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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 7, 2007 / 24 Elul, 5767

The Partitioning of Iraq

By Charles Krauthammer


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres. — Caesar


It took political Washington a good six months to catch up to the fact that something significant was happening in Iraq's Anbar province, where the former-insurgent Sunni tribes switched sides and joined the fight against al-Qaeda. Not surprisingly, Washington has not yet caught up to the next reality: Iraq is being partitioned — and, like everything else in Iraq today, it is happening from the ground up.


1. The Sunni provinces. The essence of our deal with the Anbar tribes and those in Diyala, Salahuddin and elsewhere is this: You end the insurgency and drive out al-Qaeda, and we assist you in arming and policing yourselves. We'd like you to have an official relationship with the Maliki government, but we're not waiting on Baghdad.


2. The Shiite south. This week the British pulled out of Basra, retired to their air base and essentially left the southern Shiites to their own devices — meaning domination by the Shiite militias now fighting each other for control.


3. The Kurdish north. Kurdistan has been independent in all but name for a decade and a half.


Baghdad and its immediate surroundings have not yet been defined. Despite some ethnic cleansing, the capital's future is uncertain. It is predominantly Shiite, but with a checkerboard of Sunni neighborhoods. The U.S. troop surge is attempting to stabilize the city with, again, local autonomy and policing.


This radically decentralized rule is partition in embryo. It is by no means final. But the outlines are there.


The critics at home, echoing the Shiite sectarians in Baghdad, complain that an essential part of this strategy — the "20 percent solution" that allows former-insurgent Sunnis to organize and arm themselves — is just setting Iraq up for a greater civil war. But this assumes that a Shiite government in Baghdad would march its army into the vast Anbar province, where there are no Shiites and no oil. For what? It seems far more likely that a well-armed and self-governing Anbar would create a balance of power that would encourage hands-off relations with the central government in Baghdad.


As partition proceeds, the central government will necessarily be very weak. Its reach may not extend far beyond Baghdad itself, becoming a kind of de facto fourth region with a mixed Sunni-Shiite population.


Nonetheless, we need some central government. The Iraqi state may be a shell, but it is a necessary one because de jure partition into separate states would invite military intervention by the neighbors — Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Syria.


A weak, partitioned Iraq is not the best outcome. We had hoped for much more. Our original objective was a democratic and unified post-Hussein Iraq. But it has turned out to be a bridge too far. We tried to give the Iraqis a republic, but their leaders turned out to be, tragically, too driven by sectarian sentiment, by an absence of national identity, and by the habits of suspicion and maneuver cultivated during decades in the underground of Saddam Hussein's totalitarian state.


All this was exacerbated by post-invasion U.S. strategic errors (most important, eschewing a heavy footprint, not forcibly suppressing the early looting and letting Moqtada al-Sadr escape with his life in August 2004) and by al-Qaeda's barbarous bombing campaign designed explicitly to kindle sectarian strife.


Whatever the reasons, we now have to look for the second-best outcome. A democratic, unified Iraq might someday emerge. Perhaps today's ground-up reconciliation in the provinces will translate into tomorrow's ground-up national reconciliation. Possible, but highly doubtful. What is far more certain is what we are getting: ground-up partition.


Joe Biden, Peter Galbraith, Leslie Gelb and many other thoughtful scholars and politicians have long been calling for partition. The problem is how to make it happen. Top-down partition by some new constitutional arrangement ratified on parchment is swell, but how does that get enforced any more than the other constitutional dreams that were supposed to have come about in Iraq?


What's happening today is not geographical line-drawing, colonial-style. We do not have a Mr. Sykes and a Mr. Picot sitting down to a map of Mesopotamia in a World War I carving exercise. The lines today are being drawn organically by self-identified communities and tribes. Which makes the new arrangement more likely to last.


This is not the best outcome, but it is far better than the savage and dangerous dictatorship we overthrew. And infinitely better than what will follow if we give up in mid-surge and withdraw — and allow the partitioning of Iraq to dissolve into chaos.

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