Thursday, 10 April 2008

The Building Blocks of War

The Petraeus report could be the tipping point. But can we really trust it?

Just how much is Iran involved in, or indeed responsible for, the instability in Iraq? The answers to this question are often vague, ambiguous and frequently tainted by self-interest.

Last week commander of US Forces in Iraq, General David Petraeus, declared that the mortars and missiles fired on Baghdad's fortified Green Zone were of Iranian manufacture. He further asserted that they were supplied by Iran and fired by Iranian-trained insurgents.

As for the provenance of the weapons, that is for a forensic ballistics expert to decide. Regarding the rest, well, it depends on who you trust, doesn't it?

And next week, Petraeus is going to tell Congress that everything that has gone wrong in Iraq is Iran's fault.

By contrast, many Iraq watchers are of the opinion that the recent Baghdad government assault on Basra and the subsequent nation-wide surge in violence was inspired by Vice President Dick Cheney during his recent visit to the region. Just another of the building blocks, apparently, in plans for military action against Tehran.

The aim, they say, was to destroy any support base the Iranians might have among the Shia militias to prevent effective retaliation in the event of a wider conflict.

Many of those same experts also point to Iran as being largely responsible for brokering a ceasefire.

Obviously, Iran has some influence in Iraq, but is it a positive or a negative influence?

It would be ridiculous for anyone to suggest that there are no Iranian-manufactured weapons in Iraq.

One cannot imagine the number of Iranian weapons that were captured in the course of the 1980-88 Iraq-Iran War -- weapons that had been stored in ammunition dumps that were inexplicably left unguarded after the US-led invasion of 2003 and subsequently looted.

Read more on Ohmynews International.

Reproduced on: OpEdNews

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