From Bad To Worse, How Militias Moved Into The Iraqi Police Force, And The United States Failed At Nation Building. Part Two Of An Interview With Jerry Burke, Former Advisor T
This is the second part of an interview with Jerry Burke. In May 2003, he was contacted to make a study of Iraq’s police force for the Justice and State Departments. That transitioned into being the advisor to the Baghdad Police from May 2003 to June 2004. He then returned for a second tour of Iraq to aid the Iraqi Interior Ministry from March 2005 to February 2006. During his first time in the country, he found that the American government was woefully ill prepared for Iraq. They never committed the personal nor funds necessary to rebuild the Iraqi police and justice system, which undermined the rule of law. When Burke returned to Iraq in 2005, he found that the situation had grown worse. As part of the interim Iraqi government, the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council (SIIC) was given control of the Interior Ministry, and was placing entire units of its Badr Brigade militia into the police force. The United States leadership was taking a hands off approach to this development, arguing that it was up to the Iraqis to sort it out. The result was that part of the Iraqi government began to take part in the civil war, as Shiite militias within the security forces began killing, kidnapping, and torturing Sunnis. That turn of events was just the latest example of how the United States was failing to not only provide security in Iraq, but to build a democratic society there.