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In Tikrit Offensive, Confusion and Tragedy of US Policy Laid Bare


#1

In Tikrit Offensive, Confusion and Tragedy of US Policy Laid Bare

Sarah Lazare, staff writer

As Iraqi government forces and Shia militias wage the largest counter-offensive yet against the ISIS-held city of Tikrit, the United States is publicly distancing itself from the attack, in a move that analysts say underscores the confusion—and tragedy—of U.S. policy in the Middle East.


#3

Much of the negative coverage of Netanyahu's recent speech focused on how it was a political ploy containing nothing new. However, what is new is the current situation in Iraq where Iran has displaced the US as the major opponent of The IS. Netanyahu and his circle are plainly afraid of any agreements or de facto alliance of the USA and Iran, no matter how much such arrangements might be in the US interest. The real issue is not whether Iran develops a few nuclear weapons, since Israel already has hundreds, but whether a strong Muslim state of any kind exists.

Once again, it is clear that the interests of the USA and Israel are, if anything, opposed in the region. We want oil; they want any possible enemy too weak to ever challenge their dominance of the Mid East.


#4

If I were a Sunni in Takrit, I too would flee fearing an ethnic cleaning like the Sader brigades have done to the Sunnis so many times before. Or if there was no hope for exit I would stand and fight along with ISIS.. Shiite hatred of Sunnis and visa versa is so embedded that I see no hope of reintegration these ethnic groups into one nation where all are treated equally. The same goes with the Kurds, they deserve a nation of their own. Meanwhile the US pompously talks of reintegration these ethnic groups into new Iraq. The USA should be minding its own store , to see if it can accomplish it's own ideals of treating ethnic, racial and religious minorities equally under the Law. The USA still has a long way to go on that front. If it could move further along this path the USA would have far greater influence around the world than propping up puppet governments whose empty words and foul deeds belie any real attempt at democracy.


#5

Behind the Bushco invasion of Iraq was getting rid of Saddam's blocking of the West from having an interest in their oil fields that were in poor repair. It took much money and time to get them producing again, but the West now owns what they put into the process. Every war they gin up is for their personal profit. Netanyahu is a fool to be so obviously right-wing in the US because his policy of planting homes where Palestine once existed and destroying Gaza is more neocon aggression.


#6

Actually, China signed the $multi-billion contracts to develop the oil fields in the south of Iraq, and intended to take a larger share (from 30% to 80%) and any production increases back to China. Can't have that...

Suddenly Al Maliki was OUT for just "doing business", just like Yanukovych in Ukraine. And as with Libya, China lost much of its investment in the ensuing turmoil.

BushCo was getting rid of Saddam because he dared sell oil in Euros or local currencies, not in US-petro-$$. Remember Rumsfeld shaking hands with the US's "staunch ally" and encouraging the sale of chemical weapon tech during the Iraq-Iran war... ya, Saddam was a bastard, but he was the US's bastard... put in place by the US.


#7

As a clarification, the sectarian strife largely only dates to the US occupation after 2003 - specifically the installation of Shias into all Iraqi governmental positions. Before that, they largely got along with only pockets of anti-Shia sentiment, It is similar to Catholics and Protestants in the US - there is still some anti-Catholic sentiment in the south and some WASP neighborhoods and country clubs in the North - but nothing significant.

Consider that similar sectarian strife would probably erupt even in the US if after time of traumatic strife, people suddenly noticed only Catholics were given high positions in the government. I've heard hints of some of this even here with just the present, almost certainly coincidental, Catholic majority in the US Supreme Court at present.

The situation that arose in former Yugoslavia also comes to mind too. Everybody got along just fine, until the breakup resulted in sectarian discrimination in the governments of Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia.


#8

It doesn't seem like the Obama administration has a comprehensive policy in Iraq that could be explained to the U.S. government, let alone the U.S. or Iraqi public."

The best "comprehensive policy" a US president could have in Iraq would be the arrest, trial, and life imprisonment of everybody involved in the decision to invade Iraq - including all the architects of its lies and deceit leading up to it.


#11

What I thought was bizarre was Netanyahu's equation of Iran with ISIS. At the present moment, Iran is coordinating the Iraqi attack on Tikrit and for the first time, ISIS forces are being driven back. The Iraqi government made it clear that US help was not needed. The next goal for the combined Forces would be Mosul. Assad's forces are also battling ISIS. Russia also has an interest in the defeat of Islamic extremism which can so easily spill over into their sphere of influence. A nuclear deal between Iran and the West would do much to establish the sort of de facto alliance I spoke of, and would be in the interest of Western states dependent on Mideast oil. The nuclear deal is not an acceptance of Iranian nuclear weapons development, if it includes sufficient monitoring and inspection.


#13

I have come to the conclusion that there is little the US can do in the current IRAQ/Syria/Iran situation. The Sunnites and the Shiites hate and fear each other. In the end the Iraq Sunnites will have a separate area or we will have war until that happens. I don't want it to be ISIL but the US will not stop that and domination by the Shites (Iraq and Iran) is not a solution (and it seems to be what the ZUS is pursuing).

As much as I dislike the result the best thing for the US is to just get out of the mess. We don't need their oil and we don't have any other dog in the hunt. Frankly if my head is cut off by ISIS, Iran, or Iraq or bombed to oblivion by the US I am still the victim of inhuman violence. If there were a peaceful side it would be different but there isn't.

As for the Neo Cons when will they learn that military violence in the Middle East is a fool's journey. We haven't won anything with it since WWII and one can really ask in that case whether we won anything in the countries dominated by Russia.


#14

10 companies profiting the most from war:


#15

There is only 1 resolution, which is to split Iraq into 3 pieces, let those persecuted Kurds have their freedom and their oil, and keep the Sunni & Shia apart - they will never stop this nonsense since they each think it is the other side's fault. Childish ? yes, but what other solution is there !!


#16

► There's an even earlier British precedent, when they put the Sunni minority in charge to begin with

This is all anecdotal and I'm no expert, but I hear the Shia and Sunni are not always at each others throats, but every few hundred years some wars will set it off and they'll be killing each other like the tribes of Europe.

In the Iraqi case, the warriors that set off Shia-Sunni fighting came from Britain and America