Thursday, November 13, 2003

The Lebanonization of Iraq? So, I've been thinking lately about Iraq, and I keep noticing similarities to Israel's war in Lebanon, or Operation Peace for Galilee, which started in 1982. Obviously, there is serious destabilization in the country, which was expected, and splintering along ethnic lines, which also was expected, and a growing resentment among ordinary Iraqis for the American presence (which I expected, although I'm not sure the administration did) which is similar to what happened to Israel in '82. Basically, Israel made the mistake of not getting out fast enough. They tried not only to destroy the PLO, which they succeed brilliantly in doing (it was only resurrected at the hands of the Leftists who signed the Oslo Treaty ten years later) but also to permanently change the political situation there, which was impossible to do. I think America might be attempting a similar fools game. We might want to face the fact that Iraq was never a real country in the first place, it was post-colonial aberration cobbled together by imperialist powers and held together by a totalitarian dictatorship of the ugliest kind. The best move might be to partition the country into three, its Kurdish section in the North and the Shiite portion in the South being independent of the Sunni Arab center. Obviously, the biggest obstacle to this is the desire of all three groups to have a share in Iraq's oil revenues and the problem of ethnic minority groups, but I think these can be worked out into some sort of working status quo.


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