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The US Obstacles in Iraq

Reader comment on item: The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion

Submitted by Shimon Z. Klein (Israel), Apr 17, 2004 at 12:55

It is just on a year since the US-British coalition invaded Iraq and toppled the evil Saddam Hussein regime. Who remembers the incredible euphoria after the invasion and the US-British coalition victory? Who remembers the cries of joy from the Iraqi people at Saddam's fall? Who remembers the world opposition to the war effort which may have been misread as a form of support for Saddam's regime?

A year later and what is the situation on the ground? Utter chaos with incredible loss of life, including the deaths of many American and British soldiers, not to mention the loss of life of troops from Spain, Italy and other countries who had also joined the coalition. Iraq is still no closer to the "democracy" that President Bush envisaged, let alone a US promised pullout towards the end of June. The terror by various Iraqi militias supported by Sunni Moslems and Shiite Moslems seems to be reaching its zenith.

Despite the evil of Saddam Hussein and the cruelties he had inflicted on his people, one must admit that the situation without Saddam Hussein seems to be far worse. There is total anarchy as a result of the vacuum created by Saddam's total defeat. Maybe the world opposing the war in Iraq foresaw this intolerable situation more than the beefed up intelligence of Bush and his advisors. Now it is the US face-saving game which the US is on the verge of losing in Iraq.

All the artificial US created infra-structures after the war – the Iraqi Police Force, and the rehashed Iraqi Army has crumbled completely. Why? The reason is the total naivety of the US towards the Iraqis and the Islamic psyche altogether. No self- respecting Moslem will ever accept non-Moslem rule in their country. This is an axiom which the Americans failed to understand. Israel has a similar problem. The Palestinian-Israeli conflict is an existential one and the Moslems will never accept a Jewish presence (Israel) in their midst. Any non-Moslem power, albeit temporary, has to be defeated and the infidels driven out. There will be no limit to the methods that the radical militias will use to attain their goal of driving the ruling "non-Moslem infidels" out.

Now, in Iraq, a new radical Shiite cleric, Moqtada al-Sadr, has arisen from the ashes and vacuum created by the fall of Saddam Hussein. He has an increasing following of thousands of young radicals. He is a force with which to be reckoned and he is totally opposed to the US occupation. He will stop at nothing and is probably gaining power by the day. The US propped Iraqi regime lacks the grass roots support of the Iraqi people and the country is slipping into total chaos from which it will not recover for many years to come.

The US may have won the war, but they have lost the peace. The real war is now about to begin. It seems as if the US led coalition felt that western style democracy will gain support amongst the Iraqi people and a series of US bolstered puppet Iraqi rulers will solve the problem of transition towards a democratic Iraq. Here we see US naivety and ignorance at its highest. Despite claims to the contrary, the US has turned Iraq into a new Vietnam. Similarities to the Vietnam War are growing by the day as the US becomes more and more embroiled in the mess that they had created. Suicide bombings, terror unbeknown to the US will gain in momentum and a solution is far from being on the horizon.

The US has failed to install law and order in Iraq. They are rapidly losing the support of the Iraqi people which they thought they had initially. Despite the terrible cruelties that Saddam Hussein and his ghastly regime had inflicted on the Shiite majority, the Shiites and Sunnis are far closer together as a result of the US coalition occupation than ever before. Blood is thicker than water. After all the word "occupation" is magical in uniting opposing groups against the occupier whether it is the US in Iraq or Israel in the Occupied Territories. The theory practiced in colonial times of "divide and rule" does not work in the Middle East, the opposite occurs as a result, namely "unite and drive out". Despite the differences between the various groups in Iraq, the US led occupation has paradoxically united them against the US and this will make the US task of maintaining law and order impossible.

There are no simple solutions in the aftermath of the Iraqi War. There may be no solutions at all – not for many years. When the US coalition leaves (this will not occur for a long time) Iraq will be plunged into civil war between the various population groups – Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. There will be a power struggle and the possibility of mega terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda filling the vacuum and creating terror bases against the West cannot be ruled out. No matter how one perceives the situation, the future for Iraq is very grim indeed.

Perhaps a unilateral pullout of US troops would be the solution to the Iraqi problem without too much loss of face.

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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Reader comments (91) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
Peace among all the people [125 words]Ashley Ansara, DVM, PhDOct 12, 2005 00:2326833
missing facts... [270 words]linzApr 27, 2004 22:1214910
What Strongman. [64 words]Sheldon LazarowtzApr 27, 2004 16:4314899
The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [8 words]emil steinberger, m.d.Apr 25, 2004 23:2014867
New Romans Bearing Gifts [160 words]Toby PetzoldApr 24, 2004 23:3714859
2The American 'weakness' [248 words]Raymond T. KyleApr 23, 2004 19:0314849
British rule in Egypt [62 words]Paul SavitzApr 22, 2004 15:5214839
Yes, but... [177 words]BrianApr 20, 2004 22:4714810
Excellent, and the implications for Israel? [91 words]Y Brandstetter MDApr 20, 2004 05:5014783
Rebellion? [297 words]TomApr 19, 2004 11:4014773
What about Iran? [58 words]JoeApr 18, 2004 15:5314770
It won't work [181 words]Darwin BarrettApr 18, 2004 13:5614769
Isn't this different? [202 words]DavidApr 18, 2004 12:5014768
we need to use more force [53 words]G singhApr 18, 2004 03:4314761
I disagree with Mr Pipes [77 words]Raminder GillApr 17, 2004 20:1914755
The US Obstacles in Iraq [867 words]Shimon Z. KleinApr 17, 2004 12:5514752
Iraq's Rebellion [274 words]Lisette MuradApr 17, 2004 09:2214748
1Islam [104 words]Dr. Ashley AnsaraApr 16, 2004 22:5914746
Iraqi enterprise [132 words]Ilya ZwiebackApr 16, 2004 21:4414745
1There was an American strongman in Iraq... [3 words]Ahmed AliApr 16, 2004 19:5214744
To Val Shkolnikov... [61 words]gjsApr 16, 2004 19:2214741
Find a "Democratically minded Iraqi" [167 words]Tom LoperApr 16, 2004 16:1414739
Regarding Muslim rule by Muslims only. [64 words]Arthur S. GoldbergApr 16, 2004 16:0514738
Much Debatable History Lesson [93 words]Matthew ScribnerApr 16, 2004 12:1014732
The RootsofIraqi Rebellion art.1723 [37 words]S.C.PandaApr 16, 2004 06:3414729
Aesop and Daniel [59 words]Reality CheckApr 15, 2004 15:4814727
clearing some points of view [72 words]E. DarwishApr 15, 2004 14:1314725
Interpretation of the patterns of colonialism [104 words]PeteApr 15, 2004 12:4214724
The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [138 words]Moin Ansari: American Jewish Muslim AllianceApr 15, 2004 12:3114723
It's only a clash of perceptions, not of cultures [274 words]Michael ElvinApr 15, 2004 12:1814722
Declare Victory and bring back our kids: Not be scared of "shariyaa" [1031 words]Moin Ansari: AMERICAN JEWISH MUSLIM ALLIANCEApr 15, 2004 11:4114721
On Muslim Theology [211 words]Fay VoshellApr 15, 2004 08:4714720
MUCH NEEDED HISTORY LESSON [86 words]Tova MatteroApr 15, 2004 02:2514716
Your solution to bringing peace to Iraq [226 words]Yolanda CanfieldApr 15, 2004 02:1114715
The Growth of Democracy [251 words]Val ShkolnikovApr 15, 2004 00:3114713
Complete agreement [19 words]JacquiApr 15, 2004 00:1514710
Freedom Not Intuitive [117 words]Rick HellerApr 14, 2004 23:2614709
"Democratically-minded"? [63 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Melvin A. FechterApr 14, 2004 22:5614708
A Combination of Roots of Rebellion [28 words]Timothy B. RobertsApr 14, 2004 22:0314707
Agreement [48 words]Roger DavisApr 14, 2004 21:0114706
Sistani=Strongman? [14 words]FredApr 14, 2004 19:3014704
Who? [33 words]Ann Charney ColmoApr 14, 2004 14:2614700
Islam and democracy, like oil and water. [159 words]Bill SweeneyApr 14, 2004 12:4214696
But then there are the Utopians..... [326 words]Diane AldenApr 14, 2004 12:3514695
I agree mostly: [127 words]William OliverApr 14, 2004 12:2114693
Brilliant as usual! [6 words]Walter D'UllApr 14, 2004 11:1114692
recipe unworkable for lack of key ingredient [72 words]H.C. KlingmanApr 14, 2004 10:3514691
Two Questions [98 words]JGApr 14, 2004 10:3414690
Superb article [29 words]Charles DICKINSONApr 14, 2004 10:0514688
How can Muslim ambitions be confined to their own? [356 words]Chana GivonApr 14, 2004 10:0114687
Sure this plan will work? [35 words]John PhilipsApr 14, 2004 06:4514685
Deadline is for Iran, not Iraq [117 words]BarryApr 14, 2004 05:2714682
Idealism [343 words]Robert VaughnApr 14, 2004 01:4214681
Highly Imformative [259 words]AvrahamApr 14, 2004 01:3614680
Hope springs eternal [187 words]gjsApr 14, 2004 00:1414676
I agree [47 words]Joanne PostelmansApr 13, 2004 23:5114675
disagree on failure [128 words]George TomkinApr 13, 2004 23:3214674
Rule by non-Muslims is an abomination [208 words]Jonathan UsherApr 13, 2004 22:5214672
I Have a question [149 words]Arthur BayApr 13, 2004 21:4614670
There are Muslims and there are Muslims. [288 words]MalvinaApr 13, 2004 21:2714669
Excellent [14 words]Peter KellyApr 13, 2004 20:2214667
This last article-about pulling out and leaving behind a strongman [163 words]Gary (2nd generation American/ Indiana-born)Apr 13, 2004 20:1514666
Ah, history! [197 words]Peter J. HerzApr 13, 2004 20:0314665
roots of conflict in Iraq [166 words]donvanApr 13, 2004 19:4714664
Telling the Truth but with one problem [1487 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Seth J. FrantzmanApr 13, 2004 19:2114663
Question [234 words]Dan ReidApr 13, 2004 18:3514661
Another Ataturk or regional wars [168 words]Ilona MelstradsApr 13, 2004 17:4914659
Additional Actions we can Take [228 words]Gary kardonApr 13, 2004 17:4414658
There are two fallacies in Pipes' analysis: [432 words]TanruApr 13, 2004 17:4314657
Agreed, but ... [15 words]Ira WeinerApr 13, 2004 17:3914656
Roots of Iraq's Rebellion [46 words]NENETTE GRUNBERGApr 13, 2004 17:2014655
Did the Bush Administration know? [62 words]Edward Goodman, MDApr 13, 2004 17:0214654
Iraq religion will not accept the West [27 words]Robert KeatsApr 13, 2004 16:4314653
Can Muslims ever secularize? [153 words]Pat KunzApr 13, 2004 15:4814652
At last somebody with intellectual cred speaks the obvious [32 words]Howard VeitApr 13, 2004 15:2314651
The Root's of Iraq's Rebellion [96 words]Bill TrebingApr 13, 2004 15:1914650
On the other hand.. [280 words]ScottApr 13, 2004 15:1314649
Tantamount to re-establishing Hussein. [448 words]Kirk BertinoApr 13, 2004 14:4814646
History not always a good teacher [83 words]Fan of Dr. PipesApr 13, 2004 14:4414645
on "The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion" [146 words]VladApr 13, 2004 14:3814644
A new and more terrible future Iraqi uprising. [152 words]Thomas C. Nixon--Ph. D.Apr 13, 2004 14:3214643
Send this Article to the President [63 words]Rae SpenglerApr 13, 2004 14:2414642
Finding a strong-man to rule Iraq - come on! [309 words]Lloyd Lionel KleinApr 13, 2004 14:1614641
"The Roots of Iraq's Rebellion" What about turkey? [105 words]Rich McMahonApr 13, 2004 14:0614640
Missing the point [106 words]JoaquimApr 13, 2004 13:3814638
Quite insighful [327 words]Barak QueijaApr 13, 2004 13:3714637
is hope disappearing [228 words]john W. mcginleyApr 13, 2004 13:2614636
Which strong man? [120 words]Howard MirkinApr 13, 2004 13:2014635
How about Britain in Iraq and transJordan and etc etc?? [27 words]Henry KriegerApr 13, 2004 13:0814634
Missing the Point [19 words]Bob GreenbergApr 13, 2004 12:5214633
Iraq was never united as a country, it was coerced [112 words]Ken BesigApr 13, 2004 12:4514632

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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