13 March 2008

Failure, By Any Other Name

From the WaPo:
Petraeus: Iraqi Leaders Not Making 'Sufficient Progress'
By Cameron W. Barr

BAGHDAD, March 13 -- Iraqi leaders have failed to take advantage of a reduction in violence to make adequate progress toward resolving their political differences, Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, said Thursday.

Petraeus, who is preparing to testify to Congress next month on the Iraq war, said in an interview that "no one" in the U.S. and Iraqi governments "feels that there has been sufficient progress by any means in the area of national reconciliation," or in the provision of basic public services.
The problem with the "We're Winning in Iraq" set is that they really have only the most childlike understanding of what "winning" means. Their crowing over the Glorious Surge makes it clear that they lack even the barest understanding of what would constitute success in this situation.

Few disputed the idea that a flood of troops on the ground would provide security and a decrease in violence. Unfortunately, there appears to be a tendency to treat those security gains , not as the means to the end that they are, but as the end, itself.

Might as well pin medals on the fire fighters for getting the truck to the scene without incident while the house is still burning down.

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