Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Back to Iraq 3.0: Is It Civil War Yet?

Chris Allbritton takes a look at the question, Is It Civil War Yet?:

After watching this place for two years, I’m now prepared to call this thing a civil war, aligning myself squarely with the America-haters at DefenseNews.

"For over a year now, there has not been a day in which Iraq did not witness sectarian killings where the victims were either Shiite, Sunni or Kurds," said Ghassan Attiyah, chairman of the Baghdad-based Iraq Foundation for Development and Democracy. "I’m not talking here about random shooting. I am talking about targeting people individually on the roads and killing them for being from one group or another."

In the article, Qassem Jaafar, a Doha, Qatar-based Middle East security analyst, listed the symptoms of a civil war:

  • A weak central government with incompetent security apparatus.
  • Spread of sectarian and ethnic killings.
  • Existence of armed sectarian and ethnic militias.
  • High threat perception among the sectarian and ethnic groups of the country.
  • Insistence of each group on its demands.
  • Foreign interference and support to feuding groups.
All of these elements are present now in Iraq, and the constitution process didn’t help matters.

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