February 28th, 2006

The current prospects of civil war vs. unity: Iraq the Model

When events such as the mosque bombing and the subsequent unrest and violence in Iraq happen, I turn–as I’ve done so many times before–to Iraq the Model for some inside information.

I’ve written this previous post about Iraq the Model, a tribute to its authors and the fine job they’ve done over the years since the official Iraq War ended. I’ve been reading the blog for all that time, and you know what? Omar and Mohammed, the Baghdad-based Iraqi brothers who write the blog, have never disappointed.

That’s not to say they’ve never had negative things to say–they certainly have. But, in retrospect, I can’t recall a time when they turned out to be seriously incorrect about anything important that was happening in their country. Unlike some even in our own beloved MSM, their reports and predictions on Iraq have withstood the test of time.

A few days ago, right after the bombing, Omar seemed shaken by the turn of events. Usually calm and level-headed, he displayed uncharacteristic anxiety:

As if we didn’t have enough problems already!

The quality of the target and the timing of the attack were chosen in a way that can possibly bring very serious consequences over the country….

Things look scary here in Baghdad and I hope there won’t be more updates to report as I can’t see a positive thing coming out of this.

What are the brothers saying now? They seem to have found quite a few positives, although the difficulties of the situation are far from over.

Take a look:

Life is coming back to normal in Baghdad and marketplaces and offices are open again after being shut for 4 days…

However, it seems there are also some positive outcomes from this incident and its aftermath; the first one in my opinion was the performance of the Iraqi army which had a good role in restoring order in many places. Actually the past few days showed that our new army is more competent than we were thinking.

But the latest events have also showed the brittle structure of the interior ministry and its forces that retreated before the march of the angry mobs (if not joined them in some cases) and I think the statements that came from the meetings of our politicians pointed this out so clearly when Sunni politicians said they wanted the army to replace the police and police commandos in their regions and this indicates growing trust between the people and the army.

The other positive side is represented by the line we’ve seen drawn between clerics and politicians.

In spite of the attempts of clerics to look like as if they were the defenders of national unity with all their meetings, joint prayers and hugs, the political leaderships got a sense of their growing danger and the meeting at Jafari’s home (which al-Hakeem didn’t attend) showed that the government is keen to keep the country intact and the government systems as functional as possible to contain the crisis. This meeting indicates that politicians have realized that those clerics whether Sunni or Shia are the origin of the problem and are ready to coup on even their political allies which made the politicians more aware of the danger imposed by clerics on the project of building a state ruled by the law.

It’s worth reading the whole thing. As I said, I’ve grown to trust the brothers’ analysis and insight more than I trust that of the media. It appears that the bombing has created an opportunity, at least. We’ll see whether the government can capitalize on that opportunity in order to form a more unified state.

Unity, in traditionally fragmented Iraq, a country cobbled together post-WWI, and with the additional legacy of decades of Saddam and his Sunni Baathists persecuting the Shi’ites and Kurds? Gateway Pundit has a roundup of stories, photos, and posts that seem to indicate there is more desire for unity among Iraq’s people than many think.

Perhaps some of this unity comes from the recent adversity that the Iraqi people have shared. There’s an old Bedouin saying that you’ve probably heard:

I against my brother I and my brother against our cousin, my brother and our cousin against the neighbors all of us against the foreigner.

The saying has been invoked many times to illustrate why Iraqis will rise up against any US occupation. But as I read Omar and Mohammed’s posts, it seems that the Iraqis may actually be in the process of becoming more united against a different foreigner (or, rather, foreigners) influencing events in their country lately: Syria and Iran.

[ADDENDUM: The NY Times is reporting that the Sunnis have returned to participate in discussions for a new government. The talk, at least, is of unity:

The Sunni negotiator, Mahmoud al-Mashhadany, said Sunni politicians now recognize the need to form a widely inclusive government as quickly as possible to succeed the current interim government, dominated by religious Shiites and Kurds.

"We've canceled our withdrawal from the talks," Mr. Mashhadany said in a telephone interview. "We should hurry up and form a national unity government, to change this hopeless government. In the new government, everyone will handle responsibility."...

But he [Mashhadany] generally struck a conciliatory tone, saying “there’s a desire to accelerate the formation of the cabinet” and adding, “This is from the leadership of all the groups — the Sunnis, the Shia and the Kurds.”

Doesn’t sound exactly like civil war to me. We’ll see.]

42 Responses to “The current prospects of civil war vs. unity: Iraq the Model”

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  3. Ymarsakar Says:

    Moscow-Tehran-Peking axis.

    Axis of Evil, Russia-Iran-North Korea-China-Pakistan

    The Allies. Australia, United States, Iraq, Afghanistan, India, Japan (Europe and Britain not included because of recent news)

    Bring it on suckers, World War V time. Us against the rest of ya’ll.

    Pakistan vs Afghanistan. China vs India. North Korea vs Japan. United States vs Russia. Iraq vs Iran. Let’s get it on.

    They’ll be talking about this regardless of whether it is the “Econo-War” or a “Hot War” for centuries.

    I don’t think my terms for war are the same terms the Bush administration is using.

  4. armchair pessimist Says:

    Holmes,
    Precisely the problem. We’ve been ‘conceiving’ of the time we no longer rely on oil ever since the days of Nixon.
    You can call safe guarding our oil supply a dark imperialist plot. I call it a brutal necessity.
    Sorry. I didn’t write the laws of this particular jungle we’re in.

  5. Holmes Says:

    What new dark, imperialist goals will you have for us when we no longer rely on oil? Or is your world so static that you can’t conceive of such a time?

  6. grackle Says:

    Greg, al Qaeda is not just a terrorist mob on the order of the Mafia, it is a terrorist mob that is aided, abetted & applauded by various nefarious nations. In fact these nations have been using ‘terrorists’ to wage war by proxy on the US & its allies. To you anti-warriors terrorists are merely criminals & you all seem to have the idea that the Attorney General only has to indite them & serve a subpoena. We had one anti-warrior commenting on this blog not too long ago that was he was very angry that the US sends the military after terrorists instead of the cops. He thought all that should be done is to issue a warrant.

    What I was really comparing was the Isolationist stance against both wars, how that naïve reluctance meant unnecessary losses in WW2 & how the present day Isolationists, if they get their way & pull the US out of Iraq prematurely, could mean even more casualties than what the Isolationist mindset brought in WW2. We pro-warriors can’t just keep quiet while it happens again.

    Since you broached the subject of warring on “our own terms,” I just don’t buy it. If you anti-warriors had your way the US would have dithered around even longer than the 13 years wasted trying to deal with Saddam, until Saddam-supplied nukes were blowing American cities off the face of the earth.

    I note also your taunt, “ … and oh yeah he(OBL) is still alive.” Gleefully salivating again? Not too long ago this blog was presented with a host of anti-warriors swearing that they never, ever did that, no, not them. I guess it’s a bit difficult to control since it seems to pop out anytime an anti-warrior gets flustered.

  7. armchair pessimist Says:

    Oh, civil war is chump change.
    The danger is, and will continue to be, oil.
    Like vampires, we need our oil to exist. Going into Iraq, deposing a tyrant, building from the ground up, a new nation friendly to us, was the least sordid way of assuring our fix. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, even vampires got to live.
    Civil war or no civil war, we still need our black blood.
    Meanwhile, Russia may be preparing potent garlic that we won’t like much. The other day Putin delivered a pious address on the occasion of Russia’s chairing the G8 in which he seemed to propose some kind of international energy policy that would allocate the energy among the nations. Central planning is in his blood after all.
    Given that Europe is already heavily dependent on Russian energy exports, given that a few months ago Russia tried using it to muscle the Ukraine, given that Russia is turning weirder and has a chip on its shoulder, given that Russia is too chummy with another energy power, Iran, it isn’t hard to get nightmares.
    Using energy to accomplish what the Red Army never could, certainly this is a project worthy of an up and coming Russian nationalist.
    Business types say not to worry my pretty little head over this, because even the whacko regimes know they need us more than we need them. Who’d buy their oil if not us?
    Well, yuh, ever hear of China?
    Sorry for rambling on so, but if Iraq turns out well, we’re still there to protect our oil from the Moscow-Tehran-Peking axis. If Iraq heads south, we’re still there to progect our oil from the Moscow-Tehran-Peking axis.
    “Goot eveninng, I amm Count America…”

  8. greg wirth Says:

    grackle,

    Please stop insulting every WWII veteran (including my grandfather)by comparing this war with a war to stop the military march of Hitler’s Germany and imperialist Japan. This is a war waged on our own terms. The bogus WW2 comparison is always used to squash any discussion of how we got into this mess and how we get out. Al-Qaeda is a terrorist mob not the Blitzkrieg. Bin Laden is not Hitler or Stalin, he is a well financed hitman and oh yeah he is still alive. And I have a suggestion for you on how to handle our current state of affairs: go in your basement and cover your head for the rest of your life, let neoconservatism make the decisions for you, you’ll be in great hands.

  9. Ymarsakar Says:

    minus the sheets.

    You forget that terroist sheets are black, to make themselves look intimidating, instead of white.

    Hopefully this was just a wisecrack and not a serious cognation.

    neo doesn’t do wise cracks. I do them however.

    The Iraq Model seems to be a good source of information – thank you for that.

    This is the first time you read an Iraqi blog? Where do you get your information… Riverbend?

    What is it about Iraq that drives you to continue to hope and pray for a society so torn by differences to become a utopia?

    Cause utopias are created by sacrifice, blood, and vigilance. Since we aren’t willing to do that social experiment in the US, we have to find some other country to do it in.

    Not even one battalion is ready to fight without american guidance, its been three years!

    There aren’t any British battalions that can do that either, except their Spec Ops.

    The point is that today three years after the invasion there are no Iraqi battalions able to fight alone.

    There is that military ignorance going on again. Hard to eradicate.

    The enemy counts on a strong isolationist sentiment in the US.

    I’m still taking notes and learning from the enemy’s expert propaganda techniques.

    I’m making a list,

    How to Make the West self-destruct using a bomb and a mosque.

    You have to remember about Tet. Even though they got wiped out because they actually tried to fight the US Marines in the open with our artty support, they accomplished the obj. Which was to make the US media demoralize the American people. This Al-Qaeda/Iran offensive is another Tet offensive in the sense that they are seeking to generate more psychological damage than actual military physical damage.

    It may be that this unifies Iraqis and such and such, but even military talking heads are now saying we have to pull out or do nothing while both sides fight it out. So if we pull out, because of this Civil War thing (and you see people here saying exactly that), then the terroists win regardless of how the Iraqis act.

    It is the psychological side of war that is the most important, not the actual battlefield results.

    Napoleon was considered a military genius primarily for the fact that he realized the ratio in warfare, 3 to 1.

  10. grackle Says:

    The enemy counts on a strong isolationist sentiment in the US. They are very shrewd. They can’t beat the US militarily, they can’t inflict a lot of casualties with their snipers & their roadside & human bombs & they can’t stop the Iraqis from turning out to vote so they are playing their ace: to try to start a civil war.

    The moment we take our boots off Arab soil and back onto our own is the day I will rejoice.

    The majority of the nation wanted the US to stay out of WW2. Isolationism doesn’t make any more sense today than it did before Pearl Harbor. History indicates that the US should have entered WW2 much sooner than it did. Delaying the inevitable cost the plucky Brits & probably the US many more deaths than it would have if the US had jumped in quicker.

    The Isolationists may hold sway again. And if they do I think the end result will be eventual casualty numbers to put WW2 to shame & they will be mainly Islamic & Middle Eastern. Let’s say the Democrats win in ’08 & immediately pull out of Iraq. Afghanistan would be next.

    Then comes the first big homeland terrorist attack since 9/11. Does anyone doubt that it would come? Some think nuclear would be difficult but I’m not so sure. However, let’s say it’s a chemical attack & kills thousands at the Rose Bowl. What then? If mere thousands, let’s say 5,000 die, would that be enough to go to war? But against who?

    I doubt if the US at that point would war against any country because Isolationists would probably still be in power & it would probably be impossible to find out for sure who was behind the attack. NYT headline the next day: ROSE BOWL DEATHS A CRIMINAL MATTER SAYS ATTNY GEN. The ‘criminals’ would continue these relatively low-grade attacks – a few thousand here, a few thousand there. I’m sure the Isolationists would continue to spin the claim of criminal activity, as opposed to acts of war.

    Eventually, if the Isolationists succeed in keeping “our boots” off Arab soil, the terrorists will become nuclear. Once a whole US city or two are blown to bits, what then? Well, the President that happens to be in office would have to start slinging nukes at the most likely suspects, there would be little choice at that point, because terrorists get nukes only from governments. A nuke is not something that can be put together at a hidey-hole in the desert. I believe Iran, Syria, Iraq(it’ll be under Jihadist control), Afghanistan(under Taliban control) & perhaps Pakistan would be tactically nuked in all their population centers as well as strictly military targets.

    US warfare niceties of the years since WW2, such as trying to limit civilian casualties, would be totally ignored; US subs would empty their missile bays. The initial deaths would be legion & set new records but many more would occur afterward from starvation & disease because those countries would be totally destroyed.

    It would be pretty rough in the US also because if the terrorists are clever they might be able to set nukes off in a lot of US cities; there would be no way of telling how many unused nukes the terrorists would still have. An economic depression would no doubt ensue in the US & the Middle East & spread world wide, what with the loss of the oil from the just-nuked Middle East – which would ensure even more deaths.

    All that, so some can rejoice now.

  11. Red Lief Says:

    “Another angle on the possibility of a civil war was proposed by Lee Harris on TechCentralStation ( http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=022406A ):

    “Those who are predicting that Iraq is on the brink of civil war may well prove to be guilty of wishful thinking. What is unfolding in Iraq may turn to be something far more horrifying — not the relatively civil Civil War fought by Americans a century and a half ago, but kind of tribalist anarchy that swept over Rwanda within our own lifetimes, and that has been the baseline of most human existence from time immemorial.”

    Regards,

    Steve Erbach
    Neenah, WI
    http://TheTownCrank.blogspot.com

    With all due respect, TechCentral has not had the best track record for prognostication. A bunch of Randian crackpots who long ago shelved common sense and intuition for analysing all things through “libertarian” cant, whose greatest reward is now finding themselves on Lew Rockwell’s most frequented links list.

  12. Holmes Says:

    Perhaps this is Iraq’s opportunity to earn their liberty. So far it has been handed to them (or “forced upon them” if you’re a Liberal) by our toil. And maybe then it will be all the more precious.

  13. greg wirth Says:

    Mike,

    I’m sorry but you are in the minority. Most of America is sick of Iraq and want out including the guys spilling blood over there. Their job was to take out Saddam. Iraq is now on the cusp of civil war and we are in the middle because of criminal negligence on the part of Bush and Rumsfeld. The moment we take our boots off Arab soil and back onto our own is the day I will rejoice.

  14. Mike Says:

    Greg said: “To get to the point where there is one maybe two iraqi battalions ready to fight.”

    Forty iraqi battalions now control their battlespace. We will continue to occupy the country until their military and police can defend the elected government and population from bathists, islamists and criminals. Hopefully most of the insurgents will be nationalists who will melt away when we leave, but I wouldn’t bet on that happening. Nobody cares how tired, fed up and sick of Iraq you are. Even if they did they probably wouldn’t stop the war because Greg Wirth is tired.

  15. greg wirth Says:

    The point is that today three years after the invasion there are no Iraqi battalions able to fight alone. Of course Bush doesn’t bother to mention this in his speeches on the subject. This is clearly a sign that we are in Iraq for an indefinite period and that more funds will be allocated to maintain another country besides our own.

    When it comes to a country which has dominated everything and has sucked billions of dollars out of the Treasury indifferent was the best word to describe my present feelings on the subject. Other word options:

    tired of, sick of, fed up with, increasingly hostile about, don’t care about.

  16. Marty H Says:

    Greg-

    “Our failure” can occur in many dimensions. Regarding the brothers in Iraq the Model, my definition of “our failure” is letting radical Islamist Al-Queda or secular Baathists gain control of Iraq. The reason that our troops are still there is because leaving greatly increases the probability that these anti-democracy forces will seize control of Iraq. It really is that simple.

    Regarding the Iraqi troop training, I would note that the Iraqi Army completed its mission to help calm the country after the mosque bombing. The number of battalions rated at Level I and Level II continue to grow.

    BTW, you claim to be indifferent. I have never seen an indifferent blog poster. Seems like an oxymoron to me.

    Marty H

  17. greg wirth Says:

    Thanks Marty H for your insight. I am neither pessimistic or optimistic, but indifferent.

    Also, define “our failure.” Again, as I’ve asked before, what is success? We’ve already removed Hussein. Now what? You are suggesting that if we leave Iraq will be plunged into violence? What is our mission? To get involved in a civil war? To get to the point where there is ONE or maybe TWO Iraqi battalions ready to fight? If someone can tell me why we are continuing to occupy Iraq that would be great.

  18. Goesh Says:

    Check out JAWA and their report on the UN voting record of UAE. Some friends we have there, when the record shows they voted with the US 7.5% of the time since 9/11. I bet those UAE folks who went to Afghanistan to hunt with the taliban had targets with Bush’s face on them – you know, to warm up for the deer or whatever it was they were going to hunt. What an offensive cartoon that would make.

  19. Marty H Says:

    Greg Wirth said,

    “Could it be that “Iraq the Model” have a large stake in the success of their country…”

    The answer is yes. They are literally putting their lives on the line for democracy in Iraq. Our failure there could very well result in their deaths. The stakes for them can’t get any higher.

    I’ve read Iraq the Model for a while (certainly over a year). They are optimistic, occassionally excited (such as during their elections) and genuinely thankful for the efforts of America and our allies (read their open post to Cindy Sheehan.) They are also realistic and pragmatic in their overall assessment. Iraq the Model is one of the reasons I am optimistic for the ultimate future of Iraq.

    Marty H

  20. greg wirth Says:

    When a clear majority of the public opposes this deal just on its face, you have a president who is out of step with his electorate as he is with everything else. Bush’s very presidency is marked by a giant middle finger to the very people who reelected him:

    “We want out of Iraq” – Sorry, not till I’m ready or the Iraqi people can “stand” up on their own.

    Not even one battalion is ready to fight without american guidance, its been three years!

  21. Steve Says:

    I am not particularly worked up about the Dubai deal, although it should be clear I am not a big GWB fan these days.

    What I do not understand in principle is why we have to sub-contract out this kind of thing. The only explanation I can see is that it’s some kind of “reward” in the WOT.

  22. Goesh Says:

    Well, since we are geting sidetracked over arab muslims running some of our most critical ports, the reader may want to reference LGF and the connection of CAIR and UAE. Did UAE people really go on hunting trips to taliban controled Afghanistan? Does a UAE honcho really own the property CAIR uses? How much rent do you suppose he charges? It’s too bad Liberals don’t want to be perceived as islamophobes – they could really make some political hay with some of this. What we got here folks is an issue of perception – national security perception V. multiculturalism. I think though we must put our faith in the supremacy of reason and intelligent application of the principles of civilized living – after all, people who are so damn dumb and backward who had to resort to using boxcutters to kill 3,000 of us couldn’t possibly exploint our ports.

  23. strcpy Says:

    “So, it turns out, the Coast Guard had significant concerns about security in regard to the Dubai port deal.”

    And each and everyone of them was addressed to thier satisfaction in the very first report.

    Because people like you and Greg are too ignorant (or hate Bush to the point that you do not care) doesn’t make it a Bush scandle. It only goes to show more reasons why your ideas, because they are based on falsehoods, are irrelevant. If you can not even get simple facts correct in what way can we even possibly believe you on more complex.

  24. greg wirth Says:

    How about America the model? We have quite a hefty amount of work to do at home before we can create model countries.

    What is it about Iraq that drives you to continue to hope and pray for a society so torn by differences to become a utopia? You must be extremely comfortable in your own existence and life to continue to be the Iraqi people’s number one fan.

    Could it be that “Iraq the Model” have a large stake in the success of their country and that reading their posts on the subject tends to give us quite a slanted view?

    Let me guess, some of you are 100% behind this Dubai port deal because globalist harmony is more important than our security.

  25. Van Says:

    Neo- In a previous post you blasted the left by stating:

    “The doom-and-gloomers who cried “civil war” at the very outset of any discord in Iraq are now practically salivating with glee (I’m sorry, but that’s how I see it) at being able to say–like the hypochondriac who wrote “I told you so!” on his tombstone–”See, civil war! Here it is, at last!”
    Hopefully this was just a wisecrack and not a serious cognation. As a liberal, leftist, anti-warrior, or what ever the folks here decide to call me, I can honestly say that a civil war in Iraq is the last thing that I or any of my liberal friends want to see in Iraq.
    I’ve been following the developments with interest and I’m glad to see that cooler heads are prevailing.

    The Iraq Model seems to be a good source of information – thank you for that.

    In paticular:
    “The reason I believe it’s the Salafis who did it comes from their own ideology which considers all mosques built upon tombs as places of polytheism and infidelity and thus must be destroyed.” (Iraq the Model – February 27, 2006)

    At a minimum the blog is offering insights that the mainstream media is incapable of providing or simply ignoring.

  26. Goesh Says:

    Aqualung – the topic is civil war in Iraq and as I perceive it, the threat Liberals such as yourself pose to a unified Iraq.

    Regarding the matter of UAE being in charge of some of our critical ports, we may as well hire convicted bank robbers fresh out of prison and put them to work in our banks. Clearly Bush has his head up his a** on this one. I have never heard of such an insane thing in my entire life. Ain’t Democracy wonderful? He hasn’t a clue how this is hurting the GOP, now does he? The internet straw polls were overwhelmingly opposed to such an assinine idea, yet Bush i oblivious to the grass roots dissent. Imagine being attacked by Arab muslims then having the nation that recognized the taliban, financially transacted with terrorists and allowed nuclear material to be shipped to Iran via their ports be in charge of our ports! La la la – but Bush says they are our friends and can be trusted. By the way, UAE just confiscated some school books because said books made favorable comments about Israel, you know, the evil Jews. I want my vote back. The GOP hasn’t a clue on the backlash building against them. There is deep, unspoken resentment over this port deal, very deep, laden with mistrust and strong, strong feelings of betrayal. Ain’t Democracy wonderful?

  27. Goesh Says:

    The analogy applied to the US Civil War holds true, very much so. It is quite a stretch to assume there were no ethnic issues involved in the US Civil War given agrarian nature of the South and the urban nature of the North. Scotch-Irish Protestant planters living in a different climate with almost a different language V. for instance Irish, catholic immigrant city-dwelling factory workers? Hmmm, funny how today’s Liberal would celebrate that as an ethnic difference and cultural diverstiy. There is every bit as much difference in that example as there is between the Shia’ and Sunni in Iraq today. The issues of States Rights and the threat of invading Armies of occupation fueled the fears and resentments of both sides back then, just as in Iraq today. The theological split between Shia’ and Sunni is a dichotomy identical in dynamics to the split in the interpretation of States Rights during the US Civil War. The South and North feared the occupying armies of each other, just as Shia’ and Sunni fear the militias of each other. Slavery was an issue of States Rights and the vast majority of Southerners did not own slaves. The Southern perception was of Yankees telling them how they couldn’t live. Young Southern men marched off to war because of perceived Yankee aggression and not to defend the right to own the slaves they didn’t have. Duh! Young Yankee city men marched off to war to defend against the perception of bearded, horse-riding, strange talking violent men coming North to possibly impliment the concept of bonded servants again. Lastly, there were war profiteers on both sides in the Civil War who sought personal gain and power, much like some of the tribal Sheikhs in Iraq, and al Sadr comes readily to mind.

    Reconstruction was a slow process in the South, but then much of the South was devastated. An untold and massive number of uneducated Blacks were freed and began to integrate out of slavery. It reminds me in a way of the wagging purple fingers in Iraq. Darn right it was a slow process for the freed slaves – the KKK/night riders emerged, sort of like the extremists right now in Iraq that are forcing Shia’ families out of Sunni villages. The klan intimidated Blacks with guns and white sheets – extremists are intimidating each other in Iraq with RPGs, minus the sheets.

  28. aqualung Says:

    So, it turns out, the Coast Guard had significant concerns about security in regard to the Dubai port deal. Hmmmm. And still no 48 day review took place as mandated by law. Another example of the law breaking ways of this administration. Of course, Neo-Neocon hasn’t weighed in on this yet another scandal. I guess she’s all for it; afterall, it was the Bush Whitehouse doing it. Nothing Bush does is ever wrong, even if it contradicts what he did yesterday! Long live Bush! Long live the king!

  29. camojack Says:

    I’m sure some folks are rooting for that “civil war”…one of those ubiquious oxymorons; there’s nothing civil about war.

    But speaking of morons, the outdated (formerly thought of as “mainstream”) media are surely in the camp of those hoping for such a war…

  30. douglas Says:

    “Is the Golden Dome going to be the Tet of this war? Just throwing it out there ……”
    From way left field…
    No, because this isn’t Viet Nam. Stop fighting the last war, it’s the surest way to lose the current one. Just ask AQ.

  31. Mike Says:

    Steve said “is the golden dome going to be the tet of this war”

    I hope so. Tet was a disaster for the North. People get tired of every war and every president after a few years. I don’t know (and you don’t either by the way everyone in the world) how this war will end up, but I sincerly hope that the future for America and Iraq is bright. It would be wonderful if the next generation of Iraqi’s had the oppertunity to study philosophy instead of fighting pointless wars.

  32. strcpy Says:

    “No, I wasn’t dissing the brothers, just thinking of the recent poll numbers, which indicate that most Americans are tired of this thing. HOWEVER, I’m glad that you are happy with our progress over there.”

    That is an appropriate use of the word “however” since you are abviously very unpset about it and I am not.

    “Much of life consists of how we perceive things, rather than things as they are.”

    That is your problem (and many leftist), if your perceptions are not reflected in reality you are not only wasting time but are being counter-productive. If one were to look at a bridge design and percieve it to be sound, safe, and strong and it were not there are real consequences. Same thing in Iraq – were we to buy into your perceptions it would have cost the lives of many many many more people than what you are complaining about (either through Saddams normal attrition rate or if we were to pull out). Your incorrect perception and pushing of it isn’t something that happens in a vacuume, it isn’t a single bit you can twiddle and have no consequences except the ones you want. There is a reality and our goal should be to match it as well as possible not go on our perceptions over it.

    Your statement is essentially that you prefer your made up world, and to act based up on it, to the real one – it even assumes that your perceptions (which are the most important) are not inline with reality. At least you have a moment of clarity and truth even if you fail to understand why reality should trump perceptions.

  33. Anonymous Says:

    Actually, I think the Motoon Mobs were the “Tet Offensive” of this war. The “free press” is now dead set against any free speech that doesn’t meet the multiculturalist agenda. Little by little, we are learning to accept the shari’a law. By the time the new leaders of the “free world” get around to forcing every woman to wear the burka, there will be nobody left who dares speak out against it.

  34. Steve Says:

    Much of life consists of how we perceive things, rather than things as they are.

    I am rather surprised at the way NRO is interpreting this, I have been reading them since 2000. Buckley, at least, seems to think it’s all over, regardless of any immediacy of Civil War. Is the Golden Dome going to be the Tet of this war? Just throwing it out there ……

  35. Ymarsakar Says:

    No, I wasn’t dissing the brothers, just thinking of the recent poll numbers, which indicate that most Americans are tired of this thing.

    You actually believe the polls?

    I find the historical analogies and saber rattling unpersuasive.

    That’s because history is a non sequitur to you and a non sequitor to me.

    Reading your last remarks, also gives me an idea you find historical analysis unpersuasive because you have your own version of history.

    That’s one difference. Another difference is that it took a hundred years for there to be any semblance of real democracy in the defeated South.

    The difference makes a difference because this affects Iraq… how again?

    So real democracy in the South started around 1965, eh?

    Nice insult.

    The Southern rebels were lynching blacks after they got the vote, so the rebels could elect Democrats into office. Sound like Sunni terroists to you?

    Then Grant sent the federal army into the south and Republicans got elected in Southern states, after the federal army crushed the KKK.

    Just so you know, they also didn’t have the internet, world media, JDAMs, or IEDs back in 1865 either.

    Naturally it takes people back in the barbarian ages to take longer to do things than we here in the 21st century can.

  36. Steve Says:

    To note your use of “however” implies the phrase “In spite of that”.

    No, I wasn’t dissing the brothers, just thinking of the recent poll numbers, which indicate that most Americans are tired of this thing. HOWEVER, I’m glad that you are happy with our progress over there.

    All acts are opportunities for a counter-attack. Every fist blow stroke by the enemy against you, is an opportunity for a block, an interception, or an opportunity to imbalance the enemy’s stance and to draw him forward.

    Unless you get called for offsides.

    I find the historical analogies and saber rattling unpersuasive.

    In the first place, our civil war was not fought between different ethnic groups, let alone different religious groups. One can say that the Civil War had sociological, economic, and ideological features to it, but a KEY element, without which there would have been no Civil War, was slavery.

    That’s one difference. Another difference is that it took a hundred years for there to be any semblance of real democracy in the defeated South.

  37. Ymarsakar Says:

    Clerics will not stop and they will carry on with their plans and I suspect they will launch the next phase of their plan soon after they received instructions from Syria (the Muslim scholars) and from Iran (the Sadrists).

    Bush is making a big mistake letting the UN take care of Syria and Iran.

    He needs preemptive action, whether psychological or military in origin. Any more time given to Syria and Iran just means more dead bodies in Iraq.

  38. Ymarsakar Says:

    All acts are opportunities for a counter-attack. Every fist blow stroke by the enemy against you, is an opportunity for a block, an interception, or an opportunity to imbalance the enemy’s stance and to draw him forward.

    They always said in war that it wasn’t how many battles you won, but whether you won the final decisive battle or your enemy did. Hannibal certainly understood that at the end, with a streak of numerous victories against superior Roman Legions, Hannibal still lost the war.

    The desire for unity, Neo, is a natural human desire born from the need for security. Many iraqis want security above all else. They just want to get on with their lives, and the duty of the government and the army is to make sure that their civilians can do that.

    In the American Civil War, people used to call the States those United States of America. Plural. After the Civil War, people refered to the USA as THE United States. Out of pain and sacrifice, came national unity, for such a thing must be worthwhile were so many sacrificed in the pursuit of.

    I against my brother I and my brother against our cousin, my brother and our cousin against the neighbors all of us against the foreigner.

    Otherwise known as the old Arab proverb, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

    When Al Qaeda first started bombing Iraq, and amidst the media’s crazed glee and doom and gloom predictions, I saw the counter-point. THe more attacks there are, the more they make themselves the enemy and not the US occupation. An opportunity we seized upon, and are seizing upon even now.

    But as I read Omar and Mohammed’s posts, it seems that the Iraqis may actually be in the process of becoming more united against a different foreigner (or, rather, foreigners) influencing events in their country lately: Syria and Iran.

    This began when Al-Qaeda blew up Iraqi children and women. That was a year ago I believe.

    Doesn’t sound exactly like civil war to me

    Civil war wouldn’t be too bad and isn’t too bad, no matter how you look at it.

    Link

    If children splattered across an American vehicle by a terroist IED hasn’t fazed the Iraqis and the Amerians, civil war ain’t going to faze anyone. Except the propaganda arm of the Islamic Jihad.

    The sooner they can hang saddam and some of his cronies in public, the better.

    Exactly. You have to take the psychology to the enemy, with shows of force, will, and determination. As Sherman showed when he burned down Atlanta.

    Were we, 140 years ago, really that superior to the Iraqis of today? I hardly think so.

    We weren’t superior. In fact, the Democrats were crying for peace back then as well as today, and also sabotaging Abe Lincoln’s campaign in the bargain. Propaganda newspaper sympathetic to the “rebels” cropped up everywhere. The South even tried infiltrating some arsonists into New York and tried to burn it down, when new York was made almost entirely out of wooden buildings. Talk about terrorism.

    George McClellan was almost on the capital of the South, but he favored the South and so did not end the war in the first year. McClellan was a democrat, sympathetic to the rebels, and a General.

    The good thing is that the US has no generals sympathetic to the terroists or the insurgents commanding forces. We purged them a long time ago when we destroyed the draft, Democrats could no longer infiltrate our armed forces. But the same doesn’t apply to Iraq. In Iraq, many officers are “old school” and therefore not very reliable. Others are loyal to Sadr, and those must be purged as well.

    Everyone does know that they bombed Iraqi shrines specifically because they knew the “Civil War” debate would occur, and hopefully weaken our will to fight, right?

    Bueller?

  39. strcpy Says:

    “No one wants a civil war. However, it also appears true that most Americans have had their fill with this campaign. That is Job One for those who think the war is a good idea.”

    Amusing, somehow in someway what the brothers have been saying is actually bad. I guess it’s kinda like how it’s terrible when we feed starving people and teach them to feed themselfs – we are giving them cholestorol and maybe making them fat. I’m pretty tired of both, all this giving people hope and stuff.

    To note your use of “however” implies the phrase “In spite of that”. I fail to see how no one wanting a civil war has anything to do with the sentances that follow. It seems just random word you used to change the subject, sorta like the general news where they insert random doom and gloom at the end of articles that have nothing to do with the subject matter. I suppose you may mean the “however” as a dismissal of the good news the brothers give but I’ll give you the benefit of doubt that you aren’t intentionally ignoring/discounting information that doesn’t fit your preconcieved notions.

    “Those who are predicting that Iraq is on the brink of civil war may well prove to be guilty of wishful thinking. What is unfolding in Iraq may turn to be something far more horrifying — not the relatively civil Civil War fought by Americans a century and a half ago, but kind of tribalist anarchy that swept over Rwanda within our own lifetimes, and that has been the baseline of most human existence from time immemorial.”

    Ah, I see. Since we can’t find a nice (???) civil war like the one we had in the US we are now even more doomed to a nefarious horrid secret civil war wherein many many many will die but we will never know or see it until it is too late.

    Thus we have civil war no matter what – if we see an overt one then we have proof, if we don’t see one then it’s proof of an even more nefarious plot. Civil war is a given.

  40. Steve Erbach Says:

    Another angle on the possibility of a civil war was proposed by Lee Harris on TechCentralStation ( http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=022406A ):

    “Those who are predicting that Iraq is on the brink of civil war may well prove to be guilty of wishful thinking. What is unfolding in Iraq may turn to be something far more horrifying — not the relatively civil Civil War fought by Americans a century and a half ago, but kind of tribalist anarchy that swept over Rwanda within our own lifetimes, and that has been the baseline of most human existence from time immemorial.”

    Regards,

    Steve Erbach
    Neenah, WI
    http://TheTownCrank.blogspot.com

  41. Goesh Says:

    The sooner they can hang saddam and some of his cronies in public, the better. Nothing will give a boost in confidence to the Iraqi government than for these devils to be swinging in the breeze with the masses looking on crying and cheering. I ranted in a previous post already on our own collective arrogance in thinking Iraq can’t move on and continue towards stabalization. Do we really think Iraqis are that ignorant, primitive and barbaric that they can’t!? The mindset that went to war in 1860 to sustain the enslavement of Blacks resulted in immense devastation and loss of life, well over .5 million in 4 years of real civil war, and it was overthrown and stopped, right here in America. Were we, 140 years ago, really that superior to the Iraqis of today? I hardly think so.

  42. Steve Says:

    The explanation on that blog for the bombing — being the work of a particular sect that detests mosques built on tombs — is the most persuasive I’ve seen so far, unlike a number of theories I have heard.

    No one wants a civil war. However, it also appears true that most Americans have had their fill with this campaign. That is Job One for those who think the war is a good idea.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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