Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Nouri and his broken promises

Starting with the violence.  National Iraqi News Agency notes that an armed clash in Mosul has left 2 Iraqi soldiers dead and a third injured, a Ramadi home invasion has left 2 cousins dead, an armed clash in Tikrit left 2 police officers dead and a third injured, and the preacher at Al-Huther mosque (Abdul Rahman al-Samarrai) was shot dead in a Baquba shop.

The violence has steadily increased since 2011.  The United Nations declared last month the most deadly in Iraq in five years.  That's one of the many crises that the country currently faces.  Despite having been prime minister since 2006, Nouri al-Maliki has failed to provide peace or security.

Nouri is an artificial leader for many Iraqis.  First of all, he was an exile who returned only after the US invaded.  Secondly, he was installed by the Bully Boy Bush White House who nixed the Iraqi Parliament's choice of Ibrahim al-Jafaari.  Third?  The Iraqi people called for change in the parliament election.  In 2010, his State of Law came in second to Iraqiya which should have meant, per the country's constitution, that Iraqiya get first crack at the post of prime minister and forming a Cabinet.  Instead, Nouri refused to leave the post.  Refused to surrender it and respect the will of the Iraqi people.  For 8 months after the election, he refused to honor the results.  And he got away with it because the White House backed him. And the US government brokered a contract that circumvented the Iraqi Constitution and the will of the Iraqi people by giving Nouri a second term.  So much for the US government helping to build 'democracy' in Iraq.

From John Barry's "'The Engame' Is A Well Researched, Highly Critical Look at U.S. Policy in Iraq" (Daily Beast):

Washington has little political and no military influence over these developments [in Iraq]. As Michael Gordon and Bernard Trainor charge in their ambitious new history of the Iraq war, The Endgame, Obama's administration sacrificed political influence by failing in 2010 to insist that the results of Iraq’s first proper election be honored: "When the Obama administration acquiesced in the questionable judicial opinion that prevented Ayad Allawi's bloc, after it had won the most seats in 2010, from the first attempt at forming a new government, it undermined the prospects, however slim, for a compromise that might have led to a genuinely inclusive and cross-sectarian government."

Ali Abedl Sadah (Al-Monitor) reports:

During a meeting with a number of Iraqi journalists at his house in the upscale neighborhood of Harthiya in Baghdad, Allawi said, “Maliki did not listen to our advice concerning the need to heed the demands of the demonstrators and attempt to implement as many as possible.” He pointed out that Maliki “went in the opposite direction and described the protesters as terrorists and Baathists.”
Allawi, a secular politician of Shiite roots, heads a list led by mostly Sunni politicians. In 2004, he served as head of the government in the framework of an agreement sponsored by the United States.
“Maliki told us that he has to listen to and contain demonstrators, but instead he described them as terrorists and Baathists, and he even attacked the demonstration squares with arms,” Allawi said.
Allawi believes that the demonstrations will not stop “as long as Maliki is in power.” He said, "The government should resign in order to form a reduced government that can oversee early elections without allowing its members to participate in these elections,” adding, “The second track of the solution may be the return to the Erbil Agreement and the achievement of a prompt partnership."

The Erbil Agreement?  That's the legal contract the US brokered.  Nouri would not step down.  The White House backed him in that.  It was as though Bully Boy Bush refused to leave the White House in 2009.  The White House backed Nouri's eight month tantrum (the political stalemate following the March 2010 elections).  And then the US government worked the other political blocs.  They appealed to their egos, "Be the bigger person.  Come on, you know your more mature than Nouri."  They appealed to their fears, "Nouri's gone 8 months already, you know he can dig his heels in.  This could last four years.  Four years with no government in Iraq."  (The Parliament had no real meeting during the stalemate. Because it's first order of business is to declare a President and name a prime minister-designate who then has 30 days to form a full Cabinet or someone else is named prime minister-designate and given the chance.)  They appealed to their greed, "Look this is a legal contract.  Nouri wants to be prime minister.  He's willing to trade.  What do you want?"  And they swore that no only was this a legally binding contract but that the contract had the full backing of the US government.

The contract outlined a power-sharing agreement.  Nouri got the post of prime minister.  Ayad Allawi, whose Iraqiya won the election, would head a new independent committee over national security, the Kurds would get Nouri to finally implement Article 140 of the Constitution (Kirkuk -- census and referendum), etc.

That was November 2010.  The day after the contract was signed, the Parliament finally met.  Jalal Talabani was named President (for a second term), Nouri became prime minister-designate (which was a joke, The Erbil Agreement circumvented the Constitution which no longer applied).

And the farce began.  Those promises to Iraqiya?  In the legal contract?  They couldn't be honored right then, but they would be, State of Law and Nouri swore.  Iraqiya walked out that first day but was persuaded by the US government to go back in and show good faith.


In January 2011, it was still too soon, according to Nouri, to implement elements of The Erbil Agreement. 

And by the summer of 2011, the Kurds, Iraqiya and Moqtada al-Sadr were calling for Nouri to implement the contract.

Calling with no help from the US government.

Calling for the agreement they were told was not only a legally binding contract, but one that the full backing of the US government.

The White House has played dumb.

And the political blocs that signed that contract would be insane to trust Nouri now.

What the US governments wants now is for 'all sides' to come to the table and talk.  To figure out an arrangement.

No.  That's insanity.

The political crisis was fixed with The Erbil Agreement.  And Nouri used it to get his second term and then refused to honor it.

There doesn't need to be a new agreement, he needs to honor the contract he signed.

Instead, the US government hopes Iraqis are stupid and will fall for this crap again.

Nouri breaks every promise.  Over the weekend, State of Law announced he was seeking a third term as prime minister.  February 5, 2011, he told AFP not only would he not seek a third term but that he was going to work to change the Constitution to limit the prime minister post to two terms.  He told those lies because Iraqis were in the streets protesting his corrupt government and, in the region, protesters were taking down governments.  Or, protesters the US-backed.  The US media was all over Egypt.  They didn't give a damn in 2011 about Iraqi protesters. 

Nouri breaks every promise and every agreement.

More importantly, Iraq was brought to a grinding halt for 8 months and the political blocs all agreed to concessions so that the country could move forward -- that was The Erbil Agreement.

All Iraq News quotes Iraqiya MP Hamza al-Kartani stating today that the political process is dead.  

That's true.  Iraq's just gone in circles over and over since Nouri's failure to implement The Erbil Agreement.  If that agreement's not followed, there's no reason for a new one.

Early elections are probably the best option but, as Iraqiya is insisting, a caretaker government needs to be put in charge.  Nouri abused his office during the 2010 elections and the stalemate that followed. 

The French government attempted to have a caretaker government put in place in 2010 and the US (represented by Susan Rice) blocked that in the United Nations.  Why?

Because Nouri lost the 2010 elections and if he stepped down, he wouldn't be able to steal a second term as prime minister.

So Iraqis are left with a leader they didn't want and they're left to suffer all because the White House (Barack Obama) wanted to keep Nouri in place.  (The idiot Samantha Power swore it was Nouri was the best choice.  She also married Cass Sunstein who is ugly, has a comb over, has oversized hands that belong on a giant, foul breath and can't stop fidgeting.  So that tells us all we need to know about Samantha Power's judgment.)

From yesterday's snapshot:

All Iraq News reports Jalal will be on media outlets shortly, or that's what Kurdistan Alliance MP Muhsin al-Sadoun is declaring.

Why is this big news today?  Because Nouri wants a new president of Iraq. Earlier today. All Iraq News reported on the call for President Jalal Talbani to be replaced.  Who's calling for it.  The Supreme Judicial Council that Nouri controls.  Alsumaria notes the court is demanding the Parliament replace Jalal.  Last year,  Talabani suffered a stroke.  The incident took place late on December 17th (see the December 18th snapshot) and resulted in Jalal being admitted to Baghdad's Medical Center Hospital.    Thursday, December 20th, he was moved to Germany.  He remains in Germany currently.  Friday,  All Iraq News noted that the PUK's Najm al-Din Karim declared today that the rumors are false and that "Talabani enjoys good health and has continuous improvement" and "Talabani's health continues to improve day after day."  Kitabat reported this morning that the court's demand notes Jalal's "lengthy absence."  They also note that MP Khaled Huani (with Parliament's Legal Committee and part of the Kurdistan Alliance -- Jalal is a Kurd) declared that the Committee read the court's request, discussed it and then rejected it on the grounds that the request was illegal and unconstitutional.  This evening, al-Sadoun tells All Iraq News that Jalal's doctors say his health is improving and he will be making media appearances shortly.

 Nouri's efforts to displace Jalal come as Al Rafidayn reports Nouri's fighting back rumors about his own health.  (The rumors are that he's seriously ill and will be leaving the country for medical treatment.)  If the rumors were true, that would be interesting -- Iraq's president and Iraq's prime minister both out of the country seeking medical treatment.

All Iraq News reports today that Iraqiya MP Khalid al-Alwani is calling for Nouri to implement power-sharing (Erbil Agreement), "The health problem happend to Maliki recently as reported by media outlets may be was a message from God for him to change his way of running the State.  All the tyrannical politicians have temporary power and are human beings who die at the end."

All Iraq News reports Watanioun MP Abdul Rahman al-Lawizi is stating that a new president must be named.  NINA quotes MP Mohsen al-Sadoun stating, "The [Parliamentary Legal] Committee will determine its position on the replacement of President Jalal Talbani after the visit by his doctor to Germany and determine his health condition."

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