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 Post subject: Iraq Is Coming Apart at the Seams
PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2006 9:59 am 
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Iraq Is Coming Apart at the Seams
by Joshua Holland | Oct 21 2006


Iraq is splintering along a dozen fault lines, and the prospects for a political solution are slim. Experts in conflict negotiation -- veterans of civil wars in places like Northern Ireland and Cambodia -- talk about the need for a clash to "ripen," to come to a point when combatants are exhausted with the violence and see that whatever they might gain from continued fighting is outweighed by the costs. Before they get to that place, a political settlement is all but impossible.

Iraq's armed factions, sadly, aren't close to that point. The stakes are too high -- Shiites are fighting for the majority rule that has long eluded them, Sunnis are fighting to hang on to some political influence and retain a piece of the country's oil wealth and the Kurds are fighting for some degree of independence. Iraqis are fighting against occupation by foreign troops, and they're fighting to keep their country together. Neither government troops nor coalition forces have been able to protect civilians; they're being cut down by death squads and plagued by rampant criminality. Iraqis are battling for their homes and for their lives.

This week saw the first signs of open civil war, as Shiite and Sunni militias battled it out in Balad, a city north of Baghdad, as well as a sharp spike in violence in the Iraqi capital. In the south, Shiites battled Shiites in Amarah, while Sunni militias held military parades in Haqlaniyah and Haditha. There are at least 23 independent militias operating in Baghdad alone.

It's hard to imagine what policy makers here or in Iraq can do to change the risk-benefit calculations to a degree that would lead dozens of armed factions to lay down their weapons and trust their futures to a political process. In Washington, those tasked with trying to come up with the right policy are hobbled by a stunning degree of ignorance about the region -- essentially viewing the Middle East as roiled in a conflict between "good" and "bad" Arabs. The New York Times' Jeff Stein found that most policy makers overseeing the U.S. effort don't even know which countries in the region -- or which armed groups in Iraq -- have Shiite or Sunni majorities.

Today the government elected last December is hanging by a thread. Iraqi lawmakers reached by phone earlier this week reported that Baghdad is awash in rumors of an impending coup. There's widespread anticipation that a "government of national salvation" -- a junta -- will seize power and dissolve Iraq's Parliament at any time. Those rumors are being echoed in Washington.



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2006 11:18 am 
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The PNAC mess.

Why is it PNAC isn't mentioned anywhere but Democracy Now!, and then not often. Isn't that the 'brains' behind this mess?

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2006 12:24 pm 
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Honestly, Dori, most people just don't give a shit. (God, I sound so pessimistic today) Also, PNAC officially disbanded over the summer. So, the few people who were on to them, are now left wondering what happened. I personally see it as all a game. PNAC is still the puppetmaster, regardless of what their moniker may be. And Democracy Now isn't the only place that talks about PNAC. Unfortunately, if you talk about PNAC, you are often going to get labeled a conspiracy theorist, and ignored. Remember, as my oh so sweet BF told me yesterday, "Sometimes ignorance really IS bliss."


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2006 12:42 pm 
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lefty wrote:
.... "Sometimes ignorance really IS bliss."


"Ignorance:The condition of being uneducated, unaware, or uninformed."

...I'll stick with being educated, aware, and informed....even if it does drive me crazy. :wink:

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2006 7:37 am 
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Quote:
PNAC officially disbanded over the summer.

i did not know that. that explians why their website has no new stuff on it. most of the postings date from 2005.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:45 am 
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I didn't know PNAC disbanded either. But they live on in the hearts and minds of the people who were in it.

Wonder if they have taken on a new name, like the School of the Americas has?

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:32 pm 
Any "take over" by the Iraqi police/army means Iraqis killing Iraqis. Any "getting rid of the insurgents" by the Iraqi police/army means Iraqis killing Iraqis. Isn't it interesting that the exit strategy of this war GUARANTEES civil war for Iraq? Putting the shoe on the other foot, can you imagine, when your new-found commander says to you "get rid of the insurgents" here in the United States, murdering your neighbors?

This is the type of insanity that has been brought to Iraq in the name of the United States. We can't afford to rebuild the Gulf Coast, we can't afford to rebuild New Orleans, but we can afford to bring civil war to Iraq?

In the link below, note Rep. Ike Skelton's sick use of the phrases "step up" and "get rid" of the insurgents, as if that simple euphemism for mass murder and civil war is all there is to it.

SICK AUDIO


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:39 pm 
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You're exactly right, Glass Race, and yet Bush continues to lie about "staying the course."

See shoeless's thread in POLI-TALK about Bush's Lies...the 14th page!

Yet, it took a scandal about a Republican congressman sending sexaully tainted emails to young pages to actually cause the sheeple to sit up, partially awaken, and to ask themselves if something could actually be wrong with the Republican party and the Bush administration.

America is like Rip Van Winkle...about 6 years into his 20 year sleep. :evil:

Catherine

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 10:11 pm 
Catherine wrote:
See shoeless's thread in POLI-TALK about Bush's Lies...the 14th page!


Yeah, that's cool. Right on. I have to add this other audio link where I found retired Maj. Gen. John Batiste's comments about what the American people need to support to be pretty damn appalling.

Anyone got a helicopter? I need to get above the bullshit.


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