Success Considerably Untidier Than Expected

March 27th, 2008at 08:21pm Posted by Eli

Further proof that Teh Surge is working:

Iraq’s Prime Minister was staring into the abyss today after his operation to crush militia strongholds in Basra stalled, members of his own security forces defected and district after district of his own capital fell to Shia militia gunmen.

With the threat of a civil war looming in the south, Nouri al-Maliki’s police chief in Basra narrowly escaped assassination in the crucial port city, while in Baghdad, the spokesman for the Iraqi side of the US military surge was kidnapped by gunmen and his house burnt to the ground.

Saboteurs also blew up one of Iraq’s two main oil pipelines from Basra, cutting at least a third of the exports from the city which provides 80 per cent of government revenue, a clear sign that the militias – who siphon significant sums off the oil smuggling trade – would not stop at mere insurrection.

In Baghdad, thick black smoke hung over the city centre tonight and gunfire echoed across the city.

The most secure area of the capital, Karrada, was placed under curfew amid fears the Mahdi Army of Hojetoleslam Moqtada al-Sadr could launch an assault on the residence of Abdelaziz al-Hakim, the head of a powerful rival Shia governing party.

While the Mahdi Army has not officially renounced its six-month ceasefire, which has been a key component in the recent security gains, on the ground its fighters were chasing police and soldiers from their positions across Baghdad.

And this is what it looks like with the al-Sadr ceasefire still on.  I’m glad to see that the Times Of London is acknowledging its role in Teh Surge’s apparent military success.  Somehow I’m not expecting the American media to admit that Teh Surge’s squandered political breathing room was solely at al-Sadr’s sufferance, and not due to any kind of supreme tactical and strategic brilliance by Petraeus or (ha!) GeeDubya.

It sure does look like Iraq is beginning its death spiral into chaos and all-out bloody civil war, which the Republicans will desperately try to spin as All Iran And Al-Qaeda’s Fault rather than their own.  It will also be cited as vindication of their We Must Never Leave Iraq Or It Will Fall Apart strategy – never mind that Iraq is already falling apart just fine with us there in all our Surgey glory.

Iraq is burning, and our troops are not water, but gasoline.  The best thing we can do for the Iraqis is to get the hell out.

Entry Filed under: Iraq,War

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