Last American Combat Troops Quit Saudi Arabia

DealMonkey

Lifer
Nov 25, 2001
13,136
1
0
So, did OBL get what he wanted? After all, U.S. troops have vacated the "holy land." Isn't that partly what he was fighting for?

NY Times - Last American Combat Troops Quit Saudi Arabia

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Sept. 18 ? The last few American combat troops pulled out of the Prince Sultan Air Base here earlier this month, officially closing the Persian Gulf headquarters used by the Air Force during both Iraq wars and concluding a nearly 13-year run of extensive United States military operations in Saudi Arabia.

The withdrawal signaled the end of a long strategic arrangement, mutually beneficial until it fell victim to tensions resulting from the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States, in which 15 of 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens. Since then, the countries' fragile diplomatic relations have undergone considerable strain ? only worsened in recent months by the American military presence in the kingdom, American and Saudi officials said here this week.

As one American diplomatic official based in the region put it, "on both sides, actually, the alliance had become a little bit of poison, and both sides were glad to see it end."

Nearly 500 advisers now constitute the only American military presence left in a country that during the 1991 Persian Gulf war had as many as 550,000 American troops at several sites. The advisers are helping to train the Saudi National Guard.

The Prince Sultan base, which at the height of the war this spring housed 10,000 American troops and 200 planes, has now been supplanted as the Middle East's main American military air operations center by Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar.

This last phase of the American departure from the base occurred with almost no fanfare, attracting only minor mention in the Saudi press. "It was as if they were never here," a senior Saudi official said. "They left very quietly."

The drastically reduced American profile could simplify the government's position among Saudis who espouse Osama bin Laden's contention that the American military foothold was an affront to the kingdom's sovereignty. For years, the American presence not far from Islam's two holiest sites, at Mecca and Medina, has provided Al Qaeda with an important rallying cry.

Partly for this reason, members of Saudi Arabia's royal family had rarely acknowledged the large number of American troops who used the base as a launching pad for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. About 50 miles southeast of here, the sprawling high-security installation does not appear on most Saudi maps and is marked on a barren desert road by an unassuming Arabic sign.

...
 

Dari

Lifer
Oct 25, 2002
17,134
38
91
Yes he wanted us out of the Holy Land. He also wanted us out of every muslim country. We are in more muslim countries than ever. From Kyrgyzstan, Georgia, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Qatar, Iraq, Turkey, Phillipines (strong Muslim minority), among others, with more to follow. He's clearly failed.

BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
 

DealMonkey

Lifer
Nov 25, 2001
13,136
1
0
Originally posted by: Dari
BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
Man you're condescending today, Dari. Yes, of course I realize why we were in SA. By the way, it was awfully sporting of us to go to war w/ Iraq so we could acquiesce to OBL's demands that we leave the holy land. Maybe now we can move on to #2 on OBL's grievance list. ;)
 

Dari

Lifer
Oct 25, 2002
17,134
38
91
Originally posted by: DealMonkey
Originally posted by: Dari
BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
Man you're condescending today, Dari. Yes, of course I realize why we were in SA. By the way, it was awfully sporting of us to go to war w/ Iraq so we could acquiesce to OBL's demands that we leave the holy land. Maybe now we can move on to #2 on OBL's grievance list. ;)
Yes, let's move onto #2. I hear he's dying to be a martyr...
 

LilBlinbBlahIce

Golden Member
Dec 31, 2001
1,837
0
0
Originally posted by: Dari
Originally posted by: DealMonkey
Originally posted by: Dari
BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
Man you're condescending today, Dari. Yes, of course I realize why we were in SA. By the way, it was awfully sporting of us to go to war w/ Iraq so we could acquiesce to OBL's demands that we leave the holy land. Maybe now we can move on to #2 on OBL's grievance list. ;)
Yes, let's move onto #2. I hear he's dying to be a martyr...
If you honestly think killing OBL will make any difference to terrorism, you are sorely mistaken. If anything else it WILL make him into a martyr and there will be a 1000 people ready to take his place. The only way to win this sham of a war is to attack the root causes and win the "Arab Street" on our side, something we cannot do by keeping on supporting thier currupt brutal leaderships and taking a blatantly biased stand on the Pal/Israel conflict among other things. We need to give them what they get from the terror groups, a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity, albeit a distorted one. You don't win hearts and minds by doing what we do, you just breed more OBLs.
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
If you honestly think killing OBL will make any difference to terrorism, you are sorely mistaken. If anything else it WILL make him into a martyr and there will be a 1000 people ready to take his place.
Yeah, just the same way after we nuked Japan, 1000's of Emperor Hirohito replacements sprung up.

The only way to win this sham of a war is to attack the root causes
.... which is terrorism.

supporting thier currupt brutal leaderships and taking a blatantly biased stand on the Pal/Israel conflict among other things.
You're 1 out of 2. Of course, you probably consider the removal of Saddam Hussein to be a mistake, which is in conflict with what you accuse in point #1, so i guess you're really 0 for 2. Or maybe you think that the 10 year "rush to war" (which took over a year in the final endgame stage) was a mistake, which means you only support your point 1 when actually putting it into place is delayed indefinitely.

And how did i guess that this would come right back to Israel somehow. Those damn Jews really rile you up, don't they?

We need to give them what they get from the terror groups, a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity, albeit a distorted one.
... and a puppy. Oh yeah, group hug everyone!

You don't win hearts and minds by doing what we do
Perhaps, but you sure as hell win wars that way.
 

LilBlinbBlahIce

Golden Member
Dec 31, 2001
1,837
0
0
Originally posted by: glenn1
If you honestly think killing OBL will make any difference to terrorism, you are sorely mistaken. If anything else it WILL make him into a martyr and there will be a 1000 people ready to take his place.
Yeah, just the same way after we nuked Japan, 1000's of Emperor Hirohito replacements sprung up.
A different situation all together. We had full control over Japan and in so, contianed the enemy. Terrorists are everywhere, so unless you plan on invading every country with a terrorist cell in it, your logic is retarded. Furthermore, even though many people considered the emperor a god, they soon learnt that he was just human. With Islamists, the belief in an intangible god, together with an illusion of a better life in the hereafter, are a driving force, something you cannot erase through occupation.

The only way to win this sham of a war is to attack the root causes
.... which is terrorism.
No my simple friend, the root causes are what leads people to embrace terrorism and, whether you beleive it or not, people are not born terrorists.

supporting thier currupt brutal leaderships and taking a blatantly biased stand on the Pal/Israel conflict among other things.
You're 1 out of 2. Of course, you probably consider the removal of Saddam Hussein to be a mistake, which is in conflict with what you accuse in point #1, so i guess you're really 0 for 2. Or maybe you think that the 10 year "rush to war" (which took over a year in the final endgame stage) was a mistake, which means you only support your point 1 when actually putting it into place is delayed indefinitely.

And how did i guess that this would come right back to Israel somehow. Those damn Jews really rile you up, don't they?
I don't consider the removal of Saddam to be a mistake, just the way we went about doing it. Furthermore we still support the house of Saud, Hosni Mubarak et al who are just as oppressive as Saddam was, just sans the large scale killing. When a person living in those countries sees us invading Iraq under the onus of "making life better for the Iraqis" what else are they to think other than that we are hypocrites? That leads them to beleive, and to a certain extent rightfully so, that the war was for ulterior motives, like oil. We didn't get any oil from Saddam so we needed to invade. We get oil from the Saudis so everything is cool. On the Pal/Israel issue, you are very naive if you think that it is not a major cause of Arab hatred towards the US. Everytime they see an Israeli incursion, they see it being carried out with weaponry provided largely by us. Furthermore they are not blind to our blatant one sidedness on the issue and our pathetic claim to be an "honest broker" is amusing to them at best. And if you are one of those delusional people who still beleive Iraq posed an immenent threat to the US, there is really nothing anyone can do to convince you otherwise.

We need to give them what they get from the terror groups, a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity, albeit a distorted one.
... and a puppy. Oh yeah, group hug everyone!
Once again, this is something that a "bring it on!" type person will just never understand.

You don't win hearts and minds by doing what we do
Perhaps, but you sure as hell win wars that way.
Really? We don't know if we've one the war in Iraq yet. Victory will be determined if we actually achieve all the BS we told the world we would do ie. make the country democratic and stable. We havn't been too succesful in Afghanistan and only time will tell if we will be in Iraq. Don't count your chickens before they hatch. Until then "rah rah rah America!"

 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
Still waiting for a response glenn1
What response? Your POV is that we need to address root causes (undefined by you) to give them a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity. Nice platitude, but it's a goal/standard which is impossible to measure progress towards in any concrete benchmarking sense. Which leaves us at an impasse, since even if we presumed your solution were implemented, you have no way to demonstrate how your "solution" was the root cause of any improvement, and likewise i would have no method to show why it had no effect or a negative one. At least with my position, you can measure it against actual battlefield results, the quantity of terrorist attacks taking place against American interests, and the progress (or lack thereof) towards establishment of a rule of law democracy in Iraq and elsewhere.

We're coming from mutually exclusive viewpoints. We both said our peace. I'm not going to change your mind, nor you mine, so what's the point?
 

Dari

Lifer
Oct 25, 2002
17,134
38
91
Originally posted by: LilBlinbBlahIce
Originally posted by: Dari
Originally posted by: DealMonkey
Originally posted by: Dari
BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
Man you're condescending today, Dari. Yes, of course I realize why we were in SA. By the way, it was awfully sporting of us to go to war w/ Iraq so we could acquiesce to OBL's demands that we leave the holy land. Maybe now we can move on to #2 on OBL's grievance list. ;)
Yes, let's move onto #2. I hear he's dying to be a martyr...
If you honestly think killing OBL will make any difference to terrorism, you are sorely mistaken. If anything else it WILL make him into a martyr and there will be a 1000 people ready to take his place. The only way to win this sham of a war is to attack the root causes and win the "Arab Street" on our side, something we cannot do by keeping on supporting thier currupt brutal leaderships and taking a blatantly biased stand on the Pal/Israel conflict among other things. We need to give them what they get from the terror groups, a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity, albeit a distorted one. You don't win hearts and minds by doing what we do, you just breed more OBLs.
if you honestly believe what you just wrote, then I see no point in arguing with you. BTW, are you a correspondent for Al Jazeera or the Center for Islamic Studies?


Quote

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Still waiting for a response glenn1
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



What response? Your POV is that we need to address root causes (undefined by you) to give them a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity. Nice platitude, but it's a goal/standard which is impossible to measure progress towards in any concrete benchmarking sense. Which leaves us at an impasse, since even if we presumed your solution were implemented, you have no way to demonstrate how your "solution" was the root cause of any improvement, and likewise i would have no method to show why it had no effect or a negative one. At least with my position, you can measure it against actual battlefield results, the quantity of terrorist attacks taking place against American interests, and the progress (or lack thereof) towards establishment of a rule of law democracy in Iraq and elsewhere.

We're coming from mutually exclusive viewpoints. We both said our peace. I'm not going to change your mind, nor you mine, so what's the point?
He's also forgetting that you can't negotiate with terrorists. Hell, these guys use religion, not reason, as their guidance, so there's no starting point for any negotiation. Furthermore, the Arab "street" lives on conspiracy theories. Those people honestly believe that Ariel Sharon drinks arab blood. These are the people we need to win over. First, let them get educated; then rationalize their thinking. Then, and only then, can we talk.
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,383
1,013
126
BTW, are you a correspondent for Al Jazeera or the Center for Islamic Studies?
I don't think that was necessarily called for. I'm not quite sure if he's really arguing strategy or tactics right now, and that makes a difference. If he's arguing strategy, that we shouldn't have gone into Iraq at all, i'm not sure we have basis for debate.

If he's talking tactics, then we have a discussion. Personally, i think the Bush tactics for the second stage of the WoT were blunt and unimaginative to say the least. I still think we should have taken the "roll up the flank" technique and taken out Iran first. All the dissendent students would have needed was a little push to get the ball rolling, send in special forces troops in a supporting role to help stick a fork in the mullahs. Now that would have been a perfect opportunity to put the "disinformation campaign" to use and allowed us both complete surprise and most "bang for the buck" for the amount of troops we'd have needed to employ. Then with Iran as your staging ground, pick off Iraq at leisure. Then with both Iran and Iraq in hand, it would have been only a matter of time to push the regimes in Syria and Saudi Arabia overboard also, and you have the clean sweep.

But instead we're going to be tied up with Iraq, which could have been tied up quite easily after taking Iran. Now our next strategic options are essentially nil.
 

Dari

Lifer
Oct 25, 2002
17,134
38
91
Originally posted by: glenn1
BTW, are you a correspondent for Al Jazeera or the Center for Islamic Studies?
I don't think that was necessarily called for. I'm not quite sure if he's really arguing strategy or tactics right now, and that makes a difference. If he's arguing strategy, that we shouldn't have gone into Iraq at all, i'm not sure we have basis for debate.

If he's talking tactics, then we have a discussion. Personally, i think the Bush tactics for the second stage of the WoT were blunt and unimaginative to say the least. I still think we should have taken the "roll up the flank" technique and taken out Iran first. All the dissendent students would have needed was a little push to get the ball rolling, send in special forces troops in a supporting role to help stick a fork in the mullahs. Now that would have been a perfect opportunity to put the "disinformation campaign" to use and allowed us both complete surprise and most "bang for the buck" for the amount of troops we'd have needed to employ. Then with Iran as your staging ground, pick off Iraq at leisure. Then with both Iran and Iraq in hand, it would have been only a matter of time to push the regimes in Syria and Saudi Arabia overboard also, and you have the clean sweep.

But instead we're going to be tied up with Iraq, which could have been tied up quite easily after taking Iran. Now our next strategic options are essentially nil.

Iran is an awful huge place and sending special forces would be a bad idea. Look at Afghanistan, we did exactly that and bin laden slithered away. So long as he doesn't lead any parades, he'll be fine in his cave.

Instead of a massive invasion, we decided to fight cheaply and failed to catch OBL. If it didn't work in relatively small and lawless afghanistan, it sure as hell won't work in a much more organized country like iran, with a professional army and all. Besides, attacking iran without any obvious justification is plainly wrong.

Iraq, on the other hand, was too sweet an opportunity to pass up. Hussein's regime had too many faults and it was time for him to go.
 

DealMonkey

Lifer
Nov 25, 2001
13,136
1
0
Originally posted by: Dari
Instead of a massive invasion, we decided to fight cheaply and failed to catch OBL. If it didn't work in relatively small and lawless afghanistan, it sure as hell won't work in a much more organized country like iran, with a professional army and all. Besides, attacking iran without any obvious justification is plainly wrong.
Hey, why don't we just trump up some charges against Iran so you can have your war there too? I mean, the U.S. could probably get the IAEA to claim they are working on a clandestine nuke program. We could probably point to some other country's claim that Iran bought centrifuges specifically to enrich uranium. Iran is already trying to scale back it's cooperation with the UN. What do they got to hide? Hell, they were parading their Shehab missiles up and down the square just the other day. Those things can hit U.S. forces, Israel, etc. What the hell are we waiting for Dari?!

Do you want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud?
 

LilBlinbBlahIce

Golden Member
Dec 31, 2001
1,837
0
0
Originally posted by: Dari
Originally posted by: LilBlinbBlahIce
Originally posted by: Dari
Originally posted by: DealMonkey
Originally posted by: Dari
BTW, in case you didn't realize, we were in SA because of the iraqi threat. Well, a couple of months ago, we went to war with iraq and finished what began in 1991. No more Hussein=No more Iraqi threat. Get it? If that's too hard to understand for you, PM me and I'll explain further
Man you're condescending today, Dari. Yes, of course I realize why we were in SA. By the way, it was awfully sporting of us to go to war w/ Iraq so we could acquiesce to OBL's demands that we leave the holy land. Maybe now we can move on to #2 on OBL's grievance list. ;)
Yes, let's move onto #2. I hear he's dying to be a martyr...
If you honestly think killing OBL will make any difference to terrorism, you are sorely mistaken. If anything else it WILL make him into a martyr and there will be a 1000 people ready to take his place. The only way to win this sham of a war is to attack the root causes and win the "Arab Street" on our side, something we cannot do by keeping on supporting thier currupt brutal leaderships and taking a blatantly biased stand on the Pal/Israel conflict among other things. We need to give them what they get from the terror groups, a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity, albeit a distorted one. You don't win hearts and minds by doing what we do, you just breed more OBLs.
if you honestly believe what you just wrote, then I see no point in arguing with you. BTW, are you a correspondent for Al Jazeera or the Center for Islamic Studies?


Quote

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Still waiting for a response glenn1
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



What response? Your POV is that we need to address root causes (undefined by you) to give them a sense of purpose, hope, honor and dignity. Nice platitude, but it's a goal/standard which is impossible to measure progress towards in any concrete benchmarking sense. Which leaves us at an impasse, since even if we presumed your solution were implemented, you have no way to demonstrate how your "solution" was the root cause of any improvement, and likewise i would have no method to show why it had no effect or a negative one. At least with my position, you can measure it against actual battlefield results, the quantity of terrorist attacks taking place against American interests, and the progress (or lack thereof) towards establishment of a rule of law democracy in Iraq and elsewhere.

We're coming from mutually exclusive viewpoints. We both said our peace. I'm not going to change your mind, nor you mine, so what's the point?
He's also forgetting that you can't negotiate with terrorists. Hell, these guys use religion, not reason, as their guidance, so there's no starting point for any negotiation. Furthermore, the Arab "street" lives on conspiracy theories. Those people honestly believe that Ariel Sharon drinks arab blood. These are the people we need to win over. First, let them get educated; then rationalize their thinking. Then, and only then, can we talk.
I never said negotiate with the terrorists, I also said win the Arab street and they won't need the terrorists. Conspiracy theories, like stereotypes, have no validity unless there is some basis of truth to them. Take your Sharon example. Now I don't know how many people honestly and literally beleive that he drinks Arab blood, but ignorant people woud be willing to beleive that based on facts pertaining to Sharon's behavior to Arabs in the past, ie. Shabra and Shatila. That is just one example, but I hope you understand where I'm coming from with this. Secondly, you say let them get educated. How are they to get educated when their education comes from the same people we call terrorists? So you see, we have to find ways to "educate" them ourselves, not through school books, but through our actions. They beleive that Jews control America. Why do you think they do? Because look at our unilateral policy towards Israel. How do you debunk the conspiracy theory? Truely act as an honest broker, just like we advertise. We need to do things so that when a mullah somewhere says "America is evil because..." someone in his congregation can say "But didn't they just do such and such for us?" We've never done anything to win the Arab street and we've done everything to infuriate them. You people think the solution is bombing the crap out of them and "winning wars". I way it is winning them on our side so they have no reason to side with the terrorists. We cannot do that with the way our foreign policy works today.

Secondly, to quote you:
At least with my position, you can measure it against actual battlefield results, the quantity of terrorist attacks taking place against American interests, and the progress (or lack thereof) towards establishment of a rule of law democracy in Iraq and elsewhere.
We really havn't seen any progress with any of the things you mentioned either. No terrosits attacks on US interests? Keep in mind that the planning for 9/11 started in '96. It will be years before we'll know if we've won this war on terrorism, and sadly, the way we are doing things, I don't think we will.
 

CADsortaGUY

Lifer
Oct 19, 2001
25,162
1
76
www.ShawCAD.com
Originally posted by: LilBlinbBlahIce
We really havn't seen any progress with any of the things you mentioned either. No terrosits attacks on US interests? Keep in mind that the planning for 9/11 started in '96. It will be years before we'll know if we've won this war on terrorism, and sadly, the way we are doing things, I don't think we will.
And your solution is?

CkG
 

tk149

Diamond Member
Apr 3, 2002
7,256
1
0
I think this is great news. I hope our troops all get to come home soon (wishful thinking, I know).

Also, it will provide at least a little less ammunition for terrorist propaganda. As stated, OBL did want us away from Mecca, and now he's got his wish, although not quite the way he envisioned it.

"May you get what you wish for" - old Chinese curse

I heard that 9-11 was the anniversary of the date U.S. troops first hit Saudi soil. Is this true?
 

LilBlinbBlahIce

Golden Member
Dec 31, 2001
1,837
0
0
Originally posted by: CADkindaGUY
Originally posted by: LilBlinbBlahIce
We really havn't seen any progress with any of the things you mentioned either. No terrosits attacks on US interests? Keep in mind that the planning for 9/11 started in '96. It will be years before we'll know if we've won this war on terrorism, and sadly, the way we are doing things, I don't think we will.
And your solution is?

CkG
I never suggested I had a solution, I was just trying to make a point. However I do feel that we cannot maintain the double standards that we do and expect people not to be pissed at us.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY