Infiltrated Iraqi units

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  1. An ugly story. And one that reveals one of the problems with our approach to Iraq: the official view (which you see in administration statements and in the resolution passed by the House last week):
    1. All “good” Iraqis like us.
    2. Everyone fighting us there is an Islamist terrorist that wants to destroy western civilization.
    The truth, of course, is that some Iraqis are glad we’re there, some are glad Hussein is gone but dismayed by the chaos, and others view us as an occupying force and think it’s patriotic to attack our troops. Some of the people fighting us are, indeed, Islamist terrorists; some are Iraqis who think they’re helping their country.
    A big part of any plans we make there needs to be an honest evaluation of whether we’re helping move the country toward stability, and how we might do that better; but when you start with the simplistic and incorrect story of what’s happening there, it’s really hard to see that happening.

  2. I know people who are used to news being propogated at the speed of the Internet don’t like these delays, but they serve a purpose. Specifically, the time allows for a thorough investigation to be carried out, and the facts of the “incident” determined. This really does need to be carried out without the media/blogosphere/politicians clamoring for “the facts, and NOW, Dammit!” Unlike the Web, where you can find out all type of information (most of it completely bogus, but that is another rant), real investigations are painstaking, and often you have to tie up all the loose ends (OK, was it “friendly fire”? Or was it a disgruntled ex-Baathist, an AQ ‘plant’ who infiltrated the unit, or simply a free-lancer with an AK-47 and a hard-on for those two soldiers?) And, if it is determined that someone infiltrated the unit, how compromised *is* the unit? Who can be trusted, who needs to be investigated further, and who needs to be tried and shot? Oh, and make sure all the Is are dotted and the Ts are crossed, else the case may fall apart, and you have to roll up the whole network before the Bad Guys find out.
    With all this to do, and the need to make damn sure we are correct before we take any action, getting anything done in 9 months is a miracle!

  3. It could be a unique incident if it was in fact an Iraqi soldier, or it could be just another attack from someone who stole the uniform off of the countless Iraqi soldiers that have been killed. I don’t get the impression with all the chaos there that Iraqi equipment and uniforms would be hard to find for terrorists that may never have been trained by us.

  4. Jack,
    I didn’t get the impression that this was somebody in a soldier’s uniform. They were, apparently, training and working with the Iraqi unit.

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