How are we really doing?

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by 5stringJeff, Oct 6, 2003.

  1. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Here's a letter from the front with much more info than you'll find elsewhere, straight from the horse's mouth.

    ----------------------
    Falcon Flyer

    Rip another page off your calendars! August was a tough month for the Regiment and we're glad to have it over with. The troopers who were here will never forget the heat of 6-12 August when thermometers pegged out at 136 degrees on the 10th and averaged 133 the whole period. It was a mistake to let bare skin touch metal - you would come away with a blister. Even so, the little Iraqi children cheerfully scurried across the blacktop in their
    bare feet. The kids are something. They are always smiling and waving. Troopers get a kick out of them running to the street and saying 'Hey mister, mister, chocolate - you give me chocolate'. Of course, they have already learned GI slang and some of the boys practice spitting to imitate paratroopers.

    It will probably have US troops there for at least another couple of
    years, so the Army has decided to spruce it up. We are going to throw up barracks (with flush toilets even!) and then build up quality of life additions round ourselves.

    I wanted to take a few lines and explain the big picture of this
    operation as I see it. Our nation has asked the US military to do some seriously heavy lifting - with the help of some staunch coalition partners.
    The global War on Terror is an extremely ambitious undertaking on par with liberating the continent of Europe while simultaneously defeating the Japanese in the Pacific during WW II. This war is about ending terrorism and the culture that breeds it. To do that, we had to come to the source. Some say that there was absolutely no connection between terrorism and
    Saddam's regime. If that's so, how did Abu Nidal, the most notorious terrorist of the 80's and 90's, find sanctuary here in Baghdad until he died last year? How did Ansar Al Islam, a radical surrogate of Al Queda, operate training camps in Northern Iraq until 83 of them were killed by US SOF? How was it that our forces found Al Queda training materials including recipes for bio
    toxins here? Who bombed the Jordanian embassy, the UN building, and the Shia mosque in Al Najaf?

    In spite of what you hear from the hyped up election year media, we are winning this fight. At the tactical level, your loved ones are
    conducting operations every night that directly target the remains of Saddam's murderous regime, along with those who seek to prolong the post-combat chaos in Baghdad for their own personal gain.

    We have hired almost 2000 Iraqis who are working alongside of our troopers every day to preserve security and protect critical
    infrastructure. We have recruited and are now training the first members of the Iraqi Civil Defense Corps and the new Iraqi Army. There are now almost 6000 Iraqi policemen in Baghdad and training will continue until there are 16,500. In AO Falcon, we have also started our own security force called Neighborhood
    Watch. We recruited men from each neighborhood to protect their
    families and property from criminals and enemy fighters. There are now over 1300 men who prevent evil doers from entering the Al Rasheed community. We have also formed both Neighborhood and District Advisory Councils made up of Iraqi citizens who support our cause and they are beginning to take charge of their own affairs. The fledgling representative government is taking shape and the Iraqis are learning that freedom, prosperity and Islam can in fact co-exist. Each of these groups is beginning to understand that the propaganda being spread by the anti-coalition media is simply not true. We are not here for their oil, or to destroy their religion or install a Jewish government.

    They now understand that what was caused by 35 years of neglect and decay cannot be repaired overnight. They have come to know our troopers for what they are: decent, caring, honorable people who treat everyone with dignity and respect unless given reason not to. They also realize this - the absolute worst thing that could ever happen to them is to have American
    Paratroopers as their enemies.

    The Iraqis of our district are learning that they can trust us.
    Consequently, they are no longer afraid to approach us with the
    information we need to eliminate the resistance fighters. The Iraqi people remain our best sources of intelligence. Because of this, we have transitioned from a strategy of near continuous presence on the streets to one of precision. We are no longer alienating innocent Iraqis by conducting searches of entire city blocks. Instead, we wait until we know for sure, and then strike
    quickly to snatch our enemies from their hiding places.

    Every hospital and clinic in Baghdad is now operating. The coalition is printing 5 million new textbooks, handing out school supplies to 1.2 million children and rehabilitating 1000 schools. Iraq is producing over 1 million barrels of oil a day. For the first time in history, Baghdad has a garbage collection service. Power production has jumped from 300 mega-watts per day after liberation to 3300 mega-watts per day. There are 1.3 million Iraqis drawing salaries, 92,000 receiving social security payments, and 90,000 working to clear irrigation canals of obstructions.

    So the next time you listen to the presidential contenders and media - with their predictions of another Viet Nam, failure and hysteria, you know the real deal. Military campaigns are never easy - and replacing a tyrannical dictatorship with a democracy where one has never before existed is especially difficult. But, our troopers are making it happen and making it matter.

    We will not fail and with the help of the Iraqi people, we will finish this fight and head on home.

    Let's Go!
     
  2. whatnow
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    whatnow Guest

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    Thanks for the letter. Kind of seems like one of Bush's speech writers ended up over there. :)

    here's another:

    "Honorable Mr. Powell,

    A cancer has begun to spread in the military - especially those currently serving in Iraq. Sir, that cancer - as you probably already are aware of - is the dissatisfaction of service members for having been lied to by our Commander in Chief and his staff."

    This one and a lot more can be read at:

    http://www.hackworth.com/
     
  3. janeeng
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    janeeng Guest

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    hahha, another LIB entered the board! Hey, welcome whatnow!!
     
  4. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Actually, if I'm not mistaken, the author was an officer in the 82nd Airborne Divison, one of the toughest units in the Army.
     
  5. whatnow
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    whatnow Guest

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  6. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    I don't think so... first of all, I didn't see any of the quotes from the news story in the letter I posted. Secondly, I got the letter through a West Point alumni forum, the members of which are very careful about their sources, and are instilled with a great sense of not passing along lies or half-truths.
     
  7. whatnow
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    <I don't think so... first of all, I didn't see any of the quotes from the news story in the letter I posted.>

    Well, that's good. Hopefully there isn't a second letter floating around. Apparently someone isn't too concerned with "not passing along lies or half-truths."

    "Six soldiers reached by GNS directly or through their families said they agreed with the letter's thrust. But none of the soldiers said he wrote it, and one said he didn't even sign it."

    The trouble is, a thing like this can put all the well meant letters from those serving under a cloud of doubt - whatever their message.

    West Point alumni, huh? Isn't one of the candidates for President a former top graduate in his class at West Point?
     
  8. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Yes, he is, but I certainly won't vote for him just because of that. Look at the last service academy graduate to live in the White House - Jimmy Carter. Great heart, but no balls and terrible economic policies. While I would certainly be more open to giving Clark the benefit of the doubt, given his background, the opening weeks of his campaign suggests that he is going to try and pander to the Left just like the rest of them.
     
  9. whatnow
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    whatnow Guest

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    Fair enough.

    Personally, I'll go with someone concerned with "not passing along lies or half-truths." I would find that refreshing. No, I wouldn't vote for anyone only because of the school they attended, military or otherwise. Pandering? I haven't seen a politician in years, if ever, that wasn't.
     
  10. dw6799
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    dw6799 Guest

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    Quote from GOP_Jeff "While I would certainly be more open to giving Clark the benefit of the doubt, given his background, the opening weeks of his campaign suggests that he is going to try and pander to the Left just like the rest of them."

    I fail to see how Clark is pandering to the left.The left has been attacking him rather vicously as of late.Howard Dean and Dick Gephardt both went after Wes Clark recently.Clark is very moderate.
     

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