web counter Media Lies: For those naysayers...

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

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For those naysayers...

...who think we don't need to deal with Iran, how would you answer this?
The danger of civil war is clear in recent reports that Iranian-backed assassination teams are targeting Sunni leaders. Iraq's intelligence chief, Mohammed Shahwani, charged on Oct. 14 that the Badr Organization of the Iranian-backed Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) had killed 10 of his agents, and that he had found detailed evidence of the plot in three Iranian safe houses in Baghdad. SCIRI leaders denied the allegation.

Iraqi sources tell me they have independent evidence of an Iranian plan to recruit as many as 3,000 Iraqi Shiites and organize them into hit teams of 10 to 15 people each. These sources also describe an Iranian plan last summer to provide intelligence training in Syria for some leading members of the anti-American Mahdi Army of Moqtada Sadr. "The rationale for the Iranians is that the Sunnis must never get control of Iraq again," an Iraqi source tells me.

The Sunnis have embraced this dirty war. The insurgency has been conducting a vicious assassination campaign of its own against the Iraqi government, military and police. Most of the victims are Shiites.
While I'll admit the administration is walking a tight rope here, I really don't think the worst outcome is the most likely. I think the "score settling" that's supposedly going on now is more likely the elimination of obstacles to a democratic outcome.

IOW, the Iraqi Shias have started taking matters into their own hands (and possibly the Kurds as well) in order to effect the outcome they want - democratic elections. I don't think anyone in Iraq is foolish enough to think that outright civil war is a good outcome for what's going on right now. (Hat tip to Belgravia Dispatch. Greg has much more on the issue as well.)

UPDATE: Edited the first sentence to change Iraq to Iran, which was what I meant to say all along.