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When should the troops come home?

zoebartlett

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I hope this can be a peaceful thread. I hesitated starting it because there are so many views on this, and it could get political pretty quickly. I love political threads, by the way, but I want to follow the rules. Having said that...

When do you think the troops (no matter what country they're from) should come home? Bin Laden and Hussein are no longer here. Obviously they didn't work alone and they have plenty of followers, but hopefully local police forces can take over.

Do our troops have a duty to stay overseas or should they come home right away?
 

ksinger

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Other than the fact that for Iraq, they never should have gone in the first place (Afghanistan is another issue - hunting bin Laden was always a worthy and legitimate use of our troops) the real question is what do we do with them when they get home? This is absolutely HUGE. I can't believe that they are not completely aware of how incredibly difficult it will be in this very fragile recovery, to bring these soldiers home....

Jobless rate among veterans highest in five years
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/05/us-jobs-veterans-idUSTRE71374A20110205

Government increases hiring of veterans, but unemployment rate is still high
http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/politics/government_increases_hiring_of_veterans_but_unemployment_rate_is_still_high/2011/04/13/AF8IE1YD_story.html?wprss=rss_homepage
 

HollyS

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What makes you think the threat of the Taliban taking over the entire mid-East is over?

Should we be there? I would have said no. But, then, we didn't ask to be attacked. We didn't think we had a dog in their fight, and yet . . . they wanted us riled. Doesn't anyone want to ask the question - - why? Why were we a threat? Why were we an obvious target for them? I'd say our being in the world at all is perceived as a threat to their desired way of life and way of governing. We represent ideals they don't believe in or want.

We can leave, I suppose. But, if we were to withdraw our presence entirely, leave no troops there at all, how long would it take for Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran to be completely in the throes of the Taliban, and to be a real threat to any other democratic country . . . say Israel?

Can we afford to just abandon the Middle East to the terrorists and the fundementalists? Can we afford to allow the spread of such hatred and repression?

The last time we stuck our head in the sand, Europe was nearly lost to Hitler. If the Japanese had not bombed Pearl Harbor, would we have been involved in WWII? FDR had told Churchill that we weren't going to war for them. Had we not, would there be a Europe today?

I suppose we can look the other way. But would it be the right thing to do - - for them or for us?

Understand, when I say this, I'm speaking as a person who lives very close to the military, has military friends, and I am well aware of the impact these deployments are having on the men and women who go and the families they leave behind. VERY WELL AWARE.
 

suchende

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Can troops force/coerce/effectively encourage a strong central democratic government to rise up in Afghanistan? I just don't see how we can, through military force, prevent religious extremists from becoming the next generation of political leaders.
 

iheartscience

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Messages
12,111
suchende|1304529384|2912120 said:
Can troops force/coerce/effectively encourage a strong central democratic government to rise up in Afghanistan? I just don't see how we can, through military force, prevent religious extremists from becoming the next generation of political leaders.
Ditto. It's really baffling that U.S. citizens campaign vocally for less government involvement, but then want the U.S. to insert itself into other countries' political systems and elections.
 

HollyS

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Well, thing2, ask some of our PS friends in Europe if they are grateful or ungrateful for 'sticking our noses in' when push came to shove for them.

No one wants war. Or any other 'military action' not labeled as war. It is abhorrent to everyone.

And, how about folks like Clooney beating a drum to get us involved in Darfur?

The shoe does occasionally find itself on the other foot. All the conservatives don't automatically think we should impose ourselves upon the world. And not all the liberals want us to stay out of other people's countries.
 

suchende

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I am a conservative, registered Republican, member of Federalist Society. I think Americans would like to believe that if we just show the Muslim world how strong and free we really are, they will fall in line. Doesn't seem to work like that. We messed up hugely in Iraq and I think our chances of changing the gov't structure of tribal countries like Afgahnistan are even lower. It would be better for everyone if Pakistan were better organized, but throwing money at them didn't solve the problem, and throwing troops at it wouldn't either.
 

iheartscience

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HollyS|1304531061|2912151 said:
Well, thing2, ask some of our PS friends in Europe if they are grateful or ungrateful for 'sticking our noses in' when push came to shove for them.

No one wants war. Or any other 'military action' not labeled as war. It is abhorrent to everyone.

And, how about folks like Clooney beating a drum to get us involved in Darfur?

The shoe does occasionally find itself on the other foot. All the conservatives don't automatically think we should impose ourselves upon the world. And not all the liberals want us to stay out of other people's countries.
I have no problem with the U.S. intervening when there are proven threats to our country or humanitarian crises.

I just think it's a little ridiculous to expect that the U.S. can drop into a country, get rid of its leadership and then expect the country's citizens to embrace whatever candidates the U.S. endorses with open arms. I know we Americans like to think of ourselves as the world's saviors, but it's just not that simple.
 

NewEnglandLady

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I, personally, believe that the jihadists wanted to engage us in a long, drawn-out war similar to the Soviet War in Afghanistan. I believe the attacks on the U.S.S Cole and the first WTC bombing were efforts to engage us. The final attack on the WTC is what finally drew us in and the plan seems to have worked, as we have been there just as long as the Soviets were. And at great cost, both financially and in American lives.

Terrorists groups like al Qaeda will never die. There will always be another OBL. I do not know what is the best allocation of resources--to have more intelligence here or to have more troops there. Obviously nobody wants another 9/11, but I don't believe drawn-out wars in Afghanistan (or Pakistan, Iraq or Iran) are the solution.
 

zoebartlett

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ksinger|1304502691|2911884 said:
Other than the fact that for Iraq, they never should have gone in the first place (Afghanistan is another issue - hunting bin Laden was always a worthy and legitimate use of our troops) the real question is what do we do with them when they get home? This is absolutely HUGE. I can't believe that they are not completely aware of how incredibly difficult it will be in this very fragile recovery, to bring these soldiers home....

Jobless rate among veterans highest in five years
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/05/us-jobs-veterans-idUSTRE71374A20110205

Government increases hiring of veterans, but unemployment rate is still high
http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/politics/government_increases_hiring_of_veterans_but_unemployment_rate_is_still_high/2011/04/13/AF8IE1YD_story.html?wprss=rss_homepage
Going into Iraq never made any sense to me n the first place, and I don't really get why we're still there now. I know a lot of people say that since we're there, we can't leave until Iraq becomes more stable. I don't really agree with that.

You're right, hunting down bin Laden was the goal in Afghanistan, and now he's taken care of. I wish the troops could come home soon.

Interesting links -- thanks!
 

zoebartlett

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Messages
12,450
thing2of2|1304530692|2912142 said:
suchende|1304529384|2912120 said:
Can troops force/coerce/effectively encourage a strong central democratic government to rise up in Afghanistan? I just don't see how we can, through military force, prevent religious extremists from becoming the next generation of political leaders.
Ditto. It's really baffling that U.S. citizens campaign vocally for less government involvement, but then want the U.S. to insert itself into other countries' political systems and elections.
I completely agree with both of you.
 

ksinger

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thing2of2|1304532038|2912171 said:
HollyS|1304531061|2912151 said:
Well, thing2, ask some of our PS friends in Europe if they are grateful or ungrateful for 'sticking our noses in' when push came to shove for them.

No one wants war. Or any other 'military action' not labeled as war. It is abhorrent to everyone.

And, how about folks like Clooney beating a drum to get us involved in Darfur?

The shoe does occasionally find itself on the other foot. All the conservatives don't automatically think we should impose ourselves upon the world. And not all the liberals want us to stay out of other people's countries.
I have no problem with the U.S. intervening when there are proven threats to our country or humanitarian crises.

I just think it's a little ridiculous to expect that the U.S. can drop into a country, get rid of its leadership and then expect the country's citizens to embrace whatever candidates the U.S. endorses with open arms. I know we Americans like to think of ourselves as the world's saviors, but it's just not that simple.
Ah, but it's a such a time-honored tradition, if one is to judge by the immortal words of Tom Lehrer, that master of satirical songwriting:

... for might makes right
until they've seen the light
they've got to be proTECTed
all their rights resPECTed
'til someone we LIKE can be elected!

Fresh from 1965!!
 

ksinger

Ideal_Rock
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Zoe|1304554197|2912508 said:
thing2of2|1304530692|2912142 said:
suchende|1304529384|2912120 said:
Can troops force/coerce/effectively encourage a strong central democratic government to rise up in Afghanistan? I just don't see how we can, through military force, prevent religious extremists from becoming the next generation of political leaders.
Ditto. It's really baffling that U.S. citizens campaign vocally for less government involvement, but then want the U.S. to insert itself into other countries' political systems and elections.
I completely agree with both of you.
I suggest the book "Imperial Hubris" by Michael Scheuer who is (according to Wikipedia): Michael F. Scheuer (born 1952[1]) is an American blogger, historian, foreign policy critic, and political analyst. He is currently an adjunct professor at Georgetown University's Center for Peace and Security Studies. He was formerly an intelligence officer at the Central Intelligence Agency. In his 22-year career, he served as the Chief of the Bin Laden Issue Station (aka "Alec Station"), from 1996 to 1999, the Osama bin Laden tracking unit at the Counterterrorist Center. He then worked again as Special Advisor to the Chief of the bin Laden unit from September 2001 to November 2004.

I think we can agree that this guy might just have a few insights that we don't since studying and understanding bin Laden and al Qaida and what made them tick, was his raison d'etre for decades. I promise you he's no flower-toting peacnik, has even been described as "one of the snivelling weasels of the far right', and is indeed a bit bloody-minded when it comes to bin Laden. But his scathing criticisms of our government's willful misunderstanding of the threat, and unclouded understanding of the Islamic mind and how they view this situation are invaluable. He is certainly not dully repeating the ridiculous mantra that "they hate us 'cause we're free". He writes, "The 2004 presidential campagn saw President Bush and Senator Kerry deliberately mislead voters by endlessly asserting that bin Laden is attacking America because he "hates our liberties and freedoms." Both also avoided anything that smacked of a debate on U.S. policies in the Islamic world. The cost of this non-debate continues to rise for America in terms of lives, dollars, and a steadily strengthening Islamist enemy." He further observes that very few enemies have ever outlined why they hate us so succinctly or precisely, and our "freedom" doesn't factor into it at all. . It's not like we don't KNOW why many in the middle east despise us. We simply ignore it. I'm glad our intelligence agencies have people able to view the situation clearly, even if our leaders choose to ignore those observations. And they did. And they do.

As an aside, I have a friend who met and chatted with his boss from his CIA days, and he said that Sheuer was utterly brilliant, and at times difficult because he said things that were not what the brass wanted to hear, and that every word of the book was vetted by CIA lawyers.
 

HollyS

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Once again, I've got to agree with you, Karen.

This is becoming a habit. :bigsmile:

We (the U.S.) have made some dreadful errors in the Middle East. Starting w-a-y back. And this is the fruits of our deliberate and willful "we know best" b*llsh*t.

Chickens coming home to roost. OMG, did I just quote Rev. Wright????? Heaven forbid. :bigsmile:
 

mayerling

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 4, 2010
Messages
2,357
HollyS|1304531061|2912151 said:
Well, thing2, ask some of our PS friends in Europe if they are grateful or ungrateful for 'sticking our noses in' when push came to shove for them.

No one wants war. Or any other 'military action' not labeled as war. It is abhorrent to everyone.

And, how about folks like Clooney beating a drum to get us involved in Darfur?

The shoe does occasionally find itself on the other foot. All the conservatives don't automatically think we should impose ourselves upon the world. And not all the liberals want us to stay out of other people's countries.
I'm in Europe and I can tell you for sure that I never felt that the US got into anything to save Europeans. They didn't get into WW2 until Pearl Harbour (meaning they got in for themselves, even though they were asked repeatedly to help), and I've always felt they had no business bombing Kosovo.
 

HollyS

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Originally, the U.S. did not get into the war in Europe. That's definitely true. Until Pearl Harbor. Then the ninnies in our government realized that - oops! - perhaps we'd better.

I don't think any living person could tell you why FDR and his advisors were willing to turn their heads. It certainly makes no sense. As far as the American people are concerned, the boys in uniform didn't just do it for themselves. But thank you, for appreciating the sacrifices WWII-era America made on your behalf. Well, on your grandparent's behalf.
 

Dancing Fire

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HollyS|1304630672|2913277 said:
Originally, the U.S. did not get into the war in Europe. That's definitely true. Until Pearl Harbor. Then the ninnies in our government realized that - oops! - perhaps we'd better.

I don't think any living person could tell you why FDR and his advisors were willing to turn their heads. It certainly makes no sense. As far as the American people are concerned, the boys in uniform didn't just do it for themselves. But thank you, for appreciating the sacrifices WWII-era America made on your behalf. Well, on your grandparent's behalf.
i think FDR knew the japanese was coming but did nothing to stop them so that we have an excuse to enter WWII.by entering WWII which created millions of news jobs thus got the U.S. out of the Great Depression.
 

natascha

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I am continually amazed by how so many people are able to label whole countries and whole religions as terrorists. Especially when it is people I believe to be educated, intelligent and reasonable. And at the same time many people that seem to think that way apparently have a single minded focus on one person.

Sorry for going a bit of topic. I do not really have an opinion on when to remove the troops.
 

Dancing Fire

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suchende|1304531542|2912160 said:
I am a conservative, registered Republican, member of Federalist Society. I think Americans would like to believe that if we just show the Muslim world how strong and free we really are, they will fall in line. Doesn't seem to work like that. We messed up hugely in Iraq and I think our chances of changing the gov't structure of tribal countries like Afgahnistan are even lower. It would be better for everyone if Pakistan were better organized, but throwing money at them didn't solve the problem, and throwing troops at it wouldn't either.
:o ...be careful of what you are saying :!: the liberals here out number the conservatives by 4 to 1... :lol:
 

HollyS

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natascha|1304636932|2913405 said:
I am continually amazed by how so many people are able to label whole countries and whole religions as terrorists. Especially when it is people I believe to be educated, intelligent and reasonable. And at the same time many people that seem to think that way apparently have a single minded focus on one person.

Sorry for going a bit of topic. I do not really have an opinion on when to remove the troops.



And that is why reasonable political discussions are a fantasy here at PS. Can't be done.

Taken out of context, anything and everything can be offensive, or at the very least, thoughtless. And everyone on PS has, at some point, been guilty of taking someone else's words out of context.

Case in point: no one in this discussion labeled entire countries or whole religions as terrorists.

It would be nice to think someone is merely unsure of what they read, and is trying to clarify. But, rarely does a poster make such observations innocently and without agenda. And agendas are why we cannot discuss politics like adults here on PS. It's just too easy to post that snappy snark meant to put someone else in their place.


Whatever. :rolleyes:
 

ksinger

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Dancing Fire|1304635716|2913389 said:
HollyS|1304630672|2913277 said:
Originally, the U.S. did not get into the war in Europe. That's definitely true. Until Pearl Harbor. Then the ninnies in our government realized that - oops! - perhaps we'd better.

I don't think any living person could tell you why FDR and his advisors were willing to turn their heads. It certainly makes no sense. As far as the American people are concerned, the boys in uniform didn't just do it for themselves. But thank you, for appreciating the sacrifices WWII-era America made on your behalf. Well, on your grandparent's behalf.
i think FDR knew the japanese was coming but did nothing to stop them so that we have an excuse to enter WWII.by entering WWII which created millions of news jobs thus got the U.S. out of the Great Depression.

As usual DF, your lack of real knowledge of American history is pretty glaring. The conditions and competing political and social forces leading to our involvment in the war in Japan (and Europe) were at least as complex as any today, and to say that FDR knew that Pearl Harbor was going to happen and deliberately did nothing is tantamount to accusing him of murder, not to mention being tripe. Do please point me to something erudite and well-researched that supports your claim. I'm not holding my breath though.

I know how you tend to see situations as simple, but the situation was much more complicated than
war = U.S. out of depression.

I desperately wish YOU could listen to the history lessons I receive just for asking, extemporaneous, from my insanely well-educated history-teaching-breathing-eating-sleeping-husband. His kaleidescopic knowledge of how the various threads of that era tie together is intensely interesting, and I only got a small slice. Nye Commission, the majority of the American PEOPLE didnt want war (not after WWI), America First Committe of 1940, Neutrality Acts of the 30's, Japanese Emperor went to Ivy League and knew our industrial capacity, we cut off the gas, we underestimated their desperation, they missed the repair facilities at Pearl, they underestimated our rage, Japanese Zero invention of Howard Hughes and sold to the Japanese (a little Neutrality act bonus again) etc, etc, etc. Great stuff.
 

Dancing Fire

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[quote="ksinger|As usual DF, your lack of real knowledge of American history is pretty glaring. The conditions and competing political and social forces leading to our involvment in the war in Japan (and Europe) were at least as complex as any today, and to say that FDR knew that Pearl Harbor was going to happen and deliberately did nothing is tantamount to accusing him of murder, not to mention being tripe. Do please point me to something erudite and well-researched that supports your claim. I'm not holding my breath though.

I know how you tend to see situations as simple, but the situation was much more complicated than
war = U.S. out of depression.

I desperately wish YOU could listen to the history lessons I receive just for asking, extemporaneous, from my insanely well-educated history-teaching-breathing-eating-sleeping-husband. His kaleidescopic knowledge of how the various threads of that era tie together is intensely interesting, and I only got a small slice. Nye Commission, the majority of the American PEOPLE didnt want war (not after WWI), America First Committe of 1940, Neutrality Acts of the 30's, Japanese Emperor went to Ivy League and knew our industrial capacity, we cut off the gas, we underestimated their desperation, they missed the repair facilities at Pearl, they underestimated our rage, Japanese Zero invention of Howard Hughes and sold to the Japanese (a little Neutrality act bonus again) etc, etc, etc. Great stuff.[/quote]


should of went to school instead of pool halls... :(sad
 

natascha

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HollyS|1304642844|2913490 said:
natascha|1304636932|2913405 said:
I am continually amazed by how so many people are able to label whole countries and whole religions as terrorists. Especially when it is people I believe to be educated, intelligent and reasonable. And at the same time many people that seem to think that way apparently have a single minded focus on one person.

Sorry for going a bit of topic. I do not really have an opinion on when to remove the troops.



And that is why reasonable political discussions are a fantasy here at PS. Can't be done.

Taken out of context, anything and everything can be offensive, or at the very least, thoughtless. And everyone on PS has, at some point, been guilty of taking someone else's words out of context.

Case in point: no one in this discussion labeled entire countries or whole religions as terrorists.

It would be nice to think someone is merely unsure of what they read, and is trying to clarify. But, rarely does a poster make such observations innocently and without agenda. And agendas are why we cannot discuss politics like adults here on PS. It's just too easy to post that snappy snark meant to put someone else in their place.


Whatever. :rolleyes:
Thank you for pointing that out Holly. I had been having a pretty aggravating discussion with some people yesterday about this specific subject (bin Laden, the troops, war on Iraq, etc) and when I then came on here and read some statements that I felt were putting entire religions under the same heading regarding terrorism, I posted without thinking how my post could be understood.

You are right that none here explicitly said entire countries or whole religions are terrorists, but both in this thread and in others on this board some people write about whole religions, etc in a way that at least makes me believe that that is what they mean.

But you are very right that my statement is offensive and uncalled or and for that I am sorry. Regarding me having an agenda, nope I don't, way to blunt for that. Either I will say what I mean or if I believe that no good will come out of it I try to not say anything.

I do not really understand how what I posted is snappy snark, who was I trying to put in their place?
 

Imdanny

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Yes, as others have pointed out, Iraq was not involved in 9/11. I think all the troops should come home tomorrow morning, since you asked us.
 

HollyS

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natascha|1304676149|2913780 said:
HollyS|1304642844|2913490 said:
natascha|1304636932|2913405 said:
I am continually amazed by how so many people are able to label whole countries and whole religions as terrorists. Especially when it is people I believe to be educated, intelligent and reasonable. And at the same time many people that seem to think that way apparently have a single minded focus on one person.

Sorry for going a bit of topic. I do not really have an opinion on when to remove the troops.



And that is why reasonable political discussions are a fantasy here at PS. Can't be done.

Taken out of context, anything and everything can be offensive, or at the very least, thoughtless. And everyone on PS has, at some point, been guilty of taking someone else's words out of context.

Case in point: no one in this discussion labeled entire countries or whole religions as terrorists.

It would be nice to think someone is merely unsure of what they read, and is trying to clarify. But, rarely does a poster make such observations innocently and without agenda. And agendas are why we cannot discuss politics like adults here on PS. It's just too easy to post that snappy snark meant to put someone else in their place.


Whatever. :rolleyes:
Thank you for pointing that out Holly. I had been having a pretty aggravating discussion with some people yesterday about this specific subject (bin Laden, the troops, war on Iraq, etc) and when I then came on here and read some statements that I felt were putting entire religions under the same heading regarding terrorism, I posted without thinking how my post could be understood.

You are right that none here explicitly said entire countries or whole religions are terrorists, but both in this thread and in others on this board some people write about whole religions, etc in a way that at least makes me believe that that is what they mean.

But you are very right that my statement is offensive and uncalled or and for that I am sorry. Regarding me having an agenda, nope I don't, way to blunt for that. Either I will say what I mean or if I believe that no good will come out of it I try to not say anything.

I do not really understand how what I posted is snappy snark, who was I trying to put in their place?



Okay, my turn to apologize. I thought you were pointing fingers at one of us here on this thread, and since I seem to be more verbose than most, I assumed that finger could be pointing at me.

I did not mean that you were being offensive. I meant that when words are taken out of context in anyone's post, they can be perceived as offensive. We've all been guilty of twisting words, not being clear ourselves, and ascribing motives to others. As I did to you. My apologies; I'm sorry.
 

monarch64

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I'm with Ksinger...where will the jobs come from when they come back? I'm already discouraged because I want the troops to come home and be with their families, but I also want them to have jobs.
 

zoebartlett

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Imdanny|1304677119|2913781 said:
Yes, as others have pointed out, Iraq was not involved in 9/11. I think all the troops should come home tomorrow morning, since you asked us.
Thanks Danny. Me too.
 

ImpatientOne

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Imdanny|1304677119|2913781 said:
Yes, as others have pointed out, Iraq was not involved in 9/11. I think all the troops should come home tomorrow morning, since you asked us.
If only it were that simple! My husband is a Soldier and currently in the midst of deployment #3. He is in Iraq for a year. Prior to the recent OBL incident, his base was attacked every other day or so. Since the OBL incident, that has increased to 2-3 times PER DAY.

In addition to my husband, my son is a US Marine and has deployed once. My oldest daughter just graduated from Army Basic Training last month, and my youngest daughter ships to Army Basic Training on Monday. All three of my children, plus my husband, are serving. I would love nothing more for this madness to all be over with and to never have to send any of them back to harm's way!
 
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