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Author Topic: The real price of Iraq?  (Read 2231 times)
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Canuck
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« on: June 26, 2008, 01:53:17 PM »

I have no concrete evidence for this, these are just my musings. After many days of reading the latest goings on in Zimbabwe, I've come to the personal conclusion that the war in Iraq has done more than just tarnish George Bush's and the US reputation around the world.  I believe that it has made the US more isolationist and they no longer have the stomach for getting involved in international hotspots.  And who can blame them?  They were misled into a war, a quagmire in Iraq with little hope of getting out any time soon. It has damaged the economy, sucked up their political capital and killed thousands of young American kids.  I can't see any American wanting to have anything to do with Zimbabwe-it will take years and years just to recover from Iraq.  I'm worried that many of the world despots will see this and use it to their advantage.  Mugabe seems to be walking around with all the swagger of a man with nukes in his pockets.  He KNOWS that no one is going to step in and stop him so he can do whatever he want.  Wasn't the whole reason for the Iraq invasion in the first place (after the first WMD reason didn't work out) to remove a merciless dictator and restore democracy?  It seems to me that Zimbabwe is a state which is just begging for such action and yet no one is going to lift a finger.  As much as we like to criticize America (and Lord knows I have done my share of criticizing) they are are the only nation on the planet with the resources and the aptitude to be the world cop.  And if they decide that they no longer want to have any part of that then I worry for those nations ruled by tyranny. And don't get me started on the UN. Perhaps we need to bring back Causus Belli.  Any nation which gets kicked out of the UN gives every other country a Causus Belli against them and can be attacked with no repercussions.  That might bring some states into line.
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brettmcd
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« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2008, 02:04:21 PM »

The US shouldnt be the worlds cop anyway, so maybe that will be a positive outcome of the problems in Iraq that we wont want to fill that role anymore in the world.
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Ironrod
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« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2008, 02:58:22 PM »

You pick your spots.

Iraq = second largest known oil reserves in the world.
Zimbabwe = no oil

Quote from: Canuck on June 26, 2008, 01:53:17 PM

Wasn't the whole reason for the Iraq invasion in the first place (after the first WMD reason didn't work out) to remove a merciless dictator and restore democracy? 

You are confusing a justification with a reason.
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« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2008, 03:03:54 PM »

I suppose if the US had supported the decisions that the UN, an organization it helped to found, then some of this wouldn't be so bad.

Whoever takes up the reigns next year is going to have their work cut out for them.
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Knightshade Dragon
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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2008, 04:18:20 PM »

The true price of Iraq is dead soldiers and the family they leave behind.  If we fought for what was right we'd be in Darfor right now, not Iraq. 

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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2008, 04:18:46 PM »

Quote from: brettmcd on June 26, 2008, 02:04:21 PM

The US shouldnt be the worlds cop anyway, so maybe that will be a positive outcome of the problems in Iraq that we wont want to fill that role anymore in the world.

Isn't that what the UN was supposed to do?
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Ron Burke
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Two Sheds
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« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2008, 04:28:17 PM »

Maybe, but they're not very good at it.
Then again, we haven't had a great track record either.

But why shouldn't we do it? Shouldn't we have a responsibility as a superpower to stop things like genocide, for example?
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brettmcd
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2008, 04:33:27 PM »

Quote from: Two Sheds on June 26, 2008, 04:28:17 PM

Maybe, but they're not very good at it.
Then again, we haven't had a great track record either.

But why shouldn't we do it? Shouldn't we have a responsibility as a superpower to stop things like genocide, for example?


Why?   I dont see such a responsibility for any one nation.
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Knightshade Dragon
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2008, 04:37:31 PM »

Quote from: brettmcd on June 26, 2008, 04:33:27 PM

Quote from: Two Sheds on June 26, 2008, 04:28:17 PM

Maybe, but they're not very good at it.
Then again, we haven't had a great track record either.

But why shouldn't we do it? Shouldn't we have a responsibility as a superpower to stop things like genocide, for example?


Why?   I dont see such a responsibility for any one nation.

Gotta agree with Brett on this one.  It should be a shared responsibility. 
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Two Sheds
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2008, 04:42:37 PM »

Because we can, and someone should. Who else can?
Do you have an objection other than a reluctance to accept responsibility?

Of course it should be a shared responsibility. I just think that, as the most economically, technologically, and militarily capable nation on the planet, we should be leading the charge in places like Darfur.

edit: In other words, the fact that this country would ignore the UN when we want to depose Saddam Hussein, but rely on them in Darfur, etc., is appalling.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2008, 05:01:40 PM by Two Sheds » Logged
brettmcd
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« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2008, 05:20:12 PM »

Quote from: Two Sheds on June 26, 2008, 04:42:37 PM

Because we can, and someone should. Who else can?
Do you have an objection other than a reluctance to accept responsibility?

Of course it should be a shared responsibility. I just think that, as the most economically, technologically, and militarily capable nation on the planet, we should be leading the charge in places like Darfur.

edit: In other words, the fact that this country would ignore the UN when we want to depose Saddam Hussein, but rely on them in Darfur, etc., is appalling.

Yes I have an objection to spending billions of dollars and the lives of our soldiers to rescue a countries people from themselves.   Our military exists to protect this nation, its people and its vital national interests.   Things like you want us to do dont fit any of those criteria for me.
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McBa1n
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« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2008, 06:34:52 PM »

Quote from: Knightshade Dragon on June 26, 2008, 04:18:20 PM

The true price of Iraq is dead soldiers and the family they leave behind.  If we fought for what was right we'd be in Darfor right now, not Iraq. 



Amen, sista.

But even with Darfur being pretty f'd up (like many other African nations).... Between UN f-ups and now US f-ups internationally and with military involvement - I think everyone should just stay out of everywhere. Seriously, how many military campaigns - US led or UN led that actually worked to the benefit of anyone. My brain goes back to the UN in Cambodia - and dang that was a waste of everyone's time. It reminds me of how little we're doing in Afganistan. Haha, 'but they voted!!!' - yeah so did Cambodia with the UN there, that went well...*cough*

Seriously, I can't think of anything offhand you can consider a success - well, aside from the 'mission accomplished' moment, that was a job well done!  Roll Eyes

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cheeba
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« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2008, 07:05:34 PM »

Quote from: Ironrod on June 26, 2008, 02:58:22 PM

You pick your spots.

Iraq = second largest known oil reserves in the world.
Zimbabwe = no oil

Quote from: Canuck on June 26, 2008, 01:53:17 PM

Wasn't the whole reason for the Iraq invasion in the first place (after the first WMD reason didn't work out) to remove a merciless dictator and restore democracy? 

You are confusing a justification with a reason.
^ Thread winner.
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MrZubbleWump
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« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2008, 08:43:17 PM »

Quote from: Two Sheds on June 26, 2008, 04:42:37 PM

Because we can, and someone should. Who else can?
Do you have an objection other than a reluctance to accept responsibility?

Of course it should be a shared responsibility. I just think that, as the most economically, technologically, and militarily capable nation on the planet, we should be leading the charge in places like Darfur.

edit: In other words, the fact that this country would ignore the UN when we want to depose Saddam Hussein, but rely on them in Darfur, etc., is appalling.

It's not like the UN has a military force.  The UN would ask it's members to send in troops with blue helmets on and guess which nation would supply the majority of that force?
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denoginizer
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« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2008, 10:21:40 PM »

I think if the Iraq war never happened we would still not be in Zimbabwe or Darfur.  We learned our lesson in Somalia not to get mixed up in African wars.  Africa represents no significant threat to our national interest except for maybe Nigeria due to it's oil production.

It is what it is.
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« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2008, 10:50:06 PM »

Quote from: MrZubbleWump on June 26, 2008, 08:43:17 PM

Quote from: Two Sheds on June 26, 2008, 04:42:37 PM

Because we can, and someone should. Who else can?
Do you have an objection other than a reluctance to accept responsibility?

Of course it should be a shared responsibility. I just think that, as the most economically, technologically, and militarily capable nation on the planet, we should be leading the charge in places like Darfur.

edit: In other words, the fact that this country would ignore the UN when we want to depose Saddam Hussein, but rely on them in Darfur, etc., is appalling.

It's not like the UN has a military force.  The UN would ask it's members to send in troops with blue helmets on and guess which nation would supply the majority of that force?

Uh. Not the United States.

Lets just take a spotlight of what countries were providing troops to United Nations peacekeeping efforts in 2005. Not surprisingly the United States was ranked all of 29th in the world with 344 personnel in operations. The top ten countries all contributed over 2,000 troops and they were Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Jordan, Uruguay, and South Africa.

The United States and other developed nations with the strongest militaries don't really work with the United Nations any more for peacekeeping operations. If we were to see the United States going into areas like the Sudan or Zimbabwe it wouldn't be in blue helmets anymore, it would be done with a UN-approved NATO mission much like in Afghanistan. The United States won't work directly under the UN anymore for a few reasons - 1) The UN hasn't been able to adapt to the post-Cold War conditions where missions are no long cut and dry, keep two governments apart kind of deals and more ethnic conflicts like Darfur and Rwanda 2) The main contributors are not the highly trained western militaries that work well with US troops, hence NATO being a far better fit 3) NATO, unlike the UN is designed from the get-go as a military alliance and can adapt to changing conditions in a mission far quicker and with better results than the UN can.

And to dispel the idea that peacekeeping or peace-enforcement missions (which these are all basically now) can't succeed I'd counter with the thought that after the fall of the Soviet Union the United Nations simply wasn't set up to deal with the kind of issues that were popping up in areas like Cambodia and Rwanda. Traditionally throughout the Cold War era interventions were for the purpose of peaceKEEPING - wherein two sides, usually recognized sovereign elements had agreed to some sort of a truce or were working towards an agreement while a ceasefire was in effect. UN forces would come in to act as a neutral arbiter and keep the two sides apart. It worked great when the UN could come in between two states - after the Suez Crisis or the Six Days War for instance, and has worked even as lately as UNMEE between Eritrea and Ethiopia. Which also lets me use this amusing image...



The problem came when the Soviet Union dissolved and ethnic tensions - especially in the Balkans and Africa came to the fore. You take a bureaucratic top heavy organization like the United Nations which has a system that seems to work relatively well under the right conditions and place it amongst a scenario where there are no visible state or sovereign actors and it was only inevitable that problems and disasters would arise. Rwanda and other missions failed because the UN continued to believe they could rely on peaceKEEPING when there was no peace to keep. The idea of acting as a neutral between two forces - say two ethnic groups of which one is dominant and willing to use ethnic cleansing or genocide - is simply laughable and from what I know various participants in the UN are acting to resolve the issue by moving more towards peaceENFORCEMENT in which no pretensions of neutrality will be given - the NATO mission in Afghanistan is probably the most adequate example of what future missions might look like in which a multinational force works to strengthen whatever government is deemed legitimate and sovereign.

I also think the idea that writing off the whole continent of Africa is beneath the dignity of the past sixty or seventy years of thought on the issue of humanitarian intervention and far too isolationist. We let these states collapse and odds are in a decade or two we'll be reaping the fruit of our negligence with interest - letting Afghanistan collapse and be effectively tossed under the wheels of a truck after the Soviet-Afghan War came back and bit us in the ass after all and we've been seeing the results of that since 9/11.
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Jag
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« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2008, 05:07:13 PM »

Quote from: CSL on June 26, 2008, 10:50:06 PM



I would totally play the UN in Civ just for that Unique Unit.
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