Charter Member of the Sub-Media

May 30, 2004

This Just In: « GWOT »

General Franco is still dead, and Muqtada al-Sadr is still an untrustworthy fool.

Please note the paragraph stating:

The US-led coalition has said it was not a party to the agreement, but would suspend offensive operations to give the deal a chance to bring peace to Najf.

The US had no reason to go along with the agreement. We have al-Sadr on the run and we could have pressed our advantage. But we haven't really pressed any advantage we've gained yet. Why?

Because we are teaching them. We are not imposing order as much as encouraging maturity: fight and die, or assimilate and live.

I'm sure we are still pursuing leads in military intelligence to locate ringleaders and weapons locations. But it seems that we are content to wait for them to attack us before we take them out.

It makes some sense, on some levels. I'm not sure I would have the confidence to advocate this method. But I can see that if I had a foster child who had been severely physically abused, I might choose a more patient, non-reactive, certainly non-violent response to that child acting out. Yes, I realize this is more serious than that, that our soldiers are dying in following this plan. But don't police officers do the same thing? Don't Peacekeepers do the same thing? Haven't we, at some unspecified point, changed our mission from major combat to peacekeeping? It sure seems like it from this vantage, and no, they don't keep me in the loop; I'm guessing as much as anyone else is.

If I'm correct, then we are showing restraint and patience to demonstrate that attacking only brings death, but those who don't attack won't be pursued....for now. It implies that amnesty might be possible for those who lay down their arms and begin helping rebuild the nation. It shows that we are not an occupying force trying to insidiously make Iraq dependent on us enough to steal oil. It lends credence to the oft-repeated intent to leave as soon as Iraq is peaceful and stable. It gives them the chance to learn there are other ways to seek goals other than fighting and killing.

We'll see. We've shown remarkable restraing over the last month, and all over Southeast Iraq, Muqtada al-Sadr is being blamed for the violence and the damaged mosques, not the US. This is the only explanation I can think of...and it does seem to be working....

Posted by Nathan at 10:04 AM | Comments (0)
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