Thursday, February 07, 2013

Violence, protests and rumors about Nouri's son continue

Iraq Body Count notes 80 violent deaths so far this month through yesterday which was only the sixth day of the month.   Violence continues today.  All Iraq News reports a Mosul roadside bombing has claimed the lives of 2 Iraqi soldiers, three homes in nothern Diyala Province were bombed leaving eighteen people injured, a Baghdad car bombing has injured an employee of Irbahim al-Jaafari's -- al-Jaafari is the head of the National Alliance and 1 government employee was shot dead in BaghdadAl Rafidayn identifies the government employee as the Director General of the Ministry of Housing and Construction and  Al Rafidayn identifies the location on the home bombings as Wajihiya ("north of Baquba").

On the topic of violence, Nouri's flunky Muqdad al-Sharifi was insisting to AFP yesterday that the protests were a security threat.  Today the gabby al-Sharifi is telling AP and anyone else who will listen (or anyone who'll practice stenography)  that the electoral commission are receiving death threats from Sunni areas.  Code for "Sunnis be crazy."  It's good to see that al-Sharifi's not interested in even pretending to be objective.  Better the reality of Nouri and his flunkies be exposed early on.  Interestingly enough, he's now just "a member of the election commission" -- that's how AP bills him today.  (He is actually, as AFP noted, "the chief electoral officer of Iraq's Independent High Electoral Commission.")  While Nouri and his cronies try to dismiss and attack the protesters, All Iraq News notes Ammar al-Hakim, head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, has issued a call for the legitimate demands of the protesters to be heeded.  The outlet notes that al-Hakim has been in contact with some of the southern tribal leaders and they are calling for the protesters to be listened to.  Al Rafidayn notes that al-Hakim declared that the protests are a Constitutional right and that the government must listen to the legimate demands.  Meanwhile Kitabat reports that protesters are being targeted for assassination and that in Baghdad alone 13 protests have been assassinate.

Al Mada notes the sit-in in Mousl continues and that belongings of the protesters were stolen from their tents.  Sheikh Saeed Lafi states that Friday's demonstration will rally the people and see tribal leaders and elders taking part in the demonstration and calling for the Federal Court to honor the mandates passed by Parliament (limiting the Speaker of Parliament and Prime Minister to two terms only -- as the president is already limited).  The Sheikh notes that the Federal Court is biased towards Nouri and under the control of Nouri's Dawa political party.  He also states that it is clear that Iran is influecing events in Iraq.  Kitabat adds that Friday's slogan is "NO to the Tyrannical Ruler."  The protesters state that Iraq is headed towards the abyss and they will not assist in the making of a new dictator or in helping the dicator exploit the people.

 Like the protests, questions surrounding a billion dollar deal just won't go away.  From the December 26th snapshot:

October 9th, Nouri was strutting across the world stage as he inked a $4.2 billion weapons deal with Russia. The deal is now iffy if not off (an Iraqi delegation went to Russia  at the start of the month to see if the deal could be salvaged) and it went down in charges of corruption. Among those said to be implicated in the corruption is Nouri's own son. All Iraq News reports that State of Law is attempting to remove Nouri's name from the list of those Parliament is investigating for the corruption in that deal.  In addition, Al Mada reports that Nouri is refusing to answer questions from the Parliament relating to that arms deal.

You may remember that when the rumors started to really swirl, Nouri and his cronies turned on Ali al-Dabbagh, Nouri's spokesperson.  Thing is, they turned to late.  Ali al-Dabbagh had already seen the writing on the wall and left Iraq.  Not before making it clear that he knew a great deal about the Russian arms deal -- and repeatedly maintaining that he hadn't made a cent off it.  He's currently in the UAE.  All Iraq News reports today that Ali's gotten chatty with the Russian press. Who made money off the corrupt deal?  Ali says it was Nouri's advisors and Nouri's son.

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