Saturday, November 25, 2006

Al-Quds al-Arabi's US press summary

A reporter for Al-Quds al-Arabi summarizes two US-media stories that appeared on Thursday, relating to the military picture in Iraq, reading them as two signs of the approaching US withdrawal. The NY Times piece said the Iraqi resistance, "suspected of having ties to AlQaeda in Mesopotamia" has begun well-organized training operations near Baghdad that have resulted in their ability to mount sustained battles against US forces, as opposed to the traditional hit-and-run methods. The training camps appear to be well-supplied, and their graduates are fanning out to other regions around Baghdad, including Diyala province to the north. The Times quotes American commanders to the effect the battle-discipline they are seeing in these groups is something they haven't seen before.

The Al-Quds reporter continues: "With the development of these new methods by the Iraqi fighters, the American military has begun a return to the old methods that were used in Vietnam, flooding the Iraqi army with [American military] advisers, and attempting [to speed up] transfer of security operations to the local forces, the methods which ultimately led to their gradual withdrawal from Vietnam." The reporter then reports at length on the LA Times account of discussions in the US about military strategy. The gist of this is that in Vietnam Creighton Abrams is described as having overturned prior strategy in order to concentrate instead on Vietnamization of the war, and in the same way John Abizaid is described as promoting what this Al-Quds al-Arabi reporter describes as a "vietnamization of Iraq", which is his shorthand for the end-game strategy turning over direct military operations to the local forces.

And the Al-Quds reporter is careful to include the LA Times observations to the effect that some are still touting the new strategy as correct but "too little too late", the main flaw being insufficient patience on the part of the American people, an approach echoed in the recent Bush-Cheney statements to the effect victory is still possible.


Post a Comment

<< Home