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US Troops Out of Iraq

Replace them with Indonesians
  (+17, -7)(+17, -7)
(+17, -7)
  [vote for,
against]

Most people agree that if the US were to pull out of Iraq it would leave a power vacuum and result in the country descending into civil war.

So, the solution is leave them in? Well, most people also agree that the US armed forces are being used as a symbol of US cultural imperialism and the fear of the new colonialisation is a major recruiting tool for terrorists and their ilk.

So... in a feat of political wizardry, the Indonesian government say "Right you Yanks. We don't like the fact that you're there in the first place, you've screwed it up, you can't fix it, so let us take over" all the while clandestinely being trained, funded and directed by the US military.

Indonesia's military personnel number around 300,000, many of whom are not on active duty, 2 million of them reach conscriptable age every year and need steady employment. The army is largely Muslim and given that they opposed the invasion in the first place, could be seen as relatively independent peace-keepers (rather than invaders) and as such might attract less violence than, say, US, UK, Australian and other armed forces.

Indonesia is also looking to play a larger global role and is eager to boost their military's image after some, shall we say, faux-pas in the recent past.

Corruption might be an issue, but it is on the mend, and with the new improved security climate, NGOs and other monitoring bodies could help to ensure transparency.

PS - It's my first time, be gentle... PPS - This idea is not meant to start a sledging match, so let's keep things above the belt and on topic shall we?

Mr_John, Dec 20 2005

[link]






       What about the non-US foreign troops?
calum, Dec 20 2005
  

       using this logic, replace them with Americans.. Isn't George W trying to play a larger global role?
neilp, Dec 20 2005
  

       //It's my first time, be gentle// ..I'm afraid you have left yourself open to a somewhat rough rogering by choosing this topic as your first idea - views on the US invasion and occupation having become pretty entrenched among Halfbakers as in the wider world community.   

       Welcome to the HB anyway and have a newbie pastry (+), though the idea of placing very large numbers of impressionable young Indonesian soldiers in close proximity to the persuasive influence of much more radical elements may be asking for much trouble in SE Asia in future decades.   

       Your average US Marine / British / Australian SAS etc are pretty soft compared to the elite units of the Indonesian armed forces, so I don't know whether the Iraqis would be glad about swapping pussycats for lions.
ConsulFlaminicus, Dec 20 2005
  

       When I read the title I already had my fishbone to hand, but you're basically right: Iraq needs a decent peacekeeping force and probably will do for a while, and the US is probably not the best country to supply them. Don't know if Indonesian troops are the solution, but I know that the current situation isn't. Welcome to the hb.
wagster, Dec 20 2005
  

       aren't the yanks there primarily to secure construction contracts and oil supplies for US companies? therefore can't see them going for it.   

       an excellent idea nonetheless..gets my vote.
rainbow, Dec 20 2005
  

       The idea is good. However, i'm not sure how much the impoverished people of Indonesia would go for the idea. It takes consensus and capital to go to war in any climate, peacekeeper or imperialist and Bush seemed to have that at the time with the US. Keep in mind too that they were against the invasion, what would make them want go keep the peace with their lives when they're actually well employed and safe in their own country. Unlike many of their fellow citizens. I'm giving this a bun simply because a Muslim peacekeeping force would probably be the only one to do any better than we have "winning hearts and minds". Sadly I really doubt any country has the means or the will to make their soldiers pay for our President's mistakes after seeing how much our own troops have suffered. I don't see the political wizardry of repeatedly training and supplying the troops of the next "newer" Despot... unless of course I were an arms salesman. Then I'd see the point.
Ponies for Parties, Dec 20 2005
  

       //consensus and Capitol // sp. "capital" ?
coprocephalous, Dec 20 2005
  

       On the idea though, Indonesia would not be willing to put its people in danger as they would still be seen as an occupying force. The cost of sending troops into war is huge and the American people would not see the advantage of paying for other troops to fight (Those who support the war would want to see our troops in, those against it would want to cut off money). Also, with the American military comes a huge explanse of resources from medical support to various arrays of tactical weapons. Other countries would not be given these resources.   

       Finally, the fact that Indonesians are Muslim would not help hugely as the different factions within Islam are fiercly independant and would resist forces coming in who a biased one way or another.   

       Otherwise, good idea
miasere, Dec 20 2005
  

       The silly mistake was attacking Iraq when we should have attacked Iran. This sort of thing happens a lot. They’re listed next to each other on Bush’s alphabetical to-do list. And they’re right next to each other geographically. So best to apologize and put Saddam back in charge. And then hope he attacks Iran (again), so we don’t have to.
ldischler, Dec 20 2005
  

       Didn't the Dutch do this in South Africa? Um hmm. Xhosa, descendants of the iron age migrations southward into what is present day South Africa, were pushed aside by Dutch traders, whose policy included importation of Indonesian workers as 'employees' who fought or farmed for the colonists and later intermarried. Their policy was opposed by but later expanded upon by the British, in a similar scenario to one playing out in Iraq and in India. The US has spent years and countless resources unravelling both SA and Iraqi organizations, while the Brits needed no western help to lose their Indian colonies.
reensure, Dec 20 2005
  

       Iraq. Half-baked. Seems to fit.   

       Play on [+]
sophocles, Dec 20 2005
  

       I dunno, what if the Iraqis complain that now we're just sending Muslims in to do our work for us. Might just piss them off more.
MikeOxbig, Dec 20 2005
  

       Morning news: Good news folks! We're invading Iraq again! And this time those crazy iIndonesians are going to get some to! Thanks to Georg Bush's BRILLIANT idea to send in the Indonesian Army, we now have to invade Indoesia AS WELL! Hooray violence!   

       Ok, that's just a joke, but still, I abhore violence. I don't care if you eat a deer, but if you shoot one, I'm going to have to get a little bit PISSY!
EvilPickels, Dec 20 2005
  

       Not as bad as I thought it would be. Not bad at all.
zeno, Dec 20 2005
  

       Please refer to what 'it' refers to. The idea? Me? My rantings? My joke? Possible Monkeys in Orbit(PMO)? The Space needle? King Kong?
EvilPickels, Dec 20 2005
  

       it=the idea
zeno, Dec 20 2005
  

       I have seen it suggested (an dnot even on the HB!) that the ghurkas be used as a permanent UN peacekeeping force. The ghurkas are bad of ass, in need of employment, and were once the most fearsome professional soldiers in the world.
bungston, Dec 20 2005
  

       Agreed with [zeno] and [wagster], I thought this would be much more ranty than it is... given the huge cultural barriers involved with US troops in Iraq, not such a terrible idea to bring in a Muslim dominant group to continue rebuilding.
Zuzu, Dec 21 2005
  

       USA! USA!
MikeOxbig, Dec 21 2005
  

       Any solution is a good idea. Even If I was living in Iraq, choosing a favorite occupying force would be tough. If killing for money and power isn't fashionable, and killing for Freedom and Democracy is getting old, OK, use Religion. Please, pick one that beleives all people are born equall. Perhaps one that uses Farm machinery and builders to influence the masses. Not Indonesia. World leaders don't like a country that is dealing with Pandemics. ( HIV, Leprosy, Malaria, Starvation ) To be popular, they need to be spending money stock piling drugs for a Flu pandemic that "will" happen someday.
Grandpa Rhd, Dec 21 2005
  

       [Pa`ve] I don't see how it is political advocacy; or factually incorrect for that matter.   

       None of the facts I stated above are terribly controversial...   

       The idea will never be implemented due to lack of political will, but I don't think it's necessarily a bad idea.   

       I live in Indonesia and (from a quick survey of my office) most people can't even tell you if what particular brand of Islam they follow, let alone the difference between Sunni and Shiite.   

       [rainbow] Good point. We've seen that with the Tsunami reconstruction contracts here too. Funds they donated are to be used for road building and so on, but 75% of the funds need to be paid to US contractors to do the work...   

       [ConsulFlaminicus] I wouldn't say the elite units of the Indonesian military are necessarily "harder" than SAS, etc. In the particular context, I'd say they'd probably be softer. They've been accused (note: avoiding statements that can get me in trouble. The days of being run out of the country for criticising the military are mostly over... mostly) of human rights violations pretty much exclusively to "enemies of the state". They, and more importantly their superiors, have no particular grudge against the Iraqi insurgents, so if anything the number of torture cases would probably decrease. Less emotional investment on the part of the detainer.
Mr_John, Dec 21 2005
  

       Hmm, where did Pa`ve's comment marking this for deletion go?
Mr_John, Dec 21 2005
  

       //Hmm, where did Pa`ve's comment marking this for deletion go?// Looks like they've gone the way of [Pa've] himself.
According to his blog, we're a bunch of self-centred, pedantic know it all mind-numbed socialists. I think I object to being called self-centred.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Dec 21 2005
  

       [AWL]..exactly. the rest is factual whereas //self-centred// is mere conjecture.
rainbow, Dec 21 2005
  

       who's Pa've?
po, Dec 21 2005
  

       Poor [Pa've]... I can see how he would be pissed off about this.   

       I have a slightly more general issue, though. [Mr_John] has made a noble effort to tackle a problem. It's naive, but then we're all pretty naive when it comes to international diplomacy (unless [EviPickels] turns out to be the Korean ambassador to the UN). But this is a problem which is being looked at by lots and lots of clever people, in great detail. Mostly in the US, but also across the world (especially in Muslim countires, I would guess). So I'd imagine it's highly likely that people in both Indonesia and the bowels of the Entagon have already thought of this. They've probably backed away from it hurriedly, for reasons we can only guess at. So I don't see that posting this has furthered the lot of humanity one jot. Sorry, [Mr J], but this comes under my personal heading of 'not worth tugging anyone's sleeve about'.   

       Moreover, the idea is well-meaning, but neither impractical nor amusing. It's still an idea, technically, so what the heck, but I can't help wondering why it's here.   

       No offence, [Mr_Johns], but fishbone for you. And everyone else, be aware that I have a large stockpile of hippy flares and folk songs, and I am not afraid to use them in defence of my liberal pinko credentials.
moomintroll, Dec 21 2005
  

       //I can see how he would be pissed off about this// Everyone looks left wing from over there...   

       //unless [EviPickels] turns out to be the Korean ambassador to the UN// Hah! I really hope he does.
wagster, Dec 21 2005
  

       Since my last anno addressed historically prominent folly wrought under western leadership and implemented by professional mercenaries, and how the lasting effect was centuries-long exploitation and oppression, let me point out the pitfalls of the opposite approach. Under western leadership, a lesser or inferior force is wielded into leadership and battle vanguard positions in Iraq, where political leadership is not yet crystallized.   

       That proxy army is decimated and demoralized in 3 months by a raging insurgency. Western analysts and commentators provide insight: "The insurgents would have left westerners alone and killed only Muslims if it were possible; if we had only known that all along we could have stayed away altogether." Indonesia, meanwhile, is further sacked by its pseudo-Maoist fourth estate. The US may as well just throw open the door to mass migrations of Chinese and try to settle the territory like it did its own western frontier. Hmmmm.
reensure, Dec 21 2005
  

       [moomintroll] Probably true... No offence taken.
Mr_John, Dec 22 2005
  

       Is a stable Iraq a pipe dream? I mean the constituent groups have been warring for generations. Force has been historically the only way to achieve some semblance of country.   

       I'm quite fearful that this region will need a permanent chaperone just to keep the Shiites, Kurds, and Sunnis from murdering each other. If it's even possible... The Brits sure didn't have much success.
jgercken, Dec 23 2005
  

       If a Shiite, a Kurd, and a Sunni all ______ at the same time, who gets credit?   Very old, sorry.   

       The fact that change _is_ occurring in Iraq is in no other way more evident to me than the fact that large-scale reprisals and ethnic cleansing of the Baaths seem not to be an issue with the majority parties.
reensure, Dec 23 2005
  

       I hope the oil runs out SOON , so that the world is forced to go with one of our halbakers green-energy ideas and the mid-east becomes insignificant goat-trading economy again.
jvanguts, Dec 26 2005
  

       //know it all mind-numbed socialists.// I just hate it when I'm stereotyped as being that right winged.   

       [jvanguts] The mid-east at one time was as an advanced civilization as you would have found on the planet.   

       I personally think that many of the green ideas that are thought of as new are thousands of years old. It's just more time intensive (therfore higher initial investment) to make things function in an optimal manner greenwise.
Zimmy, Feb 26 2006
  

       I voted for, because, essentially, the US needs to get out of Iraq. Indonesia, Lilliputians, don't see that part. How about... Iraqis?
Corona, Jun 21 2006
  

       "Not worth tugging anyone's sleeve about" like a fox!   

       President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was quoted in today's Jakarta Post as saying "Indonesia offers to be a part of the forces. We would send a contingent of one battalion like we did in Bosnia-Herzegovina ... We will also provide US$1 million in humanitarian aid to the affected people" in reference to the escalating conflict between Lebanon and Israel at the moment.   

       Maybe not quite to Iraq yet, but they're in the region.
Mr_John, Jul 19 2006
  

       Incidentally, realistically I doubt Indonesian troops will ever make it to the Lebanon-Israel border. Politicians like to talk, but if anyone follows through on this I'll be surprised.
Mr_John, Jul 19 2006
  
      
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