Iraq

The Surge's Scorecard

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From the Wash Post, regarding President Bush's new report on whether benchmarks for the war in Iraq are being met:

"I am disappointed that, after great sacrifice by U.S. and Iraqi troops since the announcement of the surge in January, the Iraqi government has not met critical political benchmarks in that period," said Sen. John W. Warner (Va.), the ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee and a bellwether of GOP opinion. "That government is simply not providing leadership worthy of the considerable sacrifice of our forces, and this has to change immediately."

Democrats were more scathing, accusing Bush of whitewashing the findings and failing to face reality. "The president stubbornly refuses to develop a redeployment plan or devise a redeployment schedule, preferring to hope, despite the abundance of evidence to the contrary, that his failed policies will somehow make tomorrow better than today," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

A lengthy introduction to the administration's 25-page report described it as an interim "snapshot" of only limited use in judging the success of Bush's new strategy. Some of the benchmarks, it said, were useful in "giving some sense of future trends," while others were "lagging indicators" that could be assessed only after the strategy "is fully underway." It suggested that some other measures providing a more favorable picture—a recent decrease in the number of suicide bombings and sectarian violence, and local cooperation with U.S. forces in Anbar province—might serve as a better yardstick.

The report judged that progress was "satisfactory" in eight of 18 benchmarks, including a review of the Iraqi constitution; legislation to divide Iraq into semi-autonomous regions; the protection of minority rights; and government, military and civil support for the new strategy. But it noted mixed progress on new electoral laws, militia disarmament and the reduction in militia control of local areas.

Areas receiving unsatisfactory grades included reform of Iraq's de-Baathification laws; enactment of a new law governing oil revenue; the ability of Iraqi security forces to operate independently from U.S. forces; and a range of benchmarks measuring sectarian bias in the government.

More here.

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  1. Yes, you can certainly rely on a report that gives “some sense of future trends.” Fred Kaplan gives this shitload of shinola the thrashing it deserves in Slate at http://www.slate.com/id/2170303/

  2. “That government is simply not providing leadership worthy of the considerable sacrifice of our forces, and this has to change immediately.”

    Which government is that again?

  3. I hate agreeing with Pelosi, but hoping tomorrow everything will be allll right, “despite the abundance of evidence to the contrary” pretty much sums up this administration.

  4. I wanted to pull out two years ago, but why the fuck would you let the surge go ahead and then start voting for withdrawl before its given any kind of reasonable chance?

  5. Insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results

  6. I didn’t think all the troops for the surge were even scheduled to arrive until about a week ago.

  7. I vote tros threadwinner.

  8. Chalupa, it would take many, many more hundreds of thousands of troops to be able to occupy Iraq successfully. The “surge” won’t make a dent. Unless you are in favor of a draft, theres not going to be a successful occupation.

  9. I wanted to pull out two years ago, but why the fuck would you let the surge go ahead and then start voting for withdrawl before its given any kind of reasonable chance?

    Whats a reasonable chance exactly?

    3 months? 6 months? 1 year? 2 years?

    If this far into the surge nothing positive has developed what is there to make you think that going further down that road will bring success?

    Furthermore, we were told that by many people that this is it and NOW is the time to judge if the surge is working:

    Six months ago we were told this on the CBS early show.

    The president did not predict how long the surge will last, but Pentagon officials say if this new strategy works, they should be able to begin withdrawing troops from the streets of Baghdad in about six months.

    From CBS News, 6 months ago

    Pentagon officials expect US troops to stay in the streets for about six months before turning security over to the Iraqis. `If it hasn’t happened in six months,’ one official said, `we’ll know it’s not working.’

  10. I thought the surge was primarily to secure Baghdad, in which they have shown some success.

    Of course, then the insurgents and terrorists just moved into the country.

  11. Oh God, not the “the next six months” crap AGAIN.

  12. 6 Months – otherwise known as the Friedman Unit (FU)

  13. Cesar,

    They never said when the six months started. Did you think they meant six months ago? 😉

    This administration is a three-card monty game, only less honest. Soon they will call the surge a failure and suggest a “supersurge.” It’s the buzzwords that have a six-month shelf-life, not the policy. From all evidence the policy is very simple: Send more Americans to die.

  14. Caption Contest!

    “I have no clue how bad this picture will look three years from now.”

  15. “I’m sorry about the banner, it was suppose to say “Show Me Your Tits!'”

  16. “Oh, and one other thing… I’m not wearing any pants.”

  17. *oh Tony. And you said you wouldn’t fit in the podium.*

    (finishes making O face)

  18. Hey, cummeer! Pull my finger heh heh

  19. Soon they will call the surge a failure and suggest a “supersurge.” It’s the buzzwords that have a six-month shelf-life, not the policy. From all evidence the policy is very simple: Send more Americans to die.

    If the Republicans don’t wise up and jump of this sinking ship after September they’re gonna get spanked in 08.

  20. “””They never said when the six months started. Did you think they meant six months ago? ;-)”””

    I wouldn’t be surprised, that becoming the Bush admin’s M.O.

  21. I want to see Nick’s opinion on this thread.

  22. Cesar,

    Voters have notorious short memories. As long as they start a troop draw down by September of next year, they can can keep doubling down in Iraq.

  23. “If the Republicans don’t wise up and jump of this sinking ship after September they’re gonna get spanked in 08.”

    Dick Morris has a good idea. He wrote that Bush could copy Hillary’s plan and start withdrawing. Hillary’s Democrat opponents could then make mince meat of her by pointing out that her policy is no different than Bush’s making her appear as too hawkish for the 90% of Democrats that want us out of Iraq NOW.

    Incidentally, VM wins the contest. It does look like Bush is getting a blow job in the picture.

  24. I remember all my GOP friends years ago saying “yes things look bad, but we are turning the corner.” Remember that? Can’t we dig up all the quotes by hawk pundits who kept saying that? That must be one big-assed corner…

  25. Dick Morris should stick to sucking prostitute’s toes.

    I remember all my GOP friends years ago saying “yes things look bad, but we are turning the corner.” Remember that? Can’t we dig up all the quotes by hawk pundits who kept saying that? That must be one big-assed corner…

    this little piece from Republican suck-up Neil Cavuto is still my favorite piece from “Mission Accomplished” day. Haha, what a tool.

  26. ChicagoTom,

    I don’t have the info off the top of my head, but didn’t the full amount of troops just arrive very recetly?

    Anyway, don’t let this take away from my utter disgust and hatred of this war. Bush has done what I thought was impsossible, combining the worst aspects of right wing imperial hubris with the worst aspects of loony left wing idealism.

  27. “”””Bush has done what I thought was impsossible, combining the worst aspects of right wing imperial hubris with the worst aspects of loony left wing idealism.””””

    Mission accomplished!!!!

  28. Anyway, don’t let this take away from my utter disgust and hatred of this war. Bush has done what I thought was impsossible, combining the worst aspects of right wing imperial hubris with the worst aspects of loony left wing idealism.

    Yeah, Neoconservatism is just the bastard love child of Otto Von Bismarck and Woodrow Wilson.

  29. Cesar, thanks for that link. I wonder how he feels about that now.

  30. More pathetic than the article by Cavuto was this headline on the Fox News website:

    Breaking News >> David Beckham Officially Presented to the L.A. Galaxy Soccer Team: Watch Live

    Breaking-fucking News?

  31. Insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results

    True, which is why Petraeus is doing something different, folling COIN procedures for a change.

  32. Mr. Niceguy,

    You mean like this?

    Eric Dondero | March 2, 2007, 8:08am | #

    Oh, and what of the Surge? Seems to be working, yet you Lefty poser Libertarians are silent on it. No comments, on the Surge, huh?

    Guess since the violence is down in Iraq, and the ethnic violence has dissapated, best to move on to another subject, huh?

    Can’t give George Bush any credit for anything now can we? Gotta Bash, Bash, Bash, old Bush. Stub your toe on the sidewalk, why, it’s George Bush’s fault.

    That was March, the height of “Sure is Working” Season.

    I think somebody’s got a Derangement Syndrome.

  33. If National Review wasn’t staffed by such dishonest cowards, they’d have a method of accessing their blog archives that didn’t require clicking back week by week until we got to Mission Accomplished Day (about 220 clicks, if my math is correct, while waiting until each page loaded so you can see the “Previous Week” link.

    Because reading the Catholic Women’s League (Katie O’Beirne, Kathryn Jean Lopez, Jay Nordlinger) pawing at themselves over the “bulge” in the “fighter jock’s” pants was absolutely priceless.

  34. Joe, go to the front page of the blog, click on “Archives” across the top. Then scroll down and you should see a list of months with their years by them. Total of three or four clicks and some scrolling to get Mission Accomplished Day. And what a read it is!

  35. The National Review on Mission Accomplished Day:

    That looked to me like a pefect landing, to cap off a combat war won in under a month. If the likes of Fox News Channel and NR chose the pictures that would best characterize his presidency: bullhorn at Ground Zero, in a flight suit on the deck of the Lincoln, hanging with his men…. This is one cool presidential moment. If this were a private corporation, whoever thought of it would be getting a nice raise.

    Morons.

  36. Donderooooooooooooooooooooo

    I forget which one of you SOBs started it but now I can’t get that Simpsons song out of my head!!!! Damn you!!!!!!!

  37. rho | July 13, 2007, 11:44am | #
    I thought the surge was primarily to secure Baghdad, in which they have shown some success.

    Of course, then the insurgents and terrorists just moved into the country.

    Pretty much. If the surge is totally successful, we will have secured one city (admittedly the biggest one) in the whole country. Imagine what we’d have to do to secure all of Iraq.

  38. When I look at that picture it makes me ask, why would anyone listen to this guy? He looks stoned out of his mind.

  39. The dry mouth is kicking in.

  40. Thanks, Cesar, I hadn’t found that.

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