Tuesday, August 25, 2009

For those "leave Iraq now" folks...

So you still think that we should be out of Iraq and out now? Just pull out and to hell with those there that want the same things many of us take for granted? Things like freedom of speech, self defense and the pursuit of happiness? Our being in Iraq and giving those people an opportunity to have a democratic government and displacing the prior regime has saved far more lives than have been lost. The list of atrocities committed by Saddam against his own peoples is very well documented but I will include a sample:

- 1978-1979

Up to 7,000 Iraqi communists were executed by orders of the Ba'athist regime.

- 1982

The specific atrocity for which Saddam was hanged: 148 Shias were murdered in the village of Dujail.

- 1984

Up to 4,000 political prisoners in Abu Ghraib jail were tortured and killed. Saddam's favoured methods of torture included cutting off genitalia, gouging out eyes and acid baths.

- 1980-1988

Some 1.7m died on both sides during the Iran-Iraq war, started by Saddam.

- 1987-1989

At least 100,000 Kurds were slaughtered in the so-called Anfal campaign. Some were gassed, others cast alive into mass graves.

- 1988

On March 16, in the worst single atrocity of the Anfal campaign, 5,000 Kurds were killed when Saddam ordered planes to drop a mixture of mustard gas and the nerve agent sarin on the town of Halabja.

- 1990-1991

About 25,000 Iraqi troops are thought to have died in the seven-month Gulf War, which began when US-led forces entered Iraq following Saddam's invasion of Kuwait on August 2, 1990. Estimates of Iraqi civilian deaths have varied wildly - up to 200,000. The coalition death toll was 378 and many troops suffered from the unexplained "Gulf War syndrome".

- 1991

Tens of thousands were killed as Saddam attempted to put down a popular rebellion following his defeat by the US-led forces in February 1991. More than 100,000 Shias were killed; a similar number of Kurds died. About 200,000 Marsh Arabs were killed or made homeless.

- 1993-1998

About 3,000 prisoners were machine-gunned to death at Mahjar prison in central Baghdad.


Losses to the U.S. since the invasion have be just over 4000. What ever this number would be, it would be too high but in comparison to the number of lives saved and to adding another democracy to that region, most people looking at the facts would have to admit that it was needed and continues to be. If pulling all of the troops out now undermines and undoes all that has been done, than the troops must be left to continue to hold on to what has been gained.

As to those that say, look to Vietnam. Look how well they are doing now and since we left. I say, you are right, it has been a virtual paradise since the US left in 1975:

Modern research has located thousands of mass graves from the Khmer Rouge era all over Cambodia, containing an estimated 1.39 million bodies. Various studies have estimated the death toll at between 740,000 and 3,000,000, most commonly between 1.4 million and 2.2 million, with perhaps half of those deaths being due to executions, and the rest from starvation and disease


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