Tuesday, July 31, 2007

A closer look at arming the Sunnis

Abu Haider, as he called himself, and about 80 other mostly Sunni residents — some of them former members of the 1920 Revolution Brigades, a fiercely nationalistic insurgent group — had arrived to register as security volunteers. An American soldier photographed and cataloged the recruits. The result: a neighborhood watch program with ammo.
Sure they will work with us to get rid of another enemy, and be right friendly doing it, but in the end the US Army can not forget who these people are and where they came from because they haven't forgotten.
Once he's finished rousting al Qaida from Baqouba, Abu Haider indicated, he and others will go back to fighting American troops. "Our aims," he said, "are to get the occupation forces out."
And consider this bit of history from Andrew Bacevich, a professor of international relations at Boston University and the author of "The New American Militarism — How Americans Are Seduced by War.".
The closest historical analogue, he said, is America's tactical partnership with the mujahedeen in Afghanistan against the Soviets in the 1980s.

"The deal paid great dividends in the short run until the mujahedeen, in the form of Osama bin Laden's al Qaida, turned against us," he said. "I expect the same thing will happen in Iraq."


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