Eye-Rack: We. Have. Failed.
William Arkin says what needed to be said in this online column. An outdated metric for measuring insanity is if doing something repeatedly while expecting different results.
A telling example is that it's been ten months since Iraq's only "level one" unit - a level of which Iraqi units can fight eithout American assistance - has been downgraded. Have they been upgraded during that time? How many level one units have been trained in those ten months? We went into this war unprepared, and now we are reaping the whirlwinds. Get out get yourselves together and next time you want to occupy a country that never attacked us, let us know what we're getting ourselves into before we go in.
Robert Farley of TAPPED got it exactly right with this graf:
The magic bullet that Connable (and, incidentally, the ISG) presents is a well trained and effective Iraqi military, one capable of overcoming sectarian division and carrying out a competent and efficiently executed counter-insurgency doctrine without resorting to genocidal bloodshed or fratricidal civil war. In other words, the expectation is that forces inevitably less capable than the units already deployed will be able to solve the problem and prevent insurgent control, bloodletting, brutality, etc. Right. This expectation itself depends on the assumption that an Army which has never been good at counter-insurgency will be able to train, in a remarkably short period of time (as the founding of armies goes) an Iraqi force up to the level of competence it will require to operate without substantial U.S. support.