Barring any credible progress on reconciliation between Shiite and Sunni groups in Iraq, supporters of throwing American blood into the country forever generally point to the movement within Sunni groups to police themselves against outside agitators like al Qaeda in Iraq. Unfortunately the program is falling apart on several levels. For one, while we were successfully exporting democracy labor strikes seem to have snuck in among the the crates.
The success of the US “surge” strategy in Iraq may be under threat as Sunni militia employed by the US to fight al-Qaida are warning of a national strike because they are not being paid regularly.
Leading members of the 80,000-strong Sahwa, or awakening, councils have said they will stop fighting unless payment of their $10 a day (£5) wage is resumed. The fighters are accusing the US military of using them to clear al-Qaida militants from dangerous areas and then abandoning them.
Assuming that American-trained and armed Sunni groups do go on strike, they will have to pay their cable bills some other way. Since central government in Iraq went the way of the Lake
Sarammish Sammamish salmon that traditionally means kidnapping and extortion.
American-backed Sunni volunteer forces had set up two checkpoints at a small bridge near the insurgent stronghold city of Samarra, taking precautions not to be mistaken for enemy fighters. They had spent the night before with their U.S. allies, marking areas where their men were stationed, and said they were told everything was fine.
“Our men wore special uniforms with the translucent markings so that they would be recognized by the American planes and were deployed at two points north and south of Ishaki bridge,” said Abu Farouk, a leader of the predominantly Sunni “Awakening” forces, which the U.S. military refers to as the Sons of Iraq or Concerned Local Citizens.
At 4 a.m. Saturday, an Apache helicopter opened fire, killing six men and wounding two. The military said in a statement that the men were suspected of planting improvised explosive devices. Citing initial reports, the military acknowledged that Farouk’s group was friendly to U.S. forces and said the attack was under investigation.
This isn’t the first time that we have killed people trying to help us. When our friendly fire comes in the form of red tape rather than rockets the effect is the same. Iraqis who might want to cooperate weigh their options and decide that the risk isn’t worth it.
PNAC, the early years.