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do you think any candidate will withdraw troops from Iraq?

nageov3t

Lifer
Feb 18, 2004
42,826
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amongst the ones who actually have a shot, do you think any would withdraw troops from Iraq once elected?

personally, I just don't see it... it's to Obama's and Hillary's advantage to pander to the democratic primary voters, but I've got a feeling like they'll go into their first NSA or joint chiefs meeting as president, walk out with a change of heart and dial down the rhetoric.
 

Tab

Lifer
Sep 15, 2002
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I think Obama is the most likely to withdraw troops considering that's a major part of his platform.
 

Jaskalas

Lifer
Jun 23, 2004
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I believe either of the Democrats would ? after listening to the demands of their base.
 

Farang

Lifer
Jul 7, 2003
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Your premise here is that withdrawing troops is an untenable position that a reasonable person would correct once speaking to the commanders. Obama will have no problem withdrawing troops from Iraq, both in terms of national security / budget strategy and public opinion. The more difficult position is to maintain the surge as President and put yourself in a position of accepting only unattainable standards of "victory," as McCain has done.
 

tweaker2

Lifer
Aug 5, 2000
12,006
3,260
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Originally posted by: Farang
Your premise here is that withdrawing troops is an untenable position that a reasonable person would correct once speaking to the commanders. Obama will have no problem withdrawing troops from Iraq, both in terms of national security / budget strategy and public opinion. The more difficult position is to maintain the surge as President and put yourself in a position of accepting only unattainable standards of "victory," as McCain has done.

x2.

i will add though that if anything, it's hillary that will most likely have iraq policies that will look similar to mccain once she takes office, due to hillary's waffling style of saying whatever it takes to get herself elected. i will also be watching her closely on what she said she will do with nafta now, compared with what she actually does with nafta if she does get elected.
 

ScottMac

Moderator<br>Networking<br>Elite member
Mar 19, 2001
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Originally posted by: Tab
I think Obama is the most likely to withdraw troops considering that's a major part of his platform.
Yes, but BHO is a typical empty suit lying sack of sh!t Chicago politician and probably won't get anything worthwhile accomplished, given the chance to do so (his record bears that out).

He gives a great speech though.

HRC knows better already, she's just straight-out lying .. no change there, same ol' Clinton.

McCain is not so inclined to change the schedule for withdrawal.

 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
66,961
3,751
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I do not know. My money is on Obama making the best decision. I also don't know what the best decision is. I also don't know if there is a best decision. I think in a million years anything we do will have the same effect.
 

Legend

Platinum Member
Apr 21, 2005
2,254
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Originally posted by: Tab
I think Obama is the most likely to withdraw troops considering that's a major part of his platform.
Yep, this answer.

He could backstab his supporters. But if he does get elected partly on the basis of Iraq, there's no way he'd run a second term.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,612
746
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We can go back through history and compare campaign speeches vs action in office and clearly see there are major issues that every president has gone reverse on. "No new taxes" ring a bell? I understand it was the senate that forced his hand, but still.

Ive never understood why so many people think Obama's promises are any less empty than anyone elses. As other's have said, he gives a good speech.
 

Phokus

Lifer
Nov 20, 1999
23,003
770
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Originally posted by: blackangst1
We can go back through history and compare campaign speeches vs action in office and clearly see there are major issues that every president has gone reverse on. "No new taxes" ring a bell? I understand it was the senate that forced his hand, but still.

Ive never understood why so many people think Obama's promises are any less empty than anyone elses. As other's have said, he gives a good speech.
Except taxes are something the senate votes on and the president signs while withdrawing the troops would be a presidential decision only.

 

Phokus

Lifer
Nov 20, 1999
23,003
770
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I think Obama has the best shot. Hillary is most likely lying when she says she wants to withdraw.

 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
20,612
746
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Originally posted by: Phokus
Originally posted by: blackangst1
We can go back through history and compare campaign speeches vs action in office and clearly see there are major issues that every president has gone reverse on. "No new taxes" ring a bell? I understand it was the senate that forced his hand, but still.

Ive never understood why so many people think Obama's promises are any less empty than anyone elses. As other's have said, he gives a good speech.
Except taxes are something the senate votes on and the president signs while withdrawing the troops would be a presidential decision only.
uh...right. Which is why I said "I understand it was the senate that forced his hand, but still." I tihnk you missed my point :)
 

ProfJohn

Lifer
Jul 28, 2006
18,268
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Originally posted by: blackangst1
We can go back through history and compare campaign speeches vs action in office and clearly see there are major issues that every president has gone reverse on. "No new taxes" ring a bell? I understand it was the senate that forced his hand, but still.
Bill Clinton was going to get us out of Somalia, he didn't.
He was not going to engage in 'nation building, he did anyway (as did Bush)

About the only President I can think of that did exactly what he said he was going to do via military policy was Reagan who had been giving speechs about how to combat the Soviets for 20+ years and did exactly what he had spoke about.

If elected I expect that Obama will not say much about Iraq for a few months while they do some 'policy reviews' and then he'll start to talk about the 'right way to withdraw' at which point the press and liberals will talk about how smart of a guy he is for doing it the right way while ignoring the fact that his 'right way to withdraw' policy will be no different than what we are doing now.
 

SoundTheSurrender

Diamond Member
Mar 13, 2005
3,126
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Obama and Clinton both said that they can't promise to get troops by the end of their term if they're elected. That's a load of crap.
 

Throckmorton

Lifer
Aug 23, 2007
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The withdrawal-now bandwagon is only for idiots from both sides of the aisle. It just happens to have more appeal for liberals who like to think of Iraq as our Vietnam.
 

SoundTheSurrender

Diamond Member
Mar 13, 2005
3,126
0
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Originally posted by: Throckmorton
The withdrawal-now bandwagon is only for idiots from both sides of the aisle. It just happens to have more appeal for liberals who like to think of Iraq as our Vietnam.
What's so idiotic about it?
 

Tab

Lifer
Sep 15, 2002
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Originally posted by: ScottMac
Originally posted by: Tab
I think Obama is the most likely to withdraw troops considering that's a major part of his platform.
Yes, but BHO is a typical empty suit lying sack of sh!t Chicago politician and probably won't get anything worthwhile accomplished, given the chance to do so (his record bears that out).

He gives a great speech though.

HRC knows better already, she's just straight-out lying .. no change there, same ol' Clinton.

McCain is not so inclined to change the schedule for withdrawal.
How is Barack a "suit"? He said "no" to jobs at some very prestigious law and instead decided to do volunteer work after graduating from Harvard.

As for Hilary, she hasn't promised to with drawl troops.
 

Fern

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 30, 2003
26,917
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Other than the rhetoric, the Repub's and Dem's position on Iraq since the surge have moved very close together.

No matter who's elected President, they will still face the same concerns/possibilities about a premature withdrawl. Increased bloodshed from unchecked sectarian violence, regional destabilization (Iran, Turkey etc), reduced oil production, or risk thereof, resulting in even higher prices, presure from some ME players (e.g., Saudi Arabia) to have stay and prevent these possibilites, and global condemnation if the place does a violent melt-down.

So far the talk and vague campaign promises about withdrawl have been extremely unsatisfying. Instead of focusing on whether we will withdrawl, I'd prefer to hear ideas about how we withdrawl.

The "lets just up and leave on this timetable" talk is magnificently simplistic.

I must admit that Joe Biden did the best job of addressing the issue with his "3 state" idea (partitioning) idea. IDK if that's the best way to go about it, but at least he advanced an idea.

Fern
 

Jhhnn

No Lifer
Nov 11, 1999
61,831
13,979
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Yeh, right, partitioning... that worked real well in Vietnam, Germany, India, and the situation in Korea is just peachy... Works great in the former Palestine, as well...

The Bush Admin has arrogantly set loose forces in Iraq that are beyond our will to control. Our very presence denies those forces the need and the ability to reach equilibrium between each other. The notion that we can somehow "fix it" is the foolhardy height of arrogance, considering what we've accomplished so far.

Instead of setting conditions whereby we'll leave, set conditions whereby we'll stay awhile to help them out. Given that the current crop of Iraqi politicians in Baghdad are firmly attached to uncle sugar's tit, they have no interest in seeing us go- none whatsoever. Those who don't leave with us will likely end up swinging from the lampposts of the Green Zone shortly afterwards, and they know it. If they can't get it done, then let the Iraqi people replace them with somebody who can. Funny thing about "Free, freedom, and liberty!"- the whole idea carries unintended consequences in a profound way.

Obama said it reasonably well- that we can't allow ourselves to be held hostage by the Iraqi govt. It's bad enough that we've allowed our own govt to hold our troops hostage there as long as we have, hostage to the failed delusions of the Neocon faction. Once they're out of power, the only reason to stay long at all would be our own foolish pride.
 

senseamp

Lifer
Feb 5, 2006
34,883
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All 3 will, just to different extent. We just don't have the money to keep this insanity going.
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
20,991
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The most glaring mis statement of fact has to be from non Prof John with---About the only President I can think of that did exactly what he said he was going to do via military policy was Reagan who had been giving speechs about how to combat the Soviets for 20+ years and did exactly what he had spoke about.

Is Jonney talking about the same Reagan who admitted to selling arms to Iran and up to his eyeballs in Iran Contra?

But getting back to Iraq, what GWB, McCain, Obama , or Hillary does between now and some future then is raw speculation. And a troop withdrawal is a somewhat meaningless term. If we can call a small increase in troops a surge,
withdrawing even one brigade is technically a draw down. And as Non Prof John and others have pointed out, the current troop numbers in Iraq are unsustainable without major modifications and a draconian extension of tours of duty.
So I would not be surprised to see GWB point to those lesser numbers come summer and say, see we are withdrawing troops. The McCain plan is to somehow hope that the Iraqi occupation magically transforms itself into the equivalent of the German and Japanese occupations following WW2. And that the US drain in blood and treasure also magically reduces to some easily sustainable level. A great plan, but devils in the details hooker, McCain seems to have no real plan on how to get from the quagmire it is now to the paradise he wants.

As far as I can see, the Obama and Hillary plans are similar. And they somewhat promise to begin withdrawing troops almost immediately while saying to the Iraqi government, quit diddling around, we will be withdrawing and are going to
be handing it off to you. Best start getting your stuff together. And with either Hillary or Obama, there is some hope that
both will try something called diplomacy on something other than a my way or the highway basis. In short something GWB has never tried in the history of the Iraqi occupation and its perhaps the only plan that can offer any long term stability. And something that could get the international community to help pitch in.

The two jokers in the deck are Iraq itself and many of its neighbors. Gone are the days when the insurgencies could be called Saddam Hussein dead enders. The Iraqi insurgencies are now deeply entrenched, well armed, the insurgents have the hegemony and power on the local level, and that power once gained will not be easily given up. And Iraqi is in a constantly evolving state of flux. We are well past the birth pangs of a infant monster, its not full grown yet, and its certainly not well behaved. And just as we start taming the Sunni insurgencies, the much larger Shia insurgencies are threatening to have a temper tantrum. As I write this, an uneasy cease fire exists, and in situations like that, just one hot head is all it takes. For Iraq's neighbors, the situation is equally perilous, Even if they are perfectly behaved, an Iraq that threatens to burn down can't fail to threaten their house also. And thats their worse case scenario, a major civil war in Iraq is almost certain to spill across Iraqi borders. To pretend that Iraq's neighbors don't have contingency plans to turn from basically passive spectators into aggressive lighters of back fires defies logic.

So here we are in coming into early April, After all, Aprils fools day is tomorrow. We don't have much of a clear picture of what Iraq will look like in late August, or even come the November US elections. We are more captives to Iraqi events than the shapers of events. And any next US President must be deeply worried that getting out too fast may be
be extremely risky. Which partly explains why all candidates are being somewhat vague.

The real myth may be that Iraq is something even short term maintainable and we are the deciders. At any time and for any one of a large number of reasons, Iraq could go into a state of total civil war very quickly. And then the metric question may be can we get our troops out alive fast enough?
 

StageLeft

No Lifer
Sep 29, 2000
70,214
2
0
All three will, I think, withdraw troops. I didn't say all. I said troops, so I picked the first option. This is not an all-or-nothing withdrawal all or withdraw none. I think troop levels will go down.
 

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