TEHRAN, Jan. 10 (MNA) – U.S. President George W. Bush was to unveil his plan for sending 20,000 more troops to Iraq on Wednesday. However, Charles A. Kupchan, an associate professor at Georgetown University, believes that sending more troops will not solve the United States’ problems in Iraq.

“Many Americans, elites and the public alike believe that the current course has failed and that adding more U.S. troops will not solve the problem,” he told the Mehr News Agency on Sunday.


Kupchan said public opinion has become weary of the administration’s management of the Iraq war. “As the results of the mid-term election made clear, the American public strongly disapproves of Bush’s handling of the Iraq war.”


However, the author of “The End of the American Era: U.S. Foreign Policy and the Geopolitics of the 21st Century”, said the American people believe that the U.S. has a moral responsibility for the chaos in Iraq.


“At the same time, most Americans realize that the U.S. cannot simply walk away from Iraq due to the chaos and killing that it would leave behind. As a result, the Iraq Study Group as well as many other independent efforts have been taken to find an alternative strategy.”


“The neoconservatives are much weaker today than they were during Bush’s first term,” he added.


Asked whether the proposal for a troop surge comes from new neocons such as retired general Jack Keane and American Enterprise Institute scholar Frederick Kagan, he stated, “Although analysts like Kagan are pushing for an increase in troops, the plan to send more troops to Baghdad is coming not from neoconservative ambitions, but from an administration that is not yet ready to accept that its efforts to stabilize Iraq have failed.”


He added, “Bush has abandoned the neoconservative plan to turn Iraq into a liberal democracy. But he appears ready to make one last attempt to get the violence under control and create a functioning government, be it democratic or not.”


“Opinion is divided in other think tanks, although many analysts, including conservative ones, do not support an increase in troops and believe that the United States should begin planning for a substantial decrease of its presence in Iraq.”


He said most Democrats will be unwilling to support a substantial increase in troops. “Pelosi, the leader of the House, and Reid, the leader of the Senate, have already made that clear to Bush. Most Democrats are preparing for a reduction in U.S. troops, not an increase.


“However, Congress does not have the power to force the White House to change its mind. On matters of foreign policy, the president has ultimate authority and the power of Congress is quite limited.”


Secure Iraq benefits every country


According to political analyst Barin Kayaoglu, “A stable Iraq is in everyone's benefit, Syria, Lebanon, Iran, Turkey, the United States, and almost every other country in the world.


“Now, Iraq has turned into a quagmire and the Bush administration and the neocons are still hopeful about victory,” the Ph.D. student at the University of Virginia told MNA said on Tuesday. 


“As much as I admire their optimism, I disagree with their assessment. As another (and much more realistic) Middle East expert, Prof. Alon Ben-Meir, succinctly put it, ‘There is no victory strategy.’"


Bush to set 'new course' for U.S. role in Iraq


In the speech, Bush was to announce a plan to send about 20,000 more troops to Iraq in an effort to pacify Baghdad, according to an unnamed U.S. official who spoke to CNN on Tuesday.


Bush was to propose an "Iraqi initiative" that requires U.S. support, Dan Bartlett, counselor to the president, told CNN on Wednesday.


"What we've seen time and time again is the security operations we've attempted in the past in Baghdad had two real fundamental flaws," Bartlett said. Operations did not include enough Iraqi or U.S. troops "to hold the neighborhoods we had cleared throughout Baghdad," he added.


"Rules of engagement -- where troops could go, who they could go after -- were severely restricted by politics in Baghdad," Bartlett noted. "That's going to change as well."


"The president will chart a new course in Iraq tonight, one that will expect very different results, particularly from the Iraqis."


Iraq's fledgling government has been strained by infighting while sectarian violence and insurgent attacks have plagued many parts of the capital.


"It gives us the best chance to give the Iraqi government the kind of breathing space they're going to need to have political reconciliation," Bartlett said.






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