Saturday, August 20, 2005

Something Smells Like Shit In Iraq

I use the profanity in the title because I want to shock you, and make you take notice of this. Of all the posts that I have written on CUANAS since I started this blog 17 months back, this is among the most bitter.

News comes today that the Iraqi Constitution is more than likely going to enshrine Sharia as "the" source of law in Iraq. From Little Green Footballs:

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - U.S. diplomats have conceded ground to Islamists on the role of religion in Iraq, negotiators said on Saturday as they raced to meet a 48-hour deadline to draft a constitution under intense U.S. pressure.

U.S. diplomats, who have insisted the constitution must enshrine ideals of equal rights and democracy, declined comment.

Shi’ite, Sunni and Kurdish negotiators all said there was accord on a bigger role for Islamic law than Iraq had before.

But a secular Kurdish politician said Kurds opposed making Islam “the,” not “a,” main source of law — changing current wording — and subjecting all legislation to a religious test.

“We understand the Americans have sided with the Shi’ites,” he said. “It’s shocking. It doesn’t fit American values. They have spent so much blood and money here, only to back the creation of an Islamist state ... I can’t believe that’s what the Americans really want or what the American people want.”

I have noted over the past few weeks, on a few occasions, that things looked like they might be going in this direction. I have made the point that, if this is what will happen, we have wasted huge amounts of blood and money.

Charles at Little Green Footballs put it this way:

... if it’s even remotely accurate this is bad. Very bad.

Yes, it is.

If we allow this to happen, then I think we need to start thinking differently about George Bush and his Administration. I don't know what to think, honestly.

Is he afraid because he believes the media has defeated him, and turned the American people against his project?

Has he lost his resolve?

Or, has it all been lip service from the beginning?

I think we need to consider the following perspective (offered by commenter Bob W., at the blog Israpundit):

I have a hunch - regardless of what the Washington Post writes - that America's critical strategic objectives in Iraq were already obtained.

The first strategic objective was to keep the oil trade denominated in US dollars. The Euro lost out. The second strategic objective was to build "lily pad" bases around the Arab oil fields and the Caspian pipeline. The Arab portion has since been completed. A third strategic objective was to reconfigure the US military. Although far from complete, it's already beyond the halfway mark.

Note that the Wash Post article addresses the domestic public concerns. Outside the floodlights of the US media, the USG now controls the pricing mechanism of OPEC Vienna.

I hope American readers don't think the recent price spikes for consumer gasoline (Does anyone think the Defense Fuel Agency recently experienced a bona fide price increase because of contract acceleration clauses?!) is money going to the Arabs. Call a tax a tax and a shovel a shovel. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, USG debt service is benefiting from this recent de facto user tax.

So far the US oil lobby is on the top of the pile. They are well represented.

Much of Bob W.'s perspective sounds like conspiracy theory. For instance, I have a very hard time understanding how the Bush Administration could hide a "tax" in the price of gasosline. One would think such a thing would show up.

However, I do think it is possible that, while the Bush Admin. may have had Democratic goals for Iraq, and for the entirety of the war, those goals paled in comparison to more pragmatic and pressing goals involving economics and short-term National Security concerns.

Well, that is not acceptable, as far as I am concerned. This war has been far too expensive to have been ALL ABOUT US.

I would love to hear the perspective of others on this. Am I being too emotional here?