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What's Going On In Iraq?

Reported by Donna - September 29, 2005

Today on Studio B with Jane Skinner substituting for Shepard Smith, she spoke about the top American General testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee. She asked correspondant, Greg Kelly, if things had been a little tense today.

Kelly reported that there are a lot of skeptical questions for the president's war time cabinet. He reported that General Casey said it could take 9 years to defeat the insurgency and that 2 1/2 years after the fall of Baghdad just one Iraqi battalion is ready to operate on its own.

While this is certainly not good news, look at some of the actual testimony and what General Casey had said several months ago that was not mentioned on Fox.

From AP:

The top US commander in Iraq disclosed that only a single Iraqi battalion is capable of independent operations and acknowledged conditions may worsen there even if a constitution is approved.

Senators sharply questioned administration claims of progress in Iraq, zeroing in on General George Casey's revelation before the Senate Armed Services Committee that only one Iraqi battalion was capable of operating fully independently.

The last time Casey reported to Congress several months ago, he said three battalions were at Level One, a rating for units that are capable of independent operations.

"We fully recognize that Iraqi armed forces will not have an independent capability for some time, because they don't have an institutional base to support them," he said. "And so Level One is one battalion."

"It was three. Now its gone from three to one?" interjected Senator John McCain, a Republican from Arizona.

"Things change in a battalion. We're making assessments on leadership, on training. There are a lot of variables that are involved here, senator," Casey said.

In another article from February of this year:

Wolfowitz told the Senate committee that on June 28, 2004 only one Iraqi battalion was regarded as combat-ready and capable of deployment. He said that today there are 45 such units, but acknowledged absentee rates of up to 40 percent in Iraqi military units. Article

Comments: So, several months ago Casey reported that 3 battalions were at Level One and now there are one. This comparison was not brought up on Fox. We have received so many different numbers from Generals and Pentagon officials as to the troop readiness in Iraq, that it is hard to believe what exactly is going on over there.

While it's true what Fox reported, that one battalion was ready to operate on it's own, they gave no indication that several months ago the same General said that 3 battalions were ready to operate on their own. How about what Wolfowitz told the Senate Committee in February of 2005? Apparently, Fox likes to tell you there are 'tense' moments rather offer any background for the story.

And, as for the nine years to defeat the insurgency, is this something we are to believe? And is this acceptable to the American publc?

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