Iraqi casualties may be down a little, but US casualties are definitely up. Is that a success or a failure? With the spinmeisters, everything and anything can indicate success: more casualties suggest the “last throes,” while fewer casualties mean we’re “winning.”
Let’s take a look at what victory REALLY means to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney:
Circle June 30 on your calendar. That is the day the Iraqi parliament goes home. If by that date, the duly-constituted parliament has not passed the “oil law,” George W. Bush’s fine “adventure-in-Iraq-by-surrogates” will have officially failed.
For roughly the past year, certainly, it’s been all about the oil law. A military victory was impossible, that had become clear. But the oil was still there for the taking. That’s what the Iraq Study Group was concerned about, that’s what Bush is about, and certainly that is what his patrons, the multinational oil giants, are about. The “multis” in fact wrote the law, which has been approved by the Iraqi cabinet and is pending in the legislative body.
Bush and the ISG, of course, bill the oil law as crucial because it would set terms for division of the oil revenue among the various regions of Iraq, which are widely disparate in resources. According to the Bush line, such a contract would make everybody more loving. or something.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. The terms of the oil law would grant to three US-UK (coincidentally, the occupiers of Iraq) -based multis a virtual Draculean sucking of Iraqi oil, with guaranteed profits far in excess of any in the Middle East, or possibly the world, and in fact giving them seats on the Iraqi National Oil Board.
Now, how to get this past the parliament.
In the US it would be easy, right? we all know how that works. The industry writes the energy policy, slather on the treats, huddle with the vice president in secret, campaign contributions, golf outings, dinners, whores, limos, condos, yachts, high-paying jobs for spouses. Some voice vote gets taken at 3am on a Saturday, and the corruption is approved by 51%. Maybe some day, some guy like Abramoff gets caught for his excesses, spends a few months in the slam, then gets pardoned. There is no real responsibility in the process.
Not so in Iraq. In the first place, a 2/3 majority is needed.
And, a lot of people there watch what the parliament does.
In Iraq, if you fuck with the country, or maybe even with a small part of it, they kill you. If you are a collaborator, they kill you. By drilling holes in your head with 19.2 volt rechargeable Mikita drill/drivers.
Now that’s accountability (not that I approve of it, don’t get me wrong).
That is why many of the legislators have actually left the country, bag and baggage.
Back to the “surge,” which is really all about “security in Baghdad” so the government can “do its job.” Now, to you and me, that should mean, getting sewer systems, power, potable water, garbage pickup, training the police and soldiers, etc, etc.
To Bush/Baker/multis, “do its job” means PASS THE OIL LAW. Really, it needs only 2/3 of 138 (a quorum of the 275 members) to pass. That is 91 votes. After that, who gives a shit what the Iraqis do to each other?
Of course, Petraeus thinks he has been called upon to win. And he’s going for it; but he’s really just a new lipsticker. His real goal, whether he knows it or not, is to get the Iraqi legislators to dare to vote for the oil law.
If the oil law is passed, Bush wins. The war is a success. As awful as it sounds. US troops will gradually be withdrawn into positions which guard the oil fields and pipelines.
If the oil law is not passed, Bush goes to Plan B. A naked grab. Of course, there will some sort of fig leaf put over the hairy genital organ. But it will be colonial business as usual. He and Blair will stand up and announce that “for the good of the Iraqi people,….” blah blah..”, it is imperative that we settle the issue of division of oil revenues…blah…which will then lead to economic recovery, blah blah, peace, etc.
Who knows, the Democrats will probably go along with it.
Basically, they will abrogate “suspend” the constitution and install a puppet dictator, and he will issue an “executive order” which “temporarily” ie 15 years enacts the oil law. He may or may not try to force some kind of approval through the UN.
US forces will gradually withdraw to guard the oil, as above.
So while Petraeus is providing the muscle, you can bet that Bush’s (and the multis’) legal geniuses are hard at work figuring out things like “what is a quorum,” recess appointments, “executive orders”, parliamentary maneuvers, intimidation, bribes, witness protection programs, no-fly lists and the whole nine yards of ways to make the oil law “official.” They are looking at Karl Rove’s voter suppression playbook. Those who are opposed to the oil law will be “discouraged” from showing up….perhaps warrants will be issued for parking tickets, etc. All they need is 138 to show up and 91 to vote aye. That is 33% of the elected legislators.
So we have about 80 days to watch the occupiers try to ram this down the throat of the occupied. We already know that the oil field workers are opposing it. They have some muscle, in more ways than one. Certainly al Sadr’s parliamentary bloc is going to oppose it. That’s the main reason he is being targeted.
Watch the news closely for parliamentary/political moves/developments. Watch for some way of changing the 2/3 requirement to a simple majority. Watch for Bush starting to talk “…or else…” about the oil law. It will be there in his speeches.
The countdown starts today. 80 days and counting.