Wednesday, March 01, 2006

A False Dichotomy from President Bush and the NYTimes

According to the Associated Press, President Bush decried the latest surge in sectarian violence Tuesday and said that for Iraqis "the choice is chaos or unity."

Amazingly, the NYTimes lead editorial poses the same false dichotomy: "The only alternative to civil war is, and has always been, a national unity government of Shiites, Sunni Arabs and Kurds."

There is at least one other perfectly obvious choice: peaceful separation into Kurdish, Sunni Arab and Shiite Arab nations. Issues would have to be worked out: division of oil revenue and governance of Baghdad and Kirkuk, for starters. If Bush would focus on that, maybe, just maybe the steam would go out of the insurgency.

Maybe we and the Iraquis could live peacefully ever after.

I could name two other major beneficiaries: the petroleum service companies and the international oil companies. There's lots of work to be done in Iraq and lots of oil to be pumped if stability can be established.

Oh, yes another goodie, the price of oil might drop a dollar or two per barrel.

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