Saturday, December 09, 2006

Me and Cheney?

From WAPO on Bush administration deliberations on Iraq:

The major alternatives include a short-term surge of 15,000 to 30,000 additional U.S. troops to secure Baghdad and accelerate the training of Iraqi forces. Another strategy would redirect the U.S. military away from the internal strife to focus mainly on hunting terrorists affiliated with al-Qaeda. And the third would concentrate political attention on supporting the majority Shiites and abandon U.S. efforts to reach out to Sunni insurgents.

I've discussed option 3 (the 80% solution) as perhaps the only long term viable option. Or rather I see increasing troop training as only another arm of the Shia. I unlike the Administration/mainline media follow arguments that the Army is Shia anyway and this hard distinction people make between the Army and militas doesn't really exist on the ground where the lines are much more fluid than that.

For example in the US press when so-called Shia death squads execute targeted hits, sweeps, they are described as men "appearing, looking, or dressing like the Iraqi Police." They don't look the Iraqi Police--they are the Iraqi police.

But what was more interesting to me was further in the article the writers discuss that the camp most pushing for Option #3 (abandon the Sunnis) is the Vice President's office. Cheney argues that we can not abandon the Shia again as we did after the 1991 War when George HW Bush called for the Kurds/Shia to rise but our armies we're the thinking of Brent Scowcroft and James Baker stand down and watch as the Kurds and the Shia were massacred in the thousands.

The Shia have never really trusted us. They are glad we knocked Saddam out, but none of them really I would say trust us in a way the Kurds tend to. [The Kurds, FYI are unhappy with the Baker-Hamlton plan]. Sadr hates the US and wanst us out and has from the begining. Other Shia want us to stay so long as they can consolidate power, which they more or less have done by now, hence Maliki telling Bush he wants the Army under his command.

I don't know what the reprecussions for our Sunni alliances would be for a Shia solution. James Baker should next be heading to Palestine-Israel: Condi is increasingly tired and out of ideas.

But anyway, what are the odds I'm possibly agreeing with Dick Cheney in the War on Terror? Gotta be a first.

PS VP: Congrats to your daughter on her pregnancy and sorry all the social conservatives are p-off the baby is going to have two mommies.


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