Sunday, July 09, 2017

"Title" Confusion

Iraq has won a victory in Mosul.

I'm not going to quote this Reuters article. Just the title:

Iraqi Prime Minister congratulates armed forces for Mosul 'victory'

Why is the quote marks around the word victory?

Did the Iraqi forces fail to defeat the ISIL forces holding the city?

Did Iraqi forces endure so many casualties as to make the victory Pyrrhic?

Was Mosul destroyed in the process?

Did the people of Mosul die in massive numbers during the liberation?

The answer to all of those questions is "no," of course. Iraq achieved a victory.

The only way it makes any sense at all for the editors to add the scare quotes is if they have the completely bizarre notion that nothing counts as victory unless it--and it alone--resolves all future problems related to the problem of ISIL taking over large swathes of Iraqi territory in 2014.

Defeating ISIL in Mosul--yes, "victory"--solved one problem. Future problems await.

Work the problems, and welcome to the real world.

UPDATE: Victory:

Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend, commanding general of Operation Inherent Resolve, congratulated Iraqi Prime Minister al-Abadi and the Iraqi military on their "historic victory against a brutal and evil enemy."

"Make no mistake — this victory alone does not eliminate ISIS and there is still a tough fight ahead," Townsend said. "But the loss of one of its twin capitals and a jewel of their so-called caliphate is a decisive blow."

Work the problems.