Monday, November 21, 2005

Missed Again

There really cannot be any more debate about whether we have enough men and equipment on the ground in Iraq; discussions about missed recruiting goals, critical jobs going unfilled, soldiers on their third rotations have pretty much put that debate to bed. We also know, well after the fact, that it was a lack of US manpower on the ground that enabled Osama bin Laden to escape at Tora Bora in the opening days of the Afghan war (anyone remember that one?).

So what are we to make that bin Laden's head honcho in Iraq was missed a second time, coming so close that an Iraqi official declared him a casualty of a weekend firefight?

A Pentagon source said that the military did have intelligence that indicated al-Zarqawi was meeting in a Mosul home with high-level Iraq in al-Qaida lieutenants. As soldiers closed in on the site, there was an exchange of small arms fire, then it appears that three al-Qaida suspects blew themselves up to avoid capture.

The military is conducting DNA tests on flesh and blood recovered from the scene, but a Pentagon official said indications are that al-Zarqawi is not among those killed.

"The information was solid. We just missed him," said one Pentagon source.
I think events have put the lie to the repeated Republican proclamation that we are doing everything we can to win the war on terror.

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