Excerpt Of The Day: The Weakness Of The Iraqi Terrorists & Staying The Course In Iraq
“But, lest we build up the enemy into 10-foot-tall supermen, it’s important to realize how weak they actually are. Most of the conditions that existed in previous wars won by guerrillas, from Algeria in the 1950s to Afghanistan in the 1980s, aren’t present in Iraq.
The rebels lack a unifying organization, ideology and leader. There is no Iraqi Ho Chi Minh, Fidel Castro or Mao Tse-tung. The top militant is Abu Musab Zarqawi, a Jordanian who has alienated most of the Iraqi population, even many Sunnis, with his indiscriminate attacks on civilians.
Support for the insurgency is confined to a minority within a minority — a small portion of Sunni Arabs, who make up less than 20% of the population. The only prominent non-Sunni rebel, Muqtada Sadr, has quietly joined the political process. The 80% of the population that is Shiite and Kurdish is implacably opposed to the rebellion, which is why most of the terror has been confined to four of 18 provinces.
Unlike in successful guerrilla wars, the rebels in Iraq have not been able to control large chunks of “liberated” territory. The best they could do was to hold Fallouja for six months last year. Nor have they been able to stage successful large-scale attacks like the Viet Cong did. A major offensive against Abu Ghraib prison on April 2 ended without a single U.S. soldier killed or a single Iraqi prisoner freed, while an estimated 60 insurgents were slain.
The biggest weakness of the insurgency is that it is morphing from a war of national liberation into a revolutionary struggle against an elected government. That’s a crucial difference. Since 1776, wars of national liberation have usually succeeded because nationalism is such a strong force. Revolutions against despots, from Czar Nicholas II to the shah of Iran, often succeed too, because there is no way to redress grievances within the political process. Successful uprisings against elected governments are much rarer because leaders with political legitimacy can more easily rally the population and accommodate aggrieved elements.” — Max Boot
The terrorists in Iraq may be able to continue to blow up mosques and murder people going to market, but you don’t achieve victory that way. As long as we stay in the game, continue to help the Iraqis build up their military forces, and keep supporting their efforts to achieve a fully functioning Democracy, victory is assured.
That may not be what everyone wants to hear, especially in our microwave culture, where we insist on instant results. But at this point, the only way the terrorists can win in Iraq is if America cuts and runs before the Iraqi government is ready to takeover.
The Iraqi people, our Coalition partners, and most importantly, our troops have made tremendous sacrifices under difficult circumstances to bring us this far and they will take us the rest of the way as long as we don’t snatch defeat from the jaws of victory because of impatience or shameless political maneuvering by the Democrats.
It has been a long hard slog and we still have a ways to go, but if we stand behind our troops, the Coalition, and the Iraqi people, we will have turned an anti-American, terrorist supporting, dictatorship into the first Arab Democracy. Long term, that very well may be the event that drives a dagger through the heart of radical Islam and leads to the freedom of hundreds of millions of people in the Middle-East. That is something worth continuing to fight for…