Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Quote of the day: No Iraqi army?

An Iraqi officer in a Washington Post article about where things are going in Iraq: All of them belong to Iran," one senior Iraqi commander in Baghdad said on the condition of anonymity to be able to speak critically of the Shiite politicians expected to dominate the next government. "We’re not yet an army. This ...

Joel Franusic/flickr
Joel Franusic/flickr
Joel Franusic/flickr

An Iraqi officer in a Washington Post article about where things are going in Iraq:

All of them belong to Iran," one senior Iraqi commander in Baghdad said on the condition of anonymity to be able to speak critically of the Shiite politicians expected to dominate the next government. "We're not yet an army. This is just AK-47s and Humvees."

Regular readers know that "Jwing" is more optimistic than I am, and yes, there are other signs that are more positive. But I think we should listen also to comments like this commander's. An army has to know who or what it is fighting for, and in the past it has sometimes been apparent that Iraqi soldiers didn't know.

An Iraqi officer in a Washington Post article about where things are going in Iraq:

All of them belong to Iran," one senior Iraqi commander in Baghdad said on the condition of anonymity to be able to speak critically of the Shiite politicians expected to dominate the next government. "We’re not yet an army. This is just AK-47s and Humvees."

Regular readers know that "Jwing" is more optimistic than I am, and yes, there are other signs that are more positive. But I think we should listen also to comments like this commander’s. An army has to know who or what it is fighting for, and in the past it has sometimes been apparent that Iraqi soldiers didn’t know.

Also, the Kurds are worried.

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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