Meta-Blog

SEARCH QandO

Email:
Jon Henke
Bruce "McQ" McQuain
Dale Franks
Bryan Pick
Billy Hollis
Lance Paddock
MichaelW

BLOGROLL QandO

 
 
Recent Posts
The Ayers Resurrection Tour
Special Friends Get Special Breaks
One Hour
The Hope and Change Express - stalled in the slow lane
Michael Steele New RNC Chairman
Things that make you go "hmmmm"...
Oh yeah, that "rule of law" thing ...
Putting Dollar Signs in Front Of The AGW Hoax
Moving toward a 60 vote majority?
Do As I Say ....
 
 
QandO Newsroom

Newsroom Home Page

US News

US National News
Politics
Business
Science
Technology
Health
Entertainment
Sports
Opinion/Editorial

International News

Top World New
Iraq News
Mideast Conflict

Blogging

Blogpulse Daily Highlights
Daypop Top 40 Links

Regional

Regional News

Publications

News Publications

 
Bing West reports on Iraq
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, March 03, 2007

Good, honest, tough, no holds barred in-depth look at Iraq by a guy who I think does a terrific job. It's a good news/bad news report, but then that's the nature of any conflict. Bing West gives you an overview and then his specific thoughts on specific problems and areas/issues.

A few things in the report caught my eye. One is Al Anbar where we're essentially fighting al Qaeda:
In Anbar about 60% of the tribes are tilting toward the Marines and fighting the al-Qaeda types. Police ranks are swelling with tribal members. Anbar is improving, but how the Sunni tribes will work with the Iraqi Army, let alone the central government, is moot.

Prognosis for the next six months: Progress but no breakthroughs. The central government has to woo the sheiks and offer terms, figure out how police chiefs and Iraqi army commanders share power in the cities, and crack down on the insurgents captured in Anbar (put them away for life). Jails in Anbar are filling up, and the central government is not stepping up.
Our Marines are swinging the tide over to our favor, but the Iraqi government must, as West says, step up. None of this works unless that happens. But you have to be proud of the Marines. They invented the word 'grit' and proudly display it every day.

As mentioned, West has some specific suggestions and this one was interesting:
“Catch and release” swells the ranks of the opposition. Every battalion I spoke with was convinced the “rules of law” for arrest, imprisonment and release favor the insurgent. The Iraqi judiciary system cannot be straightened out for another five years. At higher levels, this is disputed. I remain on the side of the battalions. We must lock up tens of thousands until the violence subsides.
Essentially his point is "catch and release" is a great recruiting tool for the bad guys. Catch and keep is how it should be done for a number of reasons. Grab them, put them in prison until the violence subsides. That's reason number one. Then gradually, with a good screening process, either release them or put them on trial. But at this point the priority there has to be to take bad guys, or suspected bad guys, off the street and keep them off the street.

Which brought another point of his into focus:
Improving metrics for a police war. In essence, Iraq is now a police war. Yet our briefings, our metrics and our frame of reference – how we organize, analyze and solve problems – are military. Our basic tool to combat this insurgency and sectarian war is the patrol, too often mounted. In contrast, a police station – the equivalent of our Combat Outpost – is divided into patrolmen and detectives (of which we are woefully short because we have not thought in those terms.)

It would be interesting to invite a few senior cops from the States to visit, say, Ramadi and three districts in Baghdad. Then ask them to present how they would organize their daily brief – what metrics they would demand from their police subordinates and what conops they would put in place.
He has a point. Somewhere along the line this must transition into a police action vs. a military action. How and when does that transition take place and what are the metrics and frame of reference for that kind of action? I like his final paragraph. It's a good idea and would help in the development of those metrics and that frame of reference, allowing the transition to be planned and executed efficiently.

Anyway, read the whole thing. It's a different look at things you'll never see mentioned, much less considered in any depth in the MSM.
 
TrackBacks
Return to Main Blog Page
 
 

Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
We must lock up tens of thousands until the violence subsides.
That is a good idea, to repress the violence they need a credible tool.
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
We have not only already failed in Iraq, but I don’t think people realize the scope and extent of this failure. I think the Bush Administration is starting to realize this (hence the opening to Iran and Syria, a deal with North Korea, and a shift in policy — they want to script a way to ’declare victory and leave’ before 2008’s elections) but the real cost of this dramatic and severe foreign policy fiasco (in both Afghanistan and Iraq) will become apparent to the public in coming years. (I blogged more about this in my blog today, March 5th).
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
Hey Scott, send your foreign policy concerns to Europe, because Afghanistan is officially a NATO problem (as you like to say, failure) too. D*mn those Europeans and their imperialist plans.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Hey Scott, send your foreign policy concerns to Europe, because Afghanistan is officially a NATO problem (as you like to say, failure) too. D*mn those Europeans and their imperialist plans.
The Europeans don’t have the military strength to be imperialist any more, and many are refusing to allow their troops deployed in dangerous areas of Afghanistan. I doubt the US will get much help from Europe there. Of course, if we hadn’t decided on a big government social engineering program in Iraq, there would have been ample resources to avoid the current disaster.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm

 
Add Your Comment
  NOTICE: While we don't wish to censor your thoughts, we do blacklist certain terms of profanity or obscenity. This is not to muzzle you, but to ensure that the blog remains work-safe for our readers. If you wish to use profanity, simply insert asterisks (*) where the vowels usually go. Your meaning will still be clear, but our readers will be able to view the blog without worrying that content monitoring will get them in trouble when reading it.
Comments for this entry are closed.
Name:
Email:
URL:
HTML Tools:
Bold Italic Blockquote Hyperlink
Comment:
   
 
Vicious Capitalism

Divider

Buy Dale's Book!
Slackernomics by Dale Franks

Divider

Divider