Michael Yon summarizes the changes he has witnessed in Iraq:

I have had the feeling for more than a month that top U.S. leadership in Iraq has been being cautious not to show too much optimism at this time. However, I have seen changes with my own eyes in Nineveh, Anbar, and Diyala that are more fundamental than just winning battles. In Nineveh, the enemies of a united Iraq are still strong and vibrant, but the Iraqi army and police in Nineveh clearly are improving faster than the enemy is improving. In other words, the Iraqi Security Forces are winning that particular race. Out in Anbar, the shift actually began to occur last year while Special Forces and other less-than-visible operators, along with conventional forces such as the Marines, began harnessing the mood-shift of the tribes. Whereas in Nineveh the fight has been more like a race and test of endurance, in Anbar the outcome was more like an avalanche. Parts of Diyala, such as Baqubah, witnessed avalanche-like positive changes beginning on June 19 with Operation Arrowhead Ripper. I witnessed the operation and was given full access. However, other areas in Diyala remain serious problems. I have seen firsthand many sectarian issues. There remains civil war in parts of Diyala (largely thanks to AQI). Down in Basra, a completely different problem-set faces the British who themselves are facing tough choices.

Skipping past the blow-by-blow and getting to the bottom line: I sense there has been a fundamental shift in Iraq. One officer called it a “change in the seas,” and I believe his words were accurate. Something has changed. The change is fundamental, and for once seems positive. And so, back to the O’Hanlon-Pollack story in the New York Times, “A War We Just Might Win,” I agree.

So do I.

Read the whole thing here.

A lot of Democrats and some faint-hearted Republicans have gone far out on a limb predicting defeat in Iraq. That presumption has, in effect, been the Democrats’ entire campaign so far. I suspect that there is some frantic recalibrating of their message going on. Practically speaking, this probably helps “Hillary!” Her refusal to apologize for her vote in favor of invasion gives her a fall-back position in case of success there that is not available to her competitors, all of whom have demanded precipitous withdrawal.

Of more parochial interest: If progress continues Murtha’s credibility, what is left of it, will take a big hit.

July 31, 2007 at 5:56 pm Comments (0)

Re: City of Violence Map

Sorry Alex;

That map is inauthentic. The original does not have “Mesopotamia” stamped across it. Still, your point is well taken.

Regarding Penn’s names for his “green country town” I have never heard that he considered “Mesopotamia” but he did shop around a lot of ideas with his friends and calling it Mesopotamia might have been one of them. Penn’s indecisveness regarding what form his grand experiment would take is legendary — he seems to have eagerly embraced whatever ideas were most recently pitched his way — but the name of the colony was never in doubt. The charter he was issued specified that it would be named “Pennsylvania” in honor of his father, Admiral Penn.

July 31, 2007 at 3:04 pm Comments (0)

Re: Pray for a Roberts Recovery

Some don’t share the sentiment…. well to Patterico.

July 31, 2007 at 12:11 pm Comments (0)

Clyburn: “real big problem for us”

… if General Petraeus’s report on Iraq in September is good.

Allahpundit says

In fairness, by “us” he seems to be referring to the House Democratic leadership, not the left as a whole.

Is that really any better?

The Dems have long staked their electoral successes on a loss in Iraq. The only difference here is that they’re admitting to it.

July 31, 2007 at 12:08 pm Comments (0)

PA 10 Update

My buddy Gort has heard a rumor that Joe Peters is seriously considering running against Chris Carney. With Dave out I think Joe Peters a fellow King’s graduate is not my horse in this race. So look for him to drop out soon.

Also a comment contains a possible GOP primary field.

I am hearing that a 3-way primary is likely:
1. Joe Peters (R-Drug Czar)
2. Dan Meuser (R-Hillary Clinton)
3. Chris Hackett (R-Bona Fide Conservative)

I hear Madeira is out in favor of Hackett, who is the one real conservative in the race.Peters has the credentials, the name ID, and the political experience .Meuser has the most money and DC connections, but likes to give money to Democrats occasionally. Sounds like an entertaining primary that will set up the winner for a battle royale with Carney in the Fall.

I do not know if Dave is supporting Hackett or anything else about this guy. If he is this Hackett we have some problems, for it seems he has a close relations with Democratic Commissioner Greg Skrepenak.

If this guy is a bona fide conservative I doubt he would be participating in “pay to play” with Skrep, so he is not a true conservative or we have the wrong Hackett, for it is a somewhat common name. So considering Meuser’s admiration for certain liberals and perhaps an unethical Hackett, I am convinced Joe Peters is the best choice.

July 31, 2007 at 1:53 am Comment (1)

Pray for a Roberts Recovery

Earlier today John Roberts had a seizure, but it looks like he will be ok. I am sure everyone on this blog and in America is praying that the Chief Justice of the United States, makes a full fast recovery. He has two young kids and he is the best thing to happen to America since Ronald Reagan. Not only has he been upholding the Constitution, but it seems he has convinced Justice Kennedy to do the same on a more regular basis.

July 31, 2007 at 1:29 am Comments (0)

Give Us Your Money

… or we’ll take it away anyway.

Two Pennsylvania congressmen waging an uphill fight against a state law that would put tolls on Interstate 80 unveiled a new tactic to stop the plan, prompting a warning from Gov. Ed Rendell that their interference could derail dozens of highway and bridge projects in their rural districts.

Heh. Another log on the “Most of the state hates Philadelphia fire.”

Republican Reps. Phil English and John Peterson said Monday that their legislation would eliminate the state’s economic incentive to place tolls on the interstate. It would establish a federal excise tax equal to the amount of new tolls imposed on any federally financed interstate and earmark the revenue for a federal program that helps workers whose jobs were moved overseas.


kitty-gun-bb.jpg“We want to use every tactic and every front to fight this battle,” said English, who accused state lawmakers of picking the “pockets of western Pennsylvanians to prop up Philadelphia’s mass transit system.”

Not a bad rejoinder from English & Peterson. “Ed Rendell wants to take retraining money from outsourced workers.”

Throw in “killing kittens” and we got a sure thing.

July 30, 2007 at 10:17 pm Comments (0)

Re: City of Violence – Baghdad on the Delaware

Dale, Serendipity smiles upon us!

Here’s an old map I found. (Click on it to enbiggen it)

I understand that was William Penn’s first choice to name the city, owing to the location between the Schuylkill and Delaware Rivers.

Alas, his idealism prevailed and he went with the City of Brother Love (also in Greek).

Reality gets the last word though.

July 30, 2007 at 8:59 pm Comments (0)

City of Violence — Baghdad on the Delaware

Eric Blair, over at Classical Values, notes the way violence in Philadelphia is being reported in the media and how the developing narrative supports the agenda of the gun grabbers.

Read it here.

July 30, 2007 at 6:51 pm Comments (0)

Re: Picksburgh vs. Philly

Bill, nowadays it’s hard not to sweep the Bucs. Yeah, they suck, but we love them anyway.

But it’s all good – after all, the Penguins swept the Flyers last year, and I think we might get a repeat of that next season.

July 30, 2007 at 6:26 pm Comments (0)

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