‘I Said I’d End the War in Iraq — I Ended It’

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Screen-shot-2014 obama iraq

By now everyone should know that anything Obama says today is void tomorrow.

Despite the fact that far too late Obama is doing the right thing in Iraq, this is a good time to crank up the Wayback Machine and revisit the monster known as Hubris Obamus.

2007: Preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.

First, though, let’s acknowledge that Obama did keep his word about one thing. 1500 civilians were recently slaughtered by ISIS. Obama didn’t even blink. To his credit, he told us that genocide wasn’t enough for him to act.

Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama said Thursday the United States cannot use its military to solve humanitarian problems and that preventing a potential genocide in Iraq isn’t a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there.

“Well, look, if that’s the criteria by which we are making decisions on the deployment of U.S. forces, then by that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now — where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife — which we haven’t done,” Obama said in an interview with The Associated Press.

2011: ‘We’re Leaving Behind a Sovereign, Stable and Self-Reliant Iraq’

It was a “moment of success,” he said.

Ironically, he said it at Fort Bragg

June 2014: Obama Rules Out Airstrikes in Iraq for Now

Mr. Obama ultimately may decide not to order air attacks, senior U.S. officials said, bucking what for days appeared to be the leading U.S. option to counter the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, the terror group that has seized a large swath of Iraq’s north and west. U.S. strikes are still actively under discussion, but the officials cautioned Tuesday that they don’t expect Mr. Obama to put military action back on the table quickly, and said he may announce steps in a broader U.S. response over time.

August 2014 White House: “There Are No Military Solutions In Iraq… Only Political”…

George Bush 2005: Bush: Leaving Iraq Too Soon Would Endanger America

Leaving Iraq before the mission there is finished will make America less, not more, secure and will send a dangerous message that will ring around the world, President Bush said today here at the Woodrow Wilson International Center.
Speaking the day before Iraq’s national elections, Bush disputed critics who claim the United States would be safer and Iraq less violent if the United States withdrew its forces there.

“This view presumes that if we were not in Iraq, the terrorists would be leaving us alone,” Bush said.

2014: Hayden: Obama Pulled Out of Iraq Too Soon

The White House’s decision to complete the final withdrawal of all American troops from Iraq in 2011 set the stage for the current unrest, according to Gen. Michael Hayden, the former director of both the National Security Agency and the CIA.

…..

“President Bush used to huddle with [Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki] about every two weeks in a video conference, doing a lot of coaching and mentoring,” Hayden said. “That stopped when President Obama came in. He didn’t want to do that.”

In 2008, President George W. Bush and and Iraqi government signed the U.S.-Iraq Status of Forces Agreement, setting a start and end date for the U.S. withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

Without ground troops, the United States’ ability to gather intelligence became severely handicapped, Hayden said.

“When you don’t have a footprint throughout the country, remember, it’s not just the military that left, we dramatically cut back our diplomatic presence as well, deciding because of security reasons that we would not have consulates in a variety of Iraqi cities,” Hayden said. “So we just have fewer platforms from which to observe what’s going on in Iraq.”

2014: Obama caught flat footed by ISIS

United States intelligence agencies were caught by surprise when fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) seized two major Iraqi cities this week and sent Iraqi defense forces fleeing, current and former U.S. officials said Thursday. With U.S. troops long gone from the country, Washington didn’t have the spies on the ground or the surveillance gear in the skies necessary to predict when and where the jihadist group would strike.

The speed and ease with which well-armed and highly trained ISIS fighters took over Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, and Tikrit, the birthplace of former Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein, have raised significant doubts about the ability of American intelligence agencies to know when ISIS might strike next, a troubling sign as the Islamist group advances steadily closer to Baghdad. And it harkened back to another recent intelligence miscue, in February, when U.S. spy agencies failed to predict the Russian invasion of Crimea. Both events are likely to raise questions about whether the tens of billions of dollars spent every year on monitoring the world’s hot spots is paying off — and what else the spies might be missing.

2014: GOP: We warned you

The group beat back government forces in Mosul and Tikrit and was within 60 miles of Baghdad late Thursday.

“It was something that we warned the president about over a three-year period,” Inhofe said, referencing letters Republicans sent to Obama in 2009, 2010, and last year. “Now, it’s worse than it was before. It’s very depressing.

“One of the most dangerous battlegrounds during the Iraq war was Fallujah,” Inhofe said. “To lose that, after they spent their blood to gain it — this is an America that I have never known before.”

And House Speaker John Boehner charged that Obama was caught “taking a nap” on Iraq despite the Republican warnings, particularly in the last year.

“It’s not like we haven’t seen this problem coming for over a year,” Boehner said. “And it’s not like we haven’t seen, over the last five or six months, these terrorists moving in and taking control of western Iraq.

“Now, they’ve taken control of Mosul. They’re 100 miles from Baghdad. And what’s the president doing? Taking a nap.”

2014: Obama says ISIS is the “jayvee team”

Many of us felt Obama would take a bad situation and make it worse. He as done just that.

Lead image courtesy Weasel Zippers

DrJohn has been a health care professional for more than 30 years. In addition to clinical practice he has done extensive research and has published widely with over 70 original articles and abstracts in the peer-reviewed literature. DrJohn is well known in his field and has lectured on every continent except for Antarctica. He has been married to the same wonderful lady for over 30 years and has three kids- two sons, both of whom are attorneys and one daughter on her way into the field of education. DrJohn was brought up with the concept that one can do well if one is prepared to work hard but nothing in life is guaranteed. Except for liberals being foolish.

80 Responses to “‘I Said I’d End the War in Iraq — I Ended It’”

  1. 51

    George Wells

    Your assessments of the wars you reference are correct. Surprisingly so, as you have completely misconstrued my, as you put it: “why can’t we all be friends” mentality. That question I have repeatedly asked referred specifically to the two political parties in THIS country, not to terrorists elsewhere. How ever did you miss the “united WE stand, divided WE fall” part of what I said. And all of that was in the context of AMERICANS working together to solve our OWN problems here at home.

    I have no illusions about “Kumbaya singing” with Muslims. I’m just not ready to start WW3, and both you and Pete seem to be agreeing that the total annihilation of Islam is the only solution that includes the possibility of our survival. I think that the time for that option has passed. Containment might not work, but I see it as the only viable course of action. And by “containment,” I don’t mean taking the fight to their soil. There is entirely too much mojo connected to the dirt in the Middle East, and only a nuclear-winter inducing nuclear remediation of that soil condition would eliminate that problem. Just because I don’t have a good solution to this problem doesn’t mean that I’m willing to pursue a really bad one.

    “George… learned nothing from Vietnam.” Why would you say that??? I agree that it wasn’t enough to win every battle, and that the “hearts and minds” of Americans are indeed a part of the equation that is used to calculate success or failure in war. If YOU had learned that lesson, why would you still be calling for more military actions, knowing as you apparently do that the American public lacks the stomach to finish the job? That is no less insane than the Kumbaya-spirited ROE’s that you and I BOTH decry.

  2. 52

    Bill

    @George Wells:

    In-so-far as I have not “pointed out that practically all those casualties were suffered in Afghanistan while Iraq was relatively pacified,” I don’t believe that your use of the word “always” is accurate

    I don’t think I did and did not mean to imply that you have stated this; I referred to other arguments. However, the point is and the facts show that Iraq had been subdued, that, though foreign terrorist came into Iraq to cause trouble, the Iraqi people DID greet us as liberators and appreciate our efforts (though no claims of pending parades was ever made) and, when stable, most assuredly would have been an important ally.

    That’s rich. Iraq was “stabilized” exactly like you can temporarily “stabilize” an unreleased fart.

    While I don’t want to get into a sphinctorial discussion with you, your ANALogy is somewhat accurate; by removing our troops, we “relaxed” and the controlling force was removed. Yet, I haven’t made the argument that the job in Iraq was done; quite the contrary. We should have kept forces there to maintain the stability that existed. This is exactly my point; Iraq was stable while we were there; removing the forces destabilized and weakened Iraq. Obama did that.

  3. 53

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    I’m just not ready to start WW3,

    That horse has already left the barn. We are in WW3, and there is nothing we can do to turn back the clock.

    and both you and Pete seem to be agreeing that the total annihilation of Islam is the only solution that includes the possibility of our survival. I think that the time for that option has passed.

    Every nation, or group, has a point where they are willing to stop the hostilities toward others. It was true in 1683 and remains just as true today.

    I agree that it wasn’t enough to win every battle, and that the “hearts and minds” of Americans are indeed a part of the equation that is used to calculate success or failure in war.

    You really are not very smart, or very well informed, are you, George? The “hearts and minds” war policy had nothing to do with the American populace. It was a war policy that was directed at our enemies. But no surprise that you seem to misconstrue what that policy was. You have shown multiple times that you lack historical literacy.

    Just because I don’t have a good solution to this problem doesn’t mean that I’m willing to pursue a really bad one.

    And what are you willing to accept in order to pursue the Dennis Kucinich/Ron Paul philosophy of foreign policy? How many Little Rocks, Fort Hoods, Boston Marathons and September 11s are you willing to tolerate? Like most progressives, you view war in the traditional sense when our enemy does not. Ignore the fact that Obama has a Muslim Brotherhood devotee sitting on his National Security Council. Ignore the fact that we are being infiltrated daily with those that want to kill us. Ignore that the war has already come to our shores, and that was all forewarned many times.

    It is time to clean house here. Discredit groups like CAIR and ISNA. Deport, or jail, those that aid and abet the Islamists groups that are killing Christians all across the globe. Yet, CAIR and ISNA are welcomed with open arms into the White House.

    We are at war. A long war. And if you have no solution to an ever growing problem, considering you are not even aware of certain war policies, perhaps you would be better served to just shut up about it and not make yourself look so foolish.

  4. 54

    George Wells

    @Bill #52:

    “no claims of pending parades was ever made.”

    “My belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.” –Vice President Dick Cheney, “Meet the Press,” March 16, 2003. The typical “greetings” for the “liberators” in Europe during WWII were impromptu parades. Cheney’s remark – essentially a prediction – certainly suggested the possibility that we would be similarly greeted in Iraq.

    “We should have kept forces there to maintain the stability”

    Really? Since when is it our job to maintain stability in other countries? Aren’t there about 100 countries out there that could really use our help “maintaining stability?” At a cost of maybe $100 billion EACH per year? Where are you coming from with this? Do you feel guilty that we screwed up the country, so now we have to “stabilize” it? How long will our guilt hold us to this task? I think that the taxpayers deserve to know…

  5. 55

    George Wells

    @retire05 #53:

    “You really are not very smart, or very well informed, are you, George?
    The “hearts and minds” war policy had nothing to do with the American populace. It was a war policy that was directed at our enemies. But no surprise that you seem to misconstrue what that policy was. You have shown multiple times that you lack historical literacy.”

    I am not in the business of quoting jargon, so forgive me if I did not use the term “Hearts and Minds” in the manner you preferred. We failed to win the “Hearts and Minds” of the Vietnamese, of our citizens at home during the Vietnam conflict, and of the Iraqi people and of our citizens at home during the Iraq conflict. Can’t you see the pattern here????
    “You really are not very smart, or very well informed, are you, George?”
    “You really are not very smart, or very well informed, are you, George?”
    “You really are not very smart, or very well informed, are you, George?”
    SQUALK!

    “It is time to clean house here. Discredit groups like CAIR and ISNA. Deport, or jail, those that aid and abet the Islamists groups that are killing Christians all across the globe.”

    Now you’re talking!
    Don’t jail them – that’s costly. Shoot them. It is high time we got tough HERE AT HOME. Shoot a few illegal immigrants, and the rest will self-deport. Give the word “deterrence” some TEETH! Make coming here to do mischief so impossibly dangerous that no one will try.

    I’ll even go along with your WW3 assessment, but I won’t support your warmongering until you can make a convincing argument that we can survive it. If you cannot do that, then your proposal is simply a prescription for suicide, and that makes you no better (and no more successful) than the suicide-bombing jihadists. Congratulations on lowering yourself to their level. Regrets that I won’t be joining you.

  6. 56

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    My belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.” –Vice President Dick Cheney, “Meet the Press,” March 16, 2003. The typical “greetings” for the “liberators” in Europe during WWII were impromptu parades.

    We were treated as liberators. Ask any veteran who rolled into Baghdad about how those poor Iraqis, who had been persecuted by the Saddam government viewed them. Not withstanding you are trying to compare European traditions to the traditions of an Islamic nation.

    Cheney’s remark – essentially a prediction – certainly suggested the possibility that we would be similarly greeted in Iraq.

    Only to those who try to read into a comment what was not there. Something you, and the lame stream media, are quite adapt at.

    Really? Since when is it our job to maintain stability in other countries?

    Since we marched into Berlin. And if the U.S., the benchmark for freedom, does not do it, who do you expect will? I hear you progressives whine and cry how we must help those less fortunate, through wealth redistribution, of course, but when it comes to the peoples of the rest of the world, you want to turn a blind eye to the crimes against humanity.

  7. 57

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    SQUALK!

    So now you’re a duck? More like a chicken, or an ass.

    Don’t jail them – that’s costly. Shoot them. It is high time we got tough HERE AT HOME. Shoot a few illegal immigrants, and the rest will self-deport. Give the word “deterrence” some TEETH! Make coming here to do mischief so impossibly dangerous that no one will try.

    You are mentally ill, George. Seek immediate psychiatric help.

    I’ll even go along with your WW3 assessment, but I won’t support your warmongering until you can make a convincing argument that we can survive it.

    If we don’t fight Islamic jihad, with every tool in our tool box, we will not survive anyway. And you will be hanging from a construction crane.

    If you cannot do that, then your proposal is simply a prescription for suicide, and that makes you no better (and no more successful) than the suicide-bombing jihadists. Congratulations on lowering yourself to their level. Regrets that I won’t be joining you.

    I want the survival of our nation. You want same-sex marriage legalized in every state. You don’t give a shite about the next generation, only your own selfish goals. And if you think comparing me to the jihadists makes you sound wise, or intelligent, just like every other topic you engage in you have accomplished nothing but a MAJOR FAIL.

    Stick to your queer agenda, George. You have nothing else to contribute.

  8. 58

    George Wells

    @Retire05 #56:

    “Since we marched into Berlin.”

    What planet do YOU live on? The United States never marched into Berlin, the Soviets did. Eisenhower (Republican) agreed to the Soviet’s early control of Berlin at Yalta, and only later, at Potsdam, did we secure a partition of the city in exchange for several sections of Germany then under allied control.

    “I hear you progressives whine and cry how we must help those less fortunate, through wealth redistribution”

    Still mistaking my politics for someone else’s?
    OK, I’ll be blunt: The answer to our OWN social problems will not be solved by simple income redistribution. I am only in favor of helping those who demonstrate a willingness to help themselves, and we do not require this to our great disadvantage. I’m not whining, remember?
    I’m the one who is ready to shoot illegal immigrants AS A DETERRENT! That isn’t sick, it is realistic. And I already explained that a society has the right to execute all homosexuals if it chooses to do so. Obviously, I don’t WANT it to do that here, but the right is there. That goes for Uganda, and it goes for the United States. It goes here because the Constitution doesn’t address what things can and cannot be made criminal. Once something is criminal, the more harsh the punishment, the greater the deterrent. And I don’t BELIEVE in jailing large fractions of the population. People who cannot live by the rules shouldn’t be slapped on the wrists, they should be shot. Maybe on the second offense, but it is darned sure ineffective to fine them $100 plus court costs and let them go on their merry way. I don’t get why you are so soft on crime…
    Now, WHO is “progressive?”

  9. 59

    George Wells

    @retire05 #57:
    “And you will be hanging from a construction crane.”

    Silly prediction. Infinitesimally small probability of coming true. Waste of time typing such drivel.

    “You don’t give a shite about the next generation, only your own selfish goals.”

    I fight for the things that are important to me because no one else is stepping forward to do it for me. God helps those who help themselves. As for the next generation, I’m leaving my assets to organizations that will help the next generation of gay children achieve the goals that won’t all be achieved during MY lifetime. I’m helping THEM because no one else will. You can take care of NOM or whomever you choose.

  10. 60

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    at Potsdam, did we secure a partition of the city in exchange for several sections of Germany then under allied control.

    And how did we do that, by email? Or did our troops “march” into that section of Berlin that eventually was walled off by the Russians?

    I’m the one who is ready to shoot illegal immigrants AS A DETERRENT! That isn’t sick, it is realistic

    Yes, that is sick. But if you are so inclined, why don’t you have your sissy ass on the border now?

  11. 61

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    I fight for the things that are important to me because no one else is stepping forward to do it for me.

    And how do you fight? Do you contribute to the Gay Liberation Movement, or just run your mouth?

  12. 63

    George Wells

    @Retire05 #61:

    “And how do you fight? Do you contribute to the Gay Liberation Movement, or just run your mouth?”

    At last a straight forward question!

    I vote for candidates that support gay rights, and I contribute generously to the Tidewater AIDS Crisis Task Force (they assist people who have AIDS and who are without means and who often have been abandoned or disowned by their loving (sic) families), and I contribute generously to the Human Rights Campaign and to the American Civil Liberties Union because they both provide legal support to the effort to win equal rights for gays through court action.

    The group “Gay Liberation Movement” is unknown to me. Doesn’t ring a bell. I receive solicitations for donations almost daily, but have received nothing from any group so named. As I am convinced that my current charitable contributions are already achieving the desired effect, I am unlikely to look for additional worthy causes.

  13. 64

    George Wells

    @Bill #62:

    “we WERE greeted as liberators.”

    Ahhhhh, yeah.
    And how well did that work out for ya?
    Anybody can hire a few thugs to wave a few flags.
    There was nobody there that would have understood what a liberator was or what was being liberated from whom. The proof is in the pudding.
    Or more correctly “in the poop” that followed.
    If you’re happy with how your war turned out, you’re mighty easy to please.

  14. 65

    George Wells

    @retire05 #60:

    And how did we do that, by email? Or did our troops “march” into that section of Berlin that eventually was walled off by the Russians?

    WOW! Your history is fiction! The section of Berlin that was eventually walled off by the SOVIETS (not the Russians) was EAST BERLIN, a place that our troops did NOT march into.

    How do you manage to keep making up this stuff, anyway?

    ” But if you are so inclined, why don’t you have your sissy ass on the border now?”

    Well, precisely because I am NOT so inclined. My “sissy ass” is caring for several elderly women that are unable to travel. If I COULD travel, I wouldn’t worry about the border, because you seem to be sufficiently engaged in that problem already, and I haven’t seen you bother to support any gay rights initiatives. We each work for our own goals.

  15. 66

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    WOW! Your history is fiction! The section of Berlin that was eventually walled off by the SOVIETS (not the Russians) was EAST BERLIN! (A place that our troops did NOT march into.)

    And what created EAST Berlin, dipshit? Or do you think there was an East Berlin prior to the division where the Russians got the eastern half of the city and the U.S. got the western half? There was no east/west Berlin prior to that and certainly now when our troops got there. Berlin was actually cut into four parts between Russia, the U.S., France and Great Britain who all administrated their section. But I guess we did that administration without American troops, right?

    Got your tail caught in the trap and now you’re trying to get it out. Better to just cut it off.

  16. 67

    Bill

    @George Wells: So, you are gradually surrendering the point of the fact that the IRAQI people were happy to have been liberated from the rule of Hussein. That is a good start on the road to recovery, George.

    What is important about conceding that fact is that the Iraqi people, indeed, wanted peace and something other than brutal dictatorship. That was accomplished. Then, foreign forces filtered in and instigated the insurgency. That, too, was tamped down. Then we had relative peace and calm.

    Then Obama screwed it all up. He did it out of stupidity and ineptitude. No, I am not happy how the war turned out because, after all the blood, toil, money and sacrifice, Obama pissed it away.

  17. 68

    George Wells

    @Bill #67:
    Although I am not as partisan as you are, and so cannot fault Obama exclusively regarding the situation in Iraq for the reasons previously explained, the fact remains that Iraq is presently screwed. To make this painfully easy, I’ll concede that the entire Iraq adventure, down to the very most insignificant detail, is entirely Obama’s fault. What is left? Not much. Now that ALL of the blame that Republicans want to heap on Democrats has been dispensed with, can we finally focus on getting Iraq from where it is now to where we want it to be? Just for once, let’s pretend that there is a chance that without the incessant distraction of partisan bickering, some good might be accomplished on behalf of the Iraqi people.

    No I didn’t think you’d want that. Pity.

  18. 69

    George Wells

    @retire05 #66
    You pseudo-historic account of post-Nazi Berlin is bizarre. First you have Americans “marching” into the part of the Berlin that would later become East Berlin and which the Soviets would wall off to keep East Berliners from escaping to the West, accounted the event as if we got there first – “marching” in as victors taking possession of a place that was never ours. Bizarre.
    Then you supply a ridiculous rationale to support this fading myth of us “marching into Berlin” as if there actually WAS such a march. Well, do some digging, dear heart, and SHOW me when we “Marched” into Berlin.

    From the moment the Soviets captured Berlin, it was in their hands, not ours. Eisenhower conceded it to them. Look it up. When the city was finally partitioned, and we got a quarter of it (adding our quarter to the French and English quarters to eventually make “West Berlin”), the city was still buried in EAST GERMANY! We had air access, and we also were occasionally and informally granted rail and road access to West Berlin, but only at the Soviet’s pleasure, and “marching” troops through Soviet-occupied East Germany was NEVER tolerated. There WERE allied troops in each sector, however, but their presence was kept as unprovocative as possible. They were none-the-less an irritation to the Soviets who, in 1961, unsuccessfully demanded their removal from the city. Their presence was NOT the cause of the “Berlin Crisis” of that year, however. The fact that West Berlin had become the escape route for East Germans was the cause of that.

    The fiction you create and pass off as knowledge is becoming tiresome. Get some rest.

  19. 70

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    First you have Americans “marching” into the part of the Berlin that would later become East Berlin and which the Soviets would wall off to keep East Berliners

    Perhaps you would like to show where I said what part of Berlin we “marched” into? Or are you extrapolating out of what I said something that is not there, which is a nasty habit of yours?

    Then you supply a ridiculous rationale to support this fading myth of us “marching into Berlin” as if there actually WAS such a march.

    Would you have been happier if I had said “entered” into Berlin, instead of “marching”? Or do you think we administrated the section of Berlin assigned to the U.S. by remote control?

    When the city was finally partitioned (in 1945), and we got a quarter of it

    That is what I already said, remember?

    There WERE allied troops in each sector

    So you finally admitted there were troops there, which would have meant “American” troops in the American controlled sector. And how did they get there? Fly in Superman style?

    They were none-the-less an irritation to the Soviets who, in 1961, unsuccessfully demanded their removal from the city.

    In 1961, the Russians built the Berlin wall to prevent east/west traffic. We are talking about 1945. Do try to stay on track, George. By 1961, the West Berliners had pretty much established their own government. You want to wade into the weeds 16 years later.

    The fiction you create and pass off as knowledge is becoming tiresome

    This, from a guy who seems to know little history about anything else. Laughable.

  20. 71

    George Wells

    @retire05 #60:
    “Would you have been happier if I had said “entered” into Berlin?”

    Yes, and thank you for finally acknowledging the difference. The Soviets ALLOWED the United States (and England and France) to station their own military in their respective sectors for legitimate reasons, and we did just that. As the ground route was through Soviet territory AND access to it was at the Soviet’s pleasure, we were NEVER so foolish as to “march” our troops through their territory. Perhaps the distinction between “entering” and “marching” into Berlin makes little or no difference to you, but it sure did to the Soviets.

    “So you finally admitted there were troops there, which would have meant “American” troops in the American controlled sector. And how did they get there? Fly in Superman style?”

    If you read back CAREFULLY, you will discover that I never said that American troops were NOT in our sector of Berlin. The Soviets allowed us air, rail and vehicular access to the city. We entered the city unobtrusively. We didn’t march in, and we didn’t roll tanks in, and we didn’t conduct ourselves in any other threatening way. Manners matter a great deal in the carefully controlled interactions of adversaries, and we were not friends. Remember that while the Soviet Union and the United States were both allied against Hitler, WE repeatedly failed to open the promised “Second Front” that would have distracted Hitler from his quest to capture Leningrad. The Soviets pretty much blame the deaths of 1.5 million Russians that occurred over the course of the Siege of Leningrad on that failure. The delay meant that Hitler would spend himself fighting in Eastern Europe, and when the Soviet Union finally prevailed, it pretty much guaranteed that Eastern Europe would fall under Soviet control. This is explained to provide context for the Soviet’s distrust of the United States and its allies, and to help you remember why WE were not the ones who “marched” into Berlin.

    I used to think that you were reasonably well educated, and that you were in possession of considerable encyclopedic knowledge. But lately, you have become remarkably sloppy, making elementary mistakes (billions versus trillions), creating false histories to support weak arguments (“marching” into Berlin), and replacing factual debate with extended sessions of insult (“Mr. Sodomite”, “silly ass”) as if both carry the same weight. They don’t.

    Your expression of animus is duly noted. Move on.

  21. 72

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    And what you continue to ignore is how our troops got into Berlin. Did they ride in on a magic carpet or in a Volkswagon? How did they get there? You seem to think that the number of troops were so limited they could all just climb in the back of a deuce and a half and roll in.

    So you did a little homework. Good. It’s time you learn to do research instead of just shooting off your mouth. At least the WWII occupation of Berlin seems to have sparked your interest. Very little else, beside queer studies, seems to.

    Your second paragraph, relating to the Second Front is just window dressing and not part of the conversation.

    I want you to tell me how those troops arrived in Berlin.

  22. 73

    George Wells

    @retire05 #72:

    “And what you continue to ignore is how our troops got into Berlin.”
    “I want you to tell me how those troops arrived in Berlin.”

    I have ignored this silly question because to me the question itself is not relevant and at the same time the answer to it is obvious. The initial informal agreement with the Soviets specified one rail line running a maximum of ten trains a day, which was quite sufficient to carry US troops to Berlin which, by the way, was 100 miles inside of Soviet territory through which we did not have “right-of-way.” Given options, the Military’s first choice is always the quickest and most efficient, and “marching” is neither.

    I am not in possession of a first-hand account of the travel experiences of US troops in 1945, or any other year for that matter, but the available accounts of the events in question make it clear that this was not Bataan, that by the time of the partition of Berlin, the Allies had plenty of trucks, trains and airplanes with which to transport cargo and troops into Berlin. You shouldn’t need Wikipedia to figure this out.

    Americans did not “march” into Berlin, ever, period. No amount of your rhetorical distraction will change this fact. Your continued pathetic attempt to embarrass ME with YOUR mistakes has become terminally tiresome. Since YOU won’t end this waste of time, I will.

  23. 74

    Nathan Blue

    @George Wells: #32 You say we failed, but I’m not sure why. The media needed the war to be a failure, and while you the only lib poster here that I don’t consider to be a troll, I still think your view of the war is merely toeing the democrat line. The Iraq “failure” is pivotal to so many buying into Obama, a real mistake they are not sure how to deal with beyond hammering the propaganda points fed by the MSM during the Bush years.

    Again, we invaded Iraq and conquered it in two weeks. We occupied it and set up a democracy. We continued to occupy it and the locals fought back. That’s what happens, and no one with a brain thought that wouldn’t happen. That’s not failure, and not lib that I know can give me any reason against this beyond media talking points.

    I long for world without war, but if you decide to do war, do it. Bush did it legally and with every piece of correct support from the government. Obama pulled out, and now we throw bombs. Funny how the innocent killed by our bombs won’t be nightly news.

    I’m just not hearing anything from you that adequately shows the Iraq War was a failure other than the current Dem mantra of “say a lie over and over again, and the public will think it’s true”.

  24. 75

    George Wells

    @Nathan Blue:

    Thank you for the encouragement.
    I quite fundamentally believe that no matter what any of us are told by irrationally optimistic folk, any and every state that is predominantly Islamic cannot now and never WILL be “democratic” in the sense that Western Civilization appreciates the term. The religion (Islam) is split into different sects, and the religion itself places altogether too many different values above self preservation for these disparate sects to ever be at peace with each other for very long, much less be at peace with “infidels”. So they will ALWAYS be warring, with themselves, with Israel, with Christians, etc., etc. And as they have no historical cultural context in which to place our traditions of democracy, any argument that they have “achieved” democracy is a sham. They’re play-acting for the money. We repeatedly fail to appreciate that non-Western Civ. cultures don’t think at all the way we do. Taking this into account, how can anything that we, the Soviet Union, or any other would-be World Police do be considered a success?
    Do you think that there is ANY interest… IN THE MIDDLE EAST… for peace in the Middle East?
    I don’t really think that there is. Maybe I’m a pessimist. But Retire05 insists that we are in WW3, which is, at the very least, the US vs. 1.6 billion Muslims. I tend to agree with her on this, but I cannot for the life of me find a solution to this problem that doesn’t include the end of live as we know it here on Earth.

    By saying we “failed”, what I am really getting at is that we simply could not succeed. It’s impossible. Not Bush’s fault. Not Obama’s fault. Each screwed it a bit tighter, maybe, but there never really was an option for success. Both political parties spend a lot of time and money trying to make it look like the failure is the fault of the other party, but that just isn’t the case.

    Nice to hear from you.

  25. 76

    retire05

    @George Wells:

    And what you continue to ignore is how our troops got into Berlin.”
    “I want you to tell me how those troops arrived in Berlin.”

    I have ignored this silly question because to me the question itself is not relevant and at the same time the answer to it is obvious.

    Yet, it was my term “marching” that you so objected to. So obviously it was relevant to you.

    The initial informal agreement with the Soviets specified one rail line running a maximum of ten trains a day, which was quite sufficient to carry US troops to Berlin which, by the way, was 100 miles inside of Soviet territory through which we did not have “right-of-way.” Given options, the Military’s first choice is always the quickest and most efficient, and “marching” is neither.

    Well then, provide me with a link that talks about how the Division assigned to Berlin rode the train into Berlin, if it is so damn obvious.

    I am not in possession of a first-hand account of the travel experiences of US troops in 1945,

    Ok then, so you quibble with the term “marching”, claim it is obvious that they took the train, then admit you have no information to back that claim up. Do you get dizzy trying to do the dance of the Dervish? And again, you go on to say:

    Americans did not “march” into Berlin, ever, period.

    but cannot provide any link for the mode of transportation, that seems so obvious to you, that they did take.

    Cut that tail off, George. You are never going to get it out of the trap.

  26. 77

    Bill

    @George Wells: Blame is what one does to divert attention away from personal responsibility. Defeating the Iraqi army without a plan to secure the nation was a failure on Bush’s part. Bush did not blame Clinton or anyone else but took responsibility and pushed for the surge, which succeeded. That is assigning responsibility in order to determine what failed for without determining what the failure truly was, finding a solution is impossible.

    So, Iraq was subdued. What happened? Bush’s fault? Misrepresent the conditions on the ground to absolve Obama of any responsibility? That won’t cut it because that offers no solution. What actually happened what Obama promised over and over to pull out of Iraq in 16 months. Over 36 months later, Obama is figuring out (possibly) how little he actually knows about so very much. He can’t close GITMO; he can’t simply charisma terrorists to like us and lay down their weapons; he can’t get out of Afghanistan and he can’t seem to get out of Iraq. Against the advise of intelligent people, he just pulls all forces out of Iraq.

    Iraq collapses.

    We will probably wind up going back into Iraq to prevent a terrorist army from taking control of an entire country, that can generate wealth, and then threaten other nations… especially us. How could this be avoided? By blaming Bush or by paying more attention to empty-suit community organizers who think ideologically about every issue rather than what is best for the nation and national security? This could have been avoided by not electing, for a second term, someone that failed so miserably in his first term. This can only be resolved by wresting power away from cowards whose only concern is reelection and pandering for the necessary votes for that reelection.

    A leader would be really handy along about now. Blame is immaterial.

  27. 78

    George Wells

    @Bill #77:
    I am largely in agreement with your assessment. I agree that Bush made his mistakes in Iraq, and also that Obama based many of his strategic decisions pre-2012 on his desire to get re-elected. Perhaps the greatest disagreement that we have is that you seem to believe that a true, long-lasting democratization of Iraq was possible and that the consequent succession of democratic governments there would not in turn threaten the national security of the United States. That, sir, is a very long shot. I am cautiously heartened by the apparent possibility of a peaceful replacement of Al Maliki – a modest step in the right direction. But the region is so chock-a-block full of impediments to the achievement of those goals that I am still not optimistic about Iraq’s long-term prospects.

    I think that after 9-11, we should have bombed Afghanistan into oblivion for having refused to hand over OBL.
    I think that we should have been WAY more cautious about going into Iraq in the first place, regardless of the reason, and I believe that history will take this same view of the events.
    But having gone in when we did for the reasons we had, with everyone making a full compliment of mistakes along the way, I see little reason to dwell on the mistakes of one political party or the other as if one side made critical errors while the other’s were trivial. I did not see a path to success that did not depend on a string of minor miracles at the beginning, and I do not see such a path now. In light of that view, my desire to get the Hell out of Dodge ASAP is completely rational. Presidents make mistakes, and so do countries, and I have no sense of lingering guilt over the fact that our attempt to “fix” Iraq failed, regardless of out motives for going in. I think that now, we would be much better served by putting such heroic efforts into repairing our own political infrastructure, as we are not so terribly far from having our own civil War. Whether the fight is over race relations or gay rights or abortion or any of the other issues that are tearing our union apart, it is getting worse. Our own system of governance is failing us, and we are not setting a good example for the rest of the world.

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