Tag Archives: Gen. Petraeus

Ignoring Gen. Grant

Time magazine once again proves why I was wise to stop subscribing to and reading it years ago.

Via Instapundit 

War about war

In a way, when you read the AP piece which Crittenden has posted, it merely reflects what Herbert Meyer calls the growing ascendency of "Perception Two: We’re Reaping What We Sowed," in regards to 9/11. I have to admit that President Bush, despite admirable attacks to dispose of the Taliban and Saddam, has failed to do the obvious: put the US on a war footing, impose some sort of draft, decapitate Iran and Syria and help the Israelis dismantle Hezbollah and Hamas. How Bush expects Gen. Petraeus to succeed in Iraq, without either closing their borders or hitting the insurgents’ suppliers in Iran and Syria, is beyond me. As for Petraeus, he admits, in the Army Field Manual 3-24 Counterinsurgency which he authored (excerpts available here in PDF), that insurgencies are rarely beaten and the only time the US has done it was in the Phillipines a hundred years ago. Moreover, he says wars against insurgencies take nine or ten years to win. Meyer sees little chance of that sort of committment, after more than four years in Iraq. Even Victor Davis Hanson, who has written that democracies rarely support wars of more than a few years, has come around to the view that we’ll retreat from Iraq. Then what? Meyer says we’ll need a bigger repeat of 9/11 to finally go all out. Sure looks that way.

The Wild West

Passionate reporting from Michael Yon–who is throwing in his lot with Gen. Petraeus–who says a big US offensive is underway in Iraq, one that is so far largely ignored back home. "It’s like the Wild West out there," one commenter quotes her infantryman brother who is moving in with the Stryker Brigade.

Usual Iraq confusion

If/when we leave Iraq in large numbers, the so-called chaos and civil war could be short-lived, indeed:

"…with U.S. troops gone, the Iraqi security forces will be inclined to wage war the traditional way. That means massive use of firepower against civilians in any neighborhood where the Sunni Arab terrorists show up, or are found. In Syria, the 1982 uprising by Islamic radicals was put down, in part, by the destruction of the town of Hamat, and the massacre of over 10,000 civilians there."

Meanwhile, confusion continues, with a British think-tank saying Iraq is near collapse. I suspect that Gen. Patraeus, who sees "stunning progress" in al Anbar province, obviously disagrees.

Finally, our Grant?

Victor Davis Hanson making predictions on the campaign in Iraq:

"If Gen. Petraeus fails he will be unfairly forgotten, but if he succeeds, and I think he will, he will be fairly canonized."