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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

Saturday Cartoon « Previous | |Next »
October 18, 2003

Stavro The US chasing terrorists and death chasing all.

I know that it doesn't really capture what is happening in Iraq, but it raises a wry smile.

What it misses is important, such as the fallout and conflict between the different strands of Shiite Iraqis. That was manifest in the bloody clash in the Shiite holy city of Karbala last Tuesday between the army of the radical Muqtada al-Sadr army and the militiamen loyal to the more moderate Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani. The former has announced shadow government but even the latter latter says the Americans should go.

Or that the Iraqi war---and it is a war---has breathed new life into al-Qaeda and swollen its ranks with recruits.

Or the recent UN Security Council resolution signifiying an admission of defeat by the US in Iraq; a moderation of the administration's unilateralist tendencies; and the repulsion of the virulent strand of American jingoism that says what we say goes and is right. However, Billmon over at Whiskey Bar reckons otherwise: the UN whimped out. It shoudl have said no to the Americans.

It misses the strategic US policy that makes Israel is a reliable US ally against the spread of Islamism; and the strategic US/Israel policy to destroy Iran and Syria, make Israel the dominant power in the region, and drive the Palestinians across the Jordan River. Thus we have the merging of the local struggle between the Palestinians and the Israelis with the international struggle between the United States and the Islamic jihadists.

The strategy unfolds like this. The merging of the Palestinian intifada and the US global war on terrorism advances the neocon/Likud strategy of drawing the US into "regime changes" in Syria and Iran, since these regime support the Palestinian resistance and habour Islamic terrorists. This regime change would squeeze the life out of the Palestinian resistance to Israeli expansionism. It would bring an end to the suicide bombings and enable the right wing Sharon Government to impose its own (colonialist) peace terms on the Palestinian Authority with tacit support from the imperial Bush presidency.

That's the strategy. The reality? Judging by Iraq, the US does not have the capacity to ensure regime change Syria and Iran. As Juan Cole points out the US is encountering over-reach in Iraq.

Still, the cartoon raises a smile.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:19 AM | | Comments (0)