AP and E&P: Perfect “Liars” Together
The AP and E&P have teamed up to perpetuate a lie. The details of their own story make that clear for anyone taking the time to actually parse it. The headline screams Many U.S. Troops in Iraq Oppose Escalation, so let’s take a look.
In dozens of interviews with soldiers of the Army’s 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment as they patrolled the streets of eastern Baghdad, many said the Iraqi capital is embroiled in civil warfare between majority Shiite Muslims and Sunni Arabs that no number of American troops can stop.
So, let’s see:
Spc. Don Roberts, who was stationed in Baghdad in 2004, said the situation had gotten worse because of increasing violence between Shiites and Sunnis.
"I don’t know what could help at this point," said Roberts, 22, of Paonia, Colo. "What would more guys do?
Okay, 2004, so Roberts was in Baghdad two years ago. Fair enough, but he doesn’t seem to have been interviewed as he patrolled.
"Nothing’s going to help. It’s a religious war, and we’re caught in the middle of it," said Sgt. Josh Keim,…
As you’ll see below, out of the so called dozens of interviews, Keim is the only one to actually express that opinion, except for one other individual who was against the war from the start. In reality, more soldiers interviewed support a surge of some type than oppose it.
Capt. Matt James, commander of the battalion’s Company B, was careful in how he described the unit’s impact since arriving in Baghdad.
"The idea in calling us in was to make things better here, but it’s very complicated and complex," he said.
But James said more troops in combat would likely not have the desired effect. "The more guys we have training the Iraqi army the better," he said. "I would like to see a surge there."
I imagine it is complex. But we’re over halfway through the story and so far out of dozens of interviews, the AP has provided only one source representing the view stipulated in the headline. James supports a surge with emphasis on training.
During a recent interview, Lt. Gen. Nasier Abadi, deputy chief of staff for the Iraqi army, said that instead of sending more U.S. soldiers, Washington should focus on furnishing his men with better equipment.
A fair point, perhaps. But, again, Abadi is not a US soldier on patrol.
"They’re never going to be as effective as us," said 1st Lt. Sean McCaffrey, 24, of Shelton, Conn. "They don’t have enough training or equipment or expertise."
McCaffrey does support a temporary surge in troop numbers, however, arguing that flooding Baghdad with more soldiers could "crush enemy forces all over the city instead of just pushing them from one area to another."
Pfc. Richard Grieco said it’s hard to see how daily missions in Baghdad make a difference.
"If there’s a plan to sweep through Baghdad and clear it, (more troops) could make a difference," said the 19-year-old from Slidell, La.
Sgt. James Simons, 24, of Tacoma, Wash., said Baghdad is so dangerous that U.S. forces spend much of their time in combat instead of training Iraqis.
"Baghdad is still like it was at the start of the war. We still have to knock out insurgents because things are too dangerous for us to train the Iraqis," he said.
Staff Sgt. Anthony Handly disagreed, saying Baghdad has made improvements many Americans aren’t aware of.
Staff Sgt. Lee Knapp, 28, of Mobile, Ala., also supported a temporary troop surge,
Out of all the above, not one came out against a surge, while most seem to support it depending on the mission.
Sgt. Justin Thompson, a San Antonio native, said he signed up for delayed enlistment before the Sept. 11 terror attacks, then was forced to go to a war he didn’t agree with.
A troop surge is "not going to stop the hatred between Shia and Sunni," said Thompson
A total of two out of dozens of interviews don’t see a surge helping, while the clear majority does. And they wonder why we don’t trust the AP, or E&P. Headlined as it is, this story is a farce.