Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Thursday | March 20, 2003

Some oil wells have been blown

Iraq has supposedly begun blowing oil wells, with at least three reported burning near Basra. The press is playing this as economic sabotage from a spiteful Saddam, but there are military reasons for blowing the wells.

The black smoke and soot hamper visibility from the air, making it more difficult to target defenders on the ground. Laser-guided munitions cannot follow their laser-pinpointed target through the haze.

US forces will also be traveling north to Baghdad. The burning oil wells provide challenges to those troops, forcing them to travel through the burning smoke. Not only will they be exposed to health risks, but traveling through this sort of hellish inferno will hurt morale.

But the biggest benefit? It will slow down the US march north, and the entire Iraqi defense strategy is predicated on this very simple goal -- slow the Americans at all costs. Drag out the war. Bog them down. Threaten their single logistical supply line.

And blowing the oil wells are the logical first step.

Posted March 20, 2003 09:43 AM | Comments (0) | Trackback (0)