Wednesday, April 13, 2005

It's getting better all the time: Iraqization

The articles don't acknowledge it explicitly. But it appears that "Iraqization," derided by so many, is beginning to succeed. We have quietly, and with great determination, continued to train troops. Now, despite all the criticism, that effort is clearly bearing fruit.

Here's the NY Times of April 12th, an article entitled "Military Raid in Baghdad Captures 65, Officials Say":

Hundreds of Iraqi troops and commandos backed by American soldiers swept through central and southern Baghdad early Monday morning, capturing at least 65 suspected insurgents in one of the largest raids in the capital since the fall of Saddam Hussein, military officials said.

Next paragraph contains what I call "the obligatory corrective"--that is, the bad news that must follow all good news, even if the bad news has nothing to do with the headline of the story. In this case, it's news of the kidnapping of an American contractor.

But after that, the article returns to the successful raid. Of course, it describes it without context or commentary (something it wouldn't be doing had the raid been unsuccessful, you can bet your bottom dollar). But still, we have the following important and extremely encouraging information:

In the raid, more than 500 Iraqi soldiers and police officers cordoned off areas in some of Baghdad's most dangerous and crime-ridden areas, searching from house to house in more than 90 locations with American troops playing a supporting role, United States military officials said...The raid was the latest of several large-scale operations led by Iraqi forces in recent weeks.

There's not much else in the article describing the raid; the rest is basically a discussion of Iraqi politics. But, reading between the lines, the story seems to be that the Iraqi forces performed credibly and effectively, and that this is happening more and more. Notice, also, that the US played backup here. Lately, that seems to be the situation, and my guess is that it accounts for the effectiveness of recent operations, and the large numbers of "insurgents" (i.e. murderers, terrorists, Saddamites, and foreign agitators) captured and/or killed. Logic dictates that the fact that Iraqi intelligence and Iraqi forces are leading the way makes this sort of large-scale operation much easier to carry off.

Months ago, who would have predicted it? Certainly and most assuredly not the NY Times. I wish they would publish something that acknowledges what a major breakthrough this is, what astounding progress has been made, and how another Vietnam analogy has bitten the dust.

Oh, well--never mind, as Emily Litella would say.

29 Comments:

At 3:10 PM, April 13, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Yes, it's wonderful in Iraq. So you say. You rail constantly against the NYTimes and other so-called liberal media outlets, yet your remarks lack any credibility whatsover. A "fantastic breakthrough?" Isn't that a little premature? Don't tell me that the NYTimes would never let us know if it were one - I don't care. Why should I believe YOU, or your sources? Have you no respect for logic and evidence whatsoever? You seem to believe that the proper stance in politics is simply to take a partisan attack posture, exactly what you accuse your targets of. Remember what we all tell our children..."Two wrongs don't make a right!"

Is the success or failure of the Iraq venture (regardless of why we went in the first place) to be decided this month? I'm sure the history of our war in Vietnam, to take another historical adventure often discussed on your blog, offers many examples of such breakthroughs.

I remain sceptical of reports of progress in Iraq - I hope I'm wrong, if only because it will be better for all of us. History does not provide encouraging examples.

 
At 5:05 PM, April 13, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Today's killings of nine policemen,near-assasination of yet another government (Interior ministry) official and successful attacks on US convoys,oil tankers etc.,show it's the same-old same-old.
The NYTs worst flaws were not investigating and exposing Bush Administration mishandling of mixed intelligence in the run up to the war.
The scores of starry-eyed pro-Bush
neocon blogs have been predicting the end of the insurgency since 2003.
It's a "Vietnam-on-barbituates"
scenario in the end.

 
At 5:35 PM, April 13, 2005, Anonymous David Hobbs said...

Somehow I think the above posters missed the point. The Iraqis are now starting to police themselves. It is a simple point. Does it mean Iraq is all better? No. Does it mean we are leaving any time soon? No. It simple means that a step has been taken in the right direction.

To Lichanos:

"Why should I believe YOU, or your sources? Have you no respect for logic and evidence whatsoever?"

As far as I can tell her only source was the NY Times, believe them if you want. As to why you should believe her opinion? You don't have to, but to not consider it is intellectually dishonest. As to her respect for logic... what was illogically about her statement? Our goal is for the Iraqis to police themselves. The existence of hundreds of police officers who can mount raids against insurgents suggests that the Iraqis are in fact policing themselves. Ergo our goal is being met.

A --> B
A
Ergo B


"Is the success or failure of the Iraq venture (regardless of why we went in the first place) to be decided this month? I'm sure the history of our war in Vietnam, to take another historical adventure often discussed on your blog, offers many examples of such breakthroughs. "

Is this somehow suppose to suggest that Iraqis policing themselves is a bad thing? The existence of single successful goal doesn't necessitate the success of the end-goal, but it also certainly doesn't suggest failure, that would be a logical contradiction!

Why limit yourself to Vietnam? What about World War II with Japan and Germany? Their security forces had to be rebuilt after the war. They were in fact rebuilt after the war, and both countries did in fact rebuild themselves and became the success stories they are today.

" remain sceptical of reports of progress in Iraq "

Good, skeptics are needed to help us identify problems. But don't mistake pessissim for skepticism. They are different. One can serve a purpose, the other can't.

----------------

To Anonymous #1

"Today's killings of nine policemen,near-assasination of yet another government (Interior ministry) official and successful attacks on US convoys,oil tankers etc.,show it's the same-old same-old."

No it doesn't. It merely demonstrates that work needs to be done. Directly after the war proper US forces were the only ones in charge of security. We now have evidence that the Iraqis have some force capable of handling at least some of the task.

"The scores of starry-eyed pro-Bush
neocon blogs have been predicting the end of the insurgency since 2003.It's a "Vietnam-on-barbituates" scenario in the end. "

And people such as yourself have been predicting outright failure since before the war. Obviously neither have been proven correct.

 
At 7:47 PM, April 13, 2005, Blogger Tran Sient said...

It reminds me of last weeks story on the protests in Sadr city. They acted like it was so horrible that there were protests, while never acknowledging that these same poeple were fighting us this time last year. What could be more American than protesting?

 
At 5:56 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Paul said...

Rome wasn't built in a day nor can what Saddam did to Iraq be corrected in a short time, but it looks as if it is getting better there. Baffers (Blame America first for every wrong) do nothing but criticize GWB and America and kow tow to Islamo Fascists!

 
At 6:46 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I grow weary of the Viet Nam Analogy. From all perspectives, there is no comparison. Different ideologies, different terrain, different indigenous religion and significantly different causalty rates. If this were another Viet Nam, there would have been approximately 10,500 troops dead by now instead of approx. 1600. Do the math on that one. A significant number of Americans support the effort in Iraq compared to just the opposite with Viet Nam. Our troops today in Iraq are not considered villains by large numbers of Americans as the troops in Viet Nam were. I recently read an article about Viet Nam vets currently in the National Guard serving in Iraq. All 10 of the men said morale is very high amongst the troops, which was not the case in Viet Nam. I was in that war myself by the way. I've also read from several different sources that reconstruction in Iraq is going faster than it did with Germany and Japan. I find it amazing how intelligent people can project the violence in the Sunni triangle onto the whole nation. When is the last time there was an attack in Basra in the south, which is a very large city? Most of the north is likewise calm, yet the critics would have us believe the entire nation is in total turmoil. Lastly, the waving purple fingers pretty much tells it all. The bottom line with some critics is that they can't stand the thought of Iraq becoming democratic.

 
At 7:04 AM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

To David Hobbs:

"The Iraqis are now starting to police themselves. It is a simple point."

Yes it is. Hope it's true. I don't take the NYTimes as Gospel, and Neo-Con has a relationship to fact that is pure propaganda. I consider her opinions, but she's the one who said this was a "fantastic breakthrough."

As for "our goal being met," you take a selective view. One goal is, perhaps, being met - not the goal for which the war was ostensibly fought, not the goal for which we fought one year ago...Goals change, that's okay, but rational people with memories judge statements of success by a standard that includes past statements of goals and past failures or successes.

My gripe with neo-con, once again, is that her position is that of cheerleader and propagandist- ideologue. I don't mind people pumping for their point of view - even a right-wing one, but as Daniel Patrick Moynihan said once, "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion - they are not entitled to their own facts."

 
At 7:55 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Lichanos: you said, "rational people with memories judge statements of success by a standard that includes past statements of goals..."

What comes to mind with your statement is WW1, "the war to end all wars". That was the stated goal for that war. It's just too bad that people like Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Milosovich, Saddam Hussein, Idi Amin, Mao Tse Tung and others come along to wreck stated goals, isn't it?

Here is one statement that has always rung true:"People sleep peacably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf" - George Orwell

 
At 8:47 AM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

To Anonymous:

Regarding your comment: ...What comes to mind with your statement is WW1, "the war to end all wars".

You gotta help me out a bit here - I haven't a clue what your point is. The USA called WWI the war to end all wars. The Europeans never had such illusions. (We were in the war for about eight months at the end.) Are you saying WWI was a mistake, or that it would have succeeded in ending war???

As for your reference to Orwell, one of my heroes, a little research on the Web will reveal to you that he never uttered that remark - it was George Will who misquoted him first, I believe. Orwell was a socialist by the way...

 
At 9:40 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If memory serves me right, Orwell was hit during his fight for righteousness ( socialism) in Spain. He obviously believed and lived what was attributed to him in that quote, and whether or not he actually made that quote is rather irrelevant in light of him being hit, a term rough men use meaning to be wounded in combat, wouldn't you say? It is safe to say Orwell strongly believed that fellow Socialists behind the lines could sleep well at night since he was at the front with a rifle.

It seems you are the one taking the selective view by referencing Europe in relation to the USA's goal of a war (WW1) being one to end all wars. One of your points was that rational people judge success by goals stated, so obviously ww1 was a failure from that perspective, because following that was WW2, Korea, Viet Nam, Gulf war 1 & 2, Afghanistan and a number of smaller incursions, such as Haiti, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Grenada, Panama. Yet history and collective memory regards WW1 as a success, one of the 'good ones'.

 
At 10:31 AM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Mr. Anonymous:

You bewilder me. How can you say of Orwell, "He obviously believed and lived what was attributed to him in that quote..."

He DIDN'T say it! People attribute things to people all the time! Are you the judge of what they meant in their hearts? Your take on what Orwell 'meant' by his false quote is wrong. He had a very hardnosed view of what went on in Spain, and he knew that behind the lines the Stalinists were shooting his friends, the socialists and anarchists. They almost shot him and his wife! You are attempting to bend his life to support your view of things, to wit, that 'rough men' save the pussy-footed from harm and preserve the liberty they take for granted. Perhaps true, but not a point of view that Orwell voiced. Why don't you go read what he said - he's a great writer.

As for WWI, again you lose me. As far as I am concerned, WWI was a colassal blunder, a horrific waste of human life that is a root cause of WWII. (In fact, I think historians of the next centuries will see WWI and WWII as one long war.) I'd like to know why you say that "history and collective memory" see WWI as one of the "good ones." I certainly have not encountered that opinion in my reading since I became interested in it in grade school. You live on earth, right?

 
At 11:20 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous neo-neocon said...

lichanos--I have neither the time nor the inclination to argue with you (others have done an excellent job of that), but please get your quotes correct. If you check back, you'll see I never wrote "fantastic breakthrough," which you twice quoted me as saying. The words I used were "major breakthrough," and I stand by them.

I try to be restrained and careful in my use of words; notice also that in the first paragraph I say "it appears that 'Iraqization' is beginning to succeed." Note the qualifiers "appears" and "beginning to."

 
At 11:23 AM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Good enough. I misquoted - mea culpa. I guess your conjunction of "what a major breakthrough" with "astounding progress" lead me astray, but I should have checked.

Despite your qualifiers, you're still just a cheerleader.

 
At 11:51 AM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lichanos - Orwell obviously didn't have a very hard-nosed view as he didn't stay long on the front, now did he? What do you think the object of his goal/mission/crusade/philosophical statement was visa-via taking up arms? Would it not be to end the fighting with his side the victor? Sheesh! It would be like a statement that reads, " Let's sock it to em' in Iraq" then someone claiming it doesn't pertain to Bush because he never actually made the statement.

Out of the chaos of WW1 came the League of Nations, which soon fell apart and eventually led to the United Nations ( Woodrow Wilson would be so proud!) but it too seems to be faltering, doesn't it?
Oh my! The oil-for-food scandal, sexual abuse in the Congo, UN peacekeepers that were present doing nothing in Rwanda as thousands were being butchered with machetes, etc. etc The UN needs a strong cheerleader about now, that's for sure! I rather doubt Orwell is cheering from his grave, don't you?

If nothing else, from your perspective as expressed in these posts, WW1 had to be a 'good one' because it produced the Bolsheviks. However, I do recall seeing statues of Lenin being toppled some years back and it reminds me of Saddam's statues being toppled. doesn't it to you?? Ciao for now, or perhaps I should say au revoir, you can maybe better relate to that expression.

 
At 12:09 PM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Anonymous:

You substitute bile for logic and argument:

"...from your perspective as expressed in these posts, WW1 had to be a 'good one' because it produced the Bolsheviks."

Please don't try and do my reasoning for me. I said quite clearly that I thought WWI was a horrific blunder. And why do you assume that I favor the Bolsheviks? As I mentioned, the Stalinists, Lenin's heirs, would have shot Orwell, one of my heroes. Where do you get this stuff? Make it up? If you want some anti-Bolshevik material, you can always visit my own blog.

"...Ciao for now, or perhaps I should say au revoir, you can maybe better relate to that expression."

So understanding French is an indication of political turpitude now, is it? But not Italian, eh? Perhaps you are fortunate enough to know both languages well?

By the way, the origin of the expression "Ciao" is from the Italian phrase, "I am your slave." You didn't really mean that, did you?

Finally, are you accusing Orwell of being a wimp for leaving the front after being wounded, or are you praising him for the courage of his convictions (even if they were wrong) as demonstrated by his willingness to fight? Or are you just casting about for a blog-byte to hurl away?

 
At 1:08 PM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lichanos- Obviously Orwell was not hard-nosed about his convictions, as the wound he sustained certainly did not detain him from the ardous work of writing some books post-Spain, which means his wound certainly would not have prevented him from returning to the front, had he chosen to do so. He was a man of ideas, not action, that is why not a heck of alot is known about what he really did at the front, other than sustaining a wound of sorts. I think it is quite a reach to assume his attempt at actually fighting for his beliefs served as the real impetus of his post-Spain work. What if his wound was self-inflicted? It may well have been. Mabye it was something more base and intrinsic and darker in the human psyche that brought him to the front instead, something no political/moral system has yet to contain let alone control, least of all Socialism. A failed Socialist but a brilliant author, I can give him that much. I would suggest the self deprivation he experienced is a result of that dichotomy.

 
At 1:41 PM, April 14, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Anonymous:

Orwell served in Spain, more than many who shared his politics did. You are accusing him of cowardice and malingering - do you have any evidence? Does a man have to be a quadripeligic to get some credit from you? (I'm getting a flashback to the last presidential campaign.)

As I mentioned before, the Stalinists nearly shot him and his wife as they went about their dirty work of eliminating all who didn't toe the CC line - that's why he left Spain, post haste.

 
At 5:08 PM, April 14, 2005, Anonymous neo-neocon said...

For those interested in WWI, there is a book pubished about a year ago that apparently has a somewhat revisionistic look at its causes, making the case that it was a more rational war than previously thought. I have not read it and cannot say whether it's good or not, but it sounds interesting; I heard a review of it on the radio.

Yes, it was Wilson who called WWI the "war to end all wars." He was sadly mistaken, indeed. But Europeans had tremendous illusions about the war, too, especially at the beginning--thinking, for instance, that it would be a short one. They also were sadly mistaken. A wonderful book about attitudes towards WWI (called at the time "The Great War") is The Great War and Modern Memory, by Paul Fusell. One of my all-time favorites.

 
At 12:34 AM, April 15, 2005, Anonymous David Hobbs said...

To Lichanos:

"Despite your qualifiers, you're still just a cheerleader."

I don't understand why you persist in labeling her merely a cheerleader. It is obvious that neo-neocon did and does think about her political beliefs. I especially don't understand it in the context of this post. It appears she is just providing an analysis of the current situation in Iraq.

You critize other for substituting "bile for logic" yet make the same mistake yourself. You haven't addressed the point of her post. You haven't given any argument, logical or otherwise, as to why her analysis may be flawed. From what I can tell from your own blog, you are obviously intelligent enough to provide a more substantial argument for your postion without relying on ad hominem attacks.

Of course her analysis will be some what slanted toward her view. There isn't much of a reason for her to analyze events in Iraq as a socialist might see or explain them. The slant of her argument isn't necessarily a critical or fatal flaw.

...You seem to believe that the proper stance in politics is simply to take a partisan attack posture, exactly what you accuse your targets of. Remember what we all tell our children..."Two wrongs don't make a right!...

Nor do three.

ciao, dazavtra, hasta luego, Vale, and so on.

 
At 7:59 AM, April 15, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

To Neo-Con:

Something on which we agree completely - Fussell's book is a masterpiece.

To Mr. Hobbs:

My "bile for logic" remark was directed at Anonymous who presented a strange and contradictory set of arguments, a major part of which was character attack (on Orwell) and snide remarks directed at me because he believes me to be a Francophile.

As for Neo-Con's "cheerleading", I don't begrudge her a point of view - I have one too of course. What bugs me is her tendency in many posts to grab onto a news item and run with it as if it proves a whole slew of propositions, or to simply make snide comments(Amnesty and the ACLU being frequent targets)that impute beliefs or actions to people who don't make her political muster. I also find her preoccupation with the media (something she shares with political bloggers of left and right) to be indicative of a concern for image and scoring debating points rather than a desire to parse the truth.

Her conclusion of the post is a good example:

"Months ago, who would have predicted it? Certainly and most assuredly not the NY Times. I wish they would publish something that acknowledges what a major breakthrough this is, what astounding progress has been made, and how another Vietnam analogy has bitten the dust."

This is analysis? Maybe the NYTimes doesn't think this is a major breakthrough. They have an opinion. Can she be so sure? She seems to have no understanding of the line between opinion and fact. I don't begrudge her having an opinion - I just think rational people should recognize where one ends and the other begins. Feel free to point out my failures in this regard anytime, but please be specific.

 
At 9:54 AM, April 15, 2005, Anonymous BillW. said...

hey lichanos, why don't you make your own blog? It seems nobody agrees with you and probably isn't reading you either. It looks to me like the last argument you had over Orwell and his politics you lost.

 
At 10:24 AM, April 15, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

Hey, BillW, I have a blog, as you can easily see with a mouse-click.

"... seems nobody agrees with you and probably isn't reading you either..."

More bile. My blog gets read; I know many who agree with me, although perhaps not among the commenters here, but there is a larger world. Perhaps you HOPE nobody is reading or agreeing with me. Sorry to disappoint you. GWB won the election, but it was pretty darn close, now wasn't it? My fellow liberals and I aren't going anywhere - you'll just have to live with us here in this big country of ours...and we with you.

I'm not very interested in "winning" arguments - I like to try and learn something, and perhaps convince people of my point of view. Anyway, I honestly don't understand what point Anonymous was making about Orwell, and I suspect he knows little of his writing.

 
At 12:58 PM, April 15, 2005, Anonymous BillW. said...

You do argue because you don't want anyone to get the last word in especially when it contradicts or challenges your beliefs. You will respond to this and prove my point because to not would in your mind concede your opponent has had more to say and of better quality.

 
At 1:40 PM, April 15, 2005, Anonymous David Hobbs said...

To Lichanos:

"My "bile for logic" remark was directed at Anonymous[...]."'

I realize that, but my point was you were using similar such bile against Neo-neocon.

"This is analysis? Maybe the NYTimes doesn't think this is a major breakthrough. They have an opinion. Can she be so sure? She seems to have no understanding of the line between opinion and fact."

Of course you should be critical of such remarks, just as she is critical of the New York Times. But, if I may use a cliche, "don't throw the baby out with the bath water" I think she made a good point about the increased Iraqization of Iraq. This to me is a positive, and I'm glad she was able to point out an example of it. You're not going to agree with everything she writes, but in focusing only on the highly opinionated and subjective portions of her articles, you are missing some fascinating substantive insight.

 
At 4:59 PM, April 15, 2005, Blogger Lichanos said...

"You're not going to agree with everything she writes, but in focusing only on the highly opinionated and subjective portions of her articles, you are missing some fascinating substantive insight."

Good point. Perhaps it's a matter of taste. Her 'subjective' portions rub me the wrong way. She has some good readers, though.

 
At 12:28 AM, April 17, 2005, Blogger troutsky said...

This process of "Iraqization" I am hearing so much about,if this is just about building a military force composed of nationals,we shouldnt be awfully surprised that this is something the US can achieve,we have been arming and training foriegn armies for almost a century.It's probably what we do best.The surprise is that it has taken as long as it has.If,though,"Iraqization" means self determination we would have to ask, how does a permanent US military presence fold into that concept,how will the western corporate presence affect their society and culture,how can Iraqis reap the benefits of re-building,both in terms of employment and profit,how will the oil wealth be disributed? Many questions must be answered before the congratulations begin which may be why Lichanos thinks a historical view will be the only one with clarity.For now they must suffer the consequences of a violent invasion and occupation on top of the effects of having lived under a brutal sanctions regime and a vicious dictator.We lap up the bright images of toppling statues and purple fingers but the reality is in the hospitals and morgues and funeral processesions.

 
At 7:20 PM, April 17, 2005, Anonymous David Hobbs said...

"If,though,"Iraqization" means self determination we would have to ask, how does a permanent US military presence fold into that concept,how will the western corporate presence affect their society and culture,how can Iraqis reap the benefits of re-building,both in terms of employment and profit,how will the oil wealth be disributed? "

You said it best yourself, look to history. It is not like we lack examples of societies rebuilding themselves while under American supervision. Germany, Japan, South Korea all have a US military presence and it certainly hasn't kept those socities from growing. These are good questions to be sure, but history shows they we've had some experience and some success in rebuilding nations.

"For now they must suffer the consequences of a violent invasion and occupation on top of the effects of having lived under a brutal sanctions regime and a vicious dictator.We lap up the bright images of toppling statues and purple fingers but the reality is in the hospitals and morgues and funeral processesions. "

While life might not be easy in Iraq right now, I don't think it matches with the dark picture you paint. Reality shows that they are free from a murderous dictator. Reality shows that they are slowly forming their own government. In reality that horrible foreign occupation is being replaced more and more with Iraqi troops. Certainly everything isn't roses and lollipops, but I think you're being a tad melodramtic.

 
At 6:47 PM, April 23, 2005, Blogger Ymarsakar said...

If the NYT had been paying attention in Afghanistan, they wouldn't have been caught with their balls in their hands concerning Iraq.

Seriously, if you actually read the MilBlogs concerning Iraq, you would see a picture of what the United States military can do in a country once free from all domestic political wrangling and stupidity.

We convert a mass of ignorant, superstitious, and backwards people into the premier military force of their region. To do that, we instill such virtues and character traits as "discipline". (You know what discipline is, right?)

Among other virtues, like

Honor.

Loyalty.

Sacrifice.

Duty.

And so on.

We weren't born with those traits after World War II, we as a nation earned those through relentless Cold War years and relentless self-criticism and self-improvement after Vietnam. The all Professional VOlunteer Army is the equivalent in historical terms, to the Roman Legions after the Gaius Marius Reforms.

It is only as small as it is because so many young people can find jobs easily in this increasingly strong economy we gots. We're fighting a "war" but we are doing so with a peace time economy. Ever see someone juggle 3 balls in the air with one hand? For 5 hours? Ever see Tiger Woods bounce a golf ball up and down with a golf club?

The central point of course, is that Iraq and Afghanistan has never known the stability and security that can be brought about by a "professional" army. An army that does not steal, does not go around raping people, nor accepts bribes.

We bring to Afghanistan superior techniques, superior culture, and superior resources. But the relationship is not one sided. The Afghanistan people, while being educated in the art of war by Americans, also bring their own subtle strengths to the table. The Afghanistanis bring their brand of patriotism, their brand of tribal violence, their brand of self-reliance and hardiness.

While we have to train city kids in the Marine Corps via a harsh menu, in order to instill "warrior" virtues as well as "soldierly" virtues, the Afghanistanis already has several warrior virtues. They only need the soldierly discipline.

Read Alpha Geek's blog, he is a Special Forces operator in Afghanistan and he has PLENTY of stories on the Afghanistanis he works and trains with.

http://sfalphageek.blogspot.com/2005/04/about-those-beards.html

 
At 5:50 PM, May 03, 2005, Blogger SteveR said...

I Want To Tell You... that I appreciated your title for this post almost as much as the post itself.

Yes, even if your liberal friends and relatives tell you that You Could Find Better Things to Do, or tell you You Can't Do That, keep on postin'

I've Got A Feeling I'll be reading your blog for a long time. Help! I Should Have Known Better Than to post this silly comment!....

 

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