General Petraeus gave his assessment of the “surge” yesterday. The speech seemed as if it were tailored by an expert, and Petraues was merely the dressmaker’s dummy.
“The change in the security situation in Anbar province has, of course, been particularly dramatic.
As this chart shows, monthly attack levels in Anbar have declined from some 1,350 in October 2006, to a bit over 200 in August of this year. This dramatic decrease reflects the significance of the local rejection of al Qaeda and the newfound willingness of local Anbaris to volunteer to serve in the Iraqi army and Iraqi police service.”
As part of the PR effort, Bush took a secret trip to Iraq last week, where he met with Sheikh Abdul Sattar Abu Risha, a key Sunni leader in the Anbar province. The conversation apparently yielded an allocation of US$70 million to Anbar’s budget, US$50 million in compensations for people whose homes were destroyed in the last four years of war. It was a wise diplomatic choice for Bush to meet with Abu Risha. The Sunni leader was once aligned with Hussein’s regime, but has since rejected Al Qaeda and joined the coalition. The man’s gravitas clearly yielded a victory for his province and for peace.
It all added up to what could be slated as “good news” for the surge, and a good report for the Iraq War.
Today, Abu Risha was killed by a roadside bomb, in the Western Anbar province. A huge blow to US efforts, and a potential harbinger of violence in the Anbar province.
This is further evidence of exactly who is in control in Iraq; it is not the US. They are in a civil war, and the US cannot stop it. We should stop trying to create peace in a country that wants war.