OJ Simpson made waves a month ago, over the release of his book "If I Did
It," which detailed how he "would have" killed Nicole and Ron Goldman. Maybe
one day, George W. Bush will release a book, "If I Wanted to Mess Up Iraq
and America's Security Even More." In that book, he can detail all the ways
he "would have" made the situation in Iraq worse. One chapter would have to
be devoted to the idea that came up this week, that the administration is
preparing to send 40,000 additional troops into the warzone. That's
assuming, of course, that the President is serious about our troops and
security and never would propose such a thing!
I'll be blunt: an increase of 40,000 troops would be a joke, if it didn't
mean the needless deaths of Americans at a greater clip than we're seeing
Yet, the President will tell the nation next month that this increase will
allow US forces to launch an offensive against the insurgency and offer
greater security to hot spots in the country. There's a possibility that in
the very short term some areas might be slightly more secure, but in the
long term, a force increase this small will do nothing to secure Iraq or
wipe out insurgents. Thus, what we're left with are those that will
certainly die or be injured in this influx of forces.
I know something about securing areas and protecting a delicate
I served in Iraq, I was deployed to Kosovo. There, we had a large number of
troops to secure every possible target. I protected a Serbian church that
was already half destroyed, from possible Albanian attack with sixteen other
troops. That's 16 troops for one little half standing church. Overall, we
had 40,000 troops protecting about 10% of the population. That equals one
troop for every five civilians we were protecting.
Add 40,000 troops to what we have in Iraq currently, and there's no way we
have a force large enough to be effective at securing and protecting the
country. This does not even factor in the rumors that the administration
plans to make one more large offensive against the forces of al Sadr and
insurgents in the Anbar province. For that to be effective, it will take a
sustained attack from hundreds of thousands of troops.
If the President was serious about securing Iraq and pushing back
insurgents, while the government stabilized and trained forces, he would
propose an increase of roughly 350,000 troops for a commitment of
seven-to-ten years. Of course, that type of proposal is ludicrous. The
President has so decimated our military that the only way to get that many
troops would be to institute a draft, and Americans wisely see no worth in
expending that many lives and that much money to try to secure a nation that
could very well fall apart anyway.
So, what we are left with is a President and Pentagon who want to pretend
they are changing the course, without admitting that, militarily, we can do
no further good in Iraq. This proposal to increase troops by 40,000 is just
for political show. It is far from a serious plan, and Congress should
unequivocally object to it.
The President and his advisors will stand in front of the American people
next year and maintain that they really, honestly don't think this force
increase in Iraq will make the situation worse. Yep, just as surely as OJ
says he didn't kill his wife and her friend.