Apparently the peace talks didn’t go anywhere. Everyone knows you don’t fight the US military when they’ve had time to set things up the way they want.
Rule #1: Do not give US military forces time to deploy and plan.
Rule #2: If you fail to follow Rule #1, see Rule #3.
Rule #3: Pray. Hard and fast.
I was hoping that these talks would be fruitful. al-Sistani has warned that if we cross the ‘red line’ and attack Najaf, he will “take a different stronger position”. Our battle is with al-Sadr and his al-Mahdi Army militia, but this could easily spread into a general fight with Shiites. The Badr Brigade has a strong presence in Najaf.
There’s no doubt we can win the battle. It’s the cost, in lives now and in relations later, that might be higher than we can accept.