Sunday, June 17, 2007


Glenn Reynolds writes:

MICHAEL YON EMAILS: "This is a very serious offensive kicking off in Iraq. The NYT realizes it's serious, but nobody that I am seeing realizes just how big this is. Relatively massive."

What does the NYT say?

With the influx of tens of thousands of additional combat troops into Iraq now complete, American forces have begun a wide offensive against Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia on the outskirts of Baghdad, the top American commander in Iraq said Saturday. The commander, Gen. David H. Petraeus, in a news conference in Baghdad along with Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, said the operation was intended to take the fight to Al Qaeda’s hide-outs in order to cut down the group’s devastating campaign of car bombings.

Actually, it is quite noticeable, although Michael Yon is probably right in saying we don't know the half of it. Readers should go to MNF-Iraq's press release page and look at the action over the past two days. Heavy action.

Most of the coverage of the Surge has focused on the additional numbers of troops. But it was apparent to anyone that the augmentation was relatively small. As past posts have emphasized the real news consisted in the redeployment of US troops out of the mega-bases into Joint Security Stations, where partnered with Iraqi forces, US troops were far closer to the fight. The principal benefit of this has been to increase the amount of intelligence available to US forces and shorten the decision and action loops. I also noted this had the disadvantage of moving Americans to less protected positions. However, the powers-that-be probably calculated the gains would be greater than the losses.

This is important to recall because this enhanced intelligence capability and reaction capacity is at the heart of the current offensive. Some weeks back I was at a blogger round table where they were discussing plans to interdict the flow of the "acclerants of violence" into Baghdad. This could not be accomplished by passive methods like checkpoints and barricades. Anyone who was listening must have understood this meant they were preparing to go after the VBIED and arms smugglings cells to interdict the flow of attacking munitions. That meant offense. And those who have been following Bill Roggio's accounts know US forces were prepared to expand into the "belts" around Baghdad. That spells offense too. All of these were indicators that the Surge, far from being a purely defensive strategy contained within it an offensive component coiled and waiting to strike.


Blogger Tarnsman said...

"Let's Roll!"

6/17/2007 05:15:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

What about Mookie? Are "outskirts of Baghdad" Sadr City? Or the northern part where Saddam came from? I would *really* like to see them take the fight to Mookie and his people.

6/17/2007 07:02:00 PM  
Blogger Fen said...

NYTs: offensive against Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia

Odd choice of words. Why not say "Al Queda in Iraq"?

6/17/2007 09:15:00 PM  
Blogger PierreLegrand said...

Great then what about Iran and Syria?

6/17/2007 09:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Damned Aussies!
Tiny but Hungry, Moth Threatens California Crops
A voracious Australian moth is threatening to infest one of the nation’s most important agricultural regions.

6/17/2007 09:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Mystery Solved
During the early morning of 03 May 2007, I made this audio in Baghdad.
Did you recognize this sound?
Please feel free to guess or view the video.

You can right click and save target video file

6/17/2007 10:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

They did pay Sadr City a visit.
Death or Glory Part III of IV

Yon with the Brits and Bedouins.
Great Photos.

6/18/2007 02:32:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Didn't work at the address below, I clicked a few times and it took me to YouTube which does.
Remember Me

Time punishes war. The war in Iraq is no exception; as each moment passes, public resolve, politics and passion erode its mission.

Collectively, many Americans tend to remember the mistakes and politics that led us there, rather than the faces of the men and women who serve and defend us.

Seven months ago, Lizzie Palmer, a young lady from Columbus, Ohio, barely over the threshold of childhood, felt compelled to do her part to remind people of those faces.

The result is a stunning video that was showcased on Chris Wallace's Fox News Sunday last week.

6/18/2007 05:16:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The push is on, but the Jihadi are not dying, they are being captured.
With each jihadi captured, one is released.

The Insurgency regenerates.
Not enough prison beds, or cots, or space on the floor.

Just capacity for 40,000 prisoners, same as 2004.

It's a Zero-sum Game we've tasked our troopers to.

Imagine returning the captured soldiers of the Waffen SS back to Germany, after 8 months captivity, because we did not have enough POW camps to hold them.

Not enouh beds to keep the Afrika Corps detained, so we ship them off to Italy ...
Right before we land at Anzio.

Insanity, you say?

The US models that, in Iraq, every day.

6/18/2007 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...


What causes me to believe that your sig picture is in fact an accurate representation?

6/18/2007 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Crazy Marzouq Redneck Muslim said...

Pray the ones released are monitored in a high tech way.

Pierre, Iran and Syria are being dealt with in more creative and less lethal ways.

Salaam eleikum.

6/18/2007 02:35:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

PB, two things to begin to make that determination.

1. Reading the releases by the MNF, regarding the ratios of killed to captured.
2. Bing & Owen West's latest NYTimes piece, the Laptop story linked to by Wretchard earlier and the thread dedicated to it. How that story coincides accurately with the MNF releases, as to the ratios of killed to captured.

Makes be believe the balance of the story is accurate, as well.

They claim that ten are captured for every insurgent killed. They state that 50% of those detained are released in 18 hours. More are released each step further up the chain, until an Iraqi judge releases 50% of the remaining cases.
Then those that are held seem, based on previously read antadotal stories, to be released in 8 months to a year, or escape detention after that period of time.

This coincides with the story of Ltc Kurilla and his shooting, in '04 or '05. The "Catch and Release" was a problem then, describe to Mr Yon by the Ltc, even before he was shot, by a released detainee.

Catch & Release is a reality, Mr West sets the Iraqi detention level capacity at 40,000, which corresponds with the numbers reported in '04 and '05.

Which we discussed at the time, here.

6/18/2007 03:23:00 PM  

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