Thursday, December 01, 2005

The Mighty Iraqi Army

President Bush yesterday made much of the alleged emergence of the new Iraqi security forces. He needed to promote the idea that Iraqis are well on there way toward military self-reliance so that, someday, we can get the hell out of there. The facts on the ground dispute this notion but, as per usual, that didn’t discourage the president.

Juan Cole says there are still huge problems with the new Iraqi army:
I have heard from contacts in Iraq that the soldiers in the new army often don't get their paychecks, and aren't properly equipped, and sometimes are reduced toselling their bullets on the black market. Guess who buys them?
Great. It’s always nice when we supply both sides of a fight with the tools needed to continue the struggle. I imagine there is a nice black market in not just bullets but guns, uniforms and other supplies. I understand one of the reasons the Iraqi’s don’t get much heavy military hardware is we fear it will just wind up in the hands of the insurgents (there I go, using the “I” word – sorry Rummy).

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