November 4th, 2011

Who lost Iraq?

Easy, says Krauthammer: Barack Obama.

[NOTE: The query "Who lost Iraq?" is an echo of the famous question asked about China when it went Communist in the late 40s.]

21 Responses to “Who lost Iraq?”

  1. Artfldgr Says:

    It’s called Throwing the game… its a Chicago tradition, ever since the World series scandal in 1919….

    (though i read two sets of stories one with black sox, the other with white sox… any baseball people want to set me straight?)

  2. Bob from Virginia Says:

    “Losing Iraq” was the most predictable act of the Obama administration. After all wasn’t the fall of Viet-Nam the greatest day for American leftists in US history? Wouldn’t any self respecting lefty would jump at an opportunity to relive those glory days? Soon we can expect to receive a version of Kissenger’s speech upon the fall of Viet-Nam. Something along the lines of “we’ll be more mature in our foreign policy now”, during which we will be sympathetically reminded by our great leader that he warned us this would happen. He may even slip in that this proves he is smarter than George Bush.

    It’s Afghanistan where Obama is showing his real genius by providing a public withdrawal date for the surge and trying to get the ISI (the ones Admiral Mullen identified as terrorists enablers last week) to negotiate with the Haqqani network. This is the equivalent of Roosevelt asking Hitler to negotiate a peace with Japan during WW2 while announcing the withdrawal of our troops from France a month after D-Day. Apparently Obama decided on a Decent Interval strategy for both Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Obama IS the smartest man to ever occupy the White House, he is just not on our side.

  3. Artfldgr Says:

    ANd this report on who we will be depending on..

    In “Lost in Transition: The Dark Side of Emerging Adulthood,” Christian Smith and his co-authors recount the results of their decade-long study of a representative sample of Americans aged 18-23. Through in-depth interviews, they examined their subjects’ lives and concluded that an alarming percentage of young people are highly materialistic, commitment averse, disengaged from political and civic life, sexually irresponsible, often heavily intoxicated and morally confused. In fact, the authors contend, they lack even the vocabulary to think in moral terms.

    think they will hunker down and do whats right in the face of adversity, or just give up?

  4. Brad Says:

    Unless we have some secret plans for their resources that I’m not aware of, I’m going to say to that question:

    Who cares?

    Far as I’m concerned we were there entirely too long in the first place. And I don’t consider the US a single bit more secure today than I did back when we first invaded. I thought the whole thing was about WMD at the time. Foolish me.

  5. Terry Hoover Says:


    Agree or disagree with the war and the reasons behind it, once you are in a war the only logical position is to win it. Serious countries do not choose to lose wars. I detest my generation as only a member of it can. Ever since we came of age we’ve chosen to behave as an unserious nation. It really is depressing to see us foresake what was bequesthed to us, and betray those we ask to protect that legacy.

  6. Occam's Beard Says:

    Art, the team was the White Sox. After the scandal, they were dubbed the “Black Sox.” There isn’t and never was a team with that actual name.

  7. Richard Aubrey Says:

    Wrong question. Should be threw away in order to lose it because that’s what he wanted and the dems always do.
    Bastards, ,all of them.
    The US military can defeat any force on Earth except the dem party.

  8. Bob from Virginia Says:

    Brad, the war against terror is a war against the political culture of the middle east. We can kill a million Bin Ladens and not be a bit safer unless that culture is changed.

    The media did a disservice by stressing that the Iraq war was solely about WMD. Bush gave three objectives for the invasion of Iraq: WMD, punish Saddam for supporting terrorism and finally promote the democratization of the middle east. IMHO he was successful in all these pursuits to a degree. As Lee Smith pointed out in The Strong Horse most of the regimes in the middle east operated as fronts or enablers for terrorist organizations. Due to the Bush strategy and the recognition of the source of the problem, for the first time they realized that there would be a price to pay for it. This strategy was successful in Iraq and Libya and influential everywhere. Now Obama, as he did in Honduras, has joined the other side and will try to gasp defeat from the jaws of victory.

    You’re right Occam, he is worse than Buchanan.

    Terry Hoover, agreed. The landmark of contemporary America is immaturity. Soft times have produced a soft, even silly, people.

  9. expat Says:

    The Iraq war also had something to do with Saddam’s rather successful propaganda that our sanctions were killing people. When oil for food was implemented to alleviate the suffering of the people, Saddam turned it into a bribery fund, but this was not extensively reported in places like Germany. Had Saddam be allowed to continue there would have been a lot of international pressure to get rid of sanctions, and Saddam would have painted himself as the strong Muslim leader who got the US to back down. He probably figured we would diminish AQ and then he could take over. Clinton got it right when he said that Saddam was the weapon of mass destruction.

    It’s interesting that many conservatives are now criticizing the Rino McCain, but he pushed for Bush not to give in to the turncoat dems, and he was the strongest voice supporting the surge. It’s one thing to disagree with McCain on specific issues, but is quite another to ignore his contributions on Iraq and porkbarrel spending. He was also right about Putin and the reset policy of Obama. I doubt that Christine O’Donnell would have ever had so much influence.

  10. Artfldgr Says:

    thsnks occam…
    silly i dont know that, eh?

  11. Brad Says:

    I’m not unhappy we overthrow Hussein, and I could grant, for the sake of argument that WMD’s were not just a pretext but instead that our congress critters and the Jr. White House actually believed they were there or under imminent development. However, even given my first point, and granting my second , we were warned that you can’t impose democracy on people. They have to want it more than they value their tribe or their religion. And I think we’ve been near total failures at that, as could have been predicted.

    Iraq has lots of oil, which I’m convinced will become an increasingly scarce resource over the next 3 to 10 years. Afghanistan has lots of those rare earth metals. I can’t see any other legitimate reasons for a nearly totally broke country with a totally different culture and history to spend vast amounts of treasure occupying these two places with no immediate “real” war on the horizon other than to secure resources.

    Heck, if we attack Iran that will be the closest thing to a real war (as opposed to groups who are only able to mount guerrilla attacks) since probably Vietnam. And yet we don’t need a land base for that, since supposedly we will only be using planes and our multiple supercarrier groups should be able to handle it.

  12. Bob from Virginia Says:

    Expat, Also Saddam had plans to resume his WMD program once sanctions were lifted.

    Reference McCain: he was and is right about so much. He is still one of the better geopolitical thinkers in the Senate (now there’s a challenge). Let’s give Lieberman a nod too, he also supported Bush and the surge, was right and paid a heavy price for it. He is the last of the Scoop Jackson Democrats.

    I think you underestimate Christine O’Donnell’s potential influence. She is the only candidate who could turn the opposition into a toad (reference her witchcraft days).

  13. Artfldgr Says:

    Agree or disagree with the war and the reasons behind it

    who said that the reasons are real when given? think of it…

    everyone keeps returning to reset..

    we discuss obama lying and the left contriving reality and facts and so on.

    then we inhale, and forget that, and then start going on how all that we see is honest… not influenced by foregners, and states… and so on.

    then we inhale and forget, and so on all over again… its AMAZING to watch..

    ie. if you know a fact about the subject that completely contradicts or changes the whole thing… you know that the other person is spackling the holes with their imagination, the zietgeist, the pc message, etc..

    what they ARENT doing is talking anything that is real, has bearing, makes sense, or even in the ball park.. except to the others who dont know, dont question, and feel that if they all agree, it magic how right it is.

    imagine sitting in reverend wrights church and hearing how the god da mn america had invented a desease and unleashed it upon the black man and others… and so on..

    but you know the historical admitting of the Russians through Gorbachev, and that that whole thing was contrived…

    but the people who dont know, dont even wonder, they just parrot and pat themselves on the back for having the same answer and thinking that makes it right.

    people talk about the war as if the presidents and leaders had an intimate conversation with 250 million people and external people of the world openly and was revealing the plan..

    unless you question the sanity of such and the unworkability of such, you might just sit around discussing these talking points created for consumption..

    i sit here and i have even watched as people talk about the cuban missle crisis… and NONE of them bring up the ace in the hole kennedy had… what was that? a spies information.. we know the name, we know that without them, we would not have had the ammunition to fight or threaten given that they claimed they were short range.. but the defectors information showed that they were not.

    so at what point are we going to stop revisioning? getting the facts straight, admit we dont know and do some leg work?

    as far as i can tell now, and thorugh history, never.. which is why the quote in the other thread that i put ??? on… bet no one can tell me who it is without cheating and looking it up…

  14. Artfldgr Says:

    Iraq has lots of oil, which I’m convinced will become an increasingly scarce resource over the next 3 to 10 years.

    and where did you form that, and so on?

    Hubbert peak theory?

    The Hubbert peak theory posits that for any given geographical area, from an individual oil-producing region to the planet as a whole, the rate of petroleum production tends to follow a bell-shaped curve. It is one of the primary theories on peak oil.

    however, so far, its been malthusian in its history… the first to use oil and things like that were the egyptions… (they threw away the gas and such as it caused problems starting fires)

    this peak thing was the Global warming come climate change bs of the past..

    whats missing are little details about the OTHER side of the argument. did you knwo that there WAS another side and that there WAS work done to show it?

    but its a strategic bs story… its what has granted other states control of the US economic engine.. under the idea that if the US holds on to this, and he world runs out, we then will have what?

    but if the reality is differnt, then we are waiting for something that will never come and bearing the negatives for no reason and no future gain.

    so again.. how do you know that that is the peak? that we will run out? do you know how many times people have stood up and declared that..

    if it wasnt for the fact its socialist science, we would realize that the predictions are false, and stop listening. you dont listen to the end of the worlders who claim god will do it? why do you believe the end of the worlders who claim the same, mark dates and times the same, are wrong the same, but believed each time as you find out facts by shopping for the ones you like when you hear it and saving it for reuse.

    even wiki games you

    M. King Hubbert created and first used the models behind peak oil in 1956 to accurately predict that United States oil production would peak between 1965 and 1970.[1] His logistic model, now called Hubbert peak theory, and its variants have described with reasonable accuracy the peak and decline of production from oil wells, fields, regions, and countries,[2] and has also proved useful in other limited-resource production-domains

    anyone other than me know of the drilling experiments that ound oil more than 7 miles down?

    now… please tell me… how did the biological material that we THINK makes oil get that far down? and two… the fact you can make oil with heat and pressure and just methane… a common gas in mining..

    note that if you believe hubbart, then the state will slow down, and make him seem real…

    but over the years, did US production slow beause we ran out of oil, but because the democrats are preventing drilling, new refineries, competition, etc.

    GREAT Way for them to make maximum money by restricting supply… no?

    go to wiki and there is no real source of the real history, or the other research and such.

    after all, scientific soci alism prognostications are always right… no?

    by the way… the SAME or similar is true of nuclear… take a look.. the US is blessed with a huge amount of that material compared to others. so we could supply ourselves and such easily for over a 100 years… (by then, as with oil we may have fusion…) and the whole we cant dispose of it is a farce… we have space travel but we wont be able to shoot it to the sun for 5000 years? talk about a big money scam… if we were promoting regression (progressive) then we would be where in space flight in 100 years?

    hows this

    its from 1974

    There is no question that drilling in the 15,000 to 20,000 ft. range is justified. Last year 31% of the wildcats were successful, which is high by most standards. The real question is, how much deeper than 20,000 ft. can we drill profitably?

    now here is something interesting..
    the deepest hole in the world..
    In the 1980s, it was just over six miles deep, 31,911 feet, to be exact. This was a drill hole made on the Kola Peninsula in Russia by workers looking for oil.

    but the 1974 paper said that it cant be that deep…

    This hole is 2,909 feet deeper than Mount Everest is high. The Russians are not alone in going to such depths to get oil. During the 1970s, two holes were drilled in Oklahoma, each over 30,000 feet deep.

    30,000 feet… 6 miles give or take..

    The Russians drilling the Kola well since 1970 and have reached a crust depth of 40,226 feet, a record that’s never been broken.

    and have found oil…

    so THEY know that oil is made by more than one process… not JUST the one on the surface.

    now… here is the big key and since you believe peak oil.. tell me, how did the oil get to 20,000 feet (4 miles or so) when the deepest fossils ever found are not even 2 miles deep..

    The World’s Deepest Dinosaur Finding —
    2256 Metres Below The Seabed

    the funniest or saddest is that the theory of it not being a fossile feul was buried (original work was by a russian ukranian researcher… remember the oil feilds hitler wanted?)…

    that was suppressed… (and before you say thats impossible go ask some common things about mcarthy and such. heck they have him on commitees he never had a thing with!)

    but in 1980s it came up and faded, and again in 2008.. and so on.

    study from the University of Washington has shown that hydrocarbons enriched in the isotope C-13 bubble-up from the ocean floor in the hypothermal “Lost City” field along the mid-Atlantic ridge in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and 2,100 feet below the ocean surface. An excess of C-13 is believed to signify an abiotic origin, while a decrease in C-13 (compared to a mean natural isotopic abundance of around 1% for C-13, and 99% C-12) is associated with a biotic (biological) source. On Titan, there is evidence for the presence of more hydrocarbons than exist on Earth, where it is thought too cold for biological life to exist, and which thus cannot be invoked to explain their presence.

    maybe there are dinosaurs on titan?

    in the west we believe the US made aids, and that Victor bout was an american, and so on..
    but we also believe the biotic theory.

    but back before you and i was born, and from those drilling things in the 50s…

    the russians believe it is made deeper down and then like diamond snad other things it comes up to the surface (not directly liek dimonds… its a liquid and diamonds come up in kimberlite pipes)

    The biotic theory holds that petroleum is the result of cooking animal and plant remains in near-surface regions of the Earth over millennia, while the abiotic theory is that petroleum is produced by the natural forces of geology, as a result of chemical processes within the Earth. One of the main proponents of the abiotic theory was the great Russian chemist, Mendeleev who devised the Periodic table of the Chemical Elements, and thought that petroleum was formed by the reaction of water with metal, principally iron, carbides deep within the Earth. Indeed, the renowned French chemist, Bertholet produced a hydrocarbon oil artificially by the action of acids on steel – which contains iron carbides.

    Thomas Gold thought that bacteria present at depths of down to ca 8 km could feed on hydrocarbons emanating from greater depth. He also proposed that natural gas and indeed coal, were created continually within the earth by intrinsic geochemical processes. I have heard that the Russians are sufficiently confident about the abiotic theory that they are undertaking deep-drilling projects to access petroleum

    well, as i show above, he has his distance off as 3km is not very deep for well drilling even in the 80s..

    so… unless someone can say how it gets that far down… biotic is probably not the only point..

    ALSO… whats happening is that when they return to old wells, some of them have refilled to some degree… and not just better equipment.

    and also… the projections of peak oil didnt know about the oil under slate shelfs… it also asumed you cant get it out of tar sands.. and so on.

    and dont forget, a nuclear power plant and refinery can ASSEMBLE hydrocarbons and make oil.. IF ENERGY WAS CHEAP ENOUGH!

  15. J.J. formerly Jimmy J. Says:

    Artfldgr@11:29 “………..they examined their subjects’ lives and concluded that an alarming percentage of young people are highly materialistic, commitment averse, disengaged from political and civic life, sexually irresponsible, often heavily intoxicated and morally confused. In fact, the authors contend, they lack even the vocabulary to think in moral terms.”

    My memory isn’t all that great but looking back on the years 1951 to 1956 that would be a pretty good description of me and the other 18-23 year olds I knew. Yet, we finally grew up, matured, became responsible, etc. Each at a different pace. Young people are dumb, full of animal spirits, and have no sense of their own mortality. I am constantly amazed by the young men and women who are in our military forces today. They seem much more squared away than those of my era. Yes, the average OWS participant seems callow, uninformed, naive, stoned, etc. but they are a small part of our youth today. (I hope!)

    What we don’t have today that we had back in my era are good examples in academia and politics. Nor do we have reasonably objective journalism. The country is being constantly brainwashed by the MSM. There were two articles today from the AP trumpeting how much worse global warming is and how much more CO2 there is. They were both written by Seth Borenstein of the AP. Both pure propaganda. That is where things are worse today.
    We no longer have reporting of facts, it is agenda driven propaganda.

    Peak Oil: It’s a theory with some basis in fact, but the devil is in the details. Technology has made much more oil available and will make even more available in time. No one can really predict Peak Oil with any precision. Hubbert did an approximation based on what was known at the time. Things keep changing – as you point out.

    The biotic theory of oil production is well accepted, but the new theory that you are talking about – continuous formation of hydrocarbons from deep in the crust is gaining some adherents. However, much like climate change, much more data and study is necessary before we can make plans based on the theory.

    In the mean time we get very little oil from the ME. Our interest in the ME oil is that there is so much there they can control world prices. Losing supply anywhere drives prices up and we know what high oil/gasoline prices do to our economy. It is in our national interest to keep oil flowing everywhere. Thus our forward leaning posture in the ME. The crazy thing is that the enviro-whackos have stunted our oil production here. We are our own worst enemies – at least insofar as we kowtow to the enviros.

  16. Richard Aubrey Says:

    Cute thing about “imposing” democracy. First off, the locals can vote themselves out of it. End of imposition. Pretty simple, hey?
    Second, given that the Iraqis had a pretty standard parliamentary democracy “imposed” on them, one that works except for financial responsibility in much of the western world, and American and other security aid, and money, and so forth, it’s a pretty well-scrubbed test tube for the experiment of mixing Muslims with democracy. The variables such as crushing poverty, tyrannies all over, ungovernable parts of the country harboring wannabe takeover artists, have all been steamed out of the glassware, leaving only two compounds. Islam and democracy. Which means what we see happen is going to be a pretty accurate version of what happens when you mix Muslims and democracy. Whatever happens, you won’t be able to point to contaminants in the reagents.
    And if they vote themseives a nasty, repressive, misogynistic theocracy, we can take it to the bank that that’s how Islam and democracy work when not contaminated by other things like, for example, the US constitution.
    I hope, given the sacrifices of American and other militaries, and their families, that the Iraqis keep a liberal democracy. Not to mention my hopes for the Iraqi people who don’t deserve to be run according to Islam. Nobody does, unless they really earn it by being rotten, come to think of it.
    But if they turn back to the seventh century, an immensely valuable datum will be available. Presuming people don’t turn their heads in order to avoid the lesson.

  17. Brad Says:

    I don’t write books here.
    If you want to know where I get my information from it’s a mixture of places but three main ones:

    Altogether I’ve probably spent a few hundred hours on peak oil at these places and others such as “Dieoff Debunked”.

    I’m convinced :
    A. The odds of large amounts of hydrocarbons being produced via natural geochemical (as opposed to biological)processes in places accessable to humans
    is rather low.
    B. Given this and the behavior of the oil companies (increasingly making larger and larger rigs, deeper and deeper in the water, lack of superhuge oil field discoveries etc) I’m convinced peak oil is either here, or imminent.

  18. expat Says:

    I don’t think we know right now how much oil there is. What we do know is that demand is increasing, which means that we are well served by exploring new sources of energy and finding ways to get the most from every barrel of oil. Our problem right now is that the whole energy discussion is being driven by sadomasochistic flakes who want to take us back a few centuries and by moralistic preeners such as Gore who keep adding unnecessary square footage to their houses and claiming they can be offset by a curly lightbulb.

    What we really need is some serious thinking about happiness and the good life. We need to become aware of what we don’t need so that we can be grateful for but not wasting of things that go beyond basic necessities. As a society, we need to recognize people for their quiet common decency and their contributions to society, not for their granite countertops, electronic toys, and designer handbags. Only then can we rationally talk about things like peak oil and energy policy. Right now, we suffer from a kind of whiplash, being jerked from one extreme to the other.

  19. texexec Says:


    Going back to your first post…yes, you ARE foolish…and naive.

    I’ll add another reason we went to war against Iraq that others above haven’t mentioned…that Saddam had violated 14 UN resolutions, the intentions of which were to keep him from attacking his neighbors, including Israel, and building a nuclear capability.

    If you think we could fight and win a war with Iran with just air power, you don’t know diddly squat about military strategy.

  20. Richard Aubrey Says:

    Define “win”. If we take WW II as a model for winning, we don’t see many similar examples since Rome destroyed Carthage. After the Brits and their allies defeated Napoleon, for example, they restored the Bourbons. After WW I, the Allies had a short-term, localized occupation and left the Germans to do it again. Not a good idea.
    Point is, if we use airpower against Iran, slowing down their nuke capacity, we buy time. As QE I used to say, we can take advantage of the passage of time. Something useful might happen. Or not, in which case, we start in again.
    We may need to do a WW II style campaign, pounding them flat, killing millions of them, and sitting on them for more than half a century, remaking their society. Or we can just mess them up in terms of their navy, their airforce, bomb the security force HQ and leave the Army alone, destroy their refineries, and let them deal with each other instead of giving the rest of us trouble.
    Or we can wait until they do something terrible, and then be reproached for mindless vengeance.

  21. Wm Lawrence Says:

    From Brad

    “who cares”

    I do. I am enraged at the thought of the sacrifices our soldiers have made being thrown away for political reasons and the subject of those sacrifices being handed over to the most fanatical of the 7th century death cultists in existence.

    “I don’t consider the US a single bit more secure…”

    I do and will as long as we retain some means of control over the places the jihadists use for training and organizing we will continue to be.

    “I thought the whole thing was about WMD At the time”

    Comes from listening exclusively to the MSM or Daily Kos. I recall the reasons given in the announcement that we were going to war and it seems there were a couple of dozen, any of which would be sufficient. Furthermore the WMD argument has been distorted to mean only weapons physically existing on the ground. I was just as concerned about Saddam and his intentions which he had been clearly signaling for decades and which he would have been working to achieve had it not have been for the otherwise useless and highly corruptible UN sanctions regime, which he was working to undermine.

    Invading Iraq also gave us a base in the heart of the middle east which enraged our enemies and turned it into an effective trap. Think of it as a roach motel for terrorists. Without Iraq and Afghanistan we would have had to chase them all over the globe.

    Now we are leaving, they will probably fall under the sway of Iran and we will be back on defense trying to shut down new training camps with inadequate intel and no physical access and waiting for our buildings to start falling down again, and Iran probably will have nukes. We have had troops in Europe and east Asia for nearly 70years and they have effectively damped down the periodic tendency to kill each other off in droves. what is the hurry to desert this mission?

    “silly me”

    No comment.

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