islamist brutality is unbounded. Ours is.

We remain better and more honorable, even if we are ultimately reduced to their level of warfare, which I think is unavoidable. They need killing, and there will be collateral damage, just like Germany and Japan in WWII, and the sooner we recognize that, the better off we all, and the rest of the world, will be.

500N
15th Jan 2014, 00:12
Caco

I am afraid I'll leave the peace stuff, peace symbols, flower power etc
to you and any lefty do gooders out there.

And I'll stick to what I was trained to do and am good at.


BenThere said a good thing.
"We remain better and more honorable, even if we are ultimately reduced to their level of warfare, which I think is unavoidable."

Not the word warfare. That doesn't mean we have to get into executions,
beheadings and castrations. Just use ALL available means to achieve
victory. Be it mines, flame throwers, chemicals, nuclear or whatever,
most of which have been taken off the (OUR) table by do gooders.

It is not hate, it is responding in kind to what is likely an initiation
by the other side using tactics that they choose. They forget that
we are also capable of doing what they do once the restrictions
of Gov't have been removed.

BenThere
15th Jan 2014, 01:41
I suspect neither of you know not what of you speak...

I'm curious as to on what you base that supposition.

500N
15th Jan 2014, 09:16
Caco

BenThere said "Yes I am if I don't initiate their tactics but respond in kind."

Look at WWII, Hitler started bombing cities and look where that got him.
Response in kind.

The Japs went so low it wasn't funny, "we" didn't but you could say that
partly because of it (the fanatics) they copped two big bombs instead which
cost them a lot but the US little.

It doesn't take much to make people do things they wouldn't otherwise
think they were capable of. It's mostly psychological, overcoming the
"hump" of doing it.

pigboat
15th Jan 2014, 13:16
Rules of Engagement for those who wage war against others who have no Rules of Engagement is utter bs. 600,000 Tutsis were hacked and shot to death in Rwanda because the United Nations :yuk: ROE forbade the troops they had on the ground to lift a finger to help them.

BenThere
15th Jan 2014, 14:48
Same thing at Srbrenica.

I have a huge problem with ROEs that prevent our soldiers from acting wisely in their own defense and their right to survive. To punish a soldier who is rationally fighting the enemy, when we have put him in that dangerous theatre, while limiting the range of tools he can use to fight the fight, causes great anger and resentment in me.

The slimy, politically correct generals, elevated to their rank by their willingness to go along with it, disgust me as much as the State department and administration that weighs the political more than the tactical and strategic.

We should disengage now from Afghanistan and the Middle East. We have no military mission objective, our soldiers are too precious to continue to sacrifice at the altar of futile nation-building, and our leadership is feckless and amoral.

Iraq and Syria have shown that when we leave, the bad guys fight each other, which is a good thing. When the oil money runs out, Islam can reassume its natural state, squalor, and the world might become generally peaceful once more.

vee-tail-1
15th Jan 2014, 14:55
Ben There

:ok::ok:

rgbrock1
15th Jan 2014, 16:11
BenThere, 500N.

I disagree with the seeming assertion that we must stoop down, morally, to the level of our enemies in order to defeat them. That is just plain wrong.

I'm all for loosening up any and all ROE's which tie the hands of our troops: these ROE's are equally wrong. We can, and should, bring all our resources to bear upon the enemy's ass in order to defeat them: no holds barred. Whatever it takes in the form of overwhelming firepower to defeat them is what we should do now and in the future as we take the fight to radical Islam.

However, that does NOT mean (in my not so humble opinion) that we have to stoop to their levels of barbarity and depravity in order to defeat them. We are better than that. There is indeed a code of conduct on the battlefield. Every soldier is taught that, and knows it. And that code of conduct is what sets us apart from many of our enemies. We don't behead, we don't torture unnecessarily. We have a moral backbone which our current advesary does not. And we have integrity and honor. Also things which our current enemy does not have.

We can, and must, defeat radical Islam. And the gloves must come off to do so. No holds barred. But we also have to keep in mind that in defeating our enemy we MUST keep the moral high ground. We can NOT stoop to their level in order to defeat them. We don't need to as we can defeat them without resorting to their levels of barbarity.

The moral high ground is what Prussian Army officers and troops took which many of the other Nazis (especially the Gestapo and SS) did not. The moral high ground is what distinguished U.S. Army Generals such as David Patraeus, Stanley McChrystal and David Rodriquez, who insisted their subordinates and field commanders remain steadfast in their morality and not subborn their integrity to the behavior of the enemy.

We can, and will, defeat radical Islam. And we can, and will, defeat radical Islam without dropping the morality which we as Westerners exhibit, for the most part, on the field of battle. Wherever that may be.

BenThere
15th Jan 2014, 16:23
I didn't mean to suggest I approve of us beheading or torturing.

It's more that I think if our troops are being fired on from a house with civilians resident, or a weapons cache is stored in a Mosque, or children are being used to run explosives to IED planters, they become legitimate targets; that sort of thing which is currently and illogically restricted by foolish ROEs.

rgbrock1
15th Jan 2014, 16:30
BenThere:

I agree 100%: if a weapons cache, for example, is known to exist in a Mosque then that Mosque becomes a legitimate target for anihilation and f**k all the hurt sensitivities which might become involved.

An example of restrictive ROE's.

As many are undoubtedly aware there is a Hollywood film out now called 'Lone Survivor'. The film is about the failed U.S. Navy SEAL mission named "Operation Redwing". Now, I have no intention in seeing this film because I know it will be embellished, at least, and far from reality at most.

However, I have read Marc Luttrell's book about the encounter and being that he was the 'lone survivor' I take great stead in his account and narrative.

The bottom line? The SEAL's involved in this combat action basically had their asses handed to them by the Taliban due, in large part, to restrictive ROE's.
Luttrell goes through great pains to argue against these same restrictive ROE's and how, if they're not changed, any chance of success in the war against radical Islam will be lost.

Gloves must come off and everything at our disposal must be brought to bear. With morality, integrity, courage and honor.

BenThere
15th Jan 2014, 16:51
I read 'Lone Survivor', too. What a story of courage and perseverance! I have the most respect I can muster for Navy SEALS.

I'm gratified, too, that the movie is No. 1 in the US, proving that Americans are starved for the kind of patriotic, positive fare Hollywood has for the most part stopped producing.

Morality, integrity, courage, and honor, it seems, fell out of fashion in our celebrity -struck generation. They are attributes embraced by the 'values' voter so disparaged in our popular media culture. But they still mean a lot to me.

I'm hopeful that leaders coming out of the cauldron of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will emerge to provide the backbone we need to set our country back on the right course.

My fear is that we are almost at the tipping point where government dependents outnumber the doers that got us where we are and will vote accordingly. No good will come from a nation dependent on Uncle Sam, which the Democrat party sees as its means to hold onto perpetual power.

500N
15th Jan 2014, 18:08
rgb

I was not suggesting we morally stoop down. Beheading and Castration
have never been part of our repertoire and it should stay that way.

I was also talking in one of my posts about activities that we not under
any Gov't - ie the place has turned to shyte and it's a free for all. Like
Syria is ATM. That is what any "society" looks like when it all goes bad.

Now, mines, IED's, Claymores etc etc, it wasn't that long ago that these
were still allowed and IMHO still should be.

Two very good examples of BS ROE's in Srbrenica and Rwanda :ok:
You sometimes have to wonder about the UN and it not trying to put
a foot wrong and take criticism.

Lonewolf_50
9th Apr 2014, 17:47
They may soon have another nuclear neighbor.

BBC News - Khamenei: Iran will never give up its nuclear programme (http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-26960548)

Looks like the folks in Iran will continue to pursue their nuclear capability. Would that bother the folks in Iraq? Probably not, by itself, but perhaps in how it changes the larger geopolitical environment and more "neighbors" getting involved in "having a few just in case ... " :eek: