Thursday, April 21, 2011

"Superabundance Of Crises"

Bountiful trouble!

Talking 'bout the booty of boundless superabundant crises busting out in every realm of the diplopolititary. 

"...Iraq and Afghanistan are headed in the wrong direction. As U.S. troops leave Iraq, violence and instability are far from quelled. The latest Iraqi government attacks on Camp Ashraf, which was established to safeguard the anti-Iranian MEK organization and whose safety was guaranteed by the United States, killed 34 last week, making a mockery of America's word and credibility.

"...While military operations in Afghanistan are punishing the Taliban, extending governance, broadly defined and development to Afghans lags so far behind as to question whether this strategy can ever work. Concurrently, U.S.-Pakistani relations have eroded to their worst level in memory. Whether both sets of negative trends can be reversed is far from certain.

"...The Arab Spring has likewise exposed large discrepancies in U.S. policy toward Egypt and Tunisia in support of regime change and its silence toward Bahrain and Sunni/Saudi armed repression against a Shiite majority.

"...The administration argues that its policies must balance "interests" and "values" meaning that maintaining good relations with Riyadh and counterbalancing Iranian influence trump our images of freedom, democracy and human rights. As a result, charges of hypocrisy flow and while the administration is correct that no single "template" fits each country, coming up with a rational and effective policy for the region is made difficult if not impossible.

"...The acute mix of these problems and absence of solutions congeal in Libya. The political goal of ousting Libya's Moammar Gadhafi by indirect means such as embargoes is detached from the military objective sanctioned by U.N. Resolutions 1970 and 1973 to protect innocent civilians.

"...The two aims are acting in parallel. No one knows if those aims will converge with the happy result of Gadhafi leaving or diverge leaving NATO and the coalition stuck in a conflict with an indeterminate outcome. The growing criticisms of NATO capabilities to protect innocent Libyans, combined with dissent within the alliance over military engagement in the first place, don't make solution easier.

"...In Iraq, the path of least resistance is to hope U.S. withdrawal will be obscured by other more newsworthy events. In Afghanistan, there is no alternative to another hope that Afghan security forces will be able to assume these responsibilities before 2014 ends or the time when the NATO coalition wearies of its commitment. In Pakistan, intransigence on the part of Washington and Islamabad suggests rougher and not smoother times lie ahead.

"...Libya and the Arab Spring are profoundly difficult matters. Leaving Gadhafi in power will be intolerable. At some point, the use or threat of ground forces to evict him must be considered, raising the stakes to even higher levels.

"...The key strategic centers of gravity remain Egypt and the Arab-Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Progress there could offset damage elsewhere. But will 44 even think about further overloading its plate? Probably not. If this were a baseball game, the odds are 44 will strike out rather than hit the winning home run

Pic - "Exit-Strategy Fetishism"


Nygdan said...

Odd to say that the Iraqi gov's attack on MEK makes a 'mockery' of the US, considering that US protection of the MEK terrorists made a mockery of the US in the first place.

And is it really true to say that the 'hardpoints' are Egypt and the Yehudi-Palestinian issues? Does MEK care about Egypt? Or even the Mahdi Army or the Kurds, does what happen in Cairo really matter at all to them? The Palestinian Question is always put up as a front, but, being an intractable disagreement, what does it really matter either? Also, isn't the rational that the US can gain 'goodwill' by siding with the palestinians every once in a while? But wouldn't siding with, say, the Shia over the Wahhabis in Arabia garner us more goodwill, at least amoung the Shia, who seem to be ascendant over Sunni Despots anyway?

GrEaT sAtAn'S gIrLfRiEnD said...

Hi Nygdan!

I get it about the MEK attack - and the subsequent point about their past terrorism - esentially as protected ppl, America had promised them refuge. The murderous raid on their tent city is hard to justify in nearly any context.

Good point about Palestine. And the Shia - who seem to be really on the wave right now. IDK if any sunni states can stand before them without becoming vassels - as it stands right now.