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Ear to the Ground

Some Former U.S. Allies in Iraq Reconsidering Loyalties

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Posted on Oct 16, 2010
AP / Khalid Mohammed

Awakening Council members search a man at a vehicle checkpoint in the Azamiyah area of Baghdad in March.

The U.S. troops that remain in Iraq after last summer’s withdrawal face some new challenges from within Iraqi factions, as some previously American-allied members of the Awakening Councils are apparently joining the ranks of insurgent groups such as al-Qaida in Mesopotamia, according to The New York Times.  —KA

The New York Times:

Although there are no firm figures, security and political officials say hundreds of the well-disciplined fighters—many of whom have gained extensive knowledge about the American military—appear to have rejoined Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia. Beyond that, officials say that even many of the Awakening fighters still on the Iraqi government payroll, possibly thousands of them, covertly aid the insurgency.

The defections have been driven in part by frustration with the Shiite-led government, which Awakening members say is intent on destroying them, as well as by pressure from Al Qaeda. The exodus has accelerated since Iraq’s inconclusive parliamentary elections in March, which have left Sunnis uncertain of retaining what little political influence they have and which appear to have provided Al Qaeda new opportunities to lure back fighters.

The Awakening members’ switch in loyalties poses a new threat to Iraq’s tenuous social and political balance during the country’s ongoing political crisis and as the United States military prepares to withdraw next year.

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By knute, October 17, 2010 at 9:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Vietnam Redux…..So when can we say, as a nation, that those over 4000 young men and women of ours that died in Bush/Cheney’s war, died for nothing ? I can only imagine the rage felt by the family members of those fallen during our occupation ? How about the rage felt by the Iraqi people. Do you suppose they lean more favorably towards America now then before our occupation ? The fact that there will never be accountability of the war criminals who were in charge those 8 years makes it all that much harder to stomach when we still hear that our soldiers are over in Afghanistan following in the same miss-guided path…to protect our Freedom ( another politically correct rational that is total BS )? A country that too will drift back as soon as we leave. remembering America not as a country there to help the people, instead we were the next occupiers in line after the Russians fighting the same “insurgents”. Another political clusterfuck while our economy teeters on the brink.

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Arabian Sinbad's avatar

By Arabian Sinbad, October 17, 2010 at 9:05 am Link to this comment

And what Iraqi, with any tiny grain of patriotism, would want to associate himself permanently with evil occupiers and with the evil puppet government the occupiers has installed?

Stupid American political-military gang never learn even the most basic lessons of history. I am waiting for the final definite judgment of history to document the fall of the American evil empire and its internment in the sands, valleys and mountains of Iraq and Afghanistan.

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By morristhewise, October 17, 2010 at 7:40 am Link to this comment

Human nature remains the same from the Congo to Washington, if there is a lynch
mob on your tail, bribe their leaders and hope they will throw some of it to their
followers. The problem in Iraq and Afghanistan is that their corrupt leaders are not
sharing the bribe money.

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rico, suave's avatar

By rico, suave, October 17, 2010 at 5:40 am Link to this comment

Quite possibly the “loyalty” of the Awakening Council was paid for in cash. Now that that’s drying up, so is the loyalty.

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By Alfred LaMotte, October 17, 2010 at 3:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Golly gee! Who would have ever thunk it? Guerrilla warriors trained by the almighty USA, turning against their masters!

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