Monday, August 28, 2006
Pro-American, Pro-Iranian Party Calls for Dismemberment of Iraq (Good)
"A Mixed Story," by Juan Cole, Informed Consent, http://www.juancole.com/2005/01/mixed-story-im-just-appalled-by.html, 30 January 2005 (from tdaxp).
"Groceries and Election Results...," by river, Baghdad Burning, http://riverbendblog.blogspot.com/2005_02_01_riverbendblog_archive.html#110872871401791299, 18 February 2005 (from tdaxp).
"A Defeat for the Iraqi Constitution Is a Victory for Iraq," by NYkrinDC, New Yorker in DC, 16 October 2005, http://nykrindc.blogspot.com/2005/10/defeat-for-iraqi-constitution-is.html.
"Call for Shiite Autonomy as Iraqi Tribal Chiefs Meet," by Karnal Taha, AFP, 26 August 2006, http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20060826/ts_afp/iraq_060826112717 (from Democratic Underground).
SCIRI - the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq - is the largest political party in Mesopotamia. Like other large Iraqi parties, it has attempted a strategy of friendship with Iraq's natural allies, Iran and the Untied States. This has earned SCIRI distrust from Baa'thi sympathizers
Then there’s Abdul Aziz Al-Hakim, head of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). He got to be puppet president for the month of December and what was the first thing he did? He decided overburdened, indebted Iraq owed Iran 100 billion dollars.
and commentators who just hate Bush
I'm just appalled by the cheerleading tone of US news coverage of the so-called elections in Iraq on Sunday. I said on television last week that this event is a "political earthquake" and "a historical first step" for Iraq.It is an event of the utmost importance, for Iraq, the Middle East, and the world. All the boosterism has a kernel of truth to it, of course. Iraqis hadn't been able to choose their leaders at all in recent decades, even by some strange process where they chose unknown leaders.
Yet in spite of hope that terrorist minorities would defeat the democratic process, SCIRI and its Shia-Kurdish partners (mainly Dawa, the Kurdish Democratic Party, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan) established a Constitutional Democracy in Iraq.
Now the Shia want out
At the same time Saturday one of Iraq's most influential politicians called for the vast and oil-rich Shiite region south of the capital to become a self-governing area stretching from the holy city of Najaf to the port of Basra.
Abdel Aziz al-Hakim, head of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), said a referendum should be called in the region to endorse a breakaway, an idea which is fiercely opposed by Sunni leaders.
The reason is obvious: the American military has been more interested in appeasing terrorists than supporting democracy. Instead of recognizing that our enemies come from a violent minority that has no interest in democracy, we subvert democracy. We should celebrate when the Kurdish North and Shia South liberate themselves from their former terrorist masters. We should embrace those who kill terrorists instead of attacking our natural allies.
Support the Iraqi struggle against terrorists. Support the dismemberment of Iraq.
I am okay with the three-state solution. In my pre-blogging days, that is what I verbally suggested. Tangibly, that would be the best thing. Intangibly, at this point the complexity of executing it increases as the US would have to be very careful not send signals of weakness.
Perhaps the Kurdish & Shia sections could have a treaty consisting of clauses about: of mutual defense, mutual non-aggression toward each other, free trade between them, an immediate exchange of ambassadors and mutual recognition of each other, recognition of Kuwait as a Sovereign nation and sending of an ambassador, recognition of Israel as a sovereign nation and the sending of an ambassador. The US could have Egypt nominate them for UN membership. The US could sign a mutual defense treaty, exchange ambassadors and a small sysadmin/military training force, and fund public projects and micro-loans. The US Could also open up or find the opening of a private American University campus in both nations for building sysadmin (engineers, lawyers, judges, chemists, food and water specialist, agriculturists, business administration, economics, teachers, etc).
Posted by: purpleslog | Tuesday, August 29, 2006
At this point, I think there is no alternative anymore. My post from last year was one that attempted to come up with a solution that avoided the break-up of Iraq, with the assumption that there was still time to turn things around. I no longer believe that we have time to prevent the break-up of the country. As such, now we should begin to prepare the ground strategically for such an eventuality, including working with Turkey to ameliorate any issues it has regarding the emergence of an independent Kurdish state. Of late both Turkey and Iran have been engaging in SpecOps within Northern Iraq targetting militant groups of their respective Kurdish populations who have found a safe haven in northern Iraq. At the same time, I'm worried about the fact that the US does not seem any closer to approaching Iran or even trying to come to a modus vivendi that would give us a better ally in subverting and defeating Sunni Jihadism. Absent that, I think it will leave us exactly where we don't want to be; competing with China, on opposite sides of this conflict.
Posted by: nykrindc | Thursday, August 31, 2006
I largely agree with both Purpleslog and Nykrindc.
Our biggest weakness so far is our chilly relationship with Iran. Iran is not a strategic enemy, and is in a position to help us immensely. While an "American University" style indigienous SysAdmin force may make a lot of sense for Kurdsitan, for example, Iranian-style Islamic Law may be a better situation for Shia Iraq. Such a partition would also free us to disrupt systems in the Anbar -- the Sunni Baathist/Qaedist homeland -- without causing undue problems in either Kurdistan or Shia Iraq.
I don't see competition with China -- China wants markets and materials, not hearts and minds . The worst outcome would be the reestablishment of the pre-9/11 system in the middle east, with at least one Qaedist host-state and a propping up of the Arab National Secularists.  This was the outcome that the Bush administration was bizarrely reaching for during much of the war, and we can be thankful that dream has died.
Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Saturday, September 02, 2006
"...Iranian-style Islamic Law may be a better situation..."
I really disagree with this. I am wating to have more time for a thoughtfull response to your original post on the idea from a few days ago
Sharia is bad idea...it will just increase world misery and waste human potential.
Posted by: purpleslog | Saturday, September 02, 2006
Remember the baseline -- Iraq is deep inside the AfroIslamic Gap  . The Kurdish North may be capable of becoming a Gap-Seam state like Turkey, but Arab-Islamic civilization has deep, deep problems now. "Good" solutions are probably completely out of the picture. We can, however, set states up for success later on.
Sharia is precisely such a step-up. Unlike the Baathi Constitution  and similar Arab National-Socialist monstrosities, Sharia recognizes the importance of markets. What other religious code goes into so much detail about contracts, weights, measures, tax rates, etc?
Are Sharia's views on conversion West-friendly? Nope. Do I want to live under Sharia? No. But it enables complex interpersonal and intergroup economic cooperation, which builds the foundation for later successes.
Think of Barnett's "10 Commandments" 
" 1. Look for resources and ye shall find, but �
2. No stability, no markets
3. No growth, no stability
4. No resources, no growth
5. No infrastructure, no resources
6. No money, no infrastructure
7. No rules, no money
8. No security, no rules
9. No Leviathan, no security
10. No will, no Leviathan."
Iranian-style Sharia provides us with these things. It provides us with the material facts-on-the-ground that allow for the emergence of western liberalism better on.
Other options maintain misery and waste human potential at an even higher rate.
Posted by: Dan tdaxp | Saturday, September 02, 2006