What makes a justified/morally correct war? Now discussing the 2003 US invasion of Iraq

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by saturn5, Feb 12, 2010.

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  1. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Are you sure you're not confusing Afghanistan and Iraq?

    al Qaeda only viewed Iraq in opportunist terms, in the sense that al Qaeda's Wahhabist roots meshed with Saddam Husssein's Sunni government. al Qaeda had an official relationship with the Taliban, no such relationship existed in Iraq. al Qaeda's focus was the US's presence in selected holy lands, and in that sense, the conflict that is bleeding everyone dry is Afghanistan, if that's the focus you want to put forward.
  2. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    I called your distortion of my comparison dirty, and it is. Look here.

    You seem to think
    1. It's just as OK to invade a sovereign nation as it is to attack a foreign occupying force
    2. The number of UN Resolutions against Saddam was enough justification to go to war

    Now Saddam had 13 UN Resolutions against him that he didn't act upon, Israel has 64 UN Resolutions they don't act upon. I'm not saying anybody should attack Israel; I'm saying that it follows from your statements that Israel should be attacked.

    To then turn around and accuse me of anti-semitism is dirty tactics. You don't address my comment, you don't address the flaw in your arguments - you smear.

    I was against the invasion and I still think it was a bad idea.
  3. Kimball_Kinnison Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    There is an important legal distinction, though.

    Which of those UN Resolutions against Israel authorizes using "all necessary means" to enforce any other of the resolutions? UNSCR 687 granted that authority with respect to Iraq, which provides legal justification. Unless such authority was granted with respect to Israel, military action against Israel isn't legally justified.

    Kimball Kinnison
  4. Darth_Yuthura Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2007
    star 4
    I meant Iraq.

    Al Qaeda did have a cell in Iraq for the explicit purpose of drawing the US into invading that state. That cell by no means had any connection to Saddam, but there were members of AQ in Iraq under his notice... and thanks largely to Bush, the US did exactly as they wanted. Bush said that cell in Iraq was tied to Saddam and everyone bought it.

    They did seek to draw the US into a war in Afghanistan, which was to be expected after 9/11. They did also hope for the US to invade Iraq as well, but that was something of a long shot for AQ. Never would they have expected that the US president would just forget about the AQ group in Afghanistan and then engage a completely different enemy... one of Al Qaeda's. No one could ever have expected that the US president would seek to advance the terrorists' goals.
  5. saturn5 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2009
    star 4
    Ok, better, reasoned argument and not just slanging matches. I didn't smear and certainly addressed your point. But again, Israel (which is FAR from perfect I agree)is a country light years ahead of so many others in terms of human rights etc Why is that it is always singled out for UN resolutions?

    Now you still haven't answered my question which even my old sparring mate Darth Yuthura did have the guts to do, you have the magic wand, do you bring Saddam back?
  6. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    Israel has been keeping land that's not theirs occupied for over 60 years. Apart from that, the social structure is racist towards Arab Israelis. I suspect it's had that many resolutions against it because it's a country that has above average relations with the US and Europe, and because it receives above average funds and cooperation from the US and Europe.
    Magic wands don't exist. Saddam is dead. To me it's a silly question and I wouldn't know what to answer. More importantly, the question doesn't address any realistic issues, so I think it's useless to even try to answer it.
  7. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    But we seem to be talking Vietnam and not Iraq.

    Fair enough.

    The Times/The Economist puts the death toll in Iraq at between 100,000-150,000 and I'm sticking with that.

    That is far, far, far too low and at odds with the most comprehensive studies. That is, those done by the Lancet and ORB which have similar results. Those results placed upon thier latest updates to the deaths to have been approximately just over 1 million. This was done through extensive interviews and data accumulation throughout Iraq that those news organizations do not have. On what basis are you sticking with thier figures? Becuase they sound more palatable?


    I'd also say to those who fled Iraq, well you could after the liberation, previously you were a prisoner in your own country.

    I'm unaware that Saddam literally kept people prisoner in the manner of the Berlin Wall. Saddam did not have the resources and manpower to stop 2 million people from fleeing in the manner they fled during the occupation. The reason for this is clear: there was oncgonig indiscriminate death and destruction that dwarfed the situation under Saddam in 2003.


    I'm sure the people of Kuwait, Iran, Syria and Saudi are plenty happy that he's gone. Amongst Iraqis themselves I'm sure the Kurds and Marsh Arabs would be unanimous as would the Shi'ite majority in the centre of the country. Even amongst the Sunnis who benefitted from a special position under Saddam I think you'd find most are glad he's gone.

    You're manipulating the question. The question is not are they glad he's gone -- the question is if they would prefer his presence to what it cost to replace him.

    To sum up I would compare the liberation with D-day and the Battle of Normandy which followed. The initial was a great success 'mission accomplished' but the follow up was bungled badly. Which is not to say it wasn't a good idea in the first place.

    The liberation of Normandy -- if you were to compare it to anything there -- would have been the liberation of Kuwait. the invasion of Iraq affords no such comparison. If it had, there wouldn't have been the infighting that followed. There is no French comparison after Allied liberation to what took place in Iraq. In fact there is barely a GERMAN comparison following its defeat in 1945. Even the pro-Nazi terror groups, the Werewolves, died out in less than half the time of the Iraqi insurgency and inflicted a miniscule amount of death and chaos in comparison.
  8. saturn5 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2009
    star 4
    The question of Israel is that it's the easy to kick it, a free and democratic (if deeply flawed) society which cares what people think. By contrast Iran, North Korea, China, Syria etc just don't care. It's like South Africa was the focus of everyone's rage but Eastern Bloc regimes were arguably worse and recieved no attention.

    If you say you can't answer my quesion fine but it makes it no less valid.

    I stick to my figures as I think the Economist/Times are reputable publications with no agenda one way or the other

    The question I'm asking is would any of those people, even those who had suffered under the insurgency bring Saddam back if they could? I somehow doubt it

    The Iraqi people certainly had the chance to flee the terror of the insurgency but at least they turn to the authorities for help which they couldn't do when it was the goverment who was terrorising them. And they were also allowed by their goverment to flee abroad which they would not have been able to do under Saddam who would have prevented his enemies leaving so that he could kill them.

    I think people misunderstand my reference to D-day. Normandy was a great place to land, the Germans weren't expecting it and their defences were relatively weak there. However what no one on the allied side had taken into account was the 'bocage',the Normandy countryside, small fields surrounded by 12 foot hedgerows (impenetrable even to tanks), sunken lanes lined with overhanging trees that actually provided a complete canopy (and cover from aircraft). Initial Allied attempts to break out were a disaster and only gradually were they able to overcome the situation at great cost, a relatively easy victory 'Mission accomplished' turning into a disaster only to be overcome at great effort anc sacrifice


  9. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    I stick to my figures as I think the Economist/Times are reputable publications with no agenda one way or the other

    Are you seriously saying that your concern over whether a source has an 'agenda' or not takes precedence over statistical methodology?

    Are you saying that the Lancet and ORB studies are LYING? That they did not make these interviews? That none of these things ever happened? The Economist/Times not only did not have people on the ground doing this tabulation but they have not, to my knowledge, professed to be more reliable sources than these studies. And yet you pick them over sources that are actually academically credible?

    Waht political agenda could the Lancet and ORB likely have that these papers do not? I'm sorry, is the editor of the Lancet about to embark on a resounding political career?

    This is a non-response, saturn5, a non-response that is not only narcissitic becuase it puts local politics above the Iraq war, but one that is inherently dangerous. You have not one but two reliable journals that do this sort of work for a living using tried and true methodologies. And you turn it aside becuase it's the easier thing to do. Did you even look at how these reports were put together. Have you even considered the lage array of falsehoods and brach of ethics and trust that would have to take place in order for the Economist and Times to actually be the more reliable source than the Lancet and ORB?

    I doubt it. And I can only surmise the reason for it is becuase it is more expedient for you to do so. Writ large it is this sort of willful ignorance that drives conflict in the world. This sort of identification with the state in times of war that propogates the war itself.


    The question I'm asking is would any of those people, even those who had suffered under the insurgency bring Saddam back if they could? I somehow doubt it

    It's nice that you're asking that question. But it's not a terribly challenging one. Sure, now that they have suffered you can go ahead and ask if they want Saddam back. you could also ask if you could chop off thier arm. Wow, what a dilemma for them.

    The better question to justify your position is if they would trade the hardships ensured to be free of Saddam for Saddam himself. If they would have Saddam back if thier loved ones woul be returned to them and thier country was in he state it was in 2003 rather than in 2007.


    The Iraqi people certainly had the chance to flee the terror of the insurgency but at least they turn to the authorities for help which they couldn't do when it was the goverment who was terrorising them. And they were also allowed by their goverment to flee abroad which they would not have been able to do under Saddam who would have prevented his enemies leaving so that he could kill them.

    These are either lies or statements of ignorance. PPOR. The government after the insurgency has ALSO terrorized the Iraqis becuase it became sectarian and peopel abused thier positions within it. This is still going on and not all Iraqis really trust thier government.

    And Saddam let people flee abroad. What sources do you have that say he didn't? That's an outright lie. The people Saddam would never let leave the country are those he felt had state secrets or were a direct threat to him, which are few and far between. If someone were Shia or Kurdish, Saddam would have loved nothing BETTER for them to have left Iraq. Then he doesn't have to worry about them anymore and they're someone else's problem. There was notthing Saddam ever did to particularly force people to stay in Iraq of which I am aware. There were no barbed wir fences on the borders or around the cities. There was no Berlin Wall.

    In fact, it was the occupying forces after invasion who have been particularly nonchalant about the refugees. Exactly how many people did the US take in that fled Iraq? 2 million fled, they didn't go states-side. Nor did they go to the UK. Compare that to the vast number of Vietnamese who found a new home in the United States: don't
  10. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    We've had many discussions about this in the past. The methodology of many of the reports that produced low estimates was this: tabulating other press reports of deaths. Other journalists pay attention to these kinds of reports. Another example in the U.S. would be the Challenger Employment Report, which at its heart is a collection of press clippings of job layoff announcements. It literally amounts to journalists reporting on each others' reports.

    The refugee crisis is indisputable, and the numbers are very good, and it was caused by the social and economic conditions created first by the invasion itself, later by the mutual ethnic cleansing project that the U.S. stood by and watched for months on end, and finally by the ongoing lack of economic opportunity in Iraq where unemployment hovers around 50%.

    It's important to keep your thinking grounded in reality to the extent possible. Economic opportunity in Iraq was reasonably good before the UN sanction regime, but even during the sanction crisis, it was still better than at any time since the invasion. And during all of Saddam's regime, the odds of being tortured and or killed by the state apparatus was relatively low compared to the odds of being killed during and after the invasion.

    The aftermath of 9/11 proved beyond any reasonable doubt that even Americans value their sense of personality safety far more than they value ideals like personal liberty.
  11. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    We've had many discussions about this in the past. The methodology of many of the reports that produced low estimates was this: tabulating other press reports of deaths. Other journalists pay attention to these kinds of reports. Another example in the U.S. would be the Challenger Employment Report, which at its heart is a collection of press clippings of job layoff announcements. It literally amounts to journalists reporting on each others' reports.

    The funny thing is, most news organizations -- the Economist probably included -- would not suggest those numbers to be an accurate expectation. They use it as a conservative estimate in full knowledge that media reports fail as a primary source of statistics since even the best journalist in the world is not interested in formulating data, but reporting on a given situation.

    Statistics like these are large enough to drive a Mack Truck through: if someone was killed or a reporter didn't hear about it (i.e: 8-9/10 deaths), it didn't happen. And the only organizations that would really stand behind that as a reasonable estmate is the IBC itself which uses those numbers... and even THEY concede the flaws in thier methodology. You need to go to the people who are actually trying to come up with the actual numbers.


    The refugee crisis is indisputable, and the numbers are very good, and it was caused by the social and economic conditions created first by the invasion itself, later by the mutual ethnic cleansing project that the U.S. stood by and watched for months on end, and finally by the ongoing lack of economic opportunity in Iraq where unemployment hovers around 50%.

    What's also worth mentioning is if 100-150 thousand people would be enough deaths over 5 years to cause a refugee crisis of 2 million people, whose numbers are, as mentioned, indisputable.

    It's important to keep your thinking grounded in reality to the extent possible. Economic opportunity in Iraq was reasonably good before the UN sanction regime, but even during the sanction crisis, it was still better than at any time since the invasion. And during all of Saddam's regime, the odds of being tortured and or killed by the state apparatus was relatively low compared to the odds of being killed during and after the invasion.

    This has largely to do with the fact that those who died under sanctions were mostly the newborn or sick and infirm who were not getting the treatment needed. This also did not get better after the invasion... in fact probably worse since I beleive under sanctions the Iraqi people still had electicity and certain necessities of life. I don't know if the 1 million estimated dead in the academic reports include those that died due to lack of provided services, but suffice it to say those who died on account of those reasons prior to 2003 were still dying of them after 2003. If those numbers are not included then that has to be considered as the number of people the invasion failed to save despite the supposed aim of said invasion. For a force so concerned about the Iraqi people it took an awful long time actually make things better for them, and took in very few Iraqis into thier own countries during that time.


    The aftermath of 9/11 proved beyond any reasonable doubt that even Americans value their sense of personality safety far more than they value ideals like personal liberty.

    I agree, however the counter-argument would be "does anyone"? And I think that would have a point. America's not exactly alone in that regard.
  12. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    I haven't been following this thread since my last post, so I apologize if this has been answered, but aren't you guys really debating the known vs the unknown?

    See, the problem with dismissing the sanctions by limiting the impact to the "sick and "infirmed," is that while true, it simply represented the status quo, nothing was being done to change the situation. The immediate response to that is that the impact might have been limited to the infirmed, but the cycle ensured that as more and more people became sick and infirmed, they would die because they couldn't get treatment.

    The invasion represented a possible solution. This is what I think Saturn was pointing out with his D-Day analogy. No one knew beforehand how successful the landing was going to be. You could suffer no casualties, suffer 100% losses, or something in between. But if your goal is to end the conflict in Europe, you had to land allied troops somewhere and get the conflict moving toward a conclusion.

    This is what the Iraqi invasion represented. 2003 was the catalyst. To change the situation there, you had to remove the regime, and the actual removal part was quite successful. It was the follow on process that slowed down. But now compare the results. Had nothing been done, the "sick and infirmed" would still be dying off, Hussein would still be in power, and 2010 (or some point in the future) would still roll around and require that the problem be addressed.
  13. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    Okay so here's what we do know: invading other countries is wrong. The only time when it's not wrong is under very extreme circumstances. So what were those extreme circumstances in 2003? We have rules governing how and when we go to war....but it's also more than just legal stuff and letter of the law. It's about moral justification (*cough* the title of this thread) and moral justification is based on necessity.

    So was it necessary? What would have happened if we had taken another year or two to build another international coalition to enforce disarmament upon Saddam? Would two years have meant that Saddam's government would have put an anthrax bomb in Times Square? What evidence did we have that this guy was actively trying to get back at us for his defeat in the 1991 Gulf War?
  14. saturn5 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2009
    star 4
  15. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    So was it necessary? What would have happened if we had taken another year or two to build another international coalition to enforce disarmament upon Saddam? Would two years have meant that Saddam's government would have put an anthrax bomb in Times Square? What evidence did we have that this guy was actively trying to get back at us for his defeat in the 1991 Gulf War?

    Actually good questions. I just don't think we'll ever really get an answer. This is where Saddam Hussein himself shoulders the majority of the blame.

    See, there's also the complicated manner of the regional balance of power. Iraq and Iran had just completed a long and costly war. A war that involved both advanced and chemical weapons. The problem was that during the sanction period, Hussein couldn't give ground in the regional balance, so he was telling everyone who would listen that Iraq still had massive stockpiles of such weapons. Western forces at the time captured all sorts of defecting military leaders and scientists who would reveal that the "so and so command to their flank was standing ready with mustard gas" and similar ideas. We pretty much know now, after Iraq was occupied, that these were just fabrications to keep the population in line, but everyone considered them to be credible at the time.
  16. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_in_Saddam%27s_Iraq

    do please check out point 4! For those who did manage to escape Saddam even had them murdered abroad.


    Point 4 is not the same as an actual wall constructed to keep people in. If people wanted it bad enough, they could simply get funds together and cross into another country. There were not people stationed at the border ready to shoot travellers as in the case of the Iron Curtain. Additionally, people were not so desperate that they were trying to tunnel themselves out of the country.


    The analogy with Vietnam is unfounded, with the fall of Saigon and domino effect with Laos and Cambodia you had millions of people who had no land to return to, if they did they would be executed or thrown in a concentration camp and worked to death or starved in the famine caused by the Hanoi regimes agricultural policies (even with the war raging around them Vietnam's farmers still exported, only when collective farming was introduced post war did Vietnam need to import food). In the Iraq war the good guys won and the policy is the right one, make the country safe for them to return to rather than aid their permanent settlement abroad.

    What you just said is EXACTLY the same scenario! Millions of people (2 -- and this is the weakest comparison which is still true) who had no land to return to -- becuase once they left thier home would be seized and was probably already being eyed before they left -- who would be executed if they returned -- because that's exactly what sectarian groups were doing. The only other difference is that the sectarian groups didn't have enough cash or organization to put together a concentration camp. The real difference to the average refugee is the SAME.

    As for decribing Iraq as a situation where 'the good guys won', that exposes your naiivete right there considering it's an audacious presumption to call such a policy 'right' or the people that implement it 'good'. Make the country safe for them to return... and what happens in the MEANTIME? Apparently, 'screw 'em'. How many of these refugees died on the streets of Jordan, Syria, or Iran? How many of them descended into prostitution to make ends meet? 'Right policy' -- whatever. It sounds to me to be rather a convenient policy.

    Apparently this is not a concern. Which would make sense considering the main purposes of most arguments like yours that I see is about aquitting the invaders of culpability, not truly the welfare of the Iraqi people.


    Here's the various sources for casualties, they vary wildly but 100,000-150,000 seems to be the median
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq_death_toll


    The problem is with what you just said "they vary wildly". You do realize you're taking all the sources with equal measure without looking at thier methodologies, right? You have IBC and the Associated Press up there, who have huge gaping HOLES in thier methodology so massive you don't even have to be a statistician to see the problem. some even state that you shouldn't take thier numbers as very accurate given these holes. They're going by reporter accounts in Iraq, which reports something like 1 death in 10. And do you make any good faith effort to take that into account even though I've mentioned it about twice now? No. It's for reasons like this I call you a liar. You lie by ommission.


    Don't call me a liar, you can disagree with me but let's have discussion and not slanging matches (I actually always appreciated you because you were so polite and well reasoned). The question I asked WAS if you could turn time back and have Saddam back. The institutions of Iraq are far from perfect but their ROLE is now to protect and aid their people when before it was to oppress them, now at least they have a chance.


    I will call you a liar if I think you're being disingenuous. If you wanted to ask the question on turning back time and having Saddam back then I apologize with regards to that. You can go ahead and ask the people of Iraq if they wa
  17. saturn5 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2009
    star 4
    1. Sure no fence but again, this is a society where if those who wished to flee had applied to do so they'd have been refused and shot if they'd been caught during the attempt. Under the democratic Iraqi goverment the liberation installed they were allowed to leave and return to their country at will. Did you read all the other entries of human rights (or lack of them) in the list?

    2. Sure the new goverment the liberation installed is far from perfect but lightyears in morality compared to Saddam and co. Massive difference in you living in a country where your life is under threat from criminals where you can turn to the authorities (no matter how flawed) and being in a situation where you can't because the people threatening you ARE the authorities, you have no one to turn to. You can't have a society where there is no crime but you can have one where the criminal are not the goverment. The good guys did win and you'd be incredibaly naive and blinkered not to accept that. Peoples problems are not that it's good to have Saddam gone but that the aftermath was mishandled.

    3. I don't lie, people seem to want to believe the figures that confirm their beliefs. But if the death toll is between 1-2 million then that means about 1 in 20 Iraqis were killed in the liberation which no one claims as credible.

    4. That was always my question, bring back Saddam and undo all the suffering of the insurgency. I doubt anyone would say yes? Whilst the cost of the liberation has been utterly horrific you have to ask what the cost would have been had we NOT had the liberation?

    Ultimately I think this argument all boils down to the question of the aftermath. If Saddam had been deposed and the insurgency had not been as bad as it was then no one would have any problem with it, WMDs or not. The horror of the insurgency was so bad that people question was it worth it? Only time will change that. I believe it will, in the long term people will see it as a good thing. Let me ask you this, if in 5 years Iraq is a prosperous democracy with a level of terrorist violence equivalent to Pakistan or similar, will you then consider it all to be worth it?


  18. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6
    1. Sure no fence but again, this is a society where if those who wished to flee had applied to do so they'd have been refused and shot if they'd been caught during the attempt. Under the democratic Iraqi goverment the liberation installed they were allowed to leave and return to their country at will. Did you read all the other entries of human rights (or lack of them) in the list?

    Yes, I read all those entries. That is NOT what you are claiming. You are claiming a North Korean type situation where the population is literally not allowed to leave under any measure. Saddam had neither the full control nor the interest in doing that. All those entries in the list follow one of two aims:

    1. To remove any possible threats to Saddam's power

    2. To make money for Saddam


    The type of scenario YOU are talking about is a Communist lockdown of the borders, and using it to a rhetorical advantage, which is NOT the case. Saddam was not having people shot en masse for trying to leave Iraq. He was suffering from no propoganda crisis of people trying to get out of the country in huge numbers.

    Also, your points lay oout that you are completely WRONG about people being refused if they wished to flee -- they simply had o come up with the money for a visa. This wasn't about Saddam trying to keep people in his country, it was about him trying to profit off of it. The very fact there was not such a heavy border presence is emblematic of the fact that while Iraq was an authoritarian state, it was very DIFFERENT from the sort of state run under Kim Jong Il, which is the scenario you are describing. Freedom of movement out of Iraq was not nearly so impossible.


    2. Sure the new goverment the liberation installed is far from perfect but lightyears in morality compared to Saddam and co. Massive difference in you living in a country where your life is under threat from criminals where you can turn to the authorities (no matter how flawed) and being in a situation where you can't because the people threatening you ARE the authorities, you have no one to turn to. You can't have a society where there is no crime but you can have one where the criminal are not the goverment. The good guys did win and you'd be incredibaly naive and blinkered not to accept that. Peoples problems are not that it's good to have Saddam gone but that the aftermath was mishandled.

    No, you would be the one "incredibly naiive and blinkered" to describe the invasion force as 'the good guys'. They are "the good guys" only by a releatve statement: that Saddam was more evil than they were. How can you describe a force as being "the good guys" when even people among them raped, tortured and murdered Iraqi civilians (yes, it happened, and they soldiers were convicted for it). To have that element as part of "the good guys" destroys such an absolutist description. The invasion force and administration was BETTER than Saddam. That doesn't make them "the good guys", becuase if it did we'd be doing exactly what you are: lowering the bar for everything they do under the presumption that they are in the right.

    And the issue is not that if it's good that Saddam is gone: it's the question of what it cost to remove him. Both to the Iraqis and ourselves.


    3. I don't lie, people seem to want to believe the figures that confirm their beliefs. But if the death toll is between 1-2 million then that means about 1 in 20 Iraqis were killed in the liberation which no one claims as credible.


    You say you don't lie and then in the last statement here do pretty much that. Who is "no one" you speak of? Where is this consensus and made up of whom? Not only are these claims (closer to 1 million dead than 2, but then we don't exactly know how many Iraqi refugess have died or how many non-violent deaths took place from lack of services) credible, but they're MORE credible than your sources! The two surveys in question, the Lancet and ORB, WENT TO IRAQ. They tabulated the numbers and gathered the data. Virtually nobody has countered the ORB study and have chosen to just ignore it an
  19. GrandAdmiralPelleaon Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2000
    star 6
    I think I like this phrase here, because it seems we're not paying all that much attention to the institutions in Iraq.

    Let's see, Al Jazeera recently ran an article, from which I'll quote a part:


    Amnesty raport: New order, same abuses: unlawful detention & torture in Iraq


    From the raport:

    [quot
  20. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Evidence-based reality is so much less comforting than just believing whatever the hell you want.
  21. saturn5 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2009
    star 4
    That's what I keep trying to convince them but will they listen?[face_talk_hand]

    1. So you're saying that it's ok because Saddam let you go if you could pay him? At least the democratic Iraqi goverment doesn't charge people for the right to become refugees! Unrestricted freedom of movement is one of the key facets of any human rights, the right to leave you country without interference. Surely no one would argue with that?

    2. Absolutely the Allied forces are the good guys and it seems incredible that anyone would doubt that, they came to depose Saddam and install and free and democratic goverment which they've both achieved. As for the soldiers murdering raping and torturing well that happens in every conflict ever, no matter how justified. You correctly point out that the guilty parties were duly punished for what they did and that's the difference, Saddam's boys wouldn't have been. As Stephen Ambrose points out that's the difference between US and Commonwealth forces and every other invading army.

    3. Only a very hard core of Bathists would ever want Saddam back, I doubt even the Sunnis would choose to have him return despite their relatively privileged position before the liberation

    4. 20 million under Saddam or 15 million under the democratic Iraqi goverment. I know we're going around and around with the numbers game but are you now saying 5 million are dead? What's your source for that? Also ask yourself how many Saddam might have killed by now through repression, sanctions for WMDs he didn't have, another crazy war etc. Believe me I'm not saying that there isn't wholesale corruption and brutality in the democratic Iraq's institutions. The difference is that this is the exception rather than the norm, it is against the ethos of the organisations rather then their raison d'etre and there is always the hope this will get better as indeed it slowly seems to be. Under Saddam there was none of that, all the Iraqi people had to look forwards to was more of the same.

    Let's settle it, how do I create a poll asking about five questions regarding the rightness of the liberation? We can decide on the exact nature and phrasing of the questions between us
  22. Darth_Yuthura Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2007
    star 4
    Saturn... you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. If you think that victory is simply defined by the criteria you presented, then maybe you should turn off Fox News and pick up a few books on the Iraq war. Have you ever wondered why the world's most powerful military ended up spending seven years dealing with a petty band of insurgent forces?

    Ever wonder why these people were fighting the US in the first place? These weren't terrorists who bombed the world trade center on 9/11, they were people trying to defend their homes against an invading army. You think that the US were the good guys? Do you ever wonder why those insurgents who frequently attacked US forces in Iraq wanted to attack the good guys? Maybe it could have been that they didn't see the US forces in the same light that you do. To them, we were an occupying force who wiped out every level of their infrastructure.

    It wasn't simply that Saddam was removed, but that everything was unraveled. Without law enforcement, a dismantled militia, and a foreign power having taken over control of the country... the US invasion went into Iraq with absolutely no idea what to do after Saddam was deposed. A victory, perhaps, but a costly one. And I doubt that the casualties were five million, but the number of refugees in addition to the dead sounds fairly accurate.
  23. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    I think it's interesting that the impact of the Iraq invasion on global stability hasn't once been mentioned.

    So I'll mention it. By opening a second front in a second Muslim country right after a major terrorist act was committed by radical Muslims, the U.S. have widened the rift between Eastern and Western cultures, promoted tension with Muslim minorities in many Western countries, and increased the chance for armed conflict as well as terrorist attacks.

    This is the reason 2003 was not a good moment to attack Iraq.
  24. GrandAdmiralPelleaon Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2000
    star 6
    lol, you call into question sources, but then refer to Stephen Ambrose? Surely you're aware that he's not exactly the most reputable of historians? Also, I find this post offensive, as you imply that we, apparently, are fine with brutality in soldiers & would not & do not punish soldiers that misbehave in foreign missions.

    Did you even read my post?

    Let me quote AI again:

    Nobody is saying that Saddam was good, they're saying the war was fought on false basis & in an incompetent way.
  25. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    With the news that Germany is finally set to pay off its last WW1 debt under the Treaty of Versailles on this Sunday, maybe we could change the thread topic to discuss if World War I was a jutified or morally correct war?




    Story


    For Germany, WWI finally ends on Sunday
    Country to pay final $94 million reparations installment

    Germany will finally pay off the last of its debts from World War One this Sunday, on the 20th anniversary of German reunification.


    Germany's federal office for central services and unresolved property issues (BADV) said on Tuesday a bond issued to pay remaining debts stemming from the conflict would mature on Oct. 3, two decades after West and East Germany united.

    The final 70 million euro ($94 million) installment will close a 92-year chapter that saw Germany plunge into totalitarian dictatorship and trigger a second world war that ended with its division during four decades of Cold War.

    "On Sunday the last bill is due and the First World War finally, financially at least, terminates for Germany," the country's biggest-selling newspaper, Bild, said on Tuesday.

    The Treaty of Versailles, a peace settlement signed by Germany and the Allies in 1919, made Germany solely responsible for World War One, requiring it to pay reparations for the damage done to the Allied countries and peoples between 1914 and 1918.


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