Obama Gameplan: Stable, Democratic Iraq
The Al Qaeda are mosquitoes. The idea is not to mutate them into some other more palatable species. The idea is not to reform them. They are a few thousand in number. Isolate them. Penetrate their organizations. Use human intel. Engage in surgical military operations as necessary. Decapitate, isolate their leaderships wherever possible. Strengthen homeland security. Take precautions. Think a few steps ahead. Fight smart and hard, not blunt. Fight lean and mean, not loud and scattered.
But the best way to get rid of mosquitoes is to drain the swamp. The Bush gameplan has been to add floodwaters to the swamp and then indiscriminately shower the area with DDT, and keep doing both again and again. Insanity is doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different result. The DDT has claimed lives of plants that are above water, and many species in the water that we should not want to get rid of. And the mosquitoes keep multiplying, because they have more water to play with now, and they mutate, DDT stays the same.
But the Bush propaganda machine will tell you if you are anti-DDT, you must be pro-mosquito.
If Bush will have his way, America will have spent a trillion dollars in Iraq, and the fight will still not have concluded.
The Obama gameplan is to suggest there is no military solution in Iraq. The primary challenge is political. The solution is political. Iraq is a case study of how not to spread democracy in a country that is not democratic. For one, it is too costly.
The prescription is Nepal's April Revolution. That is the prescription for Burma, for Zimbabwe. The people are sufficient unto themselves. They can rise up, they will rise up. They will come in unceasing waves. But organizational work has to be done. Political parties have to form a coalition. There has to be leadership. There has to be a gameplan. The diaspora has to get organized. The international community has to take an active, informed interest.
In Iraq's case, you slowly withdraw troops, on a definite timetable, and you fill up the resultant military space with Iraqi military and all round political grunt work. All the factions in Iraq are going to have to learn to do business with each other the democratic way. Hold dialogue, cut deals, move the ball.
But the swamp does not begin and end in Iraq. There has to be a mass movement for democracy in every single Arab country. Such can be engineered. Such can be timetabled almost. It is not like calling a muse. It is like doing homework. If we do it right, autocracies in the Arab world can start falling one after the other like in Eastern Europe in the late 1980s.
Regime after regime in the Arab countries are offensive. In a democracy you know who to blame. You voted for someone, and if they don't deliver, you vote them out. But in dictatorships like the Arab countries are, the easy slogan becomes Death To America. The distant Satan is the source of all your ills.
Bush's way of spreading democracy has been racist, quite frankly. It has been about disrespecting the Arab masses. That is not how you want to present democracy.
Democracy has to be a grassroots rallying cry. And that can be fuelled, the process can be expedited with external help.
In The News
Analysis: Rove Under Scrutiny Again Washington Post
Nepal govt postpones Constituent Assembly polls
Rudy Giuliani rivals Mitt Romney in Cash for 2008 Presidential Race
India .... The police are analyzing the content of the CD with the help of language experts in
the hope of getting identifying Al Qaeda operatives in Bihar .... The CDs containing Al-Qaeda
leader Osama bin Laden's speeches urging Muslims to join the 'Jehad' (holy war) have
surfaced in the rural pockets of Patna and adjoining Bhojpur districts in Bihar.
India demands new IMF quota formula
formula ... if GDP is computed entirely on the purchasing power parity (PPP)
basis ..... 'No halfway house of blending GDP at market exchange rates with GDP on PPP
would meet these twin objectives,' said Rakesh Mohan, deputy governor of the Reserve Bank
of India (RBI), representing Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka. ..... The continued
expansion in world GDP in 2006, with growth crossing the 5 percent mark, points to the
emergence of a new phase - one that is more diversified with most regions posting higher
growth than in the previous year ..... the new robust phase is driven by emerging market
economies with China and India continuing to contribute substantially to the global growth
momentum.' ..... The increasing integration of China and India into the global production
stream has significantly altered the efficiency of the global production process ..... risks
emanating from the behaviour of oil prices, adverse developments in the US housing market,
persistence of global imbalances, large leveraged positions in financial markets and possible
emergence of inflationary pressures. ...... policy makers should be ready to respond to
emerging challenges promptly and effectively
Obama Compares Rappers to Imus
India is just doing what great powers do
Russian police swoop on protest, arrest Kasparov New Straits Times
Suicide bombs hit US center in Morocco Houston Chronicle
China To Launch New Crackdown On Net Porn All Headline News
The banker, his lover and her pay rise of $80000 Sydney Morning Herald startling pay rises given by the development lender to his Libyan-born girlfriend, Shaha Riza ...... a day after Mr Wolfowitz was booed in a meeting with World Bank staff who were demanding his resignation, US President George Bush stood firm behind an old colleague who was one of the architects of the war in Iraq. ....... on Mr Wolfowitz's personal direction, Ms Riza was given pay rises that took her annual package to nearly $US200,000 ($241,706) when she was reassigned from the World Bank's Middle East press office to the US State Department ...... This was a rise from $US132,660 and was tax-free because of her status as a diplomat. ...... an August 2005 memorandum in which Mr Wolfowitz ordered the bank's human resources division to award Ms Riza a series of extraordinary promotions and pay increases.
Common gene causes obesity, says study
Human Bone Marrow Used to Create Early Stage Sperm Cells Forbes For the first time, scientists have used human bone marrow to create early stage sperm cells
Women to self-create
Command sent to wrong computer address led to loss of Mars probe
Apple's Leopard delay may signal deeper problems