Saturday, September 15, 2007


Gerard Baker in The Times

It is helpful to think about Iraq this way. Imagine if the US had never been there; and that this sectarian strife had broken out in any case – as, one day it surely would, given the hatreds engendered by a thousand years of Muslim history and the efforts of Saddam Hussein.

What would we in the West think about it? What would we think of as our responsibilities? There would be some who would want to wash their hands of it. There would be others who would think that UN resolutions and diplomatic initiatives would be enough to salve our consciences if not to stop the slaughter.

But many of us surely would think we should do something about it – as we did in the Balkans more than a decade ago – and as, infamously, we failed to do in Africa at the same time. And we would know that, for all our high ideals and our soaring rhetoric, there would be only one country with the historical commitment to make massive sacrifices in the defence of the lives and liberty of others, the leadership to mobilise efforts to relieve the suffering and, above all, the economic and military wherewithal to make it happen.

I acknowledge that humanitarian concerns were not uppermost on the minds of Bush and Blair in 2003, and nor will they be now. Nevertheless, those concerns are still not only relevant, but may have a huge impact on the future.

(Thank you, Ninme)

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Hazar Nesimi said...

To answer this I will refer you to
CSM article:

Any intervention would have been futile, and unrealisable anyway. Don't get me wrong, Saddam during the course of his reign murdered almost 1 million Shia and dispossed Marsh Arabs without so much as a squeak from the world Community. But now, and inevitably in the future, the Shias are murdering each other in the atmosphere of complete lawlessness. These people should be best ruled by Iran, they are not capable to govern themselves.

NoolaBeulah said...

That is a depressing article. I must confess, I have been almost ignoring Basra because the noises that people have been making for months now made me suspect that it was going badly. The British would have needed to triple or quadruple their numbers to make a difference.

Nevertheless, I don't like your solution. Hand over to Iran 80% of Iraq's oil? Mind you, I don't, at the moment, have another solution.