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February 17, 2008
Failed Surge? Violence in Baghdad down 80%
Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats have confidently announced that our counterinsurgency strategy in Iraq has failed and its time to bring the troops home.
They certainly aren't basing that judgement on reality:
In a time when you could hear nothing but explosions, gunfire and the screams of mothers and fathers and sons, and see bodies that were burned and dismembered, the people of Baghdad were awaiting Operation Imposing Law," Qanbar told reporters. The falling violence not only reflects the increased presence of American troops but also a rising level of competency demonstrated by the Iraqi Army as well as the presence of dozens of quasi independent Sunni patrols who are part of "The Awakening" movement in the provinces.
Qanbar pointed to the number of dead bodies turning up on the capital's streets as an indicator of success. In the six weeks to the end of 2006, an average of 43 bodies were found dumped in the city each day as fierce sectarian fighting threatened to turn into full-scale civil war. That figure fell to four a day in 2008, in the period up to February 12, said Qanbar, who heads the Baghdad security operation.
"Various enemy activities" had fallen by between 75 and 80 percent since the security plan was implemented, he said.
And our military is also pointing to a dramatic turnaround in the attitude of residents in Baghdad who no longer hesitate to give valuable intelligence on possible terrorist activities so that attacks can be nipped in the bud.
As long as the Democrats keep insisting that our efforts are failing in Iraq despite all evidence to the contrary, they leave themselves open to charges of defeatism - something I would expect the Republicans to take full advantage of in the fall campaign.