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US caught in "trap" a year after Saddam's fall: Middle East commentators

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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:13 AM
Original message
US caught in "trap" a year after Saddam's fall: Middle East commentators
CAIRO (AFP) - The fresh round of deadly clashes in Iraq (news - web sites) illustrate the "trap" the United States has fallen into in Iraq a year since its coalition overthrew Saddam Hussein (news - web sites), Middle Eastern commentators said.

"The American administration is surprised, it did not anticipate anything like this," said Sharif al-Mussa, a political science lecturer at the American University in Cairo.

"They did not take any advice, they did not want to understand -- or they underestimated -- the complexities of Iraq, they are in big trouble, they are trapped," he said.

"But it is difficult for the US to leave, it is not Somalia."

--snip--

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=1521&e=...

And somewhere Osama is laughing 'til he wets his pants...
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truthspeaker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:14 AM
Response to Original message
1. "The administration is surprised, they didn't expect anything like this"
What is the world coming to when some stoned slacker in Minnesota (me) is better at anticipating the consequences of foreign policy than the leaders in the White House and the Pentagon?
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Palacsinta Donating Member (929 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. Well, this middle-aged homemaker/grandma isn't surprised!
and I'm a college dropout who majored in folk dancing! I'm with you, Truthspeaker!
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shrike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. We are geniuses! We are all freakin' geniuses!
Everyone on DU. We have to be. We saw this coming a year ago, and all these high-paid mucky-mucks are just figuring it out.
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JCMach1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:14 PM
Response to Reply #16
28. My commentary (article from March 24, 2003)
The leader of the coalition forces stares out across a dusty plain moving-in to lay siege to one of the largest cities in the Arab world. 100,000 tough and battle-hardened troops equipped with the best military weapons of the day back him up. Meanwhile "The amir of Damascus, Mu'in ad-Din Unur, received several warnings of the invasion and made preparations to defend his realm and repulse the enemy. He fortified the more exposed positions, manned the communication trenches and the loopholes, cut off supplies to enemy bases and blocked up water holes and springs." Students of history understand that the siege of Damascus during the Second Crusade served as a turning point in the history of that conflict. Overwhelming Christian forces were turned back by the resolute tenacity of the defenders.

The current conflict in Iraq mirrors this historical conflict in many ways. America and the erstwhile coalition of the willing have embarked on a war of conquest against a modern Islamic country. There are important lessons from this conflict that Western military planners have failed to take into account.

First, the West seems to have forgotten that nation and religion have been bound together in ongoing relationship that goes back at least to the time of the Prophet. Instead, America's armchair neo-Conservative generals gambled that an abstract (and in some ways) alien concept of Freedom could win the propaganda war against passions and beliefs that burn across centuries.

The second tenet of the neo-Con faith has also been shattered: the invincibility of our armed forces. While we do possess one the most powerful forces ever assembled, we failed to note what happened to the Franks. They were completely defeated by the unconventional tactics used by the enemy.

Like the Franks, we have scattered our troops across the desert thinking that our army is invulnerable to the 5 million people and hundreds of thousands of troops that await us in Baghdad. The people of Baghdad will fight against all odds- against the infidel invading their homeland.

The United States may yet win this battle, but at what price will victory come? Like the crusaders our influence will pass by like the other Empires that have occupied ancient Babylon. Even worse, we may yet experience the kind of defeat the Franks did at the hands of the Muslims:

"News reached the Franks from many sources that the Muslims were bearing down on them to attack them and wipe them out, and they felt that their defeat was certain. They consulted among themselves, and decided that the only escape from thc trap or abyss that loomed ahead of them was to take flight. At dawn on the following Wednesday they retreated in miserable confusion and disorder .

When the Muslims saw that they had gone, and observed the traces that they left in their flight, they set off the same morning to pursue them. They showered them with arrows and killed many of their rearguard in this way, and horses and pack animals as well. Innumerable corpses of men and their splendid mounts were found in their bivouacs and along the route of their flight, the bodies stinking so powerfully that the birds almost fell out of thc sky. That very night they set fire to ar-Rabwa and al-Qubba al-Mamduda.

This gracious sign of God's favour brought rejoicing to Muslim hearts, and they gave thanks to the Most High for hearing the prayers raised unceasingly to Him in the days of their distress. For which let God be praised and blessed !"

We may yet live to hear those words ringing in our ears.

Excerpts are taken from the account of IBN AL-QALANISI, d. 1160

http://www.thesyndrome.com/archives/00000156.htm
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leesa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
30. No offense, truthspeaker, but it wasn't that hard to figure out.
Anybody with a brain could figure out the outcome of an illegal invasion of a disarmed country with a history of pride and ferocity stretching back for millenia. Duh, eh? Most have figured out the idiocy of a 'war on terrorism' as well.
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truthspeaker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. That was kind of my point
If I could figure it out (and millions of other people around the world), then the best and the brightest in the administration and the defense department should have been able to see it too.
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Flagg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:16 AM
Response to Original message
2. France TOLD YOU SO dumbya
eat shit
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northernsoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:03 PM
Response to Reply #2
11. and they knew from their own bitter experiences in Algeria
sometimes your friends don't agree with you because they're trying to keep you from doing something really effing stupid
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Triana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:23 AM
Response to Original message
3. qWagmire...
...as another DUer so eloquently put it, is what it is.

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bpilgrim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:40 AM
Response to Original message
4. everything is going according to plan
if the plan is to DESTABILIZE the ME, that is.

i am sure everyone understands that the civilian causualties are a unfortunate but UNAVOIDABLE consequence of 'LIBERATION'

and so it goes...


peace
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0007 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:57 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. Humanitarian catastrophes will exist in the Middle East
for a long time to come. And I further predict that it will bring this country to its knees with no results of expectations of any kind. Democracy, Oil, or Military Installations.
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bpilgrim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:30 PM
Response to Reply #7
19. true
i agree with everything you just said.

it is very hard to stay upbeat while witnessing our worse fears playing out in the most bizaar and longest spell of dejavu i've ever experienced.

:hi: 0007

peace
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PurityOfEssence Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #4
15. just have another grain alcohol and rainwater; it'll fix ya right up
Funny how conservatives, who worship the past, don't know any history.

A little reading on Gordon in Khartoum, the Brits in Kabul, Italians in Libya, French in Algeria and us in the Philippines would do them a world of good.
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bpilgrim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #15
21. don't forget to FILTER the 'rainwater'
or else it just might kill ya.

the lack of education seems to be also part of their long term agenda :argh:

:hi:

peace
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The Stranger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
5. The Spider and the Fly
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teryang Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:58 AM
Response to Reply #5
8. Great article!
I missed that one. Thanks for the link.

Who is the Spider? Who is the Fly?
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DinahMoeHum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:41 PM
Response to Reply #8
32. "The flies have conquered the flypaper"
Link:
http://www.commondreams.org/views04/0402-12.htm


Remember when * and Co. said that Iraq would become a flypaper trap for terrorists?

Yeah, hah hah, I'm laughing.

:grr: :grr: :grr:

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The Night Owl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:52 AM
Response to Original message
6. Rummy does not do quagmires...
Quagmires do Rummy.

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Magleetis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
9. The US
will fail in Iraq. It is obvious to the educated.
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lebkuchen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:04 PM
Response to Original message
12. Germany had criticized Bush for lack of cultural understanding in Iraq
Edited on Wed Apr-07-04 12:05 PM by lebkuchen
Germany further said that our troops lacked the proper training to understand Iraqi culture and the basic differences among its religious sects. That was one of many reasons Germany was unwilling to participate in the U.S.' escapade; the US' ethnocentric approach was a recipe for disaster.
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catmandu57 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:04 PM
Response to Original message
13. Hey guys, we're not seeing the big picture here
The sad fact is *'s plan is working. How can he bring on Armageddon if he doesn't piss off everyone in the world. There are people wetting their pants, cheering on the crusade, sicko mofos that they are.
There are people who truly believe that these are the end days, and that * is the vehicle to get them there.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #13
25. They're in for a rude awakening
when they found out they blew it and didn't get into heaven.

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theHandpuppet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:06 PM
Response to Original message
14. Looking at the range of commentators...
... employed by the media, which run from generals to even more generals and professional chickenhawks, it's not difficult to see why we haven't a clue when it comes to dealing with the Middle East.

To hell with people who actually understand the people, the culture or even the language -- everything about the ME is seen through military-industrial binoculars. We play a game of geopolitical chess with each move calculated to preserve our own interests in the region regardless of the real wishes and needs of the people who live in this countries. How else could we possible explain the blank check we have given to the House of Saud, one of the most corrupt and oppressive regimes on the planet?

When our forces first invaded Baghdad, one of the top priorities was to dispatch troops to protect the Ministry of Oil whilst world treasures such as the Baghdad museum -- housing some of the most precious artifacts chronicling the rise of civilization itself -- was left to looters and ruin. After all, as Herr Rumsfeld would point out in amusement, how many vases can one museum have, anyway?

It's this kind of arrogance and disregard that dooms us, rightly, to eventual failure in the ME. Only when we stop propping up its oil-rich despots and puppets will its people truly have the opportunity for self-determination. That process may be a painful one, as was our own, but it cannot be imposed upon the Arab world by a Judeo-Christian superpower forcing a false Jeffersonian model upon them.
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lightbulb Donating Member (660 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:02 PM
Response to Reply #14
24. Bravo theHandpuppet!
Yours is one of the most eloquently formed posts I've read to date.
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DrWeird Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:18 PM
Response to Original message
17. You didn't have to be Admiral Akbar to see this one.
nt
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opihimoimoi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:24 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Don;t the Bushies read HISTORY??? Its all there man. all the signs of
a fuck up and all ignored/rejected.

Now we pay a price in blood/broken bodies

arrrgggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
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truthspeaker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:31 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. props for the Star Wars reference!
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Barkley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 01:43 PM
Response to Original message
22. You're right! OBL is 'laughing' at us!
I've seen polls posted here claiming that a majority of the Iraqi support the U.S. occupation.

I have problems with how the polls were taken: they're biased because they ask people questions that are probably answered fear instead of honesty.

I wonder how Arabs in other countries (especially Palestine) feel about the US occupation of another Arab nation?

We've lost the 'war on terrorism' and we're too stupid to realize it.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #22
27. In the last Iraqi election
99% of the population voted for him.

Do you think these folks don't know how to lie?
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skip fox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 01:56 PM
Response to Original message
23. W. put us into this situation: Lose/Lose!
If we pull out on schedule, the place erupts.
If we pull out later than June 30th, we confirm in the minds of many Iraqis that we are an occupying force.

If we get bloodied and pull out, we embolden terrorism.
If we get bloodied and do not pull out we get more bloodied.
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Waistdeep Donating Member (469 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
26. Quag the Dog
is what the strategy should be called.
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leesa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 02:24 PM
Response to Original message
29. Trap?? No trap. This was entirely predictable and was predicted
by many more responsible leaders but the Bush Crime Family's greed won out.
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