Thursday, June 28, 2007

School yourself about the "surge"

Okay, this is a rant

I am tired of hearing from people who are against the war in Iraq and the War on Terrorism who have not done their homework. If you don't agree that we should stay in Iraq, let's talk about that. There are some good augments for leaving, but if all you can do is regurgitate sound bites from the Left I don't have time for that. And if you are against the war in Afghanistan (yes, there is still a war going on in Afghanistan) you need to get your head checked.

Look, I am not dogmatic, I understand that the near failure in Iraq is Bush's responsibility, and I get as irritated as anyone when people start blaming the Dems for failure in Iraq. Bush and his team started and ran this war and occupation. But if you are ready to dismiss the surge, first take the time to research what is going on. The so called surge represents a radical change in tactics for the U.S.

Maybe we were misled into this war, maybe it was run by a bunch of yes men, and neo-con monkeys. That doesn't change the fact that we are responsible for the mess in Iraq now. That doesn't change the fact that our defeat there will represent a major gain for Iran and al-Qaeda, or that by knocking off both of Iran's real threats, we have emboldened them to new levels of defiance. (see: is Cheney an Iranian agent.)

But, and it is a big one, that doesn't mean that the best course of action is to run away. General Petraeus is the first high level Commander to both get counter-insurgency ops and be willing to tell his superiors that their vision of reality was f'd up and things need to change. And to be fair - the stimulus for allowing him to be heard came form the American People during the election, which also led to the removal of DR, who pissed off alot of professional Soldiers.

So give him a chance, and, if you really care about what is going on, do your research. This is from one of the best counter-insurgency sites out there:

“I know some people in the media are already starting to sort of write off the “surge” and say ‘Hey, hang on: we’ve been going since January, we haven’t seen a massive turnaround; it mustn’t be working’. What we’ve been doing to date is putting forces into position. We haven’t actually started what I would call the “surge” yet. All we’ve been doing is building up forces and trying to secure the population.

Does that fit with your reality? What about this quote from a blogger who lives in Baghdad:

There's more than numbers for those who want to understand

The results so far have been astounding, and please allow me to say that I'm proud of the change in attitude many of my fellow Iraqis are showing. Even if numbers don't suggest so because the change is happening but it will take time-perhaps beyond September-before this change will show in numbers.

A nation is not a corporation and when we deal with a nation we are dealing with a society; a mass of people with ever changing hearts and minds and that's why numbers alone can't be enough to assess the situation—thoughtful insight and looking at the bigger image are also required.

For over a year the media and many officials were spooking us with the exaggerated ghost of civil war. I wonder what they have to say now! I think their silence is more telling than anything they would've said.

Iraqis are awakening, one very telling example can be seen in the ongoing operation in Diyala; members of the 1920 revolution brigades, once bitter enemies of the US military and Iraqi government are now assisting US and Iraqi military in fighting al-Qaeda even though the majority of the Iraqi soldiers and officers are Shia.

There has been a real turn around in al-Anbar, a place the Media was ready to write off as an insurgent haven, but that hardly gets reported. If you aren't praying for success (while demanding accountability) where do you really stand?

If you are against the war, or for the war, please get literate on the reality, take time to read (TV doesn't count) before you open your mouth. As a fighting man, I believe I can ask that much of you, those who I would kill and die for to keep safe.