Friday, September 21, 2007

In Control

Baghdad mostly under U.S. control - 21 Sep 2007 at 2:36pm - WASHINGTON -- The portion of Baghdad in which Iraqi security forces are in control with minimal help from the American military has grown only slightly in recent months, to just over 8 percent.
After four years, only 8% has been transferred back to Iraqi forces (sort of) -- what does that say about the United States' priorities where Iraq is concerned?

So can 8% of the U.S. troops that had been controlling Baghdad safely be redeployed? If not, what's the significance?

US, Iraqi forces control half of Baghdad: general - 21 Sep 2007 at 4:26pm - US or Iraqi forces control more than half of Baghdad's neighbourhoods while the rest still experience fighting and sectarian violence, the US commander in Baghdad revealed.
OK, so make that 8% of 50%, or something like that.

Weighing the History of 'Violent Politics' - September 20, 2007 - In his book Violent Politics, William Polks uses 11 tales of national turmoil for insight into counter-insurgency efforts. Polk finds echoes of Vietnam and the Soviet debacle in Afghanistan as he weighs U.S. policy in Iraq.
In his NPR interview yesterday, the author discussed, among other things, his view that military counter-insurgency strategies have never worked and they're not about to any time soon.

Iraq aims to end immunity of security firms - 21 Sep 2007 at 8:35am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq wants to tighten control over security contractors after a deadly shooting incident involving the U.S. firm Blackwater, ending their long immunity from Iraqi prosecution, the Interior Ministry said on Friday.

Mandela still alive after embarrassing Bush remark - 21 Sep 2007 at 10:29am - Nelson Mandela is still very much alive despite an embarrassing gaffe by US President George W Bush, who alluded to the former South African leader's death in an attempt to explain sectarian violence in Iraq.

Guards' Shots Not Provoked, Iraq Concludes - 21 Sep 2007 at 12:15pm - Iraq's Ministry of Interior is proposing a reshaping of how American diplomats in Iraq are protected. The U.S. Embassy said today that some convoys had resumed.

Rumsfeld as Fellow Draws a Protest at Stanford - 21 Sep 2007 at 10:06am - The appointment of the former defense secretary at the Hoover Institution is drawing fierce protests.

Number of Iraqi asylum seekers up sharply from last year: UN - 21 Sep 2007 at 2:43pm - Close to 20,000 Iraqis applied for asylum to Western countries during the first half of this year, up 45 per cent from the previous six-month-period, according to the UN's refugee agency.

Thought for the day:
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not one bit simpler. -Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955), (attributed)


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