- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A friend with decades of experience in intelligence makes the prediction that Iraq eventually will cease to exist, perhaps just five years from now, with the big pieces swallowed up by Syria, Iran and perhaps Turkey and some other neighbors, and with an independent Kurdistan in the middle:
Within the next five years I see Syria moving into southern Mesopotamia, then being pushed south by the Kurds, further thwarted by the combination of the desert and home problems from Lebanon and Israel, to be stopped no further east than al Haibbaniyah by the threatening Saudis.
Iran will move on all fronts into Iraq except the southeastern corner around al Basrah where Kuwaiti and Saudi forces aided by the US will stop them . . . and in the northeast arrested by Kurds supported by the US.
Meanwhile, here is more from Joel Wing, known to fans of this blog’s comment pages as Jwing.
(HT to Blake Hounshell, who has yet to appear on Great Satan’s Girlfriend)