Towards A Good Samaritan World

Monday, February 05, 2007


McCain Blasts Iraq Resolution (Newsday).

Meanwhile, Iraqis are blaming the US for not getting the surge started fast enough:

A growing number of Iraqis are saying that the United States is to blame for creating conditions that led to the worst single suicide bombing in the war, which devastated a Shiite market in Baghdad on Saturday. They argued that the Americans had been slow in completing the vaunted new American security plan, making Shiite neighborhoods much more vulnerable to such horrific attacks.

A funeral was held in Najaf on Sunday for some of the victims. Many Shiites believe the Mahdi Army should be allowed to protect them.

The critics said the new plan, which the Americans have started to execute, had emasculated the Mahdi Army, the Shiite militia that is considered responsible for many attacks on Sunnis, but that many Shiites say had been the only effective deterrent against sectarian reprisal attacks in Baghdadfs Shiite neighborhoods. Even some Iraqi supporters of the plan, like Hoshyar Zebari, the foreign minister who is a Kurd, said delays in carrying it out had caused great disappointment.

In advance of the plan, which would flood Baghdad with thousands of new American and Iraqi troops, many Mahdi Army checkpoints were dismantled and its leaders were either in hiding or under arrest, which was one of the plan’s intended goals to reduce sectarian fighting. But with no immediate influx of new security forces to fill the void, Shiites say, Sunni militants and other anti-Shiite forces have been emboldened to plot the type of attack that obliterated the bustling Sadriya market on Saturday, killing at least 135 people and wounding more than 300 from a suicide driverfs truck bomb.

“A long time has passed since the plan was announced,” Basim Shareef, a Shiite member of Parliament, said Sunday. “But so far security has only deteriorated.”

American officials have said the new plan will take time, but new concerns emerged Sunday about the readiness of Iraqi military units that are supposed to work with the roughly 17,000 additional American soldiers who will be stationed in Baghdad under the plan, which President Bush announced last month.

It would be one thing to force a troop withdrawal by denying funding for the troops, as John Edwards is advocating. That would show courage, it would be defensible as policy since it would have a policy effect. A symbolic resolution, whose only practical effect can be to lower our morale and encourage butchers like those who struck the Sadriya market, just to pander to anti-war voters, is a disgrace.


  • Of course, most Dems recognize that defunding the troops that everyone's support to support is pretty much shooting yourself in the face. Even Edwards might balk at that particular tactic if it had a chance to pass.

    By Blogger Nato, at 10:29 AM  

  • That's the difference between McCain and the Dems.

    McCain knew that the surge was unpopular and that he took a major political risk by doing so. It may well cost him the White House.

    But Dems won't do what they think is right if they think it means "shooting themselves in the face" politically.

    By Blogger Nathanael, at 2:38 PM  

  • I'm not sure "quit beating your children or we'll start beating them too, but even harder," is a really great idea for anyone, whatever their convictions.

    By Blogger Nato, at 6:52 PM  

  • What? I don't get it.

    By Blogger Nathanael, at 6:27 AM  

  • Viewed on a "for the troops" perspective, the Dems want to be for "bringing the boys home" because the PotUS has, presumably, misused/been irresponsible regarding/abused the military. But if the attempt to "help" the military is through defunding brinksmanship, that's not necessarily helpful unless it actually forces Bush to cancel military operations. He is in no way required to do so, however, so if he goes ahead with said operations but with troops having reduced resources, who is to blame?

    By Blogger Nato, at 8:58 AM  

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