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#320415 - 01/22/20 11:42 PM Re: iranian general qassem soleimani [Re: Greger]
CPWILL Offline
newbie

Registered: 12/26/19
Posts: 470
Originally Posted By: Greger
Quote:
Trump keeps trying to pull us out of the Middle East

One thing I like about Trump is that he really hasn't got the balls for war. We need more of that in our leaders...not too much though.


Fair enough that you appreciate it, but, I wish at least people on the left (generally) could recognize it. It's like they've got this formula of Republican=WantsMoreWar in their heads, because Republican=Bad and War=Bad, and they somehow can't accept information that contradicts the easy and trite.
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#320422 - 01/23/20 12:59 AM Re: iranian general qassem soleimani [Re: CPWILL]
rporter314 Online   content
veteran

Registered: 03/18/03
Posts: 7348
Loc: Highlands, Tx
First I do not have military contacts, especially willing to reveal classified briefing materials, so I can not respond to some of what you say.

Quote:
AQI =/= AQI, AQ in the land of two rivers, or the Islamic State. However, the latter group was more than decimated, it was down to a relative fraction of it's strength.

It's worth noting that the fact that ISIS today is stronger in Iraq and Syria than AQI was at that point in Iraq alone, and that this organization has already proven that, without pressure, they can rise from those more reduced origins to what we saw in 2014. So... I'm not exactly sure that's a great argument for the "Let's Just Leave And Hope This Time That Works" argument.
I am not sure what you are trying to say, however I am quite sure no one knew in 2014 what the future status of any of these groups would be. You could speculate, but speculation is what has gotten us in trouble. The Bush administration speculated us into a war.

Not making an argument for L&H (leaving and hoping). Remember Pres Obama was handed the SOFA. He saw as many saw a war costing America dearly in lost lives in every respect and lost treasure. He was of course unenthusiastic about staying or returning. Thus it shouldn't startle anyone that he was reticent in returning after just leaving. There would have been no clear mission. Killing terrorists is not good enough.

You and I (and Pres Obama) with hindsight can better see what could have been done which may have mitigated circumstances. Somewhere between turning the ME into a large sheet of glass and leaving them to their own devices, I suspect there is a reasonable approach for supporting American interests.

Quote:
What happened is that the Administration spent about a year and a half pushing back on the IC trying to tell them that ISIS was a large and growing threat, and excluding senior enterprise leaders who told them the truth on the matter from future meetings.
Again you say this but that is not supported by the whistleblower complaints. They were directed against top IC officials who were altering reports. These officials were not excluded from meetings as it was their reports which were presented.

Large and growing threat. See remarks above on just leaving. This lies in with the JV remark. AQ was international in scope. They were in fact the gold standard in terrorism by which a reasonable person would compare any group. ISIS did not compare to that standard at the time. They were in fact a JV wannabe at the time. They were local players which the Iraqis thought they could handle. That they rapidly morphed into a significant player could not be known at the time. And how did that happen? Well they went into Syria. Who predicted that? I don't even think in hindsight one would have predicted the rise of ISIS in the manner they did it.

Quote:
Even our Embassy in Iraq at the time didn't know what our policy was, because the Administration refused to have one.
Has any administration had a cogent policy for the ME? This was especially hard for the Obama administration as it had to take over what the Bush administration left them. Was it blood for oil? Was it opportunity to get close to Iran (to support MEK)? Whatever the Bush administration left was a mess, but what the Obama administration knew was in 2 years there was an exit and a president unwilling to continue a long war without purpose. After all, it was not about terrorists. It was about WMD's????

Quote:
Trump keeps trying to pull us out of the Middle East
Yes and no.

Yes he has no understanding of what our "mission" is, but he does understand dollars and cents. So on the one hand he says he wants out and on the other hand he wants to keep the oil, he will stay in Iraq even if they want him out unless they pay, he has in every respect acted as PM Chamberlain did with appeasement in Syria to the Russians and al-Assad. This chaotic approach to policy is probably a direct consequence of his narcissism. He will act in whatever manner necessary to get adulation and praise even if those actions are contradictory in nature or policy.

But we have wandered from the thread. We have been at war with Iran since 1979. My point is don't be indignant about what Iran does, or present rationalizations for American actions.
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#320425 - 01/23/20 05:09 AM Re: iranian general qassem soleimani [Re: rporter314]
CPWILL Offline
newbie

Registered: 12/26/19
Posts: 470
Originally Posted By: rporter314
First I do not have military contacts, especially willing to reveal classified briefing materials, so I can not respond to some of what you say.


None of this is classified - you can look it up. If you want an excellent source, I recommend Long War Journal (boy howdy did they look good and the DoD look bad after the Afghan Papers came out). But fair enough about the lack of military experience.


Quote:
however I am quite sure no one knew in 2014 what the future status of any of these groups would be.


In 2014 it wasn't a matter of the Islamic State's future status, but rather their status at the time. At the time they were a major threat, overrunning territory across eastern Syria and northern Iraq. It was in 2014 that they took Fallujah, Ramadi, Mosul, and threatened Baghdad.

Quote:
Not making an argument for L&H (leaving and hoping). Remember Pres Obama was handed the SOFA. He saw as many saw a war costing America dearly in lost lives in every respect and lost treasure. He was of course unenthusiastic about staying or returning. Thus it shouldn't startle anyone that he was reticent in returning after just leaving. There would have been no clear mission. Killing terrorists is not good enough.


Keeping VEO's suppressed is, I think, absolutely a worthy mission in and of itself. Especially when you look at our presence in 2011 - heck, I think we were losing more people to automobile accidents in-country then than we were to the enemy.

Quote:
You and I (and Pres Obama) with hindsight can better see what could have been done which may have mitigated circumstances. Somewhere between turning the ME into a large sheet of glass and leaving them to their own devices, I suspect there is a reasonable approach for supporting American interests.


well.... yes smile

Quote:
Quote:
What happened is that the Administration spent about a year and a half pushing back on the IC trying to tell them that ISIS was a large and growing threat, and excluding senior enterprise leaders who told them the truth on the matter from future meetings.
Again you say this but that is not supported by the whistleblower complaints. They were directed against top IC officials who were altering reports. These officials were not excluded from meetings as it was their reports which were presented.


That is what I'm pointing out to you - because the people who told the Administration what they didn't want to hear weren't invited back, and so the remainder altered their work accordingly. The President was quite clear that he didn't want to hear things that may suggest his decision in 2012 had gone badly, or that he may have to send troops back into Iraq.

Quote:
Large and growing threat. See remarks above on just leaving. This lies in with the JV remark. AQ was international in scope. They were in fact the gold standard in terrorism by which a reasonable person would compare any group. ISIS did not compare to that standard at the time. They were in fact a JV wannabe at the time.


:shrug: Respectfully, this is flatly incorrect. IN 2014, ISIS was not a JV team, and, in fact, if anything, had surpassed AQ by most measures (more people, more territory, more money, etc.), up to and including holding and governing territory, including territory from two separate nation-states, some of which they had seized by defeating conventional force in battle. In 2012, AQI could have been described as battered and diffused. In 2014, this was nowhere near the case.

Quote:
They were local players which the Iraqis thought they could handle


In 2014 the Iraqi Armed Forces were fleeing at the very approach of ISIS forces, abandoning their weapons and vehicles, and ISIS had seized a goodly portion of their country. Ayatollah Sistani called for every Iraqi male who could pick up a rifle to come protect against ISIS because it was so obvious that the government couldn't handle them. So.... no, because in 2014 the Iraqi's also took us back because they were desperate to A) survive and B) defeat ISIS, which they could not do on their own.

Quote:
That they rapidly morphed into a significant player could not be known at the time.


They were already a significant player and this was known at the time because it was obvious at the time.

Quote:
Quote:
Even our Embassy in Iraq at the time didn't know what our policy was, because the Administration refused to have one.
Has any administration had a cogent policy for the ME?


That is not at all the same and I suspect you know it smile.

Quote:
Quote:
Trump keeps trying to pull us out of the Middle East
Yes and no.

Yes he has no understanding of what our "mission" is, but he does understand dollars and cents. So on the one hand he says he wants out and on the other hand he wants to keep the oil, he will stay in Iraq even if they want him out unless they pay, he has in every respect acted as PM Chamberlain did with appeasement in Syria to the Russians and al-Assad. This chaotic approach to policy is probably a direct consequence of his narcissism. He will act in whatever manner necessary to get adulation and praise even if those actions are contradictory in nature or policy.


Trump has announced withdrawals multiple time and tried to push for withdrawals multiple times only to be restrained by his advisors. He's tried to get us out of Syria, Afghanistan, and, I believe, Iraq. That is his instinctive approach, which is why he keeps returning to it. It is absolutely a chaotic approach to policy, and it is absolutely damaging, but it is his preferred, instinctive, answer.

Quote:
But we have wandered from the thread. We have been at war with Iran since 1979. My point is don't be indignant about what Iran does, or present rationalizations for American actions.


Indignant? Nah - you are correct about 1979. We are long past being surprised by Iran trying to kill Americans.


Edited by CPWILL (01/23/20 05:12 AM)
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