Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Monday, November 07, 2005

The news from Iraq is pretty darn good

There's been a bit of an information battle recently, with the MSM bound and determined to point out every fallen soldier, the blogosphere carefully pointing out that these lives were not lost in vain, that Democracy is moving forward in Iraq, and that the infrastructure is steadily being rebuilt. What I don't often find are military analyses -- that is, articles that explain in laymen's terms why the military situation is pretty darn good now, and way better than it was in 2004. Some of that void is filled, however, with this Mackubin Thomas Owens article. After detailing the referendum, and reminding us of Al Qaeda's scary over-arching goals, Owens gets down to the real business of his post:

But some of the best news from Iraq is obscured by the propensity of the press to focus completely on American casualties. The problem with such a focus is that it ignores any broader strategic context. What do these casualties signify? What are the trends? To begin with, the military situation is much better today than it was only a year and a half ago. As I observed in my review of Bing West's book about Fallujah, No True Glory ("Boots on the Ground," NR, Oct. 24), it appeared likely in the spring of 2004 that the Coalition was about to confront the "perfect storm" of a unified Sunni-Shiite "national front." There could have been a simultaneous uprising of Sunni insurgents in al-Anbar province west of Baghdad and Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi army in the south, and Fallujah could have emerged as a national symbol of resistance. Even though they were on the verge of defeating the insurgents, the Marines were ordered to stop while Sadr was crushed. By the time the Marines went back on the offensive in November 2004, Fallujah had become a symbol of a different sort — a slaughterhouse where Sunni terrorists, under the direction of al-Zarqawi, turned the city into a large torture chamber in which they killed ordinary Iraqis and from which they dispatched suicide bombers to other cities.
There's more, lots more, and you'll be making yourself happy today if you read it.