Civil war in Iraq

Civil War. They’re the words on everyone’s lips lately. I don’t think it’s there yet, but I think you’ve got to admit it’s starting to get pretty darn close.

So what has to occur before we can say that Iraq is embroilled in a civil war?

Some opinions:

[quote]Top general dismisses talk of Iraq civil war
By Dan Genz Tribune-Herald staff writer
Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Is a civil war about to erupt in Iraq? Not yet.

How many members of Al-Qaida are in Iraq? About 1,000.

What’s the most important next step in Iraq? Creating an effective, unified government that will earn the public’s respect.

That’s all according to the top American military officer overseeing the war in Iraq.

Just days from the Iraq war’s third anniversary, Army Gen. John P. Abizaid answered a few burning questions in a private meeting with U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Waco, and U.S. Rep. Jim Walsh, R-N.Y., Tuesday in Walsh’s office on Capitol Hill.

He offered what Edwards called an

Both of these quotes are concerned with whether a civil war has started or when it will. I aqgree with what you’re implying - it isn’t a civil war yet.
But when Army Gen. John P. Abizaid says "we are a long way from civil war in Iraq’ but a Shiite Iraqi police colonel says “If the army and police and [US] forces don’t cooperate to control the street, we will see more killing that will lead to civil war,” all I’m reminded of is all the previous statements of “thruthiness” I’ve heard before.

Given how much time Western journalists can spend outside the green zone these days and how dangerous it is for them, I think you have to be very suspicious of a lot of reporting (Yes, however, most major news orgs. have western Iraqi stringers helping them out who can go into the field without sticking out like a sore thumb).

But if you look at that quote from the Iraqi colonel and look at the death counts since the bombing of the shrine, it puts another layer of cloud over the Iraqi situation.

For me the civil war starts when the political leaders of the Shites and the Shia start openly refusing to work with each other and the death count continues at the current level. But I’m interested in others opinions of what would constitute civil war…


So what has to occur before we can say that Iraq is embroilled in a civil war?[/quote]

[quote=“Lt. Gen. William E. Odom”]In reality, a civil war in Iraq began just weeks after U.S. forces toppled Saddam. Any close observer could see that then; today, only the blind deny it… [b]Iraqis are fighting Iraqis. Insurgents have killed far more Iraqis than Americans. That