Friday, February 23, 2007

Hammer and Anvil?

American troop strength is rising in Afghanistan. That has been reported already.

And now British troop strength will rise in Afghanistan:

British media said 1,000 more soldiers would be sent to Afghanistan to join the more than 5,000 British troops already there.

Add to this that we have another carrier battlegroup heading to CENTCOM's area and that nearly six additional brigades of Army and Marine troops are going to Iraq.

And consider that I really believe our new strategy in Iraq is far more important than new troops.

And we've neutralized North Korea for a bit with the new agreement and planned talks that are required to implement it. Would North Korea attack us, South Korea, or Japan in support of Iran if Pyongyang thinks that will end the gravy train they think they've ordered?

So, are we building up strength to strike Iran and make sure we have sufficient forces to confront Iran in a conventional fight even as we maintain enough troops to continue the counter-insurgency fights in Afghanistan and Iraq?

If we are going to address Iran forcefully, we will need Britain. I think the British will help us. But to get Britain, we need Prime Minister Blair. The prime minister won't be here much longer than the summer.

Once again, I think I see signals of impending action. Of course, I've been wrong up to now every time concerning Iran. So my predictive powers aren't what I'd like them to be.

UPDATE: VP Cheney reminds us all that the European diplomatic initiative has failed spectacularly:

"We worked with the European community and the United Nations to put together a set of policies to persuade the Iranians to give up their aspirations and resolve the matter peacefully, and that is still our preference," Cheney said.

"But I've also made the point, and the president has made the point, that all options are on the table," he said.

When diplomacy fails, those other options become a lot more relevant.