SocraticGadfly: Fragmented Iraqi resistance begins to unite

July 19, 2007

Fragmented Iraqi resistance begins to unite

The Guardian has an excellent article about how non-AQI insurgency movements are beginning to coalesce. Here’s one member’s take on the growing movement:
“Resistance isn’t just about killing Americans without any aims or goals,” says Abd al-Rahman al-Zubeidy, the political spokesman of Ansar al-Sunna. [Note: The story changes the actual names of people. “Our people have come to hate al-Qaida, which gives the impression to the outside world that the resistance in Iraq are terrorists. Suicide bombing is not the best way to fight because it kills innocent civilians. We are against indiscriminate killing — fighting should be concentrated only on the enemy. They [al-Qaida] believe that all Shia are kuffar [unbelievers] - and most of the Sunnis as well.” They estimate that al-Qaida now carries out between a fifth and a third of all attacks in Iraq.

Zubeidy also says the group has no direct contact with the Syrian government, contra another BushCo claim that Damascus is responsible for much of the problem in Iraq. And, The Guardian notes that Ba’athists, as well as AQI, are not part of this coalition.

That said, Zubeidy and other Sunni insurgents are also now calling for an outreach to Shi’a insurgent groups.

Why is the real insurgency starting to speak out now? The Guardian says that it’s in anticipation of US/UK withdrawal.

And what’s next?
“Peaceful resistance will not end the occupation,” states Abu Ahmad. “The US has made clear that it intends to stay in Iraq for many decades. Now it is a common view in the resistance that they will start to withdraw within a year.” Right or wrong, that is one of the factors that has led to the decision to form the new front, which is planned to be called the Political Office for the Iraqi Resistance. As well as Iraqi Hamas, the 1920 Revolution Brigades and the new Ansar al-Sunna, it is to include the powerful Jaish (army) al-Islami, Jaish al-Mujahideen, Jama' and Jaish al-Rashideen. The plan is to hold a congress of the seven groups to announce the front's formation and then move towards the establishment of some form of public presence outside Iraq, though it is hard to see any state being prepared to risk the wrath of the US by hosting such an outfit. “It would need UN protection,” Zubeidy suggests.

Now, I’m not sure how realistic of an idea this is, but the fact that it’s being broached indicates to me that the real insurgency is gaining steam.

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