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Sunday, October 15, 2006

Accentuating the Negative Part II

This is my latest article published over at Opinion Editorials.

In January 2005, I wrote an article title “Accentuating the Negative” which was a compilation of the positive news from Iraq. You know the news the mainstream media fails to report. The article was turned into a much-forwarded email and caused quite an uproar at the Associated Press.

Since then, the AP has “promised” to report the news from Iraq in a more balanced fashion. That promise was broken less than 1 month later and continues to be broken on a daily basis.

With the Election of 2006 looming, the wails of “failure” and screams of “cut and run” have echoed around the country courtesy of the Left. The media, never one to miss a chance to skewer the Bush Administration, has paraded story after story of the bad news in Iraq. Even going so far as to publish a “stick your finger in the wind” type of statistical report of Iraqi civilian deaths from Johns Hopkins Research.

It is not like the positive news is hidden away. The information is readily available on the Internet. You can track the Iraq Weekly Status Reports from the Bureau of Near East Affairs at the US State Department. You can even get up to the minute press releases from CentCom in your email.

But the negatives are still splashed on the front page while the positives languish in obscurity. It is a documented fact that the Islamofascists utilize the media to spread their hatred. The Terrorists see negative reports in the US as positive reports for their jihad. Like in Vietnam and Somali, if Americans can be convinced that Iraq and the war on terror is a quagmire then the enemy wins. Any sign of weakness in America’s will to fight is a check mark in the positive column for the terrorists.

Today John Kerry was on Fox News Sunday beating his Iraq is a Failure bongo drum. John Murtha was in the Washington Post admitting that he was a Defeatocrat. Read the PreWar comparisons to the Current situation in Iraq to see just how much of a “failure” Iraq is. Sources for these facts come from the Department of Defense War on Terror website, the Bureau of Near East Affairs of the State Department, CentCom and the US Army’s Iraq Reconstruction website.

3300 MW being produced with 7000 MW potential. Entire distribution system failing. No investments. No maintenance.

Electricity: 1420 MW capacity added. Increased power generation benefiting 1.3 million homes. Improved Electricity distribution to approximately 340K homes. Hours of power: 11 nationwide, 6.3 Baghdad

PreWar: 2002 2.0 million barrels per day production. No maintenance. Facilities aging and inoperative wells.

Currently: 2.5 million barrels per day production capacity. 2.33 million barrels per day current actual production. Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) production capacity of 1,200 tons per day.

Water & Sewer:
PreWar: Capacity unknown. Entire system under-maintained or inoperative. In Baghdad no working sewer system. Raw sewage dumped in Tigris River.

Currently: Added 417,000 cubic meters per day of water treatment capacity (benefits an estimate 2.0 million Iraqis). Basrah City sewage treatment project nearing completion.

PreWar: No new hospitals built in 20 years while population tripled. Over half of public health centers were closed for poor maintenance.

Currently: Seven IRRF funded Primary Healthcare Centers completed – 6 are open. 66 Primary Healthcare Centers are under construction. 21 Hospitals renovated, serving approximately 5500 patients/day.

PreWar: Approximately 13,000 schools. 10,400 in disrepair.

Currently: 835 schools providing classrooms for 325,000 grade school students

Security & Justice:
PreWar: Police force marginalized by leadership. Facilities in disrepair. Open borders – no operational border forts.

Currently: 327 police facilities completed. 245 new border forts completed, helping to secure 2000 miles of Iraq’s borders
As of October 4, there are six IA division headquarters, 30 brigades and 89 battalions in the lead for their respective areas of operation.

52 of the 110 Coalition Force bases have been transferred to Iraqi control.

Iraqi and Coalition forces killed over 110 terrorists and detained over 520 in 164 operations during the month of September. Of that total, 50 foreign fighters were killed and 16 captured.

From September 26, 2006 to October 1, 2006, 30 Death Squad Cell Members were detained.

32 countries and NATO (including US) support Iraqi Stability Operations

Transportation & Communications:
PreWar: 34,586km of paved roads. 6103km of village roads. No emergency response system.

Currently: 221km of village roads added. Provided emergency response dispatch system (911 service) covering 12 million Iraqis in 15 cities.

74% of Diesel fuel is produced domestically
81% of Kerosene is produced domestically

October 11 – Iraq will sign a trade agreement with the European Union. The agreement would treat Iraq as a friendly country and give it priority in commercial exchanges

Is Iraq a restive country? No. Is the violence heart wrenching and depressing? Yes. But focusing on the negatives leads to more doom and gloom predictions. Rep Maxine Waters claimed that reporting the positives diminishes the deaths of soldiers in Iraq. Quite the contrary - Calling our efforts in Iraq a failure in light of the above is devaluing the sacrifices made by our soldiers. The soldiers that have given the ultimate sacrifice deserve better than this continuous drumbeat of negativity.

There is only one failure. It is the failure of the naysayers to realize that THIS is our future. Instead of fighting against the Bush Administration, the energy should be used to fight against those that want to do us harm. Why is that such a difficult concept to grasp?
Is political power worth giving the Terrorists another tool in their arsenal of hate? This American doesn’t think so. Neither should you.

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