Berlin, Belfast, Baghdad…

Good fences may make good neighbours, as Robert Frost said, but there’s little doubt that the building of a 12-foot-tall wall through the middle of a city is an indication of something more destructive than a desire for neighbourliness. Yet that’s what the US army is doing in Baghdad. Its purpose, according to a press release from Camp Victory, is to “protect the largest predominately (sic) Sunni neighbourhood in east Baghdad. The wall is one of the centrepieces of a new strategy by coalition and Iraqi forces to break the cycle of sectarian violence.”

A venture that begins with the stated aim of introducing democracy to a country and ends up by dividing its capital into two by night has clearly lost its way. Sorry. Changed strategy.

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