This is a Special Guest Commentary by Gen. Victor Guerremonde, USA (Ret.) Â transcribed from a recent talk titledÂ “A Modest Proposal for Middle East Peace”Â before the Smarter Earth Society of Central Vermont
All right, you people, listen up!
The solution to Iraq is obvious, simple, easy – and it will NEVER happen!
It will never happen because it’s too obvious, too simple, and too easy!
You’re looking at it right now! Can’t you see it?
OK, try this: as another great general once said – Julius Caesar talking about some place he called Gaul – “All Iraq is divided into three parts.”
And it is! Iraq is in three parts, Iraq has been in three parts for decades, that’s the reality everyone struggles to avoid – except Saddam Hussein, who just said he wouldn’t tolerate reality and he’d kill anyone who mentioned it, so Iraq became a flourishing, sophisticated, modern state unified by a brutal dictatorship.
So what are the three parts of Iraq, you ask?
First there’s the southern part of the country, overrun with Shiites, with its capital in Baghdad – we’ll call it Baghdadistan, and it has a very long border with Iran.
Second there’s the northeast region around Kirkuk and beyond, and it’s overrun with Kurds Â¬– so we’ll call it Kurdistan.
That leaves the third part,the rest of Iraq, much of it desert so we’ll call it peace! Kidding. Little Roman conquest joke.
This third part, which literally bleeds into Syria, is overrun with Sunnis and nomads and foreign fighters and Saddamites and who knows what all murderous riff raff who captured Mosul and Falluja and places like that where they’ve been sort of welcomed, actually – call this region Jihadistan.
Now do you get the picture?
Baghdadistan and Kurdistan and, to a lesser extent to be sure, Jihadistan, are more or less coherent, state-like regions – and they all have oil already! – all they need now are a few good highways, somewhat reliable phone service – then they can pass for actual developing countries.
But they have to leave each other alone! And that’s where the Iranians come in!
Actually the Iranians have already come in, 2,000 strong and counting in defense of Baghdadistan, which is actually not under much of a real threat of an attack except from rearguard-euphemism Americans who think a re-invasion is some kind of a glorious idea.
Don’t these people get it? They’re prisoners of their own old wars! The New American Century is over! It lasted less than three years, 2001-2003! And it was a stupid idea from the get-go!
Look at a map, people. NOW do you get it?
You want stability? Three countries – a trio of tripodistans – stable.
And what keeps them stable? Iranians sitting on the tripod!
Iranians occupy and run Baghdadistan. Al Maliki can be a puppet president, who cares? No one’s going to mess with Iran.
And the last thing Iran wants to mess with are instant migraines like Kurdistan or Jihadistan.
For even more stability – Iran outright annexes Baghdadistan. Why not? Shia solidarity! Just keep the Persian thing in check.
What, you think the world won’t stand for redrawing national borders to suit the convenience of the local neighborhood?
So how is southern Iraq different from Crimea? Nobody’s doing anything about that – because it works!
All Iraq is divided into three stans! It’s a classical solution!
And as military strategy goes, it’s perfect – because no troops need to get hurt.
It doesn’t get much more easy, simple, or obvious than this, folks!
All you need is a little imagination, people! As you were.