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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Tuesday, June 14, 2005

The real truth about Iraq

The deceptions around the Iraq debacle are becoming clearer by the day. Take the latest Downing Street memo written eight months before the invasion detailing the apparent lack of US plans for any occupation problems. The current explosion of violence there proves that America had little or no idea about what to expect in Iraq and leading US senators now openly talk about bringing back the draft. As I've written before, this is a surefire way to send public support for the war to new lows. Bring back the draft!

Meanwhile, Pepe Escobar writes in the Asian Times on some possible scenarios for Iraq in the coming years. Key point:

"Several Iranian websites have widely reported a plan to break up Iraq into three Shi'ite southern mini-states, two Kurdish mini-states and one Sunni mini-state - with Baghdad as the seat of a federal government...The plan is an exact replica of an extreme right-wing Israeli plan to balkanize Iraq - an essential part of the balkanization of the whole Middle East. Curiously, Henry Kissinger was selling the same idea even before the 2003 invasion of Iraq."

America's lack of sufficient troops in the country means that the world's pathetic superpower will have to rely on Shi'ites and Kurds to fight Sunnis. The fight over oil in the north of the country rages daily. Escobar's conclusions are bleak:

"The Bush administration though is pulling no punches with Iraqification. It's a Pandora's box: inside one will find the Battle of Algiers, Vietnam, El Salvador, Colombia. All point to the same destination: civil war. This deadly litany could easily go on until 2020 when, in a brave new world of China emerging as the top economy, Sunni Arabs would finally convince themselves to perhaps strike a deal with Shi'ites and Kurds so they can all profit together by selling billions of barrels of oil to the Chinese oil majors. If, of course, there is any semblance of Iraq left at that point."

Of course, you won't read any of this here. The good man of Queensland is currently hoping that actor Sean Penn, on a journalistic project in Iran, will "prove that he's motivated by humanitarianism, however misguided, rather than anti-Americanism of the kind officially approved by Iran's rulers." God forbid Penn displays scepticism towards Bush's mission in the Middle East.


Anonymous the young-lib brigade said...

Do you seriously believe that the US administration would implement the draft knowing full well that it would make the war unpopular?

Only in youre fantasies.

They will simply increase the pay bonus for enlistment and attract new recruits like that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 11:40:00 am  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

The US government/military may have no choice soon enough. I'm sure they're aware that reintroducing the draft will make the war more unpopular, but if they want to keep on fighting imperial wars, the manpower has to come from somewhere.
And wonder why people aren't enlisting...They're already offering massive financial incentives, and yet...

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:04:00 pm  
Anonymous shabadoo! said...

Ant -- I know you're a great skeptic; doesn't it occur to you that Iran might have some other agenda in suggesting this partition plan? You need to examine everyone's motivations, not just the evil ones of Chimpy McHitlerBurtonStein.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:14:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Iran most certainly has its agenda and it too should be treated with serious suspicion. However, did you notice who is also suggesting partition? Not just the Iranians...

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:27:00 pm  
Anonymous shabadoo! said...

Furthermore, can you name any US Senator who is seriously talking about bringing back the draft (and not in a "no, there's no way we'd ever bring back the draft" sense) who isn't doing it for anti-war purposes?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:27:00 pm  
Anonymous shabadoo! said...

Also, re: the partition, isn't Iraq just an artificial lines-on-the-map construct of the British colonials? I mean, why is there an obligation to preserve those borders?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:30:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Democrat Jo Biden is talking about the draft. Seriously, perhaps not yet, but he's hardly a fringe player. For anti-war purposes, perhaps, perhaps not, but not to be ignored.
As for Iraq being drawn on British colonial lines, you're right, they've always been artificial, but the point is that to divide and conquer the country is very much against the supposed reasons for invading and occupying the country.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 12:50:00 pm  
Anonymous michael said...

Perhaps shabadoo! might examine his argument by reflecting on how he would react if the US administration decided that Australia would be easier for them to govern if the artificial unity of the continent imposed by the British colonials was dispensed with and the place was divided up according to rival football codes (or, more seriously, by ethnicities according to how well they were perceived to be co-operating with the US).

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 2:34:00 pm  
Anonymous michael said...

Does everyone get the same Google ads on the Escobar article that I do?

Seems you can get everything on eBay these days.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005 2:56:00 pm  

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