12 comments

    1. At this point, I don’t believe we have a choice. Either finish the job or go down with the ship, IMO. Tossing up our hands and saying, “Oops, sorry. Clean up aisle 9.” doesn’t cut it for me. And I think it would be bad form to do so.

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      1. I’m not abrogating rejecting our responsibility here. Frankly, I tend to buy into the Pottery Barn rule, which is one of the reasons that Iraq poses such a quandary for me. We invaded, we set up the conditions for the current crisis, therefore we bear a responsibility to clean it up. The problem for me, however, starts with the fact that I have severe doubts about our ability to do anything to make things better. At this point, and for about a year now (if I’m to be perfectly honest), I don’t know that anything we do as an occupying power can or will do a damn bit of good.

        It’s a Hel of a muddle, and I’ll be damned if I know what the solution is.

        I’m starting to lean toward partition, which I see as recognition of the reality existing on the ground, but that seems to be something that no one in the White House is willing to consider.

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      2. I can agree with that, though, I tend to lean towards helping the government crack-down on a lot of things. But, that’s just me. I’m iffy on the partition, as much as I think it’d probably be better to just let them split up and be sovereign, I can see the political bullshit storm that would bring. Of course, if they want to do that, power to them, won’t argue it. Won’t even argue if one wants to run and cede to Iran. But I can totally understand the slow tread on this one. Sectarian stuff is a wee bit different than the communist/democracy stuff we’ve dealt with previous.

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      3. One of the problems with helping the Malicki government crack-down on a lot of things is that Malicki appears to have absolutely no interest in cracking down, which really shouldn’t be surprising since Shi’ite militias are the cornerstone (manpower-wise) of the current police forces in the nation.

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      4. I’ve heard from friends over there, that he’s Muqtada’s lapdog. Wouldn’t surprise me, honestly. But at the same time, I’m also wondering exactly how fine the line he tries to tread is, which I can really understand with Talabani. On one hand he wants to make sure the Kurds are taken care of, and on the other, he also has the responsibilities of the greater nation.

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  1. well

    es·ca·late
    1. to increase in intensity, magnitude, etc.
    2. to raise, lower, rise, or descend on or as if on an escalator

    By definition an increase in the number of troops present IS an escalation.

    I require both the admin and the democrats to give me something constructive before I’ll decide one way or the other if this is useful. Frankly it just seems like another ‘stay the course’ refrain from the admin which I am tired of. However I will wait to hear what Bush outlines in his speech tomorrow before I dismiss it.

    Drew

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    1. Re: well

      troop escalation yes, escalation in the war, no. why? because unless congress allows the troops to do their job, more troops won’t mean shit, outside of more walking targets. if congress allows the troops to do their job, i have no doubt that we’ll see things scale down a bit.

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      1. Re: well

        Really? I dont think that will be the case at all. If anything it will be much like the effects of european colonialism… sure they’ll stop fighting and as soon as we leave it will start all over again.

        Drew

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      2. Re: well

        At which point, the Iraqi troops will still be in a better position to defend the government. Right now, even the ground guys training them say they’re a good ways away from being able to do something more than local police work.

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      3. Re: well

        No. At that point one sect will be better able to defend itself agains the other sect. The sectarian element of this conflict is a critical component of this issue. I think our increasing troop levels will only feed insurrection… people dont like being occupied by another country.

        Drew

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      4. Re: well

        Right now, it’s the Mahdi Army and the smaller insurgency groups against everyone else. Chances are, the point of the additional troups is to help train the Iraqi Army, as well as assist them in the ways we already are, just giving them more back-up. That was one thing that the commanders on the ground requested. More troops to help train their Army, kinda like our problem here in public schools, 1 teacher per 40 students. The difference is, it’s a bit more important that all guys in a military unit be up to speed and ready to go. One weak link can mean life or death, especially in that area, and especially right now. On top of that, the police recruits/graduates, as well as the military trainees are being targeted. How can you train and protect them if you don’t have adequate security around them. That’s been our biggest failure. Inability to provide security for the trainees who are supposed to take over our job. Kinda hard for them to do that when they’re dead.

        As for us occupying. We’re just there. Because we’re fighting a stupid PC battle, we just end up with troops defending themselves.

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