Sectarian genie is out of the bottle from Syria to Iraq

Comments (14)
njglea wrote:

These terrorists are a tiny minority of people in the world and the international community must come together to wipe them out wherever they are. That includes drug cartels, jihadists and any other group that threatens chaos and terror. People must stop running from the bullies and stand up for their right to live peacefully. It must stop now.

Jun 29, 2014 11:30am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Eideard wrote:

The failure recognized by all the world outside of Confederate minds is that of Bush and Cheney and American neo-cons to think our military might smashing a couple of countries would have any success at “bringing democracy”.

Even though the excuse was another lie from Big Oil flunkies, it also served to illustrate the stupidity of conservatives who think military might guarantees long-lasting results.

Jun 29, 2014 11:51am EDT  --  Report as abuse
comitas7 wrote:

The failure is not only Obama’s but also Bush and Cheney who had no occupation policy in the least for post-invasion Iraq. To continue to insist this a “small handful of extremists” is utterly preposterous. Their zone of operations extends now from Nigeria to South Asia. This is only the vegetarian phase of a very long, and bitter war to come.

Jun 29, 2014 12:18pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
carnivalchaos wrote:

These are the unintended consequences of Bush’s ill-advised invasion of Iraq. It’s been a complete and unmitigated disaster. Saddam was contained. Bush and the Republicans, and those weak-kneed Democrats who allowed themselves to be jackbooted into supporting the war, have thrown open the gates of hell and unleashed utter chaos throughout the Middle East. And all this in order for a few high ranking pols to make themselves rich. Cheney gained millions by thrusting us into Iraq. 4,500 US service men and women gave their lives.

Then you have folks like Bighammerman, so ideologically driven, so permeated with hatred that he allows himself to believe in the utterly absurd. He refers to the civil war busting loose in and around Iraq as Obama’s “failure”. Obama’s failure. Folks, hatred and demagoguery of one’s political bent reeks destruction on the mind’s prudence, or even the simple ability to correctly interpret what you see before your very eyes.

Obama opposed the invasion of Iraq. (I wonder if Bighammerman will praise Hillary Clinton for her support of the war? Or will he have it both ways, condemning them both for their opposite views?) Obama saw it for the mistake that it was. Obviously his position wasn’t heeded and now we have chaos, with more people having been killed since the start of the invasion than the number of people killed by Saddam during his entire reign of power. So who’s the real monster here? When Obama ran for President he promised to exit Iraq. It was the right thing to do and what the people wanted. We had had enough. He won the election, in part, to do as promised, get us out of Iraq.
If you want to blame Obama for the violence in Iraq, you also have to blame the American public.

So now US conservatives like Bighammerman want to blame Obama for the sectarian violence that now pervades Iraq and the Middle East in general. That’s delusional, and should serve as a wake-up call to logically thinking folks. Doggedly question the positions of the extreme right in America. Allowing them to carry out their ideology will destroy this Republic. No, Bighammerman. This is not Obama’s failure. The sectarian dynamics have been in place for centuries, but they were given a structure for existing together under Saddam Hussein. It was the Bush Administration’s failure that removed that structure leading to the chaos and violence we see today.

Jun 29, 2014 1:16pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Neurochuck wrote:

Interesting article about the internal dynamics.
The “facts on the ground” are that there are NOW four “not recognised states” in ex Iraq and Syria, and gluing them together seems a huge military and political task.
But there is plenty of conflict and misery in stabilizing borders and for refugees of the partition.
But rather than “fiefdoms”, there are cohesive factors in each of the four “new states”, and they have the area and populations of European nations.
The US should not get in the way of an independent Kurdistan, likely backed by Turkish political/military support.

Jun 29, 2014 2:07pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Ionosphere wrote:

“Sectarian genie is out of the bottle from Syria to Iraq” …and it is covering his face so it doesn’t get recognized by anyone. I wonder why these righteous people find it necessary to do that.

To give these thieves the sort of credit as some sort of valid political or religious group takes away from your credibility as an intelligent news reporting agency.

Jun 29, 2014 3:24pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
fred5407 wrote:

Ah yes, finger pointing as usual. We in the USA have the same problem as the nation divide policies of the Government here are stoking the fires of resentment because the current and Bush/Cheney and Clinton/Gore executive branchs make up laws and creates problems in the country for the sake of supposed rebuilding society. Logical thinking is as primitive now as it was in cave man days. People are not logical and especially thinking that we know better than God in heaven.

Jun 29, 2014 3:50pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
aeci wrote:

The geopolitics in the Middle East are a direct result of Sykes/Pico from 1916. Two superpowers carving up the Ottoman Empire, even before the end of WWI. Almost a hundred years later we are seeing ‘movements’ for self-determination. When those movements seem more in line with our Western customs we call it the Arab Spring. When they are against, we call them sectarian, or terrorist … or worse. And there are those in the middle, such as the Kurds.

This also happened after the fall of the Soviet Union. Again, a large superpower dictated the geopolitics of an area which contained many different groups whose self-determination was inhibited. This occurred in Eastern Europe, the Baltics and Central Asia. Think of all the countries that came into existence after the break up.

Just because a nation state exists doesn’t mean it must exist. From our own experience with Britain, we should realize that people need to make their own determination as to what nation they belong. And even more so with the Civil War. Remember, it was by far our bloodiest conflict, one of the shortest, and was with 150 year old technology. No matter how you view the Civil War, it was a conflict that had to happen.

In the case of the Middle East, there are forces at work that have been in existence for thousands of years, let alone the last one hundred. In a way, too … this had to happen. Our role should be humanitarian, if at all, and not military. They, not us, need to decide how they live and under what system. Forcing them as an outsider not only makes enemies but goes against our own political values and history.

I’m a firm believer in our values. But within those values, at the core, is the right to self-determination. Those values are our values, not everyone’s. Nor do they have to be. Argue as you will as to who is at fault, Obama or Bush. This issue is what should we do now. I say let them decide for themselves. If Iraq winds up turning into three states … so be it.

Jun 29, 2014 3:58pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
smirkingman wrote:

Why is the western world concerned with this?

Jun 29, 2014 4:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Tarheel72 wrote:

There are many factors to point out that got us where we are today, but for the life of me I don’t understand why we went out of our way to support the so called Arab Spring. If we saw what a failure democracy was in Iraq then why on earth did we go out of our way to help topple governments in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia where strong governments kept lunatics like these under control? Obama was wrong to support this group, just as we should stay out of Syria. Leave them to their own fortunes.

Jun 29, 2014 6:36pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
cirrus7 wrote:

The author ignores SYRIA, where Bashar Assad welcomed them with open arms. He didn’t mind one bit, as now he can claim to be the ‘moderate holding fort against terroritsts” instead of him being condemned for daily TERROR BOMBINGS of innocent Syrian families, using RUSSIAN warplanes to do so.

In fact finding evidence of Assad forces (Syrians, Hezbollah and Iranians) and ISIS fighting and killing each other is difficult. In fact ISIS just CRUCIFIED 8 heroic rebels fighting to take back Syria from the monstrous Assad.
The recent Syrian attack in Iraq “on ISIS” – who was really killed – no evidence is forthcoming.

Jun 29, 2014 8:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
lkofenglish wrote:

I’m not an expert by my first and probably only impression of “this” is that “when the Grand Ayatollah speaks…people listen.”

The End.

Jun 29, 2014 10:28pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
UScitizentoo wrote:

The news writing since the beginning has been suggesting that there will be separate regions. I think the US government has basically allowed it to happen because you can’t stop the inevitable: when you teach your children to kill other children who don’t believe in the same hairy fairy religious crap you do, it’s only a matter of time before you’re killing each other, no matter what the US marines do.

Jun 30, 2014 1:10am EDT  --  Report as abuse
JPHR wrote:

Article from 2007
http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/03/05/070305fa_fact_hersh?currentPage=all

How this was brought about in quotes:
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that there is “a new strategic alignment in the Middle East,” separating “reformers” and “extremists”; she pointed to the Sunni states as centers of moderation, and said that Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah were “on the other side of that divide.”

So the US sides with ‘moderates’ which fund ISIL against Assad…

“The policy shift has brought Saudi Arabia and Israel into a new strategic embrace, largely because both countries see Iran as an existential threat.”

The risks where quite clear:
Martin Indyk, a senior State Department official in the Clinton Administration who also served as Ambassador to Israel, said that “the Middle East is heading into a serious Sunni-Shiite Cold War.”

So guess we may conclude neocon meddling got this sectarian genie out of the bottle. The US always so proudly using the pretext of democracy an human rights actually with Saudi Arabia one of the politically most repressive regimes in the region.

Jun 30, 2014 4:07am EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.