welcome to the fest
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

McCain the Iraq War: "We already Won that one!"

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Sinfest Forum Index -> General Discussion
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Him



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 4191
Location: On edge

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 1:40 pm    Post subject: McCain the Iraq War: "We already Won that one!" Reply with quote

http://www.truth-out.org/john-mccain-we-already-won-that-one61699

John McCain: "We Already Won That One"
Monday 26 July 2010

by: Marjorie Cohn, t r u t h o u t | News Analysis


(Image: Jared Rodriguez / t r u t h o u t; Adapted: Staff Sgt. Stacy L. Pearsall / U.S. Army, Tom LeGro / NewsHour )
On July 15, I attended a reception in Washington, DC, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the normalization of relations between the United States and Vietnam. Geoff Millard and I spoke to Sen. John McCain. When Geoff introduced himself as chairman of the board of Iraq Veterans Against the War, McCain retorted, "You're too late. We already won that one."
McCain is now the second US official to declare "mission accomplished" in a war that continues to ravage the people and land of Iraq. "[I]t would be a huge mistake to see Iraq as either a success story or as stable," Juan Cole, professor of modern Middle Eastern and South Asian history at the University of Michigan, wrote on Informed Comment. McCain's declaration of victory in Iraq is as specious as the one George W. Bush made after he strutted across the flight deck of the Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003.
Gen. David Petraeus is often credited with reducing the violence in Iraq after the "surge" of 30,000 extra US troops. But the violence continues unabated. Every few days, there are reports of suicide bombings, car bombs, roadside bombs and armed attacks in Iraq. About 300 civilians continue to die each month, and more than two million Iraqis continue to live as refugees.
Click here to get Truthout stories like this one sent straight to your inbox, 365 days a year.
I wonder how McCain defines "victory" in Iraq. The US mission there has never been clear since the invasion in 2003. First, the search for weapons of mass destruction proved fruitless. Then, it became evident there was no link between al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. Finally, we were told the US invaded Iraq to accomplish regime change and bring democracy to the Iraqi people. But if democracy is the goal, there has been no victory.
Neither Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki nor Ayad Allawi won a mandate in Iraq's March election, which created a power vacuum. "The shortages of power, which remain a chronic problem seven years after the American invasion, have combined with a near paralysis of Iraq's political system and violence to create a volatile mix of challenges before a planned reduction of United States forces this summer," according to The New York Times. Ryan Crocker, former US ambassador to Iraq, described the "elitist authoritarianism that basically ignores the people."
Sunni Arab insurgents have taken advantage of the political vacuum to mount "effective bombing campaigns" and target the banks, says Cole. Last month, attackers in military uniforms tried to storm the Central Bank of Iraq in Baghdad, causing explosions and gun battles with soldiers and police. Fifteen people were killed and 50 were wounded.
Most Iraqis have less than six hours of electricity per day. Baghdad's poorer neighborhoods have as little as one hour per day, leaving them without so much as an electric fan to withstand the blistering heat - 120 degrees in some places. The electricity shortages caused thousands of Iraqis to join street demonstrations in Baghdad last month.
The political situation in Iraq is worse than it was before the US invaded. Although Saddam Hussein was a tyrant, he nevertheless raised the Iraqi standard of living to a respectable level. "Saddam [had] improved the school system in Iraq and literacy for women was phenomenal for that of an Arab country at the time," William Quandt, a professor of Middle East politics at the University of Virginia, who has served as an adviser to the American government on Mideast policy, said on the PBS "News Hour." "People didn't go hungry in those days in Iraq," Quandt added.
"We knew Saddam was tough," Said Aburish, author of a biography of Hussein called "Secrets of His Life and Leadership," noted on PBS "Frontline." "But the balance was completely different then. He was also delivering. The Iraqi people were getting a great deal of things that they needed and wanted and he was popular."
Al-Qaeda did not operate in Iraq before Bush's "Operation Iraqi Freedom." Now al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia terrorizes Iraqis in areas like Amil in Mosul. "They say you have to slaughter soldiers and police," Staff Col. Ismail Khalif Jasim told The New York Times.
There is a campaign of assassinations aimed at government officials across Iraq, the Times reported a few weeks ago: "Some 150 politicians, civil servants, tribal chiefs, police chiefs, Sunni clerks and members of the Awakening Council [former Sunni insurgents now aligned with the Iraqi government and US military] have been assassinated throughout Iraq since the election." Speculation about those responsible includes Shiite militia allies, Sunni extremist groups like al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia, Kurdish political parties and Iran.
Reconstruction of what we have destroyed in Iraq remains elusive. After six years and $104 million spent on restoring a sewage treatment system in Falluja, US officials are walking away without connecting a single house. American reconstruction officials have also walked away from partially completed police stations, schools and government buildings in the past months. "Even some of the projects that will be completed are being finished with such haste, Iraqi officials say, that engineering standards have deteriorated precipitously, putting workers in danger and leaving some of the work at risk of collapse," the Times reported earlier this month.
President Obama is scheduled to reduce the number of US soldiers in Iraq from 80,000 to 50,000 by the end of August. But that does not mean stability has been attained, nor does it mean the occupation will end. The US is sending civilian "contractors" - perhaps more accurately called mercenaries - to replace them.
The number of State Department security contractors will more than double - from 2,700 to between 6,000 and 7,000 - according to a July 12 report of the bipartisan Commission on Wartime Contracting. The State Department has requested 24 Blackhawk helicopters, 50 mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles and other military equipment from the Pentagon. The gigantic US embassy and five "Enduring Presence Posts" (US bases) will remain in Iraq. The contractors are simply taking over the duties of the departing soldiers.
Transferring military functions to civilians is "one more step in the blurring of the lines between military activities and State Department or diplomatic activities," said Richard Fontaine of the Center for a New American Security in Washington, DC.
The US government has changed the language describing military activity in Iraq from combat operations to "stability operations," but US forces will continue to kill Iraqis. "In practical terms, nothing will change," Maj. Gen. Stephen Lanza told the Times. "We are already doing stability operations."
Bush's war of choice in Iraq has caused 4,413 American deaths. Iraq Body Count estimates that between 97,110 and 105,956 Iraqi civilians have been killed. Untold numbers have been seriously wounded. By September, we will have spent nearly $750 billion on this war and occupation.
John McCain should examine the actual state of affairs in Iraq. It he does, he might stop declaring victory.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Then again, isn't this the guy who thought he won the Vietnam war?
_________________
A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want? ~Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sam



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 9551

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tbh Iraq is pretty much winding down at this point. this isn't another 'mission accomplished' level gaffe.

Quote:
then again, isn't this the guy who thought he won the Vietnam war?


no.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mizike



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 5132
Location: Iowa City

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If by winding down, you mean completely unstable and sectarian, then yes.
_________________
Scire aliquid laus est, pudor est non discere velle
"It is laudable to know something, it is disgraceful to not want to learn"
~Seneca
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Sam



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 9551

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mizike wrote:
If by winding down, you mean completely unstable and sectarian, then yes.


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128720153

listen to this story.

(ironically i heard it after i made that post)
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 17275
Location: under the bed

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

it seems to me that after the news came out that ronald reagan had been diagnosed with alzheimer's disease, someone looked back on his last few years in office and spotted signs that he was already becoming affected, even then.

i have a suspicion that the same will be true of mccain. he's already lost his grip on issues he fought for passionately in years past, and now he's apparently losing his grip on reality.
_________________
aka: neverscared!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sam



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 9551

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really am not going to take that comment as evidence that he's approaching senility. It's not a smart thing to say but I have trouble finding any indication that its that wrong.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mizike



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 5132
Location: Iowa City

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sam wrote:
Mizike wrote:
If by winding down, you mean completely unstable and sectarian, then yes.


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128720153

listen to this story.

(ironically i heard it after i made that post)


So, you're defining winding down as "It's not our problem that your country is hopelessly broken"?

That's cool. But let's not pretend that things are getting better in Iraq. There is still violence and the political situation is as bad as at any time since Chalabi was run out.
_________________
Scire aliquid laus est, pudor est non discere velle
"It is laudable to know something, it is disgraceful to not want to learn"
~Seneca
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Willem



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 6306
Location: wasteland style

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mizike wrote:
So, you're defining winding down as "It's not our problem that your country is hopelessly broken"?

You see, if things are going bad, you just change your goals! You can never lose! USA! USA!
_________________
attitude of a street punk, only cutting selected words out of context to get onself excuse to let one's dirty mouth loose
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 17275
Location: under the bed

PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sam wrote:
I really am not going to take that comment as evidence that he's approaching senility. It's not a smart thing to say but I have trouble finding any indication that its that wrong.


well, it's not exactly _right_....

but you are correct, one statement like that wouldn't indicate senility. but things seem to be kinda piling up, with him.

well, i don't know, maybe it's just overwhelming fear of losing his seat that has him tossing out his past principles wholesale - but it seems to me there should be a point where someone of sound mind, especially someone as feisy as mccain used to be, would start balking at behaving like that, just to win an election.
_________________
aka: neverscared!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sam



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 9551

PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mizike wrote:
So, you're defining winding down as "It's not our problem that your country is hopelessly broken"?


I'm not going to characterize the country as hopelessly broken! I don't get how you could have taken that from the report if you listened to it, and I do not think the levels of violence and instability in the country are consistent.

Large amounts of that are from net negatives as well as net positives, however. It's hard to maintain regular sectarian bloodshed when the cities have been emptied of minority groups and left ghost towns in places.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Lasairfiona



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 9702
Location: I have to be somewhere? ::runs around frantically::

PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 1:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mouse wrote:
well, i don't know, maybe it's just overwhelming fear of losing his seat that has him tossing out his past principles wholesale - but it seems to me there should be a point where someone of sound mind, especially someone as feisy as mccain used to be, would start balking at behaving like that, just to win an election.

I'd rather believe his mind is going than that he is selling out to keep his seat. Either is possible but I like my slightly nicer look on it.

Since either way very sad.

_________________
Before God created Las he pondered on all the aspects a woman might have, he considered which ones would look good super-inflated and which ones to leave alone.
After much deliberation he gave her a giant comfort zone. - Michael
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mizike



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 5132
Location: Iowa City

PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We won!

Quote:
BAGHDAD — In a brazen late-afternoon attack in the heart of this city’s most prominent Sunni neighborhood, gunmen attacked two police checkpoints on Thursday before a series of roadside bombs detonated on police and army patrols responding to the mayhem.

After the attack — in Adhamiya, a section of Baghdad that was the site of some of the most vicious fighting of the sectarian civil war in 2006 and 2007 — the gunmen raised the black flag of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, according to high-ranking Iraqi Army officer. According to an official with the Ministry of Interior, the death toll at the moment included 6 soldiers and policemen and 10 civilians, while 14 others were wounded.

The violence was the latest in a series of attacks in recent weeks claimed by, or attributed to, the militant group, a largely homegrown Sunni organization. Among them were the bombing of the Trade Bank of Iraq, the robbery of the Central Bank, a suicide attack on an Arabic-language satellite news channel and the slaughter of more than 40 Awakening members, mostly former insurgents now aligned with the government, as they picked up their paychecks.


There is more depressing news at the link.
_________________
Scire aliquid laus est, pudor est non discere velle
"It is laudable to know something, it is disgraceful to not want to learn"
~Seneca
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Sinfest Forum Index -> General Discussion All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group