The Dillard Doctrine

Urban Conservative Commentary on Politics & Life

What’s YOUR Strategy?

Just finished listening to a townhall meeting put on by Sen. Biden today. Four things were said about the Iraq War (yeah, I know…low number) that I have to take issue with:

Our troops deserve a better strategy (in Iraq). Glenn Nye (not the Science Guy), who’s running for Congress in VA’s 2nd District (against Thelma Drake)

From Sen. Biden:

It’s important to judge the Bush Administration and John McCain by their own standard.

It’s time to shift responsibility to the Iraqi people.

He also mentioned that now the Bush Administration was negotiating witht he Iraqi government the same sort of withdrawal plan that Obama had pressed for. He ended with the question, “Who has been right?”

My points of contention are these:

First off, if you are to judge the Bush Administration’s actions in Iraq “by their own standard,” that would lead you back to the benchmarks legislated by Congress in 2007, at the beginning of the surge. In September of 2007, GAO reported the Iraqi government had “met 3, partially met 4, and did not meet 11 of its 18 benchmarks.” They also said that,

Overall, key legislation has not been passed, violence remains high, and it is unclear whether the Iraqi government will spend $10 billion in reconstruction funds.

Well, fast forward to post-surge 2008. In July, the Washington Post reported that:

Iraq has met all but three of 18 original benchmarks set by Congress last year to measure security, political and economic progress, according to a report by the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.

The embassy judged that the only remaining shortfalls were the Baghdad government’s failure to enact and implement laws governing the oil industry and the disarmament of militia and insurgent groups, and continuing problems with the professionalism of the Iraqi police. All other goals — including preparations for upcoming elections, reform of de-Baathification and disarmament laws, progress on enacting and spending Iraq’s budget, and the capabilities of the Iraqi army — were rated “satisfactory.”

Now, call me crazy, but going from meeting 3 of your 18 goals to meeting 15 of them damn sure sounds positive. Maybe I’m wrong. But if that’s all the information I have to go on to pass judgement, I think the judgement would be favorable.

My second beef: Obama and Biden (as well as most dhimmicrats) seem to think that we should begin to shift responsibility for Iraq to the Iraqi people.

Read that sentence again. Maybe a third time, if necessary.

You probably missed it between the DNC, RNC, and Hurricane Gustav, but over the weekend, the guys and gals of Multinational Force-Iraq (MNF-I) handed over security of Anbar province to Iraqi Security Forces. Why is that important? Two reasons:

Anbar was the base of operations for al-Qaeda in Iraq…and also where the Awakening movement-locals turning against al-Qaeda-began. It was easily the most violent province in Iraq up until the surge; in fact, a good majority of surge forces were sent to quiet Anbar.

But that’s not even the most important reason. Anbar was the 11th of Iraq’s 18 provinces to be handed over to Iraqi control.

Eleven of eighteen. Meaning this has been done ten times before.

So when you tell me that we should begin to hand responsibility to the Iraqis, I’m compelled to call bullshit. Cause we already have been.

Which leads me to my last point.

It’s obvious that the surge and the counterinsurgency strategy put in place by GEN Petraeus in Iraq have been largely successful. Have they solved all of Iraq’s problems? No….but they were never designed to.

So, to all those who would suggest that we need a “new” strategy in Iraq…why, especially when our current one is working; when-even by the most liberal of standards-it has brought about a marked change in Iraq’s stability and security?

And, more importantly, what is the strategy you want to change to?




Written by Coby Dillard

September 4, 2008 at 1:30 pm

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