Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Pentagon: 'Yea, Maybe We Need A Plan B'

Last week, I plugged a Washington Post article which stated that the administration had no backup plan for what to do if/when the President's brilliant surge fails. "Plan B was to make Plan A work," Gen. Peter Pace is recalled as stating.

Well, turns out the Pentagon is saying 'Hey, maybe we need a Plan B!". Details from Reuters-
U.S. military planners have begun work on a fallback strategy in case the U.S. troop buildup in Iraq fails, including a gradual pullout of U.S. forces and more emphasis on training and advising Iraqi forces, the Los Angeles Times reported in Monday's editions.

The strategy, based partly on the U.S. experience in El Salvador in the 1980s, is in the early planning stages, the newspaper said, citing U.S. military officials and Pentagon consultants who spoke on condition of anonymity.

It is a fallback if the Bush administration's plan to send about 26,000 more U.S. troops fails to stabilize Iraq, or if the Democratic-led Congress limits that move, it said.

The newspaper quoted a Pentagon official as saying "This part of the world has an allergy against foreign presence. You have a window of opportunity that is relatively short. Your ability to influence this with a large U.S. force eventually gets to a point that is self-defeating."

'Self-defeating'? Why do you hate America, anonymous Pentagon official?

More on what the El Salvador model means from Salon's Tim Grieve and Daily Kos' mcjoan.

Speaking of Salon, they have this bombshell as well-
...As the military scrambles to pour more soldiers into Iraq, a unit of the Army's 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, Ga., is deploying troops with serious injuries and other medical problems, including GIs who doctors have said are medically unfit for battle. Some are too injured to wear their body armor, according to medical records...

...The 3,900-strong 3rd Brigade is now leaving for Iraq for a third time in a steady stream. In fact, some of the troops with medical conditions interviewed by Salon last week are already gone. Others are slated to fly out within a week, but are fighting against their chain of command, holding out hope that because of their ills they will ultimately not be forced to go. Jenkins, who is still in Georgia, thinks doctors are helping to send hurt soldiers like him to Iraq to make units going there appear to be at full strength. "This is about the numbers," he said flatly...

The 'surge' in a nutshell.

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