Thursday, June 22, 2006

Guess who wants us to leave Iraq...

...our own troops, apparently, according to this Zogby poll from Feb. 2006:
An overwhelming majority of 72% of American troops serving in Iraq think the U.S. should exit the country within the next year, and more than one in four say the troops should leave immediately, a new Le Moyne College/Zogby International survey shows.
Of course, this same poll also says:
While 85% [of the troops surveyed] said the U.S. mission is mainly “to retaliate for Saddam’s role in the 9-11 attacks,” 77% said they also believe the main or a major reason for the war was “to stop Saddam from protecting al Qaeda in Iraq.”
When I read stuff like this, I want to scream in exasperation. 85%?!?! Clearly, they think Saddam had a major role in the 9-11 attacks! My God. (No, that it not a renunciation of my atheism, merely “rhetorical deism”.) This is simply not true, though it seems some 30% of Americans continue to believe it. And the notion of Hussien protecting Al Qaeda is rather far-fetched. “Al-Qaeda was strongly opposed to the secular regime of Saddam Hussein” according to wikipedia’s Al-Qaeda entry. Why on earth would one of the world’s most paranoid dictators give shelter and comfort to a violent organization that hated him? Of course, after the first Gulf War, they did hate us more, and conservatives are constantly pointing to the tenuous contacts between the Saddam and Al Qaeda that do turn up (and you can rest assured the Bush administration has looked into every possibility). But I think it is far more likely that he was attempting to keep tabs on a potential threat, rather than conspiring with them.

Of course, if troops think our role was to retaliate against Saddam for 9-11, no wonder they want to leave. Saddam has been captured. Job done. Let’s go.

When contemplating the fantasy universe we seem to inhabit on this subject, my head spins and my heart sinks.


Blogger grishnash said...

Oh, but it's even better than that... That tenuous tie to al-Qaida in Saddam's Iraq? Turns out the worst of them were operating unmolested in the Northern No-Fly Zone. Why didn't Saddam shut them down? Because we would have bombed any forces he sent in there into oblivion. Why didn't we bomb them when we knew where they were? Because we needed there to be terrorists in Iraq when we invaded.

If the administration is looking for a good justification for another war, I suggest we invade Cuba and overthrow Castro to end the human rights violations in Guantanamo.

8:47 AM, June 23, 2006  
Blogger App Crit said...

Like in any extended overseas deployment, the sense of mission is lost at this point. The soldiers are fighting for each other, as in to keep themselves safe. I have a lot of firends over there who more or less confirm this. They laugh at the media portrayals of locals inviting soldiers for dinner and such. (Another weird thing about this 'war': all the soldiers have e-mail and broadband net access.)

All Army soldiers, male and female, were issued anti-rape whistles two months ago. That's how 'safe' they are even in the safe areas.


6:22 PM, June 23, 2006  
Blogger Zachary Drake said...

I do wonder how cell phones and web access are changing war reporting and communication. of course, you can read soldiers' blogs now. But I wonder if its going to make it harder for administrations to say one thing to the public and say/do another to the troops.

I didn't know about the anti-rape whistles. I suppose it's good that they have them, but bad that they're needed.

3:08 AM, June 24, 2006  

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