Tag Archives: War

Surging To Where?

January 31st, 2008 by Joshua Skaroff

Out of Iraq

The issue of the war in Iraq seemed to have disappeared from the campaign trail in recent weeks and months, with some declaring that the so-called surged has worked, others stating the war has ended, and the major news networks simply ignoring the war. Proponents of the war and the surge frequently cite the military progress that has been accomplished but ignore the lack of political reconciliation that the surge was ostensibly created to fix. But according to Spencer Ackerman at the new Washington Independent, even those security gains now seem at risk:

Iraq security statistics over the past 13 weeks, obtained exclusively by The Washington Independent, tell the tale. In Baghdad, improvised-explosive device (IED) detonations explosions in Baghdad have ticked up slightly to 131 in January from 129 in December—and the last week of January is not included in these latest figures. Countrywide, there was an increase in IED explosions to 2,291 in December from 1,394 in November, followed by a dip to 1,270 in the first three weeks of January. But the week ending on January 25 saw seven suicide explosions Iraq-wide, the most since the week ending Dec. 21, 2007.

It is too early to conclude that the security gains of the surge are unwinding. But they’re being put under stress in a manner not seen since the so-called “Surge of Operations” began in mid-June. Some speculate that the insurgency, knocked on its heels by the changing tactics of U.S. forces in mid-2007, is beginning to adjust, a few months before the surge draws to a close. “I think there’s some credibility to that argument,” said Brian Katulis, a national-security expert at the liberal Center for American Progress. “It all begs the question of what’s the grand endgame.”

Meanwhile, John McCain wants 100 more years in Iraq and is already looking forward to our next war.

Let’s end the war and bring our troops home.

Smartest. Man. Ever.

September 28th, 2007 by Peter Slutsky

Dick, you’re hired!

A Special Comment For Memorial Day

May 24th, 2007 by Joshua Skaroff

AP Lede Of The Day

December 29th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

From the Associate Press

President Bush worked nearly three hours at his Texas ranch on Thursday to design a new U.S. policy in Iraq, then emerged to say that he and his advisers need more time to craft the plan he’ll announce in the new year.

He then took a nap. It’s hard work being president.

Joe Lieberman Makes Me Sick

December 29th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

Sometimes it boggles my mind that the man I happily voted for in 2000 as the Democratic nominee for Vice President has so sunk to the depths he has. Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT), who for some reason the press continues to call a Democrat, has lined up with Bush and Cheney and against the American people, the US generals, and even the troops on the ground in calling for more war and more death.

I’ve just spent 10 days traveling in the Middle East and speaking to leaders there, all of which has made one thing clearer to me than ever: While we are naturally focused on Iraq, a larger war is emerging. On one side are extremists and terrorists led and sponsored by Iran, on the other moderates and democrats supported by the United States. Iraq is the most deadly battlefield on which that conflict is being fought. How we end the struggle there will affect not only the region but the worldwide war against the extremists who attacked us on Sept. 11, 2001.

Ahh, invoking 9/11. How Rovian of him.

To turn around the crisis we need to send more American troops while we also train more Iraqi troops and strengthen the moderate political forces in the national government. After speaking with our military commanders and soldiers there, I strongly believe that additional U.S. troops must be deployed to Baghdad and Anbar province — an increase that will at last allow us to establish security throughout the Iraqi capital, hold critical central neighborhoods in the city, clamp down on the insurgency and defeat al-Qaeda in that province.

Didn’t we try that six months ago? Didn’t violence and death increase? Are we really supposed to believe that 20,000 or even 50,000 more troops will stop the violence in a country of 26 million where thousands are killed each month? Sen. Lieberman closes with his favorite strawman:

Rather than engaging in hand-wringing, carping or calls for withdrawal, we must summon the vision, will and courage to take the difficult and decisive steps needed for success and, yes, victory in Iraq.

Ahh Joe, you’re just so courageous. What are a few more dead Americans so you can look brave? What are a few more thousand dead Iraqis so you can be a strong centrist with “vision?”

Call Senator Lieberman and tell him to stop wasting lives for his own ego. (202) 224-4041.

White House Lying About Iraq Violence

December 7th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

In a revelation that will surprise very, very few of our listeners and readers, the Iraq Study Group says that the Bush administration has been lying about the level of violence in Iraq to cover its own failure.

The Bush administration routinely has underreported the level of violence in Iraq in order to disguise its policy failings, the Iraq Study Group report said Wednesday.

The bipartisan group called on the Pentagon and the director of the U.S. intelligence community to immediately institute a new reporting system that provides “a more accurate picture of events on the ground.”

On page 94 of its report, the Iraq Study Group found that there had been “significant under-reporting of the violence in Iraq.” The reason, the group said, was because the tracking system was designed in a way that minimized the deaths of Iraqis.

“The standard for recording attacks acts a filter to keep events out of reports and databases,” the report said. “A murder of an Iraqi is not necessarily counted as an attack. If we cannot determine the source of a sectarian attack, that assault does not make it into the database. A roadside bomb or a rocket or mortar attack that doesn’t hurt U.S. personnel doesn’t count.”

To quote a bumpersticker, “When Clinton Lied, Nobody Died.”

Feingold on Countdown

December 7th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

So you’ve heard lots of talk already about the ISG report most likely. Wondering what someone who, unlike the entire ISG panel, didn’t support the war initially thinks? Cue Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) on last night’s Keith Olbermann:

Feingold on Countdown

The fact is this commission was composed apparently entirely of people who did not have the judgment to oppose this Iraq war in the first place, and did not have the judgment to realize it was not a wise move in the fight against terrorism. So that’s who is doing this report. Then I looked at the list of who testified before them. There is virtually no one who opposed the war in the first place. Virtually no one who has been really calling for a different strategy that goes for a global approach to the war on terrorism. So this is really a Washington inside job and it shows not in the description of what’s happened – that’s fairly accurate – but it shows in the recommendations. It’s been called a classic Washington compromise that does not do the job of extricating us from Iraq in a way that we can deal with the issues in Southeast Asia, in Afghanistan, and in Somalia which are every bit as important as what is happening in Iraq. This report does not do the job and it’s because it was not composed of a real representative group of Americans who believe what the American people showed in the election, which is that it’s time for us to have a timetable to bring the troops out of Iraq.

PA 08: Patrick Murphy

September 24th, 2006 by Joshua Skaroff

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Patrick Murphy, Candidate for U.S. Congress
Pennsylvania 8th Congressional District

Iraq Veteran and Philadelphian

Music by Dabney Morris, Guster, Béla Fleck and the Flecktones.

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Thank You, Mr. Kerry

September 11th, 2006 by Matthew Slutsky


“It is immoral for old men to send young Americans to fight and die in a conflict without a strategy that can work – on a mission that has not weakened terrorism but worsened it.”

-John Forbes Kerry, September 9, 2006 in a speech delivered at Boston’s Faneuil Hall on keeping America safe

Will the Real Joe Please Stand Up?

August 7th, 2006 by Matthew Slutsky

“It is time for Democrats who distrust President Bush to acknowledge that he will be Commander-in-Chief for three more critical years, and that in matters of war we undermine Presidential credibility at our nation’s peril.”

-Joe Lieberman