In a long and excellent post over at Unbossed, Smintheus points out yet another deception by powerpoint in General Petreaus' testimony today.
examine the third of the slides he presented to Congress (on page 4 of this PDF). It presents four maps of "ethno-sectarian violence" in the neighborhoods of Baghdad since December 2006. These maps pretend that the ethnic/sectarian mix of various neighborhoods has remained constant during this period. In fact, as I've commented here and elsewhere, the Sunnis have been driven headlong out of many neighborhoods since December 2006. Despite the map, there are no longer either majority Sunni or mixed Sunni-Shia neighborhoods east of the Tigris. And west of the Tigris, Sunni-dominated areas have shrunk considerably.Well spotted.
The maps falsify one of the most delicate of issues: The failure of the "surge" to stem ethnic/sectarian cleansing of Baghdad. If that information were brought to the fore, it would call into question the claims by Petraeus and other spokespeople for the Bush administration that the "surge" is responsible for an alleged drop in violence in Baghdad. If there is any such drop, it may be due in large part to the success of Shia attempts to drive Sunnis from their homes and into exile.