Posted by: Tony Carson | 11 September, 2007

The Surge: kicking a decision down the road

So the predictable is realized: after waiting months for a promised critical decision on troop deployments in Iraq the decision is to kick the decision down the road a few months.

In fact, it was no decision at all. As Michael Ware pointed out on CNN the ‘surge’ plan had always been to escalate troop levels for a year, then revert to the 130,000 American troops that had been stationed in Iraq before the surge. Ware, added, it couldn’t be otherwise because the US military can’t sustain the increased troop numbers, it simply doesn’t have the resourced.

So the ‘experts on the ground’ wholly concurred with the ‘experts’ in the White House and the status quo is maintained. Never mind what the people think: in both the US and Iraq 60% of the people want the troop out of Iraq immediately.

The reason? Here is a Reuters list of violence on the ground in Iraq during the day Patreaus gave his speech:

• Baghdad. Seven U.S. soldiers were killed and 11 injured in a vehicle accident in western Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

• Near Mosul. A suicide truck bomb killed 10 people and wounded 78, Iraqi police said.

• Baghdad. Ten bodies were found in the capital over the past 24 hours, police said.

• Mosul. Three policemen were killed in clashes with militants in eastern Mosul, police said.

• Iskandariya. Thirteen Iraqi soldiers were wounded in a mortar attack on their checkpoint, police said.

• Mahmudiya. Police said they found three dumped bodies showing signs of torture.

• Baghdad. U.S. and Iraqi forces detained a high-level cell leader working for both the Islamic Army and al-Qaeda during a raid on Sunday in the Yarmouk district in western Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

• Baghdad. A car bomb killed two people and wounded six near a hospital in central Baghdad, police said.

• Tikrit. A U.S. soldier died from wounds received in a rocket attack while on patrol in northern Kirkuk province on Sunday, the U.S. military said.

• Samarra. U.S. and Iraqi forces killed 12 al-Qaeda militants and detained three others, the U.S. military said. Three U.S. soldiers were wounded.

• Baghdad. U.S. soldiers arrested an alleged high-ranking al-Qaeda cell leader and detained three other suspects in a village north of Baghdad last Thursday, the U.S. military said.

• Saqlawiya. A suicide car bomb targeting a police checkpoint killed four people, including two police officers, and wounded two policemen on Sunday night, police said.

• Suwayra. Police retrieved two bodies, shot and tortured, from the Tigris River on Sunday.

• Kut. A roadside bomb targeting a U.S. military patrol wounded five civilians on Sunday, police said.

• Baghdad. U.S. forces, with the help of local citizens, killed six al-Qaeda militants and detained 30 suspects during a fight to drive them from a village in the southern outskirts of Baghdad on Thursday and Friday, the U.S. military said.

• Mosul. Gunmen destroyed the dome of a Sunni mosque on Sunday, police said.


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