Sunday, January 14, 2007

Cloudy times for Iraq's Sunnis

Hard to know what to make of this news. In anticipation of the US "surge," Sadr's militias have adopted a low profile. They're abandoning their customary black outfits and hiding their weapons and the plan is to lay low until the surge is over. Maybe it will quell the violence for a time in Baghdad. That would certainly be a good thing but it seems unlikely to be a lasting solution.

We've been here before. The insurgents melt away in the face of superior firepower, but they don't disband. They wait. Meanwhile the White House will announce our "plan" is working and declare a major turning point in the hostilities. Bush will get a little bump in his approval ratings. But when the moment is ripe, the insurgents -- whoever they are now -- will resurge and the mayhem starts all over again.

Further, I find it less than comforting that Maliki's plan is to go after the Sunnis first and leave the militias alone. The violence comes from both sides and the Shia have the greater forces. It would seem a more encompassing approach would be better advised but then again, Maliki depends on the Shia to maintain his political power. Meanwhile the Sunnis argue about who to distrust the least. What a godawful mess.

The Heretik sums it up in his inimitable manner and click the link if only to see the undoctored photo that heads the post.
So Bush may get what he wants in the short run. But what he gets will evaporate as soon as the troops leave. Or the troops will have to stay. Which makes short work of the term surge. Where Bush has said his escalation is not open ended, people will shortly see otherwise.
And therein lies the crux of the Catch 22 we're stuck in. We can clear but we must also hold the neighborhoods. The Iraq militia doesn't appear capable of doing the job. Are we prepared, or can we afford, to have the bulk of our active fighting force babysitting Baghdad for the foreseeable future? I think not.
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Blogger nolocontendere said...

I think all this surge talk and safe neighborhoods blah is just a smokescreen for a far more sinister agenda. Those new forces are planned to form a defensive wall to protect the newly built bases and the green zone when Iran is attacked and then retaliates. The shit will truly hit the fan at that point.
I believe all this pacification crap hides the fact that the truly desired end result's been reached - out of control civil strife to keep the Iraqis off balanced and at each others' throats, mainly. This stable Iraq stuff is as real and effective as how the US provided security after the invasion.

4:17:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I'n afraid I agree Nolo. A stable Iraq doesn't really fit their agenda. These maniacs want to keep the war going forever.

11:23:00 AM  

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