The Americans are haunted by the possibility that Iraq could go the way of Afghanistan, where Americans initially bought the loyalty of tribal leaders only to have some of them gravitate back to the Taliban when the money stopped...
“Many people believe this will end with tens of thousands of armed people, primarily Sunnis, and this will excite the Shiite militias to grow and in the end it will grow into a civil war,” said Safa Hussein, the deputy national security adviser and a point man on the Awakening program for Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki.
Still, the government has made only the most halting steps toward rapprochement with the Awakening groups, even those who have been fighting insurgents for months in their neighborhoods.
And for the Americans who helped create and nurture the movement, the initial excitement has been tempered by the challenge of managing a huge, and growing, force where many of the men have shadowy pasts.
Let me tell you how this ends. In the name of stopping the short-term being fucked, we get fucked even worse a generation down the road.
Ask, oh, I don't know...Charlie Wilson.