Tuesday, April 26, 2005

An Honest Assessment from the Pentagon

According to BBC News, General Richard Myers stated that the Iraqi insurgents have not lost any capacity to launch attack and violence in Iraq is not any lower. It is a honest and realistic assessment from the Pentagon in stark contrast with assessment earlier in the war, when number of insurgent and their capacity was grossly underestimated. It is also good that the Pentagon recognized that the war cannot be won militarily alone, there is a need for a parallel political process. It is good that we are starting to be honest with ourselves.
Since we recognize the insurgency as a manifestation of a political problem, mainly that of Sunni disenfranchisement. One political idea to consider is the amnesty suggested by Talibani. It is a good idea and I hope the US government endorse it. It is reminiscing of the "Chieu Hoi" program in Vietnam which was extremely successful in bringing Communist members back into society. However, for the program to work, some funding is needed. Insurgents will not turn themselves back in simply for forgiveness. That is not enough. They should feel that there is a good future for them if they turn themselves in. It means that they can depend on the government for their living. A small sum of money to start their lives is a good start. Job training and employment opportunity is also important. Intergration into the Iraqi Armed Forces is another option, which would provide former insurgents with employment, and their knowledge can be used against other insurgents.
Beside the stick, the carrot should also be offered.
SIDENOTE: The Astute Blogger has this humourous piece which he said (Hat tip to Chrenkoff):
I betchya that IRAQ - rife with neojihadist and neobaathist terror and nagged by lingering ethnic divisions (between Sunni Arabs, Sunni Kurdish, Shia and the Turkmen), and trying democracy for the first time ! - gets a new constitution before EUROPE does!

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