03 April 2008
Iraq: winners and losers
According to Admiral Michael Mullen, the American Chief of the General Staff, it is still too soon to tell who won and who lost the recent offensive. If he can't figure it out, let the Exile have a go.
With a roll of drums and crash of cymbals, we can announce that the winners are:
Firstly, the Sunni who sat on the sidelines, taking America's dollars not to kill American troops. They have used the lull in the fighting in their sector to turn their guerrilla groups into a full blown militia that will fight the turf war that will break out as soon as the Americans leave. Or they may decide to throw in their lot with whichever Shia group offers them the best deal to go back to killing Americans now. Alternatively they could bombshell back into their impossible to suppress grouplets and restart the Guerrilla war against America. That's the problem with buying people off. All you do is hire them: they never stop hating you. And you never know what they will do next.
The Sadr Shia militia are the second set of winners. The Americans used the bought-off Shia to crush Sadr's boys, but the mullah craftily ordered his militia to stop fighting - after large numbers of Shia who were wearing American supplied uniforms had already deserted to his side.
Why fight a full scale war against America? This isn't about winning battles this is about winning a war. So keep the fuckers bleeding, keep the fuckers on edge and keep the fuckers poring millions of fast depreciating dollars down the toilet that is Iraq. That's the Sadr strategy and that's why the lad's a winner.
The third winners are the Iranians. They send weaponry into Iraq when they want things to hot up and they slow down the shipments when they want things cooled off a bit. They have pretty much got the Americans where they want them - bogged down, losing men, with not end in sight to the war.
Now what about the losers? In order of calamity they are:
The Iraqi army, which is really nothing more than the Badr Brigade in American uniforms. This gang fought with Iran during the Iran-Iraq War and you might think that the Iranians would show loyalty to them, but that is never what happens in international relations. You wnat loyalty? Buy a fucking dog - the Iranians are backing Sadr, and Sadr's men have chopped the balls off the Badr outfit by enticing its men to desert. That doesn't mean that the Badr Brigade are finished, but they have certainly taken a bad hit.
Next up are those American realists who knew that turning Iraq into a post-modern democracy was a non-starter, but who hoped that something would happen from the surge. It has, but not what they wanted. Now they are stuck in a situation that has no end in sight. Militarily they can remain in Iraq for decades at this level of conflict. Economically and politically they know that they have to leave - they just don't know how.
However the real losers are those sad arsed wazzocks who believed that inside every Iraqi tribesman there was a liberal, non-judgemental, post-end-of-history man just waiting to break free. Big fucking mistake, eh, lads?
The rest of us, especially those like your friendly Exile who have been saying that this is how it would all end up for years now, can sit back, break out the beer, and watch the show continue to its final conclusion: the day the Americans cut and run!