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bitmasher's picture
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Iraq

Well it looks like the invasion is starting. I wish godspeed to the troops and safe harbor to the innocent bystanders.

Joined: 12/30/2002
Posts: 114
Iraq

My prayers are with them.

expatriate's picture
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Iraq

Having a vested interest in this area, I can state that our folks will do us all proud. The people I feel sorry for are the Iraqi grunts on the front line, stuck between an overwhelming adversary and leadership that'll shoot them if they don't fight. Victory is out of the question; the best they can hope for is to survive.

Our forces are far superior to what we had in Desert Storm. Back then, we didn't have the B-2, JDAM, Predator, Global Hawk, or a host of other capabilities we have now. To give you an idea, 10 percent of the bombs dropped during Desert Storm were precision guided. In Afghanistan, that number was up to 90 percent.

On the other hand, Iraqi forces are considerably smaller than they were in 1991, and their equipment is in worse shape.

Iraq's only hope is to defeat American will, rather than military victory. So expect the Iraqis to wage the mother of all deception campaigns to make it look like we're committing atrocities.

Joined: 12/30/2002
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Iraq

I know you shouldnt believe everything you hear on the news and ratio, but what if Sadam does have so mass distructive chemicals.

expatriate's picture
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Iraq

Our forces have trained for years to operate in a chemical environment. Chems are a lot harder to use in battle than a lot of people think. If the wind is too strong, it dissipates quickly. Gas dissipates quickly whether there's wind or not. More persistent chemicals like liquids stay around awhile, but tend to stay in one place and don't give off as much vapor. Chem also won't stick around long in desert heat. Don't get me wrong -- a chem attack could be very destructive if it somehow catches our forces off guard.

But really, the biggest impact of chemical weapons is that they impose a lot of friction on your enemy by making him operate in a chem suit in hot weather. That slows everything down and reduces effectiveness. There's also potential for casualties from heat stress, which not only takes one guy off the line, but also ties up a couple more to haul him to the rear (which increases their stress through exertion as well). And once the casualties reach the rear, it puts a load on the medical system. Also, you also can't eat when you're in a mask, which can have effects over time. Your need for water also increases tremendously, due to the amount of sweating you do (there's a tube to drink through). This puts a load on logistics -- somebody has to get a lot more water to the troops.

But using chems would tell the world that the war is justified, which goes against the political battle Saddam is trying to win. He may still use them as a last resort, but I think he'll try to make us look like the bad guys first.

Of course, even though I think that's the more likely scenario, I'd still suit up -- the cost of being wrong is pretty steep.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2003-03-21 00:35 ]

bitmasher's picture
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Iraq

Some may find this site useful as a brief history of saddam, iraq/iran war, kurdish suppression (wholesale murder?), UNSCOM...

I think highly of PBS's frontline documentaries. They are long on facts and short on hype.

Particularly interesting to me was the overview about Hussein Kamel, how unsuccessful UNSCOM was, and about how Wolfowitz's suggested premption policy of the early 90's is basically our new national security policy today.

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Iraq

You know I don't seek Iraq civilian injuries, but I really don't care if a few get hurt in order that our forces don't. A sad but hard fact, one that I wished the military had. They( Iraq civilians) are so "not scared" that there is 0 of them in refuge camps in Jordon, which says something.

[ This Message was edited by: chechatonga on 2003-03-24 13:13 ]

bitmasher's picture
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Iraq

Yeah if I was a troop over there, I would just steer clear of the civilans if at all possible. Between the matrydom talk saddam spews and these troops in civilan clothes, I wouldn't want to be around them at all, even if they were waving the stars and stripes and singing holy praises to Bush.

A quote in todays wall street journal (column 1 page 1) sums it up pretty well from a 21 yr old Marine Cpl.

"Now [Iraqi civilians] wave at me, and I wave back through my rifle sight."

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