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GAO finds Iraq has failed 11 of 18 U.S. goals

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by ConcordCowboy, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    GAO finds Iraq has failed 11 of 18 U.S. goals


    Final report more upbeat than draft after White House disputed findings

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20589286/

    WASHINGTON - Baghdad has not met 11 of its 18 political and security goals, according to a new independent report on Iraq that challenges President Bush’s assessment on the war.

    The study, conducted by the Government Accountability Office, was slightly more upbeat than initially planned. After receiving substantial resistance from the White House, the GAO determined that four benchmarks — instead of two — had been partially met.

    But GAO stuck with its original contention that only three goals out of the 18 had been achieved. The goals met include establishing joint security stations in Baghdad, ensuring minority rights in the Iraqi legislature and creating support committees for the Baghdad security plan.

    “Overall key legislation has not been passed, violence remains high, and it is unclear whether the Iraqi government will spend $10 billion in reconstruction funds,” said U.S. Comptroller David Walker in prepared remarks for a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

    An advance copy of the 100-page report and Walker’s testimony was obtained by The Associated Press.

    GAO’s findings paint a bleaker view of progress in Iraq than offered by Bush in July and comes at a critical time in the Iraq debate. So far, Republicans have stuck by Bush and staved off Democratic legislation ordering troops home. But many, who have grown uneasy about the unpopularity of the war, say they want to see substantial improvement in Iraq by September.

    Next week the top military commander in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus, and U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, are scheduled to brief Congress.

    “While the Baghdad security plan was intended to reduce sectarian violence, measuring such violence may be difficult since the perpetrator’s intent is not clearly known,” GAO states in its report. “Other measures of violence, such as the number of enemy-initiated attacks, show that violence has remained high through July 2007.”

    Lawmakers split on report
    Republican leaders on Tuesday showed no signs of wavering in their support for Bush.

    “The GAO report really amounts to asking someone to kick an 80-yard field goal and criticizing them when they came up 20 or 25 yards short,” said House GOP leader John Boehner, R-Ohio.

    Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters he would like to ensure a long-term U.S. presence in the Middle East to fight al-Qaida and deter aggression from Iran.

    “And I hope that this reaction to Iraq and the highly politicized nature of dealing with Iraq this year doesn’t end up in a situation where we just bring all the troops back home and thereby expose us, once again, to the kind of attacks we’ve had here in the homeland or on American facilities,” said McConnell, R-Ky.


    Democrats said the GAO report showed that Bush’s decision to send more troops to Iraq was failing because Baghdad was not making the political progress needed to tamp down sectarian violence.

    “No matter what spin we may hear in the coming days, this independent assessment is a failing grade for a policy that simply isn’t working,” said Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.

    The report does not make any substantial policy recommendations, but says future administration reports “would be more useful to the Congress” if they provided more detailed information.

    Bush: Iraq is making progress
    Earlier this year, Bush sent 30,000 extra troops to Iraq to enhance security in Baghdad and Anbar province. In a congressionally mandated progress report released by the White House in July, Bush judged that Baghdad had made satisfactory progress in eight of the 18 benchmarks. In five of those eight areas, GAO determined that Iraq had either failed or made only partial progress.

    The disparity is largely due to the stricter standard applied by GAO in preparing the report. GAO used a “thumbs up or thumbs down” approach in grading Baghdad, whereas Bush’s assessment looked at whether Iraq was achieving progress. For example, Bush said Iraqi politicians had made satisfactory progress in reviewing its constitution, whereas GAO ruled they had failed because the process was not complete.

    The State Department and Defense Department reviewed the report before its release. According to officials interviewed last week, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the study had not been released, the administration disputed GAO’s conclusion that Iraq has failed to provide three trained and ready Iraqi brigades to support Baghdad operations or to ensure that the security plan will not provide a safe haven for outlaws.

    In the final report released Tuesday, GAO marked those two benchmarks as “partially met” and alludes to pushback it received from the Pentagon.

    For example, GAO said it found that despite increased military operations in Baghdad, “temporary safe havens still exist due to strong sectarian loyalties and militia infiltration of security forces.” The Defense Department countered that the recent troop buildup had significantly reduced the number of safe havens inside Baghdad and in al-Anbar and Diyala provinces.

    Regarding the deployment of the three Iraqi brigades, GAO found that of the 19 Iraqi units supporting Baghdad operations only 5 had performed well. The remaining units experienced problems with lack of personnel or equipment.


    © 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
  2. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    :lmao: funny stuff ..... good post CCB
  3. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    There's always an excuse.:p:

    And Boehner wouldn't know a Boehner if he had one in his hand.:D
  4. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    You mean he is like that Kreig guy that JackSass has a crush on?
  5. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    Aren't all Republicans.:D
  6. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    If they were I think they would call them Liberals ...... not sure though ..... I am not an expert on that type of behavior like you guys. ;)
  7. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    No he's just a well known Head up Bush's Butt guy.

    So him making a claim like that really means nothing.
  8. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    I just thought it was funny ..... I do not think this War (which I feel was a good move) was run correctly at all.
  9. ConcordCowboy

    ConcordCowboy Mr. Buckeye

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    This War is just going to be one of those things that the public and elected officials are just never going to agree on.

    It's just going to get worse as the Presidential election gets closer.
  10. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch Lost in the Woods

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    A convenient position that in no way exonerates the poor judgment of the war's proponents.

    Opting for a war of choice means making a conscious decision to accept the unpredictability of its outcomes. What makes you think there ever was a "correct" way of conducting the invasion of Iraq? We couldn't predict the outcome then and we can't predict in retrospect what the outcome might have been had we done things differently. That's why war should be a last resort because it is essentially a roll of the dice and not a particularly responsible way to conduct foreign policy.

    The cause of the war was fatally undermined the moment the administration chose to base its case for invasion on untruths. Only a quick victory could have compensated for that grave miscalculation.
  11. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    No doubt about that ..... I am hoping for a change .... I am sick of the political garbage ...... Both sides say one thing and go out and do another ......
  12. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    :rolleyes:

    There was a reason for going to War ..... Saddam was a threat.

    Being a military man I do not like the way this war was run ....

    That being said I thing we have done much more good than bad over there.

    I am not going to get into another long argument with you over these facts ..... we have been doing this for almost 4 years ..... you will never get it.
  13. Sasquatch

    Sasquatch Lost in the Woods

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    Only if you define "threat" in the loosest possible sense of the word. By such a definition war would be an every day affair since almost anything and anyone would qualify as a threat.

    The problem with your arguments is that they are totally arbitrary and provide no basis for conducting our foreign policy other than pure whim. Is this the example you want to set for the rest of the world? Do you what you will provided you have the military might to get a way with it? That is the message we have sent with this invasion and no one except the administration's staunchest supporters believes otherwise.

    Four years latter, as you've said, and we've seen where that approach has gotten us. It's time to try something new.
  14. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    Except that Saddam had already invaded a neighbor and was not abiding by the restrictions we placed on him after his defeat.

    See above statement

    I agree and have already stated that I would like a fresh approach .... just not the disarmament and appeasement approach you love so much
  15. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    The problem is they knew there was no correct way to do it years before they considered doing it.

    Want proof?

    Straight from Cheney's Mouth.

    LINK
  16. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    The situation in 1990 vs the situation in 2003 was very different. A very different region and world. Its like talking about Japan in 1938 vs Japan in 1998. The world and the region had changed greatly in the intervening years.

    From what I have heard from troops who have been over there several times over the last 4 years is that things have gotten better in most of the country- the real problem is Baghdad.
  17. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    I could care less what Cheney said while a democrat was in office ....

    Its the same thing as how the Clinton's act now even though when they were in office they claimed time and time again how dangerous Saddam was and how something needed to be done.

    Its all a bunch of political crap ..... Either party would go either way on the issue depending on who was in the white house and who was not.

    The problem with the invasion was that it was too sudden ..... More time should have been given while we shut off Iraq from the outside world. Saddam should have been made to look weak so that there would have been a rebellion from within. Then we could have slowly moved in, pushing Saddam's forces to the mountains. Then after they were desperate enough to start attacking their own civilians we would have looked like the protectors of the public instead of occupators. I believe this also would have kept Iran out of this fight.

    The problem was that the current administration thought (rightfully so) that a prolonged attack lack this would have turned public opinion in here the States against them ..... in the end it happened anyway because their way was like pouring water on a grease fire ..... you end up getting alot of little fires spread everywhere (which is much harder to put out)

    Of course I simplified the hell out of it .... but I do not have the patience to write out every little thing :p:
  18. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    The interview was talking about when Papa Bush was in Command. He was explaining why they did not go and take out saddam after we removed his army from Kuwait.

    Just wanted to get that straight. It did not mean anything that he was doing the interview at a later date.
  19. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    No the difference was not like 1938 vs 1998 Japan.

    But if that helps you rationalize it for yourself...please keep it up.

    I may agree with you on some things, may disagree with you on some things. But man alive that was one of the craziest things I have ever heard.

    :rolleyes:
  20. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    Yes it did my friend ..... I believe he was trying to make it look like any further action by Clinton was unnecessary. If George senior would have still been in the White house, Cheney might have been talking about how they had unfinished business with him.

    The real reason we did not go in and take out Saddam at the time was because resistance to the War here in the states was starting to build and Bush Sr wanted to end it quick so that it would not effect the upcoming election (which of course he lost anyway because of [SIZE=-1]Perot)[/SIZE]

    What he said about Iraq after Clinton was in office is my whole point ..... their opinions and stories change depending on who is in the White House.

    pure political BS ..... just like how the Clinton's talked about Iraq when George JR is in office.

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