Winning More Hearts and Minds in Iraq

The Guardian has these quotes about the CIA’s assessment of the Iraqi resistance:

One military intelligence assessment now estimates the insurgents’ strength at 50,000. Analysts cautioned that such a figure was speculative, but it does indicate a deep-rooted revolt on a far greater scale than the Pentagon had led the administration to believe.

An intelligence source in Washington familiar with the CIA report described it as a “bleak assessment that the resistance is broad, strong and getting stronger”.

As an example of why the resistance is growing, look to stories like this one:

FALLUJAH, Iraq (AP)–U.S. troops opened fire on a truck carrying live chickens near the tense town of Fallujah, killing five civilians aboard the vehicle, including a father and his two sons, relatives said Wednesday.

“They went to bring chickens … and they came back at 9 or 10 at night and we were waiting for them,” said Khalid Khalifa al-Jumaily, whose two nephews were killed on the truck. “The Americans fired on them.”

Add a few more to that 50,000. Sigh.