January 16, 2007

Dead Ball


In our The 800-Pound Guerrilla post I explained why I thought Bush's latest moves against Iranian influence in Iraq were not enough:

The plan, it appears, is to limit our military to attacks against terrorists and their supply lines within Iraq and refrain from attacking the source of those terrorists and supply lines: Iran. Bush is attempting to cure the symptoms while ignoring the disease. As such, the weapons and terrorists will keep flowing across the border, and the chaos in Iraq, though it may rise and fall, will ultimately continue because Iran needs it to continue. How can we expect our troops to win a war in which we don't allow them to directly attack the enemy?

In World War II, we didn't stop with engaging enemy soldiers at the front lines; nor did we stop at disrupting their supply lines. We took the fight all the way to the weapons factories and the command centers from which the war emanated.

That point, I thought, deserved it's own cartoon, especially since the White House is bending over backwards to "reassure" everyone that we're only engaging Iran within Iraq. For instance, from Newsweek: Tough Talk About Iran: How Far Will It Go?.

In fact, administration officials (anonymous due to diplomatic sensitivities) concede that Bush's Iran language may have been overly aggressive, raising unwarranted fears about military strikes on Tehran. Instead, they say, Bush was trying to warn Iran to keep its operatives out of Iraq, and to reassure Gulf allies—including Saudi Arabia—that the United States would protect them against Iranian aggression.

And from an article last week:

Asked whether the United States is preparing for a potential military conflict with Iran, President Bush's national security adviser Stephen Hadley told NBC's "Meet the Press," "No, the president has said very clearly that the issues we have with Iran should be solved diplomatically."

And another:

Defense Secretary Robert Gates told the House Armed Services Committee that U.S. troops are trying to crack down on the spread of Iranian-supplied explosives into Iraq, and the administration is "making it clear that those who are involved in activities that cost the lives of American soldiers are going to be subject to actions on the part of the United States inside Iraq." [Emphasis added]

We owe it to our troops to minimize the risks they face, and to do that in Iraq, we should let them go into Iran and eliminate the Iranian IEDs, the Iranian weapons, and the Iranian-trained jihadis at the source before more Americans are killed and maimed.

UDPATE I -- Jan. 18: FOX News Poll: Most Think Troop Surge is Bush’s Last Chance in Iraq.

A majority of Americans consider President Bush's plan to send more troops to Iraq his last chance for victory there, according to a new FOX News poll.

Overall, the president's plan receives only minority support, and that comes mainly from his party faithful. A large part of the public's opposition to the plan could be based on the fact that most see it as a continuation of the same strategy, rather than as a real change.

Opinion Dynamics Corporation conducted the national telephone poll of 900 registered voters for FOX News from January 16 to January 17. The poll has a 3-point error margin.

By 59 percent to 36 percent, Americans oppose sending more U.S. troops to Iraq, not only because most believe it is unlikely the plan will succeed, but also because few voters see the plan Bush announced last week as a significant change to current policy.

UDPATE II -- Jan. 25: Bush publicly stated he has no intentions of going into Iran to stop the flow of weapons, explosives, and jihadists into Iraq, confirming that he has no plans to do what is necessary to win. From CNN: U.S. troops allowed to kill Iranians plotting attacks in Iraq.

"Some are trying to say that because we're helping ourselves in Iraq by stopping outside influence from killing our soldiers or hurting Iraqi people that we want to expand this beyond the borders," Bush said.

"That's a presumption that's simply not accurate. We believe that we can solve our problems with Iran diplomatically.

Posted by Forkum at January 16, 2007 05:53 PM