Blackfive has an excellent post that you must read:
Counter-InSURGEncy, a primer on our impending victory
The Surge is not our strategy and he is correct that it is not responsible for the tremendous success in Baghdad, the surrounding belts, Al Anbar, Diyala and now even in some of the Shia tribal areas as well. Our strategy is Counter-Insurgency (COIN) and the additional troops, known as the Surge, are simply part of that effort along with every other military member and civilian over there. Read LTC Kilcullen for an elegant primer on COIN in the Small Wars Journal.
COIN is completely different than the nation-building and national institution-building that we had been doing since toppling Saddam and up until the beginning of this year. We had hunkered down on the FOBs heading out on patrols and then back inside the wire. Now we cleared areas and then stayed and lived side by side with the Iraqis, and once they saw that we were staying they “awakened” and determined that al Qaeda brought death and destruction and the Americans brought electricity and water, not to mention security.
There have certainly been several days in the past month when no US or British soldiers were killed.
During a five-day stretch between October 19 and 23, there were no deaths among coalition forces.
Take a look at the weapons caches turned in by the Iraqis in the past year.
In The First Ten Months Of 2007, Coalition And Iraqi Security Forces Have Found And Cleared 5,364 Caches”
“That Is Twice The Volume Of Material Found And Cleared In All Of 2006.
The Democrats are tripping over themselves not to acknowledge that the COIN is working. To the contrary; Yesterday they were saying that the real reason behind the falling casualty rates in Iraq was that Muqtada al-Sadr had declared a six-month ceasefire.
Today they’re saying that If violence is decreasing in Iraq, it may be because insurgents “are running out of people to kill,”
They’ve been there.
James Tarranto talks about the death count in Iraq.
A. J. Strata has more metrics on success in Iraq.