So, is anyone else not in the least bit surprised by the Iraq situation at the moment? Obviously I’m not alone in thinking that the country would quickly descend into chaos and civil war as soon as Coalition Forces left but I think that quite a few people have been surprised by just how quickly the whole thing collapsed after the first push. It appears that all of the time, effort and money spent building up the Iraq defence forces and police which had, apparently, arrived at the stage where they could now protect themselves has been a complete waste of time. Even worse it looks like the time, effort, money and blood expended in turning around a failed state and creating a self-governing country (a democracy even) has itself been a colossal waste in every sense of the word. If the Iraqi government don’t get a handle on things soon – which is looking increasingly unlikely – the country will be back at square one or actually before square one as the three sides involved slug it out in the desert for control. Of course, as the map below shows, Iraq isn’t really a country anyway (the straight line borders are always a give-away of this sort of thing. Iraq as a country was manufactured by the European Powers) which mean that the people living inside its borders don’t automatically see themselves as the same people, instead they are Kurd, Sunni and Shi’a first and possibly Iraqi a poor second at the very best. Little surprise then that they fall on each other given the opportunity.
So, what now? Do we get involved in a Third Iraq War? Good God, I hope not! I really don’t think that the electorate of any Western country would stand for that. There might be some airstrikes and cruise missiles fired at tempting targets but there’s probably very little that such things can do to 'help' and there’s probably little appetite even for those limited measures. Maybe this ‘insurgency’ will teach the West not to get involved in these internal regional conflicts in the future (one can but hope) but whatever happens and whatever we do (or don’t do) it’s not going to be over quickly and it isn’t going to be pleasant for anyone involved.