Problems With The Surge

Ken AshfordIraqLeave a Comment

A disturbing video showing U.S soldiers watching as their Iraqi Army colleagues (they’re Shiites) brutally beat Sunni civilians to near-death, as U.S. soldiers hoop and holler in support at the "Rodney King" treatment the civilians receive.

Is this how to win hearts and minds?

UPDATE:  Carpetbagger shoots down five myths often spouted by war supporters:

The conservative case in support of the president’s escalation policy in Iraq appears to be premised on five central myths.

The first is the notion that opposition to escalation “undermines” the troops. This, on its face, is absurd — Bush is overstretching the military and sending thousands more soldiers into the middle of a civil war and critics are undermining the troops? The second is the notion that critics don’t have a plan of their own, when, in fact, we do. The third is the idea that Bush’s “new” plan deserves a chance to work, as if we haven’t already tried escalation before. The fourth is characterizing this as a left-right debate, despite the fact that there is ample opposition to the president’s policy in the GOP.

And number five is the idea that congressional opposition to the Bush strategy somehow “emboldens” the enemy. As the theory goes, our enemies are watching Washington, and if they see policy makers in public disagreement, they’ll continue to disrupt efforts to stabilize Iraq. It’s the favorite argument of the White House, John McCain, and Joe Lieberman.

And it’s wrong.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman on Sunday dismissed criticism a resolution opposing a troop buildup in Iraq would embolden the enemy and estimated perhaps only 20 senators believe President Bush “is headed in the right direction.”

“It’s not the American people or the U.S. Congress who are emboldening the enemy,” said Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., and White House hopeful in 2008. “It’s the failed policy of this president — going to war without a strategy, going to war prematurely.”

Thank you, Sen. Biden. Critics of the war aren’t emboldening the enemy; supporters of the war are.

To his credit, even Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), responding to the same argument from Joe Lieberman,
noted the obvious fact that Bush and his backers seem to be missing.

Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), who announced on Friday he will support Sen. John Warner’s (R-VA) anti-escalation resolution, pointed out the obvious: “I don’t see this enemy as needing any more emboldening or getting it from any resolution. They’re emboldened now.”