Jay Reding.com

Signs Of Progress

Mohammed Fadhil notes that many Baghdadis are voting with their feetin terms of the success of the ongoing battle to pacify the war-torn city. The stream of refugees out of the city has dropped and in some cases reversed as visible signs of US power continue to intimidate militants and US and Iraqi strikes continue to debilitate the enemy’s ability to strike.

The problem is that even a successful campaign can’t completely stop the violence in Baghdad. Such atrocities as the recent market bombing don’t signal that the “insurgency” is winning, just that such tactics are too easy to pull off. It takes no skill to load a car full of explosives and detonate it in a crowd — and we’re going to see things like that happening for quite a while.

What we can see is a sharp decrease in attacks in Baghdad and a general sense among the population that things are indeed getting better.

We should have been doing this earlier, but late is better than never. We’re taking the right steps to get Iraq under control, but it’s a race against time as the political will back home continues to erode. The lesson of this war may well be that the supreme bravery of our soldiers is no match for the weakness of our national character — and that is something that should be of concern to this country even after this war has become history.

4 responses to “Signs Of Progress”

  1. Mark says:

    So basically, Baghdad’s getting more manageable every day as the attrition rate hits unprecedented numbers? Yep….that’s conservative logic, all right.

  2. Jay Reding says:

    So basically, Baghdad’s getting more manageable every day as the attrition rate hits unprecedented numbers? Yep….that’s conservative logic, all right.

    Try canning the snark and using your brain.

    For one, Mohammed Fadhil actually lives in Baghdad. Secondly, the number of attacks have decreased in Baghdad by 80% since the beginning of the operations there.

    The “attrition rate” isn’t a meaningful measure because it doesn’t take much skill, planning, or all that many resources to do a mass-casualty attack on undefended civilian targets. You can have an “insurgency” that is truly dying but still have it be able to pull off attacks like what we’re seeing. All it takes are munitions (which are plentiful), a car, and a detonator.

    Again, people are returning to Baghdad after leaving. Either all those people are complete idiots, or something has changed that motivated them to do so. And one starts listening to what’s going on in Baghdad rather than let other think for them, it’s pretty clear that the surge is having at least a short-term effect.

  3. Wanderer says:

    Wow, you were so accurate back in 2002! I’m surprised that anyone would ever doubt your insight or brilliance.

  4. joe says:

    Well, if the insurgency is on its last legs…

    Seriously, how many times are you going to have to eat crow before you learn the difference between a short-term tactical achievement and the strategic victory?

    BTW, if you don’t like our national character, you should leave. The outbursts of anti-Americanism from the right sound an awful lot like a death rattle.