Friday, June 15, 2007

Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

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Decreased violence is a sign the surge is working.

Robert Kagan, March 11, 2007:

Leading journalists have been reporting for some time that the war was hopeless, a fiasco that could not be salvaged by more troops and a new counterinsurgency strategy. The conventional wisdom in December held that sending more troops was politically impossible after the antiwar tenor of the midterm elections. It was practically impossible because the extra troops didn't exist. Even if the troops did exist, they could not make a difference.

Four months later, the once insurmountable political opposition has been surmounted. The nonexistent troops are flowing into Iraq. And though it is still early and horrible acts of violence continue, there is substantial evidence that the new counterinsurgency strategy, backed by the infusion of new forces, is having a significant effect.
Increased violence is a sign the surge is working.

Tony Snow, June 14, 2007:
The Pentagon yesterday released its first quarterly report assessing President Bush’s escalation strategy, confirming that overall levels of violence in the country actually “increased throughout much of Iraq in recent months,” as attacks “shifted away from Baghdad and Anbar” and into “cities and provinces that had been relatively peaceful before the Bush administration’s troop buildup.”

Political reconciliation has almost entirely stalled, suicide bombings “more than doubled” from January to April, sectarian deaths have increased beyond pre-escalation levels, and U.S. troop deaths are spiking.

During his press briefing yesterday, White House spokesman Tony Snow said the increasing chaos was a positive sign. The new levels of attacks “fit a pattern that we see throughout the region,” he said, “which is that when you see things moving towards success, or when you see signs of success, that there are acts of violence.” ...

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