When The Math And The Policy Collide

July 9th, 2007at 08:25pm Posted by Eli

Apparently, Karl Rove made the claim yesterday that the Iraqupation would not be an issue in 2008 because we will already be in the process of withdrawing.

Umm… Karl? Have you talked to your boss lately? He. Is. Not. Leaving. If we’re withdrawing troops in 2008, it’ll only be because Congressional Democrats grew spines and Congressional Republicans grew brains. Frankly, after six-and-a-half years of watching Congress cave in to Bush again and again, I can’t say I’m holding out a lot of hope.

But even if we are getting out of Iraq sometime next year, it’s still not all roses and daffodils for the Republicans. For one thing, the voters probably will not have forgotten just which party it was that clung to the war like it was their only baby. And for another, well, to be brutally blunt, what are the odds that the withdrawal itself won’t be a complete bloody disaster? From Siun:

I received a message from some friends who are in Iraq at the moment. (These friends have extensive military experience but not with US forces.) They ask a terrifying question: “How many tens of thousands are the US willing to see killed – tens of thousands of US troops that is?”

They are asking us to take this seriously – they believe that no matter what routes are picked, the US forces will have to fight their way out. They cannot believe that no one seems to understand how truly bad the situation is – and how many US soldiers are going to die as the whole situation implodes – and how completely untenable are any troops left in Iraq.

One contact wrote this weekend that the mood in Iraq is no longer just a desire to see the US leave – but to hurt the US troops as much as possible as they leave as payback for episodes such as the one I wrote about last night at Firedoglake.

They believe that what we have seen so far has been testing and preparation for greatly increased attacks on US troops esp as the surge tactics have spread them in vulnerable ways. To get a feel for the situation, one example: the US/MNF this weekend boasted about a successful shipment of water by air to one base. This means that the MNF is having trouble even moving an essential like water – see Main and Central’s analysis. At the same time, remember that tanks get only 1.8 MPG (and less in real world conditions) but there are reports that there’s even a gas shortage in the Green Zone itself. Add in the campaign to destroy all the bridges on major routes and you begin to see the level of disaster shaping up.

I suppose it’s possible that a well-crafted diplomatic and military strategy and some crack logistics could get our troops out of Iraq with a minimum of bloodshed (after all, it’s not like the Iraqis will be sorry to see us go), but in what parallel universe could BushCo. come up with a well-crafted strategy for anything?

On the other hand, maybe that’s Rove’s real strategy: Turn the withdrawal into an incompetent slaughter (now that, Dubya can do!), and then blame those whiny Democrats for bringing it about with their wimpy refusal to stay the course. I suppose that might work, but Bush’s incompetence is so well-established now, especially where Iraq is concerned, that it could easily backfire. I hope we don’t have to find out.

Entry Filed under: Bush,Elections,Iraq,Politics,Republicans,Rove,War

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