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good news from Iraq « Previous | |Next »
March 9, 2006

I read that the commander of Australian forces in the Middle East claims that coalition troops are turning the tables on al-Qa'ida in Iraq, and that the ability of insurgents to mount effective attacks steadily diminishing. Brigadier Paul Symon 's message was repeated by the Defence Minister Brendan Nelson. On a lightning tour of Baghdad he said that the anecdotal evidence from Australian forces stationed in the capital was that the security situation had improved despite the surge in violence following the bombing of the Golden Mosque at Samarra last month. The bombing of the Shia mosque has been interpreted as an attempt by the largely Sunni insurgents to trigger civil war.

Ancedotal evidence? From within the green zone in Bagdhad? What's this? A desperate attempt to prop up the Alliance? Yet another example of Coalition dreaming?

Zanetti8.jpg
Paul Zanetti

Isn't the reality, as distinct from wishful hoping, that not only has the United States failed to bring a functional democracy to Iraq, but that neither US forces nor the US-backed Iraqi government in Baghdad have been able to provide the Iraqi people with basic security? The prospects of a stable, unified country sure look bleak. Even if civil war is averted in the short term, and a government is formed, that government will not be a genuine national-unity administration. It would be an arena of conflict between the contending ethnically based power groups.

Now let me offer something different: things are going according to plan for imperial divide and rule.That's the good news from Iraq.

Stephen Zines, in an article entitled The U.S. Role in Iraq’s Sectarian Violence in Foreign Policy Focus,says that:

One of the longstanding goals of such neo-conservative intellectuals has been to see the Middle East broken up into smaller ethnic or sectarian mini-states, which would include not only large stateless nationalities like the Kurds, but Maronite Christians, Druze, Arab Shi'ites and others. Such a policy comes not out of respect for the right of self-determination ----indeed, the neo-cons have been steadfast opponents of the Palestinians' desire for statehood, even alongside a secure Israel ---but out of an imperial quest for divide-and-rule. The division of the Middle East has long been seen as a means of countering the threat of pan-Arab nationalism and, more recently, pan-Islamist movements.

Tis the old imperial strategy of divide-and-rule. Chaos in Iraq, that is, civil war, serves the US's long-term strategic interests. A weak central government, starved for funds, and having trouble enforcing security, will see the slide toward confederal regionalism.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 3:56 PM | | Comments (0)
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