As expected, the Iraqi Kurds and Shiites, with the blessings of the USA, have pushed out the draft constitution for the new Iraq. The Sunnis have refused to support the draft, accusing the new laws as deliberately conducive to the breakup of the nation of Iraq as we know it today.
Now the Arab League has condemned the document as a recipe for chaos, and pointed to its potential for civil war. But the heavy handprint of American insistence could be seen in its hurried completion with an obsenely unrealistic dateline.
The old saying of shops that “if you break it, you buy it”, also reminded by Colin Powell to President Bush before the invasion, has been disregarded by the Americans. They want a constitution in place, regardless of its potential for civil war, as an essential ingredient in their exit strategy. The Bush Administration invasion has “broken” Iraq, but they have now refused to "buy" the current shambles of their created fragments, wanting only to exit el pronto.
Civil war? Sunnis form supermajorities in three provinces and majorities in at least four provinces. They don't need a civil war to reject the constitution - if three provinces vote against the constitution with more than a 2/3 majority, its a dud.ReplyDelete
But remember, Sunni leaders don't always have the same opinion as fellow Sunnis, in the same manner Samy Vellu don't represent me. The Sunnis in the constitutional committee wanted a unitary Arab republic state with limited autonomy. In other words, they want a throwback to the good ol' days prior to the Iraq war where they dominate successive Iraqi regimes.
This constitution may just be their wake-up call.
As for the constitution leading to a break-up of Iraq, while the federal-regional/provincial power distribution would be decided by the first National Assembly, it would mean most domestic laws would be regional/provincial matters. Logically, that would actually keep Iraq together - with sufficient autonomy, they would have less reason to split up.
In any case, why would an Iraqi breakup be a bad thing? Iraq is a British invention, a combination of three distinct Ottoman provinces. Merely added together simply for oil reasons - with British allies, the Sunni Hashemites in power over both Mosul and Basra provinces where most of the oil is concentrated but none of their allies, the Sunnis, are.
Its merely correcting a colonial mistake, right?
Are today's Sunni Arabs still Hashemites, even though the last Iraqi King, Faisal II was one, cousin to the late Jordanian King?ReplyDelete
The US and Israel would love to see a Hashemite in charge - there is in fact a possible contender Prince Raad Ibn Zaid but I don't see his name being mentioned at all.
I think the world is generally fed up with loose cannon royalty.
Now I didn't say that the breakup of Iraq was necessarily bad especially for the Kurds whom I have a lot of sympathy towards. I am merely pointing out that the way the draft constitution is being pushed by the US, for its own interest, is more likely to evoke civil war, and a fairly long one at that.
The equation in that Sunni-Shiite-Israeli triangle is too difficult to read which means sensible strategy can't be intelligently formulated.