Since the reign of terror by the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld trinity in toppling the Baathist regime in Baghdad headed by Saddam Hussein, a secular Sunni Muslim, the world has been at war. The dismantling of the Iraqi army immediately following the US invasion was perhaps the single biggest blunder in modern human history and condemned any hope for a new government to succeed in a reasonable amount of occupation time.
The US blunder in Iraq is significant as it has had ongoing ramifications for decades that overshadow the entire Arab world and has drawn in forces from all over the globe (Europe, Africa, Australia).
The 2 major regional powers at play in the region are Saudi Arabia (Sunnis) and Iran (Shia).
The US has been a natural ally to Saudis (Sunni) and enemy of Iran (Shia) since the Iranian revolution and throughout the Iraq-Iran war. In the, so-called”, war on terror” the United States relied again on it’s ally, Saudi Arabia. Saudi, after 9/11 and the discovery of the ethnicity of the hijackers, had even more incentive to jump in on the action against terrorism despite it’s own reservations. Like most of the world at the time they didn’t dare question the legitimacy of the Bush administrations assertions that we would see mushroom clouds over American cities if we didn’t go to war with Iraq (a sunni controlled country). 9/11 was a PR disaster for the Saudi kingdom. So, they hosted bases to the US thinking that they can get rid of Saddam and another Sunni leader can take his place. To the dismay of the Saudi’s, the Bush administration handed the country over to the Iran backed Nouri al-Maliki and a Shia dominated government.
While the Saudi’s sit idly by, the US has since bombed Afghanistan (sunnis; ongoing) and Lybia (sunnis). It has killed countless people in sunni groups with drones in Somolia, Pakistan, Kenya, Yemen, Iraq, and Syria. At the same time, the US handed Iraq to Irani hegmony, Iran’s influence increased in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Contrary to it’s own democratic values, the US supported a coup of a democratically elected Sunni government in Egypt to favour a secular military dictatorship which hands out death sentences to sunnis who oppose it’s coup. Now we have Irani militias in Iraq openly battling for Tikrit (sunni city), Irani advisors (shia) helping the Iraq military (shia) and the US attempting to give begrudging air support by bombing a sunni city in a war against ISIS (sunnis).
While the Saudi’s see Sunni power diminish in the region and under attack by it’s ally the United States and it’s enemy Iran, they see Iran’s (the Shia) power and influence increase. The Saud’s see it’s ally partnering with it’s enemy, even if begrudgingly and ultimately rejected by the shia militia. Top this off with the talk of a nuclear deal with Iran that could bring peace between the US and Iran. The Saudi’s are now very concerned.
Saudi Arabia has launched air strikes in Yemen against Shia Houthi rebels, the Saudi ambassador in the US has said. ~BBC
Saudi now launches strikes against the Iran backed Houthi rebels. What began as a simple invasion by the unholy Trinity (Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld) has gone pear shaped with an open proxy war in the region involving the two main power brokers in the region both in indirect and direct military actions. Saudi is also heavily involved in Syria arming rebels against the Iran backed Assad regime.
Saudi Arabia and Iran now being in open conflict added to Obama’s slow and very poor reactions to the Arab uprising, massive increase in drone killings and failure to see to it that Iraq succeeds politically by dealing strongly with Nouri al-Maliki to prevent further marginalizing Iraq’s sunni population, should be a strong indicator as to where the conflict is headed. It’s only a matter of time.
If you leave an ember to fester it will smolder until it grows into a raging fire and consumes the entire building.
As seen in Iraq, the ongoing conflict brought about by the US has now blossomed into a regional war with fighting along many layers, tribal, religious and national. It has festered into a regional war. How much longer will the responsible powers that created this mess dither about with BAND-AID foreign policy and inept reactions? Until it’s a World War? It’s time for our western societies to take responsibility. Look past the ugly religious extremism used to garner support in the conflict and see the root causes of the conflict. Therein lies the heart of the solution.
Let’s face it. It wasn’t the religious extremist attacks of 9/11 that brought about this conflict in the middle east. It was the lies from the unholy trinity who launched this war against Iraq, did it with too few troops expecting to be greeted with children and candy as liberators, then dismantled the only apparatus insuring stability, ie the Iraqi military.
It was a recipe for disaster from the onset created by the lies of one administration claiming that the war would make us safer. Do you feel safer? I don’t. I fear that we are now in the beginnings of a World War and people just haven’t waken up to the fact yet.
Obama administration shares blame in not only letting it fester but blowing fire into it with excessive extrajudicial killing of both US citizens and citizens of other countries with drones.
The real fan to the flames of religious extremism and war is inept foreign policy, not Islam.