Iraq: Exporting War Criminals

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April 18, 2007: In western Iraq, only about twenty percent of the Sunni Arab tribes continue to support terrorism and resistance to the government. Until about a year ago, most of the Sunni Arabs, who dominate this area, believed that they could keep the government and Americans out. No more. What scared the western tribes the most has been the Shia terror campaign against the Sunni Arabs in Baghdad. Many of the Sunni Baghdadis have fled to find refuge with kin in western Iraq. The refugees tell tales of entire Sunni Arab neighborhoods being emptied, the inhabitants being confronted by heavily armed, hooded men, and told to flee or die. This sort of "cleansing" has stopped, for the moment, while the surge seeks terrorist hideouts. While the Islamic terrorist groups are able to keep setting off car bombs, to keep the media busy, the street level Islamic terrorism effort has been crippled. There are far fewer Islamic terrorists threatening government employees, or people that work for the Americans. These thugs are either dead, fled to the suburbs, or have sought a less dangerous career.

Meanwhile, the main battle with the terrorists has moved to the Baghdad suburbs, and that's where most of the terrorism, and fighting is taking place. Being forced, by the "surge" campaign, to flee Baghdad, the terrorists have gotten sloppy and left more evidence of their presence, and this has led to more terrorists getting captured. This, in turn has led to more bomb factories and weapons caches being found. American military commanders believe another six months of this hammering, along with an Iraqi government making deals with Sunni Arab groups, to bring them into the government, will leave the terrorists with no place to hide, or just some very small places, that can be isolated from the rest of the country.

The bombing of the Iraqi parliament cafeteria last week was apparently the result of a spat between two Sunni Arab factions, and the bodyguards of one faction agreeing to work for the terrorists. Bribed bodyguards and security guards have always been a major risk. But the increasing disorder within the Sunni Arab community is playing a role as well. Sunni Arabs are losing hope of ever regaining power, because they seem to suffer one defeat after another. The rest of the Sunni Arab world, especially Saudi Arabia, has told the Iraqis Sunnis to make the best peace they can, because the Sunni Arab world will not come to their rescue.

Meanwhile, the Sunni Arab countries are trying to get the UN to persuade Western countries to take a lot of the Sunni Arabs fleeing Iraq. Many of these refugees are former killers for Saddam, or Islamic radicals. The Sunni Arab countries don't want to take them, and hope to shame some Western nations into doing so. Syria already has a huge community of Iraqi war criminals, and is trying to keep out anymore (unless they have a lot of money.) Jordan has tried to keep the Islamic terrorists out, but has been less strict about former Saddam supporters with shady pasts. The Sunni Arab world has been successful in getting the Western media to play down the Saddam connections of many of the Iraqi refugees, but the terrorism links may prove harder to hide.

 

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