Monday, June 16, 2008

New Reality in Iraq

The three realities: First, Al Qaeda had been the important enemy we have been fighting in Iraq for the past 3 years. This should have been obvious but was not to the crowd that kept bleating about a 'civil war' in Iraq. CNN obtained and shared documents on Al Qaeda in Iraq's organization and activities. This treasure trove of information has:

  • Over 80 beheading videos and greusome documentation of Al Qaeda executions
  • Proof that Al Qaeda in Iraq was well-organized and was the force behind much of the violence in Iraq:

    "It reveals," Driscoll said, "first of all, a pretty robust command and control system, if you will. I was kind of surprised when I saw the degree of documentation for everything -- pay records, those kind of things -- and that [al Qaeda in Iraq] was obviously a well-established network."

Bill Roggio of the Long War Journal notes in the Weekly Standard that CNN Debunks AQI's Status as a Bit Player in the Insurgency: "Ware's piece refutes last summer's meme that al Qaeda was but a mere fraction of the insurgency in Iraq. ... Al Qaeda in Iraq may be down, but they are not out. A hasty withdrawal from Iraq could give al Qaeda the space it needs to reignite the violence the U.S. and Iraqi forces fought so hard to quell these past 18 months."

Second important new reality - We are winning. Not actually new information, but the success of the Surge plus the improved capability of the Iraqi security forces has led to overall military and security success that even the media is noticing:

"Signs are emerging that Iraq has reached a turning point. Violence is down, armed extremists are in disarray, government confidence is rising and sectarian communities are gearing up for a battle at the polls rather than slaughter in the streets. A new sense of confidence has emerged after recent Iraqi-run military operations against Sunni extremists, including al-Qaida, in the northern city of Mosul and against Shiite militiamen in Basra and Baghdad."

Al Sadr's forces were dealt blows in Basra, so he moved to disband his forces. Al Qaeda in Iraq has been nearly destroyed. Violence is down 75% in the past year.

Give Robert Gates some credit for this turnaround.

The third and most surprising reality is this acknowledgement - A Liberal admits: President Bush never lied. Years of "Bush lied" claims have gotten the liberal 'moonbats' in a froth, but they never were based on reality, just assuming the worst of motives with no evidence. Now, even the Democratic Senate reports that tried to 'prove' that Bush lied actually - as this Liberal columnist shares - show the opposite - he never intentionally misled anyone. Bush and various intelligence agencies, and the Senate Democrats, all thought Saddam Hussein had WMD stockpiles. "The administration simply got bad intelligence. Critics are wrong to assert deception."

President Bush in Great Britain this week was asked about Iraq and expressed 'no regrets' for deposing Saddam Hussein and the liberation of 50 million people:
Asked what he thinks his legacy might be, he says he is happy to await the verdict of history. But he cannot resist also offering his own, suggesting 'the liberation of 50 million people from the clutches of barbaric regimes is noteworthy, at a minimum'.

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