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Not the Reality in Iraq Obama knew

Or, it's not wise to formulate a plan without doing some research

Fred Kagan, Kim Kagan, and Jack Keane of The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday about The New Reality in Iraq, via IraqStatusReport.com. After reading it, I decided to see how Senator Obama’s newly changed stance on Iraq matches up with their view of the situation there. As things seem to get scrubbed off the Obama website, this will be time sensitive and relevant only until the next timely scrub happens.

From the report in regards to the Iraqi government:

Meanwhile, the Iraqi government has accomplished almost all of the legislative benchmarks set by the U.S. Congress and the Bush administration. More important, it is gaining wider legitimacy among the population. The attention of Iraqis across the country is focused on the upcoming provincial elections, which will be a pivotal moment in Iraq’s development.

Obama’s website states his current view on the Iraqi government:

Since the surge began, more than 1,000 American troops have died, and despite the improved security situation, the Iraqi government has not stepped forward to lead the Iraqi people and to reach the genuine political accommodation that was the stated purpose of the surge.

This alone is a very dangerous position for someone running for Commander in Chief to hold. To be this oblivious of the situation in Iraq, after already mapping out a plan of action, is ludicrous to me.

But wait, there’s more!

The report updates us on what have been the three major factors for instability in Iraq:

As far as the civil war is concerned, there have been virtually no sectarian killings recorded for the past 10 weeks. Violence is still perpetrated by organized groups, but AQI, the remnant Sunni insurgents and Shiite fighters are now focused on attacking their own members who have defected to our side. This is a measure of their weakness. The Iraqi population is increasingly mobilizing against the perpetrators of violence, flooding American and Iraqi forces with tips about the locations of weapons caches and key militant leaders – Sunnis turning in Sunnis and Shia turning in Shia. The fighters have not simply hidden their weapons and gone to ground to await the next opportunity to kill each other. The Sunni insurgency, as well as AQI, has been severely disrupted. Coalition and Iraqi forces have killed or detained many key leaders, driven the militants out of every one of Iraq’s major cities (including Mosul), and are pursuing the remnants vigorously in rural areas and the desert.

So, I went over to see what the Obama site says about the Iranian special groups, the Mahdi army, and Al Qaeda in Iraq.

There’s no mention in Obama’s plan about any of the three that I can see. The closest I can find is this:

The decision to invade Iraq diverted resources from the war in Afghanistan, making it harder for us to kill or capture Osama Bin Laden and others involved in the 9/11 attacks. Nearly seven years later, the Taliban has reemerged in southern Afghanistan while Al Qaeda has used the space provided by the Iraq war to regroup, train and plan for another attack on the United States.

You read that right. This is under his Issues/Iraq section. The issues in Iraq he sees is that Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan are making a last ditch attempt to go on the offensive. Did I also point out that this candidate for Commander in Chief has already mapped himself out a plan on Iraq? Is it bothering anybody that his uninformed planning is so badly out of touch with reality in Iraq? Yeah, I know, its bothering most of us.

I could go on with this for an even lengthier diary, but you all can open up a couple of browsers and compare the two. I’ll leave you with one more though.

The report’s recommendation on what needs to happen in Iraq at this moment:

If America remains firm in its commitment to success in Iraq, success is very likely. The AQI and Shiite militias at present do not have the capacity to drive Iraq off course – unless both the U.S. and the Iraqi government make a number of serious mistakes. The most serious error would be to withdraw American forces too rapidly. That would strengthen the resolve of both al Qaeda and Iran to persevere in their efforts to disrupt the young Iraqi state and weaken the resolve of those Iraqis, particularly in the Iraqi Security Forces, who are betting their lives on continued American assistance. The blunt fact is this. In Iraq, al Qaeda is on the ropes, and the Shiite militias are badly off-balance. Now is exactly the time to continue the pressure to keep them from regaining their equilibrium. It need not, and probably will not, require large numbers of American casualties to keep this pressure on. But it will require a considerable number of American troops through 2009.

The woefully uniformed CIC candidate’s website has this as the recommended solution:

Immediately upon taking office, Obama will give his Secretary of Defense and military commanders a new mission in Iraq: ending the war. The removal of our troops will be responsible and phased, directed by military commanders on the ground and done in consultation with the Iraqi government. Military experts believe we can safely redeploy combat brigades from Iraq at a pace of 1 to 2 brigades a month that would remove them in 16 months. That would be the summer of 2010 – more than 7 years after the war began.

Great, he plans to do exactly the opposite of what experts are saying we need to do. As you can tell by reading the report, Al Qaeda is dazed and on the ropes right now in Iraq and our military and the Iraqi Security Forces are poised to put some serious hurt on the whole worldwide organization if only our government will just stand by our best ally in the war with that worldwide enemy.

This should show us all the dangers of letting this inexperienced, far left leaning, smooth talker get anywhere near the White House, even if just to visit.

Geary Senter

Loveland, Colorado

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