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Old 01-25-2006, 01:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Coming clean...

Quote:
Warriors and wusses
By Joel Stein


I DON'T SUPPORT our troops. This is a particularly difficult opinion to have, especially if you are the kind of person who likes to put bumper stickers on his car. Supporting the troops is a position that even Calvin is unwilling to urinate on.

I'm sure I'd like the troops. They seem gutsy, young and up for anything. If you're wandering into a recruiter's office and signing up for eight years of unknown danger, I want to hang with you in Vegas.

And I've got no problem with other people the ones who were for the Iraq war supporting the troops. If you think invading Iraq was a good idea, then by all means, support away. Load up on those patriotic magnets and bracelets and other trinkets the Chinese are making money off of.

But I'm not for the war. And being against the war and saying you support the troops is one of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken and they're wussy by definition. It's as if the one lesson they took away from Vietnam wasn't to avoid foreign conflicts with no pressing national interest but to remember to throw a parade afterward.....

here

This guy says what a lot (not all of course)of the left feels. Honesty is good, but does it cross the line at times?
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Joel Stein is a satirist. You can't take what he says at face value.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugh Hewitt Radio Show
Los Angeles Times columnist Joel Stein today saying he doesn't support the troops.

HH: All right. Now who is your...this is a column about the troops that begins, "I don't support our troops." We'll get to the specifics in a second. But who is your closest family member or friend who is on active duty?

JS: That's an excellent question. I wouldn't say I have a very close friend. I would say only acquaintances. No family at all.

HH: Who are your acquaintances?

JS: There was a guy who works at Time, that's where I worked last, who quit to serve in the military.

HH: What's his name?

JS: (pause) You know, I'm blanking on his name. But your point is well taken that I don't have many people that I even know who are in the military.

HH: Do you have any, though, other than this guy at Time whose name you can't remember?

...

JS: (pause) I'd say I've been pretty isolated from that. I mean, that's a point I made in the column.

...

HH:...Let's go on. Did you support the troops when they invaded Afghanistan?

...

JS: I've had really complicated emotions about Afghanistan. Obviously, I wanted to get Osama bin Laden and take out al Qaeda. I didn't know if that was the best method of doing it at the time.

HH: So, you didn't support them then?

JS: I did not support the invasion of Afghanistan, no.

HH: Did you support the troops when they were in the Pentagon on the morning of 9/11, when the terrorists hit it?

JS: Sure.

HH: And so, what's the difference between supporting them there and not supporting them in Afghanistan or Iraq?

JS: Well, I think I said it clear in the column, too. I don't have a...if you are for the war in Iraq, I think obviously, then you should support the troops. My problem is the people who are against the war and support the troops anyway, I think that's kind of an excuse. I think that's a way of making you feel better about your guilt, and I think that's kind of a lazy form of pacifism.

HH: Did you support the troops when they delivered, say, tsunami relief off of aircraft carriers and via supply ships?

JS: Yeah, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to imply in the column that I don't think we should have a military.

...

HH: Now wait. This is the last...well, let me give you the two last paragraphs of your column. "I'm not advocating that we spit on returning veterans like they did after the Vietnam War. But we shouldn't be celebrating people for doing something we don't think was a good idea. All I'm asking is that we give our returning soldiers what they need: hospitals, pensions, mental health, and a safe and immediate return. But please no parades. Seriously, the traffic is insufferable." So you obviously do not honor their service?

JS: I don't honor their service? The people serving in Iraq right now?

HH: Yeah.

JS: I honor them as human beings, and I want them home safe.

HH: But you don't honor their service?

...

JS: I honor police service. I honor military service. Any...I just think that...

HH: You do honor military service?

JS: Yeah. No, I'm grateful for people that serve in the military.

HH: But you don't support our troops?

JS: I don't...I don't believe in supporting the troops in an action that you don't believe in.

HH: And so, that would be everything I've named thus far. So I guess...did you support and honor the troops in the Pentagon on 9/11?

JS: Sure, yeah.

...

HH: And the people who've died in Afghanistan. Have they died in vain?

...

JS: Well, um, do I think that I, as an American, are safer because of what they did?

HH: That wasn't what I asked. I askd did they accomplish anything in going to Afghanistan.

JS: If I were an Afghani, I would probably...if I lived in Kabul, I probably would think that they accomplished something, sure.

...

HH: Do you know how big it is?

...

JS: Um, how many active troops there are? No, I don't.

HH: And do you know what a private makes?

JS: Salary wise? No.

....

JS: ...[D]o you do a harder work than someone in the military?

HH: I try and give a lot of attention and honor and props and support to the military, like Soldiersangels.com, and other drives to bring technology and relief to people who've been wounded. Do you do anything like that?

JS: No, I don't give to the military. I give to other charities, but not directly to military-related ones.

HH: Have you been to a military hospital?

JS: I have never been to a military hospital.

HH: Have you met a wounded veteran?

JS: Have I met a wounded veteran? Um, I think that's something you'd remember, so I'm going to say no.

...

HH: ...Do you think objectively, that Iraq is better off today than it was in February in 2003?

JS: Februrary...um, again, I haven't been...it's hard for me to say. It's not a great place, and I think it's better than it was under Saddam.

...

HH: If you had it to do over again, would you write this column?

...

JS: Yes. I would. I might change some things. I might be clear. But the primary thesis of the column I still believe in, although I sound to you very convincing.

End of interview.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Essentially, Mr. Stein seems to be awfully critical of a group of people he knows little to nothing about. This becomes apparent even if you do not take the time to read through my Host-like post. Some people just need to think before they speak.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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And so it begins again, but in light hearted self depreciating form in order to soften the initial blow.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by politicophile
Essentially, Mr. Stein seems to be awfully critical of a group of people he knows little to nothing about. This becomes apparent even if you do not take the time to read through my Host-like post. Some people just need to think before they speak.
Welcome back
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My issue with his, ilconcieved column is when he says, "And being against the war and saying you support the troops is one of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken and they're wussy by definition."

I would argue that most who are against the war in Iraq are not pacifists. They have other reasons to not support the war which have been well trodden.

If Stein didn't have a platform like the LA Times he would be called a troll. Like most trolls he would be banned from the TFP.

Don't feed the trolls.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlatan
I would argue that most who are against the war in Iraq are not pacifists. They have other reasons to not support the war which have been well trodden.
Not all are, of course, but a great many of them are. A lot of the same people who opposse the Iraq war also oppossed the Afghan war on pacifist principles (see my sig).
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlatan
Like most trolls he would be banned from the TFP.
Actually...I'd probably give him a week to cool off for that one. It's really not worth the PermaBan.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:00 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Hey politicophile. Long time no see.
Ya wanna kinda condense that mess up there? I just rubbed my scroll wheel finger raw. Either that, or just give the basic gist, in your own eloquent words, and post the link.
Cool. Thanks.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:01 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlatan
My issue with his, ilconcieved column is when he says, "And being against the war and saying you support the troops is one of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken and they're wussy by definition."

I would argue that most who are against the war in Iraq are not pacifists. They have other reasons to not support the war which have been well trodden.

If Stein didn't have a platform like the LA Times he would be called a troll. Like most trolls he would be banned from the TFP.

Don't feed the trolls.
Stating any opinion on TFP gets you called a troll by the other side, trust me on that one Its very amusing how you need to post an article along with your opinion in order to be allowed to have one in some peoples minds.

His use of such terms were to soften the blow of the article, to unfocus the anger that many would feel if he just said he doesn't support the troops straight out. It was amazingly masterful really, he didn't make me mad, I almost pitied him, the feeling is the of the kid who gets his lunch money taken from him by the bullies. I was most impressed.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:03 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Hmm, I think if you examine it in a way it is hypocritical to support the troops and not support what they are doing, although I think the sentiment of "supporting the troops" has more of a meaning that you empathize with the men and women in the army and that one genuinely appreciates their situation and position while at the same time disagreeing with what they are doing. I don't know...I think the article is a little over the top, maybe this person wants to garner attention.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:11 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCB
A lot of the same people who opposse the Iraq war also oppossed the Afghan war on pacifist principles (see my sig).
Yes, but those are the true pacifists. Shirley McLaine notwithstanding. I believe that the majority of those opposed to the war in Iraq, were, and still are, in favor of the military action in Afghanistan...as it was shown to be warranted. Iraq has been nothing but a hotbed of contention, with stories changing daily, since day one. I don't see the connection. I can support the military (I was military), without necessarily supporting the war in Iraq. I do support the war in Afghanistan. Should I stop the serviceman, in the airport, and ask him what Theater of Operations he served in, before spitting on him? (not that I ever would, but you get the idea)
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:11 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I totally agree with Joel's seeming fundemental point.

I read his words to mean - if you were against the war it is inconsistent to support what allied troops are doing in Iraq.

I thought it was wrong to go to war, because I was totally unconvinced that there was any real evidence of danger to anyne outside of Iraq. Now the allies have ripped the country a new asshole they've turned over every rock and found little that indicates the Iraqis could be a danger to a foreign country.

Admittedly, the Iraqi government regularly kidnapped people and tortured them, but what can you expect? They were trained by the CIA.

That's the point. The more I learn about the way the American government conducts itself the more I wonder that the real danger to the world is the US government.

This will be taken as controverial, but maybe the day that China can play on the world stage and hold back the US the world will be a safer place.

I agree with Joel that the americans would be better off not trying to police the world.

Trying to make the world safe with american troops is like herding cats - it wastes your time and upsets the cats.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:27 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel_

Admittedly, the Iraqi government regularly kidnapped people and tortured them, but what can you expect? They were trained by the CIA.
Oh United States of America, is there anything you don't do wrong?
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:32 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Sounds like he was just trying to get some publicity by being outrageous. Why would he go on the Hugh Hewitt show unless he wanted to stir up controversy by pissing off the right-wingers. He doesn't even try to defend himself. He's just playing along.
I agree with the Charlatan, he's a troll.
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Old 01-25-2006, 02:35 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill O'Rights
I believe that the majority of those opposed to the war in Iraq, were, and still are, in favor of the military action in Afghanistan...as it was shown to be warranted. Iraq has been nothing but a hotbed of contention, with stories changing daily, since day one. I don't see the connection. I can support the military (I was military), without necessarily supporting the war in Iraq. I do support the war in Afghanistan. Should I stop the serviceman, in the airport, and ask him what Theater of Operations he served in, before spitting on him? (not that I ever would, but you get the idea)
I agree completely with this
Going into Afghanistan was nessassary, Iraq was not.


Mistreating the returning solders from Vietnam was wrong,
I'm glad people have realized that.
Talk about going after the wrong people.

As far as Joel Stein' article goes...
He make's a few good points,
he make's more points I disagree with.
But as a good friend (and career millitary man)
once told me: "I totally disagree with that statement, but I will fight to the death to protect your right to say it"
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Old 01-25-2006, 03:09 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Old 01-25-2006, 03:22 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCB
Not all are, of course, but a great many of them are. A lot of the same people who opposse the Iraq war also oppossed the Afghan war on pacifist principles (see my sig).
That's like saying a lot of the same people who support the invasion of Iraq are war mongers who are just spoiling for a fight... any fight.


Clearly the pacificsts are a fringe element and not central to this discussion (despite your efforts to the contrary).
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Old 01-26-2006, 10:43 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlatan
Joel Stein is a satirist. You can't take what he says at face value.
So much for his "satire"

Quote:
"I don't support what they are doing, and I don't the see point of putting a big yellow magnet on your car if you don't," Stein told Reuters in an interview. "I don't think (soldiers) are necessarily bad people. I do plenty of things that are wrong too. But I don't agree with what they are doing so I don't see the logic of supporting it."
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Old 01-26-2006, 11:59 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I've never heard of Joel Stein, but I think his position makes sense. It doesn't seem at all outrageous to me. I mean you are either for the war or you are not. What does it exactly mean to say that you are against what the troops are doing, but you still "support" them?

I mean it certainly makes sense to say that you are against the war, but you don't think that troops themselves are responsible for the waging of the war.
It also makes sense to say that you are against the war, but you don't like seeing American men and women dieing needlessly.
It also makes sense to say that you are against the war, yet empathise with what the troops have to go through.

It's certainly possible to say a lot of things about the troops, but these things are not the same as supporting them. When you are against what they are doing and the reasons they are doing it, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to say that you "support" them, at least not by my understanding of supporting a group of people.

Is there anyone here who is against the war in Iraq, yet "supports the troops"? If so, could you explain what you mean by "support"?

(Honestly curious, not trying to troll or start a flamewar)
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Old 01-26-2006, 01:55 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Is there anyone here who is against the war in Iraq, yet "supports the troops"? If so, could you explain what you mean by "support"?
Raises hand.

My support comes from an historical perspective which is based on how dreadfully many of our returning Viet Nam vets were treated, including my first husband. I did not participate in the demeaning of our troups, nor did I have strong beliefs regarding the war in those early years ('68-'69). I did believe it outrageous that we could vilify a soldier for serving in the war.

I have constantly held very strong beliefs against the war in Iraq, but our soldiers did not start this war. I respect the young men and women who are members of our military and to that extent, I am in "support" of them. I don't see a contradiction in being against the war itself and the respect I have for our soldiers, where ever they may be serving.

Someone commented on the notion of "collective guilt" which may very well be in play for a good many people. I'm not one of them.
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Old 01-26-2006, 02:28 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I'll second Elphaba's comments,
and ask to identify myself with them.
with the exception of the returning vietnam vet
was my father not husband.
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Old 01-26-2006, 02:39 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elphaba
Raises hand.

My support comes from an historical perspective which is based on how dreadfully many of our returning Viet Nam vets were treated, including my first husband. I did not participate in the demeaning of our troups, nor did I have strong beliefs regarding the war in those early years ('68-'69). I did believe it outrageous that we could vilify a soldier for serving in the war.

I have constantly held very strong beliefs against the war in Iraq, but our soldiers did not start this war. I respect the young men and women who are members of our military and to that extent, I am in "support" of them. I don't see a contradiction in being against the war itself and the respect I have for our soldiers, where ever they may be serving.

Someone commented on the notion of "collective guilt" which may very well be in play for a good many people. I'm not one of them.
I guess it's all just a question of semantics. I think that what you describe here is similar to the statments that I listed as things that I wouldn't consider 'support'. But it doesn't matter greatly, it's pretty much a minor thing. No need to quibble over a word.

(For what it's worth; not American, but believe the war in Iraq was wrong, but don't blame it on American soldiers and don't harbour any ill will against them - but even so, don't consider myself a supporter of them or their actions)
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Old 01-26-2006, 02:47 PM   #25 (permalink)
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You know we could argue how many angels can dance on the head of a pin forever.

Saying you support the troops but not the war, or don't support the troops or the war makes no difference in your actions as far as I can tell. Both are attempting to undermine the US war effort. At this point, reguardless if you think the war was needed or not is a moot point, the US has a moral obligation to the people of Iraq. You may not have approved of the war but it happened, you can't take it back, and advocating anything but victory at this point will harm the US both directly and indirectly. This is why such 'supporters' have their patriotism questioned. With friends like that, the enemy is half way to victory already.,
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Old 01-26-2006, 04:44 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustwo
You know we could argue how many angels can dance on the head of a pin forever.

Saying you support the troops but not the war, or don't support the troops or the war makes no difference in your actions as far as I can tell. Both are attempting to undermine the US war effort. At this point, reguardless if you think the war was needed or not is a moot point, the US has a moral obligation to the people of Iraq. You may not have approved of the war but it happened, you can't take it back, and advocating anything but victory at this point will harm the US both directly and indirectly. This is why such 'supporters' have their patriotism questioned. With friends like that, the enemy is half way to victory already.,
Ok I think I understand what you are saying and agree with some of it too.

My question is at what point can we tell the President (he's CiC, he gets the grief) to stop doign stupid shit with the military?
Do we have to wait until Iraq is COMPLETELY finished (great well my grandchildren can tell him)? Or do we wait until the Army actually is stretched too thin (I don't think it is yet, but we do seem to be heading that way)?
At some point critisism has to acknowledged and considered. And I do mean constructive critisism not pointless bitching.


For the record, my opinions:
Afgan - Good move (except we didn't FINISH)
Iraq - could've been a good move in time after Afgan was finished and if the ENTIRE Iraq occursion had been considered.
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Old 01-26-2006, 04:56 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustwo
Saying you support the troops but not the war, or don't support the troops or the war makes no difference in your actions as far as I can tell. Both are attempting to undermine the US war effort. At this point, reguardless if you think the war was needed or not is a moot point, the US has a moral obligation to the people of Iraq. You may not have approved of the war but it happened, you can't take it back, and advocating anything but victory at this point will harm the US both directly and indirectly.
Ustwo, I agree completely. I think the confusion that the Times author made was between not supporting the invasion and not supporting victory. Elphaba, when you say that you have never supported the Iraq war, I interpreted it to mean that you thought and still think it was a mistake for us to go there in the first place. Is this correct?

There are, of course, some people who "support our troops" but think we should immediately withdraw from Iraq. That position makes significantly less sense because it seems to me that supporting the troops includes supporting their mission. Even so, however, I think it is possible to argue that one can support the troops by hoping they leave the dangers of the battlefield behind.

Alternatively, if you hope that the Iraqi insurgents ("minutemen" in obese traitor-speak) defeat our soldiers, I don't see how you could possibly say you support the troops.

Thus, it seems that the vast majority of people who do not support the war could conceivably support our troops. It all depends on precisely what you mean when you claim not to support the war.
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Old 01-26-2006, 05:22 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Ustwo, I agree completely. I think the confusion that the Times author made was between not supporting the invasion and not supporting victory. Elphaba, when you say that you have never supported the Iraq war, I interpreted it to mean that you thought and still think it was a mistake for us to go there in the first place. Is this correct?

There are, of course, some people who "support our troops" but think we should immediately withdraw from Iraq. That position makes significantly less sense because it seems to me that supporting the troops includes supporting their mission. Even so, however, I think it is possible to argue that one can support the troops by hoping they leave the dangers of the battlefield behind.

Alternatively, if you hope that the Iraqi insurgents ("minutemen" in obese traitor-speak) defeat our soldiers, I don't see how you could possibly say you support the troops.

Thus, it seems that the vast majority of people who do not support the war could conceivably support our troops. It all depends on precisely what you mean when you claim not to support the war.
I would fall into the catagory who support our troops by bringing them home.
I was against going to Iraq in the first place,
But now we are there.
there is no use pretending we have no responsibilty to
the Iraqi peoples, and their neighbors.
Now, I DO NOT want to see a "cut and run"
I would hope we have learned that lesson from Vietnam as well.
I do think we should start withdrawing one city at a time.
Keeping enough troops around in case the Iraqi's fail to keep control.
As the hand over progress's each city will become easier.
Start in the north, where it is the most stable.
by the time we are leaving the more dangerous southern areas
the locals will understand the drill.
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Old 01-26-2006, 06:38 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Fuck, i don't support the troops in any meaningful way. Neither do most of you. If i believed in this occupation i'd most likely be helping with it. I wouldn't be sitting on my ass here in america, pretending i had some sort of notion about making the world a better place that didn't involve me making zero sacrifices.

I like the idea that people, not just our troops, won't die unnecessarily. I like the idea that somehow some amount of regional stability will come out of our ill advised little affair in iraq. I like the idea that whoever ends up in power in iraq won't be as bad as saddam. I just don't necessarily believe that there's much hope for any of these things to actually happen.
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Old 01-26-2006, 08:12 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Fuck, i don't support the troops in any meaningful way. Neither do most of you. If i believed in this occupation i'd most likely be helping with it. I wouldn't be sitting on my ass here in america, pretending i had some sort of notion about making the world a better place that didn't involve me making zero sacrifices.

I like the idea that people, not just our troops, won't die unnecessarily. I like the idea that somehow some amount of regional stability will come out of our ill advised little affair in iraq. I like the idea that whoever ends up in power in iraq won't be as bad as saddam. I just don't necessarily believe that there's much hope for any of these things to actually happen.
And the way to make sure these things don't happen is a premature pull out. We stay until the job is done, no time tables, we can not do to the people of Iraq what we did to the people of Vietnam.
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Old 01-26-2006, 11:22 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Elphaba, when you say that you have never supported the Iraq war, I interpreted it to mean that you thought and still think it was a mistake for us to go there in the first place. Is this correct?
Absolutely.


Quote:
And the way to make sure these things don't happen is a premature pull out. We stay until the job is done, no time tables, we can not do to the people of Iraq what we did to the people of Vietnam.
Oh...My...God We could have prevented all of this by never going there.
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Old 01-27-2006, 12:05 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Oh...My...God We could have prevented all of this by never going there.
Yes we could have, so what? We are there now and that is all that matters. Even if you didn't support the action, the action HAS been taken despite your wise counsel, and if you try to make that action fail what does that make you?
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Old 01-27-2006, 01:30 AM   #33 (permalink)
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I was againts the war in Iraq but I am certainly not advocating that the US troops pull out. The USA should clean up what it started, failure to stabilise Iraq will lead to unnecessary hardship for the Iraqi population in the long term and another "messed up" state in the middle east. I do not think supporting the troops means much to me, firstly my nation does not have troops in Iraq, secondly I do not see what supporting the troops means other than wishing that they fufill their task of making Iraq into a "sane" state (that is democratic with a minimum of human rights abuses and no erratic behaviour that threatens us all). Of course I also hope that this is accomplished with the least possible loss of life because I do not like it when people are killed or injured.
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Old 01-27-2006, 06:14 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Yes we could have, so what? We are there now and that is all that matters. Even if you didn't support the action, the action HAS been taken despite your wise counsel, and if you try to make that action fail what does that make you?
I really don't understand this whole success, failure, artificial timetable stuff.
Sadam has been removed from power
His millitary, goverment....well everything has been destroyed.
Why shouldn't we leave?
Why can't we start leaving in a orderly, stratgic manner?
Does anyone even know what sucess means?
No set goals, No game plan,
How are we supposed to follow the carot at the end of the stick,
if we can't see the carot?
Heck, we don't even know if it's a carot or a stone.



I had a thought about the support issue earlier today.
Even the anti-war protesters are supporting the war,
That is...if they are paying their taxes.
That goes for citizens of any nation who have troops in theater.
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Old 01-27-2006, 06:20 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustwo
We are there now and that is all that matters. Even if you didn't support the action, the action HAS been taken despite your wise counsel, and if you try to make that action fail what does that make you?
There is a very, very, very fine line between "supporting" the troops by calling for their withdrawal and hoping that the military action itself fails. After all, the most obvious circumstance in which the administration would decide to pull out the troops is if the situation on the ground becomes unwinnable.

By this, I am not implying that everyone who wants us to cut and run from Iraq wants to see the U.S. fail, although I am definitely saying that some people who hold that view would like nothing better than for the insurgency to strengthen and begin to kill more of our soldiers.

Additionally, even those who fall into the former category would have their ends furthered if the insurgency were to begin winning. Provided, of course, that there were still enough soldiers alive to bring home.

My quandary is this: if you believe that the best thing to do in Iraq is to pull out all troops ASAP, how can you support the troops if the very success of those troops would prevent them from coming home?

If the options are failure and a swift withdrawal or success and a substantially later withdrawal, which option is preferable?

Alternatively, is success compatible with immediate withdrawal? How?
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Old 01-27-2006, 06:35 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by politicophile
There is a very, very, very fine line between "supporting" the troops by calling for their withdrawal and hoping that the military action itself fails. After all, the most obvious circumstance in which the administration would decide to pull out the troops is if the situation on the ground becomes unwinnable.

By this, I am not implying that everyone who wants us to cut and run from Iraq wants to see the U.S. fail, although I am definitely saying that some people who hold that view would like nothing better than for the insurgency to strengthen and begin to kill more of our soldiers.

Additionally, even those who fall into the former category would have their ends furthered if the insurgency were to begin winning. Provided, of course, that there were still enough soldiers alive to bring home.

My quandary is this: if you believe that the best thing to do in Iraq is to pull out all troops ASAP, how can you support the troops if the very success of those troops would prevent them from coming home?

If the options are failure and a swift withdrawal or success and a substantially later withdrawal, which option is preferable?

Alternatively, is success compatible with immediate withdrawal? How?
Again WTF is success?
You make accuations of people wanting to see a failure
You spout the standard flag waving parrotism.
Yet no concept of what success is.
Is withdrawl at anytime ever failure?

I would very much like to have anyone define what success in Iraq means.
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Old 01-27-2006, 06:40 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alpha phi
Again WTF is success?
You make accuations of people wanting to see a failure
You spout the standard flag waving parrotism.
Yet no concept of what success is.
Is withdrawl at anytime ever failure?
Success in Iraq is the establishment of a government that does not violate the civil rights of its citizens or threaten the security of the United States or U.S. interests abroad.

If withdrawal would weaken the new democratic government (it would), then withdrawal jeopardizes success.
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Old 01-27-2006, 07:01 AM   #38 (permalink)
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I have to give this guy credit;

He makes a valid point, and I applaud him. I have to also chastize the person who edited his interview. As I have said before, I have been misquoted by the press, and that is what is happening here (with all of the '...'s going around)

Hey, what is wrong with this position?
Oh, we aren't supposed to criticize the guys in theatre, because they are just doing their jobs. We learned this lesson in Vietnam. Okay. I understand that.

I didn't hear any criticism here. He is not supportive. Cool. At least he has the balls to say it, and not hide behind a fridge magnet.
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Old 01-27-2006, 07:04 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by politicophile
Success in Iraq is the establishment of a government that does not violate the civil rights of its citizens or threaten the security of the United States or U.S. interests abroad.

If withdrawal would weaken the new democratic government (it would), then withdrawal jeopardizes success.
Well in that case we have already succeeded.

The presence of foreign troops only serve the "image" of a puppet goverment.
If anything a highly publized, city by city, strategic withdrawl
will strengthen the democratically elected goverment.
The right wing millitas will settle down only when they see
their goverment in the hands of Iraqi's.
Our actions against terrorists have been like plucking grey hairs,
every hair plucked regrows three.
the longer we wait, the higher the probability of a panicked withdrawl.
That is failure.
I don't want to win the failure.
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Old 01-27-2006, 07:18 AM   #40 (permalink)
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I'm not sure why one would think that withdrawing from Iraq would weaken the insurgency. After all, the insurgency is already killing substantially more Iraqis than Americans. While it is certainly true that the insurgents use anti-American rhetoric to justify their actions, those words look more and more like hot air with every Iraqi death at the hands of the insurgents. OF COURSE the insurgents would like to turn Iraqi public opinion against the United States: a U.S. withdrawal would leave the minimally trained Iraqi Police as the only force maintaining order in the country. The U.S. can begin a gradual withdrawal beginning this year, but only in proportion to the number of available trained Iraqis.
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