Thursday, December 02, 2004

More Strength: The number one concern of the war in Iraq has always been whether we have enough troops there. The Pentagon finally relented and plans to increase the troop strength in the coming months. Now we'll just see if it will be enough.

The number of troops will increase from 138,000 to about 150,000 -- which is the highest number since the war began. But press reports indicate that some officers would like several hundred thousand troops to occupy Iraq.

It's obvious by now that the post-war occupation of Iraq has not gone as planned. While we easily toppled Saddam Hussein and his military, the urban guerilla battle with terrorists has grown worse than we feared.

This is a new type of war, one that we're not used to fighting. We made some mistakes, such as disbanding the Iraqi army and not leveling Fallujah earlier. At the time, those seemed like the right moves, but Monday-morning quarterbacks have acted like they knew what to do all along that they were setbacks. Honestly, though, I can't think of a single war in which everything went exactly to plan.

The terrorists are going to increase their activities in the run up to the Iraqi elections. It will be a tough time, especially because the terrorists' aim is to get the American people to turn against the war. But bringing democracy to the heart of the Middle East will have long-term benefits in the region that diminish the threat of Islamic terrorism over the years. We'll have to see it through.


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