Andrew Sullivan earlier wrote :
"I have no idea why the Democrats don't actually start accusing Bush of aiding terrorism by his ineptness. It's what the Republicans would do if Bush were a Democrat."It would even be true.
The head of an Al Qaeda-linked group in Iraq says the country has become a "university of terrorism", producing highly qualified warriors, since the 2003 US-led invasion.The Bush administration are always happy to talk up how we must listen to what the enemy has to say and believe it. Let's see them believe that.
In an audio recording posted on the Internet, Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, leader of the self-styled Islamic State in Iraq, said his fighters were successfully confronting US forces in Iraq and had begun producing a guided missile called al-Quds 1 or Jerusalem 1.
"The largest batch of soldiers for jihad ... in the history of Iraq are graduating and they have the highest level of competence in the world," Baghdadi said.
By getting sidetracked into a war which was never about combatting terrorism the Bush administration neglected the war which was.
U.S. and French intelligence agencies are convinced that terrorist network al-Qaida has reorganized and, what's more, developed new training camps in both Afghanistan and the remote tribal regions of northern Pakistan. They believe that a new generation of terrorists has come of age, and some are suspected of planning attacks in the West.And that incompetence was a direct cause of new instances of terrorism:
...The border region between Pakistan and Afghanistan, Maj. Gen. Michael D. Maples of the Defense Intelligence Agency recently said, is "a refuge for al-Qaida." Germany's foreign intelligence agency agrees, calling the region a "deployment zone for the new al-Qaida."
The jailed former head of al Qaeda in Spain told a court on Tuesday he did not know the suspects accused of planning the Madrid train bombings in 2004 but the attack came as no surprise because of the Iraq war.And during all this it is the Bush administration who have let the troops down, by refusing to fund them properly while still keeping them embroilled in wars for which they have no strategy.
Andrew is right - enough of the mild-mannered crap.
Update Yet more evidence that the Bush administration have not only aided terrorists but also been shamefully culpable in the needless deaths of US soldiers.
Lawrence Korb is just back from Iraq where he was working with the U.S. Agency for International Development’s National Capacity Development Project.
To say that Iraq in general and Baghdad in particular are much worse than on my last visit would be an understatement. It is hard to believe that after about 3,300 deaths, about 25,000 wounded, an expenditure of $500 billion, and two national elections things could be this bad. (The day I left was the day that the Parliamentarians were killed and the al-Sarafiya bridge was blown up.)While McClatchy News Service looks at the toll in lives:
The real issue is if the latest surge will work. The most optimistic projection was “maybe temporarily.” But most people speaking off the record believe that the insurgents will shift to other areas and lay low for a while in Baghdad.
I knew that the Iraqi government was not very effective, but I had no idea it was so bad. The national government already has 34 cabinet-level ministries and is creating about five more. The best civil servants have been de-Baathified and left the country (in fact, I ran into a couple of them at the Baghdad Airport on my way out). The remaining two million civil servants are underpaid, have little motivation, and are hamstrung by a set of rules and regulations that combines the worst elements of Soviet and American bureaucracies.
No one in or out of the American or Iraqi government seemed to have a good answer to my question: “how does it end?” On the back of this visit, I am more and more convinced that we must take control of our own destiny by setting a specific timetable for withdrawal. Currently, our fate is in the hands of an Iraqi government that does not have any real incentive to get its act together and does not even seem to understand the gravity of the situation or the declining level of support in the United States.
While I did not see as many soldiers as on my last visit, the ones I spoke to were clearly dispirited about the repeated deployments and the three-month extension.
Over the past six months, American troops have died in Iraq at the highest rate since the war began, an indication that the conflict is becoming increasingly dangerous for U.S. forces even after more than four years of fighting.Dems should be keeping the pressure on (Kucinich has a good idea on how) - the administration's rhetoric of faux-certainty says they are scared.
From October 2006 through last month, 532 American soldiers were killed, the most during any six-month period of the war. March also marked the first time that the U.S. military suffered four straight months of 80 or more fatalities. April, with 58 service members killed through Monday, is on pace to be one of the deadliest months of the conflict for American forces.
Senior American military officials attribute much of the increase to the Baghdad security crackdown, now in its third month. But the rate of fatalities was increasing even before a more aggressive strategy began moving U.S. troops from heavily fortified bases into smaller neighborhood outposts throughout the capital, placing them at greater risk of roadside bombings and small-arms attacks.