How to avoid civil war in Iraq.

How to avoid civil war in Iraq.

Military analysis.
Oct. 18 2006 3:41 PM

The Thin Green Line

What the latest violence reveals about the failed U.S. strategy in Iraq.

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The Iraq Study Group led by James Baker will reportedly propose many significant adjustments to our diplomatic strategy and our relationship with the nascent Iraqi government. Failing that, the panel will recommend a strategic withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. I believe that there is still time to secure Iraq and stave off what some believe is an inevitable civil war. Bolstering Iraq's security forces and our own reconstruction efforts may not be enough, but these practical fixes represent our best hope for pulling Iraq back from the precipice. We must act quickly, though, before more cities explode like Balad and Duluiyah.

Phillip Carter is a former Army officer and former Pentagon official who is now senior fellow at a Center for a New American Security in Washington.

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