Reidblog [The Reid Report blog]

Think at your own risk.
Thursday, January 04, 2007
Quick take headlines, January 4th
Guess who thinks he can read your mail!!!

PresidentSenator Hillary Clinton gets in touch with her inner Obama as she plots her course back to the White House...

Democrats are weighing what to do about Iraq, and whether to stop Bush, or enable him.

Meanwhile, McClatchy's Washington bureau reports that Bush's troop bump may not be all it's cracked up to be:
WASHINGTON - President Bush plans to order extra U.S. troops to Iraq as part of a new push to secure Baghdad, but in smaller numbers than previously reported, U.S. officials said Wednesday.

The president, who is completing a lengthy review of Iraq policy, is considering dispatching three to four U.S. combat brigades to Iraq, or no more than 15,000 to 20,000 U.S. troops, the officials said. Bush is expected to announce his decision next week.

Typically, a combat brigade comprises about 3,500 combat troops and more than 1,000 support personnel.

"Instead of a surge, it is a bump," said a State Department official. He spoke on condition of anonymity, because Bush hasn't yet unveiled details of what the White House is calling a "new way forward" in Iraq.

Bush had been considering proposals to send a much larger contingent into Baghdad -- as many as 30,000-40,000 soldiers and Marines.

Some experts doubt that the smaller deployment would be sufficient to halt Iraq's escalating civil war between Shiite and Sunni Muslims.
Ya think???
To marshal even 15,000 to 20,000 additional troops, Bush would have to accelerate the return of some units to the battlefield, cutting their time to train between deployments.

Advocates of a "surge" in U.S. troop levels have argued that to be effective in halting the violence, the United States would have to send a significant number of troops for an extended period of time.

Frederick W. Kagan, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative policy research center, recently briefed the White House on his plan to send 32,000 additional soldiers and Marines to Baghdad and volatile Anbar province. The troops would remain in Iraq for 18 months.

On Wednesday, Kagan cautioned against over-interpreting the number of troops being sent. More important, he said, is the number of individual combat brigades and battalions sent to Iraq and how they're deployed.

The State Department official said that, even at this late juncture, administration officials are debating what the extra troops would do.
So the neocons still in charge of U.S. policy want a full-on escalation, but Team Bush hasn't even gotten straight what the extra forces would do? Priceless... And what happens if we surge and it doesn't work, Mr. Kagan? ... hm....

On another matter not directly related to the McCain doctrine:
ā€œI think the fence is least effective. But Iā€™ll build the goddamned fence if they want it.ā€
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), on supporting a fence along the U.S.-Mexico border to placate anti-immigrant hardliners. Via ThinkP.
Nice.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch... John "Death Squad" Negroponte is stepping down as DNI in order to head over to State. What's that about?

Via RawStory and the Legal Times, was Justice Rehnquist a drug addict, in the Limbaugh sense of the word?

The Pentagon wants to make science .cool. Hope it works.

And Obama, Osama, tomato, tomahto... you know...

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posted by JReid @ 10:14 AM  
ReidBlog: The Obama Interview
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"I am for enhanced interrogation. I don't believe waterboarding is torture... I'll do it. I'll do it for charity." -- Sean Hannity
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