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    27 July 2007

    The Politics of Addressing the Surge

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    I mentioned yesterday that I had reservation with the much anticipated Petraeus/Crocker report on the situation in Iraq. I feel that the information present will be spun in such a way to wash away the bad points while enhancing or fabricating the positive points. We should all consider what is presented in the GAO as an apolitical report when compared to the July and September reports. I'm going to briefly expand on this argument below with two LA Times articles published this morning.

    We learned today that the Administration has quit reporting to Congress the availability of electricity in Baghdad. The likely reason being that it is not going well. But an ThinkProgress points out, Ryan "Crocker told CBS News that electricity "is more important to the average Iraqi than all 18 benchmarks rolled up into one." It's the hearts and minds argument I've been arguing all along. We'll see if this figure makes into the assessment and if it isn't spun or discounted.

    Next, dropping US fatalities in Iraq. Army Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno attempted to flatter the President's surge strategy by citing an otherwise normal occurrence as proof positive of success. To be fair, he points out that the cited trend really isn't a trend, yet. We'll have to look back and see if he was prophetic or just spinning appealing statistics, and whether or not he notes this error if things don't pan out as he insinuated. I'll have a visual blog tomorrow about what I'm talking about here...

    Posted by Geoff

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