Tuesday, June 17, 2014


Lots of criticism flying around the net today about people suddenly being experts on the events in Iraq:


I am feeling a wee bit guilty on this because I did to a CTV News Channel hit this morning about this stuff.  I was asked in the semi-pre-interview if I could speak about particular individuals and I said nay.

What I did say was:
In response to a question about whether Maliki would be able to reach out to the non-ISIS Sunnis, I said unlikely because of previous broken promises, the Sunnis were unlikely to support him.  Also, Maliki seemed uninterested in reaching out.
In response to a question about US/Iran cooperation, I said don't expect too much, given that the Iranians shed a heap of US blood when the US were in Iraq.
In response to a question on threats elsewhere, I indicated that ISIS was doing well in places that had weak/non-existent governments.  Other neighbors are not so civil war-ish, so don't expect dominoes to fall. 
I accepted in the invite since I thought the questions would be about US foreign policy (which I have taught and experienced).  I don't feel bad about the answers to these questions because I have written on contagion, and I have worked in the area of ethnic conflict and accommodation (most of my CV).  Still, I was on shaky territory but perhaps not quite the danger zone.

Of course, my key qualification for talking about Iraq is that I did work in Rumsfeld's Pentagon, just like Wolfowitz, Feith and others.  Just joking!

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