Gee, remember how I said the surge was already starting to fail, and that we could very likely see the return of sectarian violence in Iraq?
Man, I'm so fucking stupid I shouldn't be allowed to blog. That's right, too stupid to blog.
To turn the snark off for a moment, I was actually wrong in the particulars of my guesses: I assumed we'd see Shia-Sunni violence, not Shia-Shia violence. But that's the great thing about Iraq: in five years of this goddamned war, I've only ever been wrong by assuming things might turn out better than they actually did. (And I've never been anything but a pretty strident critic!) How is intra-Shia violence worse than the old sectatian gunfights? Well, we're seeing two Iranian-dominated Shia groups collude to crush the one genuinely nationalistic, domestic political force in Iraqi politics. I don't know about you, but using US airpower and Iranian weapons to crush the Sadrists, who like it or not were able to keep a lid on Shia discontent with the occupation for the last 6 months, seems like it's prone to bite us in the ass later.
Maliki and ISCI are both highly compromised forces in Iraq. Even if they actually succeed against the Sadrists -- and note they're not having great luck there -- we'll have succeeded in removing one of the few forces considered legitimate in the eyes of Shia Iraqis.
Remember Saddam's execution, how the hangmen chanted "Moqtada, Moqtada"? I'm sure they were talking about some other dude.