Guest Pastor Leon Benjamin. This podcast is designed to invite conversations around the Christian faith. Pastor Ellis rightly divides the word to reach and teach…
BTR News – Before his surprise visit to US troops stationed in Iraq, Donald Trump was being widely criticized by news headlines and talking heads on cable tv for not visiting troops abroad. One NBC News article said he had been the first to not visit troops since 2002 which would mean that a majority of US Presidents never visited troops based on foreign soil including Bill Clinton and the recently deceased George H. W. Bush. To hear them tell it, it was a requirement for Presidents to visit troops in combat zones all though it was never made an issue before.
Now that Trump has visited troops in the field, he is being roundly criticized for doing so. Now the talking point seems to be that because Trump made a surprise visit to Iraq without notifying Iraqis, which makes sense for operational security, the corporate news media would have you to believe that the Iraqis asking the US to leave was directly related to Trump’s unannounced visit. It was not.
In March of 2018, a similar demand was issued by the Iraqis.
“Parliament voted for a decision to thank friendly nations for their support in defeating the Islamic State and at the same time to demand the government set a timeline for the withdrawal of foreign troops,” lawmaker Husham al-Suhail told Reuters.
The measure was overwhelmingly backed by a majority of Iraqi legislators. However, instead of respecting the sovereignty of Iraq and heeding the will of its people through their legislator, no timetable for withdrawal has been set although Trump has ordered a withdrawal from Syria and the quagmire known as Afghanistan. In the meantime, the Aghan government has been trying to offer a peace deal to the Taliban.
This year was not the first time Iraqis have demanded foreign troops leave their soil. Although Barack Obama campaigned on removing US troops from Iraq declaring ISIS defeated, his administration ignored did not withdraw the troops as promised.
According to The Atlantic back in 2011, “President Obama’s speech formally declaring that the last 43,000 U.S. troops will leave Iraq by the end of the year was designed to mask an unpleasant truth: The troops aren’t being withdrawn because the U.S. wants them out. They’re leaving because the Iraqi government refused to let them stay.”.
Yet, here we are 7 years later and the US is still occupying the country. That makes the US military occupiers and not invited guests, not a good look for nation demanding others respect its sovereignty. To be fair, there was a tremendous amount of pressure put on Obama by media talking heads to stay in Iraq not to mention his warmongering Sec of State Hillary Clinton who also convinced him to overthrow US Ally Libya which is now a training ground for Islamic terrorists with open-air slave trading markets.
As Donald Trump stated in his speech to cheering US troops in Iraq hearing the news about troops withdrawals in Syria and Afghanistan,
“While American might can defeat terrorist armies on the battlefield, each nation of the world must decide for itself what kind of future it wants to build for its people, and what kind of sacrifices they are willing to make for their children. America shouldn’t be doing the fighting for every nation on Earth not being reimbursed, in many cases, at all.”
In fact, that is what seems to be occurring since Trump’s speech as a coalition of Syrians including the Kurds, the Russians and Iranians which were invited into the country and now the Iraqis who have been given the green light to attack the remaining pockets of terrorists on Syrian soil. However, perhaps caving to political pressure by colonizers in Congress and a dishonest belligerent corporate media, Trump has said he has not planned to respect Iraqi sovereignty and heed their troop withdrawal demands. If US troops start getting attacked by Iraqis in Iraq and treated as foreign invaders, the bloodshed will be on his hands.
It remains to be seen if Trump will change the course of America’s path down neo-colonialism in the name of national security and actually withdraw the troops, there seems to be a concerted effort in the media, the military and Congress to bully Trump into a continued occupation and Iraqi sovereignty and its demands don’t matter to them. It seems it was never about defeating ISIS in Iraq or Syria but about ensuring that the US military continues to occupy more nations than any other nation on the planet which of course is good for the profits of military contractors on Wall Street and bad for US troops and US taxpayers.
Whether you are a supporter of Trump or not, it would be best for us all if he holds to his decision to withdraw troops, especially the troops apparently who are wary of militant nation-building. This, of course, depends on if you really support the rank and file US soldiers. As David Wren of Thando Radio Show would say, we live in a nation full of political serial killers who want to wage wars that they don’t have to fight.