Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Ah, yes, the "liberal" New York Times.
if Mr. Bush intends to keep American troops in Iraq until his stated aims are achieved, he must face up to the compelling need to increase their strength, and to commit the resources needed to give present policies at least some chance of success. That would require a minimum of two additional combat divisions, or nearly 40,000 more American troops, beyond the just over 140,000 currently planned for the Iraqi election period. . . .

Sending two more divisions to Iraq would require expanding active-duty forces by at least six divisions, since the Army needs to have at least two divisions in various stages of recuperation and training for every division deployed in a combat area. It is unrealistic to expect reserve divisions to continue filling these gaps. That makes sense in a brief emergency, but not in what has turned into a long-term military commitment. Regular Army forces have to be expanded, well beyond the currently planned temporary increase of 30,000 troops over the next several years. That can be accomplished through a significant further increase in recruitment quotas. There are more than enough potential fighting-age volunteers to do that without resorting to a draft
One small note: the best way to drive up recruitment levels is to drive up youth unemployment. In October the unemployment rate for 16-19 year olds stood at 17.2%. That's a start, down from the 19% level when the Iraq war began but up from the 15.7% level a year ago.

And, O, how I long for the day when we will all refer to the Times as the "liberal Republican" newspaper of record.


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