Tuesday, June 28, 2005


What does this man know about the British?

Buzzflash today linked an odd editorial by John Patrick Grace in the Herald-Dispatch of Huntington, West Virginia. In it he writes,
We may now be only weeks away from a complete collapse of the Iraqi army and the withdrawal of British troops from Iraq in the face of overwhelming public pressure on Tony Blair.

What does he base this on?

That is a realistic projection based on the reports of two Washington Post reporters, whose dispatches from inside Iraqi Army units and U.S. units assigned to train and work with the Iraqi military have just been published.

Grace is undoubtedly referring to the front-page article of June 10 by Anthony Shadid and Steve Fainaru headlined "Building Iraq's Army: Mission Improbable." But the odd thing is that these reporters did not mention the British at all.

If you've been reading Simply Appalling, you know that the British have put out some strong hints that they want to get the hell out of Iraq. But not as strong as Mr. Grace has put it.

Grace is identified as a former "editor on the foreign desk of The Associated Press in New York and a correspondent in The AP Rome bureau," so you wouldn't suppose him to be spinning this out of whole cloth.

I'm hoping he knows something that the rest of us don't. A British withdrawal would certainly increase the pressure for an American withdrawal—and prove that it can be done without the world coming to an end.

Related posts
What's up in Afghanistan and why is Blair sending more troops? (4/5/05)
The secret that's not a secret: British troops to Afghanistan (5/23/05)
A further note on the Brits and Afghanistan (6/2/05)

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