Thursday, October 18, 2007

How U.S. policy has destabilized the Middle East

(Originally posted at The Motley Patriot and is an update to an article I wrote posted at TalkLeft)

I originally posted a diary at TalkLeft entitled, `The Merry-Go-Round of Iraqi Sectarian Violence`, in which I show how U.S. policy in Iraq is fueling the sectarian violence. Given Turkey's recent vote to allow incursions into northern Iraq against the PKK, I thought an update appropriate.

So, first, exactly how is the U.S. policy in Iraq fueling the sectarian violence? Because we are arming militia's and using our influence to get militia's incorporated into the Iraqi government, then, these militia's use their newfound positions to attack others. Joe Klein wrote:

According to soldiers I spoke with in Baghdad, the Mahdi Army has a major presence in the local Iraqi Security Forces, especially the local police, which was precisely the point that the seven enlisted men were making.

How did the Mahdi Army get positions in the local Security Forces? An article at Crooks and Liars states:

(W)hen General Petraeus says that they're merely applauding these tribes from the sidelines, he's lying. I mean, while we were embedded with the Americans, we saw American military commanders hand wads of cash to tribal militias. And when he says that they are facilitating their integration into the country's security forces, what he means is they're pressuring Iraq's government to incorporate these militias wholesale into the police forces. In fact, that's one of the promises that these tribes are given, that after working with the Americans for a few months, they'll become Iraqi police, be armed by the Iraqi state and be put on regular payroll. So it's completely disingenuous, what he's saying.

And, where is all that cash to pay off the local tribes? Were we not treated to this as well?

Nearly $9 billion of money spent on Iraqi reconstruction is unaccounted for because of inefficiencies and bad management, according to a watchdog report published Sunday.

So, to recap the sectarian violence alone:

- The U.S. disbanded the Iraqi Army in May 2003.

- The U.S. then lost $9 billion dollars.

- The U.S. then payed tribal leaders in "wads of cash", helped to arm them, and promised to get their militia's jobs in the local security forces if they would simply help the U.S. troops.

- The security forces then have used their new positions to commit sectarian violence.

But, what about Turkey and the PKK?

The PKK is on the State Department list of organizations deemed to be "terrorist" organizations.

#21. # Kongra-Gel (KGK, formerly Kurdistan Workers' Party, PKK, KADEK)

The U.S. policy in Iraq has been to support the Kurd's, and thus, the PKK, as the PKK was causing problems for Iran. But, they have been causing problems for Turkey as well. Now, Turkey has had enough and has voted to allow incursions into northern Iraq to seek out the PKK. This now puts the United States into the situation of "who do we support?", the PKK and Kurd's, or Turkey, or both, or neither?

This doesn't even take into account Iran and the administration's wish to take out Iran's government, or, Pakistan tribes supporting al-qaeda and the Taliban against Afghanistan, or, Israel attacking Syria, or Russia's support for Iran.

See a problem here? Do we see how our invasion of Iraq has destabilized the entire region, just as was predicted? Do we not see, with Bush warning of WWIII, where this is heading?