BAGHDAD, Nov. 7 — American forces have routed Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, the Iraqi militant network, from every neighborhood of Baghdad, a top American general said today, allowing American troops involved in the “surge” to depart as planned.
Maj. Gen. Joseph F. Fil Jr., commander of United States forces in Baghdad, also said that American troops had yet to clear some 13 percent of the city, including Sadr City and several other areas controlled by Shiite militias. But, he said, “there’s just no question” that violence had declined since a spike in June.
“Murder victims are down 80 percent from where they were at the peak,” and attacks involving improvised bombs are down 70 percent, he said.
Note that this story was buried on page 19 of the New York Times.
On the one hand, I don't want to applaud too loudly out of perhaps a superstition of celebrating too early. On the other, I feel like going back into old threads and pulling names of all those peoplewho were saying that everything is lost, the Surge is useless, and we should abandon Iraq immediately.
Mir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 20514 posts, RR: 56 Reply 5, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3066 times:
Keep in mind that the article said "Al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia". Just because they have al-Qaeda in their name doesn't mean that they're affiliated with Osama's al-Qaeda, or that they are any serious threat.
Not to diminish the importance of hunting down all terror groups, since that is what Iraq needs. And there certainly has been progress in security. But I don't see this as a major breakthrough.
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
AirxLiban From Lebanon, joined Oct 2003, 4503 posts, RR: 54 Reply 6, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3066 times:
Well to say that Al Qaeda has been routed out of a certain place implies that you can remove Al Qaeda terrorists in the same way that you can remove trees from a boulevard. That's not to disparage the efforts that the US forces have been making and the successes that have resulted. There does seem to be a decrease in the violence, but the real test is whether the security situation will stabilise in the long term.
B752fanatic From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 918 posts, RR: 9 Reply 7, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3061 times:
Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter): On the one hand, I don't want to applaud too loudly out of perhaps a superstition of celebrating too early. On the other, I feel like going back into old threads and pulling names of all those peoplewho were saying that everything is lost, the Surge is useless, and we should abandon Iraq immediately.
And yet 2007 was the deadliest year in US casualties? You think we are doing better over there? These people despise the US more and more every day. We are creating a united and concerted sentiment of hatred towards us.
How would you feel if for example in the Pacific ocean you have instead of a a huge mass of ocean, a continent, lets name it Pacifica continent, in which a country there is called "Pacifica state". The country is thrice the geographical size of the US. Has 3 Billion people, the GDP per capita is 5 times the American, the military is the biggest in the world, has more wealth than the European nations and the US combined, and they are labeled by the US and the vast majority of the world as the "world's police".
Let us think of this, they decide on doing a preemptive attack on the US, because they say that the US is conspiring with a "weapon of continental destruction" That would wipe out the entire Pacifica state if not the entire pacifica continent along with the underdeveloped south pacifica. Yet despite the UN's claim that there isn't such technology in the US for such a weapon, the ruler of Pacifica said that the US has the weapon and also had ties with the terror attacks of the major city of Pacifica city in which 50 thousand people died, and was concluded it was a religious extremist terrorist organization that apparently (Pacifica's claim) received support from the US government.
Pacifica then proceeds and attacks the major cities of the US, killing thousands of innocent civilians with the bombings, and then proceed on invading the US killing vasts numbers of US troops. Then they have victory in decimating the US armed forces and proceed to create a new US government appointed by the Pacifica government. After they depose the government they hang the US president whom was hiding in a bunker, judged and tried after finding that he was a war criminal. After searching for months they find no "weapons of continental destruction" and find no links between the US government and the attacks of Pacifica city, the international community starts to think that the war was because of energy reserves that the US had.
After the people of the US are somewhat OK with removing the despotic regime, they are now waiting for the occupying nation to leave the country and stop with the huge numbers of civilian killings and tortures (pictures appeared of hundreds of American people being tortured in a prison held by the Pacifica's intelligence forces). After the people of the US see the horrors and the atrocities of the war they become united against the occupying force.
Just imagine this, you are driving by the street and then you approach this convoy of diplomats from Pacifica, apparently your car's engine backfired and all of the sudden the convoy mistakes the backfire for gun fire and they begin shooting at you, and all of the cars in the avenue. They kill hundreds of civilians.. and they are a private militia from Pacifica.
How would you feel?
I think that it is always good to think that: "Don't do to others what you won't like to be done to you."
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." Mark Twain
JRadier From Netherlands, joined Sep 2004, 4617 posts, RR: 51 Reply 8, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 3026 times:
Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 4): Literally they're saying they forced Al Qaeda to flee the city.
which is the same as what I said, "they claim they got them all out of the city", I didn't say anything about eradicating.
Quoting JBirdAV8r (Reply 4):
Also, I just took the article to mean they have to sweep 13 percent more of the city, not 13 percent more of Al Qaeda in the city.
Which was my point, how can you say they are routed out, yet you have 13% more to go? How on earth do you know there are not more in that 13%?
Quoting B752fanatic (Reply 7): I think that it is always good to think that: "Don't do to others what you won't like to be done to you."
That is the most sensible thing I've read on this forum about the war in quite some time. No disrespect to you, but I didn't think this could come from an American. You got the problem! Get your flame-suit ready tho....
For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and ther
PPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8761 posts, RR: 42 Reply 9, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 3025 times:
Yeah but who really deserves most of the credit here, the U.S. military (aka Al-Qaeda-magnet) or the insurgency revolt against Al-Qaeda that has been relatively well reported? Note that they did get some help from U.S. forces, but still.
I don't think the surge may really have anything (or much) to do with it, aside with coinciding in time.
[Edited 2007-11-08 15:32:32]
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
B752fanatic From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 918 posts, RR: 9 Reply 10, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 3006 times:
Quoting JRadier (Reply 8): That is the most sensible thing I've read on this forum about the war in quite some time. No disrespect to you, but I didn't think this could come from an American. You got the problem! Get your flame-suit ready tho....
Believe me there are vasts numbers of Americans that think the same way, and we are not hippies or anything of the sort, the policy of imperialistic expansion by the US has been exposed with the Iraq war. In which false pretexts were used into invading a nation that had not declared war on us, nor to any of our allies.
Not only the idealistic point of view is highly critical of this, but from a economic vantage point, the US can no longer afford such wars nor the actual inflated "defense" budget.
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." Mark Twain
Flighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 7936 posts, RR: 3 Reply 14, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2966 times:
And for another thing, Al Qaeda were brought into Baghdad due to a violent attack on the leadership of Iraq, which resulted in total collapse of Baghdad. Those violent attackers were USA soldiers who were obeying orders of a crazy and delusional US president. In my opinion following those orders was sort of honorable but not heroic. True heroes do not engage in illegal war. They stand up for their constitution instead. True heroes, when they are told to do something illegal, say no.
Our boys are brave and strong, but when America needed one true hero to stop this war -- when the Iraqi people needed someone to save them from the violence of the USA -- there was nobody. This is the story of one of history's saddest failures.
JetsGo From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3037 posts, RR: 5 Reply 15, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2956 times:
Quoting B752fanatic (Reply 13):
I am glad that you are happy. I am not just content with any of our soldiers dying. Not even one.
Nobody should be. I don't support this war any more than you do. However the point is, we're there, and suddenly leaving would just turn things into an even bigger clusterfuck. May as well lower the deaths while we're there.
This is the saddest part of the whole thing to me (among many sad and tragic events and actions), that we INVADED another country. Yes I know all the arguments that have been brought to explain it. But plainly and simply we invaded another country that had not attacked us, it had only threatened.... no wait it didn't do that either.... it just puffed up its chest and disregarded the UN, which members of this very administration has described as "anti US" and weak and worthless.
Back to my point, we are the great democracy ever on this planet (or so we think) and we invaded another country outright something we had never done before. (Yes, we have supported overthows, coups, and the like but it was alway behind the scenes which is a somewhat common if unspoken action in this world.)
I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
LAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5 Reply 18, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2948 times:
Lets see the long term effects of this surge. I dont understand the numbers, apparently the number of US troops are down, but just a couple of days ago I heard that by Nov. 1st of this year, it had already become the deadliest year for American troops. It seems like the insurgents get driven out of a city, only to regroup and gain support in another part of Iraq, it happened in Fallujah, and in Al Anbar province. Until then, we can never be too positive about the future in Iraq, the ongoing violence will continue, secretarianism is even greater in Iraq that ever before, and the country is bound to be in a full fledged civil war, if it isnt already. I think the Troops have done all that has been asked of them, but it seems like a lost cause.
"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
UH60FtRucker From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 20, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2922 times:
Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 18): but just a couple of days ago I heard that by Nov. 1st of this year, it had already become the deadliest year for American troops.
I'm not interested in getting into another debate about Iraq. No one's opinion is going to change. But I just want to make a a point of clarification: The answer is both are true. Yes this was the deadliest year, but charting the causalities on a graph, shows that the first half was very deadly. While the second half featured the dramatic decrease in deaths.
May was the deadliest month this year, and this was when we went on the large offensive against insurgents in Anbar and Baghdad. The sharp decreases followed this new offensive, coupled with the surge. The trick is continuing the success we're having. And most importantly, real progress needs to be made on the political arena inside Iraq.
LAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5 Reply 21, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2912 times:
Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 20): The answer is both are true. Yes this was the deadliest year, but charting the causalities on a graph, shows that the first half was very deadly. While the second half featured the dramatic decrease in deaths.
With pre-surge troop levels and an attack on Iran.
It's becoming increasingly difficult for me to get excited about "developments" like this. This war has done potentially irreversible damage to Iraqi society. It has virtually decimated civil infrastructure in the country, created massive external and internal population displacements and done virtually nothing to improve the prospects for peace in the Middle East. There's virtually no plausible post-war (assuming it ends) situation I can think of at this point that would make me concede this war was worth its cost.
Falcon84 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 23, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2876 times:
Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter): On the one hand, I don't want to applaud too loudly out of perhaps a superstition of celebrating too early.
Agreed. I am concerened what happens when the forces are deployed out. Will the insurgents get a foothold back into Baghdad? I think, for now, we leave well enough alone, forget about Presidential politics, and leave the troop level where it's at thorugh at last 2008. I fear if we drop the troop levels, the bad guys can get back in.
Quoting B752fanatic (Reply 7): And yet 2007 was the deadliest year in US casualties? You think we are doing better over there?
It was John F. Kennedy that said "The cost of freedom is always high, and Americans have always paid it." Achieving something significant militarily, like driving out Al Qaeda from Baghdad, doesnt come at a cheap price. If we are to be successful, and turn the tide for good in Iraq, it will come at a price. We owe it to the Iraqi people.
L-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29516 posts, RR: 59 Reply 24, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2876 times:
Quoting B752fanatic (Reply 7): How would you feel if for example in the Pacific ocean you have instead of a a huge mass of ocean, a continent, lets name it Pacifica continent, in which a country there is called "Pacifica state". The country is thrice the geographical size of the US. Has 3 Billion people, the GDP per capita is 5 times the American, the military is the biggest in the world, has more wealth than the European nations and the US combined, and they are labeled by the US and the vast majority of the world as the "world's police".
Why aren't you just calling this country "CHINA"???
I am not going to put a lot of stock into these numbers, but I do hope that we are on the down-swing.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
25 B752fanatic: What guarantee do we have that we will totally eliminate Al Qaeda from Iraq? If what our presence there only fuels more hatred towards the west. No c
26 Baroque: And when the invasion is compounded by a disgraceful attempt at administration of the conquered country, there is a great deal to recover from. It is
27 CF188A: that is political slang for "we are screwed , we need to get out of here soon , and hey .. I will just tell everyone we have captured or killed or dr
28 Falcon84: Only idiots ask for guarantees in life. There are only two guarantees in life, that you are born, and you die. Those are the guarentees i'll give you
29 Gunsontheroof: It's nice to tell the Iraqi people what we owe them, but it seems the majority of them have wanted U.S. forces out of their country for quite some ti
30 B752fanatic: Man, I tell you, getting involved in the middle east is a very delicate subject, even since Napoleon's conquest of Egypt it has shown that they despi
31 Gunsontheroof: There are too many cards in each side's respective hands there for either of them to get too aggressive. That said, I think the decline of U.S. power
32 LAXspotter: , that is something I never understood as If the Iraqis are going to greet Americans with open arms . Most Iraqis, Sunni, Shiite, and even Kurds view
33 Baroque: It did not go that well with either Caesar or Mark Anthony come to that. Probably the success of Alexander is exaggerated a bit too as the stories we
34 B752fanatic: Please, I beg you don't be so defensive. I read your comment and you said that liberty has its price, but how long do you think we should be in Iraq
35 Gunsontheroof: One of the objectives of this invasion (and without question the main reason the U.S. stood by while Saddam crushed Shiite uprisings after the first
36 B752fanatic: Exactly!, do you know why? Because in order to become an Empire you ought not to have competition. FDR was to my belief the greatest leader of our na
37 Lobster: Just out of curiosity have you been to Iraq? Have you spoken to an Iraqi who currently lives in Iraq? Or just getting you knowledge from our wonderfu
38 ME AVN FAN: an end to the violence and continual bloodshed and a curbing of extremist movements might be a positive factor to have an end of the US occupation. A
39 UAL777: If you think that then you are an idiot. The troops are executing a MAJOR strategy shift enacted by Patraeus and it is working. The Iraqi people are
40 Zak: " target=_blank>http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g5...x.png all you can say is that this year has been horrible and there was a month of sub annual a
41 ME AVN FAN: it anyway would be Al Qaeda ! or maybe el Qaeda International (Iraq) LLC - and in smaller script : a member of the elQaeda International Group - Not
42 ME AVN FAN: - Not really, they just are realizing that the REALLY evil guys are those "religiously inspired" extremists and that those US-Americans are the lesse