April 9, 2011

The Forever War

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is in Iraq dropping big hints that the Obama Administration wants the Iraqis to request U.S. troops stay in Iraq past the end of 2011, the final exit date announced by both Bush and Obama. 

A reader suggests:
The shia/kurd/sunni civil war will probably [re]start shortly after America soldiers depart, which would be smack dab in the middle of Obama's re-election campaign.  Obama wants to extend the occupation so he won't be blamed for "losing Iraq" by his Republican opponent.  

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, of course, but will the Iraqis trust Obama given his shafting of Mubarak and Qadaffy Duck?

Whiskey said...

Staying in Iraq makes sense. Its an aircraft carrier dependent on us, unsinkable, right next to Iran. Which needs sky high oil prices. We ought to do what Donald Trump suggested. Take the Iraqi oil.

I don't think Obama gives a damn about being blamed for losing Iraq. He's got the media and his strategy is Blacks+Hispanics+elites+White women.

rast said...

hahahaha oh wow, EvilNeocon never disappoints. I thought Israel was our unsinkable aircraft carrier?

Anonymous said...

Moronic. We could put or BUY (and maintain) an aircraft carrier for less than that. Oh...and before you start with me, I have experience both in the operational arts and on big staffs (to the level of CINCEUR).

Anonymous said...

He should say "Yeah, we lost but its no big deal because it wasn't worth winning."

LBK said...

I'll vote for any politician who wants to abandon the entire american overseas empire.

airtommy said...

The shia/kurd/sunni civil war will probably [re]start shortly after America soldiers depart

Rubbish.

There is tremendous violence in Iraq RIGHT NOW. It will die down when we leave. That is why Bush, Obama, etc. don't want to leave. They don't want it to become plainly obvious that America has been the cause of Iraqi violence.

none of the above said...

Who could possibly have foreseen that invading and occupying Iraq would leave us stuck in the middle of local ethnic conflicts for decades? I mean other than the secretary of state who was ignored in discussions that led us into the invasion.

There is an optimal policy fir the US, but not for any particular politician, in Iraq. It's known as getting the hell out.

Anonymous said...

"hahahaha oh wow, EvilNeocon never disappoints. I thought Israel was our unsinkable aircraft carrier?"

No, the USA is Israel's unsinkable aircraft carrier.

Anonymous said...

"I'll vote for any politician who wants to abandon the entire american overseas empire."

If only there was one.

Combine that with ending legal and illegal immigration and we might have an America past 2035. Unfortunately, Buchanan lost miserably in 2000. Can anyone imagine how much better off we would be today?

It seems Americans will only wake up when it is much too late.

Anonymous said...

It seems the Iraq debacle is infinitely worse than even the Vietnam war. You can hate Obama all you want, but he couldn't be worse than Bush even if he tried.

David Davenport said...

Staying in Iraq makes sense. Its an aircraft carrier dependent on us, unsinkable, right next to Iran.

But .. but more than once, I've heard Benjy Netanyahu say that Israel is the USA's unsinkable aircraft carrier in the Middle East.

Matter of fact, I think that Whiskey has previously posted the "Israel is the USA's unsinkable aircraft carrier" cliche and talking point here on iSteve.

How many unsinkable aircraft carriers does does Uncle Sugar need in that region? Israel is farther from Iran than Iraq, Q8, Bahrain, etc., isn't it?

Luke Lea said...

Suppose only the Kurds, or only the Kurds and the Sunnis, want us to stay, and that they don't control the government. Then what?

Anonymous said...

Aren't Americans tired of Iraq? Would the media even bother to report about what happens after the US cuts and runs? Did anybody care what happened to Vietnam after the US withdrew its troops?
I very much doubt that this could become a campaign issue.

The current, confusing turmoil in the entire middle east would prevent excellent cover for withdrawal.

-
Contrarian

Anonymous said...

The shia/kurd/sunni civil war will probably [re]start shortly after America soldiers depart-

Who gives a shit? We'll still get oil because they need to sell it and we'll make some more $ selling them arms to kill each other. Win-Win.

JSM said...

"Its an aircraft carrier dependent on us, unsinkable, right next to Iran."

Huh. That's funny. All the Israel-firsters all these years have been assuring us that ISRAEL is our "unsinkable aircraft carrier" (and that's why American citizens ought to keep forking over the foreign aid).
Geez, just how many unsinkable aircraft carriers can one country require? Or afford?

Anonymous said...

Still waiting for for Steve to get on board with questioning 9/11.

1000's of U.S. soldiers are expendable in their worldview, but not 1000's of Staten Island office workers?

Come on, Steve-O. Look into it. Everything else makes sense once you realize the difference between them and us: we think individual human lives have value, they don't.

Once you understand the Cheney/Bush/Rumsfeld etc. worldview, you see the whole chessboard with clarity.

Anonymous said...

'Staying in Iraq makes sense. Its an aircraft carrier dependent on us, unsinkable, right next to Iran. Which needs sky high oil prices. We ought to do what Donald Trump suggested. Take the Iraqi oil.'

Yeah, occupying a middle east country and taking their oil, how could that go wrong?

headache said...

rast said...

hahahaha oh wow, EvilNeocon never disappoints. I thought Israel was our unsinkable aircraft carrier?


THe thinking probably is that having two in the ME is better. In addition, Iraq has more footprint, so the carrier is more unsinkable.

I guess Obummer could always sell this as "maintaining the peace", after all he got the Nobel Peace Prize.

Anonymous said...

don't we have a responsibility to the Iraqis now?

we can't just leave cuz we "felt like it."

how immoral and selfish.

beowulf said...

"I have experience both in the operational arts and on big staffs (to the level of CINCEUR)."

CINCEUR = Beta
just kidding :o)

As you well know, the USAF already has bases in UAE, Qatar, Turkey and Afghanistan. Specific to "unsinkable aircraft carriers", the US Navy has an airbase in Bahrain.

Anonymous said...

Bob Woodward claimed, in his most recent book, that the U.S. has developed a new secret weapon that's allowed it to assasinate huge numbers of Al-Qaeda operatives in Iraq. Supposedly it's a tracking system that picks up terrroists' thermal signatures, then allows satellites to lock on target and trigger the firing of missiles from drones overhead.

It's been vital in making the surge successful, as it's allowed the U.S. to clear out much of Al-Qaeda.

jody said...

like i said.

Whiskey said...

Yeah, the US has an airbase in Bahrain. BAHRAIN! Subject of massive unrest.

Iraq's locals need us. The violence is below Afghan levels, at the moment. Nothing like massive WWII armored combat, even at its worst. [Yes Israel is basically an aircraft carrier you can't sink, but its usefulness in hitting Iran is questionable due to distance, travel over Syria and Iraq, etc. Israel is useful as a hedge against Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey, and the like in the Eastern Med.]

Gas prices are over $4 a gallon here. They could go higher. Traders are prepping for $175 a barrel.

Whiskey said...

The only way to get gasoline prices down rapidly, immediately, is to start pumping oil and selling it in the US at discounted rates. We can bill the Iraqis for liberation but we can only do that with troops on the ground.

Absent that, Iraq becomes an Iranian satellite. With oil production that goes along with it. Want to drive that car, live in that suburb? Obama is needling people saying they should buy a new Prius! The only way to get more oil out quickly, now, is through Iraq.

You can't do it via the Gulf (thanks to the permitorium. Or oil sands. Too slow.

Whiskey said...

In somewhat related news France and Italy agreed to jointly patrol Tunisia's seacoast and aid (bribe) Tunisia to hold back the more than 26K refugees that washed up onto Italy's shores and were sent packing northwards.

France had put up border controls, forbidden by the EU Schengen protocols, turning away Tunisian refugees. The last thing Sarko wants is more Muslims in France. To do that, eventually, he will have to put boots on the ground. Europe is rich. North Africa is poor, and close by. Never has that worked out without massive military superiority and the will to use it by the Rich.

Whiskey said...

I'll add that since FDR in 1943 and certainly the Carter Doctrine, official US policy has been to use military force if required to achieve US interests in the Gulf. Which means basically cheap oil. Our nation runs on it.

Want out of the Gulf? Then get ready for hideously expensive oil and the economy that goes with it.

Höllenhund said...

I don't understand Steve. He lets Whiskey run wild on his blog but refuses to address his arguments at all. Is he counting on his readers to do this dirty boring work instead?

Lukas G said...

Anything for their muslim buddy in the White House...

Marlowe said...

Joe Haldeman got the future right: an endless war started on false pretenses, indefinitely extended tours for the soldiers and a majority of homosexuals in the ranks as government policy.

Lukas G said...

Anyone else notice that the "Leave your comment" spot here (probably part of the blogger.com software) will underscore the word 'muslim', indicating an error if you don't capitalize Muslim, but doesn't care whether or not you capitalize Christian? It will also indicate Buddhist, Jew, Confucian are incorrect if not capitalized, but not Christian. Just a sign of the times...

ben tillman said...

Still waiting for for Steve to get on board with questioning 9/11.

1000's of U.S. soldiers are expendable in their worldview, but not 1000's of Staten Island office workers?

Come on, Steve-O. Look into it.


That's not necessary. All that's necessary is a little reflection: on 9/11/01 our central government was the only entity known to have both motive and opportunity.

The official account is a self-exculpatory tale told by the prime suspect. There's no reason whatsoever to believe it.

And if the central government had nothing to hide, why did it destroy the crime scene?

The Anti-Gnostic said...

Whiskey - still waiting on your cost/price calculations in the Libya thread.

If you think a social democratic State like the US can go in full on imperial mode--take the oil, slaughter the locals, impregnate the women, and come back and bar the gates--you are delusional. In fact, I'm not sure that's ever worked.

headache said...

Whiskey sez:The last thing Sarko wants is more Muslims in France. To do that, eventually, he will have to put boots on the ground.

So u agree that Libya was France's war, and the US butted in to prevent them from scoring a success. Uncle Sucker always needs to be in charge everywhere. Ron Paul sez that regional powers will take care of their own backyards, so the US does not need to babysit the world.

David said...

>"I'll vote for any politician who wants to abandon the entire american overseas empire."

If only there was one.<


Ron Paul. Well, Rand Paul. Ron's a bit long in the tooth now.

>don't we have a responsibility to the Iraqis now? we can't just leave cuz we "felt like it." how immoral and selfish.<

The best thing we're capable of doing with regard to the Iraqis is to beat it. Imagine a government worker bursting into your home to save you from an abusive spouse...in the process, the worker kills your kids, your dog, and your little old grandmama, flattens your house, destroys your valuables, and then keeps you under house arrest for 15 years. How can he help you now? By leaving. Just leaving. Leaving now.

whiskey said

>cheap oil [snip]<


What has US occupation of Iraq to do with cheap oil? It isn't cheap now, and, as he points out, it may become even less cheap. All this WITH American boots on the ground in Iraq.

Prior to the Iraq war, gas averaged about $1.50 per gallon. Immediately after the war and ever since, it has averaged a dollar higher, with spikes of up to $5.00 per gallon.

Far from reducing or stabilizing the price of gas, our Iraqi adventure has done the opposite. It has INCREASED the price of gas.

That is clear to anyone who pays attention to facts, as opposed to paying attention to Debka and Little Green Footballs.

The perfect T-shirt slogan? Uncle Sam saying, "I went to Iraq and all I got was higher gas prices (and a multi-billion-dollar debt). I also got protection from theoretical bogeymen - but I always say that." Long enough to fit comfortably upon the chest of any Wal-Mart Person.

Anonymous said...

Whiskey wrote Its when he should have written It's.

Didn't we all agree last week to try to do better?

As to his point of taking the Iraqi oil - fine with me.

The great nationalist hero of Iraq - Reza Pahlavi - ruled just a sliver of a nation. The Russians held the north and the British heald the south. Those were the areas with the oil.

Ah! For a return to the "good old days".

Albertosaurus

Svigor said...

"I'll vote for any politician who wants to abandon the entire american overseas empire."

If only there was one.


One of the Pauls will probably be running. Both qualify, don't they?

Svigor said...

I'll add that since FDR in 1943 and certainly the Carter Doctrine, official US policy has been to use military force if required to achieve US interests in the Gulf. Which means basically cheap oil. Our nation runs on it.

Want out of the Gulf? Then get ready for hideously expensive oil and the economy that goes with it.


The alternative theory is that TPTB don't want us independent of oil. That way, the oil and armaments industries, and the Israel lobby, are kept happy (quite a bit of combined muscle when you consider how much overlap there is between the Israel lobby and the mass media). And pols who love a good distraction.

Which is why no one seems to give a shit about really doing something about using our massive coal reserves, or our/Canada's massive reserves of lesser-quality oil. Much less nuclear power.

Svigor said...

If we built up our alternatives (coal, low quality oil, nuclear) and infrastructures, we'd have a credible alternative, and far more bargaining power vs. OPEC. But then we'd be far less dependent on certain unsinkable (and cobweb- and mothball-ridden) aircraft carriers. And the globalist/Israel lobby/media/armaments/oil coalition might not like that.

But the fact that TPTB don't seem to want to do jack shit to "hedge our bets" (to use Whiskey's phrase) against $4 gas belies Whiskey's theory.

Svigor said...

In short, in the face of 40 years of TPTB doing jack shit about our dependence on cheap oil, it's getting more and more difficult to believe they don't prefer this situation.

Svigor said...

Imagine a government worker bursting into your home to save you from an abusive spouse...in the process, the worker kills your kids, your dog, and your little old grandmama, flattens your house, destroys your valuables, and then keeps you under house arrest for 15 years. How can he help you now? By leaving. Just leaving. Leaving now.

You forgot the icing on the cake: now the government worker's refusing to leave because for him to leave you in such a state would be "immoral and selfish." Heh.

beowulf said...

I don't understand Steve. He lets Whiskey run wild on his blog but refuses to address his arguments at all. Is he counting on his readers to do this dirty boring work instead?

The Sarkozy Strategy
:o)

Anonymous said...

"If only there was one.<

Ron Paul. Well, Rand Paul. Ron's a bit long in the tooth now"

Ron Paul might be one of the best politicians since the Founding Fathers. Unfortunately, it seems Americans won't vote for someone like him. They seem to be hypnotized by establishment types bringing America down.

WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON WITH AMERICA???

Anonymous said...

"The only way to get gasoline prices down rapidly, immediately, is to start pumping oil and selling it in the US at discounted rates." - Whiskey.

Might want to think a little longer term. Gas is going to run out eventually, deny it all you want. It's inevitable.

Anonymous said...

It is a falsehood and a canard that the USA is in any way dependent upon mideast oil for its energy needs.

LBK said...

"Prior to the Iraq war, gas averaged about $1.50 per gallon. Immediately after the war and ever since, it has averaged a dollar higher, with spikes of up to $5.00 per gallon."

Looks like the oil industry has profited mightily from the war, which means they are probably the ones who bribed the government into starting the war.

headache said...

Ron Paul might be one of the best politicians since the Founding Fathers.
As a non-American I can only second that. I love watching interviews with him, if only bandwidth was not limited here I would watch even more. For the first time economics makes sense to me, and the rest is mostly logical. I differ about his stance towards drugs, since it is known amongst Christian Street Workers that for instance weed is an entry drug for the hard stuff, so kids should not be encouraged to use it.

But apart from that I think he is mostly aligned with the US constitution. I don't think his brand of politics would necessarily suit other nations such as Germany or Japan, who are doing well in spite of their structural socialism, bit for the US he would make the best prez. by far.

It seems the Israel lobby is keeping him out of office, since he would do away with their privileged status. They call someone wanting to do that an "anti-Semite", i.e. neocons insist that political privilege is their birthright.

Svigor said...

I differ about his stance towards drugs, since it is known amongst Christian Street Workers that for instance weed is an entry drug for the hard stuff, so kids should not be encouraged to use it.

Is there any good data on this? The "gateway drug" thing can work several ways:

1) Kids try pot, then are inevitably exposed to harder drugs.

2) Kids try pot, then somehow become "junkie personalities" and inevitably move on to harder drugs.

3) Kids try pot, see it's nowhere near as "hard" as alcohol, mentally shitcan the whole "drugs are bad for you" thing as propaganda, and go experimenting.

1 seems most plausible to me, 3 seems plausible, 2 does not. 1 and 3 would both be attenuated by legalization.

Note I am not in favor of legalizing pot, but it has nothing to do with the gateway thing.

Mr. Anon said...

"Whiskey said...

Staying in Iraq makes sense. Its an aircraft carrier dependent on us, unsinkable, right next to Iran. Which needs sky high oil prices. We ought to do what Donald Trump suggested. Take the Iraqi oil."

The usual horseshit from Whiskey.

Yeah, Iraq is an "unsinkable aircraft carrier". Albeit an aircraft carrier where the officers have to bribe the sailors to do their duty, and where, none-the-less, some of the sailors occasionally kill their officers and lob mortar shells at the mess-deck.

I thought that Israel was our "unsikable aircraft carrier" - albeit one that we can never use. So now we need another one that it is just too expensive to use. What the f**k do we have real aircraft carriers for?

According to the telegraphed, inarticulate gurglings that for Whiskey pass as deep thought, the price of gas is reciprocally proportional to the number of bombs we drop on people - so it should be cheap given that we are now involved in three overt wars (and a few, small covert ones on the side as well).

The 5th Estate and US Elections said...

Ron Paul might be one of the best politicians since the Founding Fathers. Unfortunately, it seems Americans won't vote for someone like him. They seem to be hypnotized by establishment types bringing America down.

WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON WITH AMERICA???


America's elites and their tool the Main Stream Media (MSM) assassinates the character of anyone challenging their anointed one.

As unpopular as Obama is, I'm unsure anyone could survive the withering MSM attacks that await any GOP challenger.

Another strategy is for the MSM to constantly promote patsies with extreme prejudice like McCain over more serious challengers like Romney to guarantee an Obama victory.

Yet another is to split the vote of challengers. Huckabee, who had no chance of winning midway through the GOP, was praised by the MSM as much as Romney was vilified to split the religious vote and give McCain the GOP nomination.

Even today, our elites are still casting about for hardcore RINOs (Pawlenty, Gingrich, Huntsman, etc) they can use to displace Romney by talking them up and ignoring/mocking softcore RINO Romney at best.

Currently, the MSM is promoting Rick Perry to peel off Michelle Bachmann supporters and sink her campaign. The MSM promotes Perry's patently insincere "tough boarder" and recent "religious fever" publicity stunts as much as they attack Bachmann and the tea party she is associated with.

With Ron Paul, there seems to be a general media blackout on the guy with it comes to MSM coverage. He doesn't have the momentum/charisma of Bachmann so the strategy seems to be let him wither in the shadows without a voice.