Interview with Lt Gen Odierno

Here is a good review of recent events in Iraq from the commander of the Multi-National Forces. It looks like they are having some success with recent changes in strategy (the Surge).

A couple of things are further clarified by this interview. The Iranians are supplying the enemy. The Surge has scared the Shiite militias and a lot of them have run away. And the Sunni Tribes are starting to lose patience with the Al Qaeda in the al Anbar Region.

On the political front, Bush and Rice are confronting their critics directly by inviting Iran and Syria to a diplomatic conference. I suspect the objective is to demonstrate that Iran is not interested in stabilizing Iraq. That should be clear to anyone paying attention, but it will have the effect of demonstrating the fecklessness of the Iranians to the Europeans and the Democrats.

Yesterday the Iraqis finalized a deal on oil revenue distribution. That's another big step in the right direction. The Iraqi army continues to develop, although not as quickly as one would hope. (Has any Arab country ever fielded a decent army?).

This is the Long War in action. Small steps in the right direction, not unlike post-WWII Europe. Staying focused and paying attention is the only strategy. And voting for people who want this to be a success.