Thursday, March 22, 2007

If This Be Stalemate ...

The writer of this article "analyzes" Iraq after four years of war. Let me just focus on one part:

By crossing the four-year mark, we have psychologically gone beyond the time when either side can claim a clean knockout.

This has now become a war of attrition, grinding, with the bombers and the snipers and those bent on suicide pitted against bloodied but wiser U.S. forces. We cannot really talk about a very broad coalition of the willing any longer, either — determined to hold on and fight as long as necessary, or as long as possible.

Let's recap, shall we?

On March 19, 2003, when we crossed the berm into Iraq, a hostile Iraq under the Baathist Saddam and his evil spawn existed with 400,000 troops. The regime trained terrorists, oppressed and killed its people, dreamed of nuclear weapons, hoped to reconquer the Kurds, paid for suicide bombers, and sheltered terrorists.

Four years later, Saddam and his lovely sons are dead, the Kurds are fighting for a free Iraq, Iraqis have voted for a constitution and a government that is our friend, 320,000 Iraqi army and police are fighting with us as allies, and terrorists who flock to Iraq are being killed in large numbers--not training them. The Sunni Arabs are doing so badly that perhaps up to half have fled Iraq.

And with 320,000 police and soldiers (and add 145,000 security forces that protect infrastructure), today when four years ago there were none on our side, I think we can see why it is understandable that allies in calmer regions of Iraq can pull out without harming the war effort--Iraq is now a member of the coalition and has raised far more troops than allies have withdrawn.

In what meaningful sense is this a stalemate? This looks an awful lot like the Baathists getting their butts kicked. Are some people unwilling or incapable of recognizing an improvement?