The Instigator
shwayze
Pro (for)
Losing
18 Points
The Contender
Fimbulvintr
Con (against)
Winning
24 Points

WAR IN IRAQ

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/24/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,267 times Debate No: 969
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (15)
Votes (14)

 

shwayze

Pro

I believe the war in Iraq was completely justified for several reasons, specifically including Iraq's ties to Al-Qaeda.
Fimbulvintr

Con

Is that the only claim you want to start with? Okay, ill bite.

The war in Iraq was indeed NOT justified. Iraq had no ties to Al Qaeda despite the enormous amount of pro-war propaganda spewed by news networks like Fox. Saddam Hussein was a tyrant, this is true, but the United States has no right to attack a sovereign nation under the pretense that they might be developing weapons. We went to war against a third world nation that had no capability to attack us, and we are beating those same drums of war against Iran. The idea of preemptive war is extremely dangerous, and under that idea, almost any war is justified.

Terrorist activity in Iraq was minimal. Saddam was not a radical, in fact, Hussein was a deterrent to extremism in that area. He was the only thing keeping that fragile nation together, and that kind of government worked for them. We have no right to spread our beliefs around the world by attacking sovereign nations that we disagree with. Our overthrow of him was the chance people like Osama Bin Laden needed to radicalize and recruit thousands of people. The infidel has invaded the holy land and must be punished. Our presence in the middle east is a platform that radical groups are going to continue to recruit upon. Until we realize that we are part of the problem, we will have no solutions open to us. The "War on Terror" is a war on an idea, you cannot kill an idea. Our enemies are weak and dispersed throughout the world. it is not a single nation, such as Iraq, that threatens us. The real threat is our domestic policies that threaten civil liberties at home.

Let me just remind everyone, there were NO WEAPONS. The Iraq government had been bluffing about its weapons program to deter and scare Iran. The United States government was not interested in the accuracy of the intelligence we received. War mongers like Paul Wolfowitz, Dick Cheney, and the civilian "think tanks" such as the Heritage Foundation were responsible for the hastily made decision to invade. The neo conservative doctrine of war without end is going to drive us into isolation from the rest of the world if it continues. The United States use to be looked up to around the world.

All our invasion succeeded in doing was radicalizing large numbers of moderate Muslims into killing their fellow Muslims, and Americans. They are happy to have us over there because we become easy targets. They don't NEED to come over here and attack us if we stick our necks out and make ourselves vulnerable. The solution to our problems is the traditional conservative idea of what government should do. It should provide for the common defense, and not let things like 9/11 happen. We are less safe when we agitate and instigate around the world, creating hatred for America. War does not make us more safe, and this "War on Terror" is folly. For every militant that is killed, two more are recruited. Our very presence in the middle east is offensive and will continue to be a recruitment tool as long as we remain over there. Those 14 bases we are building and the embassy the size of the Vatican will symbolize American tyranny and oppression. When people are oppressed, they will act out violently, possibly resulting in more attacks on our home soil.

With that said, the war was NOT justified, and it will never be justified. For us to truly be safe we must challenge the idea that perhaps supporting the war is not an act of patriotism. The old moderate Republican base realizes this, it is the neo conservative parasite that has attached itself to the Republican party that makes rational ideas such as strength through peace seem un-american.
Debate Round No. 1
shwayze

Pro

Good post, but I'm afraid you have not done very much research. Remember this debate is about the justification for war in Iraq...you went on tangents about irrelevant issues pertaining to the war in Iraq. I digress.

The UN worked with Iraq for over 12 years after the Gulf Wars. There were also 17 UN resolutions drawn up against Iraq during this time. None of this worked and Iraq remained in material breach of resolutions even after 12 years and 17 resolutions. The resolutions specifically outlined that Iraq "cease immediately the repression of it's own citizens", and this never stopped for over a decade after the resolutions were drawn up.

I think what's most important was Iraq's (Saddam) ties to terrorism. The Council on Foreign Relations stated in April 2003 that Iraq provided bases & training camps to terror groups. There was a clear link to them supporting Palestinian terror groups, Iranian terror groups, Abu Nidal Organization, Hamas, Arab Liberation Front, and most importantly, Al-Qeada.
Saddam gave freedom to wanted terrorists in violation of international law.

For example, Hamas, one of the most prominent terrorist groups in the world, opened an office in Baghdad in 1999, the same year Saddam Hussein offered asylum to bin Laden after he was wanted for the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
http://edition.cnn.com...

Iraq has also hosted conferences attended by Palestine Islamic Jihad. These groups are at the forefront of sponsoring suicide attacks against Israel.

Iraq harbored Al-Qaeda, headed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was an associate and collaborator with Usama bin Laden and his Al-Qaeda lieutenants. Zarqawi operated a terrorist camp in Kurdish areas in northern Iraq and
Baghdad actually had an agent in the most senior levels of the radical organization Ansar al-Islam that controlled northern Iraq. In 2000, this agent offered Al-Qaeda safe haven in the region. Considering Zarqawi was found and killed in Iraq in 2006 leaves little doubt as to the truth of the Iraq-Al Qaeda connection.
http://www.cfr.org...

The United States has a responsibility to look out for our allies in the time of need and to ensure that countries ran by dictators don't get their hands on weapons that can be used to destroy our allies or massive amounts of people. Many people feel that it's not our place to police the world, but if not the United States, who's going to protect our allies and step up to the plate to stop these leaders from committing unspeakable acts against humanity?

The argument that Iraq had or was trying to develop WMD's started way before this administration. The prior administration and a long list of democrats felt the same way. A lot of them spoke out against his possession or desire to possess them and more than a few stated they needed to be stopped.
http://www.freedomagenda.com...

While no major stockpiles of WMDs were found, there were bits and pieces that were unaccounted and found hidden in various places. There were thousands of containers of deadly chemicals accounted for by official inspectors in 1998. Upon their return in 2002 these chemicals were nowhere to be found. Iraq was ordered to produce
these stockpiles or account for their destruction. Not only did they not produce them or account for them, they outright ignored this order from the official inspectors.

http://news.bbc.co.uk...
http://www.iraqwatch.org...
http://www.un.org...

Don't you remember that Saddam himself more or less bragged about his possession of WMD's and that he would use them if he had to. I don't think we can just ignore statements like that, especially given his lack of
cooperation; we needed to stop him to make sure that he didn't use them. It's called being pro-active.

Iraq didn't have to be an immediate danger to the United States for the invasion to be justified. The US was involved in many wars over the years where our country was never in danger. We do what is in the best interest of our allies, and the whole world collectively.

Thus, the war in Iraq was and is justified.
Fimbulvintr

Con

I argue my point from a "knowing what we know now" point of view, I assume you are taking the same position.

We obviously have very different views on what constitutes a just war, and it may come down to just opinions. You say that protecting our allies is a just cause for war. The founding fathers specifically warned against those sorts of policies. We are not meant to police the world and enter into entangling alliances. Nothing the UN says or does should ever influence our policy on war. It is not our job to keep the world in order. Our duty is to ensure the freedoms and protect our own people. Hence the term "provide for the common defense".

You bring up something I neglected to mention and I thank you for that. The UN resolutions were not, and are not, foundations for a declaration of war. There was a reason that the first George Bush did not topple Saddam Hussein. He understood the enormous importance of maintaining stability in Iraq, Dick Cheney even agreed with him, here is an interview from 1994:

http://youtube.com...

The United States government back then understood the folly of trying to depose Saddam Hussein. They understood it would drive the region into total chaos, and they were right. Iraq is a quagmire and it will never be able to stand on its own. We removed a government that was capable of maintaining order in an extremely unstable part of the world. Donald Rumsfeld shook Saddam Hussein's hand in the 80s. The "on-again off-again" alliances we have in the middle east are on of the reasons we are hated so much. We use to fund Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda. We armed them with the weapons they now use on us, Russia did the same thing and payed for it.

The link you describe between Al Qaeda and Iraq are flawed. The information put out by the Council on Foreign Relations came from a suspected Al Qaeda detainee.

http://edition.cnn.com...

The "intelligence" gathered from the suspect on the link between 9/11 and Saddam Hussein was based on what some detainee said. If justification for war can be tied to that then I seriously question the true intentions of this administration

In addition, the 9/11 commission also sites that there was no tie between the terrorist attacks and Iraq

http://query.nytimes.com...

and this

http://www.globalpolicy.org...

By 2006 the entire region was already unstable. As we all know, it was after the fall of the Iraqi government that the various terror groups began to move into, and operate, in the area. So the claim "Zarqawi was in Iraq" is completely true and understandable, but we know that just about every terrorist organization was operating in Iraq to target American soldiers too. They are delighted that we are there, they can recruit much quicker and take advantage of a weakened government that cannot stop them if they wanted too.

http://www.commondreams.org...

Yes it is clear that Al Qaeda and Iraq had some connection throughout the 90s, however none of the evidence points to any sort of training or assistance leading up to 9/11. Most of the groups you mentioned were very critical of Saddam Hussein and would have much liked to get rid of him since he ran a secular government and was a friend of the United States. Saddam Hussein was a friend of the infidel.

The fact remains that we went to war preemptively, and on false pretenses. The Iraq invasion was falsely linked to 9/11 to gain support among the people. We see now they are trying to pull the same trick. They say Iran is developing nuclear weapons, but wait a minute, isnt that what they said about Iraq? Isnt that the same trick they tried to pull? Iran stopped its program years ago, throught diplomacy, not war.

http://www.nytimes.com...

Saddam Hussein bragged about his weapon capabilities to intimidate Iran, with whom tensions were on the rise. There was absolutely no proof that he had the capability to do anything. The intel we got was flawed, and we were not interested in validating one shred of it.

The idea that we should go to war to protect against a potential danger to our allies is the most absurd thing I have ever heard. It is in the best interest of the united states to abstain from war altogether. It is economically destructive. The enormous cost of the war is part of the reason we are printing all this money to forward our debt to China. Future generations are going to suffer because of it.

Knowing what we know now, the only way you could still support the war, or think that is was justified is if:

A. You truly believe that Saddam Hussein was a threat to the United States

answer: Iraq had no capability of hurting us, and did not even make the slightest gesture towards us. In this case the person is either insane or has been living under a rock for the past few years.

B. You believe that Iraq was going to detonate nuclear weapons in the middle east

answer: The intelligence we got on the subject was completely flawed, and he had no nuclear weapons. He did have chemical weapons, but we knew that all throughout the 90s and did not care, because it was no threat to us.

C. You believe that it is our job to police the world and protect other nations

answer: In this case you do not have the best intentions of the United States at heart and with these sorts of people the neo-conservative movement has firmly attached itself.

The idea of being "pro-active" is essentially saying you advocate preemptive war, if that is the case then there is no debate since that is a matter of opinion, not fact. I find it quite frightening that you could advocate going to war against a nation that MIGHT be a threat. You do not go to war because they do not cooperate with you. You do not go to war because some angry dictator in the middle east says he hates America. That sort of imperialist attitude is going to have dire consequences in the future, which I brought up in my opening statement.

The very idea of invading sovereign nations to impose regime change is a practice of a rogue nation, and fools. If we think that the war in Iraq is justified then you must also except the consequences. Iraq is now a breeding ground for terrorism, the people are living in fear as never before, between 79,000 and 86,000 civilians are now dead, in addition to the 3896 dead coalition troops. You cannot possibly tell me that this, in addition to the decades of instability to come, were worth it. Our actions there are what motivate people to attack us, we must realize the enormous mistake we made.

http://www.iraqbodycount.org...
Debate Round No. 2
shwayze

Pro

I am not taking a "knowing what we know now" point of view. I'm taking a 2003 pre-war perspective. My thesis is that deploying troops for battle in Iraq was justified.

YOU SAID:
"You say that protecting our allies is a just cause for war...We are not meant to police the world and enter into entangling alliances. Nothing the UN says or does should ever influence our policy on war. It is not our job to keep the world in order. Our duty is to ensure the freedoms and protect our own people. Hence the term "provide for the common defense"."

In my opinion, protecting our allies was one of the several reasons for war, not carrying as much signficance as others but still very important. We are meant to police the world. We're the most powerful country in the world and it's not even close. We could take the world over in a few months. It is our responsibility to police and protect the world because we are by far the most potent and affluent country in the world. Look, we had 2 WORLD WARS in a span of 20 years in the beginning of the 20th century. After World War II, we had military and peace-keeping troops all over the world. We kept them and utilized them to help stabilize the world and basically keep countries rid of communism. And because of our policeman around the world, we haven't had a world war in 60 years.

Though I think the UN is worthless and waste of time because they take forever to get things accomplishes, they still have a significant influence. It is well represented with countries all over the world. Our duty in the world is to ensure the freedoms and protect the people of the world from dictators and corrupt regimes. By doing this, we are greatly enhancing the freedoms of our people here in the United States. Hence the term "provide for the COMMON GOOD."

YOU SAID:
"You bring up something I neglected to mention and I thank you for that. The UN resolutions were not, and are not, foundations for a declaration of war. There was a reason that the first George Bush did not topple Saddam Hussein. He understood the enormous importance of maintaining stability in Iraq..."

I never said the UN resolutions were foundations for a declaration of war. The point of my statement about the 17 resolutions with Iraq was show that Saddam Hussein was completely and utterly defiant. He ignored and rejected all of these resolutions. We tried deplomacy and it didn't work. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. This sounds like the relationship between the UN and ignorant Iraq. I just flat out don't agree with your point and first Bush not toppling Saddam and find it pretty irrelevant relating to 2003 Bush. The fact is that from 1997-2003, terrorist camps sprinkled the map of Iraq. The country was a terrorist haven for groups all over the Middle East and they roamed free in protection under Saddam. HE OFFERED ASYLUM TO OSAMA BIN LADEN. Iraq is in the process of a new era of democracy. The fact that the words Iraq and democracy could be in the same sentence is unbelievable. These oppressed people now how have brighter future.

YOU LINKED a CNN article about the Iraq-Al Qaeda connection). It said: "The underlying intelligence simply did not support the administration's repeated assertions that Iraq had provided chemical and biological weapons training to al Qaeda," said Levin, also a member of the Intelligence Committee."

First off, this is coming from the one and only Carl Levin, one of the prominent liberal loons in the Senate; this ad is also written by CNN, who has been obviously against the war in Iraq for several years now. This article is clearly liberal bias and even goes as far to ASSUME that the detainee was probably lying. I do not have specific links, but I know for fact the majority general consensus clearly showed a definitive link between Iraq and Al-Qaeda terrorist groups. This was no hidden fact. The New York Slimes and LA Times spits out completely biased and sometimes spurious articles. Research this if you want. You will find more than several credible sources that showed a direct nexus between Iraq and Al-Qaeda terrorist camps.

YOU SAID:
"By 2006 the entire region was already unstable. As we all know, it was after the fall of the Iraqi government that the various terror groups began to move into, and operate, in the area. So the claim "Zarqawi was in Iraq" is completely true and understandable, but we know that just about every terrorist organization was operating in Iraq to target American soldiers too. They are delighted that we are there, they can recruit much quicker and take advantage of a weakened government that cannot stop them if they wanted too."

I don't know what new you're watching, but we're kicking Al-Qaeda a** right now. We are winning the war and disrupting and preventing terrorist activity all over the region. The surge is working; we are stabilizing city by city. By the way, this is again irrelevant to my thesis that going to war was justified back in 2003.

YOU SAID:
"Saddam Hussein bragged about his weapon capabilities to intimidate Iran, with whom tensions were on the rise. There was absolutely no proof that he had the capability to do anything."

From observing Saddam's nefarious and maniacal behavior over the last few years, I would not doubt for a second that he would use lethal weapons in a second if he wanted. He did in the 90s against his own people. This man was a complete, insane lunatic. When he brags about his possession or capability of using lethal weapons, this shows that Saddam was a very serious threat. Whether or not he would've actually used them himself is debatable, but you can positively assure that he would at least help with the distribution of weapons of mass destruction between terrorist groups.

YOU SAID:
"The idea that we should go to war to protect against a potential danger to our allies is the most absurd thing I have ever heard. It is in the best interest of the united states to abstain from war altogether. It is economically destructive. The enormous cost of the war is part of the reason we are printing all this money to forward our debt to China. Future generations are going to suffer because of it."

We abstained from war altogether for 12 whole years. We tried and tried to negotiate with Iraq but it was a completely failure. By policing around the world, we are helping countries all over the globe abstain from war. If and when Iraq is successful, this mission will be an amazing economical boom. Iraq has a rich supply of oil but Saddam and his regime controlled it completely and raked in all the wealth, leaving the Iraqi people destitute. Construction of Iraq's oil industry is already in the process. The Iraqi democracy will benefit enormously and the people of Iraq will finally be able to benefit from it's own rich resources.

I personally believe the saving of thousands of lives is worth any amount of money.

YOU SAID:
"A. You truly believe that Saddam Hussein was a threat to the United States"

Again, Saddam and Iraq didn't have to be an immediate danger to the United States for the invasion to be justified. The US was involved in many wars over the years where our country was never in danger. We do what is in the best interest of our allies, and the whole world collectively.

Iraq is now a breeding ground for terrorism, the people are living in fear as never before, between 79,000 and 86,000 civilians are now dead, in addition to the 3896 dead coalition troops. You cannot possibly tell me that this, in addition to the decades of instability to come, were worth it.

I concluded this debate by reminding you again that the topic of this debate was about justification of the war, not if the war was worth it, because obviously we will not know that answer for years to come.
Fimbulvintr

Con

Ill pass on this opportunity to respond in debate. Im not sure on what grounds to debate you, I tried to respond twice but both times apparently there was misunderstanding.
Debate Round No. 3
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by shwayze 8 years ago
shwayze
i honestly don't care much about winning but i think there needs to be some kind of justice here i mean come on read the debate,
Posted by iadebater 8 years ago
iadebater
Schwayze obviously won the debate, he actually had good points but the con just warped what he said to fit his ouwn arguments. VOTE AFF
Posted by shwayze 8 years ago
shwayze
I'm not sure why there's any confusion on what the debate is. I said the following:

In Round 1: "I believe the war in Iraq was completely justified for several reasons, specifically including Iraq's ties to Al-Qaeda."

In Round 2: "Good post, but I'm afraid you have not done very much research. Remember this debate is about the justification for war in Iraq...you went on tangents about irrelevant issues pertaining to the war in Iraq. I digress."

In Round 3: "I concluded this debate by reminding you again that the topic of this debate was about justification of the war, not if the war was worth it, because obviously we will not know that answer for years to come."
Posted by Fimbulvintr 8 years ago
Fimbulvintr
Merry Christmas and goodnight ;)
Posted by Fimbulvintr 8 years ago
Fimbulvintr
What is naive is this idea that we can kill an idea. The terrorists do not hate us for our freedom, they hate us because of what we do over there. Our actions now are going to have consequences JUST like when we put the Shah in power in Iran. If we think we can go around the world, tearing down sovereign governments because we think it is our moral duty to do so, then we are going to live with many more 9/11s. I dont think you understand that the people who are cheering "yay USA" in Iraq are an extreme minority. You seem to forget the enormous body count and cost of this war. You are far too optimistic and are ignoring the enormous downsides to this conflict.

You cannot fight an idea, which is what the "war on terror" is against.

Ahwayze please put that in the actual debate, i would love to answer but our debate isnt for the comment section.
Posted by kels1123 8 years ago
kels1123
Fimbulvintr, Ask the people of Iraq if they are happy we went to war with Iraq , they majority are. My husband is there right now and he said the people are turning in terrorists now , they are starting new lives , working to better themselves and live quietly and in peace. It has gotten quiet there. We have caught many terrorist since we invaded Iraq and Afghanistan as well as stopped planned attacks. We have found WOMD and if you think there werent more you are incredible naive. There were so many ways Saddam could have disposed of any WOMD he had (which we gave him ) , he could have smuggled them to another country , hid them in a cave , etc ...
Posted by shwayze 8 years ago
shwayze
If Pearl Harbor is justification for war, why isn't 9/11 justification for Iraq? If you dont think there were ties to Al-Qaeda and Iraq, read my response in Round 2.
Posted by Fimbulvintr 8 years ago
Fimbulvintr
That is a tough one to say. If congress truly believes that our national sovereignty is at stake then yes, that is cause for war. A lot goes into something so complex. Pearl Harbor is an excellent example of war justification. I do not mean wait to be attacked either, Pearl Harbor could have been prevented.

I want to give my opponent a chance to respond, I would love to debate you formally if you wish.
Posted by Flyaway625 8 years ago
Flyaway625
Then what is a just cause for war in your opinion?
Posted by Fimbulvintr 8 years ago
Fimbulvintr
We radicalized thousands of Muslims in that conflict to fight the Russians. That is exactly the stuff I am talking about that gets us in trouble. We need to stop our interference in the middle east, those kinds of policies have blow back that our own CIA talks about. When world superpowers stick their noses where they are not wanted, bad things happen.
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