Tuesday, March 07, 2006

A Little Despair, A Little Hope

Yesterday, Iraqi General Mubdar Hatim al-Dulaimi was killed, apparently by a sniper. He was the Sunni commander of the 6th Division of the Iraqi Army. A force of 10,000 men responsible for security in over half of Baghdad. The trouble is, killing such a high value target doesn't happen by chance, whoever did this had excellent inside intelligence.

Another Iraqi general told Reuters it was an assassination that needed inside information and proved the army, recruited by U.S. officers over the past two years, had been infiltrated by factional militia groups ready to turn on fellow soldiers.

General al-Dulaimi could have been the target for any number of groups, including factions within the current Iraqi government or armed forces. There is just as great a chance a Shi'ia faction in the government, wanting a Shi'ia office in charge of this division, was responsible, as the probability that some true insurgent group was.

And it is doubtful we will ever know the who or why in this mans death.

But with this bad news also came a ray of hope. Some Sunni leaders in the West of Iraq are fighting back against al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Tribal chiefs in Iraq's western Anbar province and in an area near the northern city of Kirkuk, two regions teeming with insurgents, are vowing to strike back at al-Qaeda in Iraq, a Sunni Arab-led group that is waging war against Sunni tribal leaders who are cooperating with the Iraqi government and the U.S. military. Anbar tribes have formed a militia that has killed 20 insurgents from al-Qaeda in Iraq, leaders said.

While adding yet another militia, using extra judicial execution as a tool of politics, is a disaster in the long term, it is still very gratifying to see Sunnis standing up to the radicals in al-Qaeda in Iraq.


1 comment:

Xanthippas said...

I have to agree that having yet another independent militia is probably not good for security in the long run. Clearly they did this because they are not confident that American forces can protect them from Zarqawi. But we'll deal with the long-term if we can just have some help getting rid of Zarqawi