Friday, June 22, 2007

Iraq Deaths Don't Mean Failure, Pace Says

The recent rise in U.S. troop deaths in Iraq is the "wrong metric" to use in assessing the effectiveness of the new security strategy for Baghdad, Marine Gen. Peter Pace, the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said yesterday in a news conference with Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates.
"If you had zero violence and people were not feeling good about their future, where are you?" said Pace, emphasizing that the sentiment of the Iraqi people is a much better measurement than the number of attacks. "So it's not about levels of violence. It's about progress being made, in fact, in the minds of the Iraqi people, so that they have confidence in their government in the way forward."
What world is this fool living in? Since when does violence not matter? Doesn't he believe that lower levels of violence would give the average Iraqi a feeling of security?
Pace and Gates acknowledged that violence could rise -- as it has in recent days, when at least a dozen U.S. troops have been killed -- but said the number of attacks has gone up largely because there are more U.S. brigades in harm's way. Pace said that the number of attacks per brigade has not increased but that the enemy in Iraq has focused on inflicting greater U.S. casualties because it wants to affect the American public's view of the war.

The surge is a failure. How many American deaths will it take for the powers that be to finally admit that? Iraq is a failed state as a result of our invasion. It is obvious to me that they are trying to blunt the criticism that will surely come in September when reports on progress are due. This war will only end when the funds are cut off. The Democrats need to use the summer to drive that point home.

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