Are permanent military bases the real goal?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Black&Tan, Jun 8, 2007.

  1. Black&Tan macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

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    #1
    This is an opinion piece from The Christian Science Monitor, which I just finished reading on Yahoo. I hate to say it, but I think they've hit the nail on the head. Iraq is not a temporary invasion but a permanent occupation. Plus Bush was recently quoted as saying he was making it impossible for the next President to extricate the US from Iraq.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/yschorr08;_ylt=AglMNxMNceFLS3CCzsAYaYfMWM0F

    New White House plan: Keep US troops in Iraq permanently.

    Washington - President Bush used to be fond of saying that American troops would stay in Iraq as long as needed and not a day longer. He isn't saying that anymore.

    The new word from the White House is that American troops would be stationed in Iraq permanently on the "Korean model." The analogy is a little strained. The United States has helped to mend the rift between North and South Korea since 1953. But South Korea has had no internal insurgency to worry about.

    The plan for permanent bases in Iraq must have been long in the making. The president ignored a recommendation of the Baker-Hamilton Commission that he state that America seeks no permanent bases in Iraq. At one point last year, the Senate and House passed an amendment to the military-spending bill banning the establishment of permanent bases in Iraq. The bill went to conference and then the ban on bases, adopted by both chambers, mysteriously disappeared.

    The building of four bases along with a gigantic new American embassy in the Green Zone on the Tigris River has been moving along rapidly. The bases will have runways two miles long to accommodate the largest American planes. The Balad base north of Baghdad covers 14 square miles. Another base is planned for the area that was ancient Babylon.

    The new embassy, which will be the largest American mission in the world, will be complete with swimming pool and commissary. Retired General Anthony Zinni has said that permanent bases are "a stupid idea." He said that they will damage America's image in the whole region.

    These huge installations must be intended for more than Iraqi stabilization. Former President Jimmy Carter said in a speech in February of last year that "the reason we went into Iraq was to establish a permanent military base in the Gulf region." And few are missing the point that bases in Iraq will keep American might on Iran's doorstep.

    • Daniel Schorr is a senior news analyst at National Public Radio.
     
  2. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #2
    Sure: the idea was put forward as an integral part of the PNAC, years ago. This is colonialism, pure and simple.
     
  3. Queso macrumors G4

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    Then it's a shame the Iraqi Government are likely going to vote in December for the Americans to leave and the overwhelming majority of Iraqis don't want them there either. What will it take before Bush finally gets the message? Another Beirut style bomb killing hundreds of troops in one go?
     
  4. Black&Tan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

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    When does it all end?

    Will ordinary Iraqis and American soldiers die daily for years to come? Congress has proven itself to be impotent. The American public is impotent, or at least has no control over the actions of the current administration. The world is against the occupation and yet we're still there. What will it take?

    And what does happen when the Iraqi government asks us to leave?
     
  5. Queso macrumors G4

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    History suggests a revolution or civil war are the most likely outcomes when the system of government becomes so out of touch with a country's population.

    And I'm not talking about Iraq.
     
  6. Black&Tan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

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    #6
    Perhaps that is why the administration is building massive internment camps out West? But I doubt it will come to that. As a society, Americans are too apathetic to care about what government is really doing. Instead, they're more interested in Paris Hilton, American Idol, and cheap consumer goods.
     
  7. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    It'll be a real shame if that comes to pass.

    However, the idea that we are in Iraq for the long haul is the only way that Bush's actions make any sense.

    Of course that would make liars out of all the administration types that spent so much time assuring us that six months was a way overblown time estimate of how long this whole thing would take...
     
  8. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    Name one war we won where we don't still have bases in the country. Once we are in, we never leave. Think of the Philippines, we invaded that in the Spanish-American war over 100 years ago.

    We will never completely leave Iraq or Afghanistan. We will eventually stop "occupying" it but we will still have bases. We have bases in almost every country in the world. Iraq will be no different.
     
  9. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #9
    Do we have any permanent bases in Mexico? (Other than those located in Texas, California, New Mexico, Arizona, etc.)
     
  10. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #10
    It's not wars we've won that I'd be looking to for comparisons...
     
  11. Queso macrumors G4

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    #11
    My thought exactly. The jury's still out on this one.
     
  12. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #12
    1. We leave when we are asked to leave, al la the Philippines. The US closed their bases there because we were asked to by the native government.

    2. We are a global hegemon and our bases are essential for global stability
     
  13. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    #13
    The "war" was won in a few days. This is an occupation. You can't lose an occupation, you just leave when cost/benefit ratio turns <1. I don't see anyone protesting a war, I just see people who have decided the cost have outweighed the benefits. But I think the Philippines, is a good example on how long we will be there.

    We will "leave" by stop patrolling the streets, but there will always be bases there. We will just stop leaving the bases except by air. Then the only way to get rid of those is direct military force.

    We can't stop patrols right now, for fear of civil war. I never understood why things were set up the way they were after the "war" ended. You keep most of the people who ran the place keep running it. We ran out the Sunnis who had all the money and power, and turned the prison over to the inmates. We are kinda screwed right now. But we made our bed, and we have to sleep in it. No one bails us out of anything.
     
  14. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    Semantics. Call it whatever you want, we are currently in the bloodiest phase so far. Violence is escalating.

    Pretty easy to attack these bases with mortars and rockets if we don't patrol the streets.

    These statements seem contradictory, saying it's the same people on the one hand but lamenting that we drove out the Sunnis (and replaced them with Shiites) on the other. Who would you have preferred we install in power?
     
  15. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Funny thing is, I hear from conservatives all the time about how "Iraq is the central front in the GWOT" when calling it a war is to their advantage. Then the second you point out how crappy it's going they say "well the war was over in the first few days and we won".

    BS. It's a war if US troops are dying at the rates we're seeing each month.
     
  16. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #16
    Completely untested hypothesis. Probably bollocks. Your bases are where they are to enforce your political and economic will.
     
  17. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    What do you mean by untested? Don't the Japanese and Koreans want American military bases in Asian the hedge against PR China and save them money in an arms race? If the US left, won't the above mentioned countries will be forced to nuclearize and thereby making the entire region unstable?
     
  18. Black&Tan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

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    #18
    And if we're going to be there for 50 plus years for this "Grand War on Terror," and we're seeing casualty rates like we're seeing now, when does it end? When do the National Guard troops get to come home and when does our military stand down? Or are we going to cycle in and out of there in 18 month intervals for the next 50 years. Because I don't see the violence dying down...its getting worse. It's a catch-22 – we're there until the violence dies down, but we're the cause of the violence to begin with!
     
  19. Queso macrumors G4

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    Could you explain how the Chagos Islanders want the American military on their territory?
     
  20. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    The US military situation in iraq is akin to the hunter and the moose. So the hunter is taking a dump in the middle of a forest... he sees a moose. If he pulls his pants up and runs, he might not get gored by the moose but he messes himself. He chooses his pride, he gets gored by the moose.
     
  21. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    Well if I'm a Chagos Islander, I wouldn't want to be kicked off my native island either!
     
  22. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #22
    Is that meant to make things clearer? :confused:
     
  23. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #23
    perhaps we're supposed to read something into the word gored.
     
  24. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #24
    No moose is good moose.
     
  25. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    #25
    How about a wacupation? :D

    Mactastic, you are my favorite liberal to chat with about Iraq!

    I am not diluted enough to call what we are doing a war. I do enjoy propaganda like the term GWOT, but at least I can see it as just that. Any death is too high of a price for some. That is why we are working really hard to improve the odds for the warfighter. It is still really nasty business, and anything the government does takes too long. Right now we just don't have a choice in the situation. If we leave too soon many more will die in the war that will follow. Personally I would cut the place up like Yugoslavia, but the oil rich south would basically be given to Iran. I think that would be a good trade.

    It is good to see people on both sides working together to make this as clean as possible. Nixon really screwed up while pulling out of Vietnam, he backed the wrong locals and didn't develop the defense capacity of the south well enough. We don't want the failure of that withdrawal to happen again. It needs to be slow and almost unnoticeable by the Iraqis. To the point where there are still troops on the street, but the faces change. We should never let them feel abandoned like we did the Vietnamese.

    BTW, I don't consider myself anything, but reading my own posts I do speak on the republican/conservative side of things. Its a side effect of being a cog in the military-industrio machine.
     

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