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Shiite Manifest Destiny in Iraq

The results of the "surge" are in and it looks like the Shiites have won as reported by Newsweek:

"If you look at pre-February 2006, there were only a couple of areas in the city that were unambiguously Shia," says a U.S. official in Baghdad who is familiar with the issue but is not authorized to speak on the record. "That's definitely not the case anymore." The official says that "the majority, more than half" of Baghdad's neighborhoods are now Shiite-dominated, a judgment echoed in the most recent National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq: "And very few are mixed." In places like Amel, pockets of Sunnis live in fear, surrounded by a sea of Shiites. In most of the remaining Sunni neighborhoods, residents are trapped behind great concrete barricades for their own protection.

The surge has abjectly failed to halt the brutal sectarian cleansing campaigns being conducted by the Shiites:

Citywide, Sunnis complain that in the early phases of the surge, as Shiite militias refrained from attacks on U.S. troops, the Americans focused their firepower on Sunni insurgents. The implicit trade-off--pushed by Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and others--was that the Shiites would scale back their sectarian attacks once they felt safer. Instead militias like the Mahdi Army have become emboldened. Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, the top ground commander in Iraq, recently noted that 73 percent of American fatalities and injuries in Baghdad in July were caused by Shiite fighters. That same month, for the first time since 2003, Shiite militants carried out as many attacks on Coalition forces as Sunni insurgents did nationwide.

It's not easy to understand why we have given the green light to the Shiite militias to purge Baghdad of its remaining Sunni population while those same militias have been increasing their attacks on our forces. It could be that the administration has become so exasperated by the war in Iraq that they are now willing to concede Baghdad to the Shiites so long as they allow us to maintain the veneer of "progress" that is currently being portrayed by the MSM.

This illusion of progress could provide the political cover for Bush and the Republicans to announce that they can now begin withdrawing forces since their strategy has been so successful. This "victory" will be portrayed as a profound contrast to the "defeat" that they claim the Democrats have been trying to force on our military. Couple the sectarian cleansing in Baghdad with the outright support that the US is now providing to Sunni insurgents in places like Anbar and you have the framework of what has likely been the true strategy of the surge all along.

The real surge strategy has been to support the Shiite takeover of Baghdad and consolidation of their control of southern Iraq while at the same time building up the strength of the Sunnis in western Iraq. This looks suspiciously like the "partition" strategy that some Democrats, in particular Joe Biden, have been advocating for some time.

According to the Newsweek story, Shiites have been presenting their gradual takeover of Baghdad as part of their narrative of liberation. US officers have called it "Shiite Manifest Destiny" (and you thought we were the only ones who had a 'manifest destiny').

3,742 of our finest killed (so far)--to promote Shiite manifest destiny in Iraq.

Terrific.


Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!

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Comments (3)

Steve Crickmore:

With the Shiites making up the majority of Iraq and 70% of the population of pre-invasion Baghdad, this was one of the reasons Saddam (Sunni) felt it necessary to be so ruthless..An elementary point, but I don't think Bush grasped this, when he failed to understand that the Sunnis were different from Shiites, in January 2003, two months before the invasion..He must have missed that tutorial with Condi.

Sadly, Baghdad looks to be following the model of Basra with the British withdrawal, where the stategy in the end, such as it was, saw the 'poachers turned into gamekeepers' A lovely advance... ridding one thugish dictator and then in its place, first in Basra and now in Baghdad, rule by religious thugs and death squads.

OK so now the Americans say that Baghdad was a Sunni town and Shiites took over! Sunnis refused the new constitution in their provinces but in Baghdad the constitution won the majority's vote and Shiite parties got most the votes of Baghdadis during the two free elections in Iraq which means that the city has a Shiite majority. Yes, Sunnis leave Shiite neighborhoods and Shiites do the same but blaming Shiites for the American failure to deal with an ambitious minority that wants to re-control Iraq is absolutely ridiculous! the U.S. cannot admit the impossibility of a national reconciliation in Iraq. U.S. politicians talk about this all the time like one of those characters in a stupid Arabic soap opera where the ugly father tries his best to force his daughter to marry a man she doesn't like. if the Americans want to keep on playing the bad father's role, it's up to them but many Iraqis will not play the victimized daughter... no more victims in Iraq!
Just a reminder: how many Shiite soldiers were killed in Iraq fighting al-Qaeda right next to the American troops?
Most U.S troops killed in Iraq were the victims of the U.S. best friend: Saudi Arabia (recent Newsweek article) but the politicians don't talk about this... we love our cars and worship NASCAR in this country and without the Saudi oil, this luxury will be off the table... almost everything will be off the table!

Steve Crickmore:

Larkin, speaking of the Iraqi drones. This might explain what happened to them. Check out this story, today..No surprise!


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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