“When the U.S. government toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003, it thought regime change would help bring democracy to Iraq, and then to the rest of the region. [. . .]
“Rather than viewing the fall of Saddam as an occasion to create a liberal democracy, most Iraqis saw it as an opportunity to redress injustices in the distribution of power among the country’s major ethnic and religious groups.
“Hence, while Bush administration officials were celebrating the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the head of al Qaeda in Iraq, and spinning it asanother ‘turning point’ in the ‘War on Terror,’ the elimination of Zarqawi was seen in Iraq as another victory for the Shi’ites and their current Kurdish allies as they try to contain an insurgency led by various Sunni groups, such as former members of the Ba’ath regime and Islamist guerrillas, including foreign recruits such as the Jordanian Zarqawi (and, apparently, his Egyptian successor). In fact, some analysts have speculated that Zarqawi was betrayed by rival Sunni insurgents.”
Leon T. Hadar, writing on “After Zarqawi,” in the August issue of Chronicles