Robert Fisk, March 2, 2004: Odd, isn’t it? There never has been a civil war in Iraq. I have never heard a single word of animosity between Sunnis and Shias in Iraq.
Al-Qa’ida has never uttered a threat against Shias – even though al-Qa’ida is a Sunni-only organisation. Yet for weeks, the American occupation authorities have been warning us about civil war, have even produced a letter said to have been written by an al-Qa’ida operative, advocating a Sunni-Shia conflict. Normally sane journalists have enthusiastically taken up this theme. Civil war.
Somehow I don’t believe it.
Odd indeed. Rather than accept Fisk’s delightful suggestion that his collegues are going insane perhaps some of them have been reading his previous articles for the Independent as dug out by the blog COINTELPRO:
Take this from the man who has “never heard a single word of animosity between Sunnis and Shias in Iraq” :
Robert Fisk, April 13, 2003: And so the gun-fighting that broke out yesterday between property owners and looters was, in effect, a conflict between Sunni and Shia Muslims. By failing to end this violence by stoking ethnic hatred through their inactivity the Americans are now provoking a civil war in Baghdad.
Or this from the man who is wondering why there are fears of civil war, writing in the Independent on March 19, 2003: The nightmare is not so much the cruel bombardment of Iraq, whose inevitability is now assured, as the growing conviction that the Anglo-American invasion will provoke a civil war, of Shia against Sunnis, of Sunnis against Kurds, of Kurds and Turkomans.
So for over a year Fisk himself has been suggesting that a civil war could be on the cards in Iraq.
And yet now he heavily hints that anyone who expresses even the fear of such a development is being duped by Iraqi exiles acting as proxies for the American planners.