The debate over exit strategies for Iraq.
The biggest problem with treating Iraq like Vietnam is Iraqization -- the main
component of the current U.S. military strategy. In a people's war, handing the
fighting off to local forces makes sense because it undermines the nationalist
component of insurgent resistance, improves the quality of local intelligence,
and boosts troop strength. But in a communal civil war, it throws gasoline on
the fire. Iraq's Sunnis perceive the "national" army and police force as a
Shiite-Kurdish militia on steroids. Biddle also emphasizes the need for
a compromisebased on a constitutional deal with ironclad power-sharing arrangements protecting all parties.
responses from Larry Diamond, James Dobbins, Chaim Kaufmann, and Leslie Gelb.
Anthony Cordesman, who
anticipated the current situation (PDF),
emphasizes the need for ongoing US involvement in the region.
is pessimistic, describing the US as being in a no-win situation whether
it stays or leaves. A list of proposed
collected by the Project for Defense Alternatives.
posted by russilwvong
on Jun 21, 2006 -
A distinction between “old” and “new” wars is vital. “Old wars” are wars between states where the aim is the military capture of territory and the decisive encounter is battle between armed forces. “New wars”, in contrast, take place in the context of failing states. They are wars fought by networks of state and non-state actors, where battles are rare and violence is directed mainly against civilians, and which are characterised by a new type of political economy that combines extremist politics and criminality... I argue in this article that the United States viewed its invasion of Iraq as an updated version of “old war” that made use of new technology. The US failure to understand the reality on the ground in Iraq and the tendency to impose its own view of what war should be like is immensely dangerous and carries the risk of being self-perpetuating. It does not have to be this way. Iraq: the wrong war - Mary Kaldor writes of what was happening in pre-invasion Iraq, what happened thereafter and what the alternatives were. Well, there is always Exit strategy: Civil war. And on that, note this: Kurdish Officials Sanction Abductions in Kirkuk--a city from which, I am afraid, we will hear more and more as time goes by.
posted by y2karl
on Jun 15, 2005 -
To implement this exit strategy, we will have to practice running quickly. It is further recommended that, while running, the eyes be cast down, to avoid witnessing any last-minute people trying to kill us. We will have to establish excellent communications so that the moment that final person begins dying, we can all begin running quickly at the same time, eyes cast down, quickly, to our vehicles, to get to the airport and get out of the country.