TCS Daily


The Useless Blood of May

By Ralph Kinney Bennett - May 13, 2005 12:00 AM

What do you do when you're Islamothug Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and you're running out of "front line" fanatics to handle your suicide bombings?

You lie. You get some pathetic shlub who's just come over the border from Syria with an I.Q. well south of his enthusiasm to fight the infidels. You dramatically inform him he is needed to drive an important cargo of explosives to location X, where al-Qaida experts are going to make it into a bomb that will be employed on an important mission.

Off he goes at the wheel of some beat-up white Nissan, sitting low on its springs from the cargo of artillery shells in the back. What he doesn't know, of course is that he is the bomb, complete with remotely controlled fuse hidden somewhere in the car.

He's wheeling through the outskirts of Baghdad, drumming his thumbs on the steering wheel and trying to remember the name of the guy he's supposed to meet for the delivery but he's actually one cell phone ring away from what some believe is a rendezvous with numerous virgins.

Thus does the Iraq war lumber on in this bloody month of May. In a paroxysm of savagery, the so-called "insurgents" have killed more than 400, mostly Iraqi civilians, in a series of "suicide" bombing attacks across the country.

The desperation of the Islamofanatics is evident in such actions as an attempted attack by as many as 50 fighters against a Marine convoy near Qaim a few days ago. Two car bombs were employed in the attack. One was blown up by a Marine tank round; the other blew up possibly prematurely but managed to damage an armored Humvee. Outright "foot soldier" attacks like this against Americans have been rare because they have always ended badly for the "young lions of martyrdom" in the withering counter fire.

Give these murderous fanatics credit. As we have pointed out in previous TCS articles, they continue to show the gruesome fatal resiliency of the Japanese in a losing cause on Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

But one must wonder at the cynicism of their leadership, who know that they now fight for nothing but blood hatred. They offer the people of Iraq nothing -- neither stability, nor "heritage," nor hope. They are increasingly isolated and informed upon, forced into more remote regions of the country.

And now there are more signs that one of al-Qaida's chief sources of cannon fodder -- young Iraqi Sunni men -- may be diminishing. Here's a headline from the May 9th edition of the Arabic newspaper Alsharq Alawsat:

"Iraqi Arab Sunnis head towards Army Enlisting Posts in spite of Explosions."

The article (picked up thanks to the ever-amazing chrenkoff.blogspot.com) notes that "we witnessed thousands of Iraqi Arab Sunnis coming from different provinces to military enlisting stations in Baghdad."

The paper interviewed some of them, including Ahmed Mahmud, 30, who says, "I came because I desire to join in protecting the peace and my country." Another, who had served in the old Iraqi army, says, "I heard a number of (Sunni) religious leaders call for us to join the new army."

This is a significant development, but as it unfolds, the desperate and futile bloodshed continues, with more and more Sunnis becoming victims as well as Shiites. One cannot underestimate the terrorists' continued capacity to commit large-scale murder, but it is possible that this bloody May could be a turning point akin to the Mau Mau in Kenya beginning to lose their hold on their own Kikuyu tribesmen after the loathsome butchery of the Lari massacre in March 1953.

Like many Kikuyu tribesmen then, it is clear that Iraqis, including many Sunnis -- revolted by the daily butchery -- hate the terrorists rather than fear them. They see al-Zarqawi's "young lions" for what they are -- simple thugs and murderers, the enemies of the peace in this new nation.

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