Saturday, September 30, 2006

US Troops Reaching Breaking Point in Iraq

By Mike Whitney

"The military is in a shambles and headed for a calamity.

America’s enemies should be thrilled that Don Rumsfeld is still overseeing all operations in Iraq. His incompetence is only matched by his astonishing inability to learn from his mistakes. It’s plain that America will not prevail with Rumsfeld in command.

Overextended, over-budgeted and mismanaged, the war in Iraq is foundering and the war on terror has been exposed as a fraud. (the NIE report)

How much worse can it get?

There is no good news from Iraq. It’s all bad. The magnitude of America’s defeat is becoming clearer and clearer with each passing day. Rumsfeld’s cheery propaganda campaign has fallen on hard times and will have no effect on the wars’ final outcome. The problem is the policy; it is untenable and will require a thorough overhaul.

We should expect to see dramatic changes following the elections. The Iraq Survey Group, steered by committee-chair and Bush family friend James Baker, will release their findings right after the November balloting. Judging by their guarded comments, big changes are ahead. Perhaps, the troops will move to the perimeter and let the Iraqis kill each other in a full-blown civil war.

Whatever transpires, the first phase of the Iraqi fiasco is nearly over. The Bush administration will be compelled to protect its interests while limiting the exposure of its troops. They may choose to minimize their activities to bombing raids and counter-insurgency operations, further destroying the threadbare fabric of Iraqi society.

Security is not important. Lives are not important. Only oil and the people it enriches are important."

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