Shock: Security returning to Basra says Times of London; Update: Shiites starting to turn on Mahdi Army in Baghdad

posted at 8:29 pm on October 11, 2007 by Allahpundit

So startlingly hopeful that I’m reluctant to jinx it by even touching it. Basra’s been a Shiite gangland for years but was set for total disintegration this summer as the Brits pulled out and the militias got set to turn the city into Thunderdome in a free-for-all for control of Iraq’s oil. Assuming this new report is true, though, then it’s Yon 1, Newsday 0.

Once the last remaining 500 soldiers based in Basra city at the Basra Palace had withdrawn – early last month – the level of violence began to fall. Today, the difference is tangible. British troops no longer patrol in Basra, that role is now left to the Iraqi security forces, but they still transit through the city en route to the Shatt al-Arab waterway. Yet apart from the odd small arms fire, none of the troops so far have been attacked.

With all the troops now based at the Basra air station a few miles northwest of the city, they are no longer viewed as a provocative occupying force…

The key to the change in atmosphere which led directly to Gordon Brown’s decision to cut troop numbers by half to 2,500 next spring followed a secret deal reached between a new Iraqi army commander and Shia militia leaders in Basra, senior British military officers told The Times…

The reason why the Shia militia agreed to the secret deal was that General Mohan and General Jalil had both been appointed by Baghdad. It demonstrated to the Shia power-brokers in Basra that the government was determined to play a dominant part in the politics of southern Iraq, something the leaders in Baghdad had failed to demonstrate hitherto.

It needed two strong men from out of the Basra area to bash heads together in Basra and to persuade the rival and feuding Shia militia to stop killing each other and to leave the British troops alone. So far it has worked spectacularly well, although the rocket attack on the British airbase camp outside Basra on Monday evening was evidence that not all the Shia groups are happy with the Mohan deal.

Follow the link and read at the end about how the twin fears of “Talibanization” and an Iranian takeover haven’t (yet) materialized. Two things I don’t understand, though. First, since when is the Iraqi Army such a superior fighting force that they can take on Iranian-trained militias like the Mahdi Army and Badr Brigades and “bash heads together” at will? That’s absurd on its face. Second, what incentive does SCIRI or the Sadrists have to bow before Baghdad when control of so many of Iraq’s oil fields is within their grasp by controlling Basra? Having two generals come down from the capital would seem to be the perfect occasion to teach the central government a lesson by pushing them out, not accepting their authority. Exactly what kind of quid pro quo, I wonder, did Maliki offer them to get them to play ball? I’m thinking maybe it’s an extension of Sadr’s grand strategy of lying low to help pacify the country until the United States has withdrawn in significant numbers and then making his play for power. Other than that, I can’t explain the sudden quiescence. Just like I can’t explain this.

Watch for this story tomorrow to become that rarest of Iraq dispatches — a good news piece seized on by the left with both hands. If it’s true, it’s obviously a powerful case for withdrawal from at least some parts of the country.

Update: For the second time tonight, wow. I do believe we have a trend. And from the New York Times, no less. Has Sadr finally overplayed his hand?

The sectarian landscape has shifted, with Sunni extremists largely defeated in many Shiite neighborhoods, and the war in those places has sunk into a criminality that is often blind to sect.

In interviews, 10 Shiites from four neighborhoods in eastern and western Baghdad described a pattern in which militia members, looking for new sources of income, turned on Shiites…

“We thought they were soldiers defending the Shiites,” said Sayeed Sabah, a Shiite who runs a charity in the western neighborhood of Huriya. “But now we see they are youngster-killers, no more than that. People want to get rid of them.”…

The street militia of today bears little resemblance to the Mahdi Army of 2004, when Shiites following a cleric, Moktada al-Sadr, battled American soldiers in a burst of Shiite self-assertion. Then, fighters doubled as neighborhood helpers, bringing cooking gas and other necessities to needy families.

Now, three years later, many members have left violence behind, taking jobs in local and national government, while others have plunged into crime, dealing in cars and houses taken from dead or displaced victims of both sects.

Even the demographics have changed. Now, street fighters tend to be young teenagers from errant families, in part the result of American military success. Last fall, the military began an aggressive campaign of arresting senior commanders, leaving behind a power vacuum and directionless junior members…

Ali, the Ur businessman, said he expected the Mahdi Army to be much smaller in the future. People simply do not believe its leaders anymore. “There is no ideology among them anymore,” he said.

According to the Times, at least 25 Shiite sheikhs in the city are now cooperating with U.S. troops. The boldface part, which suggests that a lot of these tools have been kicked upstairs into positions of influence, is worrisome, but who knows? Maybe bureaucracy will have a domesticating effect on them. Needless to say, all in all, the erosion of the Sadr brand is all to the good.

Update: D.J. Elliott has more on the security efforts in Basra.


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The media is desperate to put a stop to the positive news we’ve seen coming out of Iraq (attacks down, deaths of troops and civilians way down, etc. etc.)

Right now on Yahoo!’s home page, the top news story is:

9 children killed in U.S. raid in Iraq
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071011/ap_on_re_mi_ea/iraq

I’m not saying it’s not news, but I am saying I believe they were giddy while selecting that story (as was the AP writing it). You know they’re furious over the military recruitment and retainment rates and the notable declines in death and attacks in Iraq.

RightWinged on October 11, 2007 at 8:34 PM

If it’s true, it’s obviously a powerful case for withdrawal from at least some parts of the country.

If I’m not mistaken, several thousand Brits remain just in that region and the security improved before the latest withdrawal announcement.

amerpundit on October 11, 2007 at 8:38 PM

This is good news,but I hope it’s not a ruse,
and is there any intel as to what the Iranians
are doing in Basra,if their in Basra at all.
This just sounds to good!

canopfor on October 11, 2007 at 8:50 PM

I don’t believe it at all. I bet the MSM is just trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

SoulGlo on October 11, 2007 at 9:05 PM

And Congress spits on common sense once again….
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1191257286794&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Limerick on October 11, 2007 at 9:20 PM

First, since when is the Iraqi Army such a superior fighting force that they can take on Iranian-trained militias like the Mahdi Army and Badr Brigades and “bash heads together” at will? That’s absurd on its face.

AP, darn it – stop it. I’ll be over there not too long from now helping train the IA. You seem to think they don’t know what end of a rifle the bullet comes out of. We (Coalition) have been training the IA for some time now. They have had plenty of combat ops to shake things into order as well.

pushing them out, not accepting their authority.

Why would assume some asshat, AK waving Sadrists would be able to completely smack around an army that has been getting training and assistance from us for more than a while?

Iranian-trained militias like the Mahdi Army and Badr Brigades

So you are ready to credit Iranian training with making invincible warriors, while our training yields hapless fools? Teaching people to set IEDs, follow orders from Tehran and bully people ain’t the same as turning out professional soldiers. Frankly, I’ll take our chances better than mighty Iranian Proxy Cyborgs of Doom, or whatever you seem to consider them to be. [note: exaggeration for effect]

What is with the rampant pessimism the past few months? Real life is hard enough, stop inventing burdens for yourself, and us to worry about.

major john on October 11, 2007 at 9:57 PM

So you are ready to credit Iranian training with making invincible warriors, while our training yields hapless fools?

Not at all. I’m just saying that the fighting is likely a lot more evenly matched than is suggested by the phrase “bash heads together.” We’ve heard endlessly, including from Petraeus himself, about how many Iraqi brigades aren’t ready to fight on their own yet and how we need to expand the Iraqi Army further. Now, suddenly, they’ve ridden into Basra and tamed the whole place like Tombstone? Smells fishy.

Allahpundit on October 11, 2007 at 10:03 PM

What is with the rampant pessimism the past few months? Real life is hard enough, stop inventing burdens for yourself, and us to worry about.

major john on October 11, 2007 at 9:57 PM

Haha Major. That’s great!
Those of us at home who can’t fight the enemy the way you can are less secure. Makes sense I think.

Good luck and thank you very much.

JiangxiDad on October 11, 2007 at 10:12 PM

The IA will come in and either keep peace or kick ass. Those guys are U.S.-trained and becoming a real force to be reckoned with. The militias are a joke militarily, and while taking potshots at the foreign occupiers may gain some popular sympathy, attacking their own Iraqi soldiers does not.

For three years, many of us have been saying the one really important and oft-ignored trend line in Iraq is the progress of the Iraqi Army. A competent, nonsectarian, sufficiently armed and numerous Iraqi force that can guarantee democracy and some semblance of rule of law is our “victory” and our ticket home.

TallDave on October 11, 2007 at 10:38 PM

AP’s question is a valid one. Why would the IA have more success?

I think, as noted above, the answer is politics. Attacking the Iraqi Army is not a politically smart move; the vast majority of Iraqis do not support it. Remember, Iraq is a democracy of sorts now, and these militias are often associated with political groups.

TallDave on October 11, 2007 at 10:45 PM

Please God let this be true, maybe Sadr has been too brutal and the Shiites are finally getting it. I hope we can work things out.

Bad Candy on October 11, 2007 at 10:48 PM

For three years, many of us have been saying the one really important and oft-ignored trend line in Iraq is the progress of the Iraqi Army. A competent, nonsectarian, sufficiently armed and numerous Iraqi force that can guarantee democracy and some semblance of rule of law is our “victory” and our ticket home.

TallDave on October 11, 2007 at 10:38 PM

Are you saying they might be able to be made into something akin to the Turkish military, lets things go on their own unless things get choatic, then crack some skulls to get people back in line?

Bad Candy on October 11, 2007 at 10:51 PM

Now, three years later, many members have left violence behind, taking jobs in local and national government, while others have plunged into crime, dealing in cars and houses taken from dead or displaced victims of both sects….Even the demographics have changed. Now, street fighters tend to be young teenagers from errant families, in part the result of American military success. Last fall, the military began an aggressive campaign of arresting senior commanders, leaving behind a power vacuum and directionless junior members…

That is textbook counter insurgency. Now we get jobs for the “youth” and we see more neighborhoods turn around.

bnelson44 on October 11, 2007 at 10:52 PM

Good news calls for thanksgiving!

God’s safety for our troops.

T J Green on October 11, 2007 at 11:00 PM

Iraq Casulties as of today

bnelson44 on October 11, 2007 at 11:10 PM

Hey Major, take care of your self and your troops over there and thanks for all you are doing..

robo on October 11, 2007 at 11:18 PM

I think some shiia fear an Iranian influence in their country.

William Amos on October 11, 2007 at 11:25 PM

No wonder the Reaper is moving away from war topics. I wonder how the brass at the NYT feels these days…and the MSM in general. Give it another 6 months and what will they write about then? that the Reaper and Smiley did this? Or Mr. Webb? Or Obama, or Clinton, or Edwards?

Entelechy on October 11, 2007 at 11:32 PM

My God, if the Democrats don’t do something immediately we might actually win!

Oh nevermind I see they decided to cause problems with supplies coming in from Turkey. That should cause some more US casualties and ill will.

Buzzy on October 11, 2007 at 11:40 PM

So startlingly hopeful that I’m reluctant to jinx it by even touching it.

You’re too logical to believe in God…but, not in jinxes. Does that about sum it up?

By the way, good news. I hope this keeps moving in the right direction.

tdau1997 on October 12, 2007 at 12:31 AM

Thanks for posting this AP. Hopeful it will bear out.

Spirit of 1776 on October 12, 2007 at 12:45 AM

Update: Shiites starting to turn on Mahdi Army in Baghdad

Update 2: The Mahdi Army is Shiites. Therefore now the Shiites are fighting with other Shiites as well as with Sunnis. Oh boy. ROP, RIP.

MB4 on October 12, 2007 at 2:29 AM

According to Roggio’s latest on the Iraqi army’s oder of battle, their forces are improving quite nicely. They are moving a more experienced division into Basra and stationing a special ops company there that is to expand to a battalion. So it looks like the Iraqi military is playing for keeps in that region.

crosspatch on October 12, 2007 at 2:36 AM

That should be ORDER of battle …. I think.

crosspatch on October 12, 2007 at 2:36 AM

The 3 Iraqi companies I worked with quite recently were pretty darn good. And I did work with some leadership that could bash some heads for sure. If we stepped back and let them go to town they way they want too, this would be cleared up sooner rather than later. However them learning to fight the American way utilizing Western values and our moral compass has been quite a gap for them to cross. After working with them for awhile, seeing one of them get hurt or killed can hurt almost as bad as losing a fellow american. These guys dont get to go home after a year. I wish they had the same support you guys have given us. I wish there was a way they could be sent care packages like we get, that would go a long way. They are pretty good guys for the most part, just culturally different and a bit frustrating at times!

gator70 on October 12, 2007 at 2:51 AM

Blackwater – with “friends” like them, the U.S. Army and the U.S. Marines do not need enemies.
*
Blackwater Guards Fired at Fleeing Cars, Soldiers Say

Blackwater USA guards shot at Iraqi civilians as they tried to drive away from a Baghdad square on Sept. 16, according to a report compiled by the first U.S. soldiers to arrive at the scene, where they found no evidence that Iraqis had fired weapons.

“It appeared to me they were fleeing the scene when they were engaged. It had every indication of an excessive shooting,” said Lt. Col. Mike Tarsa, whose soldiers reached Nisoor Square 20 to 25 minutes after the gunfire subsided.

His soldiers’ report — based upon their observations at the scene, eyewitness interviews and discussions with Iraqi police — concluded that there was “no enemy activity involved” and described the shootings as a “criminal event.” Their conclusions mirrored those reached by the Iraqi government, which has said the Blackwater guards killed 17 people.

Tarsa said they found no evidence to indicate that the Blackwater guards were provoked or entered into a confrontation. “I did not see anything that indicated they were fired upon,” said Tarsa, 42, commander of the 3rd Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment of the 2nd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division. He also said it appeared that several drivers had made U-turns and were moving away from Nisoor Square when their vehicles were hit by gunfire from Blackwater guards.
*
Blackwater Is Soaked

The colonel was furious. “Can you believe it? They actually drew their weapons on U.S. soldiers.”
The colonel, who was involved in a follow-up investigation and spoke on the condition he not be named, said the Blackwater guards disarmed the U.S. Army soldiers and made them lie on the ground at gunpoint until they could disentangle the SUV. His account was confirmed by the head of another private security company.
One military contractor, who spoke anonymously for fear of retribution in his industry, recounted the story of a Blackwater operative who answered a Marine officer’s order to put his pistol on safety when entering a base post office by saying, “This is my safety,” and wiggling his trigger finger in the air. “Their attitude was, ‘We’re f—ing security; we don’t have to answer to anybody’.”

MB4 on October 12, 2007 at 5:27 AM

The traitors at MoveOn.org, ANSWER, CodePink, and the far leftwing of the Demcratic party and PBS are crapping in their pants about now. The media is going to start reporting this.

The blackout on good news can’t be kept up much longer. ABC News (Charlie Gibson) appears to have broken with the MSM and has started reporting the good news out of Iraq.

There is NO anti-Bush spin possible here. Further, PEW just reported that confidence in the MSM is at an all time low, even among Democrats, but essentially NON-EXISTENT among Republicans.

If one starts looking at the print media’s profit and loss statements and their circulation numbers, they are starting to hurt. Lower circulation means lower advertising rates means lower profits, if not losses. This is washing through to the broadcast media as well. MSNBC is about dead, with viewership essentially non-existent. And if GE does NOT dump NBC next year, you can bet that MSNBC will be shuttered instead.

The conscious decision to attempt to manufacture consent against the war has not been a success, and I think they know it.

Yes, they still do the mindless casualty reports, KIA Americans without context as to what our troop’s mission was and if it succeeded. Some of them are certlainly reluctant to drop the anti-Bush, anti-war campaign, but pretty soon they aren’t going to have much choice.

I’m thinking the “insurgency” (as we knew it) is about over.

The POLITICAL struggle in Baghdad is going to take center stage. In retrospect, until the Grand Mosque bombing, sectarian violence among Iraqi’s was not excessive (or at least not as excessive as it was after the bombing). The bombing was a deliberate Al Qaeda ploy to turn Shia against Sunni, and it succeeded.

Remember, that for hundreds of years, Sunni and Shia have peacefully coexisted, even intermarried, in Iraq. While rivalries between Shia and Sunni existed, they didn’t turn (first) resentful until Saddam, and (second) extremely violent until the Grand Mosque was first bombed.

Al Qaeda has since become a monster in most Iraqi’s eyes.

As Victor Davis Hanson wrote:

“A common theme heard from analysts and intelligence officers is the abject irreligious nature of al Qaeda. It is not quite zealotry to cut off the fingers of smokers, take 14-year old “brides”, mutilate the dead, force bodies to remain unburied, and steal businesses, homes and cars. Those are verifiable incidents—in addition to the other often told rumors of the terrorists serving children up to their parents or the employment of former male prostitutes as Al Qaeda heads. We think of bin Ladenism as a perverted distortion of Islam, but on the street level it is more a cover for gasoline and food racketeering, petty theft, and murder by young criminally-minded youth.”

Victor Davis Hanson, “Impressions of Iraq—part II,” 10/7/2007, http://victordavishanson.pajamasmedia.com/2007/10/07/impressions_of_iraqpart_ii.php

And so, the Middle Eastern dictate of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” is operative here. Our Golden Hour will be that time period between the eradication of Al Qaeda as any kind of threat and the completion of the training and integration of Iraqis into to their military and police forces.

I think Petraeus is counting on this:

“That said, Iraqis are trying to adopt much of the ethos of the American office corps, and thus a constant refrain in training is the need for them to get out, risk danger, and treat their subordinates with respect.

Many are doing just that—to such a degree entire units are starting to emerge that are probably better than any in the Arab Middle East. Surely one fear of Iraq’s neighbors is that if this country ever gets settled down, its army will be one of the most professional and competent in the region.”

[Ibid.]

IMHO, the emerging competence of Iraq Army, plus the beginning of a political maturity (evidence being the “truces” being formed between the Shia militias, and between the Shia-led government and the Sunnis) gives the Iraqi people the best shot at having a peaceful and prosperous country.

What I gleaned from Yon, Roggio, Hansen, and the others, about Iraq, is that our forces are starting to be seen LESS as “invaders” and “occupiers” and MORE as builders, trainers, and reliable partners.

Major John, I certainly hope my analysis is not naive, because if things are as I think they are, your job will be much easier and much safer.

Of course, it can all go south in a hurry. I hope that doesn’t happen. This process MUST NOT FAIL!

georgej on October 12, 2007 at 5:32 AM

“But in discussing the deployment of more troops, Mr. Giuliani has been alone in saying that such a strategy may not succeed, potentially providing him cover should the situation in Iraq deteriorate further. And he has put the strategy in a broader context that plays down the importance of Iraq.

Terrorists “are going to continue to be at war with us, no matter what the outcome in Iraq,” Mr. Giuliani said recently in New Hampshire. The night before, he said that “there are no sure things,” and that if the United States fails in Iraq, “we have to be ready for that, too.” In California a few days later, speaking of “the danger of focusing on Iraq too much,” he said that complete success there would not win the fight against terrorism, and that failure there would not lose it.”

MB4 on October 12, 2007 at 5:56 AM

MB4 writes about the arrogance of Blackwater. Of course, he’s just repeating some anti-war “talking points” and anecdotal reporting.

Yet…Ralph Peters had a very illuminating column last Friday (“Bribing the Troops to Quit”) that pointed out WHY they and the other Merc outfits are bad, not just for Iraq, but for the American taxpayer.

Peters says that we spend a lot of money training the spec ops people and vetting them, and then after their enlistment time is ending, we allow Blackwater to go head-hunting among our troops during a time of war and hire them away for a LOT MORE MONEY.

Peters says that this makes no sense. The government hiring of Blackwater and the other Mercs happens, as he notes, BECAUSE of a shortage of capable people available. Why the shortage? Because Blackwater has hired our people away in the first place.

So, not only do we taxpayers pay for the background checks and training as part of their training as soldiers, but then we pay MUCH, MUCH more to hire back people who used to work for us, but at a much, much higher price. Whew. What a vicious circle!

Peters solution?

Here’s what we need to do to right a wrong that borders on treason:

* Congress must defy its campaign contributors and criminalize attempts to hire those in uniform away from their service during periods of war and conflict.

* If a service member put in a full 20 years or more and retired, he or she should be free to take a job with any law-abiding firm. But any soldier short of 20 who accepts specialized training and a security clearance at government expense should have to wait two years after his or her discharge before moving to a related private-sector position.

* Defense contractors who hire young veterans with advanced skills or security clearances should have to reimburse the government 50 percent of their training and background investigation costs.

Non-compete agreements are common in business and industry. Why can’t they be designed to apply to this situation? Reimbursement clauses are common in the professional sports business. Why not here as well?

Peters point is that Blackwater is gouging America, irrespective of their behavior in Iraq. I have no way of personally knowing if they behave as badly as their detractors claim. But I think Ralph Peters has hit the problem squarely on the head.

georgej on October 12, 2007 at 6:00 AM

MB4 writes about the arrogance of Blackwater. Of course, he’s just repeating some anti-war “talking points” and anecdotal reporting.

georgej on October 12, 2007 at 6:00 AM

Excuse me!

It is not just arrogance, it is criminal behavior and their being an enemy of the U.S. Army!

These “anti-war “talking points” and anecdotal reporting” as you call them are from Lt. Col. Mike Tarsa commander of the 3rd Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment of the 2nd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division and another Army Colonel!

So you are just repeating some silly goofiness.

You quote Peters as saying, “Congress must defy its campaign contributors and criminalize attempts to hire those in uniform away from their service during periods of war and conflict.”. That will never fly in a free country. Our Soldiers and Marines are not indentured serfs.

MB4 on October 12, 2007 at 6:26 AM

Peters point is that Blackwater is gouging America, irrespective of their behavior in Iraq. I have no way of personally knowing if they behave as badly as their detractors claim. But I think Ralph Peters has hit the problem squarely on the head.

georgej on October 12, 2007 at 6:00 AM

Sounds like you care more about $$$$ than you do about the troops. A lot more. Shame on you.

MB4 on October 12, 2007 at 6:40 AM

Great!!! If it’s permanent. I’m cynical enough now to believe that “the game is afoot.”

jeanie on October 12, 2007 at 9:31 AM

This may be unexpected, but none of it should be incomprehensible. There’s a boatload of money to be made in a stable, oil-producing Iraq. Even if Iraq had 1/10th the normal corruption of oil-producing nations, that would still make the elites very very wealthy. When a car blows up outside your house, that money may seem inconsequential. But when things are generally quiet, it probably starts looking prety good.

Look at the Kurds. They were at each others throats for years under the US umbrella. Then they got their act together and look how far they’ve come.

Clark1 on October 12, 2007 at 9:44 AM

Has Sadr Ried finally overplayed his hand?

Fixed it for ya.

smellthecoffee on October 12, 2007 at 12:20 PM

Nothing succeeds like success. And a can of whoopi whoop ass.

I think you nailed it, AP, but there is a twist:

The grand strategy is a ruse to entice the infidel invaders to voluntarily leave Iraq. Plus the defeatocrats in the states will seize upon this good news to trumpet a withdraw. The twist: Maliki will consolidate power, he will ‘big tent’ the shias to the south, and the integrated military will be the police (hence the generals deal). If the peace and prosperity hold, the shia & cosmo Iraqis will not tolerate a return of fanatical gangsters to turn the streets red again. With Iran gasping & clutching the international ropes, national Iraqi attention now turns to the new threat – Turkey.

locomotivebreath1901 on October 12, 2007 at 1:03 PM

OK Big A,

crosspatch and gator hit all the highlights before I could. If you have a key area like Basra, and you are the IA, do you send your best, or do you send the unready? Right now it looks like I will be working with a division that is somewhat in the middle of all this. I’ll let you know when I get there.

Chin up, man! Don’t you remember how YOU helped keep MY morale up while I was in Afghanistan in ’04-’05? Maybe it is my turn. If I ever get back to the Large Apple, I’m buying you a drink, ‘k?

major john on October 12, 2007 at 5:33 PM

For details (at least publicly disclosable ones…)

http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2007/10/iraqi_security_force_4.php

major john on October 12, 2007 at 6:00 PM

Two things I don’t understand, though. First, since when is the Iraqi Army such a superior fighting force that they can take on Iranian-trained militias like the Mahdi Army and Badr Brigades and “bash heads together” at will?

Allahpundit

Since they are now trained by us, that’s when. Remember Iraq’s elite guards? The Republican Guards and other secret service units he had? We militarily embarrassed the heck out of them. Yes Iran has a lot of military experience, but NOTHING compared to us.

El Guapo on October 12, 2007 at 10:30 PM

Perhaps, also, the Iraqi military is superior because we are teaching them marksman skills while the majority of jihadis still rely on the “spray and pray” tactic. What ever the bullets hit, civilians or infidels, it is Allahs will.

El Guapo on October 12, 2007 at 10:34 PM

El Guapo – We used to refer to it thusly:

Step one, insert 30 round magazine and charge weapon;

Step two, point weapon in general direction of enemy and depress trigger;

Step three, hold trigger until magazine is empty;

Step four, Insh’allah, my enemy will fall.

major john on October 13, 2007 at 12:27 AM

Major John

Thoughts on Mobilization

Am I the only one without a website? You are going thru the same crap I did, and I am active duty. We trained in the snow (FT McCoy) for our summer sand-box vacation. Alot has to do with your higher and highest leadership. A lot of decisions are made quickly and that was the only place that could fit us in so quickly, and it has been used ever since. But now, we are currently trying to lobby/negotiate/persuade the Army and our leaders for a more practical training site (already picked out) that also has better training. Good luck, and stay safe. God speed.

El Guapo on October 13, 2007 at 4:02 PM

Are you saying they might be able to be made into something akin to the Turkish military, lets things go on their own unless things get choatic, then crack some skulls to get people back in line?

Bad Candy on October 11, 2007 at 10:51 PM

Not just Turkey. Remember, the United States military’s oath is to the Constitution, not the President or the Senate or the Supreme Court. This is not by accident.

TallDave on October 14, 2007 at 2:46 AM