Today the Washington Post has a news story on, well, hope I suppose. When General Petraeus was here a few weeks ago he mentioned that he would have a decent idea of how things were going with the surge plan in September of this year.
Todays Post now points to September as being the be all end all in a lot of people’s minds. Kind of like a “benchmark” date for funding the troops. The Dems of course want us out and the Republicans don’t want to run on the issue. Two things.
1. The issue is going to be there next year whether Hillary or Romney or anyone else wants it to be otherwise. If we’re still there it’s an issue and if we’re not there it’s an issue. Iraq isn’t going to dry up and blow away.
2. Doesn’t it make you wonder what those running al-Qaeda are thinking right now? They’ve just read the Post article. September is it. If things aren’t turned around by September then no one in America is going to support staying there. (It isn’t clear what’s meant by “turned around” by the way.)
So as a good al-Qaedian do you:
a) hold back right now and make the evil Americans feel safe. Get them to go into the neighborhoods and make good friends and then pour it on in September when everyone will be watching? or do you
b) keep steady pressure on now so that there is no change at all by September?
I think my own evil mind would go for ‘a’ because of the spectacularness of it.
The good part, for us, being that the more Americans that are there in the neighborhoods and making folks feel safe the more the people of Iraq see that we are the good guys and don’t want to occupy anyone. So by September the big rush would only be a rush by al-Qaedians and not by the other folks there fighting. The other good part being that al-Qaeda is not good at winning hearts and minds. They can’t do it by killing school girls anyway. The longer al-Qaeda fights the locals the stronger the locals will stand up. You’re an Iraqi. You’ve got these Americans all over your homeland. And you’ve got these al-Qaedians all over your homeland. And now you’ve got these al-Qaedians threatening you. There is a line in the sand for most people.