Fredrick Kagan: We aren't winning, we aren't losing

Historians in the News

... Frederick Kagan, a military historian and resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, says al-Qaida insurgents have increased their attacks in an effort to undermine the Baghdad security plan and erode support for the war in the United States.

"The al-Qaida surge is very serious," said Frederick Kagan. "It is very significant. It is altering the situation in Iraq in unpredictable ways. It is clearly further eroding America's will to stay the course here and continue to try to win this war."...

Frederick Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute first proposed the sustained surge of U.S. troops in Baghdad before the Bush administration adopted the policy earlier this year.

Kagan says it is still too early to determine if the counterinsurgency strategy will ultimately succeed.

"The basic conclusion that I would offer you is that victory is still up for grabs," he said. "Those who would say that the war is lost, definitively, I don't think there is support for that statement in Iraq. I think it is hard. I think we may lose. I think we may win. I think it depends a lot on what we do and it depends a lot on what the enemy does. But I don't think anyone can predict for certain the outcome of this fight at this point."

Kagan argues the surge is a long-term commitment and should last until 2008.

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