CULTIVATING LIBERALISM
FOR ALL CLIMATES
SINCE 1759
 
Google
 

Free alert to Candide's Notebooks
Your email:

JOIN ME AT MY BULLSHIT SITES

Picking a Lockdown
Now What?

Take your surge and shove it

It wasn’t 48 hours ago that the Bush junta was chatting up its lockdown of Baghdad as a result of the ongoing “surge” of Iraqi and American forces through the capital. From the Washington Post: “ Iraq's defense and interior ministers announced a massive security operation on Thursday that will see more than 40,000 Iraqi troops deployed in the capital to hunt down insurgents and their weapons. […] ‘We will also impose a concrete blockade around Baghdad, like a bracelet around an arm, God willing, and God be with us in our crackdown on the terrorists' infrastructure. No one will be able to penetrate this blockade,’” an Iraqi government official said. Oh, wait! That was from a Post article in May 2005. Maybe this one is the more contemporary dispatch, from the BBC: A three-day curfew was put in place in Baghdad and three provinces in February after the bombing of an important Shia shrine sparked violent protests, but pedestrians were allowed to walk to mosques. US and Iraqi troops have been reinforcing operations against insurgents and sectarian militias in Baghdad.” A U.S. military spokesman “Iraqi security forces were ‘making a concerted effort’ to end sectarian violence by targeting death squads.” Wait, wrong again: that was a BBC piece from September 2006.

Let’s try again. This time from the Times two days ago: “American troops locked down a large industrialized area of eastern Baghdad all day on Sunday while Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki of Iraq, without indicating how he would do it, vowed to speed the deployment of Iraqi forces throughout the war-ravaged capital. American commanders described the operation on Sunday in the Rusafa district as an early taste of large-scale sweeps expected to come in eastern Baghdad to take back some measure of control from militias.” And what were the results of that latest lock-down to end all lockdowns? This: “Four back-to-back explosions at two markets in central Baghdad killed at least 67 people and wounded 155 today, charring drivers in their cars, shredding stores and setting ablaze a seven-story building full of clothing stores that burned for more than six hours, witnesses and officials said. […]With its timing and severity, today’s attack seemed intended to both fuel the country’s sectarian hatreds and upstage the new American-Iraqi security plan for Baghdad.” If I were a Baghdadi right about now I’d be a little steamed, or charred, about any mention of “surge” or “lock-down.” I’d be wondering when the American president might figure out that no matter how many times he attempts to appear decisive by repeating the same folly under a different guise, he’s not fooling anyone, nor stopping any bombers, nor, of course, keeping hundreds of Iraqis from getting killed every day. To the contrary. His prevarications and idiotic strategies are precipitating worse violence. Just as his invasion designed, allegedly, to stop terrorism created the very hub of terrorism that he set out to preempt, his “surge, designed to clamp down on the insurgency and counter arguments in the United States that withdrawal is the best option, is having the opposite effect. It’s fueling the insurgency more than ever, and paradoxically proving that withdrawal has always been the better option even as withdrawal, the longer it’s delayed, will also mean a deeper crisis for Iraq, once it takes place. What now? The likeliest of scenarios: a president who’ll keep asking for time, who’ll keep attacking those urging him to withdraw as defeatists, and who’ll keep getting it, because no matter how much of an opposition the Democratic Congress pretends to be, it can’t even get itself to the point of a non-binding resolution telling the president: enough.

Bookmark and Share

| permalink
THE DAILY JOURNAL
Read Pierre’s Latest at


 
The Latest Comments
 
GOOGLE GOOGLE NEW YORK TIMES NEWSPAPERS NETFLIX UK INDEPENDENT NETFLIX
 
  
RECENTLY IN THE DAILY JOURNAL: NOTEBOOKS ORIGINALS
RECENTLY IN THE DAILY JOURNAL: CRUMBS & CRIBS

   
 
Add to Google Reader or Homepage Subscribe in NewsGator Online Subscribe in Rojo   Add to My AOL Subscribe in FeedLounge Add to netvibes Subscribe in Bloglines Add to The Free Dictionary