Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The Toll

More people are killed in a month in Iraq than in 30 years of conflict in Northern Ireland. In two months, more are killed than in the first world war's Battle of Jutland, the biggest naval battle of all time.

More are killed in 10 weeks than were killed in the Halabja poison gas attack, Saddam Hussein's single most brutal assault on his people. And in 12 weeks, more are killed than died in the Srebrenica massacre.
Ref the UN Human Rights Report May - June 2006

It's a tragedy, but there isn't much we can do about the situation in Iraq now -- not without committing another 100k to 200k troops.

As our leader is so fond of pointing out, we can't let a foreign country dictate our foreign policy: but that's exactly what we're doing in Iraq with the "we'll stand down when they can stand up" mentality. We're simply trying to keep a lid on this boiling pot when our presence is part of the "heat".

Tribal and religious identities have been brought to the fore-front. They are driving the civil war we're witnessing. Our military posture and strategy in Iraq has been to designed to "stomp out brush fires" ... however, we have a full-fledged conflagration in the area. Our force is simply not designed to deal with it.... and our foreign policy leaders aren't in a position to call for what's needed if we really want to stop the violence.

This is why fatalities have increased each month... for the last 3 years. Our policy, both strategically and tactically, is simply wrong. Don't take my word for it: listen to our generals who have served in the field: LT Gen. Greg Newbold, Gen. Anthony Zinni, Maj. Gen. John Batiste, and others. Many are calling for Rumsfeld to resign.

The reasonable policy is the one advocated by John Murtha: announce a redeployment... set a date; Tell the Iraqis they have to be ready to secure their country from that day forward. Right now, with the American's doing the heavy lifting, they have little reason to put that target on their back -- the one that says "police" or "infantryman".

I'm a realist: this won't solve the problem. But it may remove one of the forces behind the violence, namely our presence. A redeployment will most definitely get American soldiers out of harms way.

Besides, why are we fighting and dying to ensure a fundamentalist regime is established in Iraq? If you don't think that's true, read the first line of the Iraqi constitution.


skip sievert said...

We went there to steal resources plain and simple. Bush could be in for a world of hurt. With two years left he is in deep trouble. It would not surprise me if he is deposed. By who.? The military. Why.? They do not like being used as pawns to steal resources for the corporations. At least some don`t like it. Many are corrupt and connected also to the corporate world. We went there for the money. Bush has partialy failed. In this system you are punished for that. War in general always makes money for the paper pushers somewhere. They play both sides. A lot of money has been made in Iraq. For special interests this has been a boon. There is no morality involved in this. To think there is a mistake. The so called war is a money making enterprise. Stealing and killing is always the fall back position in a price system. If Bush is replaced , the person who replaces him will also do what the corporate world wants them to do. The corporate world is run mostly by the religious mafia-- born again Christians and Orthodox Jews. these groups do not care for the rights of the individual. They are hate mongering belief systems. All this goes from bad to worse until we literaly destroy ourselves . Why.? The crazies are running things.

Sternhund said...

Why are we at war with Iraq to begin with? We know that Saddam had bad relations with Osama Bin Laden -- In fact, I understand he hated Bin Laden.

The answer: Oil.

So then the question is when do we plan on leaving? Well, when does the oil plan on running out?

Reign of Reason said...

I agree: the motivation for the invasion was two-fold: oil and a demonstration of American "might" in the region.

Of course, when you policies aren't well informed AND you have a crew of relatively low intellectual curiosity, such an adventure sounds like a good idea.

I just don't see much hope however -- the American public still buys into the "kick ass and take names" mentality... even when such a course of action will only make the situation worse.

skip sievert said...

I don`t know that there is an actual American public unless you are referring to the goofy stuff that comes out of the focus groups.? The U.S. public does not seem to care, or have any values about anything. They have been dumbed down to the point that most are mechanical. -- Forcing belief systems is what would be called demonstrating power in regard to this situation. Americans think they are smart. They are no doubt one of the dumbest groups of people on earth. They do have a big resource base. This has led them to believe they are intelligent for some reason. I guess because they appear to be rich. ---- We will I think pay a price for all of our stupidity. When.? Soon most likely.

Reign of Reason said...

I agree... Americans, a large part anyway, take the path of least resistance when it comes to determining "fact": if someone says it enough times... and it "sounds" reasonable, it must be true.

How else do you explain 80+% of the populace believing that there is a super-being out there who is ultimately compassionate yet stands by and watches as we kill each other.

skip sievert said...

Good illustration of belief. A fact is completly different. Ultimatly a society is a social proposal or set of beliefs. There will never be a factual society as all society is human extrapolation of abstract concepts. It would be possible to have a society that has freedom from and of belief though. A society could be administerd by science. Science does not go by belief. Science is based on fact. This type of society would remove that element of belief as far as decision making in general, would effect society. Part of education would be to point out the real reasons why religion was used to trick and control people. Spirituality is another subject. I does not have much to do with religion. A good society would go over all aspects of both spirituality and religion. What they are and why they are or were important.