The Terrorist Franchise
We've all heard heard of al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). How about Iraqi Hamas? In asking ourselves why every major terrorist group is drawn to Iraq we may come to understand what the fight in Iraq is all about.
A new group in the Iraqi insurgency, calling itself "Iraqi Hamas" has claimed responsibility for the downing of a US helicopter on Tuesday morning in Baghdad. The aircraft crashed in a central area of Baghdad, after reportedly being struck by light arms fire, interior ministry sources said. In a statement posted to the Internet, the insurgents said that "one of the brigades of Hamas in Iraq shot down a US Apache helicopter and struck a second one in the al-Fadl district of Baghdad." The statement said that further details would be provided subsequently.
When pundits say that Iraq is in the throes of a civil war, perhaps the correct conflict to which it should be compared is the Spanish Civil War. Although many of the elements of that conflict were driven by peculiarly Iberian causes, it was far more importantly the focal point of a world struggle between democracy and fascism. It is impossible to understand the events in Iraq today as simply the result of the mindless bungling of George Bush. It is above all the locus of the major clash between two contending trends in the 21st century. And like the Spanish Civil War, Iraq may be the most unavoidable event of the age.