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So why are they still there?
The Right Wing press has been suffering seizures over the lull in violence in Iraq, exclaiming how "liburls are hand-wringing" over "Bush's success." But why aren't they asking the NEXT question? (they never ask the next smart question) Why did the violence slow down?
There are a multitude of answers. The first being the fact that Moqtada al-Sadr's Madhi Army has declared a cease fire.
The recent "pact of honor" made by two of Iraq's most influential Shiite clerics, Moqtada al-Sadr and Abdul Aziz al-Hakim—aimed at preventing violence and helping to maintain the "Islamic and national interest" of Iraq—appears to signal a significant shift toward stability in Iraq.
The second reason violence is down is due to the fact that there is hardly anyone else left to ethnically cleanse. Much of the work of the Sunni/Shia Death Squads has been completed. The "unpure" Muslims were either executed or they have fled.
Fewer people to shoot at. Bush's war has created a silent disaster that is rarely reported on - the existence of over 5 million refugees, half of which have fled the nation entirely. There are over 1.2 million in Syria, there are 750,000 Iraqi refugees in Jordan, 100,000 in Egypt, 54,000 in Iran, 40,000 in Lebanon, 10,000 in Turkey and 200,000 in various Persian Gulf countries, according to the UNHCR.
So why are we still there? The answer is obvious, Iraq is not stable, it is far from stable and I doubt will be stable in the next decade. Why is it far from stable? Why will Bush keep troops there?
The cease fire from the Madhi Army is only for six months, it expires in January, 2008.
Refugees are returning home because they are out of money to support themselves and their families. Which means the ethnic cleansing is far from over once these "cleansed" neighborhoods begin to fill back up with the original inhabitants.
Oh yeah, they still have oil.