The story of of the war in Iraq is not going well, the actual war is going so well that for Americans it is largely over. The casualty rate from IEDs is now down to little more than twice what the rate would be if the same number of troops were being deployed in continuous live fire exercises. Non-combat transport accidents are now almost as significant a risk as getting attacked. The security situation in Baghdad is ‘worse’ only because the end game is now being played out - principally with the Sadr militia. What is remarkable is that most of the work is being done by the Iraqi army rather than U.S. forces.The story of the war is being written by al Reuters and the holy trinity of the Los Angeles and New York Times and the Washington Post. These are the lineal descendants of the same people who sat around the Hotel Caravelle in Saigon and were so pissed off at having the war actually come to them during Tet that they were determined to see Westmoreland pay for their spilled drinks and other inconveniences.

When the British won their counter-insurgency wars in Asia and Africa in the 1950s, no one in the London press celebrated. The victories in this war will be equally unheralded.

If anyone needs a political conspiracy theory for last night and today’s events and their likely follow-on, a better one would be that the Republicans have been devilish enough to take away women’s cosmetics and grooming aids. Talk about uniting the home front!

Ashton Dorkins replies:

I’d like to respond to your statement “The story of of the war in Iraq is not going well, the actual war is going so well that for Americans it is largely over.” While I think the first part of your claim has some merit, the second part is utterly preposterous. It seems the basis for your claim “the actual war is going so well ” is that US fatalities/casualties are declining.

The primary reason for this is because Iraq is mired in civil war. The target has shifted from the occupying force to enemy at home & this new reality makes the US military position untenable. No point getting bogged down in a civil war, forced to choose a side, might as well stay out of it. So yes,” the war for Americans is largely over.” But how many more Iraqi lives will be lost before the real war is over? How long will the country tear itself apart before a lasting peace is in place? And to what end? A country bitterly divided along sectarian lines?

Of course the media focus has been largely negative & many good stories failed to make the light of day. But death & destruction should be emphasized over a few feel good stories. Then hopefully the true costs of war will be considered by future generations before they decide to embark on such grand nation building adventures.

For a true picture of what’s going on in Iraq, I’d thoroughly recommend you read “Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq” by Thomas Ricks. Perhaps then will you grasp just how bad conditions are in Iraq & really understand why the war is largely over for Americans. If this is your idea of a war going well, I’d hate to see one not going well.





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