The President released his "Victory in Iraq
" strategy today, a 35 page document that spells out what must be done to secure victory, and remove ourselves from Iraq. I haven't had a chance to read the whole document, but when I do I'll probably comment again.
Here are some exerpts from the plan
PART I -- STRATEGIC OVERVIEW
"Our mission in Iraq is clear. We're hunting down the terrorists. We're helping Iraqis build a free nation that is an ally in the war on terror. We're advancing freedom in the broader Middle East. We are removing a source of violence and instability, and laying the foundation of peace for our children and grandchildren."
-President George W. Bush, June 28, 2003
Here are some of the goals, in a condensed format (from the Washington Post
)In the short term:
* An Iraq that is making steady progress in fighting terrorists and neutralizing the insurgency, meeting political milestones; building democratic institutions; standing up robust security forces to gather intelligence, destroy terrorist networks, and maintain security; and tackling key economic reforms to lay the foundation for a sound economy.In the medium term:
* An Iraq that is in the lead defeating terrorists and insurgents and providing its own security, with a constitutional, elected government in place, providing an inspiring example to reformers in the region, and well on its way to achieving its economic potential.In the longer term:
* An Iraq that has defeated the terrorists and neutralized the insurgency.
* An Iraq that is peaceful, united, stable, democratic, and secure, where Iraqis have the institutions and resources they need to govern themselves justly and provide security for their country.
* An Iraq that is a partner in the global war on terror and the fight against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, integrated into the international community, an engine for regional economic growth, and proving the fruits of democratic governance to the region.
Here's a link to the whole 35 page PDF file
He makes some good points, the goals can't be time defined but instead circumstance and condition based. For the novices, that's how you fight wars.
Failure can't be an option if we want trust in the Middle East, or other areas of the world where a country might be looking for help to build a democracy.
It's going to take time, wars are fast, building countries takes time.
My own thought, Iraq held it's first elections in less than 3 years, it took Germany and Japan 5 and 7 to hold theirs after WWII, it took the US about a dozen after we declared our independence. Why are we in such a rush to call this over? They are really ahead of most schedules if we look at history.
____________________________________Update, Democrats react to the plan.Nancy Pelosi
came out today after the President's speech and endorsed John Murtha's plan for Iraq, not the President, looking for a quick exit as opposed to a path for victory.
John Kerry, in his normal indecisive tone came out with 'the President didn't address the fact that the troops are part of the problem, and drawing them down has to be part of the answer'. John, read the document, because it actually acknowledges the fact that we need to remove troops, because Iraq needs to be independent, and not occupied, but not on a timetable.
Harry Reid of course said "Same tired rhetoric"Junkyard Blog
has more on Pelosi.
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