The US military has embarked on a new and risky strategy in Iraq by arming Sunni insurgents in the hope that they will tackle the extremist al-Qaida in Iraq.Arming people who hate our guts is a proud GOP tradition going back to Ronald Reagan and the Iran-Contra affair. But this makes you wonder if the White House hasn't been talking to Guinness about slipping an entire Republican chapter into a special edition.
The US high command this month gave permission to its officers on the ground to negotiate arms deals with local leaders. Arms, ammunition, body armour and other equipment, as well as cash, pick-up trucks and fuel, have already been handed over in return for promises to turn on al-Qaida and not attack US troops.
The WaPo reported on this story last week:
But aligning Americans with fighters whose long-term agenda remains unclear -- with regard to either Americans or the Shiite-led government -- is also a strategy born of desperation. It contradicts repeated declarations by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki that no groups besides the Iraqi and American security forces are allowed to bear arms. And some American soldiers worry that standing up a Sunni militia could have dire consequences if the group turns on its U.S. partners.It would be funny if it didn't mean more of our boys will come home in boxes. Please, no more hysterics from Bush administration enablers about war critics being the ones endangering American troops.
"We have made a deal with the devil," said an intelligence officer in the battalion.
For God's sake, the least the Darwin Award nominees in the White House could do is go before cameras in Baghdad to demonstrate their new strategy in person, first yelling, "Hey watch this!"
[h/t Crooks and Liars]