Iraq: June 21, 2005


Iraqis know that the terrorist violence, and a lot of the criminal activity, is caused by Sunni Arabs. But despite all these bombings and murders, most Iraqis want the coalition forces to leave. Although that changes when you ask the Iraqi leadership, they admit that Iraqi security forces are not yet up to doing the job. It will be interesting to see what happens after the parliamentary elections later this year. The members of parliament will be under pressure to act on the desires of their constituents. But the members of parliament will also know better the capabilities, or lack thereof, of the Iraqi security forces. 

At the moment, the Kurds and Shia Arabs believe that their militias could take care of Sunni Arab terrorism, and that could only happen with the coalition troops gone. Moreover, surveys show that 68 percent of Iraqis dont believe there would be a civil war. Thats based on the fact that Kurds and Shia Arabs represent 80 percent of the population, control the police and army, and would not be too upset if they were forced to deal with Sunni Arab violence in the traditional Middle Eastern way (that is, with great violence and brutality.) This is why the Sunni Arabs are making a real effort to cooperate with the government. The Sunni Arab leadership cannot deal with the Sunni Arab terrorists by themselves, and dont want to have the entire Sunni Arab community held responsible for the acts of Sunni Arab terrorists. So the Sunni Arab leadership is lining up with the government. Increasingly, Sunni Arabs are being told by their leaders to cooperate with the police. Where the local Sunni Arabs groups have enough guns, they have fought battles with Sunni Arab and al Qaeda terrorists. Where the terrorists have an edge is those regions, like along the Syrian border, where criminal gangs are particularly strong (because of  smuggling). Together, the gangsters and terrorists usually have more guns than any tribal militia. This is why American marines keep finding gun battles along the border. 

The terrorists continue their self-destructive ways, launching suicide attacks against the police and civilians. Day by day the strength and effectiveness of the police and army increases. American training experts believe that it will be two years before Iraq has enough police and troops to deal with terrorism. Iraqis believe the problem will be solved more quickly than that, but being more brutal with those Sunni Arabs and foreigners who persist in their murderous ways. The United States wants to avoid this, as they will get blamed, in the world media, for the brutality of  Iraqis trying to deal with their terrorist problem.


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