IRAQ TRAGEDY - AT 5:18 P.M. ET: It was a bad day in Baghdad, with at least 95 apparently killed in coordinated bombings. The New York Times reports that American troops couldn't help:
BAGHDAD — Insurgents struck at the heart of the Iraqi government on Wednesday in huge and coordinated bombings that exposed a new vulnerability after Americans ceded control for security here on June 30. Nearby American soldiers stood by helplessly — despite the needs of hundreds of wounded — waiting for a request for help from Iraqi officials that apparently never came.
“As much as we want to come, we have to wait to be asked now,” said an American officer who arrived at one blast site almost three hours later and who spoke in return for anonymity because he was not authorized to brief reporters.
Great. And now Al Qaeda and the other nuthouse groups in Iraq know that they can strike whenever they wish, and American troops can't help unless invited in by Iraqi politicians.
A Defense Ministry spokesman, Maj. Gen. Mohammed al-Askari, was quoted by Reuters as telling American and Iraqi military officers: “We must face the facts. We must admit our mistakes, just as we celebrate our victories.”
And Baghdad’s security spokesman, Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi, told Iraqiya state television, according to Reuters, that attacks were “a security breach for which Iraqi forces must take most of the blame.”
COMMENT: At least they admit there were mistakes made in security. It's a first step. But Iraq is not won, and it must be won, or at least reasonably secured. Will the Democratic Party's left allow Obama to do what is necessary, or do we now have one hand tied behind our back?
August 19, 2009