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Iraq: PM floats limited amnesty proposal for insurgents
Posted by: McQ on Thursday, June 15, 2006

I've got to tell you when I first read this, my knee started jerking something awful.
Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Wednesday proposed a limited amnesty to help end the Sunni Arab insurgency as part of a national reconciliation plan that Maliki said would be released within days. The plan is likely to include pardons for those who had attacked only U.S. troops, a top adviser said.

Maliki's declaration of openness to talks with some members of Sunni armed factions, and the prospect of pardons, are concessions that previous, interim governments had avoided. The statements marked the first time a leader from Iraq's governing Shiite religious parties has publicly embraced national reconciliation, welcomed dialogue with armed groups and proposed a limited amnesty.
But once I got it under control and sat back for a minute, I began to entertain the idea a little differently. The primary thought which continued to hammer me is "I want our troops out of there as soon as possible". And that will only happen when Iraq can take care of itself.

One of the major milestones toward Iraq self-sufficiency would be the defeat of the insurgency. The sooner it is gone, the sooner our troops are gone (and I again want to reinterate my belief that it isn't our job to defeat it, but to train and support the Iraqis while they do it).

So you're left with a dilemma. Put pressure on Iraq to withdraw the amnesty terms if they include amnesty for those who've attacked US troops (which, most likely, would be all of them) and see our presence extended as the insurgency rumbles on and casualties continue to mount.

OR

Grit your teeth, say nothing and hope the offer brings the desired results. Since the end-state is the desired one, it may end up saving a lot more American lives than pressuring the Iraqis to withdraw the amnesty offer. And like it or not, our ability to identify and apprehend those Sunni insurgents who have attacked us in the past is limited at best.

So I opt for the latter, and grit my teeth and growl "get on with it so we can get out of here". I don't particularly like it, but I think it is the best policy for the long term welfare of our troops there and a way to shorten their stay.
 
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"AMENSTY"

Freudian slip?
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://
The amnesty is ofr those who only attaacked American troops McQ. It’s a VERY limited offer.

How would this offer be policed, BTW? I mean how do I PROVE I only attacked US forces? How would you know otherwise?

This is just "fluff" and "Window dressing", it SOUNDS good, but again look at the details. On it’s face it’s not really a serious offer, is it?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
The amnesty is ofr those who only attaacked American troops McQ. It’s a VERY limited offer.
Yeah I understand that Joe, that’s why I highlighted the sentence which contains the world "only".
I mean how do I PROVE I only attacked US forces?
I have no idea, but I’m sure they think they have a method. I’d also guess that through intelligence means they know by name which Sunni insurgent factions have warred only against the US and which have also attacked other Iraqis.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I didn’t make myself clear...
You say:
Put pressure on Iraq to withdraw the amnesty terms if they include amnesty for those who’ve attacked US troops (which, most likely, would be all of them) and see our presence extended as the insurgency rumbles on and casualties continue to mount.
It’s not an amnesty for MOST, it’s an amnesty for SOME, a very small some, at that...I’m commenting that fear/concern you quote is not actually a reasonable one, given what the PM ACTUALLY offered.

Further, once you begin to examine the offer it begins to fall apart, on either side...again how would I PROVE I’m eligible or how would you prove I’m NOT eligible?

So it seems to me that this is just a piece of propaganda, put out to begin to divide the Sunni insurgency or at the most the opening in a series of "offers" and "counter-offers" designed to bring some insurgents "in from the cold."
-Respectfully, Joe
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Yeah I understand that Joe, that’s why I highlighted the sentence which contains the world "only".
But you left it out of ’include amensty[sic] for those who’ve attacked US troops’ which gave me (and, I suspect, Joe) pause.

Now that that’s cleared up ...

I’m inclined to agree, with the caveat of the amnesty exemption applying only to attacks which occured before we were asked to stay by the democratically-elected Iraqi government. Up till that time, while it leaves a bad taste in my mouth to excuse attacks on our troops, a ’fighting the foreign occupiers’ case could be made. Past that point, though, no.
 
Written By: Achillea
URL: http://
One would think, the insurgents could mearly not participate in futher fighting, and be relatively safe from prosecution.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
It’s not an amnesty for MOST, it’s an amnesty for SOME, a very small some, at that..
And your source for that?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Joe, I believe you’ve misread what McQ wrote.

As I understand it, his initial reaction as an American is to be upset at the offer. He would prefer that having attacked American troops means one does not receive amnesty.

After thinking about it, he presents the two options:

The first option is for America to pressure Iraq to amend the offer to satisfy his initial reaction, meaning no amnesty if you’ve attacked American troops. He then parenthetically includes that this essentially nullifies the amnesty offer because it is likely that all of them attacked American troops at some point.

The second is to accept the amnesty offer as is, which is what he has chosen to do.

I find it a persuasive argument.
 
Written By: Scout
URL: http://
The plan is likely to include pardons for those who had attacked only U.S. troops, a top adviser said.
Note... and we may be talking past one another here, but note the emphasis in the quote...ONLY THOSE WHO HAVE ATTACKED US TROOPS.

Hence my follow-on points... it’s ONLY for SOME insurgents... a very SMALL some of insurgents...because I doubt many insurgents have attacked ONLY US troops.

From that follows the question: "How would one ever prove someone eligible/ineligible for amnesty?"

From which follows, "Huuuu’uuuum Sunni insurgents AREN’T knucklheads, they can see the flaw in the proposal as well as me" so I wonder/conclude (which may be too strong) if this "proposal" isn’t merely a trick or the opening of a dialogue to bring some insurgents "in from the cold". Either Maliki is seeking to divide the insurgency, "Hey I think I might be able to get out of this LOSER war IF I claim I only attacked US troops" or "Nice offer, how about we take this to mean attacks PRIOR to a certain date? (Which someone has posited as the meaning of the phrase already)"

I offer this cautiously because all too often debates here become tendentious arguments over EXACTLY what s/he said and what it meant. I merely commenting that your concern McQ, is somewhat unjustified, because this SEEMS a very limited amnesty proposal. I believe Achillea has pointed out that the offer may mean attacks PRIOR to a certain date, which "squares the circle" in our argument/dispute/misunderstanding. In that case, yes I agree it’s a bitter pill to swallow, but it may well be the best medicine available.

Sooner or later, an end has to be made of "de-Ba’athification" and an amensty offered for insurgents. After all, the goal IS a political solution to an inherently political problem. Sooner or later the Sunni will have to be brought into the "New Iraq" and ALL Sunni have benefitted from CENTURIES of Sunni rule in Iraq and MOST have benefitted personally from the Ba’ath regime. We can’t purge/punish EVERY Sunni, so we/the Iraqi Government is going to have to accept most Sunni’s to make things work. It’s akin to Germany in 1945, we couldn’t REPLACE the Germans, we could only punish the MOST GUILTY and hope for the best for the rest.

It’s just not obvious, either way what exactly the PM meant, and that’s without discussing the possible errors of translation of Arabic into English.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Consider the situation after WWII, with German and Japanese POWs. We didn’t prosecute all of them, in fact, I would say we didn’t prosecute many of them. We gave them amnesty at the cessation of hostilities.

Now, it is up to the new Iraqi government to determine the terms of the insurgents "surrender" and acceptance into society.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
Amnesty for soldiers/guerillas, per historical standard. No amnesty for terrorists, per historical standard.

So are we admitting that they’re not all terrorists? Or are they all terrorists, and we’re just allowing some of those terrorists to be amnestied?
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Nice try Glasnost, still trying to confound the Neo-Cons? How about the SUBSTANCE fo the proposal, rather than a fairly lame attempt at political sniping?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Isn’t Iraq a sovergn nation? Don’t the Iraqis get to decide who they will or will not prosecute over what’s happened over the last 3 years?

That doesn’t mean that we cannot go after those people through legal means at a later date, now does it?
 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
So are we admitting that they’re not all terrorists?
"We" aren’t admitting anything. This is an Iraqi government proposal.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Hence my follow-on points... it’s ONLY for SOME insurgents... a very SMALL some of insurgents...because I doubt many insurgents have attacked ONLY US troops.
Again, I ask, what is your source for assuming it is a very small group?

Certainly the dead-enders are probably mostly Sunni, but I don’t believe that is who the PM is addressing.

He’s addressing the Sunni insurgents who’ve taken up arms to battle the ’occupation’. That would be the US.

Everything I read says that group is the majority of the Sunni insurgency, not the minority.
From which follows, "Huuuu’uuuum Sunni insurgents AREN’T knucklheads, they can see the flaw in the proposal as well as me" so I wonder/conclude (which may be too strong) if this "proposal" isn’t merely a trick or the opening of a dialogue to bring some insurgents "in from the cold"
Oh, sure, I agree with this completely. At this point the Iraqi government might pragmatically decide that any Sunni who claims to have only attacked the US and promises to lay down their arms and join the governmental effort is a good Sunni whether their claim is actually true or not.

Again, that’s fine if they’re fine with it. The point is to find a way to gut the majority of the insurgency so cleaning up what’s left is easier. If they do it with a little "wink, wink, nudge, nudge", so be it. I’m sure if this goes through, not all of those who agree with the terms will have exclusively warred on the US.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Again, I ask, what is your source for assuming it is a very small group?
No source, BUT I ask is it reasonable to assume that the 4132nd Sunni Insurgent IED Brigade EXCLUSIVELY operated against US targets? Or did they sometimes, not plant a bomb that got a few Shi’i volunteers for the Gendarmes or Army? I find it difficult to believe that any group or individuals acted ONLY against US forces, once there were Iraqi forces on the streets, too. After all, the Iraqi’s for the last 2 years have been in the field and if they wander into my kill zone I’m likely to kill them as not, AFTER ALL THEY OPPOSE MY POLITCAL DESIRES, TOO. It’s not like the reconstituted Iraqi Army was too likely to be a hot-bed of Sunni reaction... which is why disbanding the ORIGINAL Iraqi Army was a GREAT idea.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Well, just like in WWII, not all of the Nazis were prosecuted for warcrimes, only those where there was sufficient proof.

IMHO - It is likely, that with proof, those who’ve committed mass killings might not get a pardon. Where as, those taking pot shots at troops at opportunistic times, might.

Joe - You are looking for formal rules where there is only the barest inkling of an idea at the moment.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
No source, BUT I ask is it reasonable to assume that the 4132nd Sunni Insurgent IED Brigade EXCLUSIVELY operated against US targets? Or did they sometimes, not plant a bomb that got a few Shi’i volunteers for the Gendarmes or Army?
Not necessarily. Most of the Sunni insurgent attacks have come in exclusively or mostly Sunni areas. And they began well before the sectarian violence which is relatively new.

Bremer notes in his WSJ piece:
...during the 14 months I was in Iraq, the coalition confirmed fewer than 100 deaths attributable to sectarianism.
During that same period, however, coalition units were under increasing attack, mostly by Sunni insurgents.

Militias on both side are another matter and I would suggest perhaps most of those attacks against Shia may have been by them instead of insurgents.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I’m not addressing secterian violence per se, McQ...I’m saying that Mahmud and his crew of merry insurgents PROBABLY planted and detonated IED’s against ANY force that they could, in order to defeat the Coalition Forces and bring a return to Sunni power. IF I understand your point. I am just saying, Mahmud most likely targeted Iraqi Forces, then and NOW mostly Shi’i and Kurd, AND US forces. After all they were his enemies, equally. It was just easier to hit Iraqi units and forces, rather than US forces, in fact. So again this isn’t about the much bally-hooed "Civil War" in Iraq or "sectarian violence" or "pay back"... just the fact that if you’ve been a part fo the insurgency it’s more than likely you’ve been a fairly equal opportunity shooter.

That being the case an amnesty that ONLY applies to those who blasted away at US forces is going to be an amnesty to a fairly small crew.

Sooner or later an amnesty is going to be necessary.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
It occurs to me that if Achillea point is true that this amnesty is for those who dropped out of the shooting AFTER the elections, it’s still a pretty small crew. How many insurgents hung up the AK after sovereignty, or Constitutional ratification or the Parliamentary elections?

This amnesty is for guys and gals that fought for a year or so and then quit, mayhap, just how many is that?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
I’m not addressing secterian violence per se, McQ...I’m saying that Mahmud and his crew of merry insurgents PROBABLY planted and detonated IED’s against ANY force that they could, in order to defeat the Coalition Forces and bring a return to Sunni power.
In mostly Sunni areas, that was the coalition almost exclusively. That may be changing a bit now with Iraqi units beginning to be fielded, but I’d guess by and large Sunni insurgents mostly attacked US forces.

But neither of us know for sure and it’s all conjecture. I’ll be interested to see what comes out of this amnesty offering though.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
This amnesty is for guys and gals that fought for a year or so and then quit
And what evidence is there that this is what the Iraqis are or will be offering?
But neither of us know for sure and it’s all conjecture.
Exactly.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
Keith read the thread... and the original posting. As posted the amnesty is for those who attacked ONLY US forces... Achillea posited that the amnesty may be read ascovering those who fought PRIOR to the Iraqi Government standing up its forces...All of which would lead to the point that as it stands, as it is reported... that this amnesty really doesn’t cover that many insurgents...IMO. Because they’d have to be insurgents that dropped out fairly early in the fight...or folks who simply did not like the US and only fought them...or at least who SAID that they only did these things. Yes it IS all conjecture, but it DOES stem from a quoted posting.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Wrangle about who if you like, the end result will be people who attacked OTA’s will get amnesty too, unless the Iraqi government is fairly sure it knows who they are, which, probably in a lot of cases, it does not.

The ones it does know, probably know who they are, and they won’t bother trying to come in. But the fewer guys they need to deal with, the easier it is to close-in on the ones still operating and stop them.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
There is much more to this in the article then originally posted.

But, I would still not draw to many conclusions from this, as they are just starting down the road to any actual agreement. There is no agreement, just an opening position.
Reconciliation could include an amnesty for those "who weren’t involved in the shedding of Iraqi blood," Maliki told reporters at a Baghdad news conference. "Also, it includes talks with the armed men who opposed the political process and now want to turn back to political activity."

...

Maliki stressed that he had not yet met with the Sunni resistance and added, "We will talk to those whose hands are not stained with blood, and we hope they would rethink their strategy." He vowed that they "will not be able to interrupt the political process, either by wanting to bring back the old regime, or imposing an ugly, ethnic new regime upon Iraq."

...

President Jalal Talabani, a Kurd, has long talked of negotiations and a possible limited amnesty to help end Iraq’s violence. However, Maliki’s statements Wednesday marked the greatest public show of willingness to compromise from governments led by the Shiite religious parties.

The Arab League on Wednesday postponed a reconciliation conference for Iraq that had been set for August. Adnan Ali al-Kadhimi, a top adviser to Maliki, said the conference was delayed in part so Iraq could decide who might be eligible for any amnesty. It was not clear how the government would verify which insurgents have been responsible for which types of attacks.

"The government has in mind somehow to do reconciliation, and one way to do it is to offer an amnesty, but not a sort of unconditional amnesty," Kadhimi said in a telephone interview. "We can see if somehow those who are so-called resistance can be accepted if they have not been involved in any kind of criminal behavior, such as killing innocent people or damaging infrastructure, and even infrastructure if it is minor will be pardoned."

The reconciliation effort pioneered by South Africa after the collapse of apartheid might be a model, Kadhimi said. "One way was to admit what you have done and you will be forgiven, and maybe parts of this can be considered. Because once we see people coming forward to admit what they have done, and it’s within the areas the government has the right to pardon, it could happen."

Asked about clemency for those who attacked U.S. troops, he said: "That’s an area where we can see a green line. There’s some sort of preliminary understanding between us and the MNF-I," the U.S.-led Multi-National Force-Iraq, "that there is a patriotic feeling among the Iraqi youth and the belief that those attacks are legitimate acts of resistance and defending their homeland. These people will be pardoned definitely, I believe."

Asked about pardons for those who had attacked Iraqi forces, he said: "This needs to be carefully studied or designed so maybe the family of those individuals killed have a right to make a claim at the court, because that is a public right. Or maybe the government can compensate them."

...

Rather than a reconciliation conference, Araji said, the best step for peace in Iraq would be for leaders of Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish blocs in parliament to come to terms among themselves.

"That will take care of 90 percent of the people" in Iraq’s conflict. The remaining 10 percent "will then be isolated and exposed, so all their evil steps are obvious to us and to them," Araji said. Military forces could deal with the remaining hard-liners after any reconciliation, he said.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
Wrangle about who if you like, the end result will be people who attacked OTA’s will get amnesty too, unless the Iraqi government is fairly sure it knows who they are, which, probably in a lot of cases, it does not.
Yup ... I agree. At this point it really doesn’t matter that much either, as long as it works to gut the insurgency.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
There is much more to this in the article then originally posted.
Sure there is, but I was interested in addressing what got my knee to jerkin’. ;)
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
"We" aren’t admitting anything. This is an Iraqi government proposal

Which we’re allowing to be proposed.

You just got to understand, I’m worried about allowing the idea to take hold that you can attack US troops and live. That sort of turns us into a paper tiger. And, since the good thing about this war is that we’re not one anymore, this amnesty puts all of that progress in jeopardy.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Which we’re allowing to be proposed.
And you have that on what authority?
You just got to understand, I’m worried about allowing the idea to take hold that you can attack US troops and live. That sort of turns us into a paper tiger. And, since the good thing about this war is that we’re not one anymore, this amnesty puts all of that progress in jeopardy.
I’m sure you somehow consider this clever sarcasm but trust me, you should leave this to professionals.

 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
"Consider the situation after WWII, with German and Japanese POWs. We didn’t prosecute all of them..."

What would we have prosecuted them for? Not all German and Japanese soldiers were war criminals, in spite of all the propaganda to the contrary.

"I’m worried about allowing the idea to take hold that you can attack US troops and live. That sort of turns us into a paper tiger"

I don’t think suicide bombers are too worried about survival, and there are millions of people worldwide who, at one time or another, have attacked US troops and are still alive. Do you advocate that we slaughter them all? When wars end, they end.
 
Written By: tmactual
URL: http://
Iraq’s national security advisor just shot this down. No amnesty for anyone involved in attacks against Iraqis or coalition forces. I can’t find it on the web yet, but Fox reported it earlier.
 
Written By: Jordan
URL: http://
Tim -

I’m actually guardedly in favor of the amnesty, myself. I’m using the Socratic method to demonstrate exactly how dumb the paper tiger paradigm is in respect to the U.S.A. since, oh, 1900. McQ has no substantive response, because he was using said paradigm just weeks ago as part of the "stupid liberal peacenik policies lead to getting massacred by our enemies" argument. He’s in flagrant self-contradiction and isn’t ready to admit it, especially to an antagonist like me.

I’m really enjoying him support for a liberal peacenik terrorist amnesty, now that it’s being advocated by the tough guys. I’m also wondering if he might think twice before siding next time with the people who suggest America run its foreign policy on the basis of "take every bait and invitation to get in someone’s face, in case some arab lunatic thinks we look weak if we don’t and might try something".


trust me, you should leave this to professionals.

Like the ones here at Q + O? Or in the commments section? Can you do any better than this?



 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
I’m really enjoying him support for a liberal peacenik terrorist amnesty, now that it’s being advocated by the tough guys.
"Him" support? Proof read, will ya?

Speaking of "substantive responses", my goodness this is poor. But of course if you knew what you were talking about that would be obvious and you wouldn’t have profferred it. Instead you seem proud of it.

Your rather wimpy attempts to poke at me do remind me why I don’t take anything you say with any seriousness, given your previous examples of intellectual dishonesty.

But stick around, spatter the walls with your graffiti and continue to provide a laugh or two. Every court needs a jester. Self-delusion is its own entertainment I guess, so keep "really enjoying" yourself.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Jordan is correct... on CNN’s Situation Room the Iraqi National Security Advisor stated the amnesty did NOT apply to those who have "killed" American or Iraqi troops. I assume that really means engaged in combat with them. It covers those who SUPPORTED the insurgency, thru money, information, provision of safe houses and the like. Right now it covers the Dan Cong, not the Viet Cong.

As to being a paper tiger:
1) The US invaded Iraq
2) Conquered Iraq in less than a month
3) Defeated the guerrilla forces on the Lines of Communication
4) Established an Interim Authority for Iraq
5) Fought an insurgency
6) Defeated the insurgency, militarily, having not lost a firefight involving more than a squd since the insurgency began
7) Establsihed a compliant Iraqi Government
8) Oversaw elections to legitimate this Iraqi Government
9) Is on track to defeat it’s opponents and establish an friendly Iraqi regime
10) May acquiecse in a Amnesty program for the surviving insurgents.

IF this is being a "Paper Tiger" exactly how many groups or nations wish to face this sort of paper tiger. By this statement the PRC is a paper tiger, too in Tibet.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Joe, you’re missing my point. The paper tiger argument itself is self-destructive fallacy, probably one with a reducible to a specific logical fallacy archetype.

It’s no different from "To those who caution against military action in Iran, I say the world learned from Chabmerlain and Munich that appeasement always fails."

that was my point.

Or, more specifically, _this_ is my point:

-Excerpt-
Why the War on Terror is in jeopardy
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, May 30, 2006

We saw one of the worst results from such short-sightedness during the Vietnam war manifest itself afterward with the timidity it engendered in our foreign policy for decades. We saw it in the tentative use of our military and how, when we hit the first obstacle, we withdrew our military and our support. Had the USSR not been on it’s last legs, that could have been devastating. And it was that loss of political confidence which ended up with those that wish us harm viewing us as a paper tiger.
—Excerpt


negotiation, amnesty, withdrawal. They all, in US foreign policy history, stem from the same common root: a realization that counterinsurgencies are not won by Western Democracies with military solutions. They all recognize the limits of force. And there will always be people who don’t understand those limits who argue that negotiation, amnesty, and withdrawal equal treason, defeatism and cowardice.

They’re wrong, and they’re destructive, and they need to be fought aggressively.

McQ, call me whatever names you want, or, if you want, provide some examples of "intellectual dishonesty", or, heck, don’t even bother and just keep tossing around the slogans. But I’m still focused in quite seriously on one particular point that I am making, and just made again.

—Execerpt —
Glasnost, go, read, do some homework. You’re completely out in left field here. In fact, you’re not even in the ball park.

Nice talking with you.


You were the first one to cut the substantive debate, buddy.
On the other hand, now that I’ve had my fun pointing how your inconsistency with your own paradigm, it’s time to move on.

But remember:

—Excerpt —
But the reason Israel is still there today is because it has never allowed its enemies to steal a step on them, nor has it ever been inconsistent with it’s reaction to a provocation.

I hope this amnesty couldn’t be characterized as an inconsistent reaction to the provocation of blowing up US soldiers with IED’s.
—Excerpt—
This isn’t sarcasm. It’s the serious cutting of a bad paradigm to pieces.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
You were the first one to cut the substantive debate, buddy.
You don’t feed trolls and you’re a troll, Glasnost.

As usual, you’ve left huges swaths of the exchange out and used quotes totally out of context. You’re not only intellectually dishonest, you’ve now resorted to lying.

See ya.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Joe & Keith,

It’s now been rendered moot by the Iraqi National Security Advisor’s clarification, but I’d like to straighten out a couple of different misinterpretations of my original posting (which was, apparently, unclear).

I wasn’t saying that I thought the amnesty proposal specified or implied a timeframe for ’amnesty-worthy’ attacks, just that I would be much more inclined to support the proposal if such were the case. There’s a principle involved for me — until the will of the Iraqi people was expressed via the elections, the insurgents could make a case that they were fighting a foreign interloper on behalf of their people. However, once our troops had been asked to stay by the duly-elected sovereign government of Iraq, attacking them was the same as attacking that government and thus illegitimate. Now, it might well have turned out that reality and pragmatism would have forced the abandonment of that principle, but not without some yelling and kicking on my part.

 
Written By: Achillea
URL: http://quantum-sky.net
Just a thought;
One of the lessons of history is that peoplew don’t seem to learn the lessons of history.
 
Written By: tmactual
URL: http://
What’s the big deal with offering an amnesty at some time for groups that would come forward, identify themselves, disarm, and pledge loyalty to the new government?

It makes eminent sense in this kind of war.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Remember tmactual, "History doesn’t repeat itself, historians do..."
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://

 
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