Saturday :: Dec 3, 2005

Bush's Real "Accomplishment" In Iraq


by Steve

Professor Juan Cole wrote a piece for TruthDig.com that gives you a good history lesson on modern Iraq, entitled “How Bush Created a Regional Theocracy in Iraq.” Aside from all the bluster and spin from the trolls and the White House about standing up the Iraqis so that we can supposedly stand down and take credit for spreading democracy in Iraq, Cole boils his piece down to simple truths that Bush or his sycophants cannot deny, a result that was never envisioned by the PNAC imperialists like Cheney or the Wolfowitz neo-cons.

The hawks in the Bush administration had initially hoped that a conquered Iraq would form the launching pad for a further American war on Iran. The Shiites of Iraq foiled that plan. Sistani forced the Americans into direct, one-person, one-vote elections. Those elections in turn ensured that the religious Shiites would come to power, since they had the greatest street credibility, given their long struggle against Saddam and their nationalist credentials in the face of American occupation.
An Iraq dominated by religious Shiites who had often lived in exile in Iran for decades is inevitably an Iraq with warm relations with Tehran. The U.S., bogged down in a military quagmire in the Sunni Arab regions, cannot afford to provoke massive demonstrations and uprisings in the Shiite areas of Iraq by attacking Iran. Bush has inadvertently strengthened Iran, giving it a new, religious Shiite ally in the Gulf region. The traditional Sunni powers in the region, such as the kings of Saudi Arabia and Jordan, are alarmed and annoyed that Bush has created a new “Shiite crescent.” Far from weakening or overthrowing the ayatollahs, Bush has ensconced and strengthened them. Indeed, by chasing after imaginary weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, he may have lost any real opportunity to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon should it decide to do so.
The real winners of the Iraq war are the Shiites.

Simple and true. It doesn't matter whether it was the simple incompetence of the Bush/Cheney administration that created this nightmare, or a pathetic but geopolitically inspired grab for oil, or whether it was a roll of the dice that went awry. All that matters is that while we have tied ourselves down fighting an insurgency we now admit is largely Iraqi-led and not led by outsiders, contrary to Bush's lies, we have set Iran and the Shiites up better than they could have ever dreamed.

Turning Iraq into an extension of an Iranian-led Shiite crescent in the Middle East is probably one of the greatest foreign policy blunders ever. And no amount of troops in Iraq, nor surprise attacks inside Iran by us or Ariel Sharon will change this now.

Steve :: 4:13 PM :: Comments (31) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!