07 April 2009

Update: Even the Sons of Iraq Face Unemployment

We talked earlier about the Sons of Iraq--a concerned local citizens group of Sunnis, who are often former insurgents--and their impending unemployment, and the implications this has for Iraqi security. Thomas Ricks, author of "The Gamble", a book about General Petraeus and The Surge of 2007, has written a post in Foreign Policy Online about the further implications of the payment halt to the SOI, quoting from a former advisor to the Iraqi Army.

All of these attempts to erode the Awakening Council and SOI, all clearly part of the politics and politicking within and around the GOI, seriously undermine the transition from Coalition Forces' control to Iraqi control. While the SOI are hardly perfect, in many neighborhoods and areas they were perceived as being an important component to establishing and enhancing security, and have often been well regarded by their local ISF counterparts. The GOI's unwillingness and/or inability to properly incorporate them into the ISF and the GOI structure, will make progress going forward that much harder, risks the hard won and expensively fragile stability that has developed, and risks destabilizing Iraq as US and Coalition Forces began to pull way back and transition out of theater over the next twelve to eighteen months.

Interesting. While I have to admit that it was short-sighted to expect long-term loyalty from those that were essentially paid not to fight for al Qaeda in Mesopotamia and other organizations, the Sons of Iraq have made significant security contributions in Sunni-dominated areas. It would benefit the US and Iraq to continue to employ the SOI, since there are plenty worse ways they might attempt to make a living...

1 comment:

Padmanaban said...

That’s right. Unemployment is increasing day by day. Though there are job openings but still the case is very worse, since the companies are selective, and depending on the need, they take their time in finding the right candidate.
There should be some changes to be taken effect in the education system.