commentary on Politics and a little bit of everything else

What’s the hurry in bringing troops under a certain level in Iraq?

The Dogs says…..I told you so!

Army General Ray Odierno has spoken something that any person with a half of a brain knew ……The Army has a plan to keep troops in that country AFTER President Obama’s stated deadline……and Odierno would make these statements without backing from the National Command Authorities….

Tell us something we didn’t know?

Here’s some of the pierce from the Washington Post…Here’s the link…..…..

Under a deadline set by President Obama, all combat forces are slated to withdraw from Iraq by the end of August, and there remains heavy political pressure in Washington and Baghdad to stick to that schedule. But Army Gen. Ray Odierno, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, said Monday that he had briefed officials in Washington in the past week about possible contingency plans.

Odierno declined to describe the plans in detail and said he was optimistic they would not be necessary. But he said he was prepared to make the changes “if we run into problems” in the coming months.

Iraqis are scheduled to go to the polls March 7 for parliamentary elections that Iraqi and U.S. officials describe as a political milestone for the country.

With less than two weeks to go in the campaign, however, concern is rising over whether the results will be undermined by political boycotts, low turnout or an increase in bloodshed. Religious enmities and rivalries are already resurfacing.

Although U.S. diplomats and military officials said they are working intensely behind the scenes to hold the political process together, they are finding that their influence in Iraq is steadily on the wane.

“The Iraqi mood is very nationalistic at the moment and just not interested in extending the American presence,” said Marc Lynch, a political science professor at George Washington University and an expert on Iraqi politics. “When the United States gets really involved in contentious issues now, it just turns into political dynamite.”

Yea…but then there is this……..

Iraqi and U.S. officials have reported a spike in rocket attacks targeting the Green Zone in Baghdad and American bases. U.S. officials said Shiite militia groups have stocked up on rockets and other weapons, which they say are smuggled from Iran.

American officials say it has become harder to understand the scope and dynamics of violence in Iraq now that the U.S. military has a small footprint in Iraqi cities.

“Is this the beginning of sectarian warfare, is it tribal, is it AQI?” a U.S. military official said, using the abbreviation for the Sunni insurgency group al-Qaeda in Iraq. “It’s hard to know if these are localized killings for political reasons or violence to spread a blanket of fear so people don’t go to the polls.”

The Dog thinks in the end …about 30,000 troops or advisors or whatever will be hanging around to check the place from becoming a zoo……again….

February 23, 2010 - Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Media, Military, Other Things, Politics, Updates | , ,

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