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View Diary: The Iraq Election: Defining Success (489 comments)

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  •  Why not Success? (none)
    The Sunni are fighting because they don't know how to live with the fact that they will be in the minority and will not control the government. If they weren't fools, they would be working hard to be included in the process, to make sure they are treated with respect in the new government, rather than reminding the Shi'ites and Kurds of how aweful they have been when they controlled the government.

    It looks as if the Kurds and Shi'ites have made a clear statement of commitment to civil government. The Sunnis don't seem to have been willing to play (depending on actual turnout among Sunnis, reports seem to vary), but they are looking at the fact that the rest of the country has made a major commitment to go with civil government and a constitutional democracy. The Sunnis have lost. Now, they have to decide whether to accept the loss and play in the next round, or try again to disrupt the process when they see that there is a strong vote for that process outside their area.

    As people have noted, Sunnis can lose a lot more by keeping the fighting going. They don't have the oil and they've lost the power, power that they brandished ruthlessly. They cannot face a united Shi'ite and Kurdish Iraq and expect to win. While a war in the Sunni triangle can go on for many years, the Sunnis can also be isolated and treated as pariahs while the rest of Iraq gets on with reconstruction, development and democracy. I expect to see some Sunni face-saving moves in the next month or so, but I don't expect everyone in the Sunni community to go along with them. Low level insurgency is likely to continue until the time of the next round of elections.

    A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. - Emerson

    by freelunch on Sun Jan 30, 2005 at 06:43:27 PM PST

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