Monday, June 04, 2007

One of three tentacles

Iraq the Model writes at Pajamas Media about the return of Moqtada al-Sadr to Iraq and the efforts of Maliki to counteract his influence. "Sadr is not simply an outlaw; he represents Iran’s project in Iraq just like Hamas and Nasrallah represent it in the Palestinian territories and Lebanon. These are the three arms of Iran in the Middle East that have worked consistently to ruin every emerging democratic project. And these arms must be cut off sooner rather than later."


Blogger whiskey_199 said...

That's not going to happen, Wretchard.

One thing that stands out is how DIFFERENT Hezbollah is to all other organizations. If you've read De Atkine's "Why Arabs Lose Wars" you'll see how tribalism and the fear of coups by militaries among autocratic regimes makes their militaries corrupt and generally useless for anything but coup prevention.

Yet Hezbollah (and through it, Iran) seem to have found a way through Arab tribalism. Hezbollah fighters seem unified, not divided by tribalism. Authority seems pushed down, so that a Hezbollah Sergeant has as much authority as a US Army Sergeant or as much as Syrian Army Colonel.

It's no wonder that Hezbollah acted quickly and decisively, had amazing tunnels and fortifications that withstood Israeli bombardment, and pretty decisively defeated Israel in Lebanon. The Lebanese or even Syrian Army would never have built such bunkers, the Army officers would have built only a bit and pocketed the money for the rest. Hezbollah militia men had food and water during the war, and plenty of ammo. Israelis by contrast suffered.

No, the weak and divided tribes of Lebanon will be crushed, like the Gauls who were weak and divided were crushed by Caesar, by the united and quick reacting Hezbollah. So too in Iraq, and of course Gaza Strip.

You could even argue I suppose that AQ is the Arab and Islamic World's response to the crippling tribalism that has left them in dire straights compared to the West. Westernization and modernization were tried, they failed. Because of tribalism. Arab Nationalism and Socialism were tried, and failed, due to Tribalism. Now Islamism is being tried. It seems to actually work, in defeating the West, because it breaks apart Tribalism with an ideology more powerful than nationalism.

Look at the JFK plotters: Trinidadians, Guyanese, blacks, arabs, and who knows what else all working together to kill the infidel for Allah.

The unity, general lack of corruption, distributed and pushed-down authority, give both Hezbollah AND AQ significant advantages over it's opponents. Even Western Nations, since Nationalism is now a dirty word.

[Though nationalism likely won't be for long.]

6/04/2007 06:16:00 PM  
Blogger 3Case said...

"It's no wonder that Hezbollah acted quickly and decisively, had amazing tunnels and fortifications that withstood Israeli bombardment...."

If you call 6 years of preparing the ground in South Lebanon acting "quickly and decisively".

6/04/2007 07:00:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

There is a curious op-ed piece at the NYT about Sadr: An Enemy We Can Work With, by Bartle Breese Bull. He credits Sadr with a lot more smarts and control than I would.

Omar seems to simply hate Sadr. Not necessarily the wrong attitude.

6/04/2007 08:31:00 PM  
Blogger whiskey_199 said...

3case -- I meant the media war, and the quick exploitation of any opening, plus the ability to move rockets and missiles around in civilian areas, and the response to the Israeli ground assaults, and the operation against the Israeli corvette which nearly sank it.

These are not trivial. No Arab Army could have conducted that. Hezbollah if given training and airplanes could probably give Israel a run for their money. With enough trained pilots and planes, perhaps even destroy them through attrition.

Israel has depended on effective military organizations compared to the ineffective organizations it faces to compensate for the severe manpower deficit. Hezbollah suggests that is a thing of the past.

Hezbollah is incredibly dangerous. Not just because it can provide a mortal threat to Israel but it's template can be used to cripple the West. Consider the consequences to having NYC, Chicago, Boston, DC, LA, Atlanta, Dallas, and Seattle all destroyed. Eight nuclear bombs to essentially end the American Economy. With Iranian help that is certainly achievable by Hezbollah.

6/04/2007 09:22:00 PM  
Blogger Brother D-Day said...

Serious question. Why don't we (or the Iraqi) kill Sadr if he's an outlaw?

Are his actions not treason?

What would happen if he were greased?

A Mahdi army uprising? Would that not be them raising their hands for annihilation since they are trying to run a parallel government to the one elected?

Seriously, I am befuddled.

It's like we'd let Azzam the American into the US to start trouble and would do nothing to stop him because his followers might get mad. WTF, over?

6/05/2007 05:21:00 AM  
Blogger ADE said...

Now Islamism is being tried. It seems to actually work, in defeating the West, because it breaks apart Tribalism with an ideology more powerful than nationalism.

Inciteful post, Whiskey.

But in relation to the above, it doesn't work. Breaking apart Tribalism only works at the edges of Islam. They desperately need L'Etranger to give cohesion internally - else mayhem.

Internally, Arabs hate Arabs more than any other ethnic group on the planet.

Just think of this: oil has given the Arabs the money to buy the very best weapons to anihilate each other. Isn't it great that they can blame their mutual anihilation on the West.

Just look at what's happening.

The only problem is that the Left thinks it's my fault.


6/05/2007 07:09:00 AM  
Blogger patrick neid said...

whenever this little fat f'k with the bad teeth shows up the same questions ruminate in my head.

are we in a war against terrorism? are we in a war against the states that sponsor it?
if, as the president has stated we are, then why are the terror leaders of iran, syria, sudan, hamas, hezzbollah and al sadr to name a few still alive? correct me if i’m wrong---these are the terrorists and these are the states. these are the terror generals.
apparently john edwards is right--is that even possible?--that we are not in a war on terror. it must be a bumper sticker affair akin to those other famous bumper crusades. you know, “free tibet” and “save darfur”.
by my reasoning these folks should all be dead now, not sipping lattes and on shopping excursions while being feted by the UN. the fact that they are not speaks volumes.

6/05/2007 08:53:00 AM  

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