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In Iraq, Maliki Loses More Friends

By Rudaw 2/8/2013
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. Photo: AP
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. Photo: AP



BAGHDAD, Iraq – Iraq’s Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki is blaming opponents and allies alike for his government’s failures, accusing a deputy of giving him wrong information about power outages and charging that the Shiite Mahdi Army was behind the recent escape of prisoners from Baghdad jails.

In an interview with Al Iraqiya TV, a semi-official channel in Iraq that gathered Maliki and a number of Iraqi political commentators, the premier said that electricity blackouts across the country were not his fault.

“Hussein Shahristani, Iraqi deputy PM for energy affairs, has given me incorrect information about the level of electricity production in Iraq,” said Maliki, whose Shiite-led government has been adrift as attacks and bombings have risen dramatically, and the country’s large Sunni and Kurdish minorities no longer regard him as the man to lead Iraq.

“Unfortunately these mistakes happen at a time when the Iraqi PM has three deputies. Each deputy prime minister should have acted responsibly towards the problems of social services,” said Maliki, providing a glimpse into the turmoil and disunity inside his own inner circle.

In the same interview, Maliki blamed the fellow-Shiite Sadr Movement’s Mahdi Army for this month’s attacks on teahouses and cafes in Baghdad. 

“The Mahdi Army is also involved in the escape of prisoners in Abu Ghraib and Taji prisons in Baghdad,” Maliki said. He described Wathiq Batat, leader of the Iraqi Hizbullah and the Mukhtar Army, as “insane.”

Maliki’s verbal attacks have shaken the Shiite alliance, provoking strong reactions.

Habeeb Tarfi, an MP of the al-Muwatin Movement bloc inside the Sadr Movement, said that the alliance would discuss Maliki’s accusations. He did not rule out that Maliki’s intentions behind the accusations was to create disunity among the National Iraqi Alliance (NIA).

“These statements of Maliki represent his own personal views. We decided to discuss them within NIA in the near future,” said Tarfi.

The strongest response came to Maliki’s statements came from Ameer Kanani, secretary general of the Sadr Movement.

“The NIA is not made up of Maliki alone. The alliance consists of many factions and groups. The only rebel in this alliance is Maliki’s State of Law, which does not abide by the directives of the alliance,” said Kanani.

“Maliki’s statements were inappropriate,” Kanani added.  “These statements will drive the political groups to better consider whom they elect next time for the position of Iraqi PM.”

“Maliki is trying to escape from his failures in improving security, social services, foreign relations, and eliminating corruption. He even failed to provide Iraqi citizens with food rations, which Saddam succeeded in providing despite the economic embargo,” said Kanani.

“The next government will become the first independent Iraqi government after the withdrawal of the American forces, because the United States and Iran had their roles in appointing the Iraqi prime minister,” Kanan claimed.

“If Maliki becomes the PM again, Iraq will fall into division and civil war,” he charged.

Hashim Haboubi, Iraqi political columnist, said that Maliki’s attacks are related to the upcoming parliamentary elections.

“Maliki has no other option but to attempt to create excuses for his failures in politics, economy, security and social services,” Haboubi said.


Simko | 2/8/2013
This article is a genuine and true account of what is the filthy so-called state of Iraq with the P.M. blaming his own governing partners,from his same Shiite sect,of bombing cafehouses and mosques filled with ordinary praying citizens,attacking high security prisons and liberating hundreds of convicted Alcaida jihadists.He says ,furthermore,that his first deputy and trusted man Shahristani had provided him with inaccurate information about the failing energy power and basic services.These declarations come at the end of July, a month that registered 1058 deathes and many thousends of injuries as result of bombings in the Arab Iraq.Today's Arab Iraq,like that Iraq of Sadam is the "jewel" of the British crown and the protégé state of the American president Obama who is pursuing the same anti-kurdish agenda as Churchill,Reagan and others did.The Kurds,from Arian descent,secularists,peace loving people,freedom fighters who strictly never practiced terror are subject,nevertheless, to the politics of denial from the West.Why ?,let's ask.Look to the North,and behold how the free Kurdistán is prosperous,has a functioning democracy,is seeking peace and pursuing solutions through dialogue.Why the West sides then with the violent Arabs,Turks and Iranians,all with a more or less apparent violent islamist agenda?. Perhaps it is only a matter of preference as puts it professor David Romano.Perhaps it is only ignorance,perhaps it is just about old patterns inherited from post WWI politics,continuity of old habits and alliances;all that,regrdless to what goes on today on the ground.Most astonishingly Obama sides with bombing ridden Arab Iraq against the democratic, peaceful,oil rich and prosperous Kurdistán. And in the Syrian civil war he denys the Kurdish rights telling us we should "integrate" in the jihadist Sunnite side and abandon our demands of freedom and national aspirations.Here you have the true face of the incumbent American president.We have to remember our American friends-and we do have many-that we came in 2003 to save them in the worst of their hours in the Iraq war while they were litteraly betrayed by Turkey,their NATO alleged ally.Do the American policy makers not consider in any way any code of ethics in their behaviour? This an undoubted sign of decay.The Kurds constitue the only secularist nation in the Middle East,and with similar values as as Westners.A fact to be taken in account by Western policymakers.If they are able to make any review of their old patterns.
Hejar | 4/8/2013
Simko, I appreciate your passion and frustration over the U.S. involvement in supporting the Kurdish people but it's important to understand the different dynamics that are present. The U.S. has a very delicate balance with regards to their policy in the Middle East. They have interests and alliances strategically in place, many of which are decades old and would not easily be abandoned. I don't think the Kurdish poeple should expect full support right now but there are many positives for our people today. The Kurdish people are no longer just an after-thought in world affairs. President Obama invited President Barzani for a meeting to the white house and received him like he would the president of a sovereign country, that was a big step. I also think the recent developments in regards to Turkey's changing attitude towards the great Kurdish people are very signaficant. The Kurdish people are in a great place within the world and regional affairs but there are still many struggles left before the ultimate dreams are realized.
Bill Lees | 5/8/2013
Lets face it ,Bush was the last decades biggest terrorist using the 9/11 mantra as an excuse to launch a war victimizing the Iraqi people while serving the interest of his corporate handlers. Obama on the other hand was weak and stupid acquiescing to the Iranian Ayatollahs to put Maliki in the drivers seat in an effort to drive the battered remains of Iraq into Iranian control while talking about Al Quaeda. Who has done the most damage in the MidEast ,the US or Al Quaeda?History repeats itself US creates a war zone , victimizes millions of people declares victory and leaves behind a poisoned terrain
J Adams | 6/8/2013
CORRECTION REQUIRED - "Habeeb Tarfi, an MP of the al-Muwatin Movement bloc inside the Sadr Movement, said that the alliance would discuss Maliki’s accusations." Correction 1 - al-Muwatin bloc is part of the Supreme Islamic Council of Iraq lead by Ammar Hakim. Correction 2 - Habeeb Tarfi is a memeber of Al-Muwatin bloc and not Al-muwatin Movement. Correction 3 - "Ameer Kanani" is not the secretary general of the Sadr Movement. Dhia Al-Asadi is the secretary general.
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