I talked to a DC-based Bushivek campaign worker on Friday morning and she said they are stunned at the number of people who are telling them they will not vote for Bush.
The Bush doctrine, such as it is, has failed. He’ll still win re-election because John Kerry combines the worst characteristics of Michael Dukakis and Bob Dole with a smarmy, Clintonian lack of principle, but he’s practically a lame duck even prior to his second term. JG, who is in Iraq, states:
There’s enough troops over here to take care of the insurgency. The main problem is the politicians. Post Abu Ghraib, the most important intelligence gathering asset has been hamstrung. Also, we’ve been at the brink of destroying Sadr and his militia at least a half dozen times, but politicians have intervened and Sadr escapes and rearms with Iranian hardware.
I actually have to explain that statement a little more. We’ve got enough troops to destroy any resistance over there. Our going into Najaf, Sadr City, Falujah – we kill these people by the score, literally hundreds and maybe lose one guy. When (if) we get intel ID’ing a bad guy, a squad is sufficient to take down the house and take him into custody.
What we don’t have enough troops for is patrolling the borders (where Syria and Iran are shipping in weapons by the ton, where half of these suicide bombers come from), patrolling ALL the streets, putting check points all over the place and searching suspicious vehicles. We’re trying to get the Iraqis to do that, but insurgents are whacking Iraqi Interim Gov’t ministers regularly and take out Iraqi Police by the dozen at recruiting/training stations. It doesn’t help that the Ministry of Interior doesn’t pay these guys except every now and then, half of them are unarmed, many are not in uniform (I’ve got pictures) – the training is cursory for both the Iraqi Police and Iraqi National guard…so half the time in a firefight they run away.
I don’t believe we have the political will to do what needs to be done over here – so we’ve already lost this war…and I think any other future war with a dedicated resistance.
We’ll find out soon enough if there are enough troops or not, if the generals start requesting more troops once the next enemy offensive starts. But it’s been clear from the start that there has been no plan to win, no end game, no clear-cut definition of victory against which progress can be measured.
I fully expect that history will regard Bush as a incompetent Commander-in-Chief who was lucky to escape full responsibility for his disastrous decisions. Leading a nation into half-hearted, undeclared war is a guarantee of ultimate failure; Bush would have gotten away with it had he been content with Saddam’s scalp. I see many correlations between the administration’s decision to expand their goals into full-blown nation-building with the IJN’s decision to extend their defensive shield to the Aleutians and Midway. In both cases, easy early success led to hubris and a fatal error.
My primary concern at this point is that only a second 9/11 could possibly give the American people any more tolerance for war. If I can see this, presumably so can those internal enemies from whom our military forces, and the President, have sworn to defend the Constitution….