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04 October 2005


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amazing. I'm on my way back in a few days. A month, six weeks ago, was having a beer in baghdad with a friend. We were wondering whether it was theoretically possible for the sunnis to block the vote. She says, well, if they insist that it's 2/3 of the eligible rather than turnout, there's no chance. We both laughed, agreed there was no chance they would do anything that inflammatory, and decided not to write about it.


The apparatchik probably didn't stop to think that without some reasonable fraction of the Sunnis on board, we have guaranteed a worst-case outcome in Iraq.

It seems to me now that our policy is overtly to support a Shia/Kurd coalition in a civil war.

This cannot be good for our security. Areas of Iraq run by our real enemies. Instability in the Gulf. The Iranians laughing at us.

Our fantastic soldiers fight and die for this? The only question left is how we minimize the cost and the damage.


Thankfully the idea has been shelved except it leaves the impression that the current elected government is: without respect for democratic principles, weak and desperate.

I do not know if our ambassador or other Americans were behind or even knew of this game, but the insistance on a "faith based reality" determined by "benchmarks" or symbols such as the Constitution show a disturbing alienation from some key and rather obvious aspects of what is called "reality."

This does remind me of Vietnam. I think 2 cogent criticisms there were that much of our bureaucracy was cut off from Vietnamese reality and that aggravated by McNamera's corporate model and continued under Nixon we let forms and often invalid figures shape perceptions.

I believe that we are far more cut off from the Iraqi people than we were in Vietnam and that the hallucination of a manufactured "virtual reality" is equivalent or greater.

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