Sunday, March 30, 2008
So Where Are We Going? It's a Surprise
Meanwhile, commenter byrningman make an interesting point at Obsidian Wings concerning the ongoing debate:
Of course the US was notified of the offensive beforehand - Americans drove them to Basra. The Iraqi government does not have the capability to mobilise and maintain in the field 20-30k fighters.
I'm not an expert by any stretch in terms of military logistics, but I was under the impression that this was one of the shortcomings of the Iraqi military. Does anyone (avedis? Jay Sigger? Phil Carter? Abu Mook?) know any better? Of course, there are local Badr elements engaged in the fight, and they didn't need transport. But what about the bulk of the "official" Iraqi forces?Commenter Matttbastard at American Footprints unearths this little nugget from The Independent:
British commanders were unaware of the operation until just before it began, although the Iraqi government’s national security adviser, Mowaffaq al-Rubaie, had spent half an hour discussing the plan with General David Petraeus, the US commander in Iraq, on Saturday evening. This was followed by Mr Maliki ordering two extra Iraqi infantry battalions to Basra that night. [emphasis his]
While perusing the Obsidian Wings site (which should be a daily ritual for all upstanding citizens), I also came across this gem from Publius:
Ah yes, it's either Maliki and ISCI, or else Iran will get its way (or al-Qaeda in control!). This statement is either gallingly ignorant, or remarkably dishonest. Either way, it would be extremely dangerous if John McCain takes the White House.
God help us if this isn't a lie (emphasis mine):Randy Scheunemann, the McCain campaign’s senior foreign
policy adviser [said] “Would you rather have the Maliki government in control, or the Iranian-backed special groups in control, or Al Qaeda in control?