- House and Senate negotiators reach two-year budget deal
- Congress seeks ban on in-flight calls
- Michelle Malkin’s Twitchy site sold to owners of Townhall, HotAir: report
- GM’s Barra to be first woman to run top American carmaker
- China: Poisonous smog is a military asset, if you think about it
- Texas woman admits to sending ricin to Obama
- Ron Paul on son Rand: ‘I think he probably will’ run for president
- Cold War heats up again in the Arctic: Russian airfield reactivated after 20 years
- 6-year-old boy suspended for sexual harassment over kiss
- Voters deciding Mass. congressional contest
Gen. McCaffrey has circulated a contrasting memorandum, obtained by Inside the Ring, after his visit to Iraq revealing dire problems facing that country, based on interviews with senior military and civilian leaders in the region, including Army Gen. David Petraeus, the new commander.
“Iraq is ripped by a low-grade civil war which has worsened to catastrophic levels with as many as 3,000 citizens murdered per month,” Gen. McCaffrey stated in the memorandum sent Monday to colleagues at West Point, where he is a professor.
“The population is in despair. Life in many of the urban areas is now desperate. A handful of foreign fighters (500 plus) and a couple of thousand al Qaeda operatives incite open factional struggle through suicide bombings which target Shia holy places and innocent civilians. Thousands of attacks target U.S. military forces (2,900 IEDs) a month primarily stand off attacks with IEDs, rockets, mortars, snipers, and mines from both Shia ([explosively formed projectile] attacks are a primary casualty producer) and Sunni (85 percent of all attacks; 80 percent of U.S. deaths; 16 percent of Iraqi population.)”
Insurgents or militias are estimated to have about 100,000 fighters, he said.
“Although we have arrested 120,000 insurgents (hold 27,000) and killed some huge number of enemy combatants (perhaps 20,000 plus) the armed insurgents, militias, and al Qaeda in Iraq without fail apparently re-generate both leadership cadres and foot soldiers,” Gen. McCaffrey said. “Their sophistication, numbers, and lethality go up not down as they incur these staggering battle losses.”
“In summary, the U.S. armed forces are in a position of strategic peril,” he concluded. “A disaster in Iraq will in all likelihood result in a widened regional struggle which will endanger America’s strategic interests (oil) in the Mideast for a generation. We will also produce another generation of soldiers who lack confidence in their American politicians, the media, and their own senior military leadership.”
The key to winning the war is for the United States to convince the top 100 Shia and Sunni leaders to “walk back” from the edge of full-scale civil war, he stated. “Reconciliation is the way out,” Gen. McCaffrey said. “Military power cannot alone defeat an insurgency the political and economic struggle for power is the actual field of battle.”
Air Force Undersecretary Ronald Sega told the House Armed Services Committee that spending for space systems, including increases for intelligence and satellite defenses, doubled since 2001, going from about $500 million a year to more than $1 billion.
Mr. Sega said new systems are being developed and deployed that increase “space situation awareness” the Pentagon’s term for spying in space and identifying threats to satellites. Two new “microsatellites,” called TacSat-2 and XSS-11, are part of the surveillance effort, he said.
One major problem in space warfare is knowing right away whether a satellite breaks down from hitting debris, from internal problems or from a weapon, said Air ForceGen. Kevin Chilton, head of the Space Command.
“You need to understand the environment, who the good guys are, who the bad guys are, who the neutrals are,” he said.
Gen. Chilton said an experimental satellite called MSX, in orbit since the 1990s, is helping the Air Force to spy on threats in geosynchronous, high-Earth orbit, while radar currently is being used for targets in low-Earth orbit. The MSX system is “starting to fade” and the Air Force needs to deploy a new space-based surveillance system to replace it, he said.
By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
- Obama takes 'selfie' at Mandela's funeral service
- Harry Reid's visa pressure cooker
- Chinese man fed up with his girlfriend's shopping jumps to his death
- CARSON: Why did the founders give us the Second Amendment?
- Obama lied about Syrian chemical attack, 'cherry-picked' intelligence: report
- Obama shakes hands with Cuba's Raul Castro at Nelson Mandela's funeral
- Somber duty: U.S. presidents in hot demand at Mandela's memorial
- Israeli P.M. Benjamin Netanyahu backs out of Nelson Mandela funeral
- Obama's antics at Nelson Mandela tribute: Jovial conversation, handshake with Raul Castro
- American bourbon now better than Scottish whiskey: U.K.-born expert
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
A column dedicated to discussing politics, national security, civil liberties, and education.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
The “Silver Tsunami” created by aging Baby Boomers is hitting America. Let’s explore how we adjust to it, enjoy it and defy negative expectations about age.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow