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How to prevent humanitarian catastrophe in Baghdad

Reader comment on item: Bibliography – My Writings on U.S. Policy toward Iraq

Submitted by Alexander Bogdanov (Russian Federation), Jan 19, 2007 at 16:34

Russia Claims President Bush "Do Not Burn Baghdad to Ashes! Stop Violence in Iraq Another Way, Use the UN Authority in The World and Move Forward to Another Political Strategy in Iraq!"

The main idea coming from Russia to US Government and President Bush, to Chief of Stuff Gen. Peter Pace and new Defense Secretary Robert Gates these days is straight clear and simple - Stop pretending in such difficult circumstances that somebody in the US Government is trying to create a sort of "market democratic Soviet Union" on the place of authoritarian Iraq! This is a roofless and rootless Utopian Idea. And it does not fit the reality in violent, divided and transitional Iraq.

Central Government of Iraq cannot keep its promises simply because security in divided Iraq territories and towns does not depend on good will or wishes of Federal Government of Iraq. Like security in splitting Soviet Union did not depend on the will of the Government of Gorbachev's – Government of the USSR at the time of rising republican and provincial governments, separatism and violence in former Soviet Union. Than, at the time of transitional split of the Soviet Union, shaman claims for unity and reconciliation of beautiful Soviet people did not work. And similar slogans and claims will never going to work in decomposing, violent and mistrustful Iraq in these difficult days.

It looks like nobody in the US Government understands and takes to account that simple idea - that there are at least 3 different communities in Iraq - dangerous to each other – and there is no such an ethnic phenomena – ethnic nation - one Iraqi people. There are Arabs and Kurds. And historically contradictions between Arabs Shiites and Arab Sunnis are so deep that there are no any grounds for the American people and the US Government to sacrifice everything for such a sacred goal - to send troops to the Middle East to recon ciliate and unite Sunnis and Shiites by force and at the expenses of 3000 and more!!! American lives. So the real goal and historical duty of US troops in former Iraq is to divide Sunnis and Shiites in the disputed territories so that they won't be able to contact and kill each other on the battle grounds and on the level of town and city districts. And in this case very often you will need not many troops but many trucks and minimum compensation money for refugees. It was in former Yugoslavia, in Bosnia and Croatia. And it will be necessary in Baghdad very soon.

So there are must be a US emergency plan and hundreds of big trucks available under the emblem of the UN for a life saving international humanitarian operation in Baghdad. And we must be realistic about amount of different people that may be taken with their possessions and moved and brought to safety from Shiites districts of Baghdad. It must be predicted and calculated before and not after rebel Shiites' militia starts its last fighting. That may be fighting with no rules and no ceasefire.

These utopian beautiful prayers about reconciliation of Iraqi people, like similar slogans and prayers in 1980-s for reconciliation of the Soviet people! Those shaman tricks must not take us from a real task and the most important human rights on the plan - rights of the civil population of Baghdad – rights to live through military conflict and survive! So thousands of citizens of Baghdad must be protected by one thing – by their concrete ability to pack and go, and go not only on foot but on UN and US trucks to the better places of safety - until confronting sides will be divided and will be disarmed once and forever.

And only after this first priority job for US Army – only after establishing ‘corridors of security' and secure one-party districts in Iraqi towns and secure borders between fighting parties – US Army and Political Leadership should continue special and constructive dialog with political, ethnic and military leadership of new Sunnis. And at the same time US must continue negotiations along with political and military leaders of new Arab Shiites in the South of former Iraq. And do the same job with already autonomous leaders of Kurds. Inside of each of those communities it is possible to create market and more or less democratic predictable system, corresponding with each other on administrative level. This is a new US policy in former Iraq and it is more productive, acceptable for American people. And it may immediately eliminate amount of violence between counter standing groups in Iraq. This selective and exactly to particular group' addressed US policy inside Iraq will create chain of American allies along the Syrian and Iranian border.

This is a clear another suitable strategy for a new Defense Secretary Robert Gates and President Bush. If these decision makers want to look realistic and not dangerous for American people, for Arab world and for all international community. No use and no sense for them to express unbelievable illusions and support utopian political constructions, like communist shamans did. Stop claiming for a Criminal Utopia someone wants to involve American people to!

During the last US Congress Hearings on Iraq it become clear that The US Chief of Stuff Peter Pace does not know exactly how many Shiites and how many Sunnis were trained by US military instructors and how many of each group actually participate in patrolling Iraqi territory. At the same time almost 20 % of all trained by US Army Iraqi soldiers from total 325 000 are gone home with pay checks and disappeared or were dismissed and fired for belonging to group violence and rebel activity. It makes amount of such potential rebels on the level at least 60 000 people trained by US military personal and may be used like an extra force and extra source of military knowledge for terrorists and extremists for any kind, even for Al Kaida, who knows?!

Such lack of the professional knowledge and high rank ignorance on the highest level of Command of US troops is not acceptable anymore. The US Army command must separate new trained armed Iraqi forces on units, at least those of Sunnis separately and Shiites separately, and do it immediately now, before "Police Battle for Baghdad!" started! And only after that minimum job will be done there will be a chance to use these units very delicately, each unit precisely, in particular operation. Otherwise there is a clear risk for innocent victims of such irresponsible policy – concrete American soldiers and officers in Iraq. Just think about it – today in Baghdad and tomorrow at the moment for a new battle for cleaning Baghdad from aggressive Shiite militia in certain districts of Iraq capital – at this very moment US Command still does not know what concrete Iraqi soldier belongs to what concrete believe system!!! US Command does not know exactly how many Shiite thinking and Sunni thinking personal in police and in the army right now! Although technically and professionally American instructors should train those Iraqi groups separately and isolated from local political leaders, of cause. Until today this is a time bomb, it is a dangerous spreading of confident information about mining and de-mining, police and street battle tactics. This is a total irresponsibility under the banner of ‘Friendship among the Nations". This is a real havoc instead of predictable and constructive, very selective personally, predictable order.

Although even in "recon ciliated" mix military and police patrols those Shiite and Sunni soldiers have each one – his own different Arab scarf. Why?! What for?! That happens everyday in divided Baghdad with special purpose – such Iraqi soldier wants to look different from his comrades in battle so that hidden rebels will target and shoot anybody but not him with the certain scarf.

You must divide them, and divide seeds from weeds also. If that necessary work will not be done in the nearest future than in the street fighting on the streets of Baghdad American soldiers will be put in unnecessary risk to be targeted by any of those mix personal Iraqi units and will be defendless against such ‘friendly fire' in absolute havoc in the middle of vital police operation in Baghdad. Who will be responsible when those mix and hardly predictable Iraqi units will not be able to do the job – come and disarm rebel Shiites' districts in Baghdad?! That is going to be a mess and another, Arab Stalingrad and another Groznyy for US Army. US Army Command has to make immediate corrections, according to everything, line by line, upper written. Otherwise groundless illusions in the State Department, lack of political realism among top decision-makers and uncountable mixture of mosaic Iraqi troops on the ground instead of compact, predictable, only under US command, one-tribe each, local, pro-American special forces, up to each individual soldier or policeman known and had taken to account by US Army Intelligence (why this is still has not been done?!!!)…

Those changes must be done before any so called operation started. By not doing any of these necessary corrections powers will put American soldiers in Baghdad into Hell of additional risk and danger of loosing tens and hundreds lives of American soldiers with miserable results at the end of the planning massive and may be very destructive operation in 2007.

Shortly speaking the US Plan for Iraq for 2007 may look so:

1. President Bush in his offers for a new 2007 should concentrate attention on new mission for the US Army on territory of former Iraq - establishing and showing for Iraqi people concrete possibilities of successful dividing conflicting groups on territory of former Iraq. This is a new mission for American Army for 2007 - establishing "corridors of security" on the territory of "Zone of International War on Terror."

2. President Bush should declare a concrete task for US forces in former Iraq - By US military force to close the border with Syria and Iran for everybody. Until now those borders, especially the border with Iran is too transparent for terrorists and everybody can see it.

3. Prison in Guantanamo should be closed except the room for future Cubans - those members of Castro administration who used torches and other repressions against democrats in Cuba.

4. On the other hand UN quarantine camps should be established in all areas of Iraq as it was in postwar Germany so that everyone who participates in terror and violence in former Iraq should be immediately deported for minimum 6 months for quarantine isolation and no matters should be acknowledged for immediate release such temporary prisoners with the help of irresponsible calls and orders of any local Iraqi powers. UN quarantine camps must be established on the territory of former Iraq according International Law and under a flag of the UN.

5. UN flag and UN emblems must start protect and save lives of American soldiers on the territory of former Iraq in any place. US flag of American troops on all the territory of former Iraq should be exchanged for the UN flag, except US military bases, on the territory of those bases. And the special US forces in Iraq must always have emblems and big letters of the UN and no other signs in any situations. And all police and patrolling operations of the US forces in the cities of former Iraq must be managed the way that at least 50 % of the patrolling unit must be not the American soldiers but that of Arab league and NATO, other members of the UN and all of them must have UN letters on their uniform always when local population see them.

6. " Divorce, Full of Dignity". This political formula saved millions of lives in former Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Croatia and all the Soviet Union at the moment of split. US mission in the Middle East is not to glue artificial states when this state can be kept only by force and uncountable amount of victims but to offer an administrative technology to keep each separate one-party part in adequate condition and peace. You may call it later a Confederation of Iraq but the matter should be clear - To stop the violence NATO had to take hard arms of Yugoslavian Army from the hills of Sarajevo. And the Serbian population NATO had to take out from town too. Baghdad's military Shiites militia must be disarmed and brought to separate region ones and forever and the population must be divided and moved, where it is necessary even on trucks. Moved and divided by corridors of security how it was done in former Yugoslavia once and forever.

7. In 2007 US should not train any - any! - new military personal for conflicting groups and clangs on former Iraqi territory. Those new military technicians, trained by Americans, become a cause and a real fuel for an escalation of a new violence between conflicting groups. This is not only sectarian violence. This is a huge pragmatic and cynical war for power and just religion can not explain all the cases during this war. So stop supply region with new sophisticated and technologically educated killers trained by US Army personal on the money of US taxpayers!!! This is a crazy policy of provoking more and more violence among the local population. For a while police forces on separated territories should be controlled and motivated for actions only by UN command. Any other military and police activity on divided and separated from each other Sunni and Shiite territories should be prohibited and the UN quarantine camps must be functional in those areas as the tool of establishing concrete order in all the levels.

8. Secretary of State Condolisa Rice must take all the responsibility for all the political bloomers in Iraq and she must offer to President Bush her own, Condolisa's Rice, unconditional resignation. The King is what the Court is. American Army is not guilty in failures on former Iraq territory. All the guilt is on the political sector of President's Administration and clear misleading President Bush, done for years!!! by Condolisa Rice. Like she was failing and misleading America and President Bush with the situation with Byelorussia! for example. There were minimum affective political technologies implemented by sweat speaking Condolisa Rice to stop dictator Lukashenko for years and years too!!!

9. Collin Powell should be invited for an effective administrative role in seeking for a methodological way out from this curable and temporarily painful political situation.

10. In 2007 American people should be better informed about American mission in the Middle East. People should be better informed about different successful possibilities for the US and the world in this conflict. It is former Iraq territory like that was territory of the former Soviet Union. It is a Zone of International War on Terror. What peaceful states will be organized on the territory of former Iraq is a practical issue for American Administration in 2007. Utopian One United Iraq with one army and one police unit should not be a sacred goal for Administration of President Bush/ He is not a magician to restore united empires and order absolutely different people to love, obey and follow each other. This is actually a crucial mislead of the President of the United States - to ask American people to sacrifice their lives for so called "unity of Iraq", "United Democratic Iraq". This is a Criminal Utopia that costs American people too many innocent lives. Peace on former territory of former Iraq is a totally another story and President Bush may offer an affective administrative plan to divide confronting groups and political clans on territory of former Iraq and with all the responsibility of the UN and NATO experience to restore visual and functional order on those different territories in their transitional periods toward future democracy.

January 2007.

Alexander Bogdanov,

Saint-Petersburg,

Russia.

Submitting....

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Reader comments (6) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
5 steps to winning in Iraq [105 words]William BrownFeb 14, 2007 09:0877158
How to prevent humanitarian catastrophe in Baghdad [2667 words]Alexander BogdanovJan 19, 2007 16:3473673
Ways to end the bloodshed? [68 words]VK NarayananDec 25, 2006 14:0970498
Victory or Death [83 words]William Dennis Brown JrFeb 14, 2007 09:1770498
A sensibile Iraq policy - ownership. [196 words]Herbert Nevyas MDDec 19, 2006 14:5470014
agreed [40 words]MarkDec 18, 2006 13:3569869

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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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