Troop Surge At Full Strength - Baghdad 40% Secure? genre: Just Jihad & Polispeak

Full Surge

I'm no math whiz but the numbers in Iraq continue to defy logic...and the rhetoric that has characterized the Bush administration's four year fiasco continues to sound more like fairy tales than facts. We've been told that all of the additional troops needed for the latest surge are in theatre...and we've heard suggestions that the initiative will be reevaluated in late fall. With today's report by Lt. General Odierno that 60% of Baghdad remains unsecured, one has to question the likelihood the surge can succeed as well as the possibility that the ambitious goals will be achieved by late fall.

Security forces in Baghdad have full control in only 40 percent of the city five months into the pacification campaign, a top American general said Saturday as U.S. troops began an offensive against two al-Qaida strongholds on the capital's southern outskirts.

Odierno said there was a long way to go in retaking the city from Shiite Muslim militias, Sunni Arab insurgents and al-Qaida terrorists. He said only about "40 percent is really very safe on a routine basis" with about 30 percent lacking control and a further 30 percent suffering "a high level of violence."

In Baghdad, aides to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki told The Associated Press that talks Saturday between the U.S. defense secretary and the Iraqi leader were difficult.

Two top advisers to the prime minister said al-Maliki, a Shiite, objected vigorously to the new U.S. policy of arming and training Sunni militants in the fight against al-Qaida.

A third said Gates told al-Maliki that political and legislative action sought by the U.S., including a new law to share oil revenues among all Iraqis, must be complete by September when the defense secretary has to report to Congress on progress in Iraq.

So in addition to the lack of security, efforts to resolve any of the issues necessary to effect some degree of political stability appear to be stalled. The oil agreement has been in limbo for months and its approval in its current form looks rather doubtful. Reading between the lines, al-Maliki is doing little more than keeping warm the seat of a Prime Minister in a government that is by and large symbolic.

While one can criticize the lack of action on the part of the al-Maliki government, the reality is that consensus is all but impossible. Even if one assumes that the surge can achieve some measure of security, the lack of trust among sectarian groups will remain...leaving little room for optimism that a functional government will emerge. I can't help but wonder if we're simply trying to put a band-aid on the symptom while having no real plan for curing the disease.

Let's assume we bring the violence to a minimum through the heightened presence of U.S. troops. That still leaves all of the underlying resentments and mistrust intact. Consequently, given the stated objectives of the surge and the Bush administration's belief that a stable Iraq is essential, how will there be a plausible rationale for the removal of our troops?

The situation reminds me of a football game wherein the score is 31-3 and the losing team has the ball with 45 seconds remaining...the coach is barking signals from the sidelines as if the game were tied...they snap the ball and the running back proceeds to run back and forth frantically as if to suggest that so long as the clock has a few more ticks, the game isn't lost. Meanwhile the stadium is empty, the clean-up crews are gathering the trash from the stands, and the television network switched to a competitive game twenty minutes ago.

George Bush recently suggested that our presence in Iraq may be akin to our Korean experience...and thinking men everywhere let out a collective "What?!". Sadly, it may have been the first honest assessment of what it would take to resolve this complex conflict. Even for the most ardent evangelical, that has to be one awfully difficult "come to Jesus" moment they'd rather skip.

Daniel DiRito | June 16, 2007 | 7:59 PM
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Comments

1 On June 16, 2007 at 11:04 PM, mullah cimoc wrote —

Mullah Cimoc say too much jack bauer tv show make ameriki so stupid for hate the muslim, loving the torture, bow down for masters in tel aviv.

this all rupert murdoch tv show man mind control this way.
This evil doing for usa media , now control so few company. Benjamin Frankling not like this not free press now in usa amerika.

for please now google: mighty wurlitzer +cia

then aemriki people know not free press in usa now. just keep the ameriki so stupid for serve the master in tel aviv.

cimoc@lgcy.com

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Thought Theater at Blogged

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