After Words: Ali Allawi Interviewed by Roland Flamini
Broadcast by C-Span
Ali Allawi has published a commentary on Iraq, the first I've seen by an Iraqi. I've seen him featured as a speaker on other podcasts, but found the C-Span interview the most informative. The key points I heard were
- Many people including exile groups thought Iraq had a strong secular middle class. That was true pre 1981, but was no longer so in 2003.
- Not only did America not have a plan when it invaded Iraq, it did not have a plan even when it put in place the CPA. The CPA had no clear mission statement but had tons of resources and authority. Hence the meandering through 2004. [Side Note: the unwillingness or inability of the President to provide meaningful direction to American occupation forces is still in evidence today as they search for a 'war czar']
- A with drawl of American forces would not make a significant difference. In areas of mixed ethnicity fighting would continue, in areas of ethnic homogeneity there would be no fighting. That is essentially the current situation.