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Saturday, November 13, 2004

Falluja 

I haven't blogged on this because it's everywhere and I just assume everyone is up to speed. Furthermore, I have nothing to add to the analysis, until now.

Check this out, from an article by Hannah Allam from Knight Ridder:
Once admired as comrades in an anti-American struggle, foreign fighters have become reviled as the reason U.S. missiles are flattening homes and turning Iraq's City of Mosques into a killing field. Their promises of protection were unfulfilled, angry residents said, with immigrant rebels moving on to other outposts and leaving besieged locals to face a superpower alone.

The fact that Iraqis are turning away from foreign terrorists, however, doesn't necessarily mean that they're turning toward the United States and Iraq's U.S.-backed interim government.

"We didn't want the occupation and we didn't want the terrorists, and now we have both," said a Fallujah construction worker who gave his name as only Abu Ehab, 30. "I didn't think the Arabs would be so vicious, and I never thought the Americans would be so unmerciful."
I'm sure some on the left will seize on the fact that the interviewed Iraqi was pissed with the U.S. as well as being pissed with the foreign fighters. That's too bad, because this is good news. There are two (probably more, but for the sake of simplicity, lets stick with these two) distinct groups fighting the U.S. in Iraq: islamic extremist fighters and Iraqi insurgents.

Islamic extremist fighters refers to both the "foreign militants" referred to so often in the media and, I assume, some local Iraqi wackos as well. These people are fighting for Islamo-facism and I concede that they are our enemy and the enemy of any liberal democratic society.

Iraqi insurgents, on the other hand, I do not perceive as our enemy except in the narrow sense that when they shoot at us, we have to shoot back. On a metalevel, these people are the new Iraq, fighting for self-rule -- it just happens to be that right now they perceive the U.S. as the biggest threat to self-rule. I use the term insurgent differently from the media, applying it to Iraqis who are fighting the occupation forces not on behalf of some Islamo-facist ideal, but are more in line with the good ol' fashion "get out of my backyard, asshole" rationale.

This article suggests that the second group is getting fed up with the first. That's a good sign, and this is good news. I'm just happy to hear some.

Of course, this is only good news if we assume the U.S. military is smart enough to make a clear distinction between these two groups, which I fear they do not, but hope they do.

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