During the past several months, the media has been filled with stories concerning how the famous “surge” has resulted in a dramatic “victory” in Iraq. Lost in this euphoria is the reality that al-Qaeda, which arrived in Iraq courtesy of George Bush, is still active and may be laying low awaiting further reductions in US military personnel. Suicide bombers blew themselves up throughout Iraq yesterday as Kurdish areas were hit in anticipation of the arrival of the Turkish president who has led the fight against Kurdish rebels. Al-Qadea may be targeting Kurds because they collaborate with Americans, and there may be Kurdish rebels who are attacking any fellow Kurds who seek to work with Turks. In a word, this is one mess after another.
The situation appears to suggest there might be an escalation in fighting in northern areas of Iraq as both Kurdish rebels and al-Qaeda share a common animosity toward Kurds who collaborate with Americans or with Turkish authorities. Further south in Iraq there were other suicide bombers.
When all is said and done, President Obama has inherited a rather complicated situation and all talk about “victories” may well be a bit premature.