Thursday :: Aug 11, 2005

Iraq Update

by Steve

First off, a correction. I had posted earlier in the week that the mayor of Baghdad was tossed out at gunpoint by the SCIRI and their armed forces, while the central Iraqi government and our military did nothing. Commenter Jay Boilswater pointed me to Juan Cole’s analysis wherein Cole stated the SCIRI’s action was justified given that they had won the right in the much-lauded January elections to do what they wanted in the area. Jay is correct; Juan Cole is reporting that SCIRI does in fact have this right, no matter how bad it looks, and that Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari is now supporting the toppling of the mayor by SCIRI. Props to Jay.

But Jaafari has bigger problems now. He is trying to keep SCIRI from not only securing their hold on Baghdad to the severe consternation of the Sunnis, but to keep the SCIRI from following the lead of the Kurds and securing a separate state inside Iraq for the Shiite south. SCIRI has let the other shoe now drop, after seeing that the Kurds are now demanding a separate state and their own oil revenues, and is now demanding the same thing for the south. All of which explains why the Pentagon can’t get its story straight on when our forces in Iraq may be drawn down, if at all. It puts Bush in a politically untenable position, where he wants to get troops out of Iraq in advance of the 2006 midterms for obvious reasons, while being advised that he can't do it if such a withdrawal would destabilize the Iraqi government.

And as an aside that our media seem to gloss over in their latest pursuit of a Natalee Holloway update, we lost seven soldiers in Iraq just on Tuesday.

Steve :: 8:59 AM :: Comments (6) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!