Monday, March 28, 2005

Pentagon begins to see Iraq momentum shift

If you rely on the MSM, you would have no idea that any progress is being made in Iraq. Along comes this article in the Washington Times with a little bit of good news from Iraq. The article, by Rowan Scarborough lloks at what some at the Pentagon are seeing as positive signs in Iraq.

"Military officials and analysts say the clearing out of enemy-infested Fallujah in November, the Jan. 30 elections and the increasing willingness of Iraqis to fight and die for a democratic country are contributing to the momentum.

"This is still a tough fight. We don't want anyone to think that it is not," said retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney, a military analyst who strongly supports Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. "But the momentum is in our direction." "
The Iraqi security forces are rising to the occassion as evidenced by their recent assaults on camps set up by the terrorists. These are not insurgents as the MSM loves to call them. Insurgents do not specifically target civillians. Terrorists and criminals go after civillians.
" A Pentagon official said the more that intelligence agencies analyze the insurgency, the clearer it becomes that a large part is criminal, not nationalistic.

Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein released tens of thousands of hardened criminals, including murderers, before the March 2003 invasion, meaning that as the ex-convicts are recaptured, insurgent leaders might have an increasingly smaller pool from which to recruit attackers.

"We have always realized there was a criminal element in the insurgency that wasn't driven by devotion to Saddam. The numbers may be higher than we first estimated," the official said."
More evidence that the Iraqi security forces are begining to hurt these bastards is the shift in attacks from American forces to Iraqi forces.
"An analysis by Reuters shows that U.S. combat deaths in March so far have averaged barely one per day, the lowest figure since February 2004. All told, 1,520 U.S. personnel have died in Iraq, including 1,164 killed in action.

"They're clearly going after Iraqi security forces more," Army Gen. George Casey, the top commander in Iraq, said earlier this month. "That's kind of a steady thing. And the attacks against coalition actually have dropped off." "
Even with the increased attacks and deaths, Iraqis are fighting back and appear determined to defend their new found freedoms.
"On Thursday, 11 Iraqi policemen were killed by a single suicide bomber, most likely a terrorist in the employ of Jordanian-born Abu Musab Zarqawi.

But Iraqis continue to sign up. After an even bloodier attack in January against Iraqis in line to apply for police jobs, a still-longer line formed the next day at the same spot, said a U.S. Army officer in Iraq.

And last week, merchants and residents on one of Baghdad's main streets joined the fight by using their own guns to kill three terrorists, who were firing on passers-by. "
In conclusion, Scarborough notes this:

"Lt. Col. James Hutton, Gen. Chiarelli's spokesman, said another promising development is the proliferation of Iraqi newspapers and radio and TV stations that avoid the anti-U.S. propaganda viewed on Al Jazeera.

"The Iraqi media is really thirsty for facts out on the street," said Col. Hutton, who made it a point to offer a weekly briefing to the Iraqi press that sometimes featured Gen. Chiarelli. "They want to expose corruption."

Gen. Chiarelli is also touting the carrot and stick. Attacks in the Shi'ite Baghdad slum Sadr City fell to nearly zero after Army units crushed insurgents and then quickly put hundreds of dwellers to work building basic comforts of home: water, sewer and electric service. "

All in all this psoitive news from Iraq is most welcome. Those who said that democracy could not flower in the deserts of Iraq are begining to be proven wrong. - Sailor

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