Iraq

Those 'Up to 300' Troops in Iraq Are Now About 750

And Ahmed Chalabi is trying to mount a comeback.

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Two weeks ago, Barack Obama announced that he was sending "up to 300" troops to Iraq. Now The New York Times reports that the number has grown:

Did you miss me?

Obama administration officials said that about 200 more troops had been sent to protect the American Embassy in Baghdad and the Baghdad airport. The additional troops, who arrived on Sunday, will operate helicopters and drones to "bolster airfield and route security," Rear Adm. John F. Kirby, the Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

In addition to those forces, another 100 troops who the Pentagon had previously said would be sent to Iraq are headed to Baghdad to help with security and logistics. The moves will raise the total number of American troops deployed to Iraq for security and advisory missions to about 750.

As though to complete the bitter taste of 2003, the paper adds that, as Iraq's political parties prepare to choose new leaders, one "prominently mentioned" candidate for prime minister is Ahmed Chalabi.

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  1. But don’t worry, they won’t sent American boys to do what Iraqi boys should do.

  2. Is this the AM links for the west coast?
    Remember that horrid field of floating plastics in the Pacific?

    “Plastic Debris Widespread On Ocean Surface, Study Finds” (which is spin)
    […]
    “Researchers estimated the total amount of floating plastic debris in open ocean at 7,000 to 35,000 tons.
    Andres Cozar of the University of Cadiz in Spain, an author of the study, said that’s a lot less than the 1 million tons he had extrapolated from data reaching back to the 1970s.”
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…..44943.html

    Yeah, 7,000 is “a lot less than” 1,000,000 tons. And that remains an ‘estimate’ by greenies.
    Call it 5# and be done with it.

    1. And even the new numbers are kind of odd: 7-35k tons. I mean, that’s a range of what, 500%?

      Dear Environmentalist: we are pleased to offer you a position with our firm. Your salary will be between, $20,000 & $100,000 per year. We will advise you of your actual pay on your first monthly pay check.

      1. Dunno if you’re ever been to Puget Sound, but there are warnings on the beaches to beware of the debris from logging coming in on waves. Like 20′ logs.
        The point here is that I’m pretty sure there’s well over 5,000tons of wood debris in Puget Sound and these folks are ‘concerned’ about that much plastic spread over all the oceans in the world.
        Do fish who eat wood fare better than fish who eat plastic? Do any fish eat either one?

        1. I get your point. I was just adding that an estimate with the range cited in the article seems kind of pointless.

        2. Do fish who eat wood fare better than fish who eat plastic? Do any fish eat either one?

          Sea turtles eat plastic bags because they think the bags are jellyfish.

          http://www.seeturtles.org/1128/ocean-plastic.html

          1. From your link:
            “There are 5 major ocean gyres worldwide. In the Pacific Ocean, the North Pacific Gyre is home to the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch”, a large area that is approximately the size of Texas with debris extending 20 feet (6 meters) down into the water column. It’s estimated that this “plastic island” contains 3.5 million tons of trash and could double in size in the next 5 years.”

            So the original lie of “1,000,000 tons worldwide” has morphed into “3.5M tons in one location”, when the actual number is somewhere between 7,000 and 35,000, world-wide.
            I’d be a bit skeptical of the claims of harm from a source like that. Maybe the turtles do, but it seems there isn’t much to eat.

            1. I don’t know about the total amount of plastic in the oceans. It’s seems like you could take a boat out there, measure it and calculate it. I was just stating that sea turtles are dumb and eat things that look like jellyfish.

              1. “I was just stating that sea turtles are dumb and eat things that look like jellyfish.”
                Do we know if if causes harm?

            2. Seems like for the cost of this propaganda, someone like the Sierra Club could outfit some ships to actually clean up the garbage patches.

              1. “Sierra Club could outfit some ships to actually clean up the garbage patches.”

                It’s not totally clear, but it looks like there *aren’t* any “patches”, just debris spread around the world. And a good bit of it is tiny, but they’re counting it anyhow.
                And those boats won’t bring in the dough, like a good sob story will do!

      2. We’re sending an estimated 300-10,000 troops to Iraq.

        1. And he’ll do via “executive action” regardless of congress. It’s good to be king!

  3. I’d laugh if it wasn’t so fucking sad. What is the overall goal here? If and when ISIS decides to storm Baghdad, those guys @ the embassy better have a fleet of Blackhawks ready to get them the hell outta there.

    1. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

      I have no problem laughing at this. What exactly is the Messiah’s exit strategy?

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    2. Either that or they go the Vietnam route: attacks on the airfield security requires more troops to launch preemptive strikes against the forces attacking our forces.

      1. Once the thread starts to unravel there is no stopping it. You can’t just sort of fight a war.

        1. As Japan noticed starting in the summer of ’42.

          1. And we found out in Vietnam. You can’t defeat them in Vietnam when they can just run back over the border to Cambodia or North Vietnam and regroup in peace.

    3. What is the overall goal here?

      To keep the Senate in Dem hands.

    4. those guys @ the embassy better have a fleet of Blackhawks ready to get them the hell outta there.

      What difference at this point does it make?

  4. Hey, Buttplug, tell us again about how The Smartest President Ever avoided the classic mistake of “boots on the ground” in Iraq.

    1. Next he’ll probably go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line.

    2. It’ll be a victory if 8% of Iraq has freedom.

  5. If there is a worse option than intervening, it is intervening in a half assed way. How long before we have another Mogadeshu over there? Time will tell but this has the makings of a disaster and a humiliation for the US. You have a small US force on the ground. You have an administration determined to “do something” without doing too much. I have no doubt they are operating under ridiculous rules of engagement. If some or all of these guys get into trouble, who is going to come and help them? The Iraqis? This administrations performance during the attack on the Bengazi compound doesn’t exactly inspire confidence does it?

    1. What difference at this point does it make?

  6. Hell no, we won’t go!

    No….that’s not it. Oh wait….

    Hey hey LBJ how many kids….

    No….not that either.

    Somebody help me out here. I know there’s something familiar about all of this.

    1. The last thing we need is a draft. But there would be some serious karmic justice to see Obama saddle the yutes who were so sure it was “their time” and they were “making history” in 08 with a draft.

      1. Free birth control to all enrollees.

        1. I am pretty sure tricare covers birth control. So there is that.

      2. As long as the draft pulls in a solid sample of hipster dumbfucks (of all genders), I could probably support it for a short while.

        1. If we start drafting hipsters, I will re-enlist as a Drill Instructor.

          1. I would give up my commission and go in enlisted for that. Being a drill instructor to hipsters would be doing God’s work. I couldn’t in good conscience keep my commission under those circumstances.

            1. John, come relive a past thread with me…

              For those you who missed it the first time around, keep scrolling to get it all.

              1. We still need to make that commercial. The world needs it more now than ever. And we wouldn’t even have to do it in New York. We could film it at Columbia Heights in Washington DC.

                1. The only real question is Adagio For Strings or Mozart’s Requiem?

                  1. How about Moonlight Sonata?

                    1. Needs to be fakey sad and melodramtic, like the last days of Ke$ha before she finally succumbs to systemic pink eye.

                    2. Few things are as melodramatic as the Moonlight Sonata. It is one of the most beautful pieces of music ever written. So beautiful that it lends itself really well to satire. It is so over the top that when put over something ridiculous like a hipster crying in front of a Gap, it becomes high comedy.

                      Another one would be Bach’s Goldberg Variation 25. It is known as “The Black Pearl”. They used it in the movie Slaughter House Five during the bombing of Dresden seen, and it was entirely appropriate.

      3. In fairness, I was among those kids. The next year I started reading some basic economics and very quickly embraced the market economy. From there it was a precipitous downhill slope to rejecting interventionism.

        Now, if you want to get at the numbskulls who retained him in 2012, by all means. There was no excuse after four years, except perhaps for the empty suit the GOP ran against him.

        1. Romney actually won the under 30 white vote by a pretty big margin. So I am not sure you can blame Obama’s re-election on the yutes.

          In some ways I am almost glad he got re-elected. People hadn’t felt the full effect of his policies yet. Had he lost it would have let the Left off the hook and allowed them to claim “if only they had let Obama finish what he started, it would have worked”. Now they are stuck with four years of this incompetent self centered bastard. The upside from our view and the downside to the country and the Democrats is that I honestly don’t think he gives a shit about anyone or anything but himself. Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter and George W. Bush I think cared about the country and cared about their parties. They were all willing to reverse course when things went south if for no other reason that political necessity. Obama won’t do that. He is full speed ahead no matter what. If the Democrats have another bloodbath midterm this fall, it won’t bother him. If he fucks up so badly the Democrats are left completely out of power in 2017 and in worse shape than the Republicans were in in 09, it won’t be his problem. He is going to go full retard and there is nothing anyone can do to stop him.

      4. Those yutes voted for a schmuck who said he wanted every young person to do national service.

        That’s not karma, that’s getting exactly what you voted for.

        1. But they thought service meant getting their student loans paid off for giving poor brown children the benevolent and needed guidance of a white person. They didn’t think it mean joining the Army. The Army is icky.

    2. Too bad Pete Seeger is dead. I’m sure he would be writing a poignant and melodic protest song. He’d probably play it on the National Mall, in front of a crowd of hundreds of thousands.

      1. I honestly thought the Democrats would Johnsonize Obama but they didn’t. I think they are just gone. Obama could launch a world war and draft a 12 million man army and the usual anti-war types would go along with it.

        1. Obama could launch a world war and draft a 12 million man army and the usual anti-war types would go along with it.

          Until the next Republican got elected president. Then the protest signs and giant puppets would make a re-appearance.

          1. Yeah but that would never happen because we couldn’t possibly change Presidents in the middle of a war.

  7. Those ‘Up to 300’ Troops in Iraq Are Now About 750

    Well of course. It’s called the multiplier effect. It’s the fruit of government

    1. + 0.8

  8. Since I had already mentally checked out on our stupidity in the Middle East, I never really followed the whole Chalabi saga. He was considered a genius for a while, then a crook. Now he’s back. Why should I care? Maybe he is a genius and can pull something together, or not, good luck trying.

  9. Three more years, and it gets more difficult to call me out of the Retired Reserve… I wonder if I will make it?

    1. Depends on your military specialty. I hope you are not MP or Infantry or any kind of linguist.

      1. I have two branch quals – OD and LG

        1. I wouldn’t worry. If we ever get so short of ordinance and log guys that they are calling up retired ones to fill the short fall, having to go back to the military is likely to be the least of your worries. Hell, by that point you will probably have joined the local militia to fight off the oncoming Chinese hoard.

  10. “Those ‘Up to 300’ Troops in Iraq Are Now About 750”

    If he keeps going at this rate? Obama may soon qualify for another Nobel Peace Prize.

  11. “One “prominently mentioned” candidate for prime minister is Ahmed Chalabi.”

    Please somebody tell me this is a joke!!!

    1. The political class is so bad in Iraq, he may be the best option. And he would be better than what they have now.

      Yeah, things really are that bad. The bottom line is that the Islamists are the only ones in the entire Arab world who even remotely have their shit together. Yeah, they are insane but they at least are committed to doing something besides stealing. That puts them way ahead of the rest of Iraq, sans Kurdistan.

  12. He kept us out of war.

  13. So the upside is ISIS has defeated Al Qaeda. Who is going to bother with a bunch of pathetic jihadis hiding out in Pakistan when ISIS is kicking ass and declaring a new caliphate?

    We need to get the fuck out, now.

    1. So the upside is ISIS has defeated Al Qaeda.

      Well, at least now we know the approach to take in our next invasion.

      1. Crucifixions and beheadings?

        1. Nails through the hearts and minds.

        2. Not that I’m advocating this, but in essence, yes. To defeat the fanatics you have to crush them so badly that they begin to see that continuing down their current path will only lead to further death and destruction.

          1. You are right. To break the other side’s will to fight, you have to make fighting more unpleasent than the alternatives. When you are dealing with a fanatic willing to blow himself up to kill you, that is difficult but not impossible.

            There are fates worse than death or deaths not worth dying, even for a fanatic. The problem is that doing that requires really drastic measures that we are as yet unwilling to administer.

            You want to stop this, first make sure you desecrate their corpses in such a way that by Islamic law they are denied entry into heaven. Second, the ones you don’t kill humiliate in a way that takes away their manhood and honor such that no one wants to ever be captured. Third, punish the families and loved ones collectively with those caught joining the movement. Don’t let the extremist bribe desperate people into doing desperate things by offering to take care of their family. Make it clear that doing this dooms your family as well.

            Those are admittedly horrible measures. But anything less is unlikely to work.

            1. Second, the ones you don’t kill humiliate in a way that takes away their manhood and honor such that no one wants to ever be captured.

              As Sun Tzu wrote, never surround the opposing army. The worst thing you can do in a war is convince the enemy the have to fight to the death.

  14. In addition to those forces, another 100 troops who the Pentagon had previously said would be sent to Iraq are headed to Baghdad to help with security and logistics. The moves will raise the total number of American troops deployed to Iraq for security and advisory missions to about 750.

    Would someone, anyone, like to explain to me what’s the difference between Obama and W. Bush?

    1. Bush would have been smart enough to send a force that would have made a difference.

      1. Some would argue dumb enough, but your point still stands.

        1. Better to go all in than half in. Half in is the worst option available.

          1. I thought Bush did go half in. Actually more like 1/3 in. How many DoD guys said he sent should have sent 450K instead of 150K? Rummy wanted to do the lower number to keep the voter support.

            1. He went all in pretty quickly. We had well over 100K in Iraq by summer of 2003.

      1. That too. And at least tried to get UN approval.

      2. And Dubya had executive experience prior to becoming President.

        Point is, these two seem to think that the U.S. should keep fucking around with these Arabs, playing geopolitics with them like this is the Cold War. The only people who have ever been able to rule the Middle East did so because they were willing to put their foot down on the Arabs’ necks and not let them up.

    2. Obama had crack in his pizza?

    3. Other than skin tone, not much.

  15. This is ridiculous. We have been training and advising the Iraqi defense forces since the dissolution of the Republican Guard in ’03. If they were going to get it, they would have gotten it when we had thousands of troops in Iraq rather than 750. I continue to be impressed by how stupid this administration is; what the hell is the endgame?

    1. They don’t have an endgame. They really don’t. They just blunder from one news cycle to the next. They figured that sending someone would help with the next news cycle. What those people would do once there or how it would help resolve the situation is not a consideration. They didn’t even think that because they really don’t care. All they care about is getting through the next news cycle. They have no plan, no grasp of reality, or really any goals other than win the next news cycle.

      Say what you want about the Neocons but at least it is an ethos. These people don’t even have that. They are nihilists dude. I joke but the really kind of are. They don’t have an ideology or any kind of plan or coherent view of the world. They just campaign. It is all they know.

    2. what the hell is the endgame?

      “A stabile Irag” — meaning, I suppose, a big field of glass. 8-(

  16. The important thing is that these additional troops will “protect the American Embassy in Baghdad”.

    So the Administration has learned and is applying the lessons of Benghazi!

    Well – one of the lessons. “Stay the fuck out of bad situations that ain’t your bidness” they’re still learning.

    1. How are 700 guys going to defend the embassy? Either the Iraqi government gets its shit together and they are not needed or the Iraqi government falls and they are nothing but cannon fodder.

      1. BECAUSE THE ADMINISTRATION SAID SO, JOHN.

        Geez – racist much?

    2. “protect the American Embassy in Baghdad”.

      A Look Inside the American Embassy in Baghdad (Trigger warning: Slideshow)

      Sheesh, you’d think a nice place like that would already be protected by ADT.

  17. Those ‘Up to 300’ Troops in Iraq Are Now About 750

    Of course they are! After a clear assessment of the situation by the original 300, it was clear to them that none among them was king Leonidas.

    “Shit in their pants” comes to mind…

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