The Big Day
Suicide attacks produce extremely graphic scenes of destruction and carnage. This became especially true since a few years ago when the Palestinians found a way to produce domestically very powerful explosives. The author of this blog witnessed one such an attack in downtown Jerusalem when the ground was literally littered with bodies of dead and wounded.
When a suicide belt is detonated inside a bus or some other type of a closed space like a cafe or a bar the power of explosion usually totally destroys the bodies. Contrary to what many people expect there are no bodies inside but mostly body parts, many of which are impossible to identify. In many cases this shit is blown out and dispersed all around the place. One of Nobody's friends (an Israeli Arab by the way) was at Merkaz Klal in Jerusalem when a suicide bomber detonated his belt inside a bus in front of the building. The bloody mess of body parts and peaces of meat scattered all around had such a powerful impression on this person that he passed out and collapsed on the ground breaking his leg.
Yet even many of the seasoned, in terms of suicide attacks, Israelis were amazed by the scale of an attack mounted by the Sunni insurgents in Iraq a few days ago. The Sunni insurgents clearly had their day when a Kamikadze drove a truck loaded with explosives to a Shia market in Baghdad. It is a testimony to the sharpness of the skills of these people, polished over years in Baghdad and elsewhere in Iraq, that one single suicide bomber has killed and wounded almost 500 people.
While the air is full with all sorts of rumours and half informations about a possibility of some kind of a secret Sunni Israeli alliance in the face of the growing Iranian influence in the region, probably many people in this country are reaching just the opposite conclusion. That in these troubled days the Israeli politicians should better stop dreaming and start massively investing in the IDF, anti missile systems and similar stuff. And far from being a great opportunity for forming new alliances the Sunni Shia mess is a strong enough reason to keep a good distance from the Arabs now. This is because the Sunni Shia thing is plainly driving these people mad.
The Economist was writing recently:
This was the week of Ashura, a Shia festival that commemorates martyrdom and has often proved a tense period in places where Islam's two main sects both reside. Yet communal feelings are rising even where Shias, around 15% of the world's Muslims, have little or no (!!! NB) presence . In December, Sudan's authorities closed Iran's stall at a Khartoum book fair after Sunni activists accused it of spreading Shia propaganda. Algerian newspapers say Shia missionaries are inveigling Sunni children to convert. Supporters of Fatah, a secular Palestinian party, have taken to chanting “Shia! Shia!” at backers of the Islamist (and Sunni) Hamas party, in a dig against its strong ties to Iran. In Jordan, villagers turned back pilgrims going to a local Shia shrine. Shias say that last month's attacks by vandals in the American city of Detroit on two Shia community centres and some Shia-owned businesses were sectarian.
What the Sunni elites are doing is no less stupid than the miserable attempts by other parts of the Arab world to recover some unity by replaying the old anti imperialist anti Zionist card. This is because the usual anti imperialist resistance rhetoric awakens not only the 'noble' HA-style of resistance. It awakens the very forces that fuel the rage of the sectarian killings in Iraq and elsewhere since, and it's easy to see, it is the most anti American, resistance oriented elements of the Iraqi society that are those most deeply involved in the inter sectarian wars, namely the Mahdi Army and the Sunni insurgents of the Al Kaida in Iraq.
That this region is one big minefield or unresolved ethnic conflicts, inter clan feuds and historic injustices the US has quickly learned on its own skin after it ventured here with its democratic experiments. By removing this barrier between the Persians and the Arabs that was Iraq the US has inadvertently awoken a host of demons that were sleeping until now. In the end the Arab/Muslim world possesses no real unity and the only unity it knows is through fighting a common enemy. Yet as Iraq shows this old tactic backfires and fails the Arabs now just when they most urgently need something to stabilize themselves. As the Arabs are sinking deeper and deeper in this sectarian mess their very efforts to get themselves out of it make the matters worse.
Meanwhile a multiple car bombs attack directed primarily against the Kurdish targets was mounted in Kirkuk. Kirkuk was ethnic cleansed from Kurds under Saddam and resettled with Arabs. Now the Kurds and their Peshmerga militia are back in town reclaiming their homes and property and producing thousands of more displaced refugees. The Sunni insurgents repeatedly targeted the Kurds in Kirkuk before and one can only marvel at the passion with which these people are creating themselves new enemies. Alongside Baghdad, Kirkuk has become another battle fought by the Sunni Arabs in Iraq. Another battle that they will lose.
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