Cheat-Seeking Missles

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Iraq: Time For Smaller Victories?

If you're not reading Thomas P.M. Barnett's blog regularly, may I introduce you to the bookmark function on your browser?

I don't usually do this, but here's a full post, The Big Bang is Match Play, so you can see what you're missing:
ARTICLE: Sunni Factions Split With Al-Qaeda Group: Rift Further Blurs Battle Lines in Iraq, By Sudarsan Raghavan, Washington Post, April 14, 2007; Page A01

This story seems to confirm the growing sense that Sunni insurgency groups are distancing themselves from al Qaeda. Like in the NW tribal areas of Pakistan, AQI uses a lot of extreme violence to try and establish itself as THE going concern, but because they're all for going after Shiia and because they're not interested in some negotiated withdrawal of American combat troops from this particular field of battle (no Americans, no jihad), the Sunni insurgents finally begin to realize how their how-does-this-end?-interests clearly diverge.

But yeah, comprehensive solutions become exponentially harder to achieve.

AQI wants Sunniland to remain in flames, because that gets jihad right next door to the House of Saud--the true target.

As far as I'm concerned, I don't mind that short-term outcome for Sunniland, because it forces a fish-or-cut-bait reality upon the Saudis.

Me? Again, I would pull back most of my combat troops to Kurdistan, leave sufficient trainers and SOF to keep up the train-up of Iraqi central gov forces and the kill/capture of AQI, and I'd provide all logical logistics and C2 and air power assets to the same.

I'd work to grow grass in Kurdistan and Shiia Iraq and I'd keep up the weed control effort in Sunniland, and I'd take 2 outta 3 for now and narrow the discussion from "Iraq" to the Sunni areas and Baghdad.

The maximal, get-it-all-stable-right-now-definition just isn't going to happen. That part of the postwar we just plain lost, so now comes the time for partial victories, because the Big Bang is logically match play, so we have to learn to collect our holes as we win them--just like in the former Yugoslavia.

Thought-provoking enough for you?

Labels: , ,