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Obama vs. McCain – History Essay

The Iraq war was declared by George Bush on March 20, 2003. This war is also known as the Second Gulf War, the Occupation of Iraq, and The War in Iraq. (Wikipedia) The war is a response to the attacks on September 11th and the belief that Iraq had amassed Weapons of Mass destruction. There was a belief that Iraq posed an imminent threat to the United States and that the United States needed to act immediately to eliminate this threat. Since that day we have lost over 4,000 soldiers (icasualties) and it has cost the United States $565,308,329,744 and is getting higher (national priorities). On the contrary, we have removed the dictator Saddam Hussein from power and forced the Al-Qaeda terrorist group into hiding. Now that it is election time, our candidates need to decide what their plan for our future presence in Iraq if they are to be elected.

Senator Obama plans to enact the Iraq War De-Escalation Act. This act would be enacted in January. He believes we need to leave Iraq carefully, because we entered the war with haste. The removal of our troops will be carefully planned and done in phases. It will be directed by a selection of military commanders and in a joint effort with Iraqi police and the Iraqi government. The quickest, safest way believed to remove our American troops from Iraq is to redeploy one to two brigades a month back to the United States. This would remove nearly all of our troops by the summer of 2010. He also aims to urge political parties and governmental leaders in Iraq to reach the needed political action to save the quickly unraveling political and economic status in Iraq. He also plans to help end Iraq’s civil war, saving the lives of many Iraqi’s. One last piece of this act is to form the Iraq Study Group, whose purpose is to oversee the repair of Iraq’s broken and fragile economic and political status. Obama’s plan will end the war as quickly as possible and attempt to fix Iraq’s problem.

John McCain believes it is essential for the United States to support the Government of Iraq to become capable of governing itself. He believes that “It would be a grave mistake to leave before Al Qaeda in Iraq is defeated and before a competent, trained, and capable Iraqi security force is in place and operating effectively.”(McCain) His philosophy seems to be that we got Iraq into this mess and now we are going to fix it. He believes that we must not let Iraq become a failed state or a pawn of Iran. We will remain in Iraq until the Iraqi people no longer need us. McCain once said “I do not want to keep our troops in Iraq a minute longer than necessary to secure our interests there. Our goal is an Iraq that can stand on its own as a democratic ally and a responsible force for peace in its neighborhood. Our goal is an Iraq that no longer needs American troops.” He also believes that if we are to get out of Iraq, we must first help the Iraqi economy. We must try to lead young Iraqi’s away from the well-funded extremists. He also believes that the many Americans who have died in the war, have done so to prevent the even worse consequences of failure in Iraq. Even with all the negative attention, McCain is getting for not wanting to pull out of Iraq, he sticks with his plans and views. “Doing the right thing in the heat of a political campaign is not always easy. But it is necessary.” (McCain)

The two candidates have completely opposing views on our war in Iraq. Obama on one side wants to remove our troops immediately, while on the other hand, McCain wants to keep our troops in Iraq until we get the job done. Both are very strong in backing up their beliefs and are not letting the high amounts of criticism from the media get to them. Now it is your responsibility as the reader to take this information, and use it to decide which of these great men you want to give your vote to. Will it is Obama and who plans for a quick ending to the war hoping to spare the lives of as many Americans as he can, or McCain and his unrelenting passion to keep our soldiers in Iraq until the job is done?