You have to laugh- in this story
the following appears:
'The BBC's Jim Muir in Baghdad says there are concerns that Mr Maliki's plan will not work as it does not seek reconciliation with those at the heart of the insurgency - the radical Islamists, many of them foreigners, who want Iraq to be the centre of a new Islamic empire.'
And you thought the BBC was a news organisation, employing Journo's to report facts from various locations around the world! Its more like a world government writ small. Turns out, the BBC's Foreign Minister is happy to hand out advice to various countries from his Baghdad Hotel/Fortress, if he thinks their policies are naive or just plain stupid. Jim Muir has decided that its the Islamists who are at the heart of the Iraqi insurgency (which will come as a shock to the 130,000 US soldiers who daily fight the Ex-Baathists and Sunni nationalists) and it is they that the Iraqi govmnt should parlay with. And he's not afraid to tell them! I do hope they're grateful.
Of course, there could be blowback. What if it turns out that actually Al Qaeda in Iraq and the other islamist groups are just a few hundred losers, and actually the insurgency is mostly Sunni ex-Baathist soldiers and special forces? And what if Mr Maliki makes an accomodation with those ex-Baathists and the insurgency dries up and blows away? It will leave a rather bad taste in the mouths of those hectored by the BBC's foreign office... They would be forgiven for thinking that it would be unwise for ANYBODY to listen to advice from people cut off from real information whose every utterance betrays an ideological bias which blinds them to salient facts.
Trouble is, reading the blogs of soldiers and embeds in Iraq gives so much real information that being confronted by the peurile, sterile, fact-free BBC drivel makes you crave the red meat of FACTS. The whole narrative of this conflict has been missed by that useless bunch of aging hippies. For those of us who've been tracking this war from many sources, there WAS a time when a lot of foreign jihadis were making their way to Fallujah and then Ramadi. But the foreigners have alienated the Sunni's they were meant to be fighting with, and the routes into Iraq from the west have been mainly throttled. The 'big war' going on in Iraq has for many months now not been between the Coalition forces and a combined jihadi/baathist insurgency, but between the baathist rump/sunni nationalists and their opposite numbers in the Shia militias. Virtually everybody in Iraq knows that, its only the numbnut BBC journo's who haven't caught up. Maliki knows it- he needs to disarm both the Baathists and the Shia militias to have any hope of running an Iraq worth living in.
The jihadi's know (read Zarqawis own words about it) that they are very much a declining force and that their days are numbered. Most Iraqis see them as very much a problem, rather than part of the solution. Also, because they are Sunni, Al Qaeda in Iraq are detested by the Shia both in Iraq and Iran. The number of new jihadi recruits is declining as the kill ratio's for them and the Coalition forces diverge. For every US soldier killed or injured, 25-30 insurgents die or are captured. Not even the slum-dwellers of Riyadh and Amman are going to head into that without some trepidation.
The whole way down the line, the BBC as an organisation has not been able to get its head round this war. Its reporting has been shockingly bad, and virtually all its many predictions about future developments have been wrong. But then thats because they are based on WISHES rather than FACTS. When you can't stand the facts, its time to retire and write wish-fulfillment fiction. But please, do it on your own time, not with tax-payers money.