Jan 11, 2007

The surge and the speech

Bush looked and sounded awful, didn't he? That said, I don't know if a surge is the answer, but I very much want us to succeed in Iraq.

Victor Davis Hanson says a manpower shortage hasn't been the problem in Iraq: Tactics and strategy have been. He figures that if the surge is accompanied by a change in strategy then it'll have a chance to work.
The American people will support success and an effort to win, whatever the risks, but not stasis. We saw that with the silent approval of Ethiopia’s brutal rout of the Islamists in Somalia, and our own attack on al Qaeda there.

The subtext of the president’s speech was that our sacrifices to offer freedom and constitutional government are the only solution for the Middle East — but that our commitments are not open-ended if the Iraqis themselves don’t want success as much as we do.

But why believe that this latest gamble will work? One, things are by agreement coming to a head: this new strategy will work, or, given the current politics, nothing will. Two, the Iraqis in government know this time Sadr City and Baghdad are to be secured, or it is to be “see ya, wouldn’t want to be ya,” and they will be on planes to Dearborn.

The question is: Will the Democrats allow the President to move forward?

ADDED: 'Surge' debate a classic test of power of the purse.

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