[Michael O'Hanlon and Edward Joseph] hoping to draw the attention of Bush administration policymakers are proposing a partition plan for Iraq that would divide the country into three main regions.
The proposal would require the acquiescence of major political factions in Iraq. There would be substantial, voluntary movement in mixed, volatile areas.
This idea echos the plan supported by Joe Biden and Sam Brownback to divide the country into Shia, Sunni and Kurd dominated regions and is only slightly less stupid than Tommy Thompson's idea to partition the country into 18 parts.
That these men believe that any political factions would acquiesce to an American partition simply proves they haven't been paying attention for the last 4 years. Our forces haven't been able to convince any of the parties to do anything to date. Not even the Shia, who were effectively given the keys to the entire country when the Bush administration created the new government.
As for the substantial, voluntary relocation they imagine, it will most certainly be substantial, but hardly voluntary. We've already seen massive coerced relocations by Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish death squads as each faction attempts to claim territory. This plan would legitimize these efforts with an American seal of approval.
We already have a long sad history of these ethnically based partition plans. India and Pakistan remain on the edge of war over boundaries disputed for 60 years now and the European plan to ethnically partition Bosnia resulted in a bloody campaign as all sides slaughtered their rivals in a final land grab.
A plan that calls for the voluntary ethnic-cleansing of Iraq would be a disaster.