- Nov 22, 2003
- Reaction score
As always, the good and bad. Good, the trap about to shut. The bad, Iraqi military leadership:
...LTG Ray Odierno visited Baqubah on the 21st. Odierno clarified that this battle is to be final: we are not going to do this again. Odierno stressed to our commanders that they need to be thinking of an end-state that results in Iraqis taking charge, but that Iraqi commanders should not be given the reigns until they are ready, so that the result is we set them up for success. Odiernos timing was remarkable: even before he arrived, the commanders here were talking about end-state daily and, on a more sour note, our commanders have their hands full with the local Iraqi commanders who seem less competent (to be kind) than those I have seen elsewhere, such as in Mosul.
Our guys are winning. Al Qaeda is about to be strangled and pummeled to death in this town, but the local Iraqi leadership is severely wanting. This was most obviously noted in one area in particular, where there were some slight indicators of a possible humanitarian need. Crisis certainly is not the correct word, but there are displaced persons numbering at least in the hundreds. LTC Fred Johnson actually took me out there. (The access even to bad news is amazing with this Brigade.)...