Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Increase The Troops, Or Not?

Robert Haddick, at TCS Daily, doesn't like the idea of a troop surge in Iraq. I disagree, but found his arguments interesting, despite not being convinced. Some of his objections concern whether it is possible to require increased troop numbers from the military as it now exists. That's a reasonable question, although one that can be addressed by increasing the size of the military, something which is under discussion in any case. There is no shortage of qualified volunteers. I read a comment recently from a military recruiter which said that they are turning away approximately 60% of their current applicants. There is also the question of troop redeployment from Europe and other global locations, so I'm not sure the troops would be stretched as dramatically as Haddick implies. The rest of Haddick's objections seem to center on the lack of support for the idea from Congress and the Joint Chiefs. The Joint Chiefs might influence me, since their motivations are much more likely to be military objective-related. Lack of support from the Democrats in Congress, however, tells me nothing about the reasonableness, rightness or feasibility of the surge plan. What it does tell me is that the Democrats see no common ground with the President; and this is hardly a revelation. They now hold the purse strings, and thus can hinder President Bush's plans, but that doesn't necessarily have anything to do with what's the right thing to do, does it?