11 April 2008

Iraq News (11 Apr)

The Good: Excellent NY Times article from Michael R. Gordon on joint operations in Sadr City and how it is improving the Iraqi Security Forces...along with the setbacks. It's a mixed bag on opinion of the ISF from US military in the field, but it can't be denied that the better they get, the smaller the US role will be. The Prez has announced that combat tours will be 12 months for Army units getting on the ground after August 1st. Deployments are still long, but 12 months is better than 15.

The Bad: A mass grave was found south of Baghdad in an area once known as the "Triangle of Death". Lately, it's been pretty calm due to the rise of the Sahwa and a larger military presence, but ugly remnants of Al-Qaeda and other terrorist thugs still remain.

The Ugly: Huge controversy over the Status of Forces Agreement between Iraq and the United States. Mostly because the plan is not to have it ratified by the US Senate. Insert negative comments about BushCheneyCo here. First, Mr. Sadr's people say they are going to get in touch with the religious authorities in Najaf about disbanding the Mahdi Army. Then, the word is out that Grand Ayatollah Sistani was never consulted. Not sure what's going on with this, but it will be interesting to see what develops today during Friday prayers.

Joint Ops in Sadr City


Anonymous said...

But if Sistani does not sanction the Mahdi Army and he says it's Sadr's decision to make to disband -- hmmmm, sounds a little like pass the buck here. Which again, leaves -- leaves what?? Everyone in jeopardy again. Yeah, good luck on that situation.

Mezzo SF said...

...but those boots currently on the ground keep their "vacation" at the 15-month mark...is that it?

LT Nixon said...

Mezzo SF,

Yes... so the guys that show up starting on Aug 1 will be on 12 month tours. Knowing the military, a bunch of people will probably drop into the sandbox in late July.


Sistani is really old and doesn't get involved too much in politics. Cut the guy some slack!

Anonymous said...

If it makes a difference that he was never consulted, then it doesn't make a difference how old he is!!
(You brought it up!)