In Iraq, the best we can expect from a very bad mistake

“As a candidate for president, I pledged to bring the war in Iraq to a responsible end. I made it clear that by August 31, 2010, America’s combat mission in Iraq would end. And that is exactly what we are doing — as promised and on schedule.”

– President Barack Obama, in a speech
before the Disabled Veterans of America here in Atlanta.

By the end of this month, U.S. forces in Iraq will have drawn down to roughly 50,000 troops, and those remaining will no longer take part in combat missions.  “The hard truth is we have not seen the end of American sacrifice in Iraq,” Obama said in his speech today. “But make no mistake, our commitment in Iraq is changing — from a military effort led by our troops to a civilian effort led by our diplomats.”

While that’s a step worth noting — and certainly worth taking — any suggestion that we have achieved victory in Iraq would be an exaggeration.  We have reduced the level of violence in that country at least temporarily and have given the Iraqi people a chance at some form of democracy, but after seven years, hundreds of billions of dollars and  4,400 American lives,  it is impossible to trust the permanence of anything we’ve accomplished there.

This is simply the best we can expect from a very bad mistake.

308 comments Add your comment

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
12:47 pm

When you’ve made the transition from “liberation” to “occupation”—which we did about seven years ago—any talk of winning is rather silly.

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
12:50 pm

(I realize that by calling ours an occupying force, Zell Miller may feel compelled to fling spittle at me on national TeeVee. It’s the personal risk I’m willing to take, to present these Deep Thoughts.)

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
12:50 pm

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
12:50 pm

Home?

(if so I’ll go downstairs and call Squirrels…)

TaxPayer

August 2nd, 2010
12:52 pm

A trillion dollar a year DoD expenditure of taxpayer money sure don’t buy you much these days. This calls for a tax cut.

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
12:52 pm

GDI, quit fiddle f*cking around and bring them home. Is it supposed to lessen the emotional impact to a family if their son or daughter was killed in other than combat situations? Give me a break. Bush’s War, Obama War, who cares. IT’S A STUPID LOSS OF GOOD AMERICAN LIVES, PERIOD!!

Now, let’s talk Afghanistan…Paying warlords to protect supply lines,
Lessing expectations of success, Rules of Engagement, Oh hell yes, let’s do stay there and waste even more American lives…That’ll bring in the votes…

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
12:53 pm

GDI, quit fiddle f*cking around

Gross Domestic Iraqis?

HG3

August 2nd, 2010
12:54 pm

Now – let’s work on getting that last 50,000 home.

ty webb

August 2nd, 2010
12:54 pm

“This is simply the best we can expect from a very bad mistake.”

jay, just for clarification, is the “mistake”, the war in iraq or Obama?

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
12:55 pm

Stands,
How ’bout gawddammit, or a close proximity there of… :)

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
12:57 pm

TY,
Why do you want to go there, the war was/is Bush’s, major goof.

ty webb

August 2nd, 2010
12:58 pm

Normal,
okay, rah rah!

David S

August 2nd, 2010
12:58 pm

We are never leaving Iraq. Obama is a liar. We have built an occupational outpost disguised as the biggest embassy the world has ever seen. Vatican City is not even as large. We killed hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqi’s all to line the pockets of the military industrial complex and Obama is simply perpetuating all of Bush’s war crimes through his own administration.

Afghanistan will be no different. We are certainly not safer as a country for all of the bloodshed and killing.

Doggone/GA

August 2nd, 2010
1:03 pm

“We are never leaving Iraq.”

Where, in what Jay quoted, did Obama say we WERE leaving?

Granny Godzilla

August 2nd, 2010
1:05 pm

This is a good thing.

Michael

August 2nd, 2010
1:05 pm

Well, finally some good news on that front. It’s obvious to anyone with a pulse that this war never should have happened in the first place. Worse, lots of lives (both American and Iraqi) are impacted forever. And as much as people like to point at Obama for adding to the national debt, the long term cost of this war is estimated by the CBO to be $3 TRILLION! Thank you G-dub.

Now, if we can only change our approach to Afghanistan. I strongly believe that thinking we can mold a rugged, isolated, and largely agrarian country into a functioning democracy is pure fantasy. We’re a first world nation and ours barely works! Aghanistan will always be a nation ruled more or less by tribal code. So instead of throwing more troops at the problem to mount a Vietnam style “partrol, search, destroy” campaing, leave the day to day security to the Afghans. Our role should be limited to more precision operations. Special forces/intel people on the ground, airstrikes, drone surveillance, etc. That’s the way you combat increasingly mobile terrorists, not with a huge standing army.

finn mccool

August 2nd, 2010
1:06 pm

2700 us failies destroyed on 9-11, countless iraqi families destroyed in 7 years…and they weren’t even responsible?

A new low for america!

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:06 pm

I’ll agree with David S… though I don’t blame this on Obama… it’s simply our “standard operating procedure”… let me know when we get out of Germany… or Japan….

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:08 pm

Normal…i left you a “response” downstairs. ;-)

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
1:15 pm

Saul,
From below…A keeper!!

:lol:

Peadawg

August 2nd, 2010
1:16 pm

Wow. 2 years in office and FINALLY some good news. Better late then never!!!!!

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
1:16 pm

no mistake, better to be drawing down in Iraq than surging, but I take exception to the use of the word “sacrifice”? by whom? the Americans and families of Americans who have died or been seriously wounded, so that Bush could run a jobs program for mercenaries, oil executvies and the always present Haliburton? or, does he mean “sacrifices” on the part of American taxpayers who are on the hook for this never-ending boondoggle (see: South Korea)? and does it really matter if we draw down in Iraq, but ramp up in AfPak?

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:17 pm

“We have reduced the level of violence in that country at least temporarily and have given the Iraqi people a chance at some form of democracy, but after seven years, hundreds of billions of dollars and 4,400 American lives, it is impossible to trust the permanence of anything we’ve accomplished there. This is simply the best we can expect from a very bad mistake.”

Jay, I’m sure you’ll accuse me of being a Pollyana, but let’s review the situation in Iraq before the US stepped in:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_in_Saddam_Hussein%27s_Iraq

Toss into the mix the fact that their oil production was crippled due to their non-compliance with the UN-mandated nuclear inspections, and I believe that an invasion was justified. Are thing perfect there? Heck no, but at least they have a chance at a better future. My hope is that some of the other repressive Middle Eastern regimes will take notice and improve the conditions in their own back yards before Uncle Sam comes a knockin’.

Like it or not, the US is the defacto World Police. Are we guilty of “selective enforcement” based upon our own economic interests? Yes, but that still doesn’t invalidate the mission in Iraq.

Southern Comfort

August 2nd, 2010
1:18 pm

I guess that’s one campaign promise that appears on track to be kept. Oh well…

btw…

Thanks for removing that post downstairs Jay. I saw that and had an OMFG moment. I hate to end my visit here on those kind of moments.

See y’all later…

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
1:21 pm

I can’t remember who asked about combat pay down stairs, and I don’t know if the rules have changed or not, but in my day(Viet Nam) you only had to spend six days a month in the combat zone to receive combat pay. This did not mean that you had to be in combat, but just in the war zone. A Navy skivvy scrubber on an air craft carrier, eating three hots and sleeping in a clean cot, watching movies every night while eating ice cream would qualify if his ship was doing air ops off the coast….and that’s the way it was…

Mr Right

August 2nd, 2010
1:24 pm

it is impossible to trust the permanence of anything we’ve accomplished there.

Yes you are right but also we should not trust the permanence of what we have here in the U S with the government taking over whatever they can . What we have done in Iraq at least gives them a chance!!

Outhouse GoKart

August 2nd, 2010
1:24 pm

We should bomb the hell out of Iraq until surrender then make Iraq the 58th State.

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:30 pm

“I guess that’s one campaign promise that appears on track to be kept. Oh well…”

Oh…and never mind that of ALL the previous presidents who promised that they were going to DO something about Health Care… he kept that promise as well…

In fact…he’s KEPT 121 of them so far:

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:30 pm

“And in my opinion, because I can fully relate, you are rich, my friend. Even if in non-monetary terms…”

AmVet–From below. Maybe just my opinion, but I’ve come to believe that a high EQ is far more important than a high IQ. I think the common factor that you and I share is having grown up in an abusive home environment. Which is why I left my most recent job…..

David S

August 2nd, 2010
1:31 pm

Saul Good – Or South Korea, or Cuba, or any of the 173 countries that we know that we have bases/soldiers in. We are world occupiers. This is the source of all animosity against us, our soldiers, and our country. Just imagine if any other country occupied us in the manner that we occupy so many others. It is hard to imagine that our response would be any different than what we are experiencing in Afghanistan and Iraq. If it weren’t for all the payoff money we throw around (aka. foreign aid) the governments of these countries certainly wouldn’t be as cooperative. The citizens of course take the brunt of the occupation.

Peadawg

August 2nd, 2010
1:32 pm

“Oh…and never mind that of ALL the previous presidents who promised that they were going to DO something about Health Care… he kept that promise as well…”

You’re talking about the promise to force insurance companies to cover millions of sick and healthy people ALSO while promising to lower premiums? Good luck with that!

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
1:32 pm

you know something Outhouse GoKart, when you think about it, it almost makes more sense than the invade/occupy business model. in fact, I have argued from day one, why not simply bomb, invade, occupy and “nationalize” (for the USA)the oil fields and spend the DoD money “defendning” the new U.S. territories? retorical question, of course, because if we “nationalized” the oil fields, it wouldn’t be “capitalism” and all the cowards at Haliburton et al would not be able to reap the benefits of U.S. foreign policy for pennies (lobbyists) on the dollar ($trillion DoD budget). let’s be honest, Iraq was never about WMD’s, 9/11, rape chambers, Saddam’s reign of terror, or even “democracy in the Middle East”. it was about oil. it’s like a crack head breaking into a home to steal flat screens, and telling the judge he did it to save the family from all the bad programming on TV.

rockyranch

August 2nd, 2010
1:33 pm

Iraq is a very expensive family feud. Bush v Hussein “This man tried to kill my daddy.” Forget proving it just spend a trillion dollars and waste 4000 young Americans for vengeance.

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:34 pm

Bruno…Iraq…better or worse off since the Invasion?

Ask an Iraqi what they think…

Talk about “human rights abuses”… 2+ million displaced and hundreds of thousands killed…

Better? Or does it come down to “lesser of the two evils”???

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:35 pm

“it’s like a crack head breaking into a home to steal flat screens, and telling the judge he did it to save the family from all the bad programming on TV.”

Pretty good excuse…

Outhouse GoKart

August 2nd, 2010
1:35 pm

“like a crack head breaking into a home to steal flat screens, and telling the judge he did it to save the family from all the bad programming on TV.”

LOLOL!!

Mr Right

August 2nd, 2010
1:36 pm

Oh…and never mind that of ALL the previous presidents who promised that they were going to DO something about Health Care… he kept that promise as well…

And THAT is one promise we would all be better off if he wouldn’t have kept!!!

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
1:37 pm

Jay ………….

You know I call ‘em like I see ‘em.

The worst part is that we allowed (under Bush’s watch) the phrase in their new Constitution.

“Nothing in the Constitution shall violate the tenets of Islam.”

That is the most obscene thing I have read in a long, long time …………….. and 4,400 Americans died for that phrase ?

Outhouse GoKart

August 2nd, 2010
1:38 pm

Sure it does neo…why bother with brainwashing them with candy and flowers. Brainwash them with bombs, grenades, Granadas, missles, booby traps, bullets etc. Why pu$$yfoot around? Do it right or dont do it.

We wasted billions of $$ and thousands of lives and all we have to show for it is speeches from this Whitehouse Koo-Koo Clock.

@@

August 2nd, 2010
1:38 pm

And since this is Obama’s plan, as opposed to Bush’s, any outrage over the use of military contractors will dissipate.

State Dept. planning to field a small army in Iraq–McClatchy.

It’s the way it is with left-wingers’ self-righteous indignation. One minute they have it, the next….POOF!….it’s gone.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
1:39 pm

rockyranch, the “daddy” card is a sub-plot at best. we (well, actually the Bush family) need a presence in the region to ensure access to oil. we kinda had it with Saddam in the early to late 80’s, and we had military bases in Saudi Arabia, but we have long since been boxed out of Iran (1979 revolution) and arab “allies” like Jordan and Egypt and Saudi Arbabia can’t resolve our alliance with Israel on a political/theocratic level.

Disgusted

August 2nd, 2010
1:40 pm

Waiting for the next Saddam to appear in Iraq and impose order on an unruly population, bringing another era of rule by decree. As far as I can tell, that prospect is the only reason that 50,000 of our troops are remaining. As soon as we ditch Iraq, Iraq will ditch this sham of a democracy. We’ll have wasted 4,000+ troop lives, maimed ten times as many of our troops, and seen the death or displacement of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, all to replace one ruling religious sect with another.

Pardon me if I don’t celebrate.

getalife

August 2nd, 2010
1:40 pm

The Brits are having a hearing but Iraq has no leader and ripe for civil war.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
1:40 pm

the Bush family merely profited from this mess, but “taking on” daddy’s nemisis was secondary. look first at WHY Saddam and the US parted ways.

@@

August 2nd, 2010
1:40 pm

AmVet/Bruno:

You need to get a room.

Normal

August 2nd, 2010
1:41 pm

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:17 pm

Bruno,
On that we will never agree, but I still like you. ;)

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:43 pm

“Bruno…Iraq…better or worse off since the Invasion?”

For now, no, Saul. But, as stated above, they at least have a chance at a better future. Under Hussein, there was no chance. Call me a Pollyana, but I’ll take a reasonable chance at a better future over no chance at all.

Of course, it all depends on the willingness of the Iraqis to put aside political/religious differences to work together for a better future. So far, that doesn’t seem to be happening. It may take a generation or two before the Sunni/Shiite and Baathist/non-Baathist animosity isn’t instilled at birth.

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
1:43 pm

You guys on the Left never cease to amaze. The same posters who state Iraq was a mistake and want to pull out of Afghanistan likely also support the Mosque near Ground Zero in New York.

What would it take for you to realize there are bad guys in this world whose only objective is to kill you and dominate your wife?

Did we make mistakes in Iraq? Yes, the first was not invading when Iraq had invaded Kuwait. We made the Arab world happy and did not. Look at how they returned thanks.

Obama thinks he can “talk” a successful solution. His talk is just that, talk. The enemy only recoginizes strength. He thinks your affluence is a sign of ignorance.

Lastly, just how long should a war take when you tie the hands of the military?

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:44 pm

“AmVet/Bruno: You need to get a room.”

We’re still waiting for you and RW to check out. No vacancies right now.

TheCrooksAreStillAtIT

August 2nd, 2010
1:44 pm

Thank Goodness, we have wasted too much time in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s time to let them fend for themselves…..

AmVet

August 2nd, 2010
1:44 pm

B, I guess I didn’t pick up on your childhood abuse, if you did post that.

I have long ago forgiven. And forgotten (kind of.) It has freed me to forgive myself.

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:45 pm

Or was that you and Reporter, or you and Wild Byll? Hard to keep up, @@.

Chris D.

August 2nd, 2010
1:46 pm

Hell must be freezing over! this is the VERY first time I as a conservative have EVER agreed with Jay. The CHANCE at Democracy can only be provided to other nations. They must choose to embrace it & defend it with their own blood where necessary, if it ever is to have a chance to take hold.

stands for decibels

August 2nd, 2010
1:46 pm

there are bad guys in this world whose only objective is to kill you and dominate your wife?

ManBearPig?

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
1:47 pm

David S…. well it all adds to all of the spending we’ve had to do to keep up our “Empire”… Like all the Empires that came before us… part of their downfalls was the vast “reach” they undertook to gain more and more control and power. Of course when the history of our Empire is finally written… our Global reach will be part of our first success…and then be shown to be part of our downfall.

Sad to see so many who kick and scream about the inevitable… they can’t accept the natural order and progression of things. If being “BEST” is most important… I suggest to those who “need” that in their life that they pack up for China. It’s their turn…like it or not.

AmVet

August 2nd, 2010
1:48 pm

Again I implore my fellow Americans, how did the criminally recidivist Bush administration evade impeachment on this matter? We all know. Pelosi/Reid/Obama/Clinton et al were anatomically spineless and politically craven in their duties regarding high crimes and misdemeanors, that’s why.

I would trade ONE highly decorated combat hero, the valorous Charles Hagel – Republican, from North Platte, Nebraska, for ALL of them regarding military matters. And in terms of moral courage.

In January 2007, Hagel openly criticized President Bush’s plan to send an additional 20,000 troops to Iraq. He called it, “the most dangerous foreign policy blunder in this country since Vietnam, if it’s carried out.” Together with Democrats Joseph Biden and Carl Levin he proposed a non-binding resolution to the Democratic-controlled Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which rejected Bush’s policy as “not in the national interest” in a 12-9 vote. However, in a Senate vote of 94-2 to revoke executive power to replace federal prosecutors without a preliminary hearing, Senator Hagel and Senator Kit Bond were the only opposition.

After an April 2007 visit to Iraq with Pennsylvania Democratic Representative Joe Sestak, Hagel expressed his belief that the occupation of Iraq should not continue indefinitely and defended Congressional actions to set a timeline for an end in occupation. In July 2007, Hagel expressed his intention to cooperate with Senate Democrats in voting for a bill that would set a timeline to get out of Iraq.

In November 2007, he rated the Bush administration “the lowest in capacity, in capability, in policy, in consensus—almost every area” of any presidency in the last forty years. He also revealed he was open to running as vice-president with the 2008 Democratic nominee. In the same month, he said, “I have to say this is one of the most arrogant, incompetent administrations I’ve ever seen or ever read about.”

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
1:51 pm

If being “BEST” is most important… I suggest to those who “need” that in their life that they pack up for China. It’s their turn…like it or not.

Saul, I can’t agree with that. That is the same attitude Carter had when he was POTUS. It took Reagan to instill a new sense of challenge and hope in America to turn things around. It will take something similar once Obama has had his turn. America is the greatest nation on Earth. We can show that again if the Government will get out of the way.

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
1:51 pm

“B, I guess I didn’t pick up on your childhood abuse, if you did post that. I have long ago forgiven. And forgotten (kind of.) It has freed me to forgive myself.”

Well, that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. ;-)

Outhouse GoKart

August 2nd, 2010
1:54 pm

Once again OFailure attempts to steal the glory, take credit for something he had not much with which to do.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
1:54 pm

Bruno, I agree with your post, which is why I am confused. why did we not allow the people of Iraq to “work together for a better future”? (oh, and who gets to define “better” and who determines the nature or manner in which the Iraqis are to “work together”?). here’s an idea, why not let soveign nations work out their own issues? maybe the answer lies in dismantling Iraq,as the Soviet Union was dismantled in the early 90’s? why did the Iraqi people not overthrow Saddam and form their own government, or simply part themselves out into three separate nations (Kurish, Shia and Sunni), as “Iraq” was pre-WWI? I’ll tell you why, and the answer rhymes with OIL. for heaven’s sake, that’s what WE THE PEOPLE did, and it even took a “civil war” a couple decades later to “preserve the union”.

AmVet

August 2nd, 2010
1:56 pm

“They must choose to embrace it & defend it with their own blood where necessary, if it ever is to have a chance to take hold.”

Chris D, damn straight.

And maybe someone/anyone can show me that Iraqi version of “…we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our Fortunes, & our sacred Honor.”

JDW

August 2nd, 2010
1:59 pm

JohnnyReb, you need to read this bit by David Stockman, Reagan’s OMB Chief in todays NY Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/opinion/01stockman.html_r=2&pagewanted=print

I believe the way Reagan turned us was down.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
2:01 pm

JohnnyReb, you should be embarassed. who do you think you are, Col. Nathan “you can’t handle the truth!” Jessup? if Saddam was a “bd guy” then the “good guys” in Iraq (with no vested interest (OIL) in the outcome of any revolution or civil war, beyond their own personal freedom – should have taken up arms and “alter or abolish” and “institure a new Government”. recognize those words? Not from any movie, but from the Declaration of Independence, and interestingly enough, about 50 years ago, a guy named Ho Chi Minh, cited that very document when he sought to “alter or abolish” the government in his Southeast Asian home of Vietnam. as Chris D points out, patriotism and revolutions cannot be “outsource”.

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
2:01 pm

JDW, I’ll read the article, but that is not the point. Carter was an f’ng disaster for the country, completely demoralizing. Reagan turned that around. If the numbers don’t support that, they don’t show the whole picture.

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
2:04 pm

“The worst part is that we allowed (under Bush’s watch) the phrase in their new Constitution. “Nothing in the Constitution shall violate the tenets of Islam.”

Scout–I don’t have a copy of the new Iraq Constitution on hand, but isn’t this merely window-dressing to appease the Mullahs? They’re not instituting Sharia as far as I know.

BTW, in case you didn’t know, many of the customs which have been codified into Shariah law in the Middle East don’t come from the Q’ran. For example, the wearing of Burkas is no where to be found in the Q’ran, and may actually be prohibited:

[33.59] O Prophet! say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over-garments; this will be more proper, that they may be known, and thus they will not be given trouble; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

Left wing management

August 2nd, 2010
2:06 pm

But Jay, you didn’t mention the main problem with this. If we agree that the Iraq war was a “bad mistake” then the liberals will be crowing from sun up to sundown. And we can’t have that. That’s why the Bill Kristols have to keep busy, rattling away at their keyboards concocting new rationales and explanations for an American foreign policy in the service of empire. It’s the noble thing to do, you know.

Doggone/GA

August 2nd, 2010
2:07 pm

Bruno – I don’t think that quote bolsters your argument against burka type garments. Maybe the context is missing, but it reads to ME like a justification FOR the burka.

JDW

August 2nd, 2010
2:10 pm

Johnny, I agree that Reagan was an outstanding motivator and did a great job of building the morale of the country. Where we continue to suffer today is from the mainstreaming of what was known and should still be known as Voodoo Economics.

Somehow we have to understand that the model Republicans have pursued for the last 30 years is ruining us.

In the same vein no matter what you think of Clinton, fiscally he was on the right track.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
2:10 pm

JohnnyReb, at least you’re comsistent (Carter bashing). If Carter was such a ‘disaster’ how did Reagan eight the ship in less than 10 years? the truth is, Carter was a marginal and ineffective President who pretty much kep the nation in “neutral” which far better off than throwing us into reverse. Reagan’s schtik was to batter America’s self-esteem, so that he could gallop in on his white horse and “save” us. I don’t fault him, it’s what he learned as an actor in Hollywood B movies). I don’t think there are many, myself included, who would “rank” Carter ahead of Reagan in terms of the overall “body of work” but the slight advantange Reagan might hold in terms of ranking, is no different than the distance between W and Obama (and Obama hasn’t even reached the 7th inning stretch).

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
2:11 pm

“why did the Iraqi people not overthrow Saddam and form their own government, or simply part themselves out into three separate nations (Kurish, Shia and Sunni)”

From my understanding, the US government gave the green light to the Shiites in the South and the Kurds in the North to rise up against Hussein circa 1991, but when the time came for us to back them militarily, we abandoned them ala The Bay of Pigs. As a result, both of those groups remain leery of us til this day.

“(oh, and who gets to define “better” and who determines the nature or manner in which the Iraqis are to “work together”?). here’s an idea, why not let soveign nations work out their own issues?”

A far more complex question. Ultimately, I am a Moral Absolutist, despite Scout’s suspicions to the opposite. Freedom and secularity are always superior to oppression and the imposition of religious law in my book. Do you feel otherwise?

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:13 pm

Bruno:

It’s the Mullah’s who really control things. At their word ………… revolution and killing is on !!

Once we leave, that phrase will make that Constitution meaningless.

What a farce.

Brett

August 2nd, 2010
2:16 pm

BushDrunk extended the Iraq nightmare past the 2008 elections, typically claiming “progress”, promising “victory,” asking for patience from the ignorant Murcuhn masses. Yet the situation there & in Afghan has worsened every day. The burning hatred for the U.S. will increase & spread throughout the Middle East, even among those who were once our friends – just as it has been doing for the past 10 years. And BushDrunk and fellow Republiscum have dumped this cowardly, sordid nightmare into the arms of O’Bama. The “truth” was murdered in cold blood long before the “wars” ever began. It was all so utterly predictable. “patriots”? “Heroes”? Pitiful.

AmVet

August 2nd, 2010
2:17 pm

Oh man! Check out Luckovich’s cartoon today. The guy is a treasure.

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
2:17 pm

“Bruno – I don’t think that quote bolsters your argument against burka type garments. Maybe the context is missing, but it reads to ME like a justification FOR the burka.’

It is a little tricky, Doggone, but it comes down to the meaning of the word “hiab”:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hijab

A burka covers the face almost entirely, which is in contradiction to the Q’ran verse above.

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:18 pm

Local Headline: “HOPE scholarship funding in danger”

Oh no, looks like the poor of Georgia won’t be putting the rich kids through college anymore.

Saul Good

August 2nd, 2010
2:19 pm

Johnny…so let me understand this…

Carter did BAD, Reagan did GOOD, and Obama is bad again… yet there’s HOPE for us (if we have someone like Reagan again… but GOVERNMENT needs to get out of our way.

Now that you cleared that up…I feel better… for a second I thought Reagan WAS in fact part of the government (the HEAD of our Government)…one who was surely a spendaholic on our nickle… but now I recall that he was simply CEO of some big corporation. One who “Stepped aside” and let the people take over.

K… I’m out….heading out into the real “Islamic Terrorist” filled scary world beyond my door… Yikes! Wish me luck!

popeye

August 2nd, 2010
2:19 pm

Having grown up in the Vietnam era, and having served over there in a war built on lie after lie after lie.

Then Iraq where our soldiers were sent to fight another war built on lie after lie after lie.

The only thing I can say is when does this end. When do we stop with the invading of countries?

Now we have been in Afghanistan (it seems like forever) and why? Can anyone explain this madness to me?

On a sunnier note I bring you George Carlin…..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sDkhzHQO7jY

I

TaxPayer

August 2nd, 2010
2:21 pm

It shouldn’t take more than two, maybe three, more tax cuts and we’ll have these wars paid off.

The Anti-Wooten

August 2nd, 2010
2:21 pm

JohnnyReb, you begin by demonstrating your hillbilly mentality when you post under that handle. Then you push the completely revisionist version of what Ronny Raygun did. Are you trying for the Fool of the Day Award or is even that effort above your cranial capacity?

Doggone/GA

August 2nd, 2010
2:22 pm

Bruno – “which is in contradiction to the Q’ran verse above.”

“O Prophet! say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over-garments; this will be more proper, that they may be known, and thus they will not be given trouble; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.”

Well, to my Westernized eyes – I don’t see any contradiction. “let down upon them their over-garments” sounds like a burka. “that they may be known” – reads like: so they can be identified as women by that garment. “thus they will not be given any trouble” – reads like what I’ve always understood the veil/burka to be FOR, to identify them as women so that honorable men will not bother them.

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:22 pm

AmVet:

Luckovich is often quite good and his satire can be biting. Do you think the relatives of those buried there appreciate that cartoon?

That said, had I verbalized as satire the same thing he drew, many of you librals would accuse me of being insensitive.

Just saying ………………

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
2:23 pm

“Once we leave, that phrase will make that Constitution meaningless.”

You might be right, Scout, which is why we need to stay a while. As stated above, I think it will take a generation or two before the crazy culture which gives these Mullah’s supreme authority is overturned.

BTW–any opinions about what the Bible says about how women should behave in church:

“1 Tim 2:8-11 � I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. [Men are to lead; women are to be modest, learning quietly, and in submission; in this way, they prove their claim to godliness.]”

http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/eccl/women.htm

Do you instruct your wife and daughters not to speak in church?

mike

August 2nd, 2010
2:23 pm

If Jay had any intellectual honesty, he would say that the mistake was made in 91, when we took on responsibility for the Iraqi people. But Jay does not have any intellectual honesty.

Jay may sneer at having “reduced the level of violence in that country at least temporarily and have given the Iraqi people a chance at some form of democracy”, but that is far more than we achieved with the “good war” that the UN sanctioned in 91.

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:23 pm

Jay:

Only two questions really remain to those willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice:

1) Will the Iraq and Ahghanistan memorials on the Washington Mall be combined.

2) How many names will there ultimately be.

Oh, perfidious nation …………………

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
2:25 pm

Bruno, depends; do you feel We the People enjoy “freedom and secularity” in the USA, as opposed to “oppression and the impositon of religious law”? before you answer, consider that “oppression” comes in many forms as does “religious laws” (everything from same sex marriage or even defining “marriage” as a man and a woman to buying beer on Sundays in states like GA). it may also be worth noting, Saddam was pretty “progressive” when it came to “religious law”. he talked the Muslim talk to currie the favor of the clerics; much like Bush, Pallin, and the neo-cons sprinkle Christian concepts in their jingo-speak, but when push came to shove, he liked his Mateus wine, velvet portaits of J-Lo and other trappings of the infidel lifestyle. so, to answer your question, I don’t think nations or Constitutions or Creator’s “endow” us with “rights” or “freedoms”. I think they exist, like for example, the “freedom” of skydiving or downhill skiing or hunting big horns on horseback in the Alaskan wilderness, but really, we could do these things without governments (in fact, governments add all types of “regulations” to these activities). the middle east in general and Iraw in particular has always been a strange part of the world, and were it not for oil, it would remain an isolted, strange part of the world.

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
2:25 pm

Neo, where do I begin?

If Carter was such a ‘disaster’ how did Reagan right the ship in less than 10 years? – how is that you won’t give credit to Reagan but think Obama can do it in 4 (no way Barry will be reelected)?

Carter was a marginal and ineffective President who pretty much kept the nation in “neutral” – if you call interest rates in double digits “neutral,” God help you.

Reagan’s schtik was to batter America’s self-esteem, so that he could gallop in on his white horse and “save” us. – I never heard Reagan batter our self esteem; Carter had done enough of that.

–the slight advantange Reagan might hold in terms of ranking, is no different than the distance between W and Obama (and Obama hasn’t even reached the 7th inning stretch). – if you call no growth in the private sector something worthy of praise to Obama, no matter how bad he does you think he is the messiah. The one he was waiting for.

Jimmy62

August 2nd, 2010
2:28 pm

What we’ve done in Iraq, freeing a people from a tyrannical dictator who slaughtered them at his leisure is an unadulterated good with positive implications for the region which will be fulfilled over decades. Calling it a mistake is an insult to our servicemen who have died, and an insult to all the people Saddam killed over the years, as well as their families and loved ones, and all the people that would have died if we hadn’t done anything- far more than the 4,400 brave Americans that lost their lives.

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
2:29 pm

Anti-Wooten – if all you can do is personal insults and name calling to fellow posters, I will meet you at the AJC and we will see who can pee the hightest up the brick wall. That is about as intelligent as your post.

Bruno

August 2nd, 2010
2:31 pm

Doggone @ 2:22

From the link I provided, different Islamic courts have interpreted the phrase differently, though the majority call for the uncovering of the face:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hijab

Once again it comes down to a “literal” interpretation vs. an “allegorical” interpretation. There are extremists in every religion, including Christianity. Although some of the self-identified Christians on board here claim to believe in a literal Bible, I dispute that, or they would be required to follow OT law in accordance to Matthew 5:17-20 and Romans 7:7-12

http://blogs.ajc.com/jay-bookman-blog/2010/07/31/adl-abandons-its-principles-surrenders-its-cause/comment-page-3/#comment-368161

Doggone/GA

August 2nd, 2010
2:31 pm

“Calling it a mistake is an insult to our servicemen who have died, and an insult to all the people Saddam killed over the years, as well as their families and loved ones, and all the people that would have died if we hadn’t done anything”

Then why have we not invaded ALL countries that have the same problems? Why ONLY Iraq?

Doggone/GA

August 2nd, 2010
2:33 pm

“From the link I provided, different Islamic courts have interpreted the phrase differently, though the majority call for the uncovering of the face:”

And that is not my issue, I was simply relating how it appear to read to ME. As I said, maybe the context around it would change that…but just reading the quote you provided, I still would not agree that it supports your contention.

AmVet

August 2nd, 2010
2:33 pm

Sorry, I’m a BIG fan of that pesky First Amendment. I told you I’m cool with you or anyone else burning Korans. Or Bibles. Or Beatles records.

“…many of you librals (sic) would accuse me of being insensitive.”

That you give a ____ what I or anybody else thinks of you is interesting.

Seems like by now you would be way past that hangup…

JohnnyReb

August 2nd, 2010
2:33 pm

JDW, good article, thanks for pointing it out. I don’t read the Times unless pointed there. It is completely true that both political sides have made a hell of a mess. I don’t agree with Obama’s agenda, and I am also concerned of what will happen when the Repub’s take Congress in Nov. I do believe the wealth holders create the jobs, and would support not letting the Bush tax cuts expire for another year or two. However, we cannot spend nor save our way out of this. It will take both tax increases and spending cuts to succeed.

Intown

August 2nd, 2010
2:34 pm

The Iraq war and especially the run-up to it was the most ridiculous display of Republican callousness and lock-step stupidity that I’ve seen in a long time. The American Public should never trust them again to lead our country for at least a generation, if ever.

popeye

August 2nd, 2010
2:34 pm

What we’ve done in Iraq, freeing a people from a tyrannical dictator who slaughtered them at his leisure.

And here all along I thought it was because of something called WEAPONS of MASS DESTRUCTION!

I must have missed the memo that we were freeing people from a soverign country. Oh well, such is life!

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:36 pm

Bruno:

Those (and other verses) have to do with spiritual authority and teaching.

Let me ask you …….. can God be sexist, racist, classist or discriminate against the handicapped ?

For reasons known only to Him, God chose to place “man” in spiritual authority.

O.T. priests had to be Jewish, male, from the tribe of Levi and with no physical deformity of any kind.

In the N.T. that is carried over in many ways. Jesus made the Pharisees angry about a lot of things ….. healing on the sabboth, working on the sabboth, eating with unwashed hands, and even claiming to be God ……….. but one thing He didn’t do was “call” a female disiciple and bring her into the male only area of the Temple Mount. He could have done so to make a point but he didn’t.

And don’t forget, Jesus is coming back to reign as King ……….. not Queen.

Therefore, in my denomination we believe it is Biblically correct for men only to be pastors and deacons.

I could vote for a good, conservative woman to be my president ……….. but not my pastor.

Jimmy62

August 2nd, 2010
2:36 pm

Doggone: We can’t help everyone everywhere. Does that mean we should never help anyone? If your neighbor is beating his wife, are you going to ignore it because you can’t help all the beaten wives? Try making an argument that comes even close to making sense.

Scout

August 2nd, 2010
2:36 pm

AmVet :

Don’t forget flags and copies of the Constitution.

Jimmy62

August 2nd, 2010
2:39 pm

Popeye: The myth is that Bush said it was all about WMDs. If you bother to go back to 2002 and 2003, there were many reasons given, only one of which was WMDs. So yeah, you did miss the memo, but it’s out there. The ONLY people saying that it was only about WMDs are people on the left trying to trash Bush. Find me even one example of Bush saying that WMDs were the only reason we went in. You can’t, because he never said any such thing. He listed a bunch of reasons, but the left and the press jumped on the one they thought they could trash him on. Such short memories, but a quick glance at a newspaper from the run up the invasion will set you straight.

neo-Carlinist

August 2nd, 2010
2:39 pm

popeye, excellent link. in part, why I am a neo-Carlinist.