This morning there are two stories about Iraq in the news. The first is the head of the British army, General Sir Richard Dannat's interview with the Daily Mail and his defence of that interview to the BBC this morning. In the Daily Mail interview, he said that "get ourselves out sometime soon because our presence exacerbates the security problems". That's not a particularly unusal view for a commanding offcier to take in a warzone really, however it falls far short of the manner in which the much of the anti-war mainstream have portrayed the comment. For them, it is indicative of a call for withdrawal as soon as possible.
However, whilst there's the General's point about troop presence exacerbating problems, the second story about Iraq may have much further consequences for British troops and Iraq in general. Yesterday, the Iraqi Parliament has passed a federalism bill which set in motion the process for the semi-autonomous regions. The legislation proposes the effective balkanisation of Iraq and the weakening of Iraqi territorial sovereignty. The border argument surrounding the legislation - which Croydonian has dilligently researched here may well be the precursor to much worse consequences. By legislating for the separation and break-up of Iraq into small constituent parts, the potential of full-scale civil war increases far more than our mere presence could ever manage.