U.S. Central Command Charts Sharp Movement of the Civil Conflict in Iraq Toward Chaos
A classified briefing prepared two weeks ago by the United States Central Command portrays Iraq as edging toward chaos, in a chart that the military is using as a barometer of civil conflict.
A one-page slide shown at the Oct. 18 briefing provides a rare glimpse into how the military command that oversees the war is trying to track its trajectory, particularly in terms of sectarian fighting.
The slide includes a color-coded bar chart that is used to illustrate an “Index of Civil Conflict.” It shows a sharp escalation in sectarian violence since the bombing of a Shiite shrine in Samarra in February, and tracks a further worsening this month despite a concerted American push to tamp down the violence in Baghdad.
In fashioning the index, the military is weighing factors like the ineffectual Iraqi police and the dwindling influence of moderate religious and political figures, rather than more traditional military measures such as the enemy’s fighting strength and the control of territory.
The conclusions the Central Command has drawn from these trends are not encouraging, according to a copy of the slide that was obtained by The New York Times. The slide shows Iraq as moving sharply away from “peace,” an ideal on the far left side of the chart, to a point much closer to the right side of the spectrum, a red zone marked “chaos.” As depicted in the command’s chart, the needle has been moving steadily toward the far right of the chart.
Here's the chart:
Having read "Imperial Life in the Emerald City" and now "FIASCO" there is little doubt that not only was the initiation of the war dubious and wrong, but the occupation has been, incredibly, monumentally worse.
From relying on frauds like Chalabi, to having NO plans for the regime that would follow the "Regime Change" the stated as necessary for the war, to the complete de-baathification, the terminination of every member of the military and police, the setting up of a clear imperial rule, the disrespect for the various cultures - to the extent there was ever an effort to understand it has been all one disaster after another all making things worse and all creating the circumstances that have led to this complete unmitigated disaster.
Bush keeps saying, and now his minions are repeating the talking point "do you want to win?"
It's rather obvious that from the beginning they insured the failure of this operation from the get go. They have never known how to "win", they don't know what "winning is" other than trying to keep us hostage to this purgatory of miserable failure. There is, thanks to them, no longer any real "victory" in Iraq, rather it is an effort to "lose" less badly.
And it is ALL on them.
And for this, it is important for us as a nation to do what must be done -- and just as importantly to prevent future Administrations (of both parties) from learning a lesson -- that you can start all forms of miserable wars and manage to eek out 8 years of political success.
They must be punished, they must lose next Tuesday.
And that would be this nation's apology to those that have been sacrificed upon the altar of the Bush Administration's frightening incompetence.