CIVIL WAR WATCH….Maj. General William Caldwell, the military’s chief spokesman in Iraq, writes in the Washington Post today that he doesn’t see civil war in Iraq. He sees hope. He sees vigorous debate. And this:
I see a representative government exercising control over the sole legitimate armed authority in Iraq, the Iraqi Security Force.
Is this some kind of joke? Everything I’ve read suggests that even the best units of the ISF are barely competent. That Shiites would refuse orders to fight Shiites and Sunnis would refuse orders to fight Sunnis, assuming any government were foolish enough to give them the order in the first place. That the entire province of Anbar is essentially under the control of insurgents. That the Badr Organization and the Mahdi Army operate openly as free roving death squads. That the number of bombings is up, the number of kidnappings is up, the number of civilian deaths is now over a hundred per day, and entire sections of Baghad are virtual free fire zones.
But this isn’t a civil war because it doesn’t involve neat lines of uniformed soldiers taking hills and defending trenches? Where does this stuff come from?