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I am thunderstruck by the abysmal ignorance of our government about the real situation in Iraq. Can it really be that our manifold intelligence operations are so politicized that they are blind to the fact that, like it or not, withdrawing from our occupation of Iraq will mean bloodshed, whether we leave tomorrow or next year? It is also true, of course, that we could count on attrition; that is, wait it out and leave "peacefully" after all the people of Iraq are dead through the forces of daily violence.

Peter R. Lawson

Valley Ford, CA

Apr 13 2008 - 4:34pm

Web Letter

An informative article! The Maliki government is too splintered to control anything. The American Army has a unified command structure, but, even with the surge, there are not enough troops to bring any kind of order to Iraq.

The Mahdi Army seems to be the most organized of the militias, and they will probably be the lead element on the Shia side. A similar organization on the Sunni side is not apparent, but former Baathist officers would probably take the lead. I suspect they probably would have an underground command structure.

I do believe that al-Sadr is an Iraqi nationalist, but, it might be difficult for him to reconnect with the Sunni insurgency after the destruction of the Shia Mosque. The U. S. can only get out of the way, and let the Iraqis settle their differences.

Pervis J. Casey

Riverside, CA

Apr 7 2008 - 7:07pm