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[size=40]After Allawi’s decision .. Three opportunities await the Iraqis[/size]
March 07, 2020
Muhammad Tawfiq Allawi’s decision to withdraw his candidacy for the prime minister in the next Iraqi government revealed the major deficiencies in the Iraqi political process and the opportunities that can be used to address this defect, according to a report by the Washington-based Center for Atlantic Council for International Studies and Research.
The center’s senior researcher, Anthony Fave, says in an article published Friday that taking advantage of these opportunities requires constitutional reforms that are agreed to by everyone, although there is no consensus on how best to do this.
According to Fave, that despite the political cover provided by the current protests for such reforms, achieving them requires an uphill battle, given that Iran will continue to use its influence to maintain the status quo, in order to facilitate the achievement of its goals of removing American forces and ensuring Iraq remains a weak and submissive neighbor. .
Pfaff, who is also a professor at the Institute of Strategic Studies at the United States Military War College, notes that Allawi made the right choice when he apologized for the formation of the government, as he tried to reduce the power of parties in his cabinet, but he did not succeed in obtaining sufficient support from Parliament.
But this step was good for Iran, which is exploiting corruption, bad security and sectarian politics in Iraq to expand and consolidate its influence, according to the author.
"While the popular protests challenged Iran's influence, what Tehran really fears is a transparent and effective Iraqi government that not only provides public services, but also weakens Tehran's efforts to control the political process in Iraq."
Tehran’s desires in Iraq, rejected by the demonstrators, should be unacceptable to the United States or the rest of the international community, because the continuation of this dynamic will not only delay Iraq’s recovery, but also put it on a path to becoming an isolated and poor country like Iran, according to the report.
However, the author believes that, despite the challenges, there are opportunities to support Iraq given the pressures of popular protests, as follows:
The first opportunity : get a candidate for prime minister, supported by everyone. In the past, this meant nominating a weak person unable to pose any threat to party influence.
But today, in light of the protests, protesters may be able to impose the candidacy of at least an efficient person associated with the protest movement emerging in Iraq, whatever his ties to Iran.
The second opportunity : starting a credible constitutional reform process. As long as the Prime Minister and government nominations are subject to the interests of the various political parties in Iraq, it will remain difficult to form efficient and non-influential governments.
But the good news is that constitutional reforms are something everyone can get. Although it is difficult to define specific reforms, persistent protests may force Parliament to take these reforms more seriously.
The third opportunity: The first two opportunities for the Iraqis, and the third is for the United States, which must stay away from the protesters. This means finding ways to confront Iran outside Iraq, because doing so in Iraq simply exacerbates Iraqi popular sentiments against any external influence and distracts attention from the anti-Iranian character of the protests.
This point does not mean that the United States should not defend itself. Rather, it must abandon the response or find a response that does not include Iraq, according to the report.
Likewise, Washington should continue its efforts to expose Iran's pernicious influence, especially the use of militias to kill protesters.
And the researcher adds that Washington should withhold military and economic aid currently provided if the Iraqi security forces use again violence against peaceful protests.
In conclusion, the author of the article believes that the United States cannot prevent Iraq from becoming an isolated, poor, and dependent Iran, if this is the path chosen by Iraqi leaders.
However, the report notes that in order to prevent this shift, the United States needs to identify opportunities and take advantage of them proactively when they arise to support the current protest movement as well as empowering Iraqi actors able to create the conditions for reform.
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twa withdrew due to Iranian pressure this was probably the last shot the people had for freedom. you left out 3 more possible choices first another pm oicked by iran. second possible chap 7 put back by the un/ usa and lastly a real revolt by the people. imho I believe the choice of a pm is coming but they cannot wait too long since Iraq is in very bad financial shape until a new gov takes over
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