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HighPrvt
03-18-2007, 09:01 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6461757.stm

sbl
03-19-2007, 05:41 AM
Pvt. H Davis,

Does this incident make this f'n disaster worth it now?

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 06:22 AM
What disaster?

toptimlrd
03-19-2007, 06:52 AM
What disaster?


You know geting rid of a despot, shutting down rape rooms and torture chambers, losing fewer brave men in four years than we did in most single day battles of the past, keeping the fight in their yard instead of ours, that kind of disaster.

Or maybe the disaster is saying out of one side of our mouths we support our troops while out of the other we call it:

Disaster
Quagmire
Wrong War at the wrong time in the wrong place
Boondoggle
A "waste" of lives
Blaming the administration after seeing the same intelligence and making the same decision
Threatening to cut off funding to those troops we "support"

I'm sure those comments give our troops the warm fuzzy of being "supported".

Bottom line about WMDs? They had them. We have not found the HUGE stockpiles (we have found some) but neither have we found any indication they were dismantled and destroyed. Where are they now? This is what scares me and the above article helps to reinforce my theory that they were dispersed to those wishing us harm while the UN (Uneccesarry Naysayers) sat back and passed worthless resolutions and "inspected" those areas Sadam said they could while staying away from those areas Sadam said were "off limits". Quite frankly we should have gone in there much earlier before the chance to remove them was available.

Let's see, Hitler was not a threat to us so we should have left him alone, Japan attacked us but it had to be our fault like it was our fault the World Trade Center (2X), the USS Cole, etc. were attacked. I heard John Mellencamp talking on NPR a couple of months ago how we should be "talking" to our enemies and he even stated that he doesn't know if the history books are correct about Pearl Harbor so he really dosen't think we should have been in WWII.

Iraq is not a war but a battle in the overall war against terorism which will go on for longer than anyone would like but it must be fought. Some in politics like to use the "our children" will have to "pay" for the debt but if we do nothing they will pay more than a monetary debt (by the way the economy is not a zero sum game).

I will not sit back and let our brave men and women be denegrated by anyone at anytime and I will defend them and the job they are doing at any time. My hope is that the next administration finally turns these troops loose and lets them do their jobs without having one hand tied behind them as they are now. We are at war, now lets act like it and take out the enemy, we have allowed them to maintain too many safe havens.

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 07:10 AM
Nice to see someone else not baffled by the BS.

As far as WMD's go. They found MIG-25 fighters buried in the sand. The MIG-25 is a big freakin' plane. With all the time Saddam had thanks to the UN bs there's no wonder mass weapons didn't turn up...

I'm sure his Russian, and French allis helped make them go bye-bye.

flattop32355
03-19-2007, 08:42 AM
I believe I shall now sit back and wait for the righteous national and international condemnation of this kind of attack by our enemies, made upon civilians and millitary alike............................................. ................................ waiting........................................... ...........................................still waiting........................................... ............................................ waiting still............................................. .......................................

Does anyone else detect a very tiring pattern, here?

sbl
03-19-2007, 09:18 AM
Like I said it's an F'N disaster that WW II references, jingoism, WMD anecdotes of weapons left over from the 80s, and wishful thinking doesn't change it.

If you don't want to be called on it, don't post this stuff on a CW/WBTS forum.

We all care that our troops and veterans get the best care and equipment.

tompritchett
03-19-2007, 09:21 AM
What scares me is that this idea of a chemical dirty bomb has now occurred to the insurgent/terrorists. Unfortunately, we have learned the hard way that tactics developed by the insurgents in Iraq have a tendency to be adopted elsewhere in the world. Given the large amounts of very toxic chemicals that are routinely shipped throughout the Western world, I am very concerned that such tactics will be adopted by terrorist elsewhere. When I was in the EPA, the National Response Team ran just a scenario in one of their "war-games" and the final results made 9/11 look tame.

tompritchett
03-19-2007, 09:44 AM
Or maybe the disaster is saying out of one side of our mouths we support our troops while out of the other we call it:

Disaster
Quagmire
Wrong War at the wrong time in the wrong place
Boondoggle
A "waste" of lives

Like I said it's an F'N disaster that WW II references, jingoism, WMD anecdotes of weapons left over from the 80s, and wishful thinking doesn't change it.

The disaster has nothing to do with our soldiers and their performance. Rather, their military and civilian leadership has failed them mightly. I was just reading yesterday about the deployment of small company sized command posts which basically are functioning as police precints. Apparently this approach has been far more successful in stabilzing the situation and winning the respect of the Iraqi citizens than conducting massive sweeps from over-centralized bases. In these areas, they still do not like us, but they see our troops as being fair unlike the Iraqi police and army. Consequently, the number of leads has more than tripled. IMHO, we went in with too few troops to stabilize the situation, we focused on looking for the "terrorists" rather than restoring order and basic services, we wasted the valuable time when most Iraqee's viewed our troops as liberators instead of occupiers, and we used political litmus tests for civilian contracting firms and consultants instead of just focussing on experience and competency. After all these years of American "help", the people of Baghdad feel lucky if they can get 1 hour of electricity per day and over 90% feel that their lives are in danger - a percentage that has been steadily growing. Again, I do not place blame on the soldiers and their immediate commanders, but rather on the senior commanders (e.g., Franks and Casey) and the corresponding DoD senior civilian leadership, especially those, who in the beginning of the war, decided to run the show totally on their own and freeze out the other branches of the government that actually may have had more of a clue how to rebuild the shattered infrastructure, such as U.S. AID of the State Department.

Milliron
03-19-2007, 10:06 AM
I am always amused by those people (particularly those in the current administration) who blithely suggest that the U.S. wage war against all enemies, great and small, real and imagined, aggressive/non-aggressive, ad eternum, all to prevent some sort of future attack, from some quarter, at some time.

We can't do this forever. As great a power as the U.S. is, we simply cannot pony up billions for so-called "wars of preemption." We are well on the way to ruining our economy by tilting at this windmill. Other, vastly more dangerous enemies are now emboldened by this quixotic enterprise. I find it regrettable that now our solution is only to park a carrier group in the Strait of Hormuz and send Condi Rice to talk them into behaving. Good luck with that.

This argument has nothing to do with our men and women in uniform. That is a straw-man position. We all support the troops on the ground. Reluctance by Congress to hand a blank check to the JCS isn't unpatriotic, it's prudent. Expecting results from generals on the ground---well, you have all the WBTS references you want there.

My Marine pard and I go round and round on this. We do agree on one point. Armies (and the Marines, of course) are designed to destroy the enemy and take and hold territory from attack from without. This adventure has been a poor use of the military and frankly I don't even blame the senior leadership on the ground that much because I think they have been given a mission they were never trained to do. Notice how well they took down Saddam in 1991 and then again in 2003? The same expertise is useless in the current environment. We kicked apart a fire-ant hill and are now standing on it. It's time to step off.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 11:18 AM
The disaster has nothing to do with our soldiers and their performance. Rather, their military and civilian leadership has failed them mightly.
.


BINGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and history does repeat itself. ;) as for where is Saddam's WMD's, Irag has alot of sand to sift thru and so does Syria and Iran.
War has changed for the US. For the first time we are envolved in a religious war. There is nothing political about it. Look at history. Religious wars go on and on and on............and on. We are not accustomed or trained to fight a religious war especially one that has these kind of extremeous. Their belief in Ali is far greater than a democracy that we and others, minus France, Germany and Russia, are trying to establish. Irag has never had a democracy so they'll never understand what a democracy is.

toptimlrd
03-19-2007, 01:25 PM
Like I said it's an F'N disaster that WW II references, jingoism, WMD anecdotes of weapons left over from the 80s, and wishful thinking doesn't change it.

If you don't want to be called on it, don't post this stuff on a CW/WBTS forum.

We all care that our troops and veterans get the best care and equipment.

Call me all you want on it, I STAND BY IT!

I had a long typed response I just deleted as it would be a complete waste here. We could find ICBMs with multiple nuclear warheads all targeted at the US in Iraq and still there are those who would say it proves nothing. I think I'll go back to my old position of not mixing my politics with my hobby. I tried to mix them for a couple of weeks now based on a suggestion from a friend of mine (on the left actually) and all it has done is raise my blood pressure.

toptimlrd
03-19-2007, 01:45 PM
Call me all you want on it, I STAND BY IT!

I had a long typed response I just deleted as it would be a complete waste here. We could find ICBMs with multiple nuclear warheads all targeted at the US in Iraq and still there are those who would say it proves nothing. I think I'll go back to my old position of not mixing my politics with my hobby. I tried to mix them for a couple of weeks now based on a suggestion from a friend of mine (on the left actually) and all it has done is raise my blood pressure.


Mods, I apologize for my off topic rant as I know this was in poor taste and decorum for this board. The above statements do reflect my opinion, this was just not the appropriate place for those opinons to be discussed.

Rob Weaver
03-19-2007, 03:04 PM
Their belief in Ali is far greater than a democracy that we and others, minus France, Germany and Russia, are trying to establish. Irag has never had a democracy so they'll never understand what a democracy is.

Well, "Ali" is a boxer; "Allah" is Arabic for God. "Ali" has Parkinson's and is no longer the greatest. Out of professional courtesy I will restrain comment on the latter.

I'm not sure that "they never had it so they'll never understand it" is a valid arguement. Sounds mildly patronizing. What the Iraqis are experiencing right now isn't democracy; it's fear and revenge. 30 years of tyranny can smother responsible voices and severely limit the pool of non-partisan leadership.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 03:30 PM
Well, "Ali" is a boxer; "Allah" is Arabic for God. "Ali" has Parkinson's and is no longer the greatest. Out of professional courtesy I will restrain comment on the latter.

I'm not sure that "they never had it so they'll never understand it" is a valid arguement. Sounds mildly patronizing. What the Iraqis are experiencing right now isn't democracy; it's fear and revenge. 30 years of tyranny can smother responsible voices and severely limit the pool of non-partisan leadership.

Irag is an Islamic nation governed by religion and being so could never be a democracy like ours when we have the freedom from religion as one of our rights under a constitution. We are trying to set up a democracy based on christian beliefs that would never work in any islamic country. Their beliefs are based on the Koran and not on any constitution, theirs or anyone elses.

reb64
03-19-2007, 05:31 PM
Pvt. H Davis,

Does this incident make this f'n disaster worth it now? Boy I wish you were voting when Lincoln was in office. the south would have won with your optimism.

reb64
03-19-2007, 05:38 PM
BINGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and history does repeat itself. ;) as for where is Saddam's WMD's, Irag has alot of sand to sift thru and so does Syria and Iran.
War has changed for the US. For the first time we are envolved in a religious war. There is nothing political about it. Look at history. Religious wars go on and on and on............and on. We are not accustomed or trained to fight a religious war especially one that has these kind of extremeous. Their belief in Ali is far greater than a democracy that we and others, minus France, Germany and Russia, are trying to establish. Irag has never had a democracy so they'll never understand what a democracy is.

Lincoln was urged to let the south go, because of the battles deaths and culture. You guys are funny. reenactors of a war with far greater destruction than this, yet Lincoln kept on. One day of that war had more casulaties than all the years of this longer one combined and we are doing great. The world will never be peacefuluntil Christ returns, until then if you want to stay ahead of the fanatics, we have to take it to them.

flattop32355
03-19-2007, 05:42 PM
Irag is an Islamic nation governed by religion and being so could never be a democracy like ours when we have the freedom from religion as one of our rights under a constitution. We are trying to set up a democracy based on christian beliefs that would never work in any islamic country. Their beliefs are based on the Koran and not on any constitution, theirs or anyone elses.

I'm going to somewhat disagree with you on the above. Iraq, under Saddam, was one of the more secular countries in the region, though admittedly, they all have very, very strong religious overtones (much more than we) to their daily life and culture.

What I will agree with is that democracy as practiced in our country is a unique, and possibly non-replicable, form of that style government. It won't just slide into place anywhere in the world, for a number of reasons, and we need to realize that when supporting "democracy" in other countries. There will be differences that work there that would lead to political, and possibly open, warfare here. The world ain't us, and we ain't the world.

As to freedom from religion, I haven't found that yet in our government documents, just freedom of religion. That we have, in recent history, chosen to interpret it as such says more about us now than what the intent was when it was written.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 05:53 PM
Lincoln was urged to let the south go, because of the battles deaths and culture. You guys are funny. reenactors of a war with far greater destruction than this, yet Lincoln kept on. One day of that war had more casulaties than all the years of this longer one combined and we are doing great. The world will never be peacefuluntil Christ returns, until then if you want to stay ahead of the fanatics, we have to take it to them.

Your talking about one of our past political wars. Talk to me about one of our past religious wars.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 05:59 PM
I'm going to somewhat disagree with you on the above. Iraq, under Saddam, was one of the more secular countries in the region, though admittedly, they all have very, very strong religious overtones (much more than we) to their daily life and culture.

and who made up Saddams government? It wasn't a little bit of everyone, Sunni, Shiite and Kurd. Those three will never live in peace together in a Democracy.







As to freedom from religion, I haven't found that yet in our government documents, just freedom of religion. That we have, in recent history, chosen to interpret it as such says more about us now than what the intent was when it was written.

Freedon 'from' or 'of' religious persecution is the same thing. Difference is the spelling.

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 06:22 PM
I am always amused by those people (particularly those in the current administration) who blithely suggest that the U.S. wage war against all enemies, great and small, real and imagined, aggressive/non-aggressive, ad eternum, all to prevent some sort of future attack, from some quarter, at some time.



Bill Clinton did as you suggest. He let us be attacked multiple times, with a weak response. The result, well everyone knows the result.
Peace through strength works. Want to blame the lack of equipment on Bush??
Better look back to the sorry SOB that spent 8 years raping or military. Undoing everything Ronald Reagan accomplished. Bush Sr. took Reagan's military to war. Bush Jr. took BJ boys to war, get it?


SBL,
It's OK to post off topic posts if it's based on liberal BS, right?
Hypocrite. Funny how liberals think that those that don't follow their point of view are either uninformed, or lack intelligence.


LMAO

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 06:37 PM
What scares me is that this idea of a chemical dirty bomb has now occurred to the insurgent/terrorists. Unfortunately, we have learned the hard way that tactics developed by the insurgents in Iraq have a tendency to be adopted elsewhere in the world. Given the large amounts of very toxic chemicals that are routinely shipped throughout the Western world, I am very concerned that such tactics will be adopted by terrorist elsewhere. When I was in the EPA, the National Response Team ran just a scenario in one of their "war-games" and the final results made 9/11 look tame.

Why didn't the Germans use NBC against the Russians even when they were being pushed back across their border? Easy, they feared the reprisal...
What scares me the most about a potential Democratic president in '08 is that our enemies will perceive them as weak, that will bring such an attack.
If they don't fear a reprisal against all of Islam, then we are definitely facing a potential NBC attack. If they do launch such an attack, and we don't respond with a significant response then we are in deep doo doo.

reb64
03-19-2007, 07:24 PM
Your talking about one of our past political wars. Talk to me about one of our past religious wars.

I was taught in school many of the northerners were catholic and the south was mostly protestant. I should do some research on what the facts are.

Milliron
03-19-2007, 07:51 PM
Bill Clinton did as you suggest. He let us be attacked multiple times, with a weak response. The result, well everyone knows the result.
Peace through strength works. Want to blame the lack of equipment on Bush??
Better look back to the sorry SOB that spent 8 years raping or military. Undoing everything Ronald Reagan accomplished. Bush Sr. took Reagan's military to war. Bush Jr. took BJ boys to war, get it?


SBL,
It's OK to post off topic posts if it's based on liberal BS, right?
Hypocrite. Funny how liberals think that those that don't follow their point of view are either uninformed, or lack intelligence.

Well IMHO liberals have just done way to many drugs in their lifetime.

Peace man, pass the joint dude!!

LMAO

Not really sure where to begin on this one.


Bush Jr. took BJ boys to war, get it?

No, not really. If you're implying what it sounds like your implying, I suggest not implying it too close to a Desert Storm vet--you probably wouldn't like the result.


Funny how liberals think that those that don't follow their point of view are either uninformed, or lack intelligence

I'm not implying that all those who don't follow my point of view are necessarily uninformed, only that you might possibly be. I'm sorry if you dislike someone disagreeing with you, but you did post it here for everyone to read. As far as drugs are concerned, I'm sure I don't know what you are talking about. However it does appear you edited your post, which was probably a good idea.

I really don't understand why you think a Republican president is so intimidating to our enemies--it didn't intimidate them in 2001. If you think a series of preemptive wars is going cow radicals (particularly radicals from oil-rich Islamic states, like say, Saudi Arabia) into refraining from attacking us, then I have some land in Florida I'd like to sell you. If we blow up our economy chasing flies with the brickbat of the American military, we will totally isolate ourselves (if we haven't already) and impoverished our country, and then, my friend, the jihadis will have won.

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 08:10 PM
No, not really. If you're implying what it sounds like your implying, I suggest not implying it too close to a Desert Storm vet--you probably wouldn't like the result.





I'm implying that Clinton f'd over our military for 8 years. Your a Desert Storm vet, then you were in the military built by Ronald Reagan, from the ashes of the train wreck called Carter, not that Ford did anything for it either. I was in the US Army from '82-'85. I saw the Armies condition, and what Reagan did to fix it. How would you have like to have gone to war without Reagan's improvements ? Would the so called "Hail Mary" that Schwarzkopf dreamed up have worked with broke down M-60s, and 113s ?

As far as your threat, well assumptions can be a real bitch son.

As far as the rest. it was basically aimed at SBL, who had no argument but to talk smack, as far as '01, well yes the enemy underestimated Bush, cant blame them after the puss before him.

i don't have a problem with someone disagreeing with me, if they have an argument, havent seen one that holds water yet.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 08:13 PM
I was taught in school many of the northerners were catholic and the south was mostly protestant. I should do some research on what the facts are.

The CW was no religious war. If that was so the way your talking every war ever fought was religious. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

GaWildcat
03-19-2007, 08:15 PM
I spent time in a place called Tuwaitha, it was nicknamed "YellowCake" by the guys stationed there. Anyone care to guess why??? It weren't on account of what the mess hall was sending for dessert.

I met a man named "Danny" (not his real name) he became my friend, and he was killed for helping us. He was a Nuclear Physicist.

He told us all about Syria.

I have a letter in my medical records saying I was potentially exposed to radiation.

Anyone who wants to know what it was like for me over there, feel free to pm me.

Other than that, lines are drawn so severe, that I do not feel I can add anything else.


R.W. Hughes
Co A, 411th ECB(H)
ENG Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division
Camp Liberty, IRAQ
2004-2005
Former member, Antelope Mess

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 08:34 PM
I spent time in a place called Tuwaitha, it was nicknamed "YellowCake" by the guys stationed there. Anyone care to guess why??? It weren't on account of what the mess hall was sending for dessert.

I met a man named "Danny" (not his real name) he became my friend, and he was killed for helping us. He was a Nuclear Physicist.

He told us all about Syria.

I have a letter in my medical records saying I was potentially exposed to radiation.

Anyone who wants to know what it was like for me over there, feel free to pm me.

Other than that, lines are drawn so severe, that I do not feel I can add anything else.


R.W. Hughes
Co A, 411th ECB(H)
ENG Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division
Camp Liberty, IRAQ
2004-2005
Former member, Antelope Mess


Dang Bro, we know each other, and I didn't know that..

You going to B-port this weekend?
If your unit ain't going you can fall in with us!

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 08:37 PM
Why didn't the Germans use NBC against the Russians even when they were being pushed back across their border? Easy, they feared the reprisal...

.

There were 628 US casualties in which 69 died from mustard gas during WWII when the SS John Harvey was attacked and sunk by german bombers in the port of Bari, Italy on Dec 2, 1943. It was loaded with Mustard Gas.

We were prepared to use it when used against us.

sbl
03-19-2007, 08:47 PM
"SBL,
It's OK to post off topic posts if it's based on liberal BS, right?"

Well Pvt. Davis, I posted a responses to a news story that was meant to continue the BS about WMDs in Iraq. Like the man said. "..reality has a well know liberal bias."

"Hypocrite. Funny how liberals think that those that don't follow their point of view are either uninformed, or lack intelligence."

I don't know about what "liberals" think as framed by creepy male cheerleaders on the right. I'm getting scared FOR my countrymen.

flattop32355
03-19-2007, 09:53 PM
and who made up Saddams government? It wasn't a little bit of everyone, Sunni, Shiite and Kurd. Those three will never live in peace together in a Democracy.

If my memory serves me well, that government was made up of the Baath Party, formed by Sunni Muslims to the exclusion of others. Upon that we are agreed. However, when you throw in it was based upon keeping one man in power, rather than upon religious principals, you have a much more secular government than compared to Iran, for example.

As for the three above mentioned groups not being able to live in peace, that is somewhat dependent upon whether they see advantages to such an arrangement, and whether extremists are able to keep the pot boiling to deflect any such coalition. Without extremists, a working relationship can be made to work.


Freedon 'from' or 'of' religious persecution is the same thing. Difference is the spelling.

Your previous post did not mention freedom from religious persecution, but rather freedom from religion, a totally different subject. It was upon that concept that I based my response. I would agree that "from" and "of" are similar in that context (from religious persecution), but not so in the original idea as stated (from religion).

Milliron
03-19-2007, 09:58 PM
I'm implying that Clinton f'd over our military for 8 years. Your a Desert Storm vet, then you were in the military built by Ronald Reagan, from the ashes of the train wreck called Carter, not that Ford did anything for it either. I was in the US Army from '82-'85. I saw the Armies condition, and what Reagan did to fix it. How would you have like to have gone to war without Reagan's improvements ? Would the so called "Hail Mary" that Schwarzkopf dreamed up have worked with broke down M-60s, and 113s ?

As far as your threat, well assumptions can be a real bitch son.

As far as the rest. it was basically aimed at SBL, who had no argument but to talk smack, as far as '01, well yes the enemy underestimated Bush, cant blame them after the puss before him.

i don't have a problem with someone disagreeing with me, if they have an argument, havent seen one that holds water yet.

I don't deny that Clinton reduced the size of the army--he did. I'm sure from the point of view of someone in the Army, that may have seemed like a bad idea. However, reducing the effect of 12 years of deficit spending against an enemy that no longer existed was an economically wise move. This is a country with an Army, not an Army with a country--it was time, and the economy reflected that prudence. (remember the surplus?) Did that make us less prepared to invade in 2003? Possibly, but then we're back to whether we needed to invade in the first place, etc.

In any event, it wasn't foreseeable, particularly after Iraq was defanged in 1991 and remained so throughout the Clinton years. I think it's ironic that Clinton gets castigated for building a nice surplus in the non-war years so Bush Jr. can blow it on this little enterprise, then people blame him for creating it in the first place. What do you think the deficit would look like now if Clinton continued spending on the military as Reagan did? Would Bush have even been given the authorization to go to war in that circumstance? Clinton's frugality made Bush's war of opportunity possible, to mine and many others' chagrin. I'm sure you don't agree.

Incidentally, I am not a Gulf War veteran, and what I said wasn't a threat, merely a suggestion that maybe you were making an insult you didn't intend to make. I support our troops wholeheartedly, and regret that they seem to have been put in a very difficult position. I believe that the best service to them at this point would be to bring them home or at least redeploy them so that they can be more effectively brought to bear. Only time will tell at this point.

Trooper Graham
03-19-2007, 10:23 PM
If my memory serves me well, that government was made up of the Baath Party, formed by Sunni Muslims to the exclusion of others. Upon that we are agreed. However, when you throw in it was based upon keeping one man in power, rather than upon religious principals, you have a much more secular government than compared to Iran, for example.

in other words...it was not a democracy but a dictatorship held in control by one religious group percecuting the others. Now it's the opposite. Democracy will not work in a Islamic country like Iraq.




.
Your previous post did not mention freedom from religious persecution, but rather freedom from religion, a totally different subject. It was upon that concept that I based my response. I would agree that "from" and "of" are similar in that context (from religious persecution), but not so in the original idea as stated (from religion).

Not really...freedom from religion is not having to listen to people preaching their gospel to non-believers. There is such a thing as forced conversion which is practice more of the muslim religion than any others. Freedom of...freedom from...same thing really.

HighPrvt
03-19-2007, 10:47 PM
Bob,
Maybe I took your comments the wrong way. Sorry about that. I also feel that you misunderstood me, as I said nothing derogatory about our troops.

No one said that Clinton needed to keep spending like Reagan did, it was necessary for Reagan to rebuild our military, with the fall of the Soviet Union a force reduction was prudent. Bush one started downsizing, and restructuring our military. He sent units home after DS that were deployed to Europe. Several of these units were deactivated, and their bases closed. Clinton at the whim of a few of his anti American senators such as Diane Feinstein, etc. Went way beyond reducing our military. They raped it.
Let's talk about the procurement of inferior spare parts from overseas, or none at all. No pay raises, cuts in benefits. Name one new weapon system during Clinton's regime that wasn't either slashed to death, or completely cut out. Let's talk about front line units that would use up their entire annual training budget in a single field exercise!!! I could go on, but maybe you get my point.
You claim that you support our troops, Clinton didn't he turned his back on them, and also turned his back when technology was allowed to pass to China. As China competes for the worlds oil supply, a clash if not imminent, is very likely in the foreseeable future. Are we prepaired for that? Not hardly.

reb64
03-19-2007, 11:55 PM
in other words...it was not a democracy but a dictatorship held in control by one religious group percecuting the others. Now it's the opposite. Democracy will not work in a Islamic country like Iraq.



Not really...freedom from religion is not having to listen to people preaching their gospel to non-believers. There is such a thing as forced conversion which is practice more of the muslim religion than any others. Freedom of...freedom from...same thing really.

gospel means truth-different from religion. religion is a set of restrictive practices

flattop32355
03-20-2007, 01:34 AM
in other words...it was not a democracy but a dictatorship held in control by one religious group percecuting the others. Now it's the opposite. Democracy will not work in a Islamic country like Iraq.

Definitely a dictatorship (can't be viewed as anything else), but the facade of being of a religious nature was secondary to the main goal - keeping themselves in power by any means necessary, and not a primary objective, as in Iran, et. al.

Again, our form of democracy probably wouldn't work there, or any where else for that matter. But democracy in some fashion is entirely within the realm of possibility, provided that those groups whose only goal is to destablize any form of government other than their limited view will accept are made a non-factor.


Not really...freedom from religion is not having to listen to people preaching their gospel to non-believers. There is such a thing as forced conversion which is practice more of the muslim religion than any others. Freedom of...freedom from...same thing really.

Freedom of religion = the ability to choose your faith, including "none of the above", without fear of reprisals, particularly at the govermental level. It is extended to all faiths without favoritism at the governmental level. While one or more religions may be dominant as to popularity/numbers of adherents, there is no personal forcing of one view over another, while you may choose to change as a personal choice without repercussions.

This includes the ability to espouse your religious views in public in a reasonable manner, short of coersion. You don't have to hide your beliefs, nor avoid them in conversation, but are restrained forcing them upon others. Persuasion is acceptable, coersion is not.

Freedom from religion = Limited only to the choice of being in the "none of the above" catagory, and allowing same to establish that any references to religion that you don't like are not allowed. In practice, it has become a form of "religion" in its own right.

I submit that the two are not the same, though there is some relationship between them, as practiced by some.

Just to throw a period slant on it, the same questions existed in the 1860's, thought with somewhat less diversity of options.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 07:29 AM
Freedom of religion = the ability to choose your faith, including "none of the above", without fear of reprisals, particularly at the govermental level. It is extended to all faiths without favoritism at the governmental level. While one or more religions may be dominant as to popularity/numbers of adherents, there is no personal forcing of one view over another, while you may choose to change as a personal choice without repercussions.

From my readings, this is what our Founding Fathers were indeed intending. For example, at one time prior to the Bill of Rights, one could not hold office in Virginia unless one was an Anglican. Of course, more modern interpretations of the First Amendment have added additional meanings to the term.

Hoosier49er
03-20-2007, 07:32 AM
Iraq didn't have WMD's? As I recall, when I was stationed near the Saudi/Iraqi border during Operatin Desert Storm Sadam had a fondness for launching Scud missiles at us. Almost nightly. If a Scud isn't a WMD, then what is? And what about the mobile chemical lab they found burried out in the sand? Bottom line is, something had to be done, and Bush did something. I'll not badmouth our leadership one bit...I've seen the end of a tyrant, the freedome of a nation, and no more attacks on U.S. soil. What more do you want?

Pvt. Joe Snell
49th Ind. Vol. Inf.

Formerly SP4 Joe Snell
3rd Division

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 07:37 AM
. This adventure has been a poor use of the military and frankly I don't even blame the senior leadership on the ground that much because I think they have been given a mission they were never trained to do. Notice how well they took down Saddam in 1991 and then again in 2003? The same expertise is useless in the current environment.

Which goes back to my earlier point about DoD initially deciding to plan and run the Rebuild Iraq Show all by themselves rather than using the expertise of other government agencies that had more applicable experience.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 07:53 AM
Iraq didn't have WMD's

WMD's is a actually a very precise term because of its implications on our use of nuclear weapons. WMD specifically refers to the use of chemical, biological, and/or nuclear warheads. Yes, Saddam had SCUDs, but with conventional warheads. Intermediate range ballistic missiles with conventional warheads do not constitute WMDs. Yes, Saddam had reported buried possibly one or more mobile production laboratories (their actual function was still the subject of debate the last I heard). And yes, Saddam had used chemical agents against Iran prior to the Gulf War and against his own people before the sanctions had had a chance to start having their effect. However, I have seen no reports of Saddam having at the time of the invasion any capabilities to be a direct and immediate threat to the U.S. or any of our interests, especially using WMD's. Yes, there appears that there may been some contact and possible sharing of chemical information between members of Iraq's military intelligence staff and al-Qaeda at camps in Northern Iraq, but again whether or not that was being done with Saddam's direct knowledge is a matter of debate. Furthermore, if that was the essence of the Iraq-al-Qaeda threat, it could have been easily neutralize by the destruction of the camps via cruise missiles rather than a full scale invasion.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 08:09 AM
I really don't understand why you think a Republican president is so intimidating to our enemies--it didn't intimidate them in 2001.

To play Devil's Advocate here, one could actually argue that having a Republican president could embolden them (BTW - I am a Republican). Let's look at the historical precedents. First, who initially trained and armed the Islam fundamentalists, some of whom later formed the Taliban and/or formed the nucleus of al-Qaeda (e.g., Bin Laden)? Ronald Reagan, a Republican. Who, initially turned the other way when Saddam actually invaded one of his neighbors (Iran) and then later actually started arranging for military aid to Iraq as her military supplies started to become exhausted during the war? Who arranged the contracts that gave Iraq the chemical capabilities that gave her the ability to use chemical agents against Iran during their nasty little war? Again, the answer to all these questions - Ronald Reagan, a Republican. You can imagine Saddam's surprise when a new Republican actually objected to yet another invasion of a neighbor. (Of course, Saddam should have realized that invading an enemy of the U.S. with little to no oil ties and invading a strong friend of the U.S. with considerable oil ties just might be viewed differently by us.) Oh, and when Clinton commits troops oversees on peace keeping missions and actually initiates a military strike against an al-Qaeda training camp, who makes very public objections? The new Republican Congressional majority.

Let's face it. Over the last few decades, the U.S. has not sent a very consistent message about our tolerance to certain issues and no party can really take the high ground on this issue.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 08:22 AM
We were prepared to use it when used against us.

Interesting that this subject came up the way that it did. Back in Graduate school I was reading a book all about the various nerve gasses and came upon a discussion that I found most interesting. When it became apparent to the German's that the Normandy beach-head was at least a major thrust, the German chief of the German equivalent of the chemical corps tried to get Hitler's permission to use their new nerve gas, Sarin, on the beach-head and thus inflict massive casulties and weaken the whole thrust to the point that a major, subsequent counter-attack would push the Allies back into the sea. At the time, Hitler had also been briefed on our research with DDT and, because both Sarin and DDT attacked the nervous systems of their targets, Hitler was convinced that we had developed a nerve gas analog of DDT for humans. Therefore, he reasoned that using Sarin on the Normandy beach-head would have resulted in an Allied use of our nerve gas analog on Germany's cities - an analog that we actually did not posses at the time.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 08:34 AM
gospel means truth-different from religion. religion is a set of restrictive practices

You defined the word out of context. I stated "preaching the gospel" with emphesis on 'preaching' to someone.

http://www.gospelhour.net/2094.html

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 08:40 AM
gospel means truth

And "preaching one's gospel" to non-believers, means preaching one's interpretation of what you believe to be true to those that have a different interpretation. There is a difference between "gospel" and "the Gospel". In fact, one of the reason that we have so many denominations today, is the fact that many groups of Christians will even disagree on the finer points on what "the Gospel" means.

sbl
03-20-2007, 09:18 AM
JOE,

"Saddam's trucks were for balloons, not germs"

Peter Beaumont and Antony Barnett
Sunday June 8, 2003
The Observer

"Tony Blair faces a fresh crisis over Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction, as evidence emerges that two vehicles that he has repeatedly claimed to be Iraqi mobile biological warfare production units are nothing of the sort. ..."

"....Instead The Observer has established that it is increasingly likely that the units were designed to be used for hydrogen production to fill artillery balloons, part of a system originally sold to Saddam by Britain in 1987...."

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,973012,00.html


How many SCUDs were launched this time? I don't remember.

reb64
03-20-2007, 12:28 PM
JOE,

"Saddam's trucks were for balloons, not germs"

Peter Beaumont and Antony Barnett
Sunday June 8, 2003
The Observer

"Tony Blair faces a fresh crisis over Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction, as evidence emerges that two vehicles that he has repeatedly claimed to be Iraqi mobile biological warfare production units are nothing of the sort. ..."

"....Instead The Observer has established that it is increasingly likely that the units were designed to be used for hydrogen production to fill artillery balloons, part of a system originally sold to Saddam by Britain in 1987...."

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,973012,00.html


How many SCUDs were launched this time? I don't remember.

Saw several long range scuds fitted with extra fuel sections in violation of cease fire. also many other types of rockets, missles, gas arty shells, and munitions.

reb64
03-20-2007, 12:31 PM
And "preaching one's gospel" to non-believers, means preaching one's interpretation of what you believe to be true to those that have a different interpretation. There is a difference between "gospel" and "the Gospel". In fact, one of the reason that we have so many denominations today, is the fact that many groups of Christians will even disagree on the finer points on what "the Gospel" means.


If one is true then the others are false so there can be only one gospel get it.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 12:49 PM
No, not really. If you're implying what it sounds like your implying, I suggest not implying it too close to a Desert Storm vet--you probably wouldn't like the result.

.

Ok, I was in during Desert Storm and I am not sure what you are driving at. Our military was quite healthy when we went to Kuwait.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 01:01 PM
From my readings, this is what our Founding Fathers were indeed intending. For example, at one time prior to the Bill of Rights, one could not hold office in Virginia unless one was an Anglican. Of course, more modern interpretations of the First Amendment have added additional meanings to the term.


At last, something to actually do with history in this horrid thread. The freedom of religion clause was establish to prohibit the government from establishing a state sponsored religion such as they had (and still have) in England. By doing so you could not be coerced to support any on particular religion or denomination through the exercise of government force. It was NEVER meant to eliminate religion from the public conscious. It was not (for example) established to atttack any religion or prevent the display of religious symbols or ethos in public either. Unfortunately many in this country have taken it to that extreme. The last time I saw a country so dedicated to the freedom from religion as so many like to do here collapsed not long after the Berlin Wall crumbled. Unfortunately that political movement is alive and well here today and slowly taking over.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 01:05 PM
However, I have seen no reports of Saddam having at the time of the invasion any capabilities to be a direct and immediate threat to the U.S. or any of our interests, especially using WMD's.

Tom,

Nor have I seen any proof he dismantled them as he was supposed to do either. This entire conflict could have been avoided had Sadam done what he said he would do and was ordered to do by the UN. The only person to blame for the Iraq battle is Sadam himself.

HighPrvt
03-20-2007, 01:07 PM
Iraq violated the cease fire treaty every time they painted an aircraft with their RADAR in the no fly zone, not to mention when they fired at them. They violated the treaty on a daily basis, which in it's self was enough justification for taking down Saddam.

Saddam's BIL got his self killed for defecting and handing over WMD secrets, and installations that remained hidden from inspectors for years. He had 'em, and their buried, or are in Syria. The left can never prove otherwise. Unless they plan on searching every inch of Syria, and digging up every inch of the desert.

http://www.spyflight.co.uk/images/JPGS%5CMiG-25%20Foxbat%5CMiG-25%20buried%20under%20sand.jpg


Tom,
What Reagan was nothing new, the old Adage " The enemy of my enemy is my friend" comes to mind. It would be nice to have a crystal ball to see the future. Prior to his invasion of Kuwait Saddam wasn't considered an enemy, neither was the Mujahadeen/Taliban (sp) in Afganistan.
Maybe we can all agree that the CIA is a bunch of F'ups, no matter what party is running the show.

sbl
03-20-2007, 01:17 PM
Well Reb, I'll just have to trust your report over a British Newspaper. Do you have a date when you saw these weapons?

The joke I've heard about Iraq WMDs is that we know they have them because we have the receipts.

What is happening is that the administration admits that there were no operational WMDs at the time of the invasion, but it has the sound machine drop stories about old shells, Iranian weapons, (with United Arab Emerits) markings, buried gear, and Syrian connections just to "muddy the waters."

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 01:19 PM
Tom,
What Reagan was nothing new, the old Adage " The enemy of my enemy is my friend" comes to mind.

Bullseye, unless I am mistaken, weren't the Soviets our allies at one time before becoming our arch enemies? Of course it is obvious that many are now trying to turn the USA into the next USSR with everyone beholden to mother government.

sbl
03-20-2007, 01:20 PM
Pvt. H Davis,

Nice Matchbox Toys n' model airplane. ;)

HighPrvt
03-20-2007, 01:23 PM
Well Reb, I'll just have to trust your report over a British Newspaper. Do you have a date when you saw these weapons?



Not personally, but read GaWildcat's post above. ;0
Saddam had weapons, and played games with the inspectors right up until the end, that's the fact jack.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 01:26 PM
Pvt. H Davis,

Nice Matchbox Toys n' model airplane. ;)

SBL,

How about trying to add something constructive for once? Sheesh. We get the point that nothing a conservative can do is ever right and that Al Frankin is the most brilliant man in the whole big wide universe. Happy now?

HighPrvt
03-20-2007, 02:21 PM
Yes this is some of the best modeling I've ever seen. Especially the personnel, their the most life like I've ever seen....

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet10.jpg

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet2.jpg

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet12.jpg

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 02:29 PM
Yes this is some of the best modeling I've ever seen. Especially the personnel, their the most life like I've ever seen....

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet10.jpg

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet2.jpg

http://www.afforums.com/ppost/data/600/1iraqijet12.jpg

Is it just my computer or did the pics not come through?

Of course once they come up it will just be part of the vast right wing conspiracy won't it SBL?

HighPrvt
03-20-2007, 02:52 PM
Is it just my computer or did the pics not come through?

Of course once they come up it will just be part of the vast right wing conspiracy won't it SBL?


Must be interference from the black helos flying over your house!!

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 03:14 PM
Must be interference from the black helos flying over your house!!


Ooooooohhhhhh I never thought of that, should I get my aluminum foil hat out? LOL

HighPrvt
03-20-2007, 03:20 PM
Ooooooohhhhhh I never thought of that, should I get my aluminum foil hat out? LOL

Yep, good idea. Don't forget your lead undies...

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 04:25 PM
Tom,
What Reagan was nothing new, the old Adage " The enemy of my enemy is my friend" comes to mind.

Remember, I was playing Devil's Advocate towards the apparent belief of some psoters that only we Republicans can scare the rest of the world into not attacking us. Now to continue the train - it was the Democrats who seriously escalated the war in Vietnam while it was a Republican who withdrew our troops using the phrase, "peace with honor" (ring any recent bells). As to those who will accuse the Democratic civilian leaders of holding the military's reins and thus costing us the war, I would remind all that most of these civilian leaders had been in the decision making process during the Cuban missile crisis and had been severely frightened how close we and the Soviets actually came to an all-out exchange because of both of our saber rattling. I have read or heard several comment that, on the day the Soviet freighters were scheduled to meet our Naval blockade, when they left their homes that morning to go to work, they seriously wondered whether or not they and their families would be alive at the end of the day or just radioactive vapor. I am not necessarily defending the restraints placed especially on our bombing missions, I am merely suggesting why these civilian decision makers were unwilling to risk another round of saber rattling between the holders of the world's two largest nuclear arsenals.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 04:32 PM
If one is true then the others are false so there can be only one gospel get it.

While I agree with you about the truth of The Gospel, I do know that there are many in Christidom that may feel that my interpretation of The Gospel is flawed or totally false. But, to make matters worse, some other religions and religious sects share your feelings about there only being one Truth - the one that they follow. Thus, one major reasons for religious violence and wars.

Personally, while I hold my beliefs to be true, I respect the rights of others to hold other beliefs different from mine and accept them as fellow travelers in this world. Else, I am no better than those of other religions who are intolerant of non-believers.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 04:39 PM
Tom,

Nor have I seen any proof he dismantled them as he was supposed to do either.

Actually, Robert I do not believe that he had the capability to directly threaten us even with the weapons that we knew that he had at one time. Yes, he was a direct threat to Israel and our allies in the Gulf but he was not known to have weapons systems capable of reaching most of Europe and even further, the U.S. mainland. I am not aware of any conclusive proof that he was directly working with terrorist organizations for the purpose of enabling them to develop chemical weapons they could employ against us. Frankly, I suspect that he would have been too learly of them coming back to be used against him. Remember, this is man who modelled his whole style of government off of the paranioa of Stalin.

tompritchett
03-20-2007, 04:52 PM
"....Instead The Observer has established that it is increasingly likely that the units were designed to be used for hydrogen production to fill artillery balloons, part of a system originally sold to Saddam by Britain in 1987...."


Scott, while I would be willing to agree that this was the designed purpose of the laboratories, I do find it hard to believe that they were not modified for several reasons. First, what would Saddam need with hydrogen-filled artillery balloons? More importantly, if that was indeed their purpose, why were were they buried? Because they were obsolete? Not unless they were pretty well salvaged of anything usefull. However, I have also seen no definitive evidence they had indeed been converted to another purpose nor any clearly demonstrating a specific converted function. If anyone has such a reference, I would be glad to see it.

sbl
03-20-2007, 04:57 PM
Well Pvt. H Davis I did a "wink" after my message. I don't think posting any of my sources will do any good as they get dismissed.

sbl
03-20-2007, 05:05 PM
SBL,

How about trying to add something constructive for once? Sheesh. We get the point that nothing a conservative can do is ever right and that Al Frankin is the most brilliant man in the whole big wide universe. Happy now?


I like Al Franken! I hope he wins the Senate in Minnesota. I've read three of his books but I don't think I've ever mentioned him here.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 05:21 PM
Actually, Robert I do not believe that he had the capability to directly threaten us even with the weapons that we knew that he had at one time. Yes, he was a direct threat to Israel and our allies in the Gulf but he was not known to have weapons systems capable of reaching most of Europe and even further, the U.S. mainland. I am not aware of any conclusive proof that he was directly working with terrorist organizations for the purpose of enabling them to develop chemical weapons they could employ against us. Frankly, I suspect that he would have been too learly of them coming back to be used against him. Remember, this is man who modelled his whole style of government off of the paranioa of Stalin.

Agreed Tom, but (apologies for the tangent here) we do have a duty to protect our allies including Israel. Intelligence before the action strongly supported that Iraq had been giving aid to Al Quaida and other terrorist organizations, that same intelligence stated that Iraq was building up its WMD supply. Although Sadam may not have been able to directly threaten us, he had the ability to help support thase that were attacking us, and yes I do believe he was funneling aid to terrorists. Many now say that intelligence was flawed but I for one am not convinced of that. Now flawed or not, many countries, and both parties here in the USA accepted that intelligence as valid and acted on it. Trying to weasel a way out by blaming someone else for coming to the same conclusion as they did based on the same evidence is disengenouous and cowardly. i will paint with a broad brush in that if you supported the war based on that intelligence and now state that we should never have gone in puts you squarely in the coward catagory. Let's assume for the moment that the intelligence was flawed, the box is now open and we can not just back out and close it. Flawed intelligence or not, good has come from this action and it is not a blankin disaster regardless of what some defeatist socialist may say. I take extreme exception to that and will not stand by while it is accused. If I were on the ground, my job would be to keep it from being a disaster so any allusion to that I would take (and do take) very personally. Perhaps if we truly were the United States and not a bunch of hyphenated, multi cultural, bickering bed wetters we would have what we need to get this job finished. Could you imagine the outrage if all of a sudden rationing for the war were to occurr? People today haven't got a clue.

Too many people are being purely political here. Short story: WE WERE ATTACKED by terrorists loyal to no country. We have done an exceptional job of keeping this from becoming a "religious" war from our end. We are taking the fight to them and WINNING.....yes I said WINNING!!!!!!! We are not over there to make friends although we try with the innocent, we are there to kill people and break things. End of story.

As far as I am concerned the Bush administration has fallen way short of its potential but compared to the alternatives we have been given the current state of affairs is the best we could have hoped for. Bush has failed on the following:

Controlling spending
Cutting social programs
Securing all of our borders
Giving the ground forces sufficient latitude to get the job done quickly (it would have been ugly and bloody but it could have been done)

All republicans are guilty of not governing like a majority but as a bunch of scared school kids around the playground bully.

If I had a magic wand to change our Federal government I would:

Get rid of any program not SPECIFICALLY called for by the constitution
Eliminate Income Tax and institute either the Fair Tax or Flat Tax
Seal our borders
Withdraw from the UN
Initiate term limits for all political offices
Base political pay on the pay one received in the private sector
Institute the same type of benefits the average American has on the politicians
Do whatever it took to maintain the best military in the world


Once again sorry to rant, but Tom I do have a lot of respect for you even though we don't really see quite eye to eye on this and I hope you know me as normally more even keeled than this, but this kind of stuff is what gets my dander up.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 05:32 PM
If one is true then the others are false so there can be only one gospel get it.

Depends on who is doing the preaching and from what book and their own interpitation. I have freedom 'from' religion because I have the right to tell anyone preaching to me about their religion to F off and I have expressed that right a few times and ya know...it felt good. ;) I used it alot when this infidel was told to "convert or die". :evil:

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 05:33 PM
Remember, I was playing Devil's Advocate towards the apparent belief of some psoters that only we Republicans can scare the rest of the world into not attacking us. .

Tom,

I for one don't think that "only Republicans" can do the job (I am a conservative and a Republican only because the Republican party is the closest thing we have to a viable party that somewhat represents my values). What I do think is that we need a leader with courage, resolve to stand up to our enemies, and the intestinal fortitude to carry on in the face of adversity. The Democrats have a couple of people like that but unfortunately Zell Miller and Joe Lieberman have not jumped into the ring. The current crop of Republicans are also less than inspiring. Most of the current Democrats are either from the Carter mold or the Marx mold and I'm not sure which is worse. Most of the Republicans govern from the back bench mentality. I really don't see any Reagans, Lincolns, or Nixons out there (yep I said Nixon, throw out Watergate and he did a pretty good job) nor do I see any JFKs on the other side of the aisle willing to get into the fray. Perhaps if the Libertarians could get their act together................

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 05:51 PM
Depends on who is doing the preaching and from what book and their own interpitation. I have freedom 'from' religion because I have the right to tell anyone preaching to me about their religion to F off and I have expressed that right a few times and ya know...it felt good. ;) I used it alot when this infidel was told to "convert or die". :evil:

Yes you do have that freedom to tell them to blank off, but the one preaching has the right to preach his or her message. You are not free from religion but you are free to choose whether or not to believe. That is freedom of and not freedom from. Freedom from means that the preacher does not have the right to preach to you.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 06:04 PM
Freedom from means that the preacher does not have the right to preach to you.

...or anyone else. I have freedom of any religion being push upon me by anyone. Your right though I don't have freedom from religion because I'm reminded of it everytime I turn on the news of people being blown up in the name of Allah like the incident Sunday that just hit the news today. Two suicide bombers were waved through a checkpoint deemed not a threat because they had two young children in the back seat. They drove straight to a market the two adults jumped out and ran leaving the two children to die...for what? Allah???????????????????????:rolleyes:

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 06:08 PM
Yes you do have that freedom to tell them to blank off, but the one preaching has the right to preach his or her message.

.If they are preaching to me I sure do. They are violating my rights of my freedom of religion. But I do not go into a church and tell a preacher he is violating my rights. People have rights to religion whether to practice it or not to practice it. I will defend both those rights. But no one is going to preach me any hollier-than-though because they think I'm a heathen.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 06:16 PM
...or anyone else. I have freedom of any religion being push upon me by anyone. Your right though I don't have freedom from religion because I'm reminded of it everytime I turn on the news of people being blown up in the name of Allah like the incident Sunday that just hit the news today. Two suicide bombers were waved through a checkpoint deemed not a threat because they had two young children in the back seat. They drove straight to a market the two adults jumped out and ran leaving the two children to die...for what? Allah???????????????????????:rolleyes:

Sam,

I am not an authority on Islam by any means, but it is sad when someone USES their religion to cause so much evil. We Christians do not have clean hands in this either as in the past some have twisted Christianity enough to cause bloodshed as well.

I am a Christian but I will not spread my faith at the tip of the sword (or muzzle of a weapon). I will preach to you if you are willing to hear and I will blank off if that is your desire (not you personally of course, I am speaking in generalities). As a future minister (I pray) my job is to lead people to Christ and inspire them to do the same. That said, the decision to follow Christ has to be a personal one and not a forced one, it has to come from the heart and soul and nowhere else. I can talk to you about Christ, I can tell you how wonderful He is, but you have to make the decision to follow Him.

Now, you just read that so you were once again confronted with religion. Now you are free to think whatever you will about what I said, you may choose to believe me or disregard me, but I was also free to tell you what I told you. This is freedom of religion. Had there been a Federal law that said I could not try to tell you about my faith or if I could be charged in some way for trying to tell you about my faith, that would be freedom from religion.

Hopefully what I said makes sense and you understand the point from which I and a couple others approached this when we stated that there is no freedom FROM religion only freedom of. Yes you (once again not you personally) can be an atheist if you wish but I have the right to express my faith anywhere in public I wish as long as it does not violate some other law as well (i.e. I can't sacrifice a cat on an altar I build on the steps of city hall in the name of religion but I can tell you about my faith on those steps).

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 06:32 PM
Strange but I was about to ask if you were a TV evangalist. Sorry but your way to late. I lost my religion a long time ago but I have never condemned others for practicing what ever religion they want and don't think I'm ignorant of the teachings of the religions in this world. History of the religions has always been apart of the entire history of the world and I love history. Religion is suppose to be about love and tolerence to your fellow man and to me history has proven just the opposite. Do a Yahoo about relgious wars in history. Even the Northern Ireland troubles lasted 30 years, then the 30 Yeras War, the French religious war and the Spanish. Religious wars are a european and a middle east thing. We are involved in such a religious war now so be prepared if we stay the course for it to last alot longer. During our Iron Curtain tenure it was taught that those who governed by the way of Communism were out to convert everyone either by indocternation or by force. Now it's the radical nations of Islam. One political that did not endorse religion and now a religious one out to convert all infidels or kill them in the name of their God. :rolleyes:

sbl
03-20-2007, 07:02 PM
Thomas,

You prompted me to look it up.

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,973012,00.html

"Artillery balloons are essentially balloons that are sent up into the atmosphere and relay information on wind direction and speed allowing more accurate artillery fire. Crucially, these systems need to be mobile."

"The Observer has discovered that not only did the Iraq military have such a system at one time, but that it was actually sold to them by the British. In
1987 Marconi, now known as AMS, sold the Iraqi army an Artillery Meteorological System or Amets for short."

Now here's the tragedy...

"Powell: Mobile labs were for WMD
Thursday, May 22, 2003"

http://www.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/meast/05/22/sprj.irq.powell.trucks/

Then...

"Former aide: Powell WMD speech 'lowest point in my life'"

http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/08/19/powell.un/

"...In one dramatic accusation in his speech, Powell showed slides alleging that Saddam had bioweapons labs mounted on trucks that would be almost impossible to find..."

Readers may wish to "Google" the name "Curveball" as the source of the mobile labs story.

"Lacking Biolabs, Trailers Carried Case for War
Administration Pushed Notion of Banned Iraqi Weapons Despite Evidence to Contrary"

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/04/11/AR2006041101888_pf.html


Since Powell pointed these trailers out at the UN, the Iraqis must have bury them to avoid a bombing ot the the trailers or anything or anyone around them.

reb64
03-20-2007, 07:06 PM
[QUOTE=sbl]Thomas,

No disrepect intended but hey are you the same one selling alot of cavalry gear saying 'life changes". Does that mean you have given up the hobby and no longer a reenactor?

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 07:15 PM
[QUOTE=sbl]Thomas,

No disrepect intended but hey are you the same one selling alot of cavalry gear saying 'life changes". Does that mean you have given up the hobby and no longer a reenactor?

You're right on three accounts

1. It's not disrespectful to ask the question.
2. I am the one selling cavalry gear and
3. Life does change.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 08:23 PM
Strange but I was about to ask if you were a TV evangalist. Sorry but your way to late. I lost my religion a long time ago but I have never condemned others for practicing what ever religion they want and don't think I'm ignorant of the teachings of the religions in this world. History of the religions has always been apart of the entire history of the world and I love history. Religion is suppose to be about love and tolerence to your fellow man and to me history has proven just the opposite. Do a Yahoo about relgious wars in history. Even the Northern Ireland troubles lasted 30 years, then the 30 Yeras War, the French religious war and the Spanish. Religious wars are a european and a middle east thing. We are involved in such a religious war now so be prepared if we stay the course for it to last alot longer. During our Iron Curtain tenure it was taught that those who governed by the way of Communism were out to convert everyone either by indocternation or by force. Now it's the radical nations of Islam. One political that did not endorse religion and now a religious one out to convert all infidels or kill them in the name of their God. :rolleyes:

Sam,

Here we go on another tangent. :-)
Nope no televangelist, in fact I have quite a bit of disdain for most of em. In fact I am certaintly not in this for $$ I have preached at events and at my local church and have never taken a dime for my services. If anyone gave me money at the event, I passed it along to a ministry. Believe me I understand what you mean by losing your religion, I did too and I have turned away from "organized" denominations; I have yet to deal with one that practices what it preaches at the institutional level. This is sort of what has me in a bind, seminaries will not take you unless you are sponsored by a denomination so I am at best a lay preacher. I do have a friend who is a PhD and is mentoring me but it only goes so far. The thing is "religion" is a man made concept and I am not a "religious" person and probably have as many vices as the next guy. The last thing I am is "holier than thou".

I became so disenchanted in my late teens / early twenties that I did not step foot in a church for about 20 years except when I got married or went to a funeral. I still had faith in God, but was not practicing if you know what I mean. Like you though, life changed and I came back and this time felt a call not only to be active in my faith but to actually go behind the pulpit. Can't really explain it but there is a definite "call". Maybe my call is to cut through the BS of most organized religions, who knows. Please understand I am not trying to preach to you this time but trying to say I understand you. Also, it's never too late.....

If you ever want to discuss faith or religion for whatever reason, give me a shout. This offer actually goes out to anyone out there.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 08:40 PM
Sam,




I became so disenchanted in my late teens / early twenties that I did not step foot in a church for about 20 years except when I got married or went to a funeral.


.

Now there we have something in common. Mine ended in the month of my 19th year in Feb 1968 and from 1970-74 I was in alot of churches on funeral details. Since then I've visited churches, cathedrals, monastaries all over for historical reasons only.
I do not consider myself an atheist for I do believe there is a supreme being but I have never allowed anyone to tell me how, when and where to have a conversation with him, not insinuating you. Overall, religion has caused too many deaths in history in the name of whoevers God, much more than in the name of any political leader and/or government.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 08:50 PM
Religion is suppose to be about love and tolerence to your fellow man and to me history has proven just the opposite. Do a Yahoo about relgious wars in history. Even the Northern Ireland troubles lasted 30 years, then the 30 Yeras War, the French religious war and the Spanish. Religious wars are a european and a middle east thing. We are involved in such a religious war now so be prepared if we stay the course for it to last alot longer. :

Sam,

I think if you look at the "religious" wars and dig to the root causation it was the power grab of the aristocracy or government that was to blame more than the religion itself. The "leaders" twisted religion to stir up a fervor among the less educated and used that twisted religion to somehow convince the followers they were doing God's will (sounds kind of like our enemy today). By preserving freedom of religion our founding fathers practically guaranteed that we would not become like that. Our enemy is using religion against us but we have been able to avoid the same thanks to our freedoms. We are not fighting them based on their faith but on their actions. I do agree that this is going to be a long one and I also know that we must stay the course or we will actually prolong it even more. What it will take to end this will not be our military, all they can do is keep it in check, but it will take less radical muslim leaders to wake up and tell their followers that this is not the will of Allah and that the way is not violence but education. Until that time though, there are going to be radicals who want to destroy us and we have to disrupt their efforts.

I'm not saying we can not have victory in Iraq, but we are going to have to maintain a pesence in the middle east and continue to strive for a more stable form of government and yes we may have to go after more countries that harbor and sponsor terrorists such as Iran and Syria. Kuwait is a prime example of what we can accomplish and Afghanistan is approaching that as well. Iraq will also happen but it will take longer for as long as the Shias, Kurds, and Sunnis bicker over their differences. Once they find common ground we will be 90% there. The initial steps have been taken, free and open elections have been held and there is public debate within the Iraqi community as to which direction their government should go. Will they have a US like democracy? Probably not but hopefully they will not choose another dictatorship or theocracy either.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 08:52 PM
Now there we have something in common. Mine ended in the month of my 19th year in Feb 1968 and from 1970-74 I was in alot of churches on funeral details. Since then I've visited churches, cathedrals, monastaries all over for historical reasons only.
I do not consider myself an atheist for I do believe there is a supreme being but I have never allowed anyone to tell me how, when and where to have a conversation with him, not insinuating you. Overall, religion has caused too many deaths in history in the name of whoevers God, much more than in the name of any political leader and/or government.

May I PM you to discuss this? It is quite a fascinating discussion and I think you and I are more alike in this than different.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 09:03 PM
May I PM you to discuss this? It is quite a fascinating discussion and I think you and I are more alike in this than different.

Well since I was granted an audience with the Pope while at the Vatican one year ago last month I shall return the favour and grant you one with me......:D :D

reb64
03-20-2007, 09:37 PM
Now there we have something in common. Mine ended in the month of my 19th year in Feb 1968 and from 1970-74 I was in alot of churches on funeral details. Since then I've visited churches, cathedrals, monastaries all over for historical reasons only.
I do not consider myself an atheist for I do believe there is a supreme being but I have never allowed anyone to tell me how, when and where to have a conversation with him, not insinuating you. Overall, religion has caused too many deaths in history in the name of whoevers God, much more than in the name of any political leader and/or government.


Rules on this board leave one to side step this issue as not to offend, but their is a big difference between the two. religion is like a set of hurdles, a treadmill or rituals, light thisthing walk here or there, 7 times of this or that. true christianity, which has always been underground so to speak and not really represented in denominations, eliminates those hurdles and makes it simple. If you believe in a supreme being then what do you do with the one who claimed to have come from Him and is Him? Unlike others, He claimed to be the only way. Either He was true or false. true others have abused or used christianity for their own purposes but the question remains, what do you do about the claims he set forth? as for religious wars, my mother in law was a dvout Catholic and my wife showed me books she had denouncing the communist regimes. these were vietnam aimed books, she claimed the vietnam war was a catholic presidents attempt to shore up a failed catholic (french regime) and stop communism, a holy war so to speak. It was told to her it was her duty to pray for the communist destrcution and save the church there. this is neither europe or middle east.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 09:51 PM
Rules on this board leave one to side step this issue as not to offend, but their is a big difference between the two. religion is like a set of hurdles, a treadmill or rituals, light thisthing walk here or there, 7 times of this or that. true christianity, which has always been underground so to speak and not really represented in denominations, eliminates those hurdles and makes it simple. If you believe in a supreme being then what do you do with the one who claimed to have come from Him and is Him? Unlike others, He claimed to be the only way. Either He was true or false. true others have abused or used christianity for their own purposes but the question remains, what do you do about the claims he set forth? as for religious wars, my mother in law was a dvout Catholic and my wife showed me books she had denouncing the communist regimes. these were vietnam aimed books, she claimed the vietnam war was a catholic presidents attempt to shore up a failed catholic (french regime) and stop communism, a holy war so to speak. It was told to her it was her duty to pray for the communist destrcution and save the church there. this is neither europe or middle east.

GEEZZZZZZZZZZZZ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Vietnam was not a religious based war and as for the rules of this board it has surprised me that this thread has lasted this long. If you read the up-dated rules of use that the Provost posted recently only CW related would be allowed and no present day political posts would be accepted even in the Whine Celler.

BTW, the french were long gone before we committed combat troops.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 09:53 PM
Rules on this board leave one to side step this issue as not to offend, but their is a big difference between the two. religion is like a set of hurdles, a treadmill or rituals, light thisthing walk here or there, 7 times of this or that. true christianity, which has always been underground so to speak and not really represented in denominations, eliminates those hurdles and makes it simple. If you believe in a supreme being then what do you do with the one who claimed to have come from Him and is Him? Unlike others, He claimed to be the only way. Either He was true or false. true others have abused or used christianity for their own purposes but the question remains, what do you do about the claims he set forth? as for religious wars, my mother in law was a dvout Catholic and my wife showed me books she had denouncing the communist regimes. these were vietnam aimed books, she claimed the vietnam war was a catholic presidents attempt to shore up a failed catholic (french regime) and stop communism, a holy war so to speak. It was told to her it was her duty to pray for the communist destrcution and save the church there. this is neither europe or middle east.

You are more right than you probably realize but you are also right that this is not the best place for the discussion (which is why I took it off line with Sam). Feel free to PM me if you want to explore this idea.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 09:59 PM
GEEZZZZZZZZZZZZ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Vietnam was not a religious based war and as for the rules of this board it has surprised me that this thread has lasted this long. If you read the up-dated rules of use that the Provost posted recently only CW related would be allowed and no present day political posts would be accepted even in the Whine Celler.

BTW, the french were long gone before we committed combat troops.


I'm wondering how long it will be before we hear the pitter patter of Sgt. Pepper's little feet and the jingling of his keys to close the lock. I am as guilty as anyone else here for this diversion from the CW but I too have been wondering how much longer it would last. What started out as a thread about our modern day men and women in uniform quickly degenerated in to a left vs. right debate thanks to one flippant post that I (and a few others)took exception to. I've been trying to figure out how to steer the conversation back but couldn't think of anything. Quite frankly it will surprise me if this entire thread doesn't end up disappearing into cyberspace never to be seen again as it really does nothing to advance the hobby.

Sgt_Pepper
03-20-2007, 11:19 PM
Worry not, Mr. Collett, things aren't completely out of hand yet. This thread isn't the only one that does nothing to advance the hobby, but it is interesting, and as the Whine Cellar is my especial area of responsibility the Provost gives me some leeway in policing it.

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 11:23 PM
Worry not, Mr. Collett, things aren't completely out of hand yet. This thread isn't the only one that does nothing to advance the hobby, but it is interesting, and as the Whine Cellar is my especial area of responsibility the Provost gives me some leeway in policing it.

I thought I heard something down the hall.

Glad we kept it interseting. It could have easily broken down into nothing but name calling. We did poke some fun at each other and rattled each others cages a bit but at least we were able to get some legitimate debate going.

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 11:34 PM
Worry not, Mr. Collett, things aren't completely out of hand yet. This thread isn't the only one that does nothing to advance the hobby, but it is interesting, and as the Whine Cellar is my especial area of responsibility the Provost gives me some leeway in policing it.

The history of world religions is a facsinating subject to study but one must study alone to avoid confrontations but politics on the other hand is a bit harder. One has to weigh through all the lies before you can actually understand politics. That's why I vote as a Buddist Independent...;)

toptimlrd
03-20-2007, 11:51 PM
The history of world religions is a facsinating subject to study but one must study alone to avoid confrontations but politics on the other hand is a bit harder. One has to weigh through all the lies before you can actually understand politics. That's why I vote as a Buddist Independent...;)


Hey......were you the Buddhist monk that gave the "donation" to Algore? :-D

Trooper Graham
03-20-2007, 11:53 PM
Hey......were you the Buddhist monk that gave the "donation" to Algore? :-D

Yip!! it was my money he used to invent the internet and he lied about that too. He said it was his own money. :rolleyes: :D

tompritchett
03-21-2007, 07:54 AM
Our enemy is using religion against us but we have been able to avoid the same thanks to our freedoms. We are not fighting them based on their faith but on their actions.

Unfortunately, there are some in our country and even a few on this board, who seem to imply that we are indeed fighting them based upon their faith. Fortunately, our political leadership has not taken that tact but I have heard some of the rabble rousers come very close to it when they start making claims that our struggle is one between modern civilization and Islam, leaving out the "radical, fundamentalist" qualifiers. There is always the danger that if you start leaving those qualifiers off enough in your speech and writings, sooner or later they will no longer exist in your thoughts either.

tompritchett
03-21-2007, 08:12 AM
Yes you do have that freedom to tell them to blank off, but the one preaching has the right to preach his or her message.

Much of the historical and current dispute over the First Amendment occurs when the preaching appears to be done with the appearance of governmental endorsement. What actually constitutes "preaching" and "endorsement" is what gets the lawyers and courts spinning. Everyone can agree that the amendment gives one the right to practice his or her own religion as long as it does not violate the other laws of the country. It is this freedom from a state-sponsored religion where things get tricky.

For example, if a religion or religious denomination does recognize same-sex marraiges, does the U.S. have the right to impose Judio-Christian restraints via an attempted Constitutional Amendment that invalidate that religion's recognition of the religious institution. Our legal system obviously can choose to recognize such unions for the purpose of property inheritance, transfers during "divorces", parental rights, etc., but can our state legally force a religion to adopt a specific religious definition to such unions? I bring up this example because all the arguments against the legal recognition of such unions are all based upon the religious definitions. I am not wanting to open a debate on same-sex unions but rather am using this issue to illustrate where the separation of church & state can become a more cloudy issue.

tompritchett
03-21-2007, 09:15 AM
Once again sorry to rant, but Tom I do have a lot of respect for you even though we don't really see quite eye to eye on this and I hope you know me as normally more even keeled than this, but this kind of stuff is what gets my dander up.

As far as what I see as failures of this administration in regards to Iraq, irregardless of whether or not the justifications were flawed or not:

1) We went in w/ too few troops (I agree w/ Powell and McCain on this). Yes, we kicked tail big time but we failed to provide adequate security after the fact so that the basic infrastructure could be quickly re-established. Yes, we needed to sweep for terrorists but we also needed to initially act as normal policemen to fill the vacuum left. By not doing this, we allowed the various militias to become a dominant factor as they were the only groups that were providing any policemen types of functions and were often the primary source of many basic support functions. By not quickly filling this vacuum, we also allowed the sectarian violence to escalate and now it is gotten to the point that it is threatening to tear the nation apart.

2) We relied too heavily on DoD contractors and military personell in the beginning. Other agencies should have been involved from the very beginning (e.g., the FBI and various policy academies for training Iraq police forces, U.S. AID for rebuilding infrastructure, etc.). We purged the support infrastructure too deeply of members of Saddam's party. Yes, senior ministers had to go, but middle managers of power stations, sewage treatment plants, garbage collection systems, even city managers should have been allowed to remain in their positions. When the physical infrastructure has been heavily damaged by war, it is no time to bring in a bunch of rookies to rebuild. We relied too heavily on foreign contractors for rebuilding the infrastructure rather than hiring local Iraqee contractors and then supplying them with needed materials (something U.S. AID is particularly good at). When we used foreign contractors, we often froze out some of the most qualified companies because their countries were not "friendly" to the overall effort. Yes, Haliburton is very qualified to fix oil wells and refineries, but, if I had to repair a French built power plant, I would much rather hire the French firm that originally built the plant than an American firm whose primary expertise was in a totally different field.

3) Finally our tactics were not evolving at the highest levels. Several years ago, I remember in reading in Army Times how an Infantry battalion had great success in deploying away from the centralized bases, then clearing a given area, and then maintaining a presence so that the bad guys would not slither back in. Yet, here I am reading just last week how that practice is once again being employed. What happened in the intervening years? Was it not practical because of the number of troops needed? If that was the case, then the senior commanders should have been forcefull in making their cases rather than being beaten down by Rumsfield, a man too smart for his own, or our soldiers, good. Why has it taken this administration to finally admit that, given all the commitments the military has been given, the size of the active component needed to be increased?

Because of 1 - 3, I am not confident that Iraq will ever be stabilized. I truly believe that it could have been, and that, had the right steps been taken very early, Iraq today would have been well on its way, if not already there, to being completely rebuilt and fully functioning at a level beyond where it was before the first Gulf war. In my eyes, that is the disaster - the litany of missed opportunities early in the process, opportunities missed not by the common soldier but by the most senior leadership of the military and executive branch.

4) Finally given the fact that our soldiers were bleeding and dieing for our country in two wars, there should have been a serious effort made much earlier to ensure that our wounded were given the support that they deserved when they got home in terms of proper and consistent permanent disability assessments, proper facilities while still in the military, and proper care and facilities once they were discharged - regardless of whether they were reservists or full-timers. I can understand one to two years to get a proper support infrastructure in place, but not this far into the program. One common thread that I see in this administration is that it tends to be reactive to many issues (i.e., not see a problem and get serious about it until the s**t hits the fan) rather than be proactive (i.e., take strong action to ensure that there never is s**t to hit the fan). When Hilliary made her comment that our soldiers needed their own Bill of Rights, I was not struck that it was Hilliary making the statement (she may very well have been using it just to make political capital) but rather that the statement was there to be made. As a officer, I was taught that my first two priorities were mission and then my men. Unfortunately, I believe today, the top priority of many of our senior military leaders, especially in the Pentagon, is their own careers.

Well, that is my rant for now. As for being a Republican I am more centrist, all-inclusive, environmental friendly in the lines of Christine Whitman rather than ultra-conservative, "my way or the highway" in the lines of a Pat Toomey or Rick Santorium. I also believe in a strong defense where the priorites are, first, taking care of the men and, second, insuring that they have the proper training and equipment such that, when we have to call on them, they will kick as much *ss as possible with minimum loss on their part. Everything else in the Defense budget is gravy and should be governed by what the nation can afford given all its other priorities.

tompritchett
03-21-2007, 09:18 AM
"Artillery balloons are essentially balloons that are sent up into the atmosphere and relay information on wind direction and speed allowing more accurate artillery fire. Crucially, these systems need to be mobile."

Thank you. Being used to firing a 105mm based upon line-of-sight targeting, I had forgotten about that function of artillery balloons.

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 09:51 AM
As far as what I see as failures of this administration in regards to Iraq, irregardless of whether or not the justifications were flawed or not:

1) We went in w/ too few troops (I agree w/ Powell and McCain on this). Yes, we kicked tail big time but we failed to provide adequate security after the fact so that the basic infrastructure could be quickly re-established. Yes, we needed to sweep for terrorists but we also needed to initially act as normal policemen to fill the vacuum left. By not doing this, we allowed the various militias to become a dominant factor as they were the only groups that were providing any policemen types of functions and were often the primary source of many basic support functions. By not quickly filling this vacuum, we also allowed the sectarian violence to escalate and now it is gotten to the point that it is threatening to tear the nation apart.

2) We relied too heavily on DoD contractors and military personell in the beginning. Other agencies should have been involved from the very beginning (e.g., the FBI and various policy academies for training Iraq police forces, U.S. AID for rebuilding infrastructure, etc.). We purged the support infrastructure too deeply of members of Saddam's party. Yes, senior ministers had to go, but middle managers of power stations, sewage treatment plants, garbage collection systems, even city managers should have been allowed to remain in their positions. When the physical infrastructure has been heavily damaged by war, it is no time to bring in a bunch of rookies to rebuild. We relied too heavily on foreign contractors for rebuilding the infrastructure rather than hiring local Iraqee contractors and then supplying them with needed materials (something U.S. AID is particularly good at). When we used foreign contractors, we often froze out some of the most qualified companies because their countries were not "friendly" to the overall effort. Yes, Haliburton is very qualified to fix oil wells and refineries, but, if I had to repair a French built power plant, I would much rather hire the French firm that originally built the plant than an American firm whose primary expertise was in a totally different field.

3) Finally our tactics were not evolving at the highest levels. Several years ago, I remember in reading in Army Times how an Infantry battalion had great success in deploying away from the centralized bases, then clearing a given area, and then maintaining a presence so that the bad guys would not slither back in. Yet, here I am reading just last week how that practice is once again being employed. What happened in the intervening years? Was it not practical because of the number of troops needed? If that was the case, then the senior commanders should have been forcefull in making their cases rather than being beaten down by Rumsfield, a man too smart for his own, or our soldiers, good. Why has it taken this administration to finally admit that, given all the commitments the military has been given, the size of the active component needed to be increased?

Because of 1 - 3, I am not confident that Iraq will ever be stabilized. I truly believe that it could have been, and that, had the right steps been taken very early, Iraq today would have been well on its way, if not already there, to being completely rebuilt and fully functioning at a level beyond where it was before the first Gulf war. In my eyes, that is the disaster - the litany of missed opportunities early in the process, opportunities missed not by the common soldier but by the most senior leadership of the military and executive branch.

4) Finally given the fact that our soldiers were bleeding and dieing for our country in two wars, there should have been a serious effort made much earlier to ensure that our wounded were given the support that they deserved when they got home in terms of proper and consistent permanent disability assessments, proper facilities while still in the military, and proper care and facilities once they were discharged - regardless of whether they were reservists or full-timers. I can understand one to two years to get a proper support infrastructure in place, but not this far into the program. One common thread that I see in this administration is that it tends to be reactive to many issues (i.e., not see a problem and get serious about it until the s**t hits the fan) rather than be proactive (i.e., take strong action to ensure that there never is s**t to hit the fan). When Hilliary made her comment that our soldiers needed their own Bill of Rights, I was not struck that it was Hilliary making the statement (she may very well have been using it just to make political capital) but rather that the statement was there to be made. As a officer, I was taught that my first two priorities were mission and then my men. Unfortunately, I believe today, the top priority of many of our senior military leaders, especially in the Pentagon, is their own careers.

Well, that is my rant for now. As for being a Republican I am more centrist, all-inclusive, environmental friendly in the lines of Christine Whitman rather than ultra-conservative, "my way or the highway" in the lines of a Pat Toomey or Rick Santorium. I also believe in a strong defense where the priorites are, first, taking care of the men and, second, insuring that they have the proper training and equipment such that, when we have to call on them, they will kick as much *ss as possible with minimum loss on their part. Everything else in the Defense budget is gravy and should be governed by what the nation can afford given all its other priorities.

I concur with everything you said. ;)

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 10:03 AM
Much of the historical and current dispute over the First Amendment occurs when the preaching appears to be done with the appearance of governmental endorsement. What actually constitutes "preaching" and "endorsement" is what gets the lawyers and courts spinning. Everyone can agree that the amendment gives one the right to practice his or her own religion as long as it does not violate the other laws of the country. It is this freedom from a state-sponsored religion where things get tricky.

For example, if a religion or religious denomination does recognize same-sex marraiges, does the U.S. have the right to impose Judio-Christian restraints via an attempted Constitutional Amendment that invalidate that religion's recognition of the religious institution. Our legal system obviously can choose to recognize such unions for the purpose of property inheritance, transfers during "divorces", parental rights, etc., but can our state legally force a religion to adopt a specific religious definition to such unions? I bring up this example because all the arguments against the legal recognition of such unions are all based upon the religious definitions. I am not wanting to open a debate on same-sex unions but rather am using this issue to illustrate where the separation of church & state can become a more cloudy issue.

In regards to seperation of church and state...this has eroded over the years and I first blame the church and then the government followed. From endorsing a candidate from the pulpit to the organizing the Christion Coalition into a combined vote which is not much different than unions. Then after establishing such a combined vote usually persuaded from the pulpit poltical candidates actually seek that coalition vote by confessing all sins before declaring their candacy for political office as recently from Newt Ginghrich.
At some point through all of this threats to the church have been made to take away their tax-free status and on this I must agree. The discussion about politics should be restricted to church picnics and not part of a sermon.

Union Navy
03-21-2007, 02:28 PM
Get out the cudgels, so we can beat each other instead of the "enemy." the fact that we can even fight in a "civil" manner about this is a good sign.

I beg to differ on some points previously made. My preacher may try to tell me who to vote for (he never has), but I make up my own mind. Most Christians are not little blank hard drives waiting for the preacher or Rush or Newt to tell them what to think. It's just that many Christians have shared values and priorities that point them in the same general direction. If you can't tell they are Christians by their love, then maybe they're not (no matter what they say). And the true believers do not recognize the word "secular" - it's all God's. But He lets us choose, good and bad.

The rationale I have seen against same-sex marriages has been political and biological, not religious. Our society and culture have the obligation to promote their survival. Same-sex couples do not produce future citizens and taxpayers and veterans. Heterosexual couples do, and their tax and societal advantages should be preserved for those doing the providing. Frequent studies show that families with a mother and father most often produce the most useful and productive citizens.

road_apple1861
03-21-2007, 03:43 PM
I FULLY AGREE WITH YOU! Bush would be doing better if he wasnt tied down by the fricken UN or the anti war people

hanktrent
03-21-2007, 05:11 PM
The rationale I have seen against same-sex marriages has been political and biological, not religious. Our society and culture have the obligation to promote their survival. Same-sex couples do not produce future citizens and taxpayers and veterans. Heterosexual couples do...

So it looks like there's no reason to allow any woman over, say, 55 to marry a new husband, or to allow anyone to marry if they've had a vasectomy, hysterectomy, or for any other medical reason are unable to reproduce.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 05:31 PM
I FULLY AGREE WITH YOU! Bush would be doing better if he wasnt tied down by the fricken UN or the anti war people

The best speech Bush ever made was at the UN where he practically told the UN that they were useless.
I don't think he ever let the UN tie him down.

Union Navy
03-21-2007, 06:22 PM
So it looks like there's no reason to allow any woman over, say, 55 to marry a new husband, or to allow anyone to marry if they've had a vasectomy, hysterectomy, or for any other medical reason are unable to reproduce.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net
Well, I guess it depends on what your perception of the purpose of marriage is. My narrow view is to provide a stable environment for the potential nurturing of children. Not everyone will choose this, or be able to accomplish it, or even wish to. Anything else is just a social contract, and the divorce rate seems to substantiate this. I don't pretend to be objective about marriage, its purposes and benefits, so I'll batten down the hatches and prepare for some strong winds...

hanktrent
03-21-2007, 06:59 PM
Well, I guess it depends on what your perception of the purpose of marriage is. My narrow view is to provide a stable environment for the potential nurturing of children. Not everyone will choose this, or be able to accomplish it, or even wish to. Anything else is just a social contract, and the divorce rate seems to substantiate this. I don't pretend to be objective about marriage, its purposes and benefits, so I'll batten down the hatches and prepare for some strong winds...

I'd agree that legally marriage is just a social contract. Which is why I have trouble finding a reason not to make it available, like most legal contracts, to couples regardless of gender, physical abilities, age (as long as they're old enough to sign a contract), etc. If religious leaders didn't want to perform particular marriages, justices of the peace or the equivalent could do it.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net

reb64
03-21-2007, 09:15 PM
I'd agree that legally marriage is just a social contract. Which is why I have trouble finding a reason not to make it available, like most legal contracts, to couples regardless of gender, physical abilities, age (as long as they're old enough to sign a contract), etc. If religious leaders didn't want to perform particular marriages, justices of the peace or the equivalent could do it.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net


For secular progressives I guess it is just a contract, easliy broken. for me as aChristian its a bonding, spiritually and physically between a man and a woman, like the bible outlines. It is a scared thing and I for one don't want it tainted by those who are trying to make God bow to them instead of them bowing before him. if they want to be joined why isn't a civil union good enough? why do they have to have marriage? Isn't anything sacred anymore?

reb64
03-21-2007, 09:27 PM
[QUOTE=tompritchett]As far as what I see as failures of this administration in regards to Iraq, irregardless of whether or not the justifications were flawed or not:

1) We went in w/ too few troops (I agree w/ Powell and McCain on this).

so did Lincoln in Virginia, Roosevelt in the philipines, truman in korea, kennedy in vietnam and history books speak of their greatness

2) We relied too heavily on DoD contractors and military personell in the beginning.

Right give contracts out to countries who wouldn't help out with the fighting, give a contract to france? maybe, but only to make white sheets as they use these alot when trouble starts.

3) Finally our tactics were not evolving at the highest levels.

entering the civil war I often read of napoleon tactics and then the reading ends with trench warfare and siege.

4) Finally given the fact that our soldiers were bleeding and dieing for our country in two wars, there should have been a serious effort made much earlier to ensure that our wounded were given the support that they deserved

ditto, but then again , even with the flaws what war saw as much care given as the Army does now.

reb64
03-21-2007, 09:41 PM
GEEZZZZZZZZZZZZ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Vietnam was not a religious based war and as for the rules of this board it has surprised me that this thread has lasted this long. If you read the up-dated rules of use that the Provost posted recently only CW related would be allowed and no present day political posts would be accepted even in the Whine Celler.

BTW, the french were long gone before we committed combat troops.



My mother in law has the books, the prayer books w/ prayers to defeat communism. In her church in the sixties, Kennedy was a icon, a catholic knight out to defeat communism. just because you don't think it was a religous war doesn't change the fact that it was taught to her that it was her duty as a ctholic to help defeat communism.. also democrat and catholic congressman mansfield was advocating helping the french and we did give aid and air combat support in the late 50's. the french were there to hand off this to the us, opposed by eike but renewed by Kennedy. the french were not long gone before the us came in, they handed it off literally

toptimlrd
03-21-2007, 09:43 PM
In regards to seperation of church and state...this has eroded over the years and I first blame the church and then the government followed. From endorsing a candidate from the pulpit to the organizing the Christion Coalition into a combined vote which is not much different than unions. Then after establishing such a combined vote usually persuaded from the pulpit poltical candidates actually seek that coalition vote by confessing all sins before declaring their candacy for political office as recently from Newt Ginghrich.
At some point through all of this threats to the church have been made to take away their tax-free status and on this I must agree. The discussion about politics should be restricted to church picnics and not part of a sermon.


Sam,

I agree to a point. One must always maintain their moral compass when choosing a candidate. No the pulpit is not the place for a campaign speech but I would dare say it is the left which is more guilty of this than the right. As far as the Christian Coalition and similar organizations we are guaranteed the freedom of association and if such an association is formed and decides to back a particular candidate then that is in accordance with the law o the land, likewise it should not affect another organizations standing in regards to tax laws. Let's say a group of people from the Happy Forever United Methodist-Baptist-Unitarion Church meet every week after services for fellowship and a member of that group discusses an upcoming election and persuades that group to support that candidate why should that affect the Church's ability to remain non profit and tax free? I can give yo a specific example: In the church I most recently attended as a member, we had a lady and her family who were refugees here after excaping Idi Amin's dictatorship many years ago (her husband was a person of promiinance there and was killed by Amin's military). Her visa was about to expire and was not getting through the red tape to get her status changed to resident alien so that she could apply for citizenship. Our pastor at the time contacted several government officials for help and received the necessary help from one. Once the situation was resolved the pastor did tell the congregation about it and told them who had offered the assistance. Although he stoppd short of stumping for this person he wanted the congregation to know about this situation when deciding who to support in the future. Did he cross the line? I say no as it was simply recognizing the good work of a public servant in regards to a member of the congregation but if the opposition party had heard about it and there were prohibitions against any mention of politics from the pulpit he would be in trouble. Beware of slippery slopes as they often cause more slippage than thought.

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 10:15 PM
My mother in law has the books, the prayer books w/ prayers to defeat communism. In her church in the sixties, Kennedy was a icon, a catholic knight out to defeat communism. just because you don't think it was a religous war doesn't change the fact that it was taught to her that it was her duty as a ctholic to help defeat communism.. also democrat and catholic congressman mansfield was advocating helping the french and we did give aid and air combat support in the late 50's. the french were there to hand off this to the us, opposed by eike but renewed by Kennedy. the french were not long gone before the us came in, they handed it off literally

Back in the 60s communism was every free living christian's number one force to defeat. The strategy of the wars during the 50's and 60's was to defeat the "dominio effect". So catholics didn't have the monopoly on defeating communism.
The first Indo-China War envolved the french against the Viet-Minh from 1946-54. By 1950 the support from the US was with funds and some weapons such as the first use of Napalm but no US ground forces or airforces were involved.
The second Indo-China War was between North and South Vietnam from 1959-1975 with support from nation members of the UN and there we did dropped alot of Napalm.

toptimlrd
03-21-2007, 10:23 PM
[QUOTE=tompritchett]As far as what I see as failures of this administration in regards to Iraq, irregardless of whether or not the justifications were flawed or not:

1) We went in w/ too few troops (I agree w/ Powell and McCain on this).

so did Lincoln in Virginia, Roosevelt in the philipines, truman in korea, kennedy in vietnam and history books speak of their greatness

2) We relied too heavily on DoD contractors and military personell in the beginning.

Right give contracts out to countries who wouldn't help out with the fighting, give a contract to france? maybe, but only to make white sheets as they use these alot when trouble starts.

3) Finally our tactics were not evolving at the highest levels.

entering the civil war I often read of napoleon tactics and then the reading ends with trench warfare and siege.

4) Finally given the fact that our soldiers were bleeding and dieing for our country in two wars, there should have been a serious effort made much earlier to ensure that our wounded were given the support that they deserved

ditto, but then again , even with the flaws what war saw as much care given as the Army does now.

What I think is important to remember in this conflict is that yes mistakes have been made, many things have happened that we did not have contingencies for, and as usual the bueracracy in Washington moves way too slowly. Now having said that I for one am willing to give quite a bit of slack as we are fighting an entirely new kind of war where the enemy does not wear a uniform, swear allegiance to any one government, or fight under the normal rules of engagement. We have no experience in this type of warfare and little or no history on which to build a training regimen. We are basically learning and adapting as we go. We were told very early on that this was going to be a long protracted conflict and that we would have to be prepared for a long bumpy ride. Bush tolld a recent graduating class at West Point that the war started on his watch but would end on theirs. Yes SBL I know some made the comment that the war would be quick and the actual "Iraq War" was very quick. The rebuild and stabilization is what is going to take time. Nope we can't force a democracy or any type of government for that matter, we are doing the right thing by letting the Shias, Kurds, and Sunnis work out their differences the good old fashioned way through debate and political wrangling after all that's how another nation I know of was formed some 231 years ago. Is the war popular? Nope, but neither was the American Revolution but I don't hear anybody (sane) lamenting we are no longer loyal to the crown today. Do we need to do better yes, but we are working towards that now. We have had problems with veteran care, but there have been stories like that for as long as I can remember. For every WRMC story I hear, I also find a story about a wounded veteran getting the latest in medical technology. WRMD was an embarrasement and those responsible are paying for it with their careers. It reminds me of a sign I used to have in my office when I ran an auto center: "Ok, if we refund your money, shoot the manager, and burn the building to the ground, would that satisfy you?" Should it have been caught earlier? probably, but it wasn't and those responsible for the oversight are being held accountable.

I tend to agree with one tenant of Reb 64s statement about offering contracts to those who refused to help in the fight. Why should anyone who was unwilling to make a sacrifice for the cause be rewarded after it? And this comes from someone with the last name of Collett who actually likes going to France from time to time but they and the other so called allies who turned their backs on us (while they were getting the sweetheart oil deals from Sadam) should be locked out on the rebuild.

The administration has made some errors sure, but I haven't seen any plans that would have worked or will work better. To cut and run is ridiculous (and no using the PC tem "redeployment" does not make it any less of a cowardly move). If the current people opposing our fight had been around and in charge of the Continental army in 1776 we would still be raising our cups of tea while declaring "God save the Queen". If they had been in charge of the White House in 1861 we would likely be two countries today after that quagmire and blankin disaster of 1st Bull Run.

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 10:43 PM
[QUOTE=reb64]


we are fighting an entirely new kind of war where the enemy does not wear a uniform, swear allegiance to any one government, or fight under the normal rules of engagement. We have no experience in this type of warfare and little or no history on which to build a training regimen.
.

We are fighting an entire new type of war but not for the reasons you quoted. We not only have experienced "this type of warfare" we invented it and the british did't like it.

The difference being is:
almost 100% of the fighting is being conducted in a populated city and urban inviroment where life goes on daily.
We are now involved with 'relgious' fanatics, a Jihad War. We did run up against fanatic Japanese during WWII that died for a so called living God but the war was a politcal one as a whole.

toptimlrd
03-21-2007, 11:21 PM
[QUOTE=toptimlrd]

We are fighting an entire new type of war but not for the reasons you quoted. We not only have experienced "this type of warfare" we invented it and the british did't like it.

The difference being is:
almost 100% of the fighting is being conducted in a populated city and urban inviroment where life goes on daily.
We are now involved with 'relgious' fanatics, a Jihad War. We did run up against fanatic Japanese during WWII that died for a so called living God but the war was a politcal one as a whole.


Sam,

Touche, I will concede your point. A couple of counterpoints however is that we did not use terroristic tactics and we did have allegiance to a government of sorts albeit one that was being formed as we fought. We did not use children and innocent people as shields. Sorry but I just can't get that story of the two kids blown up out of my head. We at least limited our attacks to legitimate targets and did not "hide" in the populance, just behind trees and bushes.

You hit on something I have been thinking about but have not really talked much about due to the backlash I probably would receive especially with my background and moral code. I do believe in protecting the innocent whenever possible but at what cost do we continue to protect the innocent? You mentioned the Japanese and their commitment to fighting to the end. Their fighting spirit was incredible much like the spirit of our current enemy. At what point do we exercise the final option? To those who have no clue at what I'm talking about when do we use the WMDs we have to end this thing once and for all? How far would we have to take such an action? Japan folded after two such attacks would we have similar results in the middle east? No, I don't think it would break the terrorists, but it should flush them out as the people and governments there wake up and start flushing them for us to prevent any more such attacks. An unpleasant option I admit but one we may have to consider sooner or later. We built these weapons as a deterrent but a deterrent is only good if there is a point at which we will use it. Just like at home, sometimes you have to fumigate to get rid of the infestation. Would we be villified? Probably but we may run out of options eventually.

Trooper Graham
03-21-2007, 11:32 PM
[
Would we be villified?


You better believe we would by the whole world. Our use of WMD is strictly for defensive purposes and not for first strike use.

as for the other, use of different unconventional tactics which was new for the british army.

toptimlrd
03-21-2007, 11:48 PM
You better believe we would by the whole world. Our use of WMD is strictly for defensive purposes and not for first strike use.

as for the other, use of different unconventional tactics which was new for the british army.


Playing devil's advocate here, how would use in this theater differ from Hiroshima and Nagasaki? They attacked us at Pearl Harbor and we took the fight to the South Pacific, they attacked us in New York and Washington and we took the fight to the deserts of the middle east. People scream they want our troops out now, are they ready for the ramifications of such a move? Do we stay the course through a long and protracted operation or do we want a quick and final resolution? Questions which must be answered and difficult questions at that.

If anyone thinks we just pull out and that's the end of it they need to wake up and realize that to pull out will do nothing but delay the end even longer. We will have to win this war or be defeated by it. Here's a big difference between this and Vietnam, the Vietnamese did not want to destroy the United States and western culture as their primary objective, this enemy does. Pulling out will not make them change their mind and they will continue to plan and attempt to take us out. Short term if we pull out we will see Vietnam again with the murders of many innocent people who tried to change Iraq from the inside to make for a better future for themselves and their countrymen. Are we willing to prolong the inevitable escalation of the conflict here at home while condemning tens of thousands or even millions of decent people to a sure unpleasant death? I'm not. I'm game to stay the course or even ramp it up several notches. I am not ready to call for the football ...... yet, but I think we need to keep it as an option. THe rest of the world just needs to get over it, we were the ones that took the brunt of the attacks (no disrespect to Spain and others who felt it too) and we are obligated to do something about it. Yes I do count Iraq as part of the war on terror and to try and change my mind on that would be equivalent to spitting into an 80 MPH headwind. As Roosevelt stated "speak softly and carry a big stick." Well when speaking softly doesn't work, you have to swing that stick.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 12:01 AM
Playing devil's advocate here, how would use in this theater differ from Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

Different time in history with different values and different attitudes.
Just as the world moved on from the Middle Ages and Reformations the world has moved on to today.







They attacked us at Pearl Harbor and we took the fight to the South Pacific, they attacked us in New York and Washington and we took the fight to the deserts of the middle east. People scream they want our troops out now, are they ready for the ramifications of such a move? Do we stay the course through a long and protracted operation or do we want a quick and final resolution? Questions which must be answered and difficult questions at that.


Stay the course but change the tactics. We're dealing with religions now.





Short term if we pull out we will see Vietnam again with the murders of many innocent people


There were no murders in Nam after the pullout. There were some indoctornation camps for some. Vietnam might be communist but it's the most liberal communist regime on earth. This was Vietnam not Cambodia under Po Pot. if you remember it was the Communist Vietnamese that got rid of Po Pot.





"speak softly and carry a big stick." Well when speaking softly doesn't work, you have to swing that stick.

still, another time in history........

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 12:16 AM
still, another time in history........


And we learn from that history, not only what not to do but often what to do as well otherwise we would have to start from scratch on every endeavour. We do move on, cavalry now has tracks instead of hooves, firing rates are several per second instead of three per minute. Some things though hold true through the ages though. I still believe in peace through superior firepower. A rattlesnake shakes its tail so that it does not have to use its venom but it will use it once it feels it has to. The rattlesnake is not evil thoough it is often villified, it just wants to live its life. Sometimes we have to bite as well. Teddy was right in that we do need to carry a big stick and the lessons of Hiroshima and Nagasaki have apparently been forgotten by our current enemy. If you hit me I am not going to hit back with equal force, I am going to try to take you down with one swing, if I am armed I will use that to my advantage as well. One example was when I was in school I played trumpet. A school bully once thought he would have some "fun", he quickly learned that the mouthpiece I had in my pocket was good for more than playing scales and had a blue jaw for several days (I also never had a problem with him again). Life's lessons do carry over to similar events.

As to deaths right after we left Vietnam I will need to trust the words of people I know who escaped shortly after the war. I understand you were there as well but the VC were not exactly known for their compassion. I will admit that some of the stories may originate in Cambodia as well so I will back down slightly on that one.

As to dealing with religions, they are the ones using religion not us. As to changing the tactics, I agree and the whole point of my post. It's time to take the gloves off on these terrorists.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 12:24 AM
As to deaths right after we left Vietnam I will need to trust the words of people I know who escaped shortly after the war. I understand you were there as well but the VC were not exactly known for their compassion. I will admit that some of the stories may originate in Cambodia as well so I will back down slightly on that one.

Those that left Vietnam they left for various reasons just like others today try to get in under the wire. But the thoughts of reprisels never came. They unified. It wasn't the VC that rolled into Saigon that day but it was the NVA. Believe me, Vietnam is a whole lot better off today than it has been in it's whole history. ;)

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 12:27 AM
Those that left Vietnam they left for various reasons just like others today try to get in under the wire. But the thoughts of reprisels never came. They unified. It wasn't the VC that rolled Saigon that day but it was the NVA. Believe me, Vietnam is a whole lot better off today than it has been in it's whole history. ;)


Sam,

As I have never been there I will accept that at face value from someone who has. My overall sentiment is the same though, these terrorist have no compassion or respect for life so I do believe a pull out would cause quite a bit of bloodshed in today's conflict.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 07:23 AM
The first Indo-China War envolved the french against the Viet-Minh from 1946-54. By 1950 the support from the US was with funds and some weapons such as the first use of Napalm but no US ground forces or airforces were involved.

Actually the first Indo-China War started as the OSS armed and otherwise assisted a resistance group fighting the Japanesse occupiers. The groups was the Viet-Minh under the leadership of Ho Chi Minh. As a reward for fighting the Japanesse, we, the U.S. promised Mr. Minh that once the Japanesse were driven out and/or defeated, Vietnam would be given its independence from all occupiers. Unfortunately, once the Japanesse were indeed defeated, the allied colonial powers were allowed to regain control of the territories that they had lost to Japan during the war. Since France was now our allies, we could no longer supply the Viet Nimh with war materials to continue their quest for independence, guess who Mr. Minh turned to for support. And the rest is history.

Interestingly enough that Pol Pot and Vietnam role in overthrowing that regime was also mentioned. We supported Saddam's invasion of sovereign nation (Iran) in a naked grab for territory but when Vietnam invaded Cambodia to end Pol Pott's well documented brutality against his own people (for those younger readers - Pol Pot's slaughter of his own people even makes the bloodbath of Rwanda look tame yet alone Saddam's; it is uncertain exactly what the death toll truly was but it ranges from 1/5 to 1/3 the original population of the country) we strongly condemned Vietnam's actions and actually broke off what little diplomatic ties that we had with the country - all on the principle that Vietnam was invading the sovereignity of a native country. I have never been able to fully understand this contradiction in the application of this principle.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 08:03 AM
Interestingly enough that Pol Pot and Vietnam role in overthrowing that regime was also mentioned. We supported Saddam's invasion of sovereign nation (Iran) in a naked grab for territory but when Vietnam invaded Cambodia to end Pol Pott's well documented brutality against his own people (for those younger readers - Pol Pot's slaughter of his own people even makes the bloodbath of Rwanda look tame yet alone Saddam's; it is uncertain exactly what the death toll truly was but it ranges from 1/5 to 1/3 the original population of the country) we strongly condemned Vietnam's actions and actually broke off what little diplomatic ties that we had with the country - all on the principle that Vietnam was invading the sovereignity of a native country. I have never been able to fully understand this contradiction in the application of this principle.

Tom,

Usually in these things you can follow the money but I am not sure on this one as I am not as well versed on the politics of Vietnam as I should be. I will say however in regards to Iraqu and Iran, there has been a certain level of hostility between us and Iran for quite some time. Iraq was seen as the lesser of two evils at the time (remember the Hostage situation that led up to the Reagan presidency). We saw Iran as a real threat (as we should have) and thought Iraq may be able to overthrow the Ayatollah and we could possibly keep Iraq in check. Didn't work out but it was a good idea at the time that is b iting us in the backside now hindsight being 20/20 and crystal balls being rather fuzzy. I'm not sure if the administration during the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia saw a national interest at that time of having Cambodia overthrown. Politicians will be politicians for the most part and they stick their wet finger into the poitical air to see which way it is blowing before making their "decision". Fortunately there have been several examples of real leaders that do not do this which is why we do see variation on principle through history, it depends on the intestinal fortitude of the officials at the time.

hanktrent
03-22-2007, 08:25 AM
For secular progressives I guess it is just a contract, easliy broken.

It may be hard to believe, but there are non-Christians who are loyal and honest too, and Christians who cheat on their spouses or want divorce to be quick and easy. I'm an atheist, been married only once in my life by a justice of the peace, to the same woman for 16 years, never considered cheating, and plan to stay married to her for as long as we live.

But at this point, the debate isn't about the ease of divorce, or who will cheat, but about the marriage contract itself, and who's allowed to enter into it.


for me as aChristian its a bonding, spiritually and physically between a man and a woman, like the bible outlines. It is a scared thing and I for one don't want it tainted by those who are trying to make God bow to them instead of them bowing before him. if they want to be joined why isn't a civil union good enough? why do they have to have marriage? Isn't anything sacred anymore?

If "marriage" should only be a sacred Christian thing, isn't it already tainted right now by allowing atheists like me to marry? Or allowing non-preachers to perform marriages at all? Or allowing Christians to divorce except perhaps in extreme circumstances? Maybe it needs a bit of cleaning up already.

Hank Trent
hanktrent@voyager.net

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:07 AM
Part I



What I think is important to remember in this conflict is that yes mistakes have been made, many things have happened that we did not have contingencies for, and as usual the bueracracy in Washington moves way too slowly. Now having said that I for one am willing to give quite a bit of slack as we are fighting an entirely new kind of war where the enemy does not wear a uniform, swear allegiance to any one government, or fight under the normal rules of engagement. We have no experience in this type of warfare and little or no history on which to build a training regimen. We are basically learning and adapting as we go.

Very true about this being a new type of war and I will concede that point in regards to the evolution of tactics (although there are amazing parallels to the lessons we are learning now and the lessons we learned in Vietnam, but that is a whole different topic) but I do not accept that argument for the mistakes made in regards to rebuilding the destroyed infrastructure. First, this is not the first war after which the U.S. has had to totally build a country's infrastructure after a devastating war. After WW-II we rebuilt two of them. Yes, I will concede that those countries did not have insurgents who were actively trying to sabatoge the process, but the basic process remains the same. Second, DoD and Franks blew off those in the Administration that had previously wrestled with the problem of what it would take to rebuild Iraq had Bush Senior overthrown Saddam in the first Gulf War. I might also add that the most senior of these that was blown off, Powell, was also the only member of the Administration and Military that actually had had first-hand experience in fighting in a insurgency. Where I come from that level of arrogance is called hubris, what the Greeks called "the pride that goes before the fall". Hubris is also the pride that always results in the ultimate downfall of the heros of Greek tradegies.


We were told very early on that this was going to be a long protracted conflict and that we would have to be prepared for a long bumpy ride. Bush tolld a recent graduating class at West Point that the war started on his watch but would end on theirs. Yes SBL I know some made the comment that the war would be quick and the actual "Iraq War" was very quick.

Unfortunately, all those early comments were made by the most senior members of the Adminstration who were making all the decisions about Iraq. (Also see my later comments about the credibility of this adminstration.) Again, my comment about hubris.


The rebuild and stabilization is what is going to take time. Nope we can't force a democracy or any type of government for that matter, we are doing the right thing by letting the Shias, Kurds, and Sunnis work out their differences the good old fashioned way through debate and political wrangling after all that's how another nation I know of was formed some 231 years ago.

In regards to the political rebuilding of Iraq, on that we agree. My point is that the political process has been severely hampered by our failure after 5 years to restore more than a bare bones, basic service infra-structure. That should have always been a top priority as poverty and lack of the basics typically fuels resentment which just adds fuel to insurgents' fire (Counter-Insurgency 101). Very early (first year) it became clear that one of the insurgent's key military goals was to prevent us from restoring that infrastructure (look at what they were initially attacking) and we let them achieve that objective by ignoring the protection and rebuilding of infrastructure and focussed almost solely on rooting out the insurgents. It wasn't until we conceeded the infrastructure that the insurgents moved to Phase II of their strategy - fueling the sectarian tensions between the two dominant sects in the Baghdad region. Yes, we needed to root out the insurgents, but not at the cost of essentially abandoning the providing security to the rebuilding of the infrastructure. That is when it should have become obvious that more troops would be necessary to conduct both missions. But then, hind-sight is 20/20 - EXCEPT that is what people like McCain were actively stating and that is what Powell had said from the very beginning. IMHO, the reason why this advice was not listened to yet again - hubris on the part of at least Rumsfield and Cheney.


Is the war popular? Nope, but neither was the American Revolution but I don't hear anybody (sane) lamenting we are no longer loyal to the crown today. Do we need to do better yes, but we are working towards that now.

I think one reason that the war is so unpopular, is that many Americans have lost faith with the ability of this administration to "win" it. After all, we were repeatedly told several years ago by all three senior members of the Administration's war cabinet (Bush, Cheney & Rumsfield) that we had won the war, that the insurgents were on their last legs, and such, but we continued to read stories that indicated that, if anything, the situation was getting worse not better. To further undermine the Administration's credibility, we started learning that the "facts" that the administration had presented to the World as justification for the invasion, were often highly biased interpretations of data that more professional intelligence analysts were either backing away from or directly contradicting. The U.S. even had the head of the U.N.'s inspection team fired because he was not finding the "evidence" that we announcing to the world. (As to the question of whether or not Saddam indeed had programs to developing WMD's, the recent data shared with me by GaWildcat indicates that one may very well have been in existence but for some reason, the Administration has not gone public with enough details for an objective evaluation.)

To be frank, after the first two years, it was not until I started hearing reports from this last surge that I actually started having any positive feeling about the potential outcome for the situation. I just hope that this current surge is not too little too late - particularly considering the strain that is putting on branches that may lack the fresh manpower resources to continue it long enough for the results to make a permanent difference. Had this surge occurred in the first or second year when our troops were fresh and most had not already undergone one or two prior deployment, then the story may very well had been different.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:08 AM
Part II

We have had problems with veteran care, but there have been stories like that for as long as I can remember. For every WRMC story I hear, I also find a story about a wounded veteran getting the latest in medical technology. WRMD was an embarrasement and those responsible are paying for it with their careers. It reminds me of a sign I used to have in my office when I ran an auto center: "Ok, if we refund your money, shoot the manager, and burn the building to the ground, would that satisfy you?" Should it have been caught earlier? probably, but it wasn't and those responsible for the oversight are being held accountable.

One of the problems with the whole military health care system actually stems from its very success. In prior wars, including Vietnam, the killed to wounded ratio had consistently run at about 1 soldier killed for every 2 wounded. Because of the military's advances in immediate medical care, that number has been reduced to 1 soldier killed for every 9 wounded - a phenominal increase in the survival rate of injured soldiers. In other words, a great many soldiers that would have died from their injuries in previous wars are now surviving. The flip side of this success though is that these survivors are placing additional and new strains on the medical support services. More and more soldiers, who in prior wars would have killed, are now coming back with permanent disabilities (a trend that the Marine disability retirement data shows but is contradicted by the Army's). Soldiers that once would have been dead now are requiring additional and new mental and physical therapies at rates/soldier never seen before in previous wars. Many of the severe brain injuries, which requires new therapies that have never been in high demand before, of this war are from soldiers in previous wars who would have never lived from their injuries. Unfortunately, it appears that the adminstration was slow to realize this trend and only started really taking serious corrective action after being raked over the coals by the media.


I tend to agree with one tenant of Reb 64s statement about offering contracts to those who refused to help in the fight. Why should anyone who was unwilling to make a sacrifice for the cause be rewarded after it? And this comes from someone with the last name of Collett who actually likes going to France from time to time but they and the other so called allies who turned their backs on us (while they were getting the sweetheart oil deals from Sadam) should be locked out on the rebuild.

Why? Because they built the d*mn things in the first place. One of the early comments that came back about many of the infrastructure systems in Iraq is that most of them were custom built using components from many different countries. In many cases, the in-country blueprints for these systems had been destroyed and the only other set of originals were with the company that built them. Now imagine that you have a custom built high-performance European race car whose designers incorporated parts and design features from Jacqueer, Fiarri (sp?), Mercedes, etc. Now also imagine this car been severely damaged in a wreck and you need to get it repaired before the next race. Are you going have the original designers repair the car or are you going to take it in to your local Chevy dealer? IMHO, we tried to do the latter in trying to rebuild some of the major infrastructure systems in Iraq, especially with the power plants.

[/quote]The administration has made some errors sure, but I haven't seen any plans that would have worked or will work better. To cut and run is ridiculous (and no using the PC tem "redeployment" does not make it any less of a cowardly move). If the current people opposing our fight had been around and in charge of the Continental army in 1776 we would still be raising our cups of tea while declaring "God save the Queen". If they had been in charge of the White House in 1861 we would likely be two countries today after that quagmire and blankin disaster of 1st Bull Run.[/QUOTE]

Yes, the administration made errors, the most serious being not utilizing enough troops to stabilize the country while simultaneously rebuilding the infrastructure. Unfortunately, the administration can not claim that no one suggested more troops were indeed necessary as Powell made that point even before they went in and McCain was hammering the point very early into the conflict. However, the administration, in its hubris, blew them off and initially tried to sell this country that, as far as the military conflict was concerned, the light was just around the corner.

As far as cutting and run, I do not necessarily advocate that as long as there is indeed hope that the situation is salvagable. However, if there is hope, we need to stop playing games and do all that it takes to get the job done. Either we do it right or we don't do it at all. To do otherwise, wastes too much precious blood of our American servicemen and women. And if we realize it is indeed hopeless, we need to get the h*ll out as rapidly as possible and forget about this "with honor" load of bull. When I heard Cheney use the phrase, it brought back a quote from Kissinger that I once read where he stated that very early in Nixon's first year in office, he and Nixon realized that we could not win in Vietnam and they decided that the U.S. need some way to get out "with honor". While they were looking for that "with honor" exit, more American lives were lost there than in all the years prior. In other words, their lives and blood were not spilt for the sake of trying to achieve a victory but rather so American politicans could save face. God, I hope American blood won't end up being spilt in Iraq for the same reason.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:14 AM
You better believe we would by the whole world. Our use of WMD is strictly for defensive purposes and not for first strike use.

In the past yes. However, there has been considerable dissent by the many of our most senior military commanders about supposed White House pressure to seriously plan for the use of nuclear bunker buster warhead in a first strike attack on Iran underground Uranium enrichment and processes. In fact, according to one recent article I saw, it has gotten to the point that some of these commanders, possibly including members of the Joint Chief of Staff, have warned the White House that they will immediately tender their resignations if such an order is given by the President.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:26 AM
But at this point, the debate isn't about the ease of divorce, or who will cheat, but about the marriage contract itself, and who's allowed to enter into it.

Actually, the debate was not about the marraige contract or same-sex unions but rather the government trying to legally ban a religious sacrament recognized by as such by some minority denominations and sects, because it is counter to the beliefs of the majority of the Christian denominations (I am including Catholism as a denomination of Christianity for this discussion because, IMHO, it is a group of Christians following a specific set of interpretation of the Gospell) within the country. I raised this issue of the government trying to legislate a religious belief because the original discussions of exactly what does separation of church and state, as defined in the First Amendment, mean when applied to more gray areas of interpretation.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 09:26 AM
Actually the first Indo-China War started as the OSS armed and otherwise assisted a resistance group fighting the Japanesse occupiers.
.

I think your refering to just one area of southeast area that was fought over during WWII. All reference to the First Indo-China War or the French Indo-China War began in 1946. We supported the Huks in the Phillipines too during WWII and they are still a problem today in the Phillipines for the government. They were real active during the 60s and 70s.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:40 AM
I think your refering to just one area of southeast area that was fought over during WWII. All reference to the First Indo-China War or the French Indo-China War began in 1946.

Yes, I was indeed referring to the Vietnamese resistance movement in WW II - because you can't truly understand the French Indo-China war startin 1946 without first understanding the roots of that resistance and the betrayal of those resistance fighters by the Allies (betrayal in terms of broken promises and commitments) in the years between the Japanese surrender and the actual outbreak of hositilities. It also helps understand why Ho Chi Minh came under the influence of the Soviets, thus setting up the whole scenario for the "dominos" argument. Interestingly enough it was Nixon as VP who drove the final nail in the coffin that resulted in Castro turning to the Soviets for aid and again falling into their sphere of influence. He had actually had the opportunity to make an economic ally of Castro's Cuba before Castro turned to the Soviet's for help and Nixon basically blew it because of his own personal biases. But then, that too is another story for another day.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 09:45 AM
Yes, I was indeed referring to the Vietnamese resistance movement in WW II - because you can't truly understand the French Indo-China war startin 1946
.

...and for those unaware why China is communist today and not a republic like Chang set up on Tiawan. No doubt, communism get their best foothold in the world at the end of WWII with the help from the US and it's allies.

Malingerer
03-22-2007, 10:13 AM
Iraq didn't have WMD's? As I recall, when I was stationed near the Saudi/Iraqi border during Operatin Desert Storm Sadam had a fondness for launching Scud missiles at us. Almost nightly. If a Scud isn't a WMD, then what is? And what about the mobile chemical lab they found burried out in the sand? Bottom line is, something had to be done, and Bush did something. I'll not badmouth our leadership one bit...I've seen the end of a tyrant, the freedome of a nation, and no more attacks on U.S. soil. What more do you want?

Pvt. Joe Snell
49th Ind. Vol. Inf.

Formerly SP4 Joe Snell
3rd Division
Leaders worthy of our troops.
“I had other priorities in the 60's than military service” **** Cheney
Peter Julius
Bryson City,NC

MStuart
03-22-2007, 10:44 AM
December 3, 1969 - While still in England, Clinton writes to Lt. Col. Eugene Holmes, , commander of the University of Arkansas ROTC Program and states, "From my work I came to believe that the draft system is illegitimate ... I decided to accept the draft in spite of my beliefs for one reason - to maintain my political viability."

Lot's of that going around in the 60's.

Military service isn't a requirement for anyone......but it IS an honor.

Mark - No political affiliation

Malingerer
03-22-2007, 11:05 AM
No disrespect intended, but I think you are missing the point- or at least my point. Cheney and his ilk are quite willing to sacrifice the lives of thousands of our bravest and finest young people while calling those who question the viability of this fiasco, 'unpatriotic'. The arrant hypocracy of the right has a tendancy to p**s me off. Our troops deserve better than these clowns.
Peter Julius
centrist

MStuart
03-22-2007, 11:09 AM
Peter: No offense taken. I was pointing out that "hypocracy" knows no one ilk or political affiliation.

Has anyone else noticed that we're spending an inordinate (IMHO) amount of bandwidth discussing this war as opposed to "ours"?

Mark

flattop32355
03-22-2007, 11:25 AM
Has anyone else noticed that we're spending an inordinate (IMHO) amount of bandwidth discussing this war as opposed to "ours"?
Mark

Has anyone else noticed that there's not been much of serious discussion about "our" war even on the threads "about" it? Don't know if it's just the grumpy season, but if I see one more ghost or similar type post, I think I'm gonna go postal.

MStuart
03-22-2007, 11:32 AM
Easy there, fella!!!!! ;-)

The last thing we need is an outraged dentist. I have this nightmare that the next time I go, my dentist will keep asking me "is it safe?"

In any event, I agree with you.

Mark

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 04:25 PM
Has anyone else noticed that we're spending an inordinate (IMHO) amount of bandwidth discussing this war as opposed to "ours"?

Mark

Questioned it myself but Sgt. Pepper seemed happy witht the discussion so it continues......

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 04:31 PM
No disrespect intended, but I think you are missing the point- or at least my point. Cheney and his ilk are quite willing to sacrifice the lives of thousands of our bravest and finest young people while calling those who question the viability of this fiasco, 'unpatriotic'. The arrant hypocracy of the right has a tendancy to p**s me off. Our troops deserve better than these clowns.
Peter Julius
centrist

Peter,

Don't take this personally.

I guess I may be part of that ilk. I recall a past commander in chief who while in college wrote to an ROTC department that he "abhorred" the military. At least Cheny has respect for the men in uniform. Once sworn into military service you have affirmed that you are willing to die for whatever mission the commander in chief sends you on whether you like it or not. To say you support the troops but don't support the mission is an insult to me as to be a troop, my overall mission is to kill people and break things either directly or indirectly. This whole support the troops but not the mission nonsence is to make the morons of the 60s who gave so much grief to our troops returning from Vietnam avoid having the type of backlash they rightly deserved. If someone were to say such a thing to me when I was serving I would less than politely tell them where they could stick their support and likely help them do so.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 04:33 PM
=

Military service isn't a requirement for anyone......but it IS an honor.

Mark - No political affiliation


Amen my friend!

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 04:40 PM
Part I



Very true about this being a new type of war and I will concede that point in regards to the evolution of tactics (although there are amazing parallels to the lessons we are learning now and the lessons we learned in Vietnam, but that is a whole different topic) but I do not accept that argument for the mistakes made in regards to rebuilding the destroyed infrastructure. First, this is not the first war after which the U.S. has had to totally build a country's infrastructure after a devastating war. After WW-II we rebuilt two of them. Yes, I will concede that those countries did not have insurgents who were actively trying to sabatoge the process, but the basic process remains the same. Second, DoD and Franks blew off those in the Administration that had previously wrestled with the problem of what it would take to rebuild Iraq had Bush Senior overthrown Saddam in the first Gulf War. I might also add that the most senior of these that was blown off, Powell, was also the only member of the Administration and Military that actually had had first-hand experience in fighting in a insurgency. Where I come from that level of arrogance is called hubris, what the Greeks called "the pride that goes before the fall". Hubris is also the pride that always results in the ultimate downfall of the heros of Greek tradegies.



Unfortunately, all those early comments were made by the most senior members of the Adminstration who were making all the decisions about Iraq. (Also see my later comments about the credibility of this adminstration.) Again, my comment about hubris.



In regards to the political rebuilding of Iraq, on that we agree. My point is that the political process has been severely hampered by our failure after 5 years to restore more than a bare bones, basic service infra-structure. That should have always been a top priority as poverty and lack of the basics typically fuels resentment which just adds fuel to insurgents' fire (Counter-Insurgency 101). Very early (first year) it became clear that one of the insurgent's key military goals was to prevent us from restoring that infrastructure (look at what they were initially attacking) and we let them achieve that objective by ignoring the protection and rebuilding of infrastructure and focussed almost solely on rooting out the insurgents. It wasn't until we conceeded the infrastructure that the insurgents moved to Phase II of their strategy - fueling the sectarian tensions between the two dominant sects in the Baghdad region. Yes, we needed to root out the insurgents, but not at the cost of essentially abandoning the providing security to the rebuilding of the infrastructure. That is when it should have become obvious that more troops would be necessary to conduct both missions. But then, hind-sight is 20/20 - EXCEPT that is what people like McCain were actively stating and that is what Powell had said from the very beginning. IMHO, the reason why this advice was not listened to yet again - hubris on the part of at least Rumsfield and Cheney.



I think one reason that the war is so unpopular, is that many Americans have lost faith with the ability of this administration to "win" it. After all, we were repeatedly told several years ago by all three senior members of the Administration's war cabinet (Bush, Cheney & Rumsfield) that we had won the war, that the insurgents were on their last legs, and such, but we continued to read stories that indicated that, if anything, the situation was getting worse not better. To further undermine the Administration's credibility, we started learning that the "facts" that the administration had presented to the World as justification for the invasion, were often highly biased interpretations of data that more professional intelligence analysts were either backing away from or directly contradicting. The U.S. even had the head of the U.N.'s inspection team fired because he was not finding the "evidence" that we announcing to the world. (As to the question of whether or not Saddam indeed had programs to developing WMD's, the recent data shared with me by GaWildcat indicates that one may very well have been in existence but for some reason, the Administration has not gone public with enough details for an objective evaluation.)

To be frank, after the first two years, it was not until I started hearing reports from this last surge that I actually started having any positive feeling about the potential outcome for the situation. I just hope that this current surge is not too little too late - particularly considering the strain that is putting on branches that may lack the fresh manpower resources to continue it long enough for the results to make a permanent difference. Had this surge occurred in the first or second year when our troops were fresh and most had not already undergone one or two prior deployment, then the story may very well had been different.


Tom,

I give you credit, you have at least thought through this unlike so many others. I just have a totally different perspective and disagree with you which is OK. This is the type of debate that will lead to solutions instead on the ridiculous attacks on persons that most of the anti war / anti administration peanut gallery uses.

At the end of desert storm, I came home and told my wife that the quick and easy victory we had was one of the worst things that could happen as now so many people will expect 100 hour wars. We are now in a real conflict that is ugly and difficult but winnable and my prediction is coming true, many people simply have no concept of what sacrifice is. This has been easy so far considering the relative light casualty and death rate for our men and women.

As to other countries such as France not being let in on reconstruction, with our technical abilities and expertise if we can't figure out how they got something to work then we are in trouble. If nothing else, start from the ground up. Either that or make them do it at cost only and get zero return on the project.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 05:15 PM
Peter,

To say you support the troops but don't support the mission

.

I support the troops and believe in the mission but not the leadership of this administration to win it and I'll bet you a penny to a pound that it's the true belief also of the troops there and especially of the ones there for the third, fourth and fifth time.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 07:03 PM
I support the troops and believe in the mission but not the leadership of this administration to win it and I'll bet you a penny to a pound that it's the true belief also of the troops there and especially of the ones there for the third, fourth and fifth time.


Sam,

That is a horse of a different color. I am specifically referring to those in Washington with the yellow streak that say "I support the troops but we need to bring them home now and we shouldn't be there (even though I voted to send them in the first place too)".

The leadership of the administration is what it is at this point. Bush was elected Commander in Chief and the congress voted to give him the authority to do what is being done. We owe it to the troops to provide the support to the administration to see that the job is done and we win. 2008 is coming and we can voice our approval or disapproval at that time but let's not politicize the mission itself and I think you would agree with that.

Criticizing the administration on specific tenents of their management AND offering legitimate alternatives is one thing but blasting the operation in its entirety is another IMHO. Of course most of those criticizing are simply saying "I could do better" without telling us how.

If I may, let me spell out my problem with the opposition in this situation. What I am hearing is rhetoric such as "bring them home now", "It's a quagmire", etc. Also I hear so called "friends" of the military making slips and insulting them like Kerry did in his speech where he referred to them as less intelligent. Legitimate discourse is one thing. Why don't they come out and say that we disagree with the way Bush is running the war, we have some ideas and would like to discuss them. As long as the goal of both is to win this action which both parties agreed to then we still show strength to the enemy. In the current climate such rhetoric as I mentioned above only shows the enemy that we are very divided and that emboldens the enemy. Peter alluded to the unpatriotic issue, I don't think many can argue that legitimate disagreement is unpatriotic, but the type of rhetoric I have been hearing from many in the opposition leadership does border on it in my opinion. People like you, Peter, Tom, and others are reasonable and legitimate in your discussions which does not bother me in the least and we have dialouge. When it breaks down to political posturing I have little use, need, or respect for it.

Milliron
03-22-2007, 07:17 PM
At the end of desert storm, I came home and told my wife that the quick and easy victory we had was one of the worst things that could happen as now so many people will expect 100 hour wars. We are now in a real conflict that is ugly and difficult but winnable and my prediction is coming true, many people simply have no concept of what sacrifice is. This has been easy so far considering the relative light casualty and death rate for our men and women.

On this, Mr. Collett, we can agree. It occurred to me at the time of Desert Storm that now the U.S. public was going to expect a 100 hour TV war every time and that real sacrifice was going to be a wholly different matter if it ever came to that again. I do agree that the casualty rate has been relatively low (although the rate of wounded is higher than in the past). While I have nothing but sympathy for those men and women and their family members who have lost their lives or been wounded, this war hasn't really been brought home to most people. Everyone who has gone has volunteered and (presumably) knew what they were getting into. You simply don't have a family on every street with a loved one lost in the war.

That said, I have to wonder what public opinion would be if the reverse were true. I've heard an awful lot of sabre-rattling from chair-warriors and chicken hawks. I have a feeling the public would be far less likely to support this war if all of a sudden their kids, husbands, fathers and wives started coming home in metal boxes by the thousands. The fact that that mercifully that hasn't happened (yet) does not make the war any more legitimate. Military families will always do their duty, and we know that, but would the American public be so keen to go to war if the burden wasn't just borne by the volunteer army and their families? I doubt it, and that's where the rubber meets the road.

I have respect for anyone who has served in the military and to me their opinion on the matter counts for more than those who have not. However, I have seen a lot of people who would not step up be very willing to volunteer those who do. Unfortunately, many of those people happen to be members of the current administration. This is very much a "rich man's war, poor man's fight," to invoke our forum. If I believe that our highly skilled and valuable military is being squandered by those who would not go themselves, am I not supporting those people by opposing the way they are being used, even if I do not support the operation at large? Troops are not in a position to protest this misuse. As a citizen, don't I support the troops by speaking up where they may not?

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 07:32 PM
On this, Mr. Collett, we can agree. It occurred to me at the time of Desert Storm that now the U.S. public was going to expect a 100 hour TV war every time and that real sacrifice was going to be a wholly different matter if it ever came to that again. I do agree that the casualty rate has been relatively low (although the rate of wounded is higher than in the past). While I have nothing but sympathy for those men and women and their family members who have lost their lives or been wounded, this war hasn't really been brought home to most people. Everyone who has gone has volunteered and (presumably) knew what they were getting into. You simply don't have a family on every street with a loved one lost in the war.

That said, I have to wonder what public opinion would be if the reverse were true. I've heard an awful lot of sabre-rattling from chair-warriors and chicken hawks. I have a feeling the public would be far less likely to support this war if all of a sudden their kids, husbands, fathers and wives started coming home in metal boxes by the thousands. The fact that that mercifully that hasn't happened (yet) does not make the war any more legitimate. Military families will always do their duty, and we know that, but would the American public be so keen to go to war if the burden wasn't just borne by the volunteer army and their families? I doubt it, and that's where the rubber meets the road.

I have respect for anyone who has served in the military and to me their opinion on the matter counts for more than those who have not. However, I have seen a lot of people who would not step up be very willing to volunteer those who do. Unfortunately, many of those people happen to be members of the current administration. This is very much a "rich man's war, poor man's fight," to invoke our forum. If I believe that our highly skilled and valuable military is being squandered by those who would not go themselves, am I not supporting those people by opposing the way they are being used, even if I do not support the operation at large? Troops are not in a position to protest this misuse. As a citizen, don't I support the troops by speaking up where they may not?

Bob,

First of all, call me Robert as Mr. Collett is my dad.

Perhaps this can put in perspecive from my point of view. Would I be willing to send a loved one into this? My 17 year old son is preparing for what he hopes will be a military career and I fully support him. I pray he makes it through safely but I understand and can live with the fact that there is a real chance he may come home in a box one day, such is the life of a warrior. If I were able I would be there very willingly today. I also have a number of friends who are active duty, some who have just "reupped" and volunteered to keep fighting. I talk to them and hear the pride they have for the job they are doing in Iraq from building schools to getting the infrastructre back up. I really don't hear the negativity that is so often reported.

Under your definition of "chair warriors and chicken hawks" I wonder where I fit in. I volunteered for Desert Storm but was found medically ineligible shortly after reporting for duty. I did spend 4 jears in JROTC and one year of ROTC preparing for what I had hoped would be a military career. This is not to become argumentative bu these terms are some of the rhetoric that gets bantered around yet nobody will ever say what they really mean.

When we went into Iraq, it was almost a unanimous decision by both parties that it was necessary, all had access to the same intelligence and all came to the sme conclusions. There has been quite a bit of backpedaling since then but it was what it was at the time. This was something we went into with eyes wide open knowing that once we committed there was really no turning back. I would also add that many in the opposition are equally devoid of such service as many point to the administration as not having. I recall after 9/11 the President stating that we would hunt down terrorists no mater where they hid in the world and nobody questioned him then. I know this will sound callous but we are a representative republic, we elect people to represent us in such decisions so it is their job to speak up and ours to tell them what we think. Our speaking should be at the ballot box. If we do not like what our representatives are doing then we have the right of redress by determining whather or not they continue to represent us. Correct me if I am wrong but we were in Iraq when the current administration was elected. Like it or not that is the way the government works.

By the way, I heard a report earlier this evening that President Bush's nephew (Jeb's son) just signed up with the Navy as an intelligence officer.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 07:59 PM
Sam,

That is a horse of a different color. I am specifically referring to those in Washington with the yellow streak that say "I support the troops but we need to bring them home now and we shouldn't be there (even though I voted to send them in the first place too)".



The above is really not a horse of a different color. The campaign trail has begun and election year again is soon upon us. All politicians change color when the propects of political office with sparkles in their eyes.




The leadership of the administration is what it is at this point. Bush was elected Commander in Chief and the congress voted to give him the authority to do what is being done. We owe it to the troops to provide the support to the administration to see that the job is done and we win. 2008 is coming and we can voice our approval or disapproval at that time but let's not politicize the mission itself and I think you would agree with that.



Speaking as a soldier in a soldier's way of thinking, and not as an officer, I have no confidence after four years in the leadership of 'this' CinC or his administration. Making mistakes is normal and sometimes tragic in warfare, but not correcting them is negligence.




Criticizing the administration on specific tenents of their management AND offering legitimate alternatives is one thing but blasting the operation in its entirety is another IMHO. Of course most of those criticizing are simply saying "I could do better" without telling us how.



Are you talking about the operation or the mission? Two different things. I support the mission. the initial operation to remove Saddam was conducted in a swift and professional military operation. There it ended. We do not know how to pacify a country. We sure know how to rebuild one but not pacify it and to rebuild this one it has to be pacified first. Christian pacification will not work on the Muslims. If that had been so it would have worked during the Crusades.




If I may, let me spell out my problem with the opposition in this situation. What I am hearing is rhetoric such as "bring them home now", "It's a quagmire", etc. Also I hear so called "friends" of the military making slips and insulting them like Kerry did in his speech where he referred to them as less intelligent.


Kerry's words really didn't bother me. I heard them before. We were suppose to be the less educated and the poorest 43-52 years ago. Coming from Kerry it didn't really bother any old soldiers because he is not respected among Vietnam vets especially Navy vets.




George Patton was a great military commander. He won many a battle but he did so by studying his adversaries. I'm sure we had all the intellegence we needed about the Iragi commanders and units, we sure had the fire power domination and we won but we failed to see beyond on own face of all that has followed.

Don't change the mission...change the tactics...leave the war to those more qualified to win it. I know of another nations leader that insisted on running the show and not leaving it up to those trained and with experience to conduct it.

Milliron
03-22-2007, 08:04 PM
Under your definition of "chair warriors and chicken hawks" I wonder where I fit in. I volunteered for Desert Storm but was found medically ineligible shortly after reporting for duty. I did spend 4 jears in JROTC and one year of ROTC preparing for what I had hoped would be a military career. This is not to become argumentative bu these terms are some of the rhetoric that gets bantered around yet nobody will ever say what they really mean.

Nobody that showed up is in my mind, a chicken hawk. My best friend is a (former?--once a Marine, always a Marine) USMC reservist. He was activated for DS, spent two days literally sitting a runway, and was stood down because the show was essentially over. He's never gotten over it and you can bet nobody would dare call him a chicken hawk (not unless they wanted a mouthful of fist, anyway)

I guess my point is that believe it or not, a lot of people oppose the war for the sake of the troops. I realize they didn't ask for that, and I believe that by and large, the troops believe in their mission. FWIW, I have talked to more than one who has recently come home quite disillusioned, so I don't think that feeling is universal. It's galling to be told that unless you support the war, you don't support the troops, because it's the troops many of us have in mind.


Our speaking should be at the ballot box. If we do not like what our representatives are doing then we have the right of redress by determining whather or not they continue to represent us. Correct me if I am wrong but we were in Iraq when the current administration was elected. Like it or not that is the way the government works.

And so we were in 1864. I think the same logic applies here. Whatever you thought, the public believed that chaos would ensue if there was a change of President during wartime. The public was probably right both times, but that didn't make the war right (at least now, IMO--the ACW is whole 'nother animal). I don't believe the public elected the current administration so much because they believed in the war, only that continuity was probably best. And I think it's fair to say those folks have a fair case of buyer's remorse. You are correct that that is how our government works--it's a large ship, and damned hard to turn on a dime. What I wish for is an executive who was interested in building a consensus in our government and our nation. What was it Shelby Foote pointed out? What Americans do best is compromise? You wouldn't know it from where I sat for the last seven years.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 08:10 PM
The above is really not a horse of a different color. The campaign trail has begun and election year again is soon upon us. All politicians change color when the propects of political office with sparkles in their eyes.



Speaking as a soldier in a soldier's way of thinking, and not as an officer, I have no confidence after four years in the leadership of 'this' CinC or his administration. Making mistakes is normal and sometimes tragic in warfare, but not correcting them is negligence.



Are you talking about the operation or the mission? Two different things. I support the mission. the initial operation to remove Saddam was conducted in a swift and professional military operation. There it ended. We do not know how to pacify a country. We sure know how to rebuild one but not pacify it and to rebuild this one it has to be pacified first. Christian pacification will not work on the Muslims. If that had been so it would have worked during the Crusades.



Kerry's words really didn't bother me. I heard them before. We were suppose to be the less educated and the poorest 43-52 years ago. Coming from Kerry it didn't really bother any old soldiers because he is not respected among Vietnam vets especially Navy vets.




George Patton was a great military commander. He won many a battle but he did so by studying his adversaries. I'm sure we had all the intellegence we needed about the Iragi commanders and units, we sure had the fire power domination and we won but we failed to see beyond on own face of all that has followed.

Don't change the mission...change the tactics...leave the war to those more qualified to win it. I know of another nations leader that insisted on running the show and not leaving it up to those trained and with experience to conduct it.

I am only referring ot the operation and yes I disagree with the administration on several issues. Those who doubt the mission are the ones that are causing the main problem in accomplishing it.

One reason I do give at least some benefit of the doubt today is because of people I know who are in service now who still have a vision for what it is we need to acomplish and report that they are happy with the way things are going. I am not convinced that the reports we hear are all that balanced. I agree with changing the tactics, during this phase our troops have one hand tied behind their back and have not been allowed to be as effective as they could be. I think we are trying to pacify and not in the "Christian' sense as you allude to. We are letting the Iraqis work out their government as long as it is in a peaceful way. This is what has to be done although it will be a slow process. if we attempt to speed it up we will be seen more as developing a puppet government there than we are today. Iraq has to work out its differences between sects on its own and we have to respect their decisions.

Trooper Graham
03-22-2007, 08:28 PM
.

One reason I do give at least some benefit of the doubt today is because of people I know who are in service now who still have a vision for what it is we need to acomplish and report that they are happy with the way things are going.



it was said in an earlier post on this thread about today having an all volunteer military force. Your statement above applies also. if we didn't have an all volunteer force there would not of had so many approvals to go into Irag would not have materilized. The first Irag War yes but not this one. The inner thoughts today from politicians is just that, hey!!! they volunteered !!!! There is that old piece of advice that every soldier gets from his buddies "never volunteer". That's after your in on inner happenings. Politicians see it differently.








I think we are trying to pacify and not in the "Christian' sense as you allude to. We are letting the Iraqis work out their government as long as it is in a peaceful way.



A christian backed force disposed of Saddam. A christian back government set up free elections. In the eyes of many the present iraqi government is a pupit of a christian government. Won't work.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 08:31 PM
Nobody that showed up is in my mind, a chicken hawk. My best friend is a (former?--once a Marine, always a Marine) USMC reservist. He was activated for DS, spent two days literally sitting a runway, and was stood down because the show was essentially over. He's never gotten over it and you can bet nobody would dare call him a chicken hawk (not unless they wanted a mouthful of fist, anyway)

I guess my point is that believe it or not, a lot of people oppose the war for the sake of the troops. I realize they didn't ask for that, and I believe that by and large, the troops believe in their mission. FWIW, I have talked to more than one who has recently come home quite disillusioned, so I don't think that feeling is universal. It's galling to be told that unless you support the war, you don't support the troops, because it's the troops many of us have in mind.



And so we were in 1864. I think the same logic applies here. Whatever you thought, the public believed that chaos would ensue if there was a change of President during wartime. The public was probably right both times, but that didn't make the war right (at least now, IMO--the ACW is whole 'nother animal). I don't believe the public elected the current administration so much because they believed in the war, only that continuity was probably best. And I think it's fair to say those folks have a fair case of buyer's remorse. You are correct that that is how our government works--it's a large ship, and damned hard to turn on a dime. What I wish for is an executive who was interested in building a consensus in our government and our nation. What was it Shelby Foote pointed out? What Americans do best is compromise? You wouldn't know it from where I sat for the last seven years.

Thanks for clarifying that chicken hawk statement. Not everybody serves in the service but many serve in other ways but that is another discussion.

As to whether or not the war is (was) right, I believe it was and is. I understand the need to ferret out those who declared war on us many many years ago and just recently (9/11) were able to act on it. Justification and authority to go into Iraq was mishandled admittedly. We concentrated too much on WMDs, terrorist connections, etc. (all of which are legitimate in my opinion) but the real authorization was from Sadam's refusal to conform the the UN requirements he agreed to at the end of Desert Storm. I don't want to get the political debate stirred up too much but I would be remiss if I did not look at the eight years under Clinton as bing dismal in this respect. Had Clinton enforced the UN resolutions we would likely not be having this discussion today. Clinton was more interested in world opinion than in doing the right thing. We must keep in mind that much of the world opinion on this was fueled by "backdoor" deals for oil (Oil for food). We should have gone in long before we did. We knew Bin Laden was responsible for the first attack on the WTC yet all we did was send a cruise missile in that did nothing. We had at least a few opportunities to take Bin Laden yet we let him go claiming "no legal authority". Bush is far from perfect but he is at least taking the threat seriously.

Do I believe Bush used the war on terror to a certain point to enforce the UN resolutions? Yes, but he was well within his rights to do so. Before we point too many fingers at the administration for going into Iraq we have to remember that it was the same Democrats that are now distancing themselves that also wanted to go in. No hands are clean on that one. Kerry "If you do not believe Sadam Hussein is a real threat then don't vote for me". Senator Clinton was all over the media bragging about her support when we pulled Sadam out of his rat hole. We can possibly question the tactics used and management, but the mission is one we really can not question with any real integrity.

To be honest I hope this is just the beginning, Syria and Iran also are part of this issue and harbor terrorists. We have to find a way to break their (the terrorists) spirit to really win this. If you read my earlier posts you will find that I do question many of the administrations decisions in the handling of the mission but I do not question the mission at all.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 08:42 PM
it was said in an earlier post on this thread about today having an all volunteer military force. Your statement above applies also. if we didn't have an all volunteer force there would not of had so many approvals to go into Irag would not have materilized. The first Irag War yes but not this one. The inner thoughts today from politicians is just that, hey!!! they volunteered !!!! There is that old piece of advice that every soldier gets from his buddies "never volunteer". That's after your in on inner happenings. Politicians see it differently.





A christian backed force disposed of Saddam. A christian back government set up free elections. In the eyes of many the present iraqi government is a pupit of a christian government. Won't work.

And many continue to volunteer.

As to the second point. What do you propose? We are what we are. We are staying out of the political system as much as possible. I remember seeing all of the proud people showing their ink stained fingers. I see muslims working on their own government. Will some see it as a puppet? Sure, but what's the alternative? I recently heard a report where he Iraqi people prefer when the US is supplying security vs. the Iraqu military and police. We have to get the Iraqis up to speed and they have to pull their own weight. It seems to me they are using us as a crutch in many cases. One of the big things we have to show them is that we are not the enemy they have been told we are. We do that by letting Iraq get back on its feet and slowly back out as they are truly ready for us to. It is not going to be easy and anyone who thought it would be was fooling themselves.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:09 PM
At the end of desert storm, I came home and told my wife that the quick and easy victory we had was one of the worst things that could happen as now so many people will expect 100 hour wars.

On that we definitely agree. However, your point caused me to wonder if it wasn't just the American people that got spoiled in this manner. I seriously wonder if that is not part of the problem with the Administration at the time they decided to invade, especially in terms of the premature declarations of victory and what I view as lack of proper planning for the long-term rebuilding of the country.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 09:15 PM
On that we definitely agree. However, your point caused me to wonder if it wasn't just the American people that got spoiled in this manner. I seriously wonder if that is not part of the problem with the Administration at the time they decided to invade, especially in terms of the premature declarations of victory and what I view as lack of proper planning for the long-term rebuilding of the country.


Could be Tom. I do like to think though that they were spot on on the quick victory. Even I was surprised at how quickly the Baathists crumbled and we pulled Sadam out. I'm even more surprised that Sadam has already had his necktie party.

To me we won the battle. the problem is we are no better at closing the Iraqi borders than we are our own and these insurgents are continuing to stream in. Hopefully this is also part of the master plan to keep them off balance.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:22 PM
As to other countries such as France not being let in on reconstruction, with our technical abilities and expertise if we can't figure out how they got something to work then we are in trouble. If nothing else, start from the ground up. Either that or make them do it at cost only and get zero return on the project.

I am not arguing that it could not be done. The process is called reverse engineering and then re-design. The problem is that these steps take time - sometimes as much as a few years. If, besides securing the country, your mission is to rebuild the infrastructure as quickly as possible why accept that delay. It is a question of priorities of missions - making a political statement or getting the country up and running as quickly as possible. This administration used one set of priorities, I would have used another.

On a slight side note, France was not the only foreign country whose contractors were initially frozen out on the rebuilding contracts in favor of Haliburton. English contractors were also frozen out (last I heard they went in with us and still there) and it caused some harsh language to come out of Tony Blair's office about their exclusion. In fact, if I remember correctly, it took some frank, direct dialog from Blair to Bush before any British firms were allowed to become involved.

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:29 PM
Could be Tom. I do like to think though that they were spot on on the quick victory.

I guess that I saw Iraq as a two-fold problem, as I think did Powell: first, overthrow Saddam and, second, establish a stable society and government. Yes, we did indeed do the first part quickly, but we definitely have a way to go on the second part. My point was that I sincerely wondered that the adminstration thought that, because the first Gulf War was decided so quickly, both missions would likewise be accomplished quickly rather than just the military otherthrow of Saddam's government.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 09:36 PM
I guess that I saw Iraq as a two-fold problem, as I think did Powell: first, overthrow Saddam and, second, establish a stable society and government. Yes, we did indeed do the first part quickly, but we definitely have a way to go on the second part. My point was that I sincerely wondered that the adminstration thought that, because the first Gulf War was decided so quickly, both missions would likewise be accomplished quickly rather than just the military otherthrow of Saddam's government.

Personally I think one of the best suggestions on the table is a three way split of the country with each sect receiving an equal share of the oil revenue. Each sect already self segregates for the most part so this would be relatively easy to do. It would require more trust than they are willing to give each other now but it could work.

As to Brit contractors, I agree they should have been there from the start. I havenot heard about them being locked out also so I will need to research that one.

BTW, Don't y'all wish our politicians could have this civil a debate about this without becoming so shrill?

tompritchett
03-22-2007, 09:43 PM
Personally I think one of the best suggestions on the table is a three way split of the country with each sect receiving an equal share of the oil revenue. Each sect already self segregates for the most part so this would be relatively easy to do. It would require more trust than they are willing to give each other now but it could work.

At this point, it may ultimately be the only way to end the sectarian violence. It is my understanding that things are fairly stable in the Northern Kurduish region and in the Southern, prodominently Shia regions. Of course, setting up a semi-autonomous Kurdish sector in the North is really going to upset the Turks as they have been resisting internal pressure to do the same in their Kurdish sector. Unfortunately, I am not sure how big of a hammer they have to influence such decisions because of their control of major oil pipelines running from the Gulf to Europe.

toptimlrd
03-22-2007, 09:47 PM
At this point, it may ultimately be the only way to end the sectarian violence. It is my understanding that things are fairly stable in the Northern Kurduish region and in the Southern, prodominently Shia regions. Of course, setting up a semi-autonomous Kurdish sector in the North is really going to upset the Turks as they have been resisting internal pressure to do the same in their Kurdish sector. Unfortunately, I am not sure how big of a hammer they have to influence such decisions because of their control of major oil pipelines running from the Gulf to Europe.


But by giving the Kurds a "homeland" it may resolve the Turkish issue as well by allowing the Kurdish populance that wants the separation to move to the new "Kurdishstan" or whatever they end up calling it.

What do you think of the odds in the Sunni triangle as that seems to be the wild card in this?

HighPrvt
03-23-2007, 10:01 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/meast/03/23/iran.uk.reut/index.html

Now it's time to put a quick end to this. I certainly hope our Government has what it takes to deal with this swiftly, and decisively. Iran is, and always has been the main source of Islamic terror, time to kill the roots of this **** weed.

tompritchett
03-23-2007, 10:43 AM
But by giving the Kurds a "homeland" it may resolve the Turkish issue as well by allowing the Kurdish populance that wants the separation to move to the new "Kurdishstan" or whatever they end up calling it.

The problem as the Turks reportedly have seen it is that their Kurds will want to secede from Turkey to join the new Iraqi based Kurdish homeland - much like Texas did from Mexico.


What do you think of the odds in the Sunni triangle as that seems to be the wild card in this?

Very good question. Unfortunately, as I understand it, although specific neighborhoods and areas are becoming less and less mixed, these "pure" neighborhoods are still intermixed in terms of Shittes and Sunnis. Again, as I understand it, to fully divide Iraq into Sunni only and Shitte only regions, there would have to be mass transplanting of whole neighborhoods from one region to another. Of course, that is ultimately what happened in the former Yugoslavia, but that process was definitely not pretty.

But it is a very good question and I agree with you what ultimately happens in the Sunni triangle and the general region around Baghdad will determine the future stability of Iraq and, IMHO, the success or failure of our overall efforts to bring stability to the government and country.

flattop32355
03-23-2007, 03:43 PM
Personally I think one of the best suggestions on the table is a three way split of the country with each sect receiving an equal share of the oil revenue.

Before you do that, read up on the results of a similar solution when Pakistan broke off from India. Lots of upheaval, violence (from two supposedly "peaceful" religions), displacement, etc.

Add into that mix the folk who want to keep it all stirred up and boiling for their own purposes.

Can it work? Sure, if all are willing to make it so. But not if anyone, including outside influences, doesn't want it to.

As for the Turkish Kurds moving to an Iraqi Kurdistan en masse, I wouldn't be too sure the two groups wouldn't have some arguments amongst themselves, even if you could convince them to try it. I'd more expect the Turks to want to tack on their semi-autonomous slice of Turkey to Kurdistan rather than abandon their homelands.

Any solutions will be bloody. It's just a matter of whose blood, and how much.

tompritchett
03-23-2007, 05:35 PM
Now it's time to put a quick end to this. I certainly hope our Government has what it takes to deal with this swiftly, and decisively. Iran is, and always has been the main source of Islamic terror, time to kill the roots of this **** weed.

I would suggest that we let the Brits take the lead on this but give them all the support they need - and be very public about both. After all, it is there soldiers. Remember, the current administration in Iran specifically likes to rattle his saber at the U.S. to drum up public support among the populace. If it does come to a military operation to free the marines, the world will see it as a British operation to free their own rather than as just another example of the U.S. trying to impose its views on the rest of the world. We can definitely help the operation to any level the Brit's ask for, but let''s let them take the credit.

tompritchett
03-23-2007, 06:00 PM
As to Brit contractors, I agree they should have been there from the start. I havenot heard about them being locked out also so I will need to research that one.

I just remember it coming up during one the British/American summits during the first year of the war. Must have been resolved, because it disappeared out of the press afterwards. BBC or Guardian websites might have something about it in their archives.

[/quote]BTW, Don't y'all wish our politicians could have this civil a debate about this without becoming so shrill?[/QUOTE]

It might make our government flow much smoother and without generating the hard feelings that seem to permeate much of modern politics. Unfortunately (I know I always seem to use that phrase) it seems that many in this country have lost the ability to accept and even respect that others can have opinions and views that differ from theirs. When presented with those differing views, they seem to feel threatened as they often launch into emotion filled tirades where they call each other names and generally hurl insults all without bothering read or listen closely to the others' points. I also find that this problem is not unique to any one side of the political spectrum but typically, but not always, becomes more prevalent the more extreme one gets on either side.

Personally, I would rather actually listen to what the other person is saying and respond accordingly. Every now and then, I learn something new and definitely learn to look at the issue from another viewpoint. I may not agree with that viewpoint but I can then understand where the other person is coming from and, when appropriate, respect the values and intellect that went into developing that viewpoint. (Obviously, if I detect that an individual is merely emotionally mouthing off sound bites and media over-generalizations - all of which he or she has never bothered to question or attempt to verify, those are the instances where I have little respect for the individual. In fact, I have an older brother who, with his wife, fit in that category.)

Our discussion/debate has definitely fallen in the class of respectful discussions where each has listened carefully to the others viewpoint even though we have not always agreed. I have found the overall discussion enlightening, much in the spirit of the forum guidelines, and wish that other areas of contention more in line of our common hobby could be discussed in like manner.

HighPrvt
03-23-2007, 07:05 PM
I would suggest that we let the Brits take the lead on this but give them all the support they need - and be very public about both. After all, it is there soldiers. Remember, the current administration in Iran specifically likes to rattle his saber at the U.S. to drum up public support among the populace. If it does come to a military operation to free the marines, the world will see it as a British operation to free their own rather than as just another example of the U.S. trying to impose its views on the rest of the world. We can definitely help the operation to any level the Brit's ask for, but let''s let them take the credit.

While I respect your opinion, I completely disagree. The Brits, and Iraq for that matter, are just pawns in this game. The Iranians are public enemy number one, and as long as we play games with them we'll get nowhere.
Let just say that it's too bad we don't have a team led by Patton, and Mac Aurthur, and a military still strong enough to get the job done. Just my $0.02

A few hundred cruise missiles would be a nice start.

I'd say more but I'm getting ready for a reenactment :).

tompritchett
03-23-2007, 08:12 PM
The Brits, and Iraq for that matter, are just pawns in this game.

Personally, I think that the Brits would be offended to be called pawns in this game. Trust me, the Brits are well capable of dealing with this issue as they see fit. I am not saying that nothing should be done nor that we should not be involved, but rather let the Brits decide what is an appropriate response to this latest Iranian provocation. We can express our outrage and offer our public assurances that we will support whatever actions they decide is appropriate, to include military support, but let's let the Brits decide on what is an appropriate response to the insult that was given to them. To do anything less or more could be considered to be equally insulting to them as that would imply to the world that the Brits are incapable of dealing with the problem themselves.

Just my two cents.

toptimlrd
03-23-2007, 09:42 PM
I heard a great qoute today in a discussion about the British sailors and marines. The Iraq war has been over for quite a while and we are now fighting Iran only we are doing it in Iraq. A bit of hyperbole but quite a bit of truth in it.

jthlmnn
03-24-2007, 08:54 AM
Let just say that it's too bad we don't have a team led by Patton, and Mac Aurthur, and a military still strong enough to get the job done.

Patton AND MacArthur!? In the same theater!? Are there, even today, enough cameras and news outlets to keep the two of them happy? :) Personally, I'd stick with a Patton and leave a MacArthur at home. My opinion of Mac is similar to that of President Truman. "Mr. Prima Donna, Brass Hat, Five Star MacArthur. He's worse than the Cabots and the Lodges—they at least talked with one another before they told God what to do. Mac tells God right off. It's a very great pity we have stuffed shirts like that in key positions. I don't see why in **** Roosevelt didn't order Wainwright home and let MacArthur be a martyr. We'd have had a real General and a fighting man if we had Wainwright and not a play actor and a bunco man such as we have now."
(As quoted by Michael Schaller in, The American Occupation of Japan (Oxford, 1985)

All that aside, How wise would it be for us to open a THIRD theater of operations? What gave me unease when the saber-rattling began about Iraq was that we were already heavily engaged in Afghanistan, one of the toughest areas in the world. Invaders from Alexander the Great to the Soviet Union found it to be more than they could handle. Military wisdom from way back states that you don't fight a war on two fronts unless you are absolutely forced into it. Didn't strike me as good timing or planning then and events have not caused me to change my opinion. A THIRD theater could only make an already bad situation worse.

Of course the conspiracy theorists in Iran already believe that they are the real target of our operations. After all, we invade Afghanistan (on their eastern border), then, under questionable circumstances, we invade Iraq (on their western border). Small wonder that the Iranian government is feeling a bit paranoid. The radicals have believed, since the 1979 revolution, that the U.S. would love to return and install another Shah. Our current operations lend credence to that belief and cause people who would otherwise be our friends to stand behind the radicals (or at least keep quiet). Since the British installed the first Shah, I don't know as they are perceived with any less suspicion than the U.S. (who installed the second Shah). Its time for cooler heads to prevail. The last thing we need is more people to fight.

MHO

Trooper Graham
03-24-2007, 09:16 AM
Patton AND MacArthur!? In the same theater!? Are there, even today, enough cameras and news outlets to keep the two of them happy? :) Personally, I'd stick with a Patton and leave a MacArthur at home. My opinion of Mac is similar to that of President Truman. "Mr. Prima Donna, Brass Hat, Five Star MacArthur. He's worse than the Cabots and the Lodges—they at least talked with one another before they told God what to do. Mac tells God right off. It's a very great pity we have stuffed shirts like that in key positions. I don't see why in **** Roosevelt didn't order Wainwright home and let MacArthur be a martyr. We'd have had a real General and a fighting man if we had Wainwright and not a play actor and a bunco man such as we have now."
(As quoted by Michael Schaller in, The American Occupation of Japan (Oxford, 1985)





MHO

I think the reference to Patton and MacAuther was do to both their attitudes towards any, at that time, upcoming threats, Russia and North Korea/China. All communist. Mac was held back by Congress and chastized and so was Patton.
As far the 'Prima Dona" syndrome, they both had it but that was their character. Some generals have it and still lose, those two didn't. They kicked arse and knew how to do it in the eyes of a soldier and not a politician who should stick to politics and learn to butt out when they fail with negotiations and result with military actions. They can't play both games.

flattop32355
03-24-2007, 08:39 PM
The Brits, and Iraq for that matter, are just pawns in this game.

Anyone who plays chess, whether literally or figuratively, knows that there is no such thing as "just a pawn". Played well, that pawn can be promoted to queen, or can pin down a section of the board so effectively that the opponent cannot manouver.

And I doubt the citizens of Great Britain believe themselves to be just pawns of the USA.

tompritchett
03-25-2007, 01:10 AM
Patton AND MacArthur!? In the same theater!?

It is my understanding that if, we had indeed invaded Japan, MacArthur would have been the overall Allied groundforce commander with Patton and Montgomery as the overall commanders for the American and British troops, respectfully (Bradley would be left in Europe to command U.S. forces remaining after the war). In some ways we may have been very lucky that the Japanese did surrender after the two A-bombs because could you ever imagine a command structure with more conflicting and potential conflicting, over-powering ego's. I do have to admit though, it would have been interesting to see what MacArthur's reaction would have been when either Montgomery and Patton got into yet another p****g contest or Montgomery had yet another attack of attitude where he either thought the whole war should revolve around him or he tried to take full, public credit for a major victory by both Allied Armies such as he tried to after the Germans were stopped at the Battle of the Bulge (literally he almost lost his command before Churchill, at Roosevelt's request, made him issue an apology to Ike).

reb64
03-25-2007, 09:35 AM
While I respect your opinion, I completely disagree. The Brits, and Iraq for that matter, are just pawns in this game. The Iranians are public enemy number one, and as long as we play games with them we'll get nowhere.
Let just say that it's too bad we don't have a team led by Patton, and Mac Aurthur, and a military still strong enough to get the job done. Just my $0.02

A few hundred cruise missiles would be a nice start.

I'd say more but I'm getting ready for a reenactment :).

todays military is stronger than ever, hence taking iraq and afghan in a few days with lower than past wars casulaties. as for Iran Britain should sink their entire navy in a show of force

tompritchett
03-25-2007, 12:03 PM
as for Iran Britain should sink their entire navy in a show of force

Not a bad idea. Send in the SAS to pull the marines out and then slap them hard by sinking their navy (or least a significant portion of their major ships in Iran's Northern fleet) as not only punishment but as a preventative measure to keep it from happening again - the latter being the easier to defend world-wide. Even better for the rest of the world, it is not the U.S. that is taking the action and sending the message that future such behavior on Iran's part will not be tolerated by the rest of the world.

Definitely an idea worth further consideration.

carpe cerevisi
03-25-2007, 01:24 PM
...With all the time Saddam had thanks to the UN bs there's no wonder mass weapons didn't turn up...supposedly, there is evidence that the wmd's were either buried, as we have been consistently reminded, or that they were moved across the border into syria. i believe either explanation. you can hide a great deal of hardware under a desert.

i think a good example of how well the desert hides its secrets lies in the valley of the kings in egypt. many people thought there were no more tombs to left find there and they were wrong.

Trooper Graham
03-25-2007, 02:41 PM
Not a bad idea. Send in the SAS to pull the marines out and then slap them hard by sinking their navy (or least a significant portion of their major ships in Iran's Northern fleet) as not only punishment but as a preventative measure to keep it from happening again - the latter being the easier to defend world-wide. Even better for the rest of the world, it is not the U.S. that is taking the action and sending the message that future such behavior on Iran's part will not be tolerated by the rest of the world.

Definitely an idea worth further consideration.

No doubt Iran doesn't know about the Falklands Islands or Argentina. Of course britian had the Iron Maiden then and we had Ronnie...both arse kickers. ;)