The opposition in Iraq sees the US role and the politicians they put in power through elections as occupiers of questionable integrity. That suggests we have not heard the last of a resistance movement in Iraq, which means that violence and instability is still a threat. It may, however, be hard for the US and American media outlets to predictably blame all criticism on al-Qaeda terrorists in the future.
With Maliki now terrorising his own enemies, often in the name of questionable "plots" to overthrow him, Iraq will remain volatile. Bear in mind that after all these years, the Iraqis are still suffering from a broken electricity system as well as serious food and medical shortages.
The county has a long way to go to recover from a war that is not over. The US, meanwhile is going, at least publicly. The neo-cons who backed the war now see Iraq as a "surrogate" that will remain dependent -- or at least, so they hope. To paraphrase a clichÃ©: The war that began with the bang of shock and awe ended with the whimper of withdrawal with few of the issues solved. Many Americans are saying "good," while most Iraqis are saying good riddance.
Cross-posted from Al Jazeera
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