Robert Stein 1924-2014

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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Rise of Al-Qaeda Iraq

In the prolixity of Gen. Petraeus this week, there is a curious emphasis on the entity, “Al-Qaeda Iraq,” which, of course, did not exist until the U.S. invaded the country.

“We face a situation that is exceedingly complex,” he had written to his troops. “Al Qaeda, associated insurgent groups, and militia extremists, some supported by Iran, continue to carry out attacks.”

"Al-Qaeda is trying to open new fronts in certain locations," Petraeus told Senators today. "They've been run out of some areas...but remain a very dangerous foe and adapting foe."

There is an echo here of Bush’s argument that we’re fighting the people there who attacked us here, which would be convincing if there had been the slightest link between Iraq and Al-Qaeda before we created the chaos that invited them to come from our great ally, Saudi Arabia, and start car-bombing our troops.

Petraeus’ emphasis on Al-Qaeda Iraq, balanced by not-quite-equal time to extremists from Iran, may be non-political, but it plays neatly into the two remaining objectives of the Bush-Cheney Administration, staying in Iraq and preparing to fight Iran.

Too bad that Congressmen didn’t ask Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker about self-fulfilling prophecies.

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