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From WaPo, The W-word is starting to pop up all around Washington.
You bet. Withdraw our forces and cut our loses. I would encourage
you to scroll down and read the article I posted in its entirety
from The American Conservative.
By Christopher Layne
The administration’s Iraq policy is in shambles. Iraq has become a
geopolitical humpty-dumpty that America cannot put back together,
and the time has come for the United States to withdraw.
We now face a full-blown uprising against the occupation of Iraq.
Events plainly belie the administration’s spin that order will
soon be restored and that the revolt is just the work of a few Iraqi
extremists and a handful of terrorists from other Middle Eastern
…Where does U.S. policy go from here? There are three options:
internationalizing the occupation, increasing U.S. troop strength
and cracking down hard on the insurgency, or withdrawal.
Conservative Piece Is A Must Read
His point? It’s too messy for anyone, even Kerry to expect to get
involved. Even if we decoupled our financial gains from oil sales,
we would be hard pressed to find people who actually want to spend
billions or lose soldiers there.
Increasing US troop strength will give the insurgents more
opportunities to kill Americans and play us like a violin- driving
wedges in between the occupation and the population. A reminder,
that over the weekend, 11 GIs died.
Events in Fallujah have also conveyed another impression: The
administration is increasingly reluctant to fight the people it
defines as the bad guys in Iraq. This reluctance is perfectly
understandable. No one wants more American casualties. And no one
doubts that more violence in Iraq may alienate more of the Iraqi
population. But this reluctance can also appear both to Iraqis and
to the American public as a sign of declining will. Among the many
lessons of Vietnam is that American support for that war remained
remarkably steady, despite high American casualties, until Americans
began to sense that their government was no longer committed to what
had been defined as victory and was looking for a way out. If
Americans see signs of wavering by the Bush administration -- and
Fallujah may be one of those signs -- support for the war could
The torture story:
Intel Dump has a very good post
on the subject. He was a former MP and has a unique perspective.
Was today the day things changed?
It sure feel like it. The impact of those pictures taken in the
Iraqi prison, the withdrawal from Fallujah, bringing back a top
Republican Guard general, another shipment of tanks rushed to the
theater, proper troop levels in dispute, lingering resentment in the
Middle East over Bush's embrace of Sharon's plan, some members of
the Coalition now less "willing", charging opponents of
the war as racist or anti-Semitic, general confusion as to who is in
control over what in Iraq, a sharp increase of troop fatalities,
private contractors misbehaving, Ahmed Chalibi still getting money
for his services, the Deputy Secretary of Defense doesn't know now
many have died, time (now a vital commodity) lost due to the
Provisional Authority squandering months of opportunity, and so on.
The smell of "we can't win" is pretty strong right now.
Question: Is anybody in control?
If this mission is as important as Bush said it is (defeating
evil-doers) then why hasn't there been somebody "on top of the
situation"? It sure isn't the president.
of 6 October 2003)
"This puts accountability right into the White House," a
senior administration official said:
White House announces reorganization to deal with Iraq and
Afghanistan (according to story
in the New York Times). Here's a snapshot.
NOTE: We were reminded of this item in a comment
by Dick Durata in Matthew Yglesias' post: Wrongest...Column...Ever