Captain's Quarters Blog

« Quick Hits | Main | David Geffen, Call Patterico »

January 3, 2007
The Push In The New Direction

Michael Ledeen covered the latest news from Iraq yesterday, which Eli Lake reported for the New York Sun. New intelligence has produced evidence of Iranian support for both the Shia and the Sunni insurgencies, a feat that completely undermines the ISG's notion that Iran has no interest in chaos in Iraq:

Iran is supporting both Sunni and Shiite terrorists in the Iraqi civil war, according to secret Iranian documents captured by Americans in Iraq.

The news that American forces had captured Iranians in Iraq was widely reported last month, but less well known is that the Iranians were carrying documents that offered Americans insight into Iranian activities in Iraq.

An American intelligence official said the new material, which has been authenticated within the intelligence community, confirms "that Iran is working closely with both the Shiite militias and Sunni Jihadist groups." The source was careful to stress that the Iranian plans do not extend to cooperation with Baathist groups fighting the government in Baghdad, and said the documents rather show how the Quds Force — the arm of Iran's revolutionary guard that supports Shiite Hezbollah, Sunni Hamas, and Shiite death squads — is working with individuals affiliated with Al Qaeda in Iraq and Ansar al-Sunna.

In other words, Iran has played both sides against the middle in order to ensure the destabilization of the democratic government in Iraq. They have had a good deal of success so far, with the rise of the Mahdi Army and the tenacity of the al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists both sourced from Teheran. That new information has caused a great deal of consternation, Ledeen reports, with the people who have to calculate a new strategy for Iraq and beyond:

I am told that this information has reached the president, and that it is part of the body of information he is digesting in order to formulate his strategy for Iraq. If he sees clearly what is going on, he must realize that there can be no winning strategy for Iraq alone, since a lot of ‘Iraqi’ activity—not just lethal materiel such as the latest generation of explosive devices, now powerful enough to penetrate the armor of most of our vehicles—is actually Iranian in origin. We cannot ‘solve’ the Iraqi problem without regime change in Iran.

Those of you who have borne with me for the last few years will not be surprised to hear this; what’s new is the apparently irrefutable evidence that has now providentially fallen into our hands. The policy makers will not like this evidence, because it drives them in a direction they do not wish to go. I am told that, at first, there was a concerted effort, primarily but by no means exclusively from the intel crowd, to sit on the evidence, to prevent it from reaching the highest levels. But the information was too explosive, and it is now circulating throughout the bureaucracy.

I have little sympathy for those who have avoided the obvious necessity of confronting Iran, however I do understand the concerns of military leaders, such as General Abizaid, who are doing everything in their considerable power to avoid a two-front war. But I do not think we need massive military power to bring down the mullahs, and in any event we now have a three-front war: within Iraq, and with both Iran and Syria. So General Abizaid’s objection is beside the point. We are in a big war, and we cannot fight it by playing defense in Iraq. That is a sucker’s game. And I hope the president realizes this at last, and that he finds himself some generals who also realize it, and finally demands a strategy for victory.

When we finally realized after 9/11 that we had been in a war against radical Islamist terrorists for several years, the need to address Iran was obvious. However, we have mostly tried to convince ourselves that we could compartmentalize the war on terror to specific battlefields: Afghanistan and Iraq. It's not going to be that simple, and in truth it never was.

We have to face the fact that we are already in a big war, a World War of its own kind. Does that mean we stage a massive attack against Iran? No, but it does mean that we have to at least recognize them as the enemy behind most of the terrorists we fight, and quit fooling ourselves into thinking that they have a stake in a peaceful democratic world. Be sure to read all of Ledeen's excellent piece.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at January 3, 2007 9:13 PM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry is

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The Push In The New Direction:

» 'OK, so now can we bomb their asses? --- Update 2
--- Updated and bumped
from Bill's Bites
See previous: OK, so now can we bomb their asses?, 'OK, so now can we bomb their asses? --- UpdateIran’s secret plans for IraqBryan Preston Eeeenteresting:WASHINGTON — Iran is supporting both Sunni and Shiite terrorists in the Iraqi civil war, [Read More]

Tracked on January 4, 2007 1:13 AM

» Killing Two Birds with One Stone:Iran & Iraq from Wake up America>
That gives Israel and the US, 90 days, unhindered by Pelosi and crew to accomplish a strike against Iran's nuclear facilities, which is all that needs to be done in Iran, and be out of there. [Read More]

Tracked on January 4, 2007 1:36 PM


Design & Skinning by:
m2 web studios

blog advertising


Proud Ex-Pat Member of the Bear Flag League!