The Best Defense

Is Iraq being partitioned invisibly?

Mookie is back in Iraq.

Relevantly, Joel Wing analyzes rumors that Maliki promised the Sadrists the governorships of four southern provinces in Iraq. "On the other hand," Wing notes soberly, "he could renege on his promises as he's done with others in the past."

Move along, nothing to see here, says the vice president. Joe Biden assures the Wall Street Journal's hard-working Gerald Seib that, "The really untold story here is the Iranians had virtually no influence." That would be good news if it were true. But given Biden's multi-year track record as a counter-indicator on events in Iraq … I mean, wrong in '91, wrong in '03, wrong in '07.

Let's see what comes out of the Iranian foreign minister's visit today. No slapping!

Here is Wing's told ya so, Joe.

Jayel Aheram/Flickr

The Best Defense

The dangers of reading Foreign Policy?: Army tosses infantry bde commander

The Army on Monday fired Col. Frank Zachar as commander of the 172nd Infantry Brigade, which is based in Grafenwohr, Germany. No hanky-panky alleged -- they are just saying he was a lousy commander. As if that were grounds for relief! Next thing you know, we'll see generals held accountable. Zachar looked destined for stars -- an Airborne Ranger who had been both to SAMS and the Army War College, and who posted Foreign Policy as one of his favorite links.

The command sergeant major also got the heave-ho.

Meanwhile, Tim Kane looks at why so many good officers, like my boss, are leaving the military voluntarily. Kane proposes more of a market orientation for handling jobs in the military. I like this idea, but wonder what it would do to the "suck it up" mentality that is the foundation of Army culture.

172nd Infantry Brigade/U.S. Army