Ralph Peters Again

Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Forty-seven battalions drawn from all 10 of Iraq's army divisions took part in an operation that, above all, aimed at reassuring the public. The effort worked - from the luxury districts to the slums, the Iraqis were proud of their army.

As a result of its nationwide success, the Iraqi army gained tremendously in confidence. Its morale soared. After all the lies and exaggerations splashed in your direction, the truth is that we're seeing a new, competent, patriotic military emerge. The media may cling to its image of earlier failures, but last week was a great Iraqi success.
The article is here.

I remember reports questioning the disbanding (which was actually a collapse) of Iraq's armed forces soon after the invasion in the spring of '03. It was my contention then and remains so now that in order for the Iraqi military to function as a force for national unity it had to start anew. Keeping the cadres of non-coms and the officer corps from the old structure would never gain the confidence of either the leadership or the citizenry. To read "the Iraqis were proud of their army" as anything but a message of great hope for solution of Iraq's ongoing terrorist campaign would be foolish. The fact that units were drawn from all ten divisions is by itself evidence of unifying strength.

"Not one unit had sectarian difficulties," he stressed. "Not one. And when we canceled all leaves after the mosque bombing - we expected trouble, of course - our soldiers returned promptly to their units. Now it is as you see for yourself: Iraqis are proud of their own soldiers."

Sounds like a tough place to start a civil war. Lest we forget - 50% of the US officer corps resigned at the time of secession and signed up on the other side.

Now that's a civil war.


terrye said...


I doubt that the majority would have tolerated the old army, it was Saddam's.

brylun said...

All the top officers in Saddam's Army were Sunni Baathists. The disbanding was necessary because of the genocide inflicted on the Kurds and the Shia.

JB said...

Along with "we don't have enough troops", "we shouldn't have disbanded the Iraqi Army" is another of those non-falsifiable talking points used to beat up W. Hopefully this success will go some way towards casting doubt on the wisdom of the "experts."

Knucklehead said...

Dontcha just love the "disbanded the Iraqi army" meme? The Iraqi army disbanded itself. The US chose not to gather up the tattered, suspect remnants and recreate an instrument of the Beast we set out to destroy. Gee, what a remarkably choice!

The thing the International Seditionist Media will never cover is that Iraqis are fighting for their nation against criminals and terrorists. Go get 'em - and faster, please.

Seneca the Younger said...

I'm with Rick and Terrye: we couldn't have reconsitituted the Bundeswehr with Party members from the Nazis and trusted them. Given the feelings of the Kurds and Shi'a, that would have guaranteed a civil war.

Syl said...

One of the Iraqi bloggers had noted the feeling of pride in their new Iraqi army.

I've said this before and know I'm like a broken record, but so much of the Iraq war criticism not only impugns Bush, America, and our troops, but the Iraqi people as well.

It's almost as if the Iraqi's do not exist--except for insurgents.

Rick Ballard said...


I don't think it can be said too often. The dead press deals only in caricature. Any semblance to reality is purely accidental.

There are a few exceptions and I'm happy that Terrye found Ralph Peters. If there is a press club in NY, I'll bet no one speaks to him when he returns.