The American media is reporting dramatic success as a result of the Bush Surge, but there are indications while the city of Baghdad is quieter, serious problems remain in the nation. Most of northern Iraq is without light because its plants are idle due to lack of gasoline. The Kurdish government is engaged in a clash over oil in regions of northern Iraq it claims belong to the Kurdish authority. Supporters of al Sadr’s Mahdi army claim the United States is taking sides in a dispute between two rival Shiite groups and is backing their enemy, the Badr Corps. In the meantime, the weekend was interrupted by new bombings in Baghdad.
A factor in making difficult ascertaining the success or failure of the Surge is the lack of criteria by which to gauge what really has happened in Iraq. There is no question fighting has died down in Baghdad, but is it the result of a temporary movement away from directly responding to American attacks by insurgent groups or have they really been crushed? It is yet to early to reach any definitive analysis as to what had taken place in terms of violence. However, it is clear the government of Iraq is divided, confused, and hostile to other elements.