[Philip H. Gordon] and [Michael E. O'Hanlon] say we must not "assume that [Saddam Hussein] will quickly fall." I think that's just what is likely to happen. How would it be accomplished? By knocking out all his headquarters, communications, air defenses and fixed military facilities through precision bombing. By establishing military "no-drive zones" wherever Iraqi forces try to move. By arming the Kurds in the north, Shiites in the south and his many opponents everywhere. By using U.S. special forces and some U.S. ground forces with protective gear against chemical and biological weapons. By stationing theater missile defenses, to guard against any Iraqi Scuds still in existence. And by announcing loudly that any Iraqi, of any rank, who handles Hussein's weapons of mass destruction, in any form, will be severely punished after the war.
Gordon and O'Hanlon mention today's "400,000 active-duty troops in the Iraqi military" and especially the "100,000 in Saddam's more reliable Republican Guard and Special Republican Guard," which "would probably fight hard against the United States -- just as they did a decade ago during Desert Storm." Somehow I missed that. I do remember a gaggle of Iraqi troops attempting to surrender to an Italian film crew. The bulk of the vaunted Republican Guard either hunkered down or was held back from battle.
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