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Tom Palven
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LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Oct 11th, 2014 at 4:16am
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Back in the spring of 2003, shortly after the Shock and Awe bombing of Iraq, libertarian humorist P.J. O'Rourke gave a speech at a CATO libertarian think tank luncheon in NYC. During the speech he said that while he agreed with the LP's position against foreign intervention, that the bombing of Iraq was an exception to the rule. And he got a standing ovation.

After the Shock and Awe, George Bush's popularity poll numbers, which were down in the 30% range, jumped to about 80%, the highest recorded for a sitting President, and after that, the LP News, house organ of the "Party of Principle," never made a peep against the attack on the Iraqis.

This time it's apparently different. Polls show that a large majority of Americans accept the State Department/CIA/Associated Press mantra that "ISIL is so evil that even al Qaeda rejects it"--"worse than Hitler," and so on, and that despite all the kings and dictators in the Mid-East having their own heavily equipped armies and air forces, only the US, its men and its taxpayers, can save the day.

And the Libertarian Party, knowing that it's not going to win them many votes, is apparently sticking to it's principles and going along with it's former Presidential candidate Ron Paul, in urging US lawmakers to get out and stay out of Iraq and Syria.
https://www.lp.org/news/press-releases/get-out-stay-out-of-iraq-and-syria
« Last Edit: Oct 11th, 2014 at 1:09pm by Tom Palven »  
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Tom Palven
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #1 - Oct 15th, 2014 at 8:38am
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Many commentators have branded the Iraqi army as cowardly as compared to IS and other Mid-Eastern rebel and resistance groups in the Arab Spring movement.

But, the Iraqi army has been trained and equipped by the US for years, and its soldiers are genetically similar to the rebel soldiers, so why is there an apparent difference in their fighting capabilities?

The major difference seems to be motivation.  Many of the rebels have been willing to fight and die for their cause, even by strapping and detonating suicide vests, while many of the Iraqi regulars seem to be wearing uniforms in order to draw pay checks.  As the old saying goes, "Money can buy you a good dog, but it won't buy the wag of its tail."

In 2004 Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said that US soldiers are "fungible." as reported here:

Rumsfeld's 'fungible' facts

By Derrick Z. Jackson | April 21, 2004

DEFENSE Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was offensive enough when he intimated last week that US troops were as interchangeable as automotive factory parts. Irritated at a question from a reporter about why 20,000 American troops had to stay 90 days longer than expected in Iraq, he said: "Oh, come on. People are fungible. You can have them here or there."


This is true of US troops in the Mid-East today and was true of US troops in Vietnam. You can move troops here or there, because when they get there they have nowhere else to go. They, essentially, have to fight their way out.  Iraqi army regulars, on the other hand, stationed on their home territory, sometimes have the opportunity to melt away and change uniforms.

Rumsfeld and the neocons probably put the tremendous capabilities of US warplanes, attack helicopters, drones, and other sophisticated weaponry, along with "fungible troop assets" into their computers, and saw a military cake walk ahead, but in their elitist arrogance they view all fighting men and women as mere chess pawns, and fail to see the humanity involved;  the importance of average human elements such as emotional pain and pride in people whose doors have been from broken down during night raids, or who have had friends and family killed or maimed by Shock and Awe, and its disease-inducing aftermath.

Right now "the fiery anti-American cleric," Shi'ite leader Mookie al-Sadr, will probably have a lot more impact on how things progress in Iraq and the Mid-East than Kerry, Hagel, or US CENTCOM.  He, alone, may have the capability of uniting Shi'ites and Sunnis, or at least quelling the antagonism between them, if he chooses to do so.

So, trillions of dollars later, the US powers-that-be may as well bring the troops home from the Mid-East,  and just wait and see what happens.  If the homeboys and girls manage to overthrow King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, General al-Sisi of Egypt, and other royalty and dictators in the Mid-East, Rothbard would have applauded, and so will I.
  
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Tom Palven
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #2 - Nov 22nd, 2014 at 7:22pm
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Jeff
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #3 - Nov 23rd, 2014 at 4:02pm
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Tom Palven wrote on Nov 22nd, 2014 at 7:22pm:

Pakistan is a nuclear power... have they protested this violation of their sovereignty?
Perhaps most people in Pakistan are glad to see these people killed... but they should do it themselves.
  
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Tom Palven
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #4 - Nov 23rd, 2014 at 6:45pm
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Jeff wrote on Nov 23rd, 2014 at 4:02pm:
Pakistan is a nuclear power... have they protested this violation of their sovereignty?
Perhaps most people in Pakistan are glad to see these people killed... but they should do it themselves.


http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/24/world/asia/in-pakistan-rally-protests-drone-st...

http://world.time.com/2013/11/25/furious-pakistanis-block-nato-supply-routes-to-...

If they don't want drone strikes, why should they do it themselves?  Because The Ministry of Truth says that they should?
  
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hrdman2luv
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #5 - Nov 24th, 2014 at 7:14am
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We should not be in the middle east. Period. End of story.

All the government is doing is helping the military contractors make billions and creating enemies. Enemies the next generation will have to fight. And the next and the next and the next....

No need to micromanage this. Our country should defend itself against those that actually threaten our national security.
  

It's my one little vote. And I'll cast it like I want to.
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Jeff
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #6 - Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:01am
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Tom Palven wrote on Nov 23rd, 2014 at 6:45pm:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/24/world/asia/in-pakistan-rally-protests-drone-st...

http://world.time.com/2013/11/25/furious-pakistanis-block-nato-supply-routes-to-...

If they don't want drone strikes, why should they do it themselves?  Because The Ministry of Truth says that they should?

Yes, Pakistan is a country of people who do not all agree. Some are violent Islamists, some want secular government. I'll guess the majority don't want their country to be controlled by the people who promise to bring them strict sharia law. Right now, it seems their government thinks having the U.S. kill violent extremists (those you call "rebels") is a good idea. If the majority of Pakistanis disagree, they need to change their government.
Of course we need to change our government too, so we have one that respects our Constitution and minds it's own business.
  
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Tom Palven
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #7 - Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:18am
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Jeff wrote on Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:01am:
Yes, Pakistan is a country of people who do not all agree. Some are violent Islamists, some want secular government. I'll guess the majority don't want their country to be controlled by the people who promise to bring them strict sharia law. Right now, it seems their government thinks having the U.S. kill violent extremists (those you call "rebels") is a good idea. If the majority of Pakistanis disagree, they need to change their government.
Of course we need to change our government too, so we have one that respects our Constitution and minds it's own business.


While you are at it, Jeff, you might also want to defend this new US foreign intervention:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/11/24/387300/kabul-to-resume-infamous-night-ra...
  
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Jeff
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #8 - Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:26am
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Tom Palven wrote on Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:18am:
While you are at it, Jeff, you might also want to defend this new US foreign intervention:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/11/24/387300/kabul-to-resume-infamous-night-ra...

Jeez! How many times to I have to tell you I'm opposed to U.S. intervention? I'd stop it all if I could, but I don't control our foreign policy, 'progressives' do, and they love to intervene. Unfortunately, many governments around the world frequently want the U.S. to intervene. As long as I can't stop it, I'd rather see barbarians killed and civilization upheld, though I don't think 'progressives' can tell the difference, being barbarians themselves.
I'm also opposed to the other type of intervention our 'progressive' government does so much of, giving "aid" to foreign governments in the form of money or military equipment or military training.
  
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Tom Palven
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Re: LP says get out of Iraq and Syria
Reply #9 - Nov 24th, 2014 at 11:01am
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Jeff wrote on Nov 24th, 2014 at 8:26am:
Jeez! How many times to I have to tell you I'm opposed to U.S. intervention? I'd stop it all if I could, but I don't control our foreign policy, 'progressives' do, and they love to intervene. Unfortunately, many governments around the world frequently want the U.S. to intervene. As long as I can't stop it, I'd rather see barbarians killed and civilization upheld, though I don't think 'progressives' can tell the difference, being barbarians themselves.
I'm also opposed to the other type of intervention our 'progressive' government does so much of, giving "aid" to foreign governments in the form of money or military equipment or military training.


That's a good answer for a statist, but imho it's not a libertarian answer.
  
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