Now is your chance!
Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit is asking for
I’m going to try a blog symposium on Iraq, Iran, and Syria. I want some new ideas —
What do you have for him?
Let me preface this whole post with “I am not in the military, I don’t read military books, and I hardly ever watch war movies. In other words, I don’t know jack. But this sounds like a good plan and Glen Reynolds was asking!”
I would start in the training.
First I would increase the pay scale for anyone willing to follow this plan.
– I would start by taking those that volunteered for this out of their own neighborhood and into a barracks. They would live with and among American military.
-I would give Iraqi Police, Iraqi military and US military working with Iraqis accelerated classes in Iraqi history, the greatness of the entire country, why the British partitioned them as they are, the accomplishments of the Sunnis, the Shias and the Kurds. I would include the crap they’ve had to put up with from Saddam, Iran and Syria. I would not include anything to do with Israel or the US. I would include the friendly relations we’ve had with Iraq over time.
Then I would team people up one on one. Iraqi army guy with US army guy etc. Those two would shadow each other throughout their 4-6 months of training. The US military is strong and proud and knows about civility and treating people respectfully and treating superiors all the way up to the ranks properly. They are proud of the work they do and should be. The Iraqi’s would feed off of that. They would get to a point where they too are proud of their country, AND (not or) religion/sect. They would be proud of the work they do and quit selling themselves short to the lowest, most fanatic bidder. Would there be a communication problem? Sure. But everyone works in units and each unit would have a translator of sorts. Much can be communicated without words.
After training, the first real work done would be away from each person’s own home/neighborhood.
After that the police can go to their home stations to work and the military would go where needed throughout the country.
Anyone – anyone caught lying, cheating, stealing, embezzling, bribing or in any way acting unbecoming to their stations would be fired from the police or put in the brig or whatever they do in the military. This would apply whether in this new group of trainees or the ones currently working.
After each round of recruits is put into the area of militias such as Sadr city, I would oulaw those militias. Any militiamen would be welcome to join the service the normal way but if caught out and about, harassing civilians, killing, kidnapping etc they would be shot. And if, for example the leader such as Moqtada al Sadr doesn’t dismantle these militias, he himself will be arrested for harboring fugitives or something.
On to Iran and Syria: As weapons are coming across the border from Iran and Syria I would work to convince Maliki to start making noises about declaring war on them himself. He can freeze assets, cut off business ties, whatever. Then we, the US can start making noises about allying ourselves to Iraq. With any luck that war never comes but if it does it gives the Iraqi’s a different enemy than each other or us. One they’ve fought and won in the past.
Problems with the plan: (sure, there are a few)
Iraqis are hard pressed to leave their families during these hard times. The new pay scale has to be big and the US military not involved in this training needs to be showy so that civilians are safer than they are now.
Convincing the NYTimes not to print headlines like “Iraqi trainees being coerced into listening to American propaganda”.
Convincing Maliki to outlaw Moqtada. I’m not sure why this would be so hard if the newly trained Iraqi’s prove themselves in other areas first
Convincing the Democrat controlled Congress to back the Iraqis if it comes to the real war going on with Iran/Syria vs the US. Like I said, with any luck there would be no real war.
Convincing Maliki we really would be there for them against Iran or Syria. If we are ever to protect Israel and Lebanon we will have to be there but I am no longer certain that the American people are up to it.
Convincing the American people to win this thing and not run before it’s over.
See? There are a few problems. But as to the Iraqis and Iraq:
Sure there are rotten eggs in any organization but folks who serve in uniform are generally there as the sheepdogs to us sheep. Those sheepdogs are tougher, stronger, meaner, and prouder and when they do their job right and with dignity they only get tougher, stronger, meaner and prouder. The Iraqis can do it. Moqtada’s militias and Hezbollah’s fighters are not the sheepdogs. They hide amongst civilians and blame others for their problems. They act like wolves feeding off us sheep. In the end, sheepdogs win. And they will.