Muqtada's Shift

Muqtada al-Sadr goes in for a little political repositioning, "reaching out to a broad array of Sunni leaders" and distancing itself from the US-backed, Shiite-led Iraqi government that it once supported. Sadr's swung back and forth on this kind of thing, so I don't think it need be seen as reflecting any true change of heart. Still, he seems like a pretty canny politician who has a better grasp than most Americans on the state of Iraqi public opinion.

Thus, when he has his minions saying things like "We want to aim the guns against the occupation and al-Qaeda, not between Iraqis" I think that's a sound indication that this is the political sweet spot in Iraq. That, in turn, is just another indication that if we leave Iraq, there'll be nothing left for Iraqis to do but turn on al-Qaeda; it's only the fact of the occupation that prevents the objective unpopularity of al-Qaeda from becoming the most salient thing.

Presented by

Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. Who cares about youth? James Hamblin turns to his colleague Jeffrey Goldberg for advice.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. James Hamblin turns to a colleague for advice.

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Video

Pittsburgh: 'Better Than You Thought'

How Steel City became a bikeable, walkable paradise

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

More in Politics

Just In