Well I guess we have to revisit the controversy surrounding the Iraq and
Afghanistan wars. The Deseret News is right in pointing out that the United
States has enormous sunk costs in those two wars, both in terms of wealth
expended and bloodshed, and a whole generation of military with incurable
disabilities. So what would you have the Obama administration do? Send more
troops in? How many more casualties will you put up with? As soon as the
United States leaves either theater the locals will go back to their old
animosities. Remember, Iraq in particular is a totally artificial country -
cobbled together to help the British exploit the region for oil. If things
don't change in those areas the United States has two options: 1) get out,
or 2) bulk up there and stay forever.There is a third way out, and
that would be for the United States to assume a policy of real neutrality in
Palestine. This would get the United States some degree of credibility in the
Muslim world. Without such a change our options are limited.
The US gained something in Iraq?Saddam was a tyrant but he was a
tyrant holding a bag of snakes. The Iraqi people are now suffering with daily
car bombs, roaming death squads and poor living conditions. The
invasion has accomplished nothing except to open the door nice and wide for al
so, several questions- how long are we supposed to occupy Iraq- How long are we supposed to occupy Afghanistan?- How much will it
cost- What exactly are we achievingOr a bigger question. What
was the purpose of going into these places in the first place?
"Comments about ‘In our opinion: U.S. can't afford to lose all it
gained in Iraq, Afghanistan"----What is it exactly
that we have gained from these wars? and and what is so important about
continuing to fight over there that we ought to continue borrowing from China
and the rest of the world to pay for these wars?
Perhaps we should go to back to Vietnam and finish what we started there too? If
we started up the draft again it might not cost so much.Has it ever
occured to you that it isn't our job to fight every war on this planet?
Ditto the previous comments. Bush-Chenney orchestrated the most horrific
calamity of our time with the invasion of Iraq. Our country and the world was
in no urgent danager and world leaders pleaded with Bush to slow down and let
the inspectors finish their work. Bush-Chenney thought they had an opportunity
to change the dynamic in that region. What they ended up doing was destroying
lives, families and communities for generations. We can't undo what's
been done. Other than prayers and humanatarian relief there is little we can do
to bring solace to the victims of this tradegy.
The fact that major cities are now under al Quaeda only shows that the Bush wars
were a huge mistake that only made things worse over the long run. Hussein may
have been a bad guy (one we loved at one point), but what did we gain.
Thousands of dead Americans and trillions of dollars wasted on a Bush boondoggle
that we are still paying for.
The article assumes we should have been in Iraq in the first place so what we
"gained" had some value. Wrong on both accounts. Actually I find this opinion stunning and really scary. To think the neocons
are still out there lurking just waiting for another "moderate"
Republican President (think Chris Christie) so they can continue their agenda in
the middle east, sends chills up my spine.I like Marist's
solution, and cjb's suggestion of re-visiting Vietnam as a contrast.
Re: "There is a third way out, and that would be for the United States to
assume a policy of real neutrality in Palestine.""Real
neutrality" would require us to be much more supportive of the Israeli side
that we have been for many years.The Obama regime has spent enormous
quantities of time, money, and political capital trying to prevent Israel's
defending itself from Arab attacks on innocent Israeli women and children.To what end? It has done nothing but embolden radical Islamists to blame
ALL their barbaric misbehavior on Israel -- and us, of course.It's gotten so bad that even otherwise reasonable Americans are now
suggesting actions they know would generate a new Jewish holocaust, as if we
somehow owe that to Arabs in the region.It's beyond sad.
What we gained from Iraq:Thousands of dead Iraqis and American
soldiers.Added nearly $1 trillion to the U.S debt.Destabilized Iraq,
creating thousands of Iraqi refugees and civil war.Emboldened IranNow:a haven for terroristsAmericans are tired of fighting
wars in the middle east and elsewhere which result in little to no net gain for
either the citizens of the country or American safety and security. We are
looked at by residents of the countries we invade with more derision and blame
@procuradorfiscalLook at how many Israelis have died in the past 10
years compared to how many Palestinians. Palestinians launch bottle rockets
while Israel fires rockets filled with white phosphorus over one of the most
densly populated places on the planet.If you are trying to invoke
the image of a poor, weak Israel the facts show the complete opposite.
Anybody who didn't at least suspect that we would loose the ground we
gained in Iraq and Afghanistan if we elected Barack Obama... was smoking
something. He campaigned on that promise.Problem is... the majority
of Americans don't care what happens in Iraq or Afghanistan now. So
it's time we got out. I don't want my kids dieing for something we
don't care about.
"In recent history, the United States has had to maintain a long-term
presence in various nations in which it has secured liberty. Germany, Japan and
South Korean are examples of this." The only difference is they stopped
shooting at us shortly after the surrender.
Can't lose what we gained? What did we gain? 4500 American lives lost,
100000 or more Iraqies killed. A trillion dollars in treasure spent. No weapons
of mass destruction removed. A replacement Islamic state aligned with Iran.
Continuing tribal bloodshed. Ill will from various places.
Turns out you can't jump into a 1000+ year conflict between Sunni and
Shi'a and think you're going to magically make it all better.
By all means, let's waste more blood and treasure in Iraq. What a
disgusting mess Cheney created there.
"In our opinion: U.S. can't afford to lose all it gained in Iraq,
Afghanistan"We gained the elimintation of Al Qaeda from
Afghanistan. And I am agree that we can't afford to lose in
Afghanistan.But the government of Afghanistan is corrupt. They have
been warned and warned and they still have not listened. If we stay we send out
the message that we were not serious in our warnings.There a
governor in South Carolina who had a mistress. His wife found out, forgave him
and told him to stop. But he went back anyway. She divorced him. She said,
"I can forgive adultery, but I can't condone it."Our
message to Karzai and Afghanistan is: "We can forgive corruption, but we
can't condone it."If the Taliban take over again, they will
probably not invite Al Qaeda. What I understand is that they have realized that
it worked out badly for them in the 1990's.
It was foolish of us to have ever given up a solid military presence in Iraq. A
U.S. military base in Iraq would have been the perfect launching point to
protect the U.S.'s critical interests in the Middle East (and yes, that
includes oil). By giving up that strategic and tactical advantage, we truly
squandered an irreplaceable opportunity.
RE "There is a third way out, and that would be for the United States to
assume a policy of real neutrality in Palestine"... (Marxist)But
that would almost certainly eventually result in the inhalation of millions of
Jews... But I think you know that, and either don't care or WANT that
result.We should not sacrifice the lives of millions of innocent
Jewish civilians at the alter of placating the Muslim world, or in hopes of
gaining a degree of credibility in the Muslim world.I can't
believe how callus the left is to the plight of the Jewish people. It's
like they are just vermin... something that we either don't care about, or
something that SHOULD be destroyed.---I'm sensitive
to the plight of the Palestinians too. But they have other options. USA backing away and promising total neutrality would only insure
Israel's total destruction. But I think you know that.
We should not be in any war unless we want to win. The last time that happened
was WW II. We received collateral damage at Pearl Harbor and retaliated by
assisting the RAF in bombing Germany into rubble. We fire bombed Tokyo and used
the nuke twice on Japan. Those nasty old nukes probably saved 4,000,000
Americans, most of them your fathers and grandfathers. We should withdraw our
troops from Pakistan, Aphganistan, Iraq and quit fiddling with Iran. Then we
should turn them all into desert wasteland. Take no prisoners.
Al Qaeda and Iran would still hate us even if we changed our policy on Israel.
They are using that as an excuse.But it would take a lot of the wind
out of their sails. That is what one may consider to be one of the blessings of
doing the right thing.It isn't our values to help the strong
oppress the weak.
If the US can't afford to lose this battle, then Bush/Cheney voting
republicans need to do two things: 1-pay for it out of their own pockets and
2-enlist and go fight it yourselves.
@cjb - "Perhaps we should go to back to Vietnam" ...and how many
Vietnamese terrorist had flown planes into American buildings? @ UT
Brit -"The invasion has accomplished nothing except to open the door nice
and wide for al qaida." Thanks to Obama for successfully negotiating the
exit that enable Al Qaida to succeed...Oh wait, but Obama and his buddies said
the Al Qaida had been decimated...were they lying again?Gates newly
released book says Obama decisions on Iraq and Afghanistan were purely politics,
why is anyone surprised at the outcome?
I'm old enough to remember Vietnam. We said we wouldn't repeat the
mistake. We did.The middle east citizens are tribal (sunni,shiite,
kurds). They have been that way for centuries. Their "borders" are,
for the most part, sections of land that the West has carved out for them and
said "this is Israel, this is Iraq", etc. They, for the most part, are
tribal warriors, and they, most probably, always will be.We can no
longer afford to be the worlds policeman. We have actual troops (besides
embassy Marines)in over 90 countries of the world. When does it end? I
feel terrible that we lost over 4000 service members in Iraq. But losing
another 4000 doesn't make the first 4000 any more alive!We
can't afford to do any more "nation building" our own country
needs "building". Besides, who better to build a nation than their own
citizens? - assuming they even WANT their nation built? i.e. STOP sectarian
Re: "Palestinians launch bottle rockets while Israel fires rockets filled
with white phosphorus . . . ."Yeah, you'd think that anyone
with half a brain would stop launching those "bottle rockets,"
wouldn't you?And, BTW, when's the last time someone
launched a "bottle rocket" at you, requiring you to bed down your
children in the basement to avoid injury or death?And, if you say
WWII, why would you begrudge Israelis the same security our parents fought and
died for fighting deranged German aggression? Why is German aggression bad,
while Arab aggression is somehow excusable?It's certainly not
the "image of a poor, weak Israel" I'm trying to invoke here.
Israel's doing fine. It's America and the "civilized" West
that worries me.When and why did Americans and Europeans start
caring more for barbaric villains than for our only real and worthy ally in the
area?Or, perhaps better said, when did America adopt the deranged
attitudes of post-WWII European lemmings?
Re: 2bits "USA backing away and promising total neutrality would only
insure Israel's total destruction. But I think you know that." Let me
stipulate that the destruction of Israel would be intolerable. But somehow
we've got to get the message to the Israelis that they can't settle
the westbank to the point of shoving Palestinians into the Mediterranean.Re: Richie "We should withdraw our troops from Pakistan,
Aphganistan (sic), Iraq and quit fiddling with Iran. Then we should turn them
all into desert wasteland. Take no prisoners." Such genocide on the part of
the United States would secure pariah status for us - it would be the end of us.
Does the Deseret News have anything concrete to propose? To say the U.S. stands
to lose what it’s gained is merely stating the obvious. Critics of the two
Middle East involvements who warned of this quagmire can smugly say I told you
so.What’s left? If continuing U.S. military presence is the
default solution, that could go on indefinitely or at least as long as al Qaida
has the muscle to cause havoc. At some point, Iraq and Afghanistan have to take
responsibility for their own internal security. They’re had a decade to
prepare for the day they knew would come.
Should we occupy the world?The Iraqi and Afghan peoples deserve the
right to self determination. It's up to them to figure out what kind of
nations they will be. Think about it, we built a democracy because we took our
fate into our own hands. They need to do the same or else they will continue to
rally around the one cause all the factions have in common: fighting back
against the perceived threat from the West. Remove that ingredient, and they can
sort things out for themselves without the constant cry to push back against the
"Crusaders"We brought war to their lands to root out
terrorists and stabilize oil sources. Our military did great things at our
request, and it's time to take the lessons we've learned and apply
them to the present. Giving credibility to the claims of radical theocrats will
undermine our cause and the potential for democracy. Short term
stability isn't a good trade for strengthening the extremists long term.
As a follow-up to this villain of the moment in the White House perfunctory
editorial...Why not an editorial that gets at the heart of the
delusions that have crippled US foreign policy for decades?Why not a
dissection of the myths that befuddle US approaches to the outside world and
fuel delusions of omnipotence?Why not an editorial exploring the
folly of imposing a political order on a population(s) animated by antipathy
toward foreign occupiers?
Its easy for people to say what is going on from over here in the safety of
there houses. But we gave up a very important place in Iraq for a military base.
And to keep balance in the region. What we gain why don't you go ask the
vets and men that are still in the military what they think about it. You only
hear what the media what's you to hear. It is crazy what some of use
believe. If you want the really story on thing you have to take a little bit
from each new outlet. Or you join the military and go over there.
marxist,How can you stipulate "the destruction of Israel would be
intolerable"... but out of the other side of your mouth say, "We must be
totally neutral"?If someone tries to incinerate Israel we have
promised to help defend them. And that's exactly what Hamas,
Iran and the Palestinian people have clearly and openly stated is their goal!So how do we stay completely neutral... and at the same time prevent the
destruction of Israel? Just tell Hamas to stop it? We've already tried
that for years and years... and it hasn't worked!We can totally
turn our back on Israel (as you suggest)... OR... promise to help defend them
IF someone should try to wipe them off the map. Then hope nobody tries to wipe
them off the map, so we don't have to actually do anything.Palestine and Hamas are not completely innocent. And Israel has made some
mistakes as well. But just turning our back on Israel (to placate the Muslim
community)... doesnt seem wise (to me). Probably seems wise to you though.Giving up Israel would not change radical Muslim's hatred of the
West OR bring peace.
Just a thought..Wouldn't Jewish people be safer, and even more
financially successful, living here in the United States?Did they have any
idea how "scary" and uncertain life would be living in the Middle East
around those who did not like or respect them (for obvious historical
reasons)?The United States would not have to keep looking after the people
of Israel, financing them, etc. if they had stayed/or come to America.Guess it is probably too late....
Let's see how fast the Deseret News Editorial Board changes its tune if
they all had sons and daughters (or grandkids) serving in Anbar Province. Yes,
we have lost ground. We were never going to keep it. Ask Alexander the Great,
the Mongols, the British, the Soviets, and now us. Our military bleeds our
coffers dry and this editorial board recommends we spend more in blood and gold.
When the hawks bring back the draft, I'll start listening to this drivel.
ThornBirds,Israel does a pretty good job of financing itself. They
don't need our financial help. They are very productive and prosperous
(unlike some of their neighbors).Israel doesn't need financial
assistance. They need military assistance. We send more $$$ to Muslim
countries than we do Israel.---The Left just seems to
have a hard place in their heart for Israel. Why is that? Does anybody
understand it? Can you explain it for the rest of us? I
don't think the Left would be this heartless regarding ANY other country in
the world. I mean we have helped avoid genocide, illness, starvation, etc, in
countries on every continent in the world, but this one small place seems to
miss out on ANY of their compassion. WHY is that? Is it part of their
political ideology? A religious thing?I mean it can't be a
religious thing... the Left claims to have no animosity towards ANY religion.
Why do they hate Israel? Why the intolerance for this one small nation? I
just hope somebody can explain it.
It really is too bad that the DNews is using this as a vehicle. I dislike our
president's ineptitude as much as anyone but the fact is Fallujah is now
back under control as the Iraqi military went in and regained the city, with the
assistance of the local population, and have now handed it over to local police.
Similar steps are being taken in Ramadi as we speak. Our president also has
dispatched Apache helicopters to assist PM Maliki in Iraq's efforts to
contain the sporadic uprisings. Our media is unduly amplifying the
negative going on in Iraq to make it seem like it is falling apart, while
failing to note the amazing progress that Iraq is making politically and
economically.Al Qaida, and other radicalized groups like them, will
continue to be a thorn in the side of the world for a long time. We
haven't seen the last of them. The good news is that the world is starting
to evolve as the information age progresses. This is happening in the ME as
well. It will be slow but it is happening.
We couldn't afford to 'gain' it in the first place.
Re: 2bits "The Left just seems to have a hard place in their heart for
Israel. Why is that? ... Can you explain it for the rest of us? " Yes I can
explain this antipathy.Israel was founded (1948?) largely for
religious purposes - from the Jewish perspective, as their natural homeland;
from the evangelical Christian point of view, to fulfill prophecy and prepare
for the second coming of Christ. But in the meantime an existing population of
Palestinians was dozed aside. We have antipathy to Israel because it is a
religious construct which ignored another population. We on the left think the
whole Israel thing from a religious point of view is a boatload of nonsense
which is going to get us into unending difficulty, e.g. our invasion of Iraq
which was done in large part to satisfy Israel!That said, most of us
on the left understand that the existing state of Israel is just that, existent,
with a population which has rights. We understand that the United States could
not standby and watch Israel slaughtered. On the other hand we agree with Pat
Buchanan "that U.S. foreign policy should be set in Washington, not Tel
What is your opinion?Did our political and opinion makers (News
papers like the Deseret News) exercise due diligence before advocating that we
preemptively attack Iraq?Did Iraq have anything to do with 9/11?Was there an attempt to link Iraq to 9/11?Was Al Qaida in
Iraq in any significant numbers before the invasion?Did Iraq have an
active nuclear weapons program as we were told before the invasion?Did Iraq have an active biological weapons program as we were told before the
invasion?Did Iraq have an active chemical weapons program as we were
told before the invasion?Were we told that the oil revenues from
Iraq would pay for the invasion?Were we told that our troops would
be met with "Flowers and Sweet Tea"Perhaps we should not
have preemptively attacked Iraq? As Colin Powell once said "You break it
you fix it"
Beyond the military industrial complex and the illegal drug dealers, is there
anyone in the U.S. that gained anything from the Iraq, Afghanistan military
pretentions of fighting for freedom. Oops, I forgot about the Texas oil chiefs.
Are we more free and safe today than we were 10 years ago? Is al
Qaida’s strength and influence greater or less than 10 years ago? Are
Americans more beloved than before? Is our economy better than before? Just
where are these gains in the boast? How many times will we buy
loyalty from corrupt leaders and expect the result to last after the money
stops? How many times will we let businessmen take us to war?
@t702Yes if course Obama wanted to get out of there. Which
politician wouldnt. A disastrous war that has only made Iraq worse.@procuradorfiscalRight, so what would you do if a foreign
government came to your house, bulldozed it and told you to find somewhere else
to live? I am sure you would shake their hands and be on your way.Israel
is extremely aggressive, gets the latest weaponry from the US (for free) and
keeps expanding into Palestinian territory. Look at what the borders of Israel
were in 1948 and then compare it to now.How about this, why does Israel
not go back to the original agreement and stop destroying Palestinian homes.Also I see from your other comments that you want more fiscal
responsibility from your government, why do you support the billions of dollars
sent to Israel. Why do you not complain about the apaches and abram tanks that
are sold to them but have the debt forgiven after one small payment?
Reference 2 Bits and Procurador fiscal"Israel does a pretty good
job of financing itself." "They do not need our financial help."Looking on the AIPAC web site. "Despite ongoing budget woes, it is
critical that the United States lives up to its commitments to Israel"My opinion is that if we are unable to adequately fund programs for
American citizens like healthcare, education and welfare why are we in the
business of borrowing money to give away to countries like Israel?If
we cut this military aid to Israel or discontinued it, and they really needed it
perhaps they would pay for it themselves. If that were the case may be they
would be unable to build all these new homes for the settlers in the occupied
lands?We have housing needs for our own citizens in the United
States.I guess it is a matter of priorities for our elected
officials.In regard to debt forgiveness. I do not see the Federal
Government forgiving any of my tax debt each year.
Yeah sure, let's just waste more lives, limbs and treasury in Iraq. Who
wrote this editorial? Dick Cheney or Donald Rumsfeld?
"U.S. can't afford to lose all it gained in Iraq".-----What the U.S. really can't afford is to fight all
possible wars. All battles are not ours to fight. We gave Iraq a chance, now
its up to them . If they succeed fantastic. If not this will be a lesson to
them to try harder next time.
It is hard to hang on to something that doesn't belong to you. The people
who write and subscribe to this article are the ones who should be over in Iraq.