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How Well Will The Iraqi Army Stand On Their Own?

As the American military pulls out of Iraqi cities today, allowing Iraqi forces to take full control of their own security, many questions remain how well this military will perform on their own. In just the past 10 days, 250 persons have died in terrorist bombing incidents, as Iraqi forces seemed unable to stem this violence. On one hand, Al Qaeda or other terrorist elements in Iraq have no military means whatsoever to overthrow the government of Iraq. In fact, Al Qaeda only presents a tiny portion of Sunni radicals in the largely Shiite controlled Iraq. Likely, there is no way that Iraqi security forces will fall completely apart and turn helpless like the grossly failed Vietnamization of the Vietnam War. But some serious problems could develop.IraqiBomb.jpg

While sectarian violence problems have gotten much better, and less frictions remain between the two rival Sunni and Shiite sects, new frictions could again flare up. Further, Iran might attempt to increase it's influence in Iraq with less of an active American presence. And right now with tensions between Iran and the West worsening, Iraq remains as Iran's closest and most likely prospect area to expand it's political influence and to spread Shiite power in the region.

At some point, the United States really needed to hand back power to the people of Iraq. Nationalistic sentiments run strong in Iraq. However, the United States really needs to take the risks of allowing those in Iraq to better manage their own affairs, although some serious risks of Iran seeking to expand it's influence or renewed sectarian problems remain as serious risks.

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Comments (5)


I have long believed that the surge was a failure as a tactic because it was the cop at the door of the wife-beater. Cop leaves, wife gets beaten. Nowhere have I seen any plausible reason why Sunni and Shia are no going to live in blessed harmony.

Iraq is so peculiar in its ethnic history that the catastrophic debacle that Bush and his minions set into motion in 2002 will be producing death and mayhem for decades.


Yep, only a vicious dictator can keep the order there, just like we'll need here in this country very soon.


"Iraq is so peculiar in its ethnic history that the catastrophic debacle that Bush and his minions set into motion in 2002 will be producing death and mayhem for decades."

Like it was all rainbows and puppies before the invasion. Or maybe feeding your living political enemies into meatgrinders has some sort of tranquil ambiance that escapes me.

What IS there about the appeal of sociopathic dictatorships to the political left? Is it simple projection, in that the fols they admire are doing what THEY would do if they had the chance? Is it a case of massive envy, as they look at the total control a murderous dictator maintains with an iron fist? Is it a feeling that THEY are somehow missing out by NOT being able to literally slaughter their political enemies at will?


fols = folks



With the training of a proffessional NCO corps, combat and logistics training, and the military discipline necessary to do the job, I think the Iraqi army and NG will be capable of securing the country. As long as we can keep enough troops in country to give them an example to look to, and to train them to, they'll do better than any other country in that region outside of Israel.


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

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