Friday, July 27, 2007

benchmark erased

now we all know, that the benchmarks for Iraq are rather bad. being very vague, the Bush team managed to claim "progress" by citing weird performance as success.

there are a couple of REAL benchmarks though. brookings for example is reporting some of them in their monthly reports. a single look at the oil production numbers or the electricity output shows, that there is ZERO progress in Iraq.

now Bush is trying to eliminate those few real benchmarks:

As the Bush administration struggles to convince lawmakers that its Iraq war strategy is working, it has stopped reporting to Congress a key quality-of-life indicator in Baghdad: how long the power stays on.

Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week that Baghdad residents could count on only "an hour or two a day" of electricity. That's down from an average of five to six hours a day earlier this year.
power in baghdad? WORST ever!


TPM has some other "disappearing" information!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

"substained surge"

Officials debate sustained Iraq 'surge'

Administration and military leaders haven't decided whether progress would mean ending or extending the troop buildup.

is it just me, or doesn t this make any sense?

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Pakistan, the future

now a look at Afghanistan today gives an idea of the (best case) future of Iraq.

10 years from now, expect no central control, a failing military, need for more foreign troops and a situation getting worse.

a look at Pakistan today, will prepare you for the situation in Iraqs neighbors then.

Three suicide bombings killed at least 51 people on Thursday, as Pakistan's violent turmoil spread from the Afghan frontier to the south, officials said.

Bush has brought total chaos to a region. that the war in Iraq is lost, might be not the worst news these days.

On May 30, the Coalition held a ceremony in the Kurdistan town of Erbil to mark its handover of security in Iraq's three Kurdish provinces from the Coalition to the Iraqi government. Gen. Benjamin Mixon, the U.S. commander for northern Iraq, praised the Iraqi government for overseeing all aspects of the handover. And he drew attention to the "benchmark" now achieved: With the handover, he said, Iraqis now controlled security in seven of Iraq's 18 provinces.

In fact, nothing was handed over. The only Coalition force in Kurdistan is the peshmerga, a disciplined army that fought alongside the Americans in the 2003 campaign to oust Saddam Hussein; it is loyal to the Kurdistan government in Erbil. The peshmerga provided security in the three Kurdish provinces before the handover and after. The Iraqi army has not been on Kurdistan's territory since 1996 and is effectively prohibited from being there. Nor did the Iraqi flag fly at the ceremony. It is banned in Kurdistan.

iraq, (non-) developments

Baghdad, can you hear the U.S. Senate?” Mr. Biden said into his microphone at one point when the communications with Mr. Crocker went silent.

An activist for the Code Pink anti-war movement shouted from the gallery, “Senate, can you hear the American people?”

so what s going on in Iraq? massive things, if you believe Ambassador Crocker and General Odierno. massive things, that don t show up in benchmarks, though.

"I can think of no major population center in Iraq that is in an al Qaeda safe haven today," Odierno said.

i can t think of one, that isn t. but surely, November will show us the truth. one goal post moved. again.

so let s look at some real benchmarks:

These months have been the worst in electricity supplies ever. We're getting an average of one hour per day of electricity from the grid. The last time we had such hour was three days ago!
this is from ITM, not a left wing source really.

and how about casualties?

close to 1000, again. on the 18th of july. as always, after the June low.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

June: most violent month ever!

sorry for my long absence. but here you go:

ABC News has learned the most recent military intelligence assessment of Iraq also shows that the overall level of violence in the country -- measured as the number of "violent incidents" -- hit its highest level in June since the war began.

According to the assessment, an average of 178 attacks a day were carried out in June. By comparison, there were only 94 attacks a day in March 2006, the month after the attack on the Golden Dome mosque in Samarra touched off a wave of sectarian violence.