"while Biden may have taken a beating repeatedly in recent years for some foreign policy calls he’s made, his judgment on Iraq’s capacity to stay one country now looks almost prescient."
As the news started to come about how Kurds took the opportunity in gobbling Kirkuk and consequently its Oil field while Sunni insurgents assemble their Caliphate on the backs of millions of dollars stolen from Mosul Banks and extortion rackets; it reminded me the then ridiculed Joe Biden plan - to divide Iraq along Sectarian lines. Unless the Sunni Caliphate collapses on its contradictions or Shiite are able to mount a challenge on backs of Iran or Kurds become magnanimous in giving back the Iraqi territory; there is very little chance of assembling back a broken egg into a whole egg - Iraq. In other words, what Biden sensed - undeniable power of sectarian pull making it unable for that country to exist - is quite possibly becoming a reality.
60 years back Sectarian forces in the South Asian Sub-continent could not stop slaughtering of millions of people and birth of two rival states - India and Pakistan; so we are aware power of sectarian forces in impoverished societies. But then again the important State - India - is getting its act together and has a chance to redeem. So may be the case when Kurds would show the way to rest of the people.....I digress.
Democrats are exactly right to lay the blame of disintegrating Iraq at the feet of Iraqi PM Maliki - he destroyed a united country while serving interests of his Shiite masters - in Iraq and Iran. So much for the wisdom of those religious leaders.
For President Obama to withhold any help in achieving 'united Iraq' until major Iraqi political players undertake some serious core adjustments - that is exactly American Leadership needs to insistent upon. It is OK that many Republicans enjoy cheap shots against the Commander-in-Chief at this point, after all 'politics aren't beanbags'.
We all understand dangers of a vicious militant group like ISIL. After all Talibans did not directly declare Jihad against America but still landed harboring OBL who cost us so much. No doubt, to that extent ISIL is dangerous for all Open and Free Societies.
But ISIL has not declared any war against USA, yet. They are all busy trying to found some kind of a state. (It is extra-ordinary that our Commander-in-Chief has digested precisely these nuances.) Based on all of our understanding of successful Societies and States so far, we know that any attempts to found states on chicanery and extortion would only go so far. Quite possibly all those contradictions and competing fiefdom interests would eventually unravel ISIL. Given all that, the wise course for America is to be patient and wait until ISIL unravels itself (or finishes its war against Bashar al-Assad victoriously). Quite possibly America indeed would need to intervene, but let that be a choice to "complete what is already underway" - process of unwinding ISIL. This means tactically, Administration and American Public simply need to be patient instead of going for any knee-jerk reactions.
In the event of ISIL keep prevailing over its enemies, what can America do? Well, there is yet another deal possible - since Shiite Ayatollahs draw a red line at defending Shiite holy sites of Karbala, Najaf and Samarra; what Administration can say to Iranians is that it will help Iraqi Government forces against ISIL in lieu of Iran showing more willingness to adopt the impeding nuclear deal. Apparently that is what elected leadership of Iran is willing to consider as well and that is in longer term interests of this country.