Unsafe

by Volker Weber

Qusay Saddam Hussein al-Tikriti dead. Uday Saddam Hussein al-Tikriti dead. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi dead. Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti dead. Hundreds of thousand of civilians dead.

So far the strategy is not working. And killing the next guy won't either.

Comments

Unfortunately, you are right...

Martin Kautz, 2006-12-30

Unfortunately nothing is solved. It is worse than ever.

Cem Basman, 2006-12-31

well at least he helped me make a lot of money on trendio as his stock skyrocketed these last days http://www.trendio.com/word.php?wordid=120&language=en

Ormenipar Marshall, 2006-12-31

The people of England have been led ... into a trap from which it will be hard to escape with dignity and honour. They have been tricked into it by a steady withholding of information. The Bagdad communiqués are belated, insincere, incomplete. Things have been far worse than we have been told, our administration more bloody and inefficient than the public knows. It is a disgrace to our imperial record, and may soon be too inflamed for any ordinary cure. We are to-day not far from a disaster.

History of 1920 repeating itself in 2006.

Stephan H. Wissel, 2006-12-31

Stephan, thank you for most interesting resource which I had not seen. I was talking recently to a gentleman who was still engaged in that 'policing' operation in Mesopotamia as a young lieutenant, some 13 years after Lawrence's letter. And what do you know, he was also involved in an over-ambitious expedition into Afghanistan around that time too....

I can say with some confidence that UK politicians, at least, no longer read history, for fear of what they might find out.

Much was made this year on UK media about the anniversary of the Suez adventure, drawing some very cogent parallels with current events - but I don't think they were hearing that either.

Nick Daisley, 2006-12-31

So what do you actually RECOMMEND that we do?

Chris Whisonant, 2007-01-01

Chris, assume for a minute, your country would be occupied by the Chinese. Would the violence stop if the Chinese kill your leaders, whoever they are?

Volker Weber, 2007-01-01

Killing (executing) Saddam didn't solve anything. But I don't think leaving him alive was really a viable option. If you keep him in prison or exile him, you ensure that there will be attempts to place him back in charge. He was essentially a King, and if you depose a King you have to face brutal reality. It isn't the same as removing a democratically elected government. Kings rule through cults of personality, and restoring them will always appeal to a segment of the population. A stable, mature country where the ruler is gracefully escorted into a life of quiet privelege is fundamentally different from a violent overthrow, and these are the consequences.

As Volker quite rightly points out, though, anyone who thinks this will help stabilize Iraq just isn't paying attention. In the long term, I think it was necessary. In the short term, it's at best irrelevant, at worst inflammatory.

I'm speaking practically, as a student of history and political reality. I'm not talking about the relative morality of capital punishment or political assassination or execution - that's a whole different topic.

As for what we (America) should do? Get out. Now (if not sooner...). We're not helping, we're only making things worse. WIll the Iraqis keep blowing things up when we're gone? Sure. But they'll have fewer targets, and eventually they'll come to some sort of resolution. At this point, the presence of US troops in Iraq is the proverbial red flag waving in front of a bull (though bulls are color blind, so the red part isn't all that important...).

Rob McDonagh, 2007-01-01

An evil mass-murderer was sentenced by his peers to death and the sentence was carried out. Let's all bitch about US foreign policy again.

There's plenty in the US occupation to be concerned about without having to slant-defend this clown.

Nathan T. Freeman, 2007-01-02

So, now that he's been killed, does this mean we won?

My other comment is: Now we'll never know where he hid the WMDs!

Bob Balaban, 2007-01-02

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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