Saturday :: Feb 10, 2007

Iraq: more evidence of a clusterf**k nation


by soccerdad

UPDATE Glen Greenwald rips Gordon's NYT piece to little shreds. He writes:

The fundamental flaws in this article are as glaring as they are grotesque. Given the very ignominious history of Gordon and the NYT concerning the administration's war-seeking claims, how can this article possibly have been published?

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An article in today’s NYT, “Deadliest Bomb in Iraq Is Made by Iran, U.S. Says” tries to make the case that Iran is supplying materials for roadside bombs to Shia militias in Iraq.

The officials said they were willing to discuss the issue to respond to what they described as an increasingly worrisome threat to American forces in Iraq, and were not trying to lay the basis for an American attack on Iran.

Yeah right. And Santa is bringing me a Porsche next year. The best evidence appears to be that some fragments had Iranian markings. The article acknowledges that those parts could have come to Iraq via Hezbollah in Lebanon.

What I found interesting was that the article makes clear that the US believes that Shia militia are carrying out a significant number of attacks against US forces in Iraq. Then the obvious question that leaps to mind is: why the hell are we then backing a government with strong ties to the Shia militia? Is it simply because it’s the only game in town? Wasn’t it just a couple of weeks ago that al Hakim who has strong ties to the Badr Corps visited Washington?
By claiming that Iran is behind many of these attacks and claiming that the Shia militia are involved we are, in essence, blaming a large portion of the Iraqi government. I doubt that the Shiites trust the US anyway. In fact, I think we have to consider the likely possibility that they are playing Bush., i.e. getting US troops to do the dirty work of killing Sunni insurgents and executing the ethnic cleansing in Baghdad. Their tolerance of the US may last until they feel that they have a solid grasp on power in Iraq or until the US turns on them.

Steve had a very good post yesterday on the shooting down of helicopters. Since al Qaeda in Iraq supplied video of the copter going down one has to assume that it is likely that this was a Sunni operation. If this is a new tactic reflecting an increase in the sophistication of arms available to the insurgents, then one has to wonder whether these arms might have come in from Saudi Arabia. Bush has been trying to promote a Shia-Sunni confrontation. There have been reports of rich Saudi businessmen sending arms to Iraq to support the Sunnis. So is one of our “allies” supplying weapons to the Sunni insurgency?

It would appear that the only allies the US has in Iraq are the Kurds and they want no part of the fighting between the Shiites and the Sunnis. They just want to be left alone with their oil in the North. So the US soldiers are caught in the middle. The US can’t count on the Shia led, militia backed government without ceding a major role for Iran in the country. The only people who historically have stood up to the Shia were the Baathists who we have been trying to wipe out for 4 years.

Simply put the US goals of eliminating the Sunni insurgency and minimizing the political influence of Iran means that the US is fighting a majority of the people in Iraq. Obviously this is not sustainable. There are only 2 options: withdrawal and massive escalation. The escalation could only involve increased use of the air force, an option discussed in detail by Nick Turse here. If the US was to attack Iran, would the Shia militia in Iraq do nothing? Or would they see it as a first step in the US turning on them? It seems to me that any attack on Iran by either the US or Israel would have to be coupled with attacks on the Shia militia in Iraq including Sadr’s militia and the Badr corps.

What’s been clear from the beginning is that the neocons don’t have the slightest understanding of the complex internal politics and loyalties of the groups in Iraq or don't believe it matters since the goal is the occupation/destruction of the country. So what will their decision be: withdrawal or genocide?

soccerdad :: 7:18 AM :: Comments (22) :: Digg It!