Monday, October 30, 2006

Iraq Civil War

It is very easy to lampoon the Bush administration whenever one hears Bush, or his emissaries, trying to justify or explain the situation in Iraq. “Benchmarks” v. “Time Tables”, “Stay the Course” v. “Cut and Run” etc….It’s easy to be gleeful at what has turned out to be [in some quarters] a mistake, the great Goliath, slowly being cut down to size: one pebble at a time. When one looks at the situation from America’s perspective, it is very easy to call for a withdrawal, to call the mission a failure, to yearn for a humbling of America.

But if you look at the situation from the Iraqi’s perspective, one sees a noble cause, that is having major problems, but that is not hopeless…yet. Africa’s history is replete of examples of nations that received foreign attention for a while, but as soon as things got tough, the international attention was withdrawn and disaster followed. The poster child for this….Somalia.

The Iraqis, Americans, and the world should not let the situation in Iraq deteriorate to anarchy. The fact that Iraq is in the throws of a civil war should not lead America to abandon Iraq. Many have argued that America shouldn’t be a “referee” in the civil war, but that is precisely what the Iraqi’s need, a party (like the UN in DRC, French in Ivory Coast, ECOMOG in Liberia, British in Sierra Leone) that shall help limit the bloodshed, facilitate a ceasefire and provide the space necessary for political negotiations, where the Iraqi’s would work out the outstanding political differences.

Iraq is in a situation that many Africans have found themselves before, you get rid of a dictator, there is no heir apparent, no system to resolve leadership and political controversies, and you degenerate in to anarchy. Many in Africa, rightly, chastise the international community when it fails to assist in ending the violence (ala Rwanda), or has only fleeting interest in a conflict situation (ala Somalia). One can only hope that the Americans (after the bluster that is the campaign) resolve not to leave Iraq prematurely, and that the Iraqi’s get their collective act together and change the dynamics on the ground.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is wrong for you to lump the U.S. in the same pool as 'The UN in Congo' or 'The French in Ivory Coast'. The U.S. does not command the same respect as these Countries or organizations you gave as examples. On the other hand, I absolutely agree that the U.S. should not leave Iraq, if the situation were to improve and to improve fast. Besides, once the U.S. leave, it will take the media and international community with it, leaving anarchy to rule Iraq.

Saudi, Jordan, Syrian and other Middle Eastern countries... or the Arab League need to raise up to the occasion and help save Iraq. They too have a great role to play

7:38 PM  
Blogger Githush said...

What I was intimating was that these were foreign entities that came into a war situtation, pacified the situation and provided the space. These are examples of the role the U.S. can play from here on out.

I do agree with you that the Arab League nations must do more in Iraq, as must the Iraqi's and other nations. Living Iraq to devolve into anarchy is not the way to go.

12:30 AM  

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