Iraq: This Guy Gets It
Quotes of note:
"First, U.S. forces in Iraq remain focused on their mission. ... These men and women understand their mission and believe they are making a difference." Yes, they do. The soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines there are considerably more educated and sophisticated than they're given credit for being.
"Nothing in history is inevitable; events unfold as they do because leaders and their publics make choices. Neither civil war nor a democratic, pluralist government is predestined for Iraq. But one fact is clear: Premature withdrawal of U.S. forces -- before Iraqi troops are ready, or before the political and economic situation stabilizes -- will condemn Iraq and the region to a future of chaos, destruction and death." This is entirely correct. There is a job to be done, and it must not be cut short.
The author "gets" the War, and the campaign in Iraq. The objective is to give that country a fighting chance to make its own way in the world, without being a menace to its neighbors, a danger to world peace, and a breeding ground for militancy. That is strategic forethought.