Ok, one can hardly call Iraq circa 2006–07 “stable.”

Circa 2009, please. And compared to ISIS running Mosul and forcing the Kurdish militias into service to defend their own people because the central government was gelded……yea I can.

Sure, there was less fighting at the time, but the country was no closer to resolving the enormous power vacuum Bush had caused.

It was, actually.

But the broader point here is that power vacuums occur whenever a Middle Eastern dictator gets lifted. Which is why when Qaddafi was lifted, Libya essentially failed, and why when Mubarek was lifted, you ended up with an Islamist government that then resulted in a military dictatorship.

All activities sponsored by Obama and SoS Clinton, it should be said. You’d think after criticizing Bush for a decade about Iraq, they would have learned something. Guess not.

And if you REALLY want to a human disaster that makes Iraq look like a walk in the park, remove Assad from Syria.

Moreover, the invasion of Iraq, and to a an extent Afghanistan as well, had a ripple effect across the whole region, exacerbating anti-Western tensions and giving an opportunity for terrorist groups like Al-Qaeda, and later Islamic State to take hold and amass power and influence.

Correct. Nothing wrong with going into the Middle East and doing our business deals. But when you start effing with the governments there, nothing good will come of it. Hence, why the Iranian deal was good for Russia and Europe (possibly in range of Iranian nukes) and for American corporations, but not so good for the Iran’s geopolitical rivals (Israel and Arabia) who just happened to be our allies.

In general, in international diplomacy, it’s a no-no to throw your counterparties under the bus. This happened a bit too often during the Obama years for my tastes.

So, you leave well enough alone. A week after that the Iran deal got done, you had Arabia defense ministers in Pakistan talking to their defense ministers. Wanna bet what they were talking about? It wasn’t regional stability, I’ll wager.

Obama’s cautiousness in the Middle East is certainly debatable. One could certainly argue that it would have been more difficult for Islamic State to make the inroads that it did in Iraq with US forces present. But given the physical and financial toll conventional forces face in combating terrorism, with little results to show for it, it’s difficult to justify the type of prolonging of the Iraq War that you seem to be suggesting.

Not the right assumption. A stable (relatively) Iraq simply needed a longer period of US presence. The reduction in force agreement, however, directly enabled ISIS to go active in the north. Without the RIF, good chance that ISIS never forms at all.

Bottom line, Obama chose to heed the will of the majority of Americans and not extend an already ruinous war.

I disagree that he was heeding anything. Iraq had settled down and US deaths there had come to an effective halt. Americans obviously don’t care if their forces are based overseas — we have over a thousand bases on foreign soil, for crying out loud. What we care about is if our people are getting killed for no good reason. Basing them in Iraq wasn’t a big deal to us; the base near Baghdad was secure, and probably the only Muslims on the planet that love Americans are the Kurds in the north. Kirkuk and Mosul were safe territory. But, we RIFed, and without a northern US presence in Iraq to act as a deterrent…..ISIS went active. I’ve had relatives pinned down for four years now in al-Qamishly, stuck between the good guys (the Kurds) and ISIS, and trust me, they do not consider the US as being very helpful or even sane until just recently, after Trump installed Mattis and authorized him to make ISIS dead.

If you think fighting for black people’s equal rights is race baiting, I don’t know if there’s much I can do for you.

I don’t. What I consider race baiting is rhetoric that there are two “sides” in the matter, speaking about racism as an “us vs them” issue between races. Doesn’t work like that. Racism is the enemy, no matter how and though who it manifests.

But Jackson’s and Sharpton’s rhetoric is not particularly clear on this matter, and they tend to fuel what they oppose way too often.

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.