Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

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Tag: Korea

Oct.
6th

Trade agreements would be good for both Washingtons

This editorial will appear in Friday’s print edition.

Free-trade pacts with Korea, Colombia and Panama – a hot topic in the other Washington – could heat up business in this Washington if they’re passed.

In fact, this state stands to be one of the biggest winners if Congress approves the long-delayed pacts in the next few weeks. The Korean pact alone could generate $10 billion in increased exports and tens of thousands of jobs.

Being the most trade-dependent state, Washington stands to be a huge beneficiary of increased shipping through the ports of Tacoma, Seattle, Olympia and other entry points if tariffs are eliminated or phased out on beef, cherries, apples, other agricultural items and manufactured goods. More goods being loaded onto ships headed toward Korea means more jobs and bigger payrolls.
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Aug.
29th

A clear success for America’s Iraq veterans

This editorial will appear in tomorrow’s print edition.

Mission accomplished. Finally.

There’ll be no “Victory in Iraq” day. The legacy of America’s military intervention in Iraq is far too disputed, complicated and unsettled. Still, this month’s withdrawal of the last U.S. combat forces – Stryker units from Joint Base Lewis-McChord – deserves more celebration than it’s gotten.

Roughly 50,000 troops will remain in Iraq until the end of next year; they will largely serve the Iraqi army in a support and training role. The sight of American soldiers on patrol in the streets of Baghdad and elsewhere is history.

Iraqis, and the occasional American, are still getting killed in Iraq, but this looks less like war than the hostile peace that prevailed in Korea after the large-scale hostilities there ended in 1953. Despite a recent spate of insurgent attacks, the level of violence is a small fraction of what it was a few years ago.

Here’s hoping that the passage of years brings more parallels to Korea. That very unpopular war ended in a murky stalemate, but ultimately produced a thriving and democratic South Korea. U.S. troops remain in South Korea, more than a half century later, helping keep North Korea at bay.

A bleaker potential parallel is Vietnam, where the United States left a hopelessly corrupt and weak ally that collapsed in the face of a renewed communist offensive.

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