Sunday, July 23, 2006

Partitioning Baghdad?

This can't be a good thing. The recent proposal by the Iraqi government of dividing Baghdad in half, part Sunni and part Shia, is a tacit admission of the government's failure to unite Iraqis and that the "sectarian violence" is in fact civil war. Partitioning the country might be inevitable, but this is a city and the divisions between Sunni and Shia within Baghdad aren't clearcut. It isn't just a matter of Baghdad being Sunni west of the Tigris and Shia to the east, there are pockets of minority populations on both sides. So how could it work?

It's a plan born out of sheer desperation, and clearly shows the powerlessness of the Iraqi government. I hate to say it, but it may take Saddam-style strongarm rule to bring Iraq back under control. I'm not saying that's a good thing; just the only thing with the remotest possibility of cleaning up a mess the proportions of that which the Bush administration has wrought. Sad.