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January 10, 2007

And a Guest-Blog on the Speech
Posted by Michael Signer

And these concluding thoughts contributed by an anonymous friend of mine with military experience in Iraq:

"The President's plan is contingent on Iraq Security Forces (ISF) stepping up to the plate within a year to take over from US forces.  The ISF have proven they are incapable of this.

"In order for Counterinsurgency to work, you need overwhelming force to provide static security to the local population... 16 thousand more troops in a city of 6.5 million is FAR from overwhelming force.  It is a pittance.  Once you have that security, 80% of successful counterinsurgency is non-military tools such as economic and political development within the cocoon.  Those create the indigenous institutions required to sustain the peace and stability by itself once the external forces have left.  But that process can't begin until  the initial security is provided. 

"We need 100s of 1000s more troops, not 20,000 more... and we need them for a five year comitment if this is going to be a successful project.  If as the president said, this is the singular ideological struggle of our time, how come we have not mobilized EVERY last resource of our country to win it?  If we are in the game, we must play entirely to win.  If we are not in the game to win, we should get the hell out of the game!"


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