BBC News and other sources report that over 40,000 Iraqi troops will deploy in Baghdad to hunt down insurgent forces.
Iraq Defense Minister Saadoun al-Dulaimi says the force--composed of troops from the Defense and Interior Ministries--will be split into seven areas of operations. The security measures will be more strict than any seen before, Mister Dulaimi warns, and will be the first phase in a crackdown that will eventually cover all of Iraq.
This comes at a time when senior U.S. military officials have admitted unsatisfactory progress in training Iraqi troops, predicted a much longer U.S. involvement in Iraq, and even confessed to the possibility that the Iraq effort could fail.
I sincerely hope this Iraqi troop deployment is not a premature move designed to quell panic over the Iraq situation. If so, it could prove disastrous to the new government in that country, and to American efforts to stabilize the region.
Deploying 40,000 troops could simply provide insurgents with 40,000 new vulnerable targets and 'crackdown" security measures could inflame the passions of Iraqi civilians against their own government. That might well catapult the insurgency to previously unseen levels of activity, further inflame anti-U.S. sentiments throughout the Middle East, and lead to increased U.S. military presence in that region.
I hope this is not the case. The last thing I want to see is more American troops thrown into the quagmire created by Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Perl, Kristol, and the rest of the neo-conservative chicken hawks.
I pray the Iraqi troop deployment is an overwhelming success, and all of our troops can come home.