Plan B For Iraq

Discussion in 'Politics' started by AAAintheBeltway, May 22, 2007.

  1. I previously posted my plan for Iraq, , and later, a simplified plan.

    While both remain viable options and are far preferable to the current policy of using our troops to perform basic policing functions and thereby serve as targets for insurgents, it is clear that the public is understandably losing patience. Something is clearly needed between the options of continuing our current strategy and just pulling out altogether and declaring defeat. Morton Kondracke, a moderate by anyone's estimation, recently published a very interesting article outlining his Plan B, or win dirty strategy. It recognizes without coming right out and stating it, that insurgencies have to be defeated by unconventional means. Typically what that has meant in practice has been so-called "death squads" and "dirty wars" of the type employed in latin america.


    Morton Kondracke

    U.S. needs alternative for Iraq: Back Shiites and ‘win dirty’ | Without prejudging whether President Bush's "surge" policy will work, the administration and its critics ought to be seriously thinking about a Plan B, the "80 percent solution" — also known as "winning dirty." Right now, the administration is committed to building a unified, reconciled, multisectarian Iraq — "winning clean." Most Democrats say that's what they want, too. But it may not be possible.

    The 80 percent alternative involves accepting rule by Shiites and Kurds, allowing them to violently suppress Sunni resistance and making sure that Shiites friendly to the United States emerge victorious.

    No one has publicly advocated this Plan B, and I know of only one member of Congress who backs it — and he wants to stay anonymous. But he argues persuasively that it's the best alternative available if Bush's surge fails.

    Winning will be dirty because it will allow the Shiite-dominated Iraqi military and some Shiite militias to decimate the Sunni insurgency. There likely will be ethnic cleansing, atrocities against civilians and massive refugee flows.

    On the other hand, as Bush's critics point out, bloody civil war is the reality in Iraq right now. U.S. troops are standing in the middle of it and so far cannot stop either Shiites from killing Sunnis or Sunnis from killing Shiites.

    Winning dirty would involve taking sides in the civil war — backing the Shiite-dominated elected government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and ensuring that he and his allies prevail over both the Sunni insurgency and his Shiite adversary Muqtada al-Sadr, who's now Iran's candidate to rule Iraq.

    Shiites make up 60 percent of the Iraqi population, so Shiite domination of the government is inevitable and a democratic outcome.

    The United States also has good relations with Iraq's Kurdish minority, 20 percent of the population, and would want to cement it by semipermanently stationing U.S. troops in Northern Iraq to ward off the possibility of a Turkish invasion.

    Ever since the toppling of Saddam Hussein, Sunnis — representing 20 percent of the population — have been the core of armed resistance to the United States and the Iraqi government. The insurgency consists mainly of ex-Saddam supporters and Sunni nationalists, both eager to return to power, and of jihadists anxious to sow chaos, humiliate the United States and create a safe zone for al-Qaida operations throughout the Middle East. Bush wants to establish Iraq as a model representative democracy for the Middle East, but that's proved impossible so far — partly because of the Sunni insurgencies, partly because of Shiites' reluctance to compromise with their former oppressors and partly because al-Qaida succeeded in triggering a civil war.

    Bush's troop surge — along with Gen. David Petraeus' shift of military strategy — is designed to suppress the civil war long enough for Iraqi military forces to be able to maintain even-handed order on their own and for Sunni, Kurdish and Shiite politicians to agree to share power and resources.

    The new strategy deserves a chance, but so far civilian casualties are not down, progress on political reconciliation is glacial, and U.S. casualties have increased significantly.

    As a result, political patience in the United States is running down. If Petraeus cannot show dramatic progress by September, Republicans worried about re-election are likely to demand a U.S. withdrawal, joining Democrats who have demanded it for years.

    Prudence calls for preparation of a Plan B. The withdrawal policy advocated by most Democrats virtually guarantees catastrophic ethnic cleansing — but without any guarantee that a government friendly to the United States would emerge.

    Almost certainly, Shiites will dominate Iraq because they outnumber Sunnis three to one. But the United States would get no credit for helping the Shiites win. In fact, America's credibility would suffer because it abandoned its mission.

    And, there is no guarantee that al-Sadr — currently residing in Iran and resting his militias — would not emerge as the victor in a power struggle with al-Maliki's Dawa Party and the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, led by Abdul Aziz al-Hakim.

    Iran formerly backed the SCIRI and its Badr Brigades but recently switched allegiances — foolishly, my Congressional source contends — to al-Sadr, who's regarded by other Shiites as young, volatile and unreliable. Under a win-dirty strategy, the United States would have to back al-Maliki and the Badr Brigades in their eventual showdown with al-Sadr. It also would have to help Jordan and Saudi Arabia care for a surge in Sunni refugees, possibly 1 million to 2 million joining an equal number who already have fled.

    Sunnis will suffer under a winning dirty strategy, no question, but so far they've refused to accept that they're a minority. They will have to do so eventually, one way or another. And, eventually, Iraq will achieve political equilibrium. Civil wars do end. The losers lose and have to knuckle under.

    As my Congressional source says, "Every civil war is a political struggle.

    The center of this struggle is for control of the Shiite community. Wherever the Shiites go is where Iraq will go. So, the quicker we back the winning side, the quicker the war ends. ... Winning dirty isn't attractive, but it sure beats losing."
  2. Your first link didnt work for me, but that was the "vietnamisation-2" strategy if i recall, which didnt work the first time.

    The second, "cut and run-to the green zone", also hasnt, and isnt working.

    So, now you've finally come around to the unfortunate death squad proposition, which i in fact championed years ago, when pointing out iraqi-isation (vietnam 2)simply would not work.

    As pointed out at the time, it would take an extroradinary leap of logic to say they actually werent doing it , by proxy at least, at the time-the model was IDF/mossad or course, and strangely, as i pointed out, it hasnt been vastly succesfull for them either, probably due to hydra theory.

    I guess thats pretty much the gamut of strategy from the beltway.....anything else up your sleeve?
  3. No?

    Sad'r would make a great calif.
  4. They won't listen to me. If they had, things would have been different. Of course, that is the theme of every Washington memoir. LOL.

    I think the "death squad" analogy is spot on. It has worked repeatedly, most often in latin america. Virtually every country had a dirty war against marxist revolutionaries, and they all won eventually. But those dirty wars were conducted by local militias, not by outside forces. The US and other western countries have so hamstrung ourselves that we cannot prevail against an insurgency with any degree of civilian support. Al qaeda and other terrorist groups have mastered the art of using the international media. Can you imagine how we would have fought WW II if we had a congressional investigation every time a german or japanese child was killed by a stray bomb?

    In Iraq, i think we have pretty much reached the end of the State Department rope. Their brilliant plan has failed misreably. Arrest al Sadr, call in air strikes onhis supprters when they riot, then pull back to secure garrisons and let the shias get their revenge against the sunnis.
  5. There are no Shiites friendly to the United States, and if backed, they will only stab the US in the back just as the Afghanis did after the US backed them in the 80s. I can remember when the shits where Americas no 1 enemy after Iran took over the US embassy in 79, nothing has changed since then, too bad Moron Kondracke overlooks this.
  6. This was my opinion also. I guess that's why it is Plan B. Obviously, it is not an ideal solution. It does appear marginally better than what we're doing now. At least our soldiers won't be getting killed on a daily basis. Presumably it will deny al qaeda a safe haven, as they are sunni.
  7. Plan B is looking better and better. Ten more Americans killed Monday alone. They are being sacrificed "to prevent sectarian strife" in Iraq. Is that a valid reason? Should our soldiers be sacrificed to prevent one group of muslims from killing another, when both would love to kill us?


    Five Britons abducted in Iraq,10 U.S. troops killed
    Tue May 29, 2007 11:26PM EDT
    By Ahmed Rasheed

    BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Gunmen in police uniforms kidnapped five Britons in Baghdad on Tuesday and the deaths of 10 U.S. soldiers were announced, making May the deadliest month for the U.S. military in more than two years.

    The gunmen seized the Britons from a Finance Ministry building in eastern Baghdad. Two ministry employees who witnessed the kidnapping said at least one computer expert and several bodyguards were taken in the daylight raid.

    Britain's Foreign Office in London said five Britons were kidnapped, and diplomatic sources said no other nationalities were involved.

    "Officials from the British embassy in Baghdad are in urgent contact with the Iraqi authorities to establish the facts and to try to secure a swift resolution," said a spokesman.

    The Canadian-based security firm GardaWorld said four of its British security guards were among those kidnapped.

    At least 38 people were killed when a bomb on a parked minibus exploded in central Baghdad and a car bomb exploded in a busy market in a southwestern Shi'ite district.

    The U.S. military said 10 soldiers were killed in Iraq on Monday, taking the total for May to 114, the deadliest month for U.S. troops since November 2004 when 137 soldiers were killed.

    Two were killed when their helicopter came down under enemy fire in Diyala province, where 3,000 reinforcements have been sent to combat a rise in violence. Troops heading to the crash site were struck by roadside bombs that killed six.

    Two other soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb while on patrol in southern Baghdad.

    The 10 deaths occurred as Americans observed Memorial Day services for their war dead.

    The U.S. military has said it anticipated heavier casualties when it began pouring thousands of extra troops into Baghdad and other areas as part of a security crackdown aimed at averting all-out sectarian civil war.


    U.S. President George W. Bush won a bruising battle against Democrats over war funding this month but is under growing pressure from some in his own Republican Party to show progress in an increasingly unpopular war or start bringing troops home.

    A total of 3,465 U.S. soldiers have been killed in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion to topple Saddam Hussein. Tens of thousands of Iraqis have also been killed.

    The worst month for U.S. forces was when the 137 were killed in November 2004. The second worst was April that year when 135 were killed.

    "I think if the current elevated level of U.S. casualties continues, it will signal the failure of the Bush administration's strategy," said Loren Thompson, defense analyst with the U.S.-based Lexington Institute.

    Initially, there were conflicting reports over the kidnapping at the Iraqi Finance Ministry computer centre in Palestine Street, particularly over nationalities. Police and witnesses said Germans and Americans were among those abducted.

    But the diplomatic sources, who declined to be named, said only Britons were involved.

    A ministry official who witnessed the kidnapping said it took place as several computer experts gave a lecture on organizing electronic contracts..

    The gunmen entered the room led by a man wearing a police major's uniform, the official said.

    The gunmen shouted, "Where are the foreigners, where are the foreigners?" she said.

    Police said gunmen in a large convoy of vehicles, typically used by police, had sealed off streets round the building.

    It was the first reported kidnapping of foreigners since the Baghdad security plan began in mid-February and the first time Westerners had been taken from inside a government building.

    Kidnappings in Baghdad are a daily occurrence, usually for ransom or political motives. Men in camouflage uniforms took dozens of Iraqis from the Higher Education Ministry in November.

    More than 200 foreigners and thousands of Iraqis have been kidnapped since the 2003 U.S. invasion, although there had been a recent lull in the seizure of foreigners.

    Most of the foreign hostages who have been taken in Iraq have been released but others have been killed.

  8. Hello.............calling anyone out there.................