"Who are they that have expressed these concerns? In fact, these are the exact words of terrorists discussing Iraq -- Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and his associates -- who are describing their own situation and must be watching with fear the progress that Iraq has made over the past three years."
"Consider that if we retreat now, there is every reason to believe Saddamists and terrorists will fill the vacuum -- and the free world might not have the will to face them again."
"Turning our backs on postwar Iraq today would be the modern equivalent of handing postwar Germany back to the Nazis."
...After the raid, an Iraqi informer walked among detainees, pointing them out to U.S. troops. Despite being disguised with a bag over his head, the informer was recognized by his fellow villagers by his yellow sandals and his amputated thumb. His name was Sabah. ...The next day, his father and brother, carrying AK-47s, entered his room before dawn and took him behind the house. With trembling hands, the father fired twice...
>Seriously, can you people not differentiate between blind-animalistic-revenge-for-9/11 and a coherent strategy against the roots of terror, or are you just not trying? Saddam didn't have to plan 9/11 or know anything about it to be an obvious initial target in need of reform in the Middle East. What were we gonna do, replace the Princes in the Magic Kingdom with Hussein tying us up across the border?
posted by techgnollogic at 5:44 AM PST on June 28 [!]
...The Arab world was "pissed off" to begin with, hence "planes --> towers".
You see, the "give them money and don't stir up trouble and maybe they'll be nice to us" plan of 'attack' wasn't exactly working so well.
posted by techgnollogic at 6:55 AM PST on June 28 [!]
..."Are we safer now?"
What a dumb, pointless question. If you're in a burning house, in the last room to burn, with a flame-licked hallway between you and the exit, you're "safer" there than in the hallway. Some of us, however, would rather escape the burning building than run some muckity-muck utilitarian calculation on adjacent floorspace like doomed cellular automata.
posted by techgnollogic at 6:12 PM PST on June 28 [!]
It's not all roses and daisies, and we're not done by a long shot, but we're not wasting our time, and we're making tons of progress.
posted by techgnollogic at 9:47 PM PST on April 26 [!]
Even if it takes 5000 body bags more.
"On the third anniversary of the US invasion in Iraq, the United States is still fighting an enemy it barely knows. Washington relies on crude, broad-brush identifications -- Saddamists, Islamofascists, and the like. Rather than analyze the armed opposition's strategy and objectives, it assumes them. Rather than listen to what the insurgents say, it dismisses it. All of which is mystifying and, of far greater importance, self-defeating....That the insurgency has survived, even thrived, despite being vastly outnumbered and outgunned, suggests flaws and limitations of the current counterinsurgency campaign. The insurgents' discourse may be dismissed as rhetoric, but they appear to have effectively reached agreement on core operational matters, grown in self-assurance, and exhibited greater sensitivity to Sunni Arab opinion."
Only 3% of Americans believe Bush decided to go to war to free the Iraqis or promote democracy. [CBS News Poll -- PDF | March 13, 2006]
"During World War II, American soldiers en route to Britain before D-Day were given a pamphlet on how to behave while awaiting the invasion. The most important quote in it was this: 'It is impolite to criticize your host; it is militarily stupid to criticize your allies.'
By that rule, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is not competent to lead our armed forces. First, his failure to build coalitions with our allies from what he dismissively called 'old Europe' has imposed far greater demands and risks on our soldiers in Iraq than necessary. Second, he alienated his allies in our own military, ignoring the advice of seasoned officers and denying subordinates any chance for input.
In sum, he has shown himself incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically, and is far more than anyone else responsible for what has happened to our important mission in Iraq. Mr. Rumsfeld must step down."
-- Major General Paul D. Eaton, US Army (Retired), commanding general of the Coalition Military Assistance and Training Team from 2003 to 2004.
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