- Nov 22, 2003
- Reaction score
This has been coming for some time:
Here's the link to yesterday's NY Times article:The Casey-Rumsfeld analysis of Iraq was and is an effort to look at a complicated situation in a cold-eyed, clear-headed, rational way. Don't just throw troops into battle; don't just crack down when things seem out of control; don't just act in ways that will keep Iraqis dependent on the United States.
All very sound ideas on paper. But they've proved tragically beside the point. When a building is on fire, you don't stand around talking about how best to rebuild it. You have to put the fire out first.
In 2006, it's now clear, the postwar embers in Iraq were caught up in a crosswind and erupted into a conflagration. Casey's answer was, essentially, to task Iraqis with the job of putting out the fire. But the people who make up the Iraqi military and security forces aren't ready to take on the task.
It's our task in any case. That's the fatal flaw of the Casey-Rumsfeld idea: This war is being fought to defeat us as much as it is being fought to control Iraq.
The Times story is important as a marker of the president's intention. He has come to understand that victory requires a general whose primary aim is victory. And that general isn't George Casey - an American hero who simply got it wrong.