Reflection on Sending US Troops to Iraq
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Published: Wed, 25 Apr 2018
Why The U.S. Should Leave Iraq.
We have been in Iraq since President George Bush launched the invasion on Iraq in March 2003. Since then the war the U.S. has spent about seven hundred million dollars. While we still are in fighting to try to rebuild Iraq when we should be trying to save the U.S. from the down fall of our own economy since March of last year. From the National Priorities Project website I found this chart that shows the cost by year the money we are spending on the war in Iraq as well as Afghanistan.
Another reason why staying in Iraq is just a bad idea, as John Weiss states, “We face a paradox in Iraq: the longer we stay, the stronger our enemies become. We cannot defeat either the insurgency or the civil war resulting from our invasion and occupation; in fact, both have grown stronger. Nor can we protect the Iraqis we came to save. A corrupt Iraqi government wastes the billions we have allocated for rebuilding, while the middle class flees to avoid the danger. The Pentagon trains Iraqis to fight, but we may well be training the army of our future enemies.”(Weiss) The longer we are there the more the people there will learn how to hurt the U.S. learn the ways to operate our own military forces. The longer we leave our troops the longer the people of Iraq have time to see what we do in the middle of war. The longer we stay the longer our nation stays unprotected, think about it we have all these troops across seas fighting when and if there is another terrorist attack we in a way have our shields down. It will take longer for us to get prepared or try to reassemble what just happened.
Also I ask the question why are we sending more troops? Costing the nation more money, endangering the lives of more Americans? If we are doing what needs to be done and we are doing our job why send more? If they are fighting back harder than we are wasting our time trying to save a lost cause. Hurting our own nation to support a country just so oil prices will drop seems to be a little much some would say. Like Cenk Uygur says. “If we’re doing well, it’s because of the extra troops so we shouldn’t pull them out. If we’re doing poorly, obviously we need more troops. Either way, we need more troops and need to stay in Iraq longer. This supposition is obvious nonsense, yet we’re taking it seriously.”( Uygur)
On the other hand I guess you could say a reason why we should stay in Iraq is, by leaving our troops in Iraq and leave a few there set up a base to watch over operations of what is going on. In one article Marcus Fryman puts it, “You see, some people are just incapable of thinking long term. In the grand scheme of things, it’s better to keep US troops in Iraq just so they’ll be ready to enter into combat operations in Iran. I mean, doesn’t it seem pointless bringing them all the way back home only to deploy them back onto the streets of Tehran a month later?”(Fryman) Plus it could have the opportunity to set up more jobs in the future.
Have you ever heard of the term PTSD (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder)? It is defined as a severe anxiety disorder can develop after exposure to any event which results in psychological trauma. This event may involve the threat of death to oneself or to someone else, or to one’s own or someone else’s physical, sexual, or psychological integrity, overwhelming the individual’s psychological defenses. Symptoms include re-experiencing original trauma, by means of flashbacks or nightmares; avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma; and increased arousal, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, anger. Formal diagnostic criteria require that the symptoms last more than one month and cause significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning, meaning trying to fit back into society or trying to get back to work after experience PTSD. In a test given to 2525 soldiers returning from a year-long tour in Iraq, 124 (4.9%) reported injuries with loss of consciousness, 260 (10.3%) reported injuries with altered mental status, and 435 (17.2%) reported other injuries during deployment. Of those reporting loss of consciousness, 43.9% met criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as compared with 27.3% of those reporting altered mental status, 16.2% with other injuries, and 9.1% with no injury. Soldiers with mild traumatic brain injury, primarily those who had loss of consciousness, were significantly more likely to report poor general health, missed workdays, medical visits, and a high number of somatic and post concussive symptoms than were soldiers with other injuries. However, after adjustment for PTSD and depression, mild traumatic brain injury was no longer significantly associated with these physical health outcomes or symptoms, except for headache. I found a story about a soldier call him Mr. K, a 38-year-old National Guard soldier, was assessed in an outpatient psychiatric clinic several months after he returned home from a 12-month deployment to the Sunni Triangle in Iraq, where he had his first exposure to combat in his 10 years of National Guard duty. Before deployment, he worked successfully as an automobile salesman, was a happily married father with children ages 10 and 12 years, and was socially outgoing with a large circle of friends and active in civic and church activities. While in Iraq, he had extensive combat exposure. His platoon was heavily shelled and was ambushed on many occasions, often resulting in death or injury to his buddies. He was a passenger on patrols and convoys in which roadside bombs destroyed vehicles and wounded or killed people with whom he had become close. He was aware that he had killed a number of enemy combatants, and he feared that he may also have been responsible for the deaths of civilian bystanders. He blamed himself for being unable to prevent the death of his best friend, who was shot by a sniper. When asked about the worst moment during his deployment, he readily stated that it occurred when he was unable to intercede, but only to watch helplessly, while a small group of Iraqi women and children were killed in the crossfire during a particularly bloody assault. Since returning home, he has been anxious, irritable, and on edge most of the time. He has become preoccupied with concerns about the personal safety of his family, keeping a loaded 9-mm pistol with him at all times and under his pillow at night. Sleep has been difficult, and when sleep occurs, it has often been interrupted by vivid nightmares during which he thrashes about, kicks his wife, or jumps out of bed to turn on the lights. His children complained that he has become so overprotective that he will not let them out of his sight. His wife reported that he has been emotionally distant since his return. She also believed that driving the car had become dangerous when he is a passenger because he has sometimes reached over suddenly to grab the steering wheel because he thinks he has seen a roadside bomb. His friends have wearied of inviting him to social gatherings because he has consistently turned down all invitations to get together. His employer, who has patiently supported him, has reported that his work has suffered dramatically, that he seems preoccupied with his own thoughts and irritable with customers, that he often makes mistakes, and that he has not functioned effectively at the automobile dealership where he was previously a top salesman. Mr. K acknowledged that he has changed since his deployment. He reported that he sometimes experiences strong surges of fear, panic, guilt, and despair and that at other times he has felt emotionally dead, unable to return the love and warmth of family and friends. Life has become a terrible burden. Although he has not been actively suicidal, he reported that he sometimes thinks everyone would be better off if he had not survived his tour in Iraq. Do we want more troops coming back with things like this happening when they do not even what our help anymore? Is it worth it?
I find myself asking the same question. With everything going on here in the United States I do not think we have the money and are running out of the resources to keep fighting a battle that just may be already lost. By pulling out bring most of our troop’s home back their families, saves lives, and makes a stronger nation. We can keep some troops there you know a small base let our presents be known. I think we need to keep an eye on them, but this fighting for lost cause just needs to end.
Weiss, John. “Why We Should Leave Iraq Now”. History News Network. 10-9-06
Uygur, Cenk. “Three Reasons Why We Should Leave Iraq”. Mo Rocca 180. 4-10-2008
“Cost of War”. National Priorities Project . 2008
Fryman, Marcus. “10 Reasons Why US Troops Should Stay in Iraq”. Marcus Fryman’s 10 reasons why…. 2-27-2009
“Mild Traumatic Brain Injury in U.S. Soldiers Returning from Iraq”. The New England Journal of Medicine. January 31, 2008
Friedman, Matthew. “Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Among Military Returnees From Afghanistan and Iraq”. Treatment in Psychiatry. 4, April 2006
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