1. the report will highlight military success.
and there even was some, much less than expected (and necessary!), though. the number of civilians killed might be slightly down. number of attacks is similar or higher than before. violence seems mostly to have been shifted, not removed.
but the real problem with this aspect is: we sent in an additional 30000 US troops. that is nearly a 25% increase! of course this would have an effect. looking at some numbers it becomes obvious, that we need at least another 60000 to get violence in Iraq to an "acceptable" level.
2. the report will claim some political progress
the US will try to force iraqis to at least attempt a vote on one of the laws. (oil, most likely)
the political process unfortunetly has become much worse lately. so this a forced law will lead to another debacle, like the constitution did.
3. the Anbar progress will take ahuge place in the report.
as i wrote before, i don t believe that forming militias is progress.
4. future action: slowly remove troops.
Bush and Co will have to face reality. a majority of americans (and of US MPs of both parties) wants troop numbers reduced. the reduction of course will not come in real action, but mostly in promises. a tiny short term reduction. a bigger reduction next year (when keeping this force level up will become difficult for the US military anyway) and prospect of a huge reduction AFTER the elections.
5. don t expect any hard numbers!
oil production? electricity delivered? numbers of attacks, violence death? the report will contain pretty little of this. and those that get in, will be carefully chosen.
the LATimes has an interesting piece on this today:
The expected recommendation would authorize U.S. commanders to withdraw troops from places that have become less violent and turn over security responsibilities to Iraqi forces.a rather nice variant. "reduction" inside Iraq. followed by movement to bases "at the border to kuwait", perhaps? plenty of room to move!
a nice development is, that we might not even hear his recommendations:
The senior officer in Baghdad said the military was still debating whether Petraeus should make his detailed strategy recommendations to Congress in an open or closed session.oh, and of course the General isn t writing the report. the whitehouse is.
Despite Bush's repeated statements that the report will reflect evaluations by Petraeus and Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, administration officials said it would actually be written by the White House, with inputs from officials throughout the government.
Tomdispatch has an enormous amount of numbers on Iraq. check it out!
i joined a debate on Billroggio today.
he made the claim that
prison population rises as almost 3,000 foreign fighters are detained.but his source only speaks of 3000 foreign prisoners, not foreign fighters.