I didn’t see Newt’s appearance on Meet the Press yesterday, but he’s been widely quoted saying “the Bush administration has gone ‘off a cliff’ in postwar Iraq and that ‘the White House has to get a grip on this.'” Gingrich’s criticism is that the administration has failed “to put the Iraqis at the center of this equation. . . . The key to defeating the bad guys is having enough good guys who are Iraqis.”
Given the feverish haste with which the administration is training Iraqis to take over security duties, and the considerable progress that has been made in that effort, Gingrich’s criticique seems wildly off-base. It appears obvious that the administration would like nothing better than to hand Iraq off to the Iraqis and got our troops out at the earliest possible opportunity. There is much more risk of a too-hasty transfer of power than of the administration failing to recognize the importance of Iraqi involvement in security.
UPDATE: Josh McClain of www.bushblog.us thinks we were too hard on Gingrich, who Josh says was mainly critical of the Provisional Authority, not President Bush. Josh links to the complete transcript of Gingrich’s Meet the Press interview here. Gingrich says: “Look, if you read the president
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