Cal  Thomas

The documents are cause for optimism, not pessimism. Here are words that should delight Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, whose Iraq war strategy has been heavily criticized: "The Americans and the (Iraq) government were able to absorb our painful blows, sustain them, compensate their losses with new replacements, and follow strategic plans which allowed them in the past few years to take control of Baghdad as well as other areas one after another. This is why every year is worse than the previous year as far as the Mujahidin's control and influence over Baghdad."

Every year is worse for the terrorist insurgents? How can opinion polls reflect the opposite? Maybe the al-Qaida media strategy is working better than the insurgents think.

The documents also show that the American and Iraqi side is doing a better job than the terrorists in communicating with the Iraqi people. They state: ".the media power (in Iraq) is presented by their special radio and TV stations as the sole Sunni information source, coupled with our weak media, which is confined mainly to the Internet, without a flyer or newspaper to present these events."

The documents reveal "The Mujahidin do not have any stored weapons and ammunition in their possession in Baghdad" and that there are as few as 30 or 40 insurgents in some areas compared to "tens of thousands of the enemy troops."

"The only power the Mujahidin have," says the al-Qaida operative, "is what they have already demonstrated." That consists of sniper fire, "planting booby traps among the citizens and hiding among them in hope that the explosions will injure an American or members of the government."

These documents ought to encourage not only the U.S. government, but also American public opinion, that the virtues of patience and commitment are likely to achieve the stated objectives of freedom and a self-sustaining Iraqi government.

Cal Thomas

Get Cal Thomas' new book, What Works, at Amazon.

Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
TOWNHALL DAILY: Be the first to read Cal Thomas' column. Sign up today and receive daily lineup delivered each morning to your inbox.