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What is Rummy doing?

Official caption: U.S. Secretary of State Donald Rumsfeld says goodbye to Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari after a meeting Wednesday July 27, 2005 in Baghdad, Iraq. Rumsfeld was visiting Iraq to meet with U.S. troops and the senior U.S. and Iraqi military personnel and local governmental officials. Iraq’s transitional prime minister called Wednesday for a speedy withdrawal of U.S. troops and the top U.S. commander said he believed a ‘fairly substantial’ pullout could begin next spring and summer. (AP Photo/ Joe Raedle, pool).

This inspires confidence:

The effort to build a reliable Iraq security force has been slowed by a number of problems. One that can be traced to the earliest days of the U.S. military occupation was the virtual disintegration of the Iraqi army that existed when American troops invaded in March 2003. Some say this was made worse by the decision of L. Paul Bremer, the U.S. civilian administrator of Iraq starting in May 2003, to formally disband the Iraqi security forces.

Another problem has been infiltration of the security forces by insurgents. In its report to Congress last week, the Pentagon acknowledged that this remains a problem and it still is unable to say just how much infiltration there is, despite efforts to improve vetting of recruits.

It’s all under control…

Then we have the U.S. take on it, via Reuters.

The United States hopes to sharply reduce its forces in Iraq by the middle of next year, its top commander on the ground said on Wednesday. The remarks by General George Casey appear to have been the first time since the insurgency worsened sharply in April that top Pentagon officials have suggested a timeline for withdrawal.

Casey’s comments came as al Qaeda in Iraq said it had killed two Algerian envoys kidnapped last week, according to an Internet statement, and coincided with a new poll showing most Americans now think the United States will lose the war in Iraq. At a briefing with visiting Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Casey said he expected troop cuts after elections due in coming months — a referendum on a new constitution in October and an election for a new leader in December.

“I do believe that if the political process continues to go positively, if the developments with the (Iraqi) security forces continue to go as it is going, I do believe we will still be able to make fairly substantial reductions after these elections — in the spring and summer of next year,” he said. Early this year Casey made a similar prediction, but U.S. officials have avoided suggesting a timetable since violence worsened sharply after the new government took power in April.

The Chimperor has no clothes, and the polls show it — thus the timing for these announcements of a drawdown, as if the insurgents are going to comply and stop bombing the hell out of the country. A USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll cited in the article shows:

* 32 percent of respondents believed the United States could not win the war in Iraq.
* Another 21 percent said it was possible the United States could win but they did not believe it would.
* Just 43 percent said they were confident of victory.
* 51 percent of Americans believe the government deliberately misled the public about the presence of banned weapons in Iraq.

Also, Michael at AmericaBlog rightfully points out that along with this bluster from Rummy and the Iraqi minister, there still aren’t enough appropriately trained Iraqis to secure the country, and the Pentagon knows this — yet the MSM keeps shoveling out the bullsh*t:

But what about this paragraph in the New York Times:

Mr. Rumsfeld also called on the Iraqi government to assume greater responsibility over time for the 15,000 detainees now in American custody in Iraq; to allocate enough money in future Iraqi budgets to field security forces that are capable of replacing many of the 22,000 foreign allied forces that plan to leave Iraq by year’s end; and to improve cooperation between the Iraqi defense and interior ministries to enhance the combat readiness of Iraq’s 170,000 military and paramilitary police forces.

Iraq does NOT have 170,000 forces. How can the NYT blithely repeat the figures of the Bush administration when we KNOW they are a lie? Iraq does not have 170,000 military and paramilitary police forces by any reasonable standard of measurement. As of a few weeks ago, this figure included about 2000 Iraqi troops capable of fighting on their own and some 9000 troops who can fight with US assistance.

That leaves about 160,000 troops THAT CAN’T FIGHT AT ALL. Scattered reports by the MSM also indicate that properly equipping them is proving nigh on impossible — can you really pretend to have 170,000 troops when even if they could fight they don’t have the weapons to do it with? How can the NYT justify repeating this lie without breaking it down? Even Bush felt compelled to make clear in his national address that not all were combat ready. “Not all” combat ready as in “virtually none.” Uh, not even close. Iraq is barely halfway to replacing the measly 22,000 troops fro other countries that will be leaving in five months. And at this rate it is years away from being able to replace our troops –unless we pull out and don’t worry about Iraq sinking into chaos.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding