Another General Speaks: War is Lost

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Nabuchodonosor, Jun 5, 2007.

  1. Another General Speaks: War is Lost

    Tue, 2007-06-05
    Retired Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez commanded U.S. forces during the first year of the Iraq war. In “his first interview since he retired last year,” Sanchez has said that the war in Iraq is lost, and the best outcome America can hope for is to “stave off defeat.” From his remarks after a recent speech in San Antonio:

    “I think if we do the right things politically and economically with the right Iraqi leadership we could still salvage at least a stalemate, if you will — not a stalemate but at least stave off defeat,” Sanchez told the San Antonio Express-News. “It’s also kind of important for us to answer the question, ‘What is victory?’, and at this point I’m not sure America really knows what victory is.” […]

    “I am absolutely convinced that America has a crisis in leadership at this time and we’ve got to do whatever we can to help the next generation of leaders do better than we have done over the past five years,” Sanchez said, “better than what this cohort of political and military leaders have done.”

    Sanchez “is the highest-ranking former military leader yet to suggest the Bush administration has fallen short in Iraq.” In April, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) also said that at this stage, the war in Iraq “can only be won diplomatically, politically and economically“:

    “I believe…that this war is lost, and this surge is not accomplishing anything, as is shown by the extreme violence in Iraq this week,” Reid told journalists. […]

    “I know I was the odd guy out at the White House, but I told him at least what he needed to hear … I believe the war at this stage can only be won diplomatically, politically and economically.”

    At the time, the right wing viciously attacked Reid, calling him “an embarrassment” and charging that his comments were “very, very close to treason.” But since that time, other generals, in addition to Sanchez, have spoken out against the war.

    Nevertheless, conservatives continue to pound the issue. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has threatened that if a vote of no-confidence on Alberto Gonzales is brought to the floor, he may bring an amendment on “whether the Iraq War is actually ‘lost’ as Reid has suggested.”
  2. I think he asks a good question, "What is victory?" Hard to know if you won or lost without answering that.

    Clearly the surge plan has been a disaster. The main surge has been in US deaths. It is madness to put our troops in this situation when we apparently haven't done anything to stop the flow of increasingly sophisticated munitions from Iran.

    Plan B, ie pull troops back to secure garrisons and let the Iraqis kill each other, is looking more and more attractive. When the assessment of the surge is produced in the fall, it is inevitable that some form of Plan B will be the outcome. Why wait and get more troops killed? To prevent Bush embarrassment?
  3. They (Bush administration) are already making noises that September is too early to tell if the surge worked. Their main excuse is that some of the troops have not yet been deployed. They're just trying to drag this on as long as possible.
  4. Brandonf

    Brandonf ET Sponsor

    The main surge has not been in US Deaths. Look what is happening right now in al Anbar Province, which until recently was FAR more dangerous than Bagdad and its surrounding areas. Do not hold me to this exact number, but at one point al Anbar accounting for something like 20% of the US Troops in Iraq and 30% of the casualties. The exact number might be off, but the ratio is not. Things have dramatically changed in al Anbar since the surge, and we have gone from around 50 attacks PER day to less only a few successful ones per week. This has been done by also involving the locals and respecting their tribal customs etc etc..but the surge is working in some places.
  5. I say this with total respect for the troops and what they have accomplished, but so what. Are the results in al anbar or anywhere else worth the cost in lives of our soldiers? How is this different from the type of nation-building exercise that republicans rightly criticized Bill clinton for?

    People don't join the Reserves to spend years as policemen/targets in al anbar. We have proved to my satisfaction that within the limits of how many troops we are willing to commit and the tactics our leaders will sanction, we are not going to stop either the sunni or shia violence. We are just prolonging the inevitable. I say let the shia, the majority, impose their own brand of pacification on the sunnis, who have been the major instigators of the insurrection.
  6. This president and his administration have much to answer for, not to mention the complete responsibility for every wasted life in this trumped up fiasco. Their incompetence borders on criminal. Every single troop that has died, died for absolutely nothing, other than some idiotic notion of nation building.
    The president calls himself a religious man. If there is a God Mr. have a reservation in Hell.
  7. "Another General Speaks: War is Lost"

    All I've heard is the talk of losers, step up folks, what's was the better plan after 911? Don't just do something, stand there?
  8. Catching Osama Bin Laden, Mullah Omar, destroying Al-Qaeda and Taliban sounds like a good idea in retrospect. Of course the idea is so original and innovative that no one could have thought of it on 9/12/2001.