(UCS News : Iraq) Today US troops are battling insurgents in the sparsely populated farmland northeast of Samarra. The Troops have control of the area but operation Swarmer has failed to achieve it’s main objective. The objective was to lift the Presidents sagging poll numbers at the war’s third Anniversary . On Friday commander of multinational forces, Lt. Gen. Peter Chiarelli, told reporters the operation has found “very, very light resistance.” Just as planned.
The President and Pentagon staffers have been planning a string victorious “battles” for some time. The plans were developed in case the President’s poll numbers slipped below 40%. With his domestic agenda stalled and his top advisers jailed for shoplifting it’s the perfect time to have a victorious battle with no US casualties.
“We flew the troops in and stormed the city with a great show of force.” This makes a great sound bite, but there were no insurgents in sight. One commander on the ground stated, “The Army threw a battle and no one came.” Critics of the War agree, The operation was a perfect way for the President to distract the troops and the American people from the grim 3 year milestone. The other objective was to show some “progress” as the unpopular war drags into it’s 4th year.
Off the record Iraqi commanders complained. With the cost of jet and helicopter fuel it’s an unconscionable waste of tax payers dollars for an election year publicity stunt. Operation Swarmer was less like a battle and more like a helicopter joy ride followed by a brisk walk and MRE picnic lunch. After the picnic was over the Pentagon declared victory and went home.