They just got a different tool to use than we do: They kill innocent lives to achieve objectives. That's what they do. And they're good. They get on the TV screens and they get people to ask questions about, well, you know, this, that or the other. I mean, they're able to kind of say to people: Don't come and bother us, because we will kill you. Bush - Joint News Conference with Blair - 28 July '06

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Iraq: Is there a US/UK plan, apart from more and worse violence?

azzaman: Iraq's options are too limited

Iraqis have the right to know whether they have any options left. But wherever they turn, they are told "the worst" is in store.

Only a few days ago, U.S. President George W. Bush warned that there will be an upsurge in attacks ahead of this month's referendum on a new constitution.

Only last month, British Prime Minister Tony Blair said it never occurred to him that violence in Iraq would be so ferocious.

For Iraqis there is nothing new about these statements. Warnings of further violence and more attacks are perhaps the only diet both the White House and Downing Street have as part of their options for the new Iraq.

Even France, which has no troops in the country, is extremely worried about Iraq's future and recently suggested an international conference on how to keep the country together.

There is no doubt the U.S. and British blind occupation of the country is the main reason for the catastrophe unfolding in Iraq. This is now a matter of fact.

But what I want to question here is whether Washington holds any options for Iraq other than repeated forecasts of further violence.

Since Washington has drastically failed to achieve any of its objectives through military force and incursions into Iraqi cities, towns and villages, why not try the diplomatic and political option.

If Washington keeps listening to Iraqi government officials whose authority does not go beyond the U.S.-fortified Green Zone in Baghdad, the country will certainly keep sinking.

These politicians, Washington should know, are far from reality and do not see beyond their noses.

These politicians are driven by the fancy dreams they had in the first months of occupation. Their mentality is far away from reality and the tragedy is that they are not willing to listen to the voice of reason.

The political map of Iraq has changed dramatically and balance of forces in the Iraqi landscape is no longer the same. It differs a great deal from the time U.S. troops landed in Baghdad in April 2003.

But these politicians still obstinately stick to square number one and believe that their survival relies on the presence of foreign troops and militias and not popular support.

Their obstinacy and short-sightedness has thrown the country into a real crisis whose consequences only God knows.

The country's situation is precarious and if Bush and Blair have ever been right about their Iraq projections, their forecast of worst to come is perhaps the only thing they got right.

Have a close look at the Iraqi scene and you only come up with two alternatives. They are not even the worst of two evils. Both are the worst one could imagine.

The presence of U.S. troops is a problem and it will certainly not lead to stability.

The withdrawal of U.S. troops will certainly turn the country into a scapegoat of regional rivalries in which countries with strategic interests will openly try to spread their hegemony.

Do our politicians realize the kind of crisis they have created for the country?

Iraq's situation is extremely difficult. There are simply no options left. Link

db: Bush and Blair have no plan and no hope for Iraq - they are destined to 'cut and run' as soon as it suits them politically - that's guaranteed.