That’s what a preliminary report is said to reveal when it’s published sometime this week.
Would you like to know why? Because why should the Iraqi government officials care about our goals? You have warring factions in the government and they’re going to protect what’s theirs…which is the normal: money, power and access. And they really can’t do that until, well, we leave. Simply put, they want us out, and it’s now pretty apparent by this massive foot dragging.
The “pivot point” for addressing the matter will no longer be Sept. 15, as initially envisioned, when a full report on Bush’s so-called “surge” plan is due, but instead will come this week when the interim mid-July assessment is released, the official said.
“The facts are not in question,” the official told The Associated Press, speaking on condition of anonymity because the draft is still under discussion. “The real question is how the White House proceeds with a post-surge strategy in light of the report.”
The report, required by law, is expected to be delivered to Capitol Hill by Thursday or Friday, as the Senate takes up a $649 billion defense policy bill and votes on a Democratic amendment ordering troop withdrawals to begin in 120 days.
Also being drafted are several Republican-backed proposals that would force a new course in Iraq, including one by Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Ben Nelson, D-Neb., that would require U.S. troops to abandon combat missions. Collins and Nelson say their binding amendment would order the U.S. mission to focus on training the Iraqi security forces, targeting al-Qaida members and protecting Iraq’s borders.
Perhaps the biggest concern to us should be the following…
The boost in troop levels in Iraq has increased the cost of war there and in Afghanistan to $12 billion a month, with the overall tally for Iraq alone nearing a half-trillion dollars, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, which provides research and analysis to lawmakers.
The figures call into question the Pentagon’s estimate that the increase in troop strength and intensifying pace of operations in Baghdad and Anbar province would cost $5.6 billion through the end of September.
I certainly don’t want to keep throwing money down a hole in hopes that the Iraqi government will suddenly get with it and make with the progress.
Enough is enough. Time to quit wasting our troops, money and time.