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Did U.S. State Deptartment Organize the Fall of el-Maliki's Iraq?

Politics / Iraq War Jun 28, 2014 - 12:57 PM GMT

By: Andrew_McKillop


Divide and Rule
Push the talk button and the special crowd of American commentators at all times poised to launch a new conspiracy theory will tell you, hand on heart, that the US State Dept. and the Pentagon want the fall of Iraq's el-Maliki regime. They want to divide Iraq into Shia and Sunni camps engaged in constant sectarian warfare. The conspiracy crowd  – always reflecting credit on the devious all-knowing American elite that most of these commentators pretend to hate – are rushing to tell us that the ISIS onslaught in Iraq “was all planned by the State Department”.

Maybe it was to aid Israel, or to help the Kurds carve out and repossess their nation which the US, with Britain and France “derecognized” and tossed in the garbage can at the Lausanne Versailles-treaty series of conferences in January 1923? Or maybe it was to help oil exploration-development in the south of the former Iraq – with Iran and Russia? America's two biggest buddies.

Or maybe it was from the pure pleasure of wasting US taxpayers' money and doing harm, after spending an approximate $25 billion simply on weapons and training for the el-Maliki regime! Who knows. Who cares? But in any case it was devious and superbly planned.

Quick draw Michel Chossoduvsky was lightning fast in recycling and embellishing the anti-State Dept conspiracy theory that anybody can troll from the Web. Noam Chomsky, for example, was left standing and will have to learn to react faster. This time, he was beaten to the draw.

Planned For Decades
Chossoduvsky says that dividing Iraq along sectarian-ethnic lines has been on the drawing board of the Pentagon “for at least 10 years”. His argument is that Washington wants the outright suppression of the el-Maliki Baghdad regime and all the institutions of the federal government, leading to a process of political fracturing, eliminating Iraq as a country. Of course he cites the Oded Yinon plan!

We should not however believe in the talk about the Grand Caliphate of ISIS, nor should we believe it was the State Dept that organized the death of Ali, son of Abu Talib in AD 661, and stirred the Shia against the Sunni. Possibly it was the KGB or Mossad which did that.

As for the reasons why the US gave the el-Maliki crowd those $25 billion of weapons and training, that is training how to abandon weapons and how to run, this was only to fool the crowd and to keep America's military-industrial complex humming. If that doesn't seem credible or logical to you, this is because you don't understand the American elite is super-sophisticated, omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. If you didn't know that you are dumb enough to think that Plunge Protection stock market management by the same elite is going to come a cropper PDQ!

The State Dept and Pentagon have checked through all the history books – dating back to the times of Indiana Jones – and have found that Classic Imperialism always has two-only operating modes. Direct rule and indirect rule. The first means the Imperial power has to have boots on the ground, and civil servants in the administration, running the colonial party.

The second is supposedly more sophisticated – local co-opted elites and players are recruited and brainwashed. Sometimes, as in the el-Maliki case they go flaky and flunk their glove puppet role of running the show while their Imperial masters stay out of sight, but are there all the same. The indirect-rule method is however usually less expensive and dangerous for the Imperialists (and what's $25 billion in US weapons and training for Baghdad?) but needs time to produce entirely predictable and obedient zombie-type local elites. Africa is full of them. Why not the Middle East?

Cleans Whiter Than White
The local elites pretty often operate ethnic cleansing, sectarian pogroms, and even full-blown civil wars but they will finally produce good business, for the Imperialists. Inch'allah! Conversely, direct-rule colonialism almost always generates local resistance, needing military intervention to destroy. Ho Chi Minh, for example, warned US president Woodrow Wilson about that – in the 1920s – and asked for US help to get rid of French direct-rule colonialism in Vietnam. Wilson ignored him. Later on the US lost a lot of face – and over 50 000 dead – trying to save and replace French colonialism in Vietnam.

The colonial dividend of exploiting local resources and accumulated wealth may however be higher with direct-rule. One reason is this avoids having to share the booty with the local elites, who tend to breed, duplicate and replicate themselves quite fast, but the risks are usually higher.

Also, history of the real type (not Indiana Jones) tells us that Imperialism of the direct variety has shrunk to nothing since the 1960s with the post-World War II decolonization of Europe's empires and Japan's short-lived empire. It was upstaged by American indirect colonization – or “coca-colonization”. Today's globalization can be seen as a shift from US coca-colonization to competition from emerging China and India, doing exactly the same thing. Call it Mercantile Colonialism.

The end of the USA's indirect-empire and late-imperial model is, to be sure, less clear cut and fuzzier-edged than the end of the classic or direct colonization model, but it is happening. Maybe John Kerry doesn't know this but its sure that ISIS does.  Don't be surprised if ethnic cleansing moves up to high gear in the Middle East.

Precedents and Models for Iraq
Precedents even exist inside the western developed nations. One clear example is Ireland, where the end of English direct colonization with the 1918-1923 civil war, which killed about 7% - 10% of all Irish then living, firstly caused ethnic cleansing. England retreated to its directly-colonized northeast, called Ulster. The ethnic cleansing – as in Iraq today – was along strict religious grounds.

Direct rule continued in Ulster, to this day, but the economic bang for the buck was never high, and soon dwindled into negative territory – the Ulster colony or province of the UK costs money for UK taxpayers and is a museum of outdated uneconomic sunset industries.

Ethnic Cleansing and Oil
The history lesson is that shifting from direct to indirect rule often causes ethnic cleansing and Ireland gives us a clear example. In the Middle East, firstly the creation of Israel in 1948 caused ethnic cleansing – as longstanding and traditional Jewish communities were rooted out from Morocco to the Gulf. The abandonment of US direct rule in the region - the last outposts being Afghanistan and Iraq – should logically produce the same result, probably on an accelerated basis.

The conspiracy theorists tell us the supposed State Dept-Pentagon gameplan for Iraq needs Shia-Sunni ethnic cleansing and the total elimination of remaining Christian and other non-Muslim minority groups or communities in Iraq. In this case, ethnic cleansing will mean civil war. Whether this could or might harm oil production, transport and refining assets and infrastructures – the only interest of the US and the other external powers – has to be judged as high or very high, especially when the Gulf Sunni-minority petromonrchies are also threatened.

In the Gulf states, the opposition will in no way be only and exclusively from the Shia majorities or large minorities, which are presently disenfranchised. The opposition to autocratic rule can be the Black Flag djihadists anxious to create their Grand Caliphate (a kind of European Union of believers and therefore not at all like the EU!).

The mindboggling claim of the conspiracy theorists is that John Kerry and friends are using the break-up of Communist and Federal Yugoslavia as their model. Among the ethnic-cleansed wreckage, we have the Muslim majority micro-state of Kosovo with its 30% unemployment rate, for adults, 60% for young persons, and its huge net emigration rate – to parasite the social security systems of other EU states. A real victory for divide and rule, but not exactly an economic victory!

To be sure, Kosovo didn't have oil but is the largest exporter of child prostitutes in Europe. Saudi Arabia stripped of its Shia-majority regions and without oil, could be good for the same thing as Kosovo, and not much else apart from tourists to the Black Cube in Mecca.

Going further in their madness, the conspiracy theorists shrug off this likely outcome with claims that “Persophiles” or secret Iran-lovers have always existed, even as moles, inside the State Dept and Pentagon since the times of Jimmy Carter. Iran will now be dusted off and brought up to steam. The new downsized all-Sunni Saudi Arabia, without much oil, would be a Hibat Allah or Gift of God - to the djihadists. It will move on to only preaching, instead of pumping oil. US officials will no longer need to lick the Saudi boot – they will do their boot licking in Tehran!

Getting just a little nearer to the real world, some conspiracy theorists admit that what finally doomed Iraq was the Arab Spring. Which wasn't planned by the State Dept although Hillary Clinton with typical modesty claims she organized it all in a sinlge afternoon session in the White House Rose Garden. After the 2011 revolutions began toppling Arab autocrats, the anxious Gulf monarchies fell back on old and bad tricks to shore up their rule, treating democratic aspirations as Shia-fomented treason. The Saudis, for example, backed Bahrain's minority Sunni ruling family with an armored column using live ammunition to put down democracy demonstrators.

The most important new battlefield was Syria, long run by a dictatorship dominated by the Shia Alawites, who themselves are “heretical”, like the Druze and other sections of Syria's ethnic patchwork. For the Saudis and its Gulf partners, the chance to rob Iran of its key Arab ally and get even for losing Iraq to the Shia was irresistible. The US and some European countries did what they could to turn Syria into a carnage-riddled ethnic cleansing war zone, by pouring in Saudi-paid weapons for supposed “handpicked non-extremist rebels”.

What can the US now do? With its oil-importing allies it will have to deal with the vast terrorist safe haven which was previously called Syria and Iraq. Most of all, the US has to admit it overreached in Afghanistan and then a lot more in Iraq. Its flaky attempt at running a direct colonial “experiment” was a disaster but there is hope. The Middle East (and North Africa) runs a huge deficit on food trade with the rest of the world – meaning it has to export oil to eat. Therefore whatever new powers sit themselves in the shattered buildings of the former elite, after the ethnic cleansing, they will have to keep pumping oil – to eat – which is a need even more basic than killing your neighbor.

By Andrew McKillop


Former chief policy analyst, Division A Policy, DG XVII Energy, European Commission. Andrew McKillop Biographic Highlights

Co-author 'The Doomsday Machine', Palgrave Macmillan USA, 2012

Andrew McKillop has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has had specially long experience of energy policy, project administration and the development and financing of alternate energy. This included his role of in-house Expert on Policy and Programming at the DG XVII-Energy of the European Commission, Director of Information of the OAPEC technology transfer subsidiary, AREC and researcher for UN agencies including the ILO.

© 2014 Copyright Andrew McKillop - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisor.

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