Monday, June 02, 2008

WaPo: "Lull in news coverage" of Iraq Progress

Yesterday's Washington Post editorial, The Iraqi Upturn, starts out by commenting on the lack of media coverage of the remarkable good news coming from Iraq.
There's been a relative lull in news coverage and debate about Iraq in recent weeks -- which is odd, because May could turn out to have been one of the most important months of the war. While Washington's attention has been fixed elsewhere, military analysts have watched with astonishment as the Iraqi government and army have gained control for the first time of the port city of Basra and the sprawling Baghdad neighborhood of Sadr City, routing the Shiite militias that have ruled them for years and sending key militants scurrying to Iran. At the same time, Iraqi and U.S. forces have pushed forward with a long-promised offensive in Mosul, the last urban refuge of al-Qaeda. So many of its leaders have now been captured or killed that U.S. Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker, renowned for his cautious assessments, said that the terrorists have "never been closer to defeat than they are now."
The editorial goes on to mention several areas of significant progress, politically as well as militarily. In the last paragraph, it suggests that "likely Democratic nominee" Obama may need to adjust his strategy to the current situation. The editorial suggests that, instead of withdrawing troops on an arbitrary time table, he should tie "withdrawals to the evolution of the Iraqi army and government". In other words, he should handle it like President Bush and the Republicans have been saying all along.


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