Monday, August 27, 2007

"Defend-the-Surge" campaign about to be launched

I’m glad Jim Lobe is back from his vacation. On August 24, he posted AEI sets launch for all-or-nothing campaign. The American Enterprise Foundation is described by Lobe as the neo-conservative organization “…[W]hich contributed so much to the propaganda and planning for the Iraq invasion and subsequent occupation….”

The AEI “…[A]ppears set to launch its ‘Defend-the-Surge’ campaign in the run-up to the presentation of and Congressional debate over the Petraeus-Crocker report on Thursday, September 6, with an afternoon forum whose title, ‘No Middle Way’ in Iraq.”

Lobe describes the speakers at the forum, adding, “...[A] a partial preview of the upcoming forum and AEI’s arguments in favor of sustaining the Surge is available in an analysis in Kristol’s ‘Weekly Standard’ posted today in which Fred Kagan gives his take on Thursday’s NIE…”

The NIE referred to above was described in The New York Times on August 23: Report offers grim few of Iraqi leaders: “A stark assessment released Thursday by the nation’s intelligence agencies depicts a paralyzed Iraqi government unable to take advantage of the security gains achieved by the thousands of extra American troops dispatched to the country this year.” [see my post yesterday, Is the surge working?]

In Kagan’s analysis, he states, “Critics of the current strategy can use parts of the NIE to raise concerns about the political process in Iraq. Using those concerns to justify abandoning the current strategy, as the NIE itself clearly states, will jeopardize the enormous progress already made against al Qaeda in Iraq, which remains a potent threat that could reconstitute itself rapidly if we lifted the pressure from it. The fact that we have achieved a great deal without yet achieving all of our objectives is not grounds for abandoning a successful strategy. It is grounds for continuing it.”

Lobe, referring to Kagan’s comment above, “That is certain to be a major theme of the September 6 forum and indeed of the neo-conservative effort to keep the Surge alive.”

If Kagan's position is premised on his and the AEI's position that the surge is working when in fact it isn't, I hope Congress learns this on or before the Petraeus/Crocker hearing on September 6.

(photo of Jim Lobe from

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