April 1, 2004

Final on Fallujah for now

This will be my last entry on Fallujah until the Marines and the Iraqi police start their action which I think will be in about a week. There are two basic kinds of bloggers - thinkers and linkers. I'm a linker -- one of my favorite thinkers is Steven DenBeste and he has a wonderful analysis of events and outcomes in Fallujah on his website. A couple of excerpts taken out of context but you can get the general idea: bq. During the Saddam years, the Sunnis were the top dogs, and Kurds and Shiites suffered very badly. With Saddam gone and the Baathists shattered, if what replaces them in turn oppresses the Sunnis, then in the long run it will fail to achieve the larger political goals the US requires: to inspire reform and liberalization of the entire region. We need the Sunnis themselves to participate, and we need the Shiites and Kurds to accept them. bq. And if we succeed, and if it actually does inspire liberalization elsewhere, it will be a catastrophe for the Islamists, and they know it. The insurgency in Iraq now is attempting to make that fail, by trying to prevent any reconciliation with the Sunnis. Talking about the attack: bq. The Baathist insurgency thought that ongoing attacks would cause American demoralization and retreat. That didn't work, because they monumentally misjudged the American character. But the goal of this attack is to inspire American fury. What they hope is that the Americans will be blinded by hatred and will do something extremely stupid: to punish the Sunnis collectively for the actions of the terrorist group. And the response: bq. What is needed is a response which simultaneously punishes al Qaeda and reassures the Sunnis. But to do that, there has to be preparation. Our intelligence people now are busting their butts trying to learn everything they can about this attack and those responsible for it. Until they begin to make headway in that process, we must wait. I have only cherry-picked a few choice paragraphs. Check out the whole essay. He has issued a couple of updates as his email box fills up... :-) Posted by DaveH at April 1, 2004 9:55 PM