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Richard Davis: Obama got it right in Iraq, so far

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  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    June 25, 2014 6:44 a.m.

    And if Obama had negotiated a real status of force agreement and not cut and run to appease his base this would not be a conversation.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 25, 2014 6:55 a.m.

    “Hussein kept his distance from Islamic extremists.” No, he didn’t. He CRUSHED them.
    Saddam’s Baath Party was all Sunni but completely sectarian. The God worshipped above all gods by the Baath Party was Saddam himself.

    “ It also could have been averted if the Iraqi government had broadened its coalition to include Sunnis and Kurds rather than forcing them out.”

    Right . . . if, if, if, if . . .

    If GW Bush had not hand-picked Malaki to lead the country, and if the GW Bush administration had not seen to it that all former Baathists (all Sunni) were purged from the government, the military, and the police forces, and if GW’s hand-picked Iraqi leader behaved in a manner far more reasonable than GW could ever have done. . . .Then just MAYBE GW’s huge imbroglio would have been neutralized somewhat by now.

    And IF the American people had voted for GORE in 2000, then 911 could have been averted . . . And a long string of horrible Republican mistakes that rendered our nation weak physically, morally, financially, and spiritually would have never happened.

    In the final analysis, the fault lies with gullible American voters and their “Conservative” tendencies.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    June 25, 2014 7:20 a.m.

    Absolutely!

    Now Dr. Davis, expect to be mercilessly attacked by the same right wing posters as usual. Why? Because you committed the unpardonable sin: you said something nice about Obama.

    Never mind that it was Cheney and Bush who got us into this mess!

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 25, 2014 8:17 a.m.

    mohokat -

    "And if Obama had negotiated a real status of force agreement and not cut and run to appease his base this would not be a conversation."

    Obama and the American military abided by the then existing SOFA signed by GW in 2008, which stipulated that the US had to be completely out of Iraq by the end of 2011.

    The Iraqis insisted on it.

    All this "Conservative" nonsense about it being Obama's fault is ridiculous.

    You would be just as correct if you blamed Obama for the United States losing in Vietnam.

    Trying to deflect from continual Right Wing malfeasance by lashing out with false claims makes the Republican leadership look pretty petty silly.

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    June 25, 2014 8:49 a.m.

    mohokat: "And if Obama had negotiated a real status of force agreement and not cut and run to appease his base this would not be a conversation."

    And this dishonesty continues. It was Bush, not Obama, who negotiated the status of forces agreement. Obama sought to renegotiate, but Maliki said he would only do so if diplomatic protections were taken away from forces left behind. Would you have supported Maliki being able to arrest any American military members for his own political purposes? Of course not, and no president, ever, would have agreed to such a condition. So what would you have had him do? Occupy the country as an Emperor?

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    June 25, 2014 8:52 a.m.

    Mr. Davis aka GaryO from VA

    your periodic defense of BO is expected, but still laughable.

    if BO had actually done it right, Iraq never would have deteriorated to the state it is in now. BO inherited a relatively stable situation and totally screwed it up.

    Thanks for wasting the blood and treasure spent in Iraq because you do not know what to do.

    Maverick,
    bush left a stable situation - BO got us into this mess.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    June 25, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    @mohokat
    The Bush administration signed the statement of forces agreement in December 2008. The Iraq government didn't want to renegotiate.What was Obama supposed to do, invade them again?

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2014 9:03 a.m.

    Remember when Bush and Cheney forced Saddam to invade Kuwait? It's all their fault that the dictator invaded, and then went on to slaughter his own people using WMD's.

    Personally, I feel Saddam had to go. But, at the same time, who do you replace him with? I would rather have had Bush focus on winning in Afghanistan and killing Osama been hiden, along with dismantling that terrorist network. For the most part, they were on the run and Osama was viewed as a loser, until we invaded Iraq. That gave the network new life and recruits. We should have worked on wiping them out, before dealing with Saddam.

    Saddam was at least holding Iran and most of the terrorist at bay. Yes he was slaughtering his own people. The trouble is, every nut job terrorist group needs Iraq in their caliphate. No one is giving up that land, which is holy to them.

  • SharpHooks Sandy, UT
    June 25, 2014 9:11 a.m.

    Finally---a piece about Obama in the D News that is factual, makes sense, and shuns the typical boilerplate GOP nonsense spewed about him.
    Well done!

  • apm22 sparks, NV
    June 25, 2014 9:12 a.m.

    This part of the opinion says it all: "The U.S. cannot solve Iraq’s problems." I have not seen anyone that knows the history of the middle east say otherwise. So, while I understand that we need to help clean up the mess we created, this opinion piece acknowledges that we will not solve Iraq's problems. I believe we will not solve the middle east's problems either. The effects of our involvement in the middle east has proven that we have not solved any of the problems that we were told we were trying to solve in our operations there. Again, this opinion piece states that ISIS is "far more dangerous than Saddam Hussein ever was." So, in reality, it appears that we, the United States, have made the middle east far more dangerous than it was before we entered the picture. It is worth noting that we installed Saddam Hussein in the first place. It is high time we stop sticking our nose in places where it don't belong.

  • Ltrain St. George, UT
    June 25, 2014 9:14 a.m.

    @ GaryO Koolaide drinker,

    It was Clinton/gore who gutted the intelligence community and allowed Osama to get powerful and pull off 9/11. They had him on a silver platter several times and did nothing. They are responsible for 9/11!!!!!!

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    June 25, 2014 9:33 a.m.

    In a situation in which there are no really good options, Professor Davis is right in identifying the least bad option open to us. The problem with air strikes is that guys in pickup trucks make poor targets. The best option by far would be to hop into a time machine and not invade at all. Failing that, hold our noses and offer air support to corrupt and incompetent Maliki.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 25, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    Ltrain -

    "It was Clinton/gore who gutted the intelligence community and allowed Osama to get powerful and pull off 9/11. They had him on a silver platter several times and did nothing. They are responsible for 9/11!!!!!!"

    WRONG . . . Your forceful and impressive use of exclamation marks not withstanding.

    Clinton/Gore did not "gut the intelligence community." It was in good repair when he left office. But like all good "Conservatives," GW had a tendency to ignore whatever he didn't want to hear.

    "U.S. intelligence officials warned President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that Osama bin Laden's terrorist network might hijack American planes . . . " - ABC News

    "The direct warnings to Mr. Bush about the possibility of a Qaeda attack began in the spring of 2001. By May 1, the Central Intelligence Agency told the White House of a report that “a group presently in the United States” was planning a terrorist operation. Weeks later, on June 22, the daily brief reported that Qaeda strikes could be “imminent,” although intelligence suggested the time frame was flexible." - The New York Times

    Face it Ltrain, "Conservatives" just are not good leadership material.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 25, 2014 10:15 a.m.

    If you want a show of force... Please let's do this the right way...

    Write your congressman and ask him to invoke Article I Section and declare war.

    Short of that the President's hands are tied. I am glad this is all he is committing too.

  • JayTee Sandy, UT
    June 25, 2014 10:21 a.m.

    Obama hasn't done the right thing about ANYTHING, ever. If he would have been paying attention, he would have seen this coming long ago, and steps could have been taken to curtail it. But I don't think he really cares. Whatever goes wrong, he can just continue to blame the Bush administration, and find some other diversion. He's messed up big time on Obeymecare, the "Fast and Furious" fiasco, the IRS, the VA, the NSA, "immigration" (invasion), "climate change," and everything else he's touched. It doesn't take a mental giant to see the pattern here. But maybe he's getting better at golf and his family seems to be learning more about vacation spots around the world, because we tend to improve in areas that we specialize in.

  • FreedomFighter41 Provo, UT
    June 25, 2014 10:34 a.m.

    Ohhhh! This is so fun!

    I love the revisionist history being made here!

    Clinton and Gore are now responsible for 9/11.

    Obama is now responsible for Iraq.

    Boy oh boy, the party of accountability is doing it's best to shirk any accountability for what it's done over the past 15 years!

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2014 10:51 a.m.

    It's true, if Bill Clinton wasn't soo busy acting like a Kennedy and trying to assault or have a relation with every girl that got into the crosshairs.

    Then he wouldn't have to tell us why he decided not to take Osama out,while he was a loser and in the crosshairs of the CIA.

    Bill was soo worried that taking any action on any terrorists or dictator,would appear that he was trying to cover up hisscandals.Which he's right.

    However,sometimes youdo that right thing,insteadof worrying about yourselfBill.

    Had he done his job...The bottom line,it's no presidents fault that their are psycho terrorists trying to create a caliphate and force everyone into Islam.The blame lies on those that brainwash, join, recruit, carryout attacks etc.The war is far from over.This will only be a break.They will attack again.The next time we'll lose more freedoms to "protect" us.The left will still be blaming Reagan and Bush for everything.

    But,if liberals are right.We don't need toworry about terrorists.Climate change will kill all of us before then.They claim wehave justa fewyears leftanyway....

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 25, 2014 11:35 a.m.

    Yes, Obama has it right so far. To begin with, if it weren't for Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, etc., anything going on in Iraq today would be being overshadowed on news websites today by videos of skateboarding dogs. In any case, Bush signed a treaty in 08 that said we were to get everyone out. And we honoured it. And in retrospect involvement in Iraq was a costly mistake. So let's stay out. As much as we can. As for terrorists, we need to be vigilant and prepared at all times be they from ISIS or Nebraska.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    June 25, 2014 11:37 a.m.

    "Then he wouldn't have to tell us why he decided not to take Osama out,while he was a loser and in the crosshairs of the CIA."

    Well if we want to go that far back... why don't we just keep going and talk about the Taliban being armed by Reagan.... we could go on for ever like this. The propensity to dodge responsibility only dooms us to keep on making the same mistakes over and over again. Its kind of like the parents whose kids never do anything wrong... they just end up raising a brat. This works for both sides.

    I do think Obama's response so far has been proportional to the threat and benefit to the US. That said, I do also hold him responsible for giving the impression that we might do nothing - leaving the door wide open to ISES. We should have aided in the fighting of ISIS in Syria too... because this is an idealogical group, one that doesn't acknowledge borders.

    But lets stop deflecting responsibility, and start working on solutions... please!

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    June 25, 2014 12:12 p.m.

    BO will always get it right when compared to Bush/Chenney. That was the worst administration in the history of our country.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    June 25, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    FT
    HAHAHAHAHA,

    TOO funny!

    BO is the absolute worst in the history of the US. Carter was glad when BO was elected, because now Carter is no longer the worst in history.

    A June 20, 2014 poll puts BO's unfavorables higher than bush's. You are in the minority thinking bush was worse than BO. bush's favorables outweigh his negatives - not so with BO where his unfavorables are higher than his approvals.

    bush was the worst? HAHAHA, please stop, my sides are aching. no contest, BO is the absolute worst.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    June 25, 2014 2:05 p.m.

    Does anybody, left or right, really believe that Saddam Hussein could in any way be worse than the mess we have created in Iraq by waging a totally unjustified war?

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    June 25, 2014 2:31 p.m.

    @lost in DC
    I will not personally attack your opinion as that would be against the posting policies of the DNews. We're fortunate to live in America where all people have their right to an opinion even if they are mis-informed.
    Bush's average 2nd term approval rating was 37% but he left office with an approval rating in the low 20's. BO's current approval ratings are higher than both.
    My opionon is based upon the thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi's that died and suffered due to the decisions of Bush/Chenney. Additioanlly, the croynism that Bush/Chenney advocated that greatly contributed to the greatest economic calamity to our country since the great depression. Both acts that happened under Bush/Chenney were much worse than anything I can see under BO.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    June 25, 2014 3:17 p.m.

    IRAQ was a mistake ...Obama's handling of it has been an even BIGGER mistake...going from bad to WORSE.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    June 25, 2014 3:26 p.m.

    IRAQ is burning to the ground and has now become terror central...and Barack got it right? Cutting and running is easy ...even Jimmy Carter could do that. Having a plan - any plan is what is missing in IRAQ. Going into Iraq was a mistake no question HOWEVER Obama was handed a stable Iraq and now the place is on fire. We could have done better with a real leader. We have no leader.

  • Joan Watson TWIN FALLS, ID
    June 25, 2014 3:28 p.m.

    Prediction: We aint seen nothing yet - There is no peace to be had in the Middle East. Perhaps Pres. Obama is right - for now. But when it all hits the fan - American will be drawn into a conflict that will make World Wars I and II look like a walk in the park.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 25, 2014 4:43 p.m.

    Hey "Patriot" -

    In spite of the worst wishes of "Conservatives," Obama has been gradually helping this nation from the disaster the previous administration left for us.

    Hey Lost -

    "HAHAHAHAHA" . . . I feel you.

    I'm happy that Obama is President too.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    June 25, 2014 4:53 p.m.

    Obama, by doing what comes natural to him, nothing except give a speech, may well be making the correct decision on this. I more and more am in agreement with PM B. Netanyahu of Israel who says, just let them fight. None of these guys are our friends. Remember the 1980s and Afghanistan? We helped the Mujahdeen to fight the Soviets, and years later they became the Taliban. We had to fight against some of our own weapons in our Afghanistan war. I don't see any upside in supporting any group in any country in the Middle-East except Israel. I think the Jews are our only friend in that part of the world.

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    June 25, 2014 4:57 p.m.

    Freedom Fighter 41

    You act as if Clinton and Obama have had nothing to do with any of these problems we face in the middle east. That every bad thing happening is because of Bush. Now THAT is revisionist history.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    June 26, 2014 12:59 p.m.

    FT,
    perhaps bush's ratings while in office were down. But as of June 20, 2014, after 5-1/2 years of BO's mismanagement, people are seeing bush in a better light. They are seeing that compared to the mistake we have now, bush was better. Don't argue with me, look at the poll results yourself.

    GaryO,
    you are in the minority

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 26, 2014 5:05 p.m.

    @lost in DC
    West Jordan, UT

    GaryO,
    you are in the minority

    12:59 p.m. June 26, 2014

    ==========

    Don;t look now --
    but 81% of AMERICA think Iraq was a mistake.

    So - who's in the minority?

    And let me guess,
    you still can't figure why the Tea-Publicans can't win National elections....