Regarding the political climate in Iraq, Grim over at Black Five has Democracy in Iraq up which deals directly with that.
- I want to bring your attention to something remarkable that General Bergner said in this week's roundtable with him (transcript here). The whole thing is worth reading, and touches on military operations, Iran, and numerous other topics. What I asked him about, however, was reconciliation.
- In March of 2003, Abu Musab al-Zargawi was holed up in his mountain terrorist training camp in Eastern Iraq. He had already been fighting Americans for quite some time. He had been wounded fighting in Afghanistan in 2002 but managed to escape to Baghdad, where he was treated and brought back to health in an Iraqi hospital. Once recuperated, he established a terrorist training camp along the Iranian frontier. He selected a mountain perch that would be easy to defend and would also provide a quick escape route into Iran. His men controlled a 300 square kilometer finger of land that protruded into Iran, just east of the ghost town of Halabja.
Amid all this talk of timetables for the War in Iraq, blurred as they are by a strange lemming-like compulsion to declare the "surge" strategy a failure almost before it actually began, one deadline looms larger with each passing day: It's time for a reckoning with the truth.
- WASHINGTON (AP) - One senator said U.S. troops are routing out al-Qaida in parts of Iraq. Another insisted President Bush's plan to increase troops has caused tactical momentum.
One even went so far on Wednesday as to say the argument could be made that U.S. troops are winning.
These are not Bush-backing GOP die-hards, but Democratic Sens. Dick Durbin, Bob Casey and Jack Reed. Even Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services committee, said progress was being made by soldiers.