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Poll: Should the US withdraw its troops from Iraq?

Yes, immediately. 13 (22%)
Yes, in the short term (within 3 months). 18 (31%)
Yes, but only over the next year or so. 18 (31%)
No, only after the mission is completely done. 7 (12%)
Huh? The US is in Iraq? 3 (5%)
   Discussion: Should the US withdraw its troops from Iraq?
Gordondon son of Ethelred · 13 years, 11 months ago
My answer is that I have no idea and I don't think anyone else does either. We don't have enough information to rationally decide this. We unfortunately cannot trust the goverment sources of information, they have proved far too unreliable, and there really is no alternative.
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
The troops need to come home now, I believe. Unless we are going to send massive reinforcements and build permanent bases it's time. I don't want to see more Americans die there nor see more atrocities occur between the Iraqi civilians and our soldiers. It's a no win situation so why send more Americans to die needlessly there?
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Because we don't really know it is no win situation. If we left now the odds are really good things would become total chaos there. It is bad now but it isn't Darfur. If we left it could make Darfur look peaceful. I'm not saying that is what is going to happen but it is a real possibility. As I said, I don't know what would happen because we don't really know the facts on the ground. The only thing I'd promise if I were to be made president today is to find out what is happening and then formulate a policy based on facts not wishes.

What I love about Al Franken is that hte is the one pundit who keeps saying that he really doesn't know what is best. Everyone else seems to think they know. They just all know different things.

It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so.
Will Rogers
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Al is not one to hesitate and take a strong stand on issues and he usually backs it up with facts, that is true.
I personally think its already total chaos there. When you read about 120 people being murdered for going to work and American soldiers being tortured and beheaded, judges being shot in front of their children its hard to see how it could be much more chaotic.
I know I wouldn't go myself or let either one of my kids go there to fight so I can't very well say we should stay as long as it is someone elses family member doing the fighting and dying.
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
But that is only one side of the equation. Would you feel right leaving if it meant an extra 100,000 iraqis would die?
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Just like I don't know what is really going on there now, how can we know that it will get worse if we leave?The Iraqi's have a democratically elected government now lets let them try to run their own country. We could redeploy our troops to Kuwait or someplace nearby if needed so they can respond quickly but not be sitting ducks for every suicide bomber
Starfox Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Yes, but military casualities have actually been fairly low compared against other American military conflicts, and surprisingly low for what is essentially and invasion and occupation.

The problem is we've created a HUGE mess with the so-called "democratically elected government" we created. Iraq really should have been split into three separate countries. The Sunnis and the Shiites are at each others throats, and the Kurds are just looking for an opportunity to grab a piece of the pie for themselves.

It's a mess, and I think we have a responsibility to clean up some of what we caused when we came in and trashed the place. I don't like the fact we invaded a sovereign nation, but it's a fait accompli, now let's fix what we can and get the hell out.
Josh Woodward Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
> Iraq really should have been split into three separate countries.

I had a long post about this the other day that I trashed because I couldn't say it well, but I agree 100%. The only thing we're doing is postponing the inevitable - trying to make the three groups coexist that never should have been drawn into a single country in the first place. I'm really surprised there hasn't been more outrage that we're still trying to make it happen...
Andrea Krause Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
I think one of the big problems with this approach is the financial impact to the resulting countries. You try to split it up, you'll still have people up in arms (literally) if they don't get the piece with the most resources. Isn't the most oil rich part where the kurds are? (just talking from memory, haven't researched it) I doubt the other groups would stand for losing that revenue just to gain separation from their adversaries. Some fractured countries seem to stay together because they just can't maintain themselves as independent entities.
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago

the big problem seems to be how to separate them peacefully and which faction should get which piece of Iraq.

 http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/25/weekinreview/25filkins.html.

Thats why I think we need to pull out. Since we've occupied the country things have gotten worse. The economy is worse, oil output has declined, the power supply is less reliable  and 50,000 Iraqi civilians are dead and no end to the violence is in sight. Perhaps if we put our troops in a neighboring country close enough to react to emergencies if needed the Iraqi population might see us as less of an occupying force and stop supplying the insurgency with money, support and suicide bombers.

Starfox Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Perhaps if we put our troops in a neighboring country close enough to react to emergencies if needed the Iraqi population might see us as less of an occupying force and stop supplying the insurgency with money, support and suicide bombers.

Yes, but what country would you propose we "put our troops in", and how would their population view us? We already aren't that popular in Saudi Arabi or Kuwait or UAE. They resent the presence we have in those countries already.
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
I don't know Canada maybe-or how about we just start a middle east folk festival ??
Bender Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
What makes you think that Canada is a place that would say, "Sure! You can keep your troops here! It's not like there's anything else going on" ?
nate... Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Well, it's not like canada has an army or anything.. they've got space. ;D
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Canadians are too polite to say, "you can't keep your troops here." to a neighbor. Do you have any idea how many cups of sugar the US has borrowed from Canada over the years? It still hasn't returned Canada's power drill it borrowed in 1961 when it was used to help to prepare John Glenn's rocket.
Paul Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
I saw a report that Canada has more oil than the mideast, lets label them a terrorist state and invade!
Josh Woodward · 13 years, 11 months ago
I'm split between immediately and in the short term. I think it'll take at least three months to complete the actual process, but I think we need to start the process now. We never should have gone there in the first place, but more importantly, we're only making it worse by staying there. It's going to be bloody, but for long term stability, we need to let the Iraqis decide how they want to organize themselves.
sheryls Back · 13 years, 11 months ago

but...but..dick cheney says that's the worst thing we can do!

wait, no, the exact quote is "The worst possible thing we could do is what the Democrats are suggesting," which i'm sure is one of the many fun phrases he says when you pull the string in his back :P

Starfox · 13 years, 11 months ago
They should be brought home; I hope that fact is not debatable. But they have to be brought home in such a way that is safe for the troops that are withdrawing, and those still present. And also, we have to have some kind of stability there since we kinda trashed the place.

However, they should be brought home, and redeployed along the Mexican border.
Josh Woodward Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
> However, they should be brought home, and redeployed along the Mexican border.

Your wry sense of humor takes some getting used to, but is quite amusing after awhile. ;-)
Mamalissa! Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
> Your wry sense of humor takes some getting used to, but is quite
> amusing after awhile. ;-)

Well, with all the rumination his jokes require, of course you'd expect his sense of humor to be a nice thick rye.
Starfox Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
It would certainly help to stem the illegal immigration you apparentally are against. Granted I was being slightly tongue in cheek, but what are the military for if not for defending our own borders?
Josh Woodward Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Guarding the Mexican border with 150,000 military troops isn't exactly a reasonable solution (and it's a tiny bit out of step with libertarianism).
Starfox Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Well I wasn't talking about ALL the troops. :) But the military's role is to defend the border, and I think it is perfectly within libertarianism to advocate military patrols of the border (particularly in the desolate areas).

Hell, Michael Badnarik even proposed a dedicated force that would treat anyone crossing the border at anything other than a predetermined immigration point as invaders and deal with them accordingly. Of course, he also suggested this with broad reform of the immigration system too, but still.

Either way, you have to have an armed force capabable of defending the border. If not the military, then who?
Josh Woodward Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
It's not possible to stop them at the border. They'll find another way in. The only way to stop them is by taking away the real incentive for coming: cracking down on businesses that hire illegal aliens. Tax evasion is a felony. I run a small business. If I cheated on my own taxes, I'd go to jail. But if I hired a bunch of illegal aliens and paid them under the table, I should be just as worried about going to jail. It'd never happen.

We won't score any points with the meat packing industry in Nebraska, but they'll need to adapt or die. The south thought that the end of slavery would spell the end of the economy, but the industrial revolution was born.
Gordondon son of Ethelred · 13 years, 11 months ago
Every complex problem has a simple solution and that is wrong.
Starfox Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Bah, just nuke the planet. Then it won't matter if it's wrong or right cuz we'll all be dead! :)
Gordondon son of Ethelred Back · 13 years, 11 months ago
Speak for yourself. Some artists want to achieve immortality through their work. I want to achieve mine through not dying.

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