Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Another bad plan by the same folks who brought you Iraq.

Amidst all the chatter about Jim Baker's ISG and its forthcoming recommendations for getting us out of the mess in Iraq, the fact remains that Cheney -- despite the loss of Rummy -- is still in the saddle. While the pundits discuss the ISG's likely call for talks with Iran and Syria, the Vice President's office is still working on a "victory strategy."

This strategy apparently bypasses the unpaletable notion put forward by Baker & the "realists" of having to be forced into a major back down by actually speaking to our enemies. Instead, this new strategy contemplates getting our "moderate" Sunni Arab allies in the region to pressure "moderate" Sunni elements within Iraq to back Nuri al-Maliki, in an attempt to peel him away from the hammerlock Moqtada al-Sadr has on him and his government.

The NYT reports today that a leaked memo written by NSA Steven Hadley -- the guy that took the fall for the infamous 16-words in W.'s SOU speech back in 2003 -- spells out a plan that includes providing "monetary support to moderate groups" within the Iraqi government and putting in a whole lot more troops to prop-up al-Maliki.

The deal W. is basically going to give al-Maliki is this: [If he ever actually meets him, that is.]

'If you can't get a handle on the situation, real quick, we're going to push you to drop al-Sadr and his support of you in the Parliament and in the cabinet and start serioulsy cracking down on his Madhi army. Don't worry, though, we'll make up the difference by buying off enough "moderate" Sunnis with our money --along with politcal support from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan -- to provide the patina of a democratic process (and incidently, allow you to keep your head.)'

The pay off for the Arab states involved is that W. will promise to finally start to do soemthing about the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. Of course, the only problem with this whole master plan is that W. and his administration don't have a shred of credibility left in the Middle East. Especially after the summer war between Lebanon and Isreal.


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