Monday, January 16, 2012

Drama queen Nouri

Today Iraq's Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued the following:

Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Muhammad Jawad al Dorki Summoned the Turkish Ambassador in Baghdad, Younis Demirar .
Mr. al Dorki transferred the Iraqi government's concern of the recent statements made by the Turks officials related to the internal affairs of Iraq which would impact negatively on relations between the two countries, and requested him to convey that to his government and the need to avoid anything that might disturb the good bilateral relations.
For his part, the Turkish Ambassador stressed that the Turks officials' statements were in good intention, adding that he will inform his government in Ankara with the Iraqi side position.
The two sides confirmed their countries' keenness to sustain their relationship .
The meeting was attended by Dr. Walid Sheltagh, Head of the Neighboring Countries Department .

Reuters notes, "Iraqi officials did not specify what Turkish remarks they were angry about, but the complaint appeared to stem from comments earlier this month by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, who said a Sunni-Shi'ite conflict in Iraq, if unleashed, could engulf the entire Islamic world." Yes, it seems Nouri is determined to expand the political crisis beyond Iraq. Aswat al-Iraq notes Iraqiya MP Hamid al-Mutlaq states that "Nouri al-Maliki [has] the responsibility for security deterioration in his capacity as Commander in Chief of the armed forces and the first responsible authority for the security ministries."

Meanwhile Al Mada reports that the Sadr bloc notes that there is at least one more meeting to take place (there was one yesterday) before a national conference can be held. Not a good sign when a national conference is supposedly needed and was called last month but all that's happened thus far is weeks and weeks of pre-meetings. Al Rafidayn notes that yesterday's meeting was the first one with the blocs (not all blocs, just the major ones) and that Nouri met with President Jalal Talabani and Speaker of Parliament Osama al-Nujaifi briefly yesterday and the three agreed another meeting was needed in the next days but they couldn't agree when and they couldn't agree on any details regarding the national conference.

The two largest blocs are State of Law (headed by Nouri) and Iraqiya (headed by Ayad Allawi). Iraqiya came in first in the March 2010 elections. Nouri started the political crisis last month by going after his political rivals in Iraqiya by demanding that Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi be arrested on charges of terrorism and that Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq be stripped of his post. Al Mada notes another pre-meeting that might take place, one between Nouri and Allawi while Al-Rafidayn reports that Allawi declared yesterday that Iraq had entered "the most dangerous phase in its history." He sees a return of sectarian tensions. Dar Addustour notes State of Law is demanding al-Hashemi return to Baghdad for a trial.

And Ghaith Abdul-Ahad (Guardian) has an important article -- one that should especially be read by idiots at the New York Times and Russia Today who fail to grasp that detention in Iraq is not a joy or just one of the country's 'growing pains.'

Isaiah will have a new comic either tonight or in the morning tomorrow. Remember Kat's "Kat's Korner: Ani DiFranco's embarrassing odor" and "Kat's Korner: Adam Levine itches for one on the flip side."

The e-mail address for this site is