Ralph Peters NY Post Surge Article (1 Viewer)

RebSaint

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So can United States forces come home lieu of this smashing success? Again, the surge was to ensure a longer occupation. The "mission" under the current administration from the outset was to occupy Iraq in perpetuity. Patreaus has managed to establish a degree of peace and stability, but at what cost to nation-building? Much of this strategy has been based on giving more local autonomy to tribal leaders.

And this claim is just not true:

"Oh, and the left turned out to be dead wrong, as usual. We hadn't created an unlimited supply of terrorists."

This claim is par for the course for defenders of the occupation. For one, it wasn't just the "left" who was making these claims. The occupation created Al-Queda in Iraq where Al-Queda was never there before the invasion. And the surge did not kill or eliminate all of AQ in Iraq. And third Al-Queda in Iraq isn't synonymous with AQ in other parts of the world. Many AQ were just insurgents and guerrilla fighters calling themselves Al-Queda. Put simply, the supply of car bombers, insurgents, guerrilla fighters, terrorists in Iraq have been infinite. If the supply was finite, why are U.S. soldiers still engaged in combat?

Brief, but great critique of Ralph Peters, from a military man, no less.

http://zenhuber.blogspot.com/2006/10/neocon-ralph-peters-kill-kill-kill_04.html

The Sun tzu quote is $$$$$. Ralph Peters is one of the worst of all of the Neocons. He's the one who "re-drew" the map of the middle east. [below]. Nothing like a good Imperialist to have grand designs to nation-build, meddle, and re-draw borders.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Ralph_Peters_solution_to_Mideast.jpg

Oh...............

http://www.saintsreport.com/forums/showpost.php?p=881424&postcount=7

:9:
 
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saintfan-n-alex

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when its all said and done you cant say the surge worked until the surge is withdrawn (remove the troops) - they are only halfway into the plan, if the troops are brought back home and the violence returns - surge is a failure
 

dapperdan

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when its all said and done you cant say the surge worked until the surge is withdrawn (remove the troops) - they are only halfway into the plan, if the troops are brought back home and the violence returns - surge is a failure
No. When all is said and done, you've got to evaluate the success or failure of each phase on it's own merits, as well as looking at the overall results.

The invasion of Iraq was about as successful as any invasion in the history of warfare.

The post-invasion period appears, in hindsight, to be poorly planned and a relative failure. I'm hesitant to label the post-invasion as a complete failure as most would, but clearly the results, up until the surge, were extremely disappointing.

One of the problems I have with the assessment of waiting to see what happens if the troops are brought home is that it's probably the wrong metric to pass judgement. I would say a better evaluation would be whether the violence in Iraq can be reduced to levels where there are casualty rates that cause our stationing of troops in Iraq to be relative non-events. If we are able to maintain 50,000 to 60,000 troops in Iraq with low casualty rates, then the surge will be considered a success.
 

dapperdan

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And this claim is just not true:

"Oh, and the left turned out to be dead wrong, as usual. We hadn't created an unlimited supply of terrorists."
Please elaborate. What is untrue about the statement. It's repeated virtually verbatum by the source that YOU used:

http://zenhuber.blogspot.com/2006/10/neocon-ralph-peters-kill-kill-kill_04.html

"But like so many of his neocon cronies, Peters neglects to mention that when you make two or more terrorists for every one that you kill, you're going to have to kill a heck of a lot of people to "win." In fact, you'll have to kill darn near every one of "them," whoever "they" are."
 

RebSaint

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One of the problems I have with the assessment of waiting to see what happens if the troops are brought home is that it's probably the wrong metric to pass judgement. I would say a better evaluation would be whether the violence in Iraq can be reduced to levels where there are casualty rates that cause our stationing of troops in Iraq to be relative non-events. If we are able to maintain 50,000 to 60,000 troops in Iraq with low casualty rates, then the surge will be considered a success.
This point, not surprisingly, completely belies what the administration has said over the past year about the surge.

The surge was ostensibly to establish enough stability to allow the Iraqi army to stand up, so we can bring the troops home.

Now we're getting the truth from the supporters of the occupation in Iraq. So in other words, the success of the surge will depend on how well the United States can occupy Iraq in perpetuity while sustaining "low" casualties.

So the objective all along was to occupy and set up a puppet government. You're right. Mission accomplished. It was never, ever about establishing a free and sovereign Iraq, WMDs, or Hussein.

1.3 trillion dollars and counting--that's the cost thusfar. I wonder how much it will cost to keep 70,000 troops there in perpetuity. And for what?

*Edit*--correction. Bush pretty much admitted this morning that although some of the Surge troops may come home, the standing army will be there when he leaves office.
 
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RebSaint

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Please elaborate. What is untrue about the statement. It's repeated virtually verbatum by the source that YOU used:

http://zenhuber.blogspot.com/2006/10/neocon-ralph-peters-kill-kill-kill_04.html

"But like so many of his neocon cronies, Peters neglects to mention that when you make two or more terrorists for every one that you kill, you're going to have to kill a heck of a lot of people to "win." In fact, you'll have to kill darn near every one of "them," whoever "they" are."
If there's been a finite number of terrorists killed, and not an endless supply of them produced, why did you just basically admit that keeping 70,000 troops in Iraq is necessary?

The whole Reason D' etre for standing army occupying a foreign power is to be ready for any guerrilla insurgency or violence.

There was an endless number of terrorists created by invading and occupying Iraq, and there will continue to be. So what you're supporting, in a sense is an endless occupation, and open-ended commitment to fight an asymetrical war.

We've had this conversation numerous times, Dapperdan. You think it's worth it, I don't.

I think it's comparable to Vietnam, you'll continue to support whatever policy gets the U.S. to stay in Iraq, I continue to support bringing each and every soldier home. Now.
 

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And in reading Mr. Huber (link provided by Reb) it appears to me that Huber's criticism is simply boiler-plate anti-war criticism. Just mindless, boilerplate criticism.

Step 1: Label Opponent As A NEOCON. (Oh those evil NEOCONS)
Step 2: Name Drop The Fact That Said NEOCON Is Member Of The Evil "Project For The New American Century."
Step 3: Associated The Most Emotional, Inflamatory Language As Possible Against The Said NEOCON. In Mr. Huber's case, he likes the word "KILL":

"Neoconservative punditry is following a predictable formula: ludicrous comparisons of the "war" on terror with World War II, fear and hate rhetoric, sloganeering, bandwagonning and, most importantly, blaming their past failures on the usual scapegoats--sissy "defeatists" the "hostile" liberal media, the Clintons, etc.

All of which masks the underlying principle of neoconservative strategy and policy: Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!…"
 

RebSaint

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And in reading Mr. Huber (link provided by Reb) it appears to me that Huber's criticism is simply boiler-plate anti-war criticism. Just mindless, boilerplate criticism.

Step 1: Label Opponent As A NEOCON. (Oh those evil NEOCONS)
Step 2: Name Drop The Fact That Said NEOCON Is Member Of The Evil "Project For The New American Century."
Step 3: Associated The Most Emotional, Inflamatory Language As Possible Against The Said NEOCON. In Mr. Huber's case, he likes the word "KILL":

"Neoconservative punditry is following a predictable formula: ludicrous comparisons of the "war" on terror with World War II, fear and hate rhetoric, sloganeering, bandwagonning and, most importantly, blaming their past failures on the usual scapegoats--sissy "defeatists" the "hostile" liberal media, the Clintons, etc.

All of which masks the underlying principle of neoconservative strategy and policy: Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!…"

A. The PNAC is the vision for Neconservatives. The PNAC has an aggressive, arguably imperialistic vision for U.S. foreign policy.
B. This "aggressive" posture will, to them, require more wars, which means more killing. War involves killing.
C. The policy in Iraq is arguably the first step in the neoconservative agenda. We've-already seen many NeoConservatives sabre-rattling against Iran.

You can label it "mindless" and "boilerplate" criticism all you want, but the bottom line is the NeoConservative vision is an aggressive, expansionist foreign policy which invariably calls for more meddling, future wars, more occupations. And they have depicted opponents to this vision as "appeasers" and anti-American.

Sorry, but a lot of what he pointed out is the truf [tm-TPS]
 

dapperdan

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If there's been a finite number of terrorists killed, and not an endless supply of them produced, why did you just basically admit that keeping 70,000 troops in Iraq is necessary?

The whole Reason D' etre for standing army occupying a foreign power is to be ready for any guerrilla insurgency or violence.

There was an endless number of terrorists created by invading and occupying Iraq, and there will continue to be. So what you're supporting, in a sense is an endless occupation, and open-ended commitment to fight an asymetrical war.

We've had this conversation numerous times, Dapperdan. You think it's worth it, I don't.

I think it's comparable to Vietnam, you'll continue to support whatever policy gets the U.S. to stay in Iraq, I continue to support bringing each and every soldier home. Now.
Heck, I don't know what the troop level is needed to maintain bases in Iraq. That's just a WAG on my part.

But I do know that Iraq is far different than Viet Nam. Any comparisons between the two, at this point, are politically motivated comparisons, not military comparisons.

In short, as we mentioned on threads before the war began, and Dadsdream has much more thoroughly and eloquently fleshed out more recently, we are in Iraq to set up forward operating bases. We are going to be operating in Iraq for a long time. Is it an "occupation"; well, it's certainly not a situation where we are directly dictating to Iraq society. So in that respect, it's not an omnipotent foreign power controlling the country, it's not a good comparison with the British empire, for example. But clearly, our presence is going to provide behavioral boundries for Iraq.

Finally, regarding the number of terrorists in Iraq, I found your statement to be interesting.

"There was an endless number of terrorists created by invading and occupying Iraq, and there will continue to be." - This is a very interesting sentence. First off, the use of the past tense, "there was an endless number of terrorists". Either there IS an endless number of terrorists or there is a finite number of terrorists. Those are the only two choices we've got. You say that there 1) "was an endless number of terrorists created" (past tense), 2) "there will continue to be" (future tense); but somehow the present tense, what is happening now, is left out of the sentence. Very odd logic.
 
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dapperdan

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A. The PNAC is the vision for Neconservatives. The PNAC has an aggressive, arguably imperialistic vision for U.S. foreign policy.
B. This "aggressive" posture will, to them, require more wars, which means more killing. War involves killing.
C. The policy in Iraq is arguably the first step in the neoconservative agenda. We've-already seen many NeoConservatives sabre-rattling against Iran.

You can label it "mindless" and "boilerplate" criticism all you want, but the bottom line is the NeoConservative vision is an aggressive, expansionist foreign policy which invariably calls for more meddling, future wars, more occupations. And they have depicted opponents to this vision as "appeasers" and anti-American.

Sorry, but a lot of what he pointed out is the truf [tm-TPS]
Well, the thing is, the "neocon" belief system has been around for my entire lifetime, as has the more passive anti-war crowd, as has the real-politik crowd. Each has a place, each belief has it's own set of pros and cons. The problem is when we, mainly as a government, attempt to hide from or deny reality.

In the 90's, it's clear that the Administration kicked the terrorist can down the road, they didn't want to open a can of worms that could've disrupted a smooth running, well oiled machine. I think Clinton made a calculation that the overall risk/reward of confronting middle east terrorism against the United States wasn't worth pursuing, with vigor, the terrorists. In retrospect, it was essentially the same calculation that Reagan made in pulling out of Lebannon. Both calculations come with benefits and consequences.

In a similar vein, it certainly appears that the recent NIE estimate was a politically manipulated report designed to ensure that the current Administration is limited in what it can do to confront Iran. We'll have to see what kind of unintended consequences it produces.
 
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RebSaint

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In short, as we mentioned on threads before the war began, and Dadsdream has much more thoroughly and eloquently fleshed out more recently, we are in Iraq to set up forward operating bases. We are going to be operating in Iraq for a long time. Is it an "occupation"; well, it's certainly not a situation where we are directly dictating to Iraq society. So in that respect, it's not an omnipotent foreign power controlling the country, it's not a good comparison with the British empire, for example. But clearly, our presence is going to provide behavioral boundries for Iraq.
Forward bases for what Dapperdan? Why is it necessary to occupy Iraq with a considerable standing army?

It's the oil--specifically, access to oil There was no valid, logical reason to invade Iraq to establish bases in the middle east. The United States has enough bases in various surrounding ME countries, not to mention a very strong naval presence.

It wasn't necessary

Regarding your point on Vietnam. Despite your claim that Vietnam/Iraq comparisons are "politically motivated," there are PLENTY of valid historical parallels, although they aren't perfectly analogous. I would argue that such comparisons are more valid than the post WWII connections which are trotted out, and by the way--just as politically motivated.

Last, yes there will be an endless supply of "enemies," in Iraq as long as there's violence, and as long as there's a large, standing army in Iraq. So no, the supply of terrorists in Iraq is, and will be infinite, as long as the United States is there. :shrug:
 

dapperdan

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Re Viet Nam vs Iraq. It depends on whether you want to use broad brush comparisons to make a political point, or get down to the nitty griity; because when you get down to the nitty griity, the comparisons completely fall apart. Size and scope of the wars are completely different. Iraq doesn't, didn't, have a military power such as China looming in the background as an implied ultimate protector; the number of deaths are different by a factor of more than 10; the cost of Viet Nam was much greater, relative to our budget, than the cost of Iraq. Viet Nam was a much larger war.

Yes, it's the oil. The oil factor is a large component. But it is also more than just oil.

As Dads points out, just look at a map, Iraq is right between Iran and Syria. So there is a geographic component. Placing a democracy right in the middle of a dictatorship and a theocracy is going to have an impact on the region.

Btw, it certainly appears that our success in Iraq is having a rather interesting impact on Iran. If what we read from various military blogs has any accuracy, it appears that there is a major split in Iran that is occuring between Amadidajad (I'll go back and fix the spelling) and the IRG on one side, and Grand Ayatollah Khomeini on the other side. This is a most interesting development.

And it is about defeating terrorism, that is a big component as well. AQ has lost big in Iraq. It has lost in terms of "hearts and minds" with the Sunnis in Anbar, and it has lost militarily. This is a major defeat for AQ. It's not the end of AQ, because they have been provided sanctuary along the Afghan/Pakistan border, but it is still a major defeat for AQ.
 
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RebSaint

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Re Viet Nam vs Iraq. It depends on whether you want to use broad brush comparisons to make a political point, or get down to the nitty griity; because when you get down to the nitty griity, the comparisons completely fall apart. Size and scope of the wars are completely different. Iraq doesn't, didn't, have a military power such as China looming in the background as an implied ultimate protector; the number of deaths are different by a factor of more than 10; the cost of Viet Nam was much greater, relative to our budget, than the cost of Iraq. Viet Nam was a much larger war.
Sure I want to make a political point. Bottom line: The United States is fighting a largely asymetrical, guerrilla war with elements of a civil war overlayed. We're nation building over there. There's no tangible, easily identifiable mission; there never has been. The "enemy" is not readily identifiable. We're trying to prop up a government and insert a political system which is largely foreign. These characteristics were all present during Vietnam. No clear objective, no clear end to the commitment, no clear enemy, presence of a civil war. There are more parallels, but you'd view it as just a political shot. Whatever.

Yes, it's the oil. The oil factor is a large component. But it is also more than just oil.
No. It's only about the oil, or specifically gaining access for large oil conglomerates at the expense of U.S. military policy. So we're going to rely on Iraq as a source of oil? Really? How much sense does that make? We're already 1.3 TRILLION dollars into becoming more dependent on foreign oil. Awesome.


As Dads points out, just look at a map, Iraq is right between Iran and Syria. So there is a geographic component. Placing a democracy right in the middle of a dictatorship and a theocracy is going to have an impact on the region.
This point is also NeoConservative idealism at its worse. For one, it's not a real, sovereign democracy--it's a puppet government of the United States which will have no legitimacy until the United States for the most part leaves the region militarily. And what of democracy? What if Iraq elects a radical Islamic government? What is the U.S. to do then? The only impact it will have is further destablize the region and push moderates into the ranks of terrorist sympathizers or terrorists themselves. Again, it's just to me downright stupid to occupy a Muslim country when we're trying to diminish radical Islam on a global scale. Really, for this "democratization" argument to hold any water imo, the United States has to put its money where its mouth is. Let's give Iraq Full and complete sovereignty and let's test this theory.

We'll never know the true meddle and effect of Iraqi democracy with 70,000 American troops still propping up an "elected" Iraqi government with "benchmarks" to achieve. Sorry, Dapperdan, but the "democratization" argument doesn't wash because of the military occupation. No nation state can be truly democratic, free, and sovereign when it has a foreign military propping it up.

No, this point is meaningless idealistic window dressing to cover up the real reason--access to oil, and that's the main Reason D' Etre. All the other rhetorical nonesese about democracy, freedom,etc. in the middle east is smoke and mirrors. Really, if democracy had anything to do with the mission, I think the United States would be LONG gone.


And it is about defeating terrorism, that is a big component as well. AQ has lost big in Iraq. It has lost in terms of "hearts and minds" with the Sunnis in Anbar, and it has lost militarily. This is a major defeat for AQ. It's not the end of AQ, because they have been provided sanctuary along the Afghan/Pakistan border, but it is still a major defeat for AQ.
If it's about defeating terrorism, then occupying Iraq continue will be a problem.

Al-Queda hasn't "lost big" in Iraq, because it was allowed to establish a new base of operations, and occupying Iraq has provided Al-Queda prime fuel to recruit new members to their fold. I can't see how viewing Iraq is anything but a win for AQ. AQ was never in Iraq before the invasion. You can spin it all you want, but AQ was able to establish a pretty strong presence in Iraq because of the invasion and they haven't been fully "defeated." And it makes ZERO sense to fight AQ with a large, standing army.

What NeoCons don't understand is that their solution is more military intervention, more meddling, more military resources will make things better in the middle east, when the real objective is mostly gaining access to large oil reserves for the oil. AQ is only there because the United States is there. Insurgents are there because the United States is there. Keep killing them, and in the process, just produce more of them. Perfect slow bleed strategy reminiscent of Vietnam.

Iraq is spun as being a larger fight against terrorism, Al-Queda, establishing democracy--all misleading. There's no need to "fight AQ in Iraq," because AQ is only in Iraq to slow bleed the United States military. No, the rest of the "reasons" for occupying Iraq are largely convenient excuses to make the mission and rationale for being there more noble. It's mostly about the oil, and establishing a military occupation large enough to protect the oil interests.
 
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RebSaint

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it's certainly not a situation where we are directly dictating to Iraq society.
This claim is patently not true. Really sounds a lot like warmed-over imperialism. What caused a lot of the problems in the middle east? Yeah, imperialism.

Not dictating to Iraq society? Really?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/01/AR2005070101818.html

How about letting Iraq set their own benchmarks? How about just securing military stability and let Iraq to set out and accomplish its benchmarks.

Want to know the real reason?

http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0518/p01s01-usfp.html

Well, of course, divvying up the oil revenues and who has access to the oil is a sticking point.

Yes, unfortunately whether you like it or not, there are plenty of parallels for the United States acting like the old British Empire. You dress up imperialism all nice and pretty; it's akin to pouring a perfume on a pig. We've poured gallons of perfume to mask the true intentions of the current goals in Iraq, and it's becoming more and more obvious that oil from the outset was the goal--not just access, but AMERICAN access to the oil. Imperialism? Yeah.

Here's another interesting factoid:

"The Gulf Region Division has met its oil projects goals by increasing crude oil infrastructure capacity to 3 million barrels per day; increasing the natural gas infrastructure capacity to 800 million standard cubic feet per day; and increasing the LPG (cooking gas) infrastructure capacity to 3,000 tons per day. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers budget invested $1.7 billion in Iraq’s oil infrastructure."

From

http://www.mnf-iraq.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=16342&Itemid=128

So the United States has spent 1.7 billion dollars alone through the Army Corps of Engineers to get Iraq's oil infrastructure up and running. And we'll spend more.

Where the **** are this country's priorities? Why aren't the city of New Orleans's levees fixed, yet we're pissing away money in Iraq through the Corps of Engineers.

Disgusting.
 
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dapperdan

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Thanks for the CS Monitor link. Interesting story. Doesn't say much to support your argument above, but it's a very interesting story.

To me, the oil agreement is in the process of being in negotiations. That is a far cry from Americans confiscating the oil fields of Iraq.

Are American companies angling for a taste, you betcha. Does it make sense for the Iraqis to give American companies a taste, yep. This is a very similar situation to a venture capital deal, you bring in the VC guys, give the VC guys a taste, and they provide the management expertise, exposure to capital, exposure to new markets. The pie is much bigger in the end. It doesn't always work out, but many times it does. The target company and the VC guys are both trying to do what's in their self-interest.

Also, if you don't believe that AQ has "lost big" in Iraq, then you simply haven't been following what's been going on in Iraq for the past 18 months. They have, without question, lost big in Iraq. If I recall, even Zawahiri came out with a message some months ago, essentially conceeding the point. It appears that Zawahiri has a pretty clear understanding of the scope of the defeat of AQ in Iraq.
 
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