Instapundit lead us to this long and detailed letter from a special forces man "on sabbatical" working as a private security contractor in Iraq. The picture it presents of Iraq is, not surprisingly, an almost polar opposite from what we're getting from the media.
Such an up-beat and professional account may at first seem hard to take seriously, but it's important to understand something here. In Vietnam, the first rumbles of trouble came not from mainstream media outlets, who until about 1968 quite literally were beating the drums of war as loudly as they could. Instead, it came from obscure young journalists (Halberstam, Sheehan) and loudmouth military advisors (J.P. Vann) who were out in the sticks and saw what was happening first hand.
You're reading an account from one of those guys here. Even better, he has no career to worry about, no political axe to grind, no editor with an agenda to please. If things were going wrong or being badly managed I do not doubt his letter would be quite different. In other words, this is a source we must listen to, and for once the news is actually pretty good. I only wish more would speak up.