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Labyrinth: The War on Terror, 2001 - ?» Forums » General

Subject: Real World Status of Iraq rss

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Geoffrey Wilson
United States
Rochester
New York
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Would you still qualify Iraq as a Regime Change country at this point?

Based on the decline of US troop numbers there I'd say no; we only have 2 troop cubes there now, and it's at Fair Governance.

Which means it must've been at Good at some point; I'd think right after an election?

The way I see it in real life; the surge worked to exhaust the insurgency and strengthen the Iraqi security forces.

I'm cautiously optimistic that it will remain at Fair or Good governance long term now. (Recognizing obviously that the terms aren't nearly as clear-cut in the real world.)

I'm highly critical of the Bush Administration for getting us into Iraq in the first place...but it honestly now looks like we've won.

Saddam is gone, and we have a tenuous republic in the heart of the Middle East allied to the US. I don't think it was worth the cost, but I'll definitely admit there have been and will be benefits from this, and that we have essentially won there.

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Ocean Druen
United States
Buffalo Grove
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At best they would be a fair (at best)/poor neutral country at this point, I don't think that they have ever gotten up to good either. So according to the rules they would still be a regime change country.

I wouldn't put Iraq down as an ally, although relations may be better in a year. I think they are closer to Iran than us, but this does not factor into the scope of the game.
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Nathan Lee
Canada
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It might be handled in game terms as a withdrawal (especially with the Democrats in power currently).
 
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Volko Ruhnke
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Virginia
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Great question. As the above responses imply, the question is indeed controversial (both in game terms and real world terms). The game design has no precise delineation between "Good", "Fair", and "Poor". And we don't really know now what the potential is for extremist recruitment in Iraq as US forces withdraw.

For "Good", I had in mind effective and accountable governance by standards in the Muslim and Arab worlds in recent decades. By that standard (especially on the criterion of accountability), I would argue that Iraq got to Good, in game terms. Al-Qaeda recruitment is not doing to great in Iraq today, and democratic institutions and processes in Iraq -- while far from perfect -- are leagues beyond those in most Arab countries and at least roughly on par with the budding democracies in North Africa. I would also see the Government as an "Ally", and clearly so in game terms, which focus on the government's posture toward al-Qaeda and its friends. That such a government would be friendly to Iran does not bear directly (Turkey had been friendly with Iran too, and Turkey's in NATO.)

But that I happen to see it that way matters little. Indeed, we may find out next year that we have undertaken a Withdrawal in game terms, and we have an Iraqi Besieged Regime on our hands!

Regards, Volko
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Ocean Druen
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I’m guessing that in this case you may be right, Iraq could now be good. I wouldn’t classify this as a withdrawal though because Iraq is no longer a besieged regime (in this case), and I would say that the US stance remains "Hard". I also don’t think of Iraq as an "Ally" at this point either, after all they are kicking us out - but this goes into the influence Iran has which is beyond the scope of the game (but would add an interesting element for a third player).

This also would be beyond the scope of the game as well because I believe that in the real word situation the US side would have won. The events here in Iraq would occur after the game was packed up, and hopefully set up to play another game!
 
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Tuomo Syvänperä
Finland
Nahkela
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I guess the big question is: Can we flip the Regime Change marker to tan now?
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