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Kill or be killed - Shiites Sunnis face Catch 22 trap

Normally in civilized society the rule is live and let live, but not so among the warlike Muslim society. There it is either kill, or be killed yourself. Till 9/11 the Shiites and Sunnis fought one common enemy - the non-Muslims. And among the non-Muslims they have had a special place for the USA as the Great Satan. Death to the Great Satan has been a very popular slogan both among the Sunnis and the Shiites.

Today the Shiites and Sunnis in Iraq are like two man-eater tigers that were, before Iraq was tackled, roaming free in the wild and devouring any prey that came their way. Now they are enclosed in one cage with no one to fight with but each other. And they are doing their job well.

But there are subtle differences in the Sunni insurgency and the Shiite response. The Sunnis go in for high profile publicity generating attacks like suicide bombings of prominent targets like the hotels where foreign journalists live, iconic Shiite mosques, stricken during popular Shiite festivals like Ashura, Police academies that take in mainly Shiites, etc. But this is not to say that the Shiites are not doing their job. They sure are by apprehending prominent Sunnis in the dark and doing them in before daybreak. Killing Sunni lawyers and politicians, clerics and activists. The Shiites do their job with professional ease and dexterity. And they are paid by the Iraqi government to do so.

Photo Credits: abc

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The best possible war strategy in such a situation is to lock up the two bloodthirsty factions in a battle with each other so that neither can retreat and advance would be possible only if the adversary is destroyed.

This is the precise situation that we have helped the Shiites and Sunnis land up in. Today the Shiites and Sunnis in Iraq are like two man-eater tigers that were before Iraq was tackled, roaming free in the wild and devouring any prey that came their way. Now they are enclosed in one cage with no one to fight with but each other. And they are doing their job well.

But there are subtle differences in the Sunni insurgency and the Shiite response. The Sunnis go in for high profile publicity generating attacks like suicide bombings of prominent targets like the hotels where foreign journalists live, iconic Shiite mosques, stricken during popular Shiite festivals like Ashura, Police academies that take in mainly Shiites, etc. But this is not to say that the Shiites are not doing their job. They sure are by apprehending prominent Sunnis in the dark and doing them in before daybreak. Killing Sunni lawyers and politicians, clerics and activists. The Shiites do their job with professional ease and dexterity. And they are paid by the Iraqi government to do so. The Sunni insurgents do not draw a formal salary from anyone. They are richly funded by wealthy Saudis, Syrians, and Jordanians. In all this it makes global headlines when Shiites die at Sunni hands, but the news is very muted when Sunni bodies are found in a farm or floating down a river.

Is there a pattern in such discriminatory reporting by the global media? This is an open question. The result is that it discredits the Sunnis, while keeping the reputation of the Shiites relatively untarnished.

In this situation neither the Shiites, nor the Sunnis can backtrack and declare peace. If they do then the Shiites will not only win the elections (which they anyway will), but will use the peace to consolidate their hold with greater ease and form a fully Shiite Army, Police and Intelligence wins to help stiffen the grip of the Shiites over the new Iraq. If the Sunnis carry on a bloody insurgency, then the Shiites will respond in kind albeit with shrewd and low key attrition attacks on Sunnis. This will spark a continued disturbed situation where the elected Shiite administration will ask us to bomb Sunni cities like Fallujah, Ramadi, Al Qaim, etc.

Both scenarios will lead to an increasing cycle of Shiite-Sunni violence. The saving grace would be that in both these scenarios , the two bloodthirsty tigers will fight each other inside the cage called Iraq and till the fighting spills in to the greater Middle East and the contiguous Muslim world beyond it. But we in the US will remain relatively safe as long as the baddies are slugging it out against each other. Till then we would only have to guard against any EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse) or dirty bomb attack by a frustrated section of the Sunni who would attribute their miseries in Iraq and elsewhere to our Iraq and Middle East policy.

Story Credits: War on Jihad team

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