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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Another Opportunity Slipping Away In Iraq

The Bush administration is letting another opportunity in the Middle East go by. He blundered, through the ignorance of his advisors, into moving the Shiite population of Iraq closer to Iran. Just the facts ma’am. Bush is attempting to create one nation out of 3 cultures that hate each other. Fact. The Iraqi Shiites, in particular hate the Iraqi Sunnis and for good reason. Shiites and Sunnis do not like each other in general because their Imams hate each other due to a theological schism. Second, Saddam being a Sunni favored the Sunnis and persecuted the Shiites. The Bathists are almost all Sunnis. A lot of them are still around. Shiites are fomenting the sectarian violence between the Sunnis and Shiites. It is payback time. The Kurds could care less.

Bush created an inclusive government that forces the Sunnis and Shiites to work together and play nice. The Sunnis who ran the Iraqi army were the benefactors of a lot of the arms after the army was disbanded (we did not disarm them) and also receive help from Syria (Sunnis) and the foreign insurgents (Sunnis) and Al-Qaeda (Sunni) plus Saudi money (Sunni). The Sunnis give shelter to the insurgents as payback against the Americans for forcing an unworkable government that moves them from top dog to last place and to help them with the Shiites. The Shiites need material support from someone, not us; we are neutral so they turn to Iran. Given three years to fester and organize, we now have ourselves a civil war, excuse me sectarian violence. The central government and the army are dominated by Shiites. Just a matter of numbers in a democracy. They have no interest in stopping the Shiite militias. What a surprise. We are driving the dominant culture to Iran and a minority culture to Syria (where Saddam’s WMD are buried).

Why couldn’t the Bush administration see that coming? They did, but chose, in their mind the lesser of evils and created one government not 2 or 3. Why not two? Free Kurds are unacceptable to Turkey, Iran and the old Soviet Union. The Soviets are friends and the Turks are NATO Allies. The Sunnis have no oil. Bush, with a very strong streak of fair play wants a strong democracy friendly to America that could stabilize the entire region. He wants all three cultures to play nice. He wants too much. If he wanted a single, stable nation then he should have created and armed a pro American dictatorship. But he also wanted a democracy. The Arabs have no problem with democracy. Democracy comes with freedom, including the freedom to kill. Works for them in Iraq as democracy works for Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Bush and friends had all the good intentions in the world, but he failed to understand the cultures and he failed to foresee the actions of external forces.

We cannot expect our president to be a middle east expert, nor be able to game out all the what ifs, but we should expect him to seek the advise of experts, especially ones not in the CIA and State Department. Everyone knows or should know that the vast majority 200+ million Islamists in the Middle East hate us. That is religious and is not going to change in the near future. Even our own CIA should know that the Soviets covet the Middle East and are arming our enemies and have 1,000 nuclear advisors in Iran. Iran has openly stated it wants to be the Caliph of the whole Middle East. Syria and Egypt hate us; the Saudis hate us and are the biggest funder of Islamic terrorism and the Madras schools. The Palestinians, Hamas, Hesbollah, Al-Qaeda and all the other wacos really hate us. Turkey, a fellow NATO member refused to help us against Saddam because of the Kurds. Jordan’s love for us is just the government. They are 70% Palestinian in population. The king needs American help against Al Qaeda who killed his father and who also want his hide on the trophy wall. All this was known or easily predictable in 2003.

But this mess we are in was preventable and still can be. In fact conditions are better for us today than in 2003. You think I am nuts. How? Read on. First redefine victory in terms of what is best for America. Second, forget fair play; that is for football. Also forget any illusion that the Middle East can be populated with American loving peaceful Islamists. Get all Americans out of the Middle East; it’s a war zone. The whole place. What we need and can have with diplomacy alone is temporarily stable populations that we can use to pursue our mutual interests, but don’t expect that to be forever. There is no forever in foreign policy. We fought 2 wars against our best ally, Britain. So what are our interests? First destabilize Iran, work hard to effect regime change. They are extremely dangerous in the near term. Second keep Soviet influence out of the Middle East. They are nothing but trouble and are working to grab the oil of the Middle East. Keep Israel viable. They draw off a lot of Islamic hate that could be directed at us.

How do we win? Use the natural hatreds of the people against one another. Forget the Sunnis in Iraq. Write them off. Let the Kurds in the army join the current Kurd militias. Let the Iraqi army and the Shiites wipe out the Sunnis. It is going to happen with our help or Iran’s help. Who do you want the Iraqi Shiites allying with? Guess what bye, bye insurgents killing Americans.

Support two governments, Kurds and Shiites; they are ones with the oil. The Sunnis have nothing we want, hate us and hide the foreign insurgents that are killing Americans. Place American troops with the Kurds to keep the Turks, Russians and Iranians at bay. Place American troops with the Shiites to arm and train them. The killing of Americans stop and we have to eager but temporary allies. How best to use them. Pour in arms and material support so the Iraqi Kurds can unite all of the Kurds, Soviet, Turk and Iranian. They only need our material help. No troops.

Same with the Shiites. Support, but no troops. We give them a task in their interest as well as ours to do. First some more facts. The west coast of Iran is inhabited by Arab Shiites. Why is that important? A Persian Shiite majority dominates Iran. They are persecuting the Arab Shiites. Persian culture trumps Shiite religion. There are millions of Arabs who want to fight back and have strong ethnic ties with Iraq Shiites. A golden opportunity to make Iran’s Persians and government miserable. Iraqi Kurds arming and helping Iranian Kurds. Iraqi Shiite Arabs aiding Iranian Shiite Arabs, not Iranian Persians helping Iraqi Shiites. All done on the cheap and no American casualties. Bush could implement this in 6 months. Announcing the change before the election would guarantee a Republican victory.

The facts and inspiration comes from Jack Wheeler a world wide respected foreign policy (ex intelligence) expert that has spent a lot time on the ground over there The analysis is my own. Your thoughts?

Liberty or Death

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