Monday, May 14, 2007

Dying for the status quo

Why we fight?

In an article that encapsulates stuff you already knew about Iraq but never expressed in so many words McClatchy lays it out: Our soldiers are dying to maintain the current positions of Iraqi politicians who are incapable of compromise because they are too jealous of their own current status and the narrow interests of their own power base.

And be clear this is not just a Sunni vs. Shia thing, but is caused by the divisions within those groups as well as with the Kurdish Iraqis.

U.S. officials warn that the longer the impasse persists over laws on provincial elections and the distribution of Iraq’s oil wealth among Shiite Muslims, Kurds and Sunnis, the greater the risk that the surge of 30,000 more U.S. troops into Baghdad, which is intended to provide a security umbrella for political reforms, will be for naught.

Until the political feuding ends, “we are just maintaining the status quo,” said a U.S. military official who requested anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak publicly.

The whole sad article should be read in full to appreciate the futility of our current engagement in Iraq.

But can I, once again, point out the glaringly obvious?

The only way to change a stalemate is to change the facts on the ground. That being said I see no reason to revise my earlier analysis of "the surge": it's too little, too late.

Insanity, it is said, may be defined as the expectation that repeating the same behavior will somehow yield different results.

How then can a sane person defend allowing the current Iraqi ruling class the continuing luxury of using American soldiers as shields from their own unwillingness to compromise with one another?

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