Meet Michael Corbin, a top dip on Middle East matters. Talking to his fellow practitioners of the art of, uh, negotiation, he provided some deep thoughts about Iran-in-Iraq.
“The Iranians will always have influence in Iraq,” Corbin said, “but they have chosen to use ‘soft power’ for the most part because they have failed at using the ‘hard power.'”
Corbin said that more direct attempts to influence events in Iraq, including support for terrorist groups that the United States accuses Iran of backing, have not “succeeded in making an impression on the Iraqi people that’s favorable.”
I suppose the State Department hasn’t noticed the bloody carnage currently sweeping Iraq, or, if due notice has been taken, our policy meisters don’t think Iran’s involved. Indeed, he tells us that in Iraq, people’s interests for their country balance Iran’s interests, and “nobody is working directly for Iran.”
Really? Not even Moqtada al-Sadr, who has trained in Iran and who goes back and forth all the time?
But then they didn’t believe it during the Iraq War until the military showed that the IEDs were coming from Iran, that Iran was supporting al Qaeda, and that both the Quds Force and Hezbollah were fully engaged in the terror war against us.
Meanwhile we’re waging our own “soft” war against Iraq’s enemies, using the fearsome weapons, as Corbin says, of technical assistance and economic agreements.
That’ll stop the Revolutionary Guards dead in their tracks.