Monday, January 15, 2007

Iranians taken in Iraq are Revolutionary Guard troops

Well, well, whaddya know..the five Iranian `diplomats' collared by US forces in Kurdistan turn out to members of the Qods force,part of the Revolutionary Guard..

Let's just hope Bush was serious this tme about confronting Iran and Syria. That's the key to success in Iraq, and elsewhere.


Anonymous said...

isn't that convenient. the U.S. military confirms that these five guys are a part of the Qods forces even though the Iraqis tell us that they were legitmate diplomatic personel.

i don't know about you, but it's become mighty difficult to ascertain what's real and what's not real in Iraq. I don't know, given the recent track record of the Feds + the Military that I would accept their explanations without serious questions.

no doubt, Iranian weapons are making their way into Iraq, but whether or not this is a strategy that has come down from the highest levels of the Iranian government (and we're talking the Supreme Leader not the crazy President that just lost a round of elections) is an open question.

what would be helpful, since we supposedly live in a Republic, is if the U.S. government would substaniate its claims (kinda like Colin Powell tried to do in the UN). it's not so much that i care about legitimacy in the eyes of the world (i do not), its that i don't care to see the American people become more virulently opposed to this effort than they already are--thus ushering in a Democratic victory in 2008.

finally, could you explain what you mean by "confronting" Iran and Syria? considering that we're losing in Iraq and Afghanistan is slowly falling apart, I don't know if we ought to be "confronting" them more than we already are (per Bill Kristol's advice--attacking Iran). moreover, your claim that this is the key to success in Iraq is dubious at best. it's not like the Iraqis are being made by Iran and Syria to reject everything the U.S. has done for them. it has been their choice. that's the problem with the don't understand that until the Iraqi people's cost/benefit analysis favors the U.S., we're going to continue to lose this war. since "mission accomplished," Iraq has been a political problem. that's why all of the troops that have been put in there (and removed from there) haven't done anything.

like previous "surges" this too will fail. hopefully, per your allusion we will not get more involved in this (i.e. Iran and Syria) then we already are.

Freedom Fighter said...

Hello Ed,
Thanks for dropping by.

I share much of your disdain for the present administration. And I agree with you that the present `troop surge' is likely to fail.

To understand what I mean about confronting Iran and Syria, you should be aware that, whomever has been in power, Iran has been at war with the US since 1979 and like it or not, we ARE involved and given the Hezbollah cells in America its not simply a matter of withdrawing and 'letting these savages kill each other.'

Iraq's only value to the US, as far as I'm concerned, is as a strategic base against Iran and other Islamic fascist states in the war against jihad.

To get an idea about what I think a confrontation with Iran should look like (and it's at least three years past due) read this: J O S H U A P U N D I T: Operation Mullah Stomp: The military option on Iran

If nothing comes out of our adventure in iraq then the neutralization of Iran and Syria, it will have been worth it, IMO.

I never bought the BS about `Arab democracy' and `transforming the Middle East.'

As far as Iraq goes, as I've written here, our only real ally in Iraq are the Kurds, and we should assist them in putting together a strong independent Kurdistan by redeploying our troops and sticking our bases there. That move would provide with a strategic base in the Middle East and double our combat strength on the ground without single additional American being sent there.

That the current administration has declined to do so strikes me as having the wishes of the Saudis behind it.

We're in a war, like it not. And it's one we had better win, including here at home.

Americans like winners, and will vote for them, regardless of party.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, I would hope that no one "likes" that we're at war.

As to Iran and Syria, neither one of these "future" battles is happening in a vacuum. By nearly every objective measure, we are not winning in Iraq and Afghanistan (the military and President have admitted as much). It's not like we can just get up, ignore both countries, and then move onto Iran and Syria. Doing so puts more of our soldiers lives at risk. The last thing we need is an ADD foreign policy that more resembles how a child plays with his or her toys.

Moreover, I completely disagree with your idea of establishing bases in what would resemble an independent Kurdistan. Firstly, I don't think the Kurds would be too kosher with us using their territory to launch attacks on their neighbors (maybe Syria but there's one more point to raise). Secondly, what do you think our NATO ALLY Turkey would think of that. Sacrificing NATO, especially considering that it represents the last line of defense in Afghanistan for questionable gains in Iran/Syria would be quite a decision indeed.

Finally, this idea that we've been at war with Iran and Syria for sometime. I agree with you on this point, but how different is that from what we faced during the cold war. Was anyone calling for us to attack the Soviet Union or China for their involvement in Vietnam?...Now I realize that this is a bit of Monday morning quarterbacking, but I'm glad we didn't attack them, aren't you?

I understand that you mean well in all of this, but unfortunately the foreign policy that you are advocating has been tried before in places like Rome and Greece. At the end of the day, I'm neither a hawk nor a dove. I'm just a realist that has been right about a great many things of late--much to my own disdain.


Freedom Fighter said...

Hi Ed,
The reason we're not winning in Iraq and Afghanistan is quite simple...first, the ridiculous rules of engagement handcuffing our troops and second, our refusal to secure the borders.

In both Iraq (Iran, Syria) and Afghanistan (Pakistan)we are repeating EXACTLY the stupid tactics we used in Vietnam..fighting a defensive war of attrition while allowing `free' areas for our enemies to regroup, recruit and rearm.

In Iraq, another part of the problem was that we pushed the Iraqis into an election for political reasons way before they were prepared in any way - so of course, they voted for tribalism and Islam. And to compound it, we allowed politicians close to our enemy Iran to run in the election and take control of the government and then allowed, them to form Shiite militias like the Badr Force and Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army, with the backing and weaponry of Iran.

That's not how you win victories.Imagine if the US had stopped in Vichy North Africa in WWII to do `nationbuilding'!

In terms of my thinking, Ed, I look at things strategically, and the only reason for us to be in Iraq is as a base in the war against jihad. I said almost a year ago that the Shiite government we allowed to take power would never allow us to use Iraq as a base, and were only playing for time until they said `thank you, infidels, for your time and money. Now leave, so we can bond with our jihad brothers in Iran.'

That's exactly what's come to pass.

The Kurds are a different story. Not being Arabs, they have a different mentality and would love nothing better than for the US to establish bases and help them build a state. Their leaders have said so many times, mostly out of self-interest because they know a strong Kurdistan won't happen any other way.And the Kurds HATE Iran because of the repression against Kurds in that country.

This would give us a secure base- `a landlocked aircraft carrier' if you will - and give us the services of the best fighting force in the region next to our guys, the Kurdish Pesh Merga.

As for Turkey and NATO, there is nothing in the NATO agreement that says we can't team up with the Kurds. The Turks will not be happy about it, but frankly, since the Erdogan government took over, they're getting closer to Iran and more Islamist anyway.

At the end of the day, especially if there's a curb on the PKK, they will grumble and live with it, IMO.
Certainly, they wouldn't dare attack US troops in Kurdistan.

Do a search on this site under `Turkey' and `Kurdistan'for more info.

Lastly, the situation we have with Iran is very different than the Cold War. The Russians, whatever other faults they have, lacked the Shiite death/martyr psychology, and wanted to live to see the victory. The jihadis think that by attacking the West they are fulfilling the dictates of Mohammed, the OG, and bringing on the apocalyptic reign of the Hidden Imam and the victory over Dar Harb for Dar Islam.

In any case, the plan I and the military minds I queried came up with involves isolating them in a secure fashion so they collapse, not invading them.

The Romans realized that Carthage and Rome could not co-exist, and they did something about it.

We're unfortunately in the same position with Iran - and a rather large chunk of the Muslim world.

Take care, and feel free to weigh in anytime. Yours was a quality comment, and I don't run an echo chamber here.

Anonymous said...

Thanks man...I think we're at the point where we have agreed to disagree here.

One thing that I think we both can agree upon however is the complex business of 'managing' human behavior. Nation building has been an utter failure in the last 16+ years because we fail to understand that many of the people that inhabit this world are not Americans. Because they don't share the same history, psychology, ethnology, sociology, etc.--they tend to have different dreams, desires and thus behavior.

Taking a step back from this type of thinking would do much to marginalize two radical groups currently operating in the political of which is the Neoconservatives, the other, Wilsonians.

Feel free to pop on by Copywrite and continue this discussion in the future. We too are trying to avoid groupthink.