RE: Washington Post trashes new GOP Iraq spin
We've all read it, man. We've read everything. This thing is over. The whole country has had it with all this bullshit, like you saying here that we murdered Iraqis because they might have been thinking about attacking us some day. It's over dude, nobody is buying it anymore. Go home, and turn out the lights.
US casualties mount in Iraq as public swings against war Thu Nov 17, 3:43 AM ET
BAGHDAD (AFP) - The US military announced the death of a US soldier killed in Iraq, the 10th serviceman to die in two days at a time when US opinion is turning against the war.
The latest victim, who died Wednesday of wounds sustained in a Baghdad bomb explosion, brings to at least 2,080 the number of US military personnel killed in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion, according to an AFP tally based on the independent Iraq Coalition Casualty Count.
Five marines also died Wednesday in a firefight in Ubaydi near the Syrian border in western Iraq, the military said.
The New York Times newspaper, which has a correspondent with troops in the area, said 11 marines were also wounded in the clash which erupted after they were caught in an ambush on a farm on the outskirts of the town.
Meanwhile, a USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll released Wednesday said 54 percent of Americans want US troops withdrawn from Iraq within the next 12 months.
In 1970, a pivotal year in which sentiment swung against the Vietnam war, a similar number wanted US troops withdrawn from that country, USA Today noted.
US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld Tuesday warned against a precipitous withdrawal from Iraq, where US numbers currently number just over 150,000.
The United States wants to hand over responsibility to Iraqis as soon as possible and leave, Rumsfeld said.
"But not in a manner that is precipitous, not in a manner that would inject instability into the situation, and not in a manner that would suggest to a terrorist that all he has to do is wait us out," he added.
Setting a fixed date for withdrawal would be "a recipe for disaster," US Brigadier-General William Webster, the commander of coalition forces in Baghdad, said Wednesday.
"Yes, we ought to have an exit strategy, but setting a date without conditions being met is a loser," he said, referring to the need to build up Iraqi forces to take over from US-led forces.
If the United States was to set a specified date for withdrawing troops, insurgents could just wait until they left before renewing their war against Iraqi authorities. And then "the lives of (US) soldiers killed would have been in vain," Webster added.
"Fighting an irregular war is an extremely difficult conversion for any regular army, even a superpower. But I'm convinced that while it's infinitely frustrating... in the end we're going to be successful," he added.
Meanwhile, international concern grew over the alleged abuse of Iraqi detainees by security agencies following the discovery of 173 mostly Sunni Arab prisoners at an interior ministry lockup in Baghdad where they were said to have been tortured and starved.
British Defence Minister John Reid described the abuse of detainees in Iraq as "totally unacceptable", UN Secretary General Kofi Annan said he was "deeply concerned", and EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana said such abuse would not help stabilize the country.
Sunni Arab leaders have called for an international investigation, but the US State Department said it was satisfied with the probe launched by the Iraqi government.
Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.
-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address