The President is grappling, not only with Democratic anti-War Congress people, but with a growing number of Republican anti-War Congress people. The latter, by defecting from Bush’s pro-War stance, show exceptionally poor timing, and may end up either humiliating themselves or, much worse, derailing a surge that is proving to be more successful than the MSM lets us know. Max Boot, writing at Contentions, the blog for Commentary Magazine, has word from an officer in the field listing a significant number of benefits from the surge, some of which I include below:
Here are some positive results of the surge strategy to date—I’m sure you’ve got the negatives down pat from all the media reports.
– Deaths caused by sectarian violence in Iraq are down 75 percent from January to June
– VBIED’s [vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices]/Suicide attacks cut in half from March to June; VBIED’s at lowest level since August 2006
– Casualties from VBIED’s cut in half from February to June
– ISF KIA [Iraqi Security Forces killed-in-action] at 2-3 times the level of Coalition KIA—Iraqis are fighting and dying for their country
– Tribes are rejecting Al Qaeda in Al Anbar, Salah Ad Din, Ninewa, Diyala
– AQI [Al Qaeda in Iraq] is on the defensive and slowly dying—BUT WE NEED TIME TO FINISH THE JOB or they will recover
The big negative, of course, is lack of political reconciliation at the national level, but this is a lagging indicator. Progress is being made at the local level, and I believe the national leaders will follow in due course once the trend is clear.