Good Job Obama: Not Sarcasm
Obama Announces End of Operation Iraqi Freedom
Maybe this is the start of something good out of the Prez.
well the current administration has worked to make good, a promise made by the previous government.
I can only assume that this ambition was determined to be next to impossible and was therefore set up to give opportunity to the republicans to illustrate that Obama is as ineffectual as they were?
Sadly for the Bush-ites, the Obama people have been given a chance to sing from the roof tops in self-congratulation. goddamn it is impossible to get away from Obama-footage last night and today!
there are still 50 000 troops out there though. irrespective of the justification for this, that still strikes as something of an occupation to me. But at least the suggestion of progress being made in a desirable direction affords comfort to many.......
The greatest thing about that speech was admitting that Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan need to get their shit together and protect their own country, because it's not our ultimate responsibility. If we sit there until "terrorism" is defeated, we will never leave. Not that the war was really started to quell terrorism...
Things are still extremely risky for the remaining 50k troops there, but it is still a progress in the right direction because those troops are no longer actively seeking combat. They are there to train Iraqi forces.
As for Afghanistan, that is a different story. We'll see though. A lot people are still pissed at Obama, but I can't hate on his administration right now. The end was no where in sight during the Bush Administration. At least now we can see a little bit of light at the end of that tunnel.
I see a similarity in Obama to Bush and indeed to all other head's of state.
It is interesting how easy it still is to see the President of America as The Leader of The Free World (TM). For so long, the bringing of peace to the entire planet was touted as justification for often violent US foreign policy.
But like any good international leader, the primary interests lie at home. It is therefore not much of a criticism to brand Obama (and Bush) as 'protectionist'.
The distinction is however, whereas Bush sought to secure benefit and wealth to petro-chemical and weapons manufacturing companies (aka close family friends), Obama is seeking to re-establish the reputation of America as a whole, to encompass all fields of industry.
There has been criticism of Obama overly chastising BP. But BP are scumbags. But such vocal condemnation does illustrate how Obama intends to put America first before all. Canuckians are worried about trade implications... Iraqis etc might worry about security concerns... but ultimately Obama recognises the need to safeguard domestic issues and that is no bad thing.
I just hope this doesn't create an isolationist climate, where past wrongs are not righted and that future co-operation is jeopardised.
Budget for 2010
For the 2010 fiscal year, the president's base budget of the Department of Defense rose to $533.8 billion. Adding spending on "overseas contingency operations" brings the sum to $663.8 billion.
When the budget was signed into law on October 28, 2009, the final size of the Department of Defense's budget was $680 billion, $16 billion more than President Obama had requested. An additional $37 billion supplemental bill to support the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was expected to pass in the spring of 2010, but has been delayed by the House of Representatives after passing the Senate. Defense-related expenditures outside of the Department of Defense constitute between $216 billion and $361 billion in additional spending, bringing the total for defense spending to between $880 billion and $1.03 trillion in fiscal year 2010.
 Emergency and supplemental spending
The recent invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were largely funded through supplementary spending bills outside the Federal Budget, so they are not included in the military budget figures listed below. In addition, the Pentagon has access to black budget military spending for special programs which is not listed as Federal spending and is not included in published military spending figures. Starting in the fiscal year 2010 budget however, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are categorized as "Overseas Contingency Operations" and included in the budget.
By the end of 2008, the U.S. had spent approximately $900 billion in direct costs on the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. Indirect costs such as interest on the additional debt and incremental costs of caring for the more than 33,000 wounded borne by the Veterans Administration are additional. Some experts estimate these indirect costs will eventually exceed the direct costs.
 By title
The federally budgeted (see below) military expenditure of the United States Department of Defense for fiscal year 2010, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, is:
Components Funding Change, 2009 to 2010
Operations and maintenance $283.3 billion +4.2%
Military Personnel $154.2 billion +5.0%
Procurement $140.1 billion −1.8%
Research, Development, Testing & Evaluation $79.1 billion +1.3%
Military Construction $23.9 billion +19.0%
Family Housing $3.1 billion −20.2%
Total Spending $685.1 billion +3.0%
$664 billion! Holy shit!
Imagine how good healthcare would be if that was added to the health budget!
Yeah. An that's WITHOUT the 2 wars budget. It is beyond insane. W could fix EVERYTHING and go to Mars with that cash.
And have spare money for a free all eason pass for everybody...:)
You can see why the country usually does well when it's not in a war. I'm sure most people who post in this forum have read it, but 1984 by George Orwell has some interesting insights on the ulterior economic purposes of wars.
Agree with you. Sadly we don't even need to read 1984 anymore. War is the engine of capitalism. US IS the capitalism..hence this nation is at war at every generation.
I didn't grow up here, I'm, Italian, what I find truly amazing, is the apparently unlimited resource of youth WILLING to enroll in the Army and go to war. You realize that happens only here in US in the Western world? No other kid anywhere would do it...but here kids run to the Marines camps...why?
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