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December 19, 2007



Great, they're rallying against us but at least a sense of national identity is emerging.

There's so much spin in that that I got dizzy just typing it.

the poster formerly known as c

Maybe it's foreplay .In any event they aren't acting on that supposed animus (never referred to in the WSJ sum up).

Rick Ballard

Somehow I don't expect to ever see a report stating that "a rigorous epistemological analysis of the prevailing beliefs in muslim dominated countries lead us to the ineluctable conclusion that quarantine is the kindest choice that might be made".

Let 'em spin like dervishes. Iraq's fate was sealed when their elected representatives chose to enshrine sharia as the law above laws in their constitution. Anyone expecting muslim sentiment to rise above the support of thieves and murderers hasn't done their homework. Robert Spencer's posts at Allah pundit provide a decent Cliff Notes.

Cecil Turner

Remember, these are highly trained professional spinners - do not attempt this at home.

Not sure we've got the professional spinners correctly identified here. Note that the paragraph in question is entirely written by Ms DeYoung . . . not the unnamed military source cited as an authority. Further, it expands upon the story's lede:

The results are analyzed and presented to Petraeus as part of the daily Battle Update Assessment or BUA (pronounced boo-ah). Some of the news has been unarguably good, including the sharply reduced number of roadside bombings and attacks on civilians. But bad news is often presented with a bright side, such as the focus-group results and a November poll, which found that 25 percent of Baghdad residents were satisfied with their local government and that 15 percent said they had enough fuel for heating and cooking.
Nowhere in there is a claim the results are a representative sample, nor that they're using the data to assess living conditions (rather than attitudes about such). And this whole thing looks like nothing so much as an attempt--by the Post--to draw attention away from the "unarguably good" news . . . in an ongoing effort to support the "quagmire" meme.


I think Abdullah and the mullahs agreed it is unseemly to let Ahmadi-Nijad and bin Laden slaughter Muslims so viciously.

Better the effort be spent on infidels.


A little off topic but close enough for government work.
Iran Lands in Nicaragua

Patrick R. Sullivan

It was so hard to find things like:

The continued implementation of the New Way Forward strategy combined with the surge in overall force levels in Iraq has considerably improved overall levels of security during the past quarter. Improved security is beginning to achieve momentum that, if maintained, may lead to sustained stability.

"Not sure we've got the professional spinners correctly identified here."

Holy Moly.

The good news from the crew of
Titanic is; "she scuttled in the deepest part of the Atlantic, making the cheese and wine stores subject to the preservatives of deep cold."


'Dry canal' in Nicaragua. Tres interessant.

Cecil Turner

The good news from the crew of Titanic . . .

Heh. It's a little impressive that our friends in the media ignore the Petraeus report, which concludes:

During this reporting period, the focus on population protection and growing cooperation from residents in securing their neighborhoods helped produce continued, tangible improvements in the security environment as overall attacks, sectarian violence, high-profile attacks, murders and casualties continued to decline.
But the WaPo coverage is on focus groups, and reiterates the same nonsense from over a year ago. Shorter WaPo: [plaintive wail] "but they don't like us" [/wail]. Shorter Cleo: "See! Quagmire!"

One might almost conclude the narrative was independent of actual events on the ground.

Ralph L

Time chose Putin as man, excuse me, person of the year. A commenter on Althouse:
Fen said...
Thank God they didn't choose Petraeus - I don't want him sullied by association with that rag.

I tend to agree.


Doesn't anyone else think that it is ominous that many here respond to M.O. (above)-(jeez), than to Gen. Petraeus? We are lost!!



Wha? I skimmed the executive summary-numbers are going in the right direction.
Violence is down, electricity production is up, oil exports are up, military forces and police forces are being staffed up, trained, and equipped. Overall a good picture with some serious challanges remaining.

On the economic front unemployment remains problematic, but with improving security the large scale infrastructure projects can finally get off the ground. Inflation is also problematic, but this is probably a result of the spike in oil prices (inflation is a problem throughout the Gulf States, UAE especially) and the large amount of US currency in circulation in Iraq probably doesn't help [there was article about this a couple of days ago]. The most troubling thing to me in the report, regarding the economic situation, is that the Hussein era debt forgivness and reduction plans have stalled. Russia is refusing to cooperate regarding debt reduction and negotions with KSA have been suspended. There has been more success in the European front, with Bulgairia recently forgiving about $3 b of debt.



Time magazine has a motif of a hard bitten lone ranger; you are being led by the only man in the world appropriately pessimistic and yet loyal to you. WaPo adds to this that not only are you paranoid schizophrenic but appropriately so; safety, really sanity itself, is only possible by clutching on to your copy of the WaPo. Or you could believe your lying eyes that Petraeus is the Man of the Year and read of Iraq in Iraq the Model.


Kagan on the Middle East in the WaJo.

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