We have been sacrificing our youth as IED fodder for so many years now, but a "draft law that would ease restrictions on former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party, a measure seen by the Bush administration as crucial to national reconciliation, was presented in parliament on Sunday for the first time. A powerful Shiite faction quickly objected to any moves to bring the Baathists back into government jobs, and a table-pounding argument erupted in the closed-door session, forcing postponement of the debate."
Independent Kurdish lawmaker, Mahmoud Othman, who attended the session, explains, "The Sadrists see the draft law as permissive with Baathists and it would bring them back their jobs. They think it's an amnesty for them… We are against the idea of revenge, we want a real reconciliation. The judiciary decides who committed crimes against Iraqis," he added. "Flexibility and forgiveness are needed to reach this goal."
Aside from the law on Baathists, reconciliation legislation to distribute oil revenue among Iraq's sects, reform the constitution and set a date for provincial elections also remain stalled.
This article "Bush, al-Maliki sign deal" puts it all in perspective. W's oil bidness cronies will get to rape and pillage Iraq's resources for huge amounts of money which will be dwarfed by the huge financial treasure we will throw away for the top 1%'s benefit only! This treaty--which isn't one, and wasn't even read by Congress-whose role it is to ratify treaties, shows the utter contempt W has for us. We are going to be stuck there as long as we've been stuck in Korea-which W has been lately muttering, and once these bases and military get hunkered down, it isn't an overnight thing to get them back! We need them. W has pissed off the entire 1% sub-segment of Islamic people who believe in killing the infidels-which would be us, for this war for oil at a staggering price.
"The agreement between Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki confirms that the United States and Iraq will hash out an "enduring" relationship in military, economic and political terms. The U.S.-Iraq agreement will replace the present U.N. mandate regulating the presence of the U.S.-led forces in Iraq. Al-Maliki said the pact provides for U.S. support for the ‘democratic regime in Iraq against domestic and external dangers.’ It also would help the Iraqi government thwart any attempt to suspend or repeal the constitution drafted with U.S. help and adopted in a nationwide vote in 2005. That appeared to be a reference to any attempt to remove the government by violence or in a coup."
The article "White House Releases "Principles" for Permanent Iraqi Presence" deals with who specifically W will help as "A ‘democratic Iraq’ here means the Shiite-led Iraqi government. The current political arrangement will receive U.S. military protection against coups or any other internal subversion. That's something the Iraqi government wants desperately: not only is it massively unpopular, even among Iraqi Shiites, but the increasing U.S.-Sunni security cooperation strikes the Shiite government -- with some justification -- as a recipe for a future coup."
Why is W getting the Sunnis to fight Al Qaeda in Iraq? Does he think they won't notice that if and when Al Qaeda in Iraq stops killing Sunnis that the Shiite will be continuing? Why not just tell the Sunnis to go and let the Shiite and Al Qaeda in Iraq battle it out. The Sunnis have nothing to gain as a result of vanquishing Al Qaeda in Iraq and when they realize that their hard work won't get the US to aid them they deservedly will be disgusted with W.
The detached central Baghdad government is hypocritical if the pact between W and al-Maliki turns out to be between the US and the Iraqi Shiites solely. If W wanted this type of local solution then why didn't he support partitions? The only answer is that he wants the Shiite to run every last Sunni out of Iraq, but that isn't a sure thing. How could it be with the Sunnis in Iraq getting help from their brethren in Saudi Arabia?
The article "American-backed killer militias strut across Iraq" considers that the Sunnis can hold their own against the Shiites. It goes back to basic math-the Shiites have 3 times as many soldiers than the Sunni. It states the Suunis are being armed by the US as "Members of the Baghdad Brigade receive $300 a man each month from the Americans, who also provide vehicles, uniforms and flak jackets. In return the brigade keeps out Al-Qaeda, dismantles roadside bombs and patrols the area, a task performed with considerable swagger by many of its 4,000 recruits....
But, for Shi'ites such as Kahiriya Musa, however, a Sunni militia represents another potential source of terror in a country where millions have been traumatized by ethnic cleansing.
Officials in the Shi'ite-led government also fear the burgeoning of fresh forces beyond its control. The question being asked in government circles is: have the Americans achieved a short-term gain in security at a cost of long-term pain that may be inflicted by the Sunni militias, which are already threatening to go to war against their Shi'ite counterparts?
The western province of Anbar first witnessed the phenomenon known as "the awakening" – the turning of Sunni tribes against the largely foreign fighters of Al-Qaeda in Iraq. “For General David Petraeus, the American commander, the awakening has proved a powerful force with which to increase the impact of his surge of 30,000 US troops earlier this year."
The Sunni are vicious and so are the Shiite, and they are desperate if they are dealing with Chalabi. "It is little wonder that Shi'ite sheikhs have been queuing up this month to air their worries about the Sunni militias to Ahmad Chalabi, a former deputy prime minister who is now in charge of reconstruction and who straddles the sectarian divide.
"Many of the groups in the awakening are the same men who used to kill and displace our people," one protested. "Any return of refugees is near impossible if this is not resolved." Chalabi has come to an accommodation with the Sunni sheikhs of Sab al-Boor: they will get better services – electricity, schools, factories reopened to create jobs – if they guarantee security for 100,000 refugees to return home from temporary shelter in Baghdad."
Who knows what will happen? Recently Ryan Crocker trotted out Rummy's line about it being "a long hard slog". It will depend on when Saudi Arabia and Iran decide to stop aiding their surrogates fighting in Iraq. Since they both are making huge profits on their oil this war could be going on for generations.