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Iraq, Six Years Out

March 20th will mark six years since the invasion of Iraq. It's been a long, hard fight that the Democrats, including Barack Obama, did their best to undermine and destroy.

They failed and today Iraq is a new and functioning democracy. ABC News went back to Iraq to check on how things are going. Things are, to say the least, going very well.

Even though there were a couple years where our efforts were shockingly disorganized, rather than shrinking away and retreating as the rest of the world demanded, President Bush reorganized and ramped up our efforts. As a result, Iraq is an amazingly peaceful state. I can think of a handful of American cities that are significantly more dangerous than Iraq right now.

It's unfortunate ABC News couldn't give our American troops even a little credit since without them and President Bush, Iraqis still would be living under the murderous dictatorship of Saddam Hussein and his two psychopathic sons. It seems that if the media can't give Obama any credit for the success in Iraq, it will leave America out of the equation all together, leaving their viewers with the impression Iraq has become the democracy that it is today in a vacuum and completely on its own.

Hat tip: Hot Air


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Comments (42)

Now that Bush is out, they ... (Below threshold)
epador:

Now that Bush is out, they can admit what has been promoted on the internet media for a year or two.

Hypocrites.

Every conservative in the c... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

Every conservative in the country (real conservative, that is) knows that the MSM is thoroughly corrupt and utterly dishonest in its reporting. And there are at least a few conservatives who have a great, great deal of money. So why in heavens name don't some of them get together and create a conservative news network--you know, an answer to CNN, MSNBC and the rest of the criminal media. Donations would pour in from across the land should it be necessary. And a well run operation which concentrates on fact and truth, which exposes the MSM for the leftist stooges it employs--such an outfit would take over the number 1 spot in ratings in a year. So why doesn't it happen???

Realize, of course, that AB... (Below threshold)
Roy:

Realize, of course, that ABC has to nearly choke on its own tongue by even admitting success in Iraq.

The resounding sil... (Below threshold)
irongrampa:

The resounding silence from the ones who decried "stay the course" is pleasing to the ears.

A heartfelt thanks is also due to the unflagging heroes whose efforts and sacrifice made this possible.

Harry Reid was unavailable ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Harry Reid was unavailable for comment. An attempt was made to reach Jack Murtha, but he's still retreating 'over the horizon'.

In his Feb 28, 2009 speech ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

In his Feb 28, 2009 speech at Camp Lejeune, Obama listed two goals for success in Iraq, the removal of Saddam and the establishment of a democratic government. Both of which he said had been accomplished thanks to the efforts of the troops. Of course, Bush lead that successful effort and while Obama has been quick to criticize "the previous administration" he's not man enough to admit Bush was right or even acknowledge that Bush had a role in the success.

Iraq could still be lost, but at least now with the ABC news stories and Obama's Camp Lejeune remarks, the blame for such a lose would go 100% to Obama. If Iraq continues on it's current path, future historians uninfected by BDS will finally give Bush the credit he deserves. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

KimThings have def... (Below threshold)
Jim:

Kim

Things have definitely improved in Iraq, but how long it will be before civil war breaks out, once the coalition troops leave? My guess not very long at all.

Hicksville analysis, don't you just love it!

Hey Kim, I 'll even pay your airfare.....

Jim:So are you hopin... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Jim:
So are you hoping for 'failure'? Wouldn't that put you in the same category with Limbaugh?

So let me get this straight... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

So let me get this straight. Now we CAN and SHOULD believe what the "mainstream media" says?

Hey, OldPuppyDog, it already happened. It's called FOX. Maybe you've heard of it.

"I can think of a handful o... (Below threshold)
max:

"I can think of a handful of American cities that are significantly more dangerous than Iraq right now."

"In the second week of March, nearly 70 people were killed in two suicide bomb attacks in Baghdad."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7945511.stm

The resounding silence f... (Below threshold)
Brian:

The resounding silence from the ones who decried "stay the course"

You mean like Bush?

So far this war has cost an... (Below threshold)
Paul Hooson:

So far this war has cost an estimated 1,320,110 Iraqi lives in the cycle of violence. You can do the math per gallon of oil per life if you want.

So are you hoping for 'f... (Below threshold)
Brian:

So are you hoping for 'failure'?

Hmm, so if one "expects" military instability, that means they're "hoping" for it?

If one expects that the economy will be bad for a while, does that means they're hoping for it?

If you expect be late to your kid's birthday party, does that mean you're hoping for it?

You should check out this site.

Wouldn't that put you in the same category with Limbaugh?

Then wouldn't that mean Republicans and conservatives would defend what he said?

Don't try to be clever. You're not very good at it.

Paul, don't even try to foi... (Below threshold)

Paul, don't even try to foist the one million dead Iraqis, a number I don't even buy to begin with, on American troops. If that number is even correct, put it where it belongs: right at the feet of al Qaeda, Iran, Syria, and other terrorist organizations and countries that tried as hard as they could but failed to undermine our efforts there.

I would even give the Democrats a little bit of the credit for those deaths since they made sure our enemies in those terrorist organizations knew that deep divisions existed inside our government regarding Iraq. That knowledge most certainly kept the terrorists building their IED's and car bombs.

jim - "My guess not ver... (Below threshold)
marc:

jim - "My guess not very long at all."

Your guess has about as much value as Reids "the war is lost," and murtha's "cold blooded killers" pre-judgment lunacy.

"Don't try to be clever. Yo... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"Don't try to be clever. You're not very good at it."

Is that the pot calling the kettle black?

By your comment, I take it that I struck a nerve.

Yeah, all they had to do wa... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Yeah, all they had to do was keep the body count up - and wait for a change in the political winds at home. And we'd eventually withdraw - preferably before the Iraqi people could cohere into a functional state.

Too bad for them - looks like they're at least functional and the sectarian divisions aren't going to split them apart. Not that there won't be problems, of course - there's still going to be folks thinking a car bomb will get them what they want - but they won't be fatal ones for the Iraqi people.

"So far this war has cost a... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"So far this war has cost an estimated 1,320,110 Iraqi lives in the cycle of violence."

I thought that number had been debunked some time ago.

hooson - "So far this w... (Below threshold)
marc:

hooson - "So far this war has cost an estimated 1,320,110 Iraqi lives in the cycle of violence. You can do the math per gallon of oil per life if you want."

A much better "mathematical exercise" is to count the number of times you've posted that completely fallacious number.

But I'm afraid it would be a wasted effort.

At this point and considering you've been directed to the actual figures (several times) that are less than ten percent of what you claim it's patently obvious being "willfully ignorant" doesn't apply.

Agenda driven despicable liar does.

jlawson - "Not that the... (Below threshold)
marc:

jlawson - "Not that there won't be problems, of course - there's still going to be folks thinking a car bomb will get them what they want"

Hell considering the current mood and public opinion of Wall Street Sept. 16, 1920 may happen again.

Is that the pot calling ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Is that the pot calling the kettle black?

No.

By your comment, I take it that I struck a nerve.

Uh, yeah. After showing you to be a fool, I had my nerve struck. Good analysis.

A sure sign the Iraq war is... (Below threshold)
marc:

A sure sign the Iraq war is going in a direction the nutcakes dislike:

Code Pink has devolved into protesting the House Subcommittee on Capital Markets during a hearing on "AIG's impact on the global economy."

99,000 people killed is abo... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

99,000 people killed is about 1/2 of 1% of the population of Iraq. The 3000 killed on 9/11 is less than 1/1000 of 1% of the US population. If an equivalent number of people had been killed in terrorist attacks here that would be 1,550,000 people dead. How does one rationalize starting a chain of events that kill 99,000 innocent civilians, in a country that had not harmed us?

The number of displaced Iraqis, now shrinking, is about 18% of the population. That is equivalent to 55 MILLION people in the US. Can you imagine 55 million Americans displaced, forced from their homes, because a foreign president was displeased with our leaders?

Of course Iraqis are better off now than they were at the height of the insurgency. And it can be argued that they are better off than under Saddam. It can also be argued that the war was unnecessary, since there were no WMDs, the main reason given by the administration for the invasion.

Let us not forget, the American people did NOT want to invade Iraq to bring democracy to its people, nor even to topple Saddam. We were told that Saddam had WMDs and would give them to terrorists. That was false, and there were plenty of people saying so at the time. But the mythical "Liberal Media," led by the NYT and the WaPo, as well as ABC News and of course FOX, were cheerleaders for invasion.

I'd like to see some of the macho manlymen who haunt Wizbang tell the widows, widowers, and orphans of the 99,000 dead civilians that they're "better off" as a result of the US invasion.

I got the 99,000 figure fro... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

I got the 99,000 figure from Marc's link, btw.

"I'd like to see some of th... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"I'd like to see some of the macho manlymen who haunt Wizbang tell the widows, widowers, and orphans of the 99,000 dead civilians that they're "better off" as a result of the US invasion."

I'll get back to you, soon as I see the apologies from the Iraqi "insurgents" who settled old debts and Al Queda who decided this was a perfect battleground to win won for Allah.

"By your comment, I take it... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"By your comment, I take it that I struck a nerve."

Uh, yeah. After showing you to be a fool, I had my nerve struck. Good analysis.
Brian

Your logic, as usual, is flawless.

I'd like to see some of ... (Below threshold)
Tim:

I'd like to see some of the macho manlymen who haunt Wizbang tell the widows, widowers, and orphans of the 99,000 dead civilians that they're "better off" as a result of the US invasion.

Maybe we should tell it to the 20 to 30 thousand Iraqis per year that Saddam will no longer be able to kill.

""So far this war has cost ... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:

""So far this war has cost an estimated 1,320,110 Iraqi lives in the cycle of violence."

I thought that number had been debunked some time ago.
"
-----

It has been, over and over again it doesn't stop the drones from continuing to embarrass themselves in repeating it. The absolute high end number is roughly 100k (more then double the known count), of which of course Coalition caused deaths are an extremely small percentage.

http://icasualties.org/Iraq/IraqiDeaths.aspx
Notice a trend?

Paul, you are wrong, there ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Paul, you are wrong, there are twenty billion Iraq's dead. You jerk. See how easy it is.

Hyper actually believes that Iraq women are worse off with Saddam gone. That is how nutso he is.

Bruce, when a war starts, you don't say, "You killed 3000 of ours so we will do the same". You have a very deficient ability to understand. ww

bh - "Let us not forget... (Below threshold)
marc:

bh - "Let us not forget, the American people did NOT want to invade Iraq to bring democracy to its people, nor even to topple Saddam. "

Really? Are you being obtuse, disingenuous, willfully ignorant or just a flat-out liar?

Feb, 2003 a month before the invasion.

The survey revealed possible signs of a nascent wartime rally behind the president which just may correspond to a heightened sense of inevitability of war. George W. Bush's job approval rating jumped nine percentage points from 52% before the speech to 61% after. The survey also found a six percentage point rise in approval of the way Bush is handling the situation with Iraq--from 54% last week to 60% today. The percentage of those who trust Bush to make the right decision about Iraq rose from 53% before to 57% today.

Just under six in 10 Americans said they would support a ground attack, should it occur, but a larger proportion (62%) said the U.S. should wait for the support of the U.N. Security Council before taking action. Over half (55%) would support the U.S. going into war with the support of a few allies such as Great Britain.
From Gallup and others all from Feb/Mar 2003:
Sixty-five percent in the ABC/Washington Post, 64% in the Gallup, 67% in the CBS/New York Times and 71% in the Fox News/Opinion Dynamics polls approved. Americans always prefer to act with their allies, when it is possible. Sixty-eight percent in a mid-March 2003 Gallup poll said the United States had "done all it can to solve the crisis with Iraq diplomatically."


Feel more informed now BH?

Somehow I doubt it, you'll spew that misinformation here or elsewhere til the day you die.

Marc:I don't want ... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

Marc:

I don't want to say you are being disingenuous, but, ummm, can you freaking read?

Did I say the public didn't support the war? Hell, no. I said the reason given for the war was that Saddam was said to have WMDs, and would give them to terrorists. That's why the public supported the war. NOT to bring democracy to Iraq, NOT even to depose Saddam. It was fear, pure and simple, fear that the Bush administration skillfully played on. Along with a little anti-Arab sentiment, of course.

You have a habit of arguing with people about points they didn't make. I respectfully suggest you read and understand what people actually write before you respond to a point they didn't make.

I won't call you any names.

The WMD argument was only o... (Below threshold)
epador:

The WMD argument was only one of many made that were in support of the war. Blah,blah,blah, blah.

Saddam killed many more Iraqi's , and plenty of Iranians to boot, during his tenure. That we ended. The reign that we were responsible for starting. It is only fitting we took the responsibility for ending it, but sad that the children suffered the penalty of loss imposed by their fathers' generation.

I was appalled at the initiation of the war and expected tens of thousands of US casualties in the first months. The squalor and anarchy that followed Saddam's fall was not unpredictable. The delay in finally committing enough troops and resources to finish the job lays in all our hands. But the course of the war so far is no better or worse than many preceding it. The current state of affairs is amazing, given the lying hype against the war that has gripped our country for the past 8 years. Or not, if you credit our armed forces' ability to perform despite the shackles the US Legislature and Media place on them.

Well, epador, it's my conte... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

Well, epador, it's my contention that the WMD argument is the only one that the American people gave a happy monkeyf**k about. Everything else was bait and switch.

Think about it. Do you advocate US military intervention in Congo? If not, why not? Brutal dictator, suffering people....What about Sudan? Brutal dictator, suffering people, oil....Saudi Arabia? Brutal theocracy, suffering people, oil, our client state....

Do you think we could sell a war to the American people against ANY of these regimes, or any other, based primarily on how they treat their own people? I don't. And rightfully so.

bh - "I don't want to s... (Below threshold)
marc:

bh - "I don't want to say you are being disingenuous, but, ummm, can you freaking read?.... Did I say the public didn't support the war? Hell, no. I said the reason given for the war was that Saddam was said to have WMDs, and would give them to terrorists.

I read just fine... and what was said by many is supported by one (at least) of the poll quotes I offered.

bh - "Think about it. Do you advocate US military intervention in Congo? If not, why not?">

Simply, no, based on national security interests both tactical and strategic.

bh - "What about Sudan? Brutal dictator, suffering people, oil."

Same as above.

bh - "Saudi Arabia? Brutal theocracy, suffering people, oil, our client state...."

Again, same as above, with this caveat: More pressure must be put on SA with regards to their financial support of madrasses that do nothing but spread more hate and discontent within the Muslim world.

For the record, the main "pressure" should be in the form of weaning the U.S. off of their oil supply and in doing so tell the envirowackoos and many if not all the dams (and a few misguided reps, to pack it in their ass and drill, drill, drill until such time financially feasible alternatives can be found.

And finally, show me a single one of your examples listed above that not only have the same strategic and tactical significance that Iraq had in 2003 AND one that had or has been thumbing it's nose at the U.N. and U.S. by not following each and every tenet laid-out in the 1991 ceasefire agreement signed by Saddam. (Which BTW makes that war as legal as they come.)

And I forgot to add - "... (Below threshold)
marc:

And I forgot to add - "Do you think we could sell a war to the American people against ANY of these regimes, or any other, based primarily on how they treat their own people? I don't. And rightfully so."

Why not? Clinton did for Serbia/Kosovo. And both lied about it (i.e. the nmuber in mass graves) AND did so "illegally," based on not getting U.N. authorization until after the fact.

I am an active duty army of... (Below threshold)
Eric:

I am an active duty army officer who spent 15 months in Iraq as a company commander with the mission of mentoring and training the Iraqi Police in Eastern Baghdad. We were brought into Iraq as part of the "Year of the Police" initiative in early 2006. My company was comprised of 170 Soldiers, half of which had been to Iraq previously. We lived in the neighborhoods and the police stations alongside the Iraqis and over the course of the 15 months and gained a true appreciation and understanding of why we were fighting in Iraq. Regardless of the reasons for invading Iraq (which were debated in the public media and behind closed doors then and still to this day) our obligation to serve our country overrode our personal beliefs. We observed the ugly reality of war and watched many Iraqis and our friends and fellow Soldiers die. We watched the struggle amongst the people of Iraq unfold literally right in front of us. No Soldier who was seen, smelled and felt the reality of war cheerleads for us to enter a conflict.

We arrived in Iraq in June of 2006 and were immediately immersed into the internal conflict that was raging all across Baghdad. The fear amongst the Iraqi people was understandable as normal citizens struggled to make daily decisions that pitted them against doing what was morally right to them or doing what was going to keep them and their families alive to see another day. The vacuum in security that was created was a result of years of oppression for one group and years of protection for another group. The proverbial struggle of have and have nots played out on the streets of Baghdad. One group tried to hold on to everything that they once had while another was looking to gain everything that they felt they deserved. What they needed, what they desired, what they dreamed of was the feeling that they could have what most Americans take for granted every day. Security and Freedom.

We spent our days talking, working, living and eating alongside both Shia and Sunni alike and gained a greater understanding why we were there. To us they were not statistics and numbers drawn on a board or published in a study. They were real people who wanted the same things that we take for granted every day. We learned of the atrocities that were done by Saddam and his henchmen to both Shia and Sunni on a daily basis. How they made the taking of lives and ripping apart of families literally a sport. The Iraqi police under Saddam was an extension of his strong arm policy and most Iraqi's feared them when they came around. The average Iraqi who worked as a teacher, educator, engineer, doctor, Soldier was part of the Baath party not by free will but out of a necessity for survival. (Imagine being told that you would join to be a member of the ruling party or face removal from your job, or in some cases death) I challenge the public to study the culture of Iraq and the history of its leaders and people. Some Americans forget how fortunate we are live in a society and culture that has so many freedoms and rights.

One of the biggest challenges that I faced as a leader during that time was the divisiveness in the media and the American public that tore at the heart and soul of my Soldiers. As we progressed into the latter part of 2006 the debate over the possibility of a surge was the main topic of debate in the media and with our elected officials. The plight of the average Soldier fighting in Iraq was ignored and for the most part Soldiers understood that and they did want the focus of attention to be on them. However we would hear phrases such as "we support the troops but we do not support the war", or "why are we fighting in Iraq when our economy is in trouble?"; "Americans are growing tired of the American conflict" etc.... and it tore deep into us. The coverage of the war was sensational attacks, or 30 second video clips to draw someone to the stations tv program or web site. They failed to cover what was really happening and the possibilities that were trying to break free from the violence. Some of this lack of coverage was a failure on the military's part as an institution to recognize that the nature of media has changed and that a story about a new school or hospital opening does not really interest mass media or the American people. However we felt that Soldiers were becoming a number to the American public, much like the statistics that have been debated in this blog. 30,000 more Soldiers are going here, 10 more Soldiers were killed today, 2 more car bombs........

My company was there when the "surge" started and we saw hope fill in the hearts and souls of many Iraqis. At the same time they realized that this was their last chance. They too read and watch the American media and study what our politicians say on a daily basis. They saw how the support for the war in Iraq was fading and that the American public was growing tired of the numbers. Over the course of the next seven months I saw Iraq change. I saw it change because the American Soldier, regardless of their personal views, realized that they had a chance to give something to a society that most Americans take for granted.

We never asked for or wanted credit for what we did and our continuing to do in Iraq. We just want to be recognized as more than a number. We volunteered to do what we do every day, it was a choice that we all made of our own free will.......

I have talked to mothers and fathers of my Soldiers who were killed in Iraq and there support has been amazing. I have also talked to the mothers, fathers, sons and daughters of Iraqis who were killed and they have hope, they see the light at the end of the tunnel and understand the true cost of freedom.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Well, at least you didn't c... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

Well, at least you didn't call anyone names this time, Marc.

My last comment was in response to epador's, btw, not yours.

The article was talking about how great things are for the Iraqi people now, after 6 years of US occupation. Paul posted a figure of innocent Iraqi civilians who have died which you claim was wildly inflated. I said to myself, "Self," I said, "suppose it is 'only' 99,000 people dead? Does that make it better? Not for the widows and orphans it doesn't, I'll bet."

Suppose there had never been a 9/11. Do you think Bush would have been able to sell a war in Iraq, based on the premise that Saddam was a brutal dictator who had violated UN resolutions? I don't.

And 4200 American soldiers would still be alive, and so would 99,000 innocent civilians. 4 million Iraqis would not have fled their homes. And Saddam MAY, or MAY NOT, still be in power. He would still have been just as contained as he was before.

And NONE of your poll quotes suggest that I was being "obtuse, disingenuous, willfully ignorant, or a flat-out liar." I ask again, can you read?

Thanks for your comment, Er... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

Thanks for your comment, Eric. All Americans should appreciate what you have accomplished and what you sacrificed.

Please note that my argument against the war was that it should not have been initiated, not that the military has done anything deserving of opprobrium.

Eric is classmate of mine a... (Below threshold)
Tuan:

Eric is classmate of mine at the Army Command and General Staff College in Ft Leavenworth, KS. I am a reservist in the Navy and it has been an honor to be in class with heroes like Eric who have given so much for our great nation. He does not think of himself as a hero, but he and all 170 members of his company are heroes. They served with honor and courage and experienced things that very few people could ever imagine. They helped turn the tide in this war that most people said was lost in 2006.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

bh - "Well, at least yo... (Below threshold)
marc:

bh - "Well, at least you didn't call anyone names this time, Marc."

And where was that done? Guess you failed to see that squiggly little thing called a question mark at the end. ("Really? Are you being obtuse, disingenuous, willfully ignorant or just a flat-out liar?")

bh - "Suppose there had... (Below threshold)
marc:

bh - "Suppose there had never been a 9/11. Do you think Bush would have been able to sell a war in Iraq, based on the premise that Saddam was a brutal dictator who had violated UN resolutions? I don't."

Reduced to the hypothetical now, while conveniently avoiding Clinton's masterful selling of a war that had zero significance to the U.S. and was done on the back of the "mass graves lie" that was wildly inflated beyond the eventual reality.

Just as Bush did with WMD's Clinton sold that war on worst case.

Oh how not so shocking, it's called politics.

"And where was that done? G... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

"And where was that done? Guess you didn't notice the squiggly little thing called a question mark at the end."

And I guess you didn't notice the word "anyone." I was referring to your charming habit of calling those with whom you disagree an "asswipe." Lovely.

I see your point about Kosovo. However, Clinton sold that war as sanitary, hands off, aerial... almost like a goddam video game. Just so you know, I opposed that war, too.

FYI, because one criticises Bush doesn't mean one blindly defends any and/or all of Clinton's actions. Not everyone is as narrow-minded as you are, Marc.




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