Thursday, April 20, 2006

A Shuffle in Iraq?

The Washington Post reports that interim Iraqi prime minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari has consented to drop his bid to retain that post in the new permanent government.

While on the surface this seems encouraging in that, if true, the concession might move the process of selecting a new prime minister forward – along with choosing or confirming the permanent speaker of parliament and the president and two vice-presidents.

However, there are a number of ifs, mights, and mays in all this.

-Has al-Jaafari actually agreed to step aside?

-What is the quid pro quo and is it within the Dawa party or in the larger Iraqi body politic?

-Will Moqtada al-Sadr, al-Jaafari’s chief backer, accept the reported change or will he demand a concession for his party?

-Given the wave of sectarian-based violence, neither the Sunnis nor al-Sadr are unlikely to accept anyone from SCIRI (Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq) as prime minister because of SCIRI’s control of the Badr Brigades. The same objection would apply to al-Sadr with his “control” of the Madhi army.

This would seem to open the way for selection of a “secularist” as prime minister, but the Shi’ite clerics could oppose this option and close it down quickly.

Should the Iraqi’s actually get a functioning government, they have two immediate tasks. The first is to fulfill the pre-constitutional referendum pledge to consider amending the constitution. The second is to publicly ask the U.S. and coalition countries to withdraw all troops and bases.

If the currently improbable becomes the possible, all sides should be ready to move rapidly to anchor the possible in the new reality – before that reality flows away.


Blogger eaglette omlette said...

. . . .I think, from my first impression that you have a great postion. . . ... I do however, have questions about that last statement . .. which makes reference to something like . . hurry up and nail down some event that was formerly thought - - impossibe - - now possible, before it slips away.
Although, I'm not exactly referencing your (some) quote, the problem that I'm having, metaphorically speaking, is that "nailing down" a "heard of turtles" or "a heard of cats" makes reference to a "hurry up" offense which has proven disasterious throught out history.
And even thought you have a military back ground, and now have alligned yourself with this Quaker group to assist with the promotion of peace and peaceful growth here in the U.S. and abroad, all I can do from my perspective is watch. "The proof is in the pudding." Peace and Love Always, Shalom, J. Parsons, Volunteer War Correspondent, a "Lo Impact ane Lo Yield" Domestic War on Poverty, U.S.A./N.A. . .right here on Earth, right now, today, . . . all cultures, and mulitple generations . . . ..
p.s . . . . and GOD bless us one and all, and Tiny Tim, too . .
p.p.s. . . if you must edit this, then I request that you post none of it. I know about liable and slander and vulgarities, and that is not part of my "modis operandi" . ..

12:25 PM  

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