U.S. Intelligence Offers Gloomy Outlook for Iraq




 
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September 16th, 2004  
Duty Honor Country
 
 

Topic: U.S. Intelligence Offers Gloomy Outlook for Iraq


U.S. Intelligence Offers Gloomy Outlook for Iraq
Thu Sep 16, 2004 10:36 AM ET

By Tabassum Zakaria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. intelligence report prepared for President Bush in July offered a gloomy outlook for Iraq through the end of 2005, with the worst scenario being a deterioration into civil war, U.S. government officials said on Thursday.

The report is at odds with the generally optimistic tenor of the Bush's administration's public statements on Iraq, although Bush said last week it was "still tough" there but insisted elections would be held as scheduled in January despite doubts....

http://olympics.reuters.com/newsArti...toryID=6256036
September 17th, 2004  
Airborne Eagle
 
 
This is always the issue with intel assessments.

First, there are three outcomes loosely predicted. The most dire is getting the air time (and, to a degree, rightly so. Should prepare for the worst. Of course, you should also let the public know all the assessments and not cherry-pick).

So if you sound the alarm bells, you prepare for the worst and perhaps shake up the DOD. I am a Bush supporter, but Rumsfeld must go after the election. Can't do it prior or the press and their candidate would have a field day with the blood in the water. Regardless, the chain has to triple, quadruple their efforts to make this a success.

If they paint too rosy a picture, they help no one and leave themselves open to heat from politicians claiming the administration coerced them or the military is covering up.

So, you lay it on the line with America, as they apparently did.

Tell them this is a tough situation and there's a lot of work to do.

Here are three possible scenarios.

Now, it's up to decision makers to act on it appropriately.
September 20th, 2004  
Young Winston
 
 
The assessment doesn't look good. You would think Bush and his team would get some positive assessments (if they exist) out before the election.

Will there be a big offensive into the Sunni triangle after the election to try and clean up the insurgents?

Are the US forces a bit thin on the ground?

The Iraqis being trained don't look likely to be affective on a consistent basis for some time to come.
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September 20th, 2004  
Airborne Eagle
 
 
I highly doubt there will be a significant push into Fallujah before the winter. They're still conducting operations with air support. However, I think they're waiting until the Iraqi election draws nearer (January). As it becomes more a reality, the Baathists may lose support. The more actionable intel we have, the more effective our troops become.

I'm not so certain more troops are needed (but won't say with certainty they aren't). The more trigger-pullers you put in, you also increase your rear echelon types. They're harder to protect.

So, I think it's more a matter of tactical intel and rapid response. That, in conjuction with an increasing Iraqi force, should help. I think the Iraqi army is supposed to top at 37 battalions. Not sure how many they have now.
September 21st, 2004  
Young Winston
 
 
Surprising that John McCain and other Republicans are speaking up more and voicing their concerns about the insurgency situation. Is Bush putting a too positive spin for the elections?

The US boys have been fighting extremely well but I hope they can get on top of the security situation well before January. It just concerns me how you can attack, hold onto captured territory over a wide area and keep it safe from insurgents with so few troops. I donít think the locals are up to the task as yet to fill the gaps where the US troops canít be.

The US must have a lot of faith in Allawi. Iím not so sure about him myself.

I think you need a lot more troops.
September 21st, 2004  
Airborne Eagle
 
 
The Iraqis won't be ready to take a larger role for quite some time.

Regarding McCain (and, in a different way, Hagel), McCain's a good guy. He just never met a camera he didn't like. He seems to morph into whatever "the media" needs for the moment. Years ago, he was all about campaign finance. Despite better judgement, he continued to push an obviously flawed bill. No one stopped it and it became law. It's a terrible law because it does nothing to stop money from entering the political process, but does restrict free speech. But McCain will always be around the latest glamor issue. He's still grooming for a presidential run.
September 22nd, 2004  
Duty Honor Country
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiejohn
The assessment doesn't look good. You would think Bush and his team would get some positive assessments (if they exist) out before the election.
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiejohn
The US boys have been fighting extremely well but I hope they can get on top of the security situation well before January. It just concerns me how you can attack, hold onto captured territory over a wide area and keep it safe from insurgents with so few troops. I donít think the locals are up to the task as yet to fill the gaps where the US troops canít be.

I think you need a lot more troops.
That report is more like reality knocking on Bushes door. Since politics blurs everything, the war on Iraq is somewhere in between what Bush and Kerry are saying about it.

I do not think we need more troops, we just need to finish the fight. There have been 2 instances in both Najaf and Fallujah where the rebels were surrounded. Right before the rebels were eliminated, a deal was brokered for the rebels to leave. I firmly believe that after leaving, the rebels just start fighting again. If the rebels had been destroyed, rebels elsewhere may think twice before fighting. It's kinda grusem, but it would get the job done.

We will win this war by winning over the people. So far, the US has done a bad job of doing so. Yes there is a lot of good going on over there, but with $16 billion slated of reconstruction, there should be a lot more going on.

aussiejohn, I am going to have to start challenging a bit harder