Friday, November 30, 2007

Do Anti-War Democrats Root for Victory in Iraq?

I was chatting with an anti-war Democrat friend and was delighted that although very much anti-war, agreed that we all hope that the United States would prevail in Iraq, defeat Al Qaeda and Baathist insurgents and end up with a functioning democracy in Iraq.

I hope everyone saw the New York Times November 20, 2007 front page article “Baghdad’s Weary Start to Exhale as Security Improves” by Damien Cave and Alissa J. Rubin. It included:
■ “The security improvements in most neighborhoods are real. Days now pass without a car bomb, after a high of 44 in the city in February. The number of bodies appearing on Baghdad’s streets has plummeted to about 5 a day, from as many as 35 eight months ago, and suicide bombings across Iraq fell to 16 in October, half the number of last summer and down sharply from a recent peak of 59 in March”.

■ “As a result, for the first time in nearly two years, people are moving with freedom around much of this city. In more than 50 interviews across Baghdad, it became clear that while there were still no-go zones, more Iraqis now drive between Sunni and Shiite areas for work, shopping or school, a few even after dark. In the most stable neighborhoods of Baghdad, some secular women are also dressing as they wish. Wedding bands are playing in public again, and at a handful of once shuttered liquor stores customers now line up outside in a collective rebuke to religious vigilantes from the Shiite Mahdi Army.”

■ “Iraqis are clearly surprised and relieved to see commerce and movement finally increase, five months after an extra 30,000 American troops arrived in the country.”

Thanks to Major General David Petraeus’ “new Army” Counterinsurgency Field Manual tactics replacing the “old Army” tactics of Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez, the United States may create a functioning democracy in the Middle East and provide a devastating defeat for our Al Qaeda War on Terror enemy.


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