Iraqi Police Brigade Suspended genre: Just Jihad

State of denial

No, there is not a civil war in Iraq...just ask approximately 700 member police brigade that has been suspended for suspicion of being complicit with sectarian death squads. Some might suggest its time to go back to the drawing board...but that suggests some semblance of optimism...but that may be unrealistic. I'm at a loss to understand what one would do with the members of a suspended police brigade.

Does a temporary suspension magically remove their sectarian leanings? Does a lecture from U.S. trainers on the responsibilities of a police officer suddenly convince them to pledge their allegiance to their newly founded democracy that is little more than a U.S. task force trying to pull a rabbit out of a hat? The Associated Press article reports on the situation here.

BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Iraqi authorities have taken a police brigade out of service and returned them to training because of "complicity" with death squads in the wake of a mass kidnapping in Baghdad this week, a U.S. military spokesman said Wednesday.

The top U.S. military spokesman in Iraq, Maj. Gen. William B. Caldwell, said the Iraqi police brigade in the area had been ordered to stand down and was undergoing re-training.

"There was some possible complicity in allowing death squad elements to move freely when they should have been impeding them," he told a Baghdad press conference.

"The forces in the unit have not put their full allegiance to the government of Iraq and gave their allegiance to others," he said.

The Iraqi Interior Ministry said Tuesday that the commander of the unit, a lieutenant colonel, had been detained and was being investigated, and that the major general who commands the battalion that includes the suspended brigade has been suspended temporarily and ordered transferred.

Pardon my snark, but are we transferring the bad general to the Anbar province...that province we recently ceded to the insurgents? Just where does one transfer a general who isn't loyal to the new government? It reminds me of the Catholic Church...whereby they routinely transferred priests from parish to parish as they were found to have molested children. I'm sorry, but those who want to believe that there is increasing progress being made in Iraq must be the same people Bob Woodward is referring to in his new book "State of Denial".

Thought Theater has previously asked how Iraq can be in such a state of chaos when we read that the U.S. has trained nearly 300,000 Iraqi troops who are serving in addition to the 140,000 American troops. I know I'm cynical, but could it be possible that as we train more Iraqi forces, we are actually providing the sectarian groups with the foot soldiers they need to carry out their agendas? If one uses the increasing number of deaths to test my hypothesis, it certainly offers at least anecdotal evidence.

I'm reminded of the common expression, "Where there's a will, there's a way"...and I'm fast approaching the conclusion that the Iraqi people have spoken...and their "will" has little connection to the "way" we envision. Perhaps its time to rethink our strategy.

Daniel DiRito | October 4, 2006 | 9:06 AM
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