This was suggested by, and created for, Dan Collins--in response to NYT Columnist Frank Rich's weekend op-ed "Tet Happened, And No One Cared", where Rich opined...
"For the majority of Americans who haven’t met any of the brave troops who’ve been cavalierly tossed into the quagmire, the war is out of sight and mind in a way Vietnam never was."and
"That’s why it’s no surprise that so few stopped to absorb the disastrous six-day battle of Basra that ended last week — a mini-Tet that belied the “success” of the surge."The Left is having a field day. Several 'journalists' are trumpeting the Basra operation as a failure, and Just Another Bush Disaster. Some leftist moonbats are celebrating as well, seeing as how they may again ratchet up their negativism for their own political ends; wishing for bad things to happen in Iraq so as to bolster their own sorry political agendas. It's a shame when the first things out of their mouths is cheering and jubilation rather than dismay at a 'setback'.
But, was Basra a setback? I introduce you to Protein Wisdom commenter Ric Locke, who has more experience in the field than Frank Rich has had blow up his nose...
Comment by Ric Locke on 4/6 @ 4:51 pm #At Talisman Gate (written by Nibras Kazimi, a "Visiting Scholar at the Hudson Institute in Washington DC. I also write a weekly column on the Middle East for the New York Sun, and a monthly column for the Prospect Magazine (UK)") we find that summary Ric promised, and a refutation of another NYT article by James Glanz (you know, the one the liberal defeatists-'setback' celebrators are clamoring about...)
For those who didn’t follow the earlier thread deep into the night, you should go and check out Talisman Gate for what looks to me like a fairly detailed, realistic, and nuanced look at the Basra operation. His description of the American reaction is very plausible — Maliki apparently decided he was President of Iraq, dammit, and didn’t need American permission to swat Mookie, and caught everybody from Petraeus and Crocker to the grunts in Humvees with their right hands busy. As I said last night, that’s the Army (and State Department) I know and love :-))
Here’s how I see it: about 550 policemen (around 50 of them officers) are up for disciplinary action across all of Iraq, not just Basra. As for the Iraqi Army, less than 250 are facing various forms of legal action or reprimands; I don’t have a reliable number for how many of those are officers though I’ve been led to believe that it is less than 20.Later, Nibras gives us this Good News...
Overall, we’re talking about a total of 800-900 across all of Iraq, and not just Basra as the New York Times tried to obliquely portray it. That’s 800-900 out of the estimated 700,000 soldiers and policemen who now serve in Iraq’s various security and military outfits. I’m no math wizard, but I think that’s about 0.12 percent. Speaking for myself, I can live with these numbers.
Moving on, I spoke to someone who spent some time hanging out with Maliki today. My source says that he’s never seen the Prime Minister in higher spirits. Maliki allegedly said that he didn’t imagine that the crime cartels in Basra would crumble so quickly and that the Mahdi Army would be so disorganized. Maliki was especially proud of the Iraqi operation to secure the oil terminals of Abu Floos yesterday.[emboldenings mine] You know, we certainly wouldn't mind seeing some of those revocations given to some of our own 'journalists' right here in the U.S of A.
Maliki also allegedly said that he’s considering a proposal to revoke the visas and work permits of about a dozen western journalists who have engaged in irresponsible and dangerous propaganda. Maliki is saying that this isn’t a question of press freedoms but rather it is a necessary measure to contain the anarchy of malicious rhetoric, especially during wartime.
Too bad the NYT and the WaPo are so blithely liberal; if they were truly centrist in their politics, we might see some of their own leftist fat bastards kicked to the curbs.
That would be Rich...