Friday, May 27, 2005

The State of the Insurgency

As I pointed out in Analyzing Zarqawi Statement, I believe that the insurgency is now having a rough time recruiting replacements for all of the lives they wasted in suicide VBIEDs in the last 45 days.

Pretty difficult organizing and planning attacks when all the little indians are dead and the the big chiefs are sitting around scratching their asses. Worse yet, it's very difficult to convince people to come join your cause when the romance of fighting the "big Satan" turns into "how many innocent bystanders [read "Muslims"] can you take out with a car and a trunk load of explosives." I think the worst PR they could have gotten was the failed frontal attacks on Abu Graihb and Qaim along with a few other hotspots. The US military learned their lesson a long time ago in Beirut about how to properly barricade a base and what to do if crazy people in cars/trucks start driving towards you at high rates of speed and even Sgrena the Italian learned that they do mean to pull the trigger if you even wink suspiciously.

In my previous post, I commented that there was a story in the Arab News about two would be jihadists having their illusions of the grand mujihadeen efforts smashed when they got to Iraq and found out all they wanted was volunteers to drive booby trapped cars and kill themselves. I found the link via Arab World Analysis:

The sources added: 'At that point the leader of the group suddenly showed them the truth regarding which the young men felt the strongest bitterness. So then he said: We have a group of automobiles ready to perform suicide operations. The young men almost lost consciousness from the terror of the shock. And they said to him: how our coming to Iraq has come to this end in a suicide operation with such ease! He answered them indifferently: this is what we have now, and if you want you may look elsewhere! At that moment they decided to return to their country, and completely changed their minds about participating in what they thought was resistance in Iraq.'

Add in a few "religious rulings" by the Saudi Mufti and Islamic Scholars:

Now, Saudi religious scholars have come to a consensus that going to Iraq with the goal of killing in the current circumstances is not legal. Likewise the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia in an open meeting refuted the claims that what is happening now in Iraq is really jihad. He has said: 'Indeed, jihad in the cause of God is a great thing, no one doubts in its bounty or in its greatness, but the situation in Iraq differs. For our brothers in Iraq know the condition of their country and its circumstances and overall environment, and they work with their reality as they see fit.

I imagine some complaints regarding religioius sermons have been lodged, not only by "outside forces", but by some unsuspecting parents who find out their boys aren't in Damascus going to university, but have their names posted on a jihad website as "martyrs". Not all Saudi parents are happy to have their kids' brains splattered on the pavement. Since the Saudi government controls the mosques and universities, it is obvious they are putting pressure on folks to stop convincing their 20 something young men to sneak across the border and cause the house of Saud a royal pain in the public relations.

Continuing analyzing the insurgency, toss in things like using cows and dogs to carry explosives; some Iraqis meeting out immediate justice; operation clean sweep; operation Matador on the Iraq-Syrian border; recent news that the US and other countries have recently tied up another loop hole in transfering money to potential terrorists or their organizations through hawala by cracking down on unlicensed and unregulated organizations and, last but not least, rumors or fact of zarqawi being injured coupled with some internet confusion about who is in charge, pretty much point to a period of time when the "insurgency" is all screwed up.

One thing is sure, whether he's wounded, dead or just doing a "strategic retreat" after pissing off so many people, replacing Zarqawi as the leader, isn't all that easy.

Recall that these groups are small, insular cells. Working relations are built on absolute trust and not easily won. As much as some might believe otherwise, money is not handed over like candy at a barmitvah. Particularly, in today's atmosphere of slowly closing financial resources and other issues making it difficult just to "send money, will write". Requests are made and approved through regular, nearly beaurocratic processes and approved further up the food chain (see AQ manifest and other stories regarding operations, including September 11).

Whether Zarqawi died, is wounded or just took the low road out of Dodge to save his ass, operations will be extremely slowed down for a bit. Certainly nothing like we've seen the last two months. What we will continue to see is the occasional car bomb and some drive by shootings probably committed by sectarian partisans, not necessarily Zarqawi/AQ terrorists.

This will be further disrupted as continued sweeps and cordons of Baghdad net a few more low, medium and high value targets. With confusion in the ranks, leadership is reorganized and once long established trusting relationship between couriers and different cell leaders have to get re-established under the new guy, it is likely that some of these targets will yield up some decent intel to save their own asses.

I expect any attacks (as seen today) to be less well coordinated and performed by amateurs who will try to get their names put forward with the new guy.

I am not predicting them down and out for the count, but I would say, "seriously wounded".


Moron99 said...

Many people theorize about "the insurgency". It seems that few of them bother to ask the insurgents. The internet allows us to communicate directly with them. So why not ask them? I decided to try it. The things they won't say are almost as revealing as the things they will.

It is simple really, they want the american effort to fail.

They intentionally blow up innocent civillians when they are standing near troops in order to connect the visual image of the American military with sufferring muslims. Al Jazeera is more than happy to broadcast the pictures.

They intentionally torture, kill, maim, sabatauge, assasinate, and other atrocities to prevent the people of Iraq from finding satisfaction with the American effort.

They pursue the retreat of america with a vietnam modeled war of propaganda.

The two main sources of fighters are baathi and muj. For the moment they have a common interest. The muj have no goal beyond handing america a defeat. The baathi intend to use the muj only for as long as they provide inexpensive bomb guidance systems. If they achieve their common goal of american failure, then the baathi will first sluaghter the muj to eliminate the competition and then they will regain control of Iraq in a series of assasinations and an expanding reign of terror (same way saddam got there).

In the process I discovered something else. The pro-insurgent websites are allowed past censors. There are countless internet "lurkers" in the mideast. They are afraid to comment. The can not agree with the radicals but are afraid to disagree for fear of punishment. Our most devastating weapon against the mad mullahs is that we have no fear of asking questions. Go to a website where these people lurk. Do not argue or trade insults. Ask real, sincere questions. Put forth logic and reason. Go into long dialouges about what a great religion Islam is and how the terrorists are destroying it from the inside. Show nothing but the utmost respect for Islam and nothing but the utmost hatred for dictaotrs and corrupt Imams. Ask and answer hard questions about human rights, democracy, and America. Be completely honest. Do not hide america's flaws. The people who lurk are intelligent. They know that nothing is perfect. Trying to portray america as perfect will come off as propaganda. Harbor no hatred, harbor no prejudice, harbor no political correctness. Give these people exactly what they yearn for. A straight, honest, no bullshit view of the world. And lastly, before venturing into the dens of wolves, read the declaration of independence.

J. Francis Lehman said...

Could you post a list of said pro insurgent sites here sometime?

(Indiscriminate potching around on the web tends to get me loaded up with spyware, so I don't usually do it.)

Moron99 said...

This is a good starting point. The blog-roll on the left is a good listing of Iraqi sites. You can quickly discern if the mood of the site favors or opposses the democratization of Iraq. One dead giveway is continual outcry over american errors while never mentioning insurgent atrocities.
Iraq Blog Count

Iran is another place where information is controlled.
This guy keeps a fairly decent Iranian blogroll