U.S. troops in Iraq are provoking civilians and hampering rebuilding with an excessive use of force, British lawmakers said in a report Tuesday.
The House Foreign Affairs Committee also found that the slow pace of reconstruction had fueled the insurgency in Iraq and suggested the country had replaced Afghanistan as a training ground for international terrorists.
“Excessive use by the U.S. forces of overwhelming firepower has also been counterproductive, provoking antagonism toward the coalition among ordinary Iraqis,” the report said, echoing the concerns of British officials.
The committee said U.S.-led forces had clearly failed to stem the violence and suggested the new Iraqi government should try to negotiate with the insurgents.
“We conclude that to date the counterinsurgency strategy has not succeeded. This may reflect an overriding focus on a military approach to the detriment of political engagement … While negotiations with al-Qaida and foreign fighters are out of the question, it might be possible to address some of the Iraqi insurgents’ grievances through political negotiations,” the report added.