Thursday, July 27, 2006

Partitioning Iraq: 2003, 2006 and Leo Strauss

Sometime between 2002 and 2003, I noted two things:

  • Rumsfeld is probably not a blithering idiot
  • His methods in Iraq were manifestly not consistent with his stated aims

Therefore his stated aims were not his true aims. So what where (are?) his true aims?

In August of 2003 I wrote (emphasis is new below, I corrected some spelling errors too):

Bush's mishandling of the UN and Turkey, and the failure of the neoCons to listen to listen rationally to the CIA and the State Department, has really put the US behind the 8 ball. On the other hand, I don't think things are hopeless, and I'm pretty sure the UN alone won't be able to patch things up; if the US/UK leave Iraq the country will be partitioned. (I suspect Rumsfeld's strategy was always to partition Iraq between the Turks/Kurds/Iran and Kuwait, leaving a central Sunni portion without oil revenue.)

Partitioning Iraq, and surrendering the southern portion (less the oil?) to Iran now is now a commonly proposed desperate solution. No surprises there, except I thought this would come up more last year.

Why did Rumsfeld decide to partition Iraq? That’s very speculative, even by my standards. It probably has something to with Turkey — everything does in the middle east.

It may also be that this was his second choice. Perhaps given sufficient troops, allies and resources he would have aligned his methods with his stated aims. He knew from the moment Turkey dropped out, however, that the resources weren’t there. Instead he aligned his true aims with his resources but fed the original aims to the masses. A Straussian solution.

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