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Thread: Learn your history: Iraq circa 1917

  1. #1

    Learn your history: Iraq circa 1917

    [QUOTE][I]"To the people of Baghdad: We come here not as conquerors but as liberators, to free you from generations of tyranny."
    -General Stanley Maude upon Arrival in Baghdad, 1917. [/I] [/QUOTE]

    What happened you ask?

    The Insurgency started against the British in Fallujah, and the British responded by shelling the town into oblivion (destroying an estimated 1/2 of the town). After that the British surrounded Najaf under the pretenses that they wanted a Shiite prelate who was an insurrectionist handed over. In the Houst of Commons, Lloyd George stood up and said "If the British army leaves Iraq, there will be a civil war."

    "I imagine," the correspondent for The Times wrote on 23 September 1919, "that the view held by many English people about Mesopotamia is that the local inhabitants will welcome us because we have saved them from the Turks, and that the country only needs developing to repay a large expenditure of English lives and English money. Neither of these ideals will bear much examination... From the political point of view we are asking the Arab to exchange his pride and independence for a little Western civilisation, the profits of which must be largely absorbed by the expenses of administration.

    The public, a distinguished military analyst wrote from Baghdad, had been led "into a trap from which it will be hard to escape with dignity and honor."

    "They have been tricked into it by a steady withholding of information," he said. "The Baghdad communiqués are belated, insincere, incomplete. Things have been far worse than we have been told, our administration more bloody and inefficient than the public knows."

    He added: "We are today not far from a disaster." Sound familiar? That was T. E. Lawrence — Lawrence of Arabia — writing in The Sunday Times of London on Aug. 22, 1920, about the British occupation of what was then called Mesopotamia.

    Also in 1920, another insurgency broke out in the area of Fallujah, where Sheikh Dhari killed a British officer, Colonel Leachman, and cut rail traffic between Fallujah and Baghdad. The British advanced towards Fallujah and inflicted "heavy punishment" on the tribe. For Fallujah, of course, read Fallujah. And the location of the heavy punishment? Today it is known as Khan Dari - and it was the scene of the first killing of a US soldier by a roadside bomb in 2003.

    I'm sure you all can see where this is going. Those who do not heed the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them.

  2. #2
    Jets Insider VIP
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    your sister bringing home more history lessons from school??

  3. #3
    [QUOTE=Come Back to NY]your sister bringing home more history lessons from school??[/QUOTE]

    No, this time schools in session and Professor Bitonti is at the podium. ;)

    Don't nod off!

  4. #4
    [QUOTE=Come Back to NY]your sister bringing home more history lessons from school??[/QUOTE]

    Wow, you sure told him. :rolleyes:

    The point Bit makes is legit: Learn from past mistakes or you will repeat them. If Bush & Co. had been smarter about that fact, there would likely NOT be all the talk, criticism and downright unhappiness with the "New Vietnam" a large portion of the American people now think we're in today (not an idea I support, for the record, but one that is becoming more prevalent by the day). Look at the approval ratings for the War, and for Bush himself for the proof.

  5. #5
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    [QUOTE=Warfish]Wow, you sure told him. :rolleyes:

    The point Bit makes is legit: Learn from past mistakes or you will repeat them. If Bush & Co. had been smarter about that fact, there would likely NOT be all the talk, criticism and downright unhappiness with the "New Vietnam" a large portion of the American people now think we're in today (not an idea I support, for the record, but one that is becoming more prevalent by the day). Look at the approval ratings for the War, and for Bush himself for the proof.[/QUOTE]

    I'd rather look at results then polls....the lesson from history is don't let muslim terrorists or muslim terrorist leaders sit around unimpeded as they prepare to kill America/Americans...you look at the polls- I'll concern myself with thwarted terrorist attacks against this nation after officials act upon intelligence- something the previous adminsitration did not do and as a result we are paying a heavy price.....that is "learing from mistakes"...

  6. #6
    [QUOTE]the lesson from history is don't let muslim terrorists or muslim terrorist leaders sit around unimpeded as they prepare to kill America/Americans...[/QUOTE]

    Finally I agree with CBTNY> We must learn from the mistakes of Reagan and Papa Bush who armed the Mujahadeen and ignored that country after the Russians were defeated setting the stage for the development of the Taliban. Dont arm people who are likely to become enemies in the future! They just might use your own weopans against you!

  7. #7
    [QUOTE=Come Back to NY]I'd rather look at results then polls....the lesson from history is don't let muslim terrorists or muslim terrorist leaders sit around unimpeded as they prepare to kill America/Americans...you look at the polls- I'll concern myself with thwarted terrorist attacks against this nation after officials act upon intelligence- something the previous adminsitration did not do and as a result we are paying a heavy price.....that is "learing from mistakes"...[/QUOTE]

    It's all well and good to ignore the polls....to a point. But you cannot ignore a growing and substantial segment of your population growing increasingly demanding about the end of U.S. action. Like it or not, the will of the people will rule the day, and if enough people become frustrated or angry or just think we're losing badly enough, the War will become untenable.

    The problem with you Come Back is you think I'm arguing FOR Bitonti, and I'm not. Not everyone who agrees with some part or one piece of logic of an anti-War argument is "the enemy".

    The fact is the Bush SHOULD have been prepared to stop or limit the American people from looking at this War as "another Vietnam" as part of his overall strategy for winning what he knew (or should have known) would be a long, drawn out, costly in cash, overseas war when the implication or suggestion of imminent danger to US citizens waned. People have a much shorter memory than you may think, and while we all remember 9/11, the feeling of direct danger passes, and passes fast. Human nature.

    Regardless of if you like it or not, watching and "massaging" the will of the people in a Democracy IS a vital part to waging War, even the most rightious and justified of Wars, in a Democratic state. Politicians who ignore that fact do so at their own peril.

  8. #8
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    [QUOTE=Warfish]It's all well and good to ignore the polls....to a point. But you cannot ignore a growing and substantial segment of your population growing increasingly demanding about the end of U.S. action. Like it or not, the will of the people will rule the day, and if enough people become frustrated or angry or just think we're losing badly enough, the War will become untenable.

    The problem with you Come Back is you think I'm arguing FOR Bitonti, and I'm not. Not everyone who agrees with some part or one piece of logic of an anti-War argument is "the enemy".

    The fact is the Bush SHOULD have been prepared to stop or limit the American people from looking at this War as "another Vietnam" as part of his overall strategy for winning what he knew (or should have known) would be a long, drawn out, costly in cash, overseas war when the implication or suggestion of imminent danger to US citizens waned. People have a much shorter memory than you may think, and while we all remember 9/11, the feeling of direct danger passes, and passes fast. Human nature.

    Regardless of if you like it or not, watching and "massaging" the will of the people in a Democracy IS a vital part to waging War, even the most rightious and justified of Wars, in a Democratic state. Politicians who ignore that fact do so at their own peril.[/QUOTE]

    I am not assuming anything- I am more concerned with recent historical events and the impact they caused by what America did or did not do opposed to those almost a century ago when we were not involved....

    Regardless of whether you like it or not the anti-war crowd was ready and armed to liken this to Vietnam at the drop of a hat....yet it is nothing like Vietnam...a few things garnered from readings this weekend;

    Vietnam was a nationalist movement led by Ho Chi Mihn, a vietnemeese nationalist....who is the Iraqi nationalist leading the insurgency movement??

    The NVA was backed by superpowers such as the Soviets and Chinese....which superpowers are actively backing the Iraqi insurgency today???

    The Iraqi's have had free elections and are in the process of putting together a national constitution...when did a divded Vietnam do the similar? (and I say divided for an explicit reason).

    The mortality rated of American GI's in Vietnam was 5800 a year- in almost three and a half years we've lost 1800 soldiers in Iraq.

    Iraq has a history of terrorism and, as pointed out in the 9-11 commission, had ties and associations with AQ.....need I go further about Vietnam?

  9. #9
    this thread has sort of gotten sidetracked.

    Forget about comparing Iraq to Vietnam - How about comparing Iraq to Iraq? What are we doing that's going to be successful where the British empire failed?

    Read the history books, this whole play has been acted out before and the Westerners lost the first time. What is so different this time around? I don't think it's the Iraqi people.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=bitonti]this thread has sort of gotten sidetracked.

    Forget about comparing Iraq to Vietnam - How about comparing Iraq to Iraq? What are we doing that's going to be successful where the British empire failed?

    Read the history books, this whole play has been acted out before and the Westerners lost the first time. What is so different this time around? I don't think it's the Iraqi people.[/QUOTE]

    What's different??

    No more tyrannical dictator in charge in Baghdad....no more terrorist leader who, as he had so many times in the past, killed his own people and put down public "insurgencies" using mass executions, chemical weapons and the like......

  11. #11
    [QUOTE=Come Back to NY]I am not assuming anything- I am more concerned with recent historical events and the impact they caused by what America did or did not do opposed to those almost a century ago when we were not involved....

    Regardless of whether you like it or not the anti-war crowd was ready and armed to liken this to Vietnam at the drop of a hat....yet it is nothing like Vietnam...a few things garnered from readings this weekend;

    Vietnam was a nationalist movement led by Ho Chi Mihn, a vietnemeese nationalist....who is the Iraqi nationalist leading the insurgency movement??

    The NVA was backed by superpowers such as the Soviets and Chinese....which superpowers are actively backing the Iraqi insurgency today???

    The Iraqi's have had free elections and are in the process of putting together a national constitution...when did a divded Vietnam do the similar? (and I say divided for an explicit reason).

    The mortality rated of American GI's in Vietnam was 5800 a year- in almost three and a half years we've lost 1800 soldiers in Iraq.

    Iraq has a history of terrorism and, as pointed out in the 9-11 commission, had ties and associations with AQ.....need I go further about Vietnam?[/QUOTE]

    The fault in your logic, as I see it, is simple. You're raising facst that make almost no difference to the average person. You are correct in all your points, I do not question them at all. But none of that matters in the grand scheme.

    Here is the only comparison that matters CB:

    If the majority of the American people believe we are in a no-win War, or a War that doesn't easily show direct, appreciable results, that will drag on for an extended period, costing more and more American taxpayer $$ and American lives, the people will not allow the War to continue.

    It won't make a difference what you or I think. We both know more about the situation that the average, non-political-forum American citizen. You can argue till you're blue in the face that it's "not Vietnam", that we "are winning", that "It's to protect us from future attacks" and so on.....but if the faceless mass of "The People" start to think we cannot win, that the costs are too high, that the war is too long or the results not tangible enough, well......then it's all over my friend, all over but the History channel documentaries.

    So be secure that you are likely quite right in your specific logic and facts. But that logic, and those facts, won't save this endeavor, the War, if the general public starts to think it unwinable or too costly. THAT, above all else, seems to be where your side is failing today. Yes, the left is going to use the "Vietnam" bugaboo to argue their position. But ignoring it because it's inaccurate won't matter if people start to belive it.

  12. #12
    [QUOTE=Come Back to NY]What's different??

    No more tyrannical dictator in charge in Baghdad....no more terrorist leader who, as he had so many times in the past, killed his own people and put down public "insurgencies" using mass executions, chemical weapons and the like......[/QUOTE]


    yes and guess what - The British said the same things to the Iraqis in 1917 about the Turks.

    Read my post again if you have to... They told the people of Iraq they were
    being liberated not occupied. What did the Iraqis do? Get violent and stubborn and pined away for the days when the Turks ruled them. In the end the British could not hold Iraq just like we cannot hold Iraq. They say there is nothing new under the sun - this is not an exception.

  13. #13
    bump!

    Those who do not heed the mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them!

  14. #14
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    The fact that 2 things separated by 80+ years both happened in Iraq does not guarantee a good analogy OR history lesson. Then again, maybe its me... :rolleyes:

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