+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 7 of 7

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    2,197

    The Surge is succeeding

    The 'Surge' Is Succeeding
    By Robert Kagan
    Sunday, March 11, 2007; Page B07

    A front-page story in The Post last week suggested that the Bush administration has no backup plan in case the surge in Iraq doesn't work. I wonder if The Post and other newspapers have a backup plan in case it does.

    Leading journalists have been reporting for some time that the war was hopeless, a fiasco that could not be salvaged by more troops and a new counterinsurgency strategy. The conventional wisdom in December held that sending more troops was politically impossible after the antiwar tenor of the midterm elections. It was practically impossible because the extra troops didn't exist. Even if the troops did exist, they could not make a difference.

    Four months later, the once insurmountable political opposition has been surmounted. The nonexistent troops are flowing into Iraq. And though it is still early and horrible acts of violence continue, there is substantial evidence that the new counterinsurgency strategy, backed by the infusion of new forces, is having a significant effect.

    Some observers are reporting the shift. Iraqi bloggers Mohammed and Omar Fadhil, widely respected for their straight talk, say that "early signs are encouraging." The first impact of the "surge," they write, was psychological. Both friends and foes in Iraq had been convinced, in no small part by the American media, that the United States was preparing to pull out. When the opposite occurred, this alone shifted the dynamic.

    As the Fadhils report, "Commanders and lieutenants of various militant groups abandoned their positions in Baghdad and in some cases fled the country." The most prominent leader to go into hiding has been Moqtada al-Sadr. His Mahdi Army has been instructed to avoid clashes with American and Iraqi forces, even as coalition forces begin to establish themselves in the once off-limits Sadr City.

    Before the arrival of Gen. David Petraeus, the Army's leading counterinsurgency strategist, U.S. forces tended to raid insurgent and terrorist strongholds and then pull back and hand over the areas to Iraqi forces, who failed to hold them. The Fadhils report, "One difference between this and earlier -- failed -- attempts to secure Baghdad is the willingness of the Iraqi and U.S. governments to commit enough resources for enough time to make it work." In the past, bursts of American activity were followed by withdrawal and a return of the insurgents. Now, the plan to secure Baghdad "is becoming stricter and gaining momentum by the day as more troops pour into the city, allowing for a better implementation of the 'clear and hold' strategy." Baghdadis "always want the 'hold' part to materialize, and feel safe when they go out and find the Army and police maintaining their posts -- the bad guys can't intimidate as long as the troops are staying."

    A greater sense of confidence produces many benefits. The number of security tips about insurgents that Iraqi civilians provide has jumped sharply. Stores and marketplaces are reopening in Baghdad, increasing the sense of community. People dislocated by sectarian violence are returning to their homes. As a result, "many Baghdadis feel hopeful again about the future, and the fear of civil war is slowly being replaced by optimism that peace might one day return to this city," the Fadhils report. "This change in mood is something huge by itself."

    Apparently some American journalists see the difference. NBC's Brian Williams recently reported a dramatic change in Ramadi since his previous visit. The city was safer; the airport more secure. The new American strategy of "getting out, decentralizing, going into the neighborhoods, grabbing a toehold, telling the enemy we're here, start talking to the locals -- that is having an obvious and palpable effect." U.S. soldiers forged agreements with local religious leaders and pushed al-Qaeda back -- a trend other observers have noted in some Sunni-dominated areas. The result, Williams said, is that "the war has changed."

    It is no coincidence that as the mood and the reality have shifted, political currents have shifted as well. A national agreement on sharing oil revenue appears on its way to approval. The Interior Ministry has been purged of corrupt officials and of many suspected of torture and brutality. And cracks are appearing in the Shiite governing coalition -- a good sign, given that the rock-solid unity was both the product and cause of growing sectarian violence.

    There is still violence, as Sunni insurgents and al-Qaeda seek to prove that the surge is not working. However, they are striking at more vulnerable targets in the provinces. Violence is down in Baghdad. As for Sadr and the Mahdi Army, it is possible they may reemerge as a problem later. But trying to wait out the American and Iraqi effort may be hazardous if the public becomes less tolerant of their violence. It could not be comforting to Sadr or al-Qaeda to read in the New York Times that the United States plans to keep higher force levels in Iraq through at least the beginning of 2008. The only good news for them would be if the Bush administration in its infinite wisdom starts to talk again about drawing down forces.

    No one is asking American journalists to start emphasizing the "good" news. All they have to do is report what is occurring, though it may conflict with their previous judgments. Some are still selling books based on the premise that the war is lost, end of story. But what if there is a new chapter in the story?
    Originally posted by Americanadian
    Palin: Omit the "i" and you're left with "Pain".

  2. #2

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    and the world also thought Hitler was succeeding in Russia, then something we call Reality set in and forced those who believed in Providence to break....

    Americans believe they are destine to win any battle even if they invade......Stalin once said "history proves there are no such thing as Invincible armies"....a bitter pill to swallow but Americans will find this out the "hard way".......

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    12,866

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    frankie your article did say it was too early to tell for sure and that early signs were promising.

    That's a pretty far cry from, "The Surge is Working"

    Lady Mod

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,682

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    Believe me, I just got back. The place is a ****ing mess.
    Last edited by ianmatthews; 03-14-2007 at 03:58 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    1,123

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    That's the whole point franK, we cannot be their babysitters forever?? They, Iraqis have to grab the reins at one point or another. Once we do cut back or relocate, they "will" inevitably have to take responsibility. Of course the disgruntled citizens (insurgents, like they are not from there) will lay back when faced with a formidable opponent, but that doesn't mean they are not still there biding there time until they can strike fear into the locals again!! You destroy one bomb making facility and they will start another when the time is right. We cannot control everybody, all the time, and that is the reality of the situation.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    270

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    Here's a little something about Robert Kagan

    Robert Kagan

    Robert Kagan is co-founder with William Kristol of the Project for the New American Century. He is a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a contributing editor at the Weekly Standard, a columnist for the Washington Post, and the author of the best-selling book Of Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order.

    From 1985-1988, Mr. Kagan was Deputy for Policy in the State Department's Bureau of Inter-American Affairs. From 1984-1985, he was a member of the State Department's Policy Planning Staff and principal speechwriter to Secretary of State George P. Schultz. In 1983, he served as foreign policy advisor to Congressman Jack Kemp and as Special Assistant to the Deputy Director of the United States Information Agency. In 1981, he was Assistant Editor at the Public Interest.

    Mr. Kagan holds a bachelor's degree from Yale College, a master's degree in public policy and international relations from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, and a Ph.D. in history from American University. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Alexander Hamilton fellow in American diplomatic history at American University.

    His first book, A Twilight Struggle: American Power and Nicaragua, 1977-1990, was published by the Free Press in 1996. He is currently at work on a history of American foreign policy. Mr. Kagan's articles on foreign policy have appeared in Foreign Affairs, Commentary, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the New Republic, the Wall Street Journal, the National Interest, Policy Review, and the Weekly Standard.

    Mr. Kagan is married to Victoria Nuland, a foreign service officer with the Department of State. They have two children, Elena and David.

    http://www.newamericancentury.org/robertkaganbio.htm

    (I'd be very cautious believing anything being espoused by one of the founders of PNAC and their agenda for world domination)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    14,663

    Re: The Surge is succeeding

    Quote Originally Posted by franKg
    The 'Surge' Is Succeeding
    By Robert Kagan
    Sunday, March 11, 2007; Page B07

    A front-page story in The Post last week suggested that the Bush administration has no backup plan in case the surge in Iraq doesn't work. I wonder if The Post and other newspapers have a backup plan in case it does.

    Leading journalists have been reporting for some time that the war was hopeless, a fiasco that could not be salvaged by more troops and a new counterinsurgency strategy. The conventional wisdom in December held that sending more troops was politically impossible after the antiwar tenor of the midterm elections. It was practically impossible because the extra troops didn't exist. Even if the troops did exist, they could not make a difference.

    Four months later, the once insurmountable political opposition has been surmounted. The nonexistent troops are flowing into Iraq. And though it is still early and horrible acts of violence continue, there is substantial evidence that the new counterinsurgency strategy, backed by the infusion of new forces, is having a significant effect.

    Some observers are reporting the shift. Iraqi bloggers Mohammed and Omar Fadhil, widely respected for their straight talk, say that "early signs are encouraging." The first impact of the "surge," they write, was psychological. Both friends and foes in Iraq had been convinced, in no small part by the American media, that the United States was preparing to pull out. When the opposite occurred, this alone shifted the dynamic.

    As the Fadhils report, "Commanders and lieutenants of various militant groups abandoned their positions in Baghdad and in some cases fled the country." The most prominent leader to go into hiding has been Moqtada al-Sadr. His Mahdi Army has been instructed to avoid clashes with American and Iraqi forces, even as coalition forces begin to establish themselves in the once off-limits Sadr City.

    Before the arrival of Gen. David Petraeus, the Army's leading counterinsurgency strategist, U.S. forces tended to raid insurgent and terrorist strongholds and then pull back and hand over the areas to Iraqi forces, who failed to hold them. The Fadhils report, "One difference between this and earlier -- failed -- attempts to secure Baghdad is the willingness of the Iraqi and U.S. governments to commit enough resources for enough time to make it work." In the past, bursts of American activity were followed by withdrawal and a return of the insurgents. Now, the plan to secure Baghdad "is becoming stricter and gaining momentum by the day as more troops pour into the city, allowing for a better implementation of the 'clear and hold' strategy." Baghdadis "always want the 'hold' part to materialize, and feel safe when they go out and find the Army and police maintaining their posts -- the bad guys can't intimidate as long as the troops are staying."

    A greater sense of confidence produces many benefits. The number of security tips about insurgents that Iraqi civilians provide has jumped sharply. Stores and marketplaces are reopening in Baghdad, increasing the sense of community. People dislocated by sectarian violence are returning to their homes. As a result, "many Baghdadis feel hopeful again about the future, and the fear of civil war is slowly being replaced by optimism that peace might one day return to this city," the Fadhils report. "This change in mood is something huge by itself."

    Apparently some American journalists see the difference. NBC's Brian Williams recently reported a dramatic change in Ramadi since his previous visit. The city was safer; the airport more secure. The new American strategy of "getting out, decentralizing, going into the neighborhoods, grabbing a toehold, telling the enemy we're here, start talking to the locals -- that is having an obvious and palpable effect." U.S. soldiers forged agreements with local religious leaders and pushed al-Qaeda back -- a trend other observers have noted in some Sunni-dominated areas. The result, Williams said, is that "the war has changed."

    It is no coincidence that as the mood and the reality have shifted, political currents have shifted as well. A national agreement on sharing oil revenue appears on its way to approval. The Interior Ministry has been purged of corrupt officials and of many suspected of torture and brutality. And cracks are appearing in the Shiite governing coalition -- a good sign, given that the rock-solid unity was both the product and cause of growing sectarian violence.

    There is still violence, as Sunni insurgents and al-Qaeda seek to prove that the surge is not working. However, they are striking at more vulnerable targets in the provinces. Violence is down in Baghdad. As for Sadr and the Mahdi Army, it is possible they may reemerge as a problem later. But trying to wait out the American and Iraqi effort may be hazardous if the public becomes less tolerant of their violence. It could not be comforting to Sadr or al-Qaeda to read in the New York Times that the United States plans to keep higher force levels in Iraq through at least the beginning of 2008. The only good news for them would be if the Bush administration in its infinite wisdom starts to talk again about drawing down forces.

    No one is asking American journalists to start emphasizing the "good" news. All they have to do is report what is occurring, though it may conflict with their previous judgments. Some are still selling books based on the premise that the war is lost, end of story. But what if there is a new chapter in the story?

    The "surge" is, at best, a temporary feel good measure for short term relief but long term disaster. Kinda like the medication Frankie is on.

Similar Threads

  1. How is that surge working??
    By docb in forum Political Scams
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-29-2008, 09:48 PM
  2. How is that SURGE working???
    By California Surfin in forum Political Scams
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-19-2008, 12:30 AM
  3. Why The Troop Surge Will Fail!
    By Phinnly Slash Buster in forum Political Scams
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 05-29-2007, 11:33 PM
  4. Iraq troop surge
    By TheWorker in forum Political Scams
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 02-14-2007, 11:03 AM
  5. Troop surge could be as high as 48,000
    By franKg in forum Political Scams
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 02-02-2007, 05:07 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may post new threads
  • You may post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may edit your posts
  •