Iraq: Why is Everyone So Damn Surprised?

Iraq-soldier-getty

For Foreign PolicyThomas E. Ricks writes:

One of the editors at Foreign Policy was pushing me yesterday to say more about Iraq, despite my feeling of numb wordlessness.

OK, here goes. My question is, Why the hell is everyone so surprised ? Was this not inevitable? Perhaps it was foretold on the day we removed Sunni power from Baghdad, and so took down the bulwark that prevented the westward expansion of Persian power. Certainly it looked likely from the time Maliki decided to attack the Sunni towns to the west of Baghdad.

Is this what American troops were fighting for? No, John, because they don’t get to decide what they are fighting for.

You want a lesson of Iraq? Here’s one: Don’t go invading countries about which you don’t know enough to know what you want to do once you get there.

Ready for another? OK, here: Don’t destroy a power without considering what will fill the ensuing vacuum.

A third lesson, aimed at myself…(read more)

Foreign Policy

SAFIN HAMED/AFP/Getty Images


One Comment on “Iraq: Why is Everyone So Damn Surprised?”

  1. […] Pundit from another Planet For Foreign Policy, Thomas E. Ricks writes: One of the editors at Foreign Policy was pushing me […]


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