Oh the Left will continue to blame Bush for this, but the fact is Musharraf brought this upon himself and is reaping the whirlwind.
But the issue Rick is that as long as Pakistan remains a Muslim country with nuclear weapons, Musharraf's stability problems constitute a direct threat to the security of the US. He's playing both sides against the middle because he sees no other way, but the funny thing about standing in the middle like that is that you get crushed.
If Musharraf falls, sovereignty or not, we have a major problem. Those Pak nukes go to whomever's in charge, and they *will* end up being smuggled into the US. There's no way we can cover all the soft targets in this country.
If we press too hard, Musharraf falls to a populist Jihadi coup. If we don't press hard enough, he falls to the reconstituted AQ in Waziristan. It amazes me that with all the screaming about Iran's possible nukes, we're largely overlooking the unstable, failed Muslim state that we know possesses nukes.
It's past time to convince Musharraf that standing in the middle of the road gets you run over.Comment Posted By Jared On 19.02.2007 @ 15:57
Where Tano's argument that we should be using the threat of withdrawal as a stick to goad the Iraqi government into taking responsibility is...surprise!...the point that we're *still using our troops as political chips in a game of poker* rather than allowing them to make real progress by relaxing the RoE and permitting our troops to make real progress in *eliminating the insurgents*.
And why are our hands tied? Why, because the Iraqi government refuses to allow us the leeway we need in order to get the job done. We're essentially fighting a "hyper-police action" because the Maliki government refuses to cooperate with the "counterinsurgency" we need to be running.
Threatening to pull out is in and of itself immoral for the reasons Rick pointed out: either redeploy the troops safely home or let them win.
I'm going to argue that the current strategy we've been using is just as immoral. We need the authority to decisively win in Iraq so we can leave. Anything else produces needless casualties and is political theater that costs American blood.
In short: We need to win, or we need to admit defeat and leave. Anything in between is morally intolerable.Comment Posted By Jared On 15.02.2007 @ 15:53
So basically we have the following situation in Iraq:
1) We have proof now that surge is working. Hell, the mere *threat* of the surge is working to clean up Baghdad. Keeping it that way is entirely a different matter, but the first step is already working.
2) The Democrats are about to step in a huge pile of their own crap as they discuss how to triangulate their way safely past something that's now null and void due to point #1, namely that the surge can't work and that it should be attacked as the opening salvo in pulling out the troops. It's already working, and if we leave, all that we've accomplished in Iraq goes away (along with, oh, a million lives.) The American people will notice both and put two and two together.
3) The Mehdi Army is now a wild card and needs to be removed from the picture. The enemy you know, you can anticipate and deal with. The enemy you don't know is far more dangerous. It's not the Doberman you know is in the neighbor's back yard that's the problem, it's the stray rabid mutt running loose that's the real threat. And it's far past time to put this mutt down.
4) PM Maliki is not one of the good guys. Perhaps he never was, but if really is responsible for getting Muqtada out of Iraq, then we need to seriously consider what Iraq would look like without him in power and we need to explore that.
So, the good news, Al Sadr is out as the biggest threat in Iraq. The bad news is he may have been replaced by Malaki. Not a good day.Comment Posted By Jared On 14.02.2007 @ 11:07
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