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Bush’s Solution To Iraq – No Mystery

By Dan Lieberman

07 January, 2007

The media discussions surrounding President Bush’s stumbling decision of how the United States can extricate itself from Iraq, without showing the world its incompetence, make it seem that the decisions are a huge mystery. No such mystery.

U.S. government methods follow closely those of U.S. corporations. The first rule is: “when in trouble, punt,” or send the ball to the opposing side. Bring in a new managerial staff of expert strategists who are presented as the new team that will turn the company, or in this case, the country, around. This closely follows the accepted manner of appeasing the fans; when the ball club is losing too many games; change the manager. Actually, as in industry, the “turn-around” guy is often the closure guy. It’s his or her task to keep the employees and public engaged while he or she subtly prepares to shut the firm down.

There is an additional kicker to Bush’s strategy: Those presently in charge don’t want to be entirely associated with the debacle and they are willing to step aside and let others share the blame. The army especially wants the Navy to take a few licks – so, we have Adm. William Fallon replacing Army Gen. John Abizaid as head of U.S. Central Command, and leading U.S. military operations in the Middle East, including Iraq and Afghanistan. Ms. Condoleeza Rice, who has constantly moved up the ladder by neither doing anything, nor by having her name associated with doing anything, must have been the architect of this plan. Note that in her entire two years as Secretary of State, Secretary. Rice has not accomplished anything, has not resolved any of America’s engaging problems and does not have her name linked to any initiative. She is neither in awe with success or disconsolate with defeat. She isn’t directly attached to anything and can’t be blamed for anything.

This doesn’t mean that Bush doesn’t have a plan. It’s just that no plan can work well for the United States. There is one plan that will work for Iraq and that is the plan that will probably be placed into operation. The plan halts the sectarian strife by assisting those who have the best chance, with U.S. backing, of becoming the victors. These are the Shiites.

The Shiites are not in insurrection – after all, they are the principal part of the government. Nor are the Shiites in conflict with the Kurdish population. The minority Sunnis are in conflict with everyone: economic conflict with Kurds and Shiites, religious conflict with Shiites, social conflict with the government and cultural conflict with everyone. Only stopping the Sunnis insurgency will halt the civil war. The Sunnis are vulnerable. They are being forced to move from their established homes and are slowly being displaced as the economic force in Iraq. Those Sunnis who want to survive will take a secondary role in Iraq’s affairs. It’s either move over, stop fighting or perish. The hastened death of Saddam Hussein was meant to signal the rebellion has no leader. The U.S. will probably send more troops for awhile to assist the Iraq Shiite led government to crush the Sunnis, or at least have them retreat from Baghdad to less vulnerable positions.

The success of the Shia in Iraq poses a problem for the United States. The U.S. will have succeeded in a counter-productive policy of strengthening the radical Shiites and bringing Iraq closer to Iran. What else is new? Doesn’t the usual result of U.S. foreign policy go full circle by trying to impose a regime, and then enabling an antagonist regime to take power? Note: Vietnam, Taliban in Afghanistan, Hezbollah in Lebanon, Islamic Union briefly in Somalia, present day Nicaragua, Haiti and most Latin regimes.

Originally billed as the route to stabilizing the Middle East, the Iraq debacle will de-stabilize the world. Certainly, a Shiite Iraq, together with Iran, will try to do as much as possible to overthrow its most despised foe – the Wahabbis of Saudi Arabia, who have greatly mistreated the Shia. The Shia line from Iran, through Iraq and to the Hezbollah in Lebanon, all have common enemies of the U.S. and Israel, and will reinforce one another. Jordan and Lebanon, both with more secular Sunni populations, and which are unsettled by Sunni refugees, 1 million in Syria and 750,000 in Jordan according to the UN High Commissioner on refugees, might feel threatened by close tied Iraq and Iran

Jordan and Syria, that feel threatened by Iraq and Iran, might become more conciliatory to the U.S. and Israel (USrael) and seek their protection (as in mafia protection). The U.S. might bow out and let Israel proceed in its own plans. Israel might be the biggest victor in this calamitous and haunting adventure.

Dan Lieberman is editor of Alternative Insight, a monthly web-based newsletter. He can be contacted at: alternativeinsight@earthlink.net

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