Monday, May 7, 2007

Fourth largest Newspaper calls for an End to the War!

Los Angeles Times editorial:
But what now? After four years of war, more than $350 billion spent and 3,363 U.S. soldiers killed and 24,310 wounded, it seems increasingly obvious that an Iraqi political settlement cannot be achieved in the shadow of an indefinite foreign occupation. The U.S. military presence — opposed by more than three-quarters of Iraqis — inflames terrorism and delays what should be the primary and most pressing goal: meaningful reconciliation among the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.

This newspaper reluctantly endorsed the U.S. troop surge as the last, best hope for stabilizing conditions so that the elected Iraqi government could assume full responsibility for its affairs. But we also warned that the troops should not be used to referee a civil war. That, regrettably, is what has happened....

Having invested so much in Iraq, Americans are likely to find disengagement almost as painful as war. But the longer we delay planning for the inevitable, the worse the outcome is likely to be. The time has come to leave.
Meanwhile, the Washington Post reports:
A senior U.S. commander said Sunday that the military was bracing for a rise in the casualty rate in the coming months, as an ongoing security offensive attempts to tame the devastating violence and stabilize Baghdad.

"All of us believe that in the next 90 days, you'll probably see an increase in American casualties because we are taking the fight to the enemy," Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, commander of the Army's Task Force Marne, told reporters Sunday. "This is the only way we can win the fight."

Even as insurgents take aim at U.S. troops, they have stepped up their attacks on so-called soft targets, especially in Shiite areas of Baghdad, in an apparent attempt to stoke sectarian warfare. In the deadliest such attack Sunday, a car bomb explosion tore through one of the capital's biggest markets at midday, killing 42 people, police said. The blast, in the predominantly Shiite neighborhood of Bayaa, ravaged buildings, scorched vehicles and injured at least 67 people, police said.
And the Iraqis continue to suffer. New York Times:
Successive suicide car bombs hit a police checkpoint near Ramadi on Monday, the provincial security chief said, killing 25 people and dealing a blow to a city recently considered a showcase for the strategy of integrating insurgents into the Iraqi security forces. Attacks elsewhere in Iraq killed an additional nine Iraqi civilians, according to the Interior Ministry, while five Iraqi security troops died in an assault on a checkpoint in Al Baagh, a small town near Mosul, the town’s mayor said. Thirty bodies were found in Baghdad and at least six elsewhere in Iraq.
It's getting worse, not better. The L.A. Times is late to realize it, but it's nice to have them on board.

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