WASHINGTON — A leading Saudi analyst has termed the three-year, U.S.-led
stabilization campaign in Iraq a "lost battle."
Nawaf Obaid, managing director of the Saudi National Security Assessment
project, said the United States has failed to win the insurgency war in
Iraq. Obaid envisions the splintering of Iraq into ethnic regions, with Iran
as the dominating force.
At a two-day conference on U.S.-Arab relations in Washington, Obaid, an
adviser to the Saudi royal family, said violence would increase in Iraq.
He said Teheran would also expand its influence in Iraq, as the Islamic
Revolutionary Guard Corps increases aid to Shi'ite militias.
"It is already a lost battle," Obaid said on Oct. 31.
Obaid released a study that the Kurds would accelerate their drive for
independence in northern Iraq. The study also envisioned a waning of U.S.
influence in Iraq as the Sunni insurgency gathers strength.
"It [U.S. mission in Iraq] has failed by every single measure that you
can think of," Obaid
said. "The failure is only compounded by the fact that we just don't know
what the endgame is."
The report said Iranian-backed Shi'ites have infiltrated the Iraq Army
and police. Obaid said the effort has been supported by the Iranian
"All indications point to a current state of civil war and the
disintegration of the Iraqi state," Obaid said. "Unfortunately the
assessment is very dire, and we don't think there is a
possibility now to avoid a potential disintegration of Iraq."