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The U.S. Paying More Than 80,000 In Iraq A Salary Not To Kill Or Blow Things Up

While both Bush and McCain continue to claim that the troop "surge" was somehow responsible for the roughly 80% drop in violence in Iraq, the real truth is that the U.S. is paying over 80,000 Sunni militia fighters associated with the Sahwa Councils in Iraq a salary of $10 a day not to kill Shiites or blow them up with car bombs and instead target supporters of Al Qaeda.

However, among the Sunni community is where the support for Al Qaeda is, so it is highly likely that some Al Qeada members or supporters are receiving U.S. payments as well. In fact, journalist Michael Ware of CNN claims for a fact that the U.S. is paying some members of Al Qaeda not to kill or plant car bombs, etc.

The wide extent of a massive program that pays over 80,000 militia fighters not to be radicals and kill others such as Shiites cannot be understated. It is like a huge national bribe program to stem violence in Iraq and such a massive U.S. taxpayer funded program that is costing over $800,000 a day seems only to have bought a temporary peace as long as the program continues.

In fact, many of these same fighters promised a strike or even return to violence if the U.S. payments would stop only recently. And the Shiite dominated government in Iraq which makes a hefty profit from oil estimated at $78 billion has been real reluctant to take over payments to these rival secular fighters.

McCain, Palin and Bush only continue to beat up the Democrats by claiming that they were wrong about the surge. But this turns out to be only a halftruth. The fact of the matter is that the surge may be one of the smaller reasons for the decline in violence in Iraq compared to the huge and expensive program of bribing militia radicals not to kill or blow things up. The biggest problem is that any reduction in violence seems to rely on these payments never ending only locking the U.S. taxpayers into another lifetime overseas financial commitment.

The really interesting thing is that it is Republicans like McCain who rail on about support for cuts to entitlements, social security and social welfare programs to American citizens, while fully supporting massive welfare giveaway programs such as paying over $800,000 a day to armed militia radicals in Iraq to not be quite so radical. I guess as long as Republicans are paying people overseas it doesn't count in their own minds.

But the myth of the success of the surge is beginning to suffer under the reality of paying so many in Iraq not to do bad things like planting car bombs. For some odd reason, tens of thousands of persons in Iraq just don't seem to have the good sense not to ruin their own nation and kill their own people unless they are paid not to do so. If anything this is only a serious reminder of just the type of problem for the U.S. that Bush created and McCain supports that will hang around for years as an American problem.

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Comments (3)


How does that differ from welfare in Detroit?

Brainy, social welfare programs generally give a safety net to disabled persons, elderly, children or some single mothers who are caring for very young children under school-age. In Iraq, 80,000 persons are being paid not to be terrorists or political criminals because they don't seem to have the moral values or good sense not to kill others or blow things up unless they are paid not to do so.

I don't know of any American program that pays persons not to be gang members or criminals like what the U.S. is doing in Iraq.

The payments in Iraq may have cut the violence, but as long as the payments continue. But any society that has to pay over 80,000 not to kill or plant bombs is a deeply troubled society. Mr. Bush certainly got the U.S. into a deep mess in Iraq and voters should reject John McCain for supporting this wacko foreign policy as well.

What of it? I would argue that the $800,000 per day cost is far preferable to continued attacks on US troops and can be a useful interim measure.


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