Friday, March 28, 2008

He fought Sadr and Sadr won

By Libby

I leave the big analysis of the morass in Mesopotamia to the policy wonks, but you don't have to be a rocket scientist to grasp that this is bad news for Iraq.
Iraq’s Prime Minister was staring into the abyss today after his operation to crush militia strongholds in Basra stalled, members of his own security forces defected and district after district of his own capital fell to Shia militia gunmen.
It reminds me of an article I read several years ago about a military unit in Afghanistan, back when the media still covered that occupation. The commander of the unit remarked, "You can't buy an Afghani, but you can rent one." It seems the same dynamic plays out in Iraq. Maybe Maliki thought he had an ace up his sleeve with the US effectively bribing the various factions to stop fighting, but it apparently turned out to be just a joker.
Mr al-Maliki has gambled everything on the success of Operation Saulat al-Fursan, or Charge of the Knights, to sweep illegal militias out of Basra.
I have little doubt that the recent spate of visits by US dignitaries had something to do with Maliki throwing his cards on the table and clearly the pressure came straight from the alternate reality team at the White House.
"Prime Minister Maliki's bold decision, and it was a bold decision, to go after the illegal groups in Basra shows his leadership and his commitment to enforce the law in an even-handed manner," Mr Bush said. "It also shows the progress the Iraqi security forces have made during the surge."
Cripes. If this is progress I surely don't want to see what regression looks like. Meanwhile...
If the Iraqi forces fail to stamp out the powerful militias, however, and Iraq sinks into a new bout of in-fighting, Mr Bush’s troops and British forces may be forced to weigh in, sparking a new round of blood-letting ahead of US elections and scuttling British plans for an early withdrawal from Iraq.
That prophecy didn't take long to self-fulfill. Three days in and the
US forces are already taking the lead. You know, Bush has stated on numerous occassions that his only plan for Iraq was to engineer the circumstances on the ground to force his successor to maintain the occupation. Damn if it doesn't look like it's going to work.

[cross-posted to The Reaction]

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9 Comments:

Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

"alternate reality team" I love it.
Yes and not only are we taking over, but we're doing it with air strikes which maximizes collateral damage.

Kill them all and take their oil.

11:22:00 AM  
Blogger Donald Douglas said...

Cheering for failure, again I see. I wrote on exactly this today, with reference to the thousands of peaceful protesters exercising their democratic rights in Baghdad yesterday, and the demonization campaign of the left:

"What we are seeing is exactly as President Bush declared in his Iraq address yesterday, that "sometimes it requires grass-roots politics to get the folks in central government to respond."

This is true, as we can see from the pictures and media reports from the scene. But to acknowledge these facts would be to destroy the main antiwar Democratic talking point: That Iraq's been the greatest foreign policy blunder in history, that the country's falling apart, and that the current outbreak of violence demands nothing less the unconditional withdrawal.

The current military operations against the Mahdi army is troubling, but it is not a setback to the long-term consolidation of the Iraqi democratic regime. The peaceful protests on the Baghdad street attest to that."

American Power

12:40:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Tossing around irresponsible hyperbole again, I see, and some bad punctuation too.

Thousands of peaceful protesters mean very little in the long run. Millions homeless mean more, but there are people who snicker at every market up-tick and try to tell you there isn't a recession and you're cheering for failure. If one extracts microfacts from the larger matrix, any case - any bad case can be made to look good. Iraq still has very little to say about its future and if they found a temporary quiet corner to carry signs and shout, remember that they do that in Iran too. The fraction of the Iraqi population that wants us to leave right now is a bigger majority than the US majority that wants us out.

But of course people like you have been making the same phony case for 5 years now and certainly will be making it with the same sophistic silliness despite all evidence for the rest of their lives.

Anyone who sees this as "grass roots politics" is doing some grass smoking or crass lying and that goes for you and your idiot president.

1:22:00 PM  
Blogger repsac3 said...

Thinking of our fair Professor in particular, I was planning on commenting on how any media or blog mention of Iraq that doesn't portray the conflict as an all out, balls-to-the-wall victory is looked on as partisan negativity by the rightwing chatterers... But I see Neo beat me to it... Why am I not surprised?

Through the same rose colored glasses that brought us "6 days, 6 weeks, I doubt 6 months..." and "greeted as liberators," there is no wrong that the right cannot ignore, if not actually try to spin into a good thing. Yeesh!

Reporting the story isn't being partisan, Don. It's expressing the facts as they are. Are you planning to--or have you, already--call the UK Times Online out for this obvious Democratic "hit piece" on all that's right & true? Better get on that...

Don... How is it that your visits here (or to BioBrain) are any different from my visits to your blog, or is it that you are also looking for conspiracy?

2:16:00 PM  
Blogger Donald Douglas said...

Repsac3: Are you following me around? That's a conspiracy, or an obssession!

6:58:00 PM  
Blogger repsac3 said...

Ok... That's paranoia, my friend. Talk about conspiracy...

In fact, I visit here semi-regularly, & have since at least last July or so... I heard about it from some Con who had set out to analyze, expose, and resist the anti-Americanism and irrationalism of the radical left, but ended up introducing me (& at least a few others, I'd assume) a pretty good set of like-minded blogs to frequent.

As usual, you didn't answer my question, though... Why is it different for you to visit more leftward blogs, than for me to frequent your more rightward one(s)?

10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

You're expecting a rational answer from Douglas?

8:24:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL Fogg. That was my exact reaction.

Repsac, good to see you.

10:12:00 AM  
Blogger repsac3 said...

Why thank you for the welcomes... As I said, I've been around, but I'm not much for the "attaboy" posts... (Probably somnething to do with starting off long ago on AOL, and all the "me too!!" posting that went on there -- second only to "a/s/l")

Do I expect a rational answer from the Professor? Anything is possible, but I am not holding my breath. But I figure I can't lose whatever I get... If a rational answer, I perhaps learn something. Irrational or none, me & all reading learn (or reenforce) something about him & his methods.

5:19:00 PM  

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