What is the American Plan for Iraq ?
Politics are not about who says what and when only, politics are about taking an eagle's view of a situation, about understanding the agenda behind political decisions and statements, about understanding who, what, where the key players are from, who do they serve, what is their agenda so on and so forth...
Political naivety does not pay. Political immaturity is deadly. Political faith/trust in who says what and when is idiocy.
Sure it is important to connect dots, have an eye for details, but the question remains, what is the overall plan, and what are the best ways of achieving it. This is what one should look for when attempting to answer the above question.
I can't go through ALL of the events, pretexts and actions that took place since 2003, the date of Iraq's invasion and occupation. This is a monumental task fit for a book not a blog. But what I can do is briefly resume the main points, as they have been unfolding for 7 years now...
But before I do so, I need to issue a warning here.
The first thing to do is to break that image, that myth, that most people hold in their heads, namely that the American neocons policy towards Iraq as embodied by Bush and Co is strategically different from the so-called Democrats as embodied by Obama and that consequently the aims are different. This is a MYTH. A political myth grown out of some false loyalty to a belief that the Democrats are fundamentally different from the Republicans in American politics.
So in this hopefully short post because I will try to keep it short as I maintain and argue that the American strategy/policy towards Iraq has remain unchanged, and contrary to naive popular belief, it is unfolding along a clear concise continuum, i.e continuity in plan.
So let's roll back, to 2003 first.
The Americans gave the following reasons for their invasion and occupation of Iraq and which has cost us millions of dead and maimed in 7 years and I shall take it point by point.
1) the presence of Weapons of Mass Destruction
2) Links between Saddam Hussein, and his government with Al-Qaeda
3) Saddam Hussein was a threat to his neighbors
4) Saddam Hussein and his government have committed crimes against the people of Iraq
5) Saddam Hussein and his government are a tyrannical form of government
so the plan unfolded... and
6) removal of Saddam Hussein and regime change, debaathification, and the disintegration of the previous State apparatus including the army, so a "New Democratic Iraq" can be born.
7) for the New democratic Iraq to be born and for regime change to be radically effective, from its roots up, America called on the Shiites of Iraq, many of whom had clear Iranian affiliations, some were even born in Iran and they were put in power by the Americans.
The ideological justifications given for for this political decision was a) Shiites were oppressed in Iraq, (all the Jews of the White House harped on that and continue to harp on that, including the leftists of America like Chomsky and his followers) and it was Sunnis that ruled brutally. b)The other justification given for radical regime change was that the Kurds have been brutally repressed and murdered by Saddam and his government and a thousand stories were concocted to that effect. For both a) and b) to be credible, i.e a massive black propaganda campaign was run against Saddam, his government and the Baath party until this very day,7 years on.
This campaign both by the Shiite government, by the Kurds, the Americans, the Iranians, the Israelis is done with the aim of ensuring that NEVER AGAIN would a Saddam Hussein, an ARAB Baath party rise to power again. You need to keep that in mind. Because I will get back to it And by ARAB Baath, I mean a SECULAR, PROGRESSIVE, ARAB IDEOLOGY as was encapsulated by the Baath party and not just a political party as such.
8) once the above was achieved, it was necessary to give a rational, a plausible excuse to have a full Shiite government in Iraq and ensure its continuity. Thus came the Sammarra bombing, which sparked a deadly sectarian war, in which the Sunnis of Iraq, the Arabs of Iraq were decimated by Iranian backed militias and by Iranians and Americans plus a whole group of spies, agents and contractors. The targets were Iraqi Arabs, scientists, academics, doctors, army men, etc...
The aim was to ensure the cultural, intellectual, political, identity cleansing of Iraq...and ensure that Iraq's human assets and consequently institutions like centers of learning, hospitals, etc...be completely and radically destroyed. Thus keeping the Iraqi people in a state of chronic backwardness. And crush whatever pride the Iraqis had in being able to develop their own country like they did in the past under the ARAB Baath. In other words, a blow to the Iraqi Head, so that it can NEVER RISE UP AGAIN. This is to put it simply.
9) once the above was successfully achieved, no without resistance though, hence the forming of the Awakening councils to strangulate the Resistance and the use of "Al-Qaeda" to plant a state of permanent terror. So once that was achieved, a so called election took place that gave a semblance of a legitimacy to an all Shiite government with clear ties and loyalties to Iran and at the same time strengthening the Kurds in the North and expanding their military influence all the way to Kirkuk and Mosul.
10) At that point in time, which was around 2007/2008, the Americans clearly spoke of a partition of Iraq due to it's unruly nature. The partition plan was a South, a Center and a North, the main protaganist for that partition plan was J.Biden the democrat.
11) When the Americans choose those Shiites to represent the New Iraq, they were fully aware of their ties and loyalties to Iran. The American army in Iraq is still fully aware that those Shiite parties and their militias take orders directly from Iran. This is a very important point, it is a crucial point to keep remembering. I cannot stress it enough.
12) When Maliki from the all Shiite DAWA party came to power and Obama won the elections, the tide apparently turned, so did the discourse, and there was talk of a) a reconciliation process b) a US troop withdrawal by 2012. Meanwhile security agreements were signed between the US and the Shiite Iraqi government in the Green Zone (one clause is no military action on Iran) and in parallel, a massive privatization campaign took and is taking place, with bids and tenders being grabbed by Western firms, be it in the oil or other industries.
In parallel, the Kurds are consolidating their power in the North, in Kirkuk and Mosul, with mass ethnic cleansing and displacement of non Kurds. And they also started signing bilateral deals to sell the oil from the Northern fields.
13) The Americans felt and still believe that those who could serve their political and economic interests best in Iraq and further down the line in the ARAB region are the Shiites with clear loyalty to Iran and the Kurds with clear loyalty to Israel.
14) Maliki's false attempts at national reconciliation failed, because the nature of Shiite sectarianism cannot allow for any political reconciliation and because any true attempt at national reconciliation and welcoming the Arabs of Iraq and in particular the Sunnis and the Secular forces into the political process poses a DIRECT THREAT to both Iran and Israel.
In other words, keeping the Shiite nature of the government in Iraq and its clear sectarianism is essential for both Iran and Israel. Israel knows that Shiites who are majority loyal to Iran pose no ideological or non ideological threat to it, and it is most important for Iran to continue its grip over Iraq and its political institutions to ensure the continuity of Shiite rule in Iraq, and its power grip at least insofar as the South and the Center of the country are concerned, while at the same time politically backing the Kurds in the North.
15) The Americans on the ground in Iraq and in the White House, know very well that this is currently the balance of power in Iraq. The idea that there is a non official partitioning i.e clear cut geographical areas, like the South, the Center and the North is most welcomed, because that was the original plan to start with.
But a plan needs finishing touches. The finishing touches to work on are still in the North where the Kurds, US and Iraqi forces are meeting with Resistance and in the center, namely the Anbar province and Baghdad. The grip is not complete yet. The demographic changes as a result of massive ethnic/sectarian cleansing, displacement and exile, have not given the exactly desired results, because somewhere along the line, Iraqis are resisting the idea of being partitioned. This is also another important point to remember.
And this is where I shall hopefully pick upon in part 2 and tie it the latest events, 7 years on -- i.e the banning of Secular, Iraqi ARAB, and Sunnis from the upcoming elections as an extra piece of evidence, proof to all what I have written above.
to be continued ...