Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Since I'm Clueless On The Middle East

In a reply to a commenter I made the point that I'm clueless about what to do in Afghanistan and Iraq at this point in time. I'm clueless because there are a hell of a lot of competing interests that I think need to be addressed. It doesn't matter what I thought about getting into Afghanistan or Iraq or what I thought about the methodology as far as what to do NOW.

I think some of the interests that need to be addressed include (in no particular order of importance):
our national security
the secutity of those nations
the economic and social interests of those nations
our social and economic interests
the simple well being of the citizenry of all included nations
the cultural impacts on all nations involved
the possibility of accomplishing any of those ends
the means of accomplishing any of those ends

I will say that I've seen little evidence of the liklihood of killing your way out of a mess and it seems the more generalized the killing the less liklihood. I am by inclination anti-war, I need to be convinced that it has to be done. I don't think it is reasonable to dismiss the fact that we've killed people and blown things up and those outcomes should be addressed.

I don't like answers that simplistically deal with a part without looking at the complexity of the actual situation.

Yes, this is an ivitation to use the comments section for something other than "Chuck you're great" or "Chuck you're an ass."


The Constitutional Insurgent said...

The problem with most hot air that is emitted from the punditocracy is that they fail to take in the total sum of the issue....merely focusing on what the soundbyte media and the disposable consumer base can digest between commercial breaks.

Iraq is already lost. Oh sure, the rhetoric is that we 'won'. I won't digress into the faults of the 'surge worked' argument. We removed the regional counter-weight to aspirations of Iranian hegemony.

In Afghanistan, we have constructed a central framework that will be unable to sustain itself without enormous patronage for the next several decades, if even then. The keys to this conflict are twofold.

1- Accommodation with the Quetta Shura Taliban. The goals of the Taliban are nationalistic and bear relatively no threat to our national security. Setup a semi-autonomous Pashtunistan in the southern portion of Afghanistan, with the Kabul regime controlling the largely Uzbek and Tajik north.

2- India. Pakistan has no vested interest in committing it's forces to police the FATA unless or until it's conflict with India is resolved. With India's increased interest in supporting the Kabul regime, Islamabad has every reason to play both sides of the fence.

That's the brief synopsis of my .02.

Chuck Butcher said...

So Con,
What do you think Iraq will turn into as far as a gov/nation?

The Constitutional Insurgent said...

Ultimately, I foresee a parliamentary government with a strong theo-political influencing factor from al-Hakim's ISCI.

Factional fighting between Shia, Sunni and Kurd will continue for quite some time, but the Maliki regime will become more amenable to Tehran than they already are. I also don't discount the return to a semblance of civil war.

The main effect on our policy is going to be in regards to Iran.