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April 11, 2004

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WillieStyle

Countries that wouldn't back us when we looked like a winner are unlikely to get behind us now.

As much as I relish a good Friedman ridicule, you sure you want to go with the "We screwed up so bad no one will help us you vapid mustachioed panty-waist" comeback?

TM

We are a long way from failing, and at this point we don't even know whether this is a popular Sh'ite uprising, or just fringe elements, so I am clinging to hope here. However, it seems absurd to think that Aran nations will decide that now is the time to back America. I assume they would play a "wait and see" game, and offer their support only if it becomes clear that we don't need it.

WillieStyle

My point is, after harping on for a year that those nations who chose not to come with us are "irrelevant". That "Old Europe" is in malaise. "Punish France, forgive Germany" and all that crap. It's a bit much to now use the reluctance of other nations to participate as your defence.
"Look your honour, I would have gotten a real job, but all the stores in my town blacklisted me."

I hope the France jokes were worth it.

IceCold

Iraqi moderates, to the extent their timidity is a problem, aren't pining away for some abstract "legitimacy" or the UN or European forces or (especially) Arab forces. They want results in terms of security (of course like children they also want everything delivered magically and without bloodshed, but that's a challenge we'll just have to overcome). A better way to obtain such results than aggressive use of the world's best forces (the current approach) has yet to be suggested. It's a test of wills and nothing (rightly) will distract Iraqis from the bottom line: will the US persist and drive the stake through the heart of the old order and the jihadi and regional enemies of a new order.

France is irrelevant to this situation. Their forces would never be deployed, have limited capability, and they would never be trusted outside Fallujah or other cesspools of the old genocidal despotism, or likely to act decisively in those cesspools.

See Afghanistan for the trouble NATO forces are having deploying and contributing there -- and that's a much better place for them.

Do the fighters in Fallujah (the Iraqi ones, forget the jihadis) care about "legitimacy", or Sunni dominance and even more likely fears of a looming Shi'a payback? Do Sadr's brownshirts care about "legitimacy" or vilayet-i-faqih and more likely simply grabbing the gusto for themselves? This is not a serious discussion.

Once the test of wills with the old order and the new spoilers (Iran, Syria, AQ) is won, the question of legitimacy will leap to the fore: but it will be a question of the new Iraqi order's legitimacy in the eyes of Iraqis, as it should be.

bushgirlsgonewild

"Once the test of wills with the old order and the new spoilers (Iran, Syria, AQ) is won,..."

Won't happen -- hasn't happened in Palestine, won't happen in Iraq. This war will go down as one of the greatest misjudgments of history. In less than two years, Iraq will be a Islamic theocracy (provided we’ve had the good sense to leave by then) and most Iraqi's will be happy with that.

We had a chance after 9/11 to work with the Arab nations to quell terrorism—-Dr. Rice’s simple understanding of the problem (that ‘they’ don’t like America) is shortsighted and reflective of the Bush administration’s outdated view of the world; ‘they’ don’t like the Arab governments either. But Bush had to invade Iraq instead of dealing with existing stateless terrorists, not only turning Iraq into the world’s largest terrorist training camp, but also destroying any bridge to common ground with the Arab Islamic governments.

IceCold

Test of wills in "Palestine" was won decades ago. Only the duration and depths of Palestinian self-degradation and impoverishment remain in question.

But there are some intriguing discoveries here:

* Islamic theocracy in Iraq by popular demand; please see polling organizations and CPA political advisors and fill them in .... this will be quite a change (also check with Madan villages that have rejected islamist candidates to see what they were thinking); oh, and let the Kurds and people in Kirkuk and Mosul know so they can make arrangements for their own state

* existing stateless terrorists who haven't been dealt with -- please contact CIA with locations and nature of these, as this is important new info

* terrorist training camp in Iraq -- please provide location to CENTCOM (Salman Pak, Ansar's area up north, and the place near the river in Ramadi are long since eliminated); don't bother listing Fallujah -- we're all over that one already

* Arab Islamic governments -- please identify, so that (1) we can isolate or eliminate them (2) al-Qaeda can stop attacking them, since islamic governments is what they're after, and they were under the impression there weren't any

Meanwhile, the Mahdi Brigades seem to have, uh, lost their will. All that without The International Community entering the fray with all of its Legitimacy. That mess is far from over, but it's almost to the point where you can't trust the hysterical illiterate distortion of the elite press. Almost.

bushgirlsgonewild

"Test of wills in "Palestine" was won decades ago."

Huh? Then why is there still fighting there? The situation on both sides still seems pretty strong willed to me.

OK, point for point:

*The Kurds are Islamic. They may or may not be part of the next cleric-controlled government, but it will exist nonetheless.

*al-Qaeda hasn't been dealt with. The terrorists in Spain, England, Italy, Germany, France, Indonesia, Thailand, Nigeria,...excuse me, my fingers are getting tired.

* Haven't you been watching the news? One was just found by the Marines with training manuals and suicide belts...there are many, many more.

*Arab Islamic governments -- please identify: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Syria, to name a few. You really think we can isolate or eliminate them? Hasn't the disaster in Iraq taught you anything?

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