Charged with the battle against the anti-free-Iraq forces (including all stripes of human scum... foreigners, Saddam loyalists, and general all purpose Al Qaeda'esqe philosophists) in the south, "British officers believe they are facing a “humiliating” retreat under fire to Kuwait or the southern Iraqi port of Umm Qasr.
It appears that while new Brit PM Gordon agrees with Bush in that no withdrawal should take place before the Sept Petraeus accounting, the British soldiers are being pulled back to a single base in Basra to wait out the order for withdrawal.
Good going, guys.... it appears the terrorists are using this as a sign of victory. And the British officers are not one bit happy about it.
“I regret to say that the Basra experience is set to become a major blunder in terms of military history,” said a senior officer. “The insurgents are calling the shots . . . and in a worst-case scenario will chase us out of southern Iraq.”
Not only are the officers dismayed at this prospect, Steven Biddle (Council to CFR and an advisor to the US commander in Iraq) says this will exploited by Iran and the Mahdi Army.
“It will be a hard withdrawal. They want the image of a British defeat . . . It will be ugly and embarrassing,” he said.
Another comment from Mr. Biddle?
“They want to make it clear they have forced the British out. That means they’ll use car bombs, ambushes, RPGs [rocket-propelled grenades] . . . and there will be a number of British casualties.”
The comments coincide with British military estimates that withdrawal could cost the lives of 10 to 15 soldiers.
And how does the Brit Ministry of Defence feel about it all?
“Although the militias are trying to claim credit for ‘driving us out’, they are failing.”
Failing? If the senior officer quoted above is correct, and the terrorists factions are "calling the shots" while the military is relocating to Basra, how can it be anything BUT a public victory for them? Me thinks the Defence Ministry needs a reality check.