Skip to comments.Were We Greeted as “Liberators”?
Posted on 09/27/2008 8:58:43 AM PDT by Starman417
"And so John likes -- John, you like to pretend like the war started in 2007. You talk about the surge. The war started in 2003, and at the time when the war started, you said it was going to be quick and easy. You said we knew where the weapons of mass destruction were. You were wrong.
You said that we were going to be greeted as liberators. You were wrong." -Barry, Presidential debate September 26, 2008, on the campus of the University of Mississippi.
Has John McCain backed away from these statements? Is there really need to do so? No. And no.
- On the March 12, 2003, edition of MSNBC's Hardball, host Chris Matthews asked McCain: "Do you believe that the people of Iraq or at least a large number of them will treat us as liberators?" McCain answered: "Absolutely. Absolutely."
- On the March 24, 2003, edition of Hardball -- several days after a U.S.-led coalition had invaded Iraq -- McCain said: "[T]here's no doubt in my mind that we will prevail and there's no doubt in my mind, once these people are gone, that we will be welcomed as liberators."
Here he is on January 10, 2007, Meet the Press, defending those statements:
Even in last night's debate, Senator McCain said:
I think the lessons of Iraq are very clear that you cannot have a failed strategy that will then cause you to nearly lose a conflict. Our initial military success, we went in to Baghdad and everybody celebrated. And then the war was very badly mishandled. I went to Iraq in 2003 and came back and said, we've got to change this strategy. This strategy requires additional troops, it requires a fundamental change in strategy and I fought for it. And finally, we came up with a great general and a strategy that has succeeded.
This strategy has succeeded. And we are winning in Iraq. And we will come home with victory and with honor. And that withdrawal is the result of every counterinsurgency that succeeds.
Tim Russert, God bless him, was corrected in his assumption by John Burns of the New York Times, on February 3, 2007:
"The American troops were greeted as liberators. We saw it. It lasted very briefly, it was exhausted quickly by the looting." - John Burns [The Anchoress has a longer transcript- great stuff from Burns]
Was it all a mirage? A propaganda stunt? Or did we really see Iraqis waving to American convoys as they pressed on to Baghdad? Was their real joy amongst Iraqis when Saddam's statue was dragged down? Or was it all staged?
April 2003 - Lieutenant Colonel Jim Chartier, commanding officer of U.S. Marines 1st Tank Battalion, briefs his commanders at the Martyrs Monument in Baghdad in a scene from the Military Channel's "Delta Company: A New Era in Baghdad":
Do people forget:
Baghdad fell in 3 weeks. In comparison to other war invasions of this scale, overthrowing Saddam's regime was indeed a cakewalk. That's why on May 2, 2003, President Bush announced that major combat operations had ended. The post-war insurgency was another beast entirely, however related. It brought us from war to counterinsurgency. Historically, insurgencies last an average of more than 10 years before chances of quelling it improve. In 5 years time, thanks to the pressures of waning public opinion in America, partisan political posturing among Democrats, al Qaeda revealing their true nature to the Iraqi people, a highly motivated military and the right general in the right place at the right time; and thanks to a president with tenacious resolve, the insurgency in Iraq appears to be coming to a close in under 10 years.
When American and Coalition forces first overthrew Saddam's regime, it wasn't just the American public who were under the spell of "cakewalk", even though President Bush in his "Mission Accomplish" speech warned that "we have difficult work to do in Iraq" and that the "transition from dictatorship to democracy will take time". Who else aside from Americans became disillusioned by the fantasy of overnight success from dictatorship to democracy? The Iraqi people.
There have been a number of accounts regarding how Iraqis thought Americans could do anything. After all, the U.S. military and their allies dethroned the Butcher of Baghdad with seeming ease and effortlessness. How is it that they could not transform 30 years of repression and oppression with just a snap of the fingers? Or even repair a 30-year neglected power, water, and sewage system overnight?
The insurgency began sometime before Paul Bremer arrived in Baghdad but really took shape sometime after his arrival when the decision to officially disband the Iraqi army and police force was made and offers of help from the sheiks rebuffed; and in wake of UNSC Resolution 1483, drafted on May 22, 2003, transforming our efforts in Iraq from one of liberation into occupation.
But all of this does not dispell the fact that initially, we were indeed greeted as liberators by many Iraqis.
(Excerpt) Read more at Flopping Aces ...
I remember the iraqis that held a sign telling the “human Shields” to ‘Go home you US wankers’.
its really hard to combat the Lib lies and their emotionalism with rational arguments, especially when the MSM feeds the Libs mantras DAILY!!!
We were greeted as liberators. But then all the looting soured the mood.
Colin Powell, Not John McCain.
This is the same State Dept that insists we predicate our dealings with Iran on reaching “the people” because Iranian moderates soon will be back in power. The State Dept has been saying that since 1979. Look where negotiating and waiting for moderates has gotten us. Ask the families of PanAm 103.
I don't know which will come first- an Iranian “moderate” or the 12th imam out of a well.
McCain would do well to use this material in a commercial.
barack, your distaste for American victory has clouded your memory. We were greeted as liberators and you are wrong and a fool to continue to insist otherwise.
Then the Ba'athist insurgency started up almost immediately. Al Qaeda started flooding in, then Jaysh al Mahdi and Moqtada al Sadr started pushing hard for power and influence which led to the sectarian violence...it was a pretty slippery slope, but it looks like it's mostly under control now.
From the very little reported visit of President Talibani to the Whitehouse on September 10, 2008:
“I think it’s clear that we are in Iraq looking to you as a hero of liberation of Iraq from worst kind of dictatorship.”
“And also, we are always getting benefit from your views about how to secure Iraq. I think you know very well that you and we in Iraq achieved very good successes on terrorism. Now I can say all parts of Iraq liberated from terrorist control and activities. It’s true that some groups remain hiding themselves from here or there, but there’s no place, no inch of Iraqi land under the control of terrorist activities. There are some terrorist — still groups working — hiding themself, and thanks to you and sacrifice of your brave army and to Iraqi people, now we can live in peace and security. “
From my own experience of talking to soldiers who have been in Iraq multiple times as well as correspondence and reading Iraqi blogs, most of the people that they encounter do see America in a kind and gratitude filled light.
Its the MSM who finds those oppositional pictures and displays them. You never hear of the good news, or the good things, or the construction, the massive improvements in infrastructure, pay, or small things to us as car ownership (which was not taken for granted there), in the mass media.
I spent a couple of months working in Baghdad in 1983, during the Iran-Iraq war. Hussein’s mukhabarat (secret police) held the entire populace uner their thumbs. When we rolled into Baghdad in 2003, I really expected the people to greet the liberators with rose petals. His goons made a habit of entering peoples’ houses and relieving them of their gold which was then sold on the open market for cash to buy ammunition. The gold stalls in the souq were all closed then, too.
It’s true they were greeted as liberators by the Shi3a & Kurdish population. The Shi3a turned sour later & the Sunnah were sour from the beginning.
There you go trying to confuse them with the facts again!!!
Of course our brave troops were greeted as liberators — that’s what they were.
Does anyone have a picture of one of those Kurdish Dollars with President Bush’s picture on it? I remember seeing reports of them on Fox News.