In the post titled escalation, I countered the rhetoric that the proposed troop surge is an escalation of the Iraq conflict. It may be an escalation. It may also be, as Bush seems to be claiming, an effort to solidfy gains that we had made during the war; so that we can transfer control to Iraqi forces without creating a power. The point of my post is that we do not know at this moment, which is a great frustration.
On listening to Conservative commentators on the troop surge. My gut instinct is telling me that the in-your-face style announcement made by Bush has the military beginning a good strategic move with a big political blunder. Things would be so much better if Bush had spent a week or so during the opening of the political season to build consensus for the troop surge.
Peace is an illusive goal. One of the primary keys to achieving peace is consensus. An announcement that lacks consensus runs the risk of making American troops the target. Yes, a troop surge could help solidify gains to help us ease into a draw down. If, however, the opposition escalates their activity in response to the surge, it will become the divisive escalation that Democrats fear. The timing of the announcement was so off, that our enemies have a better chance of turning a good strategy into a blunder.