Dohiyi Mir
    In Which NTodd Says His Peace

Saturday, November 01, 2003
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Progress In Iraq

Colonel John R. Martin, having just gotten back from deployment in Iraq, writes in Strategic Studies Institute's October newsletter (PDF):

What should be believed about progress in Iraq? Both the media view and official story lines can be expected to contain substantial bias, intentional or not. Even polling can be subject to bias as pollsters sometimes unconsciously, sometimes not-infrequently lean toward the predispositions of their sponsors. Objective and scientific polling, though, is the best route to a more valid picture of progress in Iraq. The political views of Iraqis represent a critical "target" in this conflict. It is impossible to craft a strategy for Iraq without sound information on those views and how they are changing. Without rigorous polling - broken down across regions, across ethnic and gender lines and over time - nobody can know what should be believed; it's just one set of biased anecdotes versus another. Given the stakes, the Department of Defense needs to do better - and fast.

I agree in general that we're not getting the full story. However, I do hear the "good news" that the adminstration touts, and I don't think it balances the daily deaths of our soldiers, Iraqi civilians, and UN and other personnel.


[Update: Atrios has some other interesting info and commentary related to this.] 

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