U.S. Formally Ends War In Afghanistan:
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The United States and NATO formally ended their war in Afghanistan on Sunday with a ceremony at their military headquarters in Kabul as the insurgency they fought for 13 years remains as ferocious and deadly as at any time since the 2001 invasion that unseated the Taliban regime following the Sept. 11 attacks.
There are a lot of people in DC that were responsible for the wars the USA has been in involved in through the last few decades but as we know, there is no such thing as a contrite politician.
Dick Cheney is the poster-boy for that term. The best part of this entire scenario, Cheney doesn’t have one regret. That definitely demonstrates what kind of heart and character this guy has.
By all accounts, the most powerful country in the world has come up on the short end of the stick in almost every recent war we gotten involved in. We didn’t learn a thing in Viet Nam.
It is a shame to say but I believe that to a certain degree these wars were started by men that are egotistical, greedy, money hungry and narcissistic maniacs. They have no regard for human life.
It was my prediction at the beginning of Iraq and Afghanistan wars that the USA would leave with their tail between their legs, just as we did in Viet Nam. We had no business invading either country. The government likes to label our pullback as a strategic withdrawal which is absolute nonsense; it is called running away.
Not only did the USA gets its ass kicked in the wars that were fought by politicians instead of our military leaders; we left billions of dollars’ worth of combat equipment on the ground for our enemies to use against us.
There were several corporations that have made billions of dollars because of the wars. These corporations were given very lucrative contracts without going through the bidding process. It is called non-competitive bidding or in laymen terms, greasing the palm of your partners in crime.
Non-competitive bidding is not the way business is done under any circumstances that are legitimate. It was done by the GWB/Cheney and Obama administrations and many more before them. How do you think they reward the people that supported/donated to them in the campaigns when running of office?
They try to cover-up their underhanded gifts scams to these companies by claiming there was not sufficient time to draw up contracts for competitive bidding. NONSENSE, they knew long before they went to war it was going to happen. It was all orchestrated.
Be that as it may; even after all of these years with loss of life, crippling and disfiguring men and women for the rest of their lives and squandering trillions of dollars that has bankrupted our country, the leaders of the USA will continue to stick their nose where it doesn’t belong. No other country in the world ever gets as deeply entrenched into situations as the USA does. Can we assume they are smarter than us??
Today was just a symbolic withdrawal ceremony that took place which marked the end of the U.S.-led International Security Assistance Force.
Some very uncomplimentary statics to dwell on.
Ten years ago, “Operation: Shock and Awe” launched the war in Iraq. The next ten years would prove to be a calamity of unthinkable proportions, leading to the deaths of thousands of American soldiers and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians, trillions spent and billions wasted. ThinkProgress has cataloged the entirety in a single timeline, stretching from the early days of the war to the present. The following is just a small sampling:
MAY 1, 2003: Mission Accomplished
[M]y fellow Americans: Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. [Bush, 5/1/03]
The war ended in Iraq and continued in Afghanistan. What was accomplished??
JULY 2, 2003: Bring ‘Em On
There are some who feel like — that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is, bring them on. [Bush, 7/2/03]
That sounds like what some gang member on the street corner would say.
APRIL 19, 2004: Bob Woodward reveals CIA Director George Tenet said there was a “slam dunk case” against Iraq
About two weeks before deciding to invade Iraq, President Bush was told by CIA Director George Tenet there was a “slam dunk case” that dictator Saddam Hussein had unconventional weapons, according to a new book by Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward. [CNN, 4/19/04]
There hasn’t been any war that the USA got involved in that was ever been a slam dunk.
APRIL 28, 2004: Images of torture at Abu Ghraib are revealed
It is perfectly acceptable for the enemy to torture and denigrate American soldiers but water boarding by the the USA is taboo. If we are foolish enough to get engaged in a war there should be only one rule and that is to win. We have rules we fight by and the terrorists/enemy doesn’t; that is why they win.
JANUARY 12, 2005: WMD search in Iraq is declared over
U.S. inspectors have ended their search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq in recent weeks, a U.S. intelligence official told CNN. [CNN, 1/12/05]
GWB‘s TOP weapons inspector was sent to Iraq to look for weapons of mass destruction. He came back and categorically stated that the absolutely was no evidence of such weapons. GWB and Cheney made up their minds that they were going to war long before the inspector went to Iraq.
MAY 30, 2005: Dick Cheney: Insurgency in its “last throes”
I think they’re in the last throes, if you will, of the insurgency. [CNN Larry King Live, 5/30/05]
Talk about a politician that was dead wrong but would never admit it! Cheney is the poster boy of arrogance.
DECEMBER 18, 2005: Bush: “[M]uch of the intelligence turned out to be wrong.” [Bush, 12/18/05]
Naturally, did you ever hear any politician that admitted they were personally wrong? They always have a scapegoat.
FEBRUARY 2, 2006: Rumsfeld doubts “long war” in Iraq
“Is Iraq going to be a long war?” Mr. Rumsfeld answered, “No, I don’t believe it is.” [Washington Times, 2/2/06]
Rumsfeld must have been a fortune teller before he went to DC.
NOVEMBER 1, 2006: Classified military briefing reports Iraq “edging toward chaos.”
A classified briefing prepared two weeks ago by the United States Central Command portrays Iraq as edging toward chaos, in a chart that the military is using as a barometer of civil conflict. … An intelligence summary at the bottom of the slide reads “urban areas experiencing ‘ethnic cleansing’ campaigns to consolidate control” and “violence at all-time high, spreading geographically.” [New York Times, 11/1/2006]
I have no ideas why the politicians refer to it as intelligence information? The vast majority of the time it is very unintelligent and incorrect.
DECEMBER 19, 2006: The White House is “aggressively promoting” a plan to send “15,000 to 30,000 more troops” to Iraq “over the unanimous disagreement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,” the Washington Post reports. [Washington Post, 12/19/2006]
Naturally; it is called throwing good money or bodies after bad. How many politicians had anyone in their immediate families on the front lines???
FEBRUARY 2, 2007: National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq declares Iraq is worse than a civil war. The document states that the term civil war “accurately describes key elements of the Iraqi conflict,” though it “does not adequately capture the complexity of the conflict.” [Washington Post, 2/3/2007]
That is probably the most intelligent statement made throughout the war.
MAY 12, 2007: Billions in oil missing in Iraq.
“Between 100,000 and 300,000 barrels a day of Iraq’s declared oil production over the past four years is unaccounted for and could have been siphoned off through corruption or smuggling, according to a draft American government report. Using an average of $50 a barrel, the report said the discrepancy was valued at $5 million to $15 million daily.” [New York Times, 5/12/2007]
Just like any other commodity involved, the USA is always the one that takes a beating. How many trillions of dollars have we sent overseas for either relief intend gifts or to support a particular country’s militarily and the money or goods were commandeered by the country’s leadership for their own personal gain. Many of the arms we sent to assist other countries have been used to kill our own people. Am I missing something???
The old saying fool me once shame on you – foll me twice shame on me. What about fooling the USA dozens on times? How can that be labeled?
This one speaks for itself – – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjmjqlOPd6A
SEPTEMBER 11, 2007: Petraeus: ‘I don’t know’ if Iraq war makes America safer. At the Senate Armed Services hearing on progress in Iraq today, Sen. John Warner (R-VA) asked Gen. David Petraeus, the top commander in Iraq, “if we continue what you have laid before the Congress, this strategy, that if you continue, you are making America safer?” “Sir, I don’t know actually,” replied Petraeus. [CSPAN, 9/11/07]
I have always maintained; gather up all the troops around the world and bring them home. Build an impenetrable barrier around all of our boarders. That is how to protect the homeland. It is a proven fact that their way has never worked. It is virtually impossible to beat terrorists on their own soil.
OCTOBER 1, 2007: FBI sending investigators to Iraq to probe Blackwater. The agency is “making the move at the request of the State Department…to pursue possible criminal charges in light of allegations that guards working for Blackwater might have shot innocent Iraqi citizens.” [SF Gate, 10/1/07]
Blackwater is a story all of its own. It is probably the company that made the most profit in all of the recent wars the USA has been involved in.
Here are a few eye-opening statics on Blackwater:
Total number of Blackwater “movements” (i.e. protected convoys) In Iraq since 2005: 16,000
Number of movements in 2006: 6,058
Number of times Blackwater operators fired their weapons in anger: 38
Number of reported movements so far in 2007: 1,873
Number of times Blackwater operators fired their weapons in anger: 56
Percentage increase: 400
Number of Blackwater operators killed in Iraq: 27
Number of Blackwater-escorted dignitaries killed in Iraq: 0
Number of warnings given before Blackwater operators shoot to kill oncoming drivers: 7 (lights, sirens, air horns, hand signals, pen flares, shots to oncoming car’s radiator, “spider web” shot to windshield)
Average compensation paid by U.S. military to families of Iraqis killed by mistake: $3,000
Compensation paid by Blackwater for “random death” of an “innocent Iraqi citizen” in 2005: $5,000
Extra compensation: $2,000, “given the nature of the incident,” followed by the fact that the Blackwater operator “failed to report the incident, causing the family additional pain.”
Compensation paid to family of an Iraqi vice presidential guard killed by a drunken Blackwater operator in the Green Zone last Christmas Eve: $20,000
Penalty exacted on Blackwater operator: Termination of employment, cost of plane ticket back to U.S. ($1,630), and forfeiture of outstanding pay ($7,067), of Fourth of July bonus ($3,000), and of Christmas bonus ($3,000)
Total financial penalty for killing Iraqi vice presidential guard: $14,697
Compensation originally suggested by a State Department official in response to Blackwater’s accidental killing of an Iraqi bystander in December 2006: $250,000
Compensation actually paid: $15,000
Blackwater’s reasoning: “A sum this high will set a terrible precedent. This could cause incidents with people trying to get killed by our guys to financially guarantee their family’s future.”
Number of security companies now operating in Iraq: 170
Value of Blackwater’s federal contracts in 2001: $736,906
Value in 2002: $3.4 million
Value in 2003: $25 million
Value in 2004: $48 million
Value in 2005: $352 million
Value in 2006: $593 million
Total value of all Blackwater contracts at the end of 2006: $1 billion
Not a bad percentage growth from 2001 to 2006
Percentage growth since 2001: 80,453
That is just the information they are releasing.
Current number of Blackwater’s federal contracts, according to Erik Prince: “More than 50.”
Percentage of Blackwater holding company Prince Group’s revenue derived from federal contracts: 90
Number of Blackwater helicopters downed in Iraq in 2006: 3
Average daily pay for a Blackwater operator, according to Erik Prince: $500
Daily pay, according to government invoices: $1,221.62
Number of State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security agents in Iraq: 36
Number of Blackwater operators in Iraq, primarily engaged in guarding U.S. diplomats: 1,000
Number of Blackwater administrative support staff for company’s Iraq operations: 50
Blackwater tooth-to-tail ratio (i.e. number of trigger pullers to support and administrative staff): 20:1
U.S. military tooth-to-tail ratio, according to Erik Prince: Anywhere from 1:8 to 1:12
Blackwater’s profit margin: 10.5 percent
I don’t believe this number. Any company that had a 80,453 percentage growth and only made 10.5% profit needs an new bookkeeper.
Erik Prince’s income in 2006: “More than a million dollars.”
Amount Erik Prince has contributed to the GOP and Republican candidates: $225,000
Number of Erik Prince’s sons, heirs to the Blackwater fortune: 5
Slogan chanted by Code Pink protesters as Erik Prince departed hearing: “War criminal”
Blackwater is just one of the companies that profited in Iraq and Afghanistan. The numbers of the dollars the USA actually pissed away are staggering and a vast portion of it cannot be accounted for.
Like Gomer Pyle used to say: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TnkJ8_BmSI
JULY 22, 2008. The U.S. troop “surge” in Iraq that President George W. Bush ordered last year has ended after the last of five additional combat brigades left the country, a U.S. military spokesman said on Tuesday. The remaining troops from that brigade departed over the weekend, leaving just under 147,000 American soldiers in Iraq, the spokesman said. [Reuters, 7/22/08]
JUNE 13, 2011: Department of Defense announces that $6.6 billion dollars earmarked for Iraq has been lost with no explanation
Where I the name of Christ is the accountability in all of this? 6.6 billion dollars lost; give me a f…in break!!! It is a sacrilege that our worthless leaders try to shove this bull shit down the American people’s throats and expect us to believe it. It is insulting.
DECEMBER 15, 2011: The US formally declares an end to the Iraq war
Nearly 4,500 U.S. service-members were killed in more than eight years of war and about 30,000 wounded. Tens of thousands of Iraqis died, troops and civilians, as the U.S. deposed Saddam’s regime and beat down an insurgency backed by al-Qaeda terrorists and sectarian revenge killings that threatened to destroy the country. [USA Today, 12/15/11]
I always was of the opinion that the countries we illegally invaded would be a lot worse off when we left than before we got there.
As I have stated numerous time. If in fact the USA could claim that we won these wars, the bleeding would not be as bad as it is. I will guarantee that the Iraq and Afghanistan wars are not the last wars that the USA will unnecessarily get involved in.
It is always about the money.