Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Civil War in Iraq

The various talking heads are making much of the fact that Iraqi citizen (not necessarily civilian) deaths have reached recent highs. According to reports in the New York Times, 3,438 Iraqi's died in July, or over 110 each day.

    "The rising numbers suggested that sectarian violence is spiraling out of control, and seemed to bolster an assertion many senior Iraqi officials and American military analysts have made in recent months: that the country is already embroiled in a civil war, not just slipping toward one, and that the American-led forces are caught between Sunni Arab guerrillas and Shiite militias."

Unfortunately, these cold hard numbers are easy for pundants to toss out and 'analyze' in dispassionate debates, but they hide the real tragedy behind the statistics.

Fortunately National Public Radio's (NPR) Morning Edition has once again filled in the human tragedy behind the numbers: CLICK HERE: Iraqi Refugees Point to Conflict as Civil War The report is by Tom Bullock.

Iraq is facing a crisis of internal refugees, estimated now at over one hundred thousand and growing rapidly. Both Sunnis and Shiites have registered as refugees and both flee sectarian violence that affects both sides of the religious divide.

The refuges seek refuge in mosques and tent camps communities protected by armed militias. It is believed these militias protect their followers one moment then attack their opponents the next.

Listening to the testimonials and stories is heartbreaking.

    "We fled after they burned my husband's shop. Then they started killing his relatives and killing our neighbors. They broke into their houses and slaughtered them."
After you listen to the report, listen to a commentary by Saad Qasim CLICK HERE: Sectarian Violence Breaks Apart Iraqi Family

Many bloggers and many politicians simply want to turn this into political fodder. Statistics are their friends. But this attitude is morally wrong and politically simple minded. It doesn't matter if the invasion of Iraq was ill advised or done for the wrong reasons. It doesn't matter that the invasion was launched under a cloud of suspicious intelligence.

It doesn't matter today if this is George Bush's fault or Tony Blair's fault or Saddam Hussen's fault or Al-Queda's fault.

The real issue is how do we best solve the problem the war and invasion have created. Abandoning Iraq just because it was "George Bush's War" is as reprehensible as the original invasion itself, and perhaps much worse.

If you don't want to be accused of "cutting and running...," then stop advocating "cutting and running."

Propose logical solutions that might save the lives and liberty and dignity of the Iraqi people. Propose solutions that won't leave the Iraqi nation a puppet of the Iranian theocracy. Propose solutions that won't leave the United States and the entire world more vulnerable to future expansion of Islamic fundamentalism.

Vigilante, blogging over on The Vigil, calls the Iraq conflict "UULUIUOI," which stands for un-provoked, unnecessary, largely unilateral invasion and unplanned occupation of Iraq (UULUIUOI). I think it's a very fair and accurate assessment of the history that leads us to the point in which we find ourselves today.

Indeed, the problem may be all George Bush's fault.

But who is going to have the courage to actually provide a solution? Bringing home the troops might be part of the solution, but it's no solution by itself.

Leaving and hiding our head in the sand (pun definitely intended) is no solution at all.





    Vigilante said...

    Fkap, my treasurered Wizardly friend, I scarcely know where to begin.

    In the first place, it does matter whose fault the UULUIUOI was and is. Because it was George Bush and the warmongering horses he rode in on, who was responsible for this nightmare. Because not only was the invasion a colossal mistake of catastrophic proportions, Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld and Powell and Wolfowitz and Rice lied and misled us and to got Congress to go roll over. Because not only was this a colossal mistake, their invasion and its ancillary policies such as torture has broken established international standards and laws of war. Because they have never admitted to either error or treachery. Because they - not one of them - have ever been fired or been disciplined or resigned. (Even Lyndon Johnson took the blame for Vietnam and decided not to run for a second term.) Because, first, foremost, and finally the same warmongering crowd who thusly misled us into this unparalleled fucking disaster - that same crowd - stands unapologetically before us and purports to mislead us further into 'staying the course'.

    Show me why I should have any FUCKING confidence in these God-damned Un-American Neo-Con Misleading Warmongers to show us the way to an honorable solution to the UULUIUOI.

    I am willing to entertain any and all of your "logical solutions" on behalf of the Iraqi people. But you don't get it.

    First things first. We need first to see to it that the authors of this unprecedented disaster - they led America into an unprovoked war of aggression for chrissakes - are categorically reprimanded, repudiated and removed from office.

    Once the source of original error has been corrected, then you and I can discuss and agree on secondary corrective action.

    the WIZARD, fkap said...

    When an arsonist starts a fire, the fire department does not say "We need first to see to it that the authors of this unprecedented disaster - he who caused this unprovoked fire - is caught and categorically punished for this misdeed"

    "Once the person sho caused the fire has been arested, then we will take corrective action and work on a plan to stop the burning."

    I appreciate your demand for justice and your relentless pursuit of George Bush and the other authors of the invasion.

    Are are saying that no solution is even possible as long as George Bush remains in office?

    Vigilante said...


    Vigilante said...

    You do get it.

    I would not follow the leadership of a proven arsonist to put out the fire he started.