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When should we bring our troops home from Iraq - Essay Example

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On 19th September 2005, in a joint press conference with then President George Bush, Jalal Talabani, the incumbent and 6th President of Iraq, was quoted saying that, “We will set no timetable for withdrawal, Mr. President…
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When should we bring our troops home from Iraq
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Download file to see previous pages On 19th September 2005, in a joint press conference with then President George Bush, Jalal Talabani, the incumbent and 6th President of Iraq, was quoted saying that, “We will set no timetable for withdrawal, Mr. President.A timetable will help the terrorists, will encourage them that they could defeat the superpower of the world and the Iraqi people” (GOLIATH, 2005). 6 years, 455 Bn dollars and over 4421 military deaths later (Congressional Research Service, 2010), Mr. Talabani’s words on ‘timetable’ still hold true with the current 50,000 US military boots on the grounds of Iraq. Since its inception, Iraq war has been subjected to debates starting right from the justification of war, official and unofficial causes, foreign and homeland public support, and troops withdrawal. Even though a quasi-withdrawal deadline was set by the status of forces agreement to leave Iraq by 31 December 2011 (Congressional Research Service, 2009), but the realities behind the actual troop withdrawal are still mushy as described by Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates on April 7th 2011 (BBC News, 2011). The issue of troops withdrawal is not just a question of date but is a convoluted situation of geopolitics, business (read oil), foreign and humanitarian policy goals, insurgencies, stabilization and sustainability. It is worthwhile to note or contemplate on whether the troops should return from Iraq today, tomorrow or should have done it yesterday. America & Iraq – Looking back at past 8 years The Republic of Iraq, once a haven to the earliest civilizations (Mesopotamia) in the world, became a troubled shadow of its past with multi-ethnic clashes and violence, barbaric dictatorships, religious intolerances and fanaticism, social and economic divides and a rich reserve of “black gold”. On 20th March 2003, President Bush declared war against Iraq as American forces attached the middle-east nation from its southern border. Prior to the announcement, US had gathered international support and alliances with UK, Australia, Canada and Netherlands to fight Iraq. Reasons of combat intrusion of US allied forces in this Arab country have been debatable since the war started. The official rationalization of Operation Iraqi Freedom (official name of Iraq war) presented by US to the UN Security Council and by President Bush in his State of Union Address as (1) to destroy Saddam Hussain's (Reigning radical dictator of Iraq) weapons of mass destruction (WMD); (2) to eliminate the threat of international terrorism; and (3) to promote democracy in Iraq and surrounding areas (CNN, 2003). In coming years, these reasons would become the center of fierce debate and a liability for the Bush Administration to defend both to America and the rest of the world. Unofficial reasons why America was dragged into the center stage in Arab world are speculated to be (1) to control the oil reserves of Iraq, Israel-US relations (Perezalonso, 2006) and to make an American statement of influence in the Middle east. Whether the war was justified or not, America was in the middle of chaotic and emergency situation. Iraq witnessed Saddam Hussain’s capture in 2003, Evidence of American military personnel’s abuse and torture of prisoners in 2004, First Iraqi election in 2005, Saddam’s execution in 2005, Insurgency in 2007 and Stabilization efforts since 2008. The total cost of war was estimated to be 3 Trillion dollars (Washington Post, 2010). Apart from expected causalities and economic loss, the major consequences of the Iraq war have been (1) Deconstruction of Iraq (2) Possible radical empowerment of in Middle East and (3) US Hegemony at risk (Hinnebusch, 2007). The war was also a major cause of debate in US Elections 2008 and was one of the factors that led to elect of President Barack Obama. Should we bring our troops back home? Since the time, Bush Administration admitted that falsehood of Iraq’s possession of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) argument (Usborne, 2003), public ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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