---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: barry levine
Date: Wed, Sep 17, 2014 at 9:51 AM
Subject: re: Shiite Militias Pose Challenge for U.S. in Iraq
To the Editor:
What doesn't exercise a monopoly on the use of force cannot be a State. Iraq has failed. It was invented in 1916 by Mark Sykes and Francois-George Picot for the convenience of the British and French empires of the day, but has never had either cohesion or logic as a nation. Like Yugoslavia, it could be held together by a repressive central regime or a while. Like Yugoslavia, it dissolved in blood when the peoples could be heard.
It is a fool's errand to try to hold together an Iraq that the Iraqis don't want. The U.N. charter recognizes that they have a right to self-determination not as Iraqis, but as peoples. The Kurds there have taken the lead in establishing good governance. The local Shia and Sunni communities should do as well. To set the U.S. against their legitimate national aspirations would be to put us on the wrong side of history.
Barry Haskell Levine