Sunday, October 02, 2005

Cracks Show in Iraq's Government

Tensions and discord over the proposed Iraqi constitution reached new heights today with President Jalal Talabani calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari. The two represent the major Kurdish and Shiite coalitions in Iraq, coalitions that must cooperate if there is any hope of a unified government. (ABC: Iraq's President Calls for PM to Step Down).

It's a given that the third major coalition in Iraq, the Sunnis, want little to do with the unified government or with the proposed constitution. The rift between Talabani and al-Jaafari now make a unified government seem even less likely. In fact, it's enough of an issue that top military officials took to the airways on Sunday to allay fears that Iraq will dissolve into civil war. (Reuters: U.S. generals downplay fears of civil war in Iraq).

The reality is that Iraq has been in a state of civil war since the fall of Baghdad three years ago. The three major ethnic factions in Iraq have not gotten along since Biblical times, and it's unlikely that they will start now. The challenge facing the US is not the prevention of civil war in Iraq. Civil war is happening now and there's nothing the US or our allies can do about that. Rather, the challenge facing us is ensuring a pro-western government ends up in control of Iraq when all is said and done. I really don't care which group ends up in control of Iraq, although personally I think Shiite control would be a worst-case scenario. What I do care about is having a government there that will supply the US with oil, will allow the US a strong military presence, and one that will serve as an ally against other nations in the region. Who controls Iraq and what form of government they have is irrelevant.

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1 comment :

Alan Fraser said...

My personal favorite GOP quote last week was this: "If the Iraqi constitution isn't approved, I'm afraid the country will descend into anarchy." (Paraphrased but accurate to content)

Considering that and the Brown debacle, it's pretty clear that you're the only one in the GOP who reads the news.