Wednesday, January 10, 2007

After the surge

Tonight Bush will make a speech of what has basically been already leaked in detail. He will state that he plans to send over 20,000 additional soldiers into Iraq temporarily to pacify the violence specifically in Baghdad and the Al Anbar province. I have no doubt our soldiers will succeed in the short term, but for it to have a long term success, it relies on the Iraqis to maintain the peace after our soldiers leave. The enemy tends to feel the edges of the area of denial and continuously look for weaknesses like an octopus with a shelled meal. This operation will make them withdraw, but it will take an effective Iraqi security force to keep them at bay.

What the Iraqis could do themselves to improve the situation would be to expand peaceful areas of Iraq. The main one is the Kurdish north. If the Kurds can overcome their anti-Arab prejudice and the Sunnis and Shiites can overcome the reverse prejudice, northern Iraq could be used as a base to spread the boundary of peace south.

In the end, no matter what the US does, peace can only come from the Iraqis.

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