Thursday, May 24, 2007

Driving Out the Invaders

Strategypage writes about the increasing unity in Iraq:

Meanwhile, everyone is getting more patriotic. It's no longer cool to take orders from Iran. So Muqtada Al Sadr, and his Mahdi army, are becoming less a tool of Iran, and more a mainstream Iraqi political movement. Sadr is even sitting down and cutting deals with Sunni Arab politicians. At the same time, the Mahdi Army is being purged of factions that don't go along with the new peace and reconciliation approach. Those radical factions are still killing Sunni Arabs, while Sunni Arabs and al Qaeda continue to slaughter Shia Arabs. This is not popular with Iraqis in general, and the terrorists are increasingly seen as a public menace that all Iraqis must unite to destroy.

Iraqis are really getting fed up with all the violence. To that end, the police are getting more cooperation from civilians, who are reporting more terrorist activity. But civilians are more concerned with criminal activity, especially armed robbery and kidnapping. The gangs that grew to power (as enforcers and business partners) under Saddam, are still thriving. This is especially true in Sunni Arab areas. But the gangs are major victims when American and Iraqi troops come in, to clean out Sunni Arab neighborhoods and towns.

Heck, even Time magazine has figured this out (tip to Instapundit):

There is good news from Iraq, believe it or not. It comes from the most unlikely place: Anbar province, home of the Sunni insurgency. The level of violence has plummeted in recent weeks. An alliance of U.S. troops and local tribes has been very effective in moving against the al-Qaeda foreign fighters. A senior U.S. military official told me—confirming reports from several other sources—that there have been "a couple of days recently during which there were zero effective attacks and less than 10 attacks overall in the province (keep in mind that an attack can be as little as one round fired). This is a result of sheiks stepping up and opposing AQI [al-Qaeda in Iraq] and volunteering their young men to serve in the police and army units there." The success in Anbar has led sheiks in at least two other Sunni-dominated provinces, Nineveh and Salahaddin, to ask for similar alliances against the foreign fighters.

Don't let your jaw drop too much over both an admission that al Qaeda is in Iraq and the report of success in getting Sunni Arabs to fight the jihadis. Klein goes on to rap Bremmer and point out problems.

I speculated that the Iraqis--including Sunni Arabs --could rally against the jihadi invaders and repair old wounds with a common enemy.

This follows from my three-year-old prediction that the Baathists blundered by siding with the jihadis and would simply drive the Shias to our side.

It is taking more time than I expected, but there could be more unity forged from this bloodshed than many people who want to partition Iraq can imagine right now:

This trend will lead to victory over the enemy and may well solidify a national Iraqi identity first forged in the Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s. We shall see if the artificiality of Iraq is any more significant than the artificiality of any other country that relies on lines drawn on maps to describe itself.

And even Shias are turning on the Idiot Sadr seeing him for the Iranian tool he is.

Remember, everyone can hate jihadis as the real enemy! If Iraq's Sunni Arabs can do it, even Western Leftists can, too!

While there are plenty of killers in Iraq to be tracked down, the killers who can actually succeed in defeating the government and taking over are declining to near zero.