Guardian: Bush to send more troops in “last big push” to stabilize Iraq

posted at 11:25 pm on November 15, 2006 by Allahpundit

Supposedly the Baker Commission’s going to recommend a four-point strategy devised mainly by its Pentagon advisors:

· Increase US troop levels by up to 20,000 to secure Baghdad and allow redeployments elsewhere in Iraq

· Focus on regional cooperation with international conference and/or direct diplomatic involvement of countries such as Kuwait and Saudi Arabia

· Revive reconciliation process between Sunni, Shia and others

· Increased resources from Congress to fund training and equipment of Iraqi security forces

Iran may or may not figure into point two; democracy — or, in the words of the turd who leaked this to the Guardian, “the democracy crap” — may or may not figure into point three; and the Kucinich plan may or may not figure into point four.

Iraqis themselves aren’t any more united about what to do than we are. The Shiites want a pullout so they can go about massacring Sunnis; the Sunnis want more troops so that they don’t end up being massacred. Darkly funny:

He paused as two helicopters thundered overhead. The beer was running out, he said, a problem he blamed on the Americans. All the alcohol sellers in his area, Mansour, have been killed, and most shops are now closed.

“Who’s responsible for that? Rumsfeld,” he said. “He should send us some beer.”

The Guardian’s source expects that if things don’t look better within six months of the new deployments, the pressure on Bush — including from Republicans worried about the party’s prospects in ’08 — will be so intense that he’ll have no choice but to withdraw. To which I say, what prospects in ’08? If he doubles down and craps out, we’re done. He’s betting everything here; whether it’s because he believes that fervently in the cause or simply because he can’t bear to lose face is almost beside the point.

And of course, he’s not the only one who’ll be making a last big push. If I were in charge of AQ and feeling “reinvigorated,” I’d target those 20,000 new troops with everything I have. I’d even reassign resources I was saving for attacks on the west if it’d help. Nothing would strengthen the anti-war crowd’s hand like a mass slaughter of people who wouldn’t have been there had Bush listened to the Democrats. One spectacular attack, especially if it involved WMD, would purchase years of American isolationism.

For his part, Abizaid doesn’t want a great many more troops. He doesn’t want any less, either.

Update: Expect the Dems to grudgingly support this, too, if only because there’s little downside. They’ve got Zinni, Batiste, and now Abizaid saying that a withdrawal anytime soon would mean disaster. That gives them all the political cover they need to sign off on Bush’s plan. After all, by chickenhawk logic, the military judgments of uniformed personnel are practically infallible vis-a-vis civilians.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

If he doubles down and craps out, we’re done.

If he doesn’t double down, we’re also done.

steveegg on November 15, 2006 at 11:28 PM

More troops now seems like too little, too late. The insurgents are already embedded and seem to be targeting more Iraqi’s than American troops. I agree, Bush has to present a strong finish before the Dems start demanding withdrawal or this will be a disaster for the Iraqi nation and Republican chances in ’08. If the Guardian story can be believed, let’s pray the strategy works.

thedecider on November 15, 2006 at 11:36 PM

One spectacular attack, especially if it involved WMD, would purchase years of American isolationism.

I agree, if only because of who’s behind the wheels of steel.

Balls.

Kid from Brooklyn on November 15, 2006 at 11:36 PM

Drop a nuke or two!! That will make them sit up take notice, and pray to Allah we aren’t just getting warmed up.

It’s a good thing I’m not in charge. I’d be dropping nukes left and right just because I was pissed. Pakistan… crater, North Korea… crater, Iran… BIG crater, Hugo Chavez… put him in the same cell in Gitmo as Michael Moore…

Now that’s torture.

E L Frederick on November 15, 2006 at 11:44 PM

Super.

Allahpundit on November 15, 2006 at 11:47 PM

Until the Iraqi people stand up to the thugs who are murdering them, all the troops in the world (especially if they are UN) would not make a difference.

jman on November 15, 2006 at 11:49 PM

I share your optimism.

We’re screwed, blued and tatooed.

steveegg on November 15, 2006 at 11:50 PM

How can they stand up to them? What does that mean?

Allahpundit on November 15, 2006 at 11:51 PM

I understand the desire to go stark raving mad, but let’s assume for the moment that multiple nuclear strikes are off the table.

At this point the Iraqis know what’s up, and unfortunately most are not going to want to do anything that will upset the jihadi’s who will be taking over once the US leaves. Therefore, I wouldn’t expect too much help from the locals. Hungary, Czechoslavakia, Iraq…it’s the circle of life.

Coyote D. on November 15, 2006 at 11:55 PM

How can they stand up to them? What does that mean?

Allahpundit

I think he meant that they should stand up against walls so they can be shot in a more orderly fashion.

Benaiah on November 15, 2006 at 11:56 PM

Info, Allah. That’s how they stand up to them. And, frankly, I think more troops could make that a possibility. I know there’s a limit to the equation, but right now more sounds better.

I think it’s a good idea, and when I woke up this morning, I would’ve never believed anyone is suggesting it. On the political front, I can’t imagine anything sharper getting shoved up Jabba’s stinker than another 20,000 American troops in Iraq.

I am laughing so hard, I threw up a little in my mouth…

Jaibones on November 15, 2006 at 11:57 PM

How can they stand up to them? What does that mean?

Allahpundit on November 15, 2006 at 11:51 PM

I can never tell when your serious, and when your just swinging on our chain like Tarzan. So I’ll pretend like your serious.

A good step would be for the Iraqi Army to stand up and take control. Have the Iraqi government start acting like a real government, and not like our Congress.

Killing Sadr, and his Mahdi army would be a good start.

Maybe we do need to pull out…

France couldn’t win our independence for us, we had to reach out and grab the brass ring for ourselves.

Maybe a civil war where everybody kills each other until they get sick and tired of killing each other is the answer.

That makes no sense, but then your dealing with people who are kind of backward to start with.

E L Frederick on November 15, 2006 at 11:57 PM

The Iraqi people know who the insurgents are. Some of them are courageous enough to report them to the authorities, or join the police force even while the police stations are being blown up. If there were more brave people like this willing to act instead of simply watching the insurgents plant the IEDs, we would be in a much better position.

jman on November 15, 2006 at 11:58 PM

The Kucinich plan 1.Plant feet firmly on the ground aprox.30in apart. 2.Bend over as to touch your toes. 3.Follow through your legs and kiss your ass goodbye!

sonnyspats1 on November 16, 2006 at 12:04 AM

Oh yeah… and lastly… the benefit of dropping nukes is that it puts ash and stuff in the atmosphere… thus combating global warming…

Take that Al Gore!

E L Frederick on November 16, 2006 at 12:05 AM

Oh yeah… and lastly… the benefit of dropping nukes is that it puts ash and stuff in the atmosphere… thus combating global warming…

I had never considered the nuclear winter as antidote to global warming theory. Of course, our solar panels wouldn’t work so well under those conditions. But it would really get the windmills spinning, so call it even.

Coyote D. on November 16, 2006 at 12:13 AM

I had never considered the nuclear winter as antidote to global warming theory

I don’t buy it either… but it sounds good on paper.

E L Frederick on November 16, 2006 at 12:17 AM

Since we’re veering into fantasyland might I suggest we send in Bruce Willis to blow up their meteor? Worth a shot.

bbz123 on November 16, 2006 at 12:22 AM

Sqrew the Iraq economy. Shut the whole country down. Impose marshall law, ban all vehicular traffic, and outlaw all clothing that could conceal any weapons or bombs. Ration the food and water,all that. Cmon guys its a friggin WAR!Round up anyone without a purple finger. Damn how hard could it be!

sonnyspats1 on November 16, 2006 at 12:23 AM

Since we’re veering into fantasyland might I suggest we send in Bruce Willis to blow up their meteor? Worth a shot.

Sounds like a job for Chuck Norris.

Coyote D. on November 16, 2006 at 12:32 AM

We send in Jack Bauer,Chuck Norris,Bruce Willis and 007( V.SC) . Done deal.

bbz123 on November 16, 2006 at 12:53 AM

We send in Jack Bauer,Chuck Norris,Bruce Willis and 007( V.SC) . Done deal.

bbz123 on November 16, 2006 at 12:53 AM

What no Bruce Kucinich Lee?!

sonnyspats1 on November 16, 2006 at 1:03 AM

Closer to home. The Coast Guard is proposing live munitions testing on the Great Lakes. All Righty then! Lob a couple over Detriot burbs.

sonnyspats1 on November 16, 2006 at 1:08 AM

I’m sick of these things being leaked, or floated, or whatever it is…and to foreign papers no less! Cut it out! Let the report come out when it comes out. Do we have to telescope it for weeks and months? Personally, I don’t expect W. to just rubber stamp the ISG just because they might have worked for his father. I didn’t take kindly to the phrase “democracy crap” either. Our country has sorta stood for that “crap” for the last 230 years.

CP on November 16, 2006 at 1:34 AM

AP, I think jman gave a decent, albeit broad, response to your question. Is it too naive?

I agree that AQ will probably redouble their efforts if they can, but I wonder if WMD would cross that vague and invisible line that demarcates the American backbone. The propaganda and waiting game is already tilted in their favor; WMD would just add an additional and unnecessary variable to their plans.

Kevin on November 16, 2006 at 2:26 AM

It won’t be won until the Iraqi government takes the private militias and all weapons off the streets. If you’re seen with a weapon, the government can consider
you an enemy of the unified Iraq. And that’s not going to happen.

Scotsman on November 16, 2006 at 4:51 AM

OK, I’ll join in with the other military geniuses in this thread.

I read an article three days ago (sorry, no link) that described a plan to secure Iraq. This was from a high-ranking Marine officer who recently left Iraq.

The plan involved using 30,000 more troops to lock-down Baghdad, restore order, and do block-by-block sweeps to find the bad guys and kill them. He thought it was militarily a simple thing to do, but politically a non-starter. Imagine the politics of opressive US control of all life in Baghdad, coupled with lots of video of our guys kicking in doors and “harrassing” frightened women and children — who themselves are being used as human shields for the guys who like to drill holes in the skulls of their kidnap victims.

Securing Baghdad secures Iraq because Baghdad is the focus of all the major terrorist activity. Baghdad is the focus because that’s where the reporters live.

I fervently hope that the Baker plan for 20,000 more troops reflects some of the thinking above from the Marine officer. But none of us will really know until Bush goes on TV and makes his case.

Anton on November 16, 2006 at 6:12 AM

Yes yes yes. More troops. More better MTTs (Military Training Teams). Ramadi is a cesspool, but Baghdad is the key. The last crackdown was Iraqi led and failed because the Iraqi forces are too infiltrated by militias and insurgents. If we want to put an Iraqi face on this crackdown, fine, but we need our faces right behind every one of their faces.

BohicaTwentyTwo on November 16, 2006 at 9:29 AM

Drop a nuke or two!! That will make them sit up take notice, and pray to Allah we aren’t just getting warmed up.

It’s a good thing I’m not in charge. I’d be dropping nukes left and right just because I was pissed. Pakistan… crater, North Korea… crater, Iran… BIG crater, Hugo Chavez… put him in the same cell in Gitmo as Michael Moore…

Now that’s torture.

Great strategy. It is a good thing you’re not in charge.

A good step would be for the Iraqi Army to stand up and take control. Have the Iraqi government start acting like a real government, and not like our Congress.

Brilliant. Don’t you maybe think that we’ve been trying to work on that the entire time? It’s been a failure because the units are divided amongst tribal and religious lines, many of them don’t trust each other or us, and recently there has been suspicions that soldiers and police officers are actually cooperating with the insurgency.

WisCon on November 16, 2006 at 9:36 AM

Brilliant. Don’t you maybe think that we’ve been trying to work on that the entire time? It’s been a failure because the units are divided amongst tribal and religious lines, many of them don’t trust each other or us, and recently there has been suspicions that soldiers and police officers are actually cooperating with the insurgency.

WisCon on November 16, 2006 at 9:36 AM

Yes, I know that’s what we’ve been working on. I’ve been there (Baghdad). I thought it was an obvious answer, which is why I was surprised that AP asked the question to start with.

The problem is not on the American side, IMHO, the problem is that the Iraq’s don’t give a shit balls.

E L Frederick on November 16, 2006 at 9:52 AM

More troops-GREAT! FINALLY! YES!

But are those troops going to be allowed to wage WAR without the shackles of political correctness?

NOPE.

SouthernGent on November 16, 2006 at 10:22 AM

Brilliant. Don’t you maybe think that we’ve been trying to work on that the entire time? It’s been a failure because the units are divided amongst tribal and religious lines, many of them don’t trust each other or us, and recently there has been suspicions that soldiers and police officers are actually cooperating with the insurgency.

WisCon on November 16, 2006 at 9:36 AM

I know it’s been what we’ve been working on. I’ve been there (Baghdad). The problem is that the Iraqi’s care less about freedom and order than they do about killing each other.

E L Frederick on November 16, 2006 at 10:26 AM

Drop a nuke or two!! That will make them sit up take notice, and pray to Allah we aren’t just getting warmed up.

It’s a good thing I’m not in charge. I’d be dropping nukes left and right just because I was pissed. Pakistan… crater, North Korea… crater, Iran… BIG crater, Hugo Chavez… put him in the same cell in Gitmo as Michael Moore…

Now that’s torture.

E L Frederick on November 15, 2006 at 11:44 PM

Plan: liberate Iraqis, offering them a better life. If that doesn’t work, blow them all to hell. Next case.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 10:37 AM

Info, Allah. That’s how they stand up to them. And, frankly, I think more troops could make that a possibility. I know there’s a limit to the equation, but right now more sounds better.

I think it’s a good idea, and when I woke up this morning, I would’ve never believed anyone is suggesting it. On the political front, I can’t imagine anything sharper getting shoved up Jabba’s stinker than another 20,000 American troops in Iraq.
I am laughing so hard, I threw up a little in my mouth…

Jaibones on November 15, 2006 at 11:57 PM

I admire someone who doesn’t try to hide their agenda. “Fuck Iraq, let’s make our political opponents look bad.” Well it’s an ill wind as they say. Jesus.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 10:40 AM

That makes no sense, but then your dealing with people who are kind of backward to start with.

E L Frederick on November 15, 2006 at 11:57 PM

Point of clarification: you are referring to the Iraqis here, right? Not the administration/ (Sorry, couldn’t resist!!)

honora on November 16, 2006 at 10:42 AM

Plan: liberate Iraqis, offering them a better life. If that doesn’t work, blow them all to hell. Next case.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 10:37 AM

Didn’t mention Iraq…

Point of clarification: you are referring to the Iraqis here, right? Not the administration/ (Sorry, couldn’t resist!!)

honora on November 16, 2006 at 10:42 AM

I was talking about the Iraqi’s… but Pelosi and Murtha will suffice in a pinch.

E L Frederick on November 16, 2006 at 10:45 AM

The Iraqi people know who the insurgents are. Some of them are courageous enough to report them to the authorities, or join the police force even while the police stations are being blown up. If there were more brave people like this willing to act instead of simply watching the insurgents plant the IEDs, we would be in a much better position.

I think this is a little short sited in that there are Sunni insurgants attacking Shia and Shia insurgants attacking Sunni. The Shia aren’t going to turn in their insurgants because as much as they dislike what they are doing to Iraq’s stability, they offer the only real protection against the Sunni and vice-versa. Training and equipping the Iraq army sounds great, but when the majority of recruits are insurgants who sign up to get weapons and training and then abandon the Army in favor of the militias it just doesn’t work out very well. It sounds brutal, but letting them fight out the civil war until they are tired of killing may be the only real solution. If a foriegn power tried to intervene in our civil war it probably wouldn’t have made much difference; some problems just need to be solved internally.

JaHerer22 on November 16, 2006 at 10:46 AM

Why are we leaving it to the Israelis to take care of the International issue that is Iran? If Iran attains a nuclear weapon, Tel Aviv is going to be the target. Israel has made preemptive attacks on nuclear facilities in the past, and I sure wouldn’t blame them for doing it again.

The problem is that these nuclear facilities in Iran are heavily shielded and built underground. It’s going to take something very large to take them out.

Pakistan doesn’t want us to kill Taliban or Al Qaeda in Pakistan. Musharraf has gone back to being a patsy for terror.

Personally, I’m sick of hearing “we missed him” when referring to a Al Qaeda or Taliban commander.

We have to stop playing with kid gloves. We aren’t playing to win. We are playing to make everybody happy, and it just isn’t working.

We are the big kid on the block, but we allow all these pipsqueaks to kick us in the shins. When we don’t do anything about, we encourage it.

Time to start putting them back in there places, and time to start playing to win.

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on November 16, 2006 at 11:05 AM

I admire someone who doesn’t try to hide their agenda. “F*ck Iraq, let’s make our political opponents look bad.”

What part of “Send in more troops to clean things up” strikes you as “F*ck Iraq”, honora?

Jesus.

…Akbar!

Pablo on November 16, 2006 at 11:26 AM

I’m sorry, but I totally don’t trust The Guardian, which is a Leftist rag, and as usual with these liars, this story is based on anonymous leaks (from someone in a high position of trust who’s breached that and who should be prosecuted).

Jen the Neocon on November 16, 2006 at 11:30 AM

ELF:

Subject of this post: “..Bush to send more troops…to stabilize Iraq.” Your post begins:

Drop a nuke or two!! That will make them sit up take notice, and pray to Allah we aren’t just getting warmed up.

So your claim:

Didn’t mention Iraq…

..is strange. Who is the “them” you refer to? Swedes? Trinidadians? Get a grip.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 1:01 PM

What part of “Send in more troops to clean things up” strikes you as “F*ck Iraq”, honora?

Look at the context: the comment was that sending in more troops (you know, those folks who get shot at) is probably a good idea and isn’t it just grand this will piss off the Dems? So context is the key to my response. (I realize telling you to evaluate messages as part of a particular dialogue is akin to asking a dog to bake a pie, but what the hell).

honora on November 16, 2006 at 1:06 PM

Jaibones said:

I think it’s a good idea, and when I woke up this morning, I would’ve never believed anyone is suggesting it. On the political front, I can’t imagine anything sharper getting shoved up Jabba’s stinker than another 20,000 American troops in Iraq.

You’re making shit up, honora. Jaibones comment was simply that if the recommendation to send more troops in is followed it will an outright rejection of Murtha and his “plan”. How does his prefacing that with “I think it’s a good idea” equate to “F*ck Iraq”?

You can do better than that. My dog probably could too. You want me to ask her?

Pablo on November 16, 2006 at 2:08 PM

You can do better than that. My dog probably could too. You want me to ask her?

Pablo on November 16, 2006 at 2:08 PM

Well of course I do. However be advised that this is how Son of Sam started his life of crime. My point, which you refuse to get, is that the life and death decision to send in more troops does not belong in the same thought as “heh, heh, this will really piss off Murtha.” It’s demeaning to everyone involved.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 2:51 PM

..is strange. Who is the “them” you refer to? Swedes? Trinidadians? Get a grip.

honora on November 16, 2006 at 1:01 PM

I suppose listing the targets after the initial “nuke ‘em” was just to subtle for your small mind. Sorry Honora.

It’s a good thing I’m not in charge. I’d be dropping nukes left and right just because I was pissed. Pakistan… crater, North Korea… crater, Iran… BIG crater, Hugo Chavez… put him in the same cell in Gitmo as Michael Moore…

See… no Iraq listed…

As for “a grip” which one of us is the troll? Oh that’s right… you are…

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on November 16, 2006 at 5:19 PM

Well I only made it to E-4 in my four short years in the Service, so I’m no General, but I’d say sending in more troops IS WHAT WE SHOULDA DONE IN THE FIRST PLACE! But NOOOOOO we gotta try to be “culturally sensative”!

Tony737 on November 16, 2006 at 5:57 PM

Thanks, P; I wasn’t paying attention.

Honora, Pablo has me right. Like I said, I think it’s a good idea. I also think Murtha is not just wrong on Iraq policy, but actually nuts. And so the notion of a “good policy” that brings Mad Jack Murtha significant political pain is absolute serendipity.

No honest reader would equate that with “F–k Iraq”, as that is exactly the opposite of my intent. Do you believe that sending in more American troops somehow screws Iraq?

Really?

Jaibones on November 16, 2006 at 11:37 PM

Pablo,

Maybe honora didn’t know Jabba=Murtha. That would explain the bizarro response?

Jaibones on November 16, 2006 at 11:48 PM

It’s demeaning to everyone involved.

Honora, my dog said to tell you that you have no business trying to play thought police, or to determine what connected occurrences are acceptable to discuss. She also says you still haven’t explained how any of the equals “F*ck Iraq”, and that you should quit while you’re behind.

She’s a smart bitch, I tell ya. You should try her pumpkin pie. It’s to die for.

Pablo on November 17, 2006 at 5:25 AM

Jaibones, do you ever get the feeling that some half baked lefty is trying to paint you as a racist?

Pablo on November 17, 2006 at 5:39 AM