February 25, 2006

The War On Reality Continues

CNN issued this hysteric report late Friday:

The only Iraqi battalion capable of fighting without U.S. support has been downgraded to a level requiring them to fight with American troops backing them up, the Pentagon said Friday.

The battalion, made up of 700 to 800 Iraqi Army soldiers, has repeatedly been offered by the U.S. as an example of the growing independence of the Iraqi military.

The competence of the Iraqi military has been cited as a key factor in when U.S. troops will be able to return home.

Not surprisingly, the lefty blogs were ready with their vast suppository of knowledge about military operations. You can read what they have to excrete via memeorandum.

A representative sample is provided by Daily Kos diarist Susan G:

So much for fearless leader's repeated recounting of how great that training of Iraqi forces is going...

Funny, just last month, Bush said, "Today, 125 combat battalions are fighting the enemy, and 50 of those are in the lead. That's progress."

What he forgot to tell us in January was that only one of those battalions was capable of fighting without U.S. support.

And as of today, there are zero.

Somehow I don't think our troops will be coming home for Christmas ... even Christmas 2008.

Of course you don't sweetheart. You never miss a chance to try to lose, do you?

What Susan G. and the rest of the omni-impotent left either isn't bright enough to know (or honest enough to admit) is that this unit is still afield, still fighting terrorists, and still winning even while undergoing what appears to be a major shift.

CNN provides a hint as to the level of transition:

Though officials would not cite a specific reason for downgrading the unit, its readiness level has dropped in the wake of a new commander and numerous changes in the combat and support units, officials said.

It is not uncommon in our own military for units to be temporarily downgraded when similar changes in force structure, support, and command are made. In many instances, a recalibration of a unit to this level will not even occur in the field, and so the fact that they had enough faith in the ability of the unit to keep it deployed while undergoing such a transition speaks to its strength and professionalism, not to any real or lasting weaknesses.

Buried far down in the CNN article is this bit of information that you won't find liberal blogs discussing:

According to the congressionally mandated Iraq security report released Friday, there are 53 Iraqi battalions at level two status, up from 36 in October. There are 45 battalions at level three, according to the report.

17 Iraqi battalions went up a readiness level, and the media focuses on the top Iraqi unit's ability to affect a battlefield reorganization as if it represents failure instead of a high level of confidence in their abilities.

I wish the news media could display a level of competence on par with the Iraqi military, but of course, that would be hoping for far too much.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at February 25, 2006 11:01 AM | TrackBack

Didn't various media outlets try to pull this little trick several months ago? What do they do, cycle through various themes and hammer them until they die down, then switch back later when they presume people have forgotten what happened the last time?

Posted by: Patrick Chester at February 25, 2006 04:48 PM

C-Yank - you said "...vast suppository of knowledge about military operations". Heh heh. You may have meant "repository" but I think this is more apt.

I enjoy your POV.

Posted by: Dave in CO at February 25, 2006 06:04 PM

OK, so CNN is hysterical just for reporting this, even though they gave balanced information even you found palatable. Then you turn your attack to lefty bloggers.

Here's the big news, Yankee: the Iraqi army is nowhere near ready to fight on its own, which says something about our troop return time if we are to do this thing right. Pace says the institutions just don't exist yet for them to support themselves in the field. And they probably won't for some time.

I'd say you're the one acting hysterical, since you seem to think there's an organized campaign to disinfom all around you.

Posted by: RonB at February 25, 2006 06:07 PM


No, I think we generally attribute this kind of thing to unorganized stupidity coupled with lefty wishful thinking. After all, the press votes about 80/20 Dem.

For them, reporting good news is unf0rgivable warmongering jingoism. If you do it, all the other reporters pee in your coffee.

17 battalions is probably about 10,000 more troops, now able to fight reliably with only logistical and air support. I'm sure that's more level 2 troops than any other country besides the UK is providing. You would think that's good news.

Posted by: TallDave at February 25, 2006 07:11 PM

I have two questions:

1. Is the ranking influenced by the eqipment they have?

2. How does a first rank Iraqi battalion compare with other fighting forces?

Posted by: Roy Lofquist at February 25, 2006 08:10 PM


I think you also need to look at the fact that it has been a remarkably short time to rebuild a military organization from the ground up, train over 100 batallions, and have them actively fighting in combat - effectively.

The Iraqis are doing very, very, very well and no one on the left wants to do anything but nit-pick. They're dishonest in their approach from start to finish and I think you know that, deep down.


Posted by: Orion at February 25, 2006 09:11 PM

But all of you don't get it. Ron wants us to cut and run. Instead of seeing the progress that has been made in such a short time - he sees that it isn't fast enough for him. Too bad! Let's call a WAAAAAHHHHHMBULANCE for him. Maybe Rob is from the DFL in Minnesota - you know the demoncratic party in that state that is trying to get ads removed from the airwaves because they show that there has been progress in Iraq....

Posted by: Specter at February 25, 2006 10:49 PM

I love this site, is the only one that agree with my point of view. America is winning in Iraq, 99% of the Iraqis love the American occipation, they all want to visit Disneyland and work in our field harvesting our produce for less than minimal wages. Thousand of Iraqis volunteer to serve in the Army because they love their country and what better show of patriotism than to collaborate with the occupying forces? I bet if Mexico invades USA all of the people in this site will run to the recruitment office to be part of the new Ejercito de ocupacion.

Posted by: CrazyHorse at February 26, 2006 10:51 AM

CrazyHorse: Oh wow, that strawman again.

Yep, because you know Saddam's Iraq was exactly like the USA's current political landscape so if Mexico invaded the USA the situation would be exactly like it is in Iraq.

Are you that foolish, or are you just hoping the people reading your screeds are?

Posted by: Patrick Chester at February 26, 2006 03:51 PM

Is the glass half empty or is it half full? It all depends on your point of view. If you are part of the hate Bush and hate America crowd, all you can see is doom and gloom. For instance, they are still complaining about the economy even though it is setting growth records. Don't expect any honest perspective from people who have begun to believe their own lies and propaganda.

Posted by: bindare4u at February 26, 2006 10:34 PM

I have to say I'm not sure if the glass is half empty or half full and I love America, but Bush I could do without. As far as the economy goes I may believe that there is job growth but I don't believe that those jobs are as high paying or with as good of benefits as the one's that were lost. A person making 16 to 27 dollars an hour isn't going to be able to make it on Burger King wages. Everyone has their own reality but then there are some things that you just can't help but see as they hit you in the face. America has a number of problems that we as a nation have to face and deal with before it's too late. The first of many is securing our ports, borders, and transportation systems. No I'm not just talking about a company from Dubai buying out a British company to run our ports, more to my surprise is that a Chinese and Russian company are already running some west coast ports. I guess I wasn't in class the day they told us that foreign companies were allowed to come in and operate in areas that could be sensitive to attack. But then the fact that our borders are so open it really doesn't matter that much anyway. What I am talking about is that we need to address making sure that every American has health insurance, that every American has the opportunity to have affordable housing, and the one's that can't afford it on their own get help for some type of housing and I am not talking about just giving it to them but maybe some type of workfare program so that they can feel like productive citizens. We need to make child care available to those that need it so that they can work and make ends meet without having to worry about their kids. We need to get a true fix on social security. We need to change the way that companies are trying to get out of commitments for pensions that people have already earned. And last but not least we need to make changes in Washington and our state governments, it seems now that whatever President Bush wants he gets from both the republican and democratic parties. The deal with the east coast ports is the first time in a long time that I have seen both sides agree and fight the President on anything. Last of all I really hope that the Democrats don't let Hillary run for president because she is scary!

Posted by: Timothy Stephenson at February 27, 2006 04:47 AM

Specter; stop with the cut and run talk, it's getting old.Is there really a serious thinker out there who thinks this war is going well? I mean give me a break. The country is damm near in the middle of a civil war and you morons are still drinking the neo-con KOOL AID.

Let's get out of that hell hole, and leave those miserable people to do what they want with their country.(Pat Buchanan was right) Because even when they vote on a government, I guarantee you it won't be a true democracy, but a theocracy, friendly to radical Islam and Iran. Those are the facts my friends, not spin.

Posted by: wayne's world at February 27, 2006 05:45 PM

Wayne's World:
You may discover over time that there are conflicts in that region that are older than Islam. Many Iraqi Shiites look at Iran with fear and distrust, because Iraqis are Arabs (mostly) and Iranians are not.
Even though Baathists and Kurds both practice the Sunni faith, Saddam still waged war on Kurdistan (am I allowed to call it that?) for many years.
We in the West are not likely to understand these things without study. And by study, I mean something a little deeper than the "editorials with pictures" that masquerades as news in our world.

Posted by: uncleTom at March 1, 2006 11:02 AM

Sorry guys, but you are missing the big picture and I need only quote that lefty? Willian F. Buckley, Jr. in the Feb 28th Conservative Review "And the kernel here is the acknowledgment of defeat."

Posted by: Dave Staszak at March 1, 2006 12:40 PM

Who is "Willian F. Buckley, Jr.?" I know of a William F. Buckley, Jr., who is a foreign policy "realist" like Pat Buchanan, but he does not speak for many moderates or neo-conservatives.

It may surprise you, but there are many shades of conservatism. Buckley, while famous, doesn't speak for us all.

Posted by: Steve Marsh at March 1, 2006 12:47 PM

I think that Buckley's pronouncement could be the Cronkite Moment of this war. True he doesn't have the prime time weight that Uncle Walter had but still he is a towering intellecutual and very well respect for his conservative credentials. Let me ask you, who would it take to come out and say we lost and need to get out for you to come around? Buckley can't be brushed off as a Democrat like Rep. John P. Murtha (D-Pa) was. For me the only opinion I am still waiting on is Tom Friedmand's, who I would classify as being in your "moderate" category..

Posted by: Dave Staszak at March 1, 2006 01:33 PM

Before you have to ask, I meant Tom Friedman of the NY Times.

Posted by: Dave Staszak at March 1, 2006 01:55 PM

How is this for a dose of reality: "A first-ever survey of U.S. troops on the ground fighting a war overseas has revealed surprising findings, not the least of which is that an overwhelming majority of 72% of American troops in Iraq think the U.S. should exit the country within the next year." (Le Moyne College/Zogby)

I am a Vietnam Vet, a retired Lt. Colonel who has always believed that supporting the troops was a separate issue from supporting our leaders. Kipling said of WWI "And if they should ask why we died, tell them it is because our fathers lied". Some things never change.

Posted by: Dave Staszak at March 2, 2006 12:04 PM

Thanks for your service, Dave, but put a little effort in presenting the entire story, will you?

...29% of the respondents, serving in various branches of the armed forces, said the U.S. should leave Iraq “immediately,” while another 22% said they should leave in the next six months. Another 21% said troops should be out between six and 12 months, while 23% said they should stay “as long as they are needed.”

It was a loaded question, in a poll built for Zogby by one anti-war group, and funded by another one Zogby will not name.

Your fellow officers say this is poll is full of fertilizer, and I agree.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at March 2, 2006 12:17 PM