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06 October 2006


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W. Patrick Lang


Do you? pl


I remember that map. I saw it in a Ralph Peters piece in favour of partition of the Middle East along ethnic and/ or sectarian lines.

Indeed, I just checked the last link. The US couldn't even handle Iraq, a single country. If it didn't work in Iraq, it will much less work on a larger scale. Undeterred, Peters believes that America, in an entire region, has the capability to re-draw the existing borders in a new, better way. Well, to do so, the Brits and French had conquered and effectively ruled the entire place. The US do not and cannot. Nevermind.

The map suggests the plan would rob Iran some 25+% of their oil producing areas - of course to make it 'ethnically persian'. Handy. The Iranians will just love to hear that. It's quite amusing that the US premier ally in the Middle East - Turkey - loses some 20 percent of their territory. Clearly, they will be most thrilled to learn what else the big schemers in D.C. have in stock for them. Maybe the US accidentally achieve the seemingly impossible: A Russo-Turkish alliance after 700 years of rivalry. Ooops.

Peters grimly welcomes (gravitas!) ethnic cleansing of a regional scale, and that the bloodshed involved is inevitable (gravitas!) and to be welcomed because it will split the region into smaller countries that can be better dealt with than the current constellation. Divide and rule. There still is the perception among folks like Peters that the Middle East needs to be dragged kicking and screaming to it's own salvation - Michael Ledeen's 'creative destruction', or Condi's 'birth pangs'.

As someone has said before: Do we first bomb the red ones or the green ones? In Peter's article America's omnipotence complex is manifest - with it's sense of being entitled to mess with other people's internal affairs - and the puzzled reaction when people from a land-far-far-away then get violently angry about it (which would then dictate retaliation, because anything else would be appeasement. By Peter's logic, a terrorist's cardinal sin is not to kill US citizens, it's blasphemy: Questioning the US right to interfere anywhere anytime however).

Probably 95% of the people in the region would be perfectly happy to be left alone by the US and their grand schemes to save them. It would also reduce their risk of getting accidentally killed.
Peters suggests to accelerate down the path of history. To claim to know where it goes to, and to think that the US will be in the driver seat is plain and simple hubris. Prime example: Iraq today.

The Daily Show has the perfect take on Peter's article:


"... we always welcome the chance to test the latest theories of your political scientists!"

When I read Peters again I had to think of the expressionist painter Max Liebermann: "Ich kann gar nicht so viel fressen, wie ich kotzen möchte."

W. Patrick Lang


I rhink the pseudo alliance between Jordan and Iraq is irrelevent. The Shia were never going to think much of the Hashemites neither does anyone with Palestinian blood in spite of the simple fact that Jordan is the only Islamic or Arab country that gave Palestinians citizenship from the beginning. pl

W. Patrick Lang


Am I one of the Koolaid peddlars?

My position: Iraq will be partitioned de jure or de facto and we Americans and you British are no longer in control of the process. pl

W. Patrick Lang


A lot of you seem intent on misunderstanding what I am saying about this.


LISTEN!!! This is OVER!! We no longer can determine whether or not Iraq will be partitioned. It is partitioning itself. pl


these foreing phrases keep us hanging

"Ich kann gar nicht so viel fressen, wie ich kotzen möchte."

can't eat as much crap as I'd like?????

it hung up systrans and google translator

The Palestinians have mixed feelings on Jordan. The new king Abdullah II has a Palestinian wife and their children consequently are half Palestinian. And even though the Palestinians don't run things yet, the population is predominantly Palestinian and one day they will run the country.

The Hashemites had their eye on the greater empire of the Quds (Jerusalem), Dimashaq (Damascus), and Baghdad and they lost the prize they already had of the Hejaz ( Eastern Arabia and its Holy Cities).

Best Wishes


I'm curious as to why PL even has to write the above. As gruesome as SH's Iraq was, at least it was in control. It was not a threat.

While those whose lips quiver at their cause de jour, "Kurdish persecution" or "rape rooms" or chemical weapons, while they b-tch and whine about the sanctity of the "Iraqi nation" I wonder have they not read Sykes-Picot? Did they start reading ME history in 1946 or 1967 or 1990?

The Iraq problem exists because as we support or ignore dictators worldwide we make a "principled" stand against SH. All the while waxing poetically about a "nation" that never existed except in the minds of the French and the Brits and Ba'ath party.

Hope you enjoy the contents of the box, Pandoras.


the briefest translation would be: 'I can't eat as much as I wanna puke.' Funny enough the translation didn't come to my mind yesterday evening.


to make that point clear, I see a profound difference between your ideas and Mr. Peter's. I agree that Iraq will end up de facto partitioned. And I dislike it, too.

The least thing will be that the Kurds will achieven autonomy, if not independence. By going there, they may invite their own doom through challenging their neighbours raison d'etat. Considering the Kurdish nationalists's transnational ambition, I see a Turkish- Syrian- Iranian and perhaps Shia invasion as a genuine possibility.

I also agree that the US politicos babbling about Iraq are mistaken when they think they are in the driver seat on the issue. The 'Iraqis' will decide this.

What will happen between the Shia and the Sunni is another thing. Worst case would be that the Saudis will start supporting the Sunni against the Shia, who will be supported by Iran, and that they will continue to mince each other.

And all inbetween there will be America as the desperate wizard's apprentice.


The Liebermann quote could be nicely rendered as "I couldn't eat as much as I'd want to puke"


thanks for the translation. the hangup was kotzen which just came back us just "kotzen." I tried kotz which came back as "excrement." I, by the way, had a year of Deutsche at college but it's all gone.

You often hear that Irak is a creation of Sykes-Picot, that did not exist historicaly. Rubbish. It is the most ancient of nations.

In fact, the Baath (Arabic for Renaissance) tried to echo the distant past. Baath was invented by a Lebanese Christian.

What kind of party would a Lebanese Christian invent? It wouldn't be an Islamist party. It wouldn't be a racial party because the Lebanese Christians are part Greek, part Frankish from the Crusades. It would be a party celebrating the achievements, (cultural, literary, military) of the Arabs. Arabs in this context would include Salah-al-Din al Kurdi a red headed Kurd.

The party in Irak was taken over by fascists who failed to accomodate the Kurds ands Shiites to their great detriment. But it was secular and Christians, notably Tarik Aziz, rose to hi places in the goverment and military.

To echo the distant past of the Babylonians, NeoBabylonians, Assyrians, Abbasid Caliphate, names from the past were resurrected. Salahadin province. Haroun-al-Rashid Hotel. Hammurabi Division.

It is heartbreaking to hear the daily sad news of civilian deaths from the fabled Land of Shinar, the storied home of Abraham of Ur, the origin of the stroy of Noah's Ark and so much of our civilization.

A piece of pottery broken (Colin Powell's Pottery barn rule) by a drunken frat boy from Yale that took his dad's Corvette (the U.S.A.) and crashed it into an oak tree.

Best Wishes


you got it better. The '*couldn't*' (possibly) has the right emphasis to say what Liebermann meant.


Some gossip from me: I knew a German engineer who was building concrete production plants in Iraq in the early 1980s. He described the Iraqis self-image then as that of 'the Prussians of the Middle East'.
He also spoke very highly of the competence and deep technical knowledge of the Iraqi buereaucrats he dealt with. According to him they were unusual as customers in that they had studied the designs of their competitors and gave design tips to improve the performace of the plants he built.

So, first, the Iraqis most probably didn't need Halliburton engineer expertise to rebuild their country - they were more than up to the job themselves. They would have not allowed to be ripped off, as my engineer recalled the Iraqis being quite pedantic on specifications, construction standards and quality issues.

Second, no matter wether the Baathist ideology is artificial or not, the Iraqi Baathist patriotism is real. The old Iraqi elite will never forgive the US the complete destruction of what was once the second best developed country in the entire region (after Israel).

Sad sidenote: A team of American and Iraqi epidemiologists estimates that 655,000 more people have died in Iraq since coalition forces arrived in March 2003 than would have died if the invasion had not occurred. Their study can be expected to be greeted with howling, and throwing with excrement, by the usual suspects, before they dismiss it as liberally biased statistic fraud by 'Saddamite' doctors.


Bush certainly thinks the price the Iraqis pay is worth being paid for his visions, and according to him the deaths in Irak are all but a comma anyway - later, in the history books.

Got A Watch

The 655,000 Iraqi dead would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to America for everything they have done for Iraq, and look forward to continuing to work together to build a better future in the Middle East for everyone.



-In Iran, which is the big one, if you look at it, the oil of the region (that’s where most of the hydrocarbons in the world are) they are right around the gulf, the Shiite sections of Iraq, the Shiite sections of Saudi Arabia and an Arab—not Persian—region of Iran, Khuzestan, right near the Gulf, it happens to be Arab. There is talk floating around Europe (you know it’s probably planted by the CIA) of an Ahwazi Liberation Movement for this region. A feasible, I don’t know if it’s feasible or not, but I think the kind of thought that would be occurring to the Pentagon planners is to sponsor a liberation movement, so-called, in the area near the Gulf then move in to defend it.-
Noam Chomsky


-Iran is still running one of the largest refugee operations in world.....The Iraqis were largely Shia Arabs who fled after losing the fight against Saddam in 1991...Iran would like to get rid of all these refugees...The Iraqi refugees increase the number of Arabs in Iran's oil producing region. The Iranians would prefer to have more ethnic Iranians living on top of the oil.-
Jim Dunnigan

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