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Talon

US report predicts gloom in Iraq

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US report predicts gloom in Iraq

US officials have acknowledged the existence of a secret intelligence report on Iraq offering gloomy predictions for the country's future.

The report - a compilation of assessments by intelligence agencies - puts forward three possible scenarios in Iraq by the end of 2005.

They range from what the report calls tenuous stability to political fragmentation and civil war. It was prepared for President Bush before a recent escalation of violence.

The BBC's Nick Childs at the Pentagon says the report is at odds with the more upbeat public statements which continue to emerge from the Bush administration.

Many analysts in Washington are now raising doubts about whether it is realistic to plan for an election in Iraq in January, our correspondent says.

'Pessimism'

The 50-page report is the first intelligence estimate on Iraq since one on former leader Saddam Hussein's weapons programmes, completed nearly two years ago.

The 2002 report, which was used by the Bush administration to help make its case for war, was highly criticised for not taking into account dissenting views from some agencies about the status of the weapons programmes.

The new report was initiated under former CIA director George Tenet, who left his post after attracting heavy criticism for failures of intelligence in the run-up to the 11 September attacks and before the Iraq war.

One unnamed government official who read it told the New York Times newspaper that it contained "a significant amount of pessimism" about Iraq's future.

But National Security Council spokesman Sean McCormack told the newspaper the Iraqi people often defied predictions.

"In the past, including before the war to liberate Iraq, there were many different scenarios that were possible, including the outbreak of civil war," he said. "It hasn't happened."

However, our correspondent says the assessment is likely to provide new ammunition for Mr Bush's electoral opponent John Kerry.

Mr Kerry has already cast doubt on Iraq's ability to hold elections in January.

"I think it is very difficult to see today how you're going to distribute ballots in places like Falluja and Ramadi and Najaf and other parts of the country, without having established the security," he said on a radio talk show on Wednesday.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/3664136.stm

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Gloom is one way to say it...

I think being blown up and shot at on a regular basis can make your outlook rather gloomy...

I hate to be a monday morning quarterback, but really, I could have told you this last year, and the year before that...

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that installing a democracy where it is not fully supported by the citizens of the country just isn't likely to work.

We screwed ourselves as we are going to have to stay in Iraq for years and years to try and stablize the country enough to allow for free elections. Not enough thought went into the exit plan before we went in, and now we are going to be stuck there for the duration, another Korea where 50 years later we still have troops in the region to keep things under control.

It is ridiculous to say the least. $200 Billion dollars later and we haven't even gotten started, this fiasco will bankrupt this country if we are not careful. Thanks mr Bush.

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We screwed ourselves as we are going to have to stay in Iraq for years and years to try and stablize the country enough to allow for free elections. Not enough thought went into the exit plan before we went in, and now we are going to be stuck there for the duration, another Korea where 50 years later we still have troops in the region to keep things under control.

Most likely

It is ridiculous to say the least. $200 Billion dollars later and we haven't even gotten started, this fiasco will bankrupt this country if we are not careful. Thanks mr Bush.

Yeah, they were probably thinking 'You need simply kick in the front door and the whole rotten structure will come crashing down' (a quote by someone else who then invaded the country he spoke of without thinking it through and got slaughtered). They rushed all the way to Baghdad and took over, not even seeming to plan for a long struggle against militants and not securing the borders which former militants are flooding in from.

And now some people are asking them to Invade Iran. Well we certainly do have (because of Iraq and Afghanistan… almost as if they’d planned it w00t.gif ) two borders with Iran from which to attack, but neither of them is even stabilized and some people want us to start another war?! blink.gif The only good thing about a war with Iran, it'll probably make all those militants in Iraq run home to fight in Americans in their own nation tongue.gif

Edited by Talon S.

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Im still not against the war, but I do think it could have and should have been managed better.

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Im still not against the war, but I do think it could have and should have been managed better.

Agreed. In the long run (and I talking about 50 years, it'll benifit the Iraqi people), but the way they've gone about it is seriously shows a 'this will be over in a week' mentality, not even thinking through the idea of terrorists flooding in from neighbouring nations. Because of the way the carried it out, Iraqi really has become the breeding ground for terrorists they claimed it was under Saddam.

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