Monday, January 08, 2007

SURGE-ury in Iraq? Lord, help us!

Then there's Silvestre Reyes, Speaker Pelosi's choice to chair the House Intelligence Committee, who didn't know that al Qaeda was a Sunni organization.

H/T Sullivan
(Question: How come they call it "Intelligence"?)

One more from the same source...

Joe Biden: "I have reached the tentative conclusion that a significant portion of this administration, maybe even including the vice president, believes Iraq is lost. They have no answer to deal with how badly they have screwed it up. I am not being facetious now. Therefore, the best thing to do is keep it from totally collapsing on your watch and hand it off to the next guy -- literally, not figuratively."

Sometimes I wanna stop reading Sullivan, but he comes up with too much good stuff.

I think Biden's wrong, by the way. Pejman says the new military man in charge, David Petraeus, has all the qualities to move things in the right direction. Go read all he has to say. It made me feel a little bit better.

...he is a warrior-scholar in the very best sense of the term. And he could be just the commander who helps jumpstart the reconstruction effort in Iraq so as to bring about long-term stability and security, and eventually, a political system that values pluralism and transparency.

The question, of course, is whether he will have the chance. After spending so much time demanding the presence of more troops in Iraq, the critics of the war are now criticizing the idea of sending more troops to Iraq. Never mind that Iraq is not yet stabilized. Never mind that the Iraqis don't want us to go yet. Never mind that Petraeus's counterinsurgency tactics have not yet been put to the test. And never mind that a precipitous withdrawal from Iraq will only allow the terrorists and insurgents already in the country to fill the vacuum and turn Iraq into a base of operations from which further terror can be inflicted outwards.

I hope that David Petraeus has the same superhuman skills at persuading Congressional skeptics to give him time and space to carry out his goals that he showed in persuading his doctors to send him home early. Our national security goals in Iraq may depend on him being able to carry such an argument off.

My hope is that what happens next will not be a case of too little, too late. A quagmire years in the making cannot be cleaned up in a matter of months.

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