Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Credible? Or not?

Head of Iraqi Intelligence claims insurgency strength at 200,000.

That's 40,000 hardcore full time fighters, the rest being made up of logistical types and targets-of-opportunity wallahs.

This is alarming on two fronts:

a) If it's true it shows that American estimates (which, as I think Mark has pointed out before, never seem to go down even after large numbers of insurgents are claimed killed) are way off, either because the Coalition doesn't know what the hell is going on or because the people back home are being bullshitted as to the true seriousness of the situation.


b) The new head of Iraqi Intelligence doesn's know what the hell is going on.

Option B is moderately preferable to Option A, but neither is particularly palatable.

Possibly more on this later (assuming that embolism holds off).


Blogger J. said...

Bet on option A. The "destroy a town to safe it" approach is breeding terrorists faster than the U.S. coalition of the bribed can stomp them out, despite Rumsfeld's objections to the countrary.

I just always see this vision from "Full Metal Jacket" as being the case in Iraq - A general officer is grilling a Marine: "Son, all I've ever asked of my Marines is for them to obey my orders as they would the word of God. We are here to help the Vietnamese because inside every gook, there is an American trying to get out. It's a hardball world, son. We've got to try to keep our heads until this peace craze blows over."

Substitute "Vietnamese" with "Iraqi" and "gook" with "raghead" and you get today's environment. BTW doesn't Mark and Michael ever blog here ;^)

4:10 PM  
Blogger Anthony said...

They do indeed! However, I'm currently a student whereas they have high powered jobs in the defence community and I also happen to be on long university holidays (and have no wife to cater for) whereas they are not.

University starts up again next week, so you can expect my posts to trail off after that point too. After that they will probably be longer and rarer but better quality. As it is I've been killing rather a lot of time.

4:16 PM  
Blogger Josh Jasper said...

I'd say it depends on who you define as an insurgent. Do you mean a supporter of Al Sadr? Foreign militia? Random Sunni people who just happen two have a few AK-47's on hand and will occasionally go off the deep end and attack Americans? Political enemies of the new President?

Who gets to say who's an insurgent, and how do they treat suspected insurgents in Iraq? Do you get yanked off the streets and 'disappeared'? Is there any such thing as the Habeus Corpus we have in America?

6:58 PM  
Blogger Anthony said...


Too many questions to try to answer in the comments section! I'll try to cover some of the questions you've raised to the best of my ability over the next few days.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Josh Jasper said...

Just three questions, really. How do you define an insurgent, who's empowered to make the definition, and what happens when you get defined as an one?

2:11 AM  
Blogger J. said...

Well, Josh, in the U.S.A., an insurgent is anyone that doesn't agree with the White House or DOD positions on Iraq and carries a gun (as opposed to supporters of terrorism, which includes anyone that doesn't agree with the White House or DOD on Iraq), only the DOJ, DHS, DOD, and White House are empowered to define an insurgent (basic definition: evil-doers), and what happens? the U.S. can hold you in prison for life without charges when you get defined as one.

Any questions?

9:04 AM  
Blogger Josh Jasper said...

Any questions?Yes. Professor Cole? Is that you?

< grin duck and run >

3:41 PM  

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