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19 February 2006


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Babak Makkinejad

Following your logic; this could lead to a de facto partition of Iraq. Sort of like Bosnia.

John Howley

"They [Iraqi insurgents] appear to have been remarkably effective: despite
considerable setbacks – the loss of numerous leaders and
territorial sanctuaries, such as Falluja – there has been
little let-up or disarray but rather increased coherence and
organisation. The self-conscious and intensive use of
communication networks to unify the groups’ official
positions, standardise their tactics, recruit new members
and generate sympathy among their target audience largely
accounts for this success." Quote from the ICG reports (www.crisisgroup.org). I'll risk your wrath Col. Lang with another loose comparison to Vietnam: the Iraqi insurgents are managing to do this without Soviet cargo ships and infantry battalions from the North. We're doing a heck of a job training Iraqis -- we're just training the wrong ones!

W. Patrick Lang


No argument from me. Care to guess what the situation will be in ten years? Pat

W. Patrick Lang

"and infantry battalions from the North."

Actually it was regiments and divisions. pat



What is your assessment of the US military response to the Saddam Fedayeen at the beginning of the war?

The Iraqi government made it clear through the Fedayeen that their strategy was to build a long term guerrilla movement from the very beginning, leaving their marginally loyal conventional army to confront (surrender to) the US invasion forces.

It seemed to me at the time the US military did not take the Saddam Fedayeen seriously and failed to develop any US strategy to counter the Iraqi guerrilla plans. The result has been that the US military allowed the guerrillas a crucial period in which they could build roots in the populace and begin to establish themselves as an underground government in Sunni areas.

W. Patrick Lang


It was poor. The whole force was programmed by the policy people in DC to ignore the possibiity of significant resisitance. pat

Patrick Henry

"BLOOD is" thicker than "WATER"...

Seems like a Clear'er Demonstration that there is Indeed a Muslim Unity Movement going on..A ji had objective..

Question is..Are there any/enough Moderates and How FAR WILL THIS go..??

Watch Policy..!

W. Patrick Lang

There are, but they are losing. pl


bh - I think that may have been the case starting out, but one of the key findings in the report Col. Lang cites is that the Baathists have long ago lost control of the insurgency to the Islamists, or at least tribal/sectarian elements pretending to be Islamists. Out-and-out Baathists or those professing loyalty to Saddam or the former regime have been marginalized.

John Howley

crisisgroup.org now features a link to ABCNews video story on the report. Authors are interviewed along with Cordesman. Must be what Rumsfeld was talking about when he said we're losing the information war. I was struck by the insurgent video splicing together cheesy clips of staged charges by sword-wielding, bearded men on horseback with footage of attacks on U.S. forces. Looks ridiculous to us but probably is pretty moving for Iraqi teenagers.


What did I say? what did I say? People were laughing at me 6 months ago, when I say quit futzing around with Sunni-shia-kurds ethnicity. Pitting each of them to make a quick solution to supress 'terrorists/dead ender/whatever Rummy's term of the day was). When those forces start to colide, we are not going to be able to do a thing about it, short of get out or nuking the entire region.

but too late...

The war in Iraq is now entering the next phase. This is not going to be stroll in the park, few dozens IED blown ups, pipes blown up. "fox news, happy hour"

Soon it will be sunni shooting at shia and the entire country turns into a blood bath. We'll be cought in the middle. Forget Oil, showck and awe, 'we are not there for nation build' or other propaganda BS.

Iraq is quickly turning into soviet's afghanistan in no time. 2 years from now, Iraq is a full blow regional war.

If I have to make prediction in less than 5 years Syria, hezbollah, Iran will start entering Iraq. (They have no choice, since situation in Iraq start to creep into their border, plus Bush is asking for it with all the taunting.)

hundreds of thousand of people will die.


Iraq sectarian violence kills 130

Iraqi Shi'ites look at the damaged al-Hadi Shi'ite shrine, the Golden Mosque, in the town of Samarra, 62 miles north of Baghdad February 22, 2006. REUTERS/Stringer


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