President Bush stated again today that his decision to "surge" troops was based on the recommendation of military commanders:
"And so I decided to, at the recommendation of military commanders, decided to send reinforcements."
Unfortunately, this is a lie.
The commanders on the ground at the time of "surge" planning were Generals Casey and Abizaid, who were both opposed to an increase in troop deployment:
"I've met with every divisional commander. General Casey, the corps commander, General Dempsey--we all talked together. And I said, `In your professional opinion, if we were to bring in more American troops now, does it add considerably to our ability to achieve success in Iraq?' And they all said no'." General Abizaid | November 15, 2006
"[t]he longer we in the United States forces continue to bear the main burden of Iraq's security, it lengthens the time that the government of Iraq has to make the hard decisions about reconciliation and dealing with the militias ... . They can continue to blame us for all of Iraq's problems, which are at base their problems." General Casey | December 29, 2006
Additionally, the Joint Chiefs were unanimously against the troop surge.
Both Generals Casey and Abizaid were replaced by President Bush with pro-surge personnel. General Petraeus, who replaced General Casey, was unanimously confirmed by Congress, as many war supporters protest; however, they fail to understand that General Casey was already on the way out. Should Congress have left the position of field commander of Iraq unoccupied out of protest? No American who supports our troops would do such a thing, and neither did Congress.
In fact, the "surge" was conceived by Frederick Kagan (a man who has never set foot in Iraq) of the American Enterprise Institute - a neoconservative think-tank:
"We must send more American combat forces into Iraq and especially into Baghdad to support this operation. A surge of seven Army brigades and Marine regiments to support clear-and-hold operations starting in the spring of 2007 is necessary, possible, and will be sufficient." Frederick Kagan's Choosing Victory. A Plan for Success in Iraq
I understand that this may be a bit hard to swallow for the few out there who still support this president and this war, and I'm prepared for the insults and accusations; but to those people I leave the following from a Digg commentator:
"At some point you people are going to have to realize that it's not 2003 anymore, and that 70% of a population can't be dismissed as fringe radical "moonbats." Argue for the war all you want, just remember that at this point *you* are the nutjob who is contradicting all available empirical evidence."