From your own link:
On 18 December 1972, tail gunner SSgt Samuel O. Turner's B-52 had just completed a bomb run for Operation Linebacker II and was turning away when a North Vietnamese Air Force MiG-21 approached. The MiG and the B-52 locked onto one another. When the fighter drew within range, Turner fired his quad (four guns on one mounting) .50 caliber machine guns. The MiG exploded aft of the bomber
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Staff Sergeant (SSgt) is E-5 in the United States Air Force (U.S. Air Force).
Staff sergeant - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
I have been in a B-52... have you? I have also been on the battleship New Jersey, two aircraft carriers, a nuclear submarine, some frigates, in the cockpits of various fighters and in a C-5 as well as various helicopters, tanks, etc.
I know a few Army Rangers and a bunch of military people in the Air Force since that is where a family member works... I don't want to overwhelm you with anything until you can grasp the basic meaning of troops or own up to your obvious avoidance of the 1919 agreement on airspace or your incorrect assertion that no US troops entered into North Vietnam. We will get back to the basic question then and see if you are capable of finally answering it.
Once upon a time ..
.. The deal was pretty simple: China would get the light sweet crude its military needed to go with the steel they already had, Russia would get cheap Chinese-made goods, and Iraq would get a ton of Russian weapons, which included one or two of those missing warheads that would somehow be found in a boxcar clandestinely misplaced in the Ukraine.
But Saddam had two problems: 1) he didn't really have sufficient spare crude to make the deal worthwhile to the Chinese, and 2) he wasn't allowed to add new trading partners to his customer list, a sanction of many from his Gulf War debacle.
Problem 2, however, was about to expire, sometime around 2003, I believe it was, and Saddam had been a pretty good boy, as evil dictators go, so it didn't appear the U.N. would renew this particular sanction.
Now Saddam had wanted to make this deal earlier, as he really needed to beef up defenses on his eastern border with Iran .. but his regrettable foray into Kuwait to get the additional crude he needed, well, that didn't go so well for him.
So he bided his time, meanwhile working on putting together the deal, which would eventually have included a pipeline directly to China to save shipping costs, and the three partners worked on the plan.
However, when you get three partners like these together it's all very challenging, to say the least, and they soon realized the need for a moderating broker to administrate the details. So who had the most background dealing in such matters requiring the utmost in negotiating skill, not to mention keep their mouths shut, betray their western allies, all in exchange for a goodly supply of crude themselves? Why yes .. the French.
Well, after 9/11, we went on a bin Laden hunt and were pretty much occupied in Afghanistan hounding the Arabian fox .. when someone in the espionage business got wind of the big oil deal set to go down in 2003 .. and once the news of it reached the White House, well, the big question GWB had was where is Saddam gonna get all the oil he needs for a deal like th ...
Once we realized -- and I mean GWB and the Senate Security Commission realized -- that Saddam was gonna solve problem 1 by severely reducing western customer crude deliveries to obtain the crude he needed for the China deal, we went ballistic. It was understandable that we got pissed at Saddam for what he had planned. After all, at the time over 19% of the foreign crude refined in California alone was light sweet Iraqi crude, and with all the Iraqi crude we were getting, and with all the other world sources of the needed light sweet crude completely tapped, this just wasn't going to be acceptable.
So we told Saddam that this was unacceptable.
And he said that once the sanctions expire to allow him to choose new trading partners, he could do whatever he wanted.
And then in the fall of 2002 we clearly warned him that he better not.
And in the early winter of 2002 Saddam said tough luck to us.
And we replied that we'd stop him.
And he said something to the effect of over my dead body.
And the rest is history.
Did we invade to do some "nation forming" and install democracy? Of course that wasn't the reason we invaded. I mean, could you be anymore simple?!
Were there true weapons of mass destruction -- nuclear weapons or biological weapons (mustard gas residue left over from the war with Iran is chemical and obviously doesn't count) -- in Iraq at the time? No. Don't be ridiculous.
Were there terrorist training camps in Iraq at the time? You gotta be kidding -- Saddam would never have allowed "the competition" so close.
Did we invade to give jobs to Halliburton and other Bush oil cronies? No way -- how cynically wrong can you be!
Did we invade so GWB could get revenge against Saddam for what he did to Daddy Bush? Oh yeah, right, like the Senate Security Commission would have allowed that.
But invade we did.
And hundreds of thousands of Iraqi men, women, and children died.
And we lost thousands, not to mention tens of thousands seriously maimed.
And Saddam, well, he got his dare handed to him.
And GWB got to stand on an aircraft carrier and announce we won the war .. though I guess he was a bit premature.
And the big three-way deal between Iraq, China and Russia was squelched.
And the French almost got their fries renamed.
So .. was it globally worth it, the war with Iraq?
I was opposed to the war from the get-go. But the clandestine warhead thing .. that still haunts me a bit.
Now? Well, I'm not sure we'll ever know if it was worth it or not. Until we can access one of those parallel universes and take a look-see at what might have been had Saddam launched one of those Ukrainian nukes on Israel, I doubt we can really say if the war was worth it or not.
Hell, as far as we know, a man who can't even pronounce "nuclear" may have spared us a global war of the kind.
But hey, Iraq is more unstable now than when Saddam ruled with an iron fist, and these theocratic regions just aren't ready for the kind of separate church and state democracy like we've installed for them.
Why in no time at all, some new Saddam could take over and, what with China still needing that oil, and Russia still packing those weapons, compelete with "missing" nukes .. we might still get a shot at one of those alternate universes in the not too distant future.
Hopefully when that happens, we'll have better technology with more precise targeting and effective headhunting.
That way instead of so much horrific slaughter of little nine year-olds, we can have a nine year-old drone operator play a video game against "Saddam".
Don't you just love progress? ..
.. And a good story?!
When the election is over and we open our eyes, it will sadly be too late to wonder what the hell just happened.
Hopefully the 5 that said toppling Hussein was worth the $1T direct outlay and $3T indirect outlay are not otherwise trying to argue that budget deficits are a major problem, as they have gone on record with this vote in saying the US has plenty of money for wild adventures.
- Colonel Paul YinglingNobody who wins a war indulges in a bifurcated definition of victory. War is a political act; victory and defeat have meaning only in political terms. A country incapable of achieving its political objectives at an acceptable cost is losing the war, regardless of battlefield events.
Bifurcating victory (e.g. winning militarily, losing politically) is a useful salve for defeated armies. The "stab in the back" narrative helped take the sting out of failure for German generals after WWI and their American counterparts after Vietnam.
All the same, it's nonsense. To paraphrase Vince Lombardi, show me a political loser, and I'll show you a loser.
I have an answer for everything...you may not like the answer or it may not satisfy your curiosity..but it will still be an answer. ~ Kal'Stang
My mind and my heart are saying I'm in my twenties. My body is pointing at my mind and heart and laughing its ass off. ~ Kal'Stang