As al Qaeda in Iraq is targeted in the northern city of Mosul, pressure continues to be applied to the terror network nationwide. US and Iraqi security forces have killed or captured 26 senior leaders of al Qaeda in Iraq’s terror network over the past several weeks, Major General Kevin Bergner, the spokesman for Multinational Forces Iraq said in a briefing in Baghdad on March 5. Many of those killed or captured have come from the northern regions, where al Qaeda is struggling to reestablish its network during a joint US and Iraqi military onslaught.
Eight of those killed were emirs, or leaders responsible for “a geographic or functional area,” five were cell leaders, and 13 were facilitators “involved in supporting the network of foreign terrorists, organizing the movement and security of senior leaders of the terrorist cells, or the making and use of improvised explosives and suicide vests,” Bergner said.
Bergner identified 11 of those killed or captured by name. The list highlights how al Qaeda’s operations have shifted from Anbar and Baghdad provinces to the northern provinces of Diyala, Salahadin and Ninewa. Of those al Qaeda leaders identified, five operated in Mosul, two in Tikrit, one in Sharqat, and one in Baqubah, all in the north. Only two of those identified as killed or captured came from Baghdad.
Source: The Long War Journal
And, on a related note, since the surge has proven to be so successful, the Democrats have moved the goal post once again…claiming that political benchmarks haven’t been met. Well, just take a read at the 5-part series Inside Iraqi Politics for ammunition to fire back at your lefty friends.
A portion of the fifth installment is below:
Unified Retirement Law, Accountability and Justice Law,
and General Amnesty Law
These three laws specifically have the potential to advance stability and reconciliation. They are designed to clarify pension rules for Iraqis in need of economic support, reintegrate some former members of Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party into government employment, and release primarily Sunni Arab detainees accused of insurgency but held without trial or conviction.
The Coalition Provisional Authority’s 2003 decision to purge more than 1 million former Baathists from government and deny them retirement benefits created strong political and economic incentives for rebellion among those disenfranchised. What followed was the rise of a predominantly Sunni nationalist insurgency that presaged al Qaeda infiltration of Iraq and the resulting sectarian conflict. Taken together, the Unified Retirement Law and the Accountability and Justice Law remove some of the negative incentives by expanding the number of former Baathists who can re-enter public service or receive retirement pay from the government, though concerns remain about certain aspects of the latter law and its eventual implementation.
The 275-member Council of Representatives, Iraq’s parliament, passed the Unified Retirement Law by a 106-39 vote on Oct. 4, 2007, barely exceeding the minimum attendance of 138 required for quorum. The law grants retired civil servants pensions equal to 80 percent of their salaries and, significant for reconciliation, also provides pensions to members of the former Iraqi Army, many of whom had been involved in the insurgency. The law removes eligibility distinctions between those who retired before or after the fall of the regime of Saddam Hussein.
“It’s removing discrimination based on social status or political affiliation,” said Phil Reeker, Counselor for Public Affairs at the American Embassy in Baghdad.
The Unified Retirement Law paved the way for parliament’s Jan. 12 passage of the Accountability and Justice Law, also known as “de-Baathification reform.” This law reforms the previously sweeping terms of removal of former Baathists from government service, and was passed unanimously by the 143 members of parliament who were present, though several major voting blocs rejected it via abstention. The law features some terms favorable to Sunni reconciliation, including reinstatement of the jobs or pensions of those who were in the bottom six levels of the Baath Party’s 10 ranks, a clarification of pension rules, and a new appeals mechanism. But other facets of the law are considered potentially unfavorable to reconciliation and are strongly opposed by Sunni representatives. Those controversial aspects include the law’s maintenance of a committee that scrutinizes the rehiring of former Baathists and the extension of de-Baathification purges to new areas of government, including Iraq’s judiciary.
So, the anti-American war protester I discussed in a previous post is just part of the 5th and 6th columns in America fighting against our victory in Iraq. The real agenda with these protesters is Revolutionary Defeatism  , where there goal is the destruction of America, and western civilization, in order to pave the way for a Socialist Civilization.
We conservatives should be about studying the enemy, both foreign and, in this case, domestic…they are every bit as dangerous (if not more):
The Chinese have a saying; when you hunt tigers, learn about tigers, learn about their habitat, their diet, their habits and their tactics. If you do not fully know about the tiger, you are not hunting tigers, you are just walking in the woods. A Western equivalent phrase is “Know your enemy”. I know mine, how they think, how they operate and what their end goal is, and the tactics they will use to try and silence and stop me. Do you? In order to defeat the far left, we need to know him, and without a grasp of the concept of revolutionary defeatism, we do not truly know our enemy; we are just walking in the woods….