Skip to comments.US uses ink-drop strategy to contain rebel Iraq town (Ramadi)
Posted on 09/16/2006 6:18:55 PM PDT by jmc1969
The road is dusty and the convoy unusual sandwiched between two US armoured vehicles, three Iraqi black and whites are on their way to establish a new police presence in the Sunni insurgent bastion of Ramadi.
We are opening this station to go after the terrorists where they are, says Colonel Adnan, who commands the police station at Jezira in the northern suburbs of the strategic city west of Baghdad.
The situation is good because the police want to work and the people want the police. People are sick of the terrorists, who endanger childrens lives. They want to see children on the street again, adds Adnan, a former officer in the army of former president Saddam Hussein.
A lot of bad guys are in this area, he says. The people in Abu Faraj (quarter) know where the terrorists are they roam the area. There are some good people there who want to help to get rid of the terrorists. Around 15 officers, most of them originally from the area, will be stationed in the new police post which they will share with soldiers of the Iraqi army.
On August 21 a booby-trapped car exploded in Jazira, killing four people, and wounding 20 among them eight US soldiers. I was surprised to find out that they stayed after the bombing, says US military policeman and adviser Eric Baker, referring to the Iraqi police.
They did not run away. The young sergeant, already a six-year veteran at the age of 24, has just returned to duty after spending 20 days in hospital after the bombing. Before we got hit, we did two to three patrols a day, he adds.
There are also two Iraqi army brigades and nearly 1,000 police tasked with looking after security in the Ramadi district, which is home to nearly half a million people. What we did starting back in June is (we) completed the isolation of Ramadi, setting up outposts in the middle of the enemy camps, Lee says.
Then we denied them sanctuary so that they have no place to relax. They are always fearful were coming after them. As soon as we install a new camp, they challenge us for a week. Then we expand the battlespace. They have nowhere to go but to leave. They cannot fight us and win face-to-face. He calls this the ink blot strategy. You drop ink and it spreads, Lee says. The tactic also applies to reconstruction and improvements to public services such as water and electricity supplies.
This is good...like to see this kind of thing getting out to the public.
The islamic zeal of the terrorizing scum sees nothing wrong with sacrificing Muslim Iraqis in order to continue the destruction of the Iraq America wants to see in charge of ruling themselves. Al Qaeda will sacrifice every Iraq in this effort and the mad mullah scum of Iran will do likewise. Perhaps the people of Irazq are beginning to realize that Islam is a demonspawn of murder and mayhem, the the 'insugency' is nothing bu terrorism tryiing to subjugate the Iraq people with massacres to follow if the effrot is successful in running America out of theater. The dim ocrats will never figure that out, but then we can know they don't care about slaughtering innocent humans, if it empowers democrats at the ballot box (read, abortion on demand as the democrat's favored blood-drenched empowerment scheme).
I hope this works, but I'm not holding my breath.
The ink blot/oil spot strategy has gained a lot of support among theorists and among some practitioners. In my opinion, given our available forces and the overwhelming mission that they are assigned, this is misguided. Ink blot/oil spot is a very modest evolution of the WWII mindset that focuses on terrain. It has a very limited application and thus far has not been attempted anywhere that the application is relevant.
Ink blot/oil spot works if you have sufficient troops to saturate a locale and control social networks operating in that locale. More importantly, you must maintain control over both the locale and the social networks while simultaneously expanding this control outward. This is much easier when done from a periphery with friendlier inhabitants and neighbors rather than from the middle of the country in the most hostile areas. For example, spreading the ink blot northward from Basra would be simpler than starting in Ramadi and holding or expanding in all directions.
Attempting this now is further complicated by the fact that social networks organized for the purpose of insurgency/terrorism have become larger and more sophisticated. Also, there is the fear that most Iraqis have that American forces will be diverted elsewhere or otherwise not remain in sufficient strength to maintain order while the Iraqi forces are stood up. Sir Robert Thompson said What the peasant wants to know is: does the government mean to win the war? Because if not, he will have to support the insurgent. That makes it much tougher to maintain control over what youve got while expanding your influence, but that is the dilemma that most Iraqis believe they face. Perhaps to their credit, many are arming and organizing themselves for their defense, but lacking sound moral leadership this has resulted in little more than lawless gangs committing the mindless Iraqi on Iraqi violence that has characterized the past several months of conflict in Iraq, further eroding the trust necessary for Iraqis to form a society and further complicating coalition efforts to establish/maintain order. The ongoing cut and run mantra of the Demagogue Party, their leftist cohorts, the limp-wristed panty waists in Europe, and our adversaries in the UN have done nothing to assuage the legitimate fears of the Iraqi people.
In hindsight, we would have been wiser to make this a slow, methodical invasion by equipping and leading the Shia northward and the Kurds southward, backed up with American airpower, led by US Special Forces, and reinforced with conventional ground forces. Advance only as quickly as the liberated cities/towns can be de-Ba'athed, repaired, and made into functioning societies. That would have enabled us to establish police forces capable of policing and consolidating our gains while the military forces pressed on. By liberating the entire country in a matter of weeks, we inadvertently chose to drink from a firehose rather than sipping from a cup.
From my armchair to your screen.
Here is an easier way. We go in and keep the Iraqi Army and police force in tact and put in character a pro-Westrern secular Shia strongman like Allawi and tell him to slowly move the country toward democracy and liberalization.
bah, I meant to write 'charge' not character.
The truth is that we lose far more young people to traffic accidents at home than we lose to enemy action in Iraq, and if it were a Democrat in the WH in favor of this course of action that is the context in which Iraq would publicly be placed by the DriveBy Media. Realistically, we aren't having a vast difficulty in Iraq in comparison to the mess that Germany was. We have been there longer than our participation in WWII lasted, but not nearly as long as it took to stand up a peaceful Germany. Back then we had the Soviets to contend with as we now have Iran and Syria, but both of them together are not militarily competitive with us as the USSR was.
I think that realistically we are doing what may be done, and we need patience. Which means that, as usual, the critical battle is within America against they hypocrites who went to the wall for "an unusually good liar" but who throw incoherent conspiracy theories against the wall to subvert the good name of a president who has faults but is trying to be honest in the face of dishonest opposition.
We just need to win two ('06 and '08) more elections, and perhaps the situation will calm down. I sure wish I knew where our next good president was coming from, tho. But at this stage in 1978 I didn't know that Ronald Reagan was the guy, even though I did know his name, and in 1998 I didn't know that GWB would be the best of the lot in 2000.
All I know is that McCain ain't it. Nor Rudy. Nor Allan Keyes, who self destructed in Illinois.
Interesting observations and analysis. I dont know if benefits of your suggested strategy would have been dwarfed by unintended consequences if Iraq maintained and used WMD stockpiles or if a prolonged artillery war would have been so much bloodier that the we lost our political nerve. And if Shia took greater credit for deposing Saddam, Iraqs new constitution might not have looked so free, assuming (for better or worse) there was a single Iraq.
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