I heard today that the U.S. military command has basically admitted that their plan to stablize Iraq by moving troops into Baghdad in an effort to stop the violence there has been a big failure. Violence has increased, and our troops were basically engaged in rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. They would go into an area and stabilize it, but violence would flare elsewhere. All the while our troops were both exposed to hostile fire and also subject to complaints they were using excessive force. I predicted this plan would fail, and in an attempt to assist our apparently clueless planners at the Pentagon, I even posted my own plan. http://www.elitetrader.com/vb/showthread.php?s=&threadid=73682&highlight=my+plan+for+iraq Now that they have wasted several months in pursuing the fruitless Baghdad plan, I find it necessary to amend my plan. It is now more simplified but far more bold. 1. As a first step we must recognize that the democracy experiment is going nowhere. The Iraqi government is riddled with corruption, and various insurgent factions have infiltrated key ministries. In the current state of lawlessness, establishing security must be the first order of business. 2. Accordingly, Baghdad must be put under military control. A U. S. General should be put in command, but an effort should be made to locate former general officers from Saddam's military and give them the greenlight to control various sectors of Baghdad. They would be given significant freedom to establish their commands, with troops coming from the current Iraqi army and former Iraqi soldiers. No doubt many would come from the ranks of the insurgencies, but that is not totally a bad thing. Instead of creating chaotic violence, they would be part of a force that answers to us. In addition, every insurgent who joined would be one less out planting IED's. In effect, the Iraqi commanders would be like warlords who would answer to us. Over time, the more efficient would grow in stature and the less efficient would be replaced, either by the U.S. commander or by their own troops. Obviously, their first order of business would be to eliminate the various private militias. We would provide air and artillery support. The benefits of this structure would be obvious. They are in a far better position than we are to develop intelligence, and to act ruthlessly to eliminate insurgents. The Iraqi commanders would have an enormous incentive to suceed, since they would be in a position to act as mini-dictators and control all activites, licit and illicit, in their areas. 3. U.S. troops should be redeployed to border security with Syria and Iran and to protect the critical oil field infrastructure. Such redeployment would cut off or severely curtail the resupply of insurgents from Iran and Syria. Our troops massed on their borders would also focus the attention of those two countries on the risks of continued troublemaking, and in addition give us opportunities to supply insurgent movements in those ocuntries. 4. Because of the massive corruption in the Iraqi Ministry of Petroleum, it would have to be disbanded and U. S. contractors would operate the oil business, with proceeds directed to meeting our expenses, rebuilding infrastruture and supplying the Iraqi commanders. Uncooperative Iraqi commanders would be starved of funds, their commands weakened and made vulnerable to takeover by rival commands. The benefits of cooperation would be obvious. 5. The current Iraqi government could be retained as a figurehead, but they would have no power. They would over time devolve into the typical civil government in middle eastern countries, responsible for low level municipal functions. I believe this plan would accomplish our major objectives, which should be to minimize U. S. casualties, prevent the creation of a failed state in Iraq that would serve as a terrorist haven and prevent the resumption of WMD programs. The Iraqi people would welcome it, first because they would see an immediate increase in security and second because they are conditioned to respond to strong military style leadership. It would marginalize the radical clerics and greatly reduce their ability to foment unrest.