Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Between Iraq and a Hard Place

Unrest in Syria is making Iraq look better for Sunni Arab refugees who fled Iraq during the height of the fighting:

Iraqi Deputy Migration Minister Salam al-Khfaji told the AP that authorities are expecting a "huge influx" of Iraqis returning from Syria because of the violence. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have been living in Syria since the 2003 U.S. invasion.

This will be interesting. I would have thought that Sunni Baathists from Iraq could count on their Sunni Arab status to make up for their Baathist status should the non-Sunni Baathist Assad regime fall. Apparently not.

Can these refugees--who may be pro-Saddam Sunnis--reintegrate into Iraq? Or will they be targets of legal or extra-legal justice? Will they be targets of al Qaeda to compel these ex-refugees to support the Sunni Arab jihadis?

Or will they be welcome reinforcements for those who wish to resist Iranian influence and a needed influx of probably educated Iraqis who--if they have abandoned hopes of ruling Iraq--can help rebuild Iraq?