Sunday, September 23, 2007

Choke Them Off

Iraq's border with Iran is the next key fight.

As long as the Sunnis were the main resistance, I figured controlling the Iraqi the border didn't matter as much. Ammunition and money were available inside Iraq from the stockpiles controlled by the Baathists. The only asset crossing the border was suicide bombers. That was pretty tough to stop unless you sealed the border completely. So allocating US assets to the border would have been a waste. That logic is at least a year out of date, I think.

With the Sunnis declining as a threat to the government, the Shia Sadrist threat means the border is important. Lacking access to the Sunni weapons and money, these Shia thugs need the supply line to Iran that exists:

Military spokesman Rear Adm. Mark Fox said U.S. troops were continuing to find Iranian-supplied weaponry including the Misagh 1, a portable surface-to-air missile that uses an infrared guidance system.

Other advanced Iranian weaponry found in Iraq includes the RPG-29 rocket-propelled grenade, 240 mm rockets and armor-piercing roadside bombs known as explosively formed penetrators, or EFPs, Fox said.

This new development explains our new focus on the Iran border:

The area has attracted new U.S. attention as the military steps up allegations that Tehran is aiding Shiite extremists who have killed hundreds of American troops with powerful bombs known as explosively formed penetrators, or EFPs, believed to be brought in from Iran.

As we have knocked back the jihadis and gained the support of secular Sunni Arabs, the Shias backed by Iran have filled the gap. This has masked our decline in casualties against the Sunni resistance and terrorists.

Now the border is important to control in order to stop Iran's war against us in Iraq. We need to assert control fast if we want our surge success to translate into lower battlefield casualties soon.

UPDATE: The Iraqis are warning the international community that Iraq is under attack and the world won't like it if those enemies succeed:

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki warned the U.N. General Assembly Wednesday that the continued flow of weapons, suicide bombers and terrorism funding into his country would result in "disastrous consequences" for the region and the world.

The world thinks it can screw with us and our friends and we'll pick up the pieces no matter what. Taking a stand against thug states is the risk--those nutcases will kill you if you cross them.