Marines to leave Falluja

Reports that Marines will turn over Falluja to an Iraqi unit are troubling. The rational for the move is that Marines killing inurgents makes for bad politics in Iraq. It may, but their is something more important at stake in Falluja.

To defeat the terrorist, the US must utterly destroy them. They must show that they have no hope. Unless this Iraqi unit does that, then the move will be a great mistake.

It is to be expected that Arabs will whine about "civilian" casualties in a Marine operation in Falluja. But people who are shooting at Marines are not civilians, they are unlawful combatants wearing civilian clothes and hiding among civilians.

The politics of giving the Iraqis a chance to control Falluja is risky at best. One risk is that the Marines will have to go back in at a less opportune time. That could make for political risks in this country.

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