LLR Pages

Monday, November 19, 2007

Sectarian Violence in Iraq Dips to Pre-February 2006 Levels

The U.S. Military reports that the sectarian violence on Iraqi soil has dropped to pre-February 2006 levels.

This is what the following New York Times excerpt states:

BAGHDAD, Nov. 18 — The American military said Sunday that the weekly number of attacks in Iraq had fallen to the lowest level since just before the February 2006 bombing of the Shiite shrine in Samarra, an event commonly used as a benchmark for the country’s worst spasm of bloodletting after the American invasion nearly five years ago.

Data released at a news conference in Baghdad showed that attacks had declined to the lowest level since January 2006. It is the third week in a row that attacks have been at this reduced level.

But this is where it becomes more interesting. It further notes:

To be sure, the level of violence in Iraq is still high. Even as military officials announced the figures, Iraq had one of its deadliest days in weeks, with at least 22 people killed. Among the killed were nine civilians in Karada, a mixed neighborhood in central Baghdad, when a car bomber rammed a convoy carrying Iraq’s deputy finance minister. The official was not hurt, but a guard was among the wounded.

The mainstream "government" media is spinning this to make it sound like the violence has completely stopped altogether, yet the above-mentioned paragraph from the Times story points out that the sectarian violence levels are "still high." Adding insult to injury, the piece tries to justify the spinning by suggesting "factors" contributing to the drop, such as the military attacks "weakening" an Al Qaeda group in Mesopotamia and new Sunni volunteers teaming up with American forces to counter the Iraqi insurgency, without citing any evidence to back them up.

Even if they did contribute to the decrease, this latest report is only indicative of a short term drop. In the long term, the violence levels are high enough to indicate that the civil war between the Sunnis and the Shiites is still brewing with no end in sight.

Isn't it about time that, not only that we withdraw our troops from Iraq and bring them home, we also withdraw our troops from Afghanistan, Germany, Spain, and over 170 countries around the world? Isn't it also time that we close down the bases in those countries as well?

Kudos should go to Ron Paul for urging for a new foreign policy, one that would demand non-interventionism, peace, diplomacy, and true free trade.