In the Arena

A Few Days Ago in Iraq

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Notice what’s missing in this excellent report by Michael Gordon of the New York Times?

Hint: The enemy. It’s beginning to seem that most of the estimated 500 Aal Qaeda fighters have managed to slip the noose in Baquba, leaving behind the rigged house-bombs that Colonel Townsend’s soldiers have to defuse. This was supposed to be the set-piece battle of Operation Phantom Thunder. It proved more Phantom than Thunder.

I’ll have more to say about my week in Iraq, including the battle for Baquba, in the print magazine this week. For now, I”m happy to be safe and drinking vodka in Amman.