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Summarizing the Iraq Crisis

Just to make sure I’m clear on this…

Bush invaded Iraq to remove the threat of WMD’s and al-Qaeda from that country with Congress’s blessing, even though neither were there. After we invaded, al-Qaeda came in to fight us. In the course of the Surge/Awakening, al-Qaeda was forced out and then the Iraqi government forced us to leave too even though ISIS was starting to form.

ISIS and al-Qaeda next moved into Syria to help out there against Assad. Obama wanted to assist the extremists to deal with Syria’s WMD, which absolutely did exist, but Congress refused to authorize it. Then al-Qaeda decided that ISIS was too axe-crazy for their delicate tastes and kicked them out of the club; so ISIS is now fighting them too.
ISIS has returned to Iraq in force and the Iraqi government has requested American air support, but Obama is reluctant to provide it against ISIS even though he does have Congressional authority to use it.

Just to prove that our government isn’t the most incompetent in the world, the Iraqis can’t agree on declaring a state of emergency to fight back even as their army falls apart. Even better, our sworn enemies the Iranians very much want to fight against ISIS on our side, but they are mostly holding back because the Iraqis haven’t asked them yet.

The Arab kingdoms have been funding these ISIS guys for a long time, apparently not caring that ISIS really wants to overthrow their own governments and has a tendency to use people’s heads for soccer balls whenever they show up for that purpose.

ISIS now holds half a billion dollars worth of Iraqi gold, a half billion dollars worth of captured American weaponry, 1/3 of Syria, 1/3 of Iraq, and is totally insane. No world leader has any clue how to stop them, doubt if they can, and can’t even decide if they should despite the fact that ISIS is attacking, threatening, and antagonizing pretty much everybody in all directions at once.

All sides supposedly hate us for supporting Israel, but nobody is attacking either of us right now because they apparently hate each other more. Hell, if ISIS attacks Jordan, the Israelis would probably come to their aid; meaning that Israel, Syria, Iran, Iraq, the US, and Turkey would all be joining together to defeat a group of mass murders disguised as an Islamic mass movement that oppresses more Muslims than Israel, has fewer WMD’s than Syria, is more fanatical than Iran, has the support of more Sunni Iraqis than…Iraq, has blown up fewer Muslims than the US, and hates the Kurds more than the Turks.

This is the kind of thing that probably leads poli-sci professors to commit mass suicide. The nonsense of it all would be amusing if it wasn’t so horrible and real.

37 comments

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  1. AlexInCT says:

    Bush invaded Iraq to remove the threat of WMD’s and al-Qaeda from that country with Congress’s blessing, even though neither were there.

    I disagree, Thrill. They invaded because of the WMDs and many other reasons, such as the fact Saddam was destabilizing the region and would work with terrorists of all ilks, but the al-Qaeda thing is a lefty narrative. Sure the military believed al-Qaeda would flock to the battlefield, making it easier to kill them there than hunt them down elsewhere, but that’s a different thing.

    The Arab kingdoms have been funding these ISIS guys for a long time, apparently not caring that ISIS really wants to overthrow their own governments and has a tendency to use people’s heads for soccer balls whenever they show up for that purpose.

    This is just another example of the plethora of Arab dysfunctions that make that part of the world the shithole it is at work. They are trying to buy off the proverbial alligator, hoping they are the last ones that get eaten, by feeding it other people. I am starting to feel like we should just assume these people will never be able to self rule, and act accordingly. Whatever that entails.

    All sides supposedly hate us for supporting Israel, but nobody is attacking either of us right now because they apparently hate each other more.

    The hate of all things Israel is plain and simple projection. The Arabs blame the Jews for all the ills their society, religion, philosophy and own stupidity inflict on them. I thought we were seeing a light at the end of the tunnel as many of them were wising up to the real issue, but that hope seems to be evaporating. These people must have their backwardness and self destructive way of being genetically encoded. They are obsessed with killing everyone off. At the risk of sounding like a kook I think that we should seriously think about what that means to any chance of stability or peace in that part of the world.

    This is the kind of thing that probably leads poli-sci professors to commit mass suicide. The nonsense of it all would be amusing if it wasn’t so horrible and real.

    There is always a solution. I am afraid and saddened to point out that I am now feeling empathy for the people that advocate the lesson here is to look at what Rome did with Cartage to get rid of that problem forever. Note that I am not putting all the blame on them, because our weak willed political masters – especially the idiots running the country right now – are a huge part of the problem. When you are unwilling to make the other side understand there are consequences to misbehaving, expect them to misbehave.

    Speaking of which, man is that guy the left demonized for running against Black Jesus in 2012 turning out to be a fucking prophet. Hey! I just also saw a parallel between this scenario and another topic we just recently discussed. To me, this is just the natural the outcome of the progtard’s belief that spanking kids is evil. Just look at how grown up progtards deal with misbehaving people in the real world! At least they remain consistent, both in not spanking and getting nothing but bad results.

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  2. Poosh says:

    Don’t want to be a nob but the first sentence contained incorrect information / the popular but false version of history so I was dubious to read on… I haven’t read Alex’s comment yet but I assume he’s corrected you.

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  3. Poosh says:

    All I need to point out is “it’s the religion, stupid” and leave it at that.

    Just thank Allah they’re so divided and hellbent on killing each other right now.

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  4. Thrill says:

    Oh, the WMD’s existed. I’m of the conspiracy nut opinion that the Russians removed pretty much everything before the invasion and the West just chose to stay quiet about it if they knew anything at all. Point is that they weren’t found in any meaningful quantities that Bush could hold up as justification later.

    What’s just not true is to say that the military expected al-Qaeda to flock to the battlefield and even welcomed it as some kind of turkey shoot. If anything, the military overestimated the effect of shock and awe and underestimated how effectively the Baathists had laid the groundwork for an insurgency before the invasion occurred. In fact, the Sunni ex-Baathists working on the inside to enable foreign fighters has pretty much been repeated with the taking of Mosul.

    I have no solutions in mind for what’s happening now.

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  5. AlexInCT says:

    Oh, the WMD’s existed. I’m of the conspiracy nut opinion that the Russians removed pretty much everything before the invasion and the West just chose to stay quiet about it if they knew anything at all.

    Why do you think Obama was so eager to start bombing the shit out of Syria back when? Me, I suspect there were 2 reasons. The first was the WMDs that the Russians moved there from Iraq before the 2nd Gulf war. They needed those destroyed before someone found the “Made in France” or “Made in the CCCP” for Iraq/Saddam labels and the whole narrative went poof. I suspect that there are a ton of democrats that know this is exactly what happened, but intent to keep people misinformed for as long as possible, because it has been their ace in the hole. The second reason, of course, was to kill the fuckers that they were doing something illegal with in Benghazi (likely another arms for something trade or illegal torture prisons they told us only Boosh would have) before they could talk and cause damage to the criminals in DC and ruin Billary’s campaign. Mark my words that both of these things will come out someday. I dismissed the third reason someone gave me a while back – he is just a fucking blood thirsty bastard that likes to piss on the legs of everyone, but especially the idiots that gave him a Nobel peace prize, and tell them it was just warm rain – because while the dude is a fucking narcissist of the first order, he is a giant pussy at heart.

    What’s just not true is to say that the military expected al-Qaeda to flock to the battlefield and even welcomed it as some kind of turkey shoot.

    You should talk to some of the people I do then, because they all were sure this was going to be the case. Most won’t admit it anywhere they could be held to it, but this was one of the things that the trigger pullers where hoping would happen, and it did. The people in the military understand that the best way to not have to fight an enemy is to kill them dead. Unfortunately, the politicians and the top brass (same thing) who write the ROEs don’t seem keen on that option.

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  6. Thrill says:

    When I say “the military” I do mean the top brass all the way to the SecDef. The soldiers typically do know better than the generals. The size and strength of the insurgency were not predicted by the Pentagon or White House. However, I always argued that once AQ joined the fight, we had to stay and see it through to the end. I didn’t stop caring until the Iraqis forced us out so they could get on with their stupid civil war.

    And now here it is and things are worse.

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  7. CM says:

    Hey! I just also saw a parallel between this scenario and another topic we just recently discussed. To me, this is just the natural the outcome of the progtard’s belief that spanking kids is evil. Just look at how grown up progtards deal with misbehaving people in the real world! At least they remain consistent, both in not spanking and getting nothing but bad results.

    Last time I looked, children aren’t terrorists or megalomaniac murderous dictators.
    And when did I get nothing but bad results with my kids (again you seem to have some mental block which tells you that if parents don’t smack their kids then they’re not punishing them at all).

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  8. AlexInCT says:

    The size and strength of the insurgency were not predicted by the Pentagon or White House. However,

    Actually Thrill it was predicted but then buried and hidden by the top brass and politicians that where afraid of the consequences of a protracted or bloody war. That’s precisely why it took so long to get things under control too. Politicians and the top brass that need to kiss their asses don’t face reality or act in the best interests of the troops or winning the conflict. Granted, the Boosh administration had to go out of its way to avoid everything and anything because the left was going to make hay of it and undermine the effort. Since they knew that I never understood why they just didn’t do what needed to be done and ignored the fucking leftards. Note that once Obama was president all the cocksucking shitbags that constantly protested everything disappeared. I bring that up because that is more proof that the left has wanted this to go in the loss column from the start.

    However, I always argued that once AQ joined the fight, we had to stay and see it through to the end.

    I stopped supporting the Iraq and the Afghani wars the moment I found out they had a time table to withdraw and Obama became president. I expected us to do shit halfheartedly, bail, and then for exactly what is happening now to happen, basically making the sacrifice of so many good and patriotic people, worthless.

    I didn’t stop caring until the Iraqis forced us out so they could get on with their stupid civil war.

    Actually it had a lot more to do with the Iraqi authorities not wanting us to have any oversight over the money we sent there, or denying the appropriate authorities leverage to force the US leadership to turn a blind eye to it (and man having the courts hold American troops hostage would have done that for them), so they could then steal even more than they were already stealing, and less to do with the Iraqi civil war.

    Like I said: the Arab world is broken bad, the need for graft, the level of corruption, the tribalism, and other such practices that are not just tolerated but expected, make it inoperable. Then again, we seem to be heading in the same direction in the US whenever you have the leftists in charge, so maybe I should be less indignant towards the Iraqis.

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  9. AlexInCT says:

    Last time I looked, children aren’t terrorists or megalomaniac murderous dictators.

    No CM, they are only indoctrinated by their parents and the authorities into becoming that when they grow up (that is, if they are not send to die with a bomb strapped to them or a rusty AK in their hand to fight in the name of Allah). Check out Palestinian TV for example. Look for the translation of this for example. And it doesn’t stop there. They are thought, by their religious leadership, to hate the Jews and the infidel. You can pretend otherwise, but I am not going to let another liberal pretend that I am in the wrong because I am not thinking about those poor children. Screw them and you.

    And when did I get nothing but bad results with my kids (again you seem to have some mental block which tells you that if parents don’t smack their kids then they’re not punishing them at all).

    What? Are you the only liberal with kids or are you actually trying to make the case that your situation is the norm? I wasn’t talking about you, because I have not had experience with you or your kids. But I wouldn’t be surprised to find out your kids are just as out of control as those of the libs in the coffee shop I stopped at today – after my morning hike – that thought the elderly couple that asked them to keep their unruly devils spawn (my words) away from them so they wouldn’t have to deal with the shit they were doing, where in the wrong. The gall of those old people for expecting them to act like parents, and if necessary, to at least try to stop or discipline their little monsters. My parents at least had the decency of being embarrassed when I misbehaved. Most libs these days think their kid acting up is cute.

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  10. Hal_10000 says:

    When it comes to the WMDs, I prefer the theory laid out in Cobra II based on internal Iraqi documents. The air strikes of the 90′s had pretty much destroyed Saddam’s WMD capability. But he continued to defy the West on inspections because he feared what might happen if he were revealed to not have any: a shiite revolt, a Kurdish revolt, an Iranian invasion. Internal documents indicated that they thought Bush was bluffing on an invasion, especially given the comparatively small force we had in the theater. Had the WMD’s bugged out to Syria or Russia, they would have been spotted by our satellites or our air assets.

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  11. West Virginia Rebel says:

    Iraq will probably wind up being carved up like a turkey to keep the peace.

    As for what to do…I don’t think staying long-term would have prevented this. Going back in? We’d have to redeploy huge numbers of troops to Baghdad alone, with the Iranians now in the mix.

    Aside from finding a way to coordinate against ISIS, stay the hell out. If the Iraqi troops don’t even want to fight, why should we do it for them?
    West Virginia Rebel recently posted..The Decline And Fall of The Online EmpireMy Profile

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  12. stogy says:

    Something that is not really coming out in the media pundit analysis is that many of the Sunni groups in Iraq have thrown in their lot with ISIS because they are seriously pissed with Maliki’s total incompetence and exclusion of Sunni leaders from power. Had Iraq had better, more inclusive leadership, then this would have been much less likely to happen. The army has been preying on civilians in the North and Sunnis have been arrested and punished for all kinds of trumped up reasons.

    The thing that bothers me most is the “so extreme they got kicked out of Al Qaeda” meme is neither accurate nor helpful in understanding the situation. It’s like bad propaganda – endlessly repeated until it becomes true. Same as in Syria, contrary to the “Islam or death” mantra that goes around and around, most groups are simply looking for the best deal they can get, and the one that offers the least risk to local tribal elites.

    The best thing at this point to do would be to get rid of Maliki, start talks with the more moderate Sunni groups, and try to get them to switch sides – not so unlike what has happened (and worked) before during the surge. Maliki isn’t up to it and has too much baggage.

    There is only a very small window of opportunity for this, as once the Shiite militias get involved, the chance will be lost. Then there will be the war I predicted two years ago between Sunnis and Shiites, and we’ll be lucky if it doesn’t spread from the East Med to the Indus.

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  13. Poosh says:

    I think it’s a dubious claim that they are merely looking for the best deal they can get, if you are using our understanding of that phrase and its connotations.

    They are looking for the most power to inflict tyranny, is more accurate – which is somewhat different to our understanding. You can appreciate this when you note the Islamists in both Syria and Iraq (…and everywhere else) are mutilating, torturing and beheading their way through the land. In fact ‘the media’ is downplaying the atrocities the “Syrian freedom fighters” are engaging in.

    There people really are evil and want evil things for their country, and want the POWER – democratic or otherwise – to be evil. What we see as evil, they believe in ‘peace’. Had they not been evil they would behave entirely differently.

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  14. AlexInCT says:

    They are looking for the most power to inflict tyranny, is more accurate – which is somewhat different to our understanding.

    Well said. I think the biggest problem I see with our side is that we expect them to be like us. They are not. In every possible way. And unlike all the trash the multiculturalists have fed us about not judging other peoples, because no matter how broken their system, it doesn’t mean theirs is worse and ours is better, there is nothing good about the way the ME works. Unless we are willing to do the whole ME what we did to Germany & Japan after WWII, we better buck up. Because they are playing for keeps, and in their minds it is them or us, and they are starting to feel it will be them, because we are weak (and they are right).

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  15. Thrill says:

    Stogy, I don’t really disagree with your overall point. For all the “Obama’s vs Bush’s fault” arguments I’ve been seeing, I really have to pin the blame on al-Maliki. He wanted US troops out for a few reasons, he chose to crack down on the Sunnis and exclude them from government, and he’s now agitating the crisis further.

    Yes, I simplified the reason ISIS was cut off from AQ, but there is quite a bit of truth to it. Even Zarqawi was chided by Zawahiri for the excessive violence AQI was using. My understanding of the fallout between AQ and ISIS is that ISIS initially angered the official AQ affiliate in Syria by declaring that less devout/non-Sunni/etc/cigarette smoking Muslims were non-believers who should be treated as such. AQ does seem to have some qualms about using extreme violence against Muslims in areas it controls, although it’s not really clear what those limits are.

    Question for you: How likely is Baghdad to fall and if so, can ISIS hold it?

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  16. stogy says:

    I think it’s a dubious claim that they are merely looking for the best deal they can get, if you are using our understanding of that phrase and its connotations.

    I was less referring to ISIS here than some of the Sunni groups that have temporarily thrown in their lot with them. I think they can be separated away if the strategy is intelligent and non-sectarian. As I said, they have legitimate grievances that deserve to be addressed.

    They are looking for the most power to inflict tyranny, is more accurate – which is somewhat different to our understanding.

    They have learned the lesson that the only way to get what you want is by force when people don’t agree with you – no different from just about any other fundamentalists, religious or otherwise.

    There people really are evil and want evil things for their country, and want the POWER – democratic or otherwise – to be evil.

    I tend to think that ‘evil’ is a copout that stops you from thinking properly. It means you don’t have to take any responsibility for finding a solution in terms of addressing the root cause of the conflict – “as they’re evil, the only thing that can be done is to kill them all” – it doesn’t work. Remember that both ISIS and Zawahiri are both doing this to get funding and recruits – the more Americans they take out, the more towns they take, the more bombs that go off, the better they look. Defining them as ‘evil’ just improves their image even more.

    Question for you: How likely is Baghdad to fall and if so, can ISIS hold it?

    There is almost no chance that Bagdad will fall simply because there are so few Sunnis left there after the largely successful Shiite ethnic cleansing over the past ten years. There might be suicide bombs, assassinations and other nasties happening, but as ISIS have now occupied most of the Sunni-majority areas in the country, I think they have already pretty much reached their maximum extent. They are bogged down trying to take a couple of mixed Shiite/Sunni towns North of Bagdad. The one risk is that the government and army completely collapse – however, I think that is becoming less and less likely as Shiite militias, the Iranians and the US become more involved.

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  17. Hal_10000 says:

    The entire Left Wing Echosphere is screaming that we left Iraq on Bush’s timetable. As if Obama had no choice but to follow that and couldn’t change things up as events warranted. Is there going to be a day when they’ll blame Obama for anything? He could chainsaw someone to death on live television and they’d be blaming Bush.

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  18. hist_ed says:

    And Bush obviously planned for a long term US presence in Iraq. Obama screwed that up.

    Just saw a piece that quoted an Iraqi army grunt on how ashamed he was that the leadership of the Iraqi army crumbled. It said that every Iraqi officer from colonel on up abandoned their troops and fled. Yet another sphere in our guy’s government in which corruption and connections trumped experience and competence. Maliki and his cronies should be shot.

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  19. Xetrov says:

    Had the WMD’s bugged out to Syria or Russia, they would have been spotted by our satellites or our air assets.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WMD_conjecture_in_the_aftermath_of_the_2003_invasion_of_Iraq#Syria

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  20. Xetrov says:

    He could chainsaw someone to death on live television and they’d be blaming Bush.

    Darth Cheney had Halliburton build the Chain Saw.

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  21. Hal_10000 says:

    Latest report is that Rouhani is openly talking about cooperation with the US to battle ISIS but Obama is hesitating.

    That’s right: fucking Iran might be carrying us on this.

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  22. Poosh says:

    “I was less referring to ISIS here than some of the Sunni groups that have temporarily thrown in their lot with them. I think they can be separated away if the strategy is intelligent and non-sectarian. As I said, they have legitimate grievances that deserve to be addressed.”

    Ah, then that is fair enough.

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  23. Poosh says:

    “I tend to think that ‘evil’ is a copout that stops you from thinking properly. It means you don’t have to take any responsibility for finding a solution in terms of addressing the root cause of the conflict – “as they’re evil, the only thing that can be done is to kill them all” – it doesn’t work. ”

    Nope. To kill them is exactly the logical, rational thing to do. But don’t assume, when I said “evil” I mean some mythical “evil”. Evil was used as a stand in for their values and beliefs, which we would refer to as “evil”. They see it as good.

    I understand the root causes and grievances – and psychology – of the Nazis. I still call them evil. See how that works.

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  24. Iconoclast says:

    That’s right: fucking Iran might be carrying us on this.

    No, Hal, this is just another example of Obama’s “leading from behind” (a truly Orwellian turn of phrase if there ever was one).

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  25. richtaylor365 says:

    Exactly right, Poosh, this ,”I am a progressive, therefor I possess reason, therefor I can reason with anyone and persuade them to turn their sword into plowshares”, is yet another example of hubris from them, (like we don’t have enough examples already).

    Let’s see, their psycho god commanded their psycho prophet to instruct their followers through their psycho bible to either convert infidels or kill them, no wiggle room allowed. Sure, if I want to keep my head I can convert so in that respect I can avoid them killing me, but if I wish to either ignore their stupid beliefs or keep my own faith, my future is sealed.

    Reason with that.

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  26. richtaylor365 says:

    Looks like Kerry and Obama finally woke up from their “What I don’t know can’t hurt me” nap and will put air strikes on the table.

    http://news.yahoo.com/katie-couric–john-kerry-interview-213218299.html

    Of course now the bad guys are firmly entrenched in populace cities, mingling among the civilians. How easy it would have been to hit them while their armies were staging in the Syrian desert. A day late and a dollar short, this is how this administration roles.

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  27. Iconoclast says:

    I tend to think that ‘evil’ is a copout that stops you from thinking properly.

    It is such typical leftist arrogance to insist that those who disagree with you are not “thinking properly“. Who gets to decide what “proper” thinking is?

    I an convinced that the real copout is refusing to acknowledge that evil exists.

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  28. stogy says:

    Nope. To kill them is exactly the logical, rational thing to do. But don’t assume, when I said “evil” I mean some mythical “evil”. Evil was used as a stand in for their values and beliefs, which we would refer to as “evil”. They see it as good.

    So, at the risk of falling foul of Godwin’s law, when the Nazis declared the Jews as ‘evil’ and used it as a means of encouraging Germans to ‘kill them all’, that was a logical, rational thing to do? After all, the Jews were supposedly poisoning the well of humanity and corrupting society in ways unfathomable to normal, decent people. The final solution saw removing such evil as a public good.

    It is such typical leftist arrogance to insist that those who disagree with you are not “thinking properly“. Who gets to decide what “proper” thinking is?

    Well, given the ability you have shown here, not you at least. If you can’t even be bothered to assemble an argument to defend or even define a term you are supposedly advocating the use of here, then that really fits the definition of lousy lazy thinking.

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  29. CM says:

    It is such typical leftist arrogance to insist that those who disagree with you are not “thinking properly“.

    Ah such casual double-standards. The main premise of this blog is that libs don’t think properly (well, when they’re not just being evil), as opposed to just simply and reasonably disagreeing. Or did you miss that?

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  30. Section8 says:

    Stogy will be apologetic for any type of violence by these types. If it’s not one excuse, it will be another. Don’t bother with his bullshit. It’s all about picking sides. He’ll side with who he sides with regardless of what vile acts are done.

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  31. stogy says:

    Stogy will be apologetic for any type of violence by these types. If it’s not one excuse, it will be another. Don’t bother with his bullshit. It’s all about picking sides. He’ll side with who he sides with regardless of what vile acts are done.

    More lazy thinking. You know, you could start a club! :)

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  32. Section8 says:

    Time management isn’t lazy thinking. Some things are simply a waste of time, just like it’s not “smart” to give a con man money no matter how dumb they’d say you’d be for not handing it over. You’ll call for war crimes against some helicopter pilots because they should be clairvoyant and never make a mistake, but hey raid a town chop off some heads, well that’s how the world made them. Picking sides, nothing more. Which is fine, just don’t put the morality and rationality spin on it. It’s all garbage.

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  33. Thrill says:

    I’ve learned to respect stogy’s opinion on Mideast matters over the years, even if I don’t necessarily agree with them, because they are realistic and based on empirical knowledge. He’s right to point out that the Arabs there have no real good choices now nor do they have a lot of positive history to draw from.

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  34. stogy says:

    You’ll call for war crimes against some helicopter pilots because they should be clairvoyant and never make a mistake, but hey raid a town chop off some heads, well that’s how the world made them.

    You are mistaken if you think I am applying a cultural relative lens to the situation. Human rights are human rights, and war crimes are war crimes – whoever commits them. I support putting Obama on trial for war crimes just as much as I support the same for Bush. You have suggested that I think ISIS should be given a free pass on their executions of Shiite soldiers because they might have legitimate grievances – I don’t under any circumstances.

    What I have suggested is very simple: the current ISIS offensive is being supported by a fractious coalition of Sunni tribal groups, many of whom can be peeled away with the right strategy. Many of these groups do not support the ISIS goals or methods. They have legitimate complaints against the government of Iraq and addressing these would be a useful way of addressing the conflict. This needs to be done quickly before the Shiite militias become further militarized.

    Picking sides, nothing more. Which is fine, just don’t put the morality and rationality spin on it. It’s all garbage.

    Isn’t ‘evil’ a morality spin? And why is rationality such a problem for you? How can rationality be ‘spin’?

    When I said ‘evil’ is lazy thinking, I have less problems with you defining it as evil – whatever that means, no-one here has actually defined what it means or explained why it is a useful concept in the current situation. How does it help you resolve the problem apart from making it easier to ‘kill them all’). What it does mean is that you haven’t thought things through.

    Take the goals of ISIS in staging the executions and posting the photos on Twitter. An evil act, certainly – particularly for the families and friends of the deceased, and also for international human rights (which you don’t really believe in). But what is it that ISIS were trying to do? What do they want? And how they are trying to get it? Are they all ‘evil’? And if do you kill them all (and somehow avoid the ‘evil’ tag being passed to yourself), then aren’t you simply handing the balance of power to another set of thugs, just with different branding? How can you even hope to defeat your opponent if you don’t even know what they want? Strategy 101 is to win the war before the battle is even fought. Better even if you don’t have to fight it.

    Stupid, lazy thinking: ‘Evil’ unexplained and unjustified is spin. Rationality isn’t. Try it.

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  35. stogy says:

    I’ve learned to respect stogy’s opinion on Mideast matters over the years, even if I don’t necessarily agree with them, because they are realistic and based on empirical knowledge.

    Thanks Thrill. The feeling is mutual. I am actually flying into some of the affected areas in a few weeks (can’t say which country though). If I learn anything interesting, I will let you know.

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  36. Iconoclast says:
    It is such typical leftist arrogance to insist that those who disagree with you are not “thinking properly”. Who gets to decide what “proper” thinking is?

    Well, given the ability you have shown here, not you at least. If you can’t even be bothered to assemble an argument to defend or even define a term you are supposedly advocating the use of here, then that really fits the definition of lousy lazy thinking.

    Well, your premise is merely assumed, not proven. The notion that I “can’t even be bothered to assemble an argument to defend or even define a term” is simply ungrounded. I had thought to provide examples of what evil is, but thought that wouldn’t be necessary, given that such examples were already provided. In that, I admittedly erred; you guys always seem to need hand-holding. But that doesn’t translate into “can’t be bothered” unless one is practicing “lousy lazy thinking”.

    Poosh even did provide some examples of evil behavior:

    …Islamists in both Syria and Iraq (…and everywhere else) are mutilating, torturing and beheading their way through the land.

    Poosh, June 15, 2014 11:46 AM

    Now you can argue whether the claim is true, but to dismiss the labeling of that as “evil” to be a manifestation of “improper thinking” simply smacks of pure arrogance. You yourself even admitted that such acts are evil:

    Take the goals of ISIS in staging the executions and posting the photos on Twitter. An evil act, certainly…

    stogy, June 17, 2014 12:49 AM

    So why is it such an unimaginable stretch to label those who commit such acts as evil without being judged as “thinking properly”? Unless we’re engaging in moral relativism, that is?

    Isn’t ‘evil’ a morality spin?

    Isn’t that question a manifestation of moral relativism?

    …no-one here has actually defined what it means…

    Well, like I said, examples were provided, and you yourself used the term.

    How can you even hope to defeat your opponent if you don’t even know what they want?

    Well, certain segments of Islamism have repeatedly called for the destruction of Israel. Can we assume that such is what they want? How about a world wide caliphate as prophesied by their sacred text? Or the subjugation of infidels to Sharia? Do they, in fact, not want these things? Is this all just anti-Islamist propaganda?

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  37. Iconoclast says:

    Ah such casual double-standards.

    You mean like complaining when someone on the right accuses someone on the left of not thinking properly, but not complaining when someone on the left accuses someone on the right of the same? Or whining when someone on the right points out when someone on the left is making the accusation, but not whining when someone on the left points out when someone on the right makes the same accusation?

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