No Thanks from Iraq

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7point62

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The fallback of U.S. troops to rural areas sparked celebrations in Iraq but no public thanks for sacrifices that made the streets safe for parades.

A self-congratulatory speech by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki did not mention U.S. troops. They don't need anything from him, but a simple nod to their sacrifice wouldn't have cost Maliki much.

Around the world, reports of the withdrawal blame the United States for failing to rebuild Iraq and causing civil strife. Nothing is said about how difficult it has been to give self-rule a fighting chance in Iraq.

Last week, Lt. Col. Timothy Karcher of Texas, commander of the forces in Baghdad's Sadr City, said, "We will be gone in whatever way the Iraqi government tells us to be gone."

The significance of such a humble statement from a top leader of the world's most powerful military appears lost on most Iraqis.

Shortly after he handed over a symbolic key to the city to his Iraqi counterparts, a roadside bomb blew off both of Karcher's legs.

His driver died in the blast. The sergeant who rushed Karcher to the hospital and saved his life was ambushed and killed on his way back to his unit. These events were largely unnoticed even in the United States, obsessed with the peaceful death of singer Michael Jackson.

Privately, Maliki did thank the U.S. commander, Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, for the sacrifice of the troops. Too bad he didn't feel confident enough to make the thanks public.

At least 3,455 troops have been killed in hostile action in Iraq. That's more than the entire student body of Eckerd College. More than 30,000 have been wounded.

The sacrifice wasn't made to control Iraq, and it wasn't done for oil, as the anti-American world widely believed. Iraq did make a few oil deals with foreign companies, but it is reserving much of its oil for state-owned firms.

President Barack Obama correctly says that "Iraq's future is in the hands of its own people."

We don't blame Iraqis for celebrating a milestone on the path toward some degree of self-defense. What is irritating is that so many Iraqis blame U.S. troops for their problems.

"All of us are happy - Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds on this day," one Iraqi celebrant told a reporter. "The Americans harmed and insulted us too much."

But it wasn't the Americans who blew up a market full of women and children the other day.

"The Americans' cowboy style was annoying," another Iraqi said.

Well, some of the Americans were cowboys and would have been happy to stay back on the ranch. Many serving in Iraq were in reserves or Guard units and had not bargained for so much wartime duty. They are police officers, teachers, engineers, truck drivers and doctors. They left their homes, jobs and families for many months at a time and did the best they could in extremely difficult conditions.

It takes courage and pluck to stand up to terrorists and survive the daily stress of not knowing when something is going to explode beneath you.

The violence decreased after Gen. David Petraeus surged troop numbers in a gamble to overwhelm the insurgents. It put added stress on troops and their families, but it worked. An earlier commander, Gen. John Abizaid, had warned that a surge could not be sustained and would cause Iraqi resentment. He too was right, and that resentment is apparent now.

Instead of cheering the troops' departure, Iraqis better hope they have enough cowboys in their own ranks to face down the terrorists one-on-one in dark alleys and lonely streets. If not, the celebration is premature.

A TAMPA TRIBUNE editorial
 

shadoload

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I still say
"You're Welcome. Our cowboy way gave you a country"
Maliki, have the BALLS to say to the public what you express in private, and I hope you can keep what we gave you.. Bastard.
I'll have to find that Tampa Tribune copy.
 

HeloMedic1171

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Shortly after he handed over a symbolic key to the city to his Iraqi counterparts, a roadside bomb blew off both of Karcher's legs.

His driver died in the blast. The sergeant who rushed Karcher to the hospital and saved his life was ambushed and killed on his way back to his unit. These events were largely unnoticed even in the United States, obsessed with the peaceful death of singer Michael Jackson.

this part hits close to home. these guys are our sister BN within the BDE. I got a message from a friend at 10CSH asking me

"hey, who's your BC?"

"LTC **** * ********, why? "

"'cuz we had a guy come in here from 1BDE and he's a BC of a Cav unit, I only caught half the unit, thought it may have been your guy."

:( I don't like my BC, but I don't want the guy hurt, either, ya know?

and then the second part.... the same BN..... the CSM got hit. and the little fuckheads are out in the street celebrating. because it's our fault you're in this mess. really. is that so...

I don't know who's memory is shorter, Americans' or Iraqis', but it disgusts me in either case. at least we few have places like this.

Godspeed, LTC Karcher, and RIP SGT. your sacrifices weren't in vain, though the people you thought you were sacrificing for may not know any better.



Honor and Courage

Helo
 

Diamondback 2/2

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They should have rolled hard (2004 style hard) one last time, gone back in there laying hate kicking every motherfuckers door in and cutting all power off. Shut that fucking place down and enforce a 24 hour nobody outside curfew, anyone steps outside they get hate!

Oh the good ol days….}:-)

I am glad you guys are out of the cities now and I am hoping the rest of your deployments go with out issues.

RIP Sgt, and a speedy recovery LTC.
 

HeloMedic1171

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I would've loved that. the guys this happened to have become experts at laying hate since Ia Drang in '65, when they came to back up our brothers in 1-7. if "Black Sunday" means anything to anyone here, these are the same guys, same AO, different leadership. I really wish we could have let them loose one last time just to find the dickheads that did the deed, with us as a backstop. it would have been Black Friday to the durkas; a bunch of mad, screaming, vengeful white, black, yellow, tan, and red motherfuckers dressed in death and decay, wearing horse heads on their gray sleeves, sowing destruction and chaos wherever the scythes were swung. the masses would have wept, but they would have known why it was done - no one takes my brothers from me and lives so long as I have breath in my body, legs to stand on, and hands to choke them with.



problem is, politics being what they are, Uncle Mooki would have shit his dress and gone all crazy saying shit like "see how the infidels hate us and cheat us and seek to violate their own agreements??" I hate this place. I hate it more than I hate anywhere else in the world, and I hate Missouri a lot, so that's saying something. i just want this shit sandwich to end so I can go home and kiss my wife and make a baby or two before I head to A-stan. is that really too much to ask?
 

JJOIFVET

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Maliki is a coward and so are the Iraqi people. We come there we fight for them, and they give no thanks to our men and women who have shed blood and lives for them. They have a free and democratic country now, but they will never understand nor do they care the sacrifices we have made for them.
 

Rapid

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Yeah, and I'm sure that Maliki will go down as the "hero who saved Iraq" in the history books at school... with no mention of the US or anything like that.
 
7

7point62

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Yeah, and I'm sure that Maliki will go down as the "hero who saved Iraq" in the history books at school... with no mention of the US or anything like that.


Not necessarily, brother...because once the hated and reviled Americans step back even further into the shadows, that motherfucker might be up to his hairless ass in butchery and death. And if that happens, I hope all my sandbox bros and sis's sit back with an ice cold beer and give him nothing but finger.
 

Rapid

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I'm guessing that there'll be a sharp rise in violence, but that it'll eventually die down. Though if it doesn't... fuck em. They don't deserve to be saved a second time, at the expense of more lives from the coalition's side. This time they've been given a huge head start to turn the country around, and if they don't manage, then I guess that's just a sign.
 

DA SWO

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I'm guessing that there'll be a sharp rise in violence, but that it'll eventually die down. Though if it doesn't... fuck em. They don't deserve to be saved a second time, at the expense of more lives from the coalition's side. This time they've been given a huge head start to turn the country around, and if they don't manage, then I guess that's just a sign.

I agree, the Iraqi politicians are playing to their constituants, blissfully unaware of the internet. Their comments come to America, and folks like me call Congressmen/women to voice our displeasure, and tell them it's time to bring our folks home.

I don't believe in cut/run, but we have shed enough blood in Iraq. The Iraqi's need to "Cowboy the fuck up" and run their country, with THEIR military protecting them. No more training teams, no more log support, air support, or intel sharing.

What happens, happens.
 

SAWMAN

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We tried to do something positive. However, I think by giving Iraq Democracy, we effectively gave a hog a wrist watch. :doh: Most of them don't even understand what it is, much less have an appreciation for it and what it took for us to provide the opportunity for it.

Many of them would trade the democracy for goats, given the chance.

If we're going to invade a country that's not an immediate threat to us, we MUST do our homework, first. I've worked in Iraq for quite a few years, now. From all I've seen, I don't believe we did our homework before we invaded. We had experts who tried to advise we needed further planning and prep for after-action success. They were ignored. Bad call.

Now, we're pulling out with questionable long-term results looming.

I think we should also be saturating the Iraqi people via TV and Radio exactly what our intentions are and have always been. Some percentage of the insurgents have been continuing to fight us, simply because they wrongfully thought we were there to occupy Iraq indefinitely. We could have avoided so much unnecessary resistance by better informing the Iraqi people from the beginning. "Hey, we're here to give you Democracy and leave."

I know it sounds simplistic, but I've seen and talked to enough people there over the years to have developed that opinion from personal experience. Of course, it's only one piece of the puzzle, but it's a piece that I feel would have made a huge difference. They were getting saturated from anti-American TV and radio, but no such info from our side. No wonder there was misunderstanding and misrepresentation of what we were doing there. We should have immediately set up massive tv and radio efforts there as early as possible.
 

Trip_Wire

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SAWMAN:

I agree with your statement. I also worry about the future too!

Quote:

"Now, we're pulling out with questionable long-term results looming."

The long time results that I'm concerned about is the influence that Iran, will have over the Country. Will it become a satellite state of Iran? :2c:
 

SAWMAN

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SAWMAN:

I agree with your statement. I also worry about the future too!

Quote:

"Now, we're pulling out with questionable long-term results looming."

The long time results that I'm concerned about is the influence that Iran, will have over the Country. Will it become a satellite state of Iran? :2c:

Well, at least the Iraqis definitely don't want that. We'd also more than likely intervene if Iran overstepped their lane of influence there.
 

Centermass

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The region will be ripe for the old adage "Ain't karma a bitch" once we leave. Won't be a matter of if, but when. Sand it seems, will always attract this kind of mentality.

Sam Kennison summed it up best "You live in a desert! You know what it's going to a be a hundred years from now? It's still going to be a fucking desert!"
 

HOLLiS

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SAWMAN:

I agree with your statement. I also worry about the future too!

Quote:

"Now, we're pulling out with questionable long-term results looming."

The long time results that I'm concerned about is the influence that Iran, will have over the Country. Will it become a satellite state of Iran? :2c:

Pretty much my thoughts too.

A Sunni friend stated that the center of Shi'ia is in Iraq. With all the media on MJ death, to bad the media is not focusing on the slaughter in Iran.
 

SAWMAN

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Who says we gave Iraq democracy?

They were a tribal culture long before we came, they'll be a tribal culture long after we depart.

Just talking about their obvious new opportunity to vote and have their say in a more democratic system.
 
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