General John Abizaid acknowledges guerrilla warfare in Iraq
The new head of US Central Command, General John Abizaid, decided to do the things that neither his predecessor, General Tommy Franks, nor US administrator Paul Bremer resolved to do. Abizaid said, attacks on American military men had all indications of a classic guerrilla warfare. As it is well known, Washington officials have never used such a definition before. However, the general added, the guerrilla warfare was not intense. Nevertheless, Abizaid emphasized, it was a war, and coalition forces would cope with the Iraqi resistance.
The general's confession is not a big sensation, though. The fact of the guerrilla warfare in Iraq is obvious, albeit it is not very intensive. In addition to it, it would not be right to judge upon the situation in Iraq on the base of the information from the US Central Command only. However, it is still not known, who is in charge of the Iraqi resistance.
American officials have repeatedly said, there was no central command for the guerrilla warfare in Iraq. A certain coordination could be seen on the regional level only. Yet, the occupation administration believes, the major threat is coming from Baath activists of the middle level.
One should remind here that before the war was launched in Iraq, journalists were trying to guess, who was going to rule the post-war country. The Iraqi opposition (emigrants) was too separated, it did not enjoy the support among Iraqi people either. Current events show, the situation has not changed a bit in this respect. Former opposition activists may rule Iraq only with coalition forces' support. It was also supposed, Baath party members might have been included in the Iraqi administration. At least, Washington officials did not rule out such a possibility. The matter was not about senior statesmen, it was about the middle level of the party – the people, who currently command the Iraqi resistance against coalition forces, as American officials think.
One shall assume, the American administration has failed to come to consent to common party officials. It is not excluded, they have not had any contacts with them at all. Probably. Iraqi officials felt deceived against the background of the so-called "triumph" of yesterday's opposition emigrants. Former Baath party officials have no power and no authorities – nothing that they had during Saddam Hussein's regime. Former officers of Saddam's special services and the Republican Guards are also implicated in attacks against American soldiers - they can be added on the "middle level of Baath" category too. A successful career is not likely to happen, without the membership in the ruling party.
American officials have made a mistake in Iraq. It they had managed to win former Baath officials over to their side, General Abizaid would not have made such confessions.