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05. May 2007

Irak: Sekterisk politivold, etnisk udrensning og Berlinmure

Kan du huske, hvordan én af "koalitionens" fornemste opgaver efter Saddams fald var at uddanne og organisere et nyt politi og et nyt militær, der var udrustet til at fungere i et demokratisk samfund?

Læs i den borgerlige engelske avis The Independent, hvor godt det er lykkedes:
Be careful," warned a senior Iraqi government official living in the Green Zone in Baghdad, "be very careful and above all do not trust the police or the army."

He added that the level of insecurity in the Iraqi capital is as bad now as it was before the US drive to make the city safe came into operation in February.

The so-called "surge", the dispatch of 20,000 extra American troops to Iraq with the prime mission of getting control of Baghdad, is visibly failing.

There are army and police checkpoints everywhere but Iraqis are terrified because they do not know if the men in uniform they see there are, in reality, death squad members.
Problemet er ikke, at dødspatruljer klæder sig ud som politi og militær - problemet er, at politiet og militæret mange steder simpelthen er dødspatruljer.

Så mens den almindelige iraker har al mulig grund til at være bange for oprørerne og især for de terrorister, der planter bomber på markedspladser og andre steder, hvor civile færdes - men de har endnu mere grund til at være bange for dét officielle politi og militær, der ellers skulle forestille at være kontrolleret af den regering, besættelsesstyrkerne angiveligt er der for at hjælpe.

Og "hjælpe" er vel såmænd så meget sagt - det er en gammel nyhed, men amerikanerne er ved at opføre en Berlinmur mellem sunni- og shiakvarterer i Baghdad, under den irakiske regerings indtrængende protest.

USAs svar til den demokratisk valgte "regerings" protester? De er da ligeglade - hvis de har lyst til at bygge en mur, så bygger de en mur. Godt for regeringens demokratiske troværdighed og for deres eget image ...

Den kendte, kvindelige blogger Riverbend, der kommer af en blandet sunni/shia-familie og voksede op i et Irak, hvor opdelingen mellem sunnier og shiaer ikke havde nogen betydning overhovedet, kan ikke se nogen formildende omstændigheder ved muren - den minder hende om noget langt værre end den Berlinmur, jeg lige sammenlignede den med.

Hun skriver, under overskriften The Great Wall of Segregation:
It's a wall that is intended to separate and isolate what is now considered the largest 'Sunni' area in Baghdad- let no one say the Americans are not building anything. According to plans the Iraqi puppets and Americans cooked up, it will 'protect' A'adhamiya, a residential/mercantile area that the current Iraqi government and their death squads couldn't empty of Sunnis.

The wall, of course, will protect no one. I sometimes wonder if this is how the concentration camps began in Europe. The Nazi government probably said, "Oh look- we're just going to protect the Jews with this little wall here- it will be difficult for people to get into their special area to hurt them!" And yet, it will also be difficult to get out.

The Wall is the latest effort to further break Iraqi society apart. Promoting and supporting civil war isn't enough, apparently- Iraqis have generally proven to be more tenacious and tolerant than their mullahs, ayatollahs, and Vichy leaders. It's time for America to physically divide and conquer- like Berlin before the wall came down or Palestine today. This way, they can continue chasing Sunnis out of "Shia areas" and Shia out of "Sunni areas".

I always hear the Iraqi pro-war crowd interviewed on television from foreign capitals (they can only appear on television from the safety of foreign capitals because I defy anyone to be publicly pro-war in Iraq). They refuse to believe that their religiously inclined, sectarian political parties fueled this whole Sunni/Shia conflict. They refuse to acknowledge that this situation is a direct result of the war and occupation. They go on and on about Iraq's history and how Sunnis and Shia were always in conflict and I hate that. I hate that a handful of expats who haven't been to the country in decades pretend to know more about it than people actually living there.

I remember Baghdad before the war- one could live anywhere. We didn't know what our neighbors were- we didn't care. No one asked about religion or sect. No one bothered with what was considered a trivial topic: are you Sunni or Shia? You only asked something like that if you were uncouth and backward. Our lives revolve around it now. Our existence depends on hiding it or highlighting it- depending on the group of masked men who stop you or raid your home in the middle of the night.
Hvad vi end forventer ender med at blive Iraks fremtid, skal vi nok ikke regne med, at den kommer til at rumme ret mange råb af "Tak, Amerika!". Som i Vietnam-krigen er det svært at se nogen bedre udvej for amerikanerne end Jarrar-planen:
  1. Issue a Public Apology and admit responsibility for the destruction of Iraq and the murder of Iraqis.
  2. Announce A Schedule For Complete Military Pullout From Iraq
  3. Start fixing the mess caused by the war and occupation by both Paying Compensation And Bringing War Criminals To Justice
... eller i hvert fald se at komme ud og udstede en offentlig og meget hørbar undskyldning: We were wrong all the time.

Riverbend skriver i øvrigt i sit indlæg, at hun og hendes familie nu har indset, at de selv som så mange andre er nødt til at forlade det morderiske helvede, den amerikanske invasion har forvandlet hendes land til: I guess I've known we would be leaving for a while now... It's difficult to decide which is more frightening- car bombs and militias, or having to leave everything you know and love, to some unspecified place for a future where nothing is certain.

Et dilemma, hun og tusinder af andre irakere tidligst kommer ud af, den dag amerikanerne forlader landet og historien får lov til at fortsætte.