Friday, October 19, 2007

Grim math shows increase not drop in violence in Iraq

RedDan and I have been talking about the games that CENTCOM and the Whitehouse have been playing with the numbers out of Iraq. I couldn't understand why all the press releases about a drop in violence. Tactically it doesn't work like that. It didn't make any sense. A surge wouldn't decrease the level of violence. So we took a closer look at data.

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Here you are seeing the real story. A spike that in the Baghdad area and dropping numbers in the south and Al Anbar. A drop to basically 0. Why is this happening?

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown this week announced his plan to reduce the British force around the southern city of Basra from 5,000 to 2,500 by next spring. Drawing less attention, however, is the extent to which American forces have quietly withdrawn from the rest of southern Iraq. By so doing, the U.S. is ceding huge swaths of territory --

The Brits are basically holed up in a compound with smaller numbers than reported here. From an initial presence in Iraq of 40,000 down to less than 2 battalions.

The Marines have all been completely removed from Al Anbar into Baghdad, which is why they are asking to be relocated to Afghanistan. Working with and for the Army must have them tripping over each others boots.

No, what we are seeing here is a shell game. The violence is not dropping. Its ending. It's ending wherever we withdraw from and spiking were we are digging in. It only appears to drop because violence in Al Anbar, Basra, Najaf, Karbala, Wasit, Dhiqar, etc, etc, has ended. This drop obscures the spike in Baghdad.

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This information shows a trend up in the Baghdad region and shows that Iraq does not devolve into civil war when the US pulls out. Does not let al Qaeda take over in their absence. In fact the complete opposite, the local security forces quickly run to ground AQI and end them. It seems once the US forces leave the area the score settling and inter-tribal violence ends. Life seems cheap with tanks and machine guns on every corner. Remove those visual and physical reminders and people work out their differences with something other than a pistol and a power-drill. So when some tells you we have to stay, ask them why. (numbers via

Hubris Sonic & RedDan