Well, I don't entirely agree with the leftist talking points in DLSeeAmerica's post either, but I don't think he's totally off base with some of his statements.
I don't think he's talking about Iraq or Afghanistan here. But the American military has been mucking about in the Middle East for a very long time. We rolled into Lebanon in the 1980s (and got our butts kicked). While Somalia is in Africa, it's a Muslim country, and we intervened there (and got our butts kicked). The "peacekeeping" mission in the Sinai has been ongoing for decades. We garrisoned troops in Saudi Arabia - the land of Islam's two holiest cities - since at least 1990. Same for Kuwait. And in 2003 we rolled into Iraq on bad information (and were fought to a standstill until recently).
Originally Posted by DLSeeAmerica
And I think he does have a point. Let's say the UN had garrisoned troops in major American cities to "help protect the US from terrorism" after 9/11. We'd have self-styled "patriots" all over the internet ready to load their ARs and fight the blue helmets. Hell, we have that already without a UN military presence in America.
Okay, the analogy might be a little clumsy, But if anyone believes that preserving the flow of oil from the Middle East is a not a major reason we are there (and have been there for decades), well, they just have their head in the sand.
If China put troops on our soil tomorrow because they wanted our coal, would you be OK with that, or would you take to the streets against the invaders?
I'm not saying preserving the oil flow is a bad thing, because our economy depends on it. We have had ample warning that $110-a-barrel oil prices have been coming, and we did nothing to wean ourselves off this addition to Arab/Persian oil. Now in addition to money, though, we have to spend American blood to preserve that flow of oil. I have participated in well over twenty Fallen Comrade ceremonies here, and have performed honor guard duties for two soldiers (my unit has had two KIA). I resent the hell out of the fact that, despite decades of advance notice, America just sat on its collective hands and enriched the Arab oil baronies, while doing nothing to develop alternate fuel sources.
If someone wants to believe that none of this is about oil, well, I will let them go back to listening to the conservative talk radio mouthpieces and pretending to think for themselves.
From James NM:
Even most liberals have no problem with the invasion of Afghanistan and fighting the Taliban. I was pleased to be assigned to this fight rather than the pointless one in Iraq. However, I can attest that we are going about this fight in typically stupid fashion, particularly when we go around the country burning to the ground the only crop that Afghans can sell at a profit. This just alienates Afghans and drives them right to the Taliban and al-Qaeda.
Are you saying that we should only have gone after the hijackers? How about the regime in Afghanistan that trained, supported, gave shelter, and financed the hijackers?
Well, the gang wasn't in Iraq, but we continue to spend money and blood there. Meanwhile, we can't respond adequately to other threats from "the gang" because our military is worn down from five years of fighting a war that gains us absolutely nothing...but has had the very undesirable effects of creating an entirely new set of enemies and alienating the very allies we need to win the stupidly-named "war on terror."
We went after the WHOLE gang! And we're still after them.
I do, too. Yet if our battle tactics kill one bad guy, but create ten more, are we winning or losing?
And I hope we continue after them, until none are left.
Most of the Afghans I've met (which is a lot) like us just fine, actually. The Kuwaitis like us fine, and appreciate us kicking the Iraqis out of their country . Have you actually traveled the Middle East, or are you just going by what Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage say?
Now here's what I think. Most of the middle east hates us.
Clearly there are some Arabs/Persians who hate us. Just as cleary, there are many who do not, or who are neutral.
But they did continue to murder people in Madrid, London, Bali, etc. It may be simply that attacking America is logistically much more difficult than hitting other pieces of Western Civilization, and like everyone else, the terrorists want more "bang for their buck," bad pun not intended.
I believe that the only reason the terrorists have not continued to murder innocent civilians here in the US is because we took the fight to them.
Yes, we are fighting bad guys in Iraq. But these are not the same bad guys who attacked us on 9/11. We created a large number of our enemies with our many blunders in Iraq, starting with an invasion that was based on intelligence blunders, a blundering disregard of the advice of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs in the post-war planning, and continuing with blundering Rumsfeld DoD policies that had too few troops on the ground in the months and years following the invasion.
The hostilities in Iraq have done nothing to make Americans safer. If anything, the invasion of that country has angered more Muslims, made al-Qaeda recruiting easier, severely degraded our military readiness, and alienated Western nations that might have otherwise helped us win our war. Look at how America now has to go to NATO, hat in hand, begging for more troops and equipment in Afghanistan. Iraq has had only counterproductive results all around, when it comes to fighting the bad guys who attacked us on 9/11.