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Obama’s plan in Iraq: Devil’s in the details

September 14th, 2007

Yesterday, I started a conversation on e-thepeople.org about Obama’s new plan for Iraq. I wanted to summarize the interesting feedback that I’ve gotten from these discussions.

First, I raised the question: how does Obama plan to fix the oil sharing problem? No one responded, but I think Chris Dodd has the best proposal on this subject yet, whereby the oil revenue would be split among the federal government of Iraq, regional governments and directly to Iraqis.

Second, bocamp22 asked whether partitioning proposed by Biden should be part of the solution. CatsAngel responded by questioned how Shiites and Sunnies could really be separated and Kent Wicker worried that partitioning could lead to ethnic cleansing. Personally, I am not a fan of partitioning and I think it can’t possibly solve anything if the oil issue isn’t resolved first.

Third, several members asserted their belief that military withdrawal would threaten our security. My personal belief is that the state of Iraq poses no threat, but that the terrorist activity within Iraq may pose a threat. I think the innovation of Obama’s plan is that he offers an alternative to a military presence — namely, humanitarian aid and diplomacy — to mitigate this risk.

Fourth, several members questioned whether humanitarian aid and diplomacy would work. Chickmd called diplomacy with Iraqi’s neighbors an “error in judgment” because these neighbors are our enemies. I agree that this is a risk, so I’d like to how Obama wants to go about this delicate task. As for humanitarian aid, Chickmd believes that Obama like “all other democrats he does not care how he wasts other peoples tax dollars.” He wants out now and to cut our losses completely, but when I pressed him, he preferred Bush’s plan to Obama’s if he were forced between those two unsavory choices.

But the highest rated comment by d_jinx says that Obama’s strategy is risky and uncertain, but better than not trying anything different: “Gotta get started because what we what we’re doing now ain’t encouraging.”

Amen to that, brother!

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