Monday, December 04, 2006
IRAQ IS IN A STATE OF CIVIL WAR
For some reason the Republican Administration still thinks of a civil war in terms of the Union North verses the Confederate South. For reasons that defy all reason they can't understand that the war between the American States was only one type of civil war. And while this may come as a shock and a revelation to the Powers That Be in Washington DC the truth of the matter is that a definition of a civil war is a lot broader than the one in which Americans slaughtered one another enmasse from 1860 to 1865. That said I would suggest that the Bush Administration consult Merriam and Webster's Tenth Edition of the Collegiate Dictionary. In it they will find a very useful and very practical definition of a civil war:
civil war n (15c) : a war between opposing groups of the same country
The Wikipedia* definition is even more interesting:
A civil war is a war in which parties within the same culture, society or nationality fight for political power or control of an area. Political scientists use two criteria: the warring groups must be from the same country and fighting for control of the political center, control over a separatist state or to force a major change in policy. The second criterion is that at least 1,000 people must have been killed in total, with at least 100 from each side.
Now, shall we take that definition and apply it to the failing state of Iraq? The last I knew, the combatants come from the same country and they are certainly killing one another for political and religious power. By the same token I think it is safe to assume that more than 100 people have been killed on each side. Contrary to popular belief not every civil war is a host to large armies stomping around the country side in blue and gray uniforms hunting one another with 19th Century technology. In Iraq we have Shias killing Sunnis. We have Sunnis killing Shias. We have Sunni death squads hunting down Shias. We have Shia death squads killing Sunnis. And through it all both sides are becoming increasingly disgusted with their American occupiers. The insurgents and militais are using guerilla warfare, unconventional techniques, but they are nevertheless fighting a civil war
As I stated in a separate post by Hangman_Elite, the Republicans in Washington DC are so determined to save face that they are unwilling to make a logical and rational appraisal of the situation. Instead of looking at the facts they are more interested in preserving their reputations, in twisting the data and denying reality to save face while Iraqis kill one another whole sale. The number of dead and wounded American soldiers continues to rise and the best that the George W. Bush and his cronies can offer is more imbecilic rhetoric about staying the course (in new and deceitfully crafted terms) and additional doublespeak about how the escalating Iraqi Civil War isn't a civil war at all. Why if you didn't know better you'd think that there wasn't a conflict at all, that the nearly 3,000 dead American soldiers and more than 100,000 dead Iraqis weren't the result of a low intensity civil war, but the unexpected result of an unusually virulent strain of the common cold.
For months now reporters on the ground have been describing the conflict in Iraq as a low intensity civil war. The same holds true for a significant number of American Democrats who have able to look at the devolving situation and who have had the courage to speak out and to call this barbarism what it is--a low intensity civil war. And as of today, Secretary General Kofi Annan has officially described the conflict in Iraq as a civil war. **
And yet, the Republican strategy--or lack thereof--has been to break from the real world and to plan, scheme, and maneuver in a fantasy world of wishful thoughts and outright denial. At times it seems as if they are merely crossing their fingers and hoping that Iraq will remedy itself and go away on its own before the 2008 elections. What they either cannot or will not understand is that the low grade civil war has been escalating for some time now. And their non solution appears to be one of denying reality, leaving the troops in a potentially explosive situation. At no time has the moronic regime in Washington given any real thought as to what might or would happen if a high intensity civil war were to erupt around our troops and our coalition allies. That doesn't come as a surprise. God knows the Bush Regime has experienced an almost phobic, knee jerk reaction whenever it has been asked to think or plan ahead. That much was obvious during the build up to this debacle, when they were telling us that Iraq would be a cake walk and that the troops would be welcomed with candy, flowers, and a hero's salute. That didn't happen. That was nothing more than wishful thinking and here we are again, with a President and his advisers trapped in an echo chamber of wishful thinking, hoping that the escalating civil war will somehow, as if by magic (or should I say faith?) reverse itself and evolve into an Islamic variation of the New Jerusalem on the Hill.
Well, I have bad news for Bush and his cronies. Three years ago, when we warned this Administration that waging a war in Iraq would be the equivalent of opening the doors to hell, we were not kidding. And, as much as I hate to say it, we weren't wrong either. We had it right. Anyone with a modicum of knowledge about Islam and the deeply troubled relation between Sunnis and Shias (not to mention the tribalistic nature of Iraqi society) knew from historical examples that this was a powder keg with a short fuse and that the American led invasion was the match that would set the fuse on fire.
That fuse continues to burn but the administration is too proud, too arrogant, and too stubborn to admit that it has made a mistake. Instead of conceding that our troops are in the middle of a situation that will ultimately blow up in their faces, the Bush Administration merely crosses its fingers and hopes for the best while the fuse continues to burn.
I don't know how many dead soldiers and gallons of blood it's going to take before this Administration's insatiable appetite for death and thirst for blood will finally, finally be quenched, but I am fairly certain of this. They seem to be as ignorant as to what comprises a civil war as they were about the history of the Middle East and of human nature in general.