Monday, May 19, 2008

War Strategies

Don't for a moment believe that humanitarian crisis in Sadr City is an accident or some unintended by-product of conflict. It is a deliberate strategy, indeed it is a time honored method to subjugate a rebellious urban area.

The Siege of Sadr City follows a pattern of military strategy reaching back into antiquity. Israel has laid siege to the Gaza Strip for almost two years in a mostly successful attempt to quell Palestinian resistance. The Nazi siege of the Warsaw Ghetto lasted for less than a month from April 21, 1943, when Jewish fighters drove back German troops, until May 16, 1943 when the Germans crushed the last of the resistance and every Jew in the city was either dead or on a train to the Treblinka concentration camp. The Roman siege of Carthage began in 149 BC and lasted for three years. When it ended Carthage had been wiped from the face of the earth.

Siege is a weapon of the mighty against the weak. It is designed to conquer with minimal offensive casualties. The intent of a siege is to make everyone in a city suffer - fighters, women, and children alike. Starvation and disease are the weapons of a siege. The theory is that even the most dedicated fighters will surrender when their families begin dying. It is a ruthless strategy as it depends for success on the slow, painful suffering of children racked by dysentery, cholera, and starvation.

The Siege of Sadr City is the latest proof of the total disdain the United States government has for the people of Iraq.

No comments: