Monday, April 16, 2007

Why Insurgency Is Unbeatable

Attacks Surge as Iraq Militants Overshadow City - New York Times:
The insurgency’s remarkable ability to terrorize residents, killing those who help Americans while coercing others, is undeniably one of its biggest weapons. It appears to be well financed, too.

“Some guys will give you $300 to put this in a hole in the ground and attach a wire,” said John M. Jones, head of the provincial reconstruction team in Diyala, explaining how insurgents recruit bomb emplacers. “Where are the other incentives?”

With the combination of threats and money, Mr. Jones said, the insurgents’ offers are hard for residents to refuse. “You might not agree with the philosophy of what he’s saying, but he’s got the big guns, and they live in the same neighborhood. It’s you, your wife and kids. What can you do?”

Such intimidation makes progress impossible. “We are not able to make even baby steps,” he said. “I hope we’re laying the framework for future baby steps. Right now, I’d say we are pretty much frustrated.”
You can't beat such a movement with soldiers and tanks. It's a heart and minds phenomenon that won't be dismissed through force.
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