Following months of intensely studying current policies in Iraq, the government appears to be heading towards sending up to 20,000 more troops to that troubled country in the hopes of securing Baghdad and slamming the insurgency. President Bush, Senators McCain, Clinton and Lieberman and top military commanders in Iraq have all endorsed the idea, provided that political steps are also taken.
After almost four years in Iraq and facing a growing insurgency, it’s high time we sent over more soldiers. We needed more soldiers in Iraq during the initial invasion. More soldiers are needed to patrol the streets, serve as embedded troops in Iraqi units and pressure the government in Baghdad to find political solutions to the warfare. It is imperative that we enter four-way negotiations with Iraq, Iran and Syria to find a way to bring peace to Iraq. Although the governments in Iraq’s neighbors have made a number of grevious errors in their foreign relations policies, they may be the only other nations who can help us right now. We have to invite them to the table.
We also have to begin intense negotiations with insurgent groups on where to move forward from here. Additional troops means additional leverage, which, coupled with possible prisoner releases and political concessions like regional autonomy, could be the beginning of the end for the insurgency. Radical leaders like Muqtada al-Sadr might yet help the peace process become reality, but we have to be willing to talk. Even in the height of the Cold War, we maintained diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union and Red China. Now, we have to be willing to work with radicals, Iran and Syria to forge a consensus for peace in Iraq.
More troops with better equipment is the way to move ahead. Show the insurgency that America is coming to the streets, and the negotiating tables, with more will and greater strength.