Paul Craig Roberts / LewRockwell.com & Dahr Jamail and Ali Al-Fadhily / Inter Press Service – 2006-09-08 23:26:33
The War Is Lost
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts / LewRockwell.com
(September 6, 2006) — The Pentagon’s latest quarterly “progress” report to Congress on Iraq is a grim tale of a lost war. The Pentagon told Congress what Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and propaganda organs such as Fox “News” never tell the American public, namely:
• 1. The Sunni-based insurgency remains “potent and viable” despite spiraling Sunni-Shiite violence and beefed up US forces.
• 2. Since the last report three months ago, Iraqi casualties from “sectarian clashes” – the Pentagon’s euphemism for civil war – have soared by more than 50 percent.
• 3. From May when the new Iraqi government was established until August, the average number of weekly attacks increased sharply to 800.
• 4. Since the previous report, Iraqi daily casualties have jumped by 50% from 80 per day to 120 per day. Currently, Iraqis are dying at the rate of 43,800 per year from violence.
The Iraqi government cowers behind the fortified walls of the “Green Zone.” On August 31, the Kurds in the north took down the Iraqi flag and replaced it with the Kurdish one. Most of Iraq is ruled by Shiite and Sunni militias. Conflict between them has forced 160,000 Iraqis to flee their homes.
Who is going to tell Bush that the war is lost?
Is Rumsfeld going to tell him?
Is Cheney going to tell him?
How can they tell him after all the bravado and false reports?
This is a delusional administration. Confronted with three major polls showing that two-thirds of Americans oppose the Iraq war, Bush declared that he is staying the course, demonstrating yet again his disdain for common sense and the will of the American people.
If Bush and his neoconservative cabal were judged by their performance they would be ridden out of town on a rail. If a court of law judged their actions, they would walk the plank.
Everything this moronic regime promised about a “cakewalk” war and the ease of pacifying Iraq and turning it into an American puppet democracy has turned to ashes in President Bush’s mouth.
Having lost the Iraq war, the neoconservatives are determined to initiate war with Iran.
National security expert John Prados says, “The pattern of manipulation and misuse of intelligence that served the Bush administration in the drive to start a war with Iraq is being repeated today for its neighbor Iran.”
It is now established beyond a reasonable doubt that the neocons intentionally cooked up false intelligence in order to justify the invasion of Iraq, an invasion that has resulted in tens of thousands of Iraqi and American casualties, both dead and maimed.
Aggressive wars are themselves war crimes. To intentionally create a false basis for an aggressive war is an act of high treason.
Alarmed by the neoconservative drive to start a war with Iran before the US can extricate itself from the Iraq catastrophe, the CIA firmly declared that any Iranian nuclear weapon is a decade away. This undermines the neoconservatives’ urgency to attack Iran now.
Neoconservative fanatics tried to discredit the CIA with a recent report by the House Intelligence Committee Republican staff written by neoconservative Frederick Fleitz, a protégé of neocon heavyweight John Bolton, a person active in concocting the false case for war against Iraq. Fleitz alleges that the CIA is a know-nothing agency that lacks the ability to assess Iran’s ability to make nuclear weapons.
Neocons also dismiss the findings of the International Atomic Energy Agency, which issued a report on August 31 reaffirming that there is no tangible proof that Iran’s nuclear energy program has a military aspect.
The neoconservatives plan to plunge America into war with Iran before they can be held accountable for the lost war in Iraq.
This neoconservative conspiracy against the United States and Iran must be stopped. Neocons must be removed from the government that they have betrayed and held accountable for their crimes.
Before America can preach democracy to the world, we must first rescue American democracy from the Bush regime and re-establish government accountability to the people.
Dr. Roberts [send him mail] is Chairman of the Institute for Political Economy and Research Fellow at the Independent Institute. He is a former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, former contributing editor for National Review, and was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He is the co-author of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Centre for Research on Globalization.
© Copyright Paul Craig Roberts, LewRockwell.com, 2006
US Losing Control Fast
Dahr Jamail and Ali Al-Fadhily / Inter Press Service
RAMADI, Iraq (September 5, 2006) — The US military has lost control over the volatile al-Anbar province, Iraqi police and residents say.
The area to the west of Baghdad includes Fallujah, Ramadi and other towns that have seen the worst of military occupation, and the strongest resistance.
Despite massive military operations which destroyed most of Fallujah and much of cities like Haditha and al-Qa’im in Ramadi, real control of the city now seems to be in the hands of local resistance.
In losing control of this province, the US would have lost control over much of Iraq.
“We are talking about nearly a third of the area of Iraq,” Ahmed Salman, a historian from Fallujah told IPS. “Al-Anbar borders Jordan, Syria and Saudi Arabia, and the resistance there will never stop as long as there are American soldiers on the ground.”
Salman said the US military is working against itself. “Their actions ruin their goal because they use these huge, violent military operations which kill so many civilians, and make it impossible to calm down the people of al-Anbar.”
The resistance seems in control of the province now. “No government official can do anything without contacting the resistance first,” government official in Ramadi Abu Ghalib told IPS.
“Even the governor used to take their approval for everything. When he stopped doing so, they issued a death sentence against him, and now he cannot move without American protection.”
Recent weeks have brought countless attacks on US troops in Haditha, Ramadi, Fallujah and on the Baghdad-Amman highway. Several armoured vehicles have been destroyed, and dozens of US soldiers killed in the al-Anbar province, according to both Iraqi witnesses and the US Department of Defence.
Long stretches of the 550km Baghdad-Amman highway which crosses al-Anbar are now controlled by resistance groups. Other parts are targeted by highway looters.
“If we import any supplies for the US Army or Iraqi government, the fighters will take it from us and sell it in the local market,” trader Hayder al-Mussawi said. “And if we import for the local market, the robbers will take it.”
Eyewitnesses in Ramadi say many of the attacks are taking place within their city. They say that the US military recently asked citizens in al-Anbar to stop targeting them, and promised to withdraw to their bases in Haditha and Habaniyah (near Fallujah) soon, leaving the cities for Iraqi security forces to patrol.
“I do not think that is possible,” retired Iraqi police Brigadier-General Kahtan al-Dulaimi from Ramadi told IPS. “I believe no local unit could stand the severe resistance of al-Anbar, and it will be the last province to be handed over to Iraqi security forces.”
According to the group Iraq Coalition Casualty Count, 964 coalition soldiers have been killed in al-Anbar, more than in any other Iraqi province.. Baghdad is second, with 665 coalition deaths.
Residents of Ramadi told IPS that the US military has knocked down several buildings near the government centre in the city, the capital of the province.
In an apparent move to secure their offices, US Army and Marine engineers have started to level a half-kilometre stretch of low-rise buildings opposite the centre. Abandoned buildings in this area have been used repeatedly to launch attacks on the government complex.
“They are trying to create a separation area between the offices of the puppet government and the buildings the resistance are using to attack them,” a Ramadi resident said. “But now the Americans are making us all angry because they are destroying our city.”
US troops have acknowledged their own difficulties in doing this. “We’re used to taking down walls, doors and windows, but eight city blocks is something new to us,” Marine 1st Lt. Ben Klay, 24, said in the US Department of Defence newspaper Stars and Stripes.
In nearby Fallujah, residents are reporting daily clashes between Iraqi-US security forces and the resistance.
“The local police force which used to be out of the conflict are now being attacked,” said a resident who gave his name as Abu Mohammed. “Hundreds of local policemen have quit the force after seeing that they are considered a legitimate target by fighters..”
The US forces seem to have no clear policy in the face of the sustained resistance.
“The US Army seems so confused in handling the security situation in Anbar,” said historian Salman. “Attacks are conducted from al-Qa’im on the Syrian border to Abu Ghraib west of Baghdad, all the way through Haditha, Hit, Ramadi and Fallujah on a daily basis.”
He added: “A contributing factor to the instability of the province is the endless misery of the civilians who live with no services, no infrastructure, random shootings and so many wrongful detentions.”
According to the new Pentagon quarterly report on Measuring Security and Stability in Iraq, Iraqi casualties rose 51 percent in recent months. The report says Sunni-based insurgency is “potent and viable.”
The report says that in a period since the establishment of the new Iraqi government, between May 20 and Aug. 11 this year, the average number of weekly attacks rose to nearly 800, almost double the number of the attacks in early 2004.
Casualties among Iraqi civilians and security forces averaged nearly 120 a day during the period, up from 80 a day reported in the previous quarterly report. Two years ago they were averaging roughly 30 a day.
On Aug. 31 the Pentagon announced that it is increasing the number of US troops in Iraq to 140,000, which is 13,000 more than the number five weeks ago.
At least 65 US soldiers were killed in August, with 36 of the deaths reported in al-Anbar. That brought the total number killed to at least 2,642
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Centre for Research on Globalization. www.globalresearch.ca
© Copyright Dahr Jamail, Inter Press Service, 2006
Posted in accordance with Title 17, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.