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Is It Time to Pull out from Iraq? watch

  • View Poll Results: Is It Time to Pull out?
    Yes, we should leave immediately
    16
    30.19%
    Yes, we should pull out by July 2008
    8
    15.09%
    No, pulling out till the job is done would be a gross abdication of responsibility
    25
    47.17%
    No comment
    4
    7.55%

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    Everyone is aware of the situation in Iraq, and now that Gordon Brown has been crowned Prime Minister, should he pull British troops out of Iraq?

    Perhaps we should hand over Basra and the surrounding provinces and concentrate on our operations in Afghanistan where the situation seems more in control?

    Any views?
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    I don't think it's handover time yet. Too little of Iraq is stable for handing over the bits that are to work. We need to stay there until the job is done, or until the Americans cut and run, because let's face it without them we'd be stuffed.
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    I think its high time the Coalition got out of Iraq. It's already a horrible mess from their actions and their presence is hindering and not helping Iraq's recovery.

    Unifying Iraq is a lot like forming Great Britain from Scotland, England, Wales and N.I., if you consider the Sunni's, Shias, Kurds and the numerous other quasi-religious/political parties there. It's not going to happen quickly and without bloodshed, and having the West in there trying to force a political system to happen before its time will just not happen imo.
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    It's time to get out. It's long been obvious that the invasion was a complete disaster and our continued presence will result in even more loss of life. It has proved a costly experiment into how impossible it is to force democracy on a country. The withdrawal will lead to a bloodbath and a civil war, but these will be as inevitable if we withdraw in 10 years as they are now. President Bush should have considered that before he declared war.
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    (Original post by Cage)
    President Bush should have considered that before he declared war.
    ...gloat, gloat.
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    I think its high time the Coalition got out of Iraq. It's already a horrible mess from their actions and their presence is hindering and not helping Iraq's recovery.
    Explain how it would be better off without American/British troops there?
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    (Original post by Consie)
    Explain how it would be better off without American/British troops there?
    There are a lot of places which would be 'better off' with a 150,000 strong American military presence. It doesn't necessarily mean that the US military should be undertaking roles in the civil administration for which it is not designed. Policing is not a military operation, unless there is a state of martial law - and then it should only be temporary. If the US cannot secure Iraq in four years, why think it can in eight? Or sixteen?

    The future security of Iraq should be the responsibilty of the Iraqi government, funded by Iraqi taxpayers, not American and British ones. If Iraq is to become an independent state, its reliance on US aid and military presence should end.
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    Did we think after 4 years in Nothern Ireland 'ah, its never gonna work, lets jib it'. But what do you think will become of Iraq if we leave? You use words like 'taxpayers' and 'government' in regard to Iraq, there wouldnt even be such structures if we left, and if there were, in all but name. There's probably a bloody higher chance of a Danelaw being created or something between Sunni/Shi'ite boundaries.
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    (Original post by Consie)
    Did we think after 4 years in Nothern Ireland 'ah, its never gonna work, lets jib it'.
    The Northern Ireland analogy isn't a very good one for you to draw for two reasons:
    1. Northern Ireland is part of Britain, not some detatched Middle Eastern nation.
    2. It took 85 years between the declaration of the Republic's independence and the implementation of devolution for Northern Ireland. If you're suggesting we should spend the next century trying to stabilise a country which was hitherto stable, I think you should consider massive cost associated therewith.

    (Original post by Consie)
    But what do you think will become of Iraq if we leave? You use words like 'taxpayers' and 'government' in regard to Iraq, there wouldnt even be such structures if we left, and if there were, in all but name.
    There aren't effective ones there right now - because we fund security along with other infrastructural elements.

    It may be worse for the Iraqi population - I can sympathise with the "We broke it, we buy it" idea. But it seems to me that any attempt to democratise Iraq by force is futile - it's too sectarian. Were I in charge of Iraq, I would either break it up into 3 separate nations - or at least states within a loose federation - or, if you insist that there must be one united Iraq, then put a strong man in power. A Shah or a Saud - or some terrifying amalgam of the two. Just let's get the hell out of there and let some semblance of civilian government imposed by a competent, if undemocratic ruler.
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    The Northern Ireland analogy isn't a very good one for you to draw for two reasons:
    1. Northern Ireland is part of Britain, not some detatched Middle Eastern nation.
    2. It took 85 years between the declaration of the Republic's independence and the implementation of devolution for Northern Ireland. If you're suggesting we should spend the next century trying to stabilise a country which was hitherto stable, I think you should consider massive cost associated therewith.
    I know, but it was a 'counter insurgency operation'. Which apparently take at least 15 years according to 'experts'.

    While i agree the idea that democracy is inherently better regardless of circumstance is stupid, i still think we have to stay in becasue we've tied up Iraq's fate with our military. I originally thought of the splitting them up idea, but they'd just come under the control of other bigger countries. A loose federation wouldnt last. Also, the idea of a civilian government, and it being competent in context that it is competant whilst still maintaining civility, contradicts with putting a strong man in power.
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    I don't think splitting Iraq is an option. Turkey for one would not stand idle and watch the creation of a Kurdish state, and the Sunni and Shiite divisions would be brought under the undue influence of the Saudis and the Iranians, respectively.

    A central, undemocratic ruler-ship is the most realistic, and ideal solution in my opinion.
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    (Original post by thermoregulatio)
    Were I in charge of Iraq, I would either break it up into 3 separate nations
    Not convinced that will work - it is likely to open a huge can of worms for the next 20 or 30 years. I think the only thing left to do is to literally pack up and withdraw, watch the place fall apart, and wait until it sorts itself out. It will be very ugly and very bloody, but it can be delayed as long as you want... civil war is eventually inevitable.

    Just let's get the hell out of there and let some semblance of civilian government imposed by a competent, if undemocratic ruler.
    I agree, one a bit like the bloke we just forcibly removed at the expense of hundreds of billions of pounds, thousands of coalition lives, tens of thousands of civilian lives, and the entire Iraqi infrastructure. People should accept that unpleasant and despotic rulers are a natural part of a country's development cycle - every country now regarded as 'modern' had such a phase. It is simply impossible to impose democracy. It has to evolve.
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    but one isnt just going to be put in place. There will a half century of blood bath between the sunni strongman and the shia one, espeically given Iraq isnt split in a cleanly, almost north south, sunni/shia divide. If you look at the Muslims emigrating to Pakistan from India after Raj independance, you see even that, which went smoothly in the scheme of things, was a bloody affair. CAn you imagine the sustained carnage of two new nations during themselves out along ethnic lines? then there's the possibility of another blood bath between a strongman who wants a united Iraq and one that doesnt.

    What Iraq needs is about 500,000 troops to lock it down. It seems soooo contradictory that on the one hand we say were in till its sorted, and on ther other we keep shooting that plan in the head by progressivly pulling troops out. They should be, and should have to start with, piling in WW2 style.
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    (Original post by Consie)
    but one isnt just going to be put in place. There will a half century of blood bath between the sunni strongman and the shia one, espeically given Iraq isnt split in a cleanly, almost north south, sunni/shia divide. If you look at the Muslims emigrating to Pakistan from India after Raj independance, you see even that, which went smoothly in the scheme of things, was a bloody affair. CAn you imagine the sustained carnage of two new nations during themselves out along ethnic lines? then there's the possibility of another blood bath between a strongman who wants a united Iraq and one that doesnt.
    There WILL be such a bloodbath, there WILL be utter chaos, there will probably be a Turkish occupation, and none of it is any longer preventable. The minute US troops set food on Iraqi soil, this conclusion was inevitable.

    What Iraq needs is about 500,000 troops to lock it down.
    Oh yes, that should do it. We've totally messed up a country by military force, wave after wave of reinforcements cut to shreds... the people are already in extremely violent resistance, so what do you suggest? Send in half a million American grunts. A more insane idea I am yet to hear.
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    (Original post by Consie)
    I know, but it was a 'counter insurgency operation'. Which apparently take at least 15 years according to 'experts'.
    Surely it's a case-by-case analysis of each scenario, and no generic chronology for solving these problems? Call it counter insurgency, or call it guerilla warfare. It takes a long time, has no guaranteed results and no comparable benefit for the country that undertakes it.

    (Original post by Consie)
    Also, the idea of a civilian government, and it being competent in context that it is competant whilst still maintaining civility, contradicts with putting a strong man in power.
    Absolutely not. The Shah of Iran was a half-competent, civil, Westernised ruler for 25 years or so - 1955 to 1979 - and he was distinctly undemocratic and by some standards authoritarian. Ultimately his overthrow was a problem - because he should have responded to the pressure for small democratic reforms.

    Maybe Pinochet is a better example - he came in as military dictator, killed a few thousand political opponents, introduced free markets and monetarism, stablised the economy and made himself obsolete, leaving a largely democratic and stable government behind.
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    I'm not sure about injecting more coalition troops into Iraq now, but I certainly thought it was a mistake to begin the war with the relatively small troop levels with which we entered Iraq.
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    (Original post by -1984-)
    I'm not sure about injecting more coalition troops into Iraq now, but I certainly thought it was a mistake to begin the war with the relatively small troop levels with which we entered Iraq.
    Well if you accept the premise that the war ever had a hope of a peaceful resolution (which I don't) then yes the numbers of troops was hopelessly ineffective. However, there was always an alternative of a far smaller army to remove the regime, install a new one, and get out, with minimum bloodshed. The military resistance was really very ineffective and a few paratroopers right in the middle of Baghdad could have dealt with it more effectively. Or better still a military coup led from within by bribing a few generals. Not that regime change was ever the stated aim of the war anyway, of course.
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    Oh yes, that should do it. We've totally messed up a country by military force, wave after wave of reinforcements cut to shreds... the people are already in extremely violent resistance, so what do you suggest? Send in half a million American grunts. A more insane idea I am yet to hear.
    Hang on. W dont want a bloodbath by leaving, we dont want a bloodbath while we're there. 500,000 troops does a better job of squashing violenet resistance everywhere and anywhere than 5,000 do cleaning one street only to see teh previous one fill up again. Its not military force per say which has wreckd the nation, its a lack of it. This lockdown is needed more than anything to get past the initial stage of 'nation building', we still havent progressed from 2003 becasue of contradictory policies.

    and no comparable benefit for the country that undertakes it.
    Its not about benefits anymore really, i just dont agree with leaving the Iraqis too it. There's not many things im ideological about, but i cant help but feel tight on the poor *******s if we just left.


    Absolutely not. The Shah of Iran was a half-competent, civil, Westernised ruler for 25 years or so - 1955 to 1979 - and he was distinctly undemocratic and by some standards authoritarian. Ultimately his overthrow was a problem - because he should have responded to the pressure for small democratic reforms.
    this is perhaps even worse saving face wise than leaving. We go in and depose Saddam to....set up someone exacly like Saddam, except more religious and thus more of a threat, only this time a genuine, but not pervasive, threat. Left wingers would be dining out on that one for the next half century. Its going to be near impossible to install a non religious, or at least religiously apathetic, strongman. The type of fella that would come to power would make Bin Laden look like a puppy, and would have a nation of insurgents to cause some upset, which old Bin doesnt have. The thing that would suck most is, we couldnt attack him becasue we would have pretty much set him up, we'd be creating our own foe, thus creating another struggle.
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    (Original post by Consie)
    Hang on. W dont want a bloodbath by leaving, we dont want a bloodbath while we're there. 500,000 troops does a better job of squashing violenet resistance everywhere and anywhere than 5,000 do cleaning one street only to see teh previous one fill up again.
    No, 500,000 troops would just result in, at best, absolute hatred at the authoritarian nature of the occupying force, producing an extremely dangerous civilian population, or at worst, near-genocide by indiscriminate murders of civilians - of which there have already been far too many.
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    not really, it would provide a tool for implementing the policies the government, which has the best interests of the nation at heart. Its not long term either, the lock down would only be needed for a short time.
 
 
 
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