2007 May 13 Sunday
US Troop Surge Failing To Quell Iraq Violence

Even in Baghdad the violence is rising.

The US military surge in Iraq, designed to turn around the course of the war, appears to be failing as senior US officers admit they need yet more troops and new figures show a sharp increase in the victims of death squads in Baghdad.

In the first 11 days of this month, there have already been 234 bodies - men murdered by death squads - dumped around the capital, a dramatic rise from the 137 found in the same period of April. Improving security in Baghdad and reducing death-squad activity was described as one of the key aims of the US surge of 25,000 additional troops, the final units of whom are due to arrive next month.

The US would need a few hundred thousand more troops to get a handle on Iraq. That's not going to happen.

The insurgents are raising havoc in northern Iraq and the US has too few troops to do anything about it.

The U.S. commander in northern Iraq says he does not have enough manpower to secure the increasingly violent Diyala province. Major General Benjamin Mixon made the remarks to reporters at the Pentagon by videoconference from Iraq.

...

"I do not have enough soldiers right now in Diyala province to get that security situation moving," he said. "We have plans to put additional forces in that area. I can't discuss the details of that. We have put additional forces in there over the last couple of months, but I am going to need additional forces in Diyala province to get that situation to a more acceptable level so the Iraqi security forces will be able in the future to handle that."

The general says he currently has about 3,500 U.S. troops in Diyala province, with about 10,000 Iraqi soldiers and several thousand Iraqi police.

General Mixon describes the Diyala province government as "nonfunctional".

The US military is much too small to get a handle on the insurgencies (yes, plural) in all parts of Iraq. The transfer of US soldiers into Baghdad depleted other regions and the insurgents demonstrate that when the cat's away the mice play.

One could ask a question like "whatever happened to the Iraqi government's military and US efforts to train it?". We all know that the Iraqi Army isn't about to become a serious fighting force. But our leaders would have us believe that the same sorts of nationalistic loyalties that motivate Americans also motivate consanguineously marrying, low IQ, Muslim Arabs in the Middle East. Our elites have failed us. Even the Democrats who want us to withdraw from Iraq are unwilling to state the reasons why the invasion of Iraq failed since to state those reasons would require an admission that basic tenets of the secular liberal faith are wrong.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2007 May 13 09:59 PM  MidEast Iraq Military Needs


Comments
John S Bolton said at May 14, 2007 1:06 AM:

Diyala province, like Baghdad, is moving into an ever-more-frenzied
contest for supremacy between Shia and Sunni.
These are the major mixed areas, and de facto partition is well underway.
American troops are being used to stand athwart this process, even though
Iraqi brotherhood, reconciliation and national unity are not known to be
in the American national interest.
How can the holism of Iraq be an object of value to us as Americans?
Inclusionism is not known to be a valid ideal;
including bad or destructive parts is not known to be better than excluding them.

John S Bolton said at May 14, 2007 1:28 AM:

The relevant boundaries of Iraq reflect the lines beyond which, British officers almost 100 years ago, decided that it was imprudent to advance further.
Such considerations are not that which makes a real nation,
but the fighting in Diyala and elsewhere which tends toward ethnic cleansing,
is how such can come into existence.
To stand in between the parties, and get your soldiers killed for it,
would be regarded as highly unreasonable, except that our government
serves its power-greed by pretending that there are no enemies, or no lasting ones,
since all men are equal and naturally live in brotherhood.
According to these officials, we must kill enemies because there can be no permanent
enemies. Make brotherhood by killing the brothers.
Preach inclusionism from behind the blast walls of a zone of exclusionism.
Terrorists are more in tune with the actual power relations and facts on the ground there, and stand to triumph. They know that Islam is anything but a religion of peace, but our officials
pretend that it is.

psmarc93 said at May 14, 2007 10:40 AM:

Whether it's due to the inferior races or the "evils" of Islam or hatred of liberals, at least I can see that conservatives are begining to admit their war has turned into an endless meat grinder. Gone are the posts about how much conservatives LOVE the Iraqi people working so hard for freedom ("consanguineously marrying, low IQ, Muslim Arabs"; gone are the posts saying the press is hiding the "GOOD" news in the reconstruction ("The US military is much too small to get a handle on the insurgencies (yes, plural) in all parts of Iraq." And THIS RIGHT WING POST is becoming typical -- one filled with bitterness and fatalism.

So what do we liberals have to say to get you to work to end Bush's fiasco? Say it's our fault? Ok, we're sorry! Iraqis are dumb? Ok, screw 'em; they're not worth our attention. Jesus hates Mohammed and we should leave? Praise the Lord and pass the duffle bags. My mother wears army boots? Hey, and khaki socks. Whatever it takes to get you to help START bringing (some, not all) of our troops home and getting out of the way of Iraq's civil war. Let's end our combat involvement, and simply stay in enough force to protect our bases (like Guantanamo against Castro) and offer advice. BUT bring our troops home!

Matra said at May 14, 2007 11:53 AM:

psmarc93:Whether it's due to the inferior races or the "evils" of Islam or hatred of liberals, at least I can see that conservatives are begining to admit their war has turned into an endless meat grinder...And THIS RIGHT WING POST is becoming typical -- one filled with bitterness and fatalism.

I'd be surprised if Parapundit ever supported the war. I can't imagine any traditional conservative supporting a utopian neocon adventure like the Iraq invasion and occupation. Unfortunately the neocon and GOP takeover of the word "conservative" is almost complete and the public doesn't distinguish between, say, neocons and paleocons even though the former have far more in common with leftists than with paleos.

Not nearly enough neocons and GOP shills are willing to admit "their war has turned into an endless meat grinder." They are just like the liberals that can't admit to the massive failures of multiculturalism, racial integration, and open borders: Their ideological convictions make them impervious to reality.

I had to laugh at "populist" Bill O'Reilly on this. He said the US had done all it could but the Iraqis failed to live up to their side of the deal. Funny, I don't recall them getting a say in the invasion or asking for the opportunity to live up to the neocons' liberal idealism in the first place.

Bob Badour said at May 14, 2007 3:49 PM:

I supported the war right up until the day after the statue was pulled down. On that day when anarchy broke out and the US had too few troops to do anything but observe impotently, it was clear Bush and Rummie lost the war. I concluded on that day and every day since that Bush is an evil man. He wastes precious American lives and treasure.

Also, at that time, I assumed Bush (what with all of the information available from the CIA and various military intelligence organizations etc.) had better knowledge about the Iraqi WMD program than Greg Cochran did. Oh boy! Was I wrong or what?

On the bright side, since I was wrong about that, I might actually be wrong about God and an afterlife etc. If my atheism is wrong, I will enjoy every second of eternal damnation watching Bush burn in hell for his evil deeds.

Stephen said at May 14, 2007 5:47 PM:

Randall says it like its a bad thing.

Which is odd because those consanguineously marrying, low IQ, Muslim Arabs in the Middle East are winning against the invading non-consanguineously marrying, higher IQ, Christian westerners.

Stephen said at May 14, 2007 5:53 PM:

Matra said: I'd be surprised if Parapundit ever supported the war.

I think you're right - those who tended to be right were the ones who objectively analysed the evidence and realised that we only ever received the untested case for the prosecution. Though Randall forever stained his copybook because due to his pro-torture stance, which just goes to show that we all have our blind spots when it comes to rational analysis.

Randall Parker said at May 14, 2007 11:10 PM:

psmarc93,

I opposed the war since the rioting broke out in Baghdad. I should have opposed the war before the war. But Bush Administration, New York Times, and former US weapons inspectors such as David Kay, and other channels of pre-war disinformation about Iraqi WMDs had me fooled. I should have listened to Greg Cochran since his reasoning on why Iraq had no WMD program was sound.

The war caused me to adjust my analyses in terms of who I listen to as a credible source. The CIA is clearly an unimpressive organization that has declined from its glory days when it attracted talented people. Nowadays the smarties are in Silicon Valley, investment banking, and other areas of high achievement outside of government.

I never said we could establish a democracy in Iraq and argued before the war that for a list of reasons (including cousin marriage, Islam, etc) it had no chance.

As for why liberals specifically are to blame: They created the intellectual environment where anyone who says that some groups lack the capacity for free societies gets shouted down as racist. Paul Wolfowitz and many other neocons are basically liberal hawks. Wolfowitz is a firm believer in democracy as a universal cure-all. This belief stems from a very liberal view of human nature.

Neoconservatives are not conservatives. They've got liberals and conservatives confused about this.

Stephen,

Suppose someone knew the location of a nuclear bomb in a big city. Would you torture him to find out where it is or would you let a few million people die?

There's an argument to be made that the power to torture won't get used responsibly. Perhaps so. Maybe there's no way to rope around and limit the use of some power so that it only gets used in extreme circumstances The problem is that competence and a lot of correct knowledge is required to know when circustances really are extremly desperate with high stakes.

Stephen said at May 15, 2007 5:16 AM:

Randall said: Suppose someone knew the location of a nuclear bomb in a big city. Would you torture him to find out where it is or would you let a few million people die?

This would be the fanatical terrorist who would happily die for his cause but wouldn't dream of fibbing to a torturer about the address of the bomb??

m said at May 15, 2007 4:24 PM:

"Paul Wolfowitz and many other neocons are basically liberal hawks. Wolfowitz is a firm believer in democracy as a universal cure-all. This belief stems from a very liberal view of human nature."

Why do leftists hate neo-cons with such passion?

For the same reason Leninists hate Trotskyites,2 sides of the same coin and no one likes a heretic except another heretic.

A neo-con is a marxist-statist who has lost faith in Marxism but not Statism.

No-PC-wars said at May 15, 2007 6:13 PM:

Stephen the lefty sez:

"Randall said: Suppose someone knew the location of a nuclear bomb in a big city. Would you torture him to find out where it is or would you let a few million people die?

This would be the fanatical terrorist who would happily die for his cause but wouldn't dream of fibbing to a torturer about the address of the bomb??"

Dying is relatively easy for some people, witness hundreds suicides every day in the world for trivial reasons like romantic attention rejection.

Resisting an experience torturer armed, among others, with psycho meds, is virtually impossible.
However, time element is important. If there is enough time to check information and continue torture, insentive to lie is diminished.

No-PC-wars said at May 15, 2007 6:28 PM:

I happily supported the war untill a few months after fall of Baghdad. WMD issue was not that important to me. I did believed, as did every intelligence service in the world that Saddam had something cooking.
For me, it was time to punish Mussulman for 9/11 and bad behaviour in general. Saddam connection to 9/11 or lack of it, is totally irrelevant to me. Arguably Saddam was by far the best candidate for a show case.

I totally ignored Jorge Bush and neo-conmen wapors about freedom that all people desire, etc.
I thought that that cowboy pretending "tough" el-Presidente is giving lip service to women and girly-men part of US electorate. I had hard time to believe that Jorge actually meant what he said about Religion of Peace and "Freedom loving" Iragi moms and dads. The Moron-in Chief fooled me pretty good.

Two or three months of limp fisted approach to Iraqi occupation convinced me that nothing but yet another disaster will be gotten from that adventure of an idiot liberal president.

Have I been smarter to see Jorge for what he is, a liberal Nation-crusher, I would be calling my "representatives" urging troop withdraval in June 2003.

Randall Parker said at May 15, 2007 9:06 PM:

m,

I like this line:

A neo-con is a marxist-statist who has lost faith in Marxism but not Statism.

That might be true for some of them. But others in their ranks came along after Marxism was discredited. Still, they like big government even as they pose as conservatives. Far too many real conservatives have been fooled by the neocons into believing them kindred spirits.

John S Bolton said at May 16, 2007 1:21 AM:

Not only neocons, but our entire political and academic archipelago of clubs,
is committed to their feeling that a result like Kurdistan would be abject failure.
Exclusionism to them is dreadful failure, even if nothing else can keep a nation of tens of millions from
becoming an earthly paradise for terrorists.
From this one might conclude, as one is willing to revoke the assumption of good faith,
that such elites have got their hopes of power riding very much on
a primary impulse to juxtapose hostile and incompatible populations,
the better to become tyrants to deal with national emergencies,
brought on by the resulting conflicts.
Look to the bottom line in terms of the currency of power.
If nothing can dissuade the power-greedy of these familiar stripes,
from their impulse to keep at each other's throats, the predictably hostile groups,
and power flows from just that circumstance, and more efficiently than otherwise,
the conclusions may well be as above.

Randall Parker said at May 16, 2007 7:05 PM:

Stephen,

Natural selection is selecting for dumb cousin-marrying Muslims.


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