Debate and Discussion

Who wants an American victory in Iraq?
warren at 11:50AM, Aug. 16, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Just a throught: Wouldn't an Iraqi victory in Iraq be cool? I mean, it is their country. By victory, I mean the Iraqi people are free to pick their government, can decide what to do with their oil, and have a free, productive, peaceful society that actually is better on human rights that it was under Saddam.
That would be cool. It would be nice if the Iraqis could just have ordainary lives, going to work and having families and whatnot, all the while not having to worry about being killed because they worship (or don't worship) a certain flavor of God.

That can't come soon enough, and not just because we have troops stationed over there. It's because ALL OF US have the right to have ordainary, boring lives.

Hopefully the people can rise up against the nutcases and be free.
Warren

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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
Aurora Moon at 11:52AM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Vindibudd
Dude, you are playing word games. “I didn't say that America was mostly/full of/ had lots of/ racists and sexists, I said that was RIDDLED!”


Yeah, “riddled” can mean anything. I take it to mean that it is full of. What do you take it to mean? 1 in 3? 1 in 2? 1 in 5? 1 in 3000?

So what is the point of even using the term if you are unwilling to define it? In fact, what is the point of posting here if you don't want to take a stand on something? Unlike you, Map says something that is definitive, and then can't stand it when it is repeated back to her. You just like making subjective statements that can mean anything and then hide behind your choice of words so as to not be nailed down. You need to grow a set and take a stand.

Why can't you simply own up to the fact that you warp what people say?

I didn't make a vague statement, I said America is riddled with racists and sexists. YOU are the one who said that I said the majority of America is racist and sexist. That's simply not true. That was your interpretation of what I said, and that's YOUR problem, not mine. Why can't you simply own your mistake? You need “to grow a set” and be a man when you make a mistake.

I'll second what TNT said.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
TnTComic at 11:58AM, Aug. 16, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Just a throught: Wouldn't an Iraqi victory in Iraq be cool? I mean, it is their country. By victory, I mean the Iraqi people are free to pick their government, can decide what to do with their oil, and have a free, productive, peaceful society that actually is better on human rights that it was under Saddam.

You know, that's long been my problem with forcing democracy on them. Suppose they elect to have a society we don't like? What then? Do we cry “do over!” and make them have another election? If they wish to live in a manner we don't like, isn't that their right? And wouldn't we be acting as the oppressors in that scenario? Suppose the roles were reversed, and America was invaded by Muslims saying that we had to have free elections, so long as we elected a leadership they approved of, and lived in a manner they wanted us to live in. I don't believe for one second that we're interested in Iraq's freedom, we're interested in spreading our way of life. I love the American way of life, but to force it on others is wrong, in my opinion.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
Aurora Moon at 12:01PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Just a throught: Wouldn't an Iraqi victory in Iraq be cool? I mean, it is their country. By victory, I mean the Iraqi people are free to pick their government, can decide what to do with their oil, and have a free, productive, peaceful society that actually is better on human rights that it was under Saddam.

You know, that's long been my problem with forcing democracy on them. Suppose they elect to have a society we don't like? What then? Do we cry “do over!” and make them have another election? If they wish to live in a manner we don't like, isn't that their right? And wouldn't we be acting as the oppressors in that scenario? Suppose the roles were reversed, and America was invaded by Muslims saying that we had to have free elections, so long as we elected a leadership they approved of, and lived in a manner they wanted us to live in. I don't believe for one second that we're interested in Iraq's freedom, we're interested in spreading our way of life. I love the American way of life, but to force it on others is wrong, in my opinion.

Man, that's exactly how I feel.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
SpANG at 12:06PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Someone
I don't believe for one second that we're interested in Iraq's freedom, we're interested in spreading our way of life.
Problem is that so many people can't tell the difference between the two.
“You're getting freedom even if I have to oppress you!”

We are there for 2 reasons. Oil and “he tried to kill my dad”.

“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:52PM
Vindibudd at 12:31PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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At this point it is me against like 5 other people so I am not going to do a person by person response.

I'm not going to argue the whole riddled with sexists thing anymore, so don't bring it up, it isn't going to be answered.

I need to define the field that I am playing on here. I am basing my arguments on mainstream information, not conspiracy theories. I am not going to argue things like the U.S. is installing puppet governments and that they are only doing this for oil or as one person put it “he tried to kill my dad” which is really just stupid. I am also not going to argue that the White House is spinning and that the Democrats and the Republicans are spinning blah blah blah. I'm also not going to argue b-b-b-but North Korea or b-b-b-but Iran or b-b-b-but bin Laden!

What I am trying to determine is this:

Would you rather see the United States (regardless of who is in power) fail in establishing a democracy in Iraq that is an ally or would you rather see the United States (regardless of who is in power) succeed in this.

I don't care if you think one way or another, because both can be argued in a variety of ways. Hence, state your position and tell me why you think that way.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
SpANG at 12:51PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Vindibudd
…. or as one person put it “he tried to kill my dad” which is really just stupid.

Yeah, that's what I said. When Bush SAID it.


Vindibudd
Would you rather see the United States (regardless of who is in power) fail in establishing a democracy in Iraq that is an ally or would you rather see the United States (regardless of who is in power) succeed in this.
Look, you are STILL missing the point (or ignoring it). It's not that we don't WANT the USA to succeed. We just don't think they can.

So why play your game? So you can call us traitors to America because we want to see the the USA fail? We've seen the spin before. We just don't want to play your little game.
“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:52PM
ozoneocean at 1:11PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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As I've said before, the only “victory” in Iraq was the one against Saddam. Anything else is just wishful thinking and silly interpretation.

The goal of US forces over there is simply to have a stable enough situation to allow good strategic control over the area. The Iraqi's and whatever political system they have don't actually matter so much -to the strategists. What I mean is that stability is needed (for the already stated reason), and it doesn't matter so much how that's achieved as long as it is. That'll be the same whoever is in power in the US. And that means “democracy”, self determination and whatever other nice things you can think up are entirely optional.

It's grim, but at this stage what else is there? You have to realise that the US is NOT going to throw away hard won territory like this so easily.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:27PM
Aurora Moon at 1:22PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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SpANG
So why play your game? So you can call us traitors to America because we want to see the the USA fail? We've seen the spin before. We just don't want to play your little game.

To add to that statement, I'd also like to say that I don't think anybody of us here WANTS for the USA to fail at this.

I think what people are mainly worried about is that USA, while it's trying to create a stable situation with the Iraq people as our ally, is that they would mess up somehow and create a even WORSE situation–one where the Iraq people becomes our enemy.

I think everyone here would be happy if this war had a “happy ending” for both the USA AND the Iraq people. and that would induce me too!

But at best I feel like I'm just being realistic when I say that the only best thing I can really hope for, is our troops' safe return back home.

So I don't feel like I'm a traitor to America or whatever, and I'd think anybody who says so an compete idiot!


I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:10AM
Vindibudd at 2:17PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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SpANG
Look, you are STILL missing the point (or ignoring it). It's not that we don't WANT the USA to succeed. We just don't think they can.

So why play your game? So you can call us traitors to America because we want to see the the USA fail? We've seen the spin before. We just don't want to play your little game.


I don't care whether you think they can or not. Let me refine it even further, I am asking if you are in favor of the U.S. gaining an ally in Iraq or do you think that it is strategically better for the world in general if that were not the case. This of course assumes that you are generally inclined to a pro-American world view, as in, you do not want to see America destroyed one way or another.

I never said anything about calling anyone a traitor so don't assume that I would because you would be assuming too much about me. I think the problem is that a lot of you think you have me all figured out. You don't. None of you do. None of you could accurately define what I really believe about national security because I have not defined what I believe.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
ozoneocean at 3:55PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Vindibudd
I am asking if you are in favor of the U.S. gaining an ally in Iraq or do you think that it is strategically better for the world in general if that were not the case.
It's strategically better for the US not to have Iraq as an ally. That'd be like China having Tibet as an ally: in name only because if they really had that status they'd part company.

Iraq is geographically well placed and it has fantastic oil resources, apart from that it's useless or worse; maybe even a liability- with it's unstable political system, religious tension, ongoing insurgencies, run-down industries, utilities and economy, as well as being bordered by hostile nations.

As a well placed, easy to supply forward base in the Middle East though it'll be useful according to some strategic perspectives, but it really depends on how you look at it and what those are:
Support for Israel? A staging post for invasion of Iran and or Syria? Something simply to threaten Iran and Syria with, along with any other nation that in future has radically divergent goals- ie. If Egypt, Lybia, Saudi Arabia or some other country had a “worrying” change in the political situation. Perhaps as a staging post to send in troops to “liberate” any country in the region that has a revolution? That seems quite likely.

Is any of that any better for the rest of the world though? Again, it depends on your perspective. For people who want radical political change in the Middle East and a future ascendency for Iran, I suppose it's quite bad. And there's probably a pretty significant proportion of the world's population who're for that. For people who want a bit of a break on Iran's progress and more of a status quo in the middle East in general, then it seems more hopeful.

For those who want freer societies, more democracy, rights for women, and religious freedom… Well, they can go on dreaming because you're not going to impose any of that from outside.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:27PM
Ronson at 6:37PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Vindibudd
I don't care whether you think they can or not.

Why not? I mean, if we are to discuss anything, isn't it more interesting and important to discuss our current situation and our best bet towards ending the occupation? I don't want to put words into your mouth, but by not having any interest in whether or not it is POSSIBLE to accomplish the only possible reason you would pose that question is as some sort of patriotism test. I'll get into that further…

Let me refine it even further, I am asking if you are in favor of the U.S. gaining an ally in Iraq or do you think that it is strategically better for the world in general if that were not the case.

Assuming an Iraqi ally with the US and peaceful happy citizens of Iraq (an impossibility as I've stated)and that foreign incursion stops and we aren't starting a huge battle for the entire Middle East - yes. That would most certainly benefit the US and since our allies in Europe would be quick to jump on that bandwagon there are definitely some benefits.

We can also, if you like, debate:

1. Whether we would prefer to be thin and be able to eat all we want.
2. If we'd enjoy being able to get over any illness by snapping our fingers.
3. If we would all like to be successful and happy.

Because your question is phrased in the same way: If Iraq weren't a clusterfuck, would we like it to be a paradise? You don't get a lot of “no” answers to questions like that. Even Ozoneocean's answer is still not addressing the utopia you are forwarding, but rather the reality we are embroiled in.

This of course assumes that you are generally inclined to a pro-American world view, as in, you do not want to see America destroyed one way or another.

And there it is. Jingoism. Why is it one or the other. Either Iraq is a success or you hate America. I understand that you don't see it, but that's an overly simplistic black-and-white statement based on some fantasy that the Iraq situation is only being hindered by naysayers.

I never said anything about calling anyone a traitor so don't assume that I would because you would be assuming too much about me.

Only that you are either pro-American in view or want it destroyed. I suppose that being a traitor would require the leaking of state secrets (Libby, Rove, Armitage, Novak and Boehner exempted, of course).

I think the problem is that a lot of you think you have me all figured out. You don't. None of you do. None of you could accurately define what I really believe about national security because I have not defined what I believe.

That is true. We only have the statements you made and your actual feelings could be elsewhere. But I cannot help you see that your statements are biased and simple, only you can help you see that.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Vindibudd at 8:02PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Ronson
Why not? I mean, if we are to discuss anything, isn't it more interesting and important to discuss our current situation and our best bet towards ending the occupation? I don't want to put words into your mouth, but by not having any interest in whether or not it is POSSIBLE to accomplish the only possible reason you would pose that question is as some sort of patriotism test. I'll get into that further…

The reason that I said that the way I did is because I already know you are prejudiced to the idea that there is absolutely no way any positive thing can come from the current situation. I am not going to argue they have had elections because you are going to come back with they were rigged for our benefit. I am not going to say that Saddam is out of power because you are going to say things are worse than when he was. I am not going to say that now people can choose to do what they want with their lives without the government threatening to execute them because you will say well the terrorists are worse. So the point, my friend, is that it is fruitless for us to debate whether the outcome in Iraq can be positive because you and I have wildly different views on what is positive.

Ronson
Assuming an Iraqi ally with the US and peaceful happy citizens of Iraq (an impossibility as I've stated)

It is an impossibility if you want to pull out of the country yesterday.

Ronson
and that foreign incursion stops and we aren't starting a huge battle for the entire Middle East - yes. That would most certainly benefit the US and since our allies in Europe would be quick to jump on that bandwagon there are definitely some benefits.

That is what I wanted to know. Thanks.

Ronson
We can also, if you like, debate:

1. Whether we would prefer to be thin and be able to eat all we want.
2. If we'd enjoy being able to get over any illness by snapping our fingers.
3. If we would all like to be successful and happy.

Because your question is phrased in the same way: If Iraq weren't a clusterfuck, would we like it to be a paradise? You don't get a lot of “no” answers to questions like that. Even Ozoneocean's answer is still not addressing the utopia you are forwarding, but rather the reality we are embroiled in.

Okay Ronson, see my question is not phrased dripping with sarcasm, however you just have to get smart and condescending with me. That is where it breaks down. I respect your worldview though I do not agree with it. You do not appear to share that with me. I talk with people who make it their job to study politics and war and can't get enough of Marx and in my experience, the most conducive way to communicate and exchange ideas is to not belittle those you are having dialogue with.


Ronson
And there it is. Jingoism. Why is it one or the other. Either Iraq is a success or you hate America.

Ronson, do you live in the United States? Do you work and raise your family in the United States? I imagine that the answer to both of these questions is affirmative. Considering that is the case, are you completely neutral to events that affect the United States? Do you care if a Republican is in the White House? Do you care about anything at all to do with the United States? As an American citizen, do you give two farts about the state of the country in any manner whatsoever?

I am not suggesting that Iraq is a success, nor am I suggesting that Iraq is a disaster. As a matter of fact, I have not made my mind up on it. As even more of a matter of fact, I do not equate “victory” with “success.” I am trying to determine what you qualify as success by determining what you would prefer in the case of Iraq being an ally or not. This is not a black and white issue. And I have never said that anyone who doesn't agree with what happens in Iraq = America Hater.

You will not paint me that way, I am not your personal Dr. Strangelove Fantasy come to life.

Ronson
I understand that you don't see it, but that's an overly simplistic black-and-white statement based on some fantasy that the Iraq situation is only being hindered by naysayers.

Apparently you don't understand because you don't know what I see and what I don't see in the situation.

Ronson
Only that you are either pro-American in view or want it destroyed.

The world is a little bigger than that, my friend.

Ronson
I suppose that being a traitor would require the leaking of state secrets
(Libby, Rove, Armitage, Novak and Boehner exempted, of course).

I'm not the one tossing the traitor label around in this particular conversation.

Ronson
That is true. We only have the statements you made and your actual feelings could be elsewhere. But I cannot help you see that your statements are biased and simple, only you can help you see that.

You can certainly denigrate my statements and tell me what I think, though. You have mad skills there!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Vindibudd at 8:19PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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ozoneocean
It's strategically better for the US not to have Iraq as an ally. That'd be like China having Tibet as an ally: in name only because if they really had that status they'd part company.

Please clarify this, I am not sure what you are saying here.

ozoneocean
Iraq is geographically well placed and it has fantastic oil resources, apart from that it's useless or worse; maybe even a liability- with it's unstable political system, religious tension, ongoing insurgencies, run-down industries, utilities and economy, as well as being bordered by hostile nations.

True.

ozoneocean
As a well placed, easy to supply forward base in the Middle East though it'll be useful according to some strategic perspectives, but it really depends on how you look at it and what those are:
Support for Israel? A staging post for invasion of Iran and or Syria? Something simply to threaten Iran and Syria with, along with any other nation that in future has radically divergent goals- ie. If Egypt, Lybia, Saudi Arabia or some other country had a “worrying” change in the political situation. Perhaps as a staging post to send in troops to “liberate” any country in the region that has a revolution? That seems quite likely.

This is a legitimate assessment of the possibilities, though I am not sure that is what they want by having a “free” Iraq, but that could be part of it.

ozoneocean
Is any of that any better for the rest of the world though? Again, it depends on your perspective. For people who want radical political change in the Middle East and a future ascendency for Iran, I suppose it's quite bad. And there's probably a pretty significant proportion of the world's population who're for that. For people who want a bit of a break on Iran's progress and more of a status quo in the middle East in general, then it seems more hopeful.

I would have to concur.

ozoneocean
For those who want freer societies, more democracy, rights for women, and religious freedom… Well, they can go on dreaming because you're not going to impose any of that from outside.

I don't think people want to force freedom on anyone because ideas cannot be forced on anyone at all. If you give someone the choice to make their own way, which is what I think the U.S. is trying to do as a footnote to the whole plan, then they just might choose to live a life that is decidedly not Western. But from the looks of things, Iraq has a sizable portion of the population that leans Western. A big part of this is that we don't hear about these huge protests of people demanding that the U.S. leave. We hear about bombings. We hear about bombings that kill Iraqis. So if the Iraqis want the U.S. to actually leave, then why would they be blowing themselves up? But thanks for your opinion. You answered the question I asked.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Ronson at 9:09PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Last time on the merry go round, then I get back to more important things…

Vindibudd
The reason that I said that the way I did is because I already know you are prejudiced to the idea that there is absolutely no way any positive thing can come from the current situation. I am not going to argue they have had elections because you are going to come back with they were rigged for our benefit.

Actually, I'd come back with the recent report that the entire Sunni representation in this government has quit, which tilts the balance closer to a civil war. We don't need to debate the government as it was we could deal with it as it is.

I am not going to say that Saddam is out of power because you are going to say things are worse than when he was.

No, I'm not. Some things are (electricity, water, etc.) some things aren't (though I'm hard pressed to say it isn't.

I am not going to say that now people can choose to do what they want with their lives without the government threatening to execute them because you will say well the terrorists are worse.

No I won't. The “terrorists” are the least of their problems. Their problems right now are roaming bands of territorial gangs that are “protecting” their regions by eradicating Iraqi citizens that are guilty of: Being Sunni, Being Shiite, Being Batthist or helping the Americans. We can call these people terrorists if it makes us feel better, but if they are they aren't Al Queda. Al Queda's presence is not as significant right now as internal conflict. If we were honest with eachother, we'd call it a civil war, but I know some dislike the term.

So the point, my friend, is that it is fruitless for us to debate whether the outcome in Iraq can be positive because you and I have wildly different views on what is positive.

Actually you and I have wildly differing views on what is actually happening. In the last paragraph you asserted that the Iraqi government wasn't falling apart, that terrorists are causing the trouble, and that innocent people aren't being killed every day over there. 500 people were blown up just yesterday for gosh sakes.

I understand that you have your personal poltical convictions and disregard all evidence that doesn't fit it - or that you just aren't very knowledgeable in these things. That's perfectly valid and your choice. But I actually WOULD prefer to debate what you think the successes are or what I think the failures are because in the end we might both end up learning something.


Vindibudd
It is an impossibility if you want to pull out of the country yesterday.

Yes. I've already said there is nothing that I personally would call a victory unless I needed to lie to help our intractable leaders save face.

But, if we had pulled out yesterday there would have been a few more Americans alive and very little difference regarding the situation in Iraq. Though I admit that could be wrong as I've heard that if we leave it could get worse, it could get better, or there would be no change and I don't know which way is true except that we wouldn't need so many funerals over here.

And that's probably a very bad attitude on my part. For every soldier we've had die over there, there are thousands of Iraqis dying. I wish that the war hadn't started as all of the experts have been proven correct and all the pundits pushing for the war have been wrong at every turn.

So I want to cut our losses of blood and treasure, and that's the only thing that can save America right now. Maybe I should be more worldly and want to sacrifice our country to slow the bleeding of another but I just don't.

That is what I wanted to know. Thanks.

Great. Now answer my three questions. The public has a right to know. :)

Okay Ronson, see my question is not phrased dripping with sarcasm, however you just have to get smart and condescending with me. That is where it breaks down. I respect your worldview though I do not agree with it. You do not appear to share that with me. I talk with people who make it their job to study politics and war and can't get enough of Marx and in my experience, the most conducive way to communicate and exchange ideas is to not belittle those you are having dialogue with.

Your question was horrible. I don't understand the point of it. Yeah, I have illustrated the similarity of your question to other stupid questions we can “debate” about. Sorry, but I do think you've gotten a small glimpse of how it came across otherwise you wouldn't have your nose out of joint about it.

I was, however, not belittling you. I was belittling your question. As a polisci major, I expect more from you when you phrase a question. You also aren't very up to date in current events, which I thought that polisci majors would be soaking up like the air around them.

Ronson, do you live in the United States?

Yes.

Do you work and raise your family in the United States?

Yes. Though I have no kids. My wife and I are, however, a very tight little family.

Considering that is the case, are you completely neutral to events that affect the United States?

No, I am not. I dearly love the documents this country was born with … The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. A better basis for a government there is not.

Do you care if a Republican is in the White House?

Care how? I care about whoever is in that seat in the Oval Office. They can guide policy that can reshape this country - either closer to it's Constitutional origins or further away from them. They have the ability to create laws that may restrict my privacy or my freedom. Yeah, I care. Otherwise there'd be no point in talking about these things.

Do you care about anything at all to do with the United States?

Everything, up to and including its security, it's economy and it's standing in the world.

As an American citizen, do you give two farts about the state of the country in any manner whatsoever?

Yes I do, and I do believe that the current president - who, I'm sorry, is a republican - has done more harm to this country than any president before him with the possible exception of Jefferson Davis.

I think he has failed to defend his country, choosing instead to waste time, lives and resources in Iraq. I think he has failed to maintain a stable economy, giving out tax breaks to the wealthy. I think he has failed diplomatically, and ruined the United States' reputation for defending freedom and liberty. And I think he has altered irrevocably the laws of our nation that allowed for privacy and liberty.

Now, you're kneejerk reaction is that I only believe all that because he's a republican. But there are a great many republicans that agree with me against this guy. I will not try to convince you I'm nonpartisan, although I could probably join you in bashing Democrats for a while as well…though we'd disagree on the reasons they are failing this country.

I am not suggesting that Iraq is a success, nor am I suggesting that Iraq is a disaster. As a matter of fact, I have not made my mind up on it.

Fine. But what is the course of action that makes the most sense if you are straddling the fence on whether it is working or not? Continue to pump money and soldiers until you make up your mind, or start thinking practically and demand a solution? This may not be a withdrawal solution, but this “surge” was nothing of the sort, and we have been essentially standing still for two years there.

As even more of a matter of fact, I do not equate “victory” with “success.”

Well, that's awfully convenient. Because you could easily label the current situation as a success for big oil, for weapons manufacturers and for the many contractors we're overpaying. Yeah, I know it's an old argument. But that doesn't make it less true.

I am trying to determine what you qualify as success by determining what you would prefer in the case of Iraq being an ally or not. This is not a black and white issue. And I have never said that anyone who doesn't agree with what happens in Iraq = America Hater.

Actually, I am getting the distinct vibe from you that anyone who doesn't agree with you on Iraq doesn't care about the United States. But you are clever enough not to spell it out, so I will retract my assertion.

You will not paint me that way, I am not your personal Dr. Strangelove Fantasy come to life.

That was a good movie though, wasn't it? ;)

Apparently you don't understand because you don't know what I see and what I don't see in the situation.

In the two days we've discussed it, I know:
1. You don't think Iraq is in a civil war.
2. You think the destruction is solely the acts of terrorists (I admit that the definition of a terrorist is pretty slippery, and this could be broadly interpreted to be correct)
3. You don't think a discussion of the possibilities for the future of Iraq is as important as pondering if everyone would agree that Iraq would be better without all the killing and exploding and stuff.
4. You believe the Iraq war was the right thing to do at the time.

I think those are safe things to say, as I can certainly cull them from your statements. Except for the last one, honestly. That's a guess.

The world is a little bigger than that, my friend.

Yeah, that's my point. I think you are under the mistaken impression that I want the US to fail as a nation. Fortunately, I do not think the same of you, though I do think a lot of the things you defend are destroying this country. These discussions do help me straighten out any fuzzy details in my thinking and have often gotten me to change my mind. I hope they do the same for you.

Ronson
I suppose that being a traitor would require the leaking of state secrets
(Libby, Rove, Armitage, Novak and Boehner exempted, of course).

I'm not the one tossing the traitor label around in this particular conversation.

Yes, that's what I said. You aren't calling them traitors. You are certainly insinuating they're un-American. But as I said, I withdraw the assertion as it is not corroborated directly with your words.

You can certainly denigrate my statements and tell me what I think, though. You have mad skills there!

I do feel bad about this. I'm not here to denigrate or tell you what you think. I can only speak to what I've learned of the conservative movement as a whole, and I do think you fit nicely within that movement if you don't mind me saying. There are naturally places where you aren't towing the party line, but there are so many where you are that I think I'm on pretty safe ground using your words to debate against conservatism…or what passes for conservatism today.

I like you though, Vindibudd. Lots of passion. And I enjoy your comic as well.

Last word to you, then we can lock this thread, I think.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Vindibudd at 9:54PM, Aug. 16, 2007
(online)
posts: 416
joined: 1-29-2006
Ronson
Your question was horrible. I don't understand the point of it. Yeah, I have illustrated the similarity of your question to other stupid questions we can “debate” about. Sorry, but I do think you've gotten a small glimpse of how it came across otherwise you wouldn't have your nose out of joint about it.

I simply asked a question as to the strategic value of Iraq as an ally. I never asked you whether things were going swimmingly with the current state of the country. The latter would be a horrible question, the former is legitimate one.

Ronson
I was, however, not belittling you. I was belittling your question. As a polisci major, I expect more from you when you phrase a question. You also aren't very up to date in current events, which I thought that polisci majors would be soaking up like the air around them.

I'm sorry, I have to admit, I only have access to CNN at work and no cable at home, though from what I understand, CNN is the best source of news. I also listen to All Things Considered. Maybe I should expand my sources.

The reason I asked you all those questions about your national identity is because you stated that I must be jingoistic because I want America to succeed. I want America to succeed because I am an American. If that makes me “jingoistic” then so be it.

Ronson
Fine. But what is the course of action that makes the most sense if you are straddling the fence on whether it is working or not? Continue to pump money and soldiers until you make up your mind, or start thinking practically and demand a solution? This may not be a withdrawal solution, but this “surge” was nothing of the sort, and we have been essentially standing still for two years there.

If you must know, the best course of action to take in my opinion, and the one that is the right course and not the easy course, is to stay there as long as it takes Iraq to get standing on their own feet. If we leave now, every single death will have been in vain because it will all fall apart. Iran, Turkey, and Syria would all be likely to invade and oppress the Iraqis moreso than Saddam did. Iran would continue developing nuclear weapons and harboring terrorists and we would be in the exact same situation we had with Saddam there. Furthermore, Israel would not stand for Iran being next door would attack Iran, and that would draw in Lebanon as well. China would support Iran and the other its allies, and the United States would support Israel. If pushed to the brink, Israel would turn to their nuclear arsenal. In short, if the United States left now, it would in all likelihood start World War III. This is what most people that I talk to at UF in the political science department agree with. It will not save us money, it will not save us lives and will in fact guarantee the opposite. For the sake of the security of this country and that of the world, we owe it to the everyone involved to see this through. This is not Republican versus Democrat. This is survival.

Ronson
Well, that's awfully convenient. Because you could easily label the current situation as a success for big oil, for weapons manufacturers and for the many contractors we're overpaying. Yeah, I know it's an old argument. But that doesn't make it less true.

It's bigger than that. Much much much bigger.

Ronson
Actually, I am getting the distinct vibe from you that anyone who doesn't agree with you on Iraq doesn't care about the United States. But you are clever enough not to spell it out, so I will retract my assertion.

I don't agree with you and I think you are a perfectly patriotic American.

Ronson
In the two days we've discussed it, I know:
1. You don't think Iraq is in a civil war.

Guilty as charged.

Ronson
2. You think the destruction is solely the acts of terrorists (I admit that the definition of a terrorist is pretty slippery, and this could be broadly interpreted to be correct)

Not entirely, I think that Iran and Syria are encouraging it and I think there is probably some payback going on between some Iraqis but not to the extent that there is a country-wide civil war.

Ronson
3. You don't think a discussion of the possibilities for the future of Iraq is as important as pondering if everyone would agree that Iraq would be better without all the killing and exploding and stuff.

No, both conversations are equally important.

Ronson
4. You believe the Iraq war was the right thing to do at the time.

No, I thought that it was actually not a great idea.

Ronson
I think those are safe things to say, as I can certainly cull them from your statements. Except for the last one, honestly. That's a guess.

I hope I cleared some of those up for you.

Ronson
Yes, that's what I said. You aren't calling them traitors. You are certainly insinuating they're un-American. But as I said, I withdraw the assertion as it is not corroborated directly with your words.

I am not qualified to say that someone is Un-American, unless of course, they aren't a citizen of the United States, and that is iffy when you throw in places like every other nation in North and South America.

Ronson
I like you though, Vindibudd. Lots of passion. And I enjoy your comic as well.

Likewise, why do you think I bought your book?

Ronson
Last word to you, then we can lock this thread, I think.

That's unfortunate. I don't think locking it will foster any intellectual growth. Of course I am not the admin.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Hawk at 10:52PM, Aug. 16, 2007
(online)
posts: 2,760
joined: 1-2-2006
Well, it does look like you two are at least keeping things civil. But it's down to Vindibudd and Ronson, and Ronsons sounds like he doesn't want to continue the conversation.

I'll lock it, but anyone who wants it unlocked can send me a Private Quack and explain.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:46PM

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