Whitt Flora: It's time to put U.S. boots on the ground in Iraq

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  • Iron Rod Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 31, 2014 3:22 p.m.

    There are Public Relations companies who are paid to mold public opinion.

    One of their methods is to plant newspaper articles supporting the position their client want.

    Could this be a plant?

  • LOU Montana Pueblo, CO
    Aug. 29, 2014 7:00 a.m.

    Spoken like a true radical conservative, "I want war but I want you to fight it for me!".

    I love how these people are so eager to spend our money and send our sons and daughters to war.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Aug. 26, 2014 12:00 p.m.

    Did ISIS/ISIL attack America?

    Then the answer is an unequivocal -- NO!

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 7:53 p.m.

    I will agree with the writer on two conidtions

    !) He and his kids enlist in the Army

    2( We reinstate the draft.

    Otherwise leave me and my kids out of this,

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 12:52 p.m.


    Re: "Let’s get down to the elimination of the primary cause, shall we? GW Bush and his “Conservative” entourage"....

    If you really can't see that Terrorists and radical Islam are the cause (not George Bush)... then you really ARE up to your gills in the partisan coolaid.


    Bush didn't cause everything.

    There were terrorists and al qaeda sleeper cells in the United States before he even took office. I suspect there were terrorists in Iraq then as well (in fact these same people that now make up ISIS/ISIL, call it whatever you want today, it's the same thing (terrorism and radical Islam run amok).

    George Bush didn't create them. That's just bogus partisan posturing on your part.


    If George Bush started it all... who attacked our embassies in Africa, who attacked the WTC when Clinton was President, who attacked the USS Coles, who attacked Americans and infidels in the bars and resorts in the Middle East, Germany, and around the world BEFORE Bush took office???

    This ridiculous and over-simplified claim that "just never voting Republican again would solve the problem"... totally ruins your credibility.

  • Iron Rod Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 12:21 p.m.

    This is todays quiz

    1) Would ISIS be able to attack and occupy Iraq if Saddam was still in charge of Iraq?

    2) Was Saddam an secular leader or an Islamic leader?

    3) Is it true that just prior to the invasion did Saddam send emissaries saying " He would do what ever we wanted as long as we allowed him to stay in power" but we choose to ignore it.

    4) What were the effects in Libya of the United States supporting the rebels who overthrew Omar Quadafi? What type of government do they now have?

    5) What are the effects of our government supporting rebels in Syria? If they win what type government will Syria have?

    6) By our unqualified support of Israel and their actions does it alienate most of the middle east?

    7) Can we really afford to be the world's policeman in the middle east?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    I can't help but think if Whitt would be will to put his money where his mouth is...

    Enlisting himself,
    Going himself,
    NOT raising taxes,
    then NOT paying those who did for it FOR them!

    That's my beef with Republicans -- 110%.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 25, 2014 11:41 a.m.

    2 bits -

    " . . . Ebola had been around Africa for years before we started calling it Ebola . . ."

    Great Metaphor!

    We should start calling the Republican Party . . . E B O L A.

    The simple-minded, kleptocratic society resulting from Republican leadership ultimately does no one any good.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 25, 2014 11:08 a.m.

    "No it's time to embrace a non-interventionalist policy."

    Agreed. Unless there is a threat to US national security, we cannot afford to get involved in an all out war.

    I knew we would agree on something someday. Today is that day. Good post

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihuahua, 00
    Aug. 25, 2014 10:27 a.m.

    No it's time to embrace a non-interventionalist policy. These Republican and Democrat warhawks are ruining the country. No wonder we are so hated. We are the evil occupiers in the middle east. If troops were fighting for my freedoms, they would be attacking DC.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 10:19 a.m.


    This, "Our unprovoked attack on Iraq could not end the threat because It CREATED THE THREAT", MSNBC stuff... Is just political rhetoric and a selective revision of actual history..

    Obviously the people infected with the terrorist rhetoric we now call ISIL existed in Iraq AND Syria, Yemen, and other places BEFORE the Iraq war. Heck... they existed in the USA and Europe YEARS BEFORE 9/11! Why not Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, etc?

    "ISIL" may not have used the same NAME back then... but the same actors were doing the same things... yes, even before we attacked Iraq.

    The virus was already there... we just didn't have the name for it yet.

    Maybe we gave it the conditions that caused it to grow... but pretending it didn't even exist... is revisionist history. Obviously terrorism was already there, just didn't have the names they have now.

    But ISIS, alQaeda in Iraq, the terrorists in Syria, the terrorists in Afghanistan... they were already there... we just didn't have the names for them yet (like Ebola had been around Africa for years before we started calling it Ebola).

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 25, 2014 10:13 a.m.

    Hey FT1/SS - “the politicians have never let the troops win.”

    I don’t think it’s a matter of letting the troops win. It’s a matter of putting troops in a winnable conflict. to start with.

    We never should have invaded Iraq in the first place. GW created ISIL by killing Sadaam, and now we have to clean up another GW-caused mess.

    Hey 2 bits - “ . . . a lot of innocent Iraqis and Syrian's are going to die while we work on a solution.”

    Yeah, it’s a mess, and people will die because of it, not doubt about. And maybe there is not a lot we can do about it right now. But we can certainly AVOID repeating a disaster like this in the future.

    Let’s get down to the elimination of the primary cause, shall we? GW Bush and his “Conservative” entourage are the CAUSE for the current mess in the middle east. And although we cannot go back in time and un-elect GW Bush, we can do something to prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future:

    NEVER vote Republican.

  • FT1/SS Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 25, 2014 9:48 a.m.

    No! Unless their's going to be a Whitt Flora Division going in with friends of Whitt. Even if we did go in, the politicians have never let the troops win.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 9:47 a.m.

    If the Iraqis can't end the threat alone, and US airstrikes can't, and US and coalition boots on the ground can't... maybe we need another approach.

    Maybe we treat it like a Ebola or any other virus. You can never totally eliminate it. you have to learn to live with it, and contain it to where it is (and not let it spread) while you work on solutions that weaken it or strengthen your defenses against it.

    So we work on isolating it (currently it is spreading in Iraq and Syria) we need to stop the spread first. Then treat the people infected, and try to find a cure that will make it less fatal.

    The sad part is... this approach means a lot of innocent Iraqis and Syrian's are going to die while we work on a solution. Some people can't tolerate that... and that would be the reason they want to intervene with boots on the ground.

    The other sad fact is... There are already sleeper cells in Europe and the US. It's just dormant there... waiting for the right conditions.

    But just playing politics with it solves nothing...

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 25, 2014 9:25 a.m.

    Hey 2 bits – “ If the world's most powerful military fighting along side the Iraqis and a coalition of nations for 10 years failed to end the threat... how are air strikes alone going to do it now? How is Iraq on their own going to do it now? How is sending the same boots back in that weren't able to do it in 10 years... going to do it NOW?”

    You’ve got it all wrong.

    Our unprovoked attack on Iraq could not end the threat because . . . It CREATED THE THREAT.

    Prior to our interference in Iraq, Sadaam Hussein controlled a SECULAR government. And he CRUSHED Muslim Extremists like ISIL.

    When we deposed and killed Sadaam, WE allowed the spread of Islamic Extremism in Iraq.

    We can thank GW Bush and his supporters for ISIL. Now, when we strike against ISIL, we strike against the LEGACY of GW Bush . . . And I am all for it.

    But let’s limit it to air strikes and precision special forces operations, OK?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 25, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    Good post 2 bits. It is never as easy as some want to make it.

    And, lets say for the sake of discussion that troops ARE able to end the ISIS threat.
    Then what happens? Isn't it just a matter of time until someone else rises up?

    The world has lots of bad things going on. Most of them are not a threat to the US.

    So, we must ask ourselves, Is it worth a tax increase or ballooning deficits to intervene in these issues?

    Until those calling for war detail out what it will cost the average American (you know... those people who have absolutely no stake in the game today) they should be ignored.

    John McCain and Lindsey Graham have never seen a conflict that he didn't want to see an American Military response.

    And when we do, there are usually unintended consequences years down the road.

    As 2-bits points out. The answers are never as easy as our politicians make it sound.

  • 2 bit Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 9:04 a.m.

    I don't want US boots on the ground in Iraq. I really REALLY don't. But at the same time... we need to face reality (and not just play politics).

    Yesterday on Meet the Press the moderator asked the panel the question, "Do we need boots on the ground to end the ISIS threat"?

    The Politicians said, "No... Air strikes are enough". Or, "No... Iraqis can stand up and handle it". One said "Yes... it will require US military boots on the ground to end the threat".

    I was thinking... If the world's most powerful military fighting along side the Iraqis and a coalition of nations for 10 years failed to end the threat... how are air strikes alone going to do it now? How is Iraq on their own going to do it now? How is sending the same boots back in that weren't able to do it in 10 years... going to do it NOW?

    I found myself scratching my head and wondering what planet THEY have been living on for the past 10 years (maybe Washington).

    Out of words... possible answer next.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 25, 2014 6:35 a.m.

    Personal responsibility is a great thing. Unless of course, we get to flex our military muscle around the world and show off our shiny war machine.

    Then, adding to the deficit is OK.

  • Iron Rod Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 25, 2014 6:30 a.m.

    Gee, Where are all the comments supporting this article.

    As I remember the Deseret News editorial pages was quite "Gung Ho" in their support of the invasion of Iraq, Perhaps this small showing of discontent with the article will show them that many people think the Iraq war was a mistake.

    If we are forced to go back by pressure groups I agree we need to have a excess war tax so we do not burden future generations with debt. Also reinstate the draft so every one has the chance to be a "hero" in the middle east.

  • The Educator South Jordan , UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 3:24 p.m.

    I'm with lds liberal here. Where's the "party of personal responsibility" on this one? They started this war. They're the ones responsible for the trillions of dollars and thousands of lives lost.

    I think it's only fair that if they want more wars that they pay for it. I don't think it's right that my children and grandchildren should have to pay for the corrupt Bush regime and the ilk who voted them to power. Why should they have their hard earned money stolen by the government to pay for Bush's wars? If republicans want wars then we need to come up with the trillions to pay for them upfront.

    That's what being personally responsible is all about.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 2:32 p.m.

    I'm still waiting for Republicans to own-up, cough-up, or shut-up and pay for the LAST 2 times we went in over there...

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Aug. 24, 2014 2:16 p.m.

    I suggest the writer of this letter put boots on himself and his children and volunteer for active duty in the Iraqi army.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 2:12 p.m.

    "Once inside the U.S. their expertise at bomb-making and their willingness to sacrifice their lives in suicide missions allows them to perpetrate horrors that will make the events of 9/11 seem like mere child’s play."

    This reminds me of the "smoking gun mushroom cloud" fear tactics used to invade Iraq.

    Methinks we're overthinking this. ISIS isn't out for world domination or to hurt the US. They just want their country (Iraq) back since Maliki's corrupt government has taken away the rights from the Sunnis.

    Isn't it telling that none of the typical conservative commentators have come to defend this writer? Red, mike, lost, Mtn, etc are all MIA today. Not even they believe Iraq is worth fighting for.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    Aug. 24, 2014 12:00 p.m.

    Wow . . . What a ridiculous rant . . .

    And the author calls Obama “feckless?” That’s a better description for the Neocons in the Republican Party.

    The irresponsible use of force doesn’t equate to wise and effective leadership. Bombast, irresponsibility, and pushiness does not equate to strength of character or competence.

    Obama has been doing a pretty decent job of rescuing this nation from the disaster that was the GW administration.

    None of the problems outlined in your tirade, Whitt, would exist now if it had not been for the stunning incompetence of the Bush-Cheney administration. The removal of Sadaam Hussein was the absolute worst thing they could have done to the Middle East.

    Sadaam’s secular government kept DOWN Islamic Extremists. But GW eliminated that restraint.

    Way to go “Conservatives.”

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    Oh and BTW, if we do an Iraq Invasion II let's pay for it this time up front with a WWII tax paradigm - top marginal tax rate of 91%!

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 10:58 a.m.

    The big problem is of course that we can't anticipate fully the consequences of our actions - witness the Iraq invasion of Bush II. That action has had catastrophic effects. Massive troop buildup again? The idea being I guess that it didn't work the first time it is bound to work the second time?

    The bigger the action the greater the consequences. So I suppose another troop build up could be spectacularly successful - but could also be another catastrophe. This would be an enormous gamble.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 10:51 a.m.

    Can someone loan this guy a rifle and a one-way airplane ticket to whatever ground he wants to put his boots on?

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 10:39 a.m.


    Will we ever learn from history?

    The same folks who created ISIS and destabilized the entire region are calling for more boots on the ground?

    How many more times must we commit this same error? Let Allah sort this out. No matter how many lives we send and trillions we waste, the Shia, Sunnis, and Kurds will never get along. We cannot stop the violence there. We can only create more ISIS and more genocide with our continued meddling in the Middle East.

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 10:00 a.m.

    Let the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds fight it out amongst themselves. I'm not opposed to airstrikes as a response to beheading Americans and genocide, but this isn't our fight. The whole reason this problem exists is because of meddling Western nations drawing lines on a map and putting people together who don't fit. They need to be 3 states, and let them fight it out to determine where those natural borders should be.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 9:48 a.m.

    Put boots in the ground in Iraq? Spend an other $ trillion we don't have that we would then have to borrow from China? Condemned hundreds or thousands more Americans to death or mental / emotional damage .. or come back physically damaged? Desnews when will it end? This war could easily go on for a hundred more years.

  • FreedomFighter41 Provo, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    It's time for us to get out and stay out.

    We're $17 trillion in debt and have already used up 5k of lives. How do you propose we fund this? Raise taxes? Go $20 trillion in debt? Reinstitute the draft?

    And how do we know that there won't be another ISIS once we leave?

    Just stay out and let Iraq figure itself out.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 9:08 a.m.

    No. The feckless and politically motivated strategy that has put Iraq in the situation it is in was that of GW Bush. Do we have to keep exacerbating that mistake?

  • Charles H Atlanta, GA
    Aug. 24, 2014 9:01 a.m.

    It may be time, but only if others join in, like NATO, Mid East allies.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 8:35 a.m.

    Boots on the ground in the middle ease will require a substantial across the board tax increase to avoid a 2008 or to increase the deficit. Congress should require immediate increase before any war, especially a long term war in the middle of sunni and sheites.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 8:14 a.m.

    Those boots on the ground have American men and women in them. Don't trivialize their existence by calling them boots. It is easy to send other people to war.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Aug. 24, 2014 8:00 a.m.

    OK Whitt,
    Let's start with YOUR boots on the ground!

    We've been in and out of Iraq since the 1st Gulf War and the 1st G Bush,
    Do you seriously think that after almost 25 years anything has changed?

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Aug. 24, 2014 7:29 a.m.

    "To finish this vitally important task, Obama will have to put American boots on the ground — about 20,000 crack troops equipped with 100 or so tanks — could handle the task easily"

    You been talking to Cheney and Rumsfeld?

    What a dumb notion. The first time this group was run out of town it was by the Sunni's themselves, bought off by us. This time they were allowed to return by the Sunni's to combat Maliki. The Sunnis and only the Sunnis can end this.