Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Now "Quiet" War

If you watch the headlines like I do, you would know that something is missing; and, it has been missing for nearly a year. That "something" is the constant drumbeat of headlines about the death and failed operations in Iraq. Ever since the "Surge" began, things have quieted down in Iraq. So far this month, 14 U.S. soldiers have been killed in twenty-one days. That's down from the pre-Surge days when any given month saw between 80 and 120 deaths per month or more.

One of the reasons that the U.S. deaths are down is because the Iraqi Army is finally able to step up to the plate and take over operations from the American military. A perfect example of this was this morning's story about the Iraqi Army moving into Sadr City (on their own) to secure and insure a cease fire/truce in that area. They were able to move in, unabated, against the Mahdi Militia who had threatened the area since April (See Full Story).

Another reason for the "quietness" of the War in Iraq is the fact that the people of Iraq are fed up. They are fed up with killing of their own by foreign entities like Al Qaeda and the Iranians. As a result, they are working with the Iraqi forces and the United States military to "turn in" weapons caches and foreign fighters.

Because Iraq has been moved off the front pages and off the headlines of the national news, Americans have now focused on other issues in this election cycle. In poll after poll, the importance of the once-first-place Iraq War has been moved to at least second place behind the economy. This just shows the power of the news media to formulate the thinking of Americans. Of course, rarely are there any "headlines" by the left-leaning media that would indicate how "improved" things are getting in Iraq. That's because the media is still in the mode of showing the "worst" in Iraq as a means of getting a Democrat elected as President. And, because it appears the "worst" is over, the Iraq War has now become the "Quiet" war. At least from the headline standpoint.

Note: The above graphic comes from Icasualties.org which provides an accurate daily tracking on the death toll and casualties in Iraq.

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