Have we reached a tipping point in Iraq this week? Has law and order finally begun to take hold? Is the cause of the insurgents finally beginning to wane in the face of the democratic ideals that have taken root in Iraq. I have no idea yet, but if that's the case, you heard it here first. Why am I speculating that the winds of change are blowing in Iraq? Some stories in the news grabbed my attention this week because they were drastically different from the usual news coverage of Iraq. The media has a tendancy to report on negative things like bombings that kill soldiers and civilians. These stories are fair game, but the media also tends to ignore the steady progress being made in Iraq because its just not as sexy as a bombing. But this week, there were two consecutive stories in the news about clashes in Iraq between U.S. troops and insurgents in which the insurgents were SOUNDLY defeated.
On March 20, about 50 insurgents ambushed U.S. forces south of Baghdad. U.S. forces responded by killing 26 of them before the insurgents gave up and ran away. About seven U.S. soldiers were wounded.
On March 22, a joint U.S.-Iraqi raid on an insurgent trainging camp in central Iraq west of Tikrit left at least 80 insurgents dead according to Iraqi officials. The involvment of Iraqi soldiers in this successful operation is particulary noteworthy and is evidence that Iraqis are taking responsibility for the security of their country.
By my count, between the two clashes, that's over one hundred less shitheads in this world. If you think that these losses will only encourage insurgents to target civilians in Iraq, well, insurgents may find civilians are not soft targets anymore.
On March 22, shopkeepers and residents on one of Baghdad's main streets pulled out their own guns yesterday and killed three hooded insurgents when they began shooting at passers-by.
The news this week has been, I dare say, encouraging.