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.: March 2006 --> Iraq's sadistic new civil war

Iraq's sadistic new civil war

» The details: Jeffrey Gettleman returned to Bagdhad after a year, and found a changed Iraq. It's rough to read. It's rougher being there. I opposed the invasion, but I'm not sure I agree with Scott Rosenberg's conclusion that it's time to get the hell out. We moved Iraq from a terrible situation to one that is even worse. Don't we have a responsibility to repair it somehow? (via sr)
 [ 03.29.06 ]


"Don't we have a responsibility to repair it somehow?"

First response: Never assume you're (or, in this case, your country is) indispensable.

Second response: If the US policies in Iraq have created the mess there, why should further policies with the same cast of characters in charge clean up the mess? A more likely outcome based on their record, it seems to me, is that by staying they'll continue to make the mess worse.

Well, that's just it. This new phase of the horror doesn't seem to be centered around us — it's centered around religious division and the lack of will or inability of the sitting government to suppress it.

But as Juan Cole, Riverbend and others were complaining about in the months immediately after Saddam's fall, the U.S. deliberately pursued a policy that encouraged Iraqis to see themselves in sectarian terms. Because the U.S. wasn't able to keep order with its inadequate numbers of troops, it delegated authority to SCIRI and other Shiite militias in the south, and to the Kurdish Peshmergas in the north. It appointed members to the Governing Council to fill sectarian quotas. Either through naive blundering or a deliberate divide-to-conquer imperialist strategy (take your pick), the U.S. encouraged sectarian division.

I appreciate your feelings of national responsibility and of a duty to help, but the bottom line for me is that the longer the U.S. has been there, the worse things have gotten. Maybe it's time to let Iraqis try to work things out for themselves.



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