Cutting through the bullshit.

Thursday, 15 March 2007

Red Coats do Iraq

In early April 1775, the British governor of Boston sent John Howe out to gather intelligence in that hotbed of insurgency now called the western suburbs, but then the Anbar province of its time. Howe met an old man cleaning his rifle who looked too old to hunt game.

The old man said he expected foreign soldiers -- "a flock of redcoats" -- would be arriving soon, and he thought they would make good targets. Arrive they did, and with them the American revolution that in many states degenerated into civil war. The British soldiers were mostly of the same race and religion as the people they fought, but they were by then foreigners, and eight years later they were gone.

So observes one H.D.S. Greenway in his or her op-ed ‘“Surge” doomed to final failure’ in Tuesday’s Boston Globe.

WHAT THE president and proponents of the "surge" in Iraq have underestimated is the loathing Iraqis have of foreign troops bursting into their houses, shoot-to-kill checkpoints, and the humiliation occupation brings. Foreign troops legitimize insurgency.

…it is the very presence of American soldiers themselves who are sparking the resistance, and thus the chaotic conditions in which criminals can operate, and militias appear to be the population's only salvation….both the Shia and Sunnis will oppose us because they don't want foreign soldiers in their land….

The longer American troops stay the longer they will be seen as oppressors…To say American soldiers are creating stability in the cause of Iraqi national reconciliation doesn't wash…And so conquering foreign soldiers will be resisted in Iraq, as they have always been everywhere down the centuries.

It's about time someone figured that out.

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