December 27, 2011 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - Last week in a low key manner, the remnants of U.S. combat forces departed Iraq. The abrupt manner in which this policy was enacted, against almost unanimous opposition by the U.S. military command apparatus, is yielding a quick and bitter harvest.
Just a few days after the Obama pullout, a massive car-bomb was detonated in Baghdad killing at least 70 and today the Interior Ministry was attacked with at least 6 reported killed in another suicide bomb explosion.
Over this last weekend an arrest warrant was issued for Iraq's vice president Tariq al-Hashimi, a Sunni, because of his alleged involvement with death squads.
As the Washington Examiner reports, "[it] was a clear signal that the nation remains irreconcilably split along religious lines. Neighboring countries have been quick to exploit that divide." [source, http://washingtonexaminer.com/news/world/2011/12/withdrawal-us-troops-could-cause-civil-war/2036346#ixzz1hlMIBjSx].
The speculation is that absent a continuing U.S. presence, Iraq's Shia majority will quickly and forcefully move against their minority Sunni rivals and that a civil war might well quickly ensue. If this does happen, and there is nothing in Iraq's short experiment with democracy to prove otherwise, president Maliki's Shia government will increasingly seek cooperation from its neighbor Iran, with all of the complications such a relationship will pose for the U.S., Iraq and the region.
Quite probably the Muslim world's Sunni majority nations, especially Saudi Arabia, won' t simply adopt the role of bystander while their theological brothers again lock horns with Iraq's Shia establishment. The result could very well be a dramatic increase in al-Qaeda terrorist activity with foreign mujahideen streaming into the country once again, at least partially funded by Saudi petrodollars.
One would think that the bloody reaction to this administration's willful creation of a power vacuum in a marginally stable country had to be expected - the U.S. presence was the sole adhesive binding the society together. The tragedy is that even the dullest international relations undergrad should have been able to predict such an outcome well in advance of it happening.
Unfortunately logic is wasted on this administration [bolstered by Hillary's unimaginably incompetent State Dept.] which is totally focused on the 2012 election - a potentially fatal strategic error.
With Iraq disintegrating before our eyes and with Afghanistan set for a similar fate when U.S. troops depart this coming summer, rather than the expected good will [i.e., votes] it would hope to generate for keeping its word regarding these two wars - it will be staring down what could well be a complete meltdown in the Middle East. Egypt has all but capitulated to the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists and will most likely quickly jettison its peace treaty with Israel, Libya is essentially in the hands of al-Qaeda friendly group of thugs, Jordan is teetering under rising Islamist pressure, Yemen is set to disintegrate, Pakistan becomes more unstable every day and Syria is unlikely to be able to suppress its Islamist dissenters long term.
Though the MSM will try valiantly to tap dance around the increasing turmoil in the Middle East it will soon be impossible to shield the studiously inattentive American public from the frightening reality this president has forged.
With the very real possibility of an Iranian bomb tossed into the mix, American foreign policy will be in such a crisis that it's going to be impossible to ignore and Mr. Obama might finally be held to account for his reckless disregard of U.S. national security interests.
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