بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Regarding “hearts and minds”; have you ever stopped to consider why the attack against the Iraqi people, their livelihood, and their infrastructure is by far more ferocious and spiteful than the assault on American and allied forces. Why is that necessary, if the population was really seething with hatred and animosity against the “occupiers”. Why indeed are they attacking the Iraqi people with such cruelty? Just think about that. Such thing has precedence neither in Vietnam nor any other conflict, including the WWII. I mean the Germans were never known to attack their own people, nor did that happen in Japan or Vietnam. The naïve blockheads of the antiwar movement, the well meaning ones, I mean, and not those with hidden motives, just don’t see this. The attack on the Iraqi majority is simply an attack on their intrinsic underlying support for this thing. That is the simple truth. As one simple tribesman once put it: “had it not been for this thesis of liberation, the Americans would have found it impossible just to stay on the ground”. Yes indeed, the hatred of the Zarqawis of this world is much more poisonous towards the Iraqis as it is towards the Americans. And if you read again his famous letter you will see this explicitly expressed. The U.S. policy makers and forces on the ground themselves underestimated this crucial factor and have acted in many instances with foolishness that contributed a great deal to the present troubles.
Nevertheless, the basic underlying grass root support is still there despite all the suffering and troubles; for the heart of a people is a profound phenomenon. Just look at the failure of Muqtada Al-Sadr movement to ignite the kind of conflagration amongst the Shiaa population that many were expecting, despite the fierce confrontation between his supporters and the American forces.
American and Allied strategists, should understand this clearly and appreciate that it is the main asset and essential strength of this campaign, and that success hinges on rectifying the errors and restoring this popular current to its initial strength and enthusiasm. And that is doable and possible. And it will be the people who are going to defend their gains against both internal and external enemies.