Sunday, March 26, 2006

From WMD eradication to Designer Democracy or Iraqi democracy - UPDATED

(Modernity comes to Iraq)

The official Danish explanations of the reasons for being in Iraq change slowly, but inexorably. The politicians must presume that Danish voters are stupid!

“The UN increasingly run out of steam – one of the examples of that we experienced when the UN weapons inspectors were denied access to Iraq. The UN had to look on hesitatingly when an American-led invasion stepped in and actually turned UN resolutions into action – against the will of the UN”, Pia Kjaersgaard writes in her weekly newsletter March 20th.

This is wrong. It is correct that some time in the nineties the inspectors were thrown out when Iraqis claimed they violated Iraqi sovereignty, but in the pre-war period in 2002-3 Iraq did cooperate with the weapons inspectors. They visited any possible sites for production or storage and Iraq delivered 30.000 pages of documents. Actually the inspectors were pulled out because the USA and Great Britain did not intend to allow them more time for inspection.

After the roadside bomb that killed a Danish soldier last week Prime minister Rasmussen said: 'The attack hit Danish soldiers who were in Iraq to help Iraqis achieve freedom, peace, and progress' (Jyllandsposten March 24).

There has been an interesting development in the way the Danish political coalition behind the war explains why Denmark is taking part in this war. In March 2003 when the decision was taken, Rasmussen said: “Saddam Husein has weapons of Mass destruction. This is not something we believe. It is something we know.” When it was finally proved that there were no weapons of mass destruction the explanation was “We went to war to rid Iraq of a terrible dictator”. Today the explanation given is “We are in Iraq to help the Iraqis build a system of freedom and democracy.”

Who said Orwell? Cosmic Duck did:

The Ministry of Truth -- Minitrue, in Newspeak -- was startlingly different from any other object in sight. It was an enormous pyramidal structure of glittering white concrete, soaring up, terrace after terrace, 300 metres into the air. From where Winston stood it was just possible to read, picked out on its white face in elegant lettering, the three slogans of the Party:

WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

...... The Ministry of Truth, which concerned itself with news, entertainment, education, and the fine arts. The Ministry of Peace, which concerned itself with war. The Ministry of Love, which maintained law and order. And the Ministry of Plenty, which was responsible for economic affairs. Their names, in Newspeak: Minitrue, Minipax, Miniluv, and Miniplenty. (1984)

Orwell is not entirely right in his dire prophesying. War is not always peace, as the following quote from The Independent suggests. Uncle Sam is making new leaps in the building of designer democracy in Iraq. It is a problem when the voters do not elect the "right" representatives, and when these representatives do not form the "right" type of government. On the other hand, the designed model may be in its infant stage:

US forces killed 22 people and wounded eight at a mosque in east Baghdad in an incident likely to lead to increased tensions with the Shia community. Police said the US troops had retaliated after coming under fire.
Videotape showed a heap of male bodies with gunshot wounds on the floor of the Imam's living quarters in what was said to be the Al Mustafa mosque. There were 5.56mm shell casings on the floor, which is the type of ammunition used by US soldiers. A weeping man in white Arab robes is shown stepping among the bodies. .......The killings may mark another step in the deteriorating relations between the US and Iraq's Shia community, 60 per cent of the population. Shia leaders fear that the US is trying to rob them of the fruits of their success in the election on 15 December when the Shia coalition won 130 out of 275 seats.


When Uncle Sam shoots back, you better get out of the way, or you drop dead!

The mosque incident had repercussions on March 27th as the ruling shia muslim alliance in Bagdhad demanded that the USA relinquish control over security to the Iraqis. The American soldiers had allegedly killed innocent people in the mosque: "The alliance asks for a speedy transfer of security to the Iraqi government", the alliance spokesman Jawad al-Maliki said. The American army rejects the allegations. Those killed were members of the Mehdi militia, and it was thus an act of war.

The incident shows the full extent of the mess that the Americans have created in Iraq. The ethnic strife that should have been avoided is in full bloom. The shias have taken over power, which turns out not to be in American interests. Nobody can control what is going on in the border regions to Iran, and how the shias in Iraq may be helped or influenced by Shias in Iran. A powerful bloc of Shia power has been established, where before it was more like a balanced scoreboard that gave the Americans a larger leverage for influence. Short of going on wild military rampages, the Americans will have to admit defeat and leave the Shias to rule Iraq. This is probably not the worst of outcomes. Muqtada Al-Sadr is not the firebrand he is portrayed as. He has shown much restraint at times of crisis. He will probably know how to stretch out hands of reconciliation to the Sunnis. Anyway, he seems to be the only hope for some semblance of national Iraqi leadership out of the crisis. The West seems to have brought itself in a position where it'll have to accept an islamic state.
But for that to happen, the coalition forces will have to leave.

Will that happen?

No, because the ulterior reason for being in Iraq is control of the Middle East with its oil fields. It is incredible that the Danish government is not capable of understanding this - and understanding that at precondition for handling Danish interests in an optimal way in future is to get out of the war.

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