Saturday, December 02, 2006

Snowflakes Keep Falling on My Head

Rummy picks up a clue, as shown by this late memo published in the NYT.

Clearly, what U.S. forces are currently doing in Iraq is not working ...

Some of his ideas might have made sense, if tried two or three years ago. Some excerpts:
¶Initiate a reverse embeds program, like the Korean Katusas, by putting one or more Iraqi soldiers with every U.S. and possibly Coalition squad, to improve our units’ language capabilities and cultural awareness and to give the Iraqis experience and training with professional U.S. troops.

¶Retain high-end SOF capability and necessary support structure to target Al Qaeda, death squads, and Iranians in Iraq, while drawing down all other Coalition forces, except those necessary to provide certain key enablers for the ISF.

¶Initiate an approach where U.S. forces provide security only for those provinces or cities that openly request U.S. help and that actively cooperate, with the stipulation being that unless they cooperate fully, U.S. forces would leave their province.
¶Withdraw U.S. forces from vulnerable positions — cities, patrolling, etc. — and move U.S. forces to a Quick Reaction Force (QRF) status, operating from within Iraq and Kuwait, to be available when Iraqi security forces need assistance.

¶Begin modest withdrawals of U.S. and Coalition forces (start “taking our hand off the bicycle seat”), so Iraqis know they have to pull up their socks, step up and take responsibility for their country.

¶Provide money to key political and religious leaders (as Saddam Hussein did), to get them to help us get through this difficult period.

¶Initiate a massive program for unemployed youth. It would have to be run by U.S. forces, since no other organization could do it.

The last one would have been a good idea right after the invasion. It's almost certainly impossible now, though it might still make sense to try, starting in provinces that are relatively stable.

Advice, said Gildor, is a dangerous gift, even from the wise to the wise. From the foolish to the moronic, it's probably just useless. Besides, Bush and Cheney are already plotting to build the Death Star.