The Corner

Chalabi in The Wsj

Interesting editorial in the Wall St Journal today about the Chalabi business. The main drift

is, that the Bushies are so keen to hand off the whole shebang to the UN &

get out, the admin is dancing to the UN tune… and the UN, or at any rate

their man Lakhdar Brahimi, wants a Sunni strongman running the place. That

shuts out Chalabi, who is (a) a Shia, and (b) a democrat. So Chalabi’s

gotta go.

I have no idea if this is right, but it’s more plausible than most of the

Chalabi stuff going around. Supposing it’s true, how do I feel about it?

It’s a tough call. As a matter of abstract political science, I think I

would much prefer Chalabi’s vision of a new Iraq to Brahimi’s. On the other

hand, I regarded the whole expedition as punitive from the beginning. Teach

them a lesson; smash up their stuff; kill as many of the black hats as we

can find; then get the heck out. I doubt the US public has the patience for

the hard slog that building up Chalabi’s Iraq would require. I am perfectly

sure that *the US media* doesn’t. So possibly the admin’s course (supposing

it is as presented in the WSJ editorial) is a wise one. It does, though,

reinforce the impression, which must now be very widespread, that being a

friend to the US is not a good career choice.

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