I keep hearing the Sadr rebellion being called a Shiite uprising. It’s not, it’s an uprising by a bunch of militants who happen to be Shiite. From the Christian Science Monitor:
As the days go by, a full-fledged Shiite uprising in Sadr’s support is looking less likely. Most Shiites, about 60 percent of Iraq’s population, insist that they should become the arbiters of political power. But they see fighting for it now – with the US still battling Sunni insurgents – as premature.
That leaves the problem squarely on the shoulders of the US at a time when it was hoping to hand over more responsibility for security to Iraqi soldiers and police.
Instead, US soldiers are fighting on multiple fronts across Iraq – possibly luring the US into a deeper involvement.
Iraq’s major Shiite political parties, like the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, are reluctant to stand up to Sadr’s militants, afraid they could lose standing for siding too closely with the US.